Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #361

The Week That Was: By Ken Haapala, President, SEPP

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

Quote of the Week: “It is a pleasure to stand upon the shore, and to see ships tost [sic] upon the sea: a pleasure to stand in the window of the castle and to see the battle and the adventures thereof below: but no pleasure is comparable to the standing upon the vantage ground of truth ( a hill not to be commanded and where the air is always clear and serene), and to see the errors, and wanderings, and mists, and tempests, in the vale below. – From Of Truth, Francis Bacon [H/t Numberwatch, hopefully returning]

Number of the Week: 5 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of LNG, which is equal to about 0.7 billion [standard, normal temperature and pressure] cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas

The Greenhouse Effect –Atmospheric Layers: The atmosphere is divided into distinct layers and the altitude of the layers depends on the latitude, the distance from the equator. One could think of an oval shape with the thickest (elongated) part being above the equator. (Seasonal variation will be ignored in this section.)

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Science’s Untold Scandal

When we started our careers, it was considered an honor to be a member of professional societies that helped practitioners keep up with the latest developments in their fields through relevant meetings and publications. Senior author Dr. Jay Lehr had the privilege of leading one of these societies long ago.
Climate Change

(Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay)

Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #359

The Week That Was: May 11, 2019, Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Quote of the Week: “…we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have…. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both.” – Stephen Schneider, Discover, pp. 45–48, October 1989.

Number of the Week: 0.05ºC in 25 years

Honest Science: The full comment by Stephen Schneider in the 1989 interview in Discover magazine, cited above, is:

“On the one hand, as scientists we are ethically bound to the scientific method, in effect promising to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but — which means that we must include all the doubts, the caveats, the ifs, ands, and buts. On the other hand, we are not just scientists but human beings as well. And like most people we’d like to see the world a better place, which in this context translates into our working to reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climatic change. To do that we need to get some broad-based support, to capture the public’s imagination. That, of course, entails getting loads of media coverage. So, we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have. This ‘double ethical bind’ we frequently find ourselves in cannot be solved by any formula. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both.”

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Cooling Down the Hysteria About Global Warming

By Rich Enthoven – Re-Blogged From WUWT

Recently, NASA released its annual report on global temperatures and reported that 2018 was the fourth hottest year on record, surpassed only by three recent years. This claim was accompanied by dire predictions of climate change and for immediate action to dramatically curtail CO2 emissions around the globe. Like every concerned citizen read this report with interest. I also read it as an informed and trained climate analyst – and I can tell that there are some serious problems with the report and its conclusions.

For starters, I can assure my readers that I am not a climate change “denier.” No one doubts the climate changed when it experienced the Ice Age that ended 12,000 years ago. I have read enough scientific literature to believe the well documented view that the planet experienced the Medieval Warm Period (950 – 1250 AD) and Little Ice Age (1550 – 1850 AD) when global temperatures changed materially. I have also read enough scientific literature to understand that solar and ocean cycles affect global climate.

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Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #354

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

By Ken Haapala, President

Quote of the Week: “I know that most men, including those at ease with problems of the greatest complexity, can seldom accept even the simplest and most obvious truth, if it be such as would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions which they have delighted in explaining to colleagues, which they have proudly taught to others, and which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabric of their lives.” – Leo Tolstoy [William Readdy]

Number of the Week: Up to 100 times more

Why I Don’t “believe” In …: Judith Curry brought up a thoughtful essay by Robert Tracinski illustrating how politicians and the like try to persuade others to accept their views by manipulating meaningful terms to the point of rendering the terms meaningless. Currently it is fashionable to invoke the term “science” to justify one’s political policies and beliefs.

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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.

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William Nordhaus versus the United Nations on Climate Change Economics

By Robert P. Murphy – Re-Blogged From WUWT

William Nordhaus was a co-recipient of the 2018 Nobel Prize in economics for his pioneering work on the economics of climate change. On the day of the Nobel announcement, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (UN IPCC) released a special report advising the governments of the world on various steps necessary to limit cumulative global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The major media coverage treated the two events as complementary. In fact, they are incompatible. Although Nordhaus favors a carbon tax to slow climate change, his own model shows that the UN’s target would make humanity poorer than doing nothing at all about climate change.

Indeed, we can use Nordhaus’s and other standard models to show that the now-championed 1.5°C target is ludicrously expensive, far more costly than the public has been led to believe. This is presumably why the new IPCC special report does not even attempt to justify its policy goals in a cost/benefit framework. Rather, it takes the 1.5°C target as a politically “given” constraint and then discusses the pros and cons of various mechanisms to achieve it.

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