Peter Foster at the Financial Post sums up the Doha “climate change” conference best:
The UN climate conferences have descended into ritual farce, as naked money-grabbing on behalf of poor countries contrasts with finagling impossible solutions to what is likely a much-exaggerated problem. One leading question is how dubious science, shoddy economics and tried-and-failed socialist policies have come to dominate the democratic process in so many countries for so long. The answer appears to be the skill with which a radical minority — centred in and promoted by the UN, and funded by national governments and, even more bizarrely, corporations — has skilfully manipulated the political process at every level.
A fairly succinct and accurate summary of the ongoing effort.
Walter Russel Mead also has a take on it with which I agree:
Climate negotiators at the most recent conference on global warming were unable to reduce expectations fast enough to match the collapse of their agenda. The only real winners here were the bureaucrats in the diplomacy industry for whom endless rounds of carbon spewing conferences with no agreement year after year mean jobs, jobs, jobs. The inexorable decline of the climate movement from its Pickett’s Charge at the Copenhagen summit continues. The global green lobby is more flummoxed than ever. These people and these methods couldn’t make a ham sandwich, much less save Planet Earth.
And, while I agree that is so, the UN, these conferences, 3rd world nations and the so-called “green agenda” continue attempts to exert control over advanced countries and extort a chunk of their GDP as “compensation” for what no one is sure. There desires in this regard have never been more obvious than in their questionable opposition to the boom in natural gas (something, one could argue, that would be helpful to developing 3rd world countries while satisfying the “green agenda”).
It’s green, it’s cheap and it’s plentiful! So why are opponents of shale gas making such a fuss? If it were not so serious there would be something ludicrous about the reaction of the green lobby to the discovery of big shale gas reserves in this country. Here we are in the fifth year of a downturn. We have pensioners battling fuel poverty. We have energy firms jacking up their prices. We have real worries about security of energy supply – a new building like the Shard needs four times as much juice as the entire town of Colchester. In their mad denunciations of fracking, the Greens and the eco-warriors betray the mindset of people who cannot bear a piece of unadulterated good news.
Obviously, it would be even harder to sell their extortion attempts if advanced countries are able to develop a source of energy that is indeed “green, cheap and plentiful”. And, apparently, even they realize they’re not going to get too far attempting to demonize natural gas per se. So they’ve instead focused on the process used to extract it (hydraulic fracturing – “fracking”) and are in the usual mode of demonizing it instead. That, despite the fact that the process has been used in the US, at least, since 1948 on over 1,000,000 wells without negative results to ground water (the supposed threat that fracking poses). But as we’ve all learned, facts are not the currency this group uses.
The point? This circus will continue for the foreseeable future because the majority of the UN sees an extortion opportunity that is just too good to pass up. Their initial success in scaring the world with “shoddy science” continues to motivate their efforts. They haven’t quite accepted that it is failing.
Of course, real science has never really been a part of this process. All they needed was a veneer to successfully launch the project. Al Gore and “consensus” provided that. The assembled then declared the “science” to be “settled” (Science never attains consensus and is never “settled”). After that, the participants in this extortion attempt have simply stated that further review is essentially unneeded. The argument is over, just STFU and accept it. Meanwhile that “science” continues to come apart at the seams as real data is collected and demonstrates the underlying climate “science’s” shortcomings and outright falsehoods.
Natural gas provides a new alarming problem for these folks. When it was thought to be a fairly scarce resource, enviros embraced it (the Sierra Club touted it for years before turning against it when it became plentiful and cheap). Now that it threatens to undermine their entire culture of extortion and control, they’re rabidly against it – or at least what it requires to extract it.
One can only hope that the failure in Doha signals the end game of this farce, but that’s doubtful. No dissenting word is allowed. As Lord Monckton learned when he tried to bring up the fact that there has been no warming for the past 16 years and was summarily ejected for doing so. This is no longer about science. This is no longer about an imminent threat. It’s about extortion, plain and simple. And anyone with the least bit of honesty will recognize that and should join in the call to end this farce for good.
Ignoring the fact that there’s been no rise in global temperatures for 16 years, 3rd world countries at the UN’s Doha climate conference are proceeding with their plan to make richer countries pay for their perceived (perhaps “mythical” is a better word?) damages wrought by “climate change”.
Basing their claim on the discredited “science” generated by nothing more than inaccurate climate models, they’ve decided what was promised previously just isn’t enough:
There has been a historic shift in the UN climate talks in Qatar, with the prospect of rich nations having to compensate poor nations for losses due to climate change.
The US has fiercely opposed the measure – it says the cost could be unlimited.
But after angry tussles throughout the night the principle of Loss and Damage is now in the final negotiating text.
Why is it that these countries think that what was previously promised ($100 billion by 2020 in Copenhagen) isn’t sufficient? Because President Obama just asked Congress for $60 billion for hurricane Sandy relief. Obviously, using that as a baseline, these countries want more.
And you have to love this attitude:
Saleem ul-Huq, from the think-tank IIED, told the BBC: “This is a watershed in the talks. There is no turning back from this. It will be better for the US to realise that the principle of compensation is inevitable – and negotiate a limit on Loss and Damage rather than leave the liability unlimited.
“The principle of compensation is inevitable?” Really? For what, given there’s been no evidence of damage?
It is a point of principle that is at stake here for developing countries. In the end it’s questionable how much extra money a Loss and Damage Mechanism might bring.
Already poor nations are bitter that rich nations, particularly the US are dragging their feet over a promise made at the failed Copenhagen climate summit to mobilise $100bn by 2020 to help poor nations get clean energy and adapt to climate change.
A “point of principle” my rear end. It’s UN sponsored extortion. It is based on faulty science and given hope by weak willed politicans, all supervised by the bandits in the UN.
We don’t own them anything.
Not. One. Red. Cent.
Now that progressives, liberals, whatever they’re calling themselves today, are secure in the fact that Barack Obama will be in the Oval Office for another 4 years, they plan on doing everything they can to see that he does what he said he’d do way back in 2008 – or at least what they thought they heard him say he’d do.
Those parts include climate change, drone strikes, gun control and closing the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, among others.
We’ve seen the first shots fired in the gun control advocacy (no pun intended) with the absurd Costas gun-control editorial at the half-time of an NFL game. And, of course, Dianne Feinstein is making the usual “assault weapons ban” noises.
By the way, as a complete aside, but speaking of gun control, I want to show you a classic exchange:
Can you say pwned?!
Anyway, back to the subject at hand – the liberal agenda. Remember, Obama told the Russian President that he’d be “more flexible” after his re-election. There’s absolutely no reason that he won’t be less politically inhibited (because in the political world, that’s what “more flexible” really means) domestically as well as internationally is there?
But now? Now it’s safe:
“Liberals in the media are going to be tougher on Obama and more respectful at the same time,” Hendrik Hertzberg, The New Yorker’s chief political commentator and a former speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, told POLITICO. “He was the champion of our side, he vanquished the foe….. [but] now liberals don’t have to worry about hurting his chances for re-election, so they can be tougher in urging him to do what he should be doing.”
Apparently the NY Times plans on leading the way in pushing and prodding Obama to do what he said he’d do (or what the NYT thinks he said he’d do):
The New York Times editorial page launched a series titled “Goals for a New Term,” calling on the president to implement stronger gun control laws and shutter Gitmo, which he had pledged to do during his first year in office. The tone of the editorials has been sharply critical: On guns, the editors suggested Obama lacked courage. On Guantanamo, they slammed his administration for deciding “to adopt the Bush team’s extravagant claims of state secrets and executive power, blocking any accountability for the detention and brutalization of hundreds of men at Guantánamo and secret prisons, and denying torture victims their day in court.”
Gitmo? There are rumblings out there – again – of the Federal government purchasing a closed prison with the idea of moving the jihadists in captivity there on to the shores of the US. Seems prison is okay for the jihadists if the left initiates the idea of buying one and housing them there. But holding them in Gitmo, a place that wasn’t their idea (but clearly is superior to moving them here) is just beyond the pale because, you know, it was that evil Bush’s idea. So it’s not about incarceration, it’s about the myth of Gitmo … or something.
Obama has claimed he has no interest in climate change legislation/taxation in his second term (well, he doesn’t as long as there’s a Republican House … if that changes in 2014, he might develop an immediate interest). Then he’s said he does. Then, yeah, not so much. So who the hell knows. But what we do know is progressives intend to try to push him on this and it certainly wouldn’t surprise me if he responds positively. He certainly has nothing to lose. And it may provide a distraction if the economy keeps tanking. He can couch his attempt to tax thin air in the usual class warfare (fat cat corporations fouling the streams and polluting the air while melting the ice caps to boot). He can call for “social justice” because, you know, climate change effects those least able to afford it first … or something.
Drone strikes? Yawn. A small faction of the left concerns itself with drone strikes. It is classic leading from behind. Get over it progressives. Your President approves all those arial assasinations himself. It is part of the responsibilities that Nobel Peace Prize winners must endure.
Sarcasm aside, it will indeed be interesting to see if Obama does anything for progressives in his 2nd term. Will he become an activist president or will he vote “present?”
Well, let’s see – is he taking the lead in fiscal cliff negotiations and working tirelessly with Congress to ensure a solution before the deadline or is he going on a 20 day vacation to Hawaii ending January 6th?
Such that it was. 4 things.
One: There were no ‘hard questions’. If you look at the transcript you’ll note that the President called on reporters by name. You know why, don’t you?
Two: The Susan Rice thing. Let’s do a Candy Crowley and go to the transcript:
But for them to go after the U.N. ambassador, who had nothing to do with Benghazi and was simply making a presentation based on intelligence that she had received and to besmirch her reputation is outrageous.
What’s outrageous is he just admitted that he didn’t say that Benghazi was a terrorist act as he asserted in a debate, or, one assumes, Ms. Rice wouldn’t have been spouting the video line. If Obama knew on day two in the Rose Garden that it was a terrorist attack (and the only way he’d know was through intel reports), why didn’t Rice?
What I’m concerned about is not finding ourselves in a situation where the wealthy aren’t paying more or aren’t paying as much they should; middle-class families, one way or another, are making up the difference. That’s the kind of status quo that has been going on here too long, and that’s exactly what I argued against during this campaign. And if there’s — one thing that I’m pretty confident about is the American people understood what they were getting when they gave me this incredible privilege of being in office for another four years. They want compromise. They wanted action. But they also want to make sure that middle-class folks aren’t bearing the entire burden and sacrifice when it comes to some of these big challenges. They expect that folks at the top are doing their fair share as well, and that’s going to be my guiding principle during these negotiations but, more importantly, during the next four years of my administration.
I’m not sure how many times we have to publish the percentage of taxes the top 5%, 2% or 1% pay in comparison with the rest of the population, but in reality, they pay much more than their “fair share”. This isn’t about “fair share’s”. It’s about perpetuating a myth that taxing them more will ease the debt/deficit problem (as Dale has pointed out, it will yield about $42 billion) and give Obama someone to blame if “negotiations” fail. This tax the rich scheme is the reddest of red herrings.
Four: Perputuating the “Big Lie”:
You know, as you know, Mark, we can’t attribute any particular weather event to climate change. What we do know is the temperature around the globe is increasing faster than was predicted even 10 years ago. We do know that the Arctic ice cap is melting faster than was predicted even five years ago. We do know that there have been extraordinarily — there have been an extraordinarily large number of severe weather events here in North America, but also around the globe.
There has been no warming for the past 10 years, Arctic ice is fine, thank you very much, and there have not been an “extraordinarily large number of severe weather events” here. In fact, we’re in a “hurricane drought” per the experts.
The good news, if you believe him, is that climate change will take a back seat to jobs and the economy. How do we measure whether this is more Obama hot air (i.e. saying one thing, doing another) or he means it?
Watch the EPA.
But, of course, it is one of the Obama administration’s priorities (could it be because a carbon tax would most likely kill even more jobs?). Bottom line?
The world stopped getting warmer almost 16 years ago, according to new data released last week. The figures, which have triggered debate among climate scientists, reveal that from the beginning of 1997 until August 2012, there was no discernible rise in aggregate global temperatures.The new data, compiled from more than 3,000 measuring points on land and sea, was issued quietly on the internet, without any media fanfare, and, until today, it has not been reported. This stands in sharp contrast to the release of the previous figures six months ago, which went only to the end of 2010 – a very warm year.
Of course the figures, as mentioned, were “quietly” released without an media fanfare. None. They were just plopped out there.
Die-hard warmists aren’t going to pay any attention to it though. Just watch. Those who claim “science” should trump and we should be doing something to curb our carbon footprints really don’t care about science.
Does it matter that campaigners and the media are actively peddling disinformation? For the most part, probably not, as the public is by now used to such nonsense on just about every subject from unemployment figures to Barack Obama’s birth certificate. But there is one group that should be very concerned about the spreading of rampant misinformation: the scientific community. It is, of course, thrilling to appear in the media and get caught up in highly politicized debates. But leading scientists and scientific organizations that contribute to a campaign of misinformation — even in pursuit of a worthy goal like responding effectively to climate change — may find that the credibility of science itself is put at risk by supporting scientifically unsupportable claims in pursuit of a political agenda.
Absolutely. But back to Roger Pielke Jr’s question at the beginning. Does it matter that politicians and the media are actively peddling disinformation? Yes, in fact it does. Because they are able, if they convince enough people, to force us to pay for one of their revenue schemes with the false science they peddle. So yes, it does matter. But his point about scientists is important as well. It is the scientific community that should be up in arms about the fiasco that global warming, or as warmists now prefer, “climate change”, has been presented. Pure, grant peddling, hogwash.
Dr. Judith Curry at Georgia Tech says:
The data confirms the existence of a ‘pause’ in the warming. The impact of this pause within the climate dynamic community has been to focus increased attention on the impact of natural variability, particularly the impact of internal multi-decadal oscillations in the ocean. The new climate model calculations for the AR5 have focused on trying to assess what it would take to accurately simulate these multi-decadal ocean oscillations and how predictable they might be. These new observations and climate modeling results will hopefully impact the the IPCC AR5 deliberations so that we do not see the same overly confident consensus statements that we saw in the AR4.
Got that? They don’t even know what it will take to simulate the “multi-decadal ocean oscillations”. That should tell you all you need to know about the efficacy of the previous models which so “over confidently” claimed both viability and consensus. As we’ve since learned, they had neither.
Final nail? Oh, no. Zombie warmism will be with us until the newest man-made apocolypse is “discovered”.
While “the science is settled” and name calling are about all the climate alarmists have in their mostly empty rebuttal quiver, real science continues to destroy their ‘settled science’.
I’m sure you remember all the doom and gloom emanating from the claims that massive amounts of ice was melting and would raise sea levels to catastrophic heights, don’t you?
Yeah, well, it appears – shock of shocks – that those making those claims didn’t use science at all. They apparently just kind of made it up if the American Geophysical Union’s latest research is to be believed:
"Previous ocean models … have predicted temperatures and melt rates that are too high, suggesting a significant mass loss in this region that is actually not taking place," says Tore Hattermann of the Norwegian Polar Institute, member of a team which has obtained two years’ worth of direct measurements below the massive Fimbul Ice Shelf in eastern Antarctica – the first ever to be taken.
It turns out that past studies, which were based on computer models without any direct data for comparison or guidance, overestimate the water temperatures and extent of melting beneath the Fimbul Ice Shelf. This has led to the misconception, Hattermann said, that the ice shelf is losing mass at a faster rate than it is gaining mass, leading to an overall loss of mass.
The team’s results show that water temperatures are far lower than computer models predicted …
Overall, according to the team, their field data shows "steady state mass balance" on the eastern Antarctic coasts – ie, that no ice is being lost from the massive shelves there. The research is published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
You don’t say? But, but “climate deniers are the same as Holocaust deniers”, “the sciences is settled”, “consensus”, the “vast majority of the world’s scientists agree”, “IPCC”, yatta, yatta, yatta.
Again we see the so-called science wasn’t based on science at all – it was based on computer models “without any direct data for comparison or guidance” which then naturally got the results the “scientists” were looking for.
I’d love to say I’m stunned, but I’m not.
We’ve known this was happening for how long now? It’s just that the evidence just keeps coming out, doesn’t it.
If you’re still an alarmist that believes in the “science” that was put out in the IPCC report and an “Inconvenient Truth”, then it isn’t science we’re talking about anymore – it’s religion.
Some pictures of Greenland taken in the 1930s have revealed glacier melt that is worse than that taking place today:
Recently unearthed photographs taken by Danish explorers in the 1930s show glaciers in Greenland retreating faster than they are today, according to researchers.
The photos in question were taken by the seventh Thule Expedition to Greenland led by Dr Knud Rasmussen in 1932. The explorers were equipped with a seaplane, which they used to take aerial snaps of glaciers along the Arctic island’s coasts.
It’s difficult to know exactly what’s happening to the Greenland ice in total and very different estimates have been produced in recent times. However Professor Box says that many glaciers along the coasts have started retreating in the past decade.
It now appears that the glaciers were retreating even faster eighty years ago: but nobody worried about it, and the ice subsequently came back again.
The emphasized line is priceless. Chicken Little stayed home.
Why were the glaciers on Greenland retreating faster 80 years ago?
[One scientist, Professor Jason] Box, theorises that this is likely to be because of sulphur pollution released into the atmosphere by humans, especially by burning coal and fuel oils. This is known to have a cooling effect.
Unfortunately atmospheric sulphur emissions also cause other things such as acid rain, and as a result rich Western nations cracked down on sulphates in the 1960s. Prof Box believes that this led to warming from the 1970s onward, which has now led to the glaciers retreating since around 2000.
Or, “we cleaned up the air and it got warmer”. Other scientists disagree:
Still other scientists, differing with Prof Box, offer another picture altogether of Arctic temperatures, in which there were peaks both in the 1930s and 1950s and cooling until the 1990s: and in which the warming trend which resulted in the melting seen by Rasmussen’s expedition actually started as early as 1840, before the industrial revolution and human-driven carbon emission had even got rolling. In that scenario, variations in the Sun seem to have much more weight than is generally accepted by today’s climatologists.
Variations in the Sun! Whoda thunk?
Bottom line – nothing particularly unusual or worrisome if you actually have come to the conclusion, based on the evidence at hand, that the earth goes through climate cycles. The key, of course is the fact that a warming trend that resulted in the retreat of the glaciers in the 1930s was begun almost 100 years before without the benefit of the industrial revolution and human carbon emissions.
Then there’s that lingering little scientific fact that CO2 is a lagging indicator, not a cause, of warming. The fact the alarmist side continues to love to ignore.
Anyway a little context to the “OMG the glaciers are melting”.
Speaking of irony, life for some is just full of it.
Pop star Will.i.am spoke at Oxford University in a climate debate saying:
‘Climate change should be the thing that we are all worried and concerned about as humans on this planet, how we affect the planet, our consumption, and how we treat the place that we live in.’
Indeed. Boilerplate good stuff for the true believers. Of course, living up to his words? Yeah, not so much:
The 37-year-old Black Eyed Peas star arrived for the talk at Oxford University in his private helicopter.
Seemingly oblivious to the furore that it might cause, the pop star even tweeted pictures of the ‘hip.hop.copter’ when he landed.
His trip from London was a total of 286 miles and used 71.5 gallons of fuel, ploughing three-quarters of a tonne of CO2 into the atmosphere, which is the same as the average UK person produces in an entire month.
Now if I believed this mattered significantly I’d be outraged. In the big scheme of things, I really don’t care. But the finer point here is obviously Will.i.am is oblivious to the fact that he’s a grade A hypocrite. It’s hard to believe someone would be this unaware, but apparently he is. Either that, or he just doesn’t care.
But hey, we all know how this works … sacrifice is for the little people. Liberals want wind farms, but not if you can see them off of Martha’s Vineyard.
Our buddy WIll.i.am isn’t any different than the limo liberals we’ve always had to suffer. He’s just adding a new twist.
In a letter to NASA’s Administrator, 50 former NASA scientists and astronauts voice their displeasure over the climate change stance NASA has taken finding it to be unsubstantiated by science. They request that NASA “refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject.” Among those signing the letter is Dr. Chris Kraft, the former Apollo Flight Director and Director of Johnson Space Center for 24 years.
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.
The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.
As former NASA employees, we feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate. We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject. At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.
Apparently Dr. James Hansen’s most recent charge that global warming is the moral equivalent of slavery was the last straw, and the men and women who signed the letter refuse to suffer the embarrassment he continues to bring to NASA in silence.
Note the last sentence in the first paragraph where the letter writers make the most obvious point – the science, despite claims by alarmists to the contrary, is NOT settled. Additionally, much to the displeasure of the alarmists, as more and more scientific information comes available on the subject, the majority does NOT support their theory.
Thus the desperation exhibited by alarmist advocates like Hansen and his “slavery” nonsense.
The scam is coming apart at the seams and those like Hansen who’ve staked their professional reputations on the bad science that undergirded it are now suffering the appropriate consequences.
That is, being dismissed as a serious scientist.
And deservedly so.
Roger Pielke Jr notes that the new IPCC report covering climate change seems to take the skeptical argument to heart and stick much more closely to actual facts and what is really known empirically. Says Pielke:
The full IPCC Special Report on Extremes is out today, and I have just gone through the sections in Chapter 4 that deal with disasters and climate change. Kudos to the IPCC — they have gotten the issue just about right, where "right" means that the report accurately reflects the academic literature on this topic. Over time good science will win out over the rest — sometimes it just takes a little while.
His examples from the report:
A few quotable quotes from the report (from Chapter 4):
-"There is medium evidence and high agreement that long-term trends in normalized losses have not been attributed to natural or anthropogenic climate change"
-"The statement about the absence of trends in impacts attributable to natural or anthropogenic climate change holds for tropical and extratropical storms and tornados"
-"The absence of an attributable climate change signal in losses also holds for flood losses"
The report even takes care of tying up a loose end that has allowed some commentators to avoid the scientific literature:
-"Some authors suggest that a (natural or anthropogenic) climate change signal can be found in the records of disaster losses (e.g., Mills, 2005; Höppe and Grimm, 2009), but their work is in the nature of reviews and commentary rather than empirical research.
Maybe he’s right. Maybe, finally, science will “win out”. And I also hope that the administration that has said it will use science in its policy making process will now actually do so.