What if There is no Climate Emergency ?

By edmhdotme – Re-Blogged From WUWT

What if there is no Catastrophic Risk from Man-made Global Warming ?
What if Man-made CO2 emissions are not the “Climate Control Knob” ?
What if Man-made CO2 emissions really are a non-problem ?
But what if there is a real Global Cooling Catastrophe in the offing ?
screenshot-2019-11-20-at-17.57.06

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #353

Brought to You by www.SEPP.org, The Science and Environmental Policy Project

By Ken Haapala, President

Letter to President Trump: On March 18, under the leadership of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) and The Heartland Institute, about forty independent organizations and over one hundred individuals sent a letter to Donald Trump supporting the proposed President’s Commission on Climate Security under the direction of William Happer of the National Security Council staff. Robert Bradley posted the entire letter on the web site Master Resource. A few key points are quoted below:

“The commission would consist of a small number of distinguished experts on climate-related science and national security. It would be charged with conducting an independent, high-level review of the Fourth National Climate Assessment and other official reports relating to climate and its implications for national security. Its deliberations would be subject to the transparency requirements of the Federal Advisory Committees Act.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #349

The Week That Was: February 23, 2019, Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Quote of the Week: “Don’t pay attention to ‘authorities,’ think for yourself.’” – Richard Feynman, “The Quotable Feynman”

Number of the Week: Not €1.57 billion, but closer to €7 billion

The Greenhouse Effect: this is the first in a series on the greenhouse effect as it is being measured in the atmosphere.

Greenhouse gases are nearly transparent to sunlight but partially opaque to thermal radiation from Earth’s surface and atmosphere. The greenhouse effect is a predicted warming of the surface and lower atmosphere and a cooling of the stratosphere and upper atmosphere as the concentration of greenhouse gases increases. The most important greenhouse gas is water vapor, H2O. Carbon dioxide, CO2, is of lesser importance. Nitrous oxide, N2O, and methane, CH4, make only minor contributions to greenhouse warming. The most abundant gases in the atmosphere, nitrogen, N2, and oxygen, O2, are not greenhouse gases since they are nearly transparent to both sunlight and thermal radiation. There is no doubt that the greenhouse effect exists, but there is considerable uncertainty about how large it is.

Continue reading

Recently Dropping Global Temperatures Demonstrate IPCC Claims are Impossible

Dr. Tim Ball – Re-Blogged From WUWT

When you put the claims of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in perspective, you get a very different picture that defies logic. I decided to do this because of their recent hysterical claims in Special Report 15 (SR-15) designed to frighten and bully the world into completely unnecessary and enormously expensive environmental and energy policies. Charles Steele summarized their claims and proposed policies in his article, “Climate Doom Ahead? Think Twice,”

“…we have only twelve years to avert climate catastrophe and calls for a fundamental transformation of society and end to the use of fossil fuels. Endorsing it is a critical step towards adopting it, and adopting it would change virtually every element of civil society as we know it today.”

Steele notes that,

“It’s less a scientific report and more a political platform, driven by ideology, not science.”

Continue reading

System to Rid Space Station of Astronaut Exhalations Inspires Earth-Based CO2 Removal

By CTM – Re-Blogged From WUWT

From people who get grants, but may be thermodynamically challenged.~ctm

November 13, 2018 by Anthony King, From Horizon Magazine

systemtorids

The International Space Station air filter which expels CO2 has inspired scientists to try to create an Earth-based version. Credit: NASA/Mark Garcia

Continue reading

Why I Don’t Deny – Part 2

By Kip Hansen – Re-Blogged From WUWT

Note:  Please read Part 1 before reading this — this is a continuation of that essay (a rather long continuation….)

The last point I made in Part 1 of this essay was this:

The IPCC in their synthesis report for policy makers says that human emissions of greenhouse gases [“atmo­spheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide”]  and “other anthropogenic drivers,” are  “extremely likely to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”

climate_denial_Part-2_yello

Continue reading

Why I Don’t Deny – Part 1

By Kip Hansen – Re-Blogged From WUWT

climate_deanial_yellowI have often been asked “Why do you deny climate change?”  I am always stumped by the question.  It is rather like being asked “Why do you torture innocent animals?”  The questioner is not merely asking for information, they are always making an accusation — an accusation that they consider very serious and a threat to themselves and others.

The reason it stumps me is that, as you have guessed already, I do not deny climate change (and I do not torture innocent animals — nor even guilty ones).  And there is nothing about me or my behavior, present or past, that I am aware of, that would lead any reasonable person to think such a thing of me.

I am thoroughly guilty though of being very skeptical of what is generally referred to as the Climate Consensus — usually said to be represented by the latest reports and policy recommendations put out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its supporters; political, ideological and scientific.  I suppose it is this that leads to the false accusation of “denying climate change”.

Continue reading

Of Water And Albedo

By Willis Eschenbach – Re-Blogged From WUWT

As usual, there is more to learn in the CERES satellite dataset. I got to thinking of the idea put forth by Lacis 2010. He announced model results claiming that if the only modeled greenhouse gas in the modeled atmosphere were modeled water, the model world would basically evolve to a modeled ice over condition at a modeled -20°C (-4°F). Here is his money graph, showing the evolution of various modeled climate measurements in the first fifty modeled years after removing all modeled GHGs except for modeled water from the modeled atmosphere. See his paper for details.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #300

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

Fears of Global Warming: Last week’s TWTW brought up the well tested fact that all gases absorb radiant energy in certain bands of the electromagnet spectrum, including nitrogen, N2, which accounts for more than 77% of the atmosphere. Some gases absorb more energy than other gases, and in different bands. If adding carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere causes significant warming of the surface, it would be by a warming of the atmosphere from CO2 absorbing significant energy in the long-wave, infrared portion of the electromagnet spectrum, which is the range of electromagnet energy reflected by the earth into space.

Continue reading

Do Humans Harm the Environment?

By Andy May – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

This is the first of seven posts on the potential costs and hazards of human-caused global warming and the impact of humans on the environment in general. The IPCC WGII AR5 Technical Summary, defines “hazards” on page 39:

“The potential occurrence of a natural or human-induced physical event or trend or physical impact that may cause loss of life, injury, or other health impacts, as well as damage and loss to property, infrastructure, livelihoods, service provision, ecosystems, and environmental resources. In this report, the term hazard usually refers to climate-related physical events or trends or their physical impacts.”

Continue reading

Study Finds Temperature Adjustments Account For ‘Nearly All Of The Warming’ In Climate Data

By Michael Bastasch – Re-Blogged From The Daily Caller

A new study found adjustments made to global surface temperature readings by scientists in recent years “are totally inconsistent with published and credible U.S. and other temperature data.”

“Thus, it is impossible to conclude from the three published [global average surface temperature (GAST)] data sets that recent years have been the warmest ever – despite current claims of record setting warming,” according to a study published June 27 by two scientists and a veteran statistician.

The peer-reviewed study tried to validate surface temperature datasets managed by NASA, NOAA and the UK’s Met Office, all of which make adjustments to raw thermometer readings. Skeptics of man-made global warming have criticized the adjustments.

Climate scientists often apply adjustments to surface temperature thermometers to account for “biases” in the data. The new study doesn’t question the adjustments themselves but notes adjustments has increased the warming trend in published temperature records over the years.

Continue reading

Where Did the 2016 El Niño’s Heat Come From?

By Mike Jonas – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

1. The basic physics

2016 was claimed as the “hottest year ever”. Well, the hottest for a few centuries, anyway, if the global temperature measures are to be believed. Let’s suppose that they are. It is known that 2016 was an El Niño year, and that the “hottest year ever” was caused by a burst of warm water from the ocean (and we know that CO2 doesn’t act that fast). So – where did the El Niño’s heat come from? Let’s look at some basic physics:

Greenhouse gases (GHGs) warm the atmosphere. From there, the downward Infra-Red (IR) radiation reaches the ocean surface.

IR cannot penetrate more than a fraction of a millimetre into the ocean, so it warms just the surface skin. From there most of its energy goes back into the atmosphere or space, but some of it can convect or conduct into the ocean.

Continue reading

The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels

By Andy May – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

The best-selling book The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels was first published November 27, 2014 by Penguin. The author, Alex Epstein, took a BA in Philosophy from Duke University in 2002. He is the President of the Center for Industrial Progress, a former fellow of the Ayn Rand Institute and an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute. He was also named as one of the top 10 in Rolling Stone’s 2013 “Global Warming Denier Elite.” High praise indeed! He was fourth on the list.

Epstein presents a very well written discussion of the climate change debate. He destroys the 97% consensus myth, explains that the carbon dioxide greenhouse effect decreases logarithmically with concentration and shows that the climate computer models used to compute man’s influence on climate have never successfully predicted anything. He also shows that global warming has not increased extreme weather of any kind and that the dangers from extreme weather are less today than at any time in man’s history largely due to fossil fuels. He discusses Craig Idso’s pioneering research proving that increasing carbon dioxide acts as a powerful fertilizer for many plants. But readers of this review know these facts, so we will focus on his discussion of the merits of fossil fuels. He is a good writer and has superhuman skills at laying out a compelling logical argument. He would have put Daniel Webster and Clarence Darrow to shame. I highly recommend the book.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #235

The Week That Was: August 6, 2016 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org
By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Atmospheric Temperatures: Something unexpected happened in July. The rapid decline in atmospheric temperatures observed for the past few months stopped; in fact, they slightly increased. What will happen for the remainder of the year and in 2017 is yet to be seen. Will a La Niña develop, resulting in a further decline, as in 1998 following a strong El Niño, or will the temperatures remain roughly stable, at a higher level than before the 2015 El Niño? We don’t know, nor is there an established basis for such predictions. In spite of the US government spending over $40 billion since 1993 on what it calls climate science, precious little has gone into understanding the natural causes of climate change, one of which is the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO), which describes El Niño/La Niña events.

Based on research in China, and elsewhere, ENSO events may have been occurring for thousands of years, prior to human use of fossil fuels. Additional research indicates that variations in monsoons, which may be influenced by ENSO events have been occurring for hundreds of thousands of years, long before humanity existed.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #233

The Week That Was: July23, 2016 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Political Fads: Roy Spencer has written a 22-page booklet, “A Guide to Understanding Global Temperature Data,” published by the Texas Public Policy Foundation and available on the web at no cost. The booklet covers some of the scientific research that demolish a number of fashionable beliefs on global warming/climate change. First and foremost is the fad seized upon by some politicians that global warming skeptics are funded, or paid-off, by Exxon or other oil companies, etc. The recent antics by certain Senators and state attorneys general failed to present convincing evidence. In fact, later it was claimed that the purpose of the investigations was to find evidence – as if IRS filings of Exxon are not available or not reviewed. The US Government has spent over $40 Billion since 1993 on what it calls climate science. Comparable spending by Exxon cannot be hidden.

Unlike the US government, which has not undergone a full audit since the 1990s, stockholder-held corporations are subject to rigorous audits. Conversely, a February 26, 2015 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) states that major impediments, uncertainties, and material weaknesses prevent its ability to conduct an effective audit. The IRS and the SCC would not permit such a report from Exxon.

Continue reading

Five Points About Climate Change

By Professor Philip Lloyd – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Daily we are told that we are wicked to burn fossil fuels.  The carbon dioxide which is inevitably emitted accumulates in the atmosphere and the result is “climate change.” If the stories are to believed, disaster awaits us. Crops will wither, rivers will dry up, polar bears will disappear and malaria will become rampant.

It is a very big “IF”. We could waste trillions for nothing.  Indeed, Lord Stern has estimated that it would be worth spending a few trillion dollars each year to avoid a possible disaster in 200 years’ time. Because he is associated with the London School of Economics he is believed – by those whose experience of insurance is limited. Those who have experience know that it is not worth insuring against something that might happen in 200 years time – it is infinitely better to make certain your children can cope. With any luck, they will do the same for their children, and our great-great-great grandchildren will be fine individuals more than able to deal with Lord Stern’s little problem.
So I decided to examine the hypothesis from first principles.

Continue reading

An Open Letter to U.S. Presidential Candidates

By Bob Tisdale – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Date:  March 27, 2016

Subject:  Extreme Weather and Rising Sea Levels

From:  Bob Tisdale – Independent Researcher/Climate Change

To: United States Presidential Candidates

Dear Presidential Candidates:

While reading this letter, please put aside your beliefs about human-induced global warming and climate change.

Extreme weather events existed long before the industrial revolution and mankind’s emissions greenhouse gases.  That is, tornados, hurricanes, blizzards, heat waves, cold spells, floods, droughts and so on are facts of life on this planet and in this country. Regardless of whether you believe our emissions of greenhouse gases are now contributing to or enhancing them, those extreme weather events exist now, and they are not going to disappear at any time in the future.

Continue reading

Greenhouse Conspiracy on YouTube

By Anthony Watts – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

The Greenhouse Conspiracy (1990) A “Channel 4” documentary, was recently added to YouTube (h/t to Leo Hickman) Video follows. It is interesting to see what was being said 25 years ago in the context of what we know today. On the day it aired in August of 1990, the Sunday Times ran a 3,000+ word feature story by Hilary Lawson, the program’s producer and presenter.

Continue reading

Obama’s Plan to Get Around Congress

By Jo Nova – Re-Blogged From http://joannenova.com.au

While the Paris agreement was toothless the bite may well come from a pincer movement with domestic laws. Paris was voluntary and non-binding but may be used to provide a means for National laws that are binding to take effect. The laws within each country may have been put into effect earlier with specially prepared clauses that could be triggered or enabled by the Paris agreement.

Strangely Democrat members, elected democratically, don’t appear to have any problem with this. It doesn’t matter if the elected representatives get bypassed, I suppose — the ends justifies the means, the climate needs to be saved, and the voters are stupid.

Continue reading

Long -Term Climate Change: What Is A Reasonable Sample Size?

By Dr. Tim Ball – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Recent discussion about record weather events, such as the warmest year on record, is a totally misleading and scientifically useless exercise. This is especially true when restricted to the instrumental record that covers about 25% of the globe for at most 120 years. The age of the Earth is approximately 4.54 billion years, so the sample size is 0.000002643172%. Discussing the significance of anything in a 120-year record plays directly into the hands of those trying to say that the last 120-years climate is abnormal and all due to human activity. It is done purely for political propaganda, to narrow people’s attention and to generate fear.

The misdirection is based on the false assumption that only a few variables and mechanisms are important in climate change, and they remain constant over the 4.54 billion years. It began with the assumption of the solar constant from the Sun that astronomers define as a medium-sized variable star. The AGW proponents successfully got the world focused on CO2, which is just 0.04% of the total atmospheric gases and varies considerably spatially and temporally. I used to argue that it is like determining the character, structure, and behavior of a human by measuring one wart on the left arm. In fact, they are only looking at one cell of that wart for their determination.

Continue reading

El Niño Effect in 2015 Was 20 Times as Large as the Global Warming Signal

El Nino 2015 versus Global Warming 2015. Which caused the bigger temperature increase?

By Sheldon Walker – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

The aim of this article is to split the temperature increase that occurred between the end of 2014, and the end of 2015, into 2 components. An El Nino component, and a Global Warming component. This will allow the size of the 2 components to be compared.

In order to do this we need to choose a temperature series. HADCRUT4 monthly temperature data will be used for the initial analysis, but the results for GISTEMP, NOAA, and Berkeley will be included for comparison with the HADCRUT4 results.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #213

The Week That Was: January 23, 2016 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala – The Science and Environmental Policy Project

Robert M. Carter, RIP: A splendid fellow and a great friend of scientific integrity passed this week. He inspired and encouraged many scientists to question the unsubstantiated claims that atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, mainly carbon dioxide (CO2), are the dominant cause of climate change. As a geologist he knew better. He demonstrated that the CO2 hypothesis does not stand up to rigorous testing, thus needs to be discarded or changed.

Lesser characters have labeled this testing as “cherry-picking”; confusing the use of selected data to advocate a particular hypothesis (guess) with testing a hypothesis against all relevant data. If a hypothesis fails one dataset, then it cannot be a generally acceptable scientific hypothesis.

Continue reading

Call for Wind Energy ‘Reality Check’

Re-Blogged From North American Platform Against Wind Power

The necessarily sprawling facilities, huge towers, and turning blades required to collect such a diffuse resource as wind degrades and fragments wildlife habitat and threatens the health and well-being of nearby residents. And the effectiveness of large-scale wind energy remains problematic.

  • Wind power’s contribution to reducing CO₂ emissions or fossil fuel use is limited, because other power plants must be kept on line — and used more often and less efficiently — to compensate for the intermittent and variable nature of electricity generated by wind turbines.
  • Increasing numbers of large wind facilities require thousands of miles of new high-voltage transmission lines and more control installations to maintain grid stability in the face of the erratic nature of wind energy. These add substantially to the already high costs of wind energy and further degrade the environment while also raising eminent domain issues.
  • Even after several decades of technical development, wind energy remains economically not viable. Wind power devours colossal amounts of public money and depends on artificial markets for its existence. Considering the minuscule benefit, our money ought to be better spent.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #209

The Week That Was: December 12, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

COP-21: The difficult part of the Conference of Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is over. On December 12, the organizers announced an agreement of sorts. Since the announcement went against the time constraints for this TWTW, adjectives describing the agreement will be left to others, and the analysis of it will be appear in the next TWTW, when it is more clear what was agreed. The following description comes from an article in the Wall Street Journal published on December 12, updated to 6:17 pm Eastern Standard Time. TWTW inserts are in brackets.

“More than 190 nations have agreed on a plan to limit climate change [assuming it is caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases], ending a decades long search for an accord requiring the world’s economies to regulate the emission of gases that [SOME] scientists say are causing the earth to warm.

“Negotiators sealed the deal after changing provisions that would have triggered a requirement that the agreement be approved by the U.S. Congress, where there are many lawmakers skeptical about a climate accord. They won over developing nations at the last hour by exempting them from obligations to help pay the bill for confronting climate change.

“The deal calls for wealthy economies such as the U.S. and the European Union to shoulder more of the burden, including a pledge to channel at least $100 billion a year to poor countries to help them respond to climate change.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #207

The Week That Was: December 5, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

COP-21: The festive part of the Conference of Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), is over in Paris. This part began COP-21, giving various national politicians the opportunity to preen for the cameras as if they are celebrities. After all, some claim they are attending the conference in order to save the world from global warming/climate change. Who knows, some may actually believe it.

Now comes the hard part. The delegates to COP-21 must work out an agreement that, at least, gives the appearance they are saving the world. Of course, COP-21, and the UNFCCC, follows the party line laid out in the Fifth Assessment Report (AR-5, 2013 & 2014) by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Humans are mostly (more than 50%) responsible for 95 to 99% of global warming/climate change since about 1950. As stated in last week’s TWTW (November 28, 2015), this is a scientific hypothesis that must be tested. It has not been tested. Instead, the needed testing has been replaced by a cloud of assertions, some scientifically very good, some extremely poor, from which no one can logically draw firm conclusions with a 95 to 99% certainty. Simply, there is no scientific reason to accept severe limitations on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, as envisioned by many parties at COP-21.

Further, as discussed in last week’s TWTW, the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) released a report that contradicts many of the claims by the IPCC, including:

“Probably the only “consensus” among climate scientists is that human activities can have an effect on local climate and that the sum of such local effects could hypothetically rise to the level of an observable global signal. The key questions to be answered, however, are whether the human global signal is large enough to be measured and if it is, does it represent, or is it likely to become, a dangerous change outside the range of natural variability? On these questions, an energetic scientific debate is taking place on the pages of peer-reviewed science journals.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

The Week That Was: Nov 21, 2015 – Brought to You by www.sepp.org

***

Quote of the Week:
“It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who gain by the new ones.” – Niccolò Machiavelli


Number of the Week: $16.5 Trillion


By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project
Attribution: With each successive report the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) becomes more certain in attributing recent climate change to human influence. That is, that human influence, particularly carbon dioxide emissions (CO2), is the specific cause of climate change. This intensification of certainty is particularly noticeable in a trend from Third Assessment Report (AR3, 2001), to the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4, 2007) to the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5, 2013 & 2014). Specifically, AR5 states:
“It is extremely likely that more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 to 2010 was caused by the anthropogenic increase in greenhouse gas concentrations and other anthropogenic forcings together. The best estimate of the human induced contribution to warming is similar to the observed warming over this period.”
“Extremely likely” is defined as 95% to 100% probability. According to an assertion in AR3, “The most we can expect to achieve is the prediction of the probability distribution of the system’s future possible states by the generation of ensembles of model solutions.” (Section 14.2.2.2, discussed in last week’s TWTW).

There is no established probability distribution presented. Thus, the term “extremely likely” is more based on the opinion of the political actors writing the SPM, than on any objective probability distribution.

Continue reading

Memo to Paris: Don’t Base Policy on Overblown Prediction

Halfway to 2°C – halfway to hell on Earth or just a number?

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley – Re-Blogged From WattsUpWithThat

The Met Office is at it again. Just in time for Paris, in a stunt co-ordinated with the unspeakable BBC, it issued a characteristically mendacious press release saying that global mean surface temperature was about to exceed 1 C° above the mean for the reference period 1850-1900 for the first time.

And this, said the excitable David Shukman, the BBC’s pseudoscience editor on the ten o’clock news, was the halfway milestone to 2 C°, which, he said, was generally accepted to be the threshold of dangerous global warming.

Here, in pictures, is the answer to the Met Office’s hysterical press release.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #204

The Week That Was: (November 7, 2015) – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Un-Validated Models: “The basic problem with the IPCC’s [UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] extensive analysis of peer-reviewed, published research, from which it draws its conclusions regarding climate sensitivity to CO2 [carbon dioxide] and other GHG [greenhouse gases], is that it makes the critical mistake of giving any credence whatsoever to projections of future climate changes, and attribution of those changes, from output of un-validated climate simulation models. Moreover, in our opinion, the results of computer model studies should only be published in scientific journals if they are accompanied by supportive empirical observations. This conclusion is based on over a half-century of experience from many of our research team members, using models for critical decision-making in design and operation of spacecraft, where human safety was involved.

“Although computer models based on first principles are used extensively for design of commercial airplanes, bridges and buildings, engineers never base design decisions on output of un-validated computer models, and for good reasons supported by a grateful public. For what possible reason would it be appropriate to base public policy decisions regarding climate, with potentially severe unintended consequences, on un-validated climate simulation models, as the IPCC advocates and as adopted by the IWG [US Interagency Working Group] for SCC {Social Cost of Carbon] calculation?” (p.22)

“The Right Climate Stuff (TRCS) research team is a volunteer group composed primarily of more than 25 retired NASA Apollo Program veterans, who joined together in February 2012 to perform an objective, independent study of scientific claims of significant global warming caused by human activity, known as Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW).” (p.11)

Continue reading

On Global Warming and the Illusion of Control

This is a FREE E-Book, which can be downloaded at https://bobtisdale.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/tisdale-on-global-warming-and-the-illusion-of-control-part-1.pdf.  This E-Book is written largely in laymen’s terms, as a comprehensive introduction to the Theory of Human Caused Global Warming. – [Bob]

By Bob Tisdale

On Global Warming and the Illusion of Control –Part 1

PREFACE

The title of this ebook On Global Warming and the Illusion of Control is based in part on the theory that was first presented by Dr. Ellen Langer, professor of psychology at Harvard University. Her 1975 paper The Illusion of Control was published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. In the abstract of that paper, Langer defined the “ illusion of control” as: … an expectancy of a personal success probability inappropriately higher than the objective probability would warrant.
Let’s put that in easier-to-understand terms.
The ScienceDaily webpage about illusion of control begins: Illusion of control is the tendency for human beings to believe they can control or at least influence outcomes that they demonstrably have no influence over. Illusion of control is appropriate for the current groupthink (more commonly refer red to as a consensus) that mankind can control future global temperatures and sea levels and that we can also control climate — control how often weather events occur, how strong they are and how long those events last — simply by limiting carbon dioxide emissions. In other words, the ever-increasing, whimsically optimistic fantasies about modifying and controlling climate through cuts in greenhouse – gas
emissions are clear – cut examples of illusion of control.

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #203

The Week That Was: October 31, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Model Logic: Some readers of TWTW have commented that their colleagues dismiss the objections raised by TWTW, and others, to the global climate models, and their results. They say: “The basic physics is straight-forward and the logic in the models is solid.” As Galileo demonstrated in his famous experiment of using two balls of significantly different weight to test gravity, this is only part of the issue. The key part of the issue is what do empirically verifiable experiments demonstrate? Contrary to the prevailing logic of the time, both balls hit the ground together.

Similarly, a model may be developed with great rigor and detail, but if it cannot predict well, there is something wrong with the model. Richard Feynman summed the problem neatly: “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.”

In general, global climate models are failing to predict short-run changes in temperatures, particularly in the atmosphere where we have the most comprehensive observations. The models predict a significantly greater warming trend than observed. If the models cannot predict short-term temperatures, there is no logical reason to assume they can predict long-term temperatures. Since the fifth assessment report (AR-5, 2013) by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), we have seen many explanations attempting to explain what is called the “missing heat.” The important question remains: is the “missing heat” an artifact of the models, and not missing in nature?

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #202

The Week That Was: October 24, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Bonn Conference: The Bonn Climate Change Conference, October 19 to 23, 2015, apparently ended. This was billed as the last conference before the 21st Conference of Parties (COP-21) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) scheduled between November 30 and December 11 in Paris. One is not sure if the Bonn Conference is over, because these conferences seem to be endless, similar to the conference Richard Feynman describes (see quote above). However, a 51 page Draft Agreement, “Version of 23 October 2015@23:30hrs” was release. It is a much revised version of the shorter draft agreement with which the conference started.

The countless press releases and articles conference can be summed as follows: The delegates from the developed West (mainly Western Europe and the US) are saying that in order to “save the world” we have to stop the use of fossil fuels, even though they are needed for economic development. The delegates from the developing world, identified as the G-77 + China, are saying if you want us to stop development show us the money, namely the $100 Billion per year the West promised in Copenhagen in 2009.

Continue reading

What I Learned About Climate Change: The Science is NOT Settled

By David Siegel – Re-Blogged From Medium.com

What is your position on the climate-change debate? What would it take to change your mind?

If the answer is It would take a ton of evidence to change my mind, because my understanding is that the science is settled, and we need to get going on this important issue, that’s what I thought, too. This is my story.

More than thirty years ago, I became vegan because I believed it was healthier (it’s not), and I’ve stayed vegan because I believe it’s better for the environment (it is). I haven’t owned a car in ten years. I love animals; I’ll gladly fly halfway around the world to take photos of them in their natural habitats. I’m a Democrat: I think governments play a key role in helping preserve our environment for the future in the most cost-effective way possible. Over the years, I built a set of assumptions: that Al Gore was right about global warming, that he was the David going up against the industrial Goliath. In 1993, I even wrote a book about it.

Recently, a friend challenged those assumptions. At first, I was annoyed, because I thought the science really was settled. As I started to look at the data and read about climate science, I was surprised, then shocked. As I learned more, I changed my mind. I now think there probably is no climate crisis and that the focus on CO2 takes funding and attention from critical environmental problems. I’ll start by making ten short statements that should challenge your assumptions and then back them up with an essay.

Continue reading

Fact Checking Catastrophic Climate Claims

By Steve Kopits – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, touched off a firestorm of criticism by claiming that catastrophic climate events are in store.  In a speech given to the insurers group, Lloyds, Mr. Carney stated that “the catastrophic impacts of climate change will be felt beyond the traditional horizons of most actors”.   The Bank of England apparently feels it can state unequivocally both the timing and magnitude of climate events well into the future.

So, let’s look at Governor Carney’s claims and how they stand up. First of all, let’s agree on the points which are not debated.

Atmospheric CO2 continues to rise by about 2 parts per million (ppm) per year.  This pace has been essentially stable for the last few decades.  Atmospheric CO2 remains a trace gas at 400 ppm (0.04% of the atmosphere), up about 130 ppm from pre-industrial times.    CO2 is not a poison or pollutant, but an essential part of the respiratory cycle of the planet.

Temperatures are high compared to the historical record.  However, this record is limited.  Comprehensive global temperature data collection only began with the satellite era, that is, from 1979.  (We still lack such data if the full depths of the oceans are to be included.)

 

Nevertheless, we do have long-time series data for Central England, extending back to 1772.  To the extent this measurement is reliable and can be extrapolated to hemispheric averages, it shows a step-up of about 1 deg Celsius from 1980 to 2005, which supports Governor Carney’s assertions.  On other hand, it also shows a drop of 0.5 deg Celsius from 2005 to the present—which does not.

Source: UK Met Office

SOURCE: UK MET OFFICE

Satellite data tell a similar story.  The temperature steps up by about 0.7 deg C from the early 1980s to 1998, but stabilizes thereafter. Thus, the satellite data shows a ‘pause’ in global warming since 1998.  There has been no statistical warming in the satellite data for seventeen years.

Source: Dr. Roy Spencer, University of Alabama Huntsville

SOURCE: DR. ROY SPENCER, UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA HUNTSVILLE

Whether this pause will last is an open question.  Temperatures have been rising at the pace of 0.1 deg C per decade since 1880.  Although we have seen relatively flat temperatures since 1998, even climate skeptics would envision long-term warming will resume at some point.

Mr. Carney claims that, “[w]hile there is still time to act, the window of opportunity is finite and shrinking.” The satellite temperature record of the last eighteen years directly contradicts this statement.  There has been no warming at all.  And the pause is visible in other data sets as well, including in Central England temperatures, which show an outright decline in the last decade.

Sea Level

Governor Carney contends that “the rate of sea level rise is quicker now than at any time over the last 2 millennia.”   Is it really?

As with just about every other metric the Governor mentions, we have data.   Sea level is measured by tide gauges, and also by satellites.   Satellite measurements suggest that sea level has been rising steadily by roughly 3 mm / year, which equates to about 1 foot per century.

Source: University of Colorado, Boulder

SOURCE: UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO, BOULDER

We can cross-check this data against tide gauges, in this case, the one installed at Battery Park at the southern foot of Manhattan.  This gauge has been has been in use for a very long time, since before the US Civil War.  As does the satellite data, it shows an average sea level rise of about 3 mm per year.  But the rise greatly pre-dates the 1950 start date which Governor Carney ascribes to anthropogenic global warming (AGW).   If global warming is causing sea level rise, then this process started at least a century ago—well before more modern levels of atmospheric CO2.

Further, the last decade’s ‘pause’ is visible in this data set as well.   New York sea levels have actually fallen below their 1998 peak recently.  Indeed, Mr. Carney might have mentioned that sea levels at Battery Park, the epicenter of Superstorm Sandy’s tidal surge, had been falling for years at the time.

Source: NOAA data, Prienga line fit (6th degree polynomial)

SOURCE: NOAA DATA, PRIENGA LINE FIT (6TH DEGREE POLYNOMIAL)

Importantly, sea level rise coincided with New York’s rise to power as the seat of global finance.  Indeed, sea levels in New York are more than a foot higher than they were one century ago.  Has New York sunk?  Has it become uninhabitable?  Only to those without hefty incomes.   For those who can afford to live in Manhattan, it remains as high and dry as it was a century ago.

Now, is the Bank of England prepared to assert that sea level rise in New York will cease if CO2 emissions were brought to whatever level the Bank thinks is appropriate?  Would the Bank suggest that New York City government should be complacent in such an event?  The long-term record suggests this would be foolish advice.  Sea levels have been rising monotonically in New York for a very long time.  If the past is a guide to the future, we have good reason to believe a century hence sea levels at Battery Park will be a foot higher than today.  And New Yorkers will be wealthier, Manhattan real estate more expensive, and the island no wetter than it is today.

If sea level rise is a problem for New York, is it not a failure of government?  The current sea level in New York could have been projected with a high degree of certainty in 1940 with nothing more than historical gauge data and a straight edge ruler.  If rising sea levels caught New York unawares during Superstorm Sandy in 2011, it was not for lack of data.  The city had a comfortable 50 years to adjust its defenses to entirely predictable sea level rise.  Any failure is a direct failure of governance.  We will return to this issue later, for it is governance, not CO2, which lies at the heart of catastrophic insurance claims management.

Therefore, with respect to sea level, the data again refutes Governor Carney’s claims that “the rate of sea level rise is quicker now than at any time over the last 2 millennia.”  Sea level rise has continued steadily for more than a century and a half, and indeed has fallen with the ‘pause’ in New York City.  This is not to say that sea level is not rising.  It is, and that is not disputed.  However, in the case of New York, city government had literally decades to prepare for weather events.  If it did not, then elected officials, not CO2 emissions, are to blame.

Weather-related Insurance Losses

Governor Carney’s speech deals first and foremost with the risks of rapidly rising insurance claims due to CO2 emissions.   This sounds terrifying, but in fact can be decomposed into specific event types and geographies.  As it turns out, not all weather events or countries are created equal.

Weather-related losses can be categorized as hurricanes and typhoons; tornadoes; floods; winter storms; drought; and fires.   Of these, winter storms and fires are relatively minor sources of losses; and droughts are largely irrelevant to London insurers, as such losses are generally covered by government-sponsored programs.

Hurricanes

Rather, when we are speaking of weather-related losses, we are speaking first and foremost about hurricanes.  On Munich RE’s list of top ten costliest natural disasters since 1980, earthquakes are by far the leading cause of loss and represent five of the top ten worst events.  Next on the list, however, are hurricanes (excluding typhoons), taking four of the top ten positions.  Of other weather-related events, only the Thailand floods of 2011 make the top ten list.

In a list of the top ten losses from hurricanes, typhoons, and floods (top ten of each), hurricanes represent more than half of all losses.  If we include typhoons, this total rises to 65%.  Flooding accounts for 30% of top weather-related losses, and tornadoes, a mere 5%.  Thus, when we are speaking of catastrophic climate events, we are more or less speaking about hurricanes and their Asian variant, typhoons.

Source: Munich RE NatCat Service

SOURCE: MUNICH RE NATCAT SERVICE

If we narrow this to insured losses, as opposed to overall losses (some of which are not insured commercially), the results are even more stark.  Hurricanes account for 75% of catastrophic losses, with typhoons representing an additional 8%.  Thus, hurricanes and typhoons represent $6 of every $7 paid out in ‘top ten’ catastrophic weather-related insurance claims.

Source: Munich RE NatCat Service

SOURCE: MUNICH RE NATCAT SERVICE

And this in turn tells us a great deal about the nature of insurance.  Where do insured hurricane losses occur?  Principally in the United States.  Where do insured typhoon losses occur?  Principally in Japan and Taiwan.  Why these places?  Because all of these are wealthy countries.  Hurricane and typhoon losses will be greater where there is, first, a concentration of physical assets, and second, where those assets are valuable.  In other words, in the advanced countries exposed to hurricanes and typhoons.

In this, no country is more exposed than the United States.  Of overall losses due to top ten catastrophic weather events, nearly 2/3 occurred in the United States alone.

Source: Munich RE NatCat Service

SOURCE: MUNICH RE NATCAT SERVICE

Indeed, if we restrict this to insured losses (including floods and tornadoes), the US accounts for 84% by itself.  Thus, if we are speaking of insured weather-related losses, as a practical matter we are speaking of hurricane damage in the US.  The rest is largely incidental.  For example, Superstorm Sandy caused more insured losses in one event than the cumulative and collective top ten catastrophic, weather-related losses from Europe, China, Japan and the rest of Asia since 1980.  And Sandy was only the second worst insurance event in recent times.

Source: Munich RE NatCat Service

SOURCE: MUNICH RE NATCAT SERVICE

Now, why are US losses so great?  Is it due to the number or strength of storms making landfall in the United States?

In fact, there is no such pattern discernible in the data.   Indeed, the last few years have seen fewer than average hurricanes globally, with a recovery to up-cycle numbers in the last year or so.

Global Hurricane Frequency Source: Ryan Maue

GLOBAL HURRICANE FREQUENCY

SOURCE: RYAN MAUE

Even more striking, the strength of global hurricanes and cyclones hovered near historical lows from 2009 until this past year.

Global Hurricane Energy Source: Ryan Maue

GLOBAL HURRICANE ENERGY

SOURCE: RYAN MAUE

Indeed, had Carney consulted The Weather Channel, he would have found a story entitled, No Major Hurricane Has Made Landfall In the U.S. In More Than 9 Years — and That’s a New Record.  Or if he had checked the internet, he would have readily found a one-by-one list of US landfall hurricanes, as presented below:

Source: NOAA Hurricane Research Division

SOURCE: NOAA HURRICANE RESEARCH DIVISION

The list shows instead that the present decade is on track to be the quietist in the historical record.  Our good luck is unlikely to last, but the assertion that hurricanes are somehow increasing, or at least increasing in the United States, the principal source of insured losses, is completely unfounded.

Rather, reinsurance data hints at the source of losses: higher payouts for assets in harm’s way.

Insured Losses as a Percent of Overall Losses, Top Ten Lists, 1980-2014 Source: Munich RE NatCat Service

INSURED LOSSES AS A PERCENT OF OVERALL LOSSES, TOP TEN LISTS, 1980-2014

SOURCE: MUNICH RE NATCAT SERVICE

The ratio of insured to total losses are the highest for hurricanes in advanced countries.  For example, the insurance payout ratio for US hurricanes was 51%, for those in Japan, 45%.  By contrast, in the rest of Asia, typhoon payouts equaled only 6% of losses.  Payouts were also lower for floods, both in advanced and emerging countries.  In advanced countries, the payouts averaged 14%, which in developing countries, it averaged a mere 1% (excluding the major floods in Thailand, which would have brought emerging averages to advanced country levels).

Further, more and more expensive assets are exposed to hurricanes in particular.  In the US, for example, ever more people are living on the coasts, and beach front property has become prized and expensive.  One need only look out the window on a flight approaching Miami International Airport to be appalled at the sheer concertation of high-end housing built just above sea level on islands dotting Florida’s Atlantic Coast.   How long until a hurricane wipes a good number of these off their foundations?  And what kind of insurance losses will that involve?

Indeed, an examination of catastrophic losses suggests a decisive role for government policy.  Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed New Orleans in 2005, represents alone more than one-quarter of all insured top ten losses globally since 1980.  In just one event.

Why was Katrina so destructive?  Katrina was only a Category 3 hurricane when it hit Louisiana.  A Category 3 storm is strong, but certainly nothing unprecedented in that part of the world.  New Orleans had—and has—good reason to expect a punishing hurricane once every generation.  TheTimes-Picayune, a New Orleans newspaper, notes that the city has been ravaged “repeatedly by hurricanes during its 200-year history, with the first major hurricane in 1722 destroying nearly every structure in the four-year-old village, including its only church, parsonage and hospital.”  Hurricanes are nothing new or exotic in New Orleans.  The city has been destroyed by such events more than once and far before modern industrial times—by hurricanes entirely unrelated to global warming.

No, New Orleans was destroyed in 2005, first, because the levees failed, and second, because much of the city was built below sea level.  Therefore, if the levees failed, the city would be lost.  Who was responsible for the levees and zoning?  The Federal and local governments.  Had the levees held, no doubt the losses would still have been formidable, but perhaps two-thirds less than those actually incurred.  Government failure made a fairly routine, if damaging hurricane, into the worst weather-related event in history.

The catastrophe of New Orleans was a failure of politics.  Governor Carney might have made that point.  He might have mentioned that, had the levees held in New Orleans, the insurance sector would have been spared costs greater than the total of all catastrophic weather-related claims in Europe, Japan, China and the rest of Asia since 1980 taken together.    Climate is not the greatest source of risk in catastrophic insurance claims.  Weak and politicized policy-making is.

Upon closer analysis, Governor Carney’s claims of higher losses from stronger storms are not supported by the data.  The number of hurricanes is not increasingly, nor is their intensity.  Indeed, the US, by far the leading cause of insured hurricane losses, is currently seeing a hurricane drought.  Losses are nevertheless increasing over time, because the country has concentrated valuable assets in harm’s way.  And that is the general rule: As a country becomes more wealthy and insurance more prevalent, losses will increase—even if the frequency and intensity of hurricanes do not.

Floods

In the US, flood damage is tracked by the US Weather Service (NOAA).   The Weather Service endeavors to collect yearly data related to fresh water flooding (ie, not a tidal storm surges).   It is not entirely clear whether there is overlap with hurricane-related rain events, but in any event, the Weather Service provides a solid approximation of US losses.

NOAA data indicates that annual flood losses averaged $8 bn (measured in 2014 dollars) over the last 30 years.  More recently, from 2007 to 2014, losses averaged a modest $4 bn per year.  However, as with other catastrophic events, the occurrence of rains and damages is unpredictable.  For example, 2005 saw $55 bn in damages (which one has to image were at least partially related to several landfall hurricanes that year).

Source: NOAA Hydrologic Information Center, Prienga GDP adjustment using US Federal Reserve data

SOURCE: NOAA HYDROLOGIC INFORMATION CENTER, PRIENGA GDP ADJUSTMENT USING US FEDERAL RESERVE DATA

NOAA presents flood-loss data in inflation-adjusted dollars, and this is commendable.   However, we also need to acknowledge that the US economy is much bigger than a century ago.  Indeed, the US economy in 2014 was literally 15 times the size of the economy in 1930.  With a vastly larger economy, a substantially greater asset value is placed in harm’s way.  Therefore, we should by rights adjust for both inflation and economic growth.  If we adjust accordingly (ie, adjust in terms of nominal GDP growth), then flood losses have fallen by half every 15 years or so, and now average around $10 bn per year, with a continued declining trend.

Source: NOAA, data with Prienga analysis

SOURCE: NOAA, DATA WITH PRIENGA ANALYSIS

Once again, we see nothing in the data which leads us to believe that flood losses are increasing at some exponential rate.

Drought

There is no doubt that California is seeing a major drought, probably the worst in recorded history.  However, until 2005 or so, there is no visible trend in California rain or drought conditions as recorded on an annual basis and using the widely accepted Palmer Drought Severity Index.  Is California’s drought the result of climate change, or just a historically bad drought?

Source: NOAA via Monterey County Government

SOURCE: NOAA VIA MONTEREY COUNTY GOVERNMENT

If we consider the Great Plains and Rockies, an area not currently under drought conditions, we can see the historical pattern more clearly.  During the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, the US saw its worst drought in recorded history.  Conditions were far worse than those in California today.  Similarly, the center of the country saw droughts in the 1950s and again in the late 1980s.  These events are episodic, and no trend is readily identifiable in the data.

Source: NOAA via Mogreenstats

SOURCE: NOAA VIA MOGREENSTATS

The story is similar for the country as a whole.   There is no visible trend is apparent in the data over the last 120 years, and as above, the droughts of the 1930s and 1950s are readily visible in the data.

Tornadoes

Tornadoes, like hurricanes, are essentially a US phenomenon.  These are measured on the Fujita scale, from 0 to 5.  F0 tornadoes count more as bad storms, with “branches broken off trees; shallow-rooted trees pushed over; sign boards damaged,” according to NOAA.   An F1 tornado produces ‘moderate damage’, with wind that “peels surface off roofs; mobile homes pushed off foundations or overturned; moving autos blown off roads.”  In the center of the country, this might constitute ‘moderate damage’.  In New Jersey, where I live, it would constitute something of a disaster.  Tornadoes rated F3 and above are considered ‘severe’, and according to the Fujita scale, F5 tornadoes can shoot “automobile-sized missiles…through the air in excess of 100 meters.”  An F2 tornado would have wind comparable to that of Superstorm Sandy; however, the path of damage would be typically much more limited.

How have tornado numbers evolved?

The number of recorded tornadoes since the 1950s has risen dramatically, although total numbers declined precipitously from 2010 to 2014.

Source: NOAA

SOURCE: NOAA

However, if we exclude F-0 tornadoes, then in fact the count is flat, and by some measures, down.  As a broad generalization, we might consider the count of F1+ tornadoes largely without meaningful trend up or down.

Source: NOAA

SOURCE: NOAA

If we narrow the analysis to just the most destructive tornadoes—those rated F3 and higher—frequency appears to have actually declined since the 1970.

Source: NOAA

SOURCE: NOAA

Why then the increase in F0 tornadoes?  As noted above, F0 tornadoes are essentially indistinguishable from strong storms.  With today’s Doppler radar, even weak tornadoes can be detected.  In 1950, particularly in remote areas or if they occurred at night, weak tornadoes probably passed unnoticed or unrecorded.  Thus, the increase in F0 tornadoes, when F1 and stronger tornado counts are flat to down, suggests simple detection bias.    The number of F0 tornadoes has in all likelihood not increased compared to 1950, we can simply identify them better.

And even if F0 tornadoes had increased, they would be relatively inconsequential for catastrophic insurance purposes.  Tornado damage, while spectacular, is not particularly large in dollar terms, for the reason that tornadoes typically take a narrow path.  The destruction is severe, but geographically limited, unlike a hurricane.  The US Census Bureau estimates that US tornado damage averaged around $2 bn per year from 2008 to 2010.  For a country like the US, this is a minor outlay.

Nor has tornado damage increased.  A study by Roger Pielke Jr., professor of environmental studies at the Center for Science and Technology Policy Research at the University of Colorado, concludes that normalized tornado damage has not increased since the 1950s.  I would note, however, that damage can be quite severe in any given year, as it was in 2011.

Source: Roger Pielke

SOURCE: ROGER PIELKE

Again, the data squarely contradict the assertions of the Governor of the Bank of England.  If Mr. Carney is arguing that tornadoes are becoming more frequent, severe, or damaging, he is flatly contradicted by the recorded data in the US.

Wildfires

With drought and heat, wildfires look to have a record year in the US in 2015.

Although they make for great television, wildfires are not a huge sources of insured losses.  According to the Insurance Information Institute, “over the 20-year period, 1995 to 2014, [in the United States] fires, including wildfires, accounted for 1.5 percent of insured catastrophes losses, totaling about $6.0 billion, according to the Property Claims Services (PCS) unit of ISO.”  Wildfires are certainly exacerbated by drought, high temperatures, and wind.  However, the intensity of such fires has become much more severe due to the practice of…putting out wildfires.  In much of the US, wildfires are a natural and necessary feature of the landscape.  Indeed, flora have evolved specifically to resist fire or germinate as a result of wildfires.  Notwithstanding, in the last century, US forest management practice has emphasized fire suppression, such that a good bit of US wilderness is now at great risk of catastrophic fire.   This problem is hardly new.  The US Government Accounting Office prepared a report on the matter back in 1999:

The most extensive and serious problem related to the health of national forests in the interior West is the overaccumulation of vegetation, which has caused an increasing number of large, intense, uncontrollable, and catastrophically destructive wildfires. According to the Forest Service, 39 million acres on national forests in the interior West are at high risk of catastrophic wildfire. Past management practices, especially the Forest Service’s decades-old policy of putting out wildfires on the national forests, disrupted the historical occurrence of frequent low-intensity fires, which had periodically removed flammable undergrowth without significantly damaging larger trees. Because this normal cycle of fire was disrupted, vegetation has accumulated, creating high levels of fuels for catastrophic wildfires and transforming much of the region into a tinderbox.

To this is added the expansion of housing into formerly remote areas.  Some of this is quite upscale.  For example, the actor Tom Cruise recently put his Colorado vacation home on sale for $59 million.  In the event it were lost in a wildfire, it would be quite a claim.

Tom Cruise’s $59 million Colorado Getaway Source: AOL Real Estate

TOM CRUISE’S $59 MILLION COLORADO GETAWAY

SOURCE: AOL REAL ESTATE

Thus, fire losses are insignificant as a percent of total weather-related losses, and likely to stay that way.  To the extent they are growing, a warmer climate no doubt plays a part, but the principal factors are side-effects of Forest Services practices for decades, on the one hand, and the encroachment of residential properties—some of them quite expensive—on formerly wilderness areas.

Summing Up

Is his speech London’s insurance community, Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, asserted a series claims about climate change.   Some of these are widely accepted.  The climate does change.  The world has warmed.  Atmospheric CO2 has increased, half of the increment due to human activities.

Beyond this, there is no consensus, and indeed, the available data in many cases directly refutes the Governor’s more extreme assertions.  There is no consensus that humans are the primary drivers of climate change.  As we can see, sea levels, for example, were rising well before the 1950s date Carney gives as the start of modern anthropogenic warming.

Importantly, the increase in losses since the 1980s is more likely to reflect expanded insurance coverage, increasing payouts as a percent of losses incurred, and an increased number of assets with higher values placed in harm’s way.  Losses increases have not occurred due to increases in hurricane, tornado, flooding, drought or fire frequency or strength, at least not in the United States, which represents the lion’s share of insurance claims.  In many cases, either frequency or intensity of weather-related events has actually declined.  Sea level rise has not accelerated, not as measured by either satellites or tide gauges.  Sea level has been rising for well over 100 years, and continues on that pace.

Like so many other economists, Governor Carney seems to operate under the assumption that current CO2 levels are just on the edge of some catastrophic acceleration.  For some reason, 320 ppm of atmospheric CO2 is safe, but 540 ppm is not, because there is some precipice—an inflection point or boundary—between here and there.  The limit is not 1,000 ppm, or 5,000 ppm, or 42,448 ppm, but right here, right now.  A little more CO2, a trace more of a harmless trace gas, and we are doomed.

The climate is complex and the future uncertain.  It is possible the worst fears may prove correct.  Nevertheless, such an assertion is not supported by the historical data, not for US droughts, floods, tornados, hurricanes or fires.  But it does show up.  In politics.  If sea levels were 20 cm higher in New York and this contributed to the damage from Superstorm Sandy, well, any middling analyst could have predicted the rise back in 1940, just as we can predict today that sea levels will be one foot higher a century hence.  The failure was not of CO2 emissions, but squarely a failure of governance.  And that goes doubly so for the fate of New Orleans.  If Governor Carney wanted to make a constructive proposal, he should have called for Lloyds to create macro audits of risk zones and censure or refuse to insure jurisdictions where governance is not up to par.  If insurers had refused to insure New Orleans unless the levees were sound, they could have saved themselves $30 bn in payouts and probably twice that in losses.

As an analyst, I find Mr. Carney’s speech is truly dismaying.  For the Governor of the Bank to claim that climate change is leading to rapidly rising insurance claims is, at best, a critical failure of analysis.  As discussed above, insurance claims are a function of a number of factors, including the type and country of the weather event, as well as the extent of insurance coverage and payout ratios.  A hurricane in the US may see one hundred times the payouts of a major flood in India.   Payouts will rise as a function of nominal GDP, as both inflation and the value and concentration of assets will play a crucial role in overall losses.  The specific path of a storm can also be decisive for global averages.   It goes without saying that a storm which strikes in Philadelphia, marches up the New Jersey coast, slams into the Manhattan and turns towards New Haven is going to cost a bundle.  That same storm hitting, say, rural Mississippi would cause a fraction of the monetary damages.  And this matters, because Superstorm Sandy caused more insured damages than all the leading weather events in Europe, Japan, China and the rest of Asia combined.  Single events can move long-term global averages.

If the Bank missed this, it is not because the necessary data is hard to find.  Information on weather-related events is readily and publicly accessible on the internet.  Almost every graph I use above relating to hurricanes, tornadoes, floods and droughts comes from the US government itself.  Apparently, the Bank of England could not be bothered to consult the underlying climate data before making hyperbolic claims.  Thus, at best, the Bank was careless with data analysis.

A worse interpretation of events suggests that Mr. Carney was willing to blindly accept the conventional wisdom, the ‘consensus of scientists’ regarding global warming, without any will or curiosity to dig deeper and form a personal view.  One can only hope that monetary policy in the UK is not informed by such superficiality or passivity.

The very worst interpretation is that Mr. Carney is in fact aware of the source data, but chose to make hysterical claims to promote a personal political agenda.  I cannot imagine a more ill-considered idea.  For those of us who consider central bank independence sacred, the appearance of a national bank taking sides in a highly charged political debate—and doing so with scant regard for the underlying data—will establish the Bank of England as partisan and the political opponent of conservative politicians.  Given that Janet Yellen, the Chairman of the US Federal Reserve Bank, hails from Berkeley, a hot bed of climate activism, should the Republican Party consider the Fed also its opponent?  If so, I can assure you, the Republicans will find some support to ‘audit’ the institution.

At the end of the day, political neutrality is a pre-condition for central bank independence.  If a political party deems the central bank to be an opponent, then it will take measures to gain political control over the bank, with the result that monetary policy itself may become politicized.  If the Bank nevertheless feels compelled to champion a particular side in a political debate, its analysis must be water-tight and its communication, impartial.   That Governor Carny violated both dictums is simply stunning and a huge blow to the prestige of the Bank of England.  It was a very bad call indeed.

CONTINUE READING –>

Continue reading

Stop The Devastation of Peoples Lives By Speculating with No Data: Remembering Cattle And Methane Emissions

By Dr. Tim Ball – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Release of early data from NASA’s OCO2 satellite triggered the typical nonsense. The usual people talked about the modern equivalent of how many angels on the head of a pin, when they haven’t even established the existence of angels. The initial OCO2 data appears to show most estimates and assumptions were wrong. This might explain NASA’s hesitancy to release all the information, especially with regard to sources and sinks. If nothing else, the maps show the CO2 is not well mixed. The wider truth is that every piece of data in the climate debate is a very crude estimate created for a political or scientific agenda, including those used by many skeptics.

Kip Hansen’s essay “Are we Chasing Imaginary Numbers?” speaks to an important point about approximations. It reminded me about learning navigation and taking what was called “a three star fix”. The result almost always was a triangulation and all you knew was you were somewhere in the triangle. To narrow it down, but still not be precise, you dropped perpendicular lines from the centre of each side of the triangle to create what Hansen would recognize as the data point, we called it a Most Probable Position (MPP). Hansen’s discussion is very valuable, but in climate science the problem begins long before the point of determining accuracy.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #199

The Week That Was: October 3, 2015- Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

THIS WEEK: By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

More IPCC Challenges: The US administration is attempting to establish an agreement to be reached at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Paris from November 30 to December 11. Meanwhile, more challenges to the findings of the UN Intergovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) continue to emerge. Many of the challenges do not question the basic science or logic found in the climate models, but do question the use to which they are put. This questioning especially applies to the 95% certainty expressed in the Summary for Policymakers of IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR-5).

In a recent paper, distinguished physicist Wallace Manheimer expressed it well: “This paper reviews a great deal of worldwide data, some of which confirms, some of which disputes the global warming hypothesis. While increasing CO2in the atmosphere is a concern, it is hardly a planetary emergency.” Perhaps these sentences summarize the views of the global warming skeptics: carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are not causing a planetary emergency, only the politically motivated advocates and politicians are. This political motivation extends to the IPCC and its work based on the assumption it can predict (project), with great certainty, global warming from human causes without thoroughly understanding the natural influences on climate.

Continue reading

Strange New Climate Change Spin: The Hottest Year Ever Inside a Global Warming ‘Pause’?

By – Re-Blogged From The Stream

There are two stories floating around about the state of the earth’s atmosphere. Both are believed true by government-funded scientists and the environmentally minded. The situation is curious because the stories don’t mesh. Yet, as I said, both are believed. Worse, neither is true.

Story number one is that this year will be the hottest ever. And number two is that the reason it is not hot is because “natural variation” has masked or stalled man-caused global warming.

Which is it? Either it’s hotter than ever or it isn’t. If it is, then (it is implied) man-caused global warming has not “paused.” If it isn’t, if man-caused global warming has “paused,” then it is not growing hotter.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #195

The Week That Was: September 5, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Divergence and the EPA: The August 28 TWTW discussed three forms of increasing divergence: 1) the surface temperatures record as reported by US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the atmospheric record; 2) the divergence between the global climate models and the atmospheric record; and 3) the divergence between what is being reported and discussed by the Climate Establishment and what is occurring in Nature.

Several readers inquired how do these forms of divergence impact on the US EPA’s Endangerment Finding (EF)? The EF is the EPA ruling that human emissions of greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), endanger human health and welfare. The ruling is critical to the Administration’s plan to regulate CO2 emissions from power plants, making the American public more dependent on unreliable and expensive solar and wind. As being witnessed in Europe, those countries with the greatest expenditures, “investments”, in solar and wind have the highest electricity costs to consumers, led by Demark and Germany.

Continue reading

Lessons from Climate Past – Part 1

By Jim Steele – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Dansgaard Oeschger Events and the Arctic Iris Effect

During the last Ice Age, Greenland’s average temperatures dramatically rose on average every 1500 years by 10°C +/- 5°C in a just matter of one or two decades, and then more gradually cooled as illustrated in Figure 1 below (8 of the 25 D-O events are numbered in red on upper graph; from Ahn 2008). These extreme temperature fluctuations between cold “stadials” that lasted about a thousand years and warm “interstadials” lasting decades are dubbed Dansgaard-Oeschger events (D-O events). These rapid temperature fluctuations not only rivaled the 100,000‑year fluctuations between maximum glacial cold and warm interglacial temperatures but D‑O warm events coincided with expanding Eurasian forests (Sánchez Goñi 2008, Jimenez-Moreno 2009), northward shifts of subtropical currents along the California coast (Hendy 2000), and shifts in belts of precipitation in northern South America (Peterson 2001).

Continue reading

Explaining Climate Forecasting so an 8 Year Old Can Understand it

By Dr Norman Page – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

 1.  Introduction

Dr. Leif Svalgaard said in a comment on a WUWT post: August 17, 2015 at 2:27 pm    

“If you cannot explain your finding to an [attentive] eight-year old, you don’t understand it yourself.”
I agree entirely.
Miriam – Webster defines Epistemology as
” the study or a theory of the nature and grounds of knowledge especially with reference to its limits and validity “

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #194

The Week That Was: August 29, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org
THIS WEEK: By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Divergence: It is summertime in the US, and temperatures are warmer. Several readers have asked TWTW for comments on the recent claims that July 2015 was the hottest month ever and similar announcements by certain US government entities, including branches of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). These entities are making strong public statements that the globe continues to warm, and the future is dire. A humorist could comment that the closer we are to the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Paris from November 30 to December 11, the hotter the globe becomes.

Continue reading

The ‘Cult’ of Climate Change

By Ari H – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Global warming has become a religion.

This is the opinion of Nobel Prize Winning Physicist Dr. Ivar Giaever , Prof. Richard Lindzen, and many others. Climate change alarmism has a surprising number of attributes of a medieval or even ancient religion. Nevertheless, real religions have some pre-requisites, like a tradition spanning at least few generations. So the proper name for climate alarmism is a cult. And these are the telltale attributes:

1) Climate alarmists pretend to possess indisputable truths about the past, present, and future. From minute details of the paleoclimate to the world state 200 years in the future, alarmists know everything. Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #193

The Week That Was: August 22, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Administration’s Power Plan: Independent analysts continue to provide details of the Obama Administration’s politically named “Clean Power Plan” (CPP). These studies make clear that the only forms of new electrical power generation the administration considers “clean” are solar and wind. Electric power generation from fossil fuels are condemned by the administration. Hydroelectric generation is out of favor, as explained by ex-EPA official Alan Carlin. There are no plans for federally supported new dam construction in the US. In fact, the thrust has been to tear down existing dams in the name of the environment. Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #192

The Week That Was: August 15, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Social Benefits of Carbon: Craig Idso of CO2 Science has a post on the Cato web site describing the great benefits of enhanced atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2). Together with his father Sherwood and brother Keith, the Idsos have built a large repository of studies evaluating the effects of enhanced carbon dioxide, both on land and in waters (oceans). Sherwood and Craig were lead authors of the extensive report, with multiple scientific references, by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC): Climate Change Reconsidered II: Biological Impacts (2014).

In the current post, Craig draws on this extensive, empirical database to assert:

· ”At a fundamental level, carbon dioxide is the basis of nearly all life on Earth, as it is the primary raw material or “food” that is utilized by plants to produce the organic matter out of which they construct their tissues.

Continue reading

Another Lunatic on Parade

cropped-bob-shapiro.jpg   By Bob Shapiro

Climate Models are the embodiment of theories by several researchers. Nothing more! They do not spit out data – all they do is calculate results based on the creator’s (Model creator!) theory. In EVERY other field of science and mathematics, a Model MUST be validated by comparing the output to te real world. If the Model output disagrees with the real world, then the Model is wrong.

Climate Models have not been validated! So what you may ask. Suppose a drug maker comes out with a new drug, and the testing shows the results do not match the company’s expectations (their models). “But,” they say, “our Models show that this new wonder drug works, and that should be good enough,” and they release their drug onto the US market. My question is, How long before the company execs are thrown in jail?

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #191

The Week That Was: August 8, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

The New Plan: On August 3, the Obama Administration announced its plan to control the production of electricity in the US in the name of protecting the planet from human-caused climate change, even though climate change has been occurring long before humanity existed. The administration’s plan is embodied in a 1560-page regulation released by the EPA titled the Final Rule, “Clean Power Plan” (CPP), to be published in the Federal Register sometime in the future. It is not until the rule is published in the Federal Register that activities such as litigation against it can begin, without the courts considering the litigation premature. The most important rules are on power plants operating today rather than those to be built or those which have to be modified or re-built.

The Final Rule contains major changes to the draft CPP including increasing the time given to the several states to comply with the rules by 2 years. Overall, the plan mandates that the states, together, reduce their emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) by 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, a more stringent mandate than 30% in the earlier version. However, mandates to the states changed in what appears to be clear political bias, with states controlled by democrats seeing their mandates reduced while those controlled by republicans seeing their mandates increased.

Continue reading

A Simple Tale About Switching To Renewable Power: Requirements & Consequences

By Don Bogard – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

The tale below is fictional, but every one of its elements and issues has been or will be experienced somewhere in the process of switching electrical power production from fossil fuels to renewable wind and solar. Hopefully this tale will illustrate in a non-technical way some of these complications and potential issues that can and often will arise. My reference to “city” and “government” and “city fathers” are generic and could apply to different entities and scales.

Visualize a medium-size city with two very functional electrical power plants, each producing 500 Mega-watts of electricity, with one fueled by coal and one by natural gas. (About 2/3 of U.S. power is produced from these two sources.) The government decrees that this city must reduce its CO2 emissions. The city fathers decide to retire their coal-fired plant because it generates more CO2 and replace it with 350, General Electric (G.E.) 1.5 Mega-watt wind towers (total rated capacity 525 M-watt). The entire city celebrates over their good fortune in moving into a modern era of green energy. The mood is jovial.

Continue reading

The Trouble with Global Climate Models

By Rud Istvan – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

The IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, Working Group 1 (AR5 WG1) Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) was clear about the associated Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) archive of atmosphere/ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs, hereafter just GCM). CMIP5 results are available via the Royal [Koninklijk] Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI). The SPM said about CMIP5:

§D.1 Climate models have improved since the AR4. Models reproduce observed continental-scale surface temperature patterns and trends over many decades, including the more rapid warming since the mid-20th century and the cooling immediately following large volcanic eruptions (very high confidence).

§D.2 Observational and model studies of temperature change, climate feedbacks and changes in the Earth’s energy budget together provide confidence in the magnitude of global warming in response to past and future forcing.

Neither statement is true, as the now infamous CMIP5/pause divergence proves (illustrated below). CO2 continued to increase; temperature didn’t.

Continue reading

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #190

The Week That Was: August 1, 2015 – Brought to You by www.SEPP.org  The Science and Environmental Policy Project

Brief TWTW This Week

This TWTW is very brief. It focuses on two recent articles by S. Fred Singer of scientific importance: 1) Editor of Science Magazine Should Resign!; and 2) A Paradigm Change: Re-directing public concern from Global Warming to Global Cooling. The normal TWTW will resume next week.

We are at the 33rd Annual Meeting of the Doctors for Disaster Preparedness titled: “Myths, Superstitions, and Real Threats Confronting America.” Fred Singer discussed the threat of a new cold period. Ken Haapala discussed the National Climate Assessment.

Continue reading

Co-founder of Greenpeace Tells the Truth on CO2

By Anthony Watts – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Dr. Patrick Moore, who was one of the original founders of Greenpeace who left the organization in disgust of their current political zealotry, and Greenpeace is now trying to have him erased from history for daring to do that. He has now produced this interesting video in conjunction with with Prager University that is sure to put some people into conniption fits.

Global Warming activists will tell you that CO2 is bad and dangerous. The EPA has even classified it as a pollutant. But is it? Patrick Moore provides some surprising facts about the benefits of CO2 that you won’t hear in the current debate.

CONTINUE READING –>