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In the Wake of the News

Highlighted Article: Covid vs. Climate Modeling: Cloudy With a Chance of Politics

 

From: Real Clear Investigations

By: Eric Felten

Date: June 4, 2020

 

COVID Vs. Climate Models: Cloudy With A Chance Of Politics

 

"COVID-19 has proved to be a crisis not only for public health but for public policy.

As credentialed experts, media commentators, and elected officials have insisted that ordinary men and women heed “the science,” the statistical models cited by scientists to predict the spread of contagion and justify the lockdown of the national economy have proven to be far off-base.


Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York complained this week about the “guessing business” experts had presented to him dressed up as scientific fact: “All the early national experts [said]: Here’s my projection model. Here’s my projection model,” Cuomo said. “They were all wrong. They were all wrong.”

A computer model produced by statisticians" ...

 

COVID Vs. Climate Models: Cloudy With A Chance Of Politics

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Blue/Green New Deal #4

This commentary and those that follow will analyze the programs in each policy proposal which focus directly on minimizing climate change and its effects on society.

 

Green Stimulus Policy Menu

 

4. Energy System Workers and Infrastructure

This policy would create a national clean energy standard applicable to all power providers, moving rapidly to carbon-free energy by 2030.

This policy would restore the clean energy tax credits and extend them to energy storage as well, to increase renewable energy reliability.

The policy would change regulations to accelerate approval of low/no carbon projects.

The policy would provide funds to acquire fossil fuel firms which are going bankrupt as the result of mandatory termination of their markets and for the decommissioning of their assets, as well as compensation for their ex-employees and the communities in which they operated.

The policy calls for rapid phaseout of all fossil fuel industry operations and ending all fossil fuel subsidies.

The policy would provide funds to forgive government-held fossil fuel debt of utility co-ops and municipal utilities.

The policy would provide funding for community-shared solar programs.

Finally, the policy would fund rapid decarbonization of TVA and other federally-owned power providers, rural electric cooperatives and public power systems.

This policy also involves numerous provisions related to support for unionization in the clean energy industries and worker ownership in the clean energy sector. Again, there is no estimated cost provided for the various provisions of the policy, though it is clear that non-public entities in the energy sector are on their own.

 

5. Farmers, Food Systems and Rural Communities

This policy would quantify carbon reductions resulting from advanced farming methods and compensate farmers who practice carbon reduction practices, such as carbon sequestration in soils.

The policy would create a USDA research and policy development program for ocean farming of seaweed and shellfish.

The policy would direct NOAA to issue guidance and regulations to prepare the industries for the future impacts of climate change.

This policy also involves numerous provisions regarding organic standards, preferences for small producers, food supply management programs, parity pricing for farmers, a living wage for all workers in the food supply chain, “food deserts", biopiracy and native seed protection, reparations for black farmers and indigenous communities, community and cooperative farmland and food hubs and distribution centers.

Again, there is no estimated cost provided for the various provisions of this policy.

 

6. Green Infrastructure, Public Lands and the Environment

This policy proposes to electrify and modernize our ports to reduce carbon emissions and prepare for sea level rise.

The policy provides grants to establish “energy parks” combining recreation facilities with generation and storage facilities.

The policy provides funds to colleges and universities to develop climate risk management plans.

The policy proposes funding to prepare for threats such a wildfires and sea level rise.

The policy also creates a “Clean Water Corps to restore and maintain ecosystems, funds dredging and habitat restoration programs, fast tracks development of parks and open spaces, and provides permanent funding for professionals to manage the myriad projects proposed. Again, there is no estimated cost provided for the various provisions of this policy.

 

Tags: Green New Deal

Blue/Green New Deal #3

This commentary and those that follow will analyze the programs in each policy proposal which focus directly on minimizing climate change and its effects on society.

 

Green Stimulus Policy Menu

 

2. Transportation Workers, Systems and Infrastructure

Only one provision of this policy relates directly to climate change. That policy provision would fund grants and loans to local transit agencies and school boards for the purchase of electric railcars, rail engines and electric transit and school buses with the intent to eliminate purchases of diesel engine vehicles for these uses. Funding would also be provided to support electric bus and railcar manufacturing in the US. Again, there is no estimate of the funding levels proposed or required to achieve the objectives of this policy.

The policy includes numerous other provisions related to transit subsidies, affordable housing, transit project funding, and a “Fix It First” mandate for infrastructure spending including commuter rail infrastructure. Again, there is no estimate of the funding levels proposed or required to achieve the objectives of this policy.

 

3. Labor, Manufacturing and Just Transition for Workers and Communities

This policy would provide grants and no-interest loans to support US manufacturing of electric vehicles of all types and energy-efficient electric appliances.

It would implement a Green Durable Goods policy to support funding of continued production of green (electric) products, including direct government mass purchases.

It would create a “Cash for Clunkers” program for appliances to accelerate replacement of old, particularly gas, appliances with new electric appliances.

It would create a “public option” for electric appliance, vehicle and other durable goods procurement by other levels of government, cooperatives and NGOs.

The policy would create a “feebate” program to transfer pollution surcharge revenues to purchasers of “cleaner” products.

The policy would provide training opportunities for disadvantaged American “green entrepreneurs.

The policy would provide transition benefits for energy industry employees displaced by the move away from fossil fuels including wage replacement, health insurance and job training and placement, plus support for early retirement.

The policy would replace tax revenues lost by states and communities as the result of the discontinuation of fossil fuel exploration and production and assist in identifying economic development strategies.

This policy includes numerous provisions supporting worker cooperatives, union apprenticeship programs, recycling, low income preferences and women’s training and entrepreneurial support.  Again, there is no estimate of the funding levels proposed or required to achieve the objectives of this policy.

 

Tags: Green New Deal

Highlighted Article: There is no Climate Emergency!

 

From: edmhdotme

Date: May 22, 2020

 

There is no Climate Emergency!

 

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 ?


It is the propaganda of Catastrophic Global Warming / Climate Change alarmists that has illogically conflated Carbon Dioxide, the beneficial trace gas that sustains photosynthesis and thus all life on earth and which may cause some minor warming, with real and dangerous pollutants to create the “Great Global Warming Scare / Climate Change Scare / Climate Emergency / etcetera”, with their “we are all going to fry in the next few years” narrative”.

 

There is no Climate Emergency!

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Blue/Green New Deal #2

This commentary and those that follow will analyze the programs in each policy proposal which focus directly on minimizing climate change and its effects on society.

Green Stimulus Policy Menu

1. Housing, Buildings, Civic Infrastructure and Communities

This policy proposes massive expansion of the federal Weatherization Assistance Program, as well as support and funding for state level and community level initiatives to promote weatherization of existing buildings. These programs are essentially limited to caulking, weatherstripping, the addition of insulation in attics and over crawl spaces, and the installation of insulation in cavity walls where none exists currently.

The policy also proposes funding for the construction of new, “no-carbon mixed income social housing”.

The policy proposes doubling of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit for the construction of affordable housing, while mandating a zero-carbon standard for the construction process and a low-carbon standard for building materials used in the construction.

The policy proposes funding school building retrofits intended to remove fossil fueled appliances and equipment and replace it with electric heat pumps and other electric appliances and equipment, resulting in “zero-emission” schools.

The policy would require that all government-funded construction projects take into account the potential future effects of sea level rise and increased flood potential resulting from heavy precipitation events.

The policy would require states to adopt the most advanced building codes, including what are referred to as “reach codes”, such as the “Zero Code” for commercial, institutional and multi-story residential buildings.

The policy would develop a subsidy and loan program to support decarbonizing buildings and spur development and commercialization of high efficiency electric heat pumps and heat pump water heaters, heat recovery ventilation units, energy efficient lighting.and advanced building controls.

The policy would develop a subsidy and loan program to support decarbonizing construction and advancing carbon sequestration in construction materials.

Finally, the policy would create a Climate Justice Resiliency Fund to “ensure communities are protected from the unavoidable impacts of climate change, beginning with a national survey to identify areas likely to be impacted.

This policy includes numerous other provisions related to utility shutoffs, rental evictions, mortgage and rental payment suspensions, LIHEAP funding, public housing retrofits, creating markets for green building materials, minority and Native American housing, rent-controlled housing, federal zoning regulation reform, green rental subsidies, a green mortgages program, a public housing operating fund, promotion of union jobs, and funding to support unemployed artists and designers. These programs are targeted primarily at the disabled and disadvantaged and would create or expand government at all levels and fund numerous NGOs to achieve their objectives.

The discussion of this policy in the Blue/Green New Deal identifies funding levels for some of the specific policies, but does not make any estimate of the total level of federal funding which would be required to achieve the stated objectives. There is also no estimate of the costs of these policy objectives to those private sector entities, such as building contractors, landlords, electric equipment manufacturers, etc.

 

Tags: Green New Deal

Highlighted Article: Greening the planet and slouching towards Paris?

 

From: Climate Etc.

By: Patrick J. Michaels

Date: May 14, 2020

 

Greening the planet and slouching towards Paris?

 

"A new paper finds higher than expected CO2 fertilization inferred from leaf to global observations.  The paper predicts that the Earth is going to gain nearly three times as much green matter as was predicted by the IPCC AR5.


Earlier this month, I posted a short piece about an explosive paper on planetary greening that appeared in the journal Global Change Biology. I’ve since mused that it deserves a considerably longer, more contextual post.

The innocuously titled paper, “Higher than expected CO2 fertilization inferred from leaf to global observations”, by Vanessa Haverd (of Australia’s CSIRO) and eight coauthors uses a biophysical model and observed climate to back-calculate global primary productivity (GPP; the net change in standing vegetation per year), and to forward-calculate it using climate model forecasts.

Abstract.  “Several lines of evidence point to an increase in the activity of the terrestrial biosphere" ...

 

Greening the planet and slouching towards Paris?

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Blue/Green New Deal #1

A group of climate change activists and anti-capitalists has sent an “Open Letter and Call to Action to Members of Congress entitled “A Green Stimulus to Rebuild Our Economy”. The green stimulus they propose is built upon the Green New Deal developed by the Green Party in the US and the Blue New Deal developed by the New Economics Foundation in the UK. The authors of the Open Letter acknowledge that the ideas in the Letter draw on proposals put forth or supported by eight of the candidates for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

The group asks for a mere $2 trillion in the first year of the Green Stimulus, followed by allocations equal to 4% of US GDP (~$850 billion) in succeeding years “until the economy is fully decarbonized and the unemployment rate is below 3.5%. A rough estimate of the total funding requested for these efforts is $27.5 trillion, which represents approximately 25% of the total cost of the proposed programs. These funds would be in addition to the $2.2 trillion authorized by Congress to assist the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic response in the US and any such future additional recovery funding.

The Letter presents a Green Stimulus Policy Menu comprising eight sections:

  1. Housing, Buildings, Civic Infrastructure, and Communities
  2. Transportation Workers, Systems, and Infrastructure
  3. Labor, Manufacturing, and Just Transition for Workers and Communities
  4. Energy System Workers and Infrastructure
  5. Farmers, Food Systems, and Rural Communities
  6. Green Infrastructure, Public Lands, and the Environment
  7. Regulations, Innovation, and Public Investment
  8. Green Foreign Policy

The authors assert that the US faces “three converging crises: the COVID19 pandemic and the resulting economic recession; the climate emergency; and extreme inequality. While the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be a true emergency, climate change is not an emergency and the actions proposed by the authors would not “protect” the US from the impact of climate change. Extreme inequality is not defined in the Letter, but inequality pre-existed the pandemic and its relationship to climate change, if any, is unclear.

The programs proposed represent a transition toward bigger and more intrusive government, socialism/communism and authoritarianism and away from liberty and freedom. The individual elements of each of the policies listed above will be discussed in a series of commentaries following this broad introductory commentary.

It seems highly likely that the policies presented in the Letter will form a substantial portion of the Democratic Party platform for the 2020 presidential election regarding these issues, since they have been supported earlier in the campaign by nearly half of the early candidates and are similar to the proposed policies of the remaining candidate. However, the substantial underestimate of the funding required to achieve the stated objectives suggests that the costs would be downplayed during the campaign. Those costs could expect to increase dramatically as the programs are rolled out, as is typical with government programs in the US.

The fact that the proposed programs would not protect the US from the impacts of climate change, if that were necessary or possible, seems of little concern relative to the opportunities for societal restructuring.

 

Tags: Green New Deal

Climate Objectives

One of the persistent objectives of climate change alarmists is concentrating populations in cities, in smaller dwelling units, close to public transportation and places of employment. Their objective is to reduce energy demand and consumption for space conditioning and miscellaneous energy end uses and reduce transportation energy consumption for commuting.

One obvious disadvantage to this objective is that many people prefer the suburban or rural lifestyle and must be coerced into compliance. Another is that urban development leads to the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect, increasing the average temperature to which the population is exposed, aggravating the existing warming, to the extent that warming is an actual concern.

The current COVID-19 pandemic exposes another downside to the urbanization strategy. Living in close quarters and traveling by elevator, escalator, bus, light rail or subway makes “social distancing” during an epidemic or pandemic extremely difficult, if not impossible. Even walking on crowded sidewalks or in crowded markets raises exposure risk. Several large cities are currently requiring “sheltering in place” during the COVID-19 pandemic, since “social distancing” is far less practical than in suburban and rural settings.

This leads us to another of the persistent objectives of climate change alarmists and Malthusians – population control and population reduction. Reducing the population would reduce the ultimate population density of the cities, while also reducing the land area required to grow the food necessary to feed that population.

Numerous approaches to population reduction have been identified and several have been tried. All have been successful in reducing the population for a time, but overall population has continued to grow. History has shown that plagues and pandemics are highly effective but non-selective and difficult to manage population reducers. They are most effective in densely populated cities in which avoiding contact with the infected is most difficult.

Climate change alarmists tend to be globalists and socialists. Socialism’s less nuanced cousins, national socialism and communism, have used mass slaughter as an approach to population control and even genocide. This approach is more selective than plague or pandemic and far easier to control. However, it leaves societal revulsion in its path. This revulsion requires ruthless authoritarianism for its control.

The communist regime in China has controlled population growth and composition through stringent regulations on births per couple and selective abortion. However, they allowed parental sex selection, which resulted in a severe shortage of young females. Parental selection is now being permitted in several other nations, in addition to abortion for convenience and for the elimination of Down Syndrome and other birth defects.

Several nations are also permitting euthanizing the aged and infirm, in some cases against their will. There is also currently discussion of allowing the aged to die untreated as the result of COVID-19 infection, as an approach to preserving available hospital beds for younger and otherwise healthier patients.

Some climate change activists have suggested that euthanizing the old or allowing them to die untreated is one way to eliminate old climate change skeptics so that their cause can be advanced more readily.

 

Tags:

Highlighted Article: Some Dilemmas of Climate Simulations

 

From: Watts Up With That?

By: Wallace Manheimer

Date: April 27, 2020

 

Some Dilemmas of Climate Simulations

 

"A great deal of the recommendation that the world should modify its energy infrastructure to combat climate change, costing tens to hundreds of trillions of dollars, is based on computer simulations. While this author is not what is called a ‘climate scientist’, a great deal of science is interdenominational, and experience from one field often can fertilize another.  That is the spirit in which this opinion is offered.  The author has spent a good part of his more than 50-year scientific career developing and using computer simulations to model complex physical processes.   Accordingly, based on this experience, he now gives his own brief explanation of his opinion, on what computer simulations can and cannot do, along with some examples. He sees 3 categories of difficulty in computer simulations, where the simulations go from mostly accurate to mostly speculative.  He makes the case that the climate simulations are the most speculative.

First consider the case where the configuration and equations describing the complex system are known," ...

 

Some Dilemmas of Climate Simulations

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Juxtaposition - A Tale of Two “Crises”

Over the past year, there have been growing efforts to label climate change a “crisis” and begin dealing with it on that basis. These efforts have largely been ignored by the general public, primarily because there is no clear indication that the climate change which has been occurring is now, or is likely to become, a “crisis”. The two primary signals of climate change, near-surface temperature increases of 0.013°C and sea level rise of 3.0 mm per year, are undetectable without instruments and not easily detectable with them. The cumulative increases of approximately 1°C and 0.4 meters over the past 140 years have not resulted in any adverse impacts which are broadly perceived as a “crisis”.

Over the past 4 months, there has been growing global concern regarding the spread of the COVID-19 corona virus, its communicability, the severity of the infection and its growing lethality. The World Health Organization has declared the growing spread of the virus as a pandemic. The general public has not been allowed to ignore state and national government efforts to inhibit the spread of the virus. The rapidly growing numbers of infected and dead has occasioned requirements to “shelter in place” and practice “social distancing” to reduce potential exposure. The experience of approximately 60,000 deaths from the virus in the past 100 days has been impossible to ignore.

The contrast of global, national and public reaction to an obvious current global health crisis of pandemic proportions and the reaction to a potential “crisis” in the long-term future has been stark. The climate change issue has virtually disappeared in the media and from presidential politics, replaced by the global health crisis.

Climate change activists have had several interesting reactions to the shift in attention from climate change to COVID-19. Some have attempted to make a connection between climate change and the viral pandemic. However, flu viruses are largely cold season afflictions, so any connection to global warming is tenuous at best.

Others have pointed out the effects of government restrictions on a broad range of activities on global carbon dioxide emissions, suggesting the existence of a “silver lining” to the pandemic. However, this “silver lining” is not apparent to the afflicted.

Still others have suggested that the magnitude of the global response to the pandemic demonstrates a global ability to deal with the potential future climate “crisis” on some accelerated schedule. There have even been suggestions that the magnitude of the financial response to the pandemic indicates an ability to meet the goals and schedule of the Green New Deal in the US and the Green Deal in the UK. This position ignores the two order of magnitude difference in the funding involved.

Clearly, the obvious threat of the current pandemic has overwhelmed the far less obvious potential threat of continuing gradual climate warming and sea level rise in the attention of both global governments and their citizens. Equally clearly, the economic losses resulting from the pandemic and government efforts to control its spread will affect funding for climate change programs for the foreseeable future. Perhaps the most obvious funding “victim” will be the UN Green Climate Fund.

 

Tags: Covid 19

Highlighted Article: Climate Change – Ebb and Flow of the Tide

 

From: Watts Up With That?

By: Dr. Kelvin Kemm

Date: March - April 2020

 

Climate Change – Ebb and Flow of the Tide

Part 1 - March 27, 2020
Part 2 - April 16, 2020
Part 3 - April 20, 2020

 

"Emotional, agenda-driven politics confronts sound, evidence-based science

Dr Kelvin Kemm

The topic of global warming and climate change is far more scientifically complex than the public is led to believe.

Myriads of newspaper, magazine and TV items over decades have tended to simplify the science to the point at which the general public believes that it is all so simple that any fool can see what is happening. Public groups often accuse world leaders and scientists of being fools, if they do not instantly act on simple messages projected by individuals or public groups.

One often hears phrases like: ‘The science is settled.’ It is not. Even more worrying is that the reality of the correct science is actually very different to much of the simple public perception.

An additional complicating factor is that there are political groupings wanting to change the world social order and who are using the climate change issue as a vehicle to achieve these objectives. They want the ‘science’ to say what they want it to say and are not interested in the truth. Sections of the public, with noble good intentions, then frequently do not realise that they are being induced by such elements to unwittingly support a political agenda, which in reality is unrelated to the climate issue." ...

 

Climate Change – Ebb and Flow of the Tide

Part 1 - March 27, 2020
Part 2 - April 16, 2020
Part 3 - April 20, 2020

 

 

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Signal / Noise Ratio (Climate Change)

 

“Signal-to-noise ratio (abbreviated SNR or S/N) is a measure used in science and engineering that compares the level of a desired signal to the level of background noise.”, everything.explained.today

 

Previous commentaries (here, here, and here) have dealt with the signal to “noise” ratio of the primary climate change signals: temperature, sea level and extreme weather. The temperature signal has a significant natural noise component as well as a significant noise component resulting from “adjustment” of the temperature data. The sea level signal has a significant noise component, primarily because the surface of the global oceans is constantly disturbed by the effects of wind, tides and storms. The noise associated with extreme weather is largely the result of the episodic nature of extreme weather events which makes signal detection problematic.

The outputs of the climate models are frequently treated as signals. However, they are actually noise. Each of the many models produces varying outputs depending on the inputs used in each model run, so no individual model produces a signal. Each of the climate models produces different results, even when provided with the same inputs, so the ensemble of models does not produce a signal. This is the result of several factors, including the fact that none of the models have been verified and none have demonstrated predictive capability. The model outputs also vary because of the noise introduced by the ranges of values of the various inputs to the models.

Discussions of “tipping points” are noise, because the conditions required to trigger a “tipping point” are undefined and currently incapable of being defined. This is not to suggest that there is no such thing as a “tipping point’, as illustrated by the major cycles identified in paleoclimatic history. Something caused the earth to descend into the various ice ages; and, something caused the earth to recover from these ice ages. These triggers can be referred to as “tipping points”, though we do not understand what constituted the “tipping point”. In more recent history, we do not know what triggered the Little Ice Age or caused it to end. Politicians frequently warn about future possible “tipping points” being reached but are incapable of identifying the necessary conditions.

Projections of potential future events based on the climate models are also noise, because the outputs of the models are noise. Predictions of permanent droughts, excessive precipitation, stronger or more frequent storms, island submergence, crop failures, the end of snow and the emergence of an ice-free Arctic are noise in the absence of any clear underlying signal.

Efforts to attribute differences between storm frequency and intensity over time to climate change using attribution models are noise, because the models are unverified; and, the various attribution studies estimate very different climate change impacts on the storms studied.

Strident statements regarding the time remaining for precipitous action before a “tipping point” is reached and descriptions of current climate change as a crisis, or an existential threat, are also noise in the absence of a climate signal.

Arguably, the reports of the IPCC working groups, while noisy, are far less noisy that the IPCC Summary for Policymakers. The working group reports are intended to inform, though the information they present is not comprehensive or totally objective. The Summary for Policymakers is intended to influence its audience to incite action, yet another form of “noise”.

 

Tags: Climate Models, Climate Science

Highlighted Article: How the Green New Deal’s Renewable Energy Mining Would Harm Humans and the Environment

 

From: The Heartland Institue

By: Paul Driessen

Date: April 2020

 

How the Green New Deal’s Renewable Energy Mining Would Harm Humans and the Environment

 

Executive Summary

 

"The Green New Deal (GND)—promoted by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), and several other prominent elected officials—aims to replace all fossil fuels and nuclear energy with so-called “renewable” energy sources, primarily wind and solar.

The justification for this extreme policy proposal is based primarily on the fear that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from oil, natural gas, and coal will cause catastrophic global warming, as well as concerns about the alleged dangers of nuclear power sources.

The scientific case that manmade global warming poses an “existential threat” to humanity is highly questionable, according to many scientists, and the safety record for nuclear power in this country thoroughly belies the claims against it.

However, what is beyond dispute is that eliminating fossil fuels and nuclear power would require literally millions of wind turbines, billions of solar panels, and several billion batteries like the half-ton power sources used in Tesla vehicles. This, in turn, would require a massive worldwide increase in mining for lithium, cobalt, copper, iron, aluminum, and numerous other raw materials.

Current mining operations to supply materials for today’s comparatively small amount of renewable power technology—plus batteries for laptop computers, smartphones, and electric cars—are already causing supply difficulties and serious problems for the ..."

 

How the Green New Deal’s Renewable Energy Mining Would Harm Humans and the Environment

 

Tags: Highlighted Article
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