As Pensioners struggle to heat homes Energy boss reveals 1500 pound-a-minute profits

Posted: November 18, 2012 by tallbloke in Carbon cycle, Energy, flames, Robber Barons

From the Daily Record, something which won’t be forgotten.

SCOTLAND’S biggest energy company have announced profits of nearly £1500 a minute – weeks after hitting their customers with inflation-busting price rises.

SSE, parent company of Scottish Hydro, made £397.5million – up 38 per cent on the same period last year – in the six months to September.

They told their five million electricity and 2.4million gas customers a month ago that their bills were going up by an average of nine per cent.

Ninety-year-old Lily Kennedy, one of thousands of hard-up Scots pensioners struggling to pay SSE’s bills, said:

When I found out about these profits, it made me feel sick.

Politicians and consumer groups lined up to condemn SSE’s profits, but company chairman Lord Smith of Kelvin dismissed their protests. He said:

While some observers may choose to criticise SSE for making a profit and paying a dividend, I believe profit and dividend allow SSE to employ people, pay tax, provide services customers need and make investments that keep the lights on and create jobs.

Smith added that paying dividends gave shareholders, such as pension funds, “an income return that they need”.

SSE made their huge profits before insisting last month that they had no choice but to raise prices for their customers.

_______________________________________________

I think Lord Smith of Kelvin probably needs to listen to Lily, before an angry mob turns up on his doorstep to put his lights out.

90 year old Lily Kennedy. Struggling to heat her home.

Comments
  1. kim2ooo says:

    Reblogged this on Climate Ponderings and commented:
    Add your thoughts here… (optional)

  2. Bryan says:

    This whole area’s a web of backhanders and regulatory ignorance.

    The Government….. INSTRUCTS…… SSE to build windmills to replace the ‘pollutant’ CO2 coal fired power stations.

    SSE says OK but it will cost you.

    Freeloading Windmill manufacturers, Greenpeace unsophisticates, several pressure groups push the politicians into accepting crazy targets for the crazy policy.

    Do politicians have any idea of the cost implications?…..Rhetorical question!

    So if SSE say the bill is X £billion pounds the government have no idea if they are being overcharged.

    Other crazy schemes give affluent bungalow dwellers big subsidies to put solar panels on their roofs.
    This is paid for by poorer tenement dwellers in the cities who cannot join the scam.

    Landlords get millions to site windmills on their land.

    The net result is uncontrolled rise in fuel bills and a shift of money from poor people to rich people

  3. oldbrew says:

    It’s the same story in Germany, 10%+ rises all round.

    http://www.thelocal.de/money/20121115-46199.html

    ‘The increases have been described as the biggest ever seen in generally price-stable Germany’

  4. Gamecock says:

    Companies are always the villains. Politicians are always the good guys.

    Without proper education of economics, the people will continue in this belief. The politicians are in charge of education.

  5. tallbloke says:

    Hi Gamecock. I don’t know where you are based, but there’s a price fixing scandal emerging here. That’s not a free market, it’s a cartel. The average household energy bill is now up to £1350/annum, doubling the 2007 spend. thats a substantial proportion of low incomes. People are starting to trade-off between eating and staying warm.

    But the Green tax element of that double bill went up from ~90 to ~150 in the same period. So you can see that by far the biggest part of the rise is down to the energy companies. How much of this is legitimate due to rising global energy market prices is the question at issue.

  6. Zeke says:

    The energy companies have been forced and induced by government to add the worthless wind turbines. The wind turbines in turn have added price volatility, intermittent supply, subsidies, and “constraint payments” back to wind turbine owners – which are far above the going national rate – to all electricity generation.

    The next step that will be called for is the installation of smart meters on homes in all of Europe. These are not just meters; they are really a system of remote control specific even down to every appliance.

    Stories like this will be used to create an outcry for a new grid and smart meters.

    Smart meters are being designed to withstand 960CELSIUS temps so that there can be NO TAMPERING. This is particularly fiendish because there are already technological breakthroughs in energy which would give individual homes all the power they use and no need whatsoever to be on the grid and under remote surveillance and control. And it is also devilish, because the wind turbines were introduced in the first place by a gov’t policy, which destroyed national energy costs and supply. Smart meters are not smart and they are not meters.

  7. J Martin says:

    Zeke


    “because there are already technological breakthroughs in energy which would give individual homes all the power they use and no need whatsoever to be on the grid”

    Some links for that would be most appreciated.

  8. Ruth Dixon says:

    And for the customers who thought that green tariffs would protect them against fuel price rises… an 11% price rise (from British Gas):

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/oct/12/british-gas-green-energy-prices

    “Even with subsidies for technology such as onshore and offshore wind, which add about £20 on average to all energy bills, British Gas said it was more expensive to get electricity from UK renewables.”

  9. tallbloke says:

    Ruth: Welcome.

    Zeke: Rossi seems to have been quiet, what’s happening?

  10. Doug Proctor says:

    Unfortunately the Big Business aristocracy really see the lower and middle class as a group to be tolerated while the Important People do things of, well, importance. They throw us the fop of giving us jobs, sort of like letting us have the curds and whey while they savour the cheese because they have the sensitiveness to enjoy cheese.

    Taking all the profit from the lower classes so you can employ more of them to do the same is so self-serving, because nowhere in this does the spiral close into a circle. All of this actiivity provides more profits for the owners, more pleasure activitiy, security and opportunities for self-advancement for those at the top, while maintaining a work-to-live position for the non-privileged.

    I hate to sound anti-capitalist, because I am not, but when you rage against the solipsism of the overlords, that’s how it comes to sound. I have no problem with profit, in fact profit is the reason all of us work harder than we have to. If everything we do keeps us at the level of having to work to live, then our incentive is to minimize the effort. Profit keeps each of us at the millstone an extra hour.

    Conrad Black of Canada (sort of) is the epitome of the capitalist buzzard. This Lord Smith, with his statements, feeds at the same table as Black.

    The point is not to beggar your neighbour as you get ahead. Reasonable profits from the labours of others is a good concept, not a concept that says squeezing the lemon as hard as you can is part of it.

    Calgary, Alberta, has a publicly owned energy facility. They boast of large profits when they hit us with high energy costs shortly after their costs of purchase drop (natural gas glut here, not cost-of-production drop). The system is philosophically flawed everywhere.

  11. tallbloke says:

    Rupert Murdoch weighs in on twitter:

    Rupert Murdoch ‏@rupertmurdoch
    LNG halves carbon emissions. So stop wasting billions on windmills now! On climate change, China is the whole game.

  12. J Martin says:

    According to the Ecat website;

    “The ECAT 1 MW Plant is available for pre-ordering now with an estimated delivery time of 3 months. The first generation of ECAT Home products will be available in 2013. “

  13. Gamecock says:

    tallbloke says:
    November 18, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    Hi Gamecock. I don’t know where you are based, but there’s a price fixing scandal emerging here. That’s not a free market, it’s a cartel. The average household energy bill is now up to £1350/annum, doubling the 2007 spend. thats a substantial proportion of low incomes. People are starting to trade-off between eating and staying warm.

    But the Green tax element of that double bill went up from ~90 to ~150 in the same period. So you can see that by far the biggest part of the rise is down to the energy companies. How much of this is legitimate due to rising global energy market prices is the question at issue.

    =====================================================================

    Thanks, Roger. I’m on the other side of the pond.

    Over here, monopolistic power utilities have a guaranteed rate of return. As their cost environment changes, they go to the rate commission and present their case. If the commission agrees with the power companies’ numbers, rate increases are approved. A strange result is that there really can’t be cost savings: if a way to save is implemented, a rate increase will be justified.

    We have far less of the “as Pensioners struggle to heat homes” crap. The implication is that business should be run for benefit of people on the margins. The assumption that the power company will always be there gives rise such decadent irrelevance. A financially healthy power utility is of infinitely greater importance to society. It is in their profits that they can provide power for everyone.

    We aren’t immune from regulatory decadence. The state here recently placed a rule on the local hydro electric dam operator that they must manage outflow for the benefit of downstream kayakers. The greatest single asset in the area’s economy must be managed for kayakers.

    Things you mention, price fixing/cartel, etc., are things going on in your local market that I’m not familiar with. But “pensioners struggle” is a red herring, an emotional appeal to ignorance. Lily Kennedy is nothing more than a prop. Scots should be damn happy that their power company is making a profit. If it is “excessive,” the marketplace will respond.

  14. J Martin says:

    Gamecock said “If it is “excessive,” the marketplace will respond.”

    Then why do pensioners freeze to death in greater numbers in the UK than in Russia or the US ?

    When it comes to power in the UK we have cartels and government dictat, certainly no market place.

  15. tallbloke says:

    Sounds like the rate commission in the U.S. is doing a fairer job than the UK govt to me.
    For Gamecocks information there were around 17,000 excess cold related deaths in 2010 in a population 1/4 that of the U.S.

    £240 million dished out to shareholders in a recession where many people are deciding whether to eat or heat is not acceptable in my view. Especially when our share of the generating system got sold off into private hands without a by your leave or any kind of purchase agreement. It was simply stolen from all of us. State sanctioned theft is still theft.

  16. Stephen Richards says:

    It’s not so much about the profits they will be needed for future energy technology, whatever that turns out to be. It’s what these pigs pay themselves because they have made such good profits.

  17. tallbloke says:

    Stephen Richards: Indeed, snouts pushed firmly in the trough.
    Meanwhile blaming green taxes, even though the rise in green taxes since 1997 is less than a tenth of the rise in household bills:

    http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/business/energy_and_environment/article1165007.ece

  18. Zeke says:

    Tallbloke, inre Rossi update:

    He had a third party verification and presented the results, which I watched on Youtube. It is very detailed, including the black paint that was developed just for his device. There are many breaks as he is asked to say everything in Italian after presenting in English. I was surprised to learn that his recent prototype operates on Natural Gas. He is running tests for continual operation at higher temps, 1200C and above. COP 6. The structure of the device is a cylinder within a cylinder. (!)

    May I please share this quote, which I got from his journal of nuclear physics website, where he comments often? Whichever side of the cold fusion issue people find themselves on, there is a double standard within the scientific community regarding heroic efforts and spending for hot fusion. Meanwhile the DOE declared cold fusion to be a mistake and impossible within one year.

    Andrea Rossi says:
    “Can also happen that new difficulties raise, so a delay comes up. The NUCLEAR FUSION ( ITER and the likewise) scientists had foreseen to put their plant in operation 20 years ago. After 100 billions of (taxpayer’s) money, they today foresee that perhaps they will have a plant in operation in the next 50 years, after further hundreds of billion dollars, and the scientific context is comfortable with this. Their present target is COP 1.1; we published our work in 2009 ( see Focardi-Rossi paper on this Journal). After 3 years and few millions ( of our private company, no public funding requested, no taxpayer money spent) we are manufacturing ( completely at our risks) plants of 1 MW, one of which will go in operation within February 2013 and will be exposed to the public after a period of operation ( 2-3 months). The plant will be put in the concern of a major world holding, which has signed with us an extremely important contract. The plant will heat a fluid. No electricity will be produced in the first plant, because the Customer wants to make thermal energy with the forst application,but obviously, due to the high temperature we are now able to reach, the coupling with turbines in a Carnot cycle is possible and will surely be made by the same Customer in the next plants. We still guarantee COP 6, even if the supposition that the COP can be increased is not groundless. The self sustained mode happens for approximatively the 50% of the operational time, regulated by a new concept remotely governed control system. Well, after all this, somebody talks of infinite delays…well, allow me to say that some scientific context sometimes gives the impression not to be very scientific. We don’t bother, anyway, just work.
    As you can see, the answers are not confidential.
    Warm Regards,
    A.R.”

  19. Gamecock says:

    Sounds like y’all have a real mess over there.

    I’m shocked that a country 1/4 the size of the U.S. – about 75,000,000 people – would stand by and let thousands of people die of cold.

    I’m suspicious of “excess cold related deaths.” My internet search for the phrase got 18 hits, most from Tallbloke.

    Once you get this rate business straight, I expect to hear the pensioners’ landlords, doctors, petrol station owners, grocery store owners, barbers, etc., all demonized because of the effect their profits are having on the poor pensioners.

    Anyway, I don’t have a dog in this fight. Good luck getting it fixed.

    . . . . . . . . .

    “the rate commission in the U.S.” There are multiple public utility commissions; each state has its own. The Feds aren’t involved.

  20. tallbloke says:

    Gamecock: I’m suspicious of “excess cold related deaths.” My internet search for the phrase got 18 hits, most from Tallbloke.

    A couple of examples:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/oct/22/older-people-cold-energy-bills

    Two hundred people, most of them elderly, will die in Britain of cold-related diseases every day this winter, according to calculations by Britain’s leading advocacy group for old people, Age UK.

    “The fact that these ‘excess’ deaths occur in winter makes it clear that they are due directly to cold,” the organisation’s research manager, Philip Rossall, said. “And the fact that other, colder countries have lower excess winter deaths means that there is no reason that they are not preventable.”

    Age UK’s special adviser for policy, Mervyn Kohler, asked: “Why is this not a national scandal?” There were 26,156 excess winter deaths during 2009-10, with figures for 2010-11 to be published next month. “There is no reason to suppose that the worsening trend will not continue,” said Kohler.

    The charity’s figure of 200 deaths a day follows sharp price hikes by energy companies, credited with driving inflation to its highest level in 20 years. At the same time, a report by Britain’s leading academic expert on poverty and inequality, Professor John Hills of the London School of Economics, found a deepening “fuel poverty gap”.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1332343/Nine-pensioners-died-cold-hour-winter-prices-soar.html

    Nine elderly people died every hour from cold-related illnesses last winter against a background of soaring energy bills.
    Official figures show the number of deaths linked to cold over the four-month period reached 25,400 in England and Wales, plus 2,760 in Scotland.
    Charities and energy company critics claim the UK has the highest winter death rate in northern Europe, even worse than much colder countries such as Finland and Sweden.

  21. Entropic man says:

    Behind this is political philosophy. The Left tend to redistribute the wealth until its all gone. The Right are good at encouraging wealth creation, but are reluctant to redistribute enough of it.

    The trick is to find the middle way, in which power companies can be profitable, while their taxes subsidise poor old ladies.

    We may not be there yet. Turnover of old nuclear and coal power station capacity into new builds of whatever type is negative at present with a UK power shortage looming in the next decade. If you think the death rate from fuel poverty is high now, wait until the power outages start!

    The reason? Power companies do not see it as profitable investment.

    Behind this is oil and gas supply. The cheap oil has gone. The new fields coming online and under development are only viable because the price of oil is high and will remain so. Ditto for gas.

    There is no longer such a thing as cheap energy. Whether oil, nuclear, gas or renewables, energy is now an expensive commodity. The solution to fuel poverty is not going to be keeping the energy price too low to be profitable, that just kills investment in production and generation infrastructure.
    The solution will have to be diverting social funding to subsidise those who need it.

  22. Gamecock says:

    “Nine elderly people died every hour from cold-related illnesses last winter against a background of soaring energy bills.”

    Correlation is not causation.

    The problem isn’t “soaring energy bills.” The problem is elderly people with no money in a money economy.

    Again, I hope Scotland can come to an equitable solution. I am descended from Ulster-Scots, and have a Scottish surname.

  23. tallbloke says:

    Entropic: What shortage of gas?

    Centrica is expected to turn its back on building new nuclear power stations in Britain and instead focus its expansion on US shale gas. Executives believe there are not enough incentives to develop offshore wind projects and plan to invest in the US shale boom. With higher profit margins and shale gas offering huge opportunities, Centrica believes it is better to invest in the US. The company is planning to buy billions of pounds worth of cheap shale gas from the US over the next few years to give Britain greater energy independence. –Tom McGhie and Lisa Buckingham, Mail on Sunday, 18 November 2012 (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/markets/article-2234448/Centrica-abandon-nuclear-plants-Britain.html)

    Gamecock: “The problem is elderly people with no money in a money economy.”

    Sure, greedy exploitative wankers like Lord Smith of Kelvin and his shareholders don’t help though.

  24. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “Entropic: What shortage of gas?”

    The shortage is not of gas, but the cheap gas we became used to when it came out of the North Sea. Now it comes from Russia or Quatar and we pay through the nose in terms of production costs, delivery and lack of energy security.

    Shale gas is also available, and will help, though it is only viable in the current high price environment.

    The UK gas companies have to buy on the world market, at the world price and, to remain viable, have to sell it on to their customers at a price which covers their costs and gives enough profit to make their investment worth the effort.

    None of this helps those like Lily Kennedy who are unable to pay what has perforce become the going rate for gas.

  25. tallbloke says:

    The going rate plus a greedy cut for Lord Smith and co.

  26. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    You live in a money economy.

    You expect private companies to invest in gas infrastructure, buy gas and supply it to you.

    The companies and their investors expect to make a profit on their investment. If they do not make a profit, they shut down and nobody gets any gas.

    The government expects to tax that profit and use it to subsidise Lily Kennedy’s fuel bill.

    I’m surprised that you are so economically naive.

    I’ve the 2011 figures here.

    http://www.sse.com/uploadedFiles/Pages/14_Investors/SSE_2011_FullYearResultsStatement.pdf

    Headline figures:-

    Scottish Hydro earned £1.3bn profit on total revenues of £29bn. On that they paid £270m in tax.That’s a return of 3.6%, about what you’d expect from a good building society account. In the same year their investment and capital spending was £1.4bn.

    If they are trying to profiteer it doesn’t seem to be working.

  27. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    I beg your pardon. The figures above are for Scottish and Southern Energy, which owns Scottish Hydro. The basic argument remains unchanged.

  28. tallbloke says:

    Interesting. According to the figures in the headline post
    “SSE, parent company of Scottish Hydro, made £397.5million – up 38 per cent on the same period last year – in the six months to September.”
    You can see why the big prices increases always come just before folk need to turn their heating on for the winter.

    And why the power companies collude to fix prices at that time of year.

    And entropic thinks I’m the one who is “economically naive”.

    I suspect he understands fuel-price variation about as well as he understands climate variation. :)

  29. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “I suspect he understands fuel-price variation about as well as he understands climate variation.”

    Curious . I was thinking the same about you :-)

    “You can see why the big prices increases always come just before folk need to turn their heating on for the winter.”

    Any company has an obligation to maximise income for its shareholders. Their room to manoeuvre is defined by laws, regulators and the market. If you object to the legal and regulatory limits currently in operation, lobby the politicians to change the law or the operating parameters of the regulator. Not a lot you can do to change the world market.

    “And why the power companies collude to fix prices at that time of year.”

    Now THAT is illegal. Remember the British Airways and Virgin Atlantic case.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/9213267/British-Airways-fined-58.5m-for-fuel-price-fixing.html

    If you have enough evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the power companies are doing the same, give it to the police. Make sure you can show that any price similarities are because of collusion, and not because the same market forces are acting on all players.

  30. tallbloke says:

    Entropic man says:
    November 19, 2012 at 11:43 pm
    tallbloke
    “I suspect he understands fuel-price variation about as well as he understands climate variation.”
    Curious . I was thinking the same about you :)

    Says the man who can’t see/won’t admit that the multi-decadal oceanic cycles are influencing Earth’s surface temperature…

  31. tallbloke says:

    roger harrabin ‏@RogerHarrabin

    We have neglected energy infrastructure since privatisation. To keep lights on we need to spend £100bn+ by 2020. It will go on bills

    Rog Tallbloke ‏@rogtallbloke

    @RogerHarrabin We have neglected? We need to spend? Its privatised responsibility!

    _______________________

    So Thatcher steals the power industry from the public who legally owned it, sells it to her mates, then instead of investing profits in infrastructure, they ramp up prices, pay themselves greedy salaries and fat dividends, and then expect the public they’ve ripped off to pay for the maintenance of the system they have neglected?

    Are these people for real?

    Hopefully, Entropic Man, apologist for the kleptocracy, will be along to explain. :)

  32. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “Says the man who can’t see/won’t admit that the multi-decadal oceanic cycles are influencing Earth’s surface temperature…”

    Straw man! I am quite happy to accept that there is some influence of ocean cycles on short term natural variation. ENSO has demonstrable effects on rainfall and temperature in equatorial areas around the world, and peak AMO is probably one factor in the recent Arctic melting. What you have failed to demonstrate to me is that these cycles are SUFFICIENT to drive the changes seen since 1880.

    “Hopefully, Entropic Man, apologist for the kleptocracy, will be along to explain”

    What’s to explain? This is how our our civilization operates.
    I’m sorry if this offends your socialist principles. Feel free to nationalise it again if you think the government can run the power indusrtry better. While doing so, please explain where the government funding for all those new power stations would come from, and how they will be able to buy oil and gas dear and sell it cheap.

  33. Richard of NZ (once of Yorkshire) says:

    Entropic Man,

    I would challenge your “profitability” of a company as being a return on income. When I did a little bit of accounting many years ago, profitability was a function of investment, which usually manifests as infrastructure. Items such as wages, maintainence and depreciation are either not taxed or a tax benefit.

    Unless SSE has an infrastructure value of ~30 billion quid your noted “profitability” is totally misleading. If it is as much as 10 billion quid the profitability rises to 11.4% after tax, which if indeed pensioners are freezing to death through high energy prices is obscene. If the value is even less as I would presume, the rate of obscenity rises rapidily.

  34. tallbloke says:

    Entropic, thank you for the clear demonstration of your myopia when it comes to understanding the words multi-decadal.

    I’m not a socialist by the way, just an ordinary person who has no problem recognising theft, usury, greed and fraud for what they are.

  35. ferdberple says:

    J Martin says:
    November 18, 2012 at 8:37 pm
    Gamecock said “If it is “excessive,” the marketplace will respond.”
    ============
    Simple test. How many different companies can you buy your power from? If you are like most of us, there is only 1 power company and 1 gas company and if you don’t like their prices the only option you have is to turn the power off and freeze to death.

    Every day power is bought and sold on the grid. You should be able to buy from whatever company is offering the lowest price that day. With computers and smart meters, why not? You should not be forced to buy from you local supplier, while they are free to buy from the lowest bidder.

  36. Entropic man says:

    Richard of NZ(once of Yorkshire)

    “Unless SSE has an infrastructure value of ~30 billion quid your noted “profitability” is totally misleading.”

    SSE’s 2011 report quoted an investment and capital value of £21bn, which would give profitability of 6.5% before tax, 5% after tax by your measure.
    My son reminds me that assets depreciate by 5% per year and you nedd 5% return just to finance replacement of assets.

  37. Entropic man says:

    Richard of NZ(once of Yorkshire)

    “pensioners … freezing to death through high energy prices is obscene”

    Pensioners freezing to death because they cannot pay high energy prices is obscene. However, artificially forcing UK energy prices down until the industry becomes unprofitable has too many knock-on effects to be a safe solution. I would prefer something socially based like extended Winter fuel payments.to those needing help with fuel bills.

    I note today’s news that the UK government has had to borrow an extra £2bn in October bcause of a 10% drop in income from Corporation Tax.

    The country needs profitable companies to provide the tax income to finance Winter Fuel Payments to old ladies.

  38. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “Entropic, thank you for the clear demonstration of your myopia when it comes to understanding the words multi-decadal.”

    This is not the place for a discussion of cycles. When the opportunity comes up on another thread , can discuss this properly. Do you have a post where your cycle hypothesis is clearly described and enumerated?

    “I’m not a socialist by the way, just an ordinary person who has no problem recognising theft, usury, greed and fraud.”

    I just did a bit of research on the Daily Record. It donates £ 10,000 a year to the Labour Party and has a left of centre bias. I read the article you cite and recognise that style of tabloid journalism from past encounters. It gives a large number as the profit for a company, without putting it in context. It gives an emotionally loaded description of one person’s plight and then makes a dubious cause and effect link between the two. A company representative is selectively quoted to make them appear uncaring.
    You would seem to have been reacting to a piece of Labour propoganda.

  39. tallbloke says:

    Entropic: It’s my blog, I discuss what I want to discuss, when I want to discuss it. You ducked and ran from the inevitable conclusion that the positive phases of ~60 year oceanic cycles must have made a significant contribution to the late C20th warming on Richard Courtney’s thread, which was an entirely appropriate place to discuss it. So I will continue to pursue you with the issue everywhere you post from now on.

    Have you any idea how much the windfarmers have been donating to the political parties? Isn’t one of Camoron’s in laws making a fortune out of the scam? The unsustainable carbon levies and fuel price hikes imposed by the privatised energy industry on people like Lily Kennedy are the real problem. I’ve been highlighting the plight of pensioners freezing in their homes for several years, not just since I read this news item.

    Your acceptance of the green dogma peddled by political parties of all colours tells me you are more a victim of propaganda than I am.

  40. Zeke says:

    When we talk about “profits,” it is very important to look at the number in terms of profit made per dollar (or pound as the case may be) invested or spent. The actual profit means nothing until you quantify it as a ratio.

    To illustrate, here in the US, we have giant companies that serve many many customers, such as oil cos or department stores. Their profits are in the billions, which is the subject of much ire from certain activists. But it really is made by spending 1.00, and keeping anywhere from .01 to .09 of that amount. And the customers were all voluntary.

    Now, when we criticize profits without quantifying that .01 – .09 is too much, it makes a very obscure discussion. I do not think that many of us really, in our heart of hearts, wants to restrict profits per dollar like that. I do not want to tell someone that making .01 – .09 profit per dollar is too much. And I do not want to tell someone that they must relinquish 40% to 50% of what they make. That is the violation of the minority that is hidden in the silly pathetic phrase, “tax the wealthy.” We all give up half of what we make the instant we agree to do that to only some citizens.,

  41. Zeke says:

    Sorry: That is, “making” any where from .01 – .o9 after that amount.

    Microsoft makes .20/1.00, or close.

    – Keeping in mind that from that profit, development and production of new electronic devices and programs are financed.

  42. Entropic man says:

    Zeke

    “The actual profit means nothing until you quantify it as a ratio.”

    Agreed. The British tabloids have a habit of presenting news stories like this in sensational terms, giving raw profit figures and inviting their readers to make simplistic judgements based on them. Its a form of political rabble rousing and too many people fall for it.
    They get hot under the collar about profit without realising that it is business profits which finance public spending. The Corporation Tax from SSE and other businesses pays for tallbloke’s salary and my pension.

  43. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “Entropic: It’s my blog, I discuss what I want to discuss, when I want to discuss it. You ducked and ran from the inevitable conclusion that the positive phases of ~60 year oceanic cycles must have made a significant contribution to the late C20th warming on Richard Courtney’s thread, which was an entirely appropriate place to discuss it. So I will continue to pursue you with the issue everywhere you post from now on.”

    As you wish. First I need a clear idea of your hypothesis. Do you have a post where it is explicitely described?

    Immediate questions would be;-

    Why is your conclusion INEVITABLE?

    Why MUST oceanic cycles make a significant contribution to 20th century warming?

    What proportion of the total warming do you claim as due to oceanic cycles? How big is “significant”? 1% 10% 50% 100%?

    Do you have figures for the origins and amounts of energy stored during the upake phases of ENSO and AMO, and the amount and rates of release during their surface temperature peaks? Ideally I would like to see an ocean/atmosphere energy budget quantifying the energy flows you postulate. Such processes need terawatt scale energy flows. I would like to see numbers.

    Why, if it is all in the cycles, do previous peaks of AMO, presumanbly in the 1940s,1880s, 1820s and 1760s show much less warming than the current peak?

  44. tallbloke says:

    Entropic Man:
    Why is your conclusion INEVITABLE?

    Because nature will have its way despite your obfuscation

    Why MUST oceanic cycles make a significant contribution to 20th century warming?

    They already did, and will continue to.

    What proportion of the total warming do you claim as due to oceanic cycles? How big is “significant”? 1% 10% 50% 100%?

    About 30%

    Do you have figures for the origins and amounts of energy stored during the upake phases of ENSO and AMO, and the amount and rates of release during their surface temperature peaks?

    No. But then, neither do the modellers.

    Ideally I would like to see an ocean/atmosphere energy budget quantifying the energy flows you postulate. Such processes need terawatt scale energy flows. I would like to see numbers.

    So would I. Do you think the current crop of climatologists are in a hurry to work them out and provide them?

    Why, if it is all in the cycles, do previous peaks of AMO, presumanbly in the 1940s,1880s, 1820s and 1760s show much less warming than the current peak?

    They didn’t.The 1910-1945 rise in temperature was of similar duration and magnitude to the modern warming.

    If you continue to act dumb, you’ll get treated like a dummy. Dummies don’t last long around here.

  45. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “must” “inevitable” This isnt a political debate. Leave the rhetoric and concentrate on the evidence.

    If you only attribute 30% of the 20th century temperature change to ocean cycles we may be closer to agreement than I realised. I was under the impression that you were claiming 100%.There are signs in the temperature record of an approximately 5 year periodicity which may be due to ENSO ans some sign of a warming blip in the 1880s and 1940s. but they are both around 0.1C and neither sustained.

    The problem with a cycle is that it is energy neutral. If the 1910 to 1945 rise in temperature was due to AMO and the latter 20th century warming was caused by the same cycle, where did the extra energy to drive the second warming phase come from? If AMO is the pump, what’s powering the pump?

    The information we need should be somewhere about. The ENSO modellers should have it, if nobody else.If the energy budget information is not available elsewhere, I’ll try some estimates and get back to you.

  46. Entropic man says:

    This is a first pass energy budget. It makes a number of simplifying assumptions, the main one being that 30% of atmospheric global warming from 1960 is due to changes in the AMO. You should be able to suggest modifications to improve further iterations.

    First, the energy required to warm the atmosphere:-

    Mass of atmosphere 5.12 * 10^18 kg
    Specific heat capacity of atmosphere 1.006kJ/kg/C

    To warm the entire atmosphere by 1C requires 5.12 * 10^18 * 1.006 = 5.15 * 10^18 kJ

    To produce the 0.65C measured since 1960 required 5.15 * 10^18 * 0.65 = 3.35 * 10^18 kJ.

    Now the energy required to cool the North Atlantic:-

    Area of North Atlantic 1.06 * 10^8 km
    Volume to 700M depth 1.06 * 0.7 = 7.45 * 10^7 cu km
    Mass of North Atlantic to 700M 7.45 * 10^19 kg

    Specific heat capacity of seawater 3.9kJ/kg/C

    To warm or cool the North Atlantic by 1C requires a change of 7.45 *10^19 * 3.9 = 2.89 *10^20 kJ.

    If the North Atlantic released enough energy to produce 30% of 0.65C atmospheric warming it would cool by
    0.3 * (3.35 *10^18)/ (2.89 * 10^20) = 3.48 *10^-3C

    .

    That’s not at all bad. If it was only an interaction between the North Atlantic and the atmosphere, the sea temperature changerequired would be almost too small to measure. Now I have to go back and calculate the changes due to warming of the land and the rest of the oceans.

  47. tallbloke says:

    Entropic, your budget needs to include the drop in cloud cover. The ocean warmed the atmosphere, the sun warmed the ocean. Figures later, I’m on a phone keyboard here.

  48. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    Bear with me.Let me finish the basic calculation, then we can discuss refinements.

    On to warming of the rest of the ocean:-

    To increase the rest of the oceans down to 700M in proportion (30% of a 0.65C change) would need an energy input of

    ((3 *10^8 -1.06 *10^8)/1.06 * 10^8) * 2.89 *10^20 *0.65 *0.3 =1.08 * 10^20 kJ

    This is equivalent to a North Atlantic temperature change of (1.08 *10^20) / 2.89 * 10^20 = 0.375C

    Now the land. To simplify I will assume that the top 1M warms and is made of basalt with a specific heat capacity of 1.0kJ/kg/C.

    Land area 1.48 * 10^8 km^2
    Volume of land warmed = 1.48 *10^8 *10^-3 * 10^9= 1.48 * 10^5km^3 or 1.48 * 10^14 M^3.

    Density of basalt 3.0 * 10^3 kg/M^3

    Total mass of land surface is 3.0 * 10^3 *1.48 * 10^14 = 4.44 * 10^17 kg

    Specific heat of basalt 1.0 kJ/kg/C

    Total heat required to heat land by 30% of 0.65C

    4.44 * 10^17 * 1.0 * 0.3 * 0.65 = 8.6 * 10^16 kJ

    This is equivalent to a North Atlantic temperature change of

    (8.6 * 10^16) / (2.89 * 10^20) = 2.48 * 10^-3C

  49. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    Pulling it all together.

    If 30% of the 0.65C warming since 1960 were due to the AMO the North Atlantic would need to absorb and then release a total of 3.35 * 10^18 + 1.08 * 10^20 + 8.6 * 10^16 = 1.11 *10^20kj.

    This would be equivalent to the North Atlantic changing temperature by 0.38C.

    If your hypothesis and the assumptions behind this calculation are valid, and no secondary forcing takes place, the AMO would warm and cool by 0.38C on an approximately 64 year cycle. That’s a signal that should be detectable in the sea temperature records.

    Over to you. Calculate the effect of cloud cover and any other secondary forcings you feel necessary, then go and look at the North Atlantic SST record.

    These figures make your hypothesis a lot more feasible than I’d expected. I’ll be interested to see what your calculations and data analysis show.

  50. tallbloke says:

    Entropic Man.
    These figures make your hypothesis a lot more feasible than I’d expected. I’ll be interested to see what your calculations and data analysis show.

    Thank you. I did some related calculations around 4 years ago looking at the amount of energy the ocean must have absorbed in order to expand by the amount required to produce the steric component of the change in sea level the IPCC said has occurred according to the Colorado interpretation of the satellite altimetry data.

    I have steadily been developing that and incorporating estimates of the amplification of the solar signal by the reduction in cloud cover to arrive at this.


    Some notes on the model here: http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/10/23/the-carbon-flame-war-final-comment/

    Now, The AMO oscillation is around +/-0.25C and if you look at the raw, non-detrended data, you can see the ocean surface has been warming and cooling on a ~60 year cycle with an underlying positive trend since long before co2 allegedly started its dastardly work.


    Data here: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/data/timeseries/AMO/ choose the unaltered series.
    Useful page: http://www.climate4you.com/SeaTemperatures.htm

    Some numbers later, I have a carpet to fit in my master bedroom.

  51. Bryan says:

    No end in sight for year on year huge increases in energy bills.

    “Energy firms will be allowed to triple the amount of money they add to customers’ bills to pay for renewable power, nuclear and other environmental measures, under plans to be announced by the government next week. The deal over a new energy bill, struck after weeks of sometimes bitter negotiations between the coalition partners, will mean the total amount energy suppliers can add to domestic and business bills will rise from £2.35bn this year to nearly £10bn at the end of this decade. Adjusting for inflation that would be worth £7.6bn in today’s prices, an increase of nearly three times. [The Guardian]”

  52. richardscourtney says:

    tallbloke:

    Some years ago (in 2006) I had the honour of being asked to provide an Annual Prestigious Lecture. Despite its age, its analysis is still very relevant to this thread especially in light of the announcement on Energy Policy made by UK Government today.

    Its title is “A suggestion for meeting the UK Government’s renewable energy target because the adopted use of windfarms cannot meet it”.

    It can be read at

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/courtney_2006_lecture.pdf

    I think it contains much information of direct relevance to this thread. Its Snyopsis says;

    “The UK Energy White Paper was published by the UK’s Department of Trade and Industry
    (DTI) in May 2003. It proposed the objective of a contribution to reduction of carbon dioxide
    (CO2) emissions by use of ‘renewables’ mostly in the form of windfarms (i.e. local assemblies
    of wind turbines) to provide 20% of UK electricity supply. This objective was endorsed by the
    UK’s Energy Review that was published by the DTI on 11 July 2006. However, this paper
    suggests the use of windfarms cannot make significant contribution to reducing the emissions
    and suggests the construction of tidal coffer dams instead. Windfarms for power generation
    provide intermittent power so they merely displace thermal power stations onto standby mode
    or to operate at reduced efficiency while the thermal power stations wait for the wind to
    change. They make no significant reduction to pollution because thermal power stations
    continue to use their fuel and to produce their emissions while operating in standby mode or
    with reduced efficiency that can increase their emissions at low output. And this need for
    continuously operating backup means that windfarms can only provide negligible useful
    electricity to electricity grid supply systems. But the large scale use of windfarms requires
    upgrading of an electricity grid, more complex grid management, and operation of additional
    thermal power stations to protect against power cuts in time of supply failure. These effects
    increase the cost of electricity supplied by the grid in addition to the capital, maintenance and
    operating costs of the windfarms themselves. And the windfarms cause significant
    environmental damage. Tidal coffer dams would not have these problems and could provide
    continuous and controllable power supply at similar cost to off-shore windfarms.”

    I hope this helps your discussion.

    Richard

  53. Entropic man says:

    richardscourtney

    Welcome back, Mr. Courtney. Please be assured that I was not put out by any hiatus in our discussion. We all have lives to lead. Arguing on science blogs is a hobby for me. It’s fun, but not more important than life or death, like golf :-). References to “spurious arguments” and insults from another commenter made me think that further discussion was being discouraged. Tallbloke later encouraged me to continue.

    I wish temperature changes came with labels saying what caused them. As it is, our differing interpretations of the temperature record will have to remain opinions. It is important, because our different interpretations require and preclude different climate drivers.If there was 95% confident data to back any one interpretation, I suppose we would not be arguing.

    That brings me to our second point. Lacking the time, expertise and resources to do large scale climate research, we are dependant on papers published by the professionals. Your attack on Trenberth and Douglas implies that you are unhappy with the peer review process validating climate research papers. In which case, where do we get reliable data?
    If all published climate change data is suspect, all argument is moot because none of us know what’s happening out there!

    Similarly, I would regard your use of the null hypothesis concept as inapproporiate.
    As a statistical convention it has a definate place. Hijacking it to label your own position as the null hypothesis and then insist that your opponent does all the work is not, I am sure, how Karl Popper intended it to be used.
    I am trying to establish my side of the argument by reference to published data, by calculation and by argument. Please do the same with your own position. You may regard it as the null hypothesis, but please defend it, rather than just sitting on it.

  54. richardscourtney says:

    Entropic Man:

    I take severe exception to some of your comments addressed to me in your post at November 24, 2012 at 6:52 pm, especially your writing this offensive and untrue nonsense,

    “Similarly, I would regard your use of the null hypothesis concept as inapproporiate.
    As a statistical convention it has a definate place. Hijacking it to label your own position as the null hypothesis and then insist that your opponent does all the work is not, I am sure, how Karl Popper intended it to be used.”

    SAY WHAT! ? HOW DARE YOU?
    I adhere rigidly to the scientific method, and I NEVER – not ever – “hijack” fundamental scientific principles: I APPLY THEM.

    I remind that in the other thread I wrote explaining the Null Hypothesis to you saying;

    “The Null Hypothesis says it must be assumed a system has not experienced a change unless there is evidence of a change.

    The Null Hypothesis is a fundamental scientific principle and forms the basis of all scientific understanding, investigation and interpretation. Indeed, it is the basic principle of experimental procedure where an input to a system is altered to discern a change: if the system is not observed to respond to the alteration then it has to be assumed the system did not respond to the alteration.

    In the case of climate science there is a hypothesis that increased greenhouse gases (GHGs, notably CO2) in the air will increase global temperature. There are good reasons to suppose this hypothesis may be true, but the Null Hypothesis says it must be assumed the GHG changes have no effect unless and until increased GHGs are observed to increase global temperature. That is what the scientific method decrees. It does not matter how certain some people may be that the hypothesis is right because observation of reality (i.e. empiricism) trumps all opinions.

    Please note that the Null Hypothesis is a hypothesis which exists to be refuted by empirical observation. It is a rejection of the scientific method to assert that one can “choose” any subjective Null Hypothesis one likes. There is only one Null Hypothesis: i.e. it has to be assumed a system has not changed unless it is observed that the system has changed.

    In the case of global climate no unprecedented climate behaviours are observed so the Null Hypothesis decrees that the climate system has not changed.

    Importantly, an effect may be real but not overcome the Null Hypothesis because it is too trivial for the effect to be observable. Human activities have some effect on global temperature for several reasons. An example of an anthropogenic effect on global temperature is the urban heat island (UHI). Cities are warmer than the land around them, so cities cause some warming. But the temperature rise from cities is too small to be detected when averaged over the entire surface of the planet, although this global warming from cities can be estimated by measuring the warming of all cities and their areas.

    Clearly, the Null Hypothesis decrees that UHI is not affecting global temperature although there are good reasons to think UHI has some effect. Similarly, it is very probable that AGW from GHG emissions are too trivial to have observable effects.”

    THAT IS HOW SCIENCE – REAL SCIENCE – IS DONE.
    It is you who is claiming the Null Hypothesis is merely some undefined “statistical convention”.

    As always, you have adopted the normal warmist practice of projecting your pseudoscientific practices onto others.

    You also say

    “I wish temperature changes came with labels saying what caused them. As it is, our differing interpretations of the temperature record will have to remain opinions. It is important, because our different interpretations require and preclude different climate drivers.If there was 95% confident data to back any one interpretation, I suppose we would not be arguing.”

    NO! The Null Hypothesis applies.

    In the other thread you said you think the cause of the LIA is not “CO2 driven” but the observed recovery from it is. And to explain that you there said,

    “The first is the Maunder minimum, the paucity of sunspots during the LIA, which suggests a prolonged quiet sun period and reduced solar insolation.”

    I replied to that saying,
    “OK. If it is assumed that the Maunder minimum induced the LIA then it is equally likely that the end of the the Maunder minimum induced the recovery from the LIA. Simply, your assertion is an objection to your claim that cooling to the LIA and recovery from it have different causes.”

    AND YOU CALL THAT REBUTTAL OF YOUR ASSERTION A MERE MATTER OF OPINION!
    No, it is not merely opinion: it is a matter of applying scientific logic which you try to evade by falsely claiming the Null Hypothesis is not a fundamental scientific principle.

    You also claimed

    “I contend that the LIA warming and the 20th century warming are separate events with different causes. In support, I submit the temperature data. This shows a global warming up to 1880, a constant or declining temperature to about 1910 and rising temperatures thereafter.
    I regard that 30 year hiatus from 1880 to 1910 as evidence that the post LIA warming stopped and was replaced by Milankovitch cooling.
    Human CO2 release then started a separate and independant temperature rise.”

    I refuted that contention by detailing the history of global temperature rise then asking you,
    “If your assertion were true then why was there no warming from 1940 to 1970 and after 2000? And why were those periods of no warming different from the period of no warming from 1880 to 1990?”

    YOU HAVE AVOIDED THOSE QUESTIONS.

    And I added,

    “The listed temperature history is consistent with a continuous recovery from the LIA combined with a cyclical warming/cooling with a 60-year cycle length. And there is no reason to suppose that CO2 was significantly involved. Indeed, the periods of no warming suggest that the continuous and exponential rise in CO2 was NOT significantly involved.”

    YOU HAVE AVOIDED THAT, TOO.

    You then write,

    “That brings me to our second point. Lacking the time, expertise and resources to do large scale climate research, we are dependant on papers published by the professionals. Your attack on Trenberth and Douglas implies that you are unhappy with the peer review process validating climate research papers. In which case, where do we get reliable data?”

    Firstly, I don’t know the “we” to whom you refer. Perhaps it is members of the cult of AGW?
    But I do know the “we” does not include me because I have published and do publish on climate matters in the peer reviewed literature.

    Peer review does not guarantee that the contents of a paper are ‘true’. And this is especially the case in climate science where members of the Team have perverted peer review by blocking publications (see e.g. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmselect/cmsctech/memo/climatedata/uc0102.htm ),
    have managed to remove an Editor of GRL who insisted on applying proper peer review procedures, and have attempted to get the Editor of E&E sacked from her University post because she refused to be intimidated by them.

    Incidentally, as a Member of the Editorial Board of E&E I fully understand what peer review does and does not do.

    You then assert

    “If all published climate change data is suspect, all argument is moot because none of us know what’s happening out there!”

    I am the one who is supporting the clear data which shows the ‘hot spot’ is missing and it is you who is claiming the twaddle from Trenberth should be accepted as evidence that the radiosonde and MSU data are both wrong.

    I remind you that I wrote

    “SCIENCE
    consists of finding the closest possible approximation to ‘truth’ by attempting to find evidence which refutes existing understanding(s) and altering the understanding(s) in the light of obtained evidence.

    PSEUDOSCIENCE
    consists of adopting an understanding as being ‘truth’ then attempting to find evidence which supports it while presenting excuses for ignoring evidence which refutes it.

    Trenberth 2006 and Douglass et al. 2007 are clear attempts at excuses for ignoring the evidence that the ‘hot spot’ is missing: as I said, it is hard to find a more clear example of pure pseudoscience than Trenberth 2006 (and Douglass et al. 2007).”

    You conclude with this offensive nonsense

    “I am trying to establish my side of the argument by reference to published data, by calculation and by argument. Please do the same with your own position. You may regard it as the null hypothesis, but please defend it, rather than just sitting on it.”

    I am making clear, scientific arguments. You are cherry-picking nonsense papers and saying they refute empirical reality.

    Richard

  55. Entropic man says:

    richardscourtney
    tallbloke

    I enjoyed your wind farm lecture.

    I live in Northern Ireland, which is wind farm heaven. The average wind speed is 20mph; the population density is low and there are hilltops everywhere you look. From Bessy Bell I can see about 300 megawatt of installed wind power.
    From Northern Ireland any power surplus can be exported to the Republic of Ireland or to Scotland.
    . Close by is Lough Braddon, a lough on a hilltop, with suitable low ground nearby for a machinery hall and a reservoir. It is only one of a number of ideal sites for pumped storage.

    I would regard your conclusion regarding the impracticabity of wind power as obsolete. A number of energy storage technologies are now available to overcome the intermittentcy and surge problems. These include hydrogen and hydrocarbon fuel generation, liquid batteries, liquid air production and pumped storage.

  56. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke.

    The near match between my back-of the-envelope calculation and the AMO cycle temperature variability is impressive. Too many ideas fail the thermodynamic test and turn out to be energetically impossible.

    The next stage is to discuss a viable mechanism by which the AMO and the atmosphere can exchange energy, and an explaination of why it is a six decade cycle. ( Who was it defined an engineer as a man who wants to know how it works and a scientist as a man who wants to know why it works?)

    Regarding your first graph, could you expand on the labelling of the different curves. I do not recognise the acronyms.

  57. Entropic man says:

    tallbloke

    “[Reply] I’ll leave this pending while you reply to Richard’s more important comment on the wider issues around theory.”

    This is the third time a blog comment of mine has triggered a diatribe from Mr. Courtney. On previous occasions I back-pedalled from areas where he was clearly sensitive.This time I feel I would have to stand my ground.

    Since a full and honest reply would likely get me thrown off the site, I had intended to diplomatically ignore his November 24th 8.57pm post.

    Also I Googled him today, which gave me some insight into why he wrote as he did. (He seems to get enough flak without me adding to it!). As I am a private citizen with no public reputation, he is unable to do the same for me.

    [Reply] Richards comment is not “diatribe” Entropic, it is cogent and logical reason and argument. Which you seem unable to respond to in like kind. If you are, then do so, I promise not to throw you off the site for your response. I will edit out off topic or abusive statements though. I suggest you make a list of the points Richard has made and enumerate them with your responses.

  58. tallbloke says:

    Entropic Man, I’ll assume you wish to spend more time mulling over Richard’s comment before making your considered response. In the mean time, I suggest you visit the link under the model plots, where you will find a more detailed explanation. I’ll be happy to answer your further questions after then.

  59. Entropic man:

    At November 25, 2012 at 5:19 pm you write saying to me

    “I would regard your conclusion regarding the impracticabity of wind power as obsolete. A number of energy storage technologies are now available to overcome the intermittentcy and surge problems. These include hydrogen and hydrocarbon fuel generation, liquid batteries, liquid air production and pumped storage.”

    That is absolutely untrue.

    Hydrogen is not a useful fuel. It is difficult to store and explosive if it escapes.

    Hydrocarbons exist as fossil fuels which are much, much cheaper than expensive windfarms.

    The batteries don’t work at the required storage capacities and charging/discharging rates.

    Pumped storage is explained in the lecture. Its usefulness for smoothing windpower output is negligible because the time of output is limited by storage capacity.

    In summation, there are NO energy storage systems capable of the required smoothing of windpower output. Indeed, if there were such a system then it would be used to match electricity supply to varying energy demand with resulting reduction in needed generating capacity of about a third. A reduction in needed power stations by about a third is an immense saving.

    In addition to that saving, adoption of such a storage system would remove any excuse for covering the landscape in expensive, polluting, environmentally damaging bird-swatters.

    So, I suggest you invent such a storage system and, thus, become a billionaire

    Richard

    PS I did NOT provide a “diatribe” and my response to your offensive and unjustifiable insults was very restrained.

  60. Entropic man says:

    Tallbloke

    “You’ve proved to yourself that the ocean’s oscillations can easily heat the atmosphere.”

    Actually I calculated that your claimed 30% of latter 20th century warming from the AMO was not thermodynamically impossible. When I went looking at your subsequent link I found an engineer’s approach, not a scientist’s. You described how the energy flowed, but not why. Without a mechanism driving the oscillating heat flow your hypothesis struggles.
    At my most generous, 30% of the warming might be due to your cycle. Solar insolation changes have been enough for another 17%. You still havent explained the other 53%.

    [Reply]1) All complex systems exhibiting negative feedbacks oscillate at various frequencies
    2)Prof. Nir Shaviv demonstrated in his JGR paper that the solar signal is terrestrially amplified
    http://sciencebits.com/calorimeter

  61. bwdave says:

    Underestimates of solar insolation influence seem possible, due to the practice of improperly dividing it by 4, and not fully accounting for solar insolation that heats the atmosphere and the oceans at full intensity, during the day; that stores vast quantities of the energy received as latent heat, at relatively low temperatures (not S/B temperature) in atmospheric humidity; seem possible to me.

    Other explanations that the 53% might include are: heat island interferences, confirmation bias influences on data, and increased solar influence due to energy received from solar fluxes or forces other than measured insolation.