A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


The Skeptics Handbook

Think it has been debunked? See here.

The Skeptics Handbook II

Climate Money Paper




The nerds have the numbers on precious metals investments on the ASX



Midweek Unthreaded

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (4 votes cast)

MediaWatch: Jo Nova, McLean, Newscorp fools! Govt committees are always right.

MediaWatch, Climate Change.

onder the irony — MediaWatch is meant to be a media auditor, but it starts from the assumption that every government run collective is 100% accurate (at least on climate change). And unaudited UN committees are infallible too. Indeed newspapers have a duty to repeat what these committees say without questioning them. Host Paul Barry actually uses the word duty.

Once upon a time, the duty of investigative reporters was to to investigate, now their job is to be glorified marketing hacks advertising the latest government scheme to change the weather.   What could possibly go wrong?

How about if governments set up all their institutes to find problems with CO2 and asked none of them to audit the others? What if whole government departments were tasked to slay the carbon dragon, and while exactly no groups anywhere were funded to find out if the sun controlled the climate instead? Using the MediaWatch Wand of Truth, only government scientists can criticize government scientists (and only then for five minutes until their uni trawls through their emails and sacks them). Thus and verily IPCC scientists should be obeyed.

MediaWatch marvels that the Australian Newscorp media can’t be bothered repeating the same overdone fake scare campaign for the 20th time. Could it be that, unlike the ABC, they can’t afford to bore their audience with a teachy-preachy zombie hypothesis?

Let’s vote for our laws of science then?

MediaWatch think science is done by counting papers and government paid scientists. After $100 billion in science funding it’s not  hard to come up with 91 supportive scientists who haven’t been sacked yet.

 So is McLean to be believed ahead of 91 leading experts and 6,000 peer reviewed scientific papers,…

On the other hand, there are 30,000 independent scientists, thousands of papers, millions of radiosondes and 4.5 billion years of history that show the IPCC is wrong. Skeptics include people with Nobel Prizes in physics, and men who walked on the moon. If Barry had done some investigating he would know that, and he could’ve phoned Ivar Giavar instead of giving the Union of Concerned Nobody’s time to discuss something that happened six years ago. Without any government funding, skeptics outrank and outnumber believers, but we don’t pretend that means something scientific because we know what science is.

Leaving no stone-age-trick unturned, MediaWatch are not just using ad homs, but inconsistent and cherry picked ad homs supported by strawmen and argument by authority. That’s what you get with Big Government funding. Stacked fallacies.

I’m delighted to be featured in the MediaWatch weekly propaganda minute. (at 4mins)

The IPCC demands for cash rest on freak data, empty fields, Fahrenheit temps recorded as Celsius, mistakes in longitude and latitude, brutal adjustments and even spelling errors. — says Jo Nova

Presumably, the MediaWatch team thought this quote looks bad for skeptics. Keep it coming, thinks Jo. Anyone watching with half a brain would notice that these mistakes sound detailed and not good, and that MediaWatch couldn’t find anyone to say that that these errors weren’t there. The meteorology experts got Fahrenheit mixed up with Celsius, can’t spell, and got the long-and-lat wrong? But this is OK because Steven Sherwood, UNSW, says we know about the problems already:

“turns up little if anything new, seems specifically motivated to discredit global warming…

Which only makes us wonder, if they knew — why didn’t they fix it? Don’t expect a government funded audit group to ask a government funded institute. Hadley gets £226 million a year to leave errors intact for 40 years but that’s OK according to MediaWatch. The real failing here is that some people question it. How dare they?

MediaWatch fooled by Hadley bait and switch

McLean found 70 problems, but according to Paul Barry, this is neutralized, because the dataset has 7 million datapoints. Nevermind that problems like site moves and quality control can apply to millions of points. One number is big and the other small and who cares about the units. That’s about as advanced as ABC investigation goes. Apples are oranges and the team with the most oranges gets  $446 million to stop a problem that doesn’t exist or something like that…

Being functionally innumerate is practically a part of the ABC job description these days.

Would you like a character attack with that?

The MediaWatch strategy is and has long been essentially selective “Ad Hom” — they attack John McLean for something he said 7 years ago on a different topic. It’s the pagan Ad Hom Rule of Reasoning: if anyone gets any prediction wrong ever, then everything they say after that is automatically also wrong. By that reasoning the IPCC is toast. Climate models have failed for 24 years in a row on rain, humidity, clouds, Antarctica, the upper troposphere and global trends, but John McLean got one prediction wrong about the temperature of 2011, and therefore he can’t be trusted. Shall we talk about the time the Met Office predicted a BBQ summer and got torrential rain?

To sum up the MediaWatch analysis, two thousand Hadley employees rely on frozen tropical islands and junk data but we already knew about that apparently, which makes any problem OK.  They junk-data-guys predict global doom and their predictions are right because McLean was wrong on a different topic 7 years ago and his audit was supervised by a man who was sacked and dedicated to one who said the IPCC was a farce? (Vale Bob Carter).

If only McLean had dedicated his audit to Kevin Rudd.

Beat up those Strawmen

To give it a wash of “sciencey” authority, they bring in some experts like Steven Sherwood to blandly declare McLean is wrong without showing any sign that Sherwood has even read the blog posts on it, let alone looked at McLean’s 135 page audit. After dismissing the findings as old news, he discusses something entirely different and waffles about the laws of physics.

…it’s naive claims of alternative causes of global warming do not consider the relevant laws of physics and do not make sense.”

Which Law of Physics would that be? The Second Law of Data Collection? Conservation of Thermometer Units?

McLean’s audit was about the data, it was not about the flaws in their climate models. (That’s another story).

Associate Prof Nerilie Abram

“Regardless of whether the PhD thesis work has any merit, the claims that this falsifies IPCC findings is wrong.”

Abram doesn’t seem to realize that the IPCC findings rely on climate models which in turn are trained on the Hadley data. If Hadley exaggerates the warming, so will the models. But then it’s not like she’s a climate expert... oh wait.

MediaWatch could’ve asked Sherwood if we should trust the IPCC when the temperature trends consistently fall below even their lowest estimates.  MediaWatch could’ve asked Sherwood if it’s OK to change the scale on temperature graphs to pretend the hot spot was found when it wasn’t. Can we trust him, or, to paraphrase his own words: is he “specifically motivated to believe global warming“?

Hadley Meteorology Office:

 …the long term increase in global temperature is unequivocal. This is backed up by other globally recognised datasets all of which are run independently and find very similar warming.

 They might be run independently, but they’re all dependent on BigGovernment. As I said yesterday:

They claim they are backed up by other datasets. but all the worlds temperature sets are juggling the same pool of measurements. If the shonky site-move adjustments start with national met bureaus, then get sent out around the world, all the global datasets combine the same mistakes and make similar overestimations.

Look who’s making a conspiracy theory…

News corp treats climate science and the threat to our planet with contempt, why is it so, presumably because Rupert Murdoch is a non-believer.

 Naturally, the doubts of thousands of journalists are not because the IPCC keeps getting things wrong, or that climate change causes everything under the sun except “normal weather”, or that we’re perpetually tripping over tipping points, and it’s the last chance to save the world, again. Apparently, thousands of journalists and editors don’t obey the Met Bureau because they obey Rupert Murdoch instead. It’s all projection of the ABC’s failings. Maybe thousands of journalists just think for themselves.

See this weeks MediaWatch coverup for failing institutions

Soon, children won’t know what journalism is.

The ABC gets $3m dollar a day. If you can help support me, together we can push back. (Paypal, or direct). Thank you.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (62 votes cast)

#DataGate: Hadley reply to first audit with foggy excuses about problems 2,000 staff didn’t find

Hadley Meteorology Office, logo, UK.

Last week we exposed absurd errors, brutal adjustments and an almost complete lack of quality control (was there any at all?) in the key HadCRUT4 data. The IPCC’s favorite set is maintained (I’m feeling generous) by the Met Office Hadley Centre and the Uni of East Anglia’s CRU in the UK.

Finally the Hadley Met Centre team have replied to Graham Lloyd regarding John McLean’s audit. They don’t confirm or discount any of his new claims specifically. But they acknowledge his previous notifications were useful in 2016, and promise “any errors will be fixed in the next update.” That’s nice to know, but begs the question of why a PhD student working from home can find mistakes that the £226 million institute with 2,100 employees could not.

They don’t mention the killer issue of the adjustments for site-moves at all — that’s the cumulative cooling of the oldest records to compensate for buildings that probably weren’t built there ’til decades later.

Otherwise this is the usual PR fog — a few outliers don’t change the trend, the world is warming, and other datasets show “similar trends“. The elephant in the kitchen is the site move adjustments which do change the trend which they didn’t mention.

Climate Research Uni, East Anglia University.


And while the absurd outliers may not change the trend (we don’t know yet) the message from frozen tropical islands is terrible. These bizarre mistakes are like glowing hazard signs that the dataset is neglected, decaying, essentially junk. What else might be wrong?  How do we reconcile the experts urgent insistence that climate change is the greatest threat to life on Earth but it’s not important enough to bother checking the data?  We must pay trillions, turn vegetarian, and live in cold rooms, but the actual historic measurements are irrelevant. Were some numbers left in Fahrenheit for 40 years? Nevermind.

They claim that automated quality control checks are done, as are manual checks, but we are still wondering what that means when they haven’t even done a spelling check and nor bothered to filter out the freak outliers which are hotter than the hottest day on Earth. These kinds of checks are something that a 12 year old geek could write the code for.

The Met Office protests that the database includes “7 million points”, but then, they do have a supercomputer that can do 16,000 trillion calculations every second. The ten-nanosecond-test for the new World Record Temperature would have fished out the silliest mistakes, some of which have been there for decades.

They claim they are backed up by other datasets. but all the worlds temperature sets are juggling the same pool of measurements. If the shonky site-move adjustments start with national met bureaus, then get sent out around the world, all the global datasets combine the same mistakes and make similar overestimations.


Britain’s Met Office welcomes audit by Australian researcher about HadCRUT errors

Graham Lloyd, The Australian

Britain’s Met Office has welcomed an audit from Australian researcher John McLean that claims to have identified serious errors in its HadCRUT global temperature record.

“Any actual errors identified will be dealt with in the next major update.’’

The Met Office said automated quality checks were performed on the ocean data and monthly updates to the land data were subjected to a computer assisted manual quality control process.

“The HadCRUT dataset includes comprehensive uncertainty estimates in its estimates of global temperature,” the Met Office spokesman said.

“We previously acknowledged receipt of Dr John McLean’s 2016 report to us which dealt with the format of some ocean data files.

“We corrected the errors he then identified to us,” the Met Office spokesman said.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.9/10 (86 votes cast)

ABC Climate fiction: Life at 0.5 degrees hotter, dead plants, animals, ghost towns, jellyfish hell

The job of ABC environment reporters is not to serve the public and ask scientists hard questions about whether we can rely on their climate models that fail 98% of the time and on every scale in time and locality.

Instead their job is to be fiction writers, converting failing models into vomiting babies:

Under IPCC forecasts babies born today will be 22 when warming hits 1.5C. What will life be like?

By environment reporter Nick Kilvert

Meet Casey X. She was born in Alice Springs Hospital on October 13, 2018.

She came into the world screaming, before projectile-vomiting over the hospital floor and falling asleep.

For this the ABC gets $3 million dollars every day.

We are talking about a half degree Celsius of warming spread over 22 years. This is double the decadal rate currently shown by satellites. But even if we assume that climate models are right for the first time ever, and this dramatic change in trends occurs, it’s still only half a degree more in a world where humans live from minus 50C to plus 40C and every day temperatures vary by 10 – 20 degrees.

Alice Springs 2040, unlivable hell, with no plants, animals and less people

Today — October 13, 2040 — she’s 22, and still lives in Alice Springs. But she’s been thinking more and more about leaving.

Extreme hot days in Alice Springs hit 48 degrees Celsius — nearly 3C hotter than on her first birthday. And heatwaves last much longer.

Keeping things alive in the garden at these temperatures is next to impossible. Plants are pushed beyond their thresholds and die from heat shock. The animals that eat them go soon after.

Death to kangaroos, cows and camels then? Or maybe the native saltbush and scrub will do just fine like it always has, even when Alice was hotter than now 7,000 years ago for hundreds of unending relentless years during the Holocene Optimum.

Is Nick Kilvert talking about animals that eat lettuce and roses in back yards (humans, puppies, feral rabbits?). Or did he just segue from gardens to all plants, to all animals? Ahh details. Who needs em.

Ghost towns coming:

When she flicks over to the weather from reruns of Spicks and Specks, there’s fewer regional towns on the map than she remembers.

Reef turns to algae and deadly jellies rampant

Moving to Darwin is out of the question. So is north Queensland. It’s too hot and there’s no jobs in hospitality. Tourism is suffering along with the reef.

Most of the reef is dead or dying in the north. Some of the hardier coral species have survived, but the diversity and colour are gone and no-one wants to snorkel in algae.

There’s still some OK patches of reef further south, but if warming goes up to 2C, scientists say it’s all going to go.

To escape the heat, moving to south-east Queensland seems like her best option.

It’s a choice between the Gold and Sunshine Coasts, but deadly Irukandji jellyfish are showing up more often in the summer on the Sunshine Coast.

The only thing we know for sure is that never ever in a million years does CO2 do one beneficial thing — like green the world, stop deserts, grow more food or help plants survive droughts.

Shall we kill people or save them?

On average, every 12 hours for the last ten thousand years, the temperatures vary in Alice Springs by around 16 degrees C. Somehow humans survive this extreme hourly climate change, mostly by switching on the air conditioner. But if it gets half a degree hotter over 20 years, humans will have to leave.

In Australia’s five largest cities, 475 people die from heat-related deaths each year — more than double the year she was born.

Because Nick Kilvert was trained by the Australian Government in school, at uni and at the ABC he does not yet know how to do internet searches for things like “winter deaths”. If he did, or if he was especially lazy and just emailed Jo Nova to do his research for him, he would be able to tell the paying taxpayers he is supposed to serve that every year in Australia the big climate killer is winter which causes 7,000 excess deaths.

So while warming might kill 200 people a year in 2040, it will save far more people than it kills.

The only possible way this outcome of saving lives can be avoided is if we follow the ABC neo-marxist plan to make electricity unaffordable.  Air conditioners save 20,000 lives a year in the USA, so that’s probably 2,000 lives a year in Australia.

A lack of air conditioning will kill more people than global warming. Obviously what we need, if you care about lives, is more Victorian Brown coal plants.

Australian rainfall increasing. Stop that now!

Nick Kilvert is an environment reporter who may or may not realize that Australian rainfall has increased. If CO2 has any effect on rainfall, it’s made more of it. But whatever, as luck would have it, more rain definitely won’t fall in the right place or at the time — thus we get more droughts and more floods. And we know this because skillless climate models say so.

She was 14 the last time the Todd River flowed. But when it did it was a raging torrent.

Apparently that’s a thing. Hot air can hold more moisture. So it takes longer for it to get saturated enough to rain. But when it does …

Does he realize that “more moisture” in the air means there will be less extreme heat and cold? (That’s what the greenhouse effect is supposed to do).

Mostly though, it’s just dry. Alice was already hot and dry, so it doesn’t really have anywhere to go but hotter and drier.

Cotton crops along the Murray-Darling in southern Queensland and New South Wales aren’t planted when there’s long drought. And the wheat belt suffers.

Russia’s wheat industry is going gangbusters though. Good for them.

If you get the urge to take Nick Kilvert investment predictions and do the opposite, check out Cool Futures.*

What the ABC doesn’t mention: Climate change means more rain in Australia

The big question: If we cut ABC funding back to the level of starving bloggers, will Nick Kilvert learn to use the BOM website?

Australian annual rainfall trends 1900 - 2017, Graph, Bureau of Meteorology.

Australian annual rainfall trends 1900 – 2017, Graph, Bureau of Meteorology.


Back when CO2 was ideal Alice Springs had a shocking run of dry years. Lord save us all from extra rain in Alice Springs.

Alice Springs, Rainfall at the airport, 1940 - 2017, Bureau of Meteorology

Alice Springs, Rainfall at the airport, 1940 – 2017, Bureau of Meteorology

One hundred years of data shows Alice Springs was always dry with intermittent flooding. Obviously this data needs to be adjusted.

Alice Springs, Rainfall at the airport, 1880 - 1990, Bureau of Meteorology

Alice Springs, Rainfall, Post Office, 1880 – 1990.  Bureau of Meteorology


The ABC is unaccountable and out of control.

If you think that should change, please help support independent commentary with some emergency chocolate through Paypal or direct deposit and mail.

*Declaring a conflict of interest, David and I are involved already with Cool Futures and hope one day to profit from it. I’m looking forward to the day when Nick Kilvert declares a conflict of interest and admits he, and all the climate scientists and renewable firms he does free advertising for, get fatter salaries from fatter governments. Will he ever report how incompetent big government is?

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.4/10 (75 votes cast)

Weekend Unthreaded

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (11 votes cast)

A close look at the arctic sea ice models that have launched the careers of a thousand polar bears

This is Expertise the UN can bank on

In the GWPF 2018 Lecture, Richard Lindzen pointed out the genius of Arctic climate models

First, for something to be evidence, it must have been unambiguously predicted. (This is a necessary, but far from sufficient condition.) Figure 1 shows the IPCC model forecasts for the summer minimum in Arctic sea ice in the year 2100 relative to the period 1980–2000. As you can see, there is a model for any outcome.

It is a little like the formula for being an expert marksman: shoot first and declare whatever you hit to be the target.

Arctic, model predictions, climate, graph.

Graph of the Year:  Arctic sea ice predictions of the worlds top models in 2011. Spaghetti.

This will definitely happen according to the worlds top scientists at NASA, CSIRO, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Lab (NOAA), National Centre for Atmospheric Research, The Hadley Meteorological Centre, the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology – Germany, the Institute of Numerical Mathematics of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the University of Tokyo, JAMSTEC (Japan), the Climate Research Division of Environment Canada, The Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research in Norway, the  Institut Pierre Simon Laplace (IPSL), plus experts from  Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici; Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV).

Twenty one IPCC expert models can’t fail, unless of course, the world cools.


Eisenman et al (2011) Consistent Changes in the Sea Ice Seasonal Cycle in Response to Global Warming, Article, Journal of Climate 24:5325-5335


VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (78 votes cast)

Google is “the good censor” protecting civility by censoring conservative badthink

“Lucky us” Google has appointed itself as the unelected Decider Of Truth (and hopefully election results)

Google says it is unbiased, but a leaked memo explains to staff that free speech can be “a political weapon”, is a “utopian idea” and “users behaving badly” will allow “crummy politicians to expand their influence”.  And we can’t have that.

For your own safety, you are not encouraged to think, judge or read the wrong views.

‘THE GOOD CENSOR’: Leaked Google Briefing Admits Abandonment of Free Speech for ‘Safety And Civility’

by Allum Bokhari

The 85-page briefing, titled “The Good Censor,” admits that Google and other tech platforms now “control the majority of online conversations” and have undertaken a “shift towards censorship” in response to unwelcome political events around the world.

It acknowledges that major tech platforms, including Google, Facebook and Twitter initially promised free speech to consumers. “This free speech ideal was instilled in the DNA of the Silicon Valley startups that now control the majority of our online conversations,” says the document.

Research into what? Good excuses?

Responding to the leak, an official Google source said the document should be considered internal research, and not an official company position.

One of the reasons Google identifies for allegedly widespread public disillusionment with internet free speech is that it “breeds conspiracy theories.” The example Google uses? A 2016 tweet from then-candidate Donald Trump, alleging that Google search suppressed negative results about Hillary Clinton.

(Trump’s suspicions were actually correct – independent research has shown that Google did favor Clinton in 2016).

That it panders to Big Gov, is an entirely predictable outcome for a group that desperately doesn’t want Big-Government to hit it with anti-trust rules, break it up, or remove its legal immunity, and treat it like a publisher, which it obviously is. It would also kinda like to be the approved spokesengine for the Chinese government.

Shocking Internal Google Docs Prove Their Orwellian Goals and Desire to Squash Free Speech, by Cassandra Fairbanks.

Google explained that in some cases this freedom has had positive outcomes, using the Arab Spring as an example. The document then goes on to list the negative outcomes that have “undermined this utopian narrative,” listing the 2016 election (along with a photo of President Donald Trump), the trolling of actress Leslie Jones, YouTuber Logan Paul, and the rise of the alt-right as some examples of where free speech has went wrong.

The company followed that up by saying “as the ‘we’re not responsible for what happens on our platforms’ defense crumbles, users and advertisers are demanding action.” This seems to be an admission that they should no longer be protected under section 230.

Google determines that the problem is that users, governments and tech firms are all behaving badly.

It lists the ways in which users are “behaving badly” as hate speech, reprisals and intimidation, trolling, cyber harassment, cyber racism and venting. …

One of the “problems” that they found is that “everyone has a voice.”

 Spread the word. Google is filtering your search results.

h/t David E and Willie Soon.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.7/10 (93 votes cast)

Lindzen on why the educated elites are so vulnerable to being fooled

So smart and yet so stupid

Richard Lindzen

Global Warming for the Two Cultures by Richard Lindzen

Prof Richard Lindzen, a giant of the skeptical debate delivered the 2018 Annual GWPF lecture this week talking about two cultures of two different educated elites. Those at the higher intellectual level may be more prone to groupthink than ordinary folk…

The two different kinds of elites and a vast gap between them

Lindzen  quotes C.P.Snow who was both a scientist and a writer and who lived in both elite worlds — the scientific and the arts.

C.P. Snow felt only 1 in 10 of the most highly educated in the western world had even a basic grip on physics:

A good many times I have been present at gatherings of people who, by the standards of the traditional culture, are thought highly educated and who have with considerable gusto been expressing their incredulity at the illiteracy of scientists. Once or twice I have been provoked and have asked the company how many of them could describe the Second Law of Thermodynamics. The response was cold: it was also negative. Yet I was asking something which is the scientific equivalent of: Have you read a work of Shakespeare’s?

I now believe that if I had asked an even simpler question – such as, What do you mean by mass, or acceleration, which is the scientific equivalent of saying, Can you read? – not more than one in ten of the highly educated would have felt that I was speaking the same language. So the great edifice of modern physics goes up, and the majority of the cleverest people in the western world have about as much insight into it as their Neolithic ancestors would have had. — C.P. Snow

Lindzen fears little has changed and warns that the gulf in understanding between each elite culture is open to malicious exploitation. When science is used as a vote winning issue, non scientists have to pick sides and then belief and faith inevitably trump understanding.

The “trivially oversimplified false narratives”  help reassure the non-scientists that they are not completely stupid. Even the smart-but-dumb folk love being told how smart they are. (Don’t we all?) So when a complicated debate is reduced to a binary “yes-no” situation, like renewables “clean”: fossils “dirty”, educated elites get drawn in…

Why the educated elites are vulnerable to being fooled

Richard Lindzen:

… ‘ordinary’ people (as opposed to our ‘educated’ elites) tend to see through the nonsense being presented. What is it about our elites that makes them so vulnerable, and what is it about many of our scientists that leads them to promote such foolishness? The answers cannot be very flattering to either. Let us consider the ‘vulnerable’ elites first.

  1.  They have been educated in a system where success has been predicated on their ability to please their professors. In other words, they have been conditioned to rationalize anything.
  2. While they are vulnerable to false narratives, they are far less economically vulnerable than are ordinary people. They believe themselves wealthy enough to withstand the economic pain of the proposed policies, and they are clever enough to often benefit from them.
  3. The narrative is trivial enough for the elite to finally think that they ‘understand’ science.
  4. For many (especially on the right), the need to be regarded as intelligent causes them to fear that opposing anything claimed to be ‘scientific’ might lead to their being regarded as ignorant, and this fear overwhelms any ideological commitment to liberty that they might have. None of these factors apply to ‘ordinary’ people. This may well be the strongest argument for popular democracy and against the leadership of those ‘who know best.”
To paraphrase Lindzen, educated elites are gullible suckers because they spent too much time at uni, and they are rich enough to afford to hold stupid ideas. They want to believe they understand science but the level of their understanding is “Bumper Sticker 101″. Smart people have smartish friends, and they are very afraid of looking stupid.
Ordinary folk are more immune to it, because they already know university profs look down on them, so they don’t need to impress them. They can’t afford frivolous quests, like trying to change the weather with a light globe. Ordinary folk ask good, basic questions. These are also hard questions which produce waffling, dissembling and running away, or namecalling, and no one needs a PhD to decide which scientist is right then.

His lecture at the Global Warming Policy Foundation.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (108 votes cast)

Both AGL, Origin warn renewables threaten grid, create chaos, drive off baseload, cause higher cost

Another Hazelwood-size batch of renewables coming on line in Australia by 2020.

Wind turbines

That’s 1600MW of random subsidized energy dropping into a market that is artificially priced to value weather-changing potential over reliability. Now, even the bosses of two gentailers which both benefit from renewables subsidies are warning things are chaotic, going to get turbulent and more expensive. Why do they admit this? Probably because they want the government to add another layer of policy interference to reward “firm capacity” which they both also own.

Instead, lets get the government and the RET octopus off our grid. Surely we can set up a market that allows players who want electricity at 9am tomorrow to pay more for generators which can actually guarantee to be there. All the market players who don’t care when or if electricity arrives can buy the unreliable energy. Which businesses, industries or homes can use electricity that arrives at midday and random other times, remembering that wind power drops to 5% of capacity for days sometimes:

Renewables threaten volatile power supply, says AGL, Origin bosses

Perry Williams, Matt Chambers, The Australian

Power giants AGL Energy and Origin Energy have raised concerns over a surge of wind and solar generation creating a new wave of volatility in Australia’s electricity grid due to a lack of firm capacity to back it up.

“I think there is increasing risk within the national electricity market because the lack of a good mechanism means the firming generation that’s needed is not being built as quickly as the renewable generation is being built,” AGL’s interim chief executive Brett Redman told The Australian.

“That does start to drive towards a lot of volatility in the market and volatility is the enemy of existing baseload generation.”

Solar Farm, photo.

Solar Farm, Canberra

Brett Redman — AGL’s interim chief –  says there is a risk things will get “choppy” in the next ten years:

“And choppiness or turbulence is a different way of saying higher cost.”

Origin Boss, Frank Calabria said $10b in new solar was already approved, which could be built in 18 months:

…this was a problem because it had not been coupled with a policy that recognised the intermittency of renewables, as recent problems in South Australia had illustrated.

Spot the contradiction, renewables are “low cost” but the turbulence they add brings “higher cost”. Our market is screwed:

“Lower-cost renewables tend to push the higher-cost sources of dispatchable power – coal and gas – out of the market early,” Mr Calabria said.

“Today, we see several markets where the prices are hollowing out, sometimes to zero, in the middle of the day …this is exactly what we say as a lead-up to (the closure) of ageing plant like Hazelwood and Northern.”

They want more government interference to compensate for too much government interference:

“Until the politicians realise that to get to those targets they need a firm firming capacity – and they are nowhere near that at the moment – the market will be in chaos and that’s where it’s at.”


Grid at Sunset on the road to Queanbeyan, Jo Nova 2018

Photos copyright Jo Nova 2018

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.6/10 (72 votes cast)

Midweek Unthreaded

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.2/10 (11 votes cast)

Australia may have a spine. Pushes back against UN hysterical coal hate

Australia considers keeping some industry, mining, lights…

In a radical move, an Australian PM stands up for Australia (somewhat).

Finally, for the first time since Tony Abbott was PM we see Australia not rushing to adopt everything a foreign unaudited committee tells us. The IPCC has overreached — the economic neophytes and b-grade scientists are calling for the fantasy wipe-out of Australia’s main source of electricity, one of our top two export industries and a 100% write off of a resource that could last for the next 300+ years.

This appears to be a government wide policy — not only Morrison, but the Treasurer, and Environment minister, all in agreement. It’s a good but minor sign. There would have been a mutiny if the conservatives kowtowed to the UN.

We still have an obscene 26-28% target for the reduction of CO2. (And we still have the UN and anti-Australian ABC). But at least, no more “nonsense” money poured into climate conferences and “that big climate fund”. We live in hope.

IPCC push to dump coal-fired power not for us, says Morrison

Graham Lloyd, The Australian

Scott Morrison has rejected a rapid global phase-out of coal-fired power and declared his government will not be bound by a landmark climate study, amid concern its blueprint for curbing temperature rises would see the “lights go out on the east coast of Australia”.

 The Treasurer:

The Morrison government yesterday welcomed the report but stood by coal-fired power generation and defended Australia’s record in meeting its international emissions ­reduction targets.

“If we take coal out of our ­energy system, the lights will go out on the east coast of Australia — it’s as simple as that,” Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said.

No more Big Climate Fund gifts that work directly against Australia’s interests?

“We are not held to any of them at all, and nor are we bound to go and tip money into that big climate fund,” Mr Morrison told 2GB radio.

Since when were “climate scientists” the go-to experts for national energy policy?

Environment Minister rejects top scientists’ advice on phasing out coal, after UN’s warning

By Matthew Doran, ABC

Federal Environment Minister Melissa Price has argued some of the world’s leading climate scientists are “drawing a long bow” in calling for an end to coal power in a bid to limit global warming.

Speaking on the ABC’s AM program in her first broadcast interview since taking up the role, Ms Price argued that: “Coal does form a very important part of the Australian energy mix”.

“We make no apology for the fact that our focus at the moment is getting electricity prices down,” she said.

The Worlds Greatest Patsy may have a backbone?

It’s only a small one. Instead of just saying “it’s a long bow”, we should point out we are doing the world a favor. The CO2 emissions from Australian coal are a free gift to the world, increasing crop yields, reclaiming deserts, and adding to forest biomass. “Burn coal and feed the starving masses.”

Australia should be coal’s biggest advocate. Most years we are the world’s largest exporter of coal.[2] Australia contributes fully one third of the entire global coal export trade.  Coal also makes up 3% of our entire GDP, employs near 50,000 people, is one of our top two exports, and brought in $54 billion dollars last year.[3]


H/t Scott of the Pacific, Dave B.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.9/10 (76 votes cast)

IPCC Coral-apocalypse: 243,000 km² of Great Barrier Reef corals to die in only 20 years

Corals, photo

Wise Hok Wai Lum: Flynn Reef 2014.

That’s it for corals.

The IPCC have gone full apocalyptic: “Coral reefs would decline by 70 to 90 per cent with warming of 1.5°C…” And this catastrophic prophesy will unfold sometime around 2040. (See the graph).

The IPCC are practically holding the Great Barrier Reef Hostage. Things are so dire, the Financial Review has just declared that the next election is the Great Barrier Reef election.

In the game of fine-tuning the carrot and stick, it’s all bad, but there is hope.

Right now the reef covers 348,700 km². And if we are good boys and girls we might only lose 243,000 km²:

Scientists say Australia has a chance to save 30 per cent of the Great Barrier Reef if immediate global changes are made to stop temperature rises.

This news will come as a shock to corals on the Great Barrier Reef which are obliviously living across a range of 2,000 kilometers and a span of five degrees Celsius from 27 to 32°C. But these are magic numbers apparently, and half a degree hotter (which is all we are talking about) it will be 27.5 to 32.5°C which is numerology hell where baby corals go to die.

You and I might think that corals might just emigrate since they shed sperm and eggs in mass spawning events visible from space and have 112 sites known to reseed all damaged areas. But what would we know?

And what would a dumb coral know –  possibly something after 200 million years of climate change, most of which was hotter.

Corals survived the rock that killed the dinosaurs. They survived Toba, the super volcano that left a crater 100km long. Corals survived a 125m sea level rise at the end of the last ice age. And they survived the ice age — and the fifteen before it. They also survived the super cyclones that have been hitting the coast of Queensland for the last 5,000 years and there is no sign that storms are getting worse. (see Nott 2001 and Hayne 2001.)Who knows what handy genes corals carry after 200 million years of climate change?

At least one research team says corals already have the genes to survive another 250 years of warming.

Corals survive across a five degree range:

Great Barrier Reef, temperature variation on the reef,


The IPCC are going for the full wipe out.

University of New South Wales climate scientist Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick says “virtually all” coral reefs would start dying off if global temperatures increased by 2C. — The Australian

whereas more than 99 per cent would be lost with 2C.”

Corals survive massive sea level change

Sea levels have been falling in Queensland for 3,000 years. (Lewis et al 2012) Currently they are rising globally by about 1mm a year according to 1,000 tide gauges.

However, as the seas return to where they have been scores of times before, apparently corals will be wiped out, just like they never have been.


Sea levels in Queensland, holocene. Graph.

Corals have been around through all this:

We are worried about a half a degree…

Geological time graph. 65 million years.



Note that these are polar temperatures on the graph. But that’s the thing, if tropical temperatures had this kind of volatility, how could corals have made it this far? Instead, because the tropics have their own evaporative air conditioner they don’t get too hot, and as long as we are not in a Snowball Earth scenario, they don’t get too cold either. Water evaporates quickly above 30C. 

So the tropics expands and shrinks as the climate changes but it doesn’t go away, and nor have corals.

Things the ABC BBC and CBC won’t tell you about coral reefs:


Hock et al (2017) Connectivity and systemic resilience of the Great Barrier Reef PLOS Biology (doi 10.1371/journal.pbio.2003355)

IPPC, Episode 24, Death and Destruction 2018. aka Special Report 15

Lewis, S.E., et al., Post-glacial sea-level changes around the Australian margin: a review, Quaternary Science
Reviews (2012), [abstract] (paywalled).

Jonathan Nott1 & Matthew Hayne2 (2001) High frequency of ‘super-cyclones’ along the Great Barrier Reef over the past 5,000 years, Nature 413, 508-512 | doi:10.1038/35097055

Hayne, M. and Chappell, J.  (2001)  Cyclone frequency during the last 5000 years at Curacoa Island, north Queensland, Australia.  Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 168: 207-219. [Abstract] [Discussion Hayne and Chappell (2001) ]

Image: Wikimedia, author Wise Hok Wai Lum: Flynn Reef 2014.


VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (85 votes cast)

#DataGate! First ever audit of global temperature data finds freezing tropical islands, boiling towns, boats on land

Hadley Meteorology Office, logo, UK.

What were they thinking?

The fate of the planet is at stake, but the key temperature data set used by climate models contains more than 70 different sorts of problems.  Trillions of dollars have been spent because of predictions based on this data – yet even the most baby-basic quality control checks have not been done.

Thanks to Dr John McLean, we see how The IPCC demands for cash rest on freak data, empty fields, Fahrenheit temps recorded as Celsius, mistakes in longitude and latitude, brutal adjustments and even spelling errors.

Why. Why. Why wasn’t this done years ago?

So much for that facade. How can people who care about the climate be so sloppy and amateur with the data?

HadCrut4, Global Temperature, 1850 - 2018. Graph.

HadCrut4 Global Temperature, 1850 – 2018.

Absurdity everywhere in Hadley Met Centre data

There are cases of tropical islands recording a monthly average of zero degrees — this is the mean of the daily highs and lows for the month. A spot in Romania spent one whole month averaging minus 45 degrees. One site in Colombia recorded three months of over 80 degrees C. That is so incredibly hot that even the minimums there were probably hotter than the hottest day on Earth. In some cases boats on dry land seemingly recorded ocean temperatures from as far as 100km inland The only explanation that could make sense is that Fahrenheit temperatures were mistaken for Celsius, and for the next seventy years at the CRU no one noticed.

Dr McLean audited the HadCrut4 global data from 1850 onwards for his PhD thesis, and then continued it on afterwards til it was complete:

“I was aghast to find that nothing was done to remove absurd values… the whole approach to the dataset’s creation is careless and amateur, about the standard of a first-year university student.”
– John McLean

His supervisor was Peter Ridd, famously sacked for saying that “the science was not being checked, tested or replicated” and for suggesting we might not be able to trust our institutions

Data is incredibly, brazenly, sparse

The Hadley Met Centre team have not even analyzed this data with a tool as serious as a spell checker.

For two years the entire Southern Hemisphere temperature was estimated from one sole land-based site in Indonesia and some ship data. We didn’t get 50% global coverage until 1906. We didn’t consistently get 50% Southern Hemisphere coverage until about 1950.

McLean’s findings show there is almost no quality control on this crucial data. The Hadley Met Centre team have not even analyzed this data with a tool as serious as a spell checker.  Countries include “Venezuala”,” Hawaai”, and the “Republic of K” (also known as South Korea). One country is “Unknown” while other countries are not even countries – like “Alaska”.

The real fault of the modern day institutes is not so much the lack of historic data, but for the way they “sell” the trends and records as if they are highly certain and meaningful.

HadCrut4, Southern Hemisphere Temperatures, Graph, 1850 -2018.

HadCrut4, Southern Hemisphere Temperatures, 1850 -2018.

There are systematic and far reaching problems

Climate Research Uni, East Anglia University.


The HadCRUT4 dataset is a joint production of the UK Met Office’s Hadley Centre and the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia.

The CRU data covers 10,295 stations, but 2693 – more than a quarter – don’t meet the criteria for inclusion described in Jones et al 2012, which is considered to the best description of what should and shouldn’t be included.

It is impossible to know exactly which sites are included in the final temperature analysis, and whether a site’s records have been adjusted. (If only we could do our tax returns like this?)

The sub-parts of the datasets contradict each other. The land set and the sea set should combine up to be the global set, but they don’t always match. Which one is right?

“It seems like neither organization properly checked the land or sea temperature data before using it in the HadCRUT4 dataset. If it had been checked then the CRU might have queried the more obvious errors in data supplied by different countries.  The Hadley Centre might also have found some of the inconsistencies in the sea surface temperature data, along with errors that it created itself when it copied data from the hand-written logs of some Royal Navy ships.” 

– John McLean

Cooling the past one hundred years later?

In probably the worst systematic error, the past is rewritten in an attempt to correct for site moves. While some corrections are necessary, these adjustments are brutally sweeping. Thermometers do need to move, but corrections don’t have to treat old sites as if they were always surrounded by concrete and bricks.

New original sites are usually placed in good open sites. As the site “ages” buildings and roads appear nearby, and sometimes air conditioners, all artificially warming the site. So a replacement thermometer is opened in an open location nearby. Usually each separate national meteorology centre compares both sites for a while and figures out the temperature difference between them. Then they adjust the readings from the old locations down to match the new ones. The problem is that the algorithms also slice right back through the decades cooling all the older original readings – even readings that were probably taken when the site was just a paddock.  In this way the historic past is rewritten to be colder than it really was, making recent warming look faster than it really was. Thousands of men and women trudged through snow, rain and mud to take temperatures that a computer “corrected” a century later.

We’ve seen the effect of site moves in Australia in Canberra, Bourke, Melbourne and  Sydney. After being hammered in the Australian press (thanks to Graham Lloyd), the BOM finally named a “site move” as the major reason that a cooling trend had been adjusted to a warming one. In Australia adjustments to data increase the trend by as much as 40%.

In theory, a thermometer in a paddock in 1860 should be comparable to a thermometer in a paddock in 1980. But the experts deem the older one must be reading too high because someone may have built a concrete tarmac next to it forty or eighty years later. This systematic error, just by itself, creates a warming trend from nothing, step-change by step-change.

Worse, the adjustments are cumulative. The oldest data may be reduced with every step correction for site moves. Ken Stewart found some adjustments to old historic data in Australia wipe as much as 2C off the earliest temperatures. We’ve only had “theoretically” 0.9C of warming this century.

While each national bureau supplies the “preadjusted” data. The Hadley Centre is accepting them. Does it check? Does it care?

No audits, no checks, who cares?

As far as we can tell this key data has never been audited before. (What kind of audit would leave in these blatant errors?) Company finances get audited regularly but when global projections and billions of dollars are on the table climate scientists don’t care whether the data has undergone basic quality-control checks, or is consistent or even makes sense.

Vast areas of non-existent measurements

In May 1861 the global coverage, according to the grid-system method that HadCRUT4 uses, was 12%.  That means that no data was reported from almost 90% of the Earth’s surface.  Despite this it’s said to be a “global average”.  That makes no sense at all. The global average temperature anomaly is calculated from data that at times covers as little as 12.2% of the Earth’s surface”, he says.  “Until 1906 global coverage was less than 50% and coverage didn’t hit 75% until 1956.  That’s a lot of the Earth’s surface for which we have no data.” – John McLean

Real thermometer data is ignored

In 1850 and 1851 the official data for the Southern Hemisphere only includes one sole thermometer in Indonesia and some random boats. (At the time, the ship data covers about 15% of the oceans in the southern half of the globe, and even the word “covers” may mean as little as one measurement in a month in a grid cell, though it is usually more.) Sometimes there is data that could be used, but isn’t. This is partly the choice of all the separate national meteorology organisations who may not send in any data to Hadley. But neither do the Hadley staff appear to be bothered that data is so sparse or that there might be thermometer measurements that would be better than nothing.

How many heatwaves did they miss? For example, on the 6th of February, 1851, newspaper archives show temperatures in the shade hit 117F in Melbourne (that’s 47C), 115 in Warnambool, and 114 in Geelong. That was the day of the Black Thursday MegaFire. The Australian BOM argues that these were not standard officially sited thermometers, but compared to inland boats, frozen Caribbean islands and 80 degree months in Colombia, surely actual data is more useful than estimates from thermometers 5,000 to 10,000km away? Seems to me multiple corroborated unofficial thermometers in Melbourne might be more useful than one official lone thermometer in Indonesia.

While the Hadley dataset is not explicitly estimating the temperature in Melbourne in 1850 per se, they are estimating “the Southern Hemisphere” and “The Globe” and Melbourne is a part of that. By default, there must be some assumptions and guesstimates to fill in what is missing.

How well would the Indonesian thermometer and some ship data correlate with temperatures in Tasmania, Peru, or Botswana? Would it be “more accurate” than an actual thermometer, albeit in the shade but not in a Stevenson screen? You and I might think so, but we’re not “the experts”.

Time the experts answered some hard questions.


See the Hadley team reply to #DataGate a week later. Polite fog excuses.

The full report

The 135-page audit with more than 70 findings is available for $8 from Robert Boyle Publishing. You can help support months of work that should have been done by official agencies years ago.


Always hard hitting — James Delingpole’s view:

Climate Bombshell: Global Warming Scare Is Based on ‘Careless and Amateur’ Data, Finds Audit

McLean’s report could scarcely have come at a more embarrassing time for the IPCC. On Monday, it will release its 2018 Summary for Policy Makers claiming that the global warming crisis is more urgent than ever. But what McLean’s audit strongly suggests is that these claims are based on data that simply cannot be trusted.

–read it all.


Main points:

  • The Hadley data is one of the most cited, most important databases for climate modeling, and thus for policies involving billions of dollars.
  • McLean found freakishly improbable data, and systematic adjustment errors , large gaps where there is no data, location errors, Fahrenheit temperatures reported as Celsius, and spelling errors.
  • Almost no quality control checks have been done: outliers that are obvious mistakes have not been corrected – one town in Colombia spent three months in 1978 at an average daily temperature of over 80 degrees C.  One town in Romania stepped out from summer in 1953 straight into a month of Spring at minus 46°C. These are supposedly “average” temperatures for a full month at a time. St Kitts, a Caribbean island, was recorded at 0°C for a whole month, and twice!
  • Temperatures for the entire Southern Hemisphere in 1850 and for the next three years are calculated from just one site in Indonesia and some random ships.
  • Sea surface temperatures represent 70% of the Earth’s surface, but some measurements come from ships which are logged at locations 100km inland. Others are in harbors which are hardly representative of the open ocean.
  • When a thermometer is relocated to a new site, the adjustment assumes that the old site was always built up and “heated” by concrete and buildings. In reality, the artificial warming probably crept in slowly. By correcting for buildings that likely didn’t exist in 1880, old records are artificially cooled. Adjustments for a few site changes can create a whole century of artificial warming trends.

Gory details of the worst outliers

  • For April, June and July of 1978 Apto Uto (Colombia, ID:800890)  had an average monthly temperature of  81.5°C, 83.4°C and 83.4°C respectively.
  • The monthly mean temperature in September 1953 at Paltinis, Romania is reported as -46.4 °C (in other years the September average was about 11.5°C).
  • At Golden Rock Airport, on the island of St Kitts in the Caribbean, mean monthly temperatures for December in 1981 and 1984 are reported as 0.0°C. But from 1971 to 1990 the average in all the other years was 26.0°C.

Keep reading  →

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.5/10 (171 votes cast)

Big news coming tomorrow: watch this space

All the info later on Sunday Australia time, first thing in the morning for most of the world. Just in time for the IPCC report Monday. Do come back. :- )

This will be the unthreaded line til then.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.4/10 (39 votes cast)

Warning! Wind power warms local climate for next hundred years, needs 5 – 20 times as much land

It’s not often we see a report that turns things on their head quite like this.

Wind turbines may cause more local warming than global cooling in the next century.

Wind farm, Albany WA. Photo Jo Nova

Photo: Jo Nova

If the US were to install a lot of turbines, Wind power could warm the United States by 0.24 degrees Celsius instead of cooling it, because wind turbines “redistribute heat” in the atmosphere. They mix the surface layers. (0.24C would be equivalent to two decades of recent warming.) The largest effect is at night where wind plants can warm the local area by 1.5C.

At least 10 previous studies have now observed local warming caused by US wind farms. Keith and Miller compared their simulated warming to observations and found rough consistency between the data and model.

Nick Carne — Cosmos magazine

The new studies by Keith and Miller were published in Environmental Research Letters and Joule.

Major downer. The power density of wind energy is up to *100 times* less than predicted.

The new research suggests we can’t put too many turbines to close together or the whole group become far less efficient. That means we need 5 – 20 times as much land as previously thought (at least as thought by academics). Shame the US built 57,000 wind towers before they realized.

The power density of wind is just too low, and there’s an effect where the more we construct the worse it gets. A large wind shadow follows wind turbines, reducing the output from other turbines downstream. The larger the area of the wind plants, the worse their performance — the energy per meter squared falls by 75% as wind farms increase from 15km2 up to 150km2.

Wind is worse than coal for the environment in the next ten years?

Wind farms may be worse than coal for first ten years of operation, and increasing local warming for the first one hundred!  But hey, people one thousand years from now might be grateful.

The down side to wind power

Leah Burrows, Harvard Gazette

“If your perspective is the next 10 years, wind power actually has — in some respects — more climate impact than coal or gas. If your perspective is the next thousand years, then wind power has enormously less climatic impact than coal or gas.”    — David Keith

 What’s the discount rate on one thousand year time-frames?

Hmm. Wind power warms local air, and cools globe, maybe, possibly

On the one hand theoretically wind turbines cool the world, on the other hand, they warm the local area. Which effect wins?

We haven’t measured the outcome of a million wind turbines on planetary temperature. What if the assumptions of the effect of CO2 are wrong by a factor of a hundred too? Like, say, if the hot spot is missing, the rainfall estimates are skillless and the cloud cover predictions are voodoo?

That’d mean we were paying all this money to install equipment that tried to stop heatwaves by increasing local warmth…

Wind power, graphic, graph, local warning. Kieth, Miller, USA, 2018

If the USA builds lots more wind turbines it will have to wait a hundred years for any cooling effect?   |  Click to enlarge

Seriously. Wind won’t be “reducing “temperatures” for one hundred years?

Long after todays wind turbines have died, their great-grandchildren-turbines will amount to something.

The Harvard researchers found that the warming effect of wind turbines in the continental U.S. was actually larger than the effect of reduced emissions for the first century of its operation. This is because the warming effect is predominantly local to the wind farm, while greenhouse gas concentrations must be reduced globally before the benefits are realized.

Luckily CO2 emissions are irrelevant and mild warmth is probably beneficial. Who knows, if the sun cools us, wind farms might have some useful outcome, just not the one anyone expected. Can they keep the frost off crops?

Kiss goodbye to land, wilderness, quiet farms

The Harvard Gazette tells it as nicely as it can with a heavy seasoning of pro-renewables cliches. But the real implications are unsaid. Tucked far into the paper itself are some killer statistics. To power the US electrical grid based on the measured power densities wind power would have to cover fully 12% of the Continental land area. To power all the US energy needs wind turbines would have to cover 72% of the country.

How much land?

Keep reading  →

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.8/10 (60 votes cast)