Frozen in Time
May 08, 2014
Joe Bastardi on NCA and John Coleman on ‘600 page litany of doom’

Joe Bastardi on the NCA.

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‘600 page litany of doom’

Weather Channel Co-Founder John Coleman slams Federal climate report: A ‘total distortion of the data and agenda driven, destructive episode of bad science gone berserk’

Coleman: ‘When the temperature data could no longer be bent to support global warming, they switched to climate change and now blame every weather and climate event on CO2 despite the hard, cold fact that the “radiative forcing” theory they built their claims on has totally failed to verify.’

‘The current bad science is all based on a theory that the increase in the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from the exhaust of the burning of fossil fuels leads to a dramatic increase in “the greenhouse effect” causing temperatures to skyrocket uncontrollably. This theory has failed to verify and is obviously dead wrong. But the politically funded and agenda driven scientists who have built their careers on this theory and live well on the 2.6 billion dollars of year of Federal grants for global warming/climate change research cling to this theory and bend the data spread to support the glorified claims in their reports and papers.’

John Coleman’s Blog for Wednesday, May 7th

The sky is falling. “Climate Change” is running wild and disaster is certain unless we immediately stop burning coal and oil and move quickly to “green energy” to eliminate use of fossil fuels. Heat waves, huge floods, powerful storms, droughts and rising seas are on the verge of killing millions of us and destroying our civilization. That is my summary of the new Federal Assessment of Climate Change issued by a Obama administration team of more than 300 specialists guided by a 60-member federal advisory committee produced the report. It was reviewed by federal agencies and a panel of the National Academy of Sciences.
This 600 page litany of doom and gloom has received extensive coverage by the panting anchors of the national media who feel important when tell their audience that “the sky is falling.” Horrible pictures of storms, floods, drought and heat waves leaped out of the TV sets as the New York and Washington DC headquartered media was particularly excited to tell us how the huge increases in floods and storms was the worst in that part of the nation.

If you accept the picture painted by this report, the weather was just right, steady and nice in the historic past but because our industrialized society has powered its heating and air conditioning, its transportation by train, plane, cars and trucks, generated it’s electric power to run our lights, computers, television and smart phones with fossil fuels it has triggered this nightmare of awful storms, droughts and heat waves.

I am deeply disturbed to have to suffer through this total distortion of the data and agenda driven, destructive episode of bad science gone berserk. The only good news is that I least where I am and on the channels and websites I saw I was not further insulted by fawning TV Weathercasters visiting the White House and interviewing the President. I best I can tell, on a national level, that turned out to be a non-event (thank goodness).

Please allow me to hold your attention for a few minutes to explain why I don’t buy into this Climate Change alarmism. The climate of Earth has never been “normal” or stable. It has continuously changed through this planet’s 4.5 billion year history. Powerful storms, floods, droughts, heat waves and ice and snow storms have come and gone as long as Earth has existed.

The current bad science is all based on a theory that the increase in the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from the exhaust of the burning of fossil fuels leads to a dramatic increase in “the greenhouse effect” causing temperatures to skyrocket uncontrollably. This theory has failed to verify and is obviously dead wrong. But the politically funded and agenda driven scientists who have built their careers on this theory and live well on the 2.6 billion dollars of year of Federal grants for global warming/climate change research cling to this theory and bend the data spread to support the glorified claims in their reports and papers.

When the temperature data could no longer be bent to support global warming, they switched to climate change and now blame every weather and climate event on CO2 despite the hard, cold fact that the “radiative forcing” theory they built their claims on has totally failed to verify.

They call people such as me who debunk their non-scientific silliness as “deniers” and claim we are flat-earthers and shills for “big oil”. It is insulting and maddening. But I will not be silenced. And neither will the thousand others, many of them with Ph.D.’s and on the faculties of major universities who are working to stop this bad science that labels CO2 as a pollutant and blames it for every shift in the weather.

We will be gathering, we global warming skeptics, at Heartland Institutes 9th International Conference on Climate Change, July 7 - 9, 2014 in Las Vegas. You can learn about that conference at http://climateconference.heartland.org/. I will be one of the speakers at the breakfast session on Tuesday July 8th. Look at the list of speakers on the website and you will see an impressive group.

A group of the powerful Ph.D.’s in the group have recently published a complete scientific document that totaling destroys the climate change alarmism of the US Democrat Party and the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. You can find that publication on line at http://climatechangereconsidered.org/.

In the meantime, through blogs, and radio and television interviews whenever any of us can get on the air we will continue to try to debunk this way of climate alarmism. For instance, I will be on the air on WLS Radio in Chicago with Bruce Wolf & Dan Proft on Wednesday morning (today) at 8:45 AM Chicago time (6:45 AM San Diego time) and do my best to tell the real story of climate and weather. You can listen to that broadcast on line here.

All of this not withstanding, my life is sooo good. Every day is fun and relaxed since I have ended the tread mill life of grinding out all those TV weathercasts a day. I now do my dancing for fun only. LOL

May 06, 2014
Climate Change Mass Hysteria Grips the U.S.

Dr. Roy Spencer

WASHINGTON (AP) In what many experts are calling one of the most serious cases of mass hysteria in modern times, the U.S. government today released its National Climate Assessment, a sobering 840 page summary of a wide variety of normal climate occurrences which are leading to physical symptoms such as adolescent psychiatric problems, great wailing, and gnashing of teeth.

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The report is gripping the nation like a global warming polar vortex trapped in place by the swirling toxic vapors emitted by a swarm of possessed SUVs.

The report contains claims of U.S. floods, droughts, severe weather, and heat waves, all of which are not unprecedented compared to centuries past, but are nevertheless known to be the fault of humans.

Ronald Wobbles, the report’s lead author, was quoted as saying (I am not making this up), “We’re already seeing extreme weather and it’s happening now”. This finding stands in stark contrast to 100 years ago, when ‘we saw extreme weather that was happening then’.

Climate deniers, known to be the same paid shills who once worked for the tobacco industry, were quick to pounce on the report’s findings, claiming that there is no evidence supporting either the view that U.S. climate has gotten worse, or that Elvis Presley had finally returned to Earth with a great new diet plan.

The report received a warm welcome from many politicians, lobbyists, government-funded scientists, insurance companies, media personalities, and Hollywood. “I can even see climate change in my back yard!” was a common refrain voiced by astute observers, presumably relying upon many decades of precise temperature measurements capturing the fraction of a degree temperature rise around their back patio on a NIST-calibrated Wal Mart thermometer.

Experts familiar with the mass hysteria outbreak have little hope that an antidote would be forthcoming any time soon. Said one psychologist who declined to be identified, “All we can hope is that the hysteria will run its course in the next several years as higher energy prices, brownouts, and blackouts set in.”

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Roger Cohen adds:

“This is pure hogwash, of course, and that is being kind. The agent that is harming the economy is the US central government with its excessive regulations, its policies of failed excessive spending for no purpose other than to reward its constituencies, its fetish with class warfare and taxation, and its failure to permit federal lands to be accessed for its abundant resources.

As for its claims of more extreme weather, they are pure fabrication. The central government has reached the point where it expects us to believe that every storm, drought, flood, or whatever is due to driving your SUV. Like astrology their so called “science” is made to fit everything that happens after the fact, but they predict nothing that actually happens. Indeed the world has not warmed at all for more than 15 years, despite their predictions that it would. For those who want to see the real facts, consult for example the Congressional testimony of Dr. John Christy, Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science, Alabama’s State Climatologist and Director of the Earth System Science Center at The University of Alabama in Huntsville.

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The real deniers and dangerous characters are the authors of the report, the mainstream media that treats it most the words carried down on the tablets by Moses, and the administration which have led the politicization of science through billions in funding. You don’t need to read the science fiction that they are promoting. These three videos summarize it quite well.

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What the National Climate Assessment Doesn’t Tell You

By PAUL C. “CHIP” KNAPPENBERGER and PATRICK J. MICHAELS

Global Science Report is a feature from the Center for the Study of Science, where we highlight one or two important new items in the scientific literature or the popular media. For broader and more technical perspectives, consult our monthly “Current Wisdom.”

The Obama Administration this week is set to release the latest version of the National Climate Assessment, a report which is supposed to detail the potential impacts that climate change will have on the United States.  The report overly focuses on the supposed negative impacts from climate change while largely dismissing or ignoring the positives from climate change.

The bias in the National Climate Assessment (NCA) towards pessimism (which we have previously detailed here) has implications throughout the federal regulatory process because the NCA is cited (either directly or indirectly) as a primary source for the science of climate change for justifying federal regulation aimed towards mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. Since the NCA gets it wrong, so does everyone else.

A good example of this can be found in how climate change is effecting the human response during heat waves.  The NCA foresees an increasing frequency and magnitude of heat waves leading to growing numbers of heat-related deaths. The leading science suggests just the opposite.

Case and point. Last week, we had an article published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature Climate Change that showed how the impacts of extreme heat are often overplayed while the impacts of adaptation to the heat are underplayed.  And a new paper has just been published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives that finds that the risk of dying from heat waves in the U.S. has been on the decline for the past several decades.

By now, this should be rather unsurprising as it has been demonstrated over and over again. Not only in the U.S. but in Europe (and yes, Stockholm) and other major global cities as well.

The idea that human-caused global warming is going to increase heat-related mortality is simply outdated and wrong. In fact, the opposite is more likely the case that is, a warming climate will decrease the population’s sensitivity to heat events as it induces adaptation.  We described it this way in our Nature Climate Change piece:

Some portion of this response [the decline in the risk of dying from heat waves] probably reflects the temporal increase in the frequency of extreme-heat events, an increase that elevates public consciousness and spurs adaptive response. In this manner, climate change itself leads to adaptation.

...Our analysis highlights one of the many often overlooked intricacies of the human response to climate change.

But this information often falls on deaf ears - especially those ears responsible for developing the NCA.

Here is what the Executive Summary of the draft version had to say about heat-related mortality:

Climate change will influence human health in many ways; some existing health threats will intensify, and new health threats will emerge. Some of the key drivers of health impacts include: increasingly frequent and intense extreme heat, which causes heat-related illnesses and deaths and over time, worsens drought and wildfire risks, and intensifies air pollution.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency takes the same outlook (of course since it is based heavily on the National Climate Assessment).  The EPA leaned heavily on heat-related mortality as one the “threats” to public health and welfare in its justification for pursuing greenhouse gas emissions restrictions. From the EPA’s Technical Support Document for its greenhouse gas “Endangerment Finding”:

Severe heat waves are projected to intensify in magnitude and duration over the portions of the United States where these events already occur, with potential increases in mortality and morbidity, especially among the elderly, young, and frail. [emphasis in original]

Now compare the Administration’s take with the latest findings on the trend in heat-related mortality across the United States as published by a research team led by Harvard School of Public Health’s Jennifer Bobb.  Bobb and colleagues found that the risk of dying from excessive heat events was declining across the U.S. And further, that most of the overall decline was coming from declines in the sensitivity to extreme heat shown by the elderly population (75 and older).  In fact, the Bobb team found that the risk in the older population has dropped so far that it is now indistinguishable from the risk to the younger populations. Adaptation is a beautiful thing!

From Bobb et al.:

While heat-related mortality risk for the ≥75 age group was greater than for the <65 group at the beginning of the study period, by 2005 they had converged to similar levels.

In other words, all the EPA’s talk about an increasing threat from heat waves and a growing elderly population combining to negatively impact the public health and welfare has been wrong up to now and almost assuredly will be so into the future as we continually look for ways to avoid dying avoidable deaths (e.g., those from heat waves).

Bobb and colleagues summarize this way:

This study provides strong evidence that acute (e.g., same-day) heat-related mortality risk has declined over time in the US, even in more recent years. This evidence complements findings from US studies using earlier data from the 1960s through mid-1990s on community-specific mortality rates (Davis et al. 2003a; Davis et al. 2003b), as well as European studies that found temporal declines in heat-related mortality risk (Carson et al. 2006; Donaldson et al. 2003; Kysely and Plavcova 2011; Schifano et al. 2012), and supports the hypothesis that the population is continually adapting to heat.

As a note, we (Knappenberger and Michaels) were co-authors on the two Davis et al. studies cited in the above paragraph. Our work, first published more than a decade ago, was some of the first research into the declining trends in heat-related mortality across the U.S.

Clearly we have been saying all this stuff for a long time and even more clearly, the federal government hasn’t been listening for a long time. It is not what they want to hear.

References:

Bobb, J.F., R.D. Peng, M.L. Bell, and F. Dominici, 2014. Heat-related mortality and adaptation in the United States, Environmental Health Perspectives, http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.130739.

Davis, R.E., P.C. Knappenberger, P.J. Michaels, and W.M. Novicoff, 2003a, Changing heat-related mortality in the United States. Environmental Health Perspectives, 111, 1712 to 1718.

Davis, R.E., P.C. Knappenberger, P.J. Michaels, and W.M. Novicoff, 2003b, Decadal changes in summer mortality in U.S. cities. International Journal of Biometeorology, 47, 166 to 175.

Knappenberger, P.C., P.J. Michaels, and A.W. Watts, 2014. Adaptation to extreme heat in Stockholm County, Sweden. Nature Climate Change, 4, 302 to 303.

Apr 27, 2014
Lead author claims U.N. climate change report was rewritten for political reasons

John Hayward

If the Church of Global Warming still had any real credibility, the bombshell revelations by Harvard professor Robert Stavins in an open letter published Friday would be devastating.  As it is, the fanatics will probably scream that Stavins has become a Nazi-like “climate denier” or tool of Big Oil or something.

It was already known that the summary of the latest U.N. climate report was substantially edited by political interests.  Very few media figures or politicians are going to read the full report, they generally make do with the summary.  In this case, the summary wasn’t merely “sexed up” to fool gullible reporters and politicians; it actually direct contradicts the full U.N report in places.  For example, media reports of the summary yelled that global warming was going to cause more wars; the actual report summary says global warming might increase the chances of violent conflict; the report itself says there’s no reason to believe climate change has much to do with violent conflict.  It’s more likely that sustained conflict leads to poor environmental stewardship than the reverse.

These hijinks already led one of the report’s contributors, Professor Richard Tol of Sussex University, to refuse to sign the final product, because he was uncomfortable with the tone of hysteria in the report summary.  Now the UK Daily Mail reports on an online letter published by lead author Robert Stavins, in which he alleges an astonishing three quarters of the original document were deleted or revised after a late-night meeting in Berlin:

Prof Stavins claimed the intervention amounted to a serious ‘conflict of interest’ between scientists and governments. His revelation is significant because it is rare for climate change experts to publicly question the process behind the compilation of reports on the subject.

[...] Prof Stavins said the government officials in Berlin fought to make big changes to the full report’s ‘summary for policymakers’. This is the condensed version usually cited by the world’s media and politicians. He said their goal was to protect their ‘negotiating stances’ at forthcoming talks over a new greenhouse gas reduction treaty.

Prof Stavins told The Mail on Sunday yesterday that he had been especially concerned by what happened at a special ‘contact group’. He was one of only two scientists present, surrounded by ‘45 or 50’ government officials.

He said almost all of them made clear that ‘any text that was considered inconsistent with their interests and positions in multilateral negotiations was treated as unacceptable.’

Many of the officials were themselves climate negotiators, facing the task of devising a new treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol in negotiations set to conclude next year.

Prof Stavins said: ‘This created an irreconcilable conflict of interest. It has got to the point where it would be reasonable to call the document a summary by policymakers, not a summary for them, and it certainly affects the credibility of the IPCC. The process ought to be reformed.

“Science” was bludgeoned into submission with a hockey stick graph long ago; the Church of Global Warming is pure politics now.  Climate change hysteria provides a perfect excuse for higher taxes and more regulations, combined with a pseudo-religious cause around which left-wingers can rally with a sense of supreme righteousness.  They even feel confident in trying to outlaw dissent, because if you try to debate the latest climate-change fatwa, you’re threatening the very survival of the Earth.  Sure, every single one of their doomsday predictions has been wrong thus far, but we can’t take the chance they’ll be wrong with the next twenty predictions, so shut up and pay up.

This United Nations report is a purely political document that has only a tangential connection to “science.” It’s a desperate bid for the movement to stay relevant as the number of questions it cannot answer keeps growing.  If you do take the time to read the full report, not just the politically doctored summary, you’ll find the thing absolutely riddled with pure speculation, things that “might” or “could” or “may” happen over the coming century, or maybe not.  Obviously the hucksters who use climate hysteria to screw over their taxpayers didn’t think that was good enough, so they wrote some science fiction instead.

Apr 22, 2014
Massachusetts Ocean Wind Turbine Fiasco

By AUDRA PARKER

April 21, 2014

There are good reasons Cape Wind has struggled to get off the ground for the past 13 years. Not only is the project outdated, but its location in the heart of Nantucket Sound has now been determined to pose significant risks to a variety of endangered and threatened species. These environmental impacts are the basis of a recent federal court decision that sent both the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service back to the drawing board to conduct more scientific reviews.

But Cape Wind’s impacts extend far beyond the environment. The controversial project would also jeopardize public safety, put fishermen’s livelihoods at risk and desecrate sacred tribal lands. As a result of these impacts and the choice of a highly conflicted location, Cape Wind continues to face litigation and opposition.

Likely the single biggest reason Cape Wind is no closer to being built today than it was 13 years ago is simple economics: Its cost is exorbitantly high. Any electricity Cape Wind would produce is guaranteed to be some of the most expensive in New England and the nation.

Cape Wind’s contracted electricity prices start at roughly 20 cents per kilowatt-hour and would increase by 3.5 percent each year to reach an exorbitant 34 cents per kwh in the final contract year. To put these numbers in perspective, Cape Wind would cost $3 billion more than electricity bought at market rates. It would also be more than three times as expensive as competing land-based wind projects that sell electricity at a flat 8 cents per kwh with no annual increase. Cape Wind’s high rates would burden families, businesses and communities throughout the commonwealth.

Leading business groups in Massachusetts organizations that clearly support renewable energy have sounded the alarm about the high cost of Cape Wind. Groups such as the Associated Industries of Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership have warned that the state’s energy costs, already far higher than those in most other states, would become even less competitive. Cape Wind’s billions of dollars in added costs would make a difference on where businesses choose to locate and expand.

While Massachusetts businesses and residents would get saddled with the bills, the commonwealth wouldn’t have any new jobs to show for it. Middleboro’s Mass Tank worked tirelessly for two years meeting milestones for Cape Wind after being promised the job to manufacture its turbine foundations. The result? Cape Wind spurned Mass Tank in favor of a European competitor in Germany.

And after years of touting the economic benefits of the project for the commonwealth, Cape Wind signed a contract with a Maine-based company for an electrical service platform, breaking another promise, according to the National Electrical Contractors Association of Greater Boston, and leaving thousands of Massachusetts electricians and contractors out in the cold.

At the end of last year, in an attempt to qualify for $800 million of expiring tax credits, Cape Wind signed a contract with Siemens to manufacture its turbines in Denmark, meaning the outsourcing of even more jobs.

Cape Wind’s longtime struggle to secure financing even with overpriced power contracts in hand, is another strong indicator of just how much of a financial boondoggle the project is. For years the developer has asked the Department of Energy for help by having U.S. taxpayers guarantee its loans. In 2011, Cape Wind was denied a $2 billion loan guarantee from the Energy Department, an amount nearly four times that lost on the now-bankrupt Solyndra. Today, Cape Wind continues to seek hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars from the same agency under a different loan program. And while promises of Danish employment may have helped Cape Wind attract conditional foreign investments from groups like EKF, Denmark’s export credit agency, Cape Wind has yet to receive financing from a single U.S. entity.

Massachusetts is a hub for energy innovation. With all of this talent and creativity, the commonwealth could do so much better than be saddled by an industrial relic with high costs and few benefits. After 13 years, it’s becoming increasingly clear that Cape Wind shouldn’t be built, and it won’t be.

Audra Parker is the president of the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound.

Apr 19, 2014
Wikipropaganda On Global Warming

One of my stories in the local newspaper received some kudos but also a mixed review from someone who used Wikipedia to fact check which lead him astray. I thought I would comment on that. I find Wikipedia useful for finding out about people dead or alive and events that occurred. Entries about prior storms for example are generally fact filled and accurate. But not so references about climate skeptics and global warming. That part of Wikipedia can not be trusted as it is carefully controlled as this story from 2008 by Lawrence Solomon on CBSNEWS.com showed. I felt it was worth repeating.

By Lawrence Solomon, National Review On-Line on CBS News

Ever wonder how Al Gore, the United Nations, and company continue to get away with their claim of a “scientific consensus” confirming their doomsday view of global warming? Look no farther than Wikipedia for a stunning example of how the global-warming propaganda machine works. As you (or your kids) probably know, Wikipedia is now the most widely used and influential reference source on the Internet and therefore in the world, with more than 50 million unique visitors a month. In theory Wikipedia is a “people’s encyclopedia” written and edited by the people who read it - anyone with an Internet connection. So on controversial topics, one might expect to see a broad range of opinion.

Not on global warming. On global warming we get consensus, Gore-style: a consensus forged by censorship, intimidation, and deceit. I first noticed this when I entered a correction to a Wikipedia page on the work of Naomi Oreskes, author of the now-infamous paper, published in the prestigious journal Science, claiming to have exhaustively reviewed the scientific literature and found not one single article dissenting from the alarmist version of global warming. Of course Oreskes’s conclusions were absurd, and have been widely ridiculed. I myself have profiled dozens of truly world-eminent scientists whose work casts doubt on the Gore-U.N. version of global warming. Following the references in my book The Deniers, one can find hundreds of refereed papers that cast doubt on some aspect of the Gore/U.N. case, and that only scratches the surface.

Naturally I was surprised to read on Wikipedia that Oreskes’s work had been vindicated and that, for instance, one of her most thorough critics, British scientist and publisher Bennie Peiser, not only had been discredited but had grudgingly conceded Oreskes was right. I checked with Peiser, who said he had done no such thing. I then corrected the Wikipedia entry, and advised Peiser that I had done so. Peiser wrote back saying he couldn’t see my corrections on the Wikipedia page. I made the changes again, and this time confirmed that the changes had been saved. But then, in a twinkle, they were gone again. I made other changes. And others. They all disappeared shortly after they were made.

Turns out that on Wikipedia some folks are more equal than others. Kim Dabelstein Petersen is a Wikipedia “editor” who seems to devote a large part of his life to editing reams and reams of Wikipedia pages to pump the assertions of global-warming alarmists and deprecate or make disappear the arguments of skeptics. Holding the far more prestigious and powerful position of “administrator” is William Connolley. Connolley is a software engineer and sometime climatologist (he used to hold a job in the British Antarctic Survey), as well as a serial (but so far unsuccessful) office seeker for England’s Green party. And yet by virtue of his power at Wikipedia, Connolley, a ruthless enforcer of the doomsday consensus, may be the world’s most influential person in the global warming debate after Al Gore. Connolley routinely uses his editorial clout to tear down scientists of great accomplishment such as Fred Singer, the first director of the U.S. National Weather Satellite Service and a scientist with dazzling achievements. Under Connolley’s supervision, Wikipedia relentlessly smears Singer as a kook who believes in Martians and a hack in the pay of the oil industry. Wikipedia is full of rules that editors are supposed to follow, and it has a code of civility. Those rules and codes don’t apply to Connolley, or to those he favors. “Peisers crap shouldn’t be in here,” Connolley wrote several weeks ago, in berating a Wikipedian colleague during an “edit war,” as they’re called. Read full story here.

By the way in 2010, Wikipedia stepped up self policing but it wasn’t working with Connolley.

We have pieces of this story before, but felt it was newsworthy it appeared on cbsnews.com. Also it is a reminder to you and your children not to trust Wiki as a reliable source. It was a good idea let go astray.

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This was the post he was responding to.

Weather Whys and Climate Wise
By joseph D’Aleo, CCM

This was for the nation one of the coldest winters on record, a throwback to the late 1970s when the world was worried about a coming ice age. Many cities in the north central had their coldest winter ever going back into the 1800s. In Wisconsin, the October to March period was the coldest since 1895. Chicago had the coldest November to March period since records began in 1872. It was also among the snowiest - third snowiest ever in Chicago, snowiest ever in Detroit and second only to 2009/10 in Philadelphia.

What was most remarkable was how persistent the pattern has been since November. The warm interludes were brief. The snow did not come in monstrous snows like 2013 but in frequent moderate events.

POLAR VORTEX

Yes, you can blame it on the now infamous polar vortex. Meteorologists know it is not new but a permanent feature of the Polar Regions. It is an upper level low pressure enclosing the coldest air in the hemisphere and is there winter and summer. In winter it expands unevenly (driven by other factors). In 2009/10 it expanded into the US and brought a record cold winter to the southeast. In December 2010, it was displaced to near the UK, where it brought the second coldest December since the Little Ice age in 1659 and later in the winter the US where it brought big snows. The vortex took aim at Alaska, Europe and China the in the last two winters but this year it was North America’s turn.

This year, it was a warm ocean pool in the Gulf of Alaska that buckled the jet stream and anchored the polar vortex over central North America. This drove persistent cold from the Canadian arctic into the central and eastern US. with a steady stream of storms and frequent snows and many below zero nights.  Chicago had the third most sub-zero days, other locations like Green Bay, the most ever.  The result of all the cold was 92.2% of the Great Lakes froze solid, the greatest since 1978/79. On April 1, the Great Lakes were still 69.1% ice covered, around 700% of normal.

A mass of Siberian air, typically 10-20F colder than Canadian arctic air was captured in January and really amplified the vortex into the central states.  That’s when the media became enthralled with the term, “polar vortex”.

The media in general though has not acknowledged that global warming stopped almost 18 years ago (why it is now called climate change) and in the US winter temperatures have cooled for 20 years (2.26F). Here in the northeast region, the two decade cooling was 1.2F.  Snow, which was supposed to be rare by 2010, instead is occurring at a record pace. In the eastern states, we have had 14 high impact snowstorms this decade (just 4 years in), beating out the 1960s, which had 11 events,

But some might say “Yes it was cold and snowy but that is weather not climate and we hear 97% scientists agree our climate is warming”.

97% CONSENSUS

The late, great Dr. Michael Crichton wrote “Historically the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels, it is a way to avoid debate by claiming the matter is already settled”. 

Surveys of the public and economists find global warming at the bottom of their priorities. Those pushing the warming theory have been trying to convince you that your gut instinct this might be hype based on your wearing out your snowblower and all the snow days eating away our children’s summer vacation and of course those fuel bills is wrong by telling you there’s a 97% consensus of the world’s climate scientists. 

The first ‘97%’ study was an email survey of 10,000 scientists that in the end tallied only the responses from just 77 climate scientists who had published on climate.  They asked (1) is it now warmer than 1800 (the Little Ice Age) and (2) does man play an important role in climate. The answer to both is yes. Surprisingly only 97% agreed. We are fortunately not now in a Little Ice Age and yes man through urbanization and land use changes, has an effect on ‘local’ climates. Another literature study survey that proclaimed 97% consensus has been debunked by follow up peer review and a rework of the first study was rejected by the journals.

That did not stop the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the administration from using 97% as rationale for the policies that Hollywood and environmentalists (both with plenty of money to fund election campaigns) are pushing for. 

The Oregon Petition (http://www.petitionproject.org/) meanwhile lists 31,487 legitimate scientists and 9,029 PhDs who agreed there is no convincing scientific evidence that the human release of CO2 or other greenhouse gases will cause in the foreseeable future a catastrophic warming and disruption of the climate and moreover there are many benefits of CO2, an essential element of plant photosynthesis.

BENEFITS OF CO2 ENRICHMENT

Indeed, increased CO2 is a plant fertilizer not a pollutant. Nurseries pump it into the greenhouses. It also makes plants more drought resistant, reducing water needs. Yields for rice, corn, beans and wheat have increased 3 to 5 fold worldwide since the 1960s. Corn yields have increased 6 fold in the US as CO2 rose and are expected to double again by 2030 according to Dr Perry, an economist at the University of Michigan. The economic benefit from increased crop production by CO2 enrichment may total $9.8 trillion by 2050.

The carbon pollution they now talk about is really soot. Soot has been virtually eliminated by ‘scrubbers’ here in the US where particulates are well below current EPA standards but is a problem in China without scrubbers on their coal plants.

The real threat to our physical and economic health comes not from warming and CO2 but potential continued acceleration into colder conditions while we pursue unwise and unnecessary environmental regulations and energy policies.

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And he addressed also this response to a rant letter to the editor by a local recycling committee environmentalist to which I replied:

Thanks for your reply and thank you for the opportunity to set the record straight.

Climate is always changing. Our current climate is remarkably benign compared to the past. This last century continued the recovery from the ice age of prior centuries. We warmed from the 1920s to 1940s, cooled to the 1970s, warmed to the 1990s then have stabilized and begun to cool again this century. This temperature pattern fits to a tee the natural multidecadal changes in the oceans and solar cycles.

The UN commissioned greenhouse theory based climate models continue to fail MISERABLY because they ignore the real climate drivers. We don’t live in the virtual world of the models but in the real world where only real data matters.

When the earth did warm from the 1970s to 1990s, it was in northern latitudes only and that warming stopped 18 years ago. There has been no warming in the tropical atmosphere and oceans for 35 years as shown by balloons, satellite and buoys that measure temperatures down to 300 meters.  This is the area where ALL the greenhouse models forecast warming would be most robust. There has been no increase in drought or flood (NOAA), or heat waves (the 1930s holds 23 of the 50 state records, 38 came before 1960 and there were more cold record than heat records since the 1940s). Hurricanes globally are at a 34 year low. Tornadoes in 2013 were 142 less than any other year on record and the number of forest fires in the US last year was the lowest in the record since 1984. These events will happen, always have and always will but man is not responsible.

You seemed most concerned about sea levels.  The sea level hype has gone on for decades with promises of global increases of 20 feet by Gore and even 264 feet by Hansen. In actual fact, the global sea level rises have slowed dramatically to an average of less than 4 inches a century. NOAA US tide gauges are rising at an average rate of 3.6 inches/century. See this story by Nils Axel Morner, the world’s foremost sea level expert.

Bangladesh is seeing sea levels rise because the land is sinking, as it is along the Mid Atlantic. There has been no rise in sea level at Tuvalu or the Maldives, the poster children of the ‘scare the world’ program of the UN. The author you mentioned to me, Church is a UN IPCC chapter co-lead author and his projections are based on ‘adjusted’ data and model projections. Don’t buy into the disinformation, they are peddling. It is driven by politics.

The real threat comes not from warming but potential continued acceleration into colder conditions. Solar scientists have warned of a major cooling from greatly diminished solar activity, down already 60% since 1990. That would be far more problematic for the world food production and energy needs than an imperceptible, gentle warming.

This is the 212 year solar cycle that caused the last mini ice age in the early 1800s and the major one in the 1600s that caused crop failures and famine and disease.  Russian (here ). German, UK, American (NASA) and many other scientists are warning of this but Washington has ignored it. While we chase a phantom warming based on a failed theory, many worry we may get slammed from a very different, far more threatening change.  Cold is far more dangerous and deadly than warmth.

But many politicians and the environmentalists are determined to destroy our fossil fuel energy industry even as we discover we are blessed with the world’s greatest supply, all to allegedly save the planet, but in reality to gain even more control over our lives.  They put us all in jeopardy of even more unaffordable or unavailable energy in an increasingly brutal climate. Europe has discovered that renewables are not yet the answer. The wind farms will be dismantled starting next year in the UK and they are slant drilling to extract coal from beneath the North Sea) and Germany is building 24 new coal fired plants. They awoke to the reality that those that can afford it the least, the poor and middle class, were hurt most by bad, idealistic, feel good policies.

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