Wednesday, September 26, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: Arctic Sea Ice Much More Stable Than Thought

BBC’s Climate Change ‘Facts’ Are Fiction

In this newsletter:

1) Arctic Sea Ice Much More Stable Than Thought
Ron Clutz, Science Matters, 22 September 2018
2) 30 Years Ago Officials Predicted The Maldives Would Be Swallowed By The Sea. It Didn’t Happen
Michael Bastasch, The Daily Caller, 21 September 2018 

3) Climate Alarmists Accuse IPCC Of ‘Watering Down’ Disaster Predictions (Again)
Global Warming Policy Forum, 23 September 2018 
4) Harry Wilkinson: BBC’s Climate Change ‘Facts’ Are Fiction
The Conservative Woman, 22 September 2018  
5) Green Suicide: Germany’s Economic Backbone Suffers From Soaring Power Prices
Bloomberg, 24 September 2018  
6) Is Bloomberg-Funded Climate Lawyer Working Illegally?
Todd Shepherd, The Washington Free Beacon, 22 September 2018

Full details:

1) Arctic Sea Ice Much More Stable Than Thought
Ron Clutz, Science Matters, 22 September 2018

People are overthinking and over-analyzing Arctic Ice extents, and getting wrapped around the axle (or should I say axis).  So let’s keep it simple and we can all readily understand what is happening up North.

I will use the ever popular NOAA dataset derived from satellite passive microwave sensors.  It sometimes understates the ice extents, but everyone refers to it and it is complete from 1979 to 2017.  Here’s what NOAA reports (in M km2):

If I were adding this to the Ice House of Mirrors, the name would be The X-Ray Ice Mirror, because it looks into the structure of the time series.   For even more clarity and simplicity, here is the table:

NOAA NH Annual Average Ice Extents (in M km2).  Sea Ice Index v2.1 (here)

The satellites involve rocket science, but this does not.  There was a small loss of ice extent over the first 15 years, then a dramatic downturn for 13 years, 6 times the rate as before. That was followed by the current plateau with virtually no further loss of ice extent.  All the fuss is over that middle period, and we know what caused it.  A lot of multi-year ice was flushed out through the Fram Strait, leaving behind more easily melted younger ice. The effects from that natural occurrence bottomed out in 2007.

Kwok et al. say this about the Variability of Fram Strait ice flux:

The average winter area flux over the 18-year record (1978–1996) is 670,000 km^2, 7% of the area of the Arctic Ocean. The winter area flux ranges from a minimum of 450,000 km^2 in 1984 to a maximum of 906,000 km^2 in 1995. . . The average winter volume flux over the winters of October 1990 through May 1995 is 1745 km^3 ranging from a low of 1375 km^3 in the 1990 flux to a high of 2791 km^3 in 1994.

Full post

2) 30 Years Ago Officials Predicted The Maldives Would Be Swallowed By The Sea. It Didn’t Happen
Michael Bastasch, The Daily Caller, 21 September 2018 

Environmental officials warned 30 years ago the Maldives could be completely covered by water due to global warming-induced sea level rise.

That didn’t happen. The Indian Ocean did not swallow the Maldives island chain as predicted by government officials in the 1980s.

In September 1988, the Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported a “gradual rise in average sea level is threatening to completely cover this Indian Ocean nation of 1196 small islands within the next 30 years,” based on predictions made by government officials.

Then-Environmental Affairs Director Hussein Shihab told AFP “an estimated rise of 20 to 30 centimetres in the next 20 to 40 years could be ‘catastrophic’ for most of the islands, which were no more than a metre above sea level.”

The article went on to suggest the Maldives, along with its 200,000 inhabitants, could “end” sooner than expected if drinking water supplies dry up by 1992 “as predicted.” Today, more than 417,000 people live in the Maldives.

“Call Noah and have him build another Ark,” Daniel Turner, executive director of the pro-energy group Power the Future, told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Bring out the Coast Guard. Send all the boogie boards and floaties you can find for the Maldives is going down,” Turner said sarcastically.

The Maldives are among the island nations often held up by United Nations officials as being on the “front-lines” of man-made global warming. The island nation was among the first to apply for Green Climate Fund aid, but the funding hasn’t been flowing, according to The New York Times.

“That’s too long to wait,” Maldives energy and environment minister Thoriq Ibrahim told The Times last year. “There’s no use having a fund somewhere if you can’t access it quickly.”

The Maldives are indeed low-lying islands with its highest point only reaching about eight feet above sea level. But obviously, decades-old warnings the Maldives were on the verge of being swallowed by the seas didn’t pan out.

Full post

3) Climate Alarmists Accuse IPCC Of ‘Watering Down’ Disaster Predictions (Again)
Global Warming Policy Forum, 23 September 2018 

Climate alarmists are alarmed that a new IPCC report to be released on 8 October by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will reject their apocalyptic rhetoric and disaster predictions.

They blame IPCC scientists for deliberately downplaying the danger of global warming in order to placate the Trump Administration and some of its fossil fuel allies.

Warnings about the dangers of global warming are being watered down in the final version of a key climate report for a major international meeting next month, according to reviewers who have studied earlier versions of the report and its summary.

They say scientists working on the final draft of the summary are censoring their own warnings and “pulling their punches” to make policy recommendations seem more palatable to countries – such as the US, Saudi Arabia and Australia – that are reluctant to cut fossil-fuel emissions, a key cause of global warming.

Exactly the same accusations were made back in 2014 when climate alarmists told the same paper the IPCC had ‘diluted’ its report under ‘political pressure’ to protect fossil fuel interests.

According to a report in today’s Observer the IPCC report concludes that the rise of global temperatures by 2°C could have negative consequences for some countries, such as rising sea levels, spreading deserts, loss of natural habitats and species, dwindling ice-caps and increases in the number of devastating storms.

However, it is the report’s summary for policymakers that is causing concern. This is the document politicians will use as a key climate guide when making changes to legislation. Reviewers of earlier drafts say it is being altered to make the dangers of climate change seem less alarming. As a result, they say, policymakers could seriously underestimate the risks of global warming. Cuts made to the final draft of the summary include:

 Any mention that temperature rises of above 1.5C could lead to increased migrations and conflict;
 All discussion of the danger of the Gulf Stream being disrupted by cold water flowing from the Arctic where more and more sea-ice is melting;
 Warnings about the dangers that 1.5–2C temperature rises could trigger irreversible loss of the Greenland ice sheet and raise sea levels by 1–2 metres over the next two centuries.

Other cuts from the summary include the sentence: “Poverty and disadvantage have increased with recent warming (about 1C) and are expected to increase in many populations as average global temperatures increase from 1C to 1.5C and beyond.”

Over the years, climate activists and professional doom-mongers have repeatedly accused the IPCC of  watering down the danger of climate change, of underestimating climate risks and of underestimating global warming.

It would appear that the usual suspects are once again using the same trite mantra in order to prepare themselves for more disappointment.

4) Harry Wilkinson: BBC’s Climate Change ‘Facts’ Are Fiction
The Conservative Woman, 22 September 2018  

In order to avoid giving ‘false balance’ to the climate alarmists at the BBC, I thought it would be a good idea to fact-check their new internal guidance on climate change. 

This is their totalitarian memorandum aimed at stamping out free scientific discourse, on the basis that certain facts are established beyond dispute.

The problem is that these ones aren’t, and the BBC is guilty of repeatedly failing to describe accurately the nuances of climate science and the degree to which certain claims are disputed.

The crucial paragraph reads:

‘Most climate scientists regard a rise of 2C as the point when global warming could become irreversible and the effects dangerous. At current rates, we are on track for a rise of more than 3-4C by the end of the century.’

There are so many things wrong with this short statement.

That global warming can be somehow ‘irreversible’ is pure propaganda; the climate has always been changing and it always will. The briefing later describes the idea of catastrophic tipping points as a ‘common misconception’, so they have comically failed their own test right at the start.

A temperature rise of more than two degrees is not inherently dangerous either. The majority of economic impact studies put the cost of climate change by the end of the century at between 1.5% and 3% of world GDP, but these studies often make the inaccurate assumption that either no or little adaptation will take place.

In contrast, even the IPCC has admitted (p.15) that the cost of reducing emissions (‘mitigation’) to meet the 2C target may be up to 4% of world GDP in 2030, 6% in 2050 and 11% in 2100.

These numbers do not incorporate the benefits of reducing our emissions, which are primarily the avoided costs of climate change. But given that a certain amount of warming is already ‘baked in’, it looks almost certain that this ‘mitigation’ will actually be far more expensive than not doing anything. If warming actually turns out to have a positive effect, the gamble will have failed even more spectacularly. […]

Quite surreally, the document also describes the statement that ‘climate change has happened before’ as a ‘common misconception’. How much longer before the BBC renames itself The Ministry of Truth?

Estimating the current and future impacts of climate change is a complex and contested enterprise, but the BBC would rather you didn’t know. ‘The science is settled’ they say, so move on. This climate memorandum is nothing less than blatant propaganda presented as fact by controller Fran. There is a critical debate to be had, so inquisitive people had better look elsewhere.

Full post & comments

5) Green Suicide: Germany’s Economic Backbone Suffers From Soaring Power Prices
Bloomberg, 24 September 2018  

Mittelstand companies weighed down by soaring electricity costs are struggling against competition from U.S. and China. If power prices continue to rise, many companies could be forced to close down.

Bosses at a steelmaker in northwest Germany have ripped out old-style lighting in favor of LEDs, tinkered to make machinery more efficient and even locked staff into classrooms to teach them how to save energy.

Across the nation, thousands of companies are doing the same to mitigate the hit from electricity costs that have doubled since 2016. These smaller, often family-run firms are collectively known as the Mittelstand and form crucial links in the supply chains for Germany’s biggest firms, employing almost 20 million people and producing more in sales than Spain’s economy.

When the Mittelstand suffers, Germany takes a knock. And yet it’s those smaller companies along with households that have borne the brunt of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s energy policy, which has imposed higher electric bills to pay for cutting pollution. While 2,000 corporate giants like Volkswagen AG and chemicals maker BASF SE have their own power plants and get exemptions from environmental tariffs, smaller companies pay more to absorb those costs.

“We’re constantly trying to improve energy efficiency,” said Klaus Schmidtke, a spokesman for Georgsmarienhuette GmbH, which employs 1,000 people and feeds steel parts into the supply chain of Volkswagen AG. “But to be blunt, we’ve not been able to offset rising electricity prices.”

Wholesale power rates on a tear across Europe, and apart from consuming less, there’s little that companies can do about it. The surge can be traced back to jumping demand for generation fuels from coal in China to natural gas in Japan. And that globalization of the energy market is eating away at support for Merkel’s transition away from coal and toward clean energy.

Energy bills for the Mittelstand were surging even before’s this year’s surge in the wholesale market. The companies, together households, had to cough up hundreds of billions of euros to pay for Merkel’s transition to an economy based on mainly solar and wind. That put them at a disadvantage against competitors from China to the U.S., as well as other European nations.

The subsidies for solar and wind projects as well as a raft of environmental taxes aimed at cutting emissions have made German electricity prices for residential and business consumers the highest in the European Union together with Denmark.

The rising costs have forced Mittelstand firms, almost all of which have sales of less than 1 million euros, to splash out on expensive, energy-efficient equipment and lock in prices with suppliers for several years ahead. Some are even starting to produce their own electricity, while others have shifted production abroad in a last-ditch effort to keep up with Chinese, South Korean and U.S. competitors who pay far less for electricity.

“The drag on competitiveness is particularly severe for small and middle-sized firms,” Eric Schweitzer, President of Germany’s Chambers of Commerce, said by email.

The rising electricity costs threaten to undermine support for Merkel’s Energiewende just as her government is seeking to make up lost ground on the faltering path toward its 2020 emissions-reduction targets. A study of the Mittelstand by DZ Bank found a third of their company leaders thought power prices were a threat to their business.

Full story

6) Is Bloomberg-Funded Climate Lawyer Working Illegally?
Todd Shepherd, The Washington Free Beacon, 22 September 2018

Attorney was funded by Bloomberg to work on climate-related issues

Michael Bloomberg / Getty Images

A “special assistant attorney general” who has been working for Oregon’s Department of Justice, yet whose salary was being paid by Michael Bloomberg using a pass-through agency, is working in circumstances partially or completely contrary to Oregon law, according to an analysis by the office of legal counsel that serves the Oregon State Legislature.

The scheme of third-party sources paying for this attorney and others like him was uncovered and reported in late August by Chris Horner, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C.

Horner’s investigation found similar arrangements in AG offices in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Washington, Massachusetts, and New York, and shows that the attorneys were hired to focus on climate change issues.

While the effort has many layers, in general it begins with Bloomberg’s funding of a specialty school within New York University’s School of Law, the The Center’s website states that part of their mission is to work “with interested attorneys general to identify and hire NYU Law Fellows who serve as special assistant attorneys general in state attorney general offices, focusing on clean energy, climate and environmental matters.”

However, the center also pays the salaries when the “special assistant attorneys general” (SAAG) are taken on at an attorney general’s office (OAG). Horner’s report suggests these efforts are at best unethical, and often times illegal.

For example, Oregon law gives the attorney general wide latitude in hiring assistant attorneys, but the law also states that, “each assistant shall receive the salary fixed by the Attorney General, payable as other state salaries are paid.”

The legal analysis by the legislature’s office of legal counsel obtained by the Washington Free Beacon determined that the SAAG working in the Oregon Department of Justice “is not receiving a salary fixed by the Attorney General, and his salary is not paid as other state salaries are paid. This arrangement does not comply with [Oregon Revised Statute] 180.140 (4).”

Full story

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

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