Monday, August 31, 2015

Obama to push global-warming treaty in trip to Alaska

Some awkward facts you won't hear from Obama:  "Alaska’s summers are warm with temperatures that can reach into the 90°s. Ft. Yukon holds the all-time record with a sizzling 100°F temperature recorded in 1915. Many believe that the far northern part of Alaska would be the coldest. Actually, the record for Alaska (and the entire U.S. for that matter) was set in 1971 at Prospect Creek in the northern interior: a bone-chilling -80°F!"

Alaskan temperatures have on average increased considerably in recent decades, far more so than most places on earth.  The fact that they are out of step with the rest of the word does however show that we are not seeing anything global here. The process is local -- probably due to  slow changes in ocean currents which are probably cyclical and so may soon reverse

With melting glaciers and rising seas as his backdrop, President Obama will visit Alaska next week to press for urgent global action to combat climate change, even as he carefully calibrates his message in a state heavily dependent on oil.

Obama will become the first sitting president to visit the Alaska Arctic when he travels to Kotzebue – population 3,153 – just north of the Arctic Circle at the end of his three-day trip. He’ll kick off the visit Monday with a speech to a State Department-hosted conference in Anchorage on climate change and the Arctic.

The unambiguous goal of the president’s trip is to use dramatic and alarming changes to Alaska’s climate to instill fresh urgency into his global warming agenda. Sea ice is melting, critical permafrost is thawing and Alaska’s cherished glaciers are liquefying – powerful visuals that Obama hopes will illustrate the threat to natural wonders and livelihoods and serve as a global call to action.

“This is all real,” Obama said in his weekly address released Saturday. “This is happening to our fellow Americans right now.”


Ya gotta laugh:  California nightmare dreaming

They sure believe in having a bet each way below.  The drought will get worse, they say.  And then there will be floods. They may well be right.  But does that have anything to do with global warming?  Seeing that there has been no statistically significant  global warming for 18 years, global warming cannot account for either phenomenon.  Something that doesn't exist doesn't cause anything. What we are seeing is normal California climate oscillations.  It is mostly a dry state with occasional drought-breaking rains.  Always was.  Always will be.

There were some significant rains recently in fact -- but no mention of them below, of course.  California news from a few weeks ago: "Monsoonal moisture has increased rain events, cloud cover and humidity levels in what is normally a very dry time of year. The active Pacific hurricane season has helped enhance the rain events, leading to flooding for some parts of the state and even record rain amounts."

What clowns the Warmists are!

California's unabated drought (the one that's been going on for four long years) has parched the entire state and led to some frightening consequences (parts of the state are sinking), but the worst is yet to come and "there's no way out," according to climate scientists. Those were their literal words. They presented to regulators and reps from the Governor's Office at the California Climate Change Symposium this week, the Daily Breeze reports, telling them that the drought had been dramatically exacerbated by global warming, and that there's a lot worse in store: less water, more pollution, scarier weather, bigger storms, floods, and fires.

"What we're beginning to understand is that there's no way out," said Susanne Moser, who's described as a leading expert on climate change. "We need transformational change. We don't need more studies as much as we need to communicate the urgency and make solid changes. We need to not debate forever." But as the DB's Sandy Mazza writes, there's little funding at all to handle climate change and its effects, and even less for low-income communities, which are "therefore less prepared than their more affluent counterparts." But even the preparation that's already been done is wildly insufficient: "We're getting over the illusion that we can (fix) this with just a few little changes ... We have to break old habits," says Moser. Here's some of what the scientists are warning about; maybe they'll scare us into breaking some habits:

— An analysis of climate change's effect on the state's drought published in Geophysical Research Letters concluded that climate change made California's "dry season" as much as 20 percent worse. Plus, the combo of hot temperatures and little precipitation are "more likely" to result in a drought, so a warmer climate would probably be a droughtier one, a Stanford researcher explained.

— The heat evaporates more groundwater too, which is depleting underground reserves; those won't refill as easily as a reservoir might, "posing a problem for future drinking-water supplies."

— In addition to droughts, we should also expect excessive water. "We're in the middle of a drought but we're going to be in the middle of a flood, and we're less prepared for that," the president of Oakland's Pacific Institute says. Scientists are expecting an enormous El Niño effect this winter, which will mean biblical amounts of precipitation.

— One result of a warmer overall climate will be higher sea levels. Though areas along the coast, like the Port of LA, have already made some effort to prepare for a rise in waters, coastal 'hoods and "Low-lying areas, including the Los Angeles International Airport, are at risk of being submerged in water."

— Meanwhile, warmer atmospheric conditions hold more water, which can amount to more intense storms, said a US Geological Survey hydrologist, so we'll have those, too. "Atmospheric rivers," a thread of "thick precipitation" that travels through the air like a stream or river, will increase as the climate warms up. (The tail-end of an atmospheric river hit the Bay Area in late December and it was ROUGH.)

— But even though "big storms are expected this winter, Californians should actually anticipate worsening droughts, scientists said." New findings presented at this symposium suggest that there's a 95 percent chance that the changing, warming climate created that high pressure ridge—aka the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge—that's kept rain from falling on California for years—and will probably do it again. "Global warming has at least tripled the probability of the atmospheric condition" that produced the ridge.

— It's not just coastal areas that will be in trouble. Warmer temperatures are creating bigger forest fires (which in turn produce carbon emissions). "Wildfires are of particular concern because conifer forests are thicker than ever and a drier, hotter climate is especially conducive to fire," said one hydrologist.


Climate is dooming the profiteers of doom

Exclusive to WND: Lord Monckton reacts to 'bombshell dropped' on 'global warming' claims

ERICE, SICILY – Here at the World Federation of Scientists’ annual meeting on energy seminars, the warm autumn sun shines on the golden-gray limestone of the medieval monasteries that are now temples of science, asking much the same questions about the origin and destination of the universe as the pious monks once asked.

One thing has become ever clearer in the five years since I first came here to deliver a lecture to 200 of the world’s most eminent scientists on the apparently obscure topic of clouds and climate sensitivity: The profiteers of doom are themselves doomed. The climate is not responding as the bed-wetters had said it would.

There have been two plenary sessions devoted to the climate this year. By convention, the Erice meetings are subject to Chatham House rules, which prevent me from repeating what any particular participant said. However, I can certainly report that the increasing temperature of the debate between the true-believers in climate doom and the hard-headed skeptics is not matched by global mean temperature, which has not risen for 18 years and seven months, even though fully one-third of man’s effect on the climate since 1750 has occurred in the same period.

In the Canadian army, trainees are taught what it is like to have to fight an opposing force. They call the imaginary enemy the “Fantasians.” That seems to me to be the perfect word for the true-believers in climate cataclysm. They are increasingly removed from reality.

Gradually, the Fantasians who used to attend the annual seminars here on a noble mountain-top overlooking the azure Mediterranean have slunk away. They know the end of their dominance is near.

For, as was pointed out during the plenary sessions here, the rate of global warming since the U.N.’s climate panel made its first exaggerated predictions in 1990 has been little more than a third of what we were told it would be.

As always here in Erice, a quiet, learned bombshell was dropped – and dropped so subtly that most of the participants did not at first notice. I cannot give details of the form this bombshell took, for that would pre-empt a forthcoming publication in one of the leading learned journals of climate science.

But I can tell you what it means. The Fantasians’ computer models have made a prodigious exaggeration of one particular variable in the equation that tells them how much global warming to expect. What this means is that there will in fact be considerably less manmade global warming over the coming century than even I had at first thought.

As recently as January this year, in a learned paper with three distinguished colleagues, I wrote in the Science Bulletin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences that there would not even be 1 Celsius degree of new manmade global warming this century.

The effect of the bombshell, delivered by one of the sharpest of the many sharp minds here, will halve that estimate. There cannot now be more than 0.5 Celsius, or about 1 Fahrenheit, of new manmade warming by 2100 compared with today.

For that bombshell, though the biggest of them all, was not the only one to be quietly dropped into the windowless, earthquake-proof, reinforced-concrete bunker that is the chief lecture-hall at the Ettore Majorana Centre for Scientific Culture. It was also revealed that the U.N.’s accident-prone climate panel has cut another key variable in the global-warming equation by a quarter, reducing the warming we may expect by as much as a third.

It was also explained that only two-thirds of the global warming predicted to occur in response to our altering the climate will occur within a century of our influence, and that in any event our influence does not all occur in the present but will increase slowly over the 21st century, again halving the warming predicted by the hapless U.N. climate panel.

Of course, the panel also predicts that there will be some further warming from our past sins of emission. But here’s the thing: Even if the U.N. is right about that (which is unlikely after 223 months without any global warming), we can do nothing about it. Once we have returned to the atmosphere some of the CO2 that was once resident there in concentrations at least 15 times today’s, there is very little that we can do to get it back out again. Nature will do that for us over time, but we cannot much accelerate the process.

The point is that, even in theory (through probably not in practice), the only warming we can now affect is the warming that has not yet occurred this century.

But what about the warming that will therefore occur in the next century? Scientifically speaking, there is no need to worry about it, because a rate of warming so slow that we shall only see half a degree of new manmade warming this century is not going to lead to catastrophe.

Economically speaking, it might be worth doing something to try to prevent some of this year’s expected global warming, but the next century is too far away for us to need to take any steps now. The rational course would be to wait and see whether global warming accelerates: After all, the planet is scarcely warmer today than it was two decades ago, so we have plenty of extra time to see whether any action needs to be taken before throwing taxpayers’ money away on boondoggles like wind farms that slice birds and bats to bits and swipe them out of the sky, or solar collectors that fry passing birds to a crisp.

Naturally, the pompous Fantasians who have a meal-ticket for life negotiating meaningless but cripplingly expensive climate deals at the interminable series of U.N. annual climate conferences do not know anything about this. They have no idea how very silly they are beginning to look. If they bothered to read WND, they would know the truth.


Old bag Slingo Making It Up As She Goes Along

With just a couple of days left, the Met Office have confirmed just how cold the summer has been in the UK:

"Despite a dry and sunny June and a brief heat-wave at the start of July, summer overall looks set to be cooler than average and cooler than either summer 2013 or 2014. It has also been rather wetter than average, however sunshine totals are expected to be near average.

In general the weather has been dominated by a westerly flow from the Atlantic, bringing often cool and rather wet conditions, especially in the north and west, with the south-east generally experiencing the best of any warm, dry, sunny spells.

Using provisional figures up to 26 August* and then assuming average conditions for the final few days of the month, Met Office statistics show the UK mean temperature for this summer will be around 14 °C. This is 0.4 °C below the long term average (1981-2010)."

Apart from 2011 and 2012, this would make it the coldest summer since 1998.

Unsurprisingly, the Met Office did not see this coming at the end of May.

While they admit that uncertainty was large, the vast majority of their modelled projections were well above the outcome, including one which would have broken the record of 15.78C by a large margin.

None of this will come as any great surprise, but what is interesting is what Julia Slingo has to say about it on the Met Office blog:

Note again: "If we look beyond our shores there have been some big changes in the global climate this year. El Niño is in full flight, disturbing weather patterns around the world. The low pressure that has dominated our weather is part of a pattern of waves in the jet stream around the world that has brought crippling heat waves to places like Poland and Japan. And, looking back over past El Niños, you could have expected that a more unsettled summer might be on the cards for the UK."

So it’s all the El Nino’s fault! Well perhaps not.

Returning to the 3-Month outlook above, this is what the Met Office had to say at the end of May:

Note: "However, El Niño is not known to have a significant influence on the climate across northern Europe at this time of year."

In other words, Slingo is just making it up as she goes along. They were even saying exactly the same thing in their 3-Month outlook at the end of July.

Slingo claims in her article that none of this could have been foreseen, even though now she also claims that the weather should have been expected with El Nino conditions.

However, one commenter rather shows up her incompetence:

It is a mystery how this incompetent woman has kept her job for so long.

SOURCE  (See the original for links and graphics)

Global Warming Policies May Increase Water Deficits

Is it possible that emissions-curbing policies endanger the water supply even more than climate change itself?

“Using biofuels as a way to cut greenhouse gas emissions could put U.S. water resources under increasing pressure. Researchers find that a heavy reliance on bioenergy could mean a 42 percent increase in water consumption across the US by 2100,” The Carbon Brief reported.

That’s the takeaway from a new study from the University of Maryland and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). The problem centers on emissions policies designed around biofuels.

“The results clearly show, for the first time to our knowledge, that climate change mitigation policies, if not designed with careful attention to water resources, could increase the magnitude, spatial coverage, and frequency of water deficits. The results challenge the general perception that mitigation that aims at reducing warming also would alleviate water deficits in the future,” the study said.

Lead author Mohamad Hejazi said the findings mean that water must be carefully considered in any policy intervention. “If we don’t pay careful attention to water, we could end up with climate mitigation policies that yield such negative consequences,” he said.

Responding To Climate Change (RTCC) broke down the meaning of the study: “Their models show that while mitigating climate change boosts water supply, this is outweighed by increased demand... In other words, green policies risk causing more water stress than climate change itself.”

It’s not the act of curbing emissions, but rather the use of thirsty bioenergy crops, that creates problems. “A scenario involving less bioenergy saw water demand rise 12 percent instead of 42 percent, with nuclear and geothermal energy the main drivers. But the authors noted bioenergy was seen as a cost-effective option, with potential for negative emissions if coupled with carbon capture and storage,” the study said.

Bioenergy crops are also criticized for taking up space that could be used for food crops.


Katrina: Not Global Warming, and Not Worst-Case Scenario

By forecaster Joe Bastardi

I don’t know if people remember but I caused quite a stir the Friday afternoon before Hurricane Katrina struck when, on national TV, I said it was coming for New Orleans. I reminded people that I had downplayed Ivan in New Orleans the year before when apparently there was a rumor the mayor, thinking it would hit the city, ordered 10,000 bodybags. Ivan was not their storm, but I knew exactly what kind of storm would result in a disaster. I will explain that below. In any case, I was recently reminded of all this at a dinner with some clients in Houston. One of them thanked me because, as my client, I called him at two o'clock in the afternoon when the European (ECMWF) computer model run came in confirming my worst fear: It was coming for New Orleans. In what I do, serving the client to keep them prepared comes first. The TV was, is and always will be secondary. That being said, I am always going to speak my mind on these matters.

I am not writing this to relive yesterday. I have kept out of all the Katrina hoopla; in fact, I look on with a bit of ironic amusement at the way people recall the storm. It’s like a 10-year high school reunion, where some of the things that are being said just don’t fit the overall missive. I can’t wait for the 25-year reunion. Should be good. You remember how those go: The 3-1 win in the districts turns into a 7-0 perfect game in the finals of the states. It’s like a weather version of Napoleon Dynamite’s “Uncle Rico.”

The term I used for what Katrina would do was a “pincer movement” pushing water back through Lakes Bourne and Pontchartrain, with the water then coming back into New Orleans from hurricane force northwest winds on the backside. This was based on an idea I had read back when I was a child, in the February 1965 issue of Weatherwise on the review of Hurricane Hilda, 1964. The author made a point to say that if the storm had regained hurricane intensity east of New Orleans it might have flooded the city from the north. The point is that, even back in the 1960s, they were concerned about this. And, well, they should have been, as Category 4 Betsy in 1965 caused major problems there, but even that didn’t track in the ideal manner. Neither did Katrina, and people have to realize that no amount of man-made global warming clamor can change the fact it was not worst case. I said it then, and I will say it again as my contribution to the 10-year reunion: The 1947 hurricane, with Katrina’s intensity or greater (remember, Camille in 1969 was a Category 5 with a similar path to Katrina), would be the worst-case scenario.

This endgame is similar to the Category 5 “Fist of Fury,” a smaller but more violent Camille in 1969.

Now notice Betsy, a giant of a storm, occurred in 1965 despite an El Niño.

The track was south of the Mississippi River, so the worst storm surge came not through Lakes Bourne and Ponchartrain but from the southeast where the Delta can break it up. That being said, water came up so high, people were trapped in their attics! The mayor of New Orleans, before his Ivan misread, said for people to make sure they had axes, in reference to what folks had to do to get out of their houses because of Betsy. But even that was not the worst-case scenario.

Here is the ultimate track, with the intensity of any of these three storms: The 1947 Fort Lauderdale hurricane, a Category 4 storm, but not nearly as strong at New Orleans.

A 20-25 foot storm surge back through those lakes and New Orleans is rendered helpless. There is little anyone can do with an approach from the east-southeast, north of the mouth of the Mississippi.

This is certainly not global warming. It’s like with Sandy. Years before, I wrote a paper and did talks to insurance companies on what I called the “Philadelphia Story,” a storm worse than Sandy but of the same genre — one that came from the southeast. Why? Well, my dad, a meteorologist, would always pull out maps of Hurricane Hazel’s pattern (1954) then track hurricanes like the one in 1933 into the mid-Atlantic States, or the 1903 storm into Atlantic City, and observe: The question isn’t why it should happen, but why not. So it is here.

My contribution to the reunion is this: Katrina was not global warming, and it was not the worst-case scenario. And if a worst-case storm shows up, it should be apparent that it would not be global warming, either.

SOURCE  (See the original for links and graphics)


For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


Sunday, August 30, 2015

UK: End of the solar panel boom as subsidies slashed by Tories

Ministers moved to slash massive subsidies for solar panels yesterday, amid signs the Government’s enthusiasm for green energy is waning.  In a surprise move, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd announced a consultation aimed at cutting the subsidies by almost 90 per cent.

If implemented, such a step would remove virtually all incentive for home owners to install the panels and could mean the end of Britain’s solar power boom.

In recent weeks, ministers have tightened planning restrictions and reduced subsidies for wind farms. They also closed the £540million Green Deal, which gave out loans for domestic energy efficiency improvements.

Ministers claim they are taking ‘urgent action’ to tackle overspend within the Department of Energy and Climate Change and to protect ‘hard-working bill payers’.

Its latest consultation says government spending on feed-in tariffs – schemes that pay producers a subsidy for the electricity they generate – should be limited to between £75million and £100million by 2018/19.

Feed-in-tariff payments on domestic solar panels will also be cut by £192 a year for the typical household, according to calculations.

The Tories have already announced that taxpayer subsidies for wind farms are to be axed a year early, part of a ‘big reset’ of support given to renewable energy.

The Government is expected to go further and review all support given to green energy which is funded by levies on bills worth £4.3billion-a-year. The latest announcement will come as an embarrassment for energy minister Amber Rudd, who promised in May to ‘unleash a new solar revolution’.

Green energy campaigners have criticised the ‘absurd’ Government plans as ‘politically motivated’.

Friends of the Earth energy campaigner Alasdair Cameron said: ‘From California to China, the world is reaping the benefits of a solar revolution, yet incredibly in the UK David Cameron is actually trying to shut down rooftop solar.

‘These absurd solar cuts will send UK energy policy massively in the wrong direction and prevent almost a million homes, schools and hospitals from plugging in to clean, renewable energy. This is politically-motivated, and will take away power from people and hand it back to big energy firms.’

The DECC said it was taking urgent action to ‘get a grip of this overspend’, adding: ‘Our support has driven down the cost of renewable energy significantly.’


Europe's Carbon Credit Program Only Made Money -- for some

Well this is awkward. A study from the Stockholm Environment Institute investigating the effectiveness of the carbon credit program run by the United Nations found that it backfired. Well, unless the real intent was to enrich some at the expense of others.

Instead of trimming greenhouse gas emissions, the program increased them by 600 tons. How? For some countries, there was money to be made or a con to be played. The BBC reports that 73% of the programs the institute studies would have happened naturally, without any extra effort to cut back on emissions or save the trees.

“Imagine that,” Hot Air’s Jazz Shaw writes. “The Russians in particular did quite well by citing any number of programs, including one where they agreed to stop burning coal waste at mining facilities which was dumping massive amounts of carbon into the atmosphere.

The catch was that the Russians had not previously been burning the coal waste. They only started doing it so they could stop and claim the credits for it. Of course, when the Russian representative was reached for comment, he said, ‘It’s simply not true.’”

It just goes to show that Hillary Clinton was right — at least about some of her fellow statists: You can’t change hearts and minds, only the law. And those unchanged hearts will make a mockery of intrusive government programs.


A mockery of "renewables" -- from the Left

See below

A recent Greenpeace tweet celebrated the fact that renewable energy is now the world's second largest source of electricity: "Woohoo! #Renewables world’s 2nd largest source of electricity.”

Is it useful to mislead people about our progress in fighting climate change? I think not. People rarely re-assess their prejudices without some incentive and if they believe the renewable band wagon is travelling well, then why bother thinking about anything else?

Here's a few charts from the reports (1 and 2) which prompted the story and the tweet:

First, look at the top chart. There are three nominally renewable wedges in the chart and the only one of any significance is hydroelectricity. Wind, solar, geothermal, tidal and all the other subsidy sucking technologies aren't even worth their own slice in the pie.

Is hydroelectricity green? Typically, hydroelectric dams flood vast areas, totally trashing both human and animal habitats in the process; preceded of course by displacement and death respectively.

The resulting turgid watery habitat generates significant quantities of methane that weren't generated before; not just from rotting vegetation, but as the methane dissolved in the water is released on the spillways of the hydroplant.

The dam builders have been getting a free lunch for decades now by generating significant greenhouse gases but not having to list them in their Greenhouse gas inventories. Even if the reservoir created is small, hydro dams typically change river flows with a wide range of ecological consequences... generally negative unless your particular ecological interest extends to jet or water skis.

Is this the kind of ecological devastation Greenpeace should be woohooing about?

And the deeper you dig the worse it gets.

Looking at the IEA data on the global change in electricity production between the 2010 report and the most recent 2014 report, we can see that renewable growth between 2008 and 2012, even including hydro, hasn't even matched fossil fuel growth, let alone displacing anything.

Put simply, while renewables now have a slightly bigger percentage of the pie, the area of the pie they need to replace is larger than ever. It's like climbing a hill where you go up 300 meters only to find that the hill is growing and is now 600 meters higher than when you started.

Pulling the plug on nuclear in Japan and Germany, due respectively to mass hysteria and viral ignorance at the highest levels, has only made matters worse.
We don't need anybody misleading people into thinking that we can beat climate change with sloppy thinking and toy energy systems.

The situation looks even worse when we consider not just electricity, but the full gamut of fossil fuel use.

Again, as the two graphs show, renewable energy, as distinct from just electricity, is mostly hydro or biofuels and biofuels are even more of an environmental disaster than hydro electricity. Nor do they displace enough CO2 to be useful in any solution to our emissions problems.

What is blindingly obvious to all but the closed-minded is that the poster children of renewable energies, wind and solar, are doing exactly what they did back in the 70s and 80s when they were rolled out as a solution to the oil crisis; sweet bugger all.

In contrast, the energy system which broke the oil crisis has experienced considerable development and is now better than ever; nuclear power.

It's tough to admit to being wrong, but many in the environment movement have done it and are now backing nuclear power.


Climate scientists claim to predict storms in 100-10,000 years, but can't predict tropical storm Erica 1 day in advance

Thumbing its nose at some of the world’s most skilled computer models and forecasters, Tropical Storm Erika cruised relentlessly almost due west through the northern Caribbean on Friday, failing to make a long-predicted northwestward turn toward the Bahamas. The National Hurricane Center placed Erika's ill-defined center at 11:00 pm EDT Friday at 18.5°N, 72.9°W, or about 40 miles west of Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince. Erika’s top sustained winds were set at 45 mph. Hurricane-hunter flights on Friday had found flight-level winds of as high as 55 knots (more than 60 mph) on the north side of Erika.

Erika has been a troubled-looking system, with thunderstorms mostly straggling behind and south of the center due to upper-level northwesterlies producing vertical wind shear (the difference between upper- and lower-level winds) of about 30 mph. Despite the shear, Erika’s large circulation maintained a broad north-to-south oriented region of intense convection through most of Friday before thunderstorms consolidated toward its north end on Friday evening.

Most of the core convection passed just south of Puerto Rico, so by and large, the island missed out on the rain that it so desperately needs. San Juan’s Luis Munoz Marin International Airport reported just 0.25” on Thursday and 0.22” on Friday. Heavy rains swept through the Dominican Republic late Friday: a personal weather station in Barahona reported 23.76" of rain between 1 pm Friday and 2 am Saturday, including 8.80" in one hour from 8 pm to 9 pm Friday. Late Friday night, a very intense cluster of thunderstorms was moving slowly across southwestern Haiti, including Port-au-Prince.


EPA Checked in Its Takeover of America's Waterways

The EPA was hours away from implementing an expansive interpretation of the Clean Water Act when a judge in North Dakota issued an injunction blocking the power grab. In response to a suit brought by 13 states, Judge Ralph Erickson halted Thursday the EPA’s rule that would have, according to Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY), placed the agency in control of every ditch, man-made pond and flood plain in the nation.

Erickson wrote, “Once the rule takes effect, the states will lose their sovereignty over intrastate waters that will then be subject to the scope of the Clean Water Act.”

The EPA isn’t accepting the judge’s orders. It said in a statement that it will only comply with the injunction in the 13 states that were part of the suit. However, there are nine other suits brought against the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in regards to the water rule. In total, 29 states are questioning the EPA’s authority in the matter.

In addition to having a river in Colorado to clean up, the courts have been checking the EPA’s abuse of power — such as the Supreme Court’s June ruling about the EPA’s emission guidelines for coal plants. This hasn’t been a good stretch for the EPA.


‘There is a moral case for fossil fuels’

The moral case against fossil fuels is rooted in the standard that we should be minimising our impact. And the moral case for fossil fuels questions that at its root. It doesn’t just say these windmills are chopping off birds’ heads. It says that the whole standard, the whole metric by which we’re going to evaluate fossil fuels, is maximising human wellbeing. And when you adopt that standard, you see that there absolutely is a moral case for fossil fuels.’

Alex Epstein, founder of the Center for Industrial Progress and the author of a brilliant, bracing new book, The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, makes for a passionate interviewee. He’s also got the facts to back up what, in today’s green-hued zeitgeist, appears to be an achingly unfashionable argument. But it’s true: if the moral standard by which you evaluate fossil-fuel usage is the betterment of human life, then fossil fuels are indisputably a moral good.

As Epstein points out in The Moral Case, ‘Today the world uses 39 per cent more oil, 107 per cent more coal, and 131 per cent more natural gas than it did in 1980’. And during that period, the basic measures of human wellbeing have shown marked improvements:

‘World life expectancy at birth has gone up from 63 in 1980 to 70 in 2012. The child mortality rate on the planet went down from 115 to 47 per 1,000 live births. Infant mortality declined from 80 to 35 per 1,000 live births in the same time period… Malnutrition, defined by the percentage of children under five with significantly below average weight or height for their age, has been constantly decreasing at a significant rate since 1990. Access to electricity and improved water sources, which are basic indicators for human wellbeing, hygiene, and health in general, went up as well. Developing countries in the sub-Saharan and East Asian region have been particularly impressive; East Asian developing countries now have an average life expectancy at birth of 73 years.There is much credit to be given to industrial-scale energy, primarily from fossil fuels.’

But what’s so surprising about the correlation between our colllective ability to produce more and more energy – nearly 90 per cent of which is produced from fossil fuels – and the vast improvements in life expectancy, infant mortality, food provision and so on, is that energy production using fossil fuels has so few champions. A fog of defensiveness even hangs over the fossil-fuel sector itself. It’s as if no one can see what to Epstein is blindlngly clear: there is a positive, indeed moral, case to be made for these most unfairly maligned of human resources. They have, in Epstein’s words, allowed humanity to flourish, that is, to enlarge our capacity to pursue our desires.

As Epstein explains, both sides of the climate-change debate, be they alarmist or sceptical, share the same assumption – that the so-called human footprint is a problem. ‘The issue has been framed as “how much are we impacting climate?”. If you look on a conservative website, for instance, you’ll see a section on climate. And, for me, this makes as little sense as if you had a medical website with section called “vaccine side effects”...  The green movement has completely framed the issue with the goal being to minimise our impact on climate, hence a lot of conservatives have countered with a defensive “well, we’re not actually doing that much”.’ So, rather than point out, as Epstein puts it, that ‘the burning of ancient dead plants is an unbelievably positive process’, too many are content to say that fossil-fuel use isn’t that negative.

It’s not always been that way, of course. The Moral Case usefully recalls the perspective of those enthused by the transformative potential, the capacity to create and flourish, unleashed by the Industrial Revolution. In 1865, the economist William Stanley Jevons wrote: ‘With coal almost any feat is possible or easy; without it we are thrown back into the laborious poverty of earlier times.’ And if the coal ran out, he wondered? ‘We [should] miss our grand dependence, as a man misses his companion, his fortune, or a limb, every hour and at every turn [is] reminded of the irreparable loss.’ It wasn’t as if the environmental harms, as today’s green argot has it, were yet to be recognised. ‘Pollution was visible as the smoke dampened the sunlight in the cities, darkened the laundry hanging to dry, and even blackened the trees with soot’, writes Epstein. ‘Still, the energy from coal was so valuable that these side effects were more than tolerated. In many cases, they were embraced. Take Manchester, England, a major industrial city full of coal waste. There was no movement against air pollution in Manchester – even though its pollution makes China’s air today seem pristine. Why not? Because, as one commentator put it, the smoke was an “inevitable and innocuous accompaniment of the meritorious act of manufacturing”.’

Today, however, things are different. What was once grasped as an ‘innocuous’ by-product of fossil-fuel useage, to be ameliorated with better technology, has become the all-consuming focus of any discussion of how best to produce energy. It’s all about the side effects. We’re not encouraged to look at what ever-improving energy production can do for us, how it can liberate and empower us. No, we’re urged to look at what it can do to the planet, how it can enslave and damage nature. This worldview, this nature- rather than human-centred morality, dominates political and cultural life today. It allows the likes of environmentalist Bill McKibben to declare in Rolling Stone magazine that the fossil-fuel industry is ‘Public Enemy Number One’ and call for a mass-movement to demonise it and deprive it of political standing, ‘much as South Africa’s Apartheid regime had been demonised and dismantled due to the moral outrage of private citizens around the world’.

On this nature-centric ideology, Epstein is particularly cutting. He says ‘we’re taught to think that Planet Earth, nature, is something superior to human beings and that we’re to serve it by refraining from impacting it, or transforming it, or altering it in any way’. He calls this ‘the fragile-mother view of nature’: ‘It’s as if this Garden of Eden is giving us what we need, but it exists in this delicate balance, so we need to tread lightly, and make no impact.’ But, says Epstein, ‘this Disney-esque view of the planet is false. The planet has unbelievable potential, but, in its unaltered state, it is resource-poor, and very threat-rich. So man’s primary activity on the planet is to transform it to meet his needs.’

This is key to countering the humans-are-bad-for-nature sentiment, the conviction that we need to minimise our impact on the planet. Not only, Epstein tells me, are we part of nature, we’re ‘the best part’. Impacting on the natural world, transforming and altering it, is a ‘moral enterprise’. It is part of the perpetual struggle to forge a world capable of meeting our ever-developing needs. Humanity is ‘unnatural’, if by that it is meant we are constantly freeing ourselves from natural necessity – and that’s a good thing. As Epstein notes, this means that a newborn child, who may once have died of ‘natural causes’, will survive thanks to an incubator – a human invention that requires a reliable source of energy. And it’s not just incubators, of course. All around us are machines and technologies that allow us to do remarkable and literally death-defying things, machines and technologies that free us from nature’s thrall. And energy, or ‘machine calories’, is crucial to this development and flourishing.

Certain environmentalist fetishes need exposing here. Nature is not benevolent; it’s indifferent. It’s only through human activity, through maximising our impact, that we turn it from something for itself, into something for us – that is, we humanise it. And this goes for the climate itself. ‘We don’t take a safe climate and make it dangerous’, writes Epstein. ‘We take a dangerous climate and make it safe. High-energy civilisation, not climate, is the driver of climate livability. No matter what, climate will always be naturally hazardous – and the key question will always be whether we have the adaptability to handle it or, better yet, master it.’ Such mastery won’t be achieved through minimising our impact on nature, through genuflecting towards some fantastical Mother Earth. Rather, it requires a desire to increase humanity’s impact, to develop its footprint. Epstein writes, ‘Development is the transformation of a nonhuman environment into a human-friendly environment using high-energy machines. Development means water-purification systems, irrigation, synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, genetically improved crops, dams, seawalls, heating, air-conditioning, sturdy homes, drained swamps, central power stations, vaccination, pharmaceuticals, and so on.’

All of which sounds wonderful. ‘But what of the science?’, Epstein’s critics would say. What of the experts telling us that humanity, through its increasing use of fossil fuels, is impacting on nature, and the climate in particular, to a catastrophic extent? Epstein’s retort is simple – déjà-vu. In the 1970s and 1980s for instance, there was no shortage of similar doomsaying. ‘If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000’, wagered prominent ecologist Paul R Ehrlich. In 1986, NASA’s James Hansen said that because of the ‘greenhouse effect’, global temperatures would rise early in the next century to ‘well above any level experienced in the past 100,000 years’. And so on and so on.

‘It’s important that people know the track record [of climate-change alarmism]’, Epstein tells me. ‘It’s not even that it’s not mentioned. It’s that it gets mythologised as accurate. So James Hansen recently published a so-called study, and it was about these dramatic rises in sea levels. And the journal described Hansen as the guy who has been most correct on climate change. But here’s the thing: any normal person who did not predict a climate catastrophe would have a far better track record on this issue than James Hansen. He predicted this incredibly dramatic, runaway global warming and there was none.’

Indeed, as The Moral Case explains: ‘Since the Industrial Revolution, we’ve increased CO2 in the atmosphere from 0.03 per cent to 0.04 per cent, and temperatures have gone up less than a degree Celsius, a rate of increase that has occurred at many points in history. Few deny that during the past 15-plus years, the time of record and accelerating emissions, there has been little-to-no warming – and the models failed to predict that.’

Pointedly, Epstein is worried not only about the rectitude of the so-called science, but the elevation of The Science as a source of implacable authority. It’s as if it’s enough for those adhering to the minimise-human-impact, nature-centric worldview merely to invoke The Science to win the debate. The Science tells us that we must reduce CO2 emissions; The Science tells us we must reduce energy consumption; The Science tells us we have to fly less; The Science tells us to jump off a bridge… Epstein is unmoved. ‘Any given science cannot tell you how to act’, he says, mentioning the fact he himself trained to be a scientist when younger. ‘Science can only really give you information, not instruction. We have a very religous-dogmatic approach to science, which has a long history, exploiting science’s deserved prestige for its legitimate accomplishments. Hence dictators and charlatans always want to call what they do “science”. So as soon as you hear someone say “you should do X because The Science with a capital S says so”, you’ve got to start questioning it – or start running.’

Epstein continues: ‘To say “I want a scientist to tell me what to do” is absurd. It’s not as though Isaac Newton could tell you what house to get. Yeah, some of his knowledge could be relevant to that – certain physical laws. But he was not an oracle. No, it’s legitimate to want to be informed by science [but not to be told what to do by science]. The place of the scientist in our culture needs to be re-evaluated.’

Which, in a sense, is part of the purpose of The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels. Epstein is reframing the entire debate about climate change and energy. He is taking it out of the hands of The Science, and countering the nature-centric presuppositions of the debate, in which the objective is to reduce humanity’s impact on nature. It’s a deeply humanist move, and one for which he deserves the last word: ‘The moral case for fossil fuels is not about fossil fuels; it’s the moral case for using cheap, plentiful, reliable energy to amplify our abilities to make the world a better place – a better place for human beings.’



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


Friday, August 28, 2015

Amusing:  Warmists try to strike back at skeptical scientists -- but bomb out

If you read the guff below by climate robot Nuccitelli and his merry men, it seems like they have got something.  But they haven't.

I very rarely refer here to anything on Anthony Watts' site on the grounds that anybody reading this site has probably  already read Watts.  This time, however, what Watts points out is too funny to ignore.

The best bit is that Nuccitelli & Co submitted their paper to five different climate journals before they got it accepted for publication.  One of the rejecting journal referees commented pointedly:  “The manuscript is not a scientific study. It is just a summary of purported errors in collection of papers, arbitrarily selected by the authors.”

More at the Watts site.  Nuccitelli & Co do have some idea of what science is but they are no good at doing it

The scientific consensus behind man-made global warming is overwhelming: multiple studies have noted a 97 percent consensus among climate scientists that the Earth is warming and human activities are primarily responsible. Scientists are as sure that global warming is real — and driven by human activity — as they are that smoking cigarettes leads to lung cancer.

But what if all of those scientists are wrong? What if the tiny sliver of scientists that don’t believe global warming is happening, or that human activities are causing it — that two to three percent of climate contrarians — are right?

That’s the hypothetical question that a new study, authored by Rasmus Benestad, Dana Nuccitelli, Stephan Lewandowsky, Katharine Hayhoe, Hans Olav Hygen, Rob van Dorland, and John Cook, sought to answer. Published last week in the journal Theoretical and Applied Climatology, the study examined 38 recent examples of contrarian climate research — published research that takes a position on anthropogenic climate change but doesn’t attribute it to human activity — and tried to replicate the results of those studies.

The studies weren’t selected randomly — according to lead author Rasmus Benestad, the studies selected were highly visible contrarian studies that had all arrived at a different conclusion than consensus climate studies. The question the researchers wanted to know was — why?

“Our selection suited this purpose as it would be harder to spot flaws in papers following the mainstream ideas. The chance of finding errors among the outliers is higher than from more mainstream papers,” Benestad wrote at RealClimate. “Our hypothesis was that the chosen contrarian paper was valid, and our approach was to try to falsify this hypothesis by repeating the work with a critical eye.”

It didn’t go well for the contrarian studies.

The most common mistake shared by the contrarian studies was cherry picking, in which studies ignored data or contextual information that did not support the study’s ultimate conclusions. In a piece for the Guardian, study co-author Dana Nuccitelli cited one particular contrarian study that supported the idea that moon and solar cycles affect the Earth’s climate. When the group tried to replicate that study’s findings for the paper, they found that the study’s model only worked for the particular 4,000-year cycle that the study looked at.

“However, for the 6,000 years’ worth of earlier data they threw out, their model couldn’t reproduce the temperature changes,” Nuccitelli wrote. “The authors argued that their model could be used to forecast future climate changes, but there’s no reason to trust a model forecast if it can’t accurately reproduce the past.”
The researchers also found that a number of the contrarian studies simply ignored the laws of physics. For example, in 2007 and 2010 papers, Ferenc Miskolczi argued that the greenhouse effect had become saturated, a theory that had been disproved in the early 1900s.

“As we note in the supplementary material to our paper, Miskolczi left out some important known physics in order to revive this century-old myth,” Nuccitelli wrote.

In other cases, the authors found, researchers would include extra parameters not based in the laws of physics to make a model fit their conclusion.

“Good modeling will constrain the possible values of the parameters being used so that they reflect known physics, but bad ‘curve fitting’ doesn’t limit itself to physical realities,” Nuccitelli said.

The authors note that these errors aren’t necessarily only found in contrarian papers, and they aren’t necessarily malicious. In their discussion, they offer a suite of possible explanations for the mistakes. Many authors of the contrarian studies were relatively new to climate science, and therefore may have been unaware of important context or data. Many of the papers were also published in journals with audiences that don’t necessarily seek out climate science, and therefore peer review might have been lacking. And some of the researchers had published similar studies, all omitting important information.


Lamebrain Obama Called Conservatives Hypocrites on Solar Energy and Free Markets. Here’s What He Got Wrong

President Obama is having a hard time with the definition of free market.  The most recent example came from his remarks at the National Clean Energy Summit, an event hosted by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to promote solar power.

Obama told a crowd in Las Vegas that solar and renewables now make economic sense and blasted conservative think-tanks for being insincere when it comes to the free market. He said, “Now, it’s one thing if you’re consistent in being free market. It’s another thing when you’re free market until it’s solar that’s working and people want to buy and suddenly you’re not for it any more.”

The way America does solar is not free-market.

If solar made as much economic sense as Obama purports, it wouldn’t need help from Washington or continually push to extend the handouts it receives.

If solar operated in a free market, taxpayers wouldn’t have lost more than half a billion dollars on Solyndra.

Private investors would have taken that risk and lost their own money—or even better—made money. But instead we have policies where well-connected special interests and campaign donors direct how taxpayer money is spent and where private capital flows. The well-connected investors stand to reap all the profits, and the taxpayers bear all of the risk.

The market-distorting handouts for solar come in a variety of forms. The solar industry benefits from a generous 30-percent targeted investment tax credit, state grant and incentive programs, a taxpayer-funded initiative at the Department of Energy to lower the cost of solar, net metering policies that shift the costs of solar users to non-solar residents, taxpayer-backed federal loan guarantees, and Department of Defense mandates.

How are any of these viewed as free-market? Only through the lens of the Obama administration.

In fact, in the same speech, Obama announced a handful of new subsidies to prop up the solar industry on the backs of taxpayers and defended one of the biggest state-led anti-free-market policies: renewable electricity standards.

Obama stated:

    "When you start seeing massive lobbying efforts backed by fossil fuel interests, or conservative think tanks, or the Koch brothers pushing for new laws to roll back renewable energy standards, or to prevent new clean energy businesses from succeeding, that’s s problem."

Renewable electricity standards mandate that a state must produce a certain amount of its electricity from renewables by a certain date.

Mandates that guarantee a share of the market and do not require innovation or competitive practices to lower costs and compete with other energy sources are not free-market.

It’s what Obama correctly defined as “rent seeking.”

Rent seeking occurs when politicians dictate how private-sector resources are spent. The industries that stand to benefit from or be harmed by those policy decisions will increase their lobbying for government handouts and to prevent their competitors from receiving the handout.

Obama also boasted that the “solar industry now employs twice as many Americans as mining coal.” First of all, when your administration empowers overzealous regulators to implement job-crushing regulations on the coal industry with no meaningful direct environmental benefit, the number of coal miners working an honest day’s work is going to shrink.

Secondly, solar employing twice as many as the coal industry is not the right metric for success or progress.

The reality is, we’re getting dramatically less energy bang for our subsidized solar buck.

Coal provided nearly 40 percent of America’s electricity in 2014, and solar provided 0.4 percent.

If the goal were simply to create jobs, we could rid the world of mechanical equipment and hire workers to dig our ditches. But the result would be a less prosperous United States and a lot of lost value creation, which would ultimately destroy more jobs than it created.

Subsidizing energy technologies directs labor and capital away from its most efficient use.

At Heritage, we’ve consistently pushed to end subsidies for all energy sources and technologies, including fossil fuel and nuclear subsidies.

We’ve identified barriers to break down to make renewables more competitive. We want to end cronyism and the political process that picks winners and losers and allow the market to determine what provides America with reliable energy at competitive prices.

Obama criticized opponents of his plan for standing in the way of progress.

But it’s his very policies that obstruct long-term progress of the industries they want to succeed and try to promote.

Instead of relying on a process that rewards competition, taxpayer subsidies prevent a company from truly understanding the price point at which the technology will be economically viable.

There’s a stark difference between opposing solar power and opposing solar power subsidies.

If the industry can compete without crony government programs, then that will be actual progress, and families and businesses will be better off as a result.

But let’s not pretend that solar is operating in a free-market environment. Instead, let’s open access to resources, remove all government favoritism, and unshackle energy sources and technologies bogged down by regulatory obstacles.


Oil’s down, gasoline isn’t. What’s up?

By Marita Noon

A little more than a year ago, oil prices were above $100 a barrel. The national average for gasoline was in the $3.50 range. In late spring, oil was $60ish, and the national average for gas was around $2.70. The price of a barrel of oil has plunged to $40 and below — yet, prices at the pump are just slightly less than they were when oil was almost double what it is today.

Oil and gasoline prices usually travel up or down in sync. But a few weeks ago, the trend lines crossed and oil continued the sharp decline while gasoline has stayed steady — even increasing.

Oil’s down, gasoline isn’t. Consumers are wondering, “What’s up?”

Even Congress is grilling refiners over the disparity.

While, like most markets, the answer is complicated, there are some simple responses that even Congress should be able to understand. The short explanation is “refineries” — but there’s more to that and some other components, too.

The U.S. has approximately 20 percent of the world’s refining capacity. Fuel News explains that “on a perfect day,” these domestic facilities could process more than 18 million barrels of crude oil. But due, in large part, to an anti-fossil fuel attitude, it is virtually impossible to get a new refinery permitted in America. Most refineries today are old — the newest major one was completed in 1977. Most are at least 40 years old and some are more than 100. Despite signs of aging, refining capacity has continued to grow. Instead of producing at 70 percent capacity, as they were as little as a decade ago, most now run at 90 percent. They’ve become Rube Goldberg contraptions that have been modified, added on to, and upgraded. The system is strained.

To keep operating, these mature refineries need regular maintenance — usually done on the shoulders of the busy driving seasons and when systems need to be reconfigured for the different winter and summer blends. Even then, things break. Sometimes a quick repair can keep it up and running until the scheduled maintenance — known as “turnaround.” Sometimes, not. Fixing the equipment failures on the aging facilities can take weeks.

This year, several unexpected maintenance issues happened in the spring. Other refineries worked overtime to make up the shortage. That, plus low crude prices, means that many refiners didn’t shutdown for the usual spring turnaround. Fuel News notes, potential profit encouraged refiners to “get while the getting’s good.”

This pedal-to-the-metal approach is catching up with the sagging systems. On August 8, BP’s Whiting, Ind. refinery, the largest supplier of gasoline in the Midwest, faced an unplanned shutdown due to a leak and possible fire hazard in its Pipestill 12 distillation unit — which processes about 40 percent of its 413,000 barrel per day capacity.

The closure of the largest of Whiting’s three units caused an immediate jump in gasoline prices in the Midwest. Stockpiles were drawn down to fill demand during summer’s peak driving season. Gasoline has been moved — via pipeline, truck, and train — from other parts of the country to balance out supply. So, while the biggest price increase was in states like Minnesota, Michigan, and Illinois, prices rose nationwide beginning on August 11.

Meanwhile, because the Whiting plant wasn’t sucking up crude oil, its supplies grew and drove crude prices down further — hitting a six-year low. The Financial Times reports, “An outage at Whiting’s main crude distillation unit could add almost 1m [million] barrels to Cushing [The Oklahoma oil trading and storage center] every four days as long as it is out.”

Making matters worse, another Midwest refinery, Marathon’s Robinson, Ill. facility, which has a capacity of 212,000 barrels per day, is down for repairs that are expected to take two months.

Others smaller outages include Philadelphia Energy Solutions and the Coffeyville Resources’ refinery in Kansas. BloombergBusiness states, “As many as seven other Midwest refineries could shut units for extended time this fall.” Though, other reports indicate that some of the planned maintenance may be put off due to profit margins that are at a seven-year high.

While there are some other contributing factors, the current mix of supply and demand explains “what’s up?” The lack of new refineries punishes the whole system. Gasoline prices are up — hurting consumers. Crude prices are down—hurting producers.


What Is Obama's Top Population-Control Freak Hiding?

The most transparent administration in American history is at it again — dodging sunlight and evading public disclosure.

Joining former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her secret servers, former IRS witch hunt queen Lois Lerner and her secret email accounts, former EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and her Internet alter egos, and former Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and his non-public email account is White House science czar John Holdren.

President Obama’s top climate change adviser is defending his hide-and-seek game in federal court. Earlier this month, the Washington, D.C.-based Competitive Enterprise Institute appealed a D.C. district court ruling protecting Holdren’s personal email communications from Freedom of Information Act requests.

CEI argues that federal transparency law “applies to the work-related records of agency employees regardless of where they are stored. Many agencies routinely instruct their staff to preserve any such documents that they might have on their personal email accounts.” Yet, as head of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, Holdren has placed himself above the law and spirit of transparency that Obama fraudulently vowed to uphold.

“It makes little sense to claim that an agency is not ‘withholding’ documents when it refuses to produce documents held by its own chief executive that relate to ‘agency business,’” CEI’s legal brief rightly argues. “Even if OSTP had demonstrated that these emails were not within its actual control — which it did not — its failure to search its director’s personal account would still violate FOIA because any agency records in that account fall within the agency’s ‘constructive control.’”

The White House science czar’s private email account resides with his former employer, the Woods Hole Research Center. It’s a far-left eco-alarmist group that pushes radical anti-capitalist interventions (Remember “cap and trade”?) to eliminate the decades-long hyped “global climatic catastrophe.” Their ultimate goal? Establishing government rule by eco-technocrats who detest humanity.

To this day, Holdren has escaped questions about his freaky-deaky population-control agenda. Remember, this is the unrepentant sky-is-falling guru who joined fellow whack jobs Paul and Anne Ehrlich in co-authoring “Ecoscience,” a creepy tome that called for saving the planet by proposing that:

    Women could be forced to abort their pregnancies, whether they wanted to or not.

    The population at large could be sterilized by infertility drugs intentionally put into the nation’s drinking water or food.

    Single mothers and teen mothers should have their babies seized from them against their will and given away to other couples to raise.

    People who “contribute to social deterioration” (i.e. undesirables) “can be required by law to exercise reproductive responsibility” — in other words, be compelled to have abortions or be sterilized.

    A transnational “Planetary Regime” should assume control of the global economy and also dictate the most intimate details of Americans' lives — using an armed international police force.

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy obstinately refused to answer my questions for Holdren on his views about forced abortions and mass sterilizations or on his continued embrace of forced-abortion advocate and eugenics guru Harrison Brown, whom he credits with inspiring him to become a scientist. Holdren’s mentor likened the global population to a “pulsating mass of maggots.”

These are not harmless dalliances of the past. Holdren’s insidious ideology — and his hidden policy communications — now have an untold impact on American taxpayers. He is the top strategist in Obama’s war on carbon, war on coal, war on the West and war on the economy. Holdren is the zealot “right at the heart” (as The New York Times put it) of devising White House climate change initiatives that reward environmental cronies, send electricity rates skyrocketing and kill jobs.

Who is Holdren conducting government business with, and what is he hiding from the public? What data is being doctored, what scientific evidence is being stonewalled in the name of rescuing the planet and consolidating power in the hands of the green elite? It’s time to turn up the heat.


Jim Inhofe on What the Left Gets Wrong About Climate Change

Sen. Jim Inhofe is no stranger to the climate change debate. The Oklahoma Republican, who leads the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, believes that government and regulation are a big problem.

In an interview with The Daily Signal, Inhofe explained why people should care about the climate debate and what prompted him to bring a snowball to the floor of the Senate earlier this year.

In a separate exchange, Inhofe talked about the government’s regulation of U.S. waterways. Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers announced the Waters of the United States rule, known as WOTUS.


The Percival Effect

Correlations, Causes and Disproofs

Viv "Farmer" Forbes

Every morning just before dawn our rooster crows and soon afterwards the sun comes up. We have observed no exceptions over three months - clear evidence of perfect correlation. Therefore we have concluded that the crowing rooster causes the sun to rise.

My wife Flora (who believes that the Cooee birds bring the rain) said: “I knew that ages ago - Professor Percival told me.”

So I consulted Professor Percival, our neighbour. He is Professor Emeritus in the “Science in Society” Department at Top-Line University. He specialises in the effect of sound waves on atmospheric transmissivity. He says that some roosters produce sound waves of just the right frequency to affect the dawn visibility through the thick morning atmosphere. He has written pal-reviewed papers on the subject which has been named “The Percival Effect”. In all the hallowed halls, it is regarded as “settled science”.

However, we decided that our rooster was not doing his day job, so he ended up as roast dinner last night.

Flora was very concerned – “what if the sun does not appear at all tomorrow?” she wailed.

But the sun rose as normal.

Flora was relieved but a concerned Professor Percival went off to check his calculations “for feedback loops”. He is still checking.

One thing was proved conclusively in just one day – the rooster’s crowing does not make the sun appear. Something else causes the sun to rise. Our ninety-two correlations did not prove causation. But just one disproof was needed to kill the Percival Effect.

So it is with the Greenhouse Effect. For about 20 years now, carbon dioxide levels have risen steadily but global temperatures are trending level. Therefore CO2 does not control global temperature.

One disproof is all that is needed.

“No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.” -- Albert Einstein



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


Thursday, August 27, 2015

How strong is the link between global warming and California drought?

Easy answer:  No link at all. For a start, drought is a normal occurrence in California.  Second, since there has been no global warming for 18 years, it cannot  be influencing anything.  Things that don't exist don't have effects.  None of that is confronted by the lamebrain below.  He just regurgitates the usual data-free Leftist propaganda.  And thirdly, there is no significant drought.  Releasing dam water to flow straight out to sea for various crazy Greenie reasons is why there is a shortage of water for homes and crops

Further studies are being conducted at this moment to explore the contributions of particulars to the climate variability which brought about the drought and temperature components related with anthropogenic warming. Thus, when rainfall declined in 2012, the air sucked already scant moisture from soil, trees and crops harder than ever.

The climatic change and its effects may be experienced globally and warmer air and weather are not the only ones to blame since other factors such as evaporation rates and precipitation form part of the main contributors.

If human-caused greenhouse gas emissions were not trapping heat, leading to climate change, the state’s drought could be up to 27 percent less severe than it is, the study researchers say.

Yes, global warming is more than three times higher than natural climate changes and this is bad for California.

The study, authored by five researchers from Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and one from the University of Idaho’s geography department, said if this trend continues then the state will experience more “persistent aridity” within a few decades, according to an August 20 press release from Columbia.

It’s very clear the warming of California has increased the probability of conditions that create drought.

Unlike the natural variation in climate which produces extreme conditions only occasionally, the demand of additional moisture on account of global warming is on the rise every year with concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere rising higher consistently.

The study, said that average California temperatures have increased 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit over the past 113 years. Because of global warming Californian mountain snows have started melting in an accelerated way as well, whereas 10 years ago the melting was dispersed more gradually in time and has helped freshening up the lowlands during the hot season. The monthly changes were simulated in the quantity of water in each bucket between 1901 and 2014. It was found that global warming has contributed between 8 and 27% to the severity of 2012-2014 California drought. Due to the growing global temperature, this fact is turning out to be true for most places worldwide. This means that by around the 2060s, more or less permanent drought will set in, interrupted only by the rainiest years. If California finds itself struggling with this drought, serious planning needs to take place in order to be resilient to a future where it’s increasingly likely that the current drought will look like child’s play.


Sen. Lee: WH Hasn’t Responded to Congressional Inquiries Regarding EPA’s Toxic Spill

 Neither the White House nor the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – the federal agency tasked with protecting public health and the country’s natural resources – have responded to inquiries sent by members of Congress from states impacted by the EPA’s toxic chemical spill in Colorado two weeks ago, a spokesperson with Sen. Mike Lee’s (R-UT) office told

Senate and House members from Utah, New Mexico and Colorado have sent letters to President Barack Obama and EPA Inspector General Arthur Elkins, Jr. seeking accountability for the estimated three million gallons of toxic mine waste EPA employees released into Western waterways.

But Sen. Lee sent out a press release on Thursday explaining that he and other members of Congress from the states affected have still not received replies from the Obama administration.

The mine waste, which contained high concentrations of arsenic, lead and other heavy metals, was accidentally released into the Animas River by EPA workers as they inspected the long-abandoned Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colorado on Aug. 5, the Associated Press reported.

In an Aug. 17 letter to the president signed by all members of the congressional delegation from Utah, where the polluted water reached Lake Powell after travelling 300 miles downstream, the administration was chided for its slow response to the “disaster”.

“Unfortunately, EPA failed to contact the state of Utah within twenty-four hours of the spill. This reckless behavior is intolerable,” the letter states.

“The federal government must implement a more transparent and efficient cleanup effort if it is to aid Utah’s scientists and make our communities whole again,” adds the letter, which was signed by Lee, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), and GOP House members Rob Bishop, Jason Chaffetz, Chris Stewart and Mia Love.

“In the long-term, the federal government must ensure that the state and local governments forced to spend money protecting their citizens are adequately and quickly compensated,” the letter added.

In an Aug. 19 letter to Elkins, all the senators from the states of Colorado, New Mexico and Utah, including Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM), Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), pointed out that “the release of contaminated water from this legacy mine has polluted the Animas River in Colorado and spread through New Mexico, Utah, the Southern Ute Indian Reservation and the Navajo Nation.”

“The EPA’s execution of this project fell far short of the standards to which any cleanup operation should adhere,” the members of Congress complained.

They also provided 13 questions they want to see answered by the inspector general’s “preliminary inquiry” into the spill.

The 13 questions seek specific facts, including the expertise of the EPA workers at the Gold King Mine; the criteria EPA would apply for such work if it was done by a private sector company; whether the delay of information to interested parties about the spill created any health risks; and details about the procedures, or lack thereof, that led to the spill.

As reported earlier by, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said at a news conference on Aug. 11 that her agency is “taking responsibility” for the toxic release.

But according to the AP, the problem is not going away anytime soon.

“It will take many years and many millions of dollars simply to manage and not even remove the toxic wastewater from an abandoned mine that unleashed a 100-mile-long torrent of heavy metals into Western rivers and has likely reached Lake Powell,” AP reported Aug. 13.

“Plugging Colorado's Gold King Mine could simply lead to an eventual explosion of poisonous water elsewhere, so the safest solution… would be to install a treatment plant that would indefinitely clean the water from Gold King and three other nearby mines.”


Obama: 'Tea Party Agrees With Me on Solar Energy'

In a Monday speech before the National Clean Energy Summit, Barack Obama told the crowd that clean energy “is not and should not be a Republican versus Democrat issue.” He’s right about that, but he instead tried to drive a wedge between the Tea Party and the organizations backed by the Koch brothers.

First, Obama gave an example of the Florida Tea Party’s push to deregulate the state’s solar industry, advocating for a freer market, trying to change the laws so that private citizens can sell energy generated by their solar panels to energy companies. To that end, they are joined by progressives such as the Green Party.

But Obama mistakes the Tea Party trying to affect local change as an endorsement for his energy policies. With that assumption in mind, he fired upon national lobbying groups suspicious of renewable fuels. “When you start seeing massive lobbying efforts backed by fossil fuel interests or conservative think tanks, or the Koch brothers pushing for new laws to roll back renewable energy standards or prevent new clean energy businesses from succeeding, that’s a problem,” Obama said. “That’s rent-seeking, and trying to protect old ways of doing business and standing in the way of the future. … They’re trying to undermine competition in the marketplace.”

But Obama’s new way of doing business involves heavy subsidies that keep industries like ethanol and solar kicking around for another year. It’s a way of business that requires the cost of electricity to “necessarily skyrocket” in order to make green energy viable. It’s an industry that’s only green because it’s under a government spigot — not exactly a Tea Party-endorsed practice, and nothing to do with the competitive free market.


Renewables Offer No Bang for Your Megawatt

Advocates of renewable energy are touting a new statistic that 70 percent of new electricity generation capacity in the first half of 2015 was renewable. While this figure is technically true, it merits an asterisk. That 70 percent refers to how much energy power plants could produce if they were running at full power all the time, a metric called installed capacity. It does not mean that 70 percent of new energy generated in the first half of 2015 came from renewables.

To find out how much energy the new power infrastructure will actually produce, we must look at the capacity factor for various types of energy. The capacity factor measures the ratio of the energy a power plant actually produces to how much it could produce if it were running at maximum power all the time. A higher factor indicates that a source of electricity is more likely to reach its full potential. Capacity factor may be thought of as how much bang you get for your installed megawatt.

Of course, capacity factors vary across energy sources. Coal-fired power plants reach a capacity factor of 61 percent, and natural gas combined-cycle plants hover around 48 percent. Nuclear power fares the best by this metric, with a factor of 92 percent. The most inefficient sources of electricity are renewables: hydroelectric (38 percent), wind (34 percent) and solar photovoltaic (28 percent). The one exception is geothermal, at 69 percent.

Large amounts of new renewable capacity, therefore, do not always translate into large amounts of new power generation. For instance, wind power comprises six percent of total installed capacity in the United States, but produces only three percent of the electricity. Nuclear power, by contrast, punches above its weight—it makes up only 10 percent of installed capacity but produces 19 percent of America’s electricity.

The following chart shows the capacity factors of various types of energy since 1980. While fossil fuels have maintained roughly the same capacity factor over the last few decades and nuclear power plants have got far more efficient, non-hydroelectric renewables have slipped.

Non-hydroelectric renewables have disappointed over the past three decades. Federal policies such as the Wind Production Tax Credit have encouraged the addition of new renewable capacity, but this has not given us a comparable amount of new renewable electricity. Since less-efficient wind turbines and solar panels have been added to more reliable geothermal wells, the overall renewable capacity factor declined from over 60 percent to an abysmal 34 percent in 2012.

Renewables have a low capacity factor because their power sources are dependent on the elements—the sun does not always shine, and the wind does not always blow. Solar panels will see their energy output spike in the middle of a clear day, but then drop down to zero at night. Additionally, wind turbines in the breezy Midwest will often achieve higher output than those in other parts of the country. Renewable energy generation depends on more factors than other energy sources, making it more unreliable.

The one trend that stands out from this graph is nuclear energy. Since 1980, capacity factor has increased from 55 percent to over 90 percent in recent years. Improvements such as reduced maintenance periods and fewer unplanned outages have contributed to this remarkable change. Advantages such as low variability in input costs have also given nuclear a leg up in reliability.

The United States added nearly 2000 megawatts of new wind capacity in the first half of 2015. It would take just over a third of that capacity to generate a comparable amount of electricity using nuclear power. But government policy tips energy investment in favor of renewables: in 2013, nuclear power got just $1.7 billion in subsidies, compared to twice that for fossil fuels and eight times as much for renewables. The federal government is quite literally subsidizing unreliability.

Incredibly, the Obama administration is doubling down on its aversion to reliable energy with its new EPA rule regarding carbon emissions. Nuclear power emits zero carbon, yet the EPA will not allow states to count existing or under-construction nuclear plants towards their emissions-reduction goals. There is little rationale for this provision other than supporting renewables, but such a rationale is self-defeating given that renewables require other sources of power to back them up.

Subsidies and regulations are generally more trouble for an economy that they are worth. But if the government is not going to get rid of energy subsidies and EPA commandments, it should at the very least update them to reflect which power sources show the most promise. The high reliability of nuclear power, as measured by its capacity factor, is a good indicator of the way forward.


Energy switch shames Scotland

Power giant soaks up subsidy but cuts and runs at first sight of costs, with ScotNat connivance, writes Brian Wilson

I am not easily shocked these days and outrage should be saved for special occasions. However, the sound of Fergus Ewing, energy minister at Holyrood, on radio was enough to awaken…well, shock and outrage.

Consider the scenario. A multinational company which bought into a great Scottish industry has betrayed its promises, is about to prematurely close one plant with the loss of 270 quality jobs and renege on construction of another, thereby turning Scotland into a large-scale importer of a commodity of which it has long been a substantial exporter.

I can think of no previous occasion on which, in such circumstances, a Scottish minister of any political colour would not be fighting to reverse these decisions; using the levers of government to achieve that outcome; and would be taking to the airwaves only in order to challenge the morality and legitimacy of what was being done.

The multinational company is Iberdrola. The industry is power generation. The broken promises are in respect of Longannet and Cockenzie. The implications for the Scottish economy extend far beyond these places. The minister is Ewing and his preferred role is as apologist-in-chief for Iberdrola. It is an utter disgrace.

According to both Iberdrola and their well-drilled mouthpieces, this is all about £40 million – the difference in transmission charges because Longannet is in the middle of Scotland rather than on the fringes of London, a geographic detail that presumably did not escape them when they acquired Scottish Power after the trading regime was introduced.

Even that £40m figure is misleading, as we shall see. But the wider point is that the same trading arrangements which are being blamed for these decisions have poured huge profits into the coffers of Iberdrola and will continue to do so for many years to come while we are left to bemoan Longannet, no more, Cockenzie, no more.

When Iberdrola bought Scottish Power, the package contained responsibilities as well as a lucrative set of assets. Privatisation in Scotland left our two companies with the massive advantage of vertical integration, unlike their English counterparts. For Iberdrola, one of the prizes this offered was easy access to the UK renewables market – and subsidies.

It is absurd to moan about transmission charges without considering the wider context of the British Electricity Transmission and Trading Arrangements which came into effect in 2005. They gave Scottish generators the right to sell renewable energy into the British market with subsidy paid for by consumers throughout Britain. Iberdrola has been the biggest single beneficiary of that reform.

Not only that, but to facilitate this major benefit, billions of pounds worth of new infrastructure was approved by Ofgem. Iberdrola’s grid company, Scottish Power Transmission, was in the forefront of that work while the renewables branch profited mightily from the market it facilitated.

We heard little about transmission charges because they were dwarfed by the subsidies Iberdrola were (and are) receiving via the Renewables Obligation.

To compartmentalise the “cost” of transmission charges in respect of Longannet in order to justify killing it off four years early, or perhaps even more outrageously to brand Cockenzie too uneconomic to proceed with, and thereby break the promise of a new gas plant, is a denial of all the responsibilities which came with the acquisition of Scottish Power. Why is the Scottish Government not saying so?

For Iberdrola, it is a case of take, take, take. Fair enough – their obligation is to their investors, the largest of whom is the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Qatar. The scandal is that Ewing, scion of the patriotic dynasty, should rush to the defence of this behaviour solely because he sees political advantage in turning it – quite falsely – into a Scotland v England conflict; a misrepresentation that Iberdrola are understandably anxious to facilitate.

A large part of Iberdrola’s UK customer base is in the north-west of England and north Wales, as a result of Scottish Power having bought Manweb in 1995. They also have extensive generation interests in these areas – and therein lies another aspect of this sorry tale. Iberdrola are investing in the Western Link sub-sea cable between Hunterston and Holyhead. For Scottish consumption, this was presented as a means of exporting Scottish renewables.

For other audiences, the story is reversed. The Western Link will be capable of importing 3.9 gigawatts of power into Scotland, equating to 70 per cent of maximum winter demand. With Longannet and Cockenzie closed, not to mention Hunterston and Torness thereafter, Scotland will become massively dependent on electricity produced in England from coal, gas and nuclear power. What a triumph for Scottish Nationalism.

The bond of mutual cynicism between the SNP and Iberdrola was sealed on 13 September 2010 when Alex Salmond and Ignacio Galan, chairman of the multinational, made a ludicrous announcement – treated entirely uncritically by most of the Scottish media – that the Spanish company would be investing £2.7 billion in Scotland by the end of 2012, no less. Of course, it never happened and nobody bothered to check.

At the time, it was a great coup for Salmond because he could present it as endorsement for his “Saudi Arabia of renewables” nonsense. On the same day, Salmond announced plans for Gamesa, the turbine manufacturer, to invest in Scotland. That never happened either and not a single one of Iberdrola’s lucrative wind turbines has been the product of Scottish manufacturing. We have been conned, right, left and centre. In evidence to a Scottish Parliament committee earlier this year, Iberdrola said Longannet would be viable on £10m a year transmission charges, the same as the English Midlands. The same committee was told by National Grid that Longannet transmission charges would fall in 2016-17 by £10m. So even within this compartmentalised accounting, the gap is down to £20m and falling.

Any minister worth his salt would fight to find a solution within these parameters, using the massive leverage the Scottish Government has with Iberdrola if it chose to exercise it. Instead, workers in Fife and East Lothian, along with the wider Scottish economic interest, are being sacrificed in return for yet another bogus point of grievance, while Iberdrola laugh all the way to the bank.

What’s Spanish for: “What a bunch of patsies”?


The Energy Liberation Plan

Alex Epstein

Thanks to American ingenuity, this country has the potential to become the energy engine of the world—jumpstarting our economy, guaranteeing our energy security, helping billions to pull themselves out of poverty, and creating millions of highly productive jobs—all while improving the quality of our environment.

The energy industry is the industry that powers every other to improve human life. The more affordable, plentiful, and reliable energy we can produce, the more (and better) food, clothing, shelter, transportation, medical care, sanitation, clean water, technology, and everything else we can have.

Unfortunately, because of backwards energy and environmental policies that are anti-development, not anti-pollution, we are squandering the opportunity of a generation, through blind opposition to our three most potent sources of power: hydrocarbon energy (coal, oil, and gas), nuclear energy, and hydroelectric energy.

It’s time to replace today’s energy deprivation policies with energy liberation policies.

On October 5 I will be releasing the Energy Liberation Plan for consideration by 2016 political candidates.

The Energy Liberation plan is not like other energy plans, which are based on special treatment for some industries over others, and designed by people who think they know the energy business better than the energy business does and what consumers need more than consumers do.

The Energy Liberation Plan is based on the timeless wisdom of our Founding Fathers, who believed that everyone has the right to produce and consume as they judge best so long as they do not violate the rights of others. This principle leads to prosperity and justice in every area and in every era. It certainly applies to today’s energy policy.

Here is a preview of the five steps to Energy Liberation.

Step 1: Liberate energy consumers and communities from the meddlers who prevent us from choosing the most affordable, reliable energy.

    Abolish all energy mandates, subsidies, and special taxes, including all Renewable Fuel Mandates, Renewable Fuel Standards—anything and everything designed to make us consume uncompetitive, expensive forms of energy.

    Abolish all subsidies for government-preferred vehicles, stopping injustices such as forcing taxpayers to pay wealthy Tesla buyers upwards of $10,000.

    Liberate states to protect their air and water, removing these local issues from the jurisdiction of an unaccountable EPA that imposes massive costs on faraway places, leading to communities deciding on the best energy sources for their overall well-being.

If we restore consumer choice, abolishing all subsidies and mandates whatsoever, all consumers and businesses will have the opportunity to pay the lowest electricity rates and transportation costs.

Step 2: Liberate energy producers and builders from anti-development policies that prevent them from finding and developing the most affordable, reliable forms of energy.

    Restore true ownership to property owners, preventing laws like the Endangered Species Act from interfering with an owner’s right to create value, prioritizing a snail darter or sage grouse over human rights and well-being.

    Allow people to benefit from offshore and federal lands by allowing development in non-national park areas, putting an end to the practice of anti-development policies on 1/3 of American land.

Today’s governments treat development as guilty until proven innocent. They need to recognize that development, done safely and responsibly, is essential to prosperity and to high environmental quality.

Step 3: Liberate energy transporters from anti-development and xenophobic policies that prevent us from selling abundant, world-class energy to allies around the globe.

    Liberate exports of coal, the world’s fastest-growing fuel, to create prosperity in America and help billions around the globe bring themselves out of poverty, creating greater wealth for all humans on the planet.

    Liberate exports of crude oil, allowing our productive companies to sell their product to allies at a fair price instead of wasting resources at distorted domestic prices, which decreases productivity and efficiency.

    Liberate the export of natural gas, creating a global market for our prolific gas producers.

Restricting our energy producers’ ability to sell energy around the world makes no more sense than restricting Apple AAPL -6.80%’s ability to sell iPhones around the world. The world is ours to win—as long as we are free to participate in it.

Step 4: Liberate energy innovators from technophobic policies that prevent technologies like nuclear power and shale energy (including fracking) to reach their potential.

    Allow nuclear progress by replacing superstition-based laws with science-based laws, so that the US can be a leader in nuclear power like it once was.

    Acknowledge that nuclear power is one of the most innovative and safest technologies available and that its future potential is even greater, which makes spreading the false narrative about the dangers of nuclear power and arbitrary red-tape-regulations a major sin, preventing a safe, clean, and inexpensive resource from growing to its full potential.

    Stop the demonization of hydraulic fracturing and shale energy, which are safe, proven technologies.

Anyone who truly cares about the freedom to introduce alternative forms of energy should commit to stopping the technophobic opposition to nuclear power and to hydraulic fracturing.

Step 5: Protect individual rights and maximize environmental quality through laws requiring proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Recognize that our Constitution provides that laws are passed by Congress and the states and dutifully enforced by the executive branch—and repeal the many executive orders that violate this principle.

    Recognize that our legal system requires that to hold someone guilty of a crime one needs proof of harm beyond a reasonable doubt—and apply this to our treatment of energy producers. Recognize that while there may be proof beyond a reasonable doubt that human behavior has some influence on the global climate system, there is no such proof that we are causing a climate catastrophe. Such claims are all based on invalid models that have not and cannot accurately predict the climate. What we absolutely can predict is that restricting energy use, including fossil FOSL -3.51% fuel use, will make Americans both poorer and more vulnerable to climate danger.

    Refuse to sign any global treaty that would increase energy prices, above all restrictions on our most affordable, abundant, reliable energy sources, which will enable us to continue the last 30 years of progress instead of reversing it.

Fundamentally, governments need to be clear with each and every law regarding the protection of environmental quality that the overall goal is to protect human well-being and flourishing, and objectively analyze all the facts with that in mind. As I wrote in The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels: We are not trying to save the planet from human beings, we are trying to improve it for human beings.

Tell your favorite political candidates that you don’t want them to put forward another “energy plan” to dictate when and whether we are free to choose, use, find, develop, generate, transport, and sell it. Tell them to support the Energy Liberation Plan—and empower 300 million Americans with the greatest value a politician can give: freedom.



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