Archive for February, 2013

From via GWPF:

NowindForeign investors in renewable energy projects in Spain have hired lawyers to prepare potential international legal action against the Spanish government over new rules they say break their contracts.

It is unclear how much claims might be worth, but international funds have more than 13 billion euros ($17 billion) of renewable energy assets in Spain and say that the government has reneged on the terms of their investment.

The Spanish Parliament approved a law on Thursday that cuts subsidies for alternative energy technologies, backtracking on its push for green power.

That measure, along with other recent laws including a tax on power generation that hit green energy investments especially hard, will virtually wipe out profits for photovoltaic, solar thermal and wind plants, sector lobbyists say.


Dellers is on good form in the Telegraph:

nulliusThe Royal Society – founded 1660; former motto “Nullius In Verba” – this week strapped on a giant pair of waterskis and leapt over an enormous shark swimming in the pond in nearby St James’s Park. The shark, whose name is Ed Davey, is believed to have been lured over from Westminster aquarium to perform bizarre tricks for the amusement and delight of the Royal Society’s membership.

Explained the speed boat’s driver, Sir Paul Nurse, who thought up the idea:

“All that scientific method stuff: it’s so old hat. I mean like, Newton and Wren and Pepys – what kind of name is that, anyway? – they wore these stupid long grey wigs and came up with these complicated theories and did boring experiments, probably, well some of them did and not one of them ever once sold the Socialist Worker or took money from the Rockefeller Foundation either which just shows how right-wing and socially unengaged they were. So what we’re going to do now I’m running the show is ditch the Latin motto, which is so, like, waf waf, Eton crap, and we’re going to cut way back on all that factually-based, empiricist bollocks and just generally make the Royal Society more groovy and relevant to the modern age. Our performance by Ed Davey, the talking shark is just the start of it.”


Congratulations! to Nicola Scafetta and Richard C Willson on the publication of their new paper: Planetary harmonics in the historical Hungarian aurora record (1523–1960). This is another excellent paper, published in Planetary and Space Science. Grabbitquick before I take it offline. Scafetta always makes papers available later if you miss this one. The Hungarian record goes back to a very early date and this makes the paper especially interesting to those of us eager to see more validation of the solar planetary theory, which is rapidly becoming the best show in town for matching paleo records. Geoff Sharp will be particularly pleased to see the strength of these Uranus-Neptune synodic correlations with solar activity levels.



Some great info from Wired Science about a fairly close pass tomorrow by 2012 DA 14


Click for Animated GIF file. Source: Wired Science

A large space rock known as asteroid 2012 DA14 will be zipping by our planet on Feb. 15, coming within 28,000 km of Earth, the closest approach ever seen for an object its size. You can catch the event live using a backyard telescope or binoculars or watch it here on Wired with a collection of live feeds from around the world.

UPDATE 15-2-13 – 9.00am: Russian towns in the Urals have been hit by meteorite debris. Over 500 injuries so far reported. More here:


You’ll recall that some time ago, contributor Guy Leech sent an excellent letter to the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon. David Cameron MP. He has now received a response, and tin-duck-shooting season is open at the Talkshop. We did try fish-in-a-barrel shooting, but found it makes your legs wet after a few shots as you walk round it. Anyway, plinkers at the ready. It’s noticeable that the list of excuses for extorting billions from the taxayer is getting shorter (along with the author list prepared to be associated with them).



ImageThe subject of pyrgeometers as used in meterology and climatology turns up from time to time on the Talkshop. Let’s have that as a discussion in it’s own thread.

I’m writing here as an electronics instrumentation engineer although I am not familar with these instruments. In a different life you would be surprised.

Web page for a low cost (all relative) model is to the right where I have used this web snap because the lower illustration shows two instruments mounted back to back forming a “net” instrument (only the upper has a skyshade)



NFZ in the US, photo credit takomabibelot
click image for details

A few years ago massive Greenland gained some autonomy from it’s tiny owning state Denmark, shortly after that prospecting for Uranium was allowed. Now the problems moves on to allowing exploitation of the world’s (maybe) fifth largest reserve of uranium.

But the Danes are petty, declare what they don’t have is not allowed, so there.

Psst… look… want some?

“Government leaning toward allowing uranium mining in Greenland”

The Copenhagen Post have another take



Swiss beauty at Davos or is this Orwellian?
Image credit Adrian Michael, click for detail

Tony Newbery[*] reports on Davos where dependent on your view of people, either <self snip>. Me? A cynic, rarely disappointed.

“His Lordship was in confessional mood, owning up to underestimating the likely extent of global warming in his report. He now sees this as being ‘on track for something like 4oC’ by the end of the century, rather than the paltry 2oC – 3oC that he forecast in his report seven years ago.”

Harmless Sky blog: Lord Stern lends a hand at Davos

* The pensioner known for chasing FOI,  in court if necessary, most infamously the BBC trying to keep awkward facts secret.


Meteox add clouds to ensemble

Posted: February 8, 2013 by tchannon in Forecasting, media, weather


Meteox have added a visual cloud forecast to their web facility, a welcome enhancement. Seems to be applicable to Europe and North America.


Over at WUWT Willis has a long guest post dealing in circulation and emergent regimes which is rightly getting praise. Personally I would downplay the emergent and play up the way regimes change during a whole day.

In a way the critical part is recognition the world is not a static average but always changing without ever concluding what started.

Has some nice pictures.



Figure 1

The co-moderator is raising an important topic for the Talkshop. Real world data and dimensionality, H, which might look normal but is not in time, with scaling, self similarity, perhaps maximum entropy at work.

The Hurst exponent.

And yet figure 2 looks normal enough. [as in statistical bell curve etc, given real data]


Figure 2

If you are familiar with this subject check I haven’t misled anyone and help out, add detail.


Short term forecasting UAH lower troposphere

Posted: February 7, 2013 by tchannon in Analysis, Forecasting

On noticing Spencer has posted on WUWT about the latest UAH TLT global temperature, usually some days before gridded data is published, I did a very quick shufty, noting the new figure, then thought about updating the gridded I use here, then remembering not just yet.

However, I recall saying somewhere I expected a ramp up. Found the data directory, sorted by date, loaded a file to remind myself where I left things.


As a reminder


Sunspot cycle 24 progression as told by SORCE TSI

Posted: February 5, 2013 by tchannon in Solar physics


The SORCE satellite is still working, long past design life and in death throws of reduced functionality, particularly after battery cell failure.

J Martin asked about this dataset in the Comments thread here so I did an update.

We know the solar polar field has or is in the process of magnetic flip which occurs somewhere during sunspot cycle maximum, sunspot count is in an ambiguous state on whether maximum is past, a late large maximum has happened in history. The plot above is also ambiguous.


Over on the thread we ran some time ago in response to Leif Svalgaard’s negative comments on Oulu NM data quality at WUWT, Professor Ilya Usoskin, chief scientist for Oulu NM station has provided an update, alerting me to a new paper which confirms his position:


Ilya Usoskin says:

Just to put a full stop in the discussion of the “trend” in the Oulu NM data.

There is a recent paper devoted to a thorough analysis of different NMs stability on the long-term scale (Ahluwalia & Ygbuhay, Testing baseline stability of some neutron monitors in Europe, Africa, and Asia, Adv. Space Res., 2013, in press)

The last sentence (summary) of the paper states that
“it is suggested that Oulu neutron monitor may be a good standard for future comparisons of the baselines over longer intervals of time.”

Ahluwalia is one of the pioneers of cosmic ray studies by NM is definitely among the best experts in the field.


Here is the abstract:


My thanks to contributor ‘Scute’ for this interesting news, just in:

NASA can’t get enough cosmic rays. (Copied RSS feed below). First it was ATTREX kicking off last month. And now the preliminary verdict is in from ballooning across Antarctica where they found “large numbers of cosmic rays”. All very welcome but why play it all down in AR5 chapter 7 while all this was going on behind the scenes?

Stunning big photo, click for full size image. Source: NASA

Stunning big photo, click for full size image. Source: NASA

Feb. 4, 2013

RELEASE: 13-037


WASHINGTON — A large NASA science balloon has broken two flight
duration records while flying over Antarctica carrying an instrument
that detected 50 million cosmic rays.


My thanks to David Cosserat for the effort he has put into this guest post. It takes stamina to debate the subject matter, and while we have made progress here at the talkshop on the issues around energy in the atmosphere, it has become spread over a lot of disparate threads. Here, David pulls it all together, rationalises it and flags up the areas of agreement and disagreement between the parties. this is a thorough basis from which we can move forward to discussing the thermodynamic and gravitational aspects which will be elucidated in part 2.

Atmospheric Thermal Enhancement

Part I – The Great Debate Begins
David Cosserat – Feb 4 2013

Two threads have been running at the Talkshop recently. One was a posting on 06 Dec 2012 by Tim Folkerts. He is a mainstream supporter of the AGW theory and frequent blogger. He bravely agreed with TB to write an article entitled:  Tim Folkerts: Simple argument supporting a radiative greenhouse effect. The other thread was initiated on 14 Dec 2012 by TB himself entitled: Emissivity puzzle: energy exchange in non-vacuums.


So now we know why world bank chief scientist Bob Watson instructed IPCC lead authors writing the Summary for Policy Makers to pack it with “punchy take home messages” and “well-crafted tables and figures” – Orders from the Alarmist higher ups:

‘Roasted, toasted, fried and grilled’: climate-change talk from an unlikely source
The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Feb. 01

waffleThis past little while has seen some statements from unlikely sources about the critical economic importance of dealing quickly with climate change.

President Barack Obama led off the batting with his inaugural address, calling on Americans to take the lead in developing the technologies necessary for the emerging low-carbon economy. He pointed to the drought and Hurricane Sandy as the most recent evidence that our climate is changing for the worse

But the most startling statements came from the heads of those bastions of economic orthodoxy: the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the IMF and a former finance minister in the conservative government of Nicolas Sarkozy, pointed to critical pivot points for the economic future.


 @estheraddley Chris #Huhne pleads guilty to perverting the course of justice


The charge relates to an incident in March 2003 when Mr Huhne’s car was allegedly caught by a speed camera on the motorway between Stansted Airport in Essex and London.

It is alleged that between 12 March and 21 May 2003, Ms Pryce, 60, from Clapham in south London, falsely informed police that she was the driver of the car so Mr Huhne could avoid prosecution.


reformSylvia Tognetti said:
Science can be wrong, but given what is known and accepted by “all but cranks”, it would require extraordinary evidence to overturn that consensus… However, Curry, like Joe Bast, apparently rejects a consensus approach without saying how policy could otherwise be informed by what science can offer.

Eli Rabbett (Josh Halpern) said:
“choosing up sides happens in the Pre Normal Science stage before the scientific consensus’, but it persists afterwards but is only important if there are economic or philosophical drivers blocking acceptance of the science.”

Tallbloke (Roger Tattersall) responds:
However, if the scientific consensus’  is itself a political contrivance achieved by suppressing alternative legitimate scientific viewpoints, then those rebels/cranks (TM NUSAP) will persist not because of economic or philosophical considerations, but because they care about scientific ‘truth’ as they see it.

And when they see the scientific consensus’ gathered together in a single place debating amongst themselves about climate sensitivities ranging from:

“one of them stated quite openly in a meeting I attended a few years ago that he deliberately lied in these sort of elicitation exercises (i.e. exaggerating the probability of high sensitivity) in order to help motivate political actionA value (slightly) under 2 is certainly looking a whole lot more plausible than anything above 4.5.’” (James Annan)


“say S falls to ~2.5K. Does it mean the sceptics are correct and we can all go to the pub and forget about AGW?” (BBD)


By UKIP Energy Spokesman Roger Helmer:

NowindThe aggressive targets for renewable energy contained in the EU’s climate and energy package are forcing households and pensioners into fuel poverty and damaging industry.

Concerned citizens from across the European Union are calling for lower energy prices, and for the suspension of the EU’s climate and energy package, which mandates aggressive targets for expensive renewables. They are using a mechanism called the European Citizens’ Initiative, created under the Lisbon Treaty, to set out their demands. This requires the collection of a million signatures from across the EU by November 2013, including 54,000 from the UK.

If successful, the European Commission will have to respond to the initiative, and hearings will be conducted in the European Parliament. The initiative will not force the commission to comply, but it will hugely raise the profile of the issue, and put pressure on the EU institutions for a rational and affordable energy policy.