....and finally a letter from the DT, edited slightly for clarity:
The floods in York remind us that flood defences do not remove water; they merely push it somewhere else.
The rivers Ure and Swale, which join to form the Ouse, are embankened across theVale of York, preventing flood water from spreading out over agricultural land. Ditches and streams are cleared by the Environment Agency, bringing land-water quickly into these rivers, but the huge volume of water reaching York is impeded in its progress by lack of dredging.
This is because the EU Water Framework Directive stops the Environment Agency from dredging the rivers.
HG, North Yorkshire
What is not reported is the damage resulting from building houses on flood plains. Take a look at this excellent picture by Warren Smith of the Daily Mail .... I've linked the thumbnail below to the article in which it appears:
Amid all the devastation and recrimination over the floods in Cumbria hardly anybody mentions is the almost complete cessation of dredging of our rivers since we were required to accept the European Water Framework Directive (EWF) into UK law in 2000.
Yet until then, for all of recorded history, it almost went without saying that a watercourse needed to be big enough to take any water that flowed into it, otherwise it would overflow and inundate the surrounding land and houses. Every civilisation has known that. City authorities and, before them, manors and towns and villages, organised themselves to make sure their watercourses were cleansed, deepened and sometimes embanked to hold whatever water they had to carry away.
So next time you see politicians around Cumbria in wellingtons, high-viz jackets and hard hats, wringing their hands and promising to do whatever it takes to protect us from flooding, ask them how exactly they intend to get round the European Water Framework Directive.
(excerpt from not a lot of people know that .. - Ed)
In the light of this, I thought a short piece on the current row about Universities would be in order.
A generation of students is being denied the intellectual challenge of debating conflicting views because self-censorship is turning campuses into over-sanitised 'safe spaces'.
The worrying development is that a small and vocal minority is actively attempting to ban anything which which it disagrees; anything from 'The Sun' newspaper to the historian David Starkey, scientist Richard Dawkins, or a statue of Cecil Rhodes.
Unfortunately very few academics challenge censorship emanating from students. It is easier not to rock the boat and to go along with it. However, appeasement is never a good long-term policy.
An open and democratic society requires people to have the courage to argue against ideas with which they disagree or find offensive. At the present time, there is a real risk that students are not given opportunities to engage in such debate.
Those who run our universities need to take a much tougher line against the 'little emperors' who attempt to impose censorship or prevent discussion.
A carbon-capture project in Kemper County, Mississippi, is having problems with costs.
State regulators have approved an increase in electricity prices of 18% for Mississippi Power in order to keep the company afloat, as it completes the increasingly-expensive carbon-capture plant.
The plant is 582MW; relatively small. In 2008 $270 million in government grants was received and eventually it received planning approval.It is a combined-cycle power plant to create and burn synthesis gas made from lignite. It also pumps CO2 into the ground to help oil extraction.
The plant is two years behind schedule. The original price was set at $1.8 billion. It has now tripled.
A spokesman for Southern Company said that the original cost estimates for the plant did not take into account the CO2 pipeline and 65 percent carbon capture. These features were, unfortunately, added on later.
1. Dr Robert Balling: “The IPCC notes that “No significant acceleration in the rate of sea level rise during the 20th century has been detected.” (This did not appear in the IPCC Summary for Policymakers).
2. Dr. Lucka Bogataj: “Rising levels of airborne carbon dioxide don’t cause global temperatures to rise…. temperature changed first and some 700 years later a change in aerial content of carbon dioxide followed.”
3. Dr John Christy: “Little known to the public is the fact that most of the scientists involved with the IPCC do not agree that global warming is occurring. Its findings have been consistently misrepresented and/or politicized with each succeeding report.”
4. Dr Rosa Compagnucci: “Humans have only contributed a few tenths of a degree to warming on Earth. Solar activity is a key driver of climate.”
5. Dr Richard Courtney: “The empirical evidence strongly indicates that the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis is wrong.”
Sceptical quotes from 45 more ex-IPCC scientists are shown on the roaldjlarsen website
It was made up of wind turbines, a hydro scheme and solar panels. The only part of it still working is the solar. The wind turbine towers are still standing, but the mechanisms have been taken away for re-engineering, and Westwind, the installing company, whose turbines have failed all over Scotland, is subject to a Scottish government investigation.
The hydro scheme, computer controlled, has had software problems and is not working.
The solar panels give trouble-free electricity and supply a bank of batteries. Using solar in this way makes sense.
Readers may wish to take a look at the famous 2007 Channel 4 programme, entitled "The Great Global Warming Swindle". Happy viewing!
Denmark’s government will have a higher than expected budget deficit in 2015, which is the reason for the cuts. Green energy spending will reduce from $55 million to $18 million.
Denmark has a very high electricity price: 41 cents per kWh. This is about four times the price in the USA.
On the one hand, Ms. Rudd wants renewables to bear the intermittency costs they create for the rest of the system and she wants to be tough on subsidies. But she wants more offshore windfarms.
The policy is contradictory. Offshore wind is not competitive, so why subsidise it? Nevertheless her speech sends a warning to promoters of renewables because now the cost of intermittency is on the table and is unlikely to disappear.
Gas-fired power stations are dependable and are by far the lowest cost route to cutting carbon dioxide emissions, if that is your priority. They are also relatively quick to build.
Some of you may not be aware that thirty years ago, British Gas considered natural gas to be too precious to be used in power stations. Until 1990, the European Commission forbade the use of gas in generating electricity.
Denmark has the highest electricity prices in Europe; it also has the highest proportion of wind energy.
When it was built in 2001, it was advertised as having a life of 25 years.
In 2014, nine of the ten turbines were no longer working, so it is being dismantled.
A scientist in the industry with whom I am in touch tells me that the economic life of wind turbines is generally between 10 and 15 years, not the 20 to 25 years projected by the wind industry itself and by governments.
One-third of industrial electricity bills now pays for green levies and subsidies for renewable energy. Steel, an industry critical to manufacturing, is being crippled to pay for wind farms and solar panels.
Thousands more steel jobs – (Tata and others) - are at risk in Sheffield, the North East, Scotland and South Wales because of taxes designed to reduce carbon dioxide. Unfortunately tere is no evidence that man-made CO2 affects climate; it is too low in concentration to have anything more than a marginal effect. Scientists and engineers know this, but apparently the government does not.
She said "this is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution".
Figueres also said that the partisan divide in the U.S. Congress is detrimental to passing any sort of legislation to fight global warming, whereas the Chinese Communist Party can push through policies and reforms easily; the country’s national legislature usually enforces the decisions made by the party’s Central Committee.
The Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that it would be morally wrong for developed countries to expect carbon dioxide reductions to apply to his country.
Chinese President Xi Jinping asked for more fairness and justice. Decoded, this means that China, and developing countries, need money from the West - $100 billion in climate finance to developing nations by 2020 was the sum mentioned, to be used in developing cleaner energy technologies. (see remarks above by Christina Figueres - Ed.)
David Cameron said that 97% of scientists believe man-made climate change will have catastrophic impacts if certain things are not done. (see below for remarks on the '97%' - Ed.)
Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, asked for a legally binding commitment to tackling man-made climate change. However the US Senate is likely to stop such a commitment from becoming law in America, even if agreement is reached in Paris, largely because the costs outweight the benefits..
Britain has some of the strongest commitments to eradicating coal and some of the most expensive energy prices in Europe but apparently its abandonment of Carbon Capture research, a technology which doesn't work, has damaged its reputation in Climate Change activist circles.
Something which has become noticeable recently is that public opinion is turning against climate change activism, now the foolish policies it promotes are starting to affect people's pockets.
This particular gravy train seems to be heading for the buffers. It will be derailed when the public realises that global warming is nothing to do with carbon dioxide.
There are now no carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects anywhere in the UK.
To show that there is a greenhouse effect it you have to calculate the temp which the earth would have if there was no greenhouse effect, then compare it with observation.
Unfortunately the calculation cannot be done without making some fairly big assumptions, which leads to the errors in the calculation being of a similar size to the claimed effect.
28 Nov 2015
IER found the following prices, $ per MWh:
The IER economist Travis Fisher said that the notion that wind and solar power are becoming cheaper than sources like coal and nuclear is false.
He added that the narrative tends to compare highly subsidized wind and solar to coal plants paralysed by costly and unprecedented regulations. The implication was that there was no longer a cost premium in replacing existing coal plants with wind and solar.
Jim Clarkson, president of Resource Supply Management, said that coal capacity was being shut down before the end of its economic and depreciable life. The so-called replacement was wind and solar which had to be backed up by gas-fired power, which carried another set of costs.
It is clear that any policy which shuts down coal capacity before it has reached the end of its life, and builds wind and solar instead, will inevitably increase the cost of electricity.
No statistic has been quoted more often by supporters of the "consensus" than this, including President Obama. But analysis of how the two studies were conducted shows them to be unsound.
The first was based on a survey by a student for a Master’s degree. Of her original sample of 10,257 scientists, she identified only 77 as genuine climate scientists, 75 of whom had endorsed the “consensus” view on man-made climate change. This is where the 97% comes from. Unfortunately it represented only 0.007% of her original sample.
The academic John Cook did a count based on a sample of 4,011 academic papers. He said that 97% of them endorsed the view that humans are the primary cause of recent global warming, but only 65 of the 4,011 papers argued that man-made CO2 was responsible for a majority of warming, so Cook’s true percentage was actually 0.016%.
26 Nov 2015
The Prime Minister made the point that it is right to reduce subsidies on solar power, given that the price of solar panels has plummeted.
The EU has placed a trade tariff on the cheap China imports. Perhaps it does not want citizens to be able to install solar panels as cheaply as possible.
People are beginning to realize that in the UK, photovoltaic solar is not very efficient, given the high latitude of the UK, the low and weak solar irradiance from November to February, the cloudy nature of our climate and the fact that peak demand coincides with cold dark periods, when solar energy isn't available.
Solar power is also rather unfair on the less-well-off. It allows wealthy home owners to install solar panels at roughtly £1k per panel, greatly reducing their energy bills, at the expense of poorer families who do not own their own housing.
It is curious that the Labour Party rarely comments on the economic implications of spiralling energy costs, especially renewables, on heavy industry.
The 'green' aspect of the case was not mentioned in the subsequent BBC news reports.
Does this strike you as a sensible way to run an energy policy?
My own view is that the sooner the power cuts begin, the better. If the public believes there is not a problem, there is no incentive for the government to do anything about it.
Andrey Illarionov, former economic advisor to Putin and now CATO Institute Senior Fellow says that whilst climate change exists, it is cyclical, and that the anthropogenic role is very limited. The climate is a complicated system and so far, the evidence presented for the need to combat global warming is unfounded.
The Reuters new agency reported in June that India’s domestic spy service has accused Greenpeace and other lobby groups of damaging economic progress by campaigning against power projects, mining and genetically modified food. The Intelligence Bureau says that a number of Indian NGOs funded by donors based in the US, UK, Germany and the Netherlands have been using people-centric issues to create an environment in which industrial developments are likely to stall. Projects affected include coal-fired power projects, genetically modified organisms, the South Korean firm POSCO’s steel plant and Vedanta’s bauxite project (both in Odisha) and hyro-power projects in Arunachal Pradesh. It is not surprising, therefore, that the government has taken action against Greenpeace.
Update, 7 Nov 15:
22 Aug 15
22 Aug 15
He said last November that for the foreseeable future, coal is the foundation of prosperity. Coal is the foundation of the way we live because a modern lifestyle is impossible without energy.
“If we are serious about raising people’s living standards in less developed countries, if we are serious about maintaining and improving living standards in countries like Australia, we have to be serious about making the best use of coal.”
In May this year his chief business adviser Maurice Newman accused the United Nations of using debunked climate change science to lead a new world order. Christiana Figueres, head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, had just completed a journey around Australia spreading anti-coal propaganda.
Mr Newman told her that the UN was using false models showing sustained temperature increases to end democracy and impose authoritarian rule.
“The real agenda is concentrated political authority,” Newman wrote in an opinion piece published in The Australian. “Global warming is the hook. It’s about a new world order under the control of the UN. It is opposed to capitalism and freedom and has made environmental catastrophism a household topic to achieve its objective.”
In 2013, Australia was the fifth largest coal producer in the world. Approximately three quarters of its coal production each year is exported.
19 Ju1 15
This does not look good. The options are: 1) Pay factories to switch off at peak times (this is happening already in some areas but not being publicised), 2) Use mothballed power plants to plug the gap. However most of the recently-closed big plants have been demolished.
18 Ju1 15
The report also said that household energy bills have risen an extra £120 because of climate change policies which have not been thought through properly, and through the extra costs of running energy networks which use PV and wind energy.
16 Ju1 15
28 Jun 15
The move is expected to stop the construction of many developments not yet given planning permission.
Nicola Sturgeon described the decision as wrong-headed and perverse, which seems surprising since it is the spread of windfarms which is destroying Sctoland's tourist industry.
The John Muir Trust, the environmental protection group, said it was the right time to work out an energy mix which is affordable without damaging wild and natural landscapes.
The funding for the subsidy comes from the Renewable Obligation, which is funded by levies added to household bills. The Department of Energy and Climate Change said there will be grace period for projects already with planning permission.
Although energy policy is reserved to Westminster, the SNP government in Edinburgh has used its control over the planning system in Scotland to encourage the construction of thousands of turbines across the countryside, and many owners of hotels and B&B establishments have seen sharp declines in their numbers of visitors.
Lyndsey Ward said she hoped the decision would stop the construction of 25 turbines near her home just outside of Beauly, in the Scottish Highlands. She was disgusted with the Scottish Government, especially Fergus Ewing, the SNP Energy Minister, for repeating wind industry propaganda.
24 Jun 15
However there are many Methodists who do not agree with the alarmist position. The Rev Howard Curnow is one; here's another .... from the Methodist Recorder, 19 Jun 15, published by permission.
From Tim Wells, Chickerell, Dorset.
I strongly agree with Howard Curnow (Recorder, 29 May) when he argues that life as we know it would be impossible without fossil fuels as a source of electricity. Anyone who really does believe that wind and sun power can meet all of our needs is truly living in cloud cuckoo land.
I trust that the 17 Anglican bishops he mentions, plus all those in Methodism who are advocating disinvestment in oil and coal-supplying companies, have stopped using all oil-powered transport such as cars, buses and aurcraft, because continuing to do so would be completely hypocritical. And that would include trains as well; those which are diesel-powered and those using electricity. And I also trust that these advocates of disinvestment will never again use their central heating.
Somehow I feel that hypocrisy probably rules.
21 Jun 15
16 Jun 15
At a speech in the House of Lords, David Davies MP spoke about his experience meeting two men from the Royal Society. They had been sent to persuade him and fellow climate realists Peter Lilley and John Redwood to agree with the idea of man-made climate change. He said that representatives from the Society told him that they would not change their mind for at least fifty years, regardless of the evidence. ( They are, therefore, behaving as a political lobby group - Ed).
16 Jun 15
14 Jun 15
10 Jun 15
“But one must say clearly that we redistribute, de facto, the world's wealth by climate policy. … one has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. Instead, climate change policy is about how we redistribute, de facto, the world’s wealth… This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy, anymore.”
Green fundamentalism has nothing to do with the environment or saving the planet, its purpose is to transfer wealth and especially industry from Europe and North America to China and India.
It is unlikely that those organising the wealth transfer are doing it for nothing.
8 Jun 15
The reason for the rush is probably because the last thing the government wants is for it to be subjected to serious scrutiny.
Tidal schemes suffer from one serious disadvantage. They generate lot of their power at times when it is not needed by the Grid.
According to the developer, the 16 tidal-powered giant turbines, built into a six-mile long breakwater around Swansea Bay, will intermittently generate electricity at £168 per megawatt hour, with an average output of 57 megawatts. They will require back-up from fossil-fuel power stations for the whole of the time when they are producing little or no power.
Drax is another disaster story which is starting to receive adverse publicity, though not from the BBC. It was formerly Britain’s largest coal-fired power station. Now, part of it burns taxpayer-subsidised wood pellets imported from US forests. This is also horrendously expensive; around £80 per MW/hr.
This is two-and-a-half times more expensive than coal – a cost passed on to customers. Last year these subsidies to Drax came to £340 million. Without them its biomass operation would not be financially viable.
6 Jun 15
Consider also this statement from Julian Flood, councillor from Haverhill:
“A wind turbine produces expensive subsidised energy, and the power companies are forced to take it. The cost is passed directly to consumers'.
I wonder what fraction of the public is aware of this.
31 May 15
Phil Whitehurst of the General, Municipal, and Boilermakers' Union pointed out that the power station has not worn out. It has years of life left in it, and it supplies electricity at a fraction of the price of other forms of energy. As things stand the only things consumers will get from this course of action are higher bills. However the energy market has been grossly distorted by renewables subsidies; energy providers now have to use their quotas of renewable energy whether they want to or not, regardless of cost. (See also entry on CCGT below by George Wood, 21 May)
Meanwhile ... we've raised the number of CO2 molecules in the atmosphere from 3 per 10,000 to 4 per 10,000.
You couldn't make it up.
26 May 15
Our readers are aware that much of this is a game; politics is like that. Whether or not Amber is aware that 'man-made climate change' is a scam, and that climate is driven by solar activity, not carbon dioxide, I do not know. However her actions will speak louder than her words. We await developments.
It has also been announced, as mentioned further down the page, that Ferrybridge power station, which runs on coal, is to close, because of the way George Osborne’s carbon tax is making coal, the cheapest source of electricity, uncompetitive. This follows the recently announced closure of the 2.4GW coal-fired power station at Longannet. (Total UK demand is about 40 GW)
Power cuts are getting closer. Perhaps public anger when they occur will be the only way of focusing minds on reversing our lunatic energy policy.
25 May 15
Hans Jürgen Kerkhoff, President of the Federation, said that German steel companies would face additional costs of one billion euros annually until the end of the next decade if the costs were implemented.
Thyssen Krupp Steel board member Herbert Eichelkraut said that the implementation of the EU plan would lead to an increase in the price of the steel of around 20%.
Their competitors are China and India, which are not subject to CO2 restrictions.
This is not good news for the the 26,000 people employed by ThyssenKrupp Steel (and many more in other steel companies).
Donald Kaberuka, bank president, said the region did not have the luxury of abandoning fossil fuels in favour of renewables.
He said that it was hypocritical for for western governments who have funded industrialisation using fossil fuels to seek to prevent African countries from doing the same.
Our dysfunctional energy policy staggers on, and will continue to do so until public anger at power cuts (which have not yet begun) forces the government to take action.
Britain imports 50 million tonnes of coal a year, having abandoned around 500 years of indigenous coal reserves.
Ferrybridge burns British and Russian coal, producing energy at a fraction of the cost of renewables. It will be shut by next March with the loss of 370 jobs.
George Wood, a former Grid Controller, comments:
The real issue for coal-fired power stations is that CCGT (gas-fired) power stations are cheaper to build, cheaper to run, are almost twice as efficient as coal-fired, and are far more flexible to operate. They are also cleaner.
Nuclear power stations will be receiving financial support similar to wind-turbines but they are far more effective at supplying stable power than either wind-turbines or solar panels.
Nuclear power can be designed to be far more flexible than our previous era of nuclear power, as operated in France. They are also far more efficient than a coal-fired power station with attached carbon capture and storage.
I am for stopping any further subsidies to unreliable wind-turbines and solar power installations as sources of power because their full carbon emissions impact, efficiencies and impacts overall are not being fully and accurately analysed over their lifetimes.
We need some honest scientists in DECC and OFGEM.
21 May 15
We have a new government. It is now up to you to write to your elected member pointing out that wind turbines are not fit for purpose. They do not reduce carbon dioxide emissions because they are intermittent and inefficient; they produce energy which is vastly overpriced (about three times the cost of nuclear) and they desecrate the landscape, as you can see.
19 May 15
....This is where I grew up. It is Rutan Rd, Mojave, Ca. At the very end of the street is my parents' house, but no-one takes pictures from their perspective. They are the closest to these machines in the whole neighborhood. The rats and mice were driven into the houses and town by the construction, the constant red lights at night, the low hum. There's no property value at all. This vantage point is at the end of the street. near the old Golf Course. If you went on a map, you would see my parents' house, and literally choke. They are seven houses down from the vantage point on the other side of the street... It was so pretty growing up. The endless view, the birds, bats, coyotes, the sunsets and sunrises only rivalled the Caribbean. I used to run free in that desert after school and on weekends. It used to be filled with Joshua Trees. The developers ripped them out and left them in piles to rot. Protected trees.
As part of the propaganda campaign, the Supreme Court has ruled that the government must take urgent steps to tackle air pollution. This time the pollutiion specified is nitrogen dioxide.
It is convenient that there are so many air pollutants. A different one can be targeted for each new scam, or 'air pollution initiative'.
Freight drivers have predicted that diesel drivers would be offered incentives to scrap their vehicles. As with previous scams, the cost would be funded by taxpayers.
Edmund King of the AA said that 11 million motorists had been misled by Gordon Brown's dash for diesel, which was intended to reduce carbon dioxide emissions (......CO2 emissions don't do any harm anyway - Ed) . After a substantial proportion of the population have bought lower-CO2 emitters, they now discover that they are being hit by another scam.
What the propaganda fails to mention is that petrol engine emissions are as harmful as those from diesels.
The gases given off are a different mixture but the end result is similar. Diesels give off more particulates and nitrogen dioxide, but unleaded petrol emissions are far higher in cancer-producing aromatics. No doubt the next scam will be anti-petrol.... unless they think of something more lucrative first.
A tax on water, perhaps?
29 Apr 15
It is amazing that (according to the BBC) only Owen Paterson and UKIP are calling for the repeal of Ed Miliband's Climate Change Act - the most expensive Act ever to be passed by Parliament.
67% of people questioned say that parts of Scotland are now less appealing to visitors because of the proliferation of wind farms.
80% say that there should be protection for National Parks against these machines.
67% said that there should be buffer zones around specified areas.
18 Apr 15
It has been disrupting industrial projects by organizing protests.
The Indian government has also accused Greenpeace of concealing the amount of foreign money it brings into the country.
It has suspended Greenpeace bank accounts for six months and has threatened to cancel the registration which allows it to operate in India.
17 Apr 15
2 Apr 15
Here’s how the oil giant responded when asked for a quote:
“ExxonMobil will not respond to Guardian inquiries because of its lack of objectivity on climate change reporting, demonstrated by its campaign against companies that provide the energy necessary for modern life, including newspapers.” (...Crisply put ..... Ed. )
2 Apr 15
This is untrue. Smart meters are NOT compulsory, as confirmed by the Government and the consumer group 'Which?'
Energy companies are also making people believe that smart meters are obligatory.
It appears that they are getting their misleading information from 'Smart Energy GB', which is supposed to be giving out accurate information.
The Institute of Directors recently described smart meters as "unwanted by consumers, devoid of credibility and mind-blowingly expensive".
The cost of the programme is £12 billion. The price per household, if we assume 30 million housholds, is about £400.
2 Apr 15
Approval for its construction within a National Park was granted on the basis of a claimed output of 28.1%. This figure still appears on the website.
18% is extremely low; similar to that of the much-lampooned 'Green Park' turbine next to the M4 near Slough.
John Constable of the Renewable Energy Foundation comments: “The Glyndebourne wind turbine appears to be one of the least productive wind turbines in the country, with a rolling load factor since commissioning in 2011 of about 18%. We have data to calculate load factors for over 500 of the larger installations (500 kW and above). The Glyndebourne turbine performance puts it in the bottom ten per cent of this population. Indeed, it is the worst performing 900 kW turbine of the 12 for which we have data."
He added that the Glyndebourne load factor is not surprising in such a location. It's not windy enough, and 28% was never realistic.
2 Apr 15
27 Mar 15
27 Mar 15
With embarrassing timing, Parliament's European Scrutiny Committee has released a report saying that the BBC's coverage of European issues is shallow and biased.
Given the possibility that Britain will hold a referendum on its EU membership at some point in the next two years, the implication that the BBC is failing to provide balance is very troubling.
Given that the BBC is constitutionally obliged to represent everyone across the political spectrum, it needs to get its house in order.
26 Mar 15
17 Mar 15
The reason for the warning was a Society document which said:
‘If you don’t believe in climate change you are using one of the following [eight] misleading arguments...... (which it then proceeded to list)’
The implication was clear: the Society seemed to be saying there was no longer room for meaningful debate about the claim that the world is warming dangerously because of human activity, because the science behind this was settled.
We hoped we would persuade the Society to rethink this position. But since then the Society has become more dogmatic – despite the fact that since we sent that letter, it has become evident that there is more uncertainty than previously thought. Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere have continued to rise, but since 1998 there has been no statistically significant rise in global temperatures.
Nevertheless the Society continues to produce a stream of reports which reveal little sign of this, e.g. the pre-Christmas booklet A Short Guide To Climate Science. The Society has lent its name to claims that more frequent and more extreme weather events are occurring, which is untrue.
The Climate Change Act requires the UK to cut its CO2 emissions by 80 per cent from 1990 levels by 2050 – at mind-boggling cost. Generating electricity from windmills has contributed to electricity prices increasing by twice the level of inflation over the last decade, with further huge rises to fund renewable energy to come. Aluminium production is highly sensitive to energy prices, and most of the UK smelters have closed down – helping us reduce UK emissions, but also exporting jobs.
No one describes the consequence: we now import that aluminium from China, leading to CO2 emissions from shipping it here. Worse, most electricity in China is produced by coal, not gas, as in the UK. We are exacerbating the original global problem of global CO2 emissions, yet also pointing fingers at the Chinese. We really are leading the world in climate change hypocrisy.
The project to ‘solve the climate change problem’ is a modern version of the biblical Tower of Babel. We do not know how much the project will cost, when it will have been completed, nor what success will look like.
During my time as a government departmental Chief Scientific Adviser, I was always aware that politicians made the final decision on any issue on the balance of all the evidence. For this reason, civil servants are trained to draw their attention to all the upsides and downsides of taking a particular course of action.
Those who fail to provide balance are not giving advice, but lobbying. It is with the deepest regret that I must now state that this is the role which has been adopted by the Royal Society.
(...summarised from a much longer article appearing in the Daily Mail)
17 Mar 15
Appearing on Breitbart News, he said that scientific arguments have deteriorated; individuals have moved away from civilized dialogues where people work together to search for the truth. He described the activist philosophy as catering to popular opinion rather than being concerned with the truth.
He said that the rough and tumble of scientific debate and dialogue should not be suppressed by some official position on the part of scientific organizations.
17 Mar 15
16 Mar 15
CSIRO became a warmist operation, as shown by the vilification of Australian scientist Bob Carter, who drew attention in the press to the flattening world temperature trend in 2007. Andrew Ash, acting director of the CSIRO’s "Climate Adaptation Flagship", wrote at the time: “Professor Carter has presented an unethical misrepresentation of the facts." (...there is nothing unethical about questioning the statements of known dissemblers - Ed.)
Behind the warmist facade there are some good scientists at the CSIRO, but most stood by and watched as the standards collapsed because they were bullied by management into keeping silent.
Clive Spash, ex-CSIRO science leader, said that the scientists, if they were allowed to speak freely, would be able to inform the Australian public fully. The scientists were basically trustworthy. There is contested evidence, so you need open discussion and debate. CSIRO was pretending that management's position was the truth, and was suppressing other views.
The gagging of CSIRO scientists has been widespread. A website has been set up called Victims Of CSIRO, which provides a point of contact and information for current and former employees who have experienced bullying, harassment and victimisation for standing up for their views. (...summarised from www.casualinfamy.com)
16 Mar 15
David Fraser said: " It would have been wrong to have spent an additional £150,000 of scarce public money on a windfarm development which we believe made little financial or environmental sense."
There are no plans to revisit the idea.
16 Mar 15
Energy company RWE Innogy is seeking planning permission to replace them with six new turbines, three times as high.
An internet poll rejected the application in a ratio of about 2:1.
9 Mar 15
The results were as follows:
Against a carbon tax: 92%
The idea was suggested by the Green Liberal Party of Switzerland. It was intended to lower carbon dioxide emissions and reduce global warming. Readers of this site will be aware that it would have done neither. (...summarised from WSJ article by Neil Maclucas, 8 Mar)
8 Mar 15
7 Mar 15
5 Mar 15
The BBC has reported that Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, has given the go-ahead to the largest offshore wind farm in the world. 400 enormous turbines covering 436 square miles of the North Sea.
What the BBC didn’t mention was that this £8 billion project, producing on average 840 megawatts of electricity (on the days when the wind is blowing at the necessary speed - Ed), will earn for its mainly Norwegian and German owners £900 million a year in subsidies, supplied by us through our electricity bills.
Nor did the BBC mention that, in Manchester, an 880MW gas-fired power station is being built for one-eighth of the cost. It will produce a similar amount of electricity 24/7 without any subsidy.
A further point not mentioned by the BBC was that the chairman of Forewind, the consortium behind the North Sea project, was Lord Deben (John Gummer), until it was thought appropriate that he should resign when he became chairman of the Committee on Climate Change, set up to give the Government “independent” advice on its energy policy.
He was replaced as Forewind’s chairman by Charles Hendry, who had just stepped down from being Ed Davey’s colleague as Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change.
2 Mar 15
The financial details, according to John Constable, director of wind industry analysts the Renewable Energy Foundation, are the project’s most troubling aspect.
“Not since British Leyland has the government awarded this much public subsidy to a single industry – and look how badly that ended...........it represents an experiment on such a scale that it could seriously disrupt the UK economy.”
To appreciate his concerns, you need to understand the main problem with wind energy: being intermittent and unreliable (obviously, because it’s only available when the wind is blowing), it is a poor substitute for other forms of energy (derived from fossil fuel or nuclear), which can be generated on demand according to consumer need.
This is why wind energy has to be so heavily subsidised. In a free market, no business would want to invest in a wind farm because no customer wants to buy intermittent electricity. So to make wind (and other renewables, like solar) more attractive to big business, the Government has rigged the market. with a number of incentives. Renewables companies are paid triple the going rate for what little energy they produce when the wind is blowing, and we have to pay this money through our electricity bills.
Hence the involvement of Forewind, an international consortium of energy companies SSE, RWE, Statkraft and Statoil. For every megawatt hour of electricity their turbines produce, they will be paid £155.
This is a shameful waste of our money. Fossil fuel generators get £50 per MWh.
Here's part of the statement:
"In 1971, as a PhD student in Ecology I joined an activist group in a church basement in Vancouver Canada and sailed on a small boat across the Pacific to protest US Hydrogen bomb testing in Alaska. We became Greenpeace.
After 15 years in the top committee I had to leave as Greenpeace took a sharp turn to the political left, and began to adopt policies that I could not accept from my scientific perspective. Climate change was not an issue when I abandoned Greenpeace, but it certainly is now.
There is no scientific proof that human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are the dominant cause of the minor warming of the Earth’s atmosphere over the past 100 years. If there were such a proof it would be written down for all to see. No actual proof, as it is understood in science, exists.
27 Feb 15
Two of Willie's peers, Bob Carter and Lord Christopher Monckton, responded by writing letters to Dr. Alcock and other of his colleagues, defending his professional integrity.
These letters are available online.
It is normal when losing the argument to attack the player rather than the ball - Ed.
26 Feb 15
"For me the protection of Planet Earth, the survival of all species and sustainability of our ecosystems is more than a mission. It is my religion and my dharma."
The author of that statement has, for the past 13 years, been one of the world's most influential government advisers in the area of energy and climate policy, and one of the most visible spokespersons for climate science.
During this time we have witnessed a near-complete shutting down of open scientific debate, militant hostility to any questioning of the claims or assertions of the IPCC, and the zealous promulgation of costly and irrational energy policies with inadequate regard for the balancing of human costs and benefits.
It is clear that a missionary environmentalist mindset has been embedded at the highest levels of the IPCC, and we reiterate our concerns that it has been spreading throughout the organisation, with the full support of the leadership.
We call upon policymakers to begin asking some overdue questions about this organisation upon which they rely so heavily. In particular, we are left to wonder how Dr Pachauri's extreme biases have affected the work of the IPCC in recent years and the advice it gives to governments."
25 Feb 15
They were blacklisted because their activities violated visa rules. They were found to be organizing protests near fossil fuel power stations and coal mines. They were also involved in other activities damaging to India's energy security. This is what the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs told the Delhi High Court.
There were also suspicions as to who was funding Greenpeace International. It was noted that the Netherlands headquarters was attempting to disrupt India's energy supply, perhaps at the behest of foreign interests opposed to India's industrial development.
23 Feb 15
He also offered $1 billion in assistance for renewable energy products.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi didn’t bite.
In Britain, subsidies for solar and wind energy projects have doubled fuel bills in eight years.
16 Feb 15
31 Jan 15
30 Jan 15
The demand for electricity was the highest so far this winter on 19 Jan. The coincided with wind turbines generating virtually no electricity.
The cold snap caused a UK electricity demand of 52.54 GW between 5pm and 5.30pm. At this point, wind turbines were producing 0.57 GW; approximately 1% of demand. Earlier in the day the wind contribution had been 0.35 GW; the lowest performance by wind this winter.
This illustrates that Britain's wind farms cannot keep the lights on, despite the many billions of pounds they have received in subsidies.
The "installed capacity" of wind power in the UK is about 12GW. The maximum it can actually produce is 4GW, but only on the days when the wind is blowing at the necessary speed.
21 Jan 15
19 Jan 15
This is incorrect. Fossil fuels are not subsidised; they receive certain tax breaks.
- A subsidy means money goes from the government to the company.
The money flows in different directions.
Stuart Young Consulting, in 2012, successfully challenged a Guardian article which essentially was saying that since our energy VAT level is only 5% (rather than the standard 20%), fossil fuels are thus subsidised to the tune of 15%. They obviously "forgot" that renewable electricity is also 5% VAT rated.
6 Jan 15
About 4,000 respondants. Wind farms rejected in approximate 2:1 ratio.
20 Dec 14
So: expect cherry-picked medical 'reports', articles about diesel pollution in cities, particulates, diesel surcharges, etc; coming soon to the BBC and to newspapers. The progaganda will be spread by journalists parroting press releases and by politicians with no knowledge of science.
What won't get mentioned is the toxic nature of petrol engine emissions. Unleaded petrol contains a significant amount of aromatics; compounds based on benzene. They are carcinogenic, and are released unburnt, through the exhaust, when a petrol engine is cold or works inefficiently.
10 Dec 14
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