Acute Science Madness Flares Up Again In Germany – The Witch Hunts Are Returning

Since the “dramatic monster killer” tornadoes left a trail “of death and destruction” in the USA, the German media have once again began to blame abnormal human behaviour and SUV-witchcraft for the “man-made” disasters.

One example is here at the German leftist Rote Fahne News site. News is what they call it – others might term it rants and ravings of lunatics. Hat-tip DirkH. Note that this kind of reporting is not exclusive to kook sites like Rote Fahne, but is everywhere in the mainstream media. It really is so (Yesterday I heard the dubious claim on NDR public radio).

Here’s how the Rote Fahne explains the tornadoes and the US reaction to them.

That such conditions are becoming increasingly favourable because of global warming due to the burning of fossil fuels like oil, gas, and coal is being kept a secret. Huge amounts of carbon dioxide are being released. That acts ‘like a greenhouse glass roof over the planet. That leads to the greenhouse effect and takes the climate out of whack,’ says the climate program of the MLPD. US President Obama now expresses his deep sadness because of the victims and vast damage for citizens – but at the same time the destruction is being blamed on the natural environment!”

The nerve! Someone claiming the tornadoes are natural!

This of course reminds us of the 17th century witch hunts and trials held in both Europe and early colonial America. Superstitious people, claiming the authority of the latest science, claimed natural disasters and their ensuing misery, along with their own neurotic behavior, were caused by witches. Witch hunts then quickly became a method of eliminating opponents. Today, the climate science madness expressed in the text of Rote Fahne is precisely the same. Compare today’s global warming movement to the old witch trial times in the following Youtube video:

Aren’t the parallels absolutely striking? There’s nary a difference.

Today’s version of what is driving the new witch hunts is only slightly modified (see the 0:45 mark of the above video). Today it could read as follows: “What is written in the Climate Bible is the Word of Gore; it is infallible and we have to live by it on a daily basis. And when you read the book of CO2, it is written: ‘Thou shalt not suffer a skeptic to live’.”

The paranoia and madness of 1692 Salem, thanks to modern media, has re-emerged and gone global today. It’s the same stuff. Today people like Hansen, Gore, and Schellnhuber are acting as the new Pope Gregory the 9ths or Innocent the 8ths.

Today they claim people are behaving “abnormally” and so terrible things are happening because of it. The natural disasters are all the proof they need. Today it is capitalist witches at work. How do we know? Rote Fahne delivers the proof, and writes:

The environmental crisis has developed concurrently as a by-product of capitalism by law.”

For them, that’s enough proof. Prepare the gallows! The author of this leftist excrement obviously has forgotten the environmental cesspool that communism and socialism produced in the former regimes of East Germany and the Soviet Union. Thanks to shutting down these inefficient systems, united Germany’s CO2 emissions dropped 15% overnight.

Make no mistake about it – eventually history will look back and view these “infallible scientists” as Pope Gregory the 9ths or Innocent the 8th-type crackpots and zealots who just lost their way in the darkness of their own ignorance and arrogance.

PNAS Paper Confirms Climate Policy Is A Failure – “Growth In Global CO2 Emission Has Remained Strong”

Steffen Hentrich here of the Liberal Institute, a think tank of the Friedrich-Naumann-Foundation for Freedom brings our attention here to a PNAS paper written by Glen P. Peters, Jan C. Minx, Christopher L. Weber and Ottmar Edenhofer titled: Growth in emission transfers via international trade from 1990 to 2008.

Transfering efficient manufacturing to developing countries leads to more CO2 emissions, and not less. Photo source: Library of Congress CALL NUMBER LC-USW36-376

Though not saying it directly, the paper calls current climate policy a failure. It’s right there in the very first sentence (emphasis added):

Despite the emergence of regional climate policies, growth in global CO2 emissions has remained strong. From 1990 to 2008 CO2 emissions in developed countries (defined as countries with emission reduction commitments in the Kyoto Protocol, Annex B) have stabilized, but emissions in developing countries (non-Annex B) have doubled.”

That folks, is what we call POLICY FAILURE – period. In fact climate policy has likely produced just the opposite of what was intended, meaning more CO2 and not less.

The authors quantified the growth in emission transfers via international trade. To do this they developed a trade-linked global database for CO2 emissions covering 113 countries and 57 economic sectors from 1990 to 2008. Here’s what they found, taken from the front page:

…emissions from the production of traded goods and services have increased from 4.3 Gt CO2 in 1990 (20% of global emissions) to 7.8 Gt CO2 in 2008 (26%). Most developed countries have increased their consumption-based emissions faster than their territorial emissions, and non–energy-intensive manufacturing had a key role in the emission transfers. The net emission transfers via international trade from developing to developed countries increased from 0.4 Gt CO2 in 1990 to 1.6 Gt CO2 in 2008, which exceeds the Kyoto Protocol emission reductions. Our results indicate that international trade is a significant factor in explaining the change in emissions in many countries, from both a production and consumption perspective.”

What does all that mean? It means that the developed countries are simply moving their CO2-intensive industry off their territory, and placing it on territories that are exempt from mandatory reductions, i.e developing countries. This what they call emissions transfer. The result: less CO2 emissions at home, but huge, greater increases in the less efficient country that took over the industry. This is what the study has confirmed.

Indeed the whole scheme backfires because undeveloped countries often have lower environmental and technical standards, and so produce the goods with considerably higher emissions and real pollution. Then add the transport of these goods from these developing countries back to Europe or North America, which adds even more CO2. And let’s not even look at the biofuels debacle the fossil fuel hysteria led to.

The PNAS paper writes in the discussion part (emphasis added:

Under the IPCC accounting rules of only reporting territorial emissions, many developed countries have reported stabilized emissions. However, our results show that the global emissions associated with consumption in many developed countries have increased with a large share of the emissions originating in developing countries. This finding may benefit economic growth in developing countries, but the increased emissions could also make future mitigation more costly in the developing countries. In addition, we find that the emission transfers via international trade often exceed the emission reductions in the developed countries.”

So what do the environmental and economic masterminds intend to do about it? Not much for now. Solving the emissions transfer problem of course would mean massive interference in global markets and end up punishing developing countries. The authors recommend:

We suggest that countries monitor emission transfers via international trade, in addition to territorial emissions, to ensure progress toward stabilization of global greenhouse gas emissions.”

Monitor? Now they don’t mean that countries start thinking of ways to restrict trade, now do they? The more they meddle with the economy and trade, the more they are going to mess everything up.

Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for Environment, Denies Plans To Impose Water Restrictions In Europe

I got the following as a reader comment. It’s a statement that appears to be direct from Janez Potočnik’s office. He is a European Commissioner for Environment and he refutes the story that they plan to mandate water saving measures in Europe.  That’s a relief – saved from another stupid idea, at least for now (Don’t worry though – they’ve got plenty of others, for sure).

 The statement was sent by a fellow named Joe Hennon.


Statement by Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for Environment

I am aware of allegations that appeared in the German press concerning future plans to restrict water use in the Member States and to impose regulations on landlords and households. These allegations are unfounded.

I wish to make it very clear that the Commission has no plans at present to make water-saving taps mandatory in any Member State, no plans to oblige Member States to reduce household water consumption, and no targets have been set in these areas.

The main aim of EU water policy has always been to ensure that good quality water is available throughout the EU in sufficient quantities. The Commission is committed to addressing water scarcity as part of a Blueprint for Water in 2012 and, as always, a number of studies are ongoing in this area.

Several policy options are being examined regarding the technical, environmental and economic feasibility of regulatory and non-regulatory options for water performance requirements for buildings, but no new decisions have been taken in this area, nor are they indeed pending.

The European law-making process is a highly consultative one. When legislation is proposed, proposals are accompanied by studies assessing the potential environmental, social and economic effects. Any targets or legislation in the area of water use would be accompanied by the appropriate impact assessment as a matter of course, taking account of the extent to which the situation in Europe is diverse, with a view to avoiding a “one size fits all” approach.

I regret that articles on sensitive questions such as Commission proposals for water use in Member States appear in the media before any details have been checked with the relevant staff at the European Commission

Joe Hennon…


(No mention if Joe Hennon is an aide to Potočnik, or what his function is.)

EU Environmental Kommissar Drafting Water Consumption Reduction Directive – Tens Of Billions More Costs For Citizens

Parts of southern Europe are experiencing drought conditions. So what does the European Union want to do about it? They want the wet European countries to use less water too.

Okay, it’s not a solution, but I guess it’s a way of showing solidarity with dry countries, or something. Call it Europe’s next folly.

The online Die Welt has a report here called “Billions For New Faucets. Now that energy saving lights have been decreed by the EU Burgermeister-Meisterburger, now comes water-saving faucets. Die Welt writes:

In the coming years additional tens of billions of euros in extra costs may be levied on homeowners and tenants. The EU Commission wants to increase the efficiency of buildings with respect to water consumption by reducing it 30% using a new directive in member states. It is being considered to obligate homeowners and landlords to replace shower heads, faucets and toilets with new ones that have have considerably less consumption.”

This is for real. Got to hand it to the EU Commission – they really know how to come up with ways to harass and infuriate its citizens, and to interfere with their lives. For Americans and non-EU citizens, it will soon be coming to you too.

All of this is designed to benefit a few select companies, primarily manufacturers of high-end household fixtures who are having difficulty selling their high-priced wares due to the economic crisis in Europe and USA. This is going to be expensive for normal citizens. Die Welt writes:

Using a conservative figure of 400 euros per living unit, owners of the more than 25 million homes and apartments in Germany will have to fork out over 10 billion euros.”

If you do the math for all of Europe, you can estimate about €50 billion! And for what? For the luxury of having less water of course. Well, didn’t you know? Everyone dreams of having less water. Die Welt adds:

With the planned regulation, Slovenian EU-Environment Kommissar Janez Potocnik wants to mainly fight the water shortage in southern Europe.”

Can someone tell me how using less water in rainy Britain is going to make things wetter in Romania? Die Welt takes a look at some water statistics in Germany and what a 30% reduction in consumption would mean.

‘Of the annually available 188 billion cubic meters of water in Germany, only 2.7 percent gets used by public water works,’ says Martin Weyland, head managing director of the Federal Association of Energy and Water Management (BdEW).”

Eventually, that 2.7% ends up going right back into the water cycle. And a 30% reduction would mean that Germany would use only 1.9% instead of 2.7% of the water it has available. The result: that little, meaningless dip in the statistics would cost €10 billion. Yes folks, the EU masterminds are indeed again at work.

Die Welt also writes that already many public wastewater utilities say their sewage systems are having problems because NOT ENOUGH water is being fed into them by households, and so the utilities themselves have to flush their sewers with fresh water from time to time. Weyland says:

This is the only way to prevent foul odors and damage to sewage lines from deposits.”

Die Welt also brings up that it is highly questionable whether replacing faucets, shower heads and toilets would lead to any savings at all. People will simply take longer showers, or flush several times. Moreover, wastewater utility companies would have to flush their lines out with fresh water more often.

Any other brilliant ideas Herr Kommissar?

Although the Die Welt piece has lots more interesting points, I don’t need to write on more about this; you all get the picture. Enough lunacy for today.

Carbon Capture Sequestration Could Contaminate Berlin’s Water Supply

The warmist German site has a piece about sequestraton of carbon dioxide, which reports that Swedish power company Vattenfalls plans have a CCS plant near Berlin ready by 2015.

The plant would remove CO2 from Vattenfall’s brown coal power plant and pump it into the earth for high-pressure underground storage. But an expert geological assessment shows that could lead to problems. According to

Storing carbon dioxide underground could however have negative impacts beyond Brandenburg. A geological expert assessment for the community of Barnim-Oderbruch made available to states that because of the overpressure in the bedrock strata, a salinisation of groundwater has to be expected within a radius of 100 km from the injection borehole. That would affect Mecklenburg Western Pommerania and Poland.

That means the entire Berlin metropolitan area would be impacted. Geology expert Ralf Krupp studied the underground geology in the area and concludes that the ground structure may not be able to securely store the CO2 because the 20-meter salt layer is not thick enough, and so fears that the high pressure could lead salt water carrying strata to mix in with drinking water – causing it to become saline. Kilmaretter also writes:

Especially problematic for Krupp is that saltwater probably is laden with heavy metals. ‘This could be an acute hazard for many water utilities,’ the geologist descríbes.”

In the meantime Vattenfalls calls such scenarios “purely speculative” and that there a number of technical factors that have to be considered. Water utility companies, however, find the scenarios plausible and not without risk.

In the meantime, the uncertainty is already having a powerful impact on public opinion. Activist and cititens groups are already mobilising to stop the CCS technology from being employed not only near Berlin, but at a number of locations throughout Germany. So add another technology that is too risky to be used – along with nuclear power, GMO’s, high speed trains, coal power plants, shale gas, oil, internal combustion engines, bottled water, fireplaces, toilets…

Reading up on CCS technology, I find that it involves a lot work (consumption of energy) and will provide no benefit. Seems to be yet another superstition-driven folly. Watch this Alberta video on how it works:

Green To The Extreme – Earth Day Co-Founder Composted His Girlfriend, Also Claimed Creating The Internet

Updated 4/25/2011, 16:53 CETMSNBC, surprisingly, reports here on the very dark side of Earth Day co-founder Ira Einhorn. Let us recall that the first Earth Day took place on April 22, 1970 (April 22 happens to be the birthday of Vladimir Lenin).

MSNBC starts with (emphasis added):

Ira Einhorn was on stage hosting the first Earth Day event at the Fairmount Park in Philadelphia on April 22, 1970. Seven years later, police raided his closet and found the ‘composted’ body of his ex-girlfriend inside a trunk.”

According to the report, he was a hippie guru who advocated peace, love and flower power, but then murdered his girlfriend Helen “Holly” Maddux after she had broken up with him. After she went to his apartment to gather her things, she was never seen again. Einhorn told the police:

…that she had gone out to the neighborhood co-op to buy some tofu and sprouts and never returned.”

Tofu and sprouts at the neighborhood co-op? It gets even funnier. Einhorn was arrested but he jumped bail and fled to Europe. Eventually, after having been on the run for 23 years, he was extradited to the States by the French. Here’s how he explained the murder to police:

Taking the stand in his own defense, Einhorn claimed that his ex-girlfriend had been killed by CIA agents who framed him for the crime because he knew too much about the agency’s paranormal military research.”

Maybe the real reason she was composted was probably because she had voted Republican, or criticised Paul Ehrlich. who knows? Indeed there are a number of theories Einhorn used to explain the death of his former girlfriend, including claiming that it was a set-up by the CIA and that he was surprised when he learned Holly Maddux’s body was found in his steamer chest in his closet in his apartment – months later and after foul liquids had been oozing through the floor and into the apartment below.

Wikipedia writes he was a friend and contemporary of Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman. Einhorn’s past is naturally an embarrassment for the Green movement, and like the Medieval Warm Period, they would prefer for us forgetting about it. MSNBC writes:

Understandably, Earth Day’s organizers have distanced themselves from his name, citing Gaylord Nelson, an environmental activist and former Wisconsin governor and U.S. senator who died in 2005, as Earth Day’s official founder and organizer.”

So let’s add Einhorn to the list of green psychopaths along with Bin Laden and Charles Manson – with Bill “bummer outer” McKibben, Michael “f-ing” Tobis, Richard “1010” Curtis and Ben “beat-the-crap” Santer on the potential list.

Finally, claiming that one invented the Internet seems to be a sort of mental bug greens are prone to having. According to, Einhorn, like Al Gore, also claimed he created the Internet:

He further claims he ‘left the money economy in 1963, creating a lifestyle based on information transfer.’ Einhorn credits himself with ‘creating an international information network under the auspices of Bell of Pa. and AT&T, called the Internet before the Internet that reached into 27 countries.’  Then he provided a (long) list of accomplishments.”


And here’s much more on the violent background of the man who was part of the founding of Earth Day:

Anthropogenic Global Warming Is Real – But It’s Not All From CO2

By Ed Caryl

There have been multiple studies of solar influence on global and regional temperature changes. Just of few of them are here, here, here, and here. This author made a contribution to the question here. Many of these studies show a some correlation of the sun’s output versus temperature, but most researchers think that this relationship is a weak one, contributing from one third to one half of the observed warming. So, from where is the remainder coming?

Figure 1: Heat map of Buffalo, New York, USA, NASA image.

Pierre and this author have written about urban warming here and here. It is clear from the infrared satellite photos by NASA that urban heat islands are both more wide spread and warmer that previously known. Particularly in the eastern half of the U. S., the heat islands are blending together, raising the temperature of the whole region. How much?

No one (to my knowledge) has researched what part of the global temperature rise is due to energy use. All energy use ultimately goes to heat. This is what causes the heat islands. Much of energy usage is immediately wasted as heat: cooling towers at power plants, automobile radiators, heat loss through home insulation, heat loss up the chimney, electric motor heat loss, heat from electric lights, are just a few examples of heat losses. Even energy used to transport things is ultimately lost as heat. Just moving something through the air, heats the air. For this reason, we can convert all the energy used into watts and calculate the temperature rise. In these calculations, the energy used will be considered over particular land areas.

The first area considered is the U.S.A. There are figures for the energy consumption in the U. S. in 2005, 29 Pwh (Petawatt hours, a PetaWatt is 1015 watts. That is 1 with 15 zeros. The area of the contiguous U. S. (the lower 48 states) is 8,080,464 km2. If we divide the energy used by the area, we get 3,589 Wh/m2. Divide that by 8766 hours in a year we get 0.409 W/m2, or 9.826 Wh/m2/day, as the average energy dumped into the environment in the U. S. in 2005.

The sun provides about 4.5 kW/m2/day on a horizontal, flat, black, surface at the average latitude of the U.S. The average albedo of the earth’s surface is 0.3, which means that on average, the surface will absorb 70% of the insolation (solar energy) that strikes it. This means that the effective heating will be 70% of 4.5 kW/m2/day, or 3,150 W/m2/day. The energy dumped into the environment by every American’s energy use is 0.312% of the sun’s energy. This will raise the temperature by 0.312%. The average temperature in the U. S is 11.6°C or 284.75°K. The temperature rise will be about 0.89°C.

As you can see on the temperature chart below from NOAA, this will neatly take care of the temperature rise seen in the last 25 years.

Figure 2. Source:

What about the global picture? Figures are available for global energy consumption for 1988 through 2006. As most of this consumption is in the northern hemisphere, and that is where we see the most warming, the calculation uses the northern hemisphere land area, 100,228,500 km2. The same average insolation value will be used as in the U. S. example above, 3150 W/m2/day. Figure 3 is a chart of global and hemispheric temperature trends and the calculated temperature rise in the land area of the northern hemisphere due to energy usage. The temperature anomaly data comes from GISS/NASA here. The chart may underemphasize the temperature rise due to energy use because energy use is localized to a limited local areas in few countries: the US, Europe, including Russia, and China. The temperature data may also be overemphasized because the surface temperature measuring sites are at airports and other urban settings that are even warmer than the average location.

Figure 3. NH, SH, and Global temperature rise, and the rise caused by energy use (dark blue line).

Dr. Richard C. Wilson states that 50% of the temperature anomaly is due to total solar irradiance changes (TSI). Drs. Judith Lean and David Rind make predictions based on TSI along with ocean cycles. Neither mentions any influence from energy usage.

Here are two maps. The first is the lower troposphere temperature rise over the period 1978 to 2006, much the same period as the chart above.

Figure 4. Source: University of Alabama Huntsville.

The second map is of energy usage by country.

Figure 5. Source: Energy Information Administration, U.S. Department of Energy, 2006.

Though the energy usage map is very coarse, one can see that the maximum energy usage area roughly coincides with the same areas as the northern hemisphere temperature rise.

The planet has been heating in the last two hundred years. Some of that change in temperature comes from ocean cycles, some from the sun and its various influences, and some from man. Much of the anthropogenic (man caused) portion is simply energy use that has dramatically increased in the last fifty years. A thorough, honest, investigation needs to be done before we blame it all on CO2.

Soot Emerging As Main Driver Of Arctic Warming

By Ed Caryl

Pierre and I have both written about the effects of soot on Arctic and sub-Arctic ice and glaciers, read here Glaciers – The Dark Side and Half Of Arctic Warming Caused By Soot. Scientists are recognising that CO2 is becoming less of a factor and that black carbon soot instead is being recognised increasingly as the a driver of warming in the Arctic. Time to go back and revamp the models – again.


Researchers from the Arctic Council, representing the eight countries that border the Arctic, are now seriously studying the subject. See the Associated Press article here. The photo and caption from the article reads (emphasis added).

This undated handout photo provided by NOAA-STAD, Soot Transport and Deposition Study, shows Trish Quinn of NOAA in a first snow pit. An international research team is in the land of snow and ice in search of soot. Though the Arctic is often pictured as a vast white wasteland, that can be deceiving. And carbon deposited there as a result of activities elsewhere can have a long-term impact on climate (AP Photo/NOAA-STAD).

‘The Arctic serves as the air conditioner of the planet,’ explained Patricia Quinn of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, one of the research participants. Heat from other parts of the Earth moves to the Arctic in the circulating air and ocean water, and at least some of that warmth can radiate into space.”

At the same time, some of the incoming heat from the sun that tends to be absorbed in other locations is reflected by the ice and snow, allowing the polar regions to serve as cooling agents for the planet.”

Of course they need to insert the obligatory nod to CO2.

Cutting carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases is the backbone of any effort to combat warming, both globally and within the Arctic, Quinn said.”

The group has not published yet, as the research will not end until the end of May, and to have any hope of getting their paper or papers past “peer review” they need to get CO2 into the mix. But this study is a few steps in the right direction.

The Debate On Mercury Emission Standards

Scott Portman

No, I’m not becoming a warmist or a tree-hugger. But I am pleased to give environmentally concerned citizens the microphone here.

The following is from Scott Portman of Atlanta, who politely asked to have his essay published here. It’s about the EPA and regulating mercury. I’m in favour of reducing mercury emissions, as long as the benefits outweigh the costs. I think Scott here will very much appreciate your comments.

The Debate On Mercury Emission Standards

by Scott Portmann
The United States’ Environmental Protection Agency has recently proposed the first-ever national standards for mercury and other air pollutants. The agency’s proposed standards are meant to regulate coal fired power plants in the US. They currently believe that with the new regulations, public health will be dramatically improved on a global level; in the US alone, they project that 17,000 premature deaths from lung diseases, such as mesothelioma, will be prevented. The standards, in addition, will prevent a whopping 11,000 heart attacks and 120,000 cases of childhood asthma.

The administrator of the US EPA, Lisa Jackson, confirmed her belief on the subject, claiming in a statement:

With the help of existing technologies, we will be able to take reasonable steps that will provide dramatic protections to our children and loved ones, preventing premature deaths, heart attacks, and asthma attacks”

It is possible that these new standards might be a result of the recent pressure the EPA has come under, due to a lot of pushback from the Republican Party. They hold the belief that the EPA is hurting the global economy with their rigid regulations. In an attempt to try to reign in the EPA, Republican lawmakers have targeted the agency’s climate rules. In their attempt, these new mercury standards have come under fire, too.

Currently, the technology exists to make this environmental goal a reality. Just by installing the regulating systems, power plants could effectively lower a slew of harmful emissions. US President Barack Obama has even issued an executive order that mandates the EPA to make sure their regulations are cost effective and not overly burdensome to industry. In response to that, the EPA has claimed that their standards are so cost-effective that for every $1 spent, the public will see $13 in benefits.

As to be expected, there are opponents to the EPA’s mercury regulations. Some believe that the standards would impose major economic burdens to manufacturing companies, costing many people their jobs. In the current economic climate, they raise a legitimate concern. They believe that the expenses will be passed on to consumers, who will face higher electricity bills.

On the flipside, if the standards pass the public will most definitely see increased health benefits. Thousands will live longer, and even more will breathe easier. Perhaps most importantly, the environment will be safeguarded and it will be a step towards preventing climate change. Toxic mercury will be reduced from bodies of water, and as a result, fish will be safer to eat. With fewer illnesses, there will be fewer expenses due to hospital and doctor visits as well. The money saved from collateral costs will most likely outweigh any additional electricity costs. It just seems that the positive aspects of the mercury standards far outweigh the negatives.

A health, safety, and political advocate with a passion for economics, Scott Portman is an aspiring journalist who currently resides in the South East United States

Where’s The Oil! Deepwater Horizon One Year Later

It was supposed to be USA’s Fukushima – an environmental disaster of Biblical dimensions – one that would serve as a watershed in USA’s energy policy development. The nation would now finally start to wean itself off oil and switch to renewables in earnest. When the BP Deepwater Horizon drilling platform exploded, killing 11 workers, and began releasing million of gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, outrage spread across the USA and soon worldwide.

Thanks to brave men (and nature) there is little trace of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy today. Thanks to the workers who risked life and limb in doing their jobs honourably. They will not be forgotten. (Photo credit: US Coast Guard)

Like Angela Merkel declaring a moratorium on nuclear energy in Germany after Fukushima, President Barack Obama also declared a moratorium on offshore oil drilling. Indeed it looked as if Deepwater Horizon was the environmental disaster that environmentalists had been waiting for. Environmental horror stories spread like wildfire. Calls to get away from oil grew shrill.

But fortunately for the environment (and unfortunately for the environmentalists) the Deepwater Horizon disaster turned out to be all hype. Today, just a year later, it is difficult to find any of the spilled oil. Within just a few months the true scale of the spill became known, read here, for example. When compared to the shear volume of the Gulf of Mexico, the 800 million liters of spilled oil turn out to be comparable to a few drops of oil in an Olympic swimming pool. Indeed concentrations of greasy, yukky sunscreen lotion in a public pool are much higher.

Now scientists have discovered that bacteria (nature) are devouring the crude. It’s almost all gone.

The German online FOCUS magazine has written the epitiaph on the gravestone of the “Deepwater Horizon Disaster”, which actually died at birth. Focus writes:

Even the optimists among the biologists were surprised at the speed at which microbes in the water gobbled up the oil in the water.

‘We  misjudged the Gulf ecology’s capability and bacterial ability to process hydrocarbons’, emphasized William Reilly, a leader of the investigation commission that analyzed the oil disaster for US President Barack Obama’s government.”

FOCUS reminds us that “oil spills” are also a natural ongoing phenomena.

160 million litres of oil leak out each year from hundreds of natural fissures in the ocean sea floor. It’s residence time according to studies is anywhere between 10 hours and 5 days. The microbes work so effectively that only a fraction of the oil reaches the sea surface. Obviously crude oil-eating bacteria got along amazingly fine with the oil from Deepwater Horizon.”

Today the stuff is gone, eaten by nature. People are bathing at the beach, and life goes on.

Let’s recall that tens of thousands of underwater volcanoes globally spew out all sorts of nasty things into the oceans. One quickly realises that Mother Nature is in fact a long way from being clean and gentle. When you get down to it, Mother Nature is a cocktail of physical, biological, and chemical weapons – she is always trying to kill us. She is not this silly paradise of a picture that Google uses for Earth Day.

Happy animals living in a tropical paradise with no disease or danger. This is what the planet would be like if we switched off all the lights.

Top 5 Environmental Disasters That Never Happened

Steffen Hentrich at the  Thinking For Freedom”, blog of the (Classic) Liberal Institute Friedrich Naumann Foundation For Freedom brings our attention to this Youtube Video by Ronald Bailey (Reason Magazine) und Julian Morris (International Policy Network) which features the Top 5 Environmental Disasters That Never Happened.

Enviro-leftists have a talent for concocting scare stories about mass environmental disaster, and thus stampeding the public into destrcutive policy-making that always ends up killing millions of poor people. Eventually, the scare story gets exposed as a hoax, and the media look like a bunch of thoughtless dupes.

You’d think these enviro-madmen would eventually learn something from their terrible mistakes. Well, you’d be dead wrong. In fact, they seem to get a kick out it, a ghoulish delight, and so they simply go on and concoct new schemes to stampede people into self-destruction.

The latest of course is catastrophic man-made climate change precipitated by the burning of fossil fuels. And now as man attempts to scale back use of fossil fuels, the poor once again are getting hammered the hardest.

I really believe too many of these enviro-crackpots are evil and diabolical, especially when you listen to how they talk about human population – referring to people as parasites, scourges – a disease to the planet. One could arguably call them “green genocidists”. Yes, I’m getting myself worked up. Here are Reason Magazine’s The top 5 diasters that never happened:

No. 5: Frankenfoods

Nonsense upon stilts.”

Think about golden rice, and all the children who have to hungry, or blind, or die prematurely because agricultural progress is irrationally impeded.

No. 4:  The end of biodiversity

70 to 80% of all animal species would be extinct by the year 1995.”

“Not based at all on evidence.”

Today, there are no signs of biodiversity shrinking.

No. 3. The energy crisis

By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using crude oil at such a rate that there won’t be any more crude oil left.”

“And of course what happened is that our government did all kinds of idiotic things under President Richard Nixon.”

Sound familiar? And who gets hit the hardest when energy prices go up? The poor of course. It ends up causing more hunger, disease, and ultimately premature death.

No. 2: “A Silent Spring” The Banning of DDT

There was a really apacolyptic vision that was frankly based on a flimsy and inaacurate representation of arginal science.”

“And those bans have led to some unpleasant and unintended consequences.”

“The result, well, now a million people a year are dying of malaria.”

No. 1: Malthusian famine

The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s hundreds of millions of people are going to starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now.”

“Ehrlich was spectacularly wrong.”

“If we had followed his policies, we would have created the famines that he claimed were inevitable.”

“More people are being better fed today than at any time in human history.”

Wvery one of these problems was an iminent threat to life on the planet, promoted by “leading experts” who were certain, and insisted action had to be taken quickly. Many world leaders are now behaving like Nixon, and implementing idiotic policies.

The global warming scare is nothing new and will also end up in the graveyard of past scare stories as well. But in the meantime it indeed has the potential of “creating the famines that are claimed to be inevitable.” These professors like Hansen, Ehrlich, Schellnhuber, Mann, Jones, etc. are indeed dangerous and need to be reviewed by rational thinkers.

Here’s another example of a crackpot prediction:

Global Warming On Pluto Caused By The Sun (Even 3 Billion Miles Away!)

The online Financial Times Deutschland reports that a British team of astronomers, led by Jane Greaves of the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, have found strong evidence of global warming of Pluto’s atmosphere using the 15-meter James Clerk Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii. They also detected carbon monoxide in its atmosphere.

The researchers also say that new findings show that Pluto’s atmosphere extends to more than 1860 miles (3000 km) above the surface –  or a quarter of the distance out to its largest moon, Charon. Before it was thought to be only 100 km thick. Greaves will present the new discovery today at the Royal Astronomical Society’s National Astronomy Meeting in Wales.

Pluto’s atmosphere appears to have expanded due to warming. Greaves says:

The change in brightness over the last decade is startling. We think the atmosphere may have grown in size, or the carbon monoxide abundance may have been boosted.”

The Financial Times writes;.

Pluto’s extremely low density atmosphere has a fragile balance made up of the coolant carbon monoxide and the greenhouse gas methane. It is probably the most sensitive in the solar system, Greaves said.”

The far away dwarf planet is probably currently experiencing climate change, said Greaves. ‘We believe that the expansion of the atmosphere has grown. in 1989 Pluto passed its closest point to the sun in its orbit. Probably the stronger solar radiation vapourised additional ice and the atmosphere expanded.”

In the new study, scientists found that the carbon monoxide gas on Pluto is extremely cold, at about minus 364°F (-220°C ).

‘This simple, very cold atmosphere, which is greatly influenced by the sun’s warmth, could give us important information on the fundamental physical interactions and thus a better understanding of the earth’s atmosphere,’ Greaves said.”

Yeah – like the sun plays the major role on atmospheric behaviour and climate, even when it is 3 billion miles away (the earth is only 93 million miles away) and that everything else, like oceans and atmospheres, reacts to its changes and orbital changes.

Alfred Wegener Institute Observed “Dramatic Changes” Based On Only 10 Years Of Data

Germany’s Alfred Wegener Institute has issued a press release about a comprehensive study on the erosion of Arctic coastlines it has recently released. Many media outlets in Germany were busy peddling the “dramatic results” over the last day or so. So what data do we have to back up all the drama? Only about 10 years worth, it turns out.

Dramatic! Most coastlines are stable or actually agrading. (Source: Alfred Wegener Institute)

Excerpts of the AWI press release (emphasis added):

The coastline in Arctic regions reacts to climate change with increased erosion and retreats by half a metre per year on average.  This means substantial changes for Arctic ecosystems near the coast and the population living there. A consortium of more than thirty scientists from ten countries, including researchers from the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association and from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, comes to this conclusion in two studies published in Estuaries and Coasts and online on They jointly investigated over 100,000 kilometres and thus a fourth of all Arctic coasts and their results have now been published for the first time.”

I’d think data from up there is probably rather scant going back more than 10 years, certainly when you go back 50 years or more.

The changes are particularly dramatic in the Laptev, East Siberian and Beaufort Seas, where coastal erosion rates reach more than 8 metres a year in some cases. Since around a third of the world’s coasts are located in the Arctic permafrost, coastal erosion may affect enormous areas in future.”

Two thirds of the Arctic coasts do not consist of rock, but of frozen soft substrate (permafrost). And precisely these coasts are extremely hard hit by erosion. As a rule, Arctic regions are quite thinly populated. However, as nearly everywhere in the world, the coasts in the far north are important axes for economic and social life. The growing need for global energy resources as well as increasing tourism and freight transport additionally intensify anthropogenic influence on the coastal regions of the Arctic. For wild animal stocks, like the great caribou herds of the north, and the widespread freshwater lakes near the coast progressive erosion brings about significant changes in ecological conditions.

This looks more and more like a touchy feely nature documentary we often see on TV. No one lives there, yet it has an economic impact? Ice ages have also had an impact on these regions, like being covered by a mile of ice. Most animals get a bit disturbed by that too.

‘When systematic data acquisition began in 2000, detailed information was available for barely 0.5% of the Arctic coasts,’ says Dr. Hugues Lantuit from the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI).”

10 years of data? That’s it? That’s enough to call the situation dramatic?

Surprise! The coastlines are eroding. (Photo source: Wikipedia)

Photo of coastal erosion. Source: Wikipedia – (Pacific coastline, not the Arctic).

These are impacts due to weather. We have little historical data with which to compare this to. Coastal erosion has been around since we have had oceans and seas. I seriously doubt there is much there except a subtle plea for more funding. Finding a spot or two along the Arctic shores with 8 meters of erosion makes for nice headlines.

Is Permafrost Methane A Climate Time Bomb? “Only in Scenarios – Not In Reality” Says German Permafrost Scientist

It amazes me how the media take a non-story and inflate it into a “climate time-bomb”.

The Sueddeutsche Zeitung has an interview today with Dr. Hans-Wolfgang Hubberten, a director at the Alfred-Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), who has been studying the permafrost in Siberia for 20 years now. Not surprisingly he sees signs of some permafrost melt – and why not? After all the globe has warmed about 0.6°C over the last 100 years.

In the interview Hubberten speaks about the scenario of massive permafrost melt and the implications such a scenario would have, but then reminds us that in reality the permafrost is thawing only very slowly, and so it’s no big deal. So what does the media focus on? On the horror scenarios of course, and not the reality.

One of the favorite horror scenarios floated out by AGW alarmists is sub-marine permafrost melt and the associated release of huge quantities of potent greenhouse gas methane, which then could lead to the much dreaded, yet elusive, tipping point.

Hubberten points out that there are 36 million square km of permafrost, which is equal to 25% the size of the earth’s land surface. Much of it lies below the Arctic ocean. The thickness ranges from a couple of meters to 1600 meters in some spots in Siberia. Of course warming and cooling of the climate leads to corresponding changes in the permafrost over time.

Here are some of Hubberten comments on melting permafrost:

1. Impact on sea levels:

It could by the end of the century lead to an additional global sea level rise of a few centimeters. Therefore the permafrost must be studied with the same seriousness as melting glaciers and sea ice.

This is a not so subtle call for lots more funding.

2. Is the permafrost thawing? According to Hubberten (paraphrasing):

In some areas in Russia within 50 years it has gotten about 20 cm thicker. Right now in treeless regions the upper 50 or 60 cm layer  is thawing. In the forested southern permafrost region up to 5 to 6 meters. The permafrost is warming also at greater depths where temperatures over the entire year range from -5°C to -20°C. We have exact measurements in Alaska for example. At a depth of 20 meters it has warmed 1.5″C over the last 35 years.”

Some places it’s thicker, some places thinner, and some places it is less cold. That shouldn’t be a surprise though because the planet has warmed a bit over the last century. So not really that much has happened.

3. What does Hubberten think about the possibility of a massive methane gas eruption from rapidly thawing permafrost (paraphrasing – emphasis added)?

Much is speculated on this ‘methane climate time-bomb’. In a sceanrio where there is a rapid and complete disintegration of the sub-marine permafrost, there could indeed be a huge methane release into the atmosphere, and from that a considerable global temperature increase from a greenhouse effect. In reality we assume, however, that there is a relatively slow reduction of the submarine permafrost – with a possible slight addition of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.”

Hubberten then throws his pitch for more funding, again, adding:

But, the sub-marine permafrost and the methane  gas hydrates are still mostly not researched and with today’s level of knowledge it is a big factor of uncertainty in the climate system.”

In the end we can safely say that all the permafrost warnings will likely turn out to be like the UN 50-million-refugee-predictions we have all been hearing about the last few days.

“Climate Saving” CFLs Now Found To Emit Deadly Cancer-Causing Vapours

I don’t have a single one of these damn things in our house, and I’m glad. Now the German online DIE WELT has a report here called: Energy Saving Lights Emit Toxic Substances.

Hat-tip DirkH

It was already widely known that CFLs released deadly mercury, but only if they broke, see here for example, or here onwhat to do if one breaks. Now, according to the German television news show “Markt“, which will air tomorrow evening at 8:15 pm, CFLs also emit cancer-causing fumes during their operation, principally phenol, which is highly toxic even in small amounts.

DIE WELT reports that the NDR news magazine selected a random sampling of CFLs from various manufacturers and had them tested by an independent laboratory.

DIE WELT writes:

The official expert for lighting, Peter Braun, confirmed the magazine’s claims that substances can find there way in the air in a room. ‘Of special concern was that all lights that were tested emitted cancer-causing substances while they operated, and these happened to be the substances that occurred with the highest concentrations,’ Braun told the network.”

One manufacturer said they would look into it, while another said they know of no concentrations that are a threat to anyone.

Great! Now we are creating a global Love Canal to make believe we are rescuing the behavior of the atmosphere.

UPDATE: Further recommended reading:

Preachy Germany’s Black Coal Consumption Skyrockets 15.4% in 2010 – Due To Cold!

Face it, Germany’s elitst leaders think that by righteously adopting positions of “protecting the climate” and the “responsible” use of energy, they’ll be able to assume the role as the world’s moral leaders.

The pious, like Chancellor Angela Merkel and all the leaders of all other parties, media, etc., all insist they have truly learned the lessons of history and are now ready to take on moral leadership of the world and exercise the authority to admonish the rest of the world for its wasteful energy use.

Almost daily does the German public hear of a new energy-savings plan announced by these annoyingly pious and wise leaders on how to be even more responsible, and demands to make even more energy sacrifices, e.g. like shutting down power plants, installing more solar and wind farms, eliminating light bulbs, imposing tougher auto emissions standards, mandating ethanol, regulating people’s fireplaces, plans to increase tax on energy, and even master plans for the great transformation of world society. The list is endless.

Readers here would think that Germany surely will soon be a carbon-free paradise, an island of nature and morality. Well, think again. According to the Swiss online ee-news, Germany’s primary energy consumption spiked 4.6%  in 2010 – due to the “economic rebound and cooler weather“. EE-News writes:

The higher energy consumption led to an increase in energy-dependent CO2 emissions. According to the calculations of the AG Energy Management,  there were very little changes in the energy mix as a whole and about two thirds of the energy increase came from carbon-based energy sources. The increase in energy-dependent CO2 emissions was at about 4%.”

While Germany’s leaders demand other countries reduce their carbon footprints and be more responsible with the use of energy, they have no qualms about their own growing consumption. Especially burning anthracite coal, which James Hansen compared to death trains, shot up 15.4%. The use of anthracite coal increased even much more than the “booming” renewable energies, which increased only a relatively weak 9.9%.

Yet, let’s not blame the average citizen’s desire to stay warm, and to work and use more energy to fill customer orders. I say be happy they are burning more and not less. German products are solutions that make other people’s lives easier all over the world. So hopefully Germans will consume even more in the future, and so continue producing more technology, machinery and solutions to fulfill human needs for comfort and dignity. Indeed, using more energy to help others is arguably a moral obligation.

Here are some of consumption increase statistics (%):

Petroleum: +1.3%
Natural gas: + 4.2%
Anthracite coal: + 15.4%
Brown coal: +0.2
Renewables: + 9.9%

Additional Reading:

More Tick Infections “Due To Global Warming” – German Inflation Fuelled By High Energy Costs

Infected Ticks On The Increase

Here’s another “global warming is good for everything that’s bad, and bad for everything that’s good” story. Now according to the online Swiss

Ticks could become more dangerous because climate change favours infected ticks. That’s the conclusion that researchers of the University of Neuenburg concludes. The study was supported the Swiss Nation Fund.”

Scientists claim that the infected blood-sucking critters live longer when it’s warmer. Every year 10,000 Swiss people are infected with the Lyme-Borreliose.

A team led by Lise Gern have been studying the Holzbock tick over 10 years and found they have become increasingly infected during that period. The says:

Climate warming could have enhanced this trend, the researchers fear.”


Inflation In Germany and Europe Jumps

This certainly is no surprise to anyone. When sources of energy are villainized and citizens are forced to buy more and more expensive energy, plus the senseless shut own of nuclear power plants, eventually these dumb policies start having an impact on supply chains. The online Mitteldeutsche Zeitung here reports:

Consumer prices climbed in march like in February on a year earlier another 2.1 percent. That’s the highest increase in two and half years, according to the German Federal Office of Statistics. Foremost energy prices are fuelling inflation. Energy increased in price in March 10 percent. Heating oil (+ 32.8 percent) as well as gasoline and diesel (+ 11.2 percent) were at the top of the list. But also electric bills climbed sharply (+ 7.6 percent).”

There are no “coulds” here – just hard reality. The price of food, which requires substantial energy to produce, also jumped 2.2%. Unfortunately political shift to renewable energy has barely gotten underway, and so these increases are only a tiny sampling of what is in store should Europe plunge fully into the renewable energy madness.

Solar Cycle 24 Erupts – Finally!

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded this X1.5-class solar flare on March 9, 2011

Many of us have been watching the sunspots every day and wondering if the sun was entering into some kind of Dalton minimum.

Solar Cycle 24 was about three years overdue.

Well, it’s still not sure if a Dalton-sort of minimum will or will not occur, but the latest event suggests that the sun has woken from its long slumber for good. Solar Cycle 24 is alive! This is the latest news from NASA.


April 14, 2011:

If you’ve ever stood in front of a hot stove, watching a pot of water and waiting impatiently for it to boil, you know what it feels like to be a solar physicist.

Back in 2008, the solar cycle plunged into the deepest minimum in nearly a century. Sunspots all but vanished, solar flares subsided, and the sun was eerily quiet.

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded this X1.5-class solar flare on March 9, 2011. [movie]

“Ever since, we’ve been waiting for solar activity to pick up,” says Richard Fisher, head of the Heliophysics Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington DC. “It’s been three long years.”

Quiet spells on the sun are nothing new. They come along every 11 years or so—it’s a natural part of the solar cycle. This particular solar minimum, however, was lasting longer than usual, prompting some researchers to wonder if it would ever end.

News flash: The pot is starting to boil. “Finally,” says Fisher, “we are beginning to see some action.”

As 2011 unfolds, sunspots have returned and they are crackling with activity. On February 15th and again on March 9th, Earth orbiting satellites detected a pair of “X-class” solar flares–the most powerful kind of x-ray flare. The last such eruption occurred back in December 2006.

NASA graph

Continue reading here…

Leading German Meteorology Expert Calls Fighting Climate Change “A Senseless Physical Endeavour”

Dr Wolfgand Thüne (

At his Der Wettermann website retired German meteorologist Dr. Wolfgang Thüne is calling for an immediate stop of all state-funded climate research.

h/t DirkH

Dr Thüne, who is sort of Germany’s version of John Coleman, has been one of Germany’s most outspoken critics of climate science and the huge waste of taxpayer money all the research involves.

Dr. Thüne:

For decades billions of US dollars of taxpayer money have been pumped into climate research without getting any detectable progress. Climate experts still have not even succeeded in delivering the physical proof of the claimed “greenhouse effect”.

The meteorological fact is that at no point on earth and at no time of the year do either the daily or yearly air temperature and CO2 concentrations causally correlate. There is no correlation! Also a radical reduction of ‘greenhouse gases’ in Europe, or “achieving a ‘CO2-free Europe’, would have absolutely no impact on the weather over the course of the annual seasons.”

Thüne then blasts EU Climate Commissar Connie Hedegaard’s “Energy-Climate-Package” which calls for spending €270 BILLION every year over the next 40 years in order to reduce CO2 emissions by 80%, calling it a “senseless physical endeavour”. He adds:

No state, already under a mountain of debt, can morally justify the burning of  billions, and yes trillions, on the ‘protection of the global climate’ without leaving proof of having any effect whatsoever.

The correlation between the CO2-value in Hawaii and the annually calculated ‘global temperature’ is a fictitious correlation that imposters as causal effect, but is in reality only a make believe correlation.”

Thüne then reminds us that the earth’s climate has been proven to correlate with the angle of the sun’s rays striking the earth’s surface and that ‘it is as old as the planet itself’, has nothing to do with industrialisation and that the calculated temperature increase of 0.7°C  that has taken place since 1860 is a normal earthly process.

Thüne clearly labels the state’s attempt to regulate global temperature, while at the same time delivering social justice, a folly. He adds: “weather cannot be disciplined, and weather alone determines what climate a location or a state has”. Thüne ends by reminding us:

Humankind would be helped in practical ways if 20% of research resources were instead devoted to better weather forecasting and the remaining 80% devoted to combating hunger and poverty.”

Now Forget Natural Gas Too!

There is no energy shortage. What we have is a shortage of energy that we are ALLOWED to be used.

The list of energies we are allowed to use just keeps getting shorter. Techno-politico elitists are busily crossing out everything on the list, like coal, nuclear, all petroleum products, wood, and biofuels. The latest to join that list is the hope of the future: natural gas, this according to the The Hill blogsite here.

Recently there has been a flurry of reports of huge natural gas reserves in shale formations that are abundant enough to supply the world’s energy needs for decades, read here.

The Hill has posted a draft of a new study from scientists at Cornell University that concludes that natural gas mined by using hydraulic fracturing is even more dangerous than burning coal due to high fugitive methane emissions. The study will appear in the Climatic Change Letters.

Natural gas-fired power plants were once viewed as the ideal supplement to balance out the irregular supply of wind and solar energy. Coal and nuclear power plants are unable to react quickly enough to fluctuations in supply and demand. The Hill has posted the entire paper – here’s the abstract:

We evaluate the greenhouse gas footprint of natural gas obtained by high-volume hydraulic fracturing from shale formations, focusing on methane emissions. Natural gas is composed largely of methane, and 3.6% to 7.9% of the methane from shale-gas production escapes to the atmosphere in venting and leaks over the life-time of a well. These methane emissions are at least 30% more than and perhaps more than twice as great as those from conventional gas. The higher emissions from shale gas occur at the time wells are hydraulically fractured — as methane escapes from flow-back return fluids — and during drill out following the fracturing. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas, with a global warming potential that is far greater than that of carbon dioxide, particularly over the time horizon of the first few decades following emission. Methane contributes substantially to the greenhouse gas footprint of shale gas on shorter time scales, dominating it on a 20-year time horizon. The footprint for shale gas is greater than that for conventional gas or oil when viewed on any time horizon, but particularly so over 20 years. Compared to coal, the footprint of shale gas is at least 20% greater and perhaps more than twice as great on the 20-year horizon and is comparable when compared over 100 years.”

No problem, let’s just set up more windmills, enviro-nutjobs and kooks may say. But these plants, aside from their technical problems, are now facing grassroots opposition as well.

This is where we stand today. We are literally standing on huge reserves of cheap natural energies, just waiting to be taken, yet some zealot, power-mad earth-nannies, armed with nothing more than climate change wive tales, are telling us we have to go without.