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A rapid-fire lecture on solar-planetary links, sunspots, volcanoes, ice cores, climate and a whole lot more, including a closer look at the Spörer Minimum.

CO2 is Life

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A sort of post-mortem look at various issues surrounding Hurricane Florence. If pressed for time, ‘the take home point is that convincingly attributing any of this to human caused global warming is very challenging’ – see the summary.

Climate Etc.

by Judith Curry

“Impending massive hurricanes bring the best out of weather twitter and the worst out of climate twitter” – Joseph Maykut

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How constant is the “solar constant?”

Posted: September 19, 2018 by oldbrew in Analysis, data, IPCC, Measurement
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Well…it’s complicated. The available data is less than perfect, but the ‘natural variation option’ (so to speak) is still on the table.

Andy May Petrophysicist

The IPCC lowered their estimate of the impact of solar variability on the Earth’s climate from the already low value of 0.12 W/m2 (Watts per square-meter) given in their fourth report (AR4), to a still lower value of 0.05 W/m2 in the 2013 fifth report (AR5), the new value is illustrated in Figure 1. These are long term values, estimated for the 261-year period 1750-2011 and they apply to the “baseline” of the Schwabe ~11-year solar (or sunspot) cycle, which we will simply call the “solar cycle” in this post. The baseline of the solar cycle is the issue since the peaks are known to vary. The Sun’s output (total solar irradiance or “TSI”) is known to vary at all time scales (Kopp 2016), the question is by how much. The magnitude of short-term changes, less than 11 years, in solar output are known relatively accurately, to better…

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Not the actual simulations, but the already fading credibility thereof. What scientific reason is there to rely on their results?

Ross McKitrick and John Christy have an important new paper out in Earth and Space Science, writes Andrew Montford for The GWPF.

This is the latest fusillade in the long battle over whether the climate simulations that lie behind demands for decarbonisation and other political action actually amount to nothing but a hill of beans (as they say on the other side of the pond).

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German car giants face EU emissions probe

Posted: September 18, 2018 by oldbrew in Emissions, Legal, News, Travel
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Note this is not about the original issue of diesel ‘defeat’ devices. Another report at AFP says ‘Daimler and VW are widely reported to be putting themselves forward as whistle-blowers in the case, in order to win leniency with the EU authorities.’ Sounds like a guilty plea.

German carmakers BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen are to face an EU inquiry for allegedly conspiring to restrict diesel emissions treatment systems, BBC News reports.

The European Commission said it was investigating whether they agreed to limit the development of systems to reduce harmful emissions. It said that if proven, this could mean that consumers had been denied the chance to buy less polluting cars.

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David Eyles: The Quiet Revolution

Posted: September 18, 2018 by tallbloke in Analysis, Brexit, EU Referendum, Politics

village-hallA rarely spotted phenomenon, sometimes acknowledged by one or two of the more astute political pundits, is that the Labour Party has moved away from its core of working-class voters. The leadership has now fully embraced the demands of its middle and upper-middle class hierarchy and has gone full-on Quinoa Marxist.

However, the Labour Party is not alone, because the Conservative Party has also moved in the same direction, albeit not quite so far. The leadership indulges in wholesale political correctness. It then signals its virtue by casual obeisance to whichever favoured minority group is flavour of the week. Accordingly, the Tories have also stepped away from their voters – most of whom are utterly bored with this infantile nonsense.

There has been some floundering recognition that the sheer nastiness of the Labour Left is causing some Labour MPs to panic and talk of forming a new centrist party. But that will only occupy the same ground that the Tories already occupy, by virtue of their own leftward manoeuvrings. Talk of a Tony Blair led centre-left party, perhaps embracing the Liberal Democrats, would be a move into an already overcrowded marketplace with decreasing numbers of voters to whom this will appeal. Tony Blair is the most toxic brand in British politics.

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Green blob [credit: storybird.com]


It seems some people in the US with money to burn are queuing up to try and buy the weather they think they want, with fossil fuels their primary target. The concept of natural variation of the climate has either totally escaped them, or they must think it belongs in the past only.
H/T The GWPF

Major foundations handed nearly $4 billion to global warming activists, anti-fossil fuel campaigners and other environmentalists over the past eight years, according to a database debuted Monday, writes Michael Bastasch.

The website Big Green, Inc. tracked $3.7 billion in commitments from major grant-making foundations to environmental causes from 2008 to 2016.

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Image credit: Spaceflight now


Light as a power source is only a theory so far, but could have interesting implications if it can be shown to work. Or it could go nowhere…

Spacecraft and satellites could in future be launched into space without the need for fuel, thanks to a revolutionary new theory, says EurekAlert.

Dr Mike McCulloch, from the University of Plymouth, first put forward the idea of quantised inertia (QI) – through which he believes light can be converted into thrust – in 2007.

He has now received $1.3million from the United States Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for a four-year study which aims to make the concept a reality.

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Apart from a major question of practicality, where’s the money supposed to come from for these ideologically driven policies?

Some citizens are already resisting…
California Climate Policies Facing Revolt from Civil-Rights Groups

STOP THESE THINGS

Renewable energy zealots talk about the ‘transition’ to an all wind and sun powered future being ‘inevitable’. Except that the only thing inevitable about running on sunshine and breezes, is grid chaos and rocketing power prices. Ask a South Australian.

It is also what that crazy German Corporal with the funny moustache called a “big lie”: so helpful to the tyrant because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted and more readily fall victim to a colossal untruth, than the small lie.

The idea that a country can run itself entirely on wind and solar power is, of course, patent nonsense.

But, there are plenty profiting from that ideologically driven fiction, who have worked out that if you ramp up the claims to the height of ridiculousness, there are plenty of idiots ready to believe you.

California has done just that.

California cannot run on…

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Screenshot from NASA video


The reporter here is obviously sold on endless warming of planet Earth, but ignoring the propaganda, there are some technical details of the mission which is due to last three years but could be extended up to ten. NASA says: ‘The ICESat-2 laser will pulse 10,000 times a second; each pulse will release about 20 trillion photons. Only about a dozen photons hit Earth’s surface and return to the satellite.’

NASA is poised to launch Saturday its most advanced space laser ever, ICESat-2, a $1 billion dollar mission to reveal the depths of the Earth’s melting ice as the climate warms, says Phys.org.

The half-ton satellite, about the size of a smart-car, is scheduled to blast off atop a Delta II rocket on September 15 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

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The research includes an animation which explains ‘how three ancient land masses collided to form the British Isles’.

Scientists have for centuries believed that England, Wales and Scotland were created by the merger of Avalonia and Laurentia more than 400 million years ago, says EurekAlert.

However, geologists based at the University of Plymouth now believe that a third land mass – Armorica – was also involved in the process.

The findings are published in Nature Communications and follow an extensive study of mineral properties at exposed rock features across Devon and Cornwall.

They reveal a clear boundary running across the two counties, with areas north of it sharing their geological roots with the rest of England and Wales but everything south being geologically linked to France and mainland Europe.

Among other things, scientists believe the research explains the abundance of tin and tungsten in the far South West of England – metals also found in Brittany and other areas of mainland Europe, but not so evident in the rest of the UK.

The research’s lead author, Lecturer in Igneous Petrology Dr Arjan Dijkstra, said: “This is a completely new way of thinking about how Britain was formed. It has always been presumed that the border of Avalonia and Armorica was beneath what would seem to be the natural boundary of the English Channel. But our findings suggest that although there is no physical line on the surface, there is a clear geological boundary which separates Cornwall and south Devon from the rest of the UK.”

Continued here.


Whether wood is truly renewable or not is a matter of opinion. Trees can be burnt in minutes but regrowth obviously takes many years. Theory has it that new trees can over time recover the carbon dioxide from tree burning but how realistic is that? Not very much, according to experts. The same politicians who attend climate conferences proclaiming ’emissions’ are a terrible problem now actively support making them worse. You couldn’t make it up.

Europe’s decision to promote the use of wood as a “renewable fuel” will likely greatly increase Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions and cause severe harm to the world’s forests, according to a new paper published in Nature Communications.

European officials on final language for a renewable energy directive earlier this summer that will almost double Europe’s use of renewable energy by 2030.

Against the advice of 800 scientists, the directive now treats wood as a low-carbon fuel, reports Phys.org, meaning that whole trees or large portions of trees can be cut down deliberately to burn.

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Claus Reith: The Porto Climate Conference

Posted: September 12, 2018 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics

porto-sunset_1Here are some first impressions of the Porto conference from one of the attendees. More as I sort out my photos.

Global Green Airbag versus Global Greenhouse
Basic Science of a Changing Climate – the topic of the Conference that took place at Porto University in Porto, Portugal on Sept. 07. – 09. 2018. Attended by leading scientists in many domains, experts of engineering and critical thinkers of meteorology, oceanography, mathematics, geophysics, geology, chemistry and geography they confronted a very competent audience of about 80 people all over the globe from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, US, GB, Norway, Sweden, France, Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, Portugal. The primary focus of the conference was on basic climate science, nevertheless along the proceeding of the topics questions of communication to the public audience arose.

Opened by the Rector of Porto University there was a broad consensus that freedom of research is the absolute necessary basis for the progress of science. The speeches and discussions concentrated on four aspects: 1. Changes in Climate and Weather 2. CO2, Climate Sensitivity and Greenhouse Effects 3. Forcing Functions in Climate Change 4. Observational Facts, Interpretations and Geoethics. Nils Alex Mörner, former head of Paleophysics & Geodynamics at Stockholm University moderated the course of the conference that was hosted by the Faculty of Letters and represented by Maria Assunçao Araùjo of the Department of Geography and member of the Portuguese Sea Level Project together with Pamela Mattlock-Klein. Eventually some demonstrators turned up to protest against this conference without even trying to talk to the audience.

Drivers and fare dodgers
Unanimously all the assembled scientist put the human-emitted CO2 on the back seat of the climate-mobile. NO one supported in any way the “hysteria” in media and politics to reduce this assumed “threat” propelled by IPCC political papers and lobbies behind dominant media releases. Considering the quantity of water vapor in atmosphere which is the most dominant “greenhouse” player on earth with about 20% of the present gases, CO2 – representing roughly only 7% – is 94% of natural origin and only 6% out of anthropogenic (Veyre) – “anthropo(n)” meaning “human” and “genic” meaning origin. Consumption of fossil energy and other consumptions contribute only 18 ppm (parts per million) of 410 ppm of all CO2 in the atmosphere (from sea level up to 24000 feet) or 1 out of 2500 particles of the atmosphere! The main driver of atmospheric gases is water vapor, and CO2 of human consumption is negligible, thus the consensus (Gervais, Harde). Same observations and conclusions for the already passed so-called “greenhouse gases” like ozone and FCKW.

Global Green Airbag
Compared to Venus and Saturn the Earth luckily developed a so-to-say “airbag” or “Global green belt” as security features for our life. Water vapor and CO2 have minimum three very beneficial properties: they protect the earth from cooling – otherwise temperatures on earth would drop to a unlivable around minus 20 degrees Celsius. They act as a thermal cushion. Second, they protect our life and that of the plants and animals from solar and cosmic over-radiation like polaroid sunglasses. Third, they assure proper growing of all the green plant life on earth. Without CO2 no photosynthesis, no growth of plants below 150 ppm (Veyre, Gervais, Harde)! Global greening progressed thanks to CO2 – more growing of veggies and fruit and cereals and algae for an ever-growing population on earth that will soon arrive at 10 billion people. Without this Global Green Belt there will soon be more hunger and more starving instead.

Thanks to the Oceans
Oceans not only define the face of the earth from outer space as “blue planet”, as all astronauts observe full of emotions. Oceans are the heat tank with an enormous capacity – 2,7m water below surface contains the same energy as the air column of 8000m over it. Oceans produce 50% of the oxygen by the algae they contain, as an ad in the streets of Porto tells. And Oceans absorb 70% of the CO2 and stock it, transport it into the deep blue and there it is transformed into Calciumcarbonate and other carbonates and sinks to the ground as sediments. CO2 is also stocked in the waters as gas. Oceans contain 50 times the quantity of all naturally and in minor quantity humanly emitted CO2. Their role is still very much underestimated as there are only few measuring points and the quantity of them is tiniest compared to the surface of the oceans. Deep cold water-currents move slowly from the north to the south pole. This thermo-haline (“thermo” means “dependent on temperature, “haline” from “hals (gr.)” for salt (concentration) circulation takes about 140 years (!) and is one of the major drivers of climate besides water vapor and the sun (Mörner, Corbyn). The Ocean blues goes on – slowly and surely as its musical sister.

Moon, Sun and Stars
Everybody knows the tides controlled by the moon. At least also all main-landers that passed vacations at the coast of the ocean. Water level changes by influence of the gravity of the mass of the moon, more precisely said. But in space there is also the sun and the planets and their moons and the far-away stars. Mass effects add to another like the more people are in a bus the longer the distance to accelerate or to slow it down. Like this also the planets: if they are all in a line this makes the earth bump and slow or accelerate. (Tattersall, Zeller) Same the sun: the more energy it sends by magnetic and light radiation, and energy is mass by speed to the square as Einstein told us the more the rotation of the earth speeds up. And like in a merry-go-round the seats fly higher and more distant to the center with more speed – water rises at the equator the faster the planet turns. Follows the effect that as the amount of water is fix in the oceans the sea level is rising in the equatorial zone and decreasing in the higher latitudes. And the same when solar activity is low then sea levels rise in northern and southern high latitudes near the poles and water level decreases in a medium range of time in the equatorial zone. (Wysmuller, Mörner, Corbyn, Assunçao) Sea-level change comes and goes like the tide.

Suntan desperately needed
Like anybody is getting cold at night when sun is down and sky is clear – the same the earth. Without the sun radiation earth would freeze down to the temperature of Mars, nobody would like to live there. As the earth is a net-receiver it depends on the sun as net-donor. When sun gives much, earth is getting warmer than usual – a warm period, when sun is avaricious, earth temperature goes down and we can do ice-scating on rivers and lakes like in the 15th century in London, Amsterdam and Rome! This was the last little ice age. (Solheim, Yndestadt, Scafetta). The sun radiation is the prior clock of the climate, the highs and lows of the radiation – observed also by the number and length of the sunspot-number per period) makes the difference of our terrestrial sages. The sun activity is the main direct climate driver – the Mayas and Incas knew well!

Complexity, Chaos and Climate
In 16th century people burnt witches as a drought devastated Europe and emptied wells and Lakes like the Lake of Constance -as reported from Wittenberg 1540 where Martin Luther probably assisted. People do not like weather chaos, climate chaos, they want it orderly and cyclically like everything else. And if it comes worse, they want to “do” something instead of waiting for heaven or hell. Either someone has to “pay” or “confess” or “burn”. And people like it simple and hate complicated matters, in politics as in a lot of other dimensions like education, alimentation, relationships, work and fun. Nobody likes fatality today without a chance to turn it around, be it cancer or Parkinson. (Rieth) This is the time for “healers” and “quacks” and gurus. Climate is a complex affair – like a love affair sometimes – and we like it simple. We seek simple recipes for tricky matters. Who falls in love for maths and quants? And nonetheless this is the only way to tell the real story (Essex, Gervais, Rittaud, Monckton). Simple suggestions like take this and avoid this – like methane and CO2, avoid to eat meat and go vegan(so opposed to by Glatzle), stop inhaling, pay compensation for flying to Bali, confess your energy consumption, … is like a part of the simple messages of some guru-trip with the buddy driving a Rolls and people worshipping like mad for “his Highness”.
Porto Conference was about that – finding a sober and evidence-based message for a complex climate issue. Honest scientific research meeting blunt degradation in a time where middle-age thought-climate seems to regain power on enlightenment driven research. Gut versus head, fear versus sovereignty, panic versus coolness. The message of the second Porto Climate Conference – after the Obama decorated in June – is: Keep cool, no fear. Climate is fine, no need to save it and no means to do it either. Maybe it’s even getting cooler, the history of the sun-cycles may tell it. Enjoy life in the Global Green Airbag!

Claus U. Rieth
MBA, M.Div., phil.bot.
Director CRConsult, Rev.
Mulhouse France

NASA mission to Jupiter’s
trojan asteroids


Could evidence from a specific binary asteroid pair upset existing planetary theories? ‘The Jupiter trojans, commonly called Trojan asteroids or just Trojans, are a large group of asteroids that share the planet Jupiter’s orbit around the Sun.’ – Wikipedia. There are over a million of these, inhabiting two oval-shaped zones based around what are known as the Lagrangian points L4 and L5 of Jupiter’s orbit (see animation below).

Scientists at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) studied an unusual pair of asteroids and discovered that their existence points to an early planetary shake-up in our solar system.

These bodies, called Patroclus and Menoetius [see flyby 6 in the graphic], are targets of NASA’s upcoming Lucy mission to the Trojan asteroids. They are around 70 miles wide and orbit around each other as they collectively circle the Sun.

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US ‘monster’ hurricane set to strengthen

Posted: September 11, 2018 by oldbrew in News, Ocean dynamics, weather
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Image credit: sanibelrealestateguide.com

Right on cue at the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season, three major storms are barrelling westwards. So far, the first one looks like being the most powerful. Mandatory evacuations for more than a million people near the US east coast have been declared.

North Carolina’s governor warns the state Florence will be a “life-threatening, historic hurricane”, reports BBC News.

Hurricane Florence – the most powerful storm to threaten the Carolinas in nearly three decades – is expected to strengthen, say forecasters.

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Photosynthesis: nature requires carbon dioxide


Once it was flower power, now the alarmists of global warming religion hit San Francisco. Meanwhile world consumption of oil, coal and gas is rising as populations increase and more countries accelerate their economic development. The limitations of subsidised renewables are becoming ever more obvious.

Batten down the hatches! A tsunami of global warming and “clean energy” propaganda is approaching!

San Francisco is hosting the September 12-14 Global Climate Action Summit, a massive event at which “international and local leaders from states, regions, cities, businesses, investors and civil society … will be joined by national government leaders, scientists, students, non-profits and others … [to share] what they have achieved to date and commit to doing more to usher in the era of decarbonization”, write Tom Harris and Dr Jay Lehr.

Decarbonization means phasing out the fossil fuels that now provide over 80% of all the energy we use – in favor of wind, solar and other supposedly clean energy sources.

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Soon your utility will help select your next car

Posted: September 10, 2018 by oldbrew in Energy, innovation, Travel
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That’s the plan anyway, as utilities want to recommend electric cars to their customers so as to sell more electricity and make more money. But there’s much more to it than that. Enter the ‘trusted energy advisor’.

For a long time utilities have been seeking better ways to engage with their customers, says PEI.

Jeff Hamel, director of energy and housing partnerships at Google, says that the Nest smart thermostat – which is part of the hardware product line that Google provides – is a good example of a simple way that utilities are partnering with their customers.

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Small modular reactor [credit: ANS Nuclear Cafe]


It looks as if the UK government has got cold feet about the small modular reactor concept, possibly under pressure from the ‘green’ lobby. Meanwhile subsidies for unreliable weather-dependent power generation continue, more or less unabated.

London 10 September: An important new briefing paper published by the Global Warming Policy Foundation reveals that the government has kicked a key nuclear programme into the long grass, says the GWPF.

This follows an announcement last week by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on its small modular nuclear (SMR) competition, which outlined new funding for feasibility studies into a range of new nuclear technologies.

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Crazy world of climate finance [image credit: renewableenergyfocus.com]


The usual hyped-up dramas as yet more climate talks lead to little or no action. Everyone is supposed to believe the end is nigh if more money is not thrown at developing countries. How long can such charades be kept going?
H/T The GWPF

UN climate talks in Bangkok have foundered over the key issue of how efforts to limit climate change are funded and how contributions are reported, says AFP.

Activists called out the European Union, Britain and Australia for falling into line with Washington’s position. Developing countries rounded on the United States and its allies at emergency climate talks Sunday, accusing the world’s richest nations of stalling a deal aimed at preventing runaway global warming.

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So this is what impartiality looks like at the BBC. They decide what your opinion should be and suppress or attack any other viewpoints. Pathetic.

NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT

By Paul Homewood

h/t Robin Guenier et al

Carbon Brief has obtained details of new BBC guidance on how to handle climate issues:

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The BBC, one of the world’s largest and most respected news organisations, has issued formal guidance to its journalists on how to report climate change.

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