Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Man, climate combine to erode Cancun's beaches

And those with enough money to stay here continue to enjoy it -
perhaps even more, as the climate undergoes increasingly large swings.

Margaret Young, a retired teacher from Winnipeg, Canada, came to
Cancun as unusually heavy storms lashed her hometown.

"We feel climate change," Young said. "We get storms in the summer
that we never used to get."

And the foot of snow that fell in the Winnipeg area in late November
was also unusual. "We used to get some snow, but not that severe," she

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Early start to winter ~20% of USA is covered in snow already « Watts Up With That?

While early autumn snowstorms aren't uncommon in US weather history, they tend to be quick affairs that melt off quickly in a day or two. This however is a bit different in that we have a significant portion of the northern Midwest plains and northern Rockies are snow covered and it is not quickly dissipating...

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


From Jon Richfield [Via Benny Peiser's CCNet]


"Whatever is going on here, it is not science." Ross McKitrick.

When the first McIntyre-McKitrick report appeared on CCNet, I had been a climate sceptic for years, not because I am a climatologist (I emphatically am nothing of the sort!) but because the claims that I saw were variously assailable, implausible, and above all, illogical. (Anyway, as I pointed out elsewhere, in my not tediously humble opinion as a qualified non-engineer, to correct the predicted global warming consequences struck me as a minor problem.) When McMc described their statistical work, I was deeply impressed, but it did not make as deep an impression as evidence of a more serious problem:

1: Mann et al had not published their raw data (Bad!)

2: Certain major journals had not followed up and demanded the data (Worse -- Mann might have been just a naughty little lad, but these journals were practically the long-standing gold standard for quality, ethics, and professionalism. It is as shocking an example as I have seen, of what happens when even the proudest standards of smug elites are not policed.)

3: Mann et al, in the face of legitimate requests, had privately and publicly refused to provide the data. They did so on grounds so puerile as to be nauseating. I was wondering whether there must be some misunderstanding. I thought myself pretty unshockable, but...!

4: Those journals did not react when their noses were publicly rubbed in the fact that their own public honour was at stake. They did not insist on release of the data, did not publish any sort of retraction, and in the face of mounting evidence that there was something seriously wrong with the material, something that surely must come to light sooner or later, they tried to sit on the mess and hope that no one important would notice. Other VIPs forgot or jettisoned the Nullius in verba principle, and eagerly joined the party or preached vapidities against denialist treasons. By that time I was seriously beginning to doubt the evidence of my sources or senses.

5: Major international organisations, whose conferences might have required re-steering or loss of prestige, sat determinedly on their own messes. This at least was not shocking; it was politics and self-interest. Honesty and ethics were not at issue and could safely be ignored as irrelevant to anybody's personal greed.

6: Certain persons' "Inconvenient Truth" proved to be such a scientifically vacuous sales job that its popularity led me to despair; if people would swallow *that*, then what was the point of arguing? If no would understand, what did it matter whether anyone would listen?

All this is by now old stuff, certainly in CCNet. But in the light of recent revelations it raises certain points above and beyond the value of the by now widely contemptable peer-review "system":

A: Granting that no human system can be perfect, we have seen repeatedly in recent decades scientific fraud in pursuit of everything from personal prejudice, cronyism, material greed, advancement, and self aggrandisement, to downright malice. Such things may be in the minority, but nowhere far to seek. A particularly revolting corollary has been the degree to which whistle-blowing has amounted to career suicide, seen as treason, worse than the offence in some of the most flagrant cases of professional abuse.

B: The foregoing point, no matter how it may be denied, raises the commonsense observation that undetected abuses many times outnumber those that reach the public awareness. How many of us have seen theses with errors that no one could or wanted to mention? How many bosses have forbidden publication of results embarrassing either to themselves or cronies?

C: There are whole ranges of problems here, and not all of them simple to mitigate. However, to my mind the operative one is the fact that nearly all control of research is voluntary, which works fine until any conflict of interest arises. Then it instantly becomes a matter of personal ethics, in which the ethics of the most senior or esoteric of the dramatis personae generally prevail. People make all sorts of noises about how science sorts itself out sooner or later, but that is missing the point -- a whole bushel and a peck of points. The products of research, including the intangibles (Possibly the intangibles in particular!) are the concern of the community.

D: Increasingly, where communal interests are at stake, there is talk of enforceable communal sanctions. Fastidious persons do not like that idea, and neither do I, but what is the alternative? How many of us would like to be at the mercy of many people who would like to assume the prestige and power of doctors, if there were no enforceable controls? Log into for some ugly object lessons. But the system is leaky and creaky? Certainly! But it is better than nothing. And every time there is a major scandal, either there is a shake-up or the bad eggs become a little more careful for a while. Is that good enough? No. Is it better than nothing? It works in medicine, in law, and a few other fields... partly. In science one party might get slapped on the wrist, but seldom seriously, and usually indirectly, such as for fraud, rather than scientific misconduct.

Insult to the clean-handed workers? Rubbish! I do not live in a froth of indignation because there is a law against my committing burglary, even though I am not a burglar! My lab days are past, but I wouldn't have blinked at the idea that there was a law against misconduct, any more than because there was a law against burglary.

In short, I think that if there were a few dozen or so workers, among the referees, journalists, and research workers, who were at the moment contemplating possible long jail sentences for this global warming fiasco, (whether AGW is a material concern or not) that would be a salutary and salubrious thing. And the same would go for any other field of research.

E: Perhaps worst of all: if youngsters starting their scientific careers see such abuses as routine, then how long before the whole system all collapses into a morass of short-term self interest and corruption? The politics are bad enough already. Surely to avoid that is worth a little control?

Any thoughts?


Monday, August 10, 2009

Ok, I can post to my other blog now

Google has apparently un-banned me from posting to Tom Nelson.
The Associated Press: Labor sec'y says green jobs hiring will pick up
LAS VEGAS — Hiring in the alternative energy industry will pick up in the next 12 months, though it will take some time before so-called green-jobs will become a bigger part of the U.S. job market, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis said Monday.
Several Utah towns record lowest high temps
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Record low high temperatures are being reported throughout Utah.

Nearly a dozen different weather stations reported record low high temperatures or ties on Sunday, including Alpine, where the high was 74, and Alta, where the high temperature was 58 degrees on Sunday.
JUST SAY NEIN | Daily Telegraph Tim Blair Blog
And who could blame them? The US government describes carbon as a pollutant; the Australian government describes carbon as a pollutant; the German media routinely describes carbon as a pollutant. Would you want a pollutant stored in massive quantities underneath your town?
Clean-Energy Summit: You Want Clean Energy? Shale Gas. - Environmental Capital - WSJ
Of course, no clean-energy summit would be complete without Mr. Gore. He repeated many familiar lines—climate change is “threatening the future of our civilization” and continued greenhouse-gas emissions are “madness”—and again wondered what future generations would say: “What were you doing, watching American Idol?”
Energy Summit draws vocal protesters - News - ReviewJournal.com
"Just what the doctor ordered is a national program to re-power America," Gore said. "Sooner or later we are going to have to come to grips with the fact the climate crisis is threatening the future of our civilization."

Cameron Dueck (OPEsailing) on Twitter: [If carbon dioxide is really killing off the Muskox, why would people in the Northwest Passage behave this way?]
Anchored in Holman, would be quiet but for the constant whine of quad bikes driving in bored circles. Muskox on the BBQ
[Modeling energy conservation?]: Obama, First Family to Visit Yellowstone Aug. 15
President Barack Obama and his family will be visiting Yellowstone National Park on Aug. 15 after a visit to Bozeman as part of his summer vacation.
After his westward trip the First Family will spend the rest of an August vacation in Martha's Vineyard.
U.S. biofuel makers want CO2 credits in climate bill | Green Business | Reuters
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Makers of biofuels and plastics and chemicals made from crops want U.S. senators to change the climate bill to give them free pollution permits that would be needed to emit greenhouse gases under the legislation.
Krugman Calls for Second Stimulus, Suggests 'Environmental Policies' to 'Change Things'
“I actually think that environmental policies – the, uh a clear-cut target for emissions reduction would actually lead to a lot of business investment to change things,” Krugman said.

The Times columnist said it would be appropriate to “forcefully” experiment with “a lot of things.”

“We have to I think, try a lot of things, but we need to try them forcefully,” Krugman added.
A Day in the Life of a Right-Wing Extremist
Wonder if any in the Obama regime might be convinced — in the interest of fixing the fake global warming catastrophe – to melt down and recycle the iron fist of communism, because capitalism is a much more efficient manner of making sure everyone has money.
WA Rep. Baird defends Antarctica [climate scam] trip
Democratic Rep. Brian Baird of Washington state lashed out at the news media Monday, saying sensationalized coverage of taxpayer-funded trips could jeopardize the ability of Congress to learn firsthand about issues such as climate change and ocean acidification.

"They basically are scaring members away from the water," with the result that "we will have no one in Congress who is knowledgeable and has firsthand experience in the ocean," Baird said, referring to stories that have highlighted visits by him and other members of Congress to the Galapagos Island and the South Pole.
"The Wall Street Journal would have you believe it's an expose' of some sort. I've been talking about the trip since the day I got home" 17 months ago, Baird said. "It had a profound influence in my thinking on global warming."

Besides the South Pole and Galapagos trips, Baird said in the past year he also has been to Israel and the Gaza Strip — twice — as well as Iraq, Afghanistan and Davos, Switzerland — the latter for a meeting of the World Economic Forum.