Archive for the ‘research’ Category

Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid [image credit: greencarreports.com]


We already knew the subsidies for these types of vehicle were a waste of money, but this makes it look even worse. Another case of climate ideology derailing sanity.
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New testing commissioned by clean transport group Transport & Environment (T&E) shows that plug-in hybrids (PHEV) emit considerably more CO2 than advertised, and the problem could be even worse as drivers charge up before entering low emissions zones, says The Driven.

The results of testing has led the influential European NGO to label plug-in hybrids as “fake electric cars” designed solely by car makers to pass lab tests and achieve more sales via tax breaks.

The Emissions Analytics research, which included PHEV versions of the BMW X5, Volvo XC60 and Mitsubishi Outlander, found that even when driving on a full battery, emissions were 28-89% higher than advertised by the car makers.

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Image credit: wisegeek.com


That’s a large chunk of the global food supply in the dock then, according to IPCC-based ‘greenhouse’ climate theories that perform badly in climate models, leading to endless over-prediction of global warming.
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The growing use of nitrogen fertilisers in world food production could put ambitious climate targets out of reach, as it leads to rising levels of nitrous oxide (N2O) in the atmosphere, a new University of Oslo study shows.

Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a highly potent greenhouse gas, and its impact on global warming is 300 times larger than that of carbon dioxide (CO2). Once emitted, N2O remains in the atmosphere for more than 100 years. What’s more – it also depletes the ozone layer.

If left unabated, the emissions resulting from the growing use of nitrogen fertilisers will require bigger reductions in CO2 emissions to reach the goal of the Paris Agreement to keep the global temperature rise this century well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, according to the study.

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Irish farm [image credit: climatenewsnetwork.net]


Get ready to be told what the new rules of food consumption should be, according to climate-obsessed researchers. That seems to be the message being pushed here. All based on the assertion that minor trace gases in the atmosphere are going to dictate what happens to the weather, of course.
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Reducing fossil fuel use is essential to stopping climate change, but that goal will remain out of reach unless global agriculture and eating habits are also transformed, according to new research from the University of Minnesota and University of Oxford.

A paper published Thursday in the journal Science reveals that emissions from global food production alone could lead to a global temperature increase of more than 1.5°C by mid-century and of nearly 2°C by the end of the century, even if emissions from fossil fuels were to end immediately, reports Phys.org.

The study also identifies the need for large and rapid improvements in farming practices, as well as changes in what we eat and in how much food we waste, to help achieve the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5°C or 2°C.

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Some extraordinary claims are being made, or at least suggested, here. The idea of charging a battery in a few seconds, especially a lithium one, using microwaves (not the kitchen version) sounds a bit hairy to say the least.
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A team of researchers from the Polytechnic University of Valencia and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) has discovered a new method that makes it possible to transform electricity into hydrogen or chemical products solely using microwaves — without cables and without any type of contact with electrodes, reports TechXplore.

This represents a revolution in the field of energy research and a key development for the process of industrial decarbonisation, as well as for the future of the automotive sector and the chemical industry, among many others.

The study has been published in the latest edition of Nature Energy, where the discovery is explained.

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The ocean carbon cycle [credit: IAEA]


The article asks: ‘So what really happened?’ They often try to play the aerosol card when changes to CO2 levels fail to deliver their supposed effects. But could the answer simply be that climate obsessives discovered the atmosphere is a minor player in the climate compared to the oceans?
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Countries across the world took unprecedented action in the first few months of 2020 to control the spread of COVID-19, says The Conversation (via Phys.org).

At its peak, one-third of the world’s population was in lockdown.

Around the world, car travel fell by 50%, the number of flights plummeted by 75% and industrial activity fell by around 35%.

With so many cars parked, airplanes grounded and factories closed, global carbon dioxide (CO₂) emissions fell by around 17% compared with the same period in 2019.

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Climate conference transport


It takes more than a ‘climate emergency’ to keep climatologists on the ground. It’s almost like they don’t take their own theories seriously, although professors not travelling isn’t going to make any difference anyway. Do as they say, not as they do.
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Climate change researchers, especially professors, fly more than other researchers—but are also more likely to have taken steps to reduce or offset their flying, a new study has found.

Climate change researchers, especially professors, fly more than other researchers—but are also more likely to have taken steps to reduce or offset their flying, a new study has found.

The large, international survey of more than 1,400 university researchers was carried out by the UK Centre for Climate and Social Transformation (CAST), which is coordinated by Cardiff University, reports Phys.org.

A follow-up experiment with more than 350 researchers found that providing information about the impacts of aviation and support for workplace policies increases intentions to fly less.

The large-scale study—the first of its kind to survey climate academics about their travel for conferences, fieldwork and meetings—is published in the journal Global Environmental Change.

Director of CAST Professor Lorraine Whitmarsh, who led the study, said the findings were “unexpected” but said it also suggested “knowledge alone is not enough” to tackle global warming.

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Another day, another scare. The claim this time is that the increasing demand for electrically driven cooling — air con, powered fans etc. — will drive up the dreaded ’emissions’, leading to untold future discomfort one way or another.
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Past research suggests growing international demand for cooling has the potential to drive one of the most substantial increases in greenhouse gas emissions in recent history, says Phys.org.

A new study, led by the University of Oxford and published today in Nature Sustainability, sets out a framework for delivering sustainable cooling.

It also examines cooling needs in the context of sustainable development, and finds that this is a global blind spot.

“Cooling is essential to human well-being and health, from the food we eat, to the storage of medicine, to how comfortable and productive we are at home, school or the office,” says Dr. Radhika Khosla, senior researcher at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, and principal investigator of the Oxford Martin Program on the Future of Cooling.

But, Dr. Khosla says, “The global community must commit to sustainable cooling, or risk locking the world into a deadly feedback loop, where demand for cooling energy drives further greenhouse gas emissions and results in even more global warming.”

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Credit: mygridgb.co.uk


Questions such as: why bother? If it’s three times the cost of natural gas and it’s not technically possible to produce it at large scale from renewables, in what way does it make any sense, even to committed climate alarmists?
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Using hydrogen instead of natural gas for heating could help the UK to achieve net carbon-neutrality by 2050, according to new Imperial research, reports TechXplore.

Currently, non-renewable natural gas from fossil fuels is used to supply half of Europe’s heat demand, with national shares as high as 80 percent in the Netherlands and the UK.

However, the UK has committed to developing an economy with net-zero greenhouse gas emissions, and one of the ways to achieve this might involve switching natural gas for hydrogen.

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It’s always good to chat with Roger Pielke Senior. He’s informative, and more open minded than most climate scientists. Here’s a transcript of the conversation we just had on twitter.

 
Rog Tallbloke 
@RogTallbloke
Roger. Mt Everest summit winter avg -30C. Base camp -17C. Air pressure difference 20kPa. What really causes Earth’s ‘greenhouse effect’, 1% of water vapour + 0.04% CO2 or 100% of atmospheric MASS. Think man, think! CC @RogerAPielkeSr
 
Roger A. Pielke Sr
@RogerAPielkeSr
Relative Roles of CO2 and Water Vapor in Radiative Forcing
In the second edition of our book “Cotton, W.R. and R.A. Pielke, 2007: Human impacts on weather and climate, Cambridge University Press, 330 pp”, we present a new analysis completed for…
pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com
 
 

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Whose drought?
[image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]


The spectre of the disastrous events of the 1930s is raised for the US Midwest, thanks in some measure to the change in land use brought about by subsidised biofuel production, according to this study. Another own goal for climate alarmist ideology?
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Got any spaces left on that 2020 bingo card? Pencil in “another Dust Bowl in the Great Plains”, suggests Phys.org.

A study from University of Utah researchers and their colleagues finds that atmospheric dust levels are rising across the Great Plains at a rate of up to 5% per year.

The trend of rising dust parallels expansion of cropland and seasonal crop cycles, suggesting that farming practices are exposing more soil to wind erosion.

And if the Great Plains becomes drier, a possibility under climate change scenarios, then all the pieces are in place for a repeat of the Dust Bowl that devastated the Midwest in the 1930s.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: BBC/Getty Images]


Arctic sea ice doesn’t undergo natural seasonal melting any more — it ‘dies’, according to the latest climate alarm propaganda. But researchers still need an icebreaker to ‘kill’ a bit more of it in order to study its supposed demise.
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An icebreaker carrying scientists on a year-long international effort to study the high Arctic has returned to its home port in Germany carrying a wealth of data that will help researchers better predict climate change in the decades to come, reports AP News.

The RV Polarstern arrived Monday in the North Sea port of Bremerhaven, from where she set off more than a year ago prepared for bitter cold and polar bear encounters — but not for the pandemic lockdowns that almost scuttled the mission half-way through.

“We basically achieved everything we set out to do,” the expedition’s leader, Markus Rex, told The Associated Press by satellite phone as it left the polar circle last week. “We conducted measurements for a whole year with just a short break.”

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Some interesting theorising arises from this research, but as one expert commented: “These new data may raise more questions than they answer.” At least one existing belief about long-term climate change finds itself challenged.
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The retreat of North America’s ice sheets in the latter years of the last ice age may have begun with “catastrophic” losses of ice into the North Pacific Ocean along the coast of modern-day British Columbia and Alaska, scientists say.
[Science News reporting].

In a new study published October 1 in Science, researchers find that these pulses of rapid ice loss from what’s known as the western Cordilleran ice sheet contributed to, and perhaps triggered, the massive calving of the Laurentide ice sheet into the North Atlantic Ocean thousands of years ago.

That collapse of the Laurentide ice sheet, which at one point covered large swaths of Canada and parts of the United States, ultimately led to major disturbances in the global climate (SN: 11/5/12).

The new findings cast doubt on the long-held assumption that hemispheric-scale changes in Earth’s climate originate in the North Atlantic (SN: 1/31/19).

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Another round of the enduring hexagon mystery.
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With its dazzling system of icy rings, Saturn has been a subject of fascination since ancient times, says Phys.org.

Even now the sixth planet from the sun holds many mysteries, partly because its distance away makes direct observation difficult and partly because this gas giant (which is multiple times the size of our planet) has a composition and atmosphere, mostly hydrogen and helium, so unlike that of Earth.

Learning more about it could yield some insights into the creation of the solar system itself.

One of Saturn’s mysteries involves the massive storm in the shape of a hexagon at its north pole.

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Himalayan region


The researchers say “It’s likely that these results translate to other high mountain chains”. Above 4,500 metres dust is found to be ahead of other forms of pollution.
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Dust blowing onto high mountains in the western Himalayas is a bigger factor than previously thought in hastening the melting of snow there, researchers show in a study published Oct. 5 in Nature Climate Change.

That’s because dust—lots of it in the Himalayas—absorbs sunlight, heating the snow that surrounds it, reports Phys.org.

“It turns out that dust blowing hundreds of miles from parts of Africa and Asia and landing at very high elevations has a broad impact on the snow cycle in a region that is home to one of the largest masses of snow and ice on Earth,” said Yun Qian, atmospheric scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

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Quiet sun [image credit: NASA]


They picked an interesting time to study the Sun, as it starts to emerge from an unusually deep and long-lasting solar minimum. What effect this might have on Earth’s weather systems of course remains to be seen, but could be hard to quantify. The researchers have a lot of data to work through, and are hoping for ‘unprecedented insights into the sun’.
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Three of the Solar Orbiter spacecraft’s instruments, including Imperial’s magnetometer, have released their first data, reports Phys.org.

The European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter spacecraft launched in February 2020 on its mission to study the sun and it began collecting science data in June.

Now, three of its ten instruments have released their first tranche of data, revealing the state of the sun in a ‘quiet’ phase.

The sun is known to follow an 11-year cycle of sunspot activity and is currently almost completely free of sunspots.

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Teslas in Norway [image credit: Norsk Elbilforening (Norwegian Electric Vehicle Association)]


Delete ‘alone’. The study is essentially redundant, as a reduction from 0.04% of carbon dioxide’s very small share of the atmosphere won’t do anything noticeable to the climate anyway. However it does highlight some difficulties with the current policies pretending to ‘tackle the climate crisis’, such as the massive increase in electricity generation needed to power hundreds of millions of electric vehicles. Closing down all thermal power plants is not compatible with such a policy, as the researchers admit, but climate obsessives may not want to face up to that.
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Today there are more than 7 million electric vehicles (EVs) in operation around the world, compared with only about 20,000 a decade ago, says Phys.org.

It’s a massive change—but according to a group of University of Toronto Engineering researchers, it won’t be nearly enough to address the global climate crisis.

“A lot of people think that a large-scale shift to EVs will mostly solve our climate problems in the passenger vehicle sector” says Alexandre Milovanoff, lead author of a new paper published today in Nature Climate Change.

“I think a better way to look at it is this: EVs are necessary, but on their own, they are not sufficient.”

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Cyclones in Jupiter’s atmosphere [image credit: NASA]


At the south pole of Jupiter lurks a striking sight—even for a gas giant planet covered in colorful bands that sports a red spot larger than the Earth, says Phys.org.

Down near the south pole of the planet, mostly hidden from the prying eyes of humans, is a collection of swirling storms arranged in an unusually geometric pattern.

Since they were first spotted by NASA’s Juno space probe in 2019, the storms have presented something of a mystery to scientists.

The storms are analogous to hurricanes on Earth. However, on our planet, hurricanes do not gather themselves at the poles and twirl around each other in the shape of a pentagon or hexagon, as do Jupiter’s curious storms.

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Snow-covered UK, January 2010 [image credit: NASA]


The inconvenient ‘pause’ following the strong El Niño of 1997-98 comes back to life in this study. Attempts by climate alarmists to bury it have failed.
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A new analysis of global air temperature by researchers from Tongji University in Shanghai has cast light on the much debated recent hiatus in global temperature, says Dr David Whitehouse @ The GWPF.

Writing in the Journal of Earth Science the Chinese scientists say there was a rapid rise in global mean surface air temperature after the late 1970s but that this stalled and there was a relative stagnation and even slight cooling that lasted for about 15 years (1998–2012).

They add that even though the slowdown was acknowledged by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC AR5) and termed as a hiatus (IPCC, 2013) there was a debate in the scientific community about whether there was a hiatus in global warming or not.

The researchers believe that the debate about the global warming hiatus poses a substantial challenge to our understanding of the global climate response to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and natural variability.

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Image credit: Science News


We highlighted this in a 2016 blog post, and now new research provides this update.
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Fairy circles are one of nature’s greatest enigmas and most visually stunning phenomena, says Phys.org.

An international research team led by the University of Göttingen has now, for the first time, collected detailed data to show that Alan Turing’s model explains the striking vegetation patterns of the Australian fairy circles.

In addition, the researchers showed that the grasses that make up these patterns act as “eco-engineers” to modify their own hostile and arid environment, thus keeping the ecosystem functioning. The results were published in the Journal of Ecology.

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It seems most people rightly have little faith or interest in the alarmist output of climate models, and are unimpressed by claims that governments can somehow influence the climate by changing their energy policies.
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Most European citizens do not particularly care about climate change, complains Warwick University.

That’s the striking finding from new research on the views of 70,000 randomly sampled European men and women. Only 5% described themselves as “extremely worried” about climate change.

The climate and the environment ranked only fifth in people’s overall views about priorities. There was also scepticism that co-ordinated action, for example to cut personal energy use, would make much difference.

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