Wednesday, 27 July 2016


This paper by Dr Roy Spencer is well worth reading as it puts into perspective the various factors that lead to errors in measuring temperatures and the value of those errors compared to the warming that has been measured. Most people simply read the headlines in the papers about "the warmest ever" temperatures, without understanding the errors associated with those measurements. 

Tuesday, 26 July 2016


This article explains the issue very well. It is now propaganda that is being fed to our young people and not the true scientific method. The problem for alarmists is that the brightest young people can see this for what it is and so they will then arrive in the sceptic camp.

Monday, 25 July 2016


Christopher Booker is stating the truth when he forecasts trouble ahead for the UK energy sector. Here is the latest newsletter from the excellent Scientific Alliance which confirms that Booker is right.

A reliable energy supply has always been a prerequisite for a modern industrial society. Lenin – certainly interested in power in all its forms – once said “Communism is Soviet power plus electrification of the whole country”. In today’s world, there seems to be a move towards the second aim, although hopefully not the first.

Electrification is a large part of the proposed plan to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and mitigate future climate changes in many countries. Enthusiasts see a future where cars are battery powered and domestic gas heating systems have been replaced by electric radiators of some description, or heat pumps. As a possible route to radical decarbonisation, it has some conceptual attractions, but there are some pretty big obstacles to overcome if this vision is ever to become a reality.

Leaving aside for now the thorny issue of cost – both to the consumer and the public purse – the two major points that have to be addressed are the extra generating capacity that has to be added to the system, and the primary fuel used in the new power stations. Since the aim of the whole exercise would be to reduce carbon emissions, this point about the fuel is critical, so more about this later.

But first, how much generating capacity would be needed? The 2015 edition of the official Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES) reports a total generating capacity of 85 GW in 2014, and it is this figure that is the key one in terms of meeting peak demand. Not all of this capacity is necessarily available at any one time and, in particular, the output of the increasing amount of wind and solar capacity may be out of phase with actual demand. This is one reason why the country is a net importer of electricity via its system of interconnectors to the near continent.

The same source reports a total amount of 339 TWh of electricity generated, supplemented by imports. To illustrate the difficulty of matching supply and demand, the total consumption was just 303 TWh, meaning that at least 36 TWh of electricity was either generated when it was not needed or lost in the system. To put these figures into context, the theoretical output from 85 GW of capacity running flat out every hour of the year is 744 TWh, so the overall capacity factor of the UK system in 2014 was just 45.6%.

That is what we have to supply current demand. Now let’s look at the energy used for transport and heating. Looking only at road transport (rail is a minor sector and aircraft are unlikely to go electric any time soon), energy consumption in 2014 was 40 Mtoe (million tonnes of oil equivalent), 63% used for passenger transport and 37% for freight (DECC: Energy consumption in the UK chapter 2).

On the domestic front, total consumption of fossil fuels (primarily gas) was 27 Mtoe (Energy consumption in the UK chapter 3). Interestingly, despite the historically poor standard of house insulation, total energy consumption per household has fallen significantly in recent decades, due to a combination of increased insulation and more efficient boilers and other appliances. Despite some bad publicity, energy efficiency measures seem to be at least partially successful.

What would be the impact of conversion of the transport and domestic sectors to electricity? One million tonne of oil equivalent represents 11.6 TWh of electricity. So, if we assume that overall energy consumption by all sectors remains the same, converting road transport to electricity would consume a further 464 TWh, while domestic consumption would rise by 313 TWh. Total electricity demand would be 1080 TWh, three and a half times the current total.

Actually, demand would be even higher, as a terawatt hour generated does not all reach the consumer. The DUKES 2015 report gives a figure of 27.5 TWh lost in the previous year in the high-voltage transmission system and the final distribution network; that’s about 9% of electricity generated. That would increase total demand on the generating system by a about another 70 TWh.

The energy needing to be generated for transport would also be significantly higher than the bald figures suggest. In simple terms, using a tonne of oil to power a car directly is more efficient than using it to generate electricity, distributing that to car batteries and drawing on those batteries to drive the car. Each stage of this chain incurs losses. A diesel engine can be 45% efficient. Electric motors can be much more efficient, but generating, transmission, distribution and storage losses more than offset this.

Overall, we can expect that electrification of homes and road transport would require at least four to five times the current generating capacity. However, some would argue that much of the transport load could be supplied by overnight charging. If we assume that this does in fact take care of a significant proportion of demand, then let’s be optimistic and say that UK generating capacity has to be just tripled.

Even if there were to be a crash programme to build dozens of new gas-powered stations, this would be difficult to do in a reasonable timescale and, more importantly in the context of the raison d’ĂȘtre of the whole project, would not decarbonise the system. There are those who say that this can be done by a massive expansion of renewable energy, but this seems barely credible. Even if sufficient sites could be found for wind farms (we have to accept that solar can only make a very modest contribution at northern European latitudes) enormous amounts of conventional backup capacity would be needed to guarantee security of supply.

The only viable alternative would be a vast expansion of nuclear capacity, which seems unlikely to happen in the near future, given the Hinkley Point C debacle. There are alternatives to the Areva design, and Small Modular Reactors could have a bright future, but we are unlikely to see any new nuclear on stream in this country before the late 2020s.

This rough analysis strongly suggests that ambitious national emissions reduction targets are going to be increasingly difficult to meet and that essentially complete decarbonisation of the economy by 2050 is currently an unrealisable vision. However, the political earthquake the UK has experienced over the last four weeks (yes, just four weeks since the referendum!) gives a golden opportunity to revisit existing policy and turn it into something realistic, achievable and worthwhile.

Sunday, 24 July 2016


Yes it's true, they are looking at hydrogen to replace the natural gas in order to lower our CO2 emissions. Here is the article that explains the idea. Clearly this is going to be an expensive option, as they intend to convert the methane into hydrogen via a chemical reaction. It is typical of the kind of mad thinking required if we believe that saving a tiny amount of CO2 emissions is going to improve the climate. Unfortunately the government does seem to believe this. Oh dear!

Saturday, 23 July 2016


If you think that you live in an independent state (provided you are not a member of the EU) then you may have to think again when you have read this article. If you have the time I also recommend that you read the comments underneath as some of them are very enlightening. One thing before you start - the article contains a number of acronyms which you may or may not be familiar with. Here are some explanations:
TPTB - the powers that be
TPP - Trans Pacific Partnership (an FTA)
TTIP - Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (another FTA between USA and EU)
FTA - Free Trade Agreement
It is quite a long post, but it demonstrates just how much other stuff, including a raft of environmental regulation, gets put into something that most 'laymen' would expect to focus simply on trade.

While no doubt the EU is an extreme example of a trans-national organisation which aims to exercise a lot of control over its member states, these so-called free trade agreements, drawn up by international lawyers immersed in all aspects of these kind of things, also purport to cover as many areas as they can fit in.

Of course we all know that some (many) nations will minimise and even ignore many of the aspects of these agreements, and get away with it, but others, including, unfortunately, the UK, seem to observe every bit, even embellishing some aspects for good measure, ably assisted by an over zealous judiciary. Who needs enemies when our government signs us up to these kind of agreements?

Friday, 22 July 2016


This article looks at the pressure being put on to business leaders not to challenge the climate change hypothesis. And it works, as hardly any business leaders will speak out for fear of either losing business or losing their job. 

Thursday, 21 July 2016


This article refers to a report on the BBC which claimed that June 2016 was the hottest ever June. The article demonstrates that this claim is not backed by the evidence of the satellite temperature record. How those trying to perpetrate the global warming fear thesis must rue the fact that these satellite records exist.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016


Peggy Hollinger, Financial Times


Ineos, the $50bn petrochemicals giant controlled by British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, aims to accelerate shale gas development in the UK by lodging as many as 30 planning applications to drill test wells in the next six months.

Tom Crotty, a director at Ineos, said the company hoped to start drilling in the north of England early next year and could begin extracting gas in about 18 months through the controversial technique known as fracking.
The move comes as the group this year ends a six-year tax exile with the opening of a new headquarters in London for its mainly UK-based upstream oil and gas businesses. [...]
The group, which owns the Grangemouth refinery in Scotland, has ambitions to become a substantial oil and gas producer, particularly in shale gas. Ineos has backed a highly public campaign to convince the Scottish government to lift its moratorium on fracking over the past year.
Full story (subscription required)

Tuesday, 19 July 2016


This report by Tony Heller looks at a whole range of data and compares the latest data with earlier versions.  The conclusion is that there has been significant tampering to produce warming where none existed before. It is time that the scientists responsible for this were forced to account for what they have done. 

Monday, 18 July 2016


Starting now, but becoming increasingly noticeable by 2020, a new mini ice age, similar to the one between 1645 and 1715 when the Thames regularly froze, is confidently predicted. The details are to be found in this article. If true it raises a number of questions including - what will governments do to keep people warm by providing cheap forms of heating? Having abandoned fossil fuels (at least partially) will we see a U-turn in policy? It looks like we have interesting times ahead.

Sunday, 17 July 2016


This article gives the details of the difficulties they face as the German government attempts to reduce its level of CO2 emissions as well as phasing out nuclear power. If they persist they may well cause the collapse of the once mighty German economy. The danger for the German people is that once they have gone so far down the road it is very difficult to go back, without incurring even more costs to get back to where they were. It is rather like walking into boggy ground - once you have taken the decision to keep going you are bound to get stuck! 

Saturday, 16 July 2016


What fantastic news, so we can now relax and not worry about any cities going beneath the waves. Low lying atolls will be safe for the future. Here is the report. 

Friday, 15 July 2016


This piece from Jo Nova looks at the views of the newly appointed UK government on climate alarmism, and concludes that there might be some hope of optimism. I suspect it is nothing more than hope, as politicians have a habit of conforming to convention once they are given power. However this piece suggests that our new Prime Minister may be getting some sensible advice, but will she take it?

Thursday, 14 July 2016


This piece gives the details of a new 'scary' report on what to expect in the next few decades from climate change. However our good friend Paul Homewood soon debunks it all using the climate data already available which shows that up to now there has been no weather changes that have not happened in the past. It is simply all hype using cherry-picked data.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016


Some alarmist scientists had been predicting a massive rate of extinction of species as a result of global warming. Of course we now know that the ate of global warming has been negligible over recent years and this report confirms that the rate of species extinction has also been negligible. So yet another scare story comes to nothing. No wonder the public are tiring of the whole thing. If only the governments would do the same.

This excerpt from the report gives a flavour of it "It is possible to count the number of species known to be extinct. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) does just that. It has listed 801 animal and plant species (mostly animal) known to have gone extinct since 1500.” So that’s a few more than 800 species extinctions since 1500. Of those, just 3 have occurred since rapid global warming resumed in the 1970s (following the 1940s to 1970s cooling period), or since CO2 concentrations have risen from about 325 ppm (1970s) to over 400 ppm (2016)."

Tuesday, 12 July 2016


This piece explains what is going on in the strange Alice in Wonderland world of the UK energy market today. The government, having tried to show their 'green' credentials by closing coal-fired electricity generating plants early, are now waking up to the reality that they will not have sufficient generating capacity to keep the lights on in the depths of a cold snap, so they are paying these same coal-fired generating plants to stand by to add their supply to the grid. You just could not make it up, as they say!

Monday, 11 July 2016


Here is a very good piece about the claims by some alarmists that the 'pause' in global warming has ended. Christopher Monckton uses the scientific data to prove that nothing has really changed and the changes that have and are taking place can all be explained by natural processes that have always taken place. Very reassuring.

Sunday, 10 July 2016


Here are some details of a most interesting lecture by Professor Murry Salby, entitled  "Atmospheric Carbon: Why It’s Not Pollution and Why Humans Cannot Regulate It"
No, it’s not for the reasons you have heard. The ultimate reason that emitted carbon dioxide (CO2) is not a pollutant is far more fundamental. In its light, energy sources that circumvent CO2 emission are neither cleaner nor greener. They’re just different.
New research (not previously released) establishes that, even if CO2 was a pollutant, humans’ capacity to regulate its concentration in the atmosphere is extremely limited.
It reveals why a three-fold increase in the growth of fossil fuel emission at the turn of the century, which led to far more CO2 being emitted in the subsequent decade than was emitted in the preceding decade, resulted in no increase in the growth of atmospheric CO2. The research demonstrates that, even if fossil fuel emission was eliminated entirely, it would scarcely alter how much CO2 is in the atmosphere.
Changes of the Earth’s temperature, along with the myriad of environmental disasters that have been speculated would follow from fossil fuel emission, are then not merely beyond human control. They are irrelevant.
The lecture is being held on 18th July 6.45pm for 7.15pm, in the Large Lecture theatre (GO6), Roberts Building, University College, London -  Entrance from Torrington Place WC1E 7HB (opposite Waterstones bookshop) Nearest Tube stations: Euston Square, Goodge St. Free admission (donations accepted!) Contact: Philip Foster 01480 399098

Saturday, 9 July 2016


This post looks at a recent study carried out with farmers showing that they are more sceptical of the GW scare than the general population. Clearly they have much more intimate knowledge of the climate than others and so the finding is very understandable. The linked article explains that they are right to be so.

Friday, 8 July 2016


How can we trust what we read in the press or even in research papers?

Have 1 In 5 UK Academics Fabricated Data?

  • Date: 02/07/16
  • Retraction Watch

A small survey of UK academics suggests misconduct such as faking data and plagiarism is occurring surprisingly often. The survey — of 215 UK academics — estimated that 1 in 7 had plagiarized from someone else’s work, and nearly 1 in 5 had fabricated data.

Here’s how Joanna Williams and David Roberts at the University of Kent summarize the results in their full report, published by the Society for Research into Higher Education:
-Using references to support predetermined arguments rather than illuminate debate was undertaken by 38.1% (± 5.1%) respondents. This was the most frequently reported incidence of malpractice.
-36.0% (± 7.6%) of respondents reported self-plagiarising. This is more than one in three researchers.
-17.9% (± 6.1%) of academics surveyed reported having fabricated (entirely invented) research data. This is almost 1 in 5 researchers.
-13.6% (± 7.5%) of respondents reported having engaged in plagiarism.
Although these findings suggest there is cause for concern, they are higher than many of those reported by previous studies — including a 2014 paper by Roberts, which used similar survey methods and showed a fabrication rate of 0% among UK academics in biology.

Thursday, 7 July 2016


This article looks at the predictions made by the UK government about the future use of electric motor vehicles. They sound very impressive, but what are they really based on? On reading the article linked to we can see that it appears to be mainly wishful thinking on their part. However if the government are going to meet their own targets they are probably planning to 'encourage' us to take up electric vehicles, no with a carrot, but with some sticks in the shape of  penalties for using fossil fuels. That will make them very unpopular and they won't like that!

Wednesday, 6 July 2016


This report gives an update of the Australian election that has just taken place. It is possible the result could be very close, with counting still going on. It is interesting to note the re-emergence of Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party that could be very influential in a close result. The One Nation Party has a good sceptic policy on climate change. 

Tuesday, 5 July 2016


UK Gas and Electricity Prices in International Context

  • Date: 02/07/16
  • From the GWPF
  • On the 30th of June, the Department of Energy and Climate Change approved the 5th Carbon Budget and also released a large number of updates to its statistical data sets, including information on gas and electricity prices in the UK and other countries, data that underlines how unwise is the unilateral approach to climate change as embodied by the 5th Carbon Budget.
DECC reports that in 2015 UK domestic electricity prices including taxes were:
Seventh highest in the International Energy Agency member countries (of which there are 29), and 21% above the IEA country median.
In other words, UK domestic electricity prices are comparatively very expensive.
The figures for industrial electricity prices are also unfavourable. In 2015, average UK industrial electricity prices including taxes were:
Fourth highest in the IEA, and 43% above the IEA country median.
In other words, UK industrial electricity prices are comparatively expensive.
The situation with regard to gas prices is fortunately better. In 2015, average UK industrial gas prices, including taxes where not refunded, were:
Eighth lowest in the IEA, and 9% below the IEA country median.
Domestic gas prices including taxes where not refunded, were:
Thirteenth lowest in the IEA, and 1% lower than the IEA country median.
The general asymmetry between gas and electricity is easily explained. The UK’s climate policies, particularly subsidies to renewables such as wind and solar power and biomass bear very heavily on electricity, and less so on gas.
The tables also provide very helpful country price tables that allow quick comparisons. These can be remarkably illuminating. For example, in 2015 domestic electricity prices in the UK were about 15.5p/kWh, whereas in the United States the price was 8.3p/kWh, and in Korea a remarkable 6.7p/kWh.
The highest domestic electricity prices are found in Germany (22p/kWh and Denmark (21p/kWh, both countries with very aggressive renewables policies and extensive deployment, as well as policies that share the burden of renewables unevenly between industrial and domestic consumers. German industrial prices are about 9.5p/kWh, which though high by European standards (only Italy is higher in the EU 15), is only a fraction over that in the UK (9.36p/kWh). To put this another way, domestic electricity prices in the UK are 6p/kWh more than industrial prices; but in Germany the difference is 12p/kWh. Doubtless this helps to protect jobs in export based industries, but one wonders how much further the German household’s Willingness To Pay can be stretched.

Monday, 4 July 2016


Fifth Carbon Budget Based On The Assumption That The UK Remains In The EU

London 30 June: The British government has set its 5th Carbon Budget with a 2030 target of forcing CO2 emissions down by 57% on 1990 levels. In contrast, the EU-wide target is 40%.

The new Budget is the most ambitious climate policy in the world. As a result it puts the UK at a damaging competitive disadvantage compared with its European neighbours and all other major economies around the world.
Remarkably, the budget’s and government’s own Impact Assessement was drawn up weeks ago, and is based on the now incorrect assumption that the United Kingdom will still be in the EU by 2030, active in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme and covered by the EU’s Paris Agreement terms. In fact, the Impact Assessment refers to the EU more than 150 times.
It is our view that the government has behaved unreasonably, and should have delayed approval of the Budget and reassessed the impacts in the light of the far-reaching changes flowing from the referendum result.
Indeed, there was every reason to pass this extremely important decision on to the next government, allowing time for reconsideration.
The hasty, rubber-stamping of a Budget designed for very different circumstances is dangerous in itself and may be unlawful. The incoming Prime Minister should review this decision as a matter of priority. UK prosperity depends on it.

Sunday, 3 July 2016


Further to yesterday's post I predict that an early election here in the UK will be a tough task for the pollsters. Analysing the EU referendum vote shows that there was an alliance between many voters in northern towns, who would traditionally vote labour and the voters in the southern counties who would be more likely to vote conservative. Now that these voters have 'gone native' they may decide to do so again. This could be a huge opportunity for Nigel Farage and his UKIP party. Nigel is the one man who is identified with Brexit, as that has been the main aim of his party since its formation over 20 years ago. If you have not heard Nigel's victory speech then it is something you need to see. I am a Conservative and even though a few of my council colleagues have left the Conservative Party and joined UKIP I have not followed them. One reason for this is that our local MP, Julian Lewis is a conviction politician who has always taken a very sceptical line on the EU and in the recent campaign strongly supported the Leave side. Secondly I believed that I could achieve more by campaigning within the Conservative Party, which contains many who share my views, than by joining a small party that has much less influence. It is instructive to note that those colleagues who joined UKIP have since been voted off the Council and so have no position at all.

Even though I am not a member of UKIP, I agree with many of their policies, particularly on Climate Change, where the excellent Roger Helmer, MEP (a former Conservative) has drawn up a sensible policy on energy. A snap election could see many voters, particularly Labour ones, decide that UKIP's immigration policy is much more to their liking than the 'open doors' policy of the current Labour party. If that happens it would be seismic here in the UK.

Maybe there won't be a snap election. The new Conservative leader may get cold feet like Gordon Brown did when he inherited the leadership from Tony Blair. Brown lived to regret his decision, as the polls went against him and he never recovered, losing the 2010 election to David Cameron. The new Conservative leader may calculate that he need not bother as Labour will still be unelectable in 2020, when the next UK election is due. 


Saturday, 2 July 2016


Continuing on from yesterday's post I am suggesting that Brexit has changed the political climate. The voters have flexed their muscles in a way that they simply haven't done before. When they take stock of this they will become more militant, more willing to take risk, particularly when the result of leaving the EU does not turn out to lead to the apocalyptic vision conjured up by the political elite. Not only will this be true here in the UK, but it will resonate with voters all over the world.

In recent decades we have seen those in charge make a number of massive errors, such as the invasion of Iraq (again with no strategic follow up plan). This was sold to the public by a dossier that turned out to be untrue and grossly exaggerated. Then there was the financial crisis due to a lack of control of the banks; gambling that no one should have allowed to go on. We are still suffering the consequences today. The implosion of the Middle East dictatorships has led to uncontrolled migration with no plan as to how to deal with it.

Our leaders have been found wanting. They have let us down and the people are fed up. Here in the UK this is absolutely clear. The Conservative government is now without an effective leader and the opposition Labour Party is in total disarray. Their is talk of calling a general election within months. That will be a most interesting election, if it takes place. More on this tomorrow.    

Friday, 1 July 2016


Today I want to broaden the perspective of this blog and do so formally. Regular readers will have noticed that I have given a lot of coverage to Brexit, the UK's vote to leave the European Union. It is obviously a hot topic and has resulted in increasing visitors to the blog. I will continue to cover the climate topic, but with increasing focus on the politics. It is something that I have always been interested in and I am involved in local politics as a district councillor. I have been campaigning for the UK to leave the EU for a number of years and during this recent referendum campaign I have personally delivery several thousand leaflets to the residents of my ward and organised others to deliver more as well as putting up a number of posters in prominent places and urged all my family and friends to vote to leave. As I did so I wondered if it would be enough. I hoped that there would be thousands of others doing the same. In the end, as we all know it was enough and we won!

In these early days since victory many people are still dazed here. We are only just beginning to take in the magnitude of what we did. Some are fearful; some even regret voting 'leave'. It is an extraordinary result as previous posts have said. The nation seems so unprepared as though they never thought about what would happen next. Even the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who clearly thought he would win a vote to remain. He has resigned and not done what he said he would do, which was to trigger Article 50 (the notice to the EU that the country is leaving). I don't believe he wanted to be the one to do it, or be associated with it. But, of course he is, and he will always be remembered as the man who gave us the vote that led to our exit. Of course he never expected to have to give us a referendum as he did not expect to win the last election outright. He was convinced that he would, at best, form another coalition with the Liberal Democrats, who would not have supported a referendum. But he ought to have considered the outcome of a leave vote, in which case he ought to have had a plan to follow through. I think he simply didn't think it through. He is a gambler and has huge confidence in his ability to convince the people of his case. Like all gamblers he eventually lost.

We are now hearing from some of the leading 'Leave' politicians that they don't accept that people voted to leave in order to reduce immigration. I am sure they are completely wrong and if they do not reduce immigration drastically then they will find a very angry electorate who will turn them out.  We are now living (post brexit) in a new kind of politics. I will expand on this tomorrow.   

Thursday, 30 June 2016


The piece below is a fitting summary of the campaign to leave the EU. Please read it and relish the language that describes it. Let us hope that our politicians live up to its full aspirations.

The Daily Telegraph, 25 June 2016

Andrew Roberts
On Easter Sunday, May 6 1867, the Reform League pressure group had a difficult decision to make. Would they obey the diktat of the Home Secretary, Spencer Walpole, and not hold a huge meeting in Hyde Park to call for Reform, or would they defy him?

Founded only two years before, they campaigned for the franchise for all ratepayers, as well as secret ballots and an equal numerical distribution of seats in parliament, the basis of our modern democracy. Yet the police were padlocking the gates to the Park, which in those days was surrounded by high iron railings.

The Prime Minister and Cabinet urged caution and predicted dire consequences if the meeting went ahead; the police were called out en masse, and there was a run on the pound. With 200,000 supporters of Reform marching towards the park, the decision was nonetheless taken by the League’s leaders simply to pull down the railings and allow the vast surge of humanity to hold their (in the event, entirely peaceful) meeting.

The role of bloody-minded insurgents willing to do the opposite of what they’re told by the authorities has long been central to great political events in British history

Spencer Walpole burst into tears under the pressure and resigned; 10 speakers addressed the crowds, and the Second Reform Bill was passed later that same year. The railings never went back up.

The role of bloody-minded insurgents willing to do the opposite of what they’re told by the authorities has long been central to great political events in British history, and the 17,410,742 people who voted to leave the European Union can certainly be ranked among their number.

Almost every single agency of the international Establishment was deployed to thwart them – the CBI, IMF, Bank of England, OECD, big business, Goldman Sachs, all but one party leader, the World Bank, Presidents Obama, Hollande and Abe, the EU Commission, two-thirds of the cabinet, the Treasury, The Guardian, Davos, The Times, and so on – yet over 17.4 million people told them precisely what they could do with their expert opinion.

It is the British people who have now sent Obama “to the back of the queue”.

In Melvyn Bragg’s fine novel about the Peasant’s Revolt, Now is The Time, one sees a template for the uprising of ordinary people that resulted in the Brexit vote, much as the pro-EU Lord Bragg might like to deny it. The huge groundswell of ordinary people’s opinion led rather than followed their own leaders.

Today’s insurgent leaders were themselves a ragbag bunch: a half-albino Classicist whose friends called him “the truffle-pig”; a German-born female Labour MP; a beer-drinking, cigarette-smoking man of the people; and an infinitely courteous intellectual with a razor-sharp brain, who had nevertheless been sacked as education secretary a few years earlier. It wasn’t much to set against the combined forces of the Establishment, yet they won.

Just as the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (founded in 1897) and its more militant offshoot the Women’s Social and Political Union (founded 1903) took on the Establishment and won, and as the Anti-Corn Law League had a generation earlier, so the Brexit movement enlisted armies of supporters across the country whose motives were traduced and posters defaced and supplications ignored, until the vote was taken and their voices finally had to be heard. 

The popular uprising campaign was therefore not like the Poll Tax riots of 1990 but much more firmly in the mainstream of the long British tradition of legitimate peaceful protest.

In this way, too, it was a more impressive achievement than the French Revolution, soaked as that was in blood. This popular uprising has toppled the established order without calling upon the tumbrel, the scaffold and the guillotine. It will secure its place in history as a result. 

And when that history of the Brexit movement comes to be written later this century, there will be a number of people who are by no means household names but who kept alight the torch of British independence ever since it was so nearly extinguished by Ted Heath in 1973.

Michael Ivens, Douglas Jay, Alan Sked, Patrick Robertson, Jimmy Goldsmith, Bill Cash, Robert Oulds, Nigel Lawson, Rodney Leach, the McWhirter twins, Bill Cash and many others did as much to keep the popular insurgency alive over more than four decades as Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, who had the honour of lighting the blue touchpaper this year.

Their contribution should not go unmarked, even though not all of them are famous

Wednesday, 29 June 2016


Below is something to cheer readers up. Are we at last seeing a shift in the world-view of the climate change hypothesis and all that flows from it. We can only hope!

EurActiv, 24 May 2016

James Crisp

Boris Johnson, a leading Vote Leave politician who has cast doubt on global warming.

Leading figures in the Vote Leave referendum campaign to take Britain out of the EU have links to a controversial climate-sceptic think tank and question the science behind global warming.

The group’s three leaders Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and figurehead Lord Nigel Lawson have cast doubt over man-made climate change, which is backed by most of the world’s credible experts…

Gove – who tried to stop climate change being taught in schools – and in particular Johnson are seen as Conservative leadership frontrunners should a Brexit vote topple UK Prime Minister David Cameron, who backs Remain.

There are so many influential politicians and donors that are both euro and climate-sceptic that it has raised fears over the future of UK climate policy if the UK votes for Brexit on 23 June…

A spokesman for the Britain Stronger in Europe campaign said, “They deny the scientific evidence on climate change, just as they deny the economic evidence that leaving the EU would wreck the UK economy and cost around 820,000 jobs.”

Vote Leave didn’t return requests for comment yesterday (23 May). But the Global Warming Policy Foundation did.

Director Benny Peiser said the foundation had no view on the EU referendum and was not involved in any shape or form in referendum activities. “So far as I know, our trustees are divided on the referendum debate,” he added.

Peiser said the foundation and its members had a broad range of different scientific and economic viewpoints on climate change.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016


The Daily Caller, 24 June 2016

Michael Bastasch
When British voters chose to leave the European Union Thursday night, they weren’t just voting against Brussels’ immigration policies, they were also voting against Europe’s growing list of green mandates.
The EU’s allowance of millions of refugees and open borders policy did play a large role in the “Brexit” vote, but it was also a repudiation of global warming policies Brussels has imposed on the U.K.

“The decision by the British people to leave the European Union will have significant and long-term implications for energy and climate policies,” Dr. Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Forum, told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

Conservative pollster Lord Michael Ashcroft surveyed 12,369 Brits voting in Thursday’s referendum and found 69 percent of those who voted to leave the EU saw the “green movement” as a “force for ill.”

“By large majorities, voters who saw multiculturalism, feminism, the Green movement, globalisation and immigration as forces for good voted to remain in the EU; those who saw them as a force for ill voted by even larger majorities to leave,” Ashcroft wrote.

Britons have been struggling under high energy prices for years, in part due to rules passed down from EU bureaucrats. Environmentalists opposed leaving the EU for precisely this reason. The Brexit vote signals the U.K. is lurching right, and will likely reject heavy-handed climate policies.

“It is highly unlikely that the party-political green consensus that has existed in Parliament for the last 10 years will survive the seismic changes that are now unfolding after Britain’s Independence Day,” Peiser said.

Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation after the vote, since he supported the staying in the EU. Cameron was one of the main forces behind the so-called “green consensus” in Parliament, which supported green energy subsidies and energy taxes to pay for them.

“The British people have voted to leave the European Union and their will must be respected,” Cameron said Friday. “The will of the British people is an instruction that must be delivered.”

Cameron’s government did begin to cut back subsidies for solar panels and push for hydraulic fracturing. Conservative Party lawmakers voted against more handouts for wind power as well as to bring down the costs of electricity. Green taxes cost U.K. residents $6.6 billion every year.

Brits also paid some of the highest energy costs in Europe, thanks in part to green taxes added to their electricity bills.

The man that may take Cameron’s place is not committed to keeping the U.K.’s “green” image.

Ex-London Mayor Boris Johnson, who was the face of the Brexit movement, could take Cameron’s place as prime minister in the coming months. Johnson is a global warming skeptic, and even criticized alarmist claims that human emissions caused England’s unseasonably warm winter.

“It is fantastic news that the world has agreed to cut pollution and help people save money, but I am sure that those global leaders were driven by a primitive fear that the present ambient warm weather is somehow caused by humanity; and that fear – as far as I understand the science – is equally without foundation,” he wrote in December.

“There may be all kinds of reasons why I was sweating at ping-pong – but they don’t include global warming,” he wrote.

Johnson is unlikely to revive the “green consensus” in Parliament. That doesn’t mean Johnson won’t keep in place some EU environmental rules, but the regulatory regime will probably be less onerous than the one Brussels had in mind.

“But perhaps the most important aspect of the EU referendum has been the astonishing self-determination and scepticism of the British people in face of an unprecedented fear campaign,” Peiser said.

Monday, 27 June 2016


One of the best blogs on climate data and trends is Paul Homewood's "Not A Lot of People Know That" and he has yet another excellent post here on snowfall trends in New York. While climate alarmists try to make out their case by picking out short term trends that are simply unrealistic Paul seeks out and publishes the full data and it invariably shows no such trend. When will the general public be told the truth? It is time for the government to undertake a thorough review of the evidence before wasting yet more billions of ponds on trying to prevent something which isn't happening.

Sunday, 26 June 2016


This article explains how this comes about. In short the EU and UN hierarchy don't like the result of our referendum - another reason to cheer. It seems there were more good reasons to vote for Brexit than most of us even realised. It feels good to be independent, though I have no doubt that our political masters are plotting at this moment to put us back in the pen, like some awkward sheep that has somehow eluded the shepherd.

Saturday, 25 June 2016


This post and the comments show how strong the support for the UK decision is (to leave the EU). I admit that I feel very proud of the voters who withstood a barrage of fear-mongering propaganda. I believe it will make us stronger as voters, if we now prove that this propaganda does not come true. Our political leaders will now have to make our decision work, or if they do not then they will lose the next election, and that would be catastrophic for the party and the country. 

Friday, 24 June 2016


Here we see the link between rising CO2 and temperature - there isn't one at the south pole. Much of the temperature increase that has been observed in the parts of the world inhabited by man is caused by the urban heat island effect, which is due to man made cities having vast amounts of concrete and tarmac and buildings which act like a giant storage heater, plus all the heat from cars and heat put into buildings adding to the sun's heat. None of this applies to the Antarctic.

Thursday, 23 June 2016


This report is a summary of a new report by Greenpeace of Germany into what requirements are needed to comply with the Paris climate change agreement. The requirements are so completely absurd that surely no one could take them seriously. Of course no one has costed this, as to do so would be to underline to its madness. I wonder when the people will rise up against this? I reckon it will be when the State starts to get nasty and demand they hand over their cars or their heating system.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016


This article explains the case for leaving the EU in order to regain control of our energy policy. Of course even if we vote to leave the EU we can only benefit if our own government decide to do something different, and so far they have shown very little or no sign of doing so.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016


This piece looks at how clouds are treated in the climate computer models compared with the new study revealing how they actually perform. The result means that the models are even worse than previously thought.

Monday, 20 June 2016


This article explains how the new rules to make appliances more energy efficient are also making them perform worse, with all sorts of unforeseen consequences. In some cases the rules do not even result in much savings in CO2 emissions at all, but they simply cost the consumer a lot of money for no purpose. The same thing is happening in the EU.

Sunday, 19 June 2016


This report explains the reason for the Indian government's decision which is based on the immediate need to alleviate poverty in the country. This can only be done by giving priority to increasing the supply of affordable energy throughout the country, which is simply not compatible with reducing CO2 emissions when burning coal is the best way to produce affordable energy. No sensible government would leave its people in poverty in order to combat something that is unproven and in any event not going to happen for many decades, if at all. 

Saturday, 18 June 2016


This article explains an ingenious new investment that some climate sceptics are putting together. It appears to rely on the eventual demise of the CO2 hypothesis and all that flows from it. While I remain convinced that it is greatly exaggerated, I suspect it still has some way to go before it is completely debunked and so I will not be investing myself as I need to get a reasonably quick return on my investment 

Friday, 17 June 2016


This piece tell us the kind of people who are so desperate to convince us of their cause that they believe it is acceptable to lie.

Thursday, 16 June 2016


Business Standard, 10 June 2016

Nitin Sethi, New Delhi
Neither the US nor India has committed to a formal ratification of the Paris agreement by the end of 2016 in the much-hyped joint statement on climate change. The political imperatives before outgoing US President Barack Obama, domestic legal requirements in India and the procedural complications of the Paris agreement collectively ensured that the two didn't.

The statement, issued during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Washington, reads: “The United States reaffirms its commitment to join the Agreement as soon as possible this year.” The US has shied from using the word ‘ratification’, as it would require approval from the US senate, which President Obama is unlikely to secure from the Republican citadel.

During the negotiations between the two countries, preceding Modi’s tour, the US had insisted that India should commit to a joining the Paris agreement as well by 2016-end, India, however, stopped short of such a commitment in the bilateral statement.

Consequently, the joint statement reads, “India similarly has begun its processes to work toward this shared objective.” Indian negotiators insisted upon this insertion to replace the single and asymmetric sentence that the US had offered, binding only India to ratification by the end of this year, sources told Business Standard.

The Paris agreement provides four options for the countries to adopt the global deal. Article 21(1) of the pact permits countries to ratify, accept, approve or accede. Each term has different implications in different countries’ domestic, constitutional and legal framework. For the US, a ratification of a non-trade agreement necessarily requires approval from the Senate, which President Obama is keen to avoid. But other terms, which provide options for the US President to adopt the agreement through an executive order, also leave the door open for the future US Presidents to walk out.

The option available to the US, to easily walk out of the deal, worries many developing countries, including India. The fact that the US had kept out of the Kyoto Protocol after negotiating till the last moment, as well as the current election rhetoric by the Republican candidate Donald Trump, who has threatened to pull out of the Paris agreement, have impacted the negotiations between key developing countries and the US.

“President Obama is pushing hard to get the Paris agreement going as his legacy. But he can only join the agreement. He can’t ratify it. What if developing countries ratify it, helping the Paris agreement come into force by 2016-end, but the next US President walks out of it with a simple executive order? We have to be mindful of the possibilities,” said one of the negotiators.

The Paris agreement would come into force only when at least 55 countries — accounting for at least 55 per cent of the total greenhouse gas emissions — ratify, approve, accept or accede to the agreement. India accounts for only 4.01 per cent of total global emissions.

Domestically, India needs to undertake inter-ministerial consultations for ratifying any international agreement that has economy-wide implications. But the Modi government is not required to secure a Parliamentary approval before ratifying an international treaty.

“Broadly speaking, India would have to undertake inter-ministerial consultations, consult with states, and ensure that legislative requirements are in place for implementing the pact before the Union Cabinet ratifies the Paris agreement,” said J M Mauskar, member of the Prime Minister’s council on climate change and a former senior negotiator for India.

“I think it was a mature decision between the two allies, based on acknowledgement, appreciation and understanding of each other’s domestic and constitutional imperatives,” Mauskar said, referring to the India-US statement on climate change.

The process has already begun in India, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar explained during his briefing in Washington. It will require the Union government to ensure that laws pertaining to environment, forests and energy are equipped with provisions to implement the various provisions of the Paris agreement.

A current Indian negotiator also noted the complexity that lies ahead in operationalising the Paris agreement. The crucial rules for transparency, reporting and verification under the Paris agreement and many other issues are yet to be negotiated in detail. These negotiations are to now take place between all 196 member countries of the over-arching UN climate convention. If the Paris agreement comes into force before these rules are finalised, then only those countries which join the pact would have the right to negotiate the rules. The others would be only observers — a clear disadvantage to developing countries with disparate capacities to come on board in time.

An option has been floated to bring the Paris agreement into force, permitting Obama to claim it as his legacy, and then allow all the 196 countries to negotiate the rules by putting the agreement in a technical suspension. But many developing countries, including India, are unsure of the consequence and worth of such an exercise, only to allow Obama his legacy gift.

“Do we want to sign an agreement we don’t know the full contours of? Do we want to be stuck in a situation where allied developing countries are not sitting on the table to negotiate these rules? These are questions we must address before we decide to ratify the agreement,” the Indian negotiator said.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016


This article shows the attitude of the UK Green Party to democracy - they don't agree with it, preferring the rule by the EU which cannot be voted out.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016


The Australian, 11 June 2016

Graham Lloyd
When marine scientist Peter Ridd suspected something was wrong with photographs being used to highlight the rapid decline of the Great Barrier Reef, he did what good scientists are supposed to do: he sent a team to check the facts.

James Cook University’s Professor Peter Ridd on Townsville’s Strand. Picture: Cameron Laird

After attempting to blow the whistle on what he found — healthy corals — Professor Ridd was censured by James Cook University and threatened with the sack. After a formal investigation, Professor Ridd — a renowned campaigner for quality assurance over coral research from JCU’s Marine Geophysics Laboratory — was found guilty of “failing to act in a collegial way and in the academic spirit of the institution”.

His crime was to encourage questioning of two of the nation’s leading reef institutions, the Centre of Excellence for Coral Studies and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, on whether they knew that photographs they had published and claimed to show long-term collapse of reef health could be misleading and wrong.

“These photographs are a big deal as they are plastered right across the internet and used very widely to claim damage,” Professor Ridd told The Weekend Australian.

The photographs were taken near Stone Island off Bowen. A photograph taken in the late 19th century shows healthy coral. An accompanying picture supposedly of the same reef in 1994 is ­devoid of coral. When the before-and-after shots were used by GBRMPA in its 2014 report, the authority said: “Historical photographs of inshore coral reefs have been especially powerful in illustrating changes over time, and that the change illustrated is typical of many inshore reefs.”

A healthy Stone Island reef in 1890

The Stone Island reef in decline in 1994.

Stone Island reef in decline in 2012.

The Stone Island reef appears healthy again in 2015.

Professor Ridd said it was only possible to guess within a kilometre or two where the original photograph was taken and it would not be unusual to find great coral in one spot and nothing a kilometre away, as his researchers had done. Nor was it possible to say what had killed the coral in the 1994 picture.

“In fact, there are literally hundreds of square kilometres of dead reef-flat on the Great Barrier Reef which was killed due to the slow sea-level fall of about a meter that has occurred over the last 5000 years,” he said. “My point is not that they have probably got this completely wrong but rather what are the quality assurance measures they take to try to ensure they are not telling a misleading story?”

A GBRMPA spokesman said last night “the historical photos serve to demonstrate the vulnerability of nearshore coral reefs, rather than a specific cause for their decline.

“Ongoing monitoring shows coral growth in some locations, however this doesn’t detract from the bigger picture, which shows shallow inshore areas of the Great Barrier Reef south of Port Douglas have clearly degraded over a period of decades.” Centre of Excellence for Coral Studies chairman Terry Hughes did not respond to questions from The Weekend Australian.

Professor Ridd was disciplined for breaching principle 1 of JCU’s code of conduct by “not displaying responsibility in respecting the reputations of other colleagues”. He has been told that if he does it again he may be found guilty of ­serious misconduct.

A JCU spokesman said it was university policy not to comment on individual staff, but that the university’s marine science was subject to “the same quality assurance processes that govern the conduct of, and delivery of, ­science internationally”. [...]

About a quarter of the Great Barrier Reef has died and could take years to rebuild. The damage is concentrated in the northern section off Cape York. The scientific response to the bleaching has exposed a rift ­between GBRMPA and the JCU’s Coral Bleaching Taskforce led by Professor Hughes over how bleaching data should be treated and presented to the public. Conservation groups have run hard on the issue, with graphic ­images of dying corals. All sides of politics have responded with ­increased funding to reduce sediment flow and to combat crown of thorns starfish.

University of Western Australia marine biologist Carlos Duarte argued in BioScience last year that bias contributed to “perpetuating the perception of ocean calamities in the absence of robust evidence”.

A paper published this year claimed scientific journals had exaggerated bad news on ocean acidification and played down the doubts. Former GBRMPA chairman Ian McPhail accused activists of “exaggerating the impact of coral bleaching for political and financial gain”. Dr McPhail told The Weekend Australian it “seems that there is a group of researchers who begin with the premise that all is disaster”.

Monday, 13 June 2016


This article by Christopher Booker explains why we are heading for disaster unless we change the policy.

Sunday, 12 June 2016


Financial Times, 29 May 2016

Barney Jopson and Pilita Clark
Donald Trump is sowing doubt over the Paris climate change pact as his hostility towards the deal and the growing swagger of his campaign focus attention on how he could undermine it as president.

The Republican candidate last week vowed to “cancel” the painstakingly negotiated agreement, a threat experts said was unrealistic. But his comments put a spotlight on its slow ratification and weak spots in President Barack Obama’s climate legacy.

While Mr Trump could not single-handedly scrap the agreement — which Washington and Beijing had rallied more than 190 countries to join — he could withdraw the US, the second largest greenhouse gas emitter after China, or block the action needed to cut emissions to the levels promised by Mr Obama.

But if Mr Trump used the presidency to cast doubt on the need for climate action, he could weaken the resolve of other leaders sceptical about the deal.

Attacks on the Paris agreement could occur at three different levels under a Trump presidency.

No single country can “cancel” the deal because it would require each of the nearly 200 nations that negotiated it to agree to abandon it. Once the agreement is in force it is also impossible for a country to withdraw overnight…

The Paris accord cannot take effect until it is formally ratified or joined by 55 countries accounting for 55 per cent of global emissions. So far, only 17 countries representing 0.04 per cent of emissions have ratified it.

China and the US have said they plan to join this year but they account for only about 40 per cent of emissions. Even under the most optimistic scenarios, the agreement may not start until 2018.

Saturday, 11 June 2016


This piece looks at the investigation by Rep. Lamar Smith into the research methods of the taxpayer-funded National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  He has been vilified for doing this, but it seems that he has good grounds for his investigation.

Friday, 10 June 2016


This article gives the details. It would seem that India is holding back in the hope that the West will give it more finance to induce it to sign. I expect Western leaders will fall for this as they seem to have done in the past. What it shows is how the image of getting India on board is much more important than actually cutting emissions of CO2, since the Paris agreement will not lead to that anyway.

Thursday, 9 June 2016


This article on Joanne Nova's blog shows how the international interest in the UK's EU Referendum is building, as the momentum swings towards voting to leave. So many last minute voters were trying to register that the website collapsed as midnight approached. Were they surging to vote remain or leave? We cannot be sure, but with just over two weeks to go it may be very close. If we vote leave, which I am hoping we will, then it will cause panic within the EU, as the UK is the second largest economy in there, and contributes a significant amount of money, not to mention the trade. They would like to punish us, but could they afford it?  Freed from EU constraints the UK could, if it chose the right government, cut back on its ridiculous climate change policies.

Wednesday, 8 June 2016


Windfarms Chief Admits England Is Not Windy Enough For More TurbinesDaily Mail, 6 June 2016

Liz Hull
ENGLAND is simply not windy enough to justify more onshore wind turbines, the head of the industry’s trade body admitted yesterday.

Hugh McNeal, the chief executive of RenewableUK, said that – while there was still a case for more onshore farms elsewhere in the UK – wind speeds in England were just not strong enough for new turbines to make economic sense.

Critics said his comments proved what they have argued all along – that wind farms are an expensive and ineffective power source.

Dubbing wind power a ‘failed medieval technology’, they said that Mr McNeal’s remarks called into question the viability of ‘several thousand’ new turbines currently in the planning stages which are still set to go ahead – as well as England’s existing 1,200 turbines.

Mr McNeal, who joined the industry body from the Department of Energy and Climate Change two months ago, said that new wind farms in England would not be able to compete with the price of electricity produced from gas plants. ‘We are almost certainly not talking about the possibility of new [onshore] plants in England,’ he said.

‘The project economics wouldn’t work; the wind speeds don’t allow for it.’ His comments came after the Government’s decision that from this month wind farms will no longer be eligible for generous taxpayer-funded subsidies – know as Renewable Obligation Certificates – which are offered to renewable energy projects. Britain has invested £1.25 billion in wind power, making it the country’s biggest renewable energy source.

But opponents point to figures which reveal that on some days wind farms meet as little as 0.5 per cent of the nation’s electricity demand – and are only profitable because of massive subsidies paid to operators.

Last year the UK’s 5,300 onshore wind turbines cost taxpayers £800 million – equivalent to an extra £10 a year on energy bills – in Government handouts, but generated less than 10 per cent of all the country’s energy.

Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Forum, said Mr McNeal’s comments were a ‘cry by a desperate lobbyist who is conceding that wind turbines can only survive if the Government continues to hand out the cash’. He added:

‘But it is ordinary families that are paying for these subsidies and they continue to rise – renewables are predicted to cost us £8billion in subsidies by 2020.’

Despite the subsidy scrappage, ‘several thousand’ turbines that have been granted planning permission will still qualify. And ministers remain committed to wind as part of their green energy strategy, which aims to produce 15 per cent of all energy from renewables by 2020. [....]

Tuesday, 7 June 2016


The Sun Has Gone Completely BlankVencore Weather, 4 June 2016

Paul Dorian
The sun has gone completely blank. There are currently no visible sunspots – a sure sign of an approaching solar minimum – and this is the first spotless day on the sun since 2014. In fact, there has been only one spotless day on the sun since 2011 – until today that is.

There are no visible sunspots on the most current solar image; courtesy NASA/SDO,

The current solar cycle is the 24th since 1755 when extensive recording of solar sunspot activity began. Solar cycle number 24 is the weakest solar cycle in more than a century with the fewest sunspots since cycle 14 peaked in February 1906.

Sunspot numbers for solar cycles 22, 23 and 24 which shows a clear weakening trend; courtesy Dr. David Hathaway, NASA/MSFC
Sunspot numbers for solar cycles 22, 23 and 24 which shows a clear weakening trend; courtesy Dr. David Hathaway, NASA/MSFC

Info on the maximum phase
We are currently more than seven years into Solar Cycle 24 and it appears the solar maximum of this cycle was reached in April 2014 during a spike in activity (current location indicated by arrow above). Going back to 1755, there have been only a few solar cycles in the previous 23 that have had a lower number of sunspots during its maximum phase. The peak of activity in April 2014 was actually a second peak in solar cycle 24 that surpassed the level of an earlier peak which occurred in March 2012. While many solar cycles are double-peaked, this is the first one in which the second peak in sunspot number was larger than the first peak. The sunspot number plot (above) shows a clear weakening trend in solar cycles since solar cycle 22 peaked around 1990. The last solar minimum phase lasted from 2007 to 2009 and it was historically weak. In fact, it produced three of the most spotless days on the sun since the middle 1800’s (bar graph below).

Top "sunspotless" days since 1849; last solar minimum produced 3 of these years
Top “sunspotless” days since 1849; last solar minimum produced 3 of these years

Consequences of a solar minimum
Contrary to popular belief, solar minimum is not a period of complete quiet and inactivity as it is associated with numerous interesting changes. First, cosmic rays surge into the inner solar system with relative ease during periods of solar minimum. Galactic cosmic rays coming from outside the solar system must propagate upstream against the solar wind and a thicket of solar magnetic fields.

Solar wind decreases and sun’s magnetic field weakens during solar minimums making it easier for cosmic rays to reach the Earth. This is a more dangerous time for astronauts as the increase in potent cosmic rays can easily shatter a strand of human DNA. Also, during years of lower sunspot number, the sun’s extreme ultraviolet radiation (EUV) drops and the Earth’s upper atmosphere cools and contracts. With sharply lower aerodynamic drag, satellites have less trouble staying in orbit— a good thing. On the other hand, space junk tends to accumulate, making the space around Earth a more dangerous place for astronauts.

Consequences of weak solar cycles
There can be important consequences from weak solar cycles; especially, if they are part of a long-term pattern. First, this particular weak solar cycle has resulted in rather benign “space weather” in recent times with generally weaker-than-normal geomagnetic storms. By all Earth-based measures of geomagnetic and geoeffective solar activity, this cycle has been extremely quiet. However, while a weak solar cycle does suggest strong solar storms will occur less often than during stronger and more active cycles, it does not rule them out entirely. In fact, the famous “superstorm” Carrington Event of 1859 occurred during a weak solar cycle (number 10). In addition, there is some evidence that most large events such as strong solar flares and significant geomagnetic storms tend to occur in the declining phase of the solar cycle. In other words, there is still a chance for significant solar activity in the months and years ahead.

Second, it is pretty well understood that solar activity has a direct impact on temperatures at very high altitudes in a part of the Earth’s atmosphere called the thermosphere. This is the biggest layer of the Earth’s atmosphere which lies directly above the mesosphere and below the exosphere. Thermospheric temperatures increase with altitude due to absorption of highly energetic solar radiation and are highly dependent on solar activity.

Monday, 6 June 2016


This article by Christopher Booker highlights the bias of the BBC towards renewable energy. The broadcaster fails to report the subject in an even-handed way, instead trying to make out that renewables play a much more important part in the total energy output than they actually do. Is it any wonder the public are so badly informed when given such information?

Sunday, 5 June 2016


This post looks at the latest announcement from the Republican presidential candidate, and as far as global warming policy is concerned he appears to have come up with the most sensible approach I have seen. Let us hope he has a good campaign and gets elected so he can put his policy into action.

Saturday, 4 June 2016


This post gives the details of how the Shell shareholders were asked to vote on the company becoming based on 100% renewables. The result was as emphatic as it was predictable. Shell shareholders will vote for the best profits for the company, giving the best dividend for shareholders. They are not idealistic fools. If only our governments were equally fixed on giving the voters the best deal instead of paying lip service to the powerful green lobby.

Thursday, 2 June 2016


This article grabbed my attention when reading my copy of the Mail on Tuesday. Although it relates to Scotland, the idea behind it could easily be taken up by other nations. The worrying aspect of this is that a government could easily use this method of spying to try to control the views and attitudes of those such as parents and that could easily include sceptical views on climate change.

Personally I doubt if there are enough people willing to undertake this role of Named Person to cover all children, though there will always be some willing to act in this way.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016


This report gives the details which demolish the myth put forward by some alarmists that this is due to global warming. It is in fact part of a natural cycle as the report explains.

Tuesday, 31 May 2016


This piece gives the details of the situation. The voters may think again about the SNP if fracking in England starts to create the jobs that could have gone to Scotland.

Monday, 30 May 2016


This article attests to a new discovery that shows that there is a natural mechanism that makes clouds which suggests that the computer climate models are likely to have  underestimated the degree of cloudiness in the preindustrial atmosphere. The result of this is that the models have overestimated the future warming from CO2 emissions.

Sunday, 29 May 2016


This report links to the new paper with a summary. Of course readers of this blog will not be a bit surprised by this as it has been clear from the start that this was the case. This means that any savings in CO2 emissions by the UK are merely a pointless gesture - at great cost!

Saturday, 28 May 2016


I have no idea, but for those who like predictions here are a couple for you to choose from. One is the Met Office and the other is an amateur. Take your pick!