Archive for the ‘sense’ Category

Good on yer sport!

Posted on timeOctober 10th, 2008 by userPali Gap    flagNo Comments

I have had a long break from posting. To be frank – with so much global cooling going on and with alarmists in retreat I have been suffering from a lack of motivation.

However I have been woken up to do a post following something I read at Anthony Watts’ excellent blog on the subject of Kids Against Anthropogenic Global Warming.

Kids everywhere seem to be brainwashed these days into the depressing lack of original thinking and political correctness of their teachers. Where’s the rebellion of youth?

For example – consider this that I read recently:

A GROUP of Scarborough students learned all about their carbon footprint at a recent roadshow in Scarborough.

The Carbon Footprint Roadshow, run by BP, called at George Pindar Community Sports College in Moor Lane, Eastfield.

Its aim was to raise awareness about issues surrounding global warming and the students took part in role play exercises, planning and group work.

The workshop was part of the students’ theme in science of making learning real and they also took part in the BP young persons’ survey about attitudes towards global warming.

A spokeswoman for Pindar College said: “The sessions went very well and the presenters were really impressed by how concerned the students were about global warming.”

She added that the organisers were impressed by the fact that the students got more questions right than older participants from a recent workshop.

Yuck! And run by BP for heaven’s sake! For some reason it brings to my mind a line from a Lewis Carroll poem:

How doth the little crocodile
Improve his shining tail,
And pour the waters of the Nile
On every golden scale!
How cheerfully he seems to grin,
How neatly spreads his claws,
And welcomes little fishes in,
With gently smiling jaws

How refreshing then to find a 14 year old from down under taking on the AGW orthodoxy.

So good on yer webmistress Eloise and may your cloud of Google referring links grow ever larger and more authoritative by the day!


Dr Roy Spencer spells out his position

Posted on timeJuly 28th, 2007 by userPali Gap    flagNo Comments

Against the view that “the debate is over” and that there is a “scientific consensus” we have here a nice PDF pamphlet from a research scientist with some claim to “authority” (not that that matters as regards the truth of the matter, but it is evidence for the falsification of the glib claims of consensus).

Dr. Roy W. Spencer is a principal research scientist for the University of Alabama in Huntsville and the U.S. Science Team Leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) on NASA’s Aqua satellite. In the past, he has served as Senior Scientist for Climate Studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Dr. Spencer is the recipient of NASA’s Medal for Exceptional Scientific Achievement and the American Meteorological Society’s Special Award for his satellite-based temperature monitoring work. He is the author of numerous scientific articles. Dr. Spencer received his Ph.D. in Meteorology from the University of Wisconsin in 1981.

Dr Spencer argues:

  • There has been warming since the 1800’s (about 1deg C)
  • He agrees that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, and that industrialization has seen significant increases in CO2 emissions
  • However warming before 1940 is an anomaly as most CO2 emissions occurred after 1940. Instead this warming is best explained as a natural rebound from the unusually cool period before the 1800’s (the “Little Ice Age”)
  • Evidence from ice cores shows that temperature rises precede CO2 increases, not the other way around
  • Those who theorise about CO2’s role posit that mankind’s activities have resulted in a one watt per metre2 change in the energy-in/energy-out planetary balance. However there is no empirical test for this claim as yet (as it is too small to measure)
  • The greenhouse effect of CO2 is nowhere near as significant as the effect of water vapour (or methane for that matter). Weather systems drive the greenhouse effect far more than CO2:

“I believe it is because these weather systems act as a natural thermostat, adjusting precipitation, cloud, and water vapor amounts in response to solar heating in such a way that a stable average temperature is maintained”

  • So to inflate the importance of CO2, warming-mongers need to wheel out the mechanism of “positive feedback” to get their their doom-saying going. The usual recourse is to the idea that increasing surface temperatures will cause increased water evaporation, but Dr Spencer does not accept that surface evaporation is the prime, or even a key driver of water vapour levels.
  • The precipitation systems that do control water vapour levels are as yet poorly understood and modeled. However Dr Spencer believes that there is probably a negative feedback: warmer precipitation systems are more efficient at removing water vapor than cooler precipitation systems.
  • If water vapour feedbacks are controversial, the feedback effect of clouds is even more so. It is to be expected that an increase in high clouds (cirrus) would have a warming effect; an increase in low level clouds should have a cooling effect. Dr Spencer seems to be sympathetic to the cosmic ray conjecture (Svensmark et al.). The sun he says “is more active now than it has been for many centuries“. The result of this may have been reduced low level cloudiness (a strong sun reduces cosmic rays, which in turn are thought to have a role in “seeding” low level clouds).

To sum up:

“I believe that the (computer) models do not correctly handle precipitation processes, and it is those processes which control most of the Earth’s natural greenhouse effect.”

Dr Spencer’s PDF pamphlet is here “Global Warming: What You Haven’t Been Told


Holding on to sanity

Posted on timeJune 14th, 2007 by userPali Gap    flagNo Comments

Vaclav Klaus, President of the Czech Republic, has published a nice manifesto:

  • Small climate changes do not demand far-reaching restrictive measures
  • Any suppression of freedom and democracy should be avoided
  • Instead of organising people from above, let us allow everyone to live as he wants
  • Let us resist the politicisation of science and oppose the term “scientific consensus“, which is always achieved only by a loud minority, never by a silent majority
  • Instead of speaking about “the environment“, let us be attentive to it in our personal behaviour
  • Let us be humble but confident in the spontaneous evolution of human society. Let us trust its rationality and not try to slow it down or divert it in any direction
  • Let us not scare ourselves with catastrophic forecasts, or use them to defend and promote irrational interventions in human lives.

From an article published June 13 2007 Freedom, not climate, is at risk


Apocalypse avoided: the extreme weather of ’06

Posted on timeFebruary 9th, 2007 by userPali Gap    flagNo Comments

I live in the UK where the climate is notoriously fickle. This characteristic of our climate is of great assistance to the powers that be as they programmatically seek to replace the concept of “global warming” with that of “climate change” in the vernacular. Any moderately significant weather event can now be harnessed to the Great Cause and taken to add to “the weight of mounting evidence” that confirms the truth of climate change. It matters not whether it be a drought in the south, a flood in the West Country, a tornado, a spell of hot weather in London, severe gales in autumn, water spouts in the Channel – the media will tend to hype them all up as harbingers of the coming apocalypse.

However as 2006 came to an end there was an excellent piece by Philip Eden in his Weather Watch series for the Daily Telegraph (Dec 30) that added a much needed sense of perspective:

A year for the record books

It was a year when unusual weather events frequently occupied the headlines, several records were broken, and many people were convinced that the climate really was changing.

January ’06 was the wettest for almost 30 years in southern England , then on Feb 8 a severe thunderstorm accompanied by hail and violent squalls caused much damage across the Midlands and the South-east.

Spring was wet in the north and west of Britain, but very dry in the south and east; June was mostly fine, apart from a 12-hour-long, steady downpour on the 29th which deposited between 2 and 3in of rain in a broad zone across southern, central and eastern England. That apart, it was a memorably long and sunny summer which culminated in record-breaking temperatures in early September with 35°C widely approached or exceeded.

October and November were both remarkably mild though often cloudy and damp, but the year ended with a dramatic burst of wintry weather with widespread snowfalls of 6in or more, and level depths approached 2ft in eastern Scotland.

You might not remember all those events. In fact you should not remember any of them as the year was 1906, not 2006. The purpose of this exercise has been to illustrate that, weather-wise, there is nothing new under the sun. Any year will deliver a handful of records and a host of unusual events, and we should not be surprised when they turn up.

(This article was reproduced by kind permission of Philip Eden. However I should say that this does not imply that he would endorse any of the views expressed here!)

Philip Eden is an independent meteorologist. As well as lots of other excellent articles and features (e.g Spin Between the Raindrops) He has published a number of books:

Philip also runs the websites and


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