Beto’s climate action plan

by Judith Curry

Beto O’Rourke’s Climate Change Plan deserves a close look.

For those of you not in the U.S., Beto O’Rourke is one of the 20+ candidates vying for the Democratic Party nomination for the Presidential election in 2020.

A number of the candidates have endorsed Ocasio-Cortez’s  Green New Deal.  In recent months, we have also seen the Green Real Deal, the Green No Deal, and the Green Nuclear Deal (each of which is  better than the Green New Deal).

Jim Hansen has this to say about the Green New Deal, in an article entitled Climate movement Grandpa says the Green New Deal is ‘nonsense’: in a word, ‘nonsense.’

Unlike the ‘me too-ism’ of the other candidates that have endorsed the Green New Deal, Beto O’Rourke has put forward a comprehensive plan for climate change [link].

Predictably, the right wing is outraged by the 5 trillion dollar price tag over 10 years and zero emissions by 2050.  The more interesting response is from the  environmental activists, typified by the article in the Rolling Stone:

“Beto claims to support the Green New Deal, but his plan is out of line with the timeline it lays out and the scale of action that scientists say is necessary to take here in the United States to give our generation a livable future”

For the sake of argument, lets say you are moderately concerned about climate change and forward looking in terms of desiring a prosperous 21st century that includes abundant food, energy and water for all and a clean environment.

What might you find in Beto’s proposal that makes sense?

Beto O’Rourke’s proposal for climate change

Read the entire document, it isn’t all that long.  It has a lot of recommendations; I’ve selected the ones that make sense in terms of   ‘no regrets’ , even if climate change turns out not to be a big problem.

  • Reduce methane leakage from existing sources in the oil and natural gas industry for the first time and rapidly phase-out hydrofluorocarbons, the super- polluting greenhouse gas that is up to 9,000 times worse for climate change than carbon dioxide;

JC note:  this is basically the climate fast response plan.

  • Strengthen the clean air and hazardous waste limits for power plants and fuel economy standards that save consumers money and improve public health, while setting a trajectory to rapidly accelerate the adoption of zero-emission vehicles;

JC note:  clean air, water and soil are a priority independent of climate change

  • Increase consumer savings through new, modernized, and ambitious appliance- and building-efficiency standards;

JC note: cost-effective efficiency always makes sense.

  • Create unprecedented access to the technologies and markets that allow farmers and ranchers to profit from the reductions in greenhouse gas emissions they secure;

JC note: soil carbon sequestration and grazing is very good for the land, increasing productivity for farmers and ranchers

  • Leverage $500 billion in annual government procurement to decarbonize across all sectors for the first time, including a new “buy clean” program for steel, glass, and cement;

JC note: I’m not sure about the $500B part, but the issue of steel and cement production (with substantial CO2 emissions) is rarely addressed in a meaningful way in terms of CO2 production.  New cost-effective technologies for producing steel and cement would be a good thing.

  • Set a first-ever, net-zero emissions by 2030 carbon budget for federal lands, stopping new fossil fuel leases, changing royalties to reflect climate costs, and accelerating renewables development and forestation;

JC note: apart from the zero emissions by 2030, rational policies for federal lands is very much needed.

  • Protect our most wild, beautiful, and biodiverse places for generations to come — including more of the Arctic and of our sensitive landscapes and seascapes than ever before — and establish National Parks and Monuments that more fully tell our American story.

JC note:  this sort of thing used to define ‘environmentalism.’ Now environmentalism is all about climate change, and it is ok to kill bald eagles with wind turbines.

  • Innovation that will lead to pioneering solutions in energy, water, agriculture, industry, and mobility and to scientific discovery that makes us more safe and secure. $250 billion in direct resources that will catalyze follow-on private investment, creation of new businesses, and discovery of new science:

JC note:  hard to argue against this one.

  • 20 percent of the total investment will go to the climate science needed to understand the changes to our oceans and our atmosphere; avoid preventable losses and catastrophic outcomes; and protect public safety and national security.

JC note:  I don’t think an increase in climate science funding is needed (some redirection of funding would be appropriate IMO, away from climate modeling).  The other points are important.

  • Rigorously measuring our progress, scaling what works and scrapping what does not;
  • Enforcing our laws to hold polluters accountable, including for their historical actions or crimes;
  • Advancing consumer choice and market competition in electricity and transportation;
  • Supporting ecosystems, conservation, and biodiversity;

JC note:  hard to argue against any of these.

  • Increasing by ten-fold the spending on pre-disaster mitigation grants that save $6 for every $1 invested;
  • Changing the law to make sure that we build back stronger after every disaster, rather than spend recovery dollars in ways that leave communities vulnerable to the next fire, flood, drought or hurricane;
  • Supporting efforts to incentivize private-sector investment in evidence-based, risk reduction measures;
  • Recognizing the value of well-managed ecosystems to reduce and defend against climate-related risks;
  • Expanding our federal crop insurance program to cover additional risks and offer more comprehensive solutions to support farmers and ranchers;
  • Investing in the climate readiness and resilience of our first responders; and
  • Bolstering the security of our military bases, both at home and around the world, and supporting our soldiers with technologies that reduce the need to rely on high-risk energy and water supply.

JC notes:  each of these is much needed, independent of manmade climate change.

Cutting off their nose to spite their face

Basically, what Beto has done is widen the scope of technology and policy options that are being discussed, rather than focus on a timeline for reducing energy and transportation emissions to zero.  This is a move in the right direction in terms

As pointed out in my recent Congressional Testimony, there are many low-regrets actions that make a lot of sense independent of whether manmade climate change turns out to be a big or a non problem.  In principle people across the political spectrum should be able to agree on at least some of these.

However, it looks like Beto’s proposal, which is an order of magnitude better than the Green New Deal, will not catch fire with the Democrats.  Ignoring a more meaningful and politically viable proposal in preference for the  ‘nonsensical’ Green New Deal.

The best way to insure no action on climate change is to insist on the Green New Deal, and a 12-year time table.  Miles Allen has written a good essay:  Why protesters should be wary of 12 years to climate breakdown rhetoric.

317 responses to “Beto’s climate action plan

  1. I love the smell of Environmental shallowness and economic development innocence in the morning.

  2. $250 billion in direct resources that will catalyze follow-on private investment, creation of new businesses, and discovery of new science:

    JC note: hard to argue against this one.

    One word.

    Solyndra.

    w.

    • It isn’t just Solyndra.

      As my 2013 book, U.S. Energy Policy and the Pursuit of Failure details: It’s also cellulosic ethanol, which George Bush said it would be commercially viable by 2012 and which led to the enormously wasteful ethanol mandate of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. It’s also synfuels; we were going to spend over $250 billion (2018 dollars) to turn vast quantities of coal into commercially viable gasoline and natural gas by 1990. It’s the breeder reactor, which the head of the Atomic Energy Commission swore in 1971 would lead to commercially and technologically sound breeder nuclear power plants across the country by 1980. It’s the Magnetic Fusion Energy Engineering Act that was supposed to spend $60 billion (2018 dollars) to create a working fusion powerplant by 2001. In fact, these and other policy fantasies have cost us billions of dollars already. But government has never picked a winner with respect to energy technology that can survive in the marketplace without continuing subsidies.

      Moreover, if history is any guide the scale of such a program as Beto envisions is guaranteed to bring every rent seeker out of the woodwork, and the spoils will likely go to those who are best connected. Yes, there is a place for government funding of basic research. But this proposal goes well beyond that. “$250 billion in direct resources that will catalyze follow-on private investment, creation of new businesses, and discovery of new science?” I think that would be mainly a $250 billion waste.

      Admittedly, as Dr. Curry says, this program is better than the GND, which is nonsense on stilts. But if history is our guide we’d expect to get very little, if any return, for government money spent and we would not embrace this sort of program. But then to most politicians, as Henry Ford put a 100 or so years ago, “History is more or less bunk,” so we’re likely to repeat the same mistakes we’ve been making for the past 50 years. And if passed, in the end, this trillion plus dollar proposal is likely to do next to nothing with respect to climate change.

    • It is the nature of VC investment that between 50-80% of investments fail, it is just that the few that succeed secure investors enormous profits.

      One bad investment does not negate the whole technology VC space, any more than corrupt government regulation should.

      Of course the failure decreases as you progress through Series A, B to IPO and/or sustainability. But history shows major investment mistakes across all sectors over many, many generations.

      I shut down a lot of technology opportunity cases going nowhere when working in early stage VC. It did not stop me recommending new investments to my senior managers….

      • “It is the nature of VC investment that between 50-80% of investments fail, it is just that the few that succeed secure investors enormous profits.”

        “I shut down a lot of technology opportunity cases going nowhere when working in early stage VC. It did not stop me recommending new investments to my senior managers….”

        But the extremely important difference is that if your recommendations were bad enough, presumably you would eventually be laid off. And if your firm made enough bad investments they’d go out of business. There is no such discipline to federal government “investments.” They can burn through $250 billion in “investments,” with all of them bad, and they can simply waste $250 billion more.

      • To quote Lawrence Summers head during the Obama administration of the National Economic Council, here at his most eloquent:
        “I relate well to your concern that gov is a crappy vc and if u were closer to it you’d feel more strongly.”

  3. Enforcing our laws to hold polluters accountable, including for their historical actions or crimes;

    Statue of limitations needed.

    Also, it must be made clear that CO2 is NOT a pollutant. It is a compound that is absolutely necessary for plant life.

    w.

    • Statutes of limitations exist for old crimes that went unprosecuted and are necessary. I for one would argue loudly against trying to hold folks accountable for their past legal actions that are now not PC.

    • water is not a poison except when it is

      water toxemia

      semantic battles rarely drive wise decisons

      • Thanks Steven, a very good semantic point, which makes your comment self-defeating.

        Yes water is “toxic” if someone holds your head under water and CO2 is toxic above 100,000 ppmv. Neither is at all relevant to the discussion of the effects of atmospheric CO2 concentrations where it is NOT toxic and never will be. CO2 is NOT “pollution”.

        I’m a little disappointed that Judith endorses some of Beto’s stuff which would be sane if they applied to REAL pollution but we know in the context are primarily referring to CO2 “pollution”.

        We all want and need clean air and water. Pretending CO2 is “dirty” is one of the main obstacles to concentrating resources and efforts on REAL POLLUTION.

        Greg Goodman.

      • Actually drinking too much water can be fatal as one radio show contest found out.

      • Says the one who’s eyes are constantly being damaged by Wandering In The (Semantic) Weeds. So says one who’s successful multi-million dollar decisions rested on his ability to discern B.S.

        Serious question: How much of your own money (or your family’s) will you invest in the quest of avoiding much less than a degree C increase by the year 2100? That is the maximal result of eliminating all U.S. CO2 emissions, using the unvalidated UN IPCC climate model predictions.

        Are those UN IPCC climate models sufficiently believable to justify fundamentally altering our society, economy and energy systems?

    • ‘Enforcing our laws to hold polluters accountable, including for their historical actions or crimes;’

      Hmmm. If it wasn’t for the industrial revolution we would be faced with a short, brutish cold and unhealthy life in considerable servitude to those with power.

      Our increased comforts as a result of industry allowed us to greatly increase our quality and length of life, to put food on the table and a roof over our heads, to allow such things as the rule of law and culture to spread, for democracy to take root and for us to see places and experience things previously only the province of the very rich and powerful.

      So I make no apologies whatsoever for the benefits of the industrial revolution, in the great balance sheet of humanity it is a huge plus.

      Those that want to scrabble around in the negative part of the balance sheet can do so, but leave those alone who enjoy the benefits of egalitarian civilisation that industry has brought.

      tonyb

      • We have these things called family trees. My ancestors typically lived into their 70’s and beyond. A Revolutionary War veteran collected a pension into his 90’s. For years I thought he was Colonel only to find out he was a private whose first name was Colonel. The graveyards are full of kids who died between birth and around age 2, along with the occasional deceased mother.

      • Human life expectancy has increased more in the last 110 years than it did in the previous 200,000 years of human existence. In 1900, life expectancy was 47 years. In 2016, it was 78.

        No apologies for the Industrial Revolution or the use of fossil fuels that allowed all this to happen.

      • jch

        you make my point. Medicine amongst many other things have advanced as a result of the industrial revolution. Many fewer children dying.

        tonyb

      • richswarthout

        Tony,
        You are a sage. it’s a pleasure to know you.
        Richard

      • richswarthout

        And Beth (the serf). The sages of the modern world.

  4. Beto is not going to get the nomination. He doesn’t appeal enough to the far left.

  5. Dr. Judith, thanks for highlighting this in such a readable and interesting way.

    w.

  6. Martin Capages

    Dr. Curry: Some very good points here but the continued concession to CO2 being a harmful gas bothers me. Control of gaseous hydrocarbons has been advancing in the E&P and Refining industries for years. We used to flare natural gas routinely, then learned it would be helpful to reinject the gas to increase recovery and prevent waste. Now natural gas has saved the US from OPEC. Some methane emissions will never be controllable, probably much more than all CO2 natural and anthropogenic.

    • the points I highlight are absolutely independent of CO2 being dangerous or not.

      • In a sane world they would be but in the context we need to recognise that any reference to “pollution” is intended to focused on “carbon pollution”. Until we get rid of the idea that CO2 is “dirty” any efforts to “clean” the air will be misdirected and a total waste of resources and will probably have minimal effect of real air quality.

        Talk of “historical crimes” is intent to push ‘exxonknew’ etc. and you simply can’t “decarbonise” cement production.

        I think the aim of GND is to be so outlandish that they can then negotiate to a position with is merely extremely stupid and pretend this is compromise. Beto seems to be the compromise proposition.

      • Problem is that whenever the government gets involved, the decisions end up being perverted and we end up losing sight of the cost. Turning what should be cost effective into massive waste.

  7. “Increase consumer savings through new, modernized, and ambitious appliance- and building-efficiency standards;”

    Worked great for the Grenfel Tower. Other UK examples abound, including moldy new homes.

    The attitude is that the public can’t think or decide for themselves but must be told.

  8. Peter Kurilecz

    “Reduce methane leakage from existing sources in the oil and natural gas industry for the first time”
    O&G companies are working hard to reduce methane leakage since that is lost revenue. natural gas is flared off because there are not pipelines to collect the gas

  9. JC note: hard to argue against any of these.
    Increasing by ten-fold the spending on pre-disaster mitigation grants that save $6 for every $1 invested;
    Changing the law to make sure that we build back stronger after every disaster, rather than spend recovery dollars in ways that leave communities vulnerable to the next fire, flood, drought or hurricane;
    Supporting efforts to incentivize private-sector investment in evidence-based, risk reduction measures;
    Recognizing the value of well-managed ecosystems to reduce and defend against climate-related risks;
    Expanding our federal crop insurance program to cover additional risks and offer more comprehensive solutions to support farmers and ranchers;
    Investing in the climate readiness and resilience of our first responders; and
    Bolstering the security of our military bases, both at home and around the world, and supporting our soldiers with technologies that reduce the need to rely on high-risk energy and water supply.
    JC notes: each of these is much needed, independent of manmade climate change.

    If you have perfect knowledge of all of the factors that are involved then your response may be ok. If you do not have perfect knowledge of all the factors then your response is really most likely extremely wrong.

    Start with to first one:
    Increasing by ten-fold the spending on pre-disaster mitigation grants that save $6 for every $1 invested;

    Chicken little “the sky is falling” is wrong more often than it is right. The actual disasters are the black swan events that should have been expected but were not! Spending on pre-disaster mitigation is most often spent on junk that helped no one, but it generally does make many people richer from green projects that helped no one.

  10. Dr. Curry, I appreciate your bringing up the topic of governmental activities (spending) on perceived environmental problems. Ultimately, though, I fear crony capitalism.

  11. Leftist pragmatism — i.e., keep the global warming hoax and scare tactics alive while not actually doing anything that kills the Golden Goose — is perhaps the old Democrat party not the new, Socialist-Democrat party… either way, it’s still nothing more than a tax on creativity, pursuit of excellence and individual liberty.

  12. Two comments have been removed already, including one of mine, so naturally I’m interested in knowing why.

    There is no need to give the alarmists anything they want out of their unfounded fears, as man-made emissions are very small compared to naturally occurring CO2, so there isn’t any human-caused climate change to mitigate against. This country has been modernizing and becoming more energy efficient for many many decades, while the environment has improved.

    CO2 isn’t a pollutant and it hasn’t caused the weather or climate to change, so no one should be held accountable for the beneficial gas of life or any energy production or use on those bases.

    • Two comments have been removed already, including one of mine, so naturally I’m interested in knowing why.

      I am interested in reading the comments that have been removed. email them to me

      • Sorry, I didn’t save them, but mine was similar to what I said above, and included my graphic made with ML CO2 and HadSST3 data which depicts the overwhelming control ocean temperature has over CO2. The other comment was someone expressing some frustration that others’ here have too.

        While I’m at it, let me say there is no current or impending climate crisis other than surviving this solar minimum’s effects on agriculture and livestock during the next few winters. The cities and states in the US already have plans for bad or extreme weather, so the new call for more of that is just Democrat’s talking up a new tax and spend system – for which there will be no exit after it is enacted, until it obviously collapses under it’s own weight after decades of increasing misery, and when people see they couldn’t stop bad weather no matter how much money was spent, or how much control govt took away from the private sector.

        They want to use bad weather as a central planning basis. They will soon want to enact a Chinese-style social credit system to monitor and enforce your behavior so you are in lockstep with ‘saving the planet’ with no recourse or freedom of action otherwise. You will be their slave, their subject, with a very limited version of freedom. Dissension won’t be tolerated. They will produce AOC clones to nag, scold, and abuse everyone who resists.

        Beto’s call to rejoin the Paris Agreement is national suicide. He plans to buy off injured parties like coal miners and oil workers, while suing and punishing the companies who operate the mines and oil/gas wells. He plans to enforce a policy of zero emissions by 2050. The economy will tank under this plan or any other like it.

        We will not have a nation, a republic, or a representative democracy if any one of the Democrat candidates wins – we will have a communist dictatorship under them which they will still call a ‘democracy’. This isn’t about partisanship – it’s about an insane unjustified destruction of the American way of life with a take-over and remake of the US into an inefficient banana republic run by an incompetent political and scientific extremist class. Don’t give them that kind of power, ever.

        Who in their right mind can say this earth is experiencing climate change every day? Well, most well-known climatologists do. A degree of warmth is not climate change. Bad weather is not climate change. An ice age is climate change – a return to the heights of the Holocene is climate change. Any climatologist who tells you we are experiencing ‘man-made climate change’ right now is a bold-face liar who should be excoriated and refuted for saying so.

        That about covers it for now popesclimatetheory.

  13. One thing that bothers me is the alarmists and “conservatives” talk past eachother. Conservatives seem to believe there is no such thing as a good subsudie.

    • Conservatives seem to believe there is no such thing as a good subsudie.

      Well, except when it applies to the industries in their home state. Agricultural subsidies, anyone?

  14. Dr Curry, you had changed from an extreme alarmist to a Luke-Warmer. This posting looks like you flipped back to an extreme alarmist, what caused this?

    • Never mind, you are a liberal Democrat. You could not have been successful in your positions if you were not. You drifted away and they have snapped you back.

    • Characterizing me as either extreme alarmist or lukewarmer, in the past or now, is incorrect. The uncertainty monster rules; we don’t know. The evidence supporting low values of ECS (e.g. observations) is of epistemically higher quality than the evidence supporting high values (climate models).

      I have also said many times that climate science does not directly dictate energy policy. What kind of policies make sense under deep uncertainties or even recognized ignorance? This is the framework from which I formulate my analysis of policy options (see also my recent Congressional Testimony)

      • Judith is Judith. That is all.

        On another topic, I have started (yet another) blog devoted to the Green New Deal. It is intended to (eventually) serve as an implementation manual. I do not discuss whether the GND is good or bad. I’m just trying to see how, if you want a GND, you actually can get there.

        It is here: https://thegreennewwave.com/

        Points for people running up the down escalator screaming ‘It’s a cookbook! It’s a cookbook!’

      • The uncertainty monster rules; we don’t know.

        If you do not know, quit promoting “no regrets” remedies that are clearly not “no regrets”.

        The bottom line is, in your words, we don’t know. Then you do not know what may help.

      • archibaldtuttle

        I think it is a useful observation that Beto’s plan is distinct, but I don’t see that much of the policy proposed is low regret. I’m not sure why we wouldn’t regret the expense of zero emission vehicles or their more limited utility.

        A low regret policy is one you might have adopted without any impetus from climate. For instance, an increase in the gas tax dedicated to road infrastructure expansion and repair would have the economic effect of modestly curtailing mobil emisssions. If that is not truly needed from a climate perspective, if the infrastructure investment is needed then we don’t regret having made it.

        Reducing true pollution threats might be an example but we’ve already done the low hanging fruit so I don’t see a lot of benefit here and, ironically, at a point, pollution reduction costs efficiency rather than gains efficiencies in output.

        Finally, I think your points about relativism in environmentalism that doesn’t see negative externalities of renewables is well taken, but the assumption that historic public lands policy is wrongheaded is wrongheaded.

        brian

  15. Beto’s proposals are bemusing because what is reasonable is not new, and what is new is not reasonable.

    There has been as yet no acknowledgement that CO2 is not in control of climate, and that we are not in control of CO2. The natural experiment has been done: 1929-1931, a 30% decrease in human CO2 production with no change in the atmospheric CO2 trend, with temperature increasing to 1942, then decreasing through the years of WWII and post-war reconstruction. Shall we repeat that?

    No acknowledgement that there has never been a temperature reversal in the last 550 million years preceded by a CO2 change. And more recently, there was no preceding CO2 change prior to emergence from the Last Glacial Maximum, the descent into the Younger Dryas, the rapid emergence from that to the Holocene Optimum (CO2 280ppm), the gradual descent from that to the present punctuated by the Minoan (CO2 280ppm), Roman (CO2 280ppm), Medieval (CO2 280ppm), and current Warmings, not to mention the beginning (CO2 280ppm) of the Little Ice Age characterized by drought, famine, plague, and peasant revolts, and its merciful end.

    No acknowledgement that the GHG efffect of CO2 is at 50% in the first 20 ppm, and declines exponentially after that. So that the next doubling to 800 ppm will increase its GHG effect by less than 2%.

    It ignores the decarbonization that has been proceeding naturally for the last 1,000 years as we’ve gone from wood to coal to oil to natural gas and potentially to nuclear.

    It ignores the fact that plants inhale CO2 and exhale oxygen. We eat them and inhale oxygen and exhale CO2. Looks like a win-win to me. 30% of the agricultural increase since 1950 has been attributed to CO2. Satellite pictures show the greening of the earth.

    There is no recognition of the existence, much less the importance, of unintended consequences.

    This is in fact what we expect of our politicians. We do not expect everyone – and I mean everyone – to fall for it.

    • Look at the CO2 blanket that is supposed to cover the earth, it has huge holes in it where energy escapes the earth. Look at the bands of GOES, especially the CO2. Storms break right past the CO2 blanked and those places cool themselves. The warmer the earth, the holes get bigger and more. When earth really wants to cool off, it thaws polar oceans and rebuilds ice reserves. It keeps snowing until there is enough ice to cool the oceans until the polar ice forms and shuts off the evaporation. This story is true and the proof is in ice core data. Greenland and Antarctic are covered with ice that came from snowfall, mostly when oceans were warmest. The ice flows and thaws and dumps in the oceans, more when volume and weight of ice is more and less when volume and weight of ice is less. This natural internal response of the oceans and ice is ignored by climate people. It is snowing now and sea level rise will reverse.

      https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES/conus_band.php?sat=G16&band=16&length=96

      • The Microsoft browser does not display that link correctly. Other browsers do work.

      • popes:

        I had no idea that the storm tops were so HOT in LWIR.

        If I’m reading the time lapse graphic in your link correctly, the tops of massive areas of storm systems (presumably up near the tropopause) are at +20 degrees C? The storm-free areas appear to be around the typical -30 to -50 C near the tropopause. With virtually nothing above to resist LWIR radiating out into space and apparently plenty of CO2 to assist that radiation, that +20 C is very luminous by comparison.

        The last decade’s ~1.0 W/m^2 of accumulative surface evaporation (see recent article by Willis Eschenbach: https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/04/29/the-cooling-rains/ ) trump’s the, 0.3 W/m^2 of CO2 attributed increase in downwelling LWIR over the same period…enough to create a negative ECS. Looks like an awful lot of the latent heat of evaporation during storm emergence (creation) is making it off the planet.

      • Very good. And Willis’s article is fascinating. A warmer world will evaporate more water, which will condense to liquid in the higher troposphere, depositing its 540 cal/gm at that level. That water will return to earth, producing more rainfall. Increased downwelling IR from CO2 and friends will warm the top few microns of the water’s surface, increasing evaporation. Looks like a pretty decent refrigeration system.

        And then, there’s the land’s response, with outgoing IR increasing at the fourth power of the temperature. So that an increase from 288K to 289K, a 0.3% increase, will result in a 1.3% increase in outgoing IR.

    • Have there been significant CO2 changes in geological history, and if so what other changes followed them ?

      • Sure. In the Ordovician, CO2 was around 4,000 ppm, and the Hirnantian Ice Age followed. In the Carboniferous, CO2 declined to almost modern levels, O2 went up to 30%, and the world burned.

  16. If the partial government shutdown from 22 December 2018 to 25 January 2109, and then a 3.2% GDP number for this past quarter wasn’t a teachable moment on private vs government spending, then nothing is.

    Now the shutdown shouldn’t be repeated because there was real pain and consequences to good people like the USCG personnel not getting paid, to drug approval actions at FDA stalled. But there is something is that we all need to take away from that. Government competes with private enterprise for resources and capital when it spends. And government spending from DC is never as efficient as the free market and capitalism. And when the government spending goes into overdrive, as it did in 1935 under FDR and in 2010 stimulus under Obama, it is just a sugar-high, with no long term satisfaction. And only long-term stagnation as both FDR and Obama found out. And the only people who make out are the politically connected. Solyndra and many other green startups now gone and forgotten ere funded from that “stimulus deal.” Now the Left wants to do it again, and again in the name of “green.” This time with many $trillions, instead of “just” $800 Billion.

    Willis’s comment above about Slyndra is quite apt. The government, that is politicians, picking winners and losers will make losers of all of us. And a poorer nation is a nation that cannot adequately fund environmental protections on a long-term sustainable basis.

    The US Federal budget has serious deficit problems already that is going to just get worse due to projected, cooked in coming non-disc outlays. And the only way out of that mess is to grwo the economy,not put more money into bureacrats and politicians to hand out as freebies and “infrastructure” pay-offs. That would just be more sugar. And us and our children would be much poorer for it.

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

  17. The US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) defined abrupt climate change as a new climate paradigm as long ago as 2002. A paradigm in the scientific sense is a theory that explains observations. A new science paradigm is one that better explains data – in this case climate data – than the old theory. The new theory says that climate change occurs as discrete jumps in the system. Climate is more like a kaleidoscope – shake it up and a new pattern emerges – than a control knob with a linear gain. https://watertechbyrie.com/2014/06/23/the-unstable-math-of-michael-ghils-climate-sensitivity/

    Climate is not cyclic – it chaotic with extreme risk from both natural and athopogenic triggers. There are tipping points everywhere in the everywhere in the Earth system – in biology, hydrology and climate. There is a grand science here but it is not one recognized by either side in their certain, dogmatic and scientifically naive talking points.

    There are things that be done for many and these are t the core of our plans to meet a target of 65% reduction in CO2-equivalent by 2030. Caring for country, increasing resilience to drought and flood, efficiency, reducing CFC’s and nitrous oxide and technological innovation. It is only the most recalcitrant ideological extremes who fail to see the sense. Blue carbon is a great example – and whether progress is made by leveraging global warming or not is immaterial.

    • Climate is not cyclic – it chaotic with extreme risk from both natural and athopogenic triggers. There are tipping points everywhere in the everywhere in the Earth system – in biology, hydrology and climate.

      Climate change is natural, normal, necessary and unstoppable and the only thing CO2 has a large influence on is how the green stuff grows making more efficient use of water.

      Lack of proper understanding of natural causes of climate change and lack of proper understanding of internal response to external factors makes it look chaotic.

      Climate has changed over billions of years without our one molecule of CO2 per ten thousand. The King has no clothes on and no one will acknowledge that.

      It snows more when oceans are warmer and thawed, it gets colder after more ice advances. It snows less when oceans are colder and frozen, it gets warmer as less ice allows ice retreat.

      This is clear in the ice core data and the other proxies.

      I watched a recorded conference yesterday. A model for ice on Antarctica was modeling ice loss from warming and the dumb model predicted more snowfall from warmer oceans and ruined the alarmist story they expected.

      • “What defines a climate change as abrupt? Technically, an abrupt climate change occurs when the climate system is forced to cross some threshold, triggering a transition to a new state at a rate determined by the climate system itself and faster than the cause. Chaotic processes in the climate system may allow the cause of such an abrupt climate change to be undetectably small.” NAS 2002

        Alex – I have spent years spoon feeding science on dynamical complexity in the Earth system – and models – to people who lack the necessary foundation in systems theory.

      • Robert, everything happens for reasons, nothing is chaotic, things appear chaotic when you do not understand the reasons.

        There is more snowfall for many years, it appears chaotic when there is enough volume and weight to cause the ice to advance.

        There is not enough snowfall for many years, it appears chaotic when the ice volume is depleted and the ice extent decreases.

        You should have spent more time trying to understand and less time feeding incorrect stuff to people.

    • Curious George

      “Climate is not cyclic” – after removing daily cycles, yearly cycles, and decadal cycles. It all depends on your exact definition of climate.I have not seen any so far.

      • Climate is not cyclic – it is chaotic with extreme risk from both natural and athropogenic triggers. There are tipping points everywhere in the Earth system – in biology, hydrology and climate.

        External forcing – including greenhouse gases – push the system past thresholds at which stage internal emergent behavior dictates the pace and extent of change. Climate – and models – are nonlinear, coupled dynamical systems.

      • George, I think that climate is the first derivative of weather.

  18. Meanwhile, China’s and India’s emissions will continue to soar with no intention to limiting them. Making any CO2 emissions reductions we do, meaningless and pointlessly destructive to our economy with an obvious, ascendant Sino-imperialism in the making. And when China’s imperialism with a 1.4 Billion population to feed is able to dictate geo-political re-alignments and world-order to the US and its allies in the Pacific, then 2 deg C of possble warming will certainly be the least of anyone’s concern.

    • The US is doing well both in terms of emissions reductions and energy prices – mostly as a result of fracing and to ongoing decreases in carbon intensity.

      Australia, the US and China are neck and neck on carbon intensity. Fundamental to economic efficiency and productivity. China’s per capita emissions increase from a low base – about a quarter of US per capita emissions.

      Save your crocodile tears.

      • Joel O'Bryan

        Robert,
        You make my point.
        Which is why we do not need to intentionally slash our own throats on the altar of the socialit’s Climate Change religion.
        Lower emissions, while fracking shale gas and our resulting energy dominance didn’t happen because of Obama. It happened in spite of everything Obama and Paris tried to impose. Their way would have given us Germany’s EnergieWinde situation — that is, negligible emissions changes and much higher costs, while DC bureaucrats and politically connected interests gained much new power.

    • The guilt emissions coming from the west are apparently ten times more powerful than those coming from China and India so the latters will do no harm at all, even though they are now greater.

      tonyb

  19. “JC notes: each of these is much needed, independent of manmade climate change.”
    Good ideas should stand on their own merit. Using “CAGW” to scare people into action they would refuse if it were proposed on its own merits is dishonest, misleading and reprehensible. If the proposed action can cure the climate ailments show me how it will work and I will consider it. If it is going to have no measurable benefit on the climate don’t tell me it will to fool me into accepting its cost.

  20. When I see $ Trillions to be spent over 10 years it makes me feel that some of the politicians haven’t looked at the actual budget. Current year individual Income Taxes are estimated to be $1.7 Trillion. Total Spending is estimated to be $ 4.5 Trillion. With Total Revenue of $3.5 Trillion the deficit could be $ 1 Trillion.

    There are numerous proposals to increase the top marginal tax rate. Here is a summary of top marginal tax rates in the past by selected year along with the Effective Tax Rate (% of Adjusted Gross Income paid in Taxes) for All Tax Filers
    IRS DATA. ALL TAX FILERS
    1948 Top Rate 91% Effective Tax Rate 9.4%
    1954. Top Rate 91% Effective Tax Rate 11.6%
    1966. Top Rate 70% Effective Tax Rate 12.0%
    1977 Top Rate 70% Effective Tax Rate 13.7%
    1984 Top Rate. 50% Effective Tax Rate 14.1%
    1988 Top Rate. 28% Effective Tax Rate 13.4%
    1991 Top Rate 31% Effective Tax Rate 12.9%
    1993 Top Rate. 39.6%. Effective Tax Rate 13.5%

    At this point note the increase in Effective Tax Rate between 1988 and 1993 of only 0.1% after 2 tax increases in the top marginal tax rate from 28% to 39.6%. For 1993 that resulted in an increase in Tax Revenue of $4 Billion with Spending of $1.1 Trillion, given the Change in Effective Tax Rate from what the amount would have been without the increase.

    More currently the 2013 tax increase raised the Effective Tax Rate from 13.1% to 13.5%. It’s unclear what will happen from the 2018 tax cuts.

    The point of this data is to show how tightly the range of the Effective Tax Rate has been over the last 70 years regardless of the top marginal tax rate.

    The top marginal tax rate has had limited effect on increasing the Effective Tax Rate. The greater impact on increased tax revenue for a given amount of Adjusted Gross Income has been Real Growth, the nominal amount of AGI over inflation.

    The Effective Tax Rate for the top 1% in the years with a Top Marginal Tax Rate of 91% ranged from 30% to 35%.

    Given current Adjusted Gross Income for the top 1%, having them pay an Effective Tax Rate of 30% to 35% would generate an additional $ 60 to $160 Billion per year.

    That doesn’t even come close to eliminating the deficit and certainly doesn’t raise revenue for all of these New Green Deal proposals.

  21. “JC note: cost-effective efficiency always makes sense.”

    Yes it does… and it’s harder to achieve further savings than most people think.

    * It is rarely cost effective to throw away less-efficient equipment in favor of more efficient equipment. The cost savings do not justify it.
    * In many situations today, we have gone FAR past cost effectiveness in our search for more efficiency.

    Consider the lowly hot water heater. Using DOE numbers and local natural gas rates:
    * We pay about $0.70/therm. DOE says avg use is 23th/mo, so a bit under $200/year heating cost for a new-standards (63%) water heater.
    * The new standards increased efficiency by 4%. That’s an $8/year savings. Over avg 12 year life, that’s $96 saved.
    * Unfortunately, the new standards increased gas heater cost by avg 35% (heater ~$900 now, $1250 typical installed price. They now require power exhaust, and special pipe for condensing exhaust. Yes, my gas heater now will not heat without available electricity.)
    * As you can see, the savings are not nearly in line with the additional costs. (Plus, there are Unintended Consequence side effects… I will set that aside for now)

    What’s the next “cost effective” savings that will be required?

    EV’s in every home? Today’s modern power grid, even in my brand new high end neighborhood, cannot handle more than a couple of “super chargers” per block. I kid you not. Go check the transformer on your block, and evaluate how many homes it serves. In my neighborhood, we’re in pretty good shape: a 50 kVA (approx 50 kW) transformer for 16 homes. Thus on average, we can use about 3kW per home. Total.

    • Ignore the comment below for this.

      There seems something wrong here.

      “Yet empirically,modern energy efficiency is, and shows every sign of durably remaining, an expanding-quantity, declining-cost resource.”
      https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aad965/pdf

    • Many are getting rich with the chicken little, the sky is falling, stories to scare everyone to pay more in taxes and more for energy, while living with less stuff that causes more problems.

      You must flush two or three times because the more expensive device cannot use enough water to get it right the first time.

    • Utilities rely on people using their appliances at different times when sizing transformers. That said, EV loads are significant compared to most other appliances. It depends on how the aggregate of EV loads are actually imposed on the utility system. Who knows?

      Seriously, none of this means anything; people will do what they think is best for them. None of us can predict what people of the future will do. Any politician proposing policies based on assumptions of future technologies and economies is a fool. You are more of a fool if you vote for them.

  22. “Changing the law to make sure that we build back stronger after every disaster, rather than spend recovery dollars in ways that leave communities vulnerable to the next fire, flood, drought or hurricane;”

    HUH?

    this makes no sense. Last time Katrina hit New Orleans a bunch of us
    argued that it made no sense to rebuild in an area that is sinking, and especially make no sense IF one believes the situation will be made worse by SLR and more intense hurricanes.

    managed retreat makes sense.

    now we have this

    https://video.foxnews.com/v/6030328904001/#sp=show-clips

    14Billion is a lot to spend on so few people who choose to live in an effin risk area

    • New Orleans is able to effectively play the race card on White Guilt.
      There are to this day still false claims the levee above the predominate black Lower 9th Ward were intentionally blown-up to save the richer white areas.

    • The issue with rebuilding is this. There are three options:
      1) managed retreat
      2) rebuild exactly as it was
      3) rebuild it stronger

      For areas of New Orleans, rebuilding made no sense. Following Hurricane Andrew, FL rebuilt with much stronger building codes, which has helped alot re hurricanes. Re sea level rise, FL is a unique case (not to mention the Keys); when combined with hurricanes there is no place to retreat to, and no one is ready to abandon any of that real estate (good luck to them trying to hang on to their property value tho).

      • OK, make all the people move out of places that might flood or burn or have earthquakes, or severe tornados, or any dangerous threat. Where can we all fit that is safe and is a place we can make a living? We would need to leave many of the places the most people live.

        Many people have always lived at the edge of where they could. If they leave, someone else will move in. Some land sinks into the water and other land rises out of the water. There are places where the streets are for boats, not cars, those people did not leave. If we listened to Hansen, New York and Florida would already be abandoned.

      • Denis Rushworth

        PSMSL.org sea level rise and GPS data for Key West, Miami Beach and St Petersburg shows slow steady relative rise and slow steady land subsidence. Key West +2.08mm/yr and -1.76 mm/yr respectively, Miami Beach +1.1 mm/yr and -0.17 mm/yr, St Petersburg +2.7 mm/yr and -0.34 mm/yr. All sea level rise data shows a steady rise, no acceleration. None of these Florida places, especially Miami Beach, seem to be in any near term danger from sea level rise.

    • managed retreat makes sense

      Irrespective of SLR, some locations were destined for trouble at the time of digging the first footing, Miami for instance. The only question was which century.

      It isn’t just coastal communities, either. Mexico City and Being are sinking as well, as are many other locations across the globe where increased flooding is attributed to AGW, when in reality subsidence is to blame. Watersheds just aren’t what they used to be.

    • It is written in the stars, and also in the chronicles of the PBS television series Nova, that Naples, Italy, and New Orleans, Louisiana will share a similar fate.

      Sooner or later, a major natural disaster — respectively, a major volcanic eruption or a Category 5 hurricane — will totally destroy these cities.

      Centuries of past history demonstrate that however extensive the property damage and the human casualties from these kinds of events are, once the volcanic dust settles or the flood waters recede, the residents rebuild their city in the very same place it was before disaster struck.

      Sure, do all the planning analysis you might want to. When the former inhabitants decide they want to return, the politicians and the bankers will always find reasons to make it happen.

  23. There seems something wrong here.

    “Yet empirically,modern energy efficiency is, and shows every sign of durably remaining, an expanding-quantity, declining-cost resource.”
    https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aad965/pdf

  24. From the article by Miles Allen

    “So here is a conversation young activists could have with their parents: first work out what the parents’ CO₂ emissions were last year (there are various carbon calculators online – and the average is about seven tonnes of fossil CO₂ per person in Europe). Then multiply by £200 per tonne of CO₂, and suggest the parents pop that amount into a trust fund in case their kids have to clean up after them in the 2040s.”

    A far more interesting conversation would be to discuss the carbon footprint of the young who want very warm houses, to be transported everywhere by car, go on holidays with their parents to ever more far flung places, who use vast quantities of energy twittering instagramming and generally over using smartphones.

    Or is that somehow different?
    tonyb

    • Hi Tony

      They aren’t quite there yet. It takes quite a bit to think it all through. Maybe like what an adult would do. I went through all this idealistic la la land stuff with the flower children, etc, in the 1960s, so I’m not too worked up about these latest forays.

      I think we are failing our kids, though. But in a way not contemplated by the adult led hysterics about global warming. Despite what the educators tell us, I’m not sure the young ones are being taught critical thinking skills.

      FDR had it about right.

      “We can’t always build the future for our youth. But we can build our youth for the future.”

  25. The interesting question no one seems to even ask is whether the energetic/greenhouse cost of these measures (investment plus the resulting lower efficiency of the economy) might be higher than the energetic/greenhouse benefit.

    There has been some interesting and very relevant research been done by the Energy Research Group (ERG) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign through the 1970s and early 1980s.

    See e.g. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/6029194_Embodied_Energy_and_Economic_Valuation
    by Robert Constanza and related authors.
    “From the ecological perspective, markets can be viewed as an efficient energy allocation device that humans have developed to solve the common problem facing all species-survival.”
    “When the whole system is analyzed, however, it becomes clear that all you
    can do is transfer the of cost your lunch to another segment of the system.”

    The price system already reflects the energetic and so the greenhouse cost of everything. As a rule when something is more efficient it will be cheaper.

    With reduced efficiency you will have to inject more energy into the system to have the same standard of living.

  26. It’s of course good to introduce cost-effective energy-saving improvement. However, let’s be sure of our calculations. If some improvement saves consumers money, why do we need government compulsion (with its additional costs and bureaucracy)?

  27. Beto’s plan is too small, too slow and will increase inequality.
    The Project Drawdown solutions matrix is the only plan I have seen that addresses all the problems; over population, ecosystem preservation and sustainable energy. It’s a global problem and America should lead the world.

    https://www.drawdown.org/solutions-summary-by-rank
    https://www.drawdown.org/solutions/land-use

  28. I don’t see how you can watch David Attenborough’s latest doc ‘Our Planet’ and not declare an immediate climate emergency and do what Extinction Rebellion wants.

    “The Government must tell the truth about the climate and wider ecological emergency, reverse inconsistent policies and work alongside the media to communicate with citizens.
    The Government must enact legally binding policy measures to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025 and to reduce consumption levels.
    A national Citizens’ assembly to oversee the changes, as part of creating a democracy fit for purpose.”

    • “A national Citizens’ assembly” Is that like the French Revolution’s Assembly? What if the “Citizen’s assembly” doesn’t like you?

    • “The Government must enact legally binding policy measures to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025 and to reduce consumption levels”

      How much less do you and your family want to consume, Alex? Be specific.

  29. Regarding methane, I just did a quick study and leakage is a (deliberate?) misnomer. Most of the emissions are reasonable releases. In particular, the largest source of releases is pneumatic valves in pipelines. Here the pressure of the gas in the pipeline is used to operate the valves. Of course the gas used is then released, its pressure energy spent.

    Absent the climate scare there is no reason to not use these valves, which occur throughout the natural gas system, from field to final storage prior to retail distribution.

    • do more study. its called fugitive methane

      ‘Last year, the International Energy Agency reported that the oil and gas industry emits around 76 million tonnes of methane worldwide every year and that about 40 to 50 per cent of these GHG emissions can be reduced at no net cost. The IEA has said taking global action to reduce these emissions would have the same climate benefit by 2100 as eliminating all coal plants in China.

      The main reason the IEA (and similar regional studies) find that 40 to 50 per cent of methane emissions reductions are free, or profitable, is because industry can sell the natural gas captured. Environmental Defense Fund estimates that the 76 million tonnes of methane emitted globally every year could add up to approximately US$34 billion in new profit, instead of ending up as “lost product”.

      • The IEA has said taking global action to reduce these emissions would have the same climate benefit by 2100 as eliminating all coal plants in China.

        That would be equal to nothing. CO2 and the other emissions are nothing compared to natural climate cycles.

        No one has ever proved CO2 causes dangerous warming. No one has ever proved that warming is dangerous. History proves warm times are better times than cold times. They repeat the claim that no one really understands climate. If we can believe what they tell us, how can we believe their alarmist claims. No one understands climate but one molecule in ten thousand is the control knob. That is dumber than dumb.

      • 40 to 50 per cent of these GHG emissions can be reduced at no net cost.

        Prove this. If it were true, they would already have done this to get the 34 billion in new profit.

      • Tell that to liberal U.S. states that prohibit natural gas pipeline construction, Mr. Mosher. As usual, on the ground realities belie activist pronouncements.

        [Yes, the IEA is an organization made up of socialist/climate activists.]

  30. It strikes me that this is not a discussion of Beto’s plan, but of what might be called the Curry plan. Regarding Beto’s plan, we on the right are very happy to see it, because it insures that the GND (and variants) will be a feature in the Democrat nomination debates. We regard the GND as a big part of the ticket to Trump’s re-election, so it is important to keep the issue alive.

    I discuss this here:
    https://www.cfact.org/2019/02/08/the-green-new-deal-is-a-politicians-worst-enemy/

    • Compared to China, India, Africa, etc. annual increases in CO2 production, how much in Australia CO2 reductions were accomplished for the billions invested, Robert I. Ellison?

      Fool.

      • Oh – btw – $4.55 billion for 900 million metric tons CO2-e reduction at an average cost of $12/ton thus far for net benefits for business, communities and environments.

      • Typical foolish Robert I. Ellison thinking: Raise the costs to “business, communities” by $4,550,000,000 dollars for no measurable benefit to the “environments.”

      • Yes, seriously, Robert I. Ellison. What are Australia’s “fart in the wind” CO2 reductions compared to the significant increases over the same period by others?

        Virtue signaling using OPM (Other People’s Money) must be fun.

      • This idea that India, China and Africa can emit whatever they like – so why shouldn’t we. It’s so unfair. Boo hoo. No one is making you do anything. But most Americans are in favor of restoring ecosystems and energy research. Things that are in train – but railed against by the recalcitrant 7% who still want to argue that changing the composition of the atmosphere is a great idea. They are even in favor of a tax for it.

        I don’t think he’s quite got the idea. A minuscule proportion of GDP is going to a broad range of projects. No one is making business do anything. They competitively tender to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with defined methods and verification protocols.

        “If you are thinking about investing in new technology to improve the productivity or energy efficiency of your business operations, you may be interested in the Emissions Reduction Fund.

        The Emissions Reduction Fund provides a positive incentive for Australian businesses to adopt smarter practices to cut the amount of greenhouse gases they create.”

        It is of course just one part of of a comprehensive package.

        https://www.environment.gov.au/climate-change/government/emissions-reduction-fund/methods

        But recalcitrant minority fools would rather indulge in straw men polemic.

      • I don’t care what Australia does to wreck its economy, Robert I. Ellison. I assume China will pick up the pieces at fire-sale prices.

        I care that in the U.S. there are proposals to fundamentally alter our society, economy and energy systems because of an unfounded fear of catastrophic climate change. Meanwhile, there are no studies showing any serious damage to our climatic systems by a doubling of CO2 in our atmosphere. There are, however, a boatload of speculative papers on low-probability outcomes. Additionally, unvalidated UN IPCC climate models are bunk.

        Politicians and their bureaucracies are inherently incapable of micromanaging a society and its economy; bloody historical examples abound. It all sounds great until people are actually taxed to fund socialist green dreams. France is, unhappily, learning that fundamental fact of human nature.

        You continue to poo-poo the projected growth in CO2 emissions by China, India, Africa, etc. Western nations nibbling around the edges with expensive CO2 reduction schemes seem to be folly on a grand scale. Also, I don’t buy flashy trinkets and I won’t fund expensive virtue signalling by vain politicians.

        To borrow from a recent U.S. political meme: Resist!

      • China is our biggest export market – and the US the source of the largest part of foreign investment. We have had continuous economic growth since 1993.

        https://www.environment.gov.au/system/files/styles/width-450/private/resources/c42c11a8-4df7-4d4f-bf92-4f14735c9baa/images/fig3.jpg?itok=hSSuM_13

        But I suppose that fewer memes and more objectivity is to much to hope for from you.

  31. A catastrophist in the sense of Rene Thom – a very difficult and inexact science – might wonder about the potential to cross Earth system tipping points with the potential for rapid and extreme climate change.

    One can view the Earth system as nodes of chaotic oscillation on a network as a ‘stadium wave’ signal propagates around the planet. Literally dozens of chaotic oscillators with global biological, hydrological and climatic effects. These shift on decadal intervals in the observational records – and more dramatically over longer periods in proxy data. Many of the system triggers are beyond our control – and the best we can do is build prosperous and resilient communities in vibrant landscapes.

    Greenhouse gas – and black carbon and sulfur – emissions – as well as land use changes – are another story. The rational strategy there is to procure the cheapest possible emission reductions through competitive tendering across the economy – and to focus on supporting technological innovation and ‘first of a kind’ prototypes.

    “On 25 February 2019 the Australian Government established a Climate Solutions Fund to provide an additional $2 billion to continue purchasing low-cost abatement, build on the success of the Emissions Reduction Fund and continue the momentum to reach Australia’s 2030 emissions reduction target. The additional funding ensures Australian farmers, businesses and Indigenous communities continue to have opportunities to undertake emissions reduction projects that provide local benefits.

    Activities supported through the Emissions Reduction Fund provide important environmental, economic, social and cultural benefits for farmers, businesses, landholders, Indigenous Australians and communities. The Emissions Reduction Fund is established on the principles of reducing emissions at lowest cost and purchasing genuine and additional emissions reductions.

    In 2014 the Government invested $2.55 billion in the Emissions Reduction Fund to boost agricultural productivity, support jobs for Indigenous communities, improve biodiversity and water quality, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

    On 25 February 2019 the Australian Government established a Climate Solutions Fund to provide an additional $2 billion to continue purchasing low-cost abatement, build on the success of the Emissions Reduction Fund and continue the momentum to reach Australia’s 2030 emissions reduction target. The additional funding ensures Australian farmers, businesses and Indigenous communities continue to have opportunities to undertake emissions reduction projects that provide local benefits.

    Activities supported through the Emissions Reduction Fund provide important environmental, economic, social and cultural benefits for farmers, businesses, landholders, Indigenous Australians and communities. The Emissions Reduction Fund is established on the principles of reducing emissions at lowest cost and purchasing genuine and additional emissions reductions.

    In 2014 the Government invested $2.55 billion in the Emissions Reduction Fund to boost agricultural productivity, support jobs for Indigenous communities, improve biodiversity and water quality, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” https://www.environment.gov.au/climate-change/government/emissions-reduction-fund

    It is a comprehensive package with a wide range of rigorously defined and verifiable eligible mechanisms.

  32. Here from Beto’s Plan is what we might call the basic double fallacy:
    “To have any chance at limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 °C and preventing the worst effects of climate change, the latest science demands net-zero emissions by 2050.”

    First, the IPCC merely said that there would be fewer damages at 1.5 degrees of warming than at 2 degrees. This of course follows from their position that any warming causes damages. (This was part of an internal struggle over the Paris target — 1.5 or 2 degrees.)

    Nowhere does the IPCC suggest that 1.5 degrees is some sort of threshold beyond which we get “the worst effects of climate change.” The idea is nuts, oh wait!

    Second, the IPCC is not “the latest science.” In fact the IPCC assessments are not science at all, just biased arguments using citations.

    The correst point the IPCC was making is that holding the hot climate models to 1.5 degrees of warming is extremely difficult, one degree having already occurred (they say). AOC and Beto have nonsensically take that as some sort of goal. They are right in one respect, that it would take something like a WWII mobilization, which cost about 50% of national GDP. Not going to happen, so we hope they keep pushing it. Rationing anyone?

  33. @Alex Fed Fan – It’s quite reasonable to watch all the deploring of catastrophic global warming and join the chorus, while recognizing that the only effective measure we can take is preparation – oh, and don’t forget to prepare for the return of glaciation, which is overdue.

    “Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob. Many confuse environmental protection with climate protection. it’s impossible to protect the climate, but we can protect the environment and our drinking water. On the debate concerning alternative energies, which is sensible, it is often driven by the irrational climate debate. One has nothing to do with the other.” -Klaus-Eckhart Puls

    CO2 warms us and cools us and feeds us. It is not in control of climate… see above.

  34. Climate science sums to a conclusion you may find very surprising — and you get points for guessing which denier said this. “In sum, a strategy must recognise what is possible. In climate research and modelling, we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.” It means that most of “the science” — the data interpretation, the methods and the theories are utterly inadequate to the task of explaining climate for us.

    But both sides of the climate battle continue to insist on a certainty that is impossible – and continue a battle in which one side is heavily outgunned. The global warming battalion is all of the global scientific institutions, the liberal press, governments, major scientific journals, etc. Opposed is a ragtag collection of a few marginalized cheer leaders for curmudgeons with crude and eccentric theories they insist is the true science. The curmudgeons are remarkably persistent – and decadal climate shifts may give them a strategic advantage with varying rates of planetary warming. The battle is absurd and unwinnable – by either side.

    The rest of us are concerned that the real objectives of humanity are not lost sight of. It is simple in principle to take the initiative on the broad front of population, development, energy technology, multiple gases and aerosols across sectors, land use change, conservation and restoration of agricultural lands and ecosystems and building resilient communities. What we really want is much more clarity on effective policy responses – a focus on the real issues of global economic progress and environmental protection. Emissions of greenhouse gases or loss of biodiversity are far from intractable problems — but economic growth is the foundation of any practical measures.

    • You wrote:
      In climate research and modelling, we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.” It means that most of “the science” — the data interpretation, the methods and the theories are utterly inadequate to the task of explaining climate for us.

      In your words, you do not even understand enough to know or prove it is a problem. Your own words prove we should not listen to a fix that is based on utterly inadequate research.

      • Your admitted that alarmist knowledge utterly inadequate.

        Thank you for putting that in writing for all of us to read.

        We knew that, we never expected you to confirm it.

      • So if we don’t know what the consequences of our actions are it can’t bite us? And that should preclude practical and sensible responses?

        If you want to close your eyes and drive – you might get away with it.

      • So if we don’t know what the consequences of our actions are it can’t bite us?

        If you do not know the consequences of your actions are, it will bite you. That is a promise. Stop promoting junk solutions when you do not understand the problem or the consequences of your actions to correct something you do not understand.

        You do not even understand you do not understand what you say that no one can understand.

      • When you do not understand, and you have repeated that no one does, you do not know what the practical and sensible responses should be!

      • If you want to close your eyes and drive. That is what you are doing, you do not understand but you want to say what might help. That is closing your eyes and driving solutions to whatever no one understands.

      • Efficiency, conserving and restoring soils and ecosystems, energy innovation – along with smart development goals of the Copenhagen consensus. You don’t understand but I am sure many can.

      • I understand that: “This time we will get the 5-year plan right. Reactionaries sabotaged our previous plans. We collectively work for the betterment of the common man.”

      • Foolish straw men not worth responding to.

  35. double sixsixman

    I have no idea why the owner of this blog would take Democrat “climate plans” seriously, when Democrats can’t be trusted, and there is no climate problem that needs solving.

    The “coming” climate change catastrophe has been “coming” since 1957, when oceanographer Roger Revelle started the concern.

    Every prediction of climate doom since then has been wrong.

    Every prediction of environmental doom, since DDT in the early 1960s, has been wrong.

    We’ve had 300+ years experience with global warming, since the Maunder Minimum’s coldest decade, the 1690s, during the Little Ice Age.

    Why would any person want to stop the pleasant improvement of the climate on this planet since the 1690s ?

    We’ve had 78 years of experience with global warming while man made CO2 was increasing at a significant rate, since 1940, and the average temperature is up about +0.6 degrees as of the end of 2018, usihg UAH satellite data when available.

    That’s a warming rate of less than 0.08 degrees per decade.

    Oh my, let’s panic, and head for the hills !

    NO ONE knows what caused the warming after 1940 — but lets assume, with no evidence, that CO2 caused ALL of the warming after 1940.

    Based on that ACTUAL experience with man made CO2, and using a worst case assumption about CO2, there IS NO LOGICAL REASON to expect more than 0.8 degrees C. warming in the next century.

    NO ACTION is needed to stop mild pleasant warming like that.

    Or better yet, let’s be more intelligent, and NOT guess at the future climate, because no one can predict the future climate … but we do know the ACTUAL global warming in the past 300+ years was good news, and no one was hurt.

    The “existential” problem from climate change is obvious, perhaps not to the owner of this blog, which I’ll never understand, and it could be eliminated for zero dollars:

    – Misdiagnosing beneficial climate change , ‘greening’ our planet, as part of a coming climate change catastrophe already in progress,

    – Grossly overreacting to beneficial. pleasant climate change, and

    – Applying false NATIONAL “solutions” to a non-existent problem, that will make life worse, and more expensive, and don’t even affect the GLOBAL climate by more than a tiny amount !

    My diagnosis was a variation of a quote from my second favorite philosopher, Groucho Marx (my favorite philosopher is Yogi Berra):

    “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.” Groucho Marx

    I’m so happy I stopped with a masters degree — getting a PhD seems to degrade writing ability, and common sense — sometimes the right answer to a scientific question is: “we don’t know” (often, actually), and because no one knows the future climate, we should NOT wild guess what it will be, and adopt ANY “climate plans.”, especially from Robert Francis O’Rourke, the loser politician, best known for waving his hands around like a crazy man when he talks !

    My climate science blog:
    http://www.elOnionBloggle.Blogspot.com

    • The “coming” climate change catastrophe has been “coming” since 1957, when oceanographer Roger Revelle started the concern.

      Roger Revelle discovered he was wrong, but it was too late.

      • Roger Revelle? Alarm about climate change started 2000 years before that

        “Saint Cyrian was Bishop of Carthage around 250AD.* (see Note 1) He was talking about the huge increase in Rome’s population which had caused wars against Carthage and the building of 500 towns in North Africa to satisfy the eternal city’s ever increasing needs for timber, cereal, and exotic animals for its gladiatorial contests. Here is an account of lack of sustainability and climate change caused by a variety of factors, with the hints of a decline in the warm climate that had sustained Rome now starting to work against them as it intermittently turned cooler

        ‘The world has grown old and does not remain in its former vigour. It bears witness to its own decline. The rainfall and the suns warmth are both diminishing. The metals are nearly exhausted the husbandman is failing in his fields. Springs which once gushed forth liberally now barely give a trickle of water.’

        Around 1560 the Rev Schaller, pastor of Strendal in the Prussian Alps wrote;

        “There is no real constant sunshine neither a steady winter nor summer, the earth’s crops and produce do not ripen, are no longer as healthy as they were in bygone years. The fruitfulness of all creatures and of the world as a whole is receding, fields and grounds have tired from bearing fruits and even become impoverished, thereby giving rise to the increase of prices and famine, as is heard in towns and villages from the whining and lamenting among the farmers.”

        The reality of this period of cold is reinforced by this account from 1610 when John Taylor, talking of the hills around him in Deeside Scotland, remarked that “the oldest men alive never saw but snow on the top of divers of these hills both in summer as in winter.”

        tonyb

      • “the oldest men alive never saw but snow on the top of divers of these hills both in summer as in winter.”

        Would I be safe in assuming that snow in the summer could be something out of the norm? There are times when anecdotal evidence is so compelling that high tech thermometers really couldn’t add to our knowledge of the past.

        My wife has been looking at the ancestry of our daughter-in-law. One individual sat on the jury of Anne Boleyn. It occurred to me that what occurred to Anne would be questioned by some today and considered only anecdotal since we had no video tapes of the execution. When anecdotes reach critical mass they should be treated as scientific evidence.

      • climatereason has turned to history for its perspective on climate. The “Bishop of Carthage around 250AD” lived just after the Eddy cycle peak; the RomanWP. It was turning cooler. In “Around 1560 the Rev Schaller” it was heading into an Eddy root – cold – but an inflexion point. We are heading to a peak, a warming. Its nature, and no one seems to be looking way back for a better understanding.

        But as the Bishop said “Springs which once gushed forth liberally now barely give a trickle of water.’”. Yes that is so today, maybe worse, because technology made it possible to extract from the aquifers the storage of millennia.

        Still, the last two peaks were somewhat fine. The previous two are an unknown, but the ones before that were no fun as per the prehistoric evidence. But don’t panic, just pray the Adon stays asleep.

      • Yes, Climate changes in Natural Cycles and we have not taken control and we do not have a trace gas control knob.

        We can sequester all the CO2 and the only result will be the end of life of the green things that grow and all life that depends on them, that includes us.

      • The data of what did happen contain the answers to why it did happen. That must be understood before it can be modeled. There are internal responses to external forces. The immediate responses to external forces have been studied to death. The longer term responses to external forces have been treated as results and have not been considered as having any influence. The snowfall that happens today plays a part in the ice extent hundreds of years in the future. The snowfall that did not happen hundreds of years in the past played a part in the warming that has occurred since we got thermometers. We have proxy data and history that go back to make up for the lack of thermometers. More ice extent causes colder, it is cause and not result. Less ice extent allows warmer, it is cause and not result. Thawing ice does cool the land and oceans. Land and oceans with less thawing ice does get warmer.

    • That’s very good, doublesix.
      Of course, the warming after the LIA began around 1840, not preceded by CO2 change and continued to 1880 when human CO2 production began its rapid increase, at which time the world cooled until 1910, when it rose uninterruptedly till 1942, at which time it cooled slightly but measurably through WWII and post-war reconstruction when a fair amount of CO2 was produced by us, but atmospheric CO2 stabilized. It’s been rising since 1950 at a fairly indolent pace. Most of us oldies remember the terribly hot summers of our childhood, and the terrible winters.

  36. Hayek called on classic liberals “to offer a new liberal programme which appeals to the imagination. We must make the building of a free society once more an intellectual adventure, a deed of courage. What we lack is a liberal utopia, a programme which seems neither a mere defence of things as they are nor a diluted kind of socialism, but a truly liberal radicalism which does not spare the susceptibilities of the mighty” (“The Intellectuals and Socialism,” University of Chicago Law Review 16 [spring 1949], 433).


    https://climatecommunication.yale.edu/publications/climate-change-in-the-american-mind-december-2018/2/

    Yes and they all are convinced by extreme weather events.

    http://www.apnorc.org/projects/Pages/Is-the-Public-Willing-to-Pay-to-Help-Fix-Climate-Change-.aspx

    I despair of US conservatives.

    • I don’t despair.

      “However, if the monthly charge increased to $10 a month, just 28 percent would be supportive, while 68 percent would be opposed.”

      https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/more-americans-believe-global-warming-they-won-t-pay-much-n962001

      This isn’t a product of “merchants of doubt”, it’s the entirely predictable result of three decades of climate advocacy claims that transitioning from fossil fuels would be “cheap and easy” and is opposed by conservatives not because of high cost (and ineffectiveness) but because they hate the planet. The world is calling your bluff, $10 a month is more than your cap. Good luck.

    • They don’t mind if the government spends it. And all you have is straw man arguments. The political myopia is to fail to see the necessity of offering credible alternatives. But you are stuck in an intellectual rut battling an enemy largely the product of your antipathies to the 7% of extreme activists. Rather than Hayek’s imaginative plan – all we see from you is well rehearsed polemic.

      “Seventy-one percent of Americans say climate change is a reality, and most think human activity is primarily responsible, while only 9 percent say it is not. Nineteen percent are unsure. Among those who say climate change is happening, 60 percent think it is primarily caused by human activities.

      Nearly half of Americans say the science on climate change is more convincing than five years ago, with extreme weather driving their views. The survey was conducted while wildfires were burning out of control in California, though there were no significant regional differences in responses.

      Americans who accept that climate change is happening want the government to address it. Forty-four percent support and 29 percent oppose a policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by taxing the use of carbon-based fuels based on how much they contribute to climate change, irrespective of how the funds would be used. Twenty-five percent say they neither support nor oppose a carbon tax.

      Two-thirds support a carbon tax if the proceeds were used for environmental restoration and more than half support it if the funds were used towards research and development for renewable energy programs and public transportation.”

      I’m with the majority. They show a great deal more common sense than the 7% of skeptic curmudgeons with crude and eccentric theories they insist – absurdly – is the one true science. “My cap” – wtf does that mean – involves conservation and restoration of agricultural soils and ecosystems – and energy innovation.

      • As usual, you didn’t read. The survey says people won’t pay $10 a month to combat global warming. If they’re asked to pay $10 a month they don’t support action on global warming.
        This is not a strawman, it’s the result of a survey by Yale as covered by NBC news which I provided a link to.
        “They don’t mind if the government spends it.” is an appeal to low information voters. Americans, at least, understand that government spends its citizens’ money collected in taxes. Which is why the warm have been going on and on about imposing carbon taxes- fees that everyone knows they will ultimately pay.
        ““My cap” – wtf does that mean” – it means you promised people renewables are “cost comparative with fossil fuels” and they called your bluff. Implement your renewable strategy in such a way that costs less than $10 per month extra.
        Have fun.

      • I quoted from your link. That seems to prove that I did read it.

        I argued that R&D is a key to energy, productivity and prosperity. At 5% penetration in the US – these low LCOE technologies you have a deep ideological antipathy to need little in the way of back up or storage. This limits practical limits to penetration. Hence the R&D and the potential spin offs that most Americans are in favor of. You seem more interested in polemic than reason.

      • climate change is a natural reality and most think human activity is not a factor.

      • Alex’s disconnect from objectivity.? Hmmm.

      • CAGW is the issue, not mild warming.

        Funding energy R&D is far different from fundamentally altering your society, economy and energy systems. Combining R&D with socialist green schemes is a dodge.

      • What Hayek suggested was an imaginative program from people with policy research skills – not brain dead skeptic memes.

      • If we believed in man made climate change, we would not have elected Trump. We elected Donald Trump to stomp out this madness.

      • Hmmmmm. I have always said global warming has occurred, we just came out of the little ice age, but it was natural, we did not cause it.

      • Robert Ellison: “I argued that R&D is a key to energy, productivity and prosperity. ”

        Whoa there. Now you “despair” for conservatives because you think they’re preventing R&D? Under a post about the Democrats saying renewables are ready to deploy?
        Where are “conservatives” stopping R&D?

        Time to face the facts, nobody is admitting how expensive renewables are because there are lower-cost and more reliable alternatives. Nobody wants to admit this for two reasons-
        1. the “climate concerned” don’t think CO2 is THAT big a deal and
        2. the political left opposes lower cost alternatives and need conservatives to the bad guys leaving unobtanium the only option because… see number 1.

    • Is this a new plan for energy futures – or are you just fixated on repeating your renewables meme? You can’t see the forest for the straw man trees?

      • No conservative “despairs” over letting the market choose alternatives to fossil fuels, plenty of progressives do.
        Write that down, keep it by your keyboard.

      • I’d despair at the myopia. You would object to tax write offs for research or support for first of a kind high risk construction of advanced nuclear reactor prototype?

      • “You would object to tax write offs for research or support for first of a kind high risk construction of advanced nuclear reactor prototype?”

        That’s pure projection. i’ve never said that and never would. Because it’s a lot less ridiculous than “let’s commit billions to a doubtful strategy in the hopes that massive scale will make it work.”

        You can’t forecast that unobtanium will be plentiful and cheap just because you’ve decided to start digging in the hope that it exists.

  37. JC: “I don’t think an increase in climate science funding is needed (some redirection of funding would be appropriate IMO, away from climate modeling). The other points are important.”

    Previously, on the Week in Science post, I commented that the DOE is soliciting research proposals that might utilize its new family of supercomputers. One of the accepted proposals was aimed at finding improved cloud parameters for existing models. What a waste of resources!

    Readers here know that Der Spiegel, interviewed Bjorn Stevens, and stated parameterization is a disease and that cloud complexities are a major reason that global warming forecasts are still surprisingly inaccurate.

    The DOE supercomputers should be used to discover the dynamics and interactions of clouds with the atmosphere and oceans – not trying to fix failed models. Looks like the proposal is an effort to jump the shark!

    Richard

  38. All this discussion and not one mention of of nuclear power.. How about giving Gen IV some attention. This is new technology waiting to be utilized with a common sense approach to power generation. Reduce over regulation, permitting process time, and licensing. It’s a win win..

    • NuScale’s SMR, which is now the Gen IV reactor design furthest down the pathway towards becoming a working production reactor, will be fully compliant with current NRC requirements. The first operating NuScale SMR reactor facility is planned to be in operation in eastern Idaho in 2026.

      The NuScale team and its project partners know full well that unless they work diligently to achieve full compliance with the NRC’s quality assurance standards, in the factory and at the construction site, the public stakeholders in Idaho, Wyoming, and Utah will never allow the NuScale Gen IV reactor facility to be built.

    • It comes in under energy innovation. There are dozens of SMR versions worldwide. China is fuelling theirs for a December start. Russia has a floating Gen III almost ready to go. The US is progressing generic approvals and the NRC has agreed to the TVA request to limit safety zones for SMR to site boundaries. The DOE has partially funded R&D for some of the US versions to date.

      http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/nuclear-fuel-cycle/nuclear-power-reactors/small-nuclear-power-reactors.aspx

      https://www.forbes.com/sites/arielcohen/2019/04/25/china-enters-global-tech-race-for-small-modular-nuclear-reactors/#1ba24ea662b8

      Nuscale is one version.

      https://www.nuscalepower.com/

      General Atomics is developing a high temperature gas cooled reactor. High temps temps mean high efficiency, the poosibility of high temperature hydrogen production and heat supply for high temperature industrial processes. Such as new, low carbon cement and steel processes. Because it is helium cooled with a Brayton cycle gas turbine – it can be sited anywhere. General Atomics – with over 50 years experience in the industry – have built a couple of helium cooled reactors.

      I expect that some of these will be cost competitive in the US by the end of the 2020’s – gas price increases and technology cost decreases – and well before that in much of the rest of the world.

      • Beta Blocker

        NuScale is one version.
        https://www.nuscalepower.com/

        Compare NuScale’s targeted figure of $4,200 / kWe capital cost for their SMR design versus the Vogtle 3 & 4 current estimate of roughly $13,000 / kWe capital cost for a pair of large AP1000s. VC Summer, which experienced similar cost growth issues, was eventually cancelled altogether.

        When the Vogtle 3 & 4 project started in the late 2000’s, the targeted figure was $5,000 / kWe. But the EPC contractors chosen by Southern Nuclear in 2010 simply did not have the background and experience needed to manage a project of that size and complexity.

        This was true for VC Summer as well. For both projects, the original contractors were eventually replaced, but not before enormous damage was done to their parent companies and to the nuclear construction industry as a whole.

        The difference between NuScale and the rest of the SMR competition is that not only is NuScale further down the road towards building a production operation SMR, they also have the right players on their project team with the direct experience and the skill base in nuclear that is needed to keep capital costs under control.

        Moreover, NuScale’s SMR design uses important elements of the existing light water nuclear fuel cycle, thus avoiding most of the technical and cost risks associated with moving to one of the exotics; molten salt for example.

        It’s not enough to claim that X nuclear technology has operational and cost advantages over some other Y nuclear technology. The supposed advantages don’t become real unless a reactor having those alleged advantages can be constructed on its targeted cost and schedule, and can then gain enough of a foothold in the current nuclear industrial base to keep its operational costs in line with industry expectations.

      • You mean Nuscale is the leading US concept? “While countries such as Russia, India, Pakistan and China have all made great strides in developing and using SMRs either for research or in innovative projects like floating power plants, the U.S. has lagged behind in SMR development.” https://www.power-eng.com/articles/npi/print/volume-8/issue-1/nucleus/the-promise-of-small-modular-reactors.html


        https://www.innovationreform.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Advanced-Nuclear-Reactors-Cost-Study.pdf

        Multiple lines of development increase the chances of arriving at cost competitive alternatives. But the EM2 is a better technical solution with broader commercial applications.

        “The Energy Multiplier Module, EM2 is a next-generation, gas-cooled nuclear reactor concept designed by General Atomics. Over 60 years of research and development experience designing safe reactors led to the incorporation of technology and engineering innovations focused on delivering solutions that meet the 4-core objectives required of
        advance reactors: significantly enhanced safety, reduced waste, strong proliferation resistance and production of low-cost, clean electricity.” http://www.ga.com/websites/ga/docs/em2/pdf/EM2_datasheet.pdf

    • Curious George

      I would change your formulation “a new technology waiting to be utilized” to “a new technology to be tried”. Why are there so many competing designs? Because none is clearly superior – on paper. That’s not a bad thing. We should try all ideas. But a prototype must come before a widespread “utilization”.

  39. Beto Unveils Plan To Replace All Cars With Skateboards By 2030
    U.S.—Presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke has unveiled a $5 trillion plan to fight climate change. Foremost among the major changes the plan would enact is the replacement of all cars in the United States with skateboards.
    O’Rourke got the idea while skating a half-pipe and smoking some weed with some local youths over the weekend.
    “Can you imagine just how bad the nation would be with everyone grinding, flipping, tricking, and pop shove-it-ing all around? Totally rad,” O’Rourke said to the youths as he passed a joint around. “Yeah, man, that’d be so sick. Bruh. I mean, dude. Bruh. Dude.”
    https://babylonbee.com/news/beto-unveils-plan-to-replace-all-cars-with-skateboards-by-2030
    :: ))

  40. “A key part of the ecomodern discourse of a ‘Good Anthropocene’ is the vision of a ‘high-energy planet’ characterized by universal access to modern energy. Recognizing the crucial historical role that rising energy consumption has played in driving social transformations, ecomodernists imagine a future with substantial global equality of opportunity powered by clean and abundant energy.” https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14781158.2018.1428946

    The ethical position is to support whatever energy source is required in Africa, China and India to pursue development. We will happily – apart from some malcontents funded by Hilary Clinton – sell them coal and gas. Really – we have lots of stuff.


    https://www.worldcoal.org/sustainable-societies/wca-report-aseans-energy-equation

    What you do I’m struggling to give a rat’s arse about.

  41. I was reading Curry for the good discussions. Now I wonder if she isn’t a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
    PhilF

  42. ” Why protesters should be wary of 12 years to climate breakdown rhetoric.” — by the time they grow up (physically or intellectually), nothing discernible will have happened in those 12 years. Actually trying to carry out the GND will results in a massive public outcry (first) then public resistance — the French yellow vests times a thousand.

    Predictions with a short runway can be disastrous for those making such predictions — especially when coupled with actions that hurt people’s lives like increasing energy costs, disruptions of local energy delivery (the grid and the necessary infrastructure changes to shift from gasoline to electric).

  43. Yep, let’s just go tell those “petulant children” to do what we think is best. If climate change is an existential threat to humanity, shouldn’t we go to war to force compliance by other countries?

  44. The temperature trend calculated across decadal periods of internal variability. If climate were a linear system – rather than a nonlinear coupled, chaotic system – this wouldn’t ring any alarm bells.

    The future can be predicted with a single ‘unvalidated’ model that has 1000’s of feasible solutions – a result of sensitive dependence on initial conditions. An increase in a linear projection this century of temp observations is trivial. But linear responses in the nonlinear Earth system are unlikely to say the least.

    Warming seems mostly to come from sea surface temperature/cloud cover physics in the Pacific – itself a nonlinear process. And climate shifts there seem likely – on the basis of long term proxies and 20th century instrumental records – three more times this century.

    “A small forcing can cause a small [climate] change or a huge one.”
    — National Academy of Sciences, 2002.(1)

    The old paradigm is that climate”… if it changes at all, evolves so slowly that the difference cannot be seen in a human lifetime. That was the opinion of most people, and nearly all scientists, through the first half of the 20th century. To be sure, there were regional excursions, such as long spells of drought in one place or another. But people expected that after a few years “the weather” would automatically drift back to its “normal” state, the conditions they were used to. The planet’s atmosphere was surely so vast and stable that outside forces, ranging from human activity to volcanic eruptions, could have no more than a local and temporary effect.” https://history.aip.org/climate/rapid.html

    We no longer think that.

    “The hydrologist H.E. Hurst, studying the long flow records of the Nile and other geophysical time series, was the first to observe a natural behaviour, named after him, related to multi-scale change, as well as its implications in engineering designs. Essentially, this behaviour manifests that long-term changes are much more frequent and intense than commonly perceived and, simultaneously, that the future states are much more uncertain and unpredictable on long time horizons than implied by standard approaches. Surprisingly, however, the implications of multi-scale change have not been assimilated in geophysical sciences. A change of perspective is thus needed, in which change and uncertainty are essential parts.” https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02626667.2013.804626

    In a risk management framework – even low probability events – extreme warming or cooling with extreme consequences is an extreme risk. So what to do about it is the question – not CAGW.

    “The old climate framework failed because it would have imposed substantial costs associated with climate mitigation policies on developed nations today in exchange for climate benefits far off in the future — benefits whose attributes, magnitude, timing, and distribution are not knowable with certainty. Since they risked slowing economic growth in many emerging economies, efforts to extend the Kyoto-style UNFCCC framework to developing nations predictably deadlocked as well.” https://itif.org/publications/2011/07/26/climate-pragmatism-innovation-resilience-and-no-regrets

    It comes as no surprise that no one wants to pay for it. So we are left with “Climate Pragmatism: Innovation, Resilience and No Regrets”.

    “The new framework now emerging will succeed to the degree to which it prioritizes agreements that promise near-term economic, geopolitical, and environmental benefits to political economies around the world, while simultaneously reducing climate forcings, developing clean and affordable energy technologies, and improving societal resilience to climate impacts. This new approach recognizes that continually deadlocked international negotiations and failed domestic policy proposals bring no climate benefit at all. It accepts that only sustained effort to build momentum through politically feasible forms of action will lead to accelerated decarbonization.”

    Curbing skeptic memes and developing imaginative alternatives would at least make Climate etc a lot less tedious.

    • This is well inside the bounds of the last ten thousand years, there is no chaos and there are no alarm bells ringing other in the alarmist push to get rich from getting people to pay to fix something that is not broke.

    • It comes as no surprise that no one wants to pay for it.

      You really, really, really, got that right. We do not want to pay for fixes that ruin everything that works well and replaces it with everything that does not work well, ever, and worse, when the wind don’t blow and the sun don’t shine.

    • ‘As of January 1, 2018, there was an estimated 7,124 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of total world proved reserves of gross natural gas.
      – eia.gov

      Total world proved oil reserves reached 1687.9 billion barrels at the end of 2013, sufficient to meet 53.3 years of global production
      – jalopnik.com

      As of December 31, 2015, estimates of total world proved recoverable reserves of coal were about 1,136 billion short tons, (or 1.1 trillion short tons).
      – eia.gov’

      Some 50 years supply at current consumption – but with energy demand set to increase by 350% this century. Those pesky Africans, Chinese and Indians.Along with a denial that any 21st century technology can compete with 19th century technology. We should give up trying? A completely nutty skeptic meme.

      • “We should give up trying? A completely nutty skeptic meme.” Another absurd Robert I. Ellison straw-man statement. Nobody has suggested we give up on improving technology. The idea is that we should not allow politicians to dictate our energy systems. Especially if those politicians are socialists.

    • An agglomeration of high-sounding words, ending with “It accepts that only sustained effort to build momentum through politically feasible forms of action will lead to accelerated decarbonization.” The whole thing presupposes that there is agreement that accelerated decarbonization is a worthy goal. Ask anybody but a wealthy Western politician about that.

    • probability x consequence = risk

      In a nonlinear Earth system with extreme intrinsic variability the risks of atmospheric experimentation are extreme. Unless you are relentlessly convinced that it is all coming up roses – an insanely impossible certainty – perhaps it is prudent to adopt innovation, resilience and no regrets. It is called risk management.

      The natural science is very evident – and I have quoted this time the American Institute of Physics and – again – Dimitris Koutsoyiannis who refers to the millennial long Nilometer record. But arguing nonlinearity with people who have very evidently never studied any science is especially pointless.

      But he is for energy innovation – just not wind and solar. Decarbonization will happen by itself in a supply and demand crunch – the point of the fossil fuel reserves quote – unless there is accelerated decarbonization. The question is how painful the crunch. In terms of energy security and energy prices – having a variety of energy sources widely distributed is rational energy policy.

      And all he can do is rant about socialists and politicians. Let me quote Hayek again – this time on the fundamentals of classic liberal commitment to democracy.

      “When I say that the conservative lacks principles, I do not mean to suggest that he lacks moral conviction. The typical conservative is indeed usually a man of very strong moral convictions. What I mean is that he has no political principles which enable him to work with people whose moral values differ from his own for a political order in which both can obey their convictions. It is the recognition of such principles that permits the coexistence of different sets of values that makes it possible to build a peaceful society with a minimum of force. The acceptance of such principles means that we agree to tolerate much that we dislike. There are many values of the conservative which appeal to me more than those of the socialists; yet for a liberal the importance he personally attaches to specific goals is no sufficient justification for forcing others to serve them. I have little doubt that some of my conservative friends will be shocked by what they will regard as “concessions” to modern views that I have made in Part III of this book. But, though I may dislike some of the measures concerned as much as they do and might vote against them, I know of no general principles to which I could appeal to persuade those of a different view that those measures are not permissible in the general kind of society which we both desire. To live and work successfully with others requires more than faithfulness to one’s concrete aims. It requires an intellectual commitment to a type of order in which, even on issues which to one are fundamental, others are allowed to pursue different ends.”

      High sounding words indeed. There is much leeway permitted in the cut and thrust of politics in a liberal democracy. He forgets – or has never known – that his antipathy to politicians and socialists – and $5 – will get him a cup of coffee. Only an alternative program founded on the American public’s support for decarbonization will sway the day. A program informed by economics, sound policy and science.

      • resilience and no regrets would rule out renewables, that is proper risk management.

      • David Wojick

        How we live is not “atmospheric experimentation” or any kind of experimentation. Neither economics, sound policy or science support decarbonization. This is where our energy comes from.

      • You know exactly what is meant.

      • Innovation fuels the future.

      • Free individuals innovate. Government bureaucracies don’t.

      • To build a better world, we must have the courage to make a new start. We must clear away the obstacles with which human folly has recently encumbered our path and release the creative energy of individuals. We must create conditions favourable to progress rather than “planning progress.”… The guiding principle in any attempt to create a world of free men must be this: a policy of freedom for the individual is the only truly progressive policy.
        —Friedrich A. Hayek

        https://www.heritage.org/index/about

        You don’t have a clue do you?

      • Robert
        You frequently make the point “innovation of new energy technologies (renewables, batteries etc.) is good since it will produce discoveries, even if some claims of renewable energy are flawed”.
        Think of Apollo and Teflon, SDI and lasers, etc.
        But that argument can only go so far.
        If the basis of a research project is sufficiently flawed, it can consume vast resources and produce nothing of value.
        Think of Isaac Newton. His work “Principia…” and his discoveries in gravity, mechanics and optics were a tiny fraction of his life’s work.
        It was all complete by age 30; after that his entire efforts were devoted to where his heart really was.
        Alchemy. Trying to turn lead into gold.
        What did humanity inherit from Newton’s decades of work on alchemy? Zero. Since the idea was sufficiently flawed.
        CAGW is at least as flawed as alchemy, and nothing good will come of it.

      • Small change in a dynamic nonlinear sytem can trigger large change. The third great idea in 20th century physics.

        SMR, nuclear fusion, gas and coal efficiency and pollution control, hot dry rocks, geothermat, methane digesters, landfill gas, energy towers, wave energy, printed solar cells, ultracapacitors … I’m not sure we should depend on you to pick winners.

      • (unknown probability) x (speculative consequences) = confused and distorted risk management

      • small probability this century – major system changes evident in the history og the Earth system = an argument from extreme ignorance?

  45. David Wojick

    Well done, Caleb!

    https://news.yahoo.com/how-to-hijack-a-climate-change-hearing-134320533.html

    CO2 is good for you. Pass it on.

  46. “Set a first-ever, net-zero emissions by 2030 carbon budget for federal lands, stopping new fossil fuel leases, changing royalties to reflect climate costs, and accelerating renewables development and forestation;”

    ::JC note: apart from the zero emissions by 2030, rational policies for federal lands is very much needed. ::

    Except it won’t be rational. The first step will be to zero out grazing leases. Most public lands are already undergrazed (grazed at about half the rate they were in the era of bison) and that’s not good for the health of the natural vegetation. But never mind that, we gotta zero out cow farts on public lands… and the cost of meat will go up by 10x, and because that will kill the cattle industry, and with it the manure recycling industry (whence comes about half our fertilizer) whatever ‘greenhouse gas’ was saved will be more than countered by the increased need for synthetic fertilizer made from natural gas.

  47. Hiding in this Beto plan is a realisation that the catastrophist meme is likely to be self-fulfilling.

  48. Reading more widely, it is clear that there is a huge body of people dug in on both sides of a trench. Neither side is open to discussion and insults are ten a penny.

    It is good to see at least one politician and one commentator being constructive in their proposals and discussions.

    It is sad to see Dr Curry being commented about disparagingly in WUWT BTL debate as a result of this constructive article. She may not have perfect judgement, her conclusions may not be without blemish, but at least she has an open mind to specific proposals, is prepared to remove ideology from discussions and does not see climate as a subject worthy of little boys throwing stones at each other and engaging in puerile name calling.

  49. As Dr Curry suggests, I have read Beto O’Rourke’s complete proposal and as a non-US citizen I will comment dispassionately.

    Firstly, all three of his key claimed dangers due to climate change are due to other things or non-existent:

    1. Dangerous water quality has nothing to do with climate change and everything to do with antediluvian primitive US water industry policy.
    2. Racial inequalities are all to do with 250 years of racist US life, nothing to do with climate.
    3. US has no serious national security dangers, whereas the rest of the world is constantly endangered by US warmongering, economic gangsterism and generalised inhuman arrogance and racial superiority syndromes.

    So the whole tenets for his argument are unadulterated cobblers.

    Having put that to one side, we ask what Rep O’Rourke is saying in practical terms that the rest of the world has not been addressing for two decades and more. Not a lot. So outsiders will say that the usual US stonewalling when they do not have global leadership may presage a hegemonic power grab to impose tardy US solutions on a reluctant world, just like trying to sell expensive LNG to Europe when we prefer cheaper Russian gas.

    The rest of the world will no longer submit to such American tactics and nor should they. World War III, if it comes, will see mainland USA as a primary site of destruction: no longer will the US destroy the rest of the world while remaining unscathed at home. None of you understand destruction of homelands and most of you were being hysterical when two buildings collapsed in 2001. Europe has seen entire civilisations bombed to oblivion: we are less wussy as a result…..

    Be all that as it may, the specific proposals in principle are in the right arenas.

    As always, their effectiveness will depend on judicious due diligence; rigor- and focus in programme selection, oversight and management; and freedom from the sorts of corruption which bedevil solar and wind grant programmes in the UK.

    As for the Central Valley being affected by climate change, I have my doubts. It is affected by huge population increases, destruction of wetland habitats and salmon runs, attempts to impose northern european farming onto a Mediterranean climate, widespread deforestation since 1800 with attendant pressures on water tables, surface soils, watershed sponge systems and failure to recognise river flooding as an eternal natural feature.

    A site like this should start challenging the unaccountable weather engineers and who gave them the right to affect the whole of humanity in their unaudited, unaccountable missions.

    Many of them are in the US military which is not a de facto global fascist militia. It is not an arm of Wall Street food futures traders and it is not representative of the 7.2bn+ people who are not US citizens.

    When I do due diligence on the US, I start from the premise that it is an undemocratic-, oligarchic-, hegemonic nation of out-of-control-, rapacious economic conquistadors set upon wreaking havoc using Full Spectrum Dominance technologies. Its policy in Ukraine and Russia fully justifies such a premise.

    I never start from the assumption that the US is fundamentally decent.

    Russians agree with me, Venezuelans agree with me, many Germans agree with me, Libyans agree with me, most Iraqis agree with me and so do most thinking Australians. That is just a judicious list: the entire world has issues with the USA.

    I can be pleasantly surprised if the US behaves better than expected, but treating it like an incorrigible criminal is merely pragmatic Foreign Policy….

    Decent Germans existed under Hitler, decent Chinese under Mao, decent Italians under Mussolini.

    Just because decent Americans exist does not excuse indecent US Government behaviour…..

    So I trust this latecoming to the Earth Conserving community does not presage yet more American imperialism..

  50. My latest for CFACT:

    Big oil goes big green
    https://www.cfact.org/2019/05/01/big-oil-goes-big-green/

    Excerpts: “Climate alarmists often accuse skeptics, like myself and independent groups like CFACT, of being in the pay of Big Oil. This is completely false ­ we do not receive even a dime from them. It is part of the green fairy tale that skepticism only exists because the oil companies are funding it. That Exxon-Mobil threw a few million at various skeptical causes prior to 2007 is the standard example, but that was many years ago. They have stopped sending any money whatsoever to skeptical causes since then.

    So I did some digging and the reality turns out to be just the opposite. In fact the big oil companies are putting at least a billion dollars into alarmist projects and lobbying. Of course they have good commercial reasons, which are killing coal and making natural gas more “climate friendly.” After all, Big Oil is also Big Gas. The central vehicle for moving these green billion dollars goes by a perfectly descriptive name ­ the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative or OGCI. If the false accusers were correct then “oil and gas” would never go together with “climate initiative” but there it is and it is very big.

    What seems to have happened is that the ever-wily big companies simply created their own green group. With a billion bucks in funding it may well be the biggest outfit in Big Green (not counting the green governments).

    However, I also found that EDF is actively engaged with corporations, via its EDF+Business arm. In particular EDF has a huge methane reduction program ­ the Methane Challenge ­ that involves OGCI. This program is featured in the Sustainability Reports of several major oil companies. EDF is even building and launching their own satellite, cleverly called MethaneSAT. EDF is clearly getting a lot of money for this. They say they get none directly from the companies, rather that they get it from unspecified “philanthropies.” Where these philanthropies get it may be a different story. They could easily be laundering Big Oil money. It may be telling that OGCI does not issue a financial report.

    In any case it is clear that Big Oil is spending at least a billion dollars on green stuff, which is a lot of green. There is no evidence that the skeptics are getting anything, but if some are it is trivial in comparison. Meanwhile OGCI is getting at least a billion and EDF maybe many millions.

    When it comes to skepticism, the simple fact is that roughly half of Americans do not accept climate alarmism, right up to the President. No one is paying for this widespread skepticism. As for Big Oil, they are putting big bucks into green climate initiatives, not skepticism. Conservatives do have their think tanks, which happily manage to find some funding, but not from Big Oil for climate skepticism.

    That Big Oil is responsible for skepticism is just another part of the alarmist fantasy world.”

    There is more in the article.

    Oh, and congratulations to the CO2 Coalition’s Caleb Rossiter for hijacking AOC’s big green subcommittee.
    See https://www.climatedepot.com/2019/05/01/skeptical-scientist-hijacks-aoc-congressional-climate-hearing-aoc-laments-were-not-debating-whether-climate-change-is-real/.

    Fun stuff!

    • Beta Blocker

      An energy policy which places a stiff tax on all carbon fuels, plus the eventual adoption of a government-imposed carbon fuel rationing scheme, could serve to greatly increase oil industry profits per unit of production, in ways that make it highly desirable for industry executives to support these kinds of anti-carbon policies — if they play their cards right.

      If the cost and price structures of oil and gas can be manipulated appropriately in collusion with those who determine the government’s carbon tax policies, the result could be more income on lower total production volume and less total cost expenditure.

      What if the reliability of the power grid begins to fall precipitously at some point in the future as a consequence of relying too much on wind and solar?

      Not to worry. The quickest way to fix the problem is for LNG-powered gas peaker plants to be quickly constructed wherever they can be easily serviced by rail transport.

      If you are an oil industry executive and you know how to play the game of national energy politics to your best advantage, what’s not to like about powerful government intervention in the marketplace to raise the price of all energy resources and to directly constrain energy production and consumption?

  51. Skeptical knee-jerk reactions to Beto’s plan are wide of the mark here.
    Beto’s plan contains unmistakable signs of hope.
    In short, Beto’s plan is something like what, in the real world, official climb-down from extreme catastrophist climate alarmism would / will look like.
    Affirming the public’s desire to “do something” but – between the lines – accepting that it’s really only worthwhile if an action helps something real, aside from averting computer projected disaster.
    Go Beto!
    “No regrets” is code for “even if there’s no tooth fairy, you still get a dime!”

  52. Robert, “Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob. Many confuse environmental protection with climate protection. it’s impossible to protect the climate, but we can protect the environment and our drinking water. On the debate concerning alternative energies, which is sensible, it is often driven by the irrational climate debate. One has nothing to do with the other.”

    • Iriai is a Japanese word meaning to enter into the joint use of resources. There are ways to a bright future for the planet, its peoples and its wild places – but these need to be consciously designed in a broad context of economics and democracy, population, development, technical innovation, land use and the environment. There is a stark choice in which narratives of catastrophe and economic, environmental and social collapse have no place. Which future is for you and your children? Economic collapse, civil strife, war – or prosperous and resilient communities in vibrant landscapes?

      We might even solve global warming. Electricity is 25% of the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. A multi-gas and aerosol strategy is required – carbon dioxide. CFC’s, nitrous oxides, methane, black carbon and sulfate. Ongoing decreases in carbon intensity and increases in efficiency and productivity. And technical innovation across sectors – energy, transport, industry, residential and agriculture and forestry.

      Some of the answer is under our feet. Rattan Lal – himself a scientific treasure – estimates that some 500 Gigatonne (GtC) carbon has been lost from terrestrial systems. ‘Soil is like a bank account – we must replace what we have removed.”

      Carbon sequestration in soils has major benefits in addition to offsetting anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion, land use conversion, soil cultivation, continuous grazing and cement and steel manufacturing. Restoring soil carbon stores increases agronomic productivity and enhances global food security. Increasing the soil organic content enhances water holding capacity and creates a more drought tolerant agriculture – with less downstream flooding. There is a critical level of soil carbon that is essential to maximising the effectiveness of water and nutrient inputs. Global food security, especially for countries with fragile soils and harsh climate such as in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, cannot be achieved without improving soil quality through an increase in soil organic content. Wildlife flourishes on restored grazing land helping to halt biodiversity loss. Reversing soil carbon loss is a new green revolution where conventional agriculture is hitting a productivity barrier with exhausted soils and increasingly expensive inputs.

      Increased agricultural productivity, increased downstream processing and access to markets build local economies and global wealth. Economic growth provides resources for solving problems – conserving and restoring ecosystems, better sanitation and safer water, better health and education, updating the diesel fleet and other productive assets to emit less black carbon and reduce the health and environmental impacts, developing better and cheaper ways of producing electricity, replacing cooking with wood and dung with better ways of preparing food thus avoiding respiratory disease and again reducing black carbon emissions. A global program of agricultural soils restoration is the foundation for balancing the human ecology.

      Instead of quoting skeptic platitudes at me – I suggest you get on with it.

      https://watertechbyrie.com/2015/10/04/biological-abundance-and-economic-growth/

  53. Get on with what?
    CO2, at this time, at these levels, is not in control of climate – we know that from history, ancient and modern. And we are not in control of CO2. Both were demonstrated in the steady rise in global temp from 1910 to 1942, through the 30% decrease in human CO2 production in 1929-1931 which did not change global CO2 in the slightest.

    Freeman Dyson suggested that the best way to control CO2, if that was what we wanted to do, was with agriculture.

    It is, in my view, wrong to spend resources on CO2 mitigation that we could devote to clean air, clean water, sanitation, malaria control, public health, and preservation of the environment for ourselves and other living things. And it’s not just wrong, it’s a mistake.

  54. Are we perhaps, unaccountably, in agreement here? Returning CO2 to the soil is clearly a good thing, even if in ineffective approach to climate fears.

  55. Don’t be silly. Of course they’re forcings. Just like the other (known) eight, positive and negative. The vector sum influences climate one way or the other. Do you have a point? Any idea of the historical record?

    • Forcings in a dynamic nonlinear system.dynamic nonlinear system. You have a selective myopia. And hand waving at ‘the historical record’ is meaningless.

      “Neither the Tanais [River Don in Russia] nor the Nile have always been flowing, but the region in which they flow now was once dry: for their life has a bound, but time has not [. . .] But if rivers are formed and disappear and the same places were not always covered by water, the sea must change correspondingly. And if the sea is receding in one place and advancing in another it is clear that the same parts of the whole earth are not always either sea or land, but that all changes in course of time.” Aristotle

      On the historical record I’d suggest you read Dimitris Koutsoyiannis – but without much hope that you are willing or capable.

      https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02626667.2013.804626

  56. You’re handwaving. I’m pointing.
    The discussions here are fascinating, but what you and I are discussing at the moment is:
    Is CO2 at this time, at these levels, in control of climate, and
    Are we in control of CO2?
    The answers clearly are no and no.
    The historical record I’m pointing to – please feel free to avoid all the questions – is:
    1. Granted that water vapor and the other GHGs are very important, and even at these levels have some effect, why don’t they correlate – at all – with the major swings in climate over the past 3 million years? (Our current Ice Age is 2.5 million years old, and the Eemian 120,000 years ago was 2C warmer, with CO2 at 280 ppm.) The end-Ordovician (Hirnantian) Ice Age, 440 million years ago, began when CO2 was around 4,000 ppm and temp around 22C, and lasted a couple of million years. At the end of that time, with 85% of marine life extinct, when the frigid oceans had gobbled up atmospheric CO2 to around 3,000 ppm, the globe suddenly began to warm up, getting back to the previous 22°C with astonishing speed. We haven’t any idea why it cooled so fast and so far, or especially why it warmed so fast and so far. (Dr Curry?) After all, that was the time of the cool young sun, 70% of current irradiance. It’s not just The Pause that doesn’t fit the model(s).

    2. The earth has spent half of the previous 550 million years around 22°C, looking like there’s a tight lid at that number. Why doesn’t that entail strong negative feedback and no “tipping point”?

    3. We don’t know why the P-T extinction warming (to at least 28°C) occurred so fast, nor why it was so brief. What brought the temperature down to 22°C again? Why didn’t it “run away”? (Dr Curry?)

    4. Why is the lowest temperature around 12°C? When “snowball earth” occurs, with glaciers almost down to the equator, why doesn’t the albedo force more cooling, more ice, more albedo, and more cooling down to the Stefan-Boltzmann equilibrium of 255K (0°F) ? (Dr Curry?)

    5. In other words, why has the earth’s temperature been so stable, ranging from 285K to 295K since the end of the Archean Eon 2.5 billion years ago? That’s a median of 290K (62°F), ±2%. Climate stability needs an answer, not climate change. Over the last 150 years, the average temperature has only varied by plus or minus 0.3%. For a system as complex and ever-changing as the climate, that is quite impressive.

    6. And then, if CO2 is currently close to the lowest it’s been for the last 600 million years, why is it dangerous to produce more? 50% of the CO2 greenhouse (misnomer) effect is in the first 20 ppm, and it declines exponentially after that. The emergence from the last glaciation 14,000 years ago was not preceded by CO2 change. The Younger Dryas a few thousand years later was a very rapid cooling succeeded by a very rapid warming, neither reversal preceded by CO2 change. The Holocene Optimum (280 ppm) was not preceded by CO2 change, and we’ve been cooling since then. The interval Warmings: Minoan, Roman, Medieval, and Modern, were not preceded by CO2 change. If CO2 doubles to 800ppm, that will add less than 2% to its GHG effect.

    So there’s no reason to propose that CO2 *CONTROLS* global temp, either up or (most certainly) down, starting from the levels we now have. There is, of course, the magical thinking that leads to Cargo Cult Science. This could be simple devotion to the Climate God — if we build it He will come.

    The morality of the desired end justifies any necessary deceit, fraud, and coercion along the way. The corollary is “It is immoral to interfere with this care for the planet’s welfare by dissenting on the evidence.” And of course it’s flattering to our notion of self-importance to think that *WE* can change the climate of the earth. Another version of the Ptolemaic system: We’re special.
    Cf: Canute, King. Oh, and George Carlin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=948Nm34arfA

    • We are quite obviously emitting greenhouse gases to the atmosphere in an uncontrolled experiment. I’ll let you know how it turns out. I may be a while.

      But no we are not talking CO2 – I am talking environment and energy.

      And George Carlin says we can’t restore soils and ecosystems? What an idgit.

      Here’s an idea. We want a million of these for half a billion people by 2040.

  57. Yes, you’ve successfully – sort of – avoided the questions. But that “emitting greenhouse gases to the atmosphere in an uncontrolled experiment.” does say that you believe that the record supports the idea that CO2 is in control of the climate and we are in control of CO2. You haven’t any idea, though, of how to support that except with “dynamic nonlinear system,” and that won’t work. Deal with historical facts, however painful that may be, or retire from the field. Nobody disagrees with the need to care for the environment, or, at least here, with the potential for the newer nuclear reactors. And diverting resources away from that to CO2 mitigation is just wrong. And worse, it’s a mistake.

  58. BTW, George Carlin didn’t say that. You’re having some trouble. Are you getting old?

  59. “Recent scientific evidence shows that major and widespread climate changes have occurred with startling speed. For example, roughly half the north Atlantic warming since the last ice age was achieved in only a decade, and it was accompanied by significant climatic changes across most of the globe. Similar events, including local warmings as large as 16°C, occurred repeatedly during the slide into and climb out of the last ice age. Human civilizations arose after those extreme, global ice-age climate jumps. Severe droughts and other regional climate events during the current warm period have shown similar tendencies of abrupt onset and great persistence, often with adverse effects on societies.

    Abrupt climate changes were especially common when the climate system was being forced to change most rapidly. Thus, greenhouse warming and other human alterations of the earth system may increase the possibility of large, abrupt, and unwelcome regional or global climatic events. The abrupt changes of the past are not fully explained yet, and climate models typically underestimate the size, speed, and extent of those changes. Hence, future abrupt changes cannot be predicted with confidence, and climate surprises are to be expected.” NAS 2002

    That’s why we should mitigate. Here’s how.

    We might even solve global warming. Electricity is 25% of the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. A multi-gas and aerosol strategy is required – carbon dioxide. CFC’s, nitrous oxides, methane, black carbon and sulfate. Ongoing decreases in carbon intensity and increases in efficiency and productivity. And technical innovation across sectors – energy, transport, industry, residential and agriculture and forestry.

    • The abrupt changes of the past are not understood and climate models typically get everything wrong, size, speed, and extent of everything that changes.

      Future abrupt changes cannot be predicted with confidence, and wonderful, natural, normal, necessary and unstoppable, good climate surprises are to be expected.”

  60. Yes, weather happens. And the climate does change, locally and globally. CO2 recently has had nothing to do with it, as the historical record shows. And even less recently, going back 550 million years, there is no evidence for causality.
    Meanwhile, 30% of the increase in agriculture is attributed to CO2 and the satellite photos show the greening of the earth. Please do deal with CFC’s, nitrous oxides, methane, black carbon and sulfates, and leave CO2 alone. It warms us and cools us and feeds us. It’s all good.

    Please try to deal with the 6 questions. I want some entertainment. Just pick one if you’re short on time.

    “We might even solve global warming”?? Delusional. Just pray to the Climate God that we don’t dip into the glaciation that we’re overdue for. Maybe She can help you.

    • If you want to have even more fun, point out that we were on our way to “solving global warming” in the ’70s and ’80s when the anti-science brigade decided to attack nuclear power and stop the progress.
      How many megatons of CO2 emissions would have been avoided if the US and Europe had followed France’s lead on nuclear by the mid 1980s or early ’90s? Factor into that the simple fact that building and R&D at that scale would have lowered prices of nuclear construction and improved safety, which means China would have built more of it instead of coal.
      Even if you accept an ECS of 3 for a doubling of atmospheric CO2, the culprit is Greenpeace and the Union of Concerned Scientists, not Exxon and the Koch Brothers.

      • You’re right.
        Of course the CO2 increase since then has warmed us just a bit, and increased agriculture production and made plants more drought resistant. And the nuclear reactors of the time were not as safe as they are now.
        I think it was likely worth while waiting, even though France makes maybe 80% of its electricity from nuclear, and has never had a major accident to my knowledge – i.e. one involving fatality or contamination.

  61. There are a number of reasons to ‘decarbonize’. All of which I have addressed. It includes the potential for price rises and price shocks and geopolitical risk. 50 years reserves at current consumption – and sharply rising demand – suggest that the crunch will come. Unless there is a concerted effort to diversify supply. Probably sooner rather than later as prices of alternative energy decline.

    The winner is those who embrace innovation – but you have to be in it to win it.

    Do we have a new Jimmy? The value of entering a climateball discussion on his wrongly framed CO2 questions is negligible. Both science and politics have moved on. The questions here are about energy and environment.

    • No, nothing new.
      But this page is devoted to Beto’s plan, which demands that we control CO2 which in turn controls climate. CO2 is the only forcing that we have even the faintest theoretical chance of influencing, and that control knob spins loosely. If you’re able to discuss energy and environment and leave CO2 out of it, please do. I’ve seen no evidence you’re capable of that.

      In Beto’s plan, what is reasonable is not new and what is new is not reasonable.
      “Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob. Many confuse environmental protection with climate protection. it’s impossible to protect the climate, but we can protect the environment and our drinking water. On the debate concerning alternative energies, which is sensible, it is often driven by the irrational climate debate. One has nothing to do with the other.”

      The natural experiment was run in 1929-1931. It’s clear. CO2 warms us and cools us and feeds us. It’s all good.

    • Another reason for ‘decarbonization’?

      LMGTFY – http://lmgtfy.com/?q=dynamic+chaotic+nonlinear+Earth+system

      Are you dizzy yet from going in circles with your blog unscience?

      • Ellison –
        We’ve been decarbonizing for the last 1,000 years as we’ve gone from wood to coal to oil to natural gas and to nuclear. Eventually technologies will improve and fossil fuels will get more expensive so that wind and solar will no longer need huge subsidies. And maybe wind turbines will be able to warn eagles and bats away. And maybe they won’t need diesel motors to keep them running during the slack times.
        “On the debate concerning alternative energies, which is sensible, it is often driven by the irrational climate debate. One has nothing to do with the other.”

        But meanwhile…”Solar and wind power don’t work”:
        http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/solar-and-wind-power-simply-dont-work–not-here-not-anywhere/news-story/66f188a1399705745abc0f2663a4a9c3

        And please, before calling names, quote the words you consider “unscience” and attempt to refute them. I’ll really enjoy that.

        And if you could please help out Robert Clark…he really needs it.

  62. South Australia is a skeptic poster child for the unreliability and expense of wind turbines.

    Renewables are about 10% of my bill – for about 7% of eastern states supply. The bigger part of price rises in the past decade is a gold plated distribution network, gas price increases and shortages – unbelievably in the world’s biggest gas exporter – and speculative electricity spot prices on the closure of a couple of low cost brown coal generators at the end of long service lives. The renewables target is maxed out, isn’t being extended and supports are being wound back to nothing in 2030.

    The South Australian section of the grid tripped out when some transmission lines were lost in severe weather, wind farms tripped out on preset frequency fluctuations, the rest of the SA generation was unable to ramp up fast enough and the resultant demand tripped the grid interconnector.

    The wind farms are now less sensitive, digital inertia has been added in the form of batteries – faster and more precise than conventional load matching – and the interconnector has been beefed up.

    We have the Snowy Mountains hydro generators – as well as hydro plants in Tasmania – supplying energy to an integrated eastern states market. Some 7% of generation. The Snowy Mountains Scheme officially began on 17 October 1949 and it took 25 years to complete this massive engineering feat. The turbines have about a 12% capacity factor because of a lack of water. Enough to provide some backup. And it is practically free energy. The water was turned inland to supply the food bowel of a lot of the world.

    So is this support for skeptic wind and solar memes or proof of concept?

  63. Pointless. There’s nothing wrong with CO2 at these levels, at this rate of increase.

  64. “If I could have one ‘FuturePower’… it would be the ability to have people realise when they are in cognitive dissonance and to be aware of their confirmation bias. Humanity’s story needs a global reboot – cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias are blocking that.” https://atlasofthefuture.org/futurehero-tony-lovell-5-billion-hectares-hope/

    Rattan Lal estimates that 500 GtC has been lost from soils and ecosystems since the advent of agriculture. Compare 350 GtC from fossil fuels and cement since 1750. Wgatever the virtu4es of carbo0n it is far better returned to terrestrial systems than in the atmosphere.

    Carbon sequestration in soils has major benefits in addition to offsetting anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion, land use conversion, soil cultivation, continuous grazing and cement and steel manufacturing. Restoring soil carbon stores increases agronomic productivity and enhances global food security. Increasing the soil organic content enhances water holding capacity and creates a more drought tolerant agriculture – with less downstream flooding. There is a critical level of soil carbon that is essential to maximising the effectiveness of water and nutrient inputs. Global food security, especially for countries with fragile soils and harsh climate such as in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, cannot be achieved without improving soil quality through an increase in soil organic content. Wildlife flourishes on restored grazing land helping to halt biodiversity loss. Reversing soil carbon loss is a new green revolution where conventional agriculture is hitting a productivity barrier with exhausted soils and increasingly expensive inputs.

  65. ““This survey demonstrates not only an urgent opportunity, but heightened political value for Republicans to present conservative, market-based clean energy solutions as an alternative to the unrealistic and politically unfeasible promises included in the Green New Deal,” said CRES Forum Executive Director Heather Reams. “American voters support alignment of federal policies that achieve rapid reductions in emissions while also bolstering our country’s economy. Republican policymakers have a green light to command the attention of voters across the political spectrum by moving swiftly to craft solutions that are realistic in alleviating concerns for our changing climate. Embracing all clean energy technologies and understanding the benefit of investing in policies that reduce emissions moves voters to action and preserves our nation’s energy dominance today and for generations to come.” https://cresforum.org/2019/02/cres-forum-releases-national-survey-on-green-new-deal/

    Going with the flow might be a better option than being a dinosaur.

  66. Excellent. Clean energy of course includes anything producing nice clean CO2. Some people don’t actually have a cognitive dissonance problem with that idea.

  67. Want an Energy Revolution? – https://www.city-journal.org/next-energy-revolution

    Most people want cheap, abundant, reliable, low carbon energy. The latter may be to get them to shut up about it. The fundamental principle here is Schumpeter’s creative destruction of capitalism and not Moore’s microchip law.

    “Schumpeter describes creative destruction as the “process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one.” https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/creativedestruction.asp

    The underlying dynamic is supply and demand at the intersection of a fossil fuel supply and demand crunch and declining costs of a very broad range of real and potential alternative energy sources.

    There is in this article a naive analysis of the physics of wind and solar. Who on Earth believes that commercial air transport is possible with batteries? There is a confusion between subsidies and technology. IF you want to argue about subsidies on economic principles – do so but get the arguments right.

  68. Markets work better than policies.

  69. “Who believes commercial air transport is possible with batteries?”
    Who cares? Batteries pollute the environment with toxic chemicals.

    “Most people want cheap, abundant, reliable, low carbon energy.” ??
    You can leave out the low carbon. Only the very devout care about that, and not for rational reasons.

  70. So, Ellison – Since I expected that as an ozzie you would have access to *The Australian* link behind the paywall, I thought you might comment on it. But, noooooo.
    So I’ll leave an alternative link for the regular folks to look at. The title “Solar and wind power simply don’t work — not here, not anywhere” I can understand might have been a bit off-putting for you.
    http://www.greenwichneighborsunited.com/solar-and-wind-power-simply-dont-work-not-here-not-anywhere/
    So, cobber, do you have any response other than vituperation? Any facts at your disposal?

  71. Australia has a federal election on 18 May.

    Labor is ahead in the poles and favoured to win. Their policies, if implanted, would do enormous damage to the Australian economy. For example, if their climate policies are implemented, the best-case estimate of the effects of Labor’s climate policy by 2030 is:

    $264 bn GDP loss
    166,500 jobs lost
    3% wages lost
    $110/MWh wholesale electricity price
    $67/tonne carbon price

    “The analysis, released as Bill Shorten [the Labor leader] continues to defy calls to put a price on his signature climate change policy, also suggests that if the Greens were to block or limit the use of international carbon permits under Labor’s plan, the cost to the economy could be as high as $1.2 trillion by 2030.”

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/politics/price-labors-carbon-cuts-yes-you-can/news-story/4aae9813f8fc2a92789ad5c8f74974c2

    The article is behind a paywall. Google the title:
    Price Labor’s carbon cuts? Yes you can

  72. Read it long ago. I’ve written stacks on why renewables are not viable, hugely expensive and incapable of supplying much of the world’s energy, ever.

  73. Yes. The exceptions I guess would be hydro, and tidal, and geothermal.
    But yes, not much. So it’s nuclear…

  74. Pricing costs of carbon policy is a classic Fermi problem – with an order of magnitude precision. And costs are thus disputed across the political divide.

    “Dr Fisher estimated Labor’s plan to cut carbon emissions by 45 per cent by 2030 could shrink economic growth by 0.8 per cent over the decade.

    However, he said allowing heavy polluters to offset more of their emissions using international credits would slash the negative impacts in half.

    “It’s not disastrous, but it is a drop-off,” Dr Fisher told ABC Radio.”

    The Labor policy could wipe $542B according to Dr. Fisher – about half that with foreign carbon credits – from $3 trillion in economic activity to 2030. The estimation problem is the cost per ton of carbon reduction. And why wouldn’t you pay some Chinese firm $5/ton C02-e – and that’s like 50g CFC – to make CFC’s on one side of a road and take it across the other side to destroy it. I imagine it might be simpler to shuttle it back and forth across the road without the messy manufacturing and incineration.

    Here’s my estimate. It is within cooee of Dr. Fisher’s.

    With the current Paris commitment – I have rounded up the price obtained from carbon auctions – the price for much deeper cuts is a guess. Dr Fisher’s guess is $67/ton.

    My bigger concern is the practicality – can it even be done or are they blowing smoke up our arses. The latter was a real medical procedure for drowned people. What was the thought behind that? “We have to do something – we can’t just stand around smoking pipes. I know…”

    I wonder as well what the impetus is of going so far beyond OECD Paris commitments? Already at 65% reduction on a per capita basis – with our growing population and nonstop economic growth over nearly 3 decades.

    https://www.environment.gov.au/system/files/styles/width-450/private/resources/c42c11a8-4df7-4d4f-bf92-4f14735c9baa/images/fig3.jpg?itok=hSSuM_13

    Labor’s policy lacks any comforting detail of course. You can sign up for it here.

    https://www.laborsclimatechangeactionplan.org.au/

    But I’m sure we can rely on a newspaper article and a politician on a blog with experience in agricultural education, running a newspaper shop, underground mining and tobacco farming. Makes me wonder what Jimmy’s expertise is.

    As for American attitudes – it is perhaps better to have something with a semblance of methodology than pulling it out of your…

    https://climatecommunication.yale.edu/publications/energy-in-the-american-mind-december-2018/4/

    Vituperation – btw – seems to involve not debating his CO2 blog unscience. LMFAO.

  75. Carbon policy? What’s the point? There’s no conceivable effect on global climate of any policy whatsoever, pro or con. Now the effect on national economies… oh, yes… now that’s the whole point isn’t it…

    You are a veritable font of unscience. All aspiration and intimidation.
    You wanna have a go? Cite my words and refute. You can’t which is why you haven’t done it.

  76. The costs of Labor’s policies are huge. The benefits are negative.

    • The best-case estimate (i.e. lowest) of the effects of Labor’s climate policy by 2030 is:

      $264 bn GDP loss
      166,500 jobs lost
      3% wages lost
      $110/MWh wholesale electricity price
      $67/tonne carbon price

      The highest is $1.2 trillion if international carbon trading is precluded. I.e. almost as much as Australia’s GDP.

      The most likely estimate is about $500 billion (from memory). I.e about the same as Australia’s debt.

      This is crazy stuff.

  77. From Brian Fisher (edited for clarity for international audience)
    “Under Labor’s policy, Australia’s share of renewables would reach about 36 per cent and the wholesale electricity price would be $93/MWh, compared with $81/MWh in 2030.
    To achieve the 45 per cent target with 50 per cent renewables would see the Australian economy $144bn smaller in 2030, with cumulative losses over the decade of $472bn with an average annual growth rate of 2.3 per cent compared with 2.9 per cent.
    Under the base case, the Australian economy would support about 14 million full-time equivalent jobs in 2030 but there would be about 336,000 fewer jobs by meeting the 45 per cent emissions reduction target. The full-time wage would also be about $97,400 — a reduction of 8 per cent. In meeting the combined 50 per cent renewables target and the emissions target, the wholesale electricity price would be about $128/MWh.”

  78. “The [Brian Fisher’s] independent modelling, however, said that depending on the level of access to international permits, Australian business could expect to be operating under a carbon price ranging from $67 a tonne to as high as $405 a tonne if that access was restricted.

    The modelling forecast cumulative losses to gross national product could be expected to be between $264bn and $542bn by 2030 depending on the level of ¬access to permit trading and industry shielding.

    This would mean that by 2030, annual lost GDP would be anywhere between $53bn and $187bn compared with the status quo, while job losses in 2030 would range from 166,500 to 333,000.

    Lower wage growth could also be expected — between 3 per cent and 11 per cent — which would mean a $106,000 wage would be between $3180 and $11,660 lower than could otherwise be expected. The wholesale electricity price in 2030 could be as much as 50 per cent higher at $135MWh, while the total cost to business of inter¬national permits ¬required by then would be anywhere from $US2.9bn with 25 per cent access to $US6.2bn with no restriction.”
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/politics/price-labors-carbon-cuts-yes-you-can/news-story/4aae9813f8fc2a92789ad5c8f74974c2

  79. “Dr Fisher estimated Labor’s plan to cut carbon emissions by 45 per cent by 2030 could shrink economic growth by 0.8 per cent over the decade…

    It’s not disastrous, but it is a drop off,” Dr Fisher told ABC Radio on Thursday.

    Fermi problem? Disputed gross assumptions? Alternative modelling?

    It’s a bit annoying but hardly disastrous it seems. We might need to get the Kyoto credits out of the back pocket.

    It’s all cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias in an election frenzy. It’s all a bit crazy. I’m not voting Labor – but I am not having kittens either.

  80. As is usual, those who don’t understand that cost effectiveness is already built into our basic system of living fail to recognize that government is not always the solution to a problem. Same people, same lack of understanding.

    Taken from a rational free market perspective, I can argue that we would have better outcomes to almost all of these alleged situations which need addressing. Unfortunately, the ‘intellectuals’ don’t understand the basic mathematics of free market solutions or the pressures they create on cost.

    For instance, don’t we already think that more cost effective methods of producing cement are VERY effing high in the minds of those who make cement? — I mean come on –really are we that out of touch with business?

    I suppose the question answers itself.

    Also, any new regulation to force higher efficiency absolutely comes at a higher cost – or we wouldn’t need the regulation. Of course you have to believe climate change is something other than beneficial and something we can alter to believe in any of this nonsense.

    • Part quote: “– to force higher efficiency absolutely comes at a higher cost –“. Going for a higher efficiency (no need to force) may more than pay for itself. It is overcoming the inertia that is usually the problem (vested interest, fear of new tech, not understanding new tech, job changes, risk aversion, etc…).

      • This striving for cost is a market force – government is not required. For instance fuel efficiency in trucking is a huge consideration already and nobody, not congress, not the president or any law can make it more important. Fleets will absolutely pay higher equipment costs in exchange for better operational costs.

        Mandated LED lighting is an example in the opposite direction. In the northern climate, the increased costs did not outweigh the efficiency as incandescent bulb heat is not wasted but rather used as room heat. As LED bulb prices come down the consumer will make their own choice anyway. Literally a zero purpose law.

  81. Markets exist – ideally – in a democratic context. Markets need fair, transparent and accessible laws – including on open and equal markets, labor laws, environmental conservation, consumer protection and whatever else is arrived at in the political arena. Including for regulation of markets – banking capital requirements, anti-monopoly laws, prohibition of insider trading, laws on corporate transparency and probity, tax laws, etc. A key to stable markets – and therefore growth – is fair and transparent regulation, minimal corruption and effective democratic oversight.

    Optimal tax take is some 23% of GDP and government budgets are balanced. Interest rates are best managed through the overnight cash market to restrain inflation to a 2% to 3% target. These nuts and bolts of market management are mainstream market theory and keep economies on a stable – as far as is possible – growth trajectory.

    “Economic freedom is the fundamental right of every human to control his or her own labor and property. In an economically free society, individuals are free to work, produce, consume, and invest in any way they please. In economically free societies, governments allow labor, capital, and goods to move freely, and refrain from coercion or constraint of liberty beyond the extent necessary to protect and maintain liberty itself.” https://www.heritage.org/index/about

    Although in politics I suspect that there is a certain permissible leeway in interpretation of necessity. Whatever Jimmy – for instance – thinks of CO2 – something that is fairly ordinary – that particular PR battle seems to have been lost. It is a pointless self indulgence to be a voice in the wilderness. For a political party there is an absolute need for a policy that acknowledges political realities. You may agree or disagree with compromising detail – but not lose sight of the forest for the trees with impunity.

    • Whatever Jimmy – for instance – thinks of CO2 – something that is fairly ordinary – that particular PR battle seems to have been lost.

      What was lost by which side? Did you give up already, our side has not given up. We did elect Trump so you may think your side gave up and you have just now acknowledge your battle was lost.

      • I am speaking of course about the attitude of the general public – something that is influenced by the last weather disaster. I am not responsible for that.

  82. Many people have made fortunes and careers out of the madness of crowds and the consensus of the ignorant.
    “Science advances one funeral at a time.” – Max Planck

    Have a crack at those questions, would you please?

  83. Mr Shorten (Labor Leader) said on the ABC on 1 May, (as reported in ‘The Australian’):

    “Mr Shorten last night defended Labor’s lack of policy costings.

    “The cost of not acting on ¬climate change is far worse than acting on climate change,” he said on ABC’s 7.30.

    “And, again, when you talk about cost, what’s the cost to the environment, the cost in not acting?”

    The issue that should be challenged continually by the government, is that the cost to the environment of not acting to reduce global warming is negligible and likely beneficial. And the cost to the global economy is also negligible to beneficial. However, the cost of the policies to reduce global warming is huge.

  84. There is a real and understandable concern that is at least as scientifically informed as Peter Lang’s. Not much that is.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-47890319

    Real responses – as opposed to fringe polemic – have positive cost/benefit ratios.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-47890319

    https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aad965/pdf

    https://www.businessinsider.com.au/17-emerging-energy-technologies-2014-4

  85. Oh my! Look, there’s a squirrel!
    This debate is not, and should not be, about concern for the environment or alternative fuels. It’s about
    1. Does CO2 control climate and
    2. Can we control CO2
    And the answers very clearly are no and no. Which moots the question of should we…
    Markets will take care of cost factors and efficiencies. Regulations may, if intelligent, mitigate side effects.

    At the present time, at present levels, at the present rate of increase, CO2 does not present any threat, and does provide several benefits.

    Anyone who disagrees with that should attempt to reply to the 6 questions I offered a while ago.
    No takers yet. Any punters out there? Ellison?

    • I don’t know about the 6 questions but I agree and you have effectively refuted all of ‘beto’s’ nonsense.

      The idea that these questions and answers from the ‘plan’ are reasonable shows an extreme lack of understanding of obvious free market forces.

  86. Population, energy and farming is the core of progress.

    Earth system science is far from settled – but the time to debate skeptic blog unscience is well past.

  87. I occasionally do a review type article. Such things as this are not on Jimmy’s one dimensional radar.

    https://watertechbyrie.com/2014/06/23/the-unstable-math-of-michael-ghils-climate-sensitivity/

    • Science here is definitive and not settled.- but to know why you have to be familiar with the literature. If you can it opens up new vistas.

      https://pielkeclimatesci.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/r-260.pdf

    • It’s hard to get past that first sentence, Bobby. “The US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) defined abrupt climate change as a new climate paradigm as long ago as 2002.”
      Actually, the largest fastest warming in any instrumental record occurred around 1680 – 1720 CET https://climexp.knmi.nl/daily2longer.cgi
      On a longer time scale, the Younger Dryas comes to mind.
      And there are quite a few others.
      The only constant is change.

      • I didn’t say I didn’t read it. I said it was hard to get past that first line. Neither paper is dispositive to the questions Does CO2 control climate? and Can we control CO2? Which bears directly on Beto’s plan, the subject of this page.

      • Perpetual change is the point Jimmy. It happens via ‘NONLINEARITIES, FEEDBACKS AND CRITICAL THRESHOLDS WITHIN THE EARTH’S CLIMATE SYSTEM’

        I’ll skip to the bottom line just for you Jimmy.

        The 20 to 30 year regimes are chaotic shifts of quasi standing waves in the spatio/temporal chaos of the climate system. They may change a little or a lot with greenhouse gases giving form to Wally’s wild beast.

      • jimmww

        Met office figures dating back to 1659 (Central England Temperatures) demonstrate that temperatures have risen continuously in the UK (which has been described as a reasonable if not perfect proxy for Northern Hemisphere temperatures) since 1750, some two centuries before increased Co2 emissions from man are said to have had any impact. (Sea levels also began to rise around this time)

        The highest rates of annual temperature increase were as you say, the 1690 to 1720 and also the 1840 to 1870 climatic period; the most extensive rise in winter temperatures being a 90 year period commencing 1780 and finishing in 1870.

        These are all 30 year ‘climate periods’ so are not cherry picked shorter periods. if we want one of those no one living in the UK will have known warming this century. We are on a (historically high) temperature plateau

        tonyb

      • Thanks, Tonyb. This Modern Warming is indeed historic for recorded temperatures, but equalled and exceeded by the Minoan, Roman, and Medieval Warmings, not to mention the Holocene Optimum. Too bad thermometers don’t go back that far.

      • Are cold winters in Europe associated with low solar activity?

        https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/5/2/024001/meta

        Are warmer conditions linked to high activity. The CET is in a region influenced by the Northern Annular Mode – an atmospheric see-saw driven by polar surface pressure. The solar connection may not bode well for future CET warmth.

        But that there are obvious changes in a complex Earth system that are not caused by greenhouse gases means what?

  88. Try this: https://www.youtubeDOTcom/watch?v=T7pwFxQqOxQ for Jordan Peterson’s take on it.

  89. To bring you back from your squirrel, the subject pertinent to Beto’s plan is:
    1. Does CO2 control climate and
    2. Can we control CO2

    • Oh for God’s sake. We have established that anthropogenic greenhouse gases and aerosols – carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxides, CFC’s, black carbon and sulfate – are potentially triggers in a chaotic Earth system. If not predictably problematic. There are some very simple, existing fixes here. Low hanging fruit.

      The rational response is to build resilience to disaster whether natural or anthropogenic, to restore and conserve soils and ecosystems and to commercialize cost competitive alternatives to limiter fossil fuels.

      So CO2 is one factor in a complex dynamical Earth system – and we can profitably control anthropogenic emissions from a number of sectors including land use and agriculture.

      • “The rational response is to build resilience to disaster whether natural or anthropogenic, to restore and conserve soils and ecosystems,” and, etc.– e.g., praise the benefits of increased atmospheric CO2?

      • The benefit of anthropogenic emission to the atmosphere is that it can now be restored to the landscape. That is what you meant isn’t it?

      • Oh for God’s sake yourself.
        You haven’t established anything except possibilities. If you were for a moment to take a look at the historical record, you would instantly see that CO2 is not a problem at this time, at these levels, at this rate of increase.
        Indeed, if it were to double to 800ppm its GHG effect would increase by less than 2%, totally indistinguishable from the other eight forcings.

        Looks like what we have here is a simple failure of discrimination. You refuse to distinguish between CO2 and all those other nasty things that humans do to their environment.

        Do you really want to repeat the years 1929-1931 when human CO2 production declined by 30%, with no effect on temperature rise or the level and rise of atmospheric CO2?

  90. Wagathon has it exactly right. CO2 enhances crop production and drought resistance in a linear fashion while its GHG effect declines exponentially after the 50% in the first 20ppm.

    • Despite CO2 is good memes – the foundation for doubling food production in the next 30 years is not CO2 in the atmosphere but organic content in soils. There are some 42 nutrients and essential elements required by plants plus water. Where water is a limitation – leaf surface area increases CO2. Where water is not a limitation – evapotranspiration decreases altering terrestrial hydrology, cloud formation and humidity – increasing surface temperature and reducing condensation as dew.

      Increasing soil organic content increases infiltration, increases water holding capacity in the root, increases deep percolation to aquifers and reduces surface runoff, erosion and downstream flooding.

      Organic matter in soils allows diverse ecolologies to develop underground. Plants and fungi have a symbiotic relationship. Plants provide sugars for fungi – fungi produce acidic conditions that breakdown rock into macro and micro nutrients for plants.


      https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Building-Soils-for-Better-Crops-3rd-Edition/Text-Version/The-Living-Soil

      Real people all over the planet are realizing the value.

      So why the willful ignorance here?

  91. Speculating on possibilities is not science. It’s the beginning of science. Then follows evaluation of known mechanisms, looking for unknown mechanisms, calculating necessary consequences and looking for those by observation or experiment, and discarding those speculations not confirmed.
    Try it.

    If you disaggregate the good stuff from the bad stuff, you get more good stuff.

    • ‘What defines a climate change as abrupt? Technically, an abrupt climate change occurs when the climate system is forced to cross some threshold, triggering a transition to a new state at a rate determined by the climate system itself and faster than the cause. Chaotic processes in the climate system may allow the cause of such an abrupt climate change to be undetectably small.’ NAS 2002

      It is the dominant Earth system scientific paradigm. But as you noted – Planck suggested that science progresses one funeral at a time.

  92. Don’t forget, Bobby: The money you don’t spend on silly CO2 mitigation can be spent on repairing the damages we have caused, improving our social systems, and improving / maintaining infrastructure.

    At this time, the only conceivable mechanism we have of cooling the planet down is by global thermonuclear war, and I don’t recommend that.

    • Reducing CO2 will – all things being equal – cool the planet. We can do that with increased efficiency, sequestration in soils and ecosystems with increased food ;productivity and with cost competitive low carbon energy. Like SMR nuclear perhaps. The economic future belongs to the innovator.

      You reject reality and substitute your own? What a waste of effort this is.

      • “Reducing CO2 will – all things being equal – cool the planet”
        Ellison, don’t you find it at all unsettling that that has never happened in the last 550 million years? Maybe that’s because all other things were not equal.

  93. Ellison says ” the foundation for doubling food production in the next 30 years is not CO2 in the atmosphere but organic content in soils.” Maybe he should tell that to the greenhouse operators (that’s an actual greenhouse, that blocks convection) that they don’t have to keep their CO2 at 1500 – 2000 ppm. Of course, they do manage their soil well, but that’s because they can walk and chew gum at the same time. They know the difference that CO2 makes.

  94. Fascinating. Mean air temperature is determined at 6-50 meters. http://www.icax.co.uk/Mean_Annual_Air_Temperature.html
    The current mean temp is about 15C.
    Have you been drinking? Or just rabble-rousing?

    • Somewhere in the UK? They are not much into rice growing.

      While the graph I posted just above refers to air temp – this is soil temp. But never mind – the temperature to note is in the growing season.

    • But I am puzzled by determining mean air temperature at 6-50m deep in the ground? Surface temperature is measured in a standard meteorological enclosure at 2m.

    • There is such a logjam of error here. Starting with the idea that CO2 fertilization can double food production. It seems at most some 20% increase in cereal production under ideal conditions. It doesn’t scratch the surface of global food production.

      Instead of acknowledging error he doubled down claiming an average air temperature of 15C deep underground. Making my graph of carbohydrate increase irrelevant. This is In the UK where I suggested they don’t grow much rice. But OK – I suggested that the 2m deep temperature in the growing season was closer to the mark. He insisted that the relevant air temperature is the ground temperature at 6-50m deep. All the while with an attitude of sneering deprecation and a refusal to explain the inexplicable or graciously backtrack.

      • Now you’re confabulating, Bobby. 1. ” Starting with the idea that CO2 fertilization can double food production.” I didn’t say that.
        2. “doubled down claiming an average air temperature of 15C deep underground. Making my graph of carbohydrate increase irrelevant.” I didn’t say that.
        3. ” He insisted that the relevant air temperature is the ground temperature at 6-50m deep.” I didn’t say that.

  95. Sure.
    Air temperature varies from moment to moment. Surface temperature is the first derivative of that. Temp 6-50 m down is the second derivative.
    That averages out all the variables we know about.
    Anything else you want to know, just ask.

  96. Ellison, you can’t read and you certainly can’t quote. I cited the official source for mean air temperature. http://www.icax.co.uk/Mean_Annual_Air_Temperature.html
    I was surprised too.

  97. It shows CO2 rice fertilization in ideal conditions for a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere. Air temperature is not the critical point. A small change in air temperature may shift the growing season.

    The critical point is that CO2 fertilization is not doubling cereal production – let alone food production – by 2050.

  98. No, the critical point is that CO2 is very good for agriculture. The increase in CO2 since 1950 has been credited with 30% of the increase in production

  99. Who credits 30% of the ‘green revolution’ to CO2 fertilization. If there is no credible scientific support for such claims – it is just propaganda.

  100. Photosynthesis maxes out at low CO2 concentrations. Particularly for C4 plants that are the bulk of staple foods.

    The so called fertilization effect occurs through stomatal control of water losses in respiration. CO2 fertilization is more a factor in dryland cropping of cereals.

    Carbon has been lost from soils to the atmosphere at levels comparable to fossil fuel combustion.

    Farmers are now returning that carbon to soils.

    The best place for it for many reasons – including water conservation and management.

    https://judithcurry.com/2019/04/29/betos-climate-action-plan/#comment-892434

  101. Farmers should return carbon to the soil. And do. They also appreciate the increase in crop from CO2 increases.


    The greatest CO2 benefit was seen in trees, then C3 crops (most crops), but even C4 crops (all of them grasses) showed increases of 15-20%, especially when drought-stressed.
    There are only four important C4 crops, all of them grasses: corn [maize], sugarcane, sorghum, and millet.

    C3 plants include: rice (Oryza sativa), wheat (Triticum spp.), barley (Hordeum vulgare), rye (Secale cereale), and oat (Avena sativa); soybean (Gycine max), peanut (Arachis hypogaea), cotton (Gossypium spp.), sugar beets (Beta vulgaris), tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum), spinach (Spinacea oleracea), potato (Solanum tuberosum)
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/01/21/co2-and-crops-nas-vs-science/

  102. Mark Twain said you never want to get into an argument with anyone who buys ink by the barrel. The modern translation would be: anyone who buys electrons by the petabyte.

  103. I have given this seed yield graph before. There is some 20% increase in seed yield for rice with a doubling of CO2 in ideal growing conditions. The numbers vary but there is an increase. Vegetative growth is greater than the increase in seed yield. How this translates to the field with different limitations is another problem.


    http://www.fao.org/3/w5183e/w5183e06.htm

    But the task is to double food production by 2050. Carbon sequestration in soils has major benefits in addition to offsetting anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion, land use conversion, soil cultivation, continuous grazing and cement and steel manufacturing. Restoring soil carbon stores increases agronomic productivity and enhances global food security. Increasing the soil organic content enhances water holding capacity and creates a more drought tolerant agriculture – with less downstream flooding. There is a critical level of soil carbon that is essential to maximising the effectiveness of water and nutrient inputs. Global food security, especially for countries with fragile soils and harsh climate such as in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, cannot be achieved without improving soil quality through an increase in soil organic content. Reversing soil carbon loss is a new green revolution at a time when agriculture is hitting a productivity barrier with exhausted soils and increasingly expensive inputs. And farmers are leading the way.

    “This Regenerative Agriculture Alliance has great capacity and my job is to harness the best consultants, groups, the best people who know that space and can help us address the most complex farming problems,” she said. “We live in an interesting time. We have moved beyond the notion of sustainable farming. Now we’re looking at the biology of how we’re going to fix planet earth.” https://www.theland.com.au/story/5705717/pms-high-praise-for-awarded-farm-leader/

  104. Well, you’re a bit selective, aren’t you, cobber?
    The soybean yield from increased CO2, measured, is from 30-40% by measurement, not by model math.
    http://www.fao.org/3/w5183e/w5183e06.htm
    Now, why would that be? I ask, with some curiosity…
    And then, why would you, of all people, tackle the problem of doubling food production by 2050. You really don’t seem equipped for the task.

  105. I think not.

  106. So, Descartes walks into a bar and the bartender say “Would you like a beer?” Descartes says “I think not,” and disappears…

  107. Ellison!
    You didn’t say “That’s not funny!”

  108. I guess one of the many things lacking in your skill set is a sense of humour. Right?

  109. Now, if I had said you lacked a sense of humor, you could have argued with that, on the simple technicality.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s