Tuesday, April 24, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - New Study: Republicans More Persuasive Than Scientists On Climate Change

Second Shale Revolution Is On The Horizon

In this newsletter:

1) New Study: Republicans More Persuasive Than Scientists On Climate Change
EurekAlert, 18 April 2018 
2) U.S. Republican & Independent Climate Scepticism Spreading — Despite Recent Natural Disasters
Business Insider, 28 March 2018 

3) Why Do Polar Bears Cry?
H. Sterling Burnett, The American Spectator, 18 April 2018
4) While Green Europe Declines, China To Double Shale Gas Production
Energy Voice, 17 April 2018
5) Australia Aims To Replicate Us Shale Revolution
Financial Times, 18 April 2018 
6) Second Shale Revolution Is On The Horizon
mrt news, 16 April 2018 
7) U.S. Coal Exports Increased By 61% In 2017 As Exports To Asia More Than Doubled
US Energy Information Administration, 19 April 2018 

Full details:

1) New Study: Republicans More Persuasive Than Scientists On Climate Change
EurekAlert, 18 April 2018 

Regardless of political affiliation, people are more likely to believe facts about climate change when they come from Republicans speaking against what has become a partisan interest in this country, says a new University of Connecticut study.

In fact, Republicans are even more persuasive than scientists when it comes to correcting misinformation about climate change, researchers found.

"Unfortunately, correcting misinformation is much harder than simply providing 'facts'," says Lyle Scruggs, professor of political science at UConn, who co-authored the paper with Salil Benegal, a recent UConn Ph.D. graduate, now at DePauw University. The study is published in Climatic Change.

"For science issues such as climate change, we might expect scientists to be a credible and neutral authority," says Benegal. "However, partisanship increasingly influences perceptions of scientific credibility."

The study included 1,341 people, data collected by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and focused on a specific partisan issue on which scientific consensus has been widely adopted by Democrats but challenged by Republicans. Participants included those who self-identified as Republicans, Democrats, or Independents.

As expected, study authors found a partisan gap between Democrats and Republicans in their stated opinions on climate change, with Democrats expressing the highest level of concern and scientific agreement. The partisan gap diminished, however, with corrective information.

In the study, misinformation was corrected by factual information from different sources stating the presence of broad scientific consensus that climate change is happening and attributable to human activity.

All participants, regardless of partisanship, received factual corrections after reading a statement denying climate change. The corrections were randomly attributed to Republicans, Democrats, or non-partisan climate scientists.

Overall, participants found the most effective corrections came from Republicans rather than non-partisan scientists or Democrats. This transcended partisan leanings, researchers found.

"This may be because Republicans who make such statements are engaging in more potentially costly behavior that lend them additional persuasive value," the authors say.

Full post 

2) U.S. Republican & Independent Climate Scepticism Spreading — Despite Recent Natural Disasters
Business Insider, 28 March 2018 

Republicans are more skeptical than ever that climate change is a problem, and the partisan gap on the issue appears to be widening under President Donald Trump. Sixty-nine percent of Republicans say the threat of climate change is “exaggerated,” according to a new Gallup poll. That’s compared to only 4% of Democrats who said the same thing.

While the poll indicates the majority of Americans agree with the scientific consensus and are concerned about climate change, Republicans are less convinced — even compared to last year.

In 2017, 53% of Republicans agreed that most scientists
believe climate change is occurring. That number declined to 42% in 2018, as the Trump Administration has scrubbed mentions of climate change from federal websites, instructed bureaucrats from different agencies to refrain from using the term, and backed out of the Paris Agreement.

Moreover, only 35% of Republicans believe climate change is caused by human activities, down from 40% in 2017. That’s compared to 89% of Democrats, up from 87% in 2017.

Full story

3) Why Do Polar Bears Cry?
H. Sterling Burnett, The American Spectator, 18 April 2018 

Because the New York Times keeps lying about them.

The New York Times — one of the grand dames of print newspapers, whose slogan is “All the News That’s Fit to Print” — has fallen on hard times. It is not rare to see reports about the paper’s falling readership, cuts to the paper’s newsroom and editorial staff, or factual errors or outright false stories appearing in the paper. (Some of these errors never get corrected. See, for example, its error-filled coverage of the 2006 Duke Lacrosse scandal.)

Of all the Times’ numerous errors, perhaps none have been as consistently egregious as its coverage of climate change. Among major newspapers, the Times has long banged the climate alarmist drum the loudest, unquestioningly reporting the latest environmental lobbyists’ apocalyptic proclamations as if they were gospel truth. Most recently, the Times hyped BioScience paper on the impending doom of polar bears, which the paper alleged is the result of human-caused climate change.

TheTimes couldn’t be bothered to accurately describe the dispute in its headline. According to the Times, the argument is between “scientists” and “denialists” — an ad hominem slur aimed at researchers who dispute any portion of the claim “scientists agree we know with certainty humans are causing climate change and it is dangerous.” Both sides in the debate have engaged in research on polar bears and anthropogenic climate change, so why call one side denialists? It can only be to instigate a smear campaign, by associating them with truly heinous Holocaust deniers in the public’s mind.

Concerning the BioScience paper, it doesn’t actually examine the effects of climate change on polar bears; it presents mostly opinions and few actual facts. For instance, the authors amazingly provide no real data on polar bear populations or population trends, although it does cite the number of blogs and research papers discussing polar bears.

This is an exercise in sophistry, not science.

Instead of presenting proof of the fate of polar bears, the authors commit the Fallacy of Appeal to Authority and the Fallacy of Appeal to Numbers to support their assertion human-caused climate change threatens polar bears’ continued existence.

“Increasing surface temperatures, Arctic sea-ice loss, and other evidence of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) are acknowledged by every major scientific organization in the world,” say the BioScience authors, who later tout the existence of “a broad scientific consensus.”

Evidence and proof are the hallmarks of science, and if one claims humans are harming polar bears, one must provide supporting evidence. Scientifically, it is illegitimate to say, “X, Y, Z, and others are experts on climate, and they say humans are harming polar bears, so you should believe us when we tell you polar bears are in danger and other people are lying about it.” […]

The Times claimed data for nine other populations is too sparse to estimate. One might ask what about the other six subpopulations? While it’s hard to question the Times since it doesn’t say where it got its numbers, a recent survey of the literature by Crockford (published by the Global Warming Policy Foundation) examining each of the subpopulations in detail tells a different story.

Crockford — whose survey relies on peer-reviewed, publicly available data — notes only one subpopulation of bears has declined and two others may or may not have declined.

Full post

4) Green Europe Declines, China To Double Shale Gas Production
Energy Voice, 17 April 2018

Chinese shale gas production will almost double between now and 2020, energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie (Woodmac) has predicted.

Woodmac said China had made significant progress over the last decade, growing to nearly 600 wells and 9 billion cubic metres (bcm) of production last year.

Production is expected to reach 17 bcm in 2020.

Nearly 700 new wells will come onstream between 2018 and 2020 from three projects alone, with a total capital investment of $5.5billion.

The projects are Sinopec’s Fuling, and PetroChina’s Changning-Weiyuan and Zhaotong developments, all of which sit in the mountainous terrain of the Sichuan Basin.
But China will still miss its 30 bcm production target announced in its 13th energy sector five-year plan.

Woodmac consultant Tingyun Yang said: “China is eager to materialise its shale gas potential to fuel its massive gasification initiative and support rising demand growth.
“In order to meet the government’s 30-bcm target, up to 725 additional wells are needed by 2020 on top of the nearly 700 new wells.

“This will double the amount of investment needed in the base-case drilling plan. The required well number could be larger if well productivity degrades. This is a mammoth task for the Chinese national oil companies.”

Dr Yang added: “The speed of shale development will impact global gas markets. Considering the impact of shale gas production on domestic demand, the 2020 13-bcm ‘gap’ will have to be filled by imports, in particular LNG.

Full story

5) Australia Aims To Replicate Us Shale Revolution
Financial Times, 18 April 2018 

Australia’s Northern Territory has lifted a moratorium on fracking, the process of extracting gas from shale rock, to replicate the US shale revolution in a vast region with massive mineral resources.

The decision on Tuesday was welcomed by the oil and gas industry, which is promising to invest billions of dollars in exploration and create thousands of jobs in an underpopulated region roughly six times the size of the UK.

Australian energy companies Origin Energy and Santos have identified the Northern Territory as a potential source of gas to meet a shortage of the fossil fuel in Australia, which has led to surging energy prices and prompted Canberra to implement export controls on liquefied natural gas — one of the country’s most valuable exports.

“Member companies stand ready to invest billions of dollars in new projects in the territory,” said Malcolm Roberts, chief executive of the oil and gas industry lobby group Appea, after the territory’s government’s decision to lift the moratorium.

Full story

6) Second Shale Revolution Is On The Horizon
mrt news, 16 April 2018 

In less than two decades, Permian Basin operators have unleashed a shale revolution that has virtually tripled crude production from the region and upended global energy markets. Now a second revolution is on the horizon as operators prepare to re-enter those wells that launched the first revolution and implement secondary recovery projects.

That can consist of operators reinjecting gas into the reservoir to restore pressure and then producing the additional crude and natural gas.

“It looks like the second shale revolution will be huge,” said Lewis Matthews, data scientist with CrownQuest Operating.

He said the Permian Basin has been producing for close to 100 years and “we’re not even close to getting all the oil.”
CrownQuest alone has 200 years of drilling inventory, said Matthews, who expects companies such as Concho Resources and Pioneer Natural Resources have similar inventories.

The Permian Basin is renowned for its stacked plays – up to 3,000 feet of potential producing formations, some of which have yet to be developed.

“The number of benches we’re looking at today, we know there’s more there,” Matthews said.

Matthews discussed this coming revolution and its challenges during a recent quarterly luncheon of the Petroleum Professional Data Management association at Midland College’s Petroleum Professional Development Center.

The challenges of the second revolution will be similar to those of the first: optimizing spacing and completion techniques, but with additional cycles of injecting gas to repressure the reservoirs, he said. But operators are using what he called heterogeneous completion techniques and relying on heterogeneous geology, geophysics, geomechanics and geometry.

Just as a doctor would not prescribe the same identical medication for each patient, “each well requires unique spacing and completion,” he said.

But devising unique spacing and completions for each well requires data, and data is in short supply, Matthews said.

“We have tiny data sets on spacing and completions,” he said. “The newest wells are the most interesting and the most economic. But a single operator may have a data set that’s tiny – 10 to 20 wells if they’re lucky.”

As the industry turns to advanced technology such as machine learning to help find the best drilling locations and improve operations efficiencies and production, he said data on just 20 wells isn’t enough.

That’s why he spent the last year calling for a consortium solution, whereby operators pool data and help speed the cycle of machine learning.

Full post

7) U.S. Coal Exports Increased By 61% In 2017 As Exports To Asia More Than Doubled
US Energy Information Administration, 19 April 2018 

The United States exported 97.0 million short tons (MMst) of coal in 2017, a 61% (36.7 MMst) increase from the 2016 level. Exports to Asia more than doubled from 15.7 MMst in 2016 to 32.8 MMst in 2017, although Europe continues to be the largest recipient of U.S. coal exports.

Steam coal, which is used to generate electricity, accounted for most of the increase in 2017 coal exports. India, South Korea, and Japan were three of the top five recipients of U.S. steam coal exports in 2017. India, the largest importer of steam coal from the United States, imported 7.6 MMst of steam coal from the United States in 2017—nearly three times as much as in 2016—mainly to fuel growing electricity capacity in the country.

Coal-fired generating capacity in India has more than doubled in recent years to meet growing electricity demand. Although India produces enough coal to meet most of its domestic needs, a large portion of India’s new coal-fired power plants require coal with higher quality and energy content than the coal that is typically produced in India, resulting in these power plants having to import coal from elsewhere.

Full post

The London-based Global Warming Policy Forum is a world leading think tank on global warming policy issues. The GWPF newsletter is prepared by Director Dr Benny Peiser - for more information, please visit the website at www.thegwpf.com.

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