Archive for September, 2012

Climate Realism

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source:  American Thinker

Even with the Kyoto Protocol due to expire at the end of this year, Obama persists in giving highest priority to climate change policy if re-elected.  Does the U.S. really want to lead the world in committing economic suicide?  It pays to look at the rapidly disappearing scientific rationale for trying to mitigate a putative future global warming.

In an essay “Why the Global Warming Skeptics are Wrong” in the New York Review of Books of Feb. 22, 2012, Yale professor William D. Nordhaus attempts to counter the arguments of a group of 16 prominent scientists who published an essay, “No Need to Panic about Global Warming,” in the Wall Street Journal on Jan. 27, 2012.

Two crucial points may have been overlooked in the debate:

**Evidence for anthropogenic global warming (AGW) is problematic.
**A modest warming is likely to be beneficial — not damaging. (more…)

ANTARCTIC SEA ICE EXPANDS TO NEW RECORD

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source: Forbes

Antarctic sea ice set another record this past week, with the most amount of ice ever recorded on day 256 of the calendar year (September 12 of this leap year). Please, nobody tell the mainstream media or they might have to retract some stories and admit they are misrepresenting scientific data.

National Public Radio (NPR) published an article on its website last month claiming, “Ten years ago, a piece of ice the size of Rhode Island disintegrated and melted in the waters off Antarctica. Two other massive ice shelves along the Antarctic Peninsula had suffered similar fates a few years before. The events became poster children for the effects of global warming. … There’s no question that unusually warm air triggered the final demise of these huge chunks of ice.” (more…)

Should the GOP Champion Climate Change as a National Security Issue?

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source: Global Warming.org  

by Marlo Lewis

Yes, argues Daveed Gartenstein-Ross in The Atlantic (Sep. 17, 2012). Gartenstein-Ross is the author of Bin Laden’s Legacy: Why We’re Still Losing the War on Terror. I haven’t read the book, but judging from the favorable reviews, Gartenstein-Ross has the ear of defense hawks of both parties. Does he offer sound advice on global warming?

In his Atlantic article, Gartenstein-Ross chides Republicans for taking a “decidely unrealistic tack” on climate change. “The available evidence overwhelmingly suggests that climate change is real; that extreme weather events are increasing; and that this dynamic will have an impact on American national security, if it hasn’t already,” he avers. He goes on to blame this summer’s drought on global warming, citing NASA scientist James Hansen’s claim that the 2003 European heat wave, the 2010 Russian heat wave, and the 2011 Texas-Oklahoma drought have “virtually no explanation other than climate change.” (For an alternative assessment, see these posts.)  (more…)

Is the EPA superagency bigger than the President and Congress?

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source: http://netrightdaily.com/2012/09/is-the-epa-superagency-bigger-than-the-president-and-congress/#ixzz26pM2KZzg

So much for the separation of powers.

Thanks to federal court rulings, even if Mitt Romney prevails in Nov., he will be hard-pressed to unilaterally rein in regulatory overreach by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The problems at the agency are fixable, but they will require decisive action by Congress and the president — and even then courts may remain a likely avenue for radical environmentalists to enact sweeping restrictions on the energy industry, the wider economy, and everyone’s standards of living.

Under the Obama Administration, the agency has taken the habit of entering into “sue-and-settle” arrangements with radical fringe groups. This is where an organization sues the EPA demanding that they enforce the law in a new, expanded way.

The EPA then enters into a consent decree with the party, which is signed by a judge without review, since the two disputing parties are in “agreement.” Suddenly, the EPA’s power under, say, the Clean Air Act or the Clean Water Act has been expanded dramatically. (more…)

EPA stifles U.S. coal but subsidizes it in China

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source:  Washington Examiner

Two weeks ago, the United States national debt surpassed $16 trillion. To put that into perspective, that is more than $50,000 per person in the U.S. To finance this overwhelming debt, the U.S. is borrowing roughly 40 cents of every dollar we spend, a good portion of it from foreign countries like China.

There are many news stories highlighting instances where the federal government wastes our money, but Americans may not be aware that our federal government is actually using taxpayer dollars to subsidize projects that benefit our foreign competitors, including China.

Last week, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a hearing on the Accountability in Grants Act, which would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from awarding grants under Section 103 of the Clean Air Act for foreign projects. Since 2001, the EPA has awarded grants to foreign recipients totaling more than $100 million. In many instances, these taxpayer-funded grants help foreign companies at the expense of domestic ones. (more…)

India Has Big Plans for Burning Coal

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source: Scientific American

BIG COAL: India has big plans for burning coal, with attendant impacts on global warming Image: flickr/conskeptical

India Has Big Plans for Burning Coal: Scientific American

India is poised to contend with China as the globe’s top consumer of coal, with 455 power plants preparing to come online, a prominent environmental research group has concluded.

The coal plants in India’s pipeline — almost 100 more than China is preparing to build — would deliver 519,396 megawatts of installed generating capacity. That is only slightly less than pending new capacity in China, which remains the undisputed king of coal consumption.

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India is poised to contend with China as the globe’s top consumer of coal, with 455 power plants preparing to come online, a prominent environmental research group has concluded.

The coal plants in India’s pipeline — almost 100 more than China is preparing to build — would deliver 519,396 megawatts of installed generating capacity. That is only slightly less than pending new capacity in China, which remains the undisputed king of coal consumption.

The data from the World Resources Institute (WRI), not released publicly but obtained by ClimateWire, paint a picture of a global energy trajectory in which coal remains a dominant actor, despite concerns about rising costs and environmental groups’ trumpeting of the reduced costs of renewable energy. (more…)

Global Warming Skepticism – a Medical Condition?

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source: http://www.sepp.org/twtwfiles/2012/TWTW%20-%209-22-12.pdf  

Global Warming Skepticism – a Medical Condition? The controversy continues regarding a paper in press in Psychological Science by Stephan Lewandowsky et al. of the University of Western Australia. The title is ‘NASA faked the moon landing, Therefore (Climate) Science is a Hoax: An Anatomy of the Motivated Rejection of Science.’
http://websites.psychology.uwa.edu….

There are many comments in the blogs on how deficient the paper is including those by Thomas Fuller and Steven McIntyre. McIntyre hones in on the statistical deficiencies in the paper and the inability to replicate the findings. (more…)

Ninth Circuit Upholds Dismissal of Climate Change Nuisance Case

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Source:  http://www.troutmansanders.com/ninth-circuit-upholds-dismissal-of-climate-change-nuisance-case-09-24-2012/

By Peter S. Glaser and Douglas A. Henderson

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on Friday upheld a 2009 California federal district court decision dismissing claims by an Alaska Native American village against a large number of coal, oil and electric utility companies that the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of these companies constituted a public nuisance by causing massive erosion around the coastal village.  See Native Village of Kivalina v. Exxon-Mobil Corp., No. 09-17490 (Sept. 21, 2012).  The case is the first major court decision in this area following the Supreme Court’s decision in American Electric Power Co., Inc. v. Connecticut, 131 S. Ct. 2527 (2011), which held that federal common law claims based on GHG emissions are displaced by federal regulation of GHGs under the Clean Air Act. (more…)

Things More Worrisome than AGW: Strike on Iran would trigger ‘World War III’: Guards

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Source:  France 24 News

Iran Missiles

 

AFP – Iran could launch a pre-emptive strike if Israel prepares to attack it, a senior Revolutionary Guards commander told broadcaster Al-Alam on Sunday, a day after his boss warned that conflict was inevitable.

Should Israel and Iran engage militarily, “nothing is predictable… and it will turn into World War III,” Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh told Iran’s Arabic-language television network. (more…)

Things More Worrisome than AGW: Fed’s QE3

Friday, September 21st, 2012

Source:   The Economic Collapse

Printing away the future

OPINION

The Federal Reserve Is Systematically Destroying Social Security And The Retirement Plans Of Millions Of Americans

By Michael Snyder

Last week the mainstream media hailed QE3 as the “quick fix” that the U.S. economy desperately needs, but the truth is that the policies that the Federal Reserve is pursuing are going to be absolutely devastating for our senior citizens.

By keeping interest rates at exceptionally low levels, the Federal Reserve is absolutely crushing savers and is systematically destroying Social Security.

Meanwhile, the inflation that QE3 will cause is going to be absolutely crippling for the millions upon millions of retired Americans that are on a fixed income.  Sadly, most elderly Americans have no idea what the Federal Reserve is doing to their financial futures. (more…)

New SPPI Paper: Interactive Effects of C02 and UV-B Radiation on Terrestrial Ecosystems

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Source:  SPPI

Zhao et al. (2004)[1] report that “as a result of stratospheric ozone depletion, UV-B radiation (280-320 nm) levels are still high at the Earth’s surface and are projected to increase in the near future (Madronich et al., 1998; McKenzie et al., 2003),” and in reference to this potential development, they note that “increased levels of UV-B radiation are known to affect plant growth, development and physiological processes (Dai et al., 1992; Nouges et al., 1999),” stating that high UV-B levels often result in “inhibition of photosynthesis, degradation of protein and DNA, and increased oxidative stress (Jordan et al., 1992; Stapleton, 1992).” In light of these observations, therefore, it is only natural to wonder how the ongoing rise in the air’s CO2 content might impact the deleterious effects of UV-B radiation on Earth’s vegetation.

 

Stop the War on Coal Act (H.R. 3409)

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Source:  US House Energy and Commerce Committee

stop the lynching of coal industry

 

Title I of the bill, the Coal Miner Employment and Domestic Energy Infrastructure Protection Act, sponsored by Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH), will protect American jobs and support U.S. energy production by prohibiting the Secretary of the Interior from issuing new rules or regulations that will adversely impact mining jobs and our economy. It is a necessary safeguard in response to the effort by the Obama administration’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) to conduct a sweeping rewrite of a coal mining regulation (the 2008 Stream Buffer Zone Rule) that will cost jobs and decrease American energy production.

Specifically, the Coal Miner Employment and Domestic Energy Infrastructure Protection Act will prohibit the Secretary of the Interior from issuing regulations under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act that will: Adversely impact U.S. coal mining employment; Cause a reduction in coal revenue to governments through regulation of coal mining; Reduce the amount of coal available for domestic consumption or export; Designate any area as unsuitable for surface coal mining and reclamation operations; or Expose the U.S. to liability for taking the value of privately owned coal through regulation.

Should the GOP Champion Climate Change as a National Security Issue?

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Source:  Global Warming.org

The truth about extreme weather

OPINION

Yes, argues Daveed Gartenstein-Ross in The Atlantic (Sep. 17, 2012). Gartenstein-Ross is the author of Bin Laden’s Legacy: Why We’re Still Losing the War on Terror. I haven’t read the book, but judging from the favorable reviews, Gartenstein-Ross has the ear of defense hawks of both parties. Does he offer sound advice on global warming?

In his Atlantic article, Gartenstein-Ross chides Republicans for taking a “decidely unrealistic tack” on climate change. “The available evidence overwhelmingly suggests that climate change is real; that extreme weather events are increasing; and that this dynamic will have an impact on American national security, if it hasn’t already,” he avers. He goes on to blame this summer’s drought on global warming, citing NASA scientist James Hansen’s claim that the 2003 European heat wave, the 2010 Russian heat wave, and the 2011 Texas-Oklahoma drought have “virtually no explanation other than climate change.” (For an alternative assessment, see these posts.)

Since 2010, notes Gartenstein-Ross, the Department of Defense has classified climate change as a conflict accelerant — a factor exacerbating tensions within and between nations. Well, sure, what else is Team Obama at DOD going to say in an era of tight budgets when no rival superpower endangers our survival? The concept of an ever-deepening, civilization-imperilling climate crisis is an ideal mission-creep accelerant. (more…)

GOP needs to start talking about EPA reform now

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Source:  Washington Times

The EPA Hydra

OPINION

One issue that has been noticeably absent from the Republican platform this election season is any discussion of the Obama Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). It didn’t even come up at the Republican National Convention a couple of weeks ago. If the omission was an oversight, it was a big one. If it was intentional, it’s cause for concern. (more…)

Coal company facing aggressive regulations announces 1,200 layoffs

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Source:   Daily Caller

Coal company Alpha Natural Resources announced Tuesday it would be laying off 1,200 workers and closing eight coal mines to face two new challenges: cheap natural gas and “a regulatory environment that’s aggressively aimed at constraining the use of coal.”

The Associated Press reports that the company is cutting production by 16 million tons and 1,200 jobs nationwide, with 400 layoffs occurring immediately by closing coal mines in Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Four mines will be closed in West Virginia, another three will be closed in Virginia and one in Pennsylvania. All the mines are non-union operations, according to the AP. (more…)