Archive for June, 2010

PNAS Climate Change Expert Credibility Farce

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

Source: http://theresilientearth.com/?q=content/pnas-climate-change-expert-credibility-farce

by Doug L. Hoffman

A new, purportedly scientific report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) is claiming that more “top” environmental scientists believe in global warming. Moreover, the report also claims that the scientists who do believe in global warming—now re-labeled anthropogenic climate change (ACC)—have higher credibility than those who do not. All of this is based on an “extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data.” Citing such data is like saying “most of the people who write for conservative magazines are conservatives.” In other words, the study is devoid of factual significance and possibly purposely misleading. More propaganda from the sinking global warming ship.

In an open access article, rather innocuously titled “Expert credibility in climate change,” William R. L. Anderegg, James W. Prall, Jacob Harold, and Stephen H. Schneider have attempted to denigrate those who dare to disagree with the IPCC party line. In order to provide a false sense of balance, the “researchers” refer to climate change believers as “convinced by the evidence” (CE) and skeptics as “unconvinced by the evidence” (UE). That is the only unbiased thing about the report. Here is the paper’s abstract: (more…)

The Global Warming Inquisition Has Begun

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

Source: Wattsupwiththat?

by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.


A new ?study? has been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) which has examined the credentials and publication records of climate scientists who are global warming skeptics versus those who accept the ?tenets of anthropogenic climate change?.

Not surprisingly, the study finds that the skeptical scientists have fewer publications or are less credentialed than the marching army of scientists who have been paid hundreds of millions of dollars over the last 20 years to find every potential connection between fossil fuel use and changes in nature.

After all, nature does not cause change by itself, you know. (more…)

Vegetative Response to Climate Change: Celebrate, Don’t Fret

Monday, June 21st, 2010

SPPI Note:  The Gonzales paper speculations do not fit real world observations and data.  See the following:

http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/originals/plant_and_animal_response.html

http://www.amazon.com/CO2-Global-Warming-Species-Extinctions/dp/0981969402/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1277150227&sr=1-1

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Source: Master Resource

by Chip Knappenberger
June 21, 2010

A new study has concluded that shifting climate is leading to shifting vegetation patterns across the globe.

My response to this announcement was “Terrific! The biosphere was responding the way it should to changing conditions.”

To my surprise, this enthusiasm wasn’t shared by the study’s authors. In fact, lead author Patrick Gonzalez seemed downright glum:

“Globally, vegetation shifts are disrupting ecosystems, reducing habitat for endangered species, and altering the forests that supply water and other services to many people.”

A very negative spin on what should be cause for celebration. (more…)

Global Warming Hysteric Chokes on His Own Hysteria

Monday, June 21st, 2010

Source: Real Clear Politics

How to Expose a Warmist: Andrew Bolt Interviews Australia’s Al Gore

by Tom Minchin

The global warming movement is in heavy retreat in every Western country. But, as we have learned from the rise of leftist leaders like President Obama and Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, modern collectivists are resilient. If they can recover from the collapse of Communism, they can certainly rebuild the environmental movement. Now is not the time to celebrate, but to press home the exposure of their bogus claims and hidden interests.

TIA Daily readers will therefore appreciate the uncompromising interview style of Australian journalist Andrew Bolt as he eviscerates one of the world’s leading warming alarmists, Tim Flannery-a man in the mold of Al Gore. The interview took place on radio in Melbourne, Australia on June 9.

Andrew Bolt has given TIA Daily permission to reproduce the interview in full. (more…)

Margaret Thatcher – the world’s first climate realist

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

by Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

Anthony Watts’ splendid wattsupwiththat blog has an interesting posting about Margaret Thatcher’s sceptical approach to the climate question. This prompted some comments asking whether I could add anything to the story, since I gave her advice on science as well as other policy from 1982-1986, two years before the IPCC was founded. So here goes.

First, what on Earth was a layman with a degree in classical languages and architecture doing giving advice on science to the British Prime Minister, who was herself a scientist and a Fellow of the Royal Society?

Truth is, British government is small (though still a lot bigger and more expensive than it need be). The Prime Minister’s policy unit had just six members, and, as a mathematician who was about to make a goodish fortune turning an obscure and hitherto-unnoticed wrinkle in the principles of probabilistic combinatorics into a pair of world best-selling puzzles, I was the only one who knew any science.

So, faute de mieux, it was I who – on the Prime Minister’s behalf – kept a weather eye on the official science advisors to the Government, from the Chief Scientific Advisor downward. On my first day in the job, I tottered into Downing Street dragging with me one of the world’s first portable computers, the 18-lb Osborne 1, with a 5” screen, floppy disks that were still truly floppy, and a Z80 8-bit chip which I had learned to program in machine language as well as BASIC.

This was the first computer they had ever seen in Downing Street. The head of security, a bluff military veteran, was deeply suspicious. “What do you want a computer for?” he asked. “Computing,” I replied.

I worked that weighty little box hard. It did everything: converting opinion-poll percentages to predictions of Parliamentary seats won and lost (we predicted the result of the 1983 General Election to within 1 seat); demonstrating a new type of index-linked home loan that removed the inflationary front-loading of interest payments and made it easier for working people to buy the State-owned houses they lived in (we sold a million, and turned cringing clients of the State into proud homeowners with a valuable stake in Britain); and calculating the optimum hull configuration for warships to prove that a government department had defrauded a lone inventor (he go $1 million in compensation).

The tiny computer back-engineered the Social Security Department’s model that showed the impact of changes in tax and benefit rates on different types of family; discounted Cabinet Ministers’ policies to present value to appraise their viability as investments; and worked out how much extra revenue the Government would get if it cut the top rate of income tax from 60 cents on the dollar to 40 cents.

On that one, I was right and the Treasury were wrong: as I had calculated, the rich ended up paying not only more tax but a higher percentage of total tax, even though the top tax rate they had previously paid was 50% higher than the new rate.

The only expenses I ever claimed for in four years at 10 Downing Street were £172 for soldering dry joints on that overworked computer, on which I also did the first elementary radiative-transfer calculations that indicated climate scientists were right to say some “global warming” would arise as CO2 concentration continued to climb.

I briefed my colleagues in the Policy Unit, and also the Prime Minister herself. My advice was straightforward: CO2 concentrations were rising, we were causing it, and it would cause some warming, but at that time no one knew how much (plus ca change), so we needed to find out.

The Prime Minister’s response was equally hard-headed: we were to keep an eye on the problem and come back to her again when action was necessary.

Did she even mention that “global warming” presented an opportunity to give nuclear power a push and, at the same time, to do down the coal-miners who had destroyed a previous Conservative government and had also tried to destroy hers?
Certainly not, for four compelling reasons.

First, nuclear power was politically dead at that time, following the monumentally stupid attempt by the Soviet operators of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor to shut it down without external power just because they were curious to see what would happen.

Secondly, by then the mineworkers, under their Communist leadership, had long been defeated, and we were making arrangements for the deep, dangerous, loss-making coal-mines that had killed so many brave pitmen to be shut down and replaced with safer, profitable, opencast mines.

Two mineworkers came to my farewell party at 10 Downing Street: the first miners ever to enter Downing Street during a Conservative administration.

Thirdly, Margaret Thatcher was never vindictive: it simply was not in her nature. If any of us ever suggested taking any action that would unfairly disadvantage any of her political opponents, she would give us the Gazillion-Gigawatt Glare and say, very firmly and quietly, “Prime Ministers don’t, dear!”

Fourthly, she had an unusual mind that effortlessly spanned CP Snow’s Two Cultures.

As a former food chemist, she possessed the ruthlessly honest logic of the true scientist. As a former barrister, she had the vigor and articulacy of the true practitioner of the forensic arts. Too many scientists today are in effect politicians: too many politicians pretend to be scientific.

Margaret Thatcher was genuinely both scientist and politician, and was able to take the best from both roles without confusing them. She would not have dreamed of doing anything that in any way undermined the integrity of science.

A little vignette will illustrate her scientific integrity. In the late 1970s, a year before she won the first of her three General Elections and became Britain’s first woman Prime Minister, I had sent her a tiny piece of propaganda that I had designed, the Labour Pound.

The little slip of paper bore this simple message: “This is a Labour Pound. This is how small your banknote would be today if it had been shrunk to match the fall in its value under Labour. Vote Conservative!”

Margaret Thatcher noticed at once that the piece of paper was a little too small. Inflation had been bad under the Labour Government (at the time it was running at 27% a year), but not that bad. “Do it again and get it right and be fair,” she said. Humbled, I did as I was told – and tens of millions of Labour Pounds were distributed throughout Britain at the subsequent General Election, to satisfyingly devastating effect.

In 1988 it was my successor at No. 10, George Guise, who traveled one bitterly cold October weekend down to Chequers, the Prime Minister’s country house, and sat in front of a roaring fire writing the speech that would announce a government subsidy to the Royal Society to establish what would become the Hadley Centre for Forecasting.

George remembers how he and the Prime Minister chuckled at the irony of writing a speech about “global warming” on an evening so cold that he could hardly hold his pen.

But that’s October for you: a couple of years ago the scientific illiterates who now inhabit the House of Commons voted for the Climate Change and National Economic Hara-Kiri Bill by one of the largest majorities in Parliament’s history, with only three gallant MPs having the courage to defy the Whips and vote against – and this on the very night that the first October snow in 74 years fell in Parliament Square.

In due course, the scientific results began to arrive. It became as clear to Margaret Thatcher as it has to me that our original concern was no longer necessary. The warming effect of CO2 is simply too small to make much difference and, in any event, it is orders of magnitude cheaper and more cost-effective to adapt to any consequences of “global warming” than to wreck the economies of the West by trying to demonize CO2 and cut our emissions.

Margaret Thatcher was very conscious that the Left tries to taint every aspect of life by attempting to politicize it.

In her thinking, therefore, there is genuine outrage that the coalescence of financial and political vested-interest factions in the scientific and academic community that are driving the climate scare should be striving to bring the age of enlightenment and reason to an end by treating scientific debate as though every question were a political football to be kicked ever Leftward.

In the elegant words of my good friend Bob Ferguson of the Science and Public Policy Institute, she is interested not in “policy-based evidence-making” but in “evidence-based policy-making”. The present crop of politicians on both sides of the Atlantic could learn much from her honest, forthright, no-nonsense approach.

Ocean Acidification (Effects on Marine Plants: Phytoplankton — Coccolithophores) — Summary

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source: CO2 Science

Coccolithophores are single-celled algae and protists that contain chlorophyll, conduct photosynthesis, and possess special plates or scales known as coccoliths that they produce by the process of calcification. They are found in large numbers throughout the surface euphotic zones of the world’s oceans; and we here review the results of several studies that indicate how they may fare in a CO2-enriched world of the future that is characterized by significantly altered oceanic carbonate chemistry.

Working with two previously untested coccolithophores, Calcidiscus leptoporus and Coccolithus pelagicus, which they describe as “two of the most productive marine calcifying species,” Langer et al. (2006) conducted batch-culture experiments in which they observed (1) a “deterioration of coccolith production above as well as below present-day CO2 concentrations in C. leptoporus [italics added],” and (2) a “lack of a CO2 sensitivity of calcification in C. pelagicus” over an atmospheric CO2 concentration range of 98-915 ppm, both of which observations, in their words, “refute the notion of a linear relationship of calcification with the carbonate ion concentration and carbonate saturation state.” (more…)

The Thermal Preferences of Ecuadorian Butterflies of the Amazon

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source: CO2 Science

Reference
Checa, M.F., Barragan, A., Rodriguez, J. and Christman, M. 2009. Temporal abundance patterns of butterfly communities (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) in the Ecuadorian Amazonia and their relationship with climate. Annales de la Société Entomologique de France (NS) 45: 470-486.

What was done
Working within areas surrounding the Yasuni Scientific Research Station in the Ecuadorian Amazon inside the Yasuni National Park — which together with the Huaorani Ethnic Reserve comprise 1.6 million hectares of forest and were declared by UNESCO in 1987 to constitute a Biosphere Reserve — the authors studied the composition and structure of butterfly communities of the “rotting-carrion guild” of the Nymphalidae family over a period of 13 months (April 2002-April 2003), based on data obtained using traps baited with rotten shrimp that had been fermenting for 11-20 days. (more…)

American Pikas and Global Warming

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source:  CO2 Science

Reference
Millar, C.I. and Westfall, R.D. 2010. Distribution and climatic relationships of the American Pika (Ochotona princeps) in the Sierra Nevada and Western Great Basin, U.S.A.; periglacial landforms as refugia in warming climates. Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research 42: 76-88.

Background
American pikas are small generalist herbivores that are relatives of rabbits and hares. They tend to inhabit patchily-distributed rocky slopes of western North American mountains and are good at tolerating cold. However, they are widely believed to have a physiological sensitivity to warming, which when “coupled with the geometry of decreasing area at increasing elevation on mountain peaks,” in the words of the authors, “has raised concern for the future persistence of pikas in the face of climate change,” so much so, in fact, that “the species has been petitioned under California [USA] state and federal laws for endangered species listing.” (more…)

The Demise of the Monteverde Golden Toad

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source:  CO2 Science

Reference
Anchukaitis, K.J. and Evans, M.N. 2010. Tropical cloud forest climate variability and the demise of the Monteverde golden toad. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 107: 5036-5040.

Background
The authors write that “widespread amphibian extinctions in the mountains of the American tropics have been blamed on the interaction of anthropogenic climate change and a lethal pathogen,” as we have discussed at length in reviews of papers we have archived under the heading of Extinction (Real-World Observations — Animals: Amphibians) in our Subject Index; and they note, in this regard, that “limited meteorological records make it difficult to conclude whether current climate conditions at these sites are actually exceptional in the context of natural variability,” questioning once again the original climate-alarmist contention that modern global warming was the primary culprit in the demise of the Monteverde golden toad (Bufo periglenes). (more…)

The Persistence of Species

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source: CO2 Science

by Sherwood, Keith and Craig Idso

In his 26 April 2007 testimony before the Select Committee of Energy Independence and Global Warming of the U.S. House of Representatives entitled “Dangerous Human-Made Interference with Climate,” NASA’s James Hansen stated that life in alpine regions is “in danger of being pushed off the planet” in response to continued greenhouse-gas-induced global warming. Why? Because that’s what all the species distribution models of the day predicted at that time. Now, however, a set of new-and-improved models is raising some serious questions about Hansen’s overly zealous contention, as described in a “perspective” published in Science by Willis and Bhagwat (2009). (more…)

Trying to Hit a Mosquito with a Sledgehammer

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Source:  World Climate Report

One of the standard tenets of the global warming bible is that malaria will get worse as temperatures rise. We?ve addressed this many times before, primarily by noting that the link between high temperatures and high malaria infection rates is anything but straightforward. Infectious disease expert Paul Reiter is quick to point out that malaria has been observed inside the Arctic Circle?and this is obviously not typical of a so-called ?tropical? disease. (more…)

TEEB report has multiple errors in first chapter alone, Parts #1 & 2

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Source: Climate Quotes

Source: #2 Climate Quotes

It’s been quiet here for over a month. This has been a busy time for me, I am now a college graduate (and looking for a job, know of any?). I intend to continue posting however, and when I saw a headline article on climate depot a while ago I dug a little deeper into the story.

This article from the Guardian talks about new UN biodiversity report. It’s worth reading. Here is an interesting quote:

The report will advocate massive changes to the way the global economy is run so that it factors in the value of the natural world. In future, it says, communities should be paid for conserving nature rather than using it; companies given stricter limits on what they can take from the environment and fined or taxed more to limit over-exploitation; subsidies worth more than US$1tn (£696.5bn) a year for industries like agriculture, fisheries, energy and transport reformed; and businesses and national governments asked to publish accounts for their use of natural and human capital alongside their financial results.

Shock! The UN is using protection of the natural world as a reason to make massive changes to the global economy? This sounds familiar, which I’m sure is why Morano posted it. Whenever the UN puts out a report that involves the world spending a lot of money, I get suspicious, so I decided to take a look at the interim report (the final isn’t going to be published until later this year). Here is the report. (more…)

TEEB pushes fear and new taxes

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Source:  Climate Quotes

The past two days I’ve looked at the UN’s interim TEEB report and found several errors in the first chapter. I was going to write a post about how this pseudo-science spreads, but after looking at several TEEB documents I decided to write on a new topic.

The TEEB isn’t a scientific body, it exists to influence policymakers. This isn’t a contentious claim, they say so on their webpage:

The TEEB study aims to:

* Integrate ecological and economic knowledge to structure the evaluation of ecosystem services under different scenarios.
* Recommend appropriate valuation methodologies for different contexts.
* Examine the economic costs of biodiversity decline and the costs and benefits of actions to reduce these losses.
* Develop “toolkits” for policy makers at international, regional and local levels in order to foster sustainable development and better conservation of ecosystems and biodiversity.
* Enable easy access to leading information and tools for improved biodiversity practice for the business community ? from the perspective of managing risks, addressing opportunities, and measuring impacts.
* Raise public awareness of the individual?s impact on biodiversity and ecosystems, as well as identifying areas where individual action can make a positive difference.

They obtain these goals by attempting to instill fear in their audience. Once the fear is instilled, they recommend new taxes to solve the problem. (more…)

Interior Secretary Salazar lies about drilling peer review

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Source:  Red State

by Moe Lane

Basically, what happened was that Salazar added language to a report on the Gulf oil spill, and that said language called for a drilling moratorium.  That’s not the lie: the Interior Secretary is allowed to make his own recommendations, even when they’re dunderheaded recommendations.  No, this is the lie:

Salazar’s report to Obama said a panel of seven experts “peer reviewed” his recommendations, which included a six-month moratorium on permits for new wells being drilled using floating rigs and an immediate halt to drilling operations.

“None of us actually reviewed the memorandum as it is in the report,” oil expert Ken Arnold told Fox News. “What was in the report at the time it was reviewed was quite a bit different in its impact to what there is now. So we wanted to distance ourselves from that recommendation.”

Via Power Line and Instapundit: the exact lie is: (more…)

Statement by Sen. Orrin G. Hatch Before the United States Senate

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Statement by Sen. Orrin G. Hatch Before the United States Senate, June 10, 2010

EPA Disapproval Resolution

Mr. President, I rise today as an original cosponsor of the Disapproval Resolution of the carbon regulations proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency.  I would like to start off by applauding Senator Murkowski for her strong leadership on this issue, and I stand squarely behind her effort.

To summarize what has already been laid out today, the EPA has released findings that, one, human carbon emissions contribute in a significant way to global warming; and, two, that global warming  —  which has been going on for about 10,000 years now  — is an endangerment to humans.  The EPA?s foundation for its proposal relies on the assumption that both of these findings are true. (more…)