Archive for July, 2017


What to do with millions of tons of retired solar panels? Answers on a postcard to China.

China will have the world’s worst problem with ageing solar panels in less than two decades, according to a recent industry estimate, as South China Morning Post reports.

Lu Fang, secretary general of the photovoltaics division in the China Renewable Energy Society, wrote in an article circulating on mainland social media this month that the country’s cumulative capacity of retired panels would reach up to 70 gigawatts (GW) by 2034.

That is three times the scale of the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydropower project, by power production.

By 2050 these waste panels would add up to 20 million tonnes, or 2,000 times the weight of the Eiffel Tower, according to Lu.

“In fair weather, prepare for foul,” she warned.

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Bottlenose dolphin [image credit: NASA]


H/T Wind Energy News

Ideally these studies should have been done years ago, but better late than never.

Scottish scientists are set to gain new insights into the lives and habits of the world’s most northerly resident population of bottlenose dolphins and how they are coping with wind turbines in the North Sea, says The Scotsman.

The study is one of four new scientific projects selected as part of a pioneering £2.7 million investigation into the potential impact of offshore wind farms on society and the environment launched by the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC).

The £300 million scheme, Scotland’s largest offshore wind power testing facility, will trial cutting-edge renewables technology in Aberdeen Bay. Experts say the innovative programme, which is jointly funded by EOWDC owner Vattenfall and the European Union, will put Scotland at the forefront of research and development in the sector.

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H/T to GWPF for this new paper linking solar variation with climate change.

Date: 28/07/17
Mohammed Allan et al., Climate of the Past, 11 July 2017
Several intervals of significant rapid climate change were detected during the Holocene at 10.3, 9.3-9.5, around 8.2, 6.4-6.2, 4.7-4.5, and around 2.7 ka BP. Those intervals are similar to the cold events evidenced in different natural paleoclimate archivers, suggesting common climate forcing mechanisms related to changes in solar irradiance.
Allen-etal2017

Abstract. We present a decadal-centennial scale Holocene climate record based on trace elements contents from a 65 cm stalagmite (“Père Noël”) from Belgian Père Noël cave. Père Noël (PN) stalagmite covers the last 12.7 ka according to U/Th dating. High spatial resolution measurements of trace elements (Sr, Ba, Mg and Al) were done by LaserAblation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS). Trace elements profiles were interpreted as environmental and climate changes in the Han-sur-Lesse region. Power spectrum estimators and continuous wavelet 15 transform were applied on trace elements time series to detect any statistically significant periodicities in the PN stalagmite. Spectral analyses reveal decadal to millennial periodicities (i.e., 68-75, 133-136, 198-209, 291-358, 404- 602, 912-1029 and 2365-2670 yr) in the speleothem record. Results were compared to reconstructed sunspot number data to determine whether solar signal is presents in PN speleothem. The occurrence of significant solar periodicities (i.e., cycles of Gleissberg, de Vries, unnamed 500 years, Eddy and Hallstat) supports for an impact of solar forcing on 20 PN speleothem trace elements contents. Moreover, several intervals of significant rapid climate change were detected during the Holocene at 10.3, 9.3-9.5, around 8.2, 6.4-6.2, 4.7-4.5, and around 2.7 ka BP. Those intervals are similar to the cold events evidenced in different natural paleoclimate archivers, suggesting common climate forcing mechanisms related to changes in solar irradiance.

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midgetTemperatures refuse to rise, exterminate polar bears, melt the icecaps, engulf coastal cities or make Tim Flannery seem rational. Not that the paleontologist is alone in the upper ranks of ratbaggery. Meet Professor Matthew Liao, who yearns to bio-engineer smaller, drug-ready humans
People unwilling to act on the climate-crisis narrative should be assisted with drugs that improve and promote conformity, according to eminent bio-ethicist Professor Matthew Liao, of New York University, who also wants to see parents dosing their children with hormones and diets to keep them shorter and less of a burden on the planet.

He wants such people to be given  the ‘love drug/cuddle chemical’ oxytocin. This would increase their trust and empathy and make them more ready to change to emission-saving lifestyles.

As his peer-reviewed study puts it, “Pharmacologically induced altruism and empathy could increase the likelihood that we adopt the necessary behavioral and market solutions for curbing climate change.” He emphasises there would be no coercion. The drugs would merely help those who want to be climate-friendly behaviour but lack the willpower

Once sufficiently drugged, parents would be less likely to reject notions of “human engineering” techniques that will be needed to create Humans 2.0. These amended species will be 15cm shorter than now, hence more energy efficient and less resource-demanding. His study,  Human Engineering and Climate Change, is in  Ethics, Policy and the Environment.[1]

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The Catch-22 of Energy Storage

Posted: July 27, 2017 by tallbloke in Analysis, Energy, Maths, wind
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H/T @hockeyschtick1 for this great article on the non-viability of wind/solar as large-scale replacement for fossil/nuclear. Now can we scrap the CCA please?

 

Brave New Climate

Pick up a research paper on battery technology, fuel cells, energy storage technologies or any of the advanced materials science used in these fields, and you will likely find somewhere in the introductory paragraphs a throwaway line about its application to the storage of renewable energy.  Energy storage makes sense for enabling a transition away from fossil fuels to more intermittent sources like wind and solar, and the storage problem presents a meaningful challenge for chemists and materials scientists… Or does it?


Guest Post by John Morgan. John is Chief Scientist at a Sydney startup developing smart grid and grid scale energy storage technologies.  He is Adjunct Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at RMIT, holds a PhD in Physical Chemistry, and is an experienced industrial R&D leader.  You can follow John on twitter at @JohnDPMorgan First published in Chemistry in Australia .

Several recent analyses of the…

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Ben Somervell | @bensomervell1 Originally published on Student Voices

Since the Conservative Party lost of its parliamentary majority, the line ‘no [Brexit] deal is better than a bad deal’ has come under attack. Conservative MP Anna Soubry suggested that the line is a ‘nonsense’ and Labour MP Hillary Benn stated that the idea of leaving the EU with no deal is ‘dead in the water’. The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, recently said on the “Andrew Marr Show” that no deal would be a ‘very, very bad’ outcome for the UK and, in doing so, wrongly and unwisely undermined his Government’s own negotiating position as so clearly laid out in the Lancaster House speech, the Brexit White Paper, the letter invoking Article 50 and the Conservatives’ 2017 General Election manifesto.

However a couple of days ago, I was very pleased to hear the news that the Government has asked businesses to prepare for a no deal outcome in case the EU refuses to back down on the £87.7bn (€100bn) so-called Brexit “divorce bill” some EU figures are citing. This is despite the fact that the figure produced by the Institute for Economic Affairs’ (IEA) Brexit Unit is just £26bn and despite the fact that the European Commission’s own lawyers have admitted that a €100bn “divorce bill” would be ‘legally impossible’ to enforce.

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If cars are to be electric only there will obviously be a massive increase in demand on the National Grid as a result – and that’s only one of a number of major issues arising from such a policy, such as cost and practicality. Whether hybrids would still be allowed is not clear.

New diesel and petrol cars and vans will be banned in the UK from 2040 in a bid to tackle air pollution, the government is set to announce.

Ministers will also unveil a £255m fund to help councils tackle emissions from diesel vehicles, as part of a £3bn package of spending on air quality, reports BBC News.

The government will later publish its clean air strategy, favouring electric cars, before a High Court deadline.

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homeworkReproducibility is a cornerstone of the scientific method. It must be possible to replicate experiments or datasets which scientific claims rest on. Especially when billions of pounds of public money financing public policy decisions stemming from those scientific claims are at stake. Here’s just one reminder of certain climate scientist’s approach to this fundamental aspect of scientific method and ethics.

We’ve lost the numbers: CRU responds to FOIA requests

The world’s source for global temperature record admits it’s lost or destroyed all the original data that would allow a third party to construct a global temperature record. The destruction (or loss) of the data comes at a convenient time for the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) in East Anglia – permitting it to snub FoIA requests to see the data.

The CRU has refused to release the raw weather station data and its processing methods for inspection – except to hand-picked academics – for several years. Instead, it releases a processed version, in gridded form. NASA maintains its own (GISSTEMP), but the CRU Global Climate Dataset, is the most cited surface temperature record by the UN IPCC. So any errors in CRU cascade around the world, and become part of “the science”.

Professor Phil Jones, the activist-scientist who maintains the data set, has cited various reasons for refusing to release the raw data. Most famously, Jones told an Australian climate scientist in 2004:

Even if WMO agrees, I will still not pass on the data. We have 25 or so years invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it.

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They admit that “The exact origin of water in the lunar interior is still a big question”, as Phys.org reports. The article also points out that ‘The idea that the interior of the Moon is water-rich raises interesting questions about the Moon’s formation.’ Perhaps they are suggesting that some prevailing theories might no longer…er…hold water.

A new study of satellite data finds that numerous volcanic deposits distributed across the surface of the Moon contain unusually high amounts of trapped water compared with surrounding terrains.

The finding of water in these ancient deposits, which are believed to consist of glass beads formed by the explosive eruption of magma coming from the deep lunar interior, bolsters the idea that the lunar mantle is surprisingly water-rich.

Scientists had assumed for years that the interior of the Moon had been largely depleted of water and other volatile compounds.

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Paul Driessen tells is like it is, and makes a wake up call to governments and private industry to properly assess the costs and impacts of ‘green’ energy.

STOP THESE THINGS

Where wind turbines are born: just one of China’s rare earth plants.

For the uninitiated, the sight of snow white wind turbines flailing in the breeze in some green field reinforces that feel-good notion that wind power is the crème de la crème of ‘green energy’.

For those in the know, whenever the term ‘green energy’ is trotted out by some starry-eyed hipster or sandal wearing troglodyte, a sense of wild frustration ensues, followed by an urge to throw something solid at their antagonist or to throw them off the top of one of their beloved windmills.

To maintain their faith, the wind worshipper avoids facts like the plague. Mathematics and meaningful statistics are shunned by cultists, too.

Here’s CFACT’s Paul Driessen laying out the numbers and reaching the obvious conclusion that – in relation to so-called ‘green energy’ – the numbers can never stack up.

Monumental, unsustainable environmental impacts

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Former Tilbury power station


If this goes ahead it’s likely to be finished years before the troubled Hinkley Point nuclear plant.

German utility RWE has commenced the planning process for the construction of a 2.5 GW gas-fired power plant in Essex, England, reports Power Engineering International.

If the development is to proceed it would be a big boost for the UK energy system, as old coal and nuclear plants are being taken out of the equation.

RWE is starting the planning process to build a 2.5 GW gas power plant in Tilbury, Essex on the site of a former biomass station in what could be a potential boost to the UK energy system.

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Jupiter is living up to its billing as a ‘planet on steroids’.
http://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/jun/04/probe-jupiter-juno

Planet Pailly

Last week, the Juno mission flew over Jupiter’s Great Red Spot and sent back some spectacular close-ups. But I’m not ready to talk about that. Not yet. I’m still catching up on the Juno news from two months ago.

Toward the end of May, NASA released a ton of fresh data from Juno, including new information about Jupiter’s auroras. Astro-scientists had previously known about two sources contributing to these auroras: the solar wind and the Io plasma torus. Now Juno may have discovered a third.

As Juno flew over Jupiter’s poles, it detected electrically charged particles flying up.

I can’t emphasize enough how weird this is. I wanted to write about it right away, but I held off doing this post because I was sure I must have misunderstood what I was reading.

Auroras are caused by electrically charged particles accelerated down toward a planet’s magnetic poles. These…

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Credit: NASA

The report at Phys.org explains that “Even though the moon blocking the sun during a solar eclipse and clouds blocking sunlight to Earth’s surface are two different phenomena, both require similar mathematical calculations to accurately understand their effects.”

It was mid-afternoon, but it was dark in an area in Boulder, Colorado on Aug. 3, 1998. A thick cloud appeared overhead and dimmed the land below for more than 30 minutes. Well-calibrated radiometers showed that there were very low levels of light reaching the ground, sufficiently low that researchers decided to simulate this interesting event with computer models.

Now in 2017, inspired by the event in Boulder, NASA scientists will explore the moon’s eclipse of the sun to learn more about Earth’s energy system. On Aug. 21, 2017, scientists are looking to this year’s total solar eclipse passing across America to improve our modelling capabilities of Earth’s energy.

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Whitelee wind farm, Scotland [image credit: Bjmullan / Wikipedia]


Wherever onshore wind turbines are built there will also be networks of electricity pylons to carry the power away. Tourism is big business in windy Scotland.

A survey carried out on behalf of the John Muir Trust (JMT) found that 55% of respondents were “less likely” to venture into areas of the countryside industrialised by giant turbines, electricity pylons and super-quarries, reports The Times (via GWPF).

Just 3% said they were “more likely” to visit such areas, while 26% said such large-scale developments would make “no difference”. The poll has rekindled calls for Scottish ministers to increase protection for wild and scenic areas that, it is argued, will protect rural tourism businesses.

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Niagara Falls [image credit: Saffron Blaze / Wikipedia]


The author of this theory says “Jupiter and Saturn’s growth naturally pollutes the inner Solar System with water-rich planetesimals. In my mind the mechanism is very clear”. The theory does seem to bear a resemblance to this summary from the Hans Rickman Uppsala Astronomical Observatory.

Water on Earth, Mars and everywhere within the inner Solar System can be traced back to the rapid waist-expanding growth of Jupiter and Saturn, which knocked inwards a local population of icy planetesimals, as Sci-News reports.

This is according to a new model, which could also explain the current makeup of our modern asteroid belt.

Whilst Earth is often described as the blue marble, with over 70% of its surface covered in oceans, seas, rivers and lakes, water actually makes up less than 0.1% of our planet by mass.
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School destroyed by mud flow [image credit: Hugh e82 / Wikipedia]


Whether caused by the blowout of a natural gas well, a distant earthquake or something else, the Sidoarjo mud flow is the biggest of its kind in the world.

The world’s most destructive mud volcano was born near the town of Sidoarjo, on the island of Java, Indonesia, just over 11 years ago – and to this day it has not stopped erupting, as The Conversation explains.

The mud volcano known as Lusi started on May 29, 2006, and at its peak disgorged a staggering 180,000 cubic metres of mud every day, burying villages in mud up to 40 metres thick.

The worst event of its kind in recorded history, the eruption took 13 lives and destroyed the homes of 60,000 people. But although the mud is still flowing more than a decade later, scientists are not yet agreed on its cause.

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Dogma rules in California when it comes to supposed climate issues, as harmless and life-giving trace gas carbon dioxide continues to be treated by the government there as a ‘pollutant’.

California legislators have voted to extend a law to cut carbon emissions, weeks after President Donald Trump said the US would withdraw from the Paris climate accord, reports BBC News.

The policy, which requires firms to purchase permits to release pollutants, will be extended to the year 2030. California Governor Jerry Brown said Republicans and Democrats had taken “courageous action” with the move. The US state aims to cut greenhouse gases by 40% from 1990 levels by 2030.
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Credit: NASA


Extreme ultraviolet radiation (EUV) is perhaps an aspect of solar activity that gets less attention than it should. The authors make the interesting point in their introduction to the research article that ‘Although the total solar irradiance at Earth varies very little, the relative variance in the EUV is as large as the mean irradiance. This EUV light interacts with Earth’s thermosphere and stratosphere and may affect climate in a “top-down” process in regions such as northern Europe’.

A pair of researchers with Aberystwyth University in the U.K. has used data from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory to learn more about how the sun’s corona behaves over differing stages of its 11-year cycle, reports Bob Yirka at phys.org.

In their paper published on the open access site Science Advances, Huw Morgan and Youra Taroyan describe attributes of the sun they observed over time and what they discovered about the “quiet corona” and its possible impact on us back here on Earth.

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Ned and Karl have finally got some big exposure to the general public for their paradigm shifting breakthrough in geo and astro-physics. World Net Daily front page stories are read by over a million people. This is a great step forward for recognition of their work.
ned-karl-wnd3

Study blows Greenhouse Theory out of the water

7-9-2017 By Alex Newman for World Net Daily

BOZEMAN, Mont. – A new scientific paper contends the entire foundation of the man-made global-warming theory – the assumption that greenhouse gases warm the atmosphere by trapping heat – is wrong.

If confirmed, the study’s findings would crush the entire “climate change” movement to restrict CO2 emissions, the authors assert

Some experts contacted by WND criticized the paper, while others advised caution.

Still others suggested that the claimed discovery represents a massive leap forward in human understanding – a “new paradigm.”

The paper argues that concentrations of CO2 and other supposed “greenhouse gases” in the atmosphere have virtually no effect on the earth’s temperature.

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Fig 1. Integration of solar data departing from long term average as a proxy for OHC

OK, this the last post before I go. This is a comment I made this morning over at Pierre Gosselin’s place.

To understand the effect of solar variation on a large heat capacity mass like Earth’s oceans, you have to integrate the solar data to get a reasonable proxy for ocean heat content. If you look at empirical comparisons of average sunspot number during periods when the ocean temperature is steady, you can derive a value of approximately 40 sunspots per month. This also happens to be the average sunspot number over the period of record from 1749 to today. Integrating the sunspot numbers as a running total departing from this average produces a reasonable proxy for OHC.

Calibrating the Steinhilber et al TSI reconstruction based on 10Be to the same baseline, we obtain a reconstruction which compares well to the Mann et al 2008 millennial temperature reconstruction, as seen in Fig1.

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