The Uninformed, Hypocritical, Emotionally-Driven People’s Climate March

September 20th, 2014 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

PCM_windmill_316_450While as many as 100,000 people gather in New York City tomorrow to march for the use of more unreliable and expensive energy, over 300,000,000 people will be staying home.

The marchers will be relying on fossil fuels for transportation to get to the event, and relying on mostly fossil-fueled electricity to power their cell phones. They will be enjoying food and drinks which similarly relied on fossil fuels for growing, processing, and transportation. Their clothing relied on fossil fuels.

Their health care and entire standard of living that allows them the luxury of attending the march required abundant and affordable fossil fuels.

Most of these marchers have romantic, emotional, uninformed attitudes about energy. I get letters and emails from them sometimes, advocating nonsensical solutions to the global warming problem, like increased reliance on “anti-gravity”.

After I appeared on a TV talk show with Daryl Hannah a few years ago she told me, “We just need to switch to solar and wind power now”. Such misinformed and naive attitudes are pervasive in the Green movement.

I suspect engineers and others who actually make the country run will not be well represented at the march tomorrow. My father used to say, “those who can, do…those who can’t, teach”. The marchers are trying to teach us how we should live our lives, when they have no clue what life would be like if they got their way.

Someday we will have a realistic, affordable, abundant energy alternative to fossil fuels. But that day is not here yet. And its arrival cannot be legislated or negotiated with a treaty.

It will arrive not through the efforts of politicians and actors, but through the hard work and technical knowledge of geeks (probably employed by a fossil fuel company) seeking to meet the energy demands of every human on Earth. A demand which will never go away, because energy is required for everything we do.

As Germany and other countries rapidly backtrack on their commitment to the use of renewable energy, finding just how expensive and economically damaging it is, we Americans are allowing ourselves to be railroaded into a similar, bleak future.

And maybe that’s the real goal of the People’s Climate March.


103 Responses to “The Uninformed, Hypocritical, Emotionally-Driven People’s Climate March”

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  1. ren says:

    Mother Earth has their own temperature controls. Most importantly, it has a magnetic field, which protects the atmosphere. If it were not, the Earth would be like Mars.

    • 4TimesAYear says:

      Amen. Our planet is very well balanced; day/night, opposing seasons, convection currents (in the air and oceans), etc., ensure it will not overheat.

      • dave says:

        “…well balanced…”

        It is the anthropogenic priciple applied to land life as a whole. If life and the vagaries of climate were not reasonably compatible, there would be no surface life.

        The earth has been “calming down” for a long time. All the evidence is that life was confined to sheltered environments at first, and then to the seas, and, for the last four hundred million years (or six thousand, as some* believe), has found it easy to survive** almost everywhere.

        * None in the eastern religions!

        ** species come and go; but any niche is quickly filled by opportunists.

  2. Dr. Spencer the Weather Channel is going to come up with another installment of their 2050 climatic outlook. The first one was in a word —nonsense.

    Maybe you should feature what they have to say about the climate in 2050 on your web-site so we can all have commentary about how ridiculous it is. Thanks

  3. JC says:

    This should be our first step in the Climate March!
    http://meatonomics.com/

    “As environmental science has advanced, it has become apparent that the human appetite for animal flesh is a driving force behind virtually every major category of environmental damage now threatening the human future: deforestation, erosion, fresh water scarcity, air and water pollution, climate change, biodiversity loss, social injustice, the destabilization of communities, and the spread of disease.” Worldwatch Institute, “Is Meat Sustainable?”

    “If every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted vegetables and grains… the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than half a million cars off of U.S. roads.” Environmental Defense Fund

    “A 1% reduction in world-wide meat intake has the same benefit as a three trillion-dollar investment in solar energy.” ~ Chris Mentzel, CEO of Clean Energy

    There is one single industry destroying the planet more than any other. But no one wants to talk about it… http://cowspiracy.com

    Step by Step Guide: How to Transition to a Vegan Diet http://www.onegreenplanet.org/vegan-food/step-by-step-guide-how-to-transition-to-vegan-diet/

    • Thank you for illustrating my point.

    • Bryan says:

      I am glad that this post seems to be about voluntary decisions to switch to something deemed more sustainable. However, many think these kinds of changes should be forced. So…

      To whatever extent meat consumption is not sustainable, that non-sustainability will be reflected in the price of meat, which will cause people to consume less meat. So It corrects itself.

      Of course we create laws to make producers face the actual costs, so that the price will reflect the real sustainability. For example, we don’t let a huge pork producer just wash all the hog urine and feces into a nearby creek. He has to spend the money to build the right kind of containment and treatment. Thus he has to charge more for the hogs, and we have to ultimately pay whatever the price ends up being in order to pay for the waste treatment.

      We don’t pretend that we get all the laws and regulations exactly right, to insure the price of something exactly matches some theoretical “real” cost. But we make the laws what we want them to be, based on society’s perception of the cost of pollution, deforestation, and so on. It is a societal value judgement, as it should be.

      What we must avoid is basing these societal value judgements on silly, emotional attitudes. For example, if we insist on making EVERYTHING much more expensive because of (take your pick): the precautionary principle, or a romantic notion of a pristine past, or a dogmatic belief that ANY change in climate caused by humans must be avoided at all cost, or unfounded fears of catastrophe — then we will be making ourselves (including those who are already poor) much poorer, hindering our efforts to find and develop abundant, affordable alternatives to fossil fuels.

      • Rick A says:

        Believe I will grill me up a big tasty steak this evening.

        • Windy says:

          There are health effects from the over consumption of red meat. As an occasional protest, it’s not too harmful..

          • DavidA says:

            “As an occasional protest, it’s not too harmful..”

            Unless you’re the cow.

          • Joe Wooten says:

            No there is NOT evidence. All the studies conducted on this back in the 1950’s and 1960’s by the developer of the K rations in WW2 were just as bad as the AGW studies and computer models used by the warmistas now.

            Eating more meat and less grains is better for your health.

            Fat does not make you fat.

    • Jimbo says:

      Rod Serling has entered the building!

      Why is it that warmist loons have at best a tenuous connection with REALITY, and seldom have ANY comprehension of cause and effect, or of the fact that just because you WANT it, you may not be able to CREATE it or AFFORD it?

      It’s like they collectively suffer from arrested development at around age six or seven…

    • Don says:

      Perhaps we should eat each other and solve two problems at the same time?

  4. dave says:

    The forecast for September 21 is for quite a nice day: 26 C.

    Back in 1895 on the same day they would have had to contend with 33 C.

    • joe bastardi says:

      On this day in 1938, a hurricane that set the land wind speed record for a tropical cyclone at Blue Hill Mass ( 5 min 121 gust to 186) smashed the northeast. From my fathers memoirs, to put in perspective what extreme really is:

      MY PERSONAL RECOLLECTION OF THE GREAT 1938
      NEW ENGLAND HURRICANE

      I was 9 years old on the day (Sept. 21, 1938) that the 1938 hurricane hit Rhode Island. On the day I was attending Kenyon Street School in Providence as a 3rd grade pupil. Around 1:30 in the afternoon, our teacher told the class to all go home because a storm was coming. I lived at 117 Federal Street on the first floor of a 3-tenement house just two blocks away from school and I remember walking home in a strong gusty wind.

      My mother was home with my seven-year-old brother Joe who had turned seven years old on that day. An hour later my father came home from his shop not far from our house, because of the stormy conditions.

      Later in the afternoon about 4:30 the power went out and a huge oak tree half a block from our house had blown down. Earlier in the afternoon my mother went to the small grocery store across the street and purchased a small chocolate cake for my brother’s 7th birthday. We celebrated his birthday late in the evening in virtual darkness except for the 4 or 5 lit candles as we huddled at the kitchen table.

      Around 5 p.m. I kept looking out the front living room window and listened to the constant roar of the wind and watched roof shingles flying through the air and falling to the street.

      Around 6 p.m. the wind diminished and my Uncle Charlie, who lived across the street with his parents (my maternal grandparents,) walked down Federal Street about four blocks toward the city of Providence, where he reached LaSalle Square next to the police station. He saw before him an unbelievable sight. He could go no further because the water depths in LaSalle square suddenly went from ankle deep to 10 to 14 feet deep toward the Providence Journal Building and beyond into the city. He stood there amazed listening to the eerie sounds of car horns from hundreds of vehicles that were floating or partially submerged throughout the city streets.

      All this he told us when he came to our house later in the evening before total darkness set in. There were looters and the National Guard was called out. Looters were in rowboats robbing merchandise and jewelry from the flooded stores. The following day (September 22nd), Uncle Charlie went to downtown Providence where the water had receded back into Narragansett Bay. Everywhere in the streets was muck and litter and strong odors. He bought ten pairs of shoes at a dollar a pair.

      As I recall most residential homes and small businesses were without power for at least a week and we had to boil water for drinking on our small kerosene stove. We were fortunate that we lived inland. Six hundred people died along the shore area of Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Some drowned in the city of Providence itself; others were trapped in buildings in downtown Providence until the water receded back into Narragansett Bay.

      There were no warnings from the weather services in Washington and its handoff counterpart-the Boston Weather Bureau. The weather forecast for the 21st of September, 1938 by the Washington Weather bureau was for the hurricane to pass out to sea southeast of Cape Cod.

      There was tremendous tree damage by the wind and much salt air damage to vegetation as far as 100 miles inland over Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. The 1938 New England hurricane has been described as a massive doughnut extending from New York City to eastern Massachusetts and was moving 56 miles per hour in a northerly direction when its center crossed central Long Island into Central Connecticut.

      2004/6

      If it wasnt designed to destroy our way of life, the antics of this crowd pushing this would be laughable.

      Mencken said it best
      “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false face for the urge to rule it.”

      That is what this is about.. the real tipping point is not in global warming. but the global warming agenda tipping our nation into the abyss

      • DavidA says:

        Joe, remember this from 2008?

        “AccuWeather’s Expert Senior Forecaster Joe Bastardi has stated: “People are concerned that 50 years from now, it will be warm beyond a point of no return. My concern is almost opposite, that it’s cold and getting colder.”

        http://m.nationalreview.com/articles/224354/chill-out-climate-hysteria/deroy-murdock/page/0/1

        Yet NOAA is showing the warmest summer ever:

        https://twitter.com/EricHolthaus/status/512619840951943171

        and Hadley is showing record SSTs:

        http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2014/08/july-sst-highest-ever-excepting-only.html

        So where is the “cooling?”

        • Jake says:

          DavidA;

          The NOAA? You mean the organization which is selectively changing temperatures so that they can validate theory. Did you read 1984? Did is scare you? Because … we’re living it.

        • nutso fasst says:

          Western region Coop station temperature data, as it appears online at NCDC websites, has changes to, and deletions from, the temperatures logged by observers. Whoever is doing the changing/deleting apparently does not know what they are doing, which is obvious in the numbers from stations where data is logged in the morning or logged twice per day. Tmax logged at stations that log data in the morning is from the day before, but NCDC data shows it as being Tmax on the day on which it was logged. In some cases this has resulted in record low high temperatures announced by the NWS in August being discarded by NCDC as being “unreasonable.”

          If not intentionally dishonest, NOAA is at least incompetent. Why should I trust them?

  5. Svend Ferdinandsen says:

    I wonder why New York did not celebrated the power cuts when Sandy went ashore. Think of all that CO2 that was spared.
    Is it that kind of future the marchers want.

  6. DMA says:

    Maybe we are closer to the non fossil fuel future than most of us think. Blacklight Power anticipates a commercial prototype of their hydrino powered generator by year end. I look forward to the independent third party analysis of Rossi’s E-Cat due out this month. I am watching for more info to emerge from Solar Hydrogen Trend’s hydrogen production unit and Brillouin Energy Corporation anticipated replacement of a coal fired steam generator with their technology this year.
    Even if these all pan out,and that is unlikely, It will be many years before the transition to these clean energy sources could be implemented. Until then the effort to replace fossil fuels with low density, intermittent,and expensive sources is pointless, wasteful, and deadly.

  7. Mike Somerville says:

    If they got their way, whatever would they wear on their feet to march in? Without polymers or leather, would they March in wooden shoes?

  8. I hope Dr. Spencer will let loose at the climate crossroads summit SEP. 25-26.

    Because if anyone could do it in that manner and still appear professional it is Dr. Spencer.

  9. I get so tired by the lack of logic when it comes to and how the greens approach to this issue. It’s amazing to see how little they understand .. No Carbon Dioxide, no bread, no meet and no vegetables .. It’s a mystery why they don’t understand such basic facts ..

  10. Alan Poirier says:

    Well said. There are no panaceas.

  11. Your God says:

    You don’t speak for me. You never have and you never will.

  12. Sundance says:

    These are people that loathe their own existence, can’t stand acheivers, embrace proven failure and blame everyone else for their continued failures. These are Apostles of the Church Of The Subgenius who want to “Change Everything” by mandating their own failure as the new norm.

  13. Caractacus says:

    The Church of the Hopelessly Erroneous Algorithms in procession. I will be looking for the dominant costumes. Will these silly people hide their faces like the fanatics of the Muslim persuasion?

  14. 4TimesAYear says:

    Those who are well off enough to attend that fiasco need to check their own carbon footprint. They’re nothing but a bunch of hypocrites.

  15. Windy says:

    “And maybe that’s the real goal of the People’s Climate March.”
    Sans doute.The Greens have not been infiltrated by communists so much as their materialism is fundamentally philosophically identical to communism.

  16. Free Market Method says:

    North Korea surely must have the lowest carbon footprint on the planet. Maybe the IPCC should have their next meeting there. All of the climate protestors could show up and march to their hearts content. We could solve the all of the world’s climate problems in one weekend.

  17. Jimbo says:

    The lunatic left’s connection with reality is at best shaky, and the functioning of their “cause and effect” gene seems to be inhibited by consumption of Saint Algore’s Global Warming Kool Aid, delivered by an I.V. from a 55 gallon 0blameacare drum…

    Dr. Spencer reminds anyone with three brain cells of the reality that we are nowhere near able to dump fossil fuels in the near term (a reality made worse by government “helping” such crony companies as Solyndra), and if the Green Gestapo couldn’t power their computers, microwaves, or charge their iPhones or Chevy Volts, they’d protest THAT!

    With 0blamea’s trillion dollar unqualified failure to jumpstart his “green energy” agenda, it’s long past time to get the jackbooted, costly, heavy hand of gooberment OUT of the energy business and let free market competition solve the problem..

  18. ossqss says:

    Doc Roy is right. Be careful what you wish for, less energy availability is exactly that. No matter who you are.

  19. John says:

    So you are arguing people shouldn’t campaign for an alternative to fossil fuels until we have an alternative to fossil fuel and are using it?

    Are you sure we can’t legislate to help develop an alternative? Legislation helped the development of nuclear and of course fossil fuels.

    • Massimo PORZIO says:

      John, please,
      do you really believe that the scientific progress needs politician legislation to take place?
      Nuclear and fossil fuels had been helped in their development AFTER they have been clearly proved their sustainability and convenience.
      Currently, wind and solar power plants are nothing else than well known expensive and unreliable experiments, without any hope.

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi John,

      You asked:

      “Are you sure we can’t legislate to help develop an alternative?”

      So, you want to do spend billions of other people’s money to try and find out?

      “Legislation helped the development of nuclear and of course fossil fuels.”

      Really? actually most legislation restricts and hinders hydrocarbon development or what you apparently would label erroneously in multiple cases “fossil fuel.” Private companies explored and developed hydrocarbon fuels long before the government ever took notice and continue to do so.

      Nuclear development began with private individuals like M. Curie, Rutherford but the inevitable MILITARY potential encouraged government involvement especially in Germany and later the U.S., Japan, etc. to do so.

      Btw, why should the government fund energy research no private individual in their right minds would waste time and energy on?

      Have a great day!

  20. Looks like the People’s Climate March is just another money-making scheme. Nothing to do with the future. Just money, right now.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/09/20/the-peoples-climate-march-just-another-corporate-multi-million-dollar-fundraiser-by-350-org-and-avaaz/

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  22. John says:

    Massimo,

    “Nuclear and fossil fuels had been helped in their development AFTER they have been clearly proved their sustainability and convenience.” Really? You know they started as nationalised industries right?

    And they receive help for political reasons. For example shale gas has had government funding and tax incentives since the 1970s oil crisis, long before it was a commercial success.

    I don’t oppose this sort of help. I just find it very ironic to argue against legislating to help one energy source while enjoying the success legislating brought to another energy source.

    • Carbonicus says:

      Energy density. Compare Gigawatts produced/$ of subsidy then come talk to us.

      • John says:

        Why would you make that comparison between emerging and established technologies.
        If you evaluated every emerging technology solely based on current investment to return then you’d never again have any innovation.

        You’d certainly not now have Shale Gas or Nuclear.

        • Massimo PORZIO says:

          Hi John,
          “Really? You know they started as nationalised industries right?”

          yes, but that was the best choice for that time, not the big failure of last 30 years of national investments around the whole world as wind and solar are.
          One thing is helping start-ups one another is obstinately subsidising a failure, currently without any hope.
          Wind farms are well established in Denmark since 1984, google yourself what a big failure they are.
          Solar had been experimented everywhere.
          Both are stochastic energy producers, that is useless for the power grid mass energy needs.

          Have a nice day.

          Massimo

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  24. Robertv says:

    Barcelona (ACN).- On Catalonia’s National Day, on the 11th of September, as in 2012 and 2013, pro-independence supporters have once again created a colossal demonstration, unique at a European level, to demand the right to hold a self-determination vote.

    According to Barcelona local police, 1.8 million participants of all ages and social origins, coming from the whole of Catalonia, formed a V-shaped mosaic displaying the Catalan flag

    Counting that there only live only 7,565,603 million people in Catalonia.

    So 100,000 people in New York makes me laugh.

    http://www.catalannewsagency.com/politics/item/1-8-million-catalans-form-an-11km-long-flag-mosaic-supporting-november-s-independence-vote?highlight=YTo2OntpOjA7aToxMTtpOjE7czo5OiJzZXB0ZW1iZXIiO2k6MjtpOjIwMTQ7aTozO3M6MTI6IjExIHNlcHRlbWJlciI7aTo0O3M6MTc6IjExIHNlcHRlbWJlciAyMDE0IjtpOjU7czoxNDoic2VwdGVtYmVyIDIwMTQiO30=

  25. DavidA says:

    “Someday we will have a realistic, affordable, abundant energy alternative to fossil fuels. But that day is not here yet. And its arrival cannot be legislated or negotiated with a treaty.”

    And by failing to put a price on carbon pollution — on giving fossil fuel producers and users a free pass to dump their waste into the atmosphere — we’re prolonging when that day will arrive (mostly, IMO, so FF companies can continue to make huge profits).

    • Svend Ferdinandsen says:

      Do you really believe that these sustainable energy companies dont want to make profit?
      How should they increase their busines (to save the world) if they had no profit, or can you increase your dept just by the noble cause.

      • DavidA says:

        “Do you really believe that these sustainable energy companies dont want to make profit?”

        Of course they do — that’s what’s the world is counting on.

        However, they have far fewer negative externalities than fossil fuels, especially coal. That costs everyone money, including you. (At least $150 B/yr, according to a 2010 study by the National Academy of Science.) The so-called “free market” doesn’t price in externalities — what it means is free to some, not free to most. Stern called climate change “the largest failure of the free market in history.”

    • Bryan says:

      “…failing to put a price on carbon pollution…”

      It would seem that so far increased CO2 in the atmosphere has been a net benefit: Most of the (small) increase in temperature that can reasonably be attributed to CO2 has been at night and in cold places. In hot places the daytime highs have increased only a little. So temperature-wise, this is a net positive. Increased crop yields, another net positive. No increase in bad weather, no acceleration in sea level rise. If we attribute a decrease in sea ice in the arctic to CO2, this is a positive (opening some navigation routes at times). Likewise, any retreat of the Greenland ice sheet attributed to CO2 is a positive (increased access to mineral wealth). What’s not to like? Now that I think about it, maybe we should get a tax credit for driving SUV’s.

      Folks can say “carbon pollution” until they are blue in the face, but that does not make CO2 harmful. I don’t know of ANY evidence that it is harmful until we get to much higher levels. At some level it becomes hard to keep CO2 low enough indoors to avoid affecting cognition, memory and alertness. Also, it arguably might be bad for the climate at some level, but currently there is no evidence that the level that would be harmful to the environment is anything but far above where we are now.

      • Robertv says:

        “Most of the (small) increase in temperature that can reasonably be attributed to CO2 has been at night and in cold places.”

        This is called the Urban Heat Island effect. It is because of man made asphalt and concrete and not because of CO2.

        • Bryan says:

          I agree that UHI makes it difficult to accurately compare present day temperatures (especially nighttime lows) with the past. For that matter, comparing land based temperatures over time is confounded by several other problems as well. I’m just saying that using the data cited by the warmists, the warming that could reasonably attributed to CO2 has been more at night (when it is usually not terribly hot anyway), and in cold places (where we can use all the heat we can get).

          I also want to to be clear: We are talking about a small change that isn’t shocking the ecosystem or leading to mass extinctions. The notion that CO2 is harmful (without reaching much, much higher levels) is not based on observations, nor on predictions derived from first principals of science. It is instead based on an unconfirmed theory of positive feedbacks that is looking worse and worse (farther from observations) as time goes on.

      • DavidA says:

        “Most of the (small) increase in temperature that can reasonably be attributed to CO2 has been at night and in cold places.”

        Proof? NOAA data shows California warming 2.2 F since 1895, which definitely is affecting their drought (higher evaporation). How is that a “net benefit?”

        Texas has warmed 1.0 F — how is that a benefit?

        • Bryan says:

          DavidA,

          Concerning most of the increase being at night, check this from a website that you might count as a favorite:

          http://www.skepticalscience.com/human_fingerprint_warmer_nights.shtml

          Concerning the increase occurring disproportionately in cold places, maybe you will like this one:

          http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/01/polar-amplification/

          As for the data from California and Texas:

          For the sake of argument, lets say that the NOAA data for today is accurate (doubtful, given the difficulties involved in obtaining average temperature values using land based thermometers), and that the NOAA data for 1895 is also accurate (even more doubtful). [And we will ignore the fact that adjustment after adjustment after adjustment made by NOAA over the years have cooled the past and warmed the present.]

          Assuming accurate data, consider that we are told that CO2 levels got high enough to cause significant warming around the mid 20th century. So only warming since then counts. Also consider that there has been a long global warming trend since the end of the Little Ice Age. So even part of the warming since the mid 20th century could be attributed to a natural long term trend. After all, we are told that natural a natural cooling trend has counteracted CO2 forcing in the last 17 years or so. If natural variation is strong enough to counteract the forcing, then why is it not strong enough to cause a significant part of the warming? So the increase in California that can reasonably be attributed to CO2 is small. Is it detrimental in that it makes droughts worse? Maybe, but of course there have always been droughts in California and always will be, and we are talking about a very small effect. I am not saying that there will be no negatives anywhere, just that NET globally it looks like a positive so far. In Texas the the data suggests an effect that is even quite a bit smaller — almost nothing when you consider the above.

        • Curt says:

          David:

          California state climatologist Jim Goodridge showed many times that the measured warming in California was directly related to development trends. The more populous the county, the more warming it showed. For example, here:

          http://www.scribd.com/doc/67524224/PDF-1996-Goodridge-Comments-on-Regional-Simulations-of-Greenhouse-Warming-Including-Natural-Variability

          Undeveloped counties, such as those in the Sierras where the bulk of the water comes from, showed essentially no warming. This is not CO2, it’s UHI.

        • Joe Wooten says:

          Look at the unmodified data from about 20 years ago in any library or old encyclopedia and you will see the hottest year on record in both Texas and California was the 1930’s, specifically 1938, but the whole decade was very warm.

      • DavidA says:

        “Likewise, any retreat of the Greenland ice sheet attributed to CO2 is a positive (increased access to mineral wealth).”

        How much access ($) has resulted from Greenland’s melt so far?

        How much real estate will be lost when Greenland melts completely (24 feet of sea-level rise). Is mining a little more gold and silver really worth drowning all the coastal cities in the world?

        “Folks can say “carbon pollution” until they are blue in the face, but that does not make CO2 harmful.”

        CO2 is definitely a pollutant — a substance that, in excess quantities, causes undersirable effects. Even the Supreme Court has ruled CO2 is a “pollutant” (Mass v EPA, 2007)

        “I don’t know of ANY evidence that it is harmful until we get to much higher levels.”

        Then you simply aren’t interested in finding out, because the science certainly doesn’t support your claim.

        • Bryan says:

          “How much real estate will be lost when Greenland melts completely (24 feet of sea-level rise). Is mining a little more gold and silver really worth drowning all the coastal cities in the world?”

          My post was referring to any retreat in sea ice that has actually happened and is attributable to CO2 emissions. You are referring to the effects predicted by a theory of big positive feedbacks that has so far not been confirmed by observations, and in fact is looking worse and worse as time goes on. Just because people can come up with a theory that predicts dire consequences doesn’t mean that we should respond by making great sacrifices (and imposing hardships on the world’s poor).

          “CO2 is definitely a pollutant — a substance that, in excess quantities, causes undersirable effects. Even the Supreme Court has ruled CO2 is a “pollutant” (Mass v EPA, 2007)”

          Any substance “in excess quantities” causes undesirable effects. The question is, what constitutes “excess quantities”? As I discussed above, the CO2 we are putting in the atmosphere currently is not getting us anywhere near the levels that would cause undesirable climate effects — unless the positive feedback theory turns out to be correct, and the theory has never been confirmed by observations and is looking worse all the time. As for undesirable ocean effects, that has not been shown either. I agree that we should monitor and study this. If it turns out that we find actual harm to the climate or oceans, then a tax on carbon would be appropriate. But short of that we would be shooting ourselves in the foot by creating an artificial preference for more expensive energy without an adequate reason. Who does that?

          I am indeed VERY interested in finding out whether or not CO2 emissions are harming the environment. I have read numerous articles advancing the positive feedback theory. It all comes down to the the sensitivity of the climate to CO2. So far it does not appear to be sensitive enough to cause dire consequences at the levels of CO2 that we are talking about. The effect of CO2 on climate is logarithmic, so if we continue with a linear increase in CO2 levels, we would expect diminishing returns. I’m just now seeing the evidence of harm.

        • JohnKl says:

          David A (for alarmist),

          You claimed:

          “CO2 is definitely a pollutant — a substance that, in excess quantities, causes undersirable effects. Even the Supreme Court has ruled CO2 is a “pollutant” (Mass v EPA, 2007)”

          Please identify a substance that in excess quantities causes no undesirable effects. Too much of anything can kill.

          Undaunted by lack of evidence you assert:

          “How much real estate will be lost when Greenland melts completely (24 feet of sea-level rise). Is mining a little more gold and silver really worth drowning all the coastal cities in the world?”

          Do you have any empirical evidence for this claim? Please provide it.

          Have a great day!

  26. Tim Wells says:

    The last Icelandic volcano to go off in 2010, gave us the worst UK winter for 40/50 years, if the latest one goes off it will drastically make a difference to the temperature of the earth.

  27. Robertv says:

    About 300 protesters have marched up Auckland’s Queen Street as part of a global protest urging more action on climate change.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/255157/auckland-climate-change-protest

    High winds, hail and snow have caused problems around the country this morning. MetService has warned of winds reaching 120 kilometres per hour on the east coast of both Islands.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/255190/snow-closes-desert-road

    Same country same day

  28. gallopingcamel says:

    Roy,
    Thanks for putting things in perspective.

    The Greenies are getting really desperate. It seems likely this little junket cost much more than it raised.

    If you had studied English instead of science you would know that “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.” is from “Man and Superman” by George Bernard Shaw.

  29. gallopingcamel says:

    Roy said:
    “Someday we will have a realistic, affordable, abundant energy alternative to fossil fuels. But that day is not here yet. And its arrival cannot be legislated or negotiated with a treaty.”

    How could you have missed the fact that “Old Nukes” produce electricity at a cost of $0.03/kWh?

    “New Nukes” will do even better but they will be constructed in the People’s Rupublic of China, India and Russia:
    http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2013/06/02/electric-power-in-florida/

    If you don’t want to read the link above, here is the punch line:

    “Do nukes have to cost that much? Currently there are AP1000s under construction in the People’s Republic of China for $2 billion each or half of what a similar installation costs in the USA. It is thus inevitable that the PRC will soon have a fleet of shiny new nukes while the USA clings to its shabby “Old Nukes”. I see this as a metaphor for excessive regulation destroying innovation and with it the prosperity of our children.”

    • Mark Luhman says:

      Not better said, and do you know what political party is anti nuke, hint Carter kill the breeder reactor program and Clinton killed the Integrated Fast reactor. yet it is said that the Republican whom are anti science.

  30. Mark Luhman says:

    The reality is they want us to quit using chemical and nuclear energy. what the morons forget is previous to used of chemical energy, (ie wood or coal to make steam and later oil in an internal combustion engine.) All work was done either by animals of slaves, to many of them cannot not figure out they will not be the elites that live off the animal or slave energy, instead they will be the slaves.

  31. ren says:

    A forecast for Iceland in 2050
    Iceland will be warmer and may experience more rain than it does currently. With warmer weather, areas where forest may grow will be larger. However, warmer temperatures also bring new insects that cannot thrive in Iceland today and some of these may also be harmful to native plants.

    The establishment of new species will put a strain on the ecosystem both flora and fauna. This is already apparent with regards to marine life where warmer ocean temperatures result in the northward movement of the ranges of some fish stocks. The acidification of the ocean may also adversely impact ocean food webs, with possible consequences on fisheries.

    Iceland’s ice caps have been melting and will continue to do so. According to scientific estimate, they will almost disappear in the next 200 years.

    Many of these changes can already be seen, for instance: The tiny ice cap Ok, west of Langjökull, has changed beyond recognition and is not registered as a glacier anymore; every year new species are reported in the ocean and the average temperature in Iceland for the last 10 years has been well above the average temperature of the 20th century in Iceland.
    http://en.vedur.is/about-imo/news/nr/2989
    Surface of the caldera of the volcano is lowered.
    http://www.vedur.is/photos/volcanoes/barc_gps_3d_is.png

  32.  D o u g   says:

    Regarding wind power … (from PSI)

    Patricia Mora is a research professor in coastal ecology and fisheries science at the Interdisciplinary Research Center for Comprehensive Regional Development, Oaxaca Unit (CIIDIR Oaxaca), at the National Institute of Technology. She also raises other issues: the thorough destruction of biotopes by wind farms…

    “… we find ourselves at the meeting point of various intimately related aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, known as “ecotones.” What occurs in each distinct ecosystem affects the dynamic on a larger scale, placing the existence of the adjoining ecosystems in danger.”

    … the issues of low frequency sound, infrasound, and electromagnetic fields…

    “There is abundant information about the harm caused by the sound waves produced by wind turbines. These sound waves are not perceptible to the human ear, which makes them all the more dangerous. They are also low frequency sound waves and act upon the pineal and nervous systems, causing anxiety, depression (there is a study from the United States that found an elevated suicide rate in regions with wind farms), migraines, dizziness and vomiting, among other symptoms. Western science has given very little weight to electromagnetic and sound waves. In contrast, Eastern science, which gives greater importance to the flow of energy through the body, links the origin of many illnesses to the pollution we generate through the emission of human-made energy flows. The harm caused by this pollution has only recently begun to be accepted.”

    … the adverse effects on the population…

    “The inhabitants would have to leave behind their traditional activities. Migration and misery would be their future. You can see how this has happened in other areas of the country. They would lose their culture and a lifestyle that has a deep respect for nature. For example, in the northwest coastal region of the country, the arrival of these projects has displaced the fishing communities and farmers. Today, many of these people and their children have migrated. In the worst cases, they have joined the drug trafficking business.”

  33. Brian says:

    Very well said, Roy. But watch out – Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is still trying to find the right balance with his medications, says that skeptics like you to “ought to be serving time” for your failure to acknowledge catastrophic human-induced global warming. What’s wrong with you Roy? Why does it matter that the actual data indicates that the Earth has not continued to warm for about 17 years or so despite the continued release of large amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere?

  34. James says:

    Found the comments of key marchers was basically the same, blaming capitalism for everything but not speaking to the climate. Environmentalism seems to have become the home of the socialist agenda these days. Naomi Klein being one of the ringleaders and she is quite the limousine socialist. That is she makes a boatload of money off capitalism while she attacks it a la Michael Moore.

    I also note there have been, to date, 52 reasons for why the climate hasn’t warmed the last 19 years. If you can’t explain why it hasn’t warmed as you predicted then you sure can’t explain why it has meaning the predictions are useless from a scientific perspective. Computer models will predict exactly what they are programmed to predict. You want to see warming then you will program your model to see warming. That’s exactly what has occurred.

    • bernie says:

      “…home of the socialist agenda…”

      The original Marxist complaint about Capitalism was that it was based on a theft – namely the the theft of the labour of the working class. Marxism predicted this would intensify, with continuing “immiseration” of the working class. A rising standard of living for the workers was impossible. The necessary revolution would come sooner rather than later.

      In fact, the standard of living of the working class improved. Rather than admit that Capitalism was a game in which all could be winners (and that therefore their “insights” are rubbish), Marxists have had to invent NEW SOURCES for the temporary excess wealth of Capitalist societies.

      The first adjustment of theory was to say that the wealth of the West was based on exploitation of colonial people. However, the British Empire is gone and the British are still well-off. That is dead as an explanation.

      The next was radical feminism – it is (somehow) patriarchy which lies at the heart of exploitation. That seems especially silly in an emasculated society such as the United States. Then came exploitation of the living world, as an excuse. But most people are vegetarians, so that did not resonate well.

      Most recently, the source of the wealth has been attributed to over-exploitation of resources. But it has become clear that resources are greater than anticipated.

      All we are left with is a general accusation that the whole material world is the victim – a quasi-religious wicca worship, and dread of “upsetting” the world.

      And that is where we are.

      The slowness in development of the “warming crisis” is a desperate disappointment to people whose only real motivation is the desire to howl, “I TOLD YOU SO!” and then get straight to the Pol Pot fun.

      • bernie says:

        “…most people are vegetarians…” should be “…most people are not vegetarians…”

        • dave says:

          “…socialist agenda…”

          A thoughtful leader in the Liverpool Echo was once clear about the problem:

          “The greatest objection to the schemes of the Socialists is that they will involve an increase in the cost of loving.”

  35.   D o u g     says:

    Roy

    Why are the tropical oceans still cold in the depths? Why don’t they become isothermal like you think the troposphere would have been without that most-prolific of all greenhouse pollutants, water vapour sending all that warming back radiation back to the surface to warm it to a higher temperature than it was when it sent the original radiation and cooled in doing so.

    Well the tropical oceans are colder in the depths because the poles act as a heat sink. Isothermals (such as 4 degrees C) are deep down in the tropics, but break out at the surface in the polar regions.

    So too would the atmosphere be colder at the base for the same reason. If the whole globe were paved in black asphalt the surface would be about 235K – nearly 40 degrees below freezing. You can work it out yourself with an on-line Stefan Boltzmann calculator using solar radiative flux of 161W/m^2 and emissivity 0.93.

    So there is a lot of thermal energy entering the ocean surface in non-polar regions, moving downwards through the thermocline and exiting in the polar regions.

    But why is the thin transparent ocean surface so hot? Before you say it’s the back radiation, I have to tell you that radiation from colder regions does not penetrate the warmer ocean surface more than a few nanometres. It is “pseudo scattered” because it merely raises electrons to higher energy states and then those electrons immediately drop back and emit an identical photon. The electro-magnetic energy is not converted to thermal energy, and so it does not raise the temperature.

    In fact there is a gravitationally induced temperature gradient (aka lapse rate) in any planetary troposphere, and thermal energy absorbed from solar radiation in the upper troposphere can flow up that sloping thermal profile restoring thermodynamic equilibrium as it does so, and even entering the oceans. Water vapour reduces the temperature gradient (fortunately) making the surface about 10 to 12 degrees cooler. Carbon dioxide makes it another 0.1 degree cooler for the same reason.

  36. More realistic estimates seem to be around 16,000 – not the 100,000 claimed by the media. I’m a little disappointed that with a US population of around 319,000,000, only that many hipsters, beatniks, bored housewives and hippy types showed up.

  37. bernie says:

    In Paris, police estimated the rally attracted 4,800.

  38. barry says:

    “Someday we will have a realistic, affordable, abundant energy alternative to fossil fuels. But that day is not here yet. And its arrival cannot be legislated…”

    A weak point, but it seems to be the central one (unless it is ‘hypocrisy’, which is an even weaker point). Governments certainly can legislate to develop any aspect of society or the economy, and that is what realistic supporters of renewables hope for, not some miraculous wand-waving to bring “that day” to the present.

    There is little constructive criticism from the opposed. You don’t even have to believe in AGW to see the benefits of accelerating the development of renewables. We can head off peak oil, disentangle ourselves from geopolitical relationships with unsavoury regimes who supply fossil fuels, breathe cleaner air and create new industries. It is strange to get a protectionist vibe from a group that is by and large firmly pro-market. Are there no entrepreneurs amongst the critics?

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi Barry,

      Your comments seem to lack understanding in multiple areas. You asserted without rational basis:

      “Governments certainly can legislate to develop any aspect of society or the economy, and that is what realistic supporters of renewables hope for, not some miraculous wand-waving to bring “that day” to the present.”

      Hmmh! Governments can only by force and/or coercion re-allocate resources from some people to other people. They produce nothing. Why do you seem to believe that a political clique in power knows better how to allocate scarce resources they’ve done nothing to produce and the potential for which they know even less than millions of people trading their own resources in hopes of the greatest benefit possible given their investment? Do you spend hours of your day in abject awe of these enviro-clowns in the IPCC and elsewhere?

      The market place provides energy alternatives if at this point their costs remain prohibitive to many work to bring the costs down. Or do you believe as many like Gore do that it’s up to some bureaucratic thug to enforce their often confused (and in Al Gore’s case regarding ethanol apparently inaccurate) environmental claims and vision of a better environment on others by imposing arbitrary costs on the masses, whether they like it or not? Or whether it makes any economic, environmental or political sense or not?

      You went on to assert:

      “There is little constructive criticism from the opposed. You don’t even have to believe in AGW to see the benefits of accelerating the development of renewables.”

      Personally, I have no problem with what you label “renewables” (by which I assume you mean wind, solar, etc.) or any source of energy provided those who reap the benefits of such energy systems pay for it. Do you know any one who does? If you wish to purchase a solar voltaic collection unit or some alternative device pay for it yourself! I’ve purchased smaller units. Why do you feel the need for some other party to subsidize and/or pay yet another parties freight under the guise of “accelerating the development of renewable?” Who’s renewable’s development do you seek to develop? Your own perhaps? In any case the entire economic argument seems counterfactual. Germany and Russia heavily subsidized their steel industries for much of their history since the industrial revolution. If I remember correctly one American company at the turn of the 20th century produced more steel than either country without government subsidy. Wasting taxpayer money on investments the citizens themselves of sound mind and body would never choose voluntarily makes neither economic nor ecological sense.

      You went on to boast:

      “We can head off peak oil, disentangle ourselves from geopolitical relationships with unsavoury regimes who supply fossil fuels, breathe cleaner air and create new industries.”

      King Hubbert’s Peak oil was supposed to have already occurred in the 1970’s for the U.S. and enviro-frauds claimed it resulted from the country running out of oil and not the myriad drilling bans and moratoriums legislated in the decade(s) prior. The fact that advertisers now boast that the U.S. will soon be the world’s largest producer again and the U.S. geological survey consistently claims ever growing quantities of petroleum reserves doesn’t seem to have affected your undimmed belief in absolute nonsensical fiction! Btw, if you doubt that politics is behind such fiction answer this question. If I remember correctly, prior to the Iraq war the price of oil was something like 11 cents a barrel in Iraq. Since then the price has obviously grown, just ask Isis! Oh! you might also consider an obvious point. If we really are running out of oil (oh! my gosh!) then why all the panic over global warming? After all were about to run out of the primary source of all that CO2 any minute right? If you hilariously seek to alarm myself or others please reflect on the words of an old political satirist before voting to provide enormous subsidies to bloated corporate entities.

      “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”
      H. L. Mencken

      Have a great day!

      • JohnKl says:

        Hi Barry,

        My last post proves in complete. I wrote:

        “Btw, if you doubt that politics is behind such fiction answer this question.”

        Do you really believe the oil price in Iraq rose because they ran out of oil?

        Have a great day!

      • barry says:

        Hi JohnKl,

        I think you are confused about the role of government. They regulate all the time – taxes is only the most obvious tool. There’s nothing special about the energy sector – fossil fuels et al are also regulated in all sorts of ways.

        All government regulation is backed by some enforcement measure(if you fail to meet regulations, you will be fined/punished/taxed). All this to ensure health, safety, equality, diversity, productivity….

        I certainly did not say that the government rules by fiat in some sort of ‘clique,’ nor would I advocate such. Spencer’s article was about a public demonstration on an issue. Do you approve of the public getting involved, then?

        Of course people should pay for energy, from whatever source. Everyone in my country pays for renewable energy, which currently supplies a small fraction of the total. That’s the same everywhere else. Can you tell me in which country people are getting renewable energy for free? I might move there – just to save on bills.

        I did not say peak oil is imminent.

        I said nothing about the price of oil.

        I said nothing about panic.

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi Barry,

          You claimed:

          “I think you are confused about the role of government. They regulate all the time – taxes is only the most obvious tool. There’s nothing special about the energy sector – fossil fuels et al are also regulated in all sorts of ways.”

          Hmmh! It should be obvious I’m not confused. I never claimed the government doesn’t regulate. They regulate most aspects of people’s lives including the use of hydrocarbons (you have yet to provide any proof that all alkane chemicals are fossil fuels) and the empirical result of ever greater poverty, irrational allocation of resources and environmental degradation should be clear to any rational observer.

          You go on to assert without evidence:

          “All government regulation is backed by some enforcement measure(if you fail to meet regulations, you will be fined/punished/taxed). All this to ensure health, safety, equality, diversity, productivity….”

          Really, so why hasn’t the government in fact ensured any of it? If true, how exactly did Bill Clinton’s off-shoring of U.S. coal production to Indonesia ensure any of those things? How did previous bans on energy generating wind-mills on office buildings do any of those things? How do ethanol mandates that have no net scientific, economic or environmental basis of improving anything (as Al Gore already admitted) accomplish any of that?

          You further assert:

          “I certainly did not say that the government rules by fiat in some sort of ‘clique,’ nor would I advocate such. Spencer’s article was about a public demonstration on an issue. Do you approve of the public getting involved, then?”

          Your first statement proves true. You never directly claimed that government rules in some sort of clique or by fiat. In fact, I merely stated it seems you believe it to be true. For example, you did assert:

          “Governments certainly can legislate to develop any aspect of society or the economy, and that is what realistic supporters of renewables hope for, not some miraculous wand-waving to bring “that day” to the present.”

          No doubt governments can pass all kinds of legislation ostensibly to promote any kind of cause. Objectively that fact has no correlation with the governments ability to achieve any goal whatever and you have not addressed my criticism. Please re-read the prior post you still appear to lack understanding.

          You asked:

          “Can you tell me in which country people are getting renewable energy for free? I might move there – just to save on bills.”

          Anyone with a photovoltaic panel can utilize solar energy without a bill from the sun, and anyone wishing to dry their clothes on a clothes line can as well. In any case, I shall assume you refer to government hand-outs. Please note their exists no free lunch. However, many do seek others to pay some or if possible all the costs associated with acquiring it. There are many countries that fit the bill, but to be fair I’ll start with the one I currently reside in the U.S.. I’ve been told programs do exist to fund low income families to pay for housing including compensation for utilities, leave aside at this point whether it proves beneficial. In fact, since a good part of California energy supply comes from wind-power what you call “renewables” do play a role in the subsidy. In addition, you have massive government subsidies to companies like Solyndra to provide solar panels. Just have to ask, what planet do you live on?

          I’ll address the other statements later.

          Have a great day!

          • JohnKl says:

            Hi Barry,

            Allow me one correction:

            If I remember correctly, Al Gore did recant his overly enthusiastic stance regarding ethanol and I believe admitted some desire to help local farmer friends of his, but I’m not sure he decried any benefit from the stuff at all. However, I’m happy to argue any net benefit from the stuff, whenever you like.

            Have a great day!

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi Barry,

          You claimed:

          “I did not say peak oil is imminent.” True, however, if no evidence exists of resource limitations and of “running out” then the entire theoretical edifice remains fit only for the waste basket. Btw the prime promoter of the “peak oil” theory claimed that peak oil had already been reached back in 1970 if I remember correctly. Which means if old King Hubbert had been correct peak oil would not be imminent it would have come and gone and the remaining petroleum levels would be almost completely gone.

          “I said nothing about the price of oil.” Never claimed you did. I mentioned it to point out that current prices reflect political coercion, not so much resource constraint.

          “I said nothing about panic.” If no panic exists, why the rush to pass ineffectual climate legislation?

          Have a great day!

  39.  D o u g   C o t t o n  says:

    The easiest way to understand why it is not radiation to the surface which is determining the mean global temperature is to think about the thin surface layer of the oceans, especially in non-polar regions where most of us live. There are published measurements of solar radiation entering the water and penetrating at least 20m. Let’s define the water surface as having that thickness which absorbs the first 10% of the energy in the incident solar radiation. (This is quite thick enough to determine the surface temperature.) So the other 90% of the solar radiation warms colder regions below. Thermal energy in those colder regions below the surface cannot rise to the warmer surface above it. Instead it heads for the poles and so has no effect on the temperature in the non-polar regions of the oceans.

    Now, to calculate the surface temperature you would have to use only 10% of the solar flux in Stefan-Boltzmann calculations, and obviously that gives temperatures way below freezing point, even for the direct flux of 650W/m^2 at noon in the tropics on a clear day. For example, for emissivity of 0.984 for ocean water, 65W/m^2 gives only 185K. So you have a very obvious and huge different between observed temperatures in non-polar ocean surfaces and the temperatures derived with radiation calculations.

    So let’s focus on this issue Roy and all ye who still believe in radiative forcing.

  40. Ray says:

    Part of the propaganda associated with the march was a press release which included the following quote:

    “In rural Papua New Guinea students from a primary school marched to a nearby lighthouse, which has recently become semi-submerged due to rising sea levels.”

    This was repeated in virtually every report on the march on the internet.

    I was unable to find any information on the internet to identify this lighthouse, so I contacted the organisers for more information. The promised to contact their representatives in Oceania and get back to me, but so far nothing.

    If anyone has any information on this I would be grateful to hear from them.

  41. Ray says:

    Part of the propaganda associated with the march was a press release which included the following quote:

    “In rural Papua New Guinea students from a primary school marched to a nearby lighthouse, which has recently become semi-submerged due to rising sea levels.”

    http://peoplesclimate.org/media/

    This was repeated in virtually every report on the march on the internet.

    I was unable to find any information on the internet to identify this lighthouse, so I contacted the organisers for more information. The promised to contact their representatives in Oceania and get back to me, but so far nothing.

    If anyone has any information on this I would be grateful to hear from them.

  42. Ray says:

    Apparently this is the lighthouse in question.
    http://www.panoramio.com/photo/35088742
    Being 22 metres tall and some way in land, it hardly seems likely that it has been “semi-submerged”

  43. Ray says:

    Update
    The lighthouse was actually the previous one, nearer the sea which the one above replaced.
    But it was only the foundations were “semi-submerged”.

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