Monday, 30 April 2018


It's as simple as that, as set out in this article below.

Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy noted one obvious problem Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron’s recent clarion call for the U.S. to stay connected to the Paris Climate agreement.

Exempting China and India from abiding to the non-binding deal is one of the main reasons why greenhouse gas emission are pitching upward, Cassidy said in an interview with Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade. Environmental rules in the U.S. are causing companies to shift production to countries not tethered to the accord’s strict provisions.

“Paris climate accord leaves out China and India until 2030, and they’re the major polluter,” Cassidy said of the move allowing both countries to opt out of the international agreement until 2030. “It has no teeth,” he added, “and no one is going to achieve their goals except maybe the U.S.”

Major manufacturers have wagered China is the path of least resistance. “It’s cheaper to produce there because of regulations in the U.S. and the E.U.” said Cassidy, who became a Republican in 2006 after several decades as a Democrat. “And now we have more global greenhouse gas emissions, but the loss of American jobs.”

Carbon emissions rose in 2017 after stalling for three years in a row, according to a report by the International Energy Agency (IEA). IEA’s report mirrors findings published in the Global Carbon Project in 2017, predicting global emissions would rise two percent.

CO2 emissions rose because of a 2.1 percent increase in global energy demand — 70 percent of which was met by fossil fuels, especially natural gas and coal-fired electricity. China’s six percent jump in electricity demand was met by coal, IEA reported.

The rise in emissions came as the world economy grew 3.7 percent in 2017. Higher economic growth means more emissions, despite claims economic growth had begun to “decouple” from greenhouse gas emissions. Much of that economic output is a result of American and European companies shifting manufacturing to places where labor costs are lower.

Follow Chris White on Facebook and Twitter.

This article originally appeared in The Daily Caller

Sunday, 29 April 2018


Why we have to scrap the Climate Change Act. 

By Owen Paterson MP, December 2015 Daily Telegraph

As the Paris summit ends, it’s more important than ever to separate energy and climate change policy. As it reaches its conclusion - without having come to any conclusions - it's probably worth asking: what was the point of the Paris Climate Change summit? Ostensibly the politicians and officials met to discuss the effects of global warming and how to mitigate them. Climate change is certainly a useful political tool. International heads of state burnished their credentials as they spoke in Paris of their intent to protect the world from rising temperatures.

Locally too, the words "climate change" can be politically expedient. Indeed, as Cumbria is left considering the aftermath of the floods - which broke records in terms of river height and wrought havoc emotionally and financially - politicians and officials have been quick to blame climate change. It is, frankly a cheap way to abdicate any responsibility for the devastating effect of flooding.

I say this because last year, 17 senior climatologists published a paper in which they said that blaming climate change for flood losses turns the losses into a global issue – thereby putting them beyond the control of national institutions. The evidence also suggests that rainfall in Cumbria last weekend only marginally overtook much older records, if at all. Indeed, the frequency of such floods in the past three decades, according to scientists from Lancaster University, is not unusual and has fallen markedly from the mid-20th century.

My point is that this dreadful flooding could easily have happened even if the climate were not changing, since it is largely caused by landscape changes. And the measures the world has taken against climate change have not and will not significantly change the risk of flooding in Cumbria.

So what, then, have these 21 years of exchanging hot air on the subject actually achieved? Very little in terms of restricting global emissions – just look at India and China – but as far as Britain is concerned, they have had a devastating effect on our energy policy.

Back in 2011, the world pledged to produce binding legal targets on emissions for all countries at this Paris meeting. But that ambition has been abandoned in favour of vague “intended” national promises. Each country must now set its own energy policy. So China and India – in fact any country – can continue to burn fossil fuels at will. Apart from Britain.

We are left uniquely isolated and vulnerable as the only country in the world with a legal target for reducing emissions, thanks to our Climate Change Act of 2008. No other country will be breaking its own law if it misses its target. But we have a binding target to reduce emissions by 80 per cent by 2050. We have repeatedly boasted that we are setting the world an example – but the world seems disinclined to take notice.

Lucky for us, then, that Amber Rudd, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, is beginning to dismantle the disgraceful legacy of her three predecessors, Ed Miliband, Chris Huhne and Ed Davey, which has delivered no significant cuts in emissions while risking black-outs, killing jobs in the aluminium and steel industries, hugely inflating cost and worsening fuel poverty. Her recommendations make a good start, but there is much further to go if she is to rescue the British economy from an impending energy crisis.

The 2050 target commits us to decarbonising our electricity, abolishing gas as a fuel for cooking and heating our homes, and converting two thirds of our cars to electric. These aims come at an astronomical cost. Since wind does not significantly reduce emissions (because of the need for back-up when it is not blowing) and because solar power is useless at night and in winter, it would mean a vast investment in nuclear power, equivalent to building a new Hinkley Point every three years for 35 years.

That’s neither feasible nor affordable. So while it is great news that the Government is killing wind subsidies onshore and abandoning the costly pipe dream of carbon capture and storage, we must go further and get rid of offshore wind subsidies (the most costly of all) and “biomass” subsidies. Our dash for wind power so distorted the electricity market that it has actually prevented the construction of efficient and cheap combined-cycle gas turbines.

By calling for an acceleration of the development of shale gas and by embracing the idea of small modular nuclear reactors, the Government is insuring that gas will for many decades be the most affordable and cleanest of the fuels available to the world. But our dash for wind power so distorted the electricity market that it has actually prevented the construction of efficient and cheap combined-cycle gas turbines.

So, in the wake of the non-committal Paris climate talks, we need to make sure we decouple energy policy from climate change policy, and take measures to restore resilience to the system. Specifically, it is vital that the 2008 Climate Change Act, Ed Miliband’s most pernicious legacy, be suspended and eventually repealed. Clause 2 of the act enables the Secretary of State to amend the 2050 target, which could have the immediate effect of suspending it. To avoid failure in 10-20 years time, that decision must be taken now.

Saturday, 28 April 2018


A short BBC video features Christiana Figueres, the former UN climate chief, talking about a "fossil fuel world. The video can be accessed here .  My thoughts are in line with those of Paul Homewood, which are that she is living in a fanasy world - just like many of our own politicians!

Friday, 27 April 2018


This piece explains the argument for arbitration to decide what is good science and what is rubbish. I think it might be useful but only if it can be trusted and had a truly independent judge and jury.

Thursday, 26 April 2018


This article gives the details. What this shows is that our climate is highly variable, just as it always has been.  

Wednesday, 25 April 2018


This article explains how the increase in highly subsidised solar panels is causing serious distortion in the grid and higher prices for consumers.

Tuesday, 24 April 2018


This piece looks at the improved financial independence of USA shale. Now the UK has got to get fracking and show the EU what can be achieved.

Monday, 23 April 2018


This piece explains how the Indian government has decided to increase the amount of coal power and reduce future nuclear stations. This decision completely overwhelms the decision of Western governments to try and reduce CO2 emissions. So much for coal becoming a stranded asset!

Sunday, 22 April 2018


This post looks at the past predictions of doom and gloom as we reach another anniversary of Earth Day.  Although we do face some problems it is good to see that many of the gloomier predictions have not come true.

Saturday, 21 April 2018


This piece looks at the economic case for battery storage of solar energy.  It concludes that it is not economic and will not be until batteries go below half their current cost.

Friday, 20 April 2018


This Daily Mail article updates us on the increasingly desperate measures being taken by the electricity companies to get us all to sign up to a smart meter.

Thursday, 19 April 2018


How Bad Is The Government’s Science?
Peter Wood and David Randall, The Wall Street Journal, 17 April 2018

Policy makers often cite research to justify their rules, but many of those studies wouldn’t replicate

Half the results published in peer-reviewed scientific journals are probably wrong. John Ioannidis, now a professor of medicine at Stanford, made headlines with that claim in 2005. Since then, researchers have confirmed his skepticism by trying — and often failing — to reproduce many influential journal articles. Slowly, scientists are internalizing the lessons of this irreproducibility crisis. But what about government, which has been making policy for generations without confirming that the science behind it is valid?

The biggest newsmakers in the crisis have involved psychology. Consider three findings: Striking a “power pose” can improve a person’s hormone balance and increase tolerance for risk. Invoking a negative stereotype, such as by telling black test-takers that an exam measures intelligence, can measurably degrade performance. Playing a sorting game that involves quickly pairing faces (black or white) with bad and good words (“happy” or “death”) can reveal “implicit bias” and predict discrimination.

All three of these results received massive media attention, but independent researchers haven’t been able to reproduce any of them properly. It seems as if there’s no end of “scientific truths” that just aren’t so. For a 2015 article in Science, independent researchers tried to replicate 100 prominent psychology studies and succeeded with only 39% of them.

Further from the spotlight is a lot of equally flawed research that is often more consequential. In 2012 the biotechnology firm Amgen tried to reproduce 53 “landmark” studies in hematology and oncology. The company could only replicate six. Are doctors basing serious decisions about medical treatment on the rest? Consider the financial costs, too. A 2015 study estimated that American researchers spend $28 billion a year on irreproducible preclinical research.

The chief cause of irreproducibility may be that scientists, whether wittingly or not, are fishing fake statistical significance out of noisy data. If a researcher looks long enough, he can turn any fluke correlation into a seemingly positive result. But other factors compound the problem: Scientists can make arbitrary decisions about research techniques, even changing procedures partway through an experiment. They are susceptible to groupthink and aren’t as skeptical of results that fit their biases. Negative results typically go into the file drawer. Exciting new findings are a route to tenure and fame, and there’s little reward for replication studies.

American science has begun to face up to these problems. The National Institutes of Health has strengthened its reproducibility standards. Scientific journals have reduced the incentives and opportunities to publish bad research. Private philanthropies have put serious money behind groups like the Meta-Research Innovation Center at Stanford, led in part by Dr. Ioannidis, and the Center for Open Science in Charlottesville, Va.

There’s more to be done, and the National Association of Scholars has made some recommendations. Before conducting a study, scientists should “preregister” their research protocols by posting the intended methodology online, which eliminates opportunities for changing the rules in the middle of the experiment. High schools, colleges and graduate schools need to improve science education, particularly in statistics. Universities and journals should create incentives for researchers to publish negative results. Scientific associations should seek to disrupt disciplinary groupthink by putting their favored ideas up for review by experts in other sciences.

A deeper issue is that the irreproducibility crisis has remained largely invisible to the general public and policy makers. That’s a problem given how often the government relies on supposed scientific findings to inform its decisions. Every year the U.S. adds more laws and regulations that could be based on nothing more than statistical manipulations.

All government agencies should review the scientific justifications for their policies and regulations to ensure they meet strict reproducibility standards. The economics research that steers decisions at the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department needs to be rechecked. The social psychology that informs education policy could be entirely irreproducible. The whole discipline of climate science is a farrago of unreliable statistics, arbitrary research techniques and politicized groupthink.  […]

Mr. Wood is president of the National Association of Scholars. Mr. Randall is the NAS’s director of research and a co-author of its new report, “The Irreproducibility Crisis of Modern Science.

Full post


Wednesday, 18 April 2018


Put-Up-Or-Shut-Up Time For The Solar-Climate Theory
James A. Bacon, Bacon's Rebellion, 12 April 2018

Here’s the nice thing about the sun-spot theory: It’s a testable hypothesis. We should be able to confirm or disprove the sun-spot hypothesis within a few years.

I have frequently expressed skepticism of dire Global Warming scenarios by noting that the increase in global temperatures over the past 20 years fits the lowest range of forecasts made by the climate models. Sorry, folks, I just can’t get exercised about warming-generated calamities, no matter how many after-the-fact justifications are proffered to explain the failure of reality to conform with theory.

On the other side, the anti-Global Warming crowd has advanced an alternative explanation for climate change. The extreme skeptics suggest that solar activity — sun spots, or the lack of them — have a far greater influence on earth’s climate than the level of CO2 in the atmosphere. According to this theory, solar radiation interacts with the earth’s magnetosphere to block cosmic radiation from penetrating to the atmosphere and seeding cloud formation. Boiling the argument down to its essence, more sun spots predict higher temperatures on earth, fewer sun spots predict lower temperatures. We may have reached put-up-or-shut-up time for that theory as well.

The skeptics are getting excited now because the incidence of sun spots is crashing. Indeed, sun spots have almost disappeared. The last time the sun exhibited similar characteristics was in the 1600s, the so-called Maunder Minimum which coincided with a decline in global temperatures known to history as the Little Ice Age. If the solar warming rejectionists are correct, “global warming” could disappear in a hurry.

Writes Robert Zimmerman with the Global Warming Policy Forum:

If the solar minimum has actually arrived now, this would make this cycle only ten years long, one of the shortest solar cycles on record. More important, it is a weak cycle. In the past, all short cycles were active cycles. This is the first time we have seen a short and weak cycle since scientists began tracking the solar cycle in the 1700s, following the last grand minimum in the 1600s when there were almost no sunspots.

If the planet is entering a new solar minimum, the theory would predict falling temperatures. Perhaps not immediately — there may be buffering effects that aren’t well understood — but in not too many years.

Here’s the nice thing about the sun-spot theory: It’s a testable hypothesis. The theory states in no-uncertain terms that solar radiation as measured by sun spots is a key driver of earth’s climate. The theory says that cycles in earth’s temperatures closely match cycles in sun spot activity. We appear to be entering a phase in which sun spots are going dormant. Temperatures should drop — not just for a year or two but in a sustained matter. We should be able to confirm or disprove the sun-spot hypothesis within a few years.

If the sun-spot hypothesis is confirmed by the data and we see a decisive shift in temperature trends, the theory that posits CO2 as the driving climate variable will be dashed. Conversely, if the sun-spot model  is proven incorrect, a lot of moderate Global Warming skeptics (like me) will be more receptive to the CO2 model — although it still has to explain the two-decade-long pause. (“Pause” is not quite the right word. Global temperatures have crept higher. They just haven’t conformed to predictions.)

Perhaps I’m being naive to think that reality will settle the debate. Reality has a way of being frustratingly complex and ambiguous, and zealots are endlessly creative at devising fallback theories. We didn’t account for the effect of increased particulates in the atmosphere. Or temperatures didn’t rise as expected because the missing heat is lurking undetected deep in the ocean.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018


The answer according to this report appears to be "yes". It is hard to understand why the Lancet, a journal dedicated to medicine and medical matters, should devote so much of its attention to supporting measures to reduce CO2 emissions. One possible reason could be that pressure has been applied, but that is hard to prove. However, as the linked report shows, they are distorting the evidence to fit their agenda of opposing coal-fired power stations in the developing world with disastrous consequences for the poor people that live there.

Monday, 16 April 2018


This article looks at the burning of wood pellets instead of coal in order to cut CO2 emissions. There i a lot of controversy over whether this actually saves CO2, with some arguing that the trees can be regrown, while others point to the fact that a greater quantity of wood is required to give the same amount of heat, hence more CO2 is emitted. The issue is to be the subject of a television programme at 8pm on Channel 4 this evening (16 April). 


This article explains the change being brought in by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Scott Pruitt.  Pruitt offered few details, but the Social Cost of Carbon (SCC) would be likely to be a government-wide decision, not relegated to EPA alone.  President Trump issued an executive order in 2017 to review the SCC. 

Sunday, 15 April 2018


Model Alarmists Resurrect ‘Day After Tomorrow’ Scenario, ‘Unsupported By Any Data’
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 11 April 2018

Scientists relied on climate models, not direct measurements, to claim in a new study man-made global warming caused a slowdown in the Gulf Stream ocean current.

It’s the very same scenario posed in disaster movie “The Day After Tomorrow,” where a slowdown in the Gulf Stream turned North America into a frozen wasteland. A catastrophic scenario could be decades away, some scientists are saying.

“We know somewhere out there is a tipping point where this current system is likely to break down,” Potsdam Institute climate scientist Stefan Rahmstorf, a co-author of one of the studies, said in a statement.

“We still don’t know how far away or close to this tipping point we might be,” Rahmstorf warned. “This is uncharted territory.”

Rahmstorf’s study was one of two that garnered alarming media headlines, but experts are skeptical because of the scant observational evidence. Indeed, scientists have only been taking direct measurements of the Gulf Stream for a little over a decade.

“Climate model reconstructions are not the same as observed data or evidence,” libertarian Cato Institute’s Dr. and Atmospheric Scientist Ryan Maue told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“We should be very wary of grandiose claims of ‘A Day After Tomorrow’ based upon very limited direct measurements,” Maue said.

The Gulf Stream, or Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC), brings warm water from the Gulf of Mexico to the North Atlantic, and in turn, cold northern water is brought southward.

Polar ice melt and enhanced rainfall put an increasing amount of cold, fresh water into the North Atlantic, reducing salinity, some scientists say. Less saline has a harder time sinking, throwing off the AMOC.
Climate models generally show a weaker AMOC as a result of warming, but observational evidence has been scant. Anomalous cooling south of Greenland is evidence of a weakened AMOC, some scientists say.
The weak AMOC is explicitly tied to “increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations” and “temperature trends observed since the late nineteenth century,” according to the study, Rahmstorf co-authored.
However, the “Labrador Sea deep convection and the AMOC have been anomalously weak over the past 150 years or so … compared with the preceding 1,500 years,” a second study published in the same journal found.

In other words, the AMOC began weakening before human activities could play a role.
“The specific trend pattern we found in measurements looks exactly like what is predicted by computer simulations as a result of a slowdown in the Gulf Stream System, and I see no other plausible explanation for it,” Rahmstorf, whose study relied on proxy-data from ocean sediment and calcareous shells, said.
But again, there’s limited observational evidence. Several scientists besides Maue were skeptical of Rahmstorf’s study.
Rahmstorf’s “assertions of weakening are conceivable but unsupported by any data,” Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Carl Wunsch told The Associated Press.

Saturday, 14 April 2018


Solar Activity Crashes
Robert Zimmerman, Behind The Black, 9 April 2018

It surely looks like the solar minimum has arrived, and it has done so far earlier than expected!

On Sunday NOAA posted its monthly update of the solar cycle, covering sunspot activity for March 2018. Below is my annotated version of that graph.

March 2018 was the least active month for sunspots since the middle of 2009, almost nine years ago. In fact, activity in the past few months has been so low it matches the low activity seen in late 2007 and early 2008, ten years ago when the last solar minimum began and indicated by the yellow line that I have added to the graph below. If the solar minimum has actually arrived now, this would make this cycle only ten years long, one of the shortest solar cycles on record. More important, it is a weak cycle. In the past, all short cycles were active cycles. This is the first time we have seen a short and weak cycle since scientists began tracking the solar cycle in the 1700s, following the last grand minimum in the 1600s when there were almost no sunspots.

The graph above has been modified to show the predictions of the solar science community. The green curves show the community’s two original predictions from April 2007, with half the scientists predicting a very strong maximum and half predicting a weak one. The red curve is their revised May 2009 prediction.

The graph [above], courtesy of the Sunspot Index and Long-term Solar Observations webpage (SILSO), will give you an idea how little activity occurred in March. There were only five days during the entire month where sunspots could be seen on the visible hemisphere of the Sun. We have not seen so little activity since 2009, when the Sun was in the middle of its sunspot minimum.
We could still see a recovery in sunspot cycle. Past cycles tended to ramp down slowly to solar minimum, not quickly as we have so far seen with this cycle. For example, look at sunspot activity during 2007 on the NOAA graph above. Though activity was dropping, throughout the year there were new bursts of activity, thus holding off the arrival of the minimum. It would not be surprising or unusual to see this happen now. […]
The big question remains: Are we about to head into a grand minimum, as happened during the Maunder Minimum in the 1600s? During that century there were practically no sunspots. Since it occurred immediately after the invention of the telescope, astronomers had no idea that the lack of sunspots were unusual and did not give it much attention. It wasn’t until the solar cycle resumed in the 1700s that they discovered its existence, and thus realized the extraordinary nature of the century-long minimum that had just ended. Unfortunately, it was over, and the chance to study it was gone.
Thus, if a new grand minimum is about to start, it will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for today’s solar scientists. Not only will they get to study the Sun as it behaves in a manner they have not seen before, they will be able to do it with today’s phalanx of space-based observatories. The chance to gain a better understanding of the Sun will be unprecedented.
Furthermore, the occurrence of a grand minimum now would help the climate field. We really do not know the full influence of the Sun’s solar cycles on the Earth’s climate. There is ample circumstantial evidence that it has a significant impact, such as the Little Ice Age that occurred during the last grand minimum, as well as the unusually cold climates that also matched past weak cycles, now, and also in the early 19th and 20th centuries.
Studying a grand minimum with today’s sophisticated instruments could help measure precisely how much the Sun’s sunspot activity, or lack thereof, changes the climate here on Earth.