Week in review – science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that have caught my eye these past several weeks.

Regional imprints of changes in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation [link]

A deadly summer in Africa [link]

**Abrupt Common Era hydroclimate shifts drive west Greenland ice cap change [link]

Emergence of representative signals for sudden stratospheric warmings [link]

Scientists now blame geothermal heat for melting Antarctic glaciers [link]

Large-scale atmospheric drivers of snowfall over Thwaites Glacier, Antarctica [link]

Confusion over ENSO and global warming: [link] [link] [link]

Constraining the date of a seasonally ice-free Arctic Ocean [link]

Contributions to Polar Amplification in CMIP5 and CMIP6 models [link]

Review of airborne transmission of respiratory viruses [link]

Atmospheric blocking and weather extremes over the Euro-Atlantic sector [link]

Ambiguous stability of glaciers at bed peaks [link]

Seasonal Arctic sea ice forecasting with probabilistic deep learning [link]

**An extremeness threshold determines the regional response of floods to changes in rainfall extremes [link]

Europe’s July Floods: So rare and extreme, they’re hard to study [link]

**The anti-greenhouse effect: Antarctic radiative and temperature response to a doubling of CO2 [link]

**High tide floods and storm surges during atmospheric river events on the west coast [link]

Biomass burning smoke and its influence on clouds [link]

Pielke Jr: Catastrophes of the 21st Century [link]

Radiative feedbacks on land surface change and associated precipitation shifts [link]

Co-occurrence of California drought and northeast Pacific marine heatwaves under climate change [link]

Coral reef islands are growing [link]

**Earth’s energy imbalance from the ocean perspective [link]

**Arctic ocean stratification set by sea level and freshwater inputs since the last ice age [link]

**’Recent Emergence of Arctic Amplification’ in the past century of the observational record. Using a large ensemble, we explore why Arctic Amplification didn’t occur for much of the past century [link]

** A simple explanation for declining phenological temperature sensitivity with warming [link]

**Lower peak for last interglacial ice melt and sea level rise [link]

Global-scale human impact on delta morphology has led to net land area gain [link]

Increasing probability of record shattering climate extremes [link]

**An evaluation of CMIP5 and CMIP6 climate models in simulating summer rainfall in the Southeast Asian monsoon domain [link]

The bushfires that ravaged Australia in 2019 and 2020 were so intense they actually cooled temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere last year [link]

Frequency of extreme precipitation increases extensively with event rareness under global warming [link]

Policy and technology

Farmers restore native grasslands as groundwater disappears [link]

Long duration energy storage: A blueprint for research and innovation [link]

MIT designed project achieves major advance towards fusion energy [link]

Australian startup is beating China to efficient and cheaper solar panels [link]

How Bangladesh transformed itself into a modern and resilient society [link]

Change of extreme snow events shaped the roof of traditional Chinese architecture in the past millennium [link]

Big carbon removal plant in Iceland [link]

Framing nature based solutions to climate change [link]

“Risk? Crisis? Emergency? Implications of the new climate emergency framing for governance and policy” [link]

Restoring coastal wetlands in the Gulf of Mexico [link]

Major hurricanes can develop faster than cities can evacuate: we’re hitting the limits of hurricane preparedness [link]

Biden’s welcome hypocrisy on climate policy: The Paris Agreement has completely untethered the global climate discourse from actual policy-making.[link]

Economic development and declining vulnerability to climate-related disasters in China [link]

Cost of nonuniform climate policies [link]

The radical potential of nuclear fusion [link]

Federal regulators declare first-ever shortage on the Colorado River as water officials look toward a drier future. [link]

California’s NIMBY cities pushed millions of people into housing in fire hazard zones – and is now abandoning them. [link]

Advancing bipartisan decarbonization policies: lessons from state-level successes and failures [link]

Managing the political economy of limate change policies [link]

Wildfire burning is key to increasing biodiversity [link]

**Climate litigation has a big evidence gap [link]

Energy independence doesn’t mean what it used to [link]

A soil-science revolution upends plans to fight climate change [link]

Western drought highlights the need for action to reduce wildfire risk [link]

Potential CO2 removing from enhanced weathering by ecosystem responses to powdered rock [link]

Lomborg: Welfare in the 21st century: increasing development, reducing inequality the impat of climate change, and the cost of climate policies [link]

About science and scientists

**Ioannidis: How the pandemic is changing the norms of science.[link]

**Philospher Peter Boghossian resigns his faculty position: My university sacrificed ideas for ideology [link]

**Cancel culture in academia: The New Puritans [link]

**Dan Sarewitz: How good is science? [link]

The social science monoculture doubles down [link]

A postmodern inquisition: today’s activists closely resemble Gallileo’s inquisitors [link]

“water studies needs to confront the reality that it may be pursuing too many publications and not enough ideas” [link]

On scientists’ failure (refusal?) to acknowledge when they got it wrong. [link]

**Matt Ridley: How science lost the Public’s trust [link]

228 responses to “Week in review – science edition

  1. Since it seems like I’m the first one to comment, let me just thank our gracious and most knowledgeable host for her endless contributions to both the science, and the discussion of the science, of climate. Dr. Judith, most well done!

    w.

  2. > today’s activists closely resemble Gallileo’s inquisitors

    But Galileo never gets old:

    https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2021/05/23/the-bingo-core/

  3. I too want to thank Dr. Curry.

    It will be interesting to see comments on Ionnidis’ article.

    Also, the Galileo myth appears (things were are lot more complicated than the standard story – the main reason for house arrest wasn’t heresy, but intentionally ridiculing the Pope). It was already well established, in the Church if not in doctrine, that the Earth orbited the Sun.

    Finally, does anyone else here use Safari to post comments. Starting about a month ago, that quit working for me. But Firefox works fine.

    • You might like:

      http://intellectualmathematics.com/blog/the-case-against-galileo-s01-overview/

      Galileo was first and foremost a self-promoter.

      Perfect model for contrarians, if you ask me!

      • I am glad that Al Gore and Michael Mann are so self effacing.

      • tony –

        Is it possible to get past the personality contest? Is there a more sure sign of tribalism than that?

      • C’mon, J.

        Al is WAAAAAAAYYYYY fatter than Galileo!

      • joshua

        I suggest you redirect that comment to Willard as by directing it to me you have shown your own bias.

      • Tony,

        Your whataboutism is duly noted.

        As you may know, New Discourse has been founded by Jimmy Concept and Michael O’Fallon. Speaking of whom:

        Just as the Terror was used by Robespierre and the Jacobins during the French Revolution two centuries ago, fear and draconian control is being used today to usher in… The Great Reset.

        Or so Michael O’Fallon would have you believe. O’Fallon is the founder of Sovereign Nations, a Christian nationalist organisation that aims to “prepare warriors for the battleground of ideas”. He’s recently been collaborating with [Jimmy Concept], renowned culture warrior and online troll, to teach us all how critical theory and social justice are hell bent on destroying Our (or at least Western) Civilisation.

        https://decoding-the-gurus.captivate.fm/episode/michael-ofallon-the-jacobins-are-back-to-reset-everything-dun-dun-daah

        Would you care to comment?

      • tony –

        > I suggest you redirect that comment to Willard as by directing it to me you have shown your own bias.

        How do you figure? John thought up Galileo. You brought up Al, and Mike.

    • meso –

      Not that you’ll be interested, but a comment on Ioannidis piece below.

      As for commenting and browsers, I’ve had a very hard time getting comments past the filter lately, using Chrome. I doubt it’s related to my browser, but who knows?

      Regarding the comment below, I tried numerous times with no success. Then I broke the comment up into two separate comments and the went through with no other changes (except I change “anonymous/pseudonymous” “anonymous and pseudonymous.”

      Which is pretty dang weird.

    • Been using Firefox for years, but it now seems the Fox is under fire – with frequent updating and very slow to respond.

    • Re Ioannidis’ article….

      I always enjoy his writing, but it’s disheartening that he too seems to have succumbed to the end-of-the-world catastrophe porn purveyed by the bulk of media – mainstream and social. To wit: “Amid pandemic confusion, the powerful and the conflicted became more powerful and more conflicted, while millions of disadvantaged people have died and billions suffered.”

      As of this morning, 224,117,770 cases of COVID-19 had been recorded worldwide. Of these cases, 4,622,583 resulted in death. The world population at the time I checked those stats was 7,892,844,357. So 2.84% of the world population has had the disease. Of those, 2.06% died. That means that 0.058% (58 one thousandths of one percent) of the world population has perished from COVID-19.

      During the Spanish flu epidemic, 500 million of the 1.8 billion people on Earth caught the disease – 27.8%. At least 50,000,000 died, 2.8% of the world’s population.

      People have lost whatever sense of proportion they might once have had. This pandemic is wimpy. I’m sorry, but it just is. The unrelenting assault on us by media of all kinds has beaten us into submission. We have to start looking at it in more realistic terms, or we will travel down a road from which there may be no return.

      P.S. I write this as one who lost a parent to COVID-19. We held her memorial service this afternoon.

      • I don’t know about the world figures quoted by Ioannidis, although I suspect that what he says regarding the numbers is more likely to be true than not, especially as there is evidence of under-reporting in the figures.

        I am prepared to trust the figures for the UK, with a well-organized system of measuring and reporting – and it makes grim reading.

        The known cases (confirmed by testing) represent 10.9% of the population. This is certainly an under-representation of the number of UK citizens who have caught the disease, but by how much is still a matter of debate.

        0.79% of the population has been hospitalized by the disease.
        0.2% of the population has died of the disease.

        What is less well known is the number of people who have been debilitated by the disease – so called “long Covid”. It is seemingly quite widespread, maybe up to 2M people (that would be about 3% of the population).

        Sure, it is not anywhere near as bad as Spanish Flu – or the Black Death outbreak of the 14th century. Just as well. They were horrific.

        However, its effects have been pretty dire. The hospitalization figures brought the health system in the UK close to being overwhelmed back in January. It is certain that substantial numbers of people have died of other non-covid diseases because of the stress on the health system.

        Much of the reaction to the disease in the UK has been one of keeping the numbers of infected down to a level where the health system is not overwhelmed. And it ain’t over yet, despite the various measures. At least we now have effective vaccines and improving treatment protocols for those who get infected.

        I am sorry for your loss.

      • “I am sorry for your loss.”

        Thank you, I appreciate your sentiment.

        Both of my sons, age 31 and 29, have had COVID. It had long COVID effect on both of them, until each got vaccinated after the fact. Then the effects disappeared, and they were able to see for the first time what those effects had been.

        This is nothing new with respect to viruses that attack the central nervous system. I received a deep scratch by a racoon (long story), and thought nothing of it until a week later, when I developed flu-like symptoms. It was some time after that – and much deterioration in my condition – that I went to an ER, and was immediately given rabies vaccine and human rabies antibodies. My flu-like symptoms disappeared within hours, and after three subsequent rabies vaccine injections, were gone completely.

        But the effects lasted for nearly a year. I was in a mental fog (much like COVID fog), whose extent was not apparent to me until after I recovered. My neurologist (who was surprised that I survived after waiting so long to get treated) filled me in on the effects of the rabies vaccine. He was right. COVID seems to have similar effects.

        But the figures I cited were ones I found on worldometer for COVID, and various sources for the Spanish flu. I don’t recall Ioannidis citing any figures.

        The figures are unquestionably wrong, since they don’t include any accurate data from China (which doesn’t have any itself), and since they DO include horribly skewed and altered data from the United States. But they are all we have to go on, and are probably within an order of magnitude accuracy.

        One thing that should be remembered, and is not, is that the original “lockdowns” were for the purpose of “flattening the curve.” Epidemiologists knew that this virus had the potential to sicken hundreds of millions of people, and kill millions. But they didn’t want the first wave to overwhelm hospital Intensive Care Units, so recommended the unprecedented quarantine of the healthy to limit the spread.

        This initial effort has evolved into “defeating the virus” – as if we could eradicate it the same way we did with smallpox. That has never been done with a virus of this type, and will never be done with COVID-19. The vaccines were nothing short of a miracle of science (sorry for the extremely mixed metaphor), but we have made little progress with treatment of the illness. That’s largely because of political opposition from people who don’t like the proponents of certain treatments. The blood of hundreds of thousands of Americans (my mother included) is on their hands.

  4. Emergence of representative signals for sudden stratospheric warmings. Authors analyze the arctic stratosphere, based on data from a 2.5×2.5 degrees grid. Polar coordinates have a singularity right in the middle of the area of interest. For analyzing arctic events another coordinate system should have been used. This severely diminishes my trust in their impressive formulas. They probably know what they are doing, but I don’t feel like wading into it.

  5. Earlier this month, I posted an assessment of the vertical profiles from observations compared with GISS model E runs for the RAOB era, the MSU era and the twenty-first century so far.

    There are confirmatory and disconfirmatory aspects you may see here:
    https://climateobs.substack.com/p/vertical-profiles-of-climate-change

    • McGee: Just explain the problems here. We’re not going to go read some blog post to try to figure out what you’re alluding to. Thanks.

      • Oh, yeah – good point.

        On the basis of qualitative assessments:

        * obs confirm modeled warming of the troposphere
        * obs confirm modeled cooling of the troposphere
        * obs confirm modeled maxima of warming over the Arctic
        * obs tend to contradict an upper tropospheric maxima of warming for the RAOB and MSU eras
        * ERA5 and RAOB do include upper tropospheric maxima of warming over the brief twenty-first century so far

        * RAOBs do not capture any coherent zonal wind speed trends
        * ERA5 zonal wind speed trends tend to confirm the “t-bone” shaped maxima in both NH and SH
        * ERA5 zonal wind speed trends tend to contradict the model in many regions

        * RAOBs and ERA5 contradict the model by indicating significant areas of decreasing water vapor over time for all three periods.
        * At the same time, RAOBs and ERA5 both indicate a greater than modeled increase of water vapor over high latitudes

        * ERA5 greatly contradicts the model with respect to changes of cloud fraction.

      • Correction:

        second point should read:
        “obs confirm modeled cooling of the stratosphere”

  6. A typically (unfortunately) unqualified opinion dressed up as fact from Ioannidis:

    > Anonymous and pseudonymous abuse has a chilling effect; it is worse when the people doing the abusing are eponymous and respectable.

    How does one measure the “chilling effect” from anonymous/psuedonymous VS. eponymous abuse, respectively? How has he done so in order to make this statement? Ioannisis infamously had to walk back personal-level antipathy he embedded within a scientific piece he authored.

    Perhaps his logic is more than a bit self-serving.

  7. A typically (unfortunately) unqualified opinion dressed up as fact from Ioannidis:

    > Anonymous and pseudonymous abuse has a chilling effect; it is worse when the people doing the abusing are eponymous and respectable.

    • How does one measure the “chilling effect” from anonymous and psuedonymous VS. eponymous abuse, respectively? How has he done so in order to make this statement? Ioannidis infamously had to walk back personal-level antipathy he embedded within a scientific piece he authored.

      Perhaps his logic is more than a bit self-serving.

      • I can think of no group better qualified to measure chilling effects than climate scientists.

        Then again, a lot of them can’t be trusted to read a thermometer.

      • George Turner wrote: I can think of no group better qualified to measure chilling effects than climate scientists.
        Then again, a lot of them can’t be trusted to read a thermometer.

        Exactly the kind of hatred that has caused so many problems.

  8. Here is the Matt Ridley article not behind a paywall.
    https://www.rationaloptimist.com/blog/how-science-lost-the-public-s-trust/
    I liked the discussed example “Climate science has also been “infected by cultural relativism and postmodernism,” Mr. Ridley says. He cites a paper that was critical of glaciology—the study of glaciers—“because it wasn’t sufficiently feminist.” I wonder if he’s kidding, but Google confirms he isn’t. In 2016 Progress in Human Geography published “Glaciers, gender, and science: A feminist glaciology framework for global environmental change research.””
    That explains in a nutshell why science is distrusted. If it doesn’t conform to political norms, it is not allowed. Science as a religion, not a discipline.

  9. Article re, ‘Heatwaves and wildfires’… in Africa…

    Reminds me me of some of the latest archaeological take on, out of Africa– nothing we humans can do to stop climate from changing… the latest ‘news’ (archaeological evidence) is hominids traversed the Arabian peninsula from Africa to Eurasia — back and forth due to changes in climate– many times over hundreds of thousands of years with possibly several species of hominids living together at the same time.

    It may well be that migration out of Africa many times over many years may well have been motivated by life in the real world such as perhaps… Africa was just too damn hot!

  10. Is it just me or are others having difficulty with downloading or view Roger Pielke Jr’s paper on catastrophes of the 21st Century? Judith’s link opens the root page for the publication but the links to either download the paper or view it in the browser fail to open. I’ve tried Safari and Chrome.

  11. On the policy side:
    Countdown to COP26 on the road to failure
    By David Wojick
    https://www.cfact.org/2021/09/07/countdown-to-cop26-on-the-road-to-failure/

    The beginning:

    “It is less than 60 days until COP26 convenes in Glasgow. We can expect a flood of climate horror stories (including flooding). But there will also be some discussion of the actual issues, so here is a brief breakdown of the big four.

    Keep in mind that the alarmists have a bit of a civil war going on, between what I call the moderates and the radicals. The moderates have been at it for over 30 years and the radicals are fed up. The moderates now have a net zero target of 2050, while the radicals want 2030, so the difference is pretty stark. The last two COPs were partly paralyzed by this split, especially COP25. This fight will be a major factor in Glasgow.

    The first two big issues are old business, money business to be precise. Of course it is all about money but these two are that by name ­ trading and finance.”

    The analysis is in the article. Please share it.

    COP26 could be great fun!

  12. Two of the three links under “El Niño confusion” seem to go to the same article. Both articles are on how future warming will change El Niño. I have a reverse twist on this. All of the warming to date in the 40+ year satellite record is due to two super El Niño. There is no GHG warming at all. I first pointed this out almost three years ago but it is still valid. Why should be the big research question.

    http://www.cfact.org/2018/01/02/no-co2-warming-for-the-last-40-years/
    https://www.cfact.org/2021/01/15/the-new-pause/
    The third flatline continues.

    The basic points:
    1. Why the CO2 increase has had no effect is a big research question, as I said. Possible negative feedbacks include clouds (Lindzen’s iris for example) and convection. Countervailing forces might be indirect solar (Svensmark for example) and ocean stuff. As a logician I just analyze the data. I study the reasoning, not the climate.

    2. I see nothing random in the satellite record. There is a non-warming oscillator, probably simple chaos since we know the weather and climate are both chaotic. Climate is average weather and chaotic weather will give what are called “strange statistics” which means the averages will also oscillate.

    3. If we flatten the non-warming oscillations we find three flat lines, each a bit warmer than its predecessor, separated by two super El Niño. We know these cause energy to be added so it is merely a matter of some residual energy raising the successive flatline. The explanation is painfully simple.

    4. I consider the surface and ocean temperature graphs to be statistical junk. Each method violates statically sampling theory in several different fatal ways. But assuming one or both are actually warming, I know of no way an increase in atmospheric CO2 can warm the surface or ocean without also warming the atmosphere, which we do not see. Happy to hear a conjecture.

    • David Wojick wrote: Two of the three links under “El Niño confusion” seem to go to the same article. Both articles are on how future warming will change El Niño. I have a reverse twist on this. All of the warming to date in the 40+ year satellite record is due to two super El Niño.

      David: How does an El Nino generate heat that’s added to the climate system?

      Where does that heat come from?

      • DA

        Where did the heat come from 4,000 years ago?

      • CKid: You’re another one whose emailed comments are now filtered straight to trash for your past insulting comments.

      • David

        Looks like my comment got straight through and my comment was a question. Where did the heat come from 4,000 years ago? Or do you think things like hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, blizzard, floods, etc, etc, only start after AGW rose its ugly head? Do they allow you to know those things, or are they on the pay no never mind list?

      • Richard Greene

        El Ninos rearrange heat — they bring some ocean heat to the surface, where that heat will affect sea surface temperatures.

        In the long run (30 to 40 years), all the ENSOs have offset each other, for a net change of near zero.

        It is too soon to declare that the strong 1998 and 2015/2016 El Ninos will never be completely offset by La Ninas.

    • David Wojick wrote:
      I consider the surface and ocean temperature graphs to be statistical junk.

      David W has no qualifications for making this judgements, which is why he doesn’t give any reasoning.
      .
      “Wojick has a Ph.D. in the philosophy of science and mathematical logic from the University of Pittsburgh and a B.S. in civil engineering from Carnegie Tech.”
      https://www.heartland.org/about-us/who-we-are/david-wojick-ph-d

      Just another sell-out.

    • “All of the warming to date in the 40+ year satellite record is due to two super El Niño.”

      OK
      Then please explain the physics of that process.
      When what is happening is that an EN transfers sensible and mostly LH to the atmosphere, which in a matter of a weeks after the EN’s ending at most escapes to space as LWIR.
      Pray tell, IYO, how that process manages to “lift by it’s own braces” and stay within the climate system until the next EN?
      For 40 years.
      Meanwhile, of course we have had many LNs as well.
      Fascinating the lengths to which some go to bolster ideological bias.

      Additionally, how come this new physics of yours (as that is what it must mean) is only happening at at time of increased RF from CO2.
      Do tell and in addition write a paper to share with the climate science world that stands agog.

  13. On the responsiveness of atmospheric composition to fossil fuel emissions

    https://wp.me/pTN8Y-5oU

  14. Wowwowwow. WordPress or JCurry won’t allow comments about m_Ridl_ey owning a coal_mine

    • Such a shame I had to sneak that in

      • David

        (repeated as this reply disappeared)

        It is hardly a secret that the family you mention own a you know what mine and have done for nearly a century.

        It is however just one of a number of businesses supporting the local economy that the family in England has owned since 1700, which you will recognise as being the start of a remarkable rise in temperatures for the next 39 years that ended in 1740, one of the coldest winters ever.

        Here is the proper context

        https://www.mattridley.co.uk/explore-blagdon/

        Did you have some point to make?

        tonyb

    • Is that censorship your doing, Judith?

      • David

        I have tried three times to reply to you on the subject but each one has disappeared. Curious

        The ownership is hardly a secret and the facility in question has been in operation for nearly a century providing jobs for local people.

        It is one of a number of enterprises owned by the family since 1700 which you will recognise as the start of a remarkable 39 year rise in temperature that ended in 1740 in an extremely cold winter. Phil Jones investigated this in 2004 and he wrote that it demonstrated far greater natural climate variability than he had previously believed possible

        do you have a point to make on his ownership?

        Tonyb

    • David –

      The filter is acting weird. Attributing that to intent to “censor” is weak thinking.

    • David

      It is hardly a secret that the family of Matt Ridley own a coa* mine and have done for nearly a century.

      It is however just one of a number of businesses supporting the local economy that the family in England has owned since 1700, which you will recognise as being the start of a remarkable rise in temperatures for the next 39 years that ended in 1740, one of the coldest winters ever.

      Here is the proper context

      https://www.mattridley.co.uk/explore-blagdon/

      Did you have some point to make?

      tonyb

  15. Ireneusz Palmowski

    After the 20th of September, Arctic air masses will arrive in central and southeastern Europe. The front may bring snow to the Apennines.
    https://i.ibb.co/XWL80yP/hgt300-1.webp

  16. Ireneusz Palmowski

    A weak La Niña will not form a strong turning wave in the western Pacific, so it is unlikely that wintertime La Niña will be followed by El Niño formation. If solar wind continue to be as weak as they are now then La Niña conditions could drag on.
    http://www.bom.gov.au/archive/oceanography/ocean_anals/IDYOC007/IDYOC007.202109.gif
    https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/real-time-solar-wind

  17. Bjorn Lomborg says “… climate change now causes 116,000 additional heat deaths annually but avoids almost 283,000 cold deaths. Each year, warming saves 166,000 lives.

    Today, we no longer see 500,000 or even 18,000 lives lost to climate-related weather disasters but 6000. This year could achieve a century-long climate-related death risk decline of 99.7 per cent. For a smart climate conversation, we need to insist on seeing all the data.”

    The Australian ‘Do the maths for the real story on climate disasters’

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/inquirer/do-the-maths-for-the-real-story-on-climate-disasters/news-story/3599246ae2ca9f5de31eb4a5abf5240d

    • The full article in three quotes:

      “Media gives outsized attention to plane crashes. But lots of stories of plane crashes do not provide a good insight into transport safety. You need statistics to realise that planes are much safer than cars.

      Climate alarmist reporting is causing the same problem with ever-proliferating stories about extreme heatwaves, floods and fires. This gale of ghastly tragedies argues that out-of-control climate change is causing ever deadlier calamities. Yet this narrative is contradicted by the data.
      One of the best documented impacts of global warming is more heat extremes, which made headlines across the world this northern summer.

      While rarely reported, the new UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report also tells us “the frequency and intensity of cold extremes have decreased”. That matters because, globally, more than 4.5 million people die from cold compared with fewer than 600,000 from heat.

      A new study in medical journal The Lancet shows temperature rises during the past two decades in the US and Canada mean 7200 additional heat deaths each year – many more than the widely reported 624 deaths from this summer’s heat dome.

      But the study also shows that warming means each year we avoid 21,000 cold deaths. We are badly informed if we don’t hear both parts of this story.

      Similarly, the tragic floods in Germany and Belgium are blamed on climate change. But the data doesn’t support that river floods have increased.

      Globally, a large study of more than 9000 rivers shows that while some rivers see increasing flood trends, many more rivers see decreasing flood trends. This is also true in Europe, where the new UN IPCC report tallies all rivers and finds most flood less.

      Stories of the rivers that still flood inevitably will dominate, but this doesn’t help us understand the global picture. Most German flood deaths occurred on the river Ahr.

      cont …

    • … cont.

      “While it did experience a very high flow on July 14 this year, it was still much lower than flows in 1804 and 1910. What matters most for riverine flooding is that ever more people build on flood plains, leaving the water nowhere to go. This highlights the necessity of a well-functioning warning system.

      Here, Germany failed spectacularly. Since previous deadly floods in 2002, Germany has built an extensive warning system, but last September, during a “national warning” day, most warning measures didn’t work. Models warned of flooding up to nine days ahead, but most people were left unaware.

      The hydrologist who set up the European Flood Awareness System called it “a monumental failure of the system”. But, of course, blaming the deadly floods on climate change is convenient for politicians who were responsible for the missing early warnings.

      Similarly, US fires frequently get blamed on climate, but the real reason is mostly bad forest management.

      Overall, the US government’s statistics belie the hype: this year’s burned area to date is the seventh lowest of the past 20 years. Last year, 11 per cent of the annual area burned compared with the early 1900s. Contrary to climate cliches, globally burned area has declined dramatically since 1900 and continues to fall through the satellite era.

      The world is vast, and with cameras everywhere there is a torrent of new fires, heatwaves and floods vying for attention daily. Newspapers earn clicks, politicians brandish their virtue and climate campaigners fund¬raise from these calamities. But just like plane crashes, a steady stream of bad news doesn’t inform well.

      We have statistics on global deaths from all climate-related weather disasters such as floods, droughts, storms and fire from the International Disaster Database. In the 1920s, these disasters on average killed almost 500,000 people each year.

      The current climate-alarmed narrative would suggest that climate-fuelled disasters are deadlier, but that is untrue. During the past century, climate-related deaths have dropped an astounding 96 per cent to about 18,000 dead in an average year. Because the global population has quadrupled, global death risk from climate in the 2010s has dropped by more than 99 per cent.

      This doesn’t negate that climate change is a real problem that we should fix smartly. But contrary to the current narrative, our adaptive capacity is vastly larger than changing climate risks.”

      cont…

      • … cont.

        “Look at 2021, which seems to be branded the year of climate catastrophes. Add the 624 deaths from the North American heat dome, the 358 dead from floods in Germany and Belgium, the 559 dead from Indian climate-related catastrophes that you may not even have heard about and 1378 more fatalities from more than 200 other catastrophes. Adjusted to a full year, and climate-related weather disasters will likely cause about 6000 deaths this year.

        Each death is a tragedy, yet many more tragedies are being avoided. Globally, the Lancet study shows that climate change now causes 116,000 additional heat deaths annually but avoids almost 283,000 cold deaths. Each year, warming saves 166,000 lives.

        Today, we no longer see 500,000 or even 18,000 lives lost to climate-related weather disasters but 6000. This year could achieve a century-long climate-related death risk decline of 99.7 per cent. For a smart climate conversation, we need to insist on seeing all the data.”

        https://www.theaustralian.com.au/inquirer/do-the-maths-for-the-real-story-on-climate-disasters/news-story/3599246ae2ca9f5de31eb4a5abf5240d

  18. … cont.

    “Look at 2021, which seems to be branded the year of climate catastrophes. Add the 624 deaths from the North American heat dome, the 358 dead from floods in Germany and Belgium, the 559 dead from Indian climate-related catastrophes that you may not even have heard about and 1378 more fatalities from more than 200 other catastrophes. Adjusted to a full year, and climate-related weather disasters will likely cause about 6000 deaths this year.

    Each death is a tragedy, yet many more tragedies are being avoided. Globally, the Lancet study shows that climate change now causes 116,000 additional heat deaths annually but avoids almost 283,000 cold deaths. Each year, warming saves 166,000 lives.

    Today, we no longer see 500,000 or even 18,000 lives lost to climate-related weather disasters but 6000. This year could achieve a century-long climate-related death risk decline of 99.7 per cent. For a smart climate conversation, we need to insist on seeing all the data.”

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/inquirer/do-the-maths-for-the-real-story-on-climate-disasters/news-story/3599246ae2ca9f5de31eb4a5abf5240d

  19. From one of the Geothermal links.

    “High geothermal heat flow beneath Thwaites and Pope glaciers could further contribute to rapid past and future changes in the glacier system. Our results in the Amundsen Sea region provide a new base for discussing the location and extent of crustal-scale thermal anomalies. This is a key finding to better characterize basal sliding properties and subglacial hydrology, as well as refine thermal boundary conditions for studies of ice sheet dynamics in the most rapidly changing sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet”

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s43247-021-00242-3

    Yet another study to add to dozens of other studies that most likely will be excluded from IPCC7, and will be included in the voluminous list of studies absent from IPCC5 and IPCC6, joining SLR studies that found little or no acceleration.

  20. The Atlantic article on cancel culture and the new Puritans is sobering. It made me realise that this phenomenon has a lot in common with the purges of Stalin’s CCCP in 1936-1939:

    (an) academic … told me that his university “never even talked to me before it decided to actually punish me. They read the reports from the investigators, but they never brought me in a room, they never called me on the phone, so that I could say anything about my side of the story. And they openly told me that I was being punished based on allegations. Just because they didn’t find evidence of it, they told me, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.”

    Stalin’s purges in the 1930’s likewise acquired a terrifying momentum. What was in common was that there was no process of inquiry or justice, no opportunity for defence. The show trials and forced confessions were part of the punishment and never changed the outcome. Likewise now when an academic or writer is tarred by the social media or campus mob, no-one even wants any real inquiry or an apology – it’s just permanent unconditional excommunication and – for many creative trades – execution.

    The Russian mindset to this day is haunted by the purges and deeply wounded, even mutilated by it. Those sent to Stalin’s gulag left behind abandoned children and no-one would even touch them. Such was the state of fear that is now back and resident in America’s campuses and media circles. The bible called this “turning your back on your own flesh and blood”.

    What happens to people and a whole society when everyone repeatedly engages in mob killings? When fear for one’s own safety mixes with a murderous self-righteousness and one even derives satisfaction at the demise of former friends and colleagues. First once or twice then on a routine basis. One long term consequence is a loss of honesty. The ability to be open and frank including being able to discuss one’s own mistakes, dies. A kind of paranoia sets in in which one must aggressively defend oneself from even the tiniest, most apparently trivial suggestion of an accusation against you. Behind every conversation, even casual ones, looms the shadow of the Gulag. Fanatical defence is mounted at the merest suggestion of impugned guilt of the most trivial thing.

    Of course, soon nothing is casual. That’s gone forever. Get used to a beady sheen of sweat over your face and under your clothes – all the time. Eyes fearfully darting left and right, all the time and everywhere you go. You never relax. Then comes a tsunami of deceit within which you live your whole life. Creating fictitious narratives with which to justify ourselves and impugne anyone else at a moment’s notice, becomes second nature. Now we’re all fiction creators! And friends are a thing of the past, a distant distrusted memory.

    I’ve seen all this – still alive and well in post-Soviet societies half a century after those disastrous purges and the frenzy of voluntary mutual betrayal that fuelled them. And the suppressed guilt of the abandoned friends and their abandoned children for which there will never be absolution. That’s where our society is now headed, the locked-in consequence of our own ongoing purges.

  21. Geez! And that’s just a summary of some recent articles. One could spend hours in this dystopian rabbit hole. I had somehow missed the news about fires in Africa.

  22. If it’s a 2.5×2.5 *degree* grid *on the Earth*, then how could it *not* be effectively polar coordinates???

  23. The soil article (“death of humus”) is very interesting.

    https://www.quantamagazine.org/a-soil-science-revolution-upends-plans-to-fight-climate-change-20210727/

    Life uses carbon but life is not carbon.
    Study life. Not carbon (unless you’re a chemist).

  24. I have a financial interest in coal mining on my family’s land. The details are commercially confidential, but I have always been careful to disclose that I have this interest in my writing when it is relevant; I am proud that the coal mining on my land contributes to the local and national economy; and that my income from coal is not subsidized and not a drain on the economy through raising energy prices. I deliberately do not argue directly for the interests of the modern coal industry and I consistently champion the development of gas reserves, which is a far bigger threat to the coal-mining industry than renewable energy can ever be. So I consistently argue against my own financial interest.

    https://www.mattridley.co.uk/explore-blagdon/

  25. I have a financial interest in coal mining on my family’s land. The details are commercially confidential, but I have always been careful to disclose that I have this interest in my writing when it is relevant; I am proud that the coal mining on my land contributes to the local and national economy; and that my income from coal is not subsidized and not a drain on the economy through raising energy prices. I deliberately do not argue directly for the interests of the modern coal industry and I consistently champion the development of gas reserves, which is a far bigger threat to the coal-mining industry than renewable energy can ever be. So I consistently argue against my own financial interest.

    w w w dot m a t t r i dley.co.uk/explore-blagdon

    • jim –

      Just wondering if you feel totally foolish about the whole Sydney Powell/Lin Wood thingy?

      Are you in the Pillow Guy camp?

  26. “Review of airborne transmission of respiratory viruses [link]”

    The article by Chia C. Wang et al provides a rationale for respiratory aerosols being the major route of transmissibility for COVID-19. That is, infectious viral particles in the <5 micrometer size become the dominate modes for infectivity as they are large in number when speaking, singing, coughing, etc. and their residence time in the air is long, mostly influenced by environmental airflows, ie, still air (like inside) vs relatively fast moving air (as is outdoor). Indoor air is also impacted by the number of room air turnovers per hour, recirculating as well as air filtering and disinfecting systems.

    Many people will recall a number of years ago environmentalists and then Governmental officials promoting and subsidizing "tightening up our homes and buildings" including recirculating indoor air all to reduce heat and air conditioned air loss with the outside. This article helps illustrate and define the errors of such advice and practices.

    I have a small criticism of the article when they have inserted complex equations such as Stokes and others along with their derived assumptions when the science/data on aerosols is not that precise for their use or understanding.

    A cough is a concoction of liquid and solid materials including the virus of interest forcefully expelled into the environment that extend from the person coughing to across the room. All this was known in the 1930s regarding tuberculosis observed in a picture of a person coughing using stroboscopic lighting. Speaking and signing and shouting generate such mixtures as well.

    It isn't too far fetched to surmise and then investigate viruses as having such capabilities.

    A very worthwhile review. Thank you Dr. Curry

    • From the article: “Additionally, the physical plexiglass barriers designed to block droplet spray from coughs and sneezes in indoor spaces can impede the airflow and even trap higher concentrations of aerosols in the breathing zone and has been shown to increase transmission of SARS-CoV-2. ”

      Every retail setting in the country (maybe world) was encouraged to put up plexiglass barriers. This was all on the assumption of Covid being transmitted primarily on droplets, the same reason for the six-foot rule and masks. However, masks, according to the article have shown to be effective in models.

      An RCT study published last week on masks showed cloth masks to be 0% effective in preventing wearers from becoming infected, though surgical masks were 11% effective. That study did not address the obvious higher effectiveness of a mask would have when worn by infected from transmitting to others. I suppose that was what was modeled in the above linked study.

      One wonders why when the NIH was sending millions to China to study and manufacture novel SARS coronaviruses that they didn’t think to run any experiments to see how they transmit from humanized mouse to humanized mouse in ambient conditions. One also wonders if the Chinese also neglected to think about this while they were working with the viruses under BSL2 protocols, no bubble suits or glove boxes, just latex gloves and fume hoods.

      The mysteries of the retrospective discovery of early infection in Spain and Italy and of the novel pangolin SARS cov could be that the WIV had been leaking like a sieve for years. The thousands of lab animals, especially the exotic ones, may sometimes have ended up in the wet markets. Perhaps the elusive natural reservoir of SARS that Baric and others were postulating was co-infecting only captive civet cats and people in parallel was the WIV.

  27. Europe’s July floods:
    “This is the sort of event where we’d expect climate change to have an influence. Warmer air can hold more moisture, and so we’d expect it to enhance precipitation, which it has. But the data indicates that we’re not seeing more rainy days; instead, we’re seeing more intense rain on those days when it does rain.”

    Not true, northwest European summers have become wetter since 1995, apart from summers with higher indirect solar, e.g. 2003, 2006, 2013, and 2018.
    The Met Office and IPCC circulation models predict drier summers for northwest Europe with rising CO2 forcing as the they predict increasingly positive Northern Annular Mode conditions. That didn’t work out too well did it.
    Predictably, northwest European summers will generally be wetter during a warm AMO phase, and especially during centennial solar minima and the associated increase in negative NAM conditions.

  28. “Increasing probability of record shattering climate extremes”

    Those heatwaves are weather events not climate extremes, and being discretely solar driven they are a cause and not a product of climate change.

    “Arctic Amplification”

    Is nonsense, AMO and Arctic warming are a negative feedback to weaker solar wind states.

  29. JC … Great selection and followup to the last post. Thank you.

  30. PNAS papers now behind a paywall??
    That’s bad – PNAS always used to be open access.
    Anyway according to this paper

    https://www.pnas.org/content/118/33/e2026839118

    the sea level rises during the Eemian (previous interglacial) are not the extravagant tens of meters claimed in previous stratigraphy from the Bahamas and elsewhere, but a more modest and believable meter or three.

    Without getting behind the paywall I can’t see if they mention the short sharp sea level rise peaks that happened right at the end of the Eemian interglacial.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/ngeo1890

    The interesting thing here is that ice sheet collapse and abrupt – but short-lived – sea level rise happened at the end of the interglacial, just before glacial inception, at which both sea level and temperatures (although not CO2) went down sharply. Can we expect such developments at the end of our current Holocene?

  31. ‘Research funding activities, initiated in 2007 “to revolutionize existing fields, create new subfields, cause paradigm shifts, support discovery, and lead to radically new technologies.” More recently, NSF launched its Big Ideas program, “to position our nation at the cutting edge—indeed to define that cutting edge—of global science and engineering leadership and to invest in basic research that advances the United States’ prosperity, security, health, and well-being.” https://issues.org/how-good-is-science-editors-journal-sarewitz/

    The big picture says that anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions are a problem to be addressed. The solution is big ideas.

    ‘In fact, the last time the atmospheric CO₂ amounts were this high was more than 3 million years ago, when temperature was 2°–3°C (3.6°–5.4°F) higher than during the pre-industrial era, and sea level was 15–25 meters (50–80 feet) higher than today.’ https://www.climate.gov/news-features/understanding-climate/climate-change-atmospheric-carbon-dioxide

    https://d32ogoqmya1dw8.cloudfront.net/images/integrate/teaching_materials/coastlines/student_materials/diagram_shows_sea-level_position_1473264652694424243_744.jpg
    https://serc.carleton.edu/integrate/teaching_materials/coastlines/student_materials/901

  32. Dr Curry, the ship track phenomenon is attracting attention again. Aerosols pumped into ocean stratocumulus cover are suggested as a way of brightening the clouds and thus reducing warming. There are suggestions that anthropogenic aerosol production, cars, dust etc, are already doing this and so masking the CO2 effect.

    If oil and surfactant pollution is reducing salt aerosol production then the opposite effect is happening. If (OK, ‘fess up,’ when’) I point this out to researchers in the field my emails go, no doubt, into the spam bin. Even the redoubtable Willis ignores my pleas to look at this most obvious potential AGW effect.

    Observation: I have observed a smooth covering thousands of square miles which was able to resist wave breaking in a Force 4 breeze. I’ve seen smooths from the Mediterranean to the Arctic – the oceans even produce their own smooths as plankton blooms die and release their lipids.

    Lake Michigan is warming anomalously rapidly. Why? Are all lakes subject to major city effluent and run-off doing the same?

    One of the cloud brightening teams is quantifying the results of more and different aerosols. Perhaps someone who does not automatically go into spam could suggest to them that it would be useful to quantify the results of spilling millions of tons of aerosol suppressing pollutants onto every water surface on the planet? The could start by looking at Lake Michegan.

    JF

    • Low level marine stratocumulus form as water vapor rises and cools as open and closed cell cloud over ocean – Rayleigh-Benard convection in a plana atmosphere. Closed cells rain out faster over warmer oceans – leaving open cells and reduced albedo over a lot of the planet.

      I’d thought over oceans that natural sulphate production supplied enough sulphate for cloud condensation nuclei?

      e.g. https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/cloud-and-dimethyl-sulfide-e1536287377755.jpg

    • “There are suggestions that anthropogenic aerosol production, cars, dust etc, are already doing this and so masking the CO2 effect.”

      Low altitude industrial aerosols amplify daytime maximum surface temperatures over land with cloud free skies.

    • If technology is ever able to create a global temperature control knob it will be with manipulation of albedo. They only question is whether it will be the through creation surface reflectors or stratospheric emitters.

      In the case of reflectors I see two modes, sea surface reflectors or low level cloud enhancement or creation. For sea surface reflectors the question is which is more practical, making sea foam (spoom) or other liquid surface films by industrial manufacture or by using bioengineering to produce them naturally. Or, would surfactants have a negative effect on cloud brightness as you point out?

      If surfactants harm cloud formation then perhaps the way to go is to enhance low level reflective aerosols (fog, cloud).

      The most talked about geoengineering plan is the placing of emissive aerosols like SO2 in the stratosphere. Of course both reflectors and emitters could used.

  33. WHAT’S WRONG WITH SCIENCE?

    Something to do with a lack of Mertonian* norms of science?

    Saw something about fusion energy on my phone. ‘They’ fired one up for a fraction of a second. The one on better magnets here is another step. 😂

    It inspired me to solve global cooling. Many fusion generators burning water and putting out heat and power.

    * e.g. https://www.futurelearn.com/info/courses/open-social-science-research/0/steps/31422

    • Geoff Sherrington

      RIE writes “Saw something about fusion energy on my phone.”
      Robert, please be assured that it will be quite a few years before fusion is minimized to the size of a mobile phone. The mobile phone is likely to be driven by batteries for some years ahead.😉
      BTW, I once owned a fast neutron generator and spent many instructive hours working with related topics, also on a different scale. Geoff S

      • My phone shows science and technology alerts. It isn’t fusion powered.

      • I met a nice bloke who sold me the sun a few years ago. I don’t actual have legal possession yet (some technicality with the title, apparently) but when I do I will be the full bottle (magnetic?) on fusion power.

    • Dr. Robert Merton, a sociologist, believes that science should be communistic. But should, for example, IBM become more altruistic, give up all their proprietary science for the good of humanity, or is the good of humanity elevated by IBM’s success?

      It’s hard not to agree with Merton’s views on Universalism, Disinterestedness, Organized Skepticism. But Merton’s view of communism as a tenet of the sciences is absurd, even within the context framed in the article … “that the findings of science are common property to the scientific community and that scientific progress relies on open communication and sharing”. Science done in the public domain, yes, in the private domain, no. The bread and butter of industry that creates the better half of cultural advancement relies on heavy proprietary investment in the sciences to maintain a competitive edge in the marketplace. It drives competition, not just in industry, but also the sciences in general.

      Someone who’s degreed in the field of understanding humanity’s foibles should be able to see the cracks in the logic better than this article articulates. Though it’s possible Merton does elaborate better than the author of this article describes, perhaps the author is injecting confirmation bias; is it so hard to believe the media has a communistic tilt?

      • trunks … Merton wasn’t a leftist. Far from it. He was speaking about about public domain.

      • ” scientific progress relies on open communication and sharing. Science done in the public domain, yes, in the private domain, no.”

        In reality, even science done in the private domain is tied to open communication. The way to gain commercial advantage from knowledge is through the patent process – and the patent process requires public disclosure.

        Without patents, there is the risk that the relevant knowledge will either leak out or that another organization will make the same advance in knowledge and commercialize it. This is why organizations like IBM put such significant efforts into creating patents.

        It is hard to conceive of commercial organizations doing research purely “for the good of humanity”, since by their very nature, such organizations are set up to make profits. I would argue that benefits do flow to humanity as a whole from the activity of commercial organizations, but that such activities must clearly benefit the organizations first, otherwise they would simply not undertake those activities in the first place.

    • Thanks, Bill.

      Obviously I’m not familiar with Dr. Merton’s philosophy, which is why I appropriately hedged my criticism. The article doesn’t mention “public” when defining Communality (a translation from Merton’s usage: communism), it also implicitly reads as all science, the way it’s described. I think my last paragraph is closer to the mark, typical in the way contemporary academia filters information.

      “the findings of science are common property to the scientific community and that scientific progress relies on open communication and sharing.”

      It misses qualification that I’m sure Merton must have expressed.

      • No worries. There’s a chasm between Marxists and the rest of sociology, which I’m sure you know. The left has been working tirelessly to marginalize the ‘other side’ for the last hundred years from Weber, Parsons, Merton, Mills, Wilson, Banfield and many others. Any analysis that doesn’t share preconceptions with the left are denigrated. They have a soft spot for Mills, but only because they think he echoed some sentiments they share, i.e. White Collar Crime. Of course my readings were decades ago, but my impression of Merton and the others was an effort to recognize preconceptions and to look at social structures as mechanisms influenced by the totality of human culture, past and present. The Marxists relay far more on philosophy and a resulting interpretation of history.
        Today the word communism is mostly taken by us as a political system, which is hard for us to disassociate, whereas Merton used it literally in the above article. This is in keeping with the left’s emphasis on reconstructing language, with which they have been extremely successful. Just to throw something out there to think about: over the past 70 years, or so, the words discrimination, prejudice and racism have all been conflated to essentially mean racism. This has been a signal victory for them. Although Mr. Blair might see this type of work as Syme’s doing.

        Enjoy your day!

    • The tension is between the ideal of science as a open community and commercial interests. There is nothing wrong with commerce as such – it is accommodated as necessary.

    • Do those who propose complete switch to nuclear energy realise they will be releasing energy stored within molecules of the same order of magnitude as naturally concentrated and stored energy in oil and coal?
      And, does it matter anyway? I believe increasing temperature would increase greening of the planet which would in turn reduce reflected energy and trend back to equilibrium.

  34. Pingback: “A fiction that elevates my soul is dearer to me than a host of base and despicable truths”. – Not The Grub Street Journal

  35. Geoff Sherrington

    A person noted for frequent comments on this blog, initials RIE, might find interest in Judith’s choice above –
    “A soil-science revolution upends plans … ”
    It can be read to show the difference between observation and measurement, on one hand, as opposed to romantic green dreams of a future under waving wands. Geoff S

    • ‘A new generation of soil studies powered by modern microscopes and imaging technologies has revealed that whatever humus is, it is not the long-lasting substance scientists believed it to be. Soil researchers have concluded that even the largest, most complex molecules can be quickly devoured by soil’s abundant and voracious microbes. The magic molecule you can just stick in the soil and expect to stay there may not exist.’

      There is no ‘magic molecule’. Never was. That’s why carbon loss from agricultural soils is such a problem. Fixing it is a matter of management practices to create optimal soil moisture and temperature conditions and a positive carbon and nutrient budget. Farmers using 21st century science to increase productivity and reduce input costs.

  36. Energy prices in Europe reach record highs as nations scramble to find fossil fuels to burn as a result of the fact that renewables don’t work.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/energy-prices-in-europe-hit-records-after-wind-stops-blowing-11631528258

    If the media follows the Texas cold snap formula, they’ll be publishing stories soon about how this is all the fault of natural gas because it just couldn’t compensate for bad climate policy fast enough.

    • China is slated to build 200 more coal fired utilities near-term. The Left ignores this; instead the Left applauds China’s super duper high-tech prowess, they’re stealing the market, and supplying the world its energy salvation. No mention that China can use all their production throughput in solar/wind “very high-tech” to dismiss their coal vision. Just how stupid can this logic get? Stay tuned.

      Oh BTW, Germany did an about turn several years ago, they’ve been adding coal power to supplement their world class position as the globes model for alternative energy. No news at 5, and don’t expect too many exposés about it.

      • Germany also paid for Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline and approved plans for Wolfsburg to switch to gas.
        COP meetings are designed to move CO2 emissions, not reduce them. They always have been, you can see it in any chart of global emissions. US and EU tax policy is now designed to do so as well. Notice how, per the article, EU grid operators were ordered to turn on fossil fuel plants and then penalized for it with carbon credit mandates- all applied to the power bills of EU businesses with the implicit instruction that you can avoid all this as long as you don’t build anything in the EU. At least Germany is (quietly) calling BS on the whole charade.

      • “BS on the whole charade.” is apropos.

        Beijing Biden has shut down US pipelines to restrict US fossil fuel production, yet has facilitated opening the fossil fuel pipeline between Russia and Germany. Can one say hypocritical manipulation of an agenda? All the Lefts rage in recent years that not enough sanctions were being levied against Russia, the lip service media hyperventilation about the dangers that Russia poses to “democracy” while they quietly plan to institute their fascist foundations for “changing the world”. Please. These lying jokers are now in spin control/slight of hand overdrive to misdirect the Afghan retreat fiasco. I’ve never seen anything so politically inept in just about everything this administration does.

    • Joe - the non climate scientist

      Jeff mentions the Texas fiasco

      What is not reported is how close, the other US grids came to collapsing during the Feb 2021 freeze. The other grids survived in a large part because the other grids are not as dependent renewable sourced electricity as it is in Texas.

      the Texas grid failed from 2.15.2021 until 2.18.2021

      Renewables lost 70-90% of electric generation across the entire North american Continent (not just Texas – but the Entire North American continent-
      from 2.12.2021 until 2.19.2021.

      It takes someone with child like fantasies, to believe renewables are viable solution. Anyone believing Mark Jacobson 100% delusion lacks basic critical thinking skills.

      • The warm are the “merchants of doubt.”
        The analogy I use for this is: You are in NYC at the headquarters of the company you run. The chief financial officer rushes into your office and says you will be bankrupt if you do not attend a meeting in Los Angeles tomorrow. You start pulling up flight information when the CFO says that you must walk there.
        There are three things you know:
        1. Someone competent should look at your books.
        2. Your CFO isn’t competent
        3. You don’t know if something is wrong with your finances, but you know you don’t need to be in LA tomorrow.

        This is the status world leaders face with climate. Some, like China and Russia, are simply more honest about it. Some, like Germany, play the game better. And some, like the current US administration, are just using it as an opportunity to ramp up government spending.

      • Richard Greene

        There are 29 million people in Texas.
        25 million did NOT lose electric power
        in February 2021.

        Wind power was near zero just before the blackout,
        but was expected to be low in February, with near zero
        for an hour once and a while.

        Actual wind output was about one third lower
        than expected due frozen windmills.

        But with those hours that have
        very little wind, having one bazillion non-frozen
        windmills would not have helped much.
        Windmills belong in museums.

        The windmills didn’t cause the problems with
        every other source of electric power, all of which were not
        prepared for extreme cold weather (a similar problem in
        February 2011 caused rolling blackouts that affected
        3.2 million Texans even though windmills were rare at the time).

        The Texas problem was spending far too much money on windmills,
        and too little money on new fossil fuels power plants, in addition
        to NOT spending money to winterize the entire energy infrastructure,
        even beyond the power plants (recommended in 2011).

      • joe - the non climate scientist

        Richard greene
        concur with your comments. Astonishing that the advocates of wind power, somehow believe those limitations on wind and solar power are a relatively trivial engineering hurdle

  37. Atomic Chickens: Texas Lawmakers Reject Proven Plan To Store Nuclear Waste (Dr. James Conca at Forbes)

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2021/09/13/with-nuclear-waste-vote-texas-anti-science-cowardice-on-display-from-both-parties/?sh=18a61699536a

    “The best, safest, least expensive solution to our nuclear waste problem gets a near-unanimous bipartisan negative vote from the Texas Legislature. The lawmakers banned the storage of high-level radioactive waste in Texas, including spent nuclear fuel, at their approved nuclear waste disposal site near Andrews, Texas.”

  38. Model bashers ought to rejoice:

    We can compare the anthropogenic climate change costs associated with Hurricane Harvey, with the climate change as these are calculated in a typical IAM. When we examine the IAM constructed by William Nordhaus (an economics Nobel laureate), we find that the anthropogenic costs associated with this one single hurricane are much larger (by a factor of about three) than what Nordhaus predicts with his Dynamic Integrated Climate Change (DICE) model for the whole of the United States for the whole of that year. Note too that this was a year in which there were two other destructive hurricanes, many devastating wildfires, tornadoes and droughts, and many other more local adverse weather events.

    This is not a perfect comparison, but the inevitable conclusion seems to be that the current quantifications of the economic costs of climate change, obtained with IAM techniques, vastly underestimate the cost of climate change as it is experienced right now (and therefore also what it predicts about the future). If the current costs of climate change are much higher than what most economists derive from IAMs, the profession needs to reassess its lukewarm support for more aggressive greenhouse gas emission reduction policies (such as much higher carbon taxes).

    https://www.economicsobservatory.com/what-are-the-economic-effects-of-extreme-weather-caused-by-climate-change

    I’m sure John Christy’s fans will agree.

    • Throw all the climate models in the garbage can, where they belong.

      There were no costs of the mild, harmless global warming in the past 45 years. There were BENEFITS from CO2 greening the planet and improving plant growth.

      As a group, US economists have never predicted even one US recession.

      I could not care less what they predict about the future climate.

      • Here’s how you reacted to a similar argument in a different case, RG:

        Models are computer games that deliberately make wrong predictions used for climate scaremongering propaganda. They are not real science

        https://judithcurry.com/2021/08/17/new-confirmation-that-climate-models-overstate-atmospheric-warming-2/#comment-957928

        Would you say that, in the current case, models are computer games that deliberately make wrong predictions used for climate denial propaganda?

      • Richard Greene

        Response to Willard (reply button did not show up next to his name)
        I was referring to econometric computer models in my comment, used to predict the “cost” of climate change. They are very unlikely to be accurate.

        The other computer models are climate models to predict the future climate (global average temperature).

        General Circulation Climate Models are intended to project (predict) the future climate (global average temperature) based on an assumption of CO2 level growth in the atmosphere

        For three reasons I believe accurate predictions are NOT a goal:

        (1) Predictions have not been accurate for 40 years — models consistently over-predict actual global warming,

        (2) Predictions have not improved in 40 years, with the latest CMIP6 models (as a group) appearing predict even faster global warming than the CMIP5 models (as a group), and

        (3) The one climate model that least over-predicts the global warming trend, the Russian INM model, gets no special attention.

        In fact, it is usually buried in an average where ALL the other models over-predict global warming by MORE than the INM model does.

        (I can’t imagine meteorologists ignoring their best weather forecasting model, and using an average of all models instead).

        My conclusion is that climate models are really climate computer games whose primary purpose is to scare people about climate change.

        The reality of climate change since humans began adding lots of CO2 to the atmosphere, let’s say starting at the trough of the Great Recession in 1932, was some mild warming, and some mild cooling — NOTHING like the past 64 years of predictions of rapid, dangerous global warming.

        The Climate Alarmists claim the gradual increase of the CO2 level will have VERY DIFFERENT effects on the climate in the FUTURE, than it had in the past.

        Very different outputs from the same CO2 growth inputs?

        That belief meets the definition of insanity, in my opinion — wild climate speculation, not real climate science.

      • Thank you for your very well ordered rant, RG.

        You have not addressed the point I made, which is that, by your logic, IAM economic models are computer games that deliberately make wrong predictions used for climate denial propaganda.

        What’s good for the AGW goose is good for the Contrarian Matrix gander.

  39. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Houston is threatened with heavy rainfall as the tropical storm is blocked by highs and will remain on the Texas coast for an extended period of time.

  40. Ireneusz Palmowski

    The storm is collecting moisture from over the very warm western Gulf of Mexico and will lead to flooding.
    http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/real-time/mtpw2/webAnims/tpw_nrl_colors/conus/mimictpw_conus_latest.gif

  41. I recently wrote this for a listserv so thought it might be interesting here:

    Climate chaos

    I used to lecture on the role of chaos theory in science. It does not get the attention it deserves in the climate debate. In fact climate change may be nothing more than simple chaos, in which case nothing controls it. Here is a brief explanation.

    Chaos is a mathematical property. That is, certain equations, including very simple ones, can exhibit a complex form of behavior. They jump up and down in a random looking way. This is called a periodic oscillation. Chaos math was discovered by the great Poincare around 1910. 

    Chaos has a fascinating feature called extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. The slightest change to the numbers rapidly causes big changes in behavior. This is because an infinite number of behaviors is packed into a finite box of possibilities, called the strange attractor.

    This raises the scientific question, do these equations describe anything in the physical world. Lorenz discovered the first the first such case in the weather, in the 1960s. He built a little computer model, basically of the interaction of highs and lows. It behaved strangely. The miracle was that Lorenz had read Poincare and recognized chaos.

    He coined the term butterfly effect for the extreme sensitivity, although it is just a metaphor. Chaos has since been found in a great many different natural phenomena, making what is called nonlinear dynamics a major branch of science.

    The butterfly effect makes a chaotic phenomenon unpredictable, even though it is still completely deterministic. This is because you can never know which of the possible behaviors you are seeing. In the weather, moving one molecule an inch can completely change the future and we can never know where all the molecules are. This practical limitation is called intrinsic unpredictability. It is universally ignored because there is no money in unpredictability.

    Irregular oscillation is a glaring feature of most climate data, ranging from minute to minute out to very long term data over centuries. The chaos in weather is sufficient to explain this because chaotic phenomena exhibit what are called strange statistics. This means the long term averages also oscillate aperiodically. In a sense there is no such thing as average weather because different time periods give different numbers.

    Given that climate is average weather, the chaos in weather is thus sufficient in principle to explain climate change. Climate change may just be strange weather statistics.

    The climate modelers know all about this so they go to great lengths to keep large scale chaos out of their models. There is a lot of small wiggling but not enough to affect predictability. Or if that occurs they make a probabilistic argument that has no scientific validity. The butterfly effect is not probabilistic in the normal sense of that term. In fact average weather is a rare event, not the most likely.

    That climate change is simply due to chaos I call the chaotic climate hypothesis. We never hear about it in the great climate debate.

    Scientists dislike intrinsic unpredictability.

    • > We never hear about it in the great climate debate.

      “But predictions” is right next to “But Science” in the bingo.

      From the horse’s mouth:

      Since AR5, an increase in computing power has made it possible to investigate simulated internal variability 14 and to provide robust estimates of forced model responses, using Large Initial Condition Ensembles (ICEs), also referred to as Single Model Initial condition Large Ensembles (SMILEs). Examples using GCMs or ESMs that support assessments in AR6 include the CESM Large Ensemble (Kay et al., 2015), the MPI Grand Ensemble (Maher et al., 2019), and the CanESM2 large ensembles (Kirchmeier-Young et al., 2017). Such ensembles employ a single GCM or ESM in a fixed configuration, but starting from a variety of 19 different initial states. In some experiments, these initial states only differ slightly. As the climate system is chaotic, such tiny changes in initial conditions lead to different evolutions for the individual realizations of the system as a whole. Other experiments start from a set of well-separated ocean initial conditions to sample the uncertainty in the circulation state of the ocean and its role in longer-timescale variations. These two types of ICEs have been referred to as “micro” and “macro” perturbation ensembles respectively (Hawkins et al., 2016). In support of this report, most models contributing to CMIP6 have produced ensembles of multiple realizations of their historical and scenario simulations (see Chapters 3 and 4).

    • David,
      First of all thanks.

      “Chaos has a fascinating feature called extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. The slightest change to the numbers rapidly causes big changes in behavior. This is because an infinite number of behaviors is packed into a finite box of possibilities, called the strange attractor.
      This raises the scientific question, do these equations describe anything in the physical world.”

      What the theory neglects to mention is that the chance of such big chaotic changes occurring is microscopically small.
      So much so that in general my kicking the rubbish bin in frustration will still not help the 76’s throw the basket that wins the flag.
      So mathematical,
      Fascinating and generally not very important.
      One needs lots of time for the event arrows to flow and work.

    • It is worth noting that this is a physical system – aquasphere, atmosphere, cyrosphere, biosphere and lithosphere – in which interactions and feedbacks between subsystems drive abrupt state changes. State space is constrained to physically feasible behaviours of the coupled subsystems. Meaning that there is a limit to variability – albeit a very broad one.

      The probabilistic forecasts copied and pasted by poor wee willie – make 1000’s of runs from slightly different initial values and one might be right – is one approach. The new generation of Earth system models – big data initialised seasonal to decadal scale probabilistic forecasts – is a better way to go.

    • Ireneusz Palmowski

      The storm merged with a tropical wave from over the Atlantic. Louisiana at risk of flooding.
      The amount of rain over the three days will be tremendous.

  42. Australian BOM continues to blacklist NASA from their 8 combined models of International climate model outlooks
    They were removed after the 19/1/2021 and presumably will be blacklisted by BOM until they bring their findings into line with approved climate change models like NOAA, JMA NAD UKMO.
    NASA were predicting a much longer and stronger La Nina.

    This enables BOM to continue using a forecasting ensemble with models that produce warmer outcomes. Arctic sea Ice made a brave attempt to get to 11th lowest but has run out of puff.
    Cooler temperatures [still above average] persist around the globe with sea temperatures being relatively neutral for large swathes.
    Warming seas had been a big contributor to warmer air temperatures.
    The moderate fall in temps for this year combined with a weak La Nina in the offing suggests temperaures may actually continue to fall or at least stay around there current UHA levels.
    Currently equal 6th warmest year it may yet spiral down to 9th highest which would be an amazing global cooling for 1 year.

    • Mornin’ Angech (UTC),

      You will no doubt be overjoyed to discover that the provisional Arctic sea ice minimum volume and extent numbers for 2021 have duly arrived in answer to a metaphorical prayer:

      https://GreatWhiteCon.info/2021/09/facts-about-the-arctic-in-september-2021/#Sep-21

      https://greatwhitecon.info/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/piomas-trnd-20210915.png

      Volume calculated from the thickness data currently show that 2021’s minimum was reached on September 7th at 4.64 thousand km³, which is the 8th lowest value in the Polar Science Center’s record.

      • Whoops!

        It seems as though I’ve forgotten how to embed an image here.

        Mind you it looks like everybody else has too?

      • Jim

        Everyone comes at this from a different angle

        https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2021/09/22/arctic-sea-ice-recovers-strongly-in-2021/

        I would say that is quite a strong recovery and going the opposite way to certain of the forecasts

        How is the Antarctic doing?. A little while ago it was at one of its highest measured extents

        Grockles still here, worst luck.

        tonyb

      • Jim

        The Antarctic ozone hole (probably driven by temperature) also doesn’t seem to be behaving. After last years virtually record size it seems to be heading that way again, although as the season normally ends in October its a little too early to judge its final position.

        Surely models and expectations for Arctic and Antarctic ice and the ozone hole can’t be wrong. Its surely a blip?

        tonyb

      • joe - the non climate scientist

        From tony’s linked article – “In short sea ice extents are not going to simply return to pre-2007 levels just like that. Indeed, it will probably not start to happen until the return of the AMO cold phase, which saw rapid refreezing in the 1970s.”

        Gotta be impressed when the great white Con uses a start date of 1979 to show the “rapid” decline.

      • Evenin’ Tony (UTC),

        Plenty of emmets on this side of the Tamar too. Boscastle was still heaving yesterday :(

        Not a lot of people seem to know that Mr. Homewood knows not of what he speaks. Surely a man of your Arctic experience doesn’t agree with:

        The message from the data is by now abundantly clear – Arctic sea ice is going nowhere.

        The IPCC’s AR6 WG1 report certainly doesn’t!

        Barring a by now improbable late surge the Antarctic sea ice extent has posted the earliest maximum in the satellite era by a considerable margin.

        I’d include an image, but I don’t know how!

        Jim

      • Evenin’ Joe,

        When do you and/or Paul predict that “the return of the AMO cold phase” will take place?

        FYI 1979 is the start of the SMMR equipped satellite era op. cit.

      • joe - the non climate scientist

        Greatwhitecon / jim hunt comment – “FYI 1979 is the start of the SMMR equipped satellite era op. cit.”

        Jim – fully aware of that – Just noting that you prefer to present data from a starting date when the sea ice was at a maximum. Hiding a fuller historical context.

        Deceptive perhaps!

      • Joe – Not a lot people know that if you want a graph of Arctic sea ice extent going back further than 1979 you could always consult this ancient article inspired by the great Paul Homewood:

        https://GreatWhiteCon.info/2015/04/gross-deception-measuring-arctic-sea-ice-trends/

        I’d include an image, but….

      • Jim Hunt
        “Mornin’ Angech
        You will no doubt be overjoyed to discover that the provisional Arctic sea ice minimum volume and extent numbers for 2021 have duly arrived in answer to a metaphorical prayer:”

        Thank you Jim.
        Fairly overjoyed and thank you for putting the links up.
        I learnt a long time ago that Arctic and Antarctic ice are temperamental, strong willed and not to be taken lightly.
        Rather like the femmes in our lives.
        Antarctic is dipping badly but still a lot better than 3 years ago.
        The arctic has been having very slow recoveries after the minimum has been reached.
        The only difference this year is a colder world generally and a higher albedo for the start of the freezing season.

        It will make for a very good spy v spy as Albert would say this year.
        [not the alligator] the other one.

      • My pleasure Angech,

        “This year is a colder world generally”

        Not according to Berkeley Earth, amongst others?

        https://twitter.com/hausfath/status/1440732813079179285

        “A higher albedo for the start of the freezing season.”

        If so, the additional snow cover will insulate the ice beneath, leading to thinner ice at the start of the next melting season.

        Is there some secret method for embedding images on here these days?

      • Is there some secret method for embedding images on here these days?
        Lot’s of tech savvy people here to help you, I hope.

      • Typical Zeke playing up to his audience

        “Summer 2021 was the warmest summer on record for the Earth’s land regions (where we all live!). Temperatures for June, July, and August were around 1.5C above pre industrial levels””

        To clarify [Zeke]
        “If we look at global average temperatures (including the oceans), summer 2021 was the fourth warmest summer on record.”

        Never mind the very cold start to the year and the current position, possibly equal 6th.
        Nor the fact that it was on only one global set.

        Still have to keep the narrative running.

      • Evenin’ Angech, you old cynic you!

        What other “global sets” of summer 2021 surface temperature are you thinking of?

        Can I safely assume that “lower troposphere” data sets are not amongst them?

      • joe - the non climate scientist

        Morning Jim

        https://journals.ametsoc.org/view/journals/clim/32/15/jcli-d-19-0008.1.xml

        A link to a more comprehensive history of arctic sea ice

      • Afternoon Joe,

        Sure, but that’s a “A Model-Based Reconstruction” of volume.

        I thought the ‘M’ word was considered to have 4 letters in here? If not see:

        https://GreatWhiteCon.info/2021/03/the-2021-maximum-arctic-sea-ice-volume/#comment-431443

        Mind the gap between 20C and 21C!

      • Try the real deal, Chief:

        Arctic atmospheric variability during the industrial era (1875–2000) is assessed using spatially averaged surface air temperature (SAT) and sea level pressure (SLP) records. Air temperature and pressure display strong mul- tidecadal variability on timescales of 50–80 yr [termed low-frequency oscillation (LFO)]. Associated with this variability, the Arctic SAT record shows two maxima: in the 1930s–40s and in recent decades, with two colder periods in between. In contrast to the global and hemispheric temperature, the maritime Arctic temperature was higher in the late 1930s through the early 1940s than in the 1990s. Incomplete sampling of large-amplitude multidecadal fluctuations results in oscillatory Arctic SAT trends. For example, the Arctic SAT trend since 1875 is 0.09 6 0.038C decade21, with stronger spring- and wintertime warming; during the twentieth century (when positive and negative phases of the LFO nearly offset each other) the Arctic temperature increase is 0.05 6 0.048C decade21, similar to the Northern Hemispheric trend (0.068C decade21). Thus, the large-amplitude mul-tidecadal climate variability impacting the maritime Arctic may confound the detection of the true underlying climate trend over the past century. LFO-modulated trends for short records are not indicative of the long-term behavior of the Arctic climate system. The accelerated warming and a shift of the atmospheric pressure pattern from anticyclonic to cyclonic in recent decades can be attributed to a positive LFO phase. It is speculated that this LFO-driven shift was crucial to the recent reduction in Arctic ice cover. Joint examination of air temperature and pressure records suggests that peaks in temperature associated with the LFO follow pressure minima after 5–15 yr. Elucidating the mechanisms behind this relationship will be critical to understanding the complex nature of low-frequency variability.

        http://ffden-2.phys.uaf.edu/usbhatt/publications/polyakov.etal.2003a.pdf

      • Mornin’ Robert (UTC),

        I’m afraid you’ll need to expand upon your overly brief comment. Perhaps you know what you meant by it but I’m a bear of very little brain, so I don’t.

        Apart from anything else I was referring to Arctic sea volume whilst your invisible image appears to be of extent.

        Willard seems to be of the opinion that you’re referring to “natural variability”?

  43. I reposted above due to the comments about El Nino
    over “Confusion over ENSO and global warming:”

    David Wojick | September 11, 2021 “El Niño confusion” Both articles are on how future warming will change El Niño. All of the warming to date in the 40+ year satellite record is due to two super El Niño’s”

    David Appell | September 11, 2021 “How does an El Nino generate heat that’s added to the climate system? Where does that heat come from?

    Richard Greene | September 13, 2021 got it mostly right “El Ninos rearrange heat — they bring some ocean heat to the surface, where that heat will affect sea surface temperatures.In the long run (30 to 40 years), all the ENSOs have offset each other, for a net change of near zero.

    Christian Wengel used the butterfly wing argument
    “The current generation of climate models does not properly resolve oceanic mesoscale processes in tropical oceans, such as tropical instability waves”

    Christopher W. Callahan, makes the surprise finding that their models actually show exactly what they were looking for.
    “higher temperatures are associated with a ‘permanent El Niño”
    While confirming ENSO as an outcome, not a causation [David Appell was right, due to large natural variability]
    “El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is the primary mode of interannual climate variability, and understanding its response to climate change is critical, but research remains divided on the direction and magnitude of that response.”

    If ocean heat did not come to the surface in the right spot at the right time there would be no El Nino.
    This does not mean that the ocean currents are a cause of El Nino.
    Whether currents of heat go deep for a thousand years or 2 days does not mean that they area source of new heat into the system.

    El Nino’s occur when the earths atmosphere receives more energy. Less clouds, less albedo mean more energy into the system. When the earth is warmer the seas are warmer, the “hot” currents appear to stay warm.

    The question is not some arcane new heat coming into the system.
    The system with hot and cold currents is already in balance and stays in overall energy balance [chiefio quite a few current comments on this}.
    The question is what are the natural variations occuring that allow the heat to rise in the system.
    Solar output variation, distance from sun over north or south hemisphere , cloud cover. changing vegetation water blooms sandstorms , and the ongoing butterfly effects from these real and large changes explain ENSO.

    So, “”All of the warming to date in the 40+ year satellite record is due to two super El Niño.;s”
    No.
    It would be nice but it is not true.
    The temperature rise is just natural variability.
    Factors we have not got a handle on yet.
    Judith and others would argue a bit of warming due to CO2 .
    Nothing wrong with that either.
    How much natural variability is possible?
    A lot more than what most people are prepared to factor in.
    How quickly can it change?
    Big world, CO2 is a very small butterfly.
    Time will tell.

    • Ireneusz Palmowski

      It’s worth wondering why surface temperatures drop so slowly when the Peruvian Current brings cold water below the surface? In my opinion, the easterly wind along the equator is not constant. The meridional jet current, which is created by weak spikes in solar wind strength, makes it difficult for La Niña to develop.
      http://www.bom.gov.au/archive/oceanography/ocean_anals/IDYOC007/IDYOC007.202109.gif

    • ENSO and the PDO have added energy to the Earth system in the past 40 years through a cloud effect feedback.

      But the effects emerge in patterns of ocean and atmospheric circulation. In a La Nina strong trade winds pile warm surface water up against Australia and Indonesia. At some stage the trade winds falter and warm water surges eastward. Comprehension is founded on physical oceanography.

    • Angech: Judith and others would argue a bit of warming due to CO2 .
      Nothing wrong with that either.
      How much natural variability is possible?
      A lot more than what most people are prepared to factor in.
      How quickly can it change?
      Big world, CO2 is a very small butterfly.

      Thank you for that post.

  44. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Jakobshavn Glacier in west Greenland viewed by the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission on 29 April 2019. In recent years, Greenland has been losing more ice through this glacier than from anywhere else on this huge ice sheet. Various types of satellite data have been used to understand and monitor the glacier’s flow over the last 20 years. This revealed that the glacier was flowing at its fastest and losing the most ice in 2012–13. In places, the main trunk of the glacier was deflating by 10 m a year as it adjusted dynamically to ice loss and melting. However, information from satellites such as ESA’s CryoSat and the Copernicus Sentinel-1 mission show that between 2013 and 2017, the region drained by the glacier stopped shrinking in height and started to thicken. The overall effect is that Jakobshavn is now flowing more slowly, thickening, and advancing toward the ocean instead of retreating farther inland.
    https://www.esa.int/ESA_Multimedia/Images/2019/05/Jakobshavn_Glacier
    Jakobshavn Isbrae has been the single largest source of mass loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet over the last 20 years. During that time, it has been retreating, accelerating and thinning. Here we use airborne altimetry and satellite imagery to show that since 2016 Jakobshavn has been re-advancing, slowing and thickening. We link these changes to concurrent cooling of ocean waters in Disko Bay that spill over into Ilulissat Icefjord. Ocean temperatures in the bay’s upper 250 m have cooled to levels not seen since the mid 1980s. Observations and modelling trace the origins of this cooling to anomalous wintertime heat loss in the boundary current that circulates around the southern half of Greenland. Longer time series of ocean temperature, subglacial discharge and glacier variability strongly suggest that ocean-induced melting at the front has continued to influence glacier dynamics after the disintegration of its floating tongue in 2003. We conclude that projections of Jakobshavn’s future contribution to sea-level rise that are based on glacier geometry are insufficient, and that accounting for external forcing is indispensable.
    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-019-0329-3
    The map shows the degree to which the Greenland Ice Sheet has become either thicker or thinner during the three-year period from January 2017 until December 2019. It is evident that near many of the large outlet glaciers, the ice sheet has thinned by several metres each year, but we do also see that large parts of the ice sheet have thickened due to precipitation during the three years.
    In this map we see a thickening at the front of Jakobshavn Isbræ; a signal that has been confirmed by air-borne measurements (Khazendar et al., 2019)
    http://polarportal.dk/fileadmin/polarportal/mass/CS2_uk_HD_large.jpg

  45. Ireneusz Palmowski |The fjords into which Greenland’s glaciers flow can be as deep as 1 km.

    Raises an interesting question.
    How far down can ice go?
    Cannot go to deep under the earth due to increasing heat.
    I might surmise that ice could not be found 500 meters under the earth surface anywhere on the globe.

    But how deep can it go in the oceans before having to break off and float to the surface?
    50 meters?
    100 meters ?
    500 meter’?
    Seeing 8/9 ? of an ice berg is under water how deep does a Manhattan sized chunk of ice go below the surface?
    Guessing 50 meters maximum.

  46. David Baltimore explains his “smoking gun” comment about the origin of COVID during this interview:

    https://www.caltech.edu/about/news/the-debate-over-origins-of-sars-cov-2

    “Recently you were quoted as saying: “When I first saw the furin cleavage site in the viral sequence, with its arginine codons, I said to my wife it was the smoking gun for the origin of the virus. These features make a powerful challenge to the idea of a natural origin for SARS2.” Can you unpack this quote for us?

    Let me be clear, even though I used the phrase “smoking gun,” I DON’T REALLY THINK THERE’S A SMOKING GUN IN THE GENOME ITSELF. [My emphasis].

    Now, within the SARS-CoV-2 genome there is an insertion of 12 nucleotides that is entirely foreign to the beta-coronavirus class of virus that SARS-CoV-2 is in. There are many other viruses in this class, including the closest relative of SARS-CoV-2 by sequence, and none of them have this sequence. The sequence is called the furin cleavage site.

    To back up a little bit: In order to infect a cell, the spike protein on the surface of viruses like SARS-CoV-2 needs to first be cut, or cleaved. The cut needn’t be terribly exact, but it needs to be cut. Different viruses attract different kinds of cellular “scissors,” so to speak, to make this cut; the furin cleavage site attracts the furin protein providing the most efficient way to make a cut. You don’t need a furin cleavage site to cut the protein, but it makes the virus more efficiently infectious.

    So where did it come from in SARS-CoV-2? There are other viruses that have furin cleavage sites, other coronaviruses, though not the family of beta-coronaviruses. So this sequence’s nucleotides could have hopped from some other virus.* No one has identified a virus that has exactly this sequence, but it could have come from something close, then evolved into the sequence that we see today.

    I’m perfectly willing to believe that happened, but I don’t think it’s the only way that that sequence could have appeared. The other way is that somebody could have put it in there. You can’t distinguish between the two origins from just looking at the sequence. So, naturally, you want to know were there people in the virology laboratory in Wuhan who were manipulating viral genetic sequences? It’s really a question of history: What happened?

    When I first saw the sequence of the furin cleavage site—as I’ve said, other beta coronaviruses don’t have that site—it seemed to me a reasonable hypothesis that somebody had put it in there. Now, I don’t know if that’s true or not, but I do know that it’s a hypothesis that must be taken seriously.
    _______________________

    * Some have asserted that furin site “hopping” [recombination] between distant branches of the coronavirus family is unlikely. That may be true. In that case, the furin cleavage site MUST have been developed in MULTIPLE branches of the coronavirus family by convergent evolution and could have happened in the beta branch too. Baltimore doesn’t mention the convergent evolution hypothesis, so he apparently doesn’t think recombination between distant branches is problematic. I tend to believe Baltimore is correct about the likelihood of recombination, but the existence of furin cleavage sites in three branches of the coronavirus family means finding it is SARS2 is “not a smoking gun” … as best I can tell.

    • Frank, there does not need to be a smoking gun to make an airtight case. The FCS is just one piece of evidence. It was odd enough for Anderson to run to Fauci first thing when he saw it and say the virus showed potential for lab manipulation (before Fauci gathered all the troops to say we are not going this direction).

      Two days ago we learned that a new book coming out will reveal that Wei Jingsheng, a prominent Chinese defector to the US, learned from his contact in China in November 2019 that a new deadly virus was spreading in Wuhan since the October World Military Games and was being covered up. He went to the USIC and did everything in his power to get the message to the White House but is uncertain if he succeeded. It sound like the USIC blundered again but there should be an investigation.

      In any case China has overwhelming evidence against it and is culpable for the spread of the virus throughout the world by covering it up for three months, whether it came out of a lab or not. But what would give anyone doubt that the Chinese military would not have been doing their own gain of function research on SARS viruses? Real question.

      https://nypost.com/2021/09/14/chinese-defector-warned-us-intelligence-of-covid-19-in-2019/

      • Ron and Tom: The problem much of the NYP’s “evidence” doesn’t point to a single hypothesis.

        As Baltimore says, the furin cleavage site could have been introduced by genetic engineering or recombination (and I added or convergent evolution). Those who asserted the furin cleavage site MUST have been genetic engineered mislead us. It isn’t evidence that points to any hypothesis. The official report given to Biden believed that SARS2 wasn’t genetically engineered as part of a biowarfare project.

        Wei Jingsheng says he learned about a mysterious virus at the WMI games in OCTOBER 2019 from a high-level contact in Beijing, told that story in front of witnesses on 11/22/19, and to contacts with access to Trump. This hypothesis makes little sense to me. If the virus at the WMI (an ideal place to start a pandemic) were the SARS2 discovered in late December, the pandemic would have been obvious to all in November. In the initial stages of the pandemic in most places each infected person on the average is infecting 3-4 others every 5 days and this number could easily at such an event and flying home. The number of US cases increased 5000-fold in March of 2020 (before lockdowns had time to work) and the same thing of worse should have happened after the WMI by mid-November 2019. Absurd. Sure, there could have been an unusual number of illnesses at the WMI, but it wasn’t what we recognize as SARS2 today. And the WMI hypothesis doesn’t add and support for (or against the genetic engineering hypothesis.

        Then Asher is talking about a third hypothesis, intelligence that workers at the WIV were getting sick in Nov. That certainly could have been the start of the pandemic, but it is also totally independent of the WMI hypothesis and the genetic engineering hypothesis. The virus that infected these workers could have come from a collected sample of a virus that evolved in nature or more sophisticate study of some coronavirus that remains unreported today. RaTG17 differs at 1000 positions from SARS2.

        Trump is a conspiracy theorist. Scientists should treat conspiracy theories lacking any evidence as conspiracy theories, If the US government had evidence to back Trump’s conspiracy theory in the spring, they might have made sure the WH was aware they had evidence to back up Trump’s conspiracy theory and might have made the WH aware of that evidence and scientists would have taken that hypothesis more seriously, as they do today (mostly because a close relative of SARS2 hasn’t been found in animals as it was with SARS1). Of course, the intelligence bureaucracy may not have wanted Trump dealing irresponsibility with their evidence and kept quiet,

        Ron wrote: “there does not need to be a smoking gun to make an airtight case.” Multiple pieces of evidence that support different hypotheses – none of which are smoking guns by themselves – never add up to an air-tight case. That’s called “throwing everything against the wall and seeing what sticks”. So far, nothing is sticking.

        I’m sure there is an “Institute of Virology” in many major Chinese cities with a medical system sophisticated enough to identify SARS2. You’ll probably find one in many in US cities too, though they might be called Institutes of AIDS Research in the US. (I checked Stanford and Berkeley before finding one at UCSF, UC’s top medical school.) And all major Chinese cities have (or had) wild animal markets. Wuhan, however, is special because they have THE premier virus research center in the whole country and the only BSL4 facilities.

        FWIW The head of the Chinese CDC (Gao) called the head of the US CDC (Redfield) on January 4 (who was on vacation) and again on January 8 and – in great distress – informed him that they had discovered a novel coronavirus that may have gotten out of control in Wuhan. If this were known to have been the result of a lab accident at the WIV that was already being covered up, all information would likely have been released by official channels. Communications, especially about human transmission, through official channels to the WHO were delayed and misleading.

      • Ron wrote: “It was odd enough for Anderson to run to Fauci first thing when he saw it and say the virus showed potential for lab manipulation (before Fauci gathered all the troops to say we are not going this direction).”

        If I were Anderson, I certainly would have “run to Fauci” and others with my hypothesis about the furin cleavage site. Smart scientists know that confirmation bias makes it easy for them to fall in love with their latest great idea. As Feynman said in Cargo Cult Science: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person [for you] to fool.” So, many test their ideas by trying out their ideas on others they respect – as Anderson did immediately with a group Fauci informally assembled. Nothing suspicious about that.

        Now I’d like to believe the consensus they came to was a purely scientific and unforced consensus after properly considered all of the evidence. After SARS1 and MERS, zoonosis was the obvious origin hypothesis – until we failed to identify a host between bats and people. But I won’t insist that you accept that politics didn’t determine the outcome, because you are inherently much more suspicious than I. Experience has taught me to be cynical about climate science, but not scientists in general. (Peter Dazsak may be more policy advocate than scientist.)

        Ron also wrote: “In any case China has overwhelming evidence against it and is culpable for the spread of the virus throughout the world by covering it up for three months, whether it came out of a lab or not.”

        This assumes that SARS2 was at the World Military Games in October or was responsible for the US intelligence report of infectious disease in November. In the early days of COVID in a new location (like the US in March), the number of cases doubles roughly every 2.5 days = 4,000 fold in a month. You just can’t have what we know of as SARS2 expanding in a major metropolitan area for months and keep it a secret. Maybe in an isolated area or military base. Maybe a less virulent strain. The news about identification of a new coronavirus spread over social media quickly once the virus was sequenced. Taiwan was screening passengers on flights from Wuhan on 1/2/20. Gao called Redfield in tears on 1/4/20 confessing that they had lost control of a new form of SARS. China did outrageously deny having evidence of human-to-human transmission for far too long.

      • Frank wrote: “If I were Anderson, I certainly would have “run to Fauci” and others with my hypothesis about the furin cleavage site.”

        I suspect Anderson had spoken to his virology colleagues before warning Fauci (the Big Kahuna). This was likely the reason for Fauci’s need to have his deputy round up all of them in emergency fashion the next day.

        Fauci has zero evolutionary biology expertise compared with the virologists yet you believe it is appropriate that his judgment prevail over theirs. Because why?

        Anderson clearly could find no justification on that question which is apparently why he deleted his Twitter account, which he had before that point been using daily. He might have had different thoughts if he knew of yours and others willing acceptance of his behavior. (Especially now seeing the MSM applauding General Milley’s revealed coup against Trump.)

        In Anderson et al (2020) the number one evidence given for SARS2 not being from a lab is that the backbone virus that would have been lab manipulated is not seen in the published databases. I wonder what Anderson’s thoughts were when Zhengli Shi coughed up the confession in November 2020 that she had collected 8 other SARS viruses (unpublished) from the same location that RaTG13 came from.

        Why didn’t Anderson use his Twitter account to demand that China publish the sequences for these 8 novel SARS viruses? The reason is clearly that had allowed himself to be compromised, just like Fauci and Daszak.

        At lease Ralph Baric signed the March letter with Alina Chan and others demanding China be more cooperative. Baric must have been devastated when he learned that 6 miners had been directly infected by bat SARS in 2012 and Zhengli Shi had been analyzing their hospital labs and the location site for years without telling him.

      • Also in Anderson et al (2020) they predict that an intermediary species will be identified due to the evolution of the spike relative to RaTG13. In fact the FCS, which broadens infectivity and range of possible hosts, strongly suggests it. Not only has no intermediary been found for SARS2, it has also became questioned for SARS1 in 2009, (likely unbeknownst to Anderson).

        From Anderson et al:

        Given the level of genetic variation in the spike, it is likely that SARS-CoV-2-like viruses with partial or full polybasic cleavage sites will be discovered in other species.

    • Given the geopolitical ramifications, were I Dr. Fauci I would not want to be the first, second or third American to suggest a virus had escaped a Chinese laboratory, even if I had strong suspicions about it, which does not seem to be the case here.

      • By the time Fauci began to use his influence to cast a false narrative about the science the president, secretary of state and several senators had already made the obvious connection to the WIV and Wuhan that comedian Democrat John Stewart would make a year later. The virus came from a city that housed an institute with the same name: The Institute for Novel Coronavirus Gain of Function Research and Evolution.

    • A new paper awaiting peer-review asserts that two separate variants (A and B) of SARS2 existed from the start of the pandemic – strongly implying that it crossed over twice from animals to people. Only a few early sequences show characteristics of both strains in one isolate and these sequences led to the initial assumption that there was a common viral ancestor in humans. The new report argues that these few isolates had sequencing errors. The A variant was found in patients associated with one wild animal market and spread only in China. The B variant was found in patients associated with a second wild animal market and spread worldwide (as well as in China).

      https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-02519-1

      https://virological.org/t/evidence-against-the-veracity-of-sars-cov-2-genomes-intermediate-between-lineages-a-and-b/754/1

      FWIW, I’m not advocating this hypothesis. I’m merely passing on the news that a reputable source is reporting it.

      • Thanks for the links. I guess you anticipated my question of whether a reservoir infecting China markets is evidence of a natural origin or a very leaky lab if they can’t find the animal reservoir.

      • Ron: I don’t like a paper which claims there could be mistakes in the data indicating that the A and B variants had a common origin in one “Patient Zero”. If mistakes were made, get the data to prove it and THEN publish. Hopefully they chose a different path because the data that needs to be reviewed is in many different labs and files.

        IIRC, there are two major variants of HIV and both have been traced back to two different crossovers of Simian Immunosuppression Virus into two human “Patient Zeros” many years apart in Africa before 1950. And there were two crossover events with SARS1.

        These articles for raised a distressing number of questions for me, beginning with why two crossovers in a very short period of time in one location where bats aren’t a problem? And why so many sequencing errors at these two key locations?

      • Frank, I appreciate your open mindedness. I’m trying too.

        But this character, Gary, from the article is not at all thinking clearly when he says: “If you can show that A and B are two separate lineages and there were two spillovers, it all but eliminates the idea that it came from a lab.”

        Evidence of spillovers is evidence of the existence of a reservoir, nothing more, obviously, as you recognized.

        OTOH, if it is verified that the transitional varieties found of the virus containing parts of both version A and version B, then this is evidence of recombination event(s), which rarely happen in the wild, and thus would seem to preclude a natural reservoir. Yet it would be highly supportive of a scenario of ongoing lab leaks of a virus undergoing accelerated (artificial) evolution in a lab.

        Were any of the WIV’s lab animal species in also ones available for sale in wet markets? I have not seen anyone voicing this question.

      • If the virus had a natural origin then tracing infections to separate wet markets is only the beginning of the trail. Finding the reservoir that infected the market animals is the key. Few people outside of the SARS1 researchers are aware that the origin of SARS1 was re-opened years after the case had been closed. Ralph Baric can be heard here in 2015 postulating that civet cats were not the reservoir for SARS1. Although he doesn’t state why one can find in the literature that an Ecohealth Alliance funded 2009 study found civet cats in the wild do not carry the coronavirus. This was also their finding on a study of wild pangolins in 2020 after Covid. (BTW, Baric’s lead investigator, Menachery, has taken down his website where I originally found the podcast though the podcast still remains floating in cyberspace.)

        Mystery1: what reservoir formed SARS1 ?
        Mystery2: where did pangolin cov come from?
        Mystery3: why couldn’t they find the wet market reservoir with it being one of the most urgent questions in the world?
        Mystery 4: why is nobody asking for samples of the 8 other SARS-like viruses found in the same copper mine as RaTG13? (Zhengli Shi admitted their existence but nothing more in November of 2020 after prodding.)
        https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2951-z

      • Eco Health Alliance proposed using SARS research to be funded by DARPA as a 2018 defense contract. He, of course, would have Baric and Shi oversee injecting the chimeric bat SARS into humanized mice.

        DARPA said, “Naaah. We think it’s GOF which is banned research.”

        https://drasticresearch.org/2021/09/20/1583/

      • Peter Daszak forgot to mention that he and Zhengli Shi had their eye on inserting a furin cleavage site into novel SARS covs to increase pathogenicity in humans in their 2018 grant application to DARPA.

        Proteolytic cleavage and Glycosyiation Sites:
        After receptor binding, a variety of cell surface or endosomal proteases cleave the SARS-CoV S glycoprotein causing massive changes in S structure and activating fusion-mediated entry. We will analyze all SARS-CoV gene sequences for appropriately conserved proteolytic cleavage sites in and for the presence of potential furin cleavage sites. SARS-
        CoV with mismatches in proteolytic cleavage sites can be activated by exogenous trypsin or cathepsin L Where clear mismatches occur, we will introduce appropriate human specific cleavage sites and evaluate growth potential in Vero cell and HACE cultures. In SARS CoV, we will ablate several of these sites based on pseudotyped particle studies and evaluate the impact of select SARS CoV S changes on virus replication and pathogenesis.

        DARPA claims they said “no” to Shi and Daszak but nobody has asked the PLA what their response was.
        https://theintercept.com/2021/09/23/coronavirus-research-grant-darpa/

  47. To be clear, I personally don’t think that comparing COVID outcomes across states has much utility.

    That given, many of my friends here have been making such comparisons, and…for my many and much beloved “denizen” friends who in these threads have been repeatedly praising the outcomes of COVID policies in Florida relative to NY…

    As such, I’m curious to find out their thoughts about the current status and related trends in COVID outcomes across the states.

    I notice that Florida, lately, has been marching up the charts (particularly relative to NY) in per capita deaths from COVID. It is near the very top in per capita cases, even though it is well down the chart in per capita testing.

    Given trends, it seems likely to keep moving in the wrong direction relative to NY along each metric for the next month or so, or maybe longer? Maybe those trends will reverse once the Fall and Winter settle in up North?

    NY, on the other hand, has fallen back towards the pack in per capita deaths, is well down the chart in per capita cases, even as it is near the top in per capital testing.

    I certainly hope some of my friends will help me to understand these trends. If you think comparing across states has value for evaluating different policies in different states, what do you think the implications are of these trends?

    • I was definitely in the camp that thought that comparisons across states would give us some information about methods that are effective versus ones that are not. The very early vaccination (once available) of Israel’s population to very high levels (in comparison to other countries), and the subsequent very high levels (again in comparison to other countries) of incidence of disease has changed my mind. There are too many confounding variables to make these comparisons. However, I found that the post that was previously published on this web site to address this was reasonably done and worthwhile reading. That post talks about voluntary versus mandatory controls, and how that information about increased risk can lead to actions that limit the spread. Conversely, in the case of Israel, a relaxing of the population (in this case due to vaccination) can lead to a spread before the information reaches the population that the risk has increased despite the vaccination. This is especially true of a vaccination that does not completely make a person immune like the ones that are available for COVID.

      • Joshua,

        I had not seen those articles, but both are very good, and I highly recommend them. Further, just to clear up any misunderstanding, I am not saying that COVID vaccinations are not worth the risk of getting them. I was vaccinated, and as I have explained previously I have no idea if I have had COVID or not due to allergies that could mask a mild infection.

      • atandb –

        > Further, just to clear up any misunderstanding, I am not saying that COVID vaccinations are not worth the risk of getting them.

        Sure. I didn’t interpret your comments to be unsupportive of vaccines.

        What I’ve seen of Israel thus far along with the UK or Iceland or Chile or the Seychelles or Gibraltar, just goes to reinforce my view that trying to extrapolate cross-nationally is very tricky and should only be done with a lot of circumspection, by people who have the best data and a lot of experience with this kind of analysis. Armchair epidemiologistsz it seems to me, have a very hard time getting past confirmation bias.

      • I have looked at several maps that are supposed to show risk of COVID vs State or Country. Just looked at some data that makes those maps suspect. Grenada, Bermuda, and Saint Lucia are all pretty high in terms of risk if you use new cases/1M pop + New Deaths/10k pop. As best as I can tell most of the “risk” maps are using total incidence over the entire COVID time period, which does not give a current picture.

    • Covid-19 specific data can be (and I believe are) manufactured at will. The “clean” data are total (all-causes) death rates (deaths/population).

      Sweden provides a very useful example of what works and what doesn’t. The link also shows covid-19 related ICU numbers even though I just said I’m not a big fan of any covid-19 specific data.

      Sweden did not panic and the results are quite good. So what Sweden did worked. Of course if the goal was to create panic then Sweden was a very bad actor for not playing along.

      https://ibb.co/ZgMFcxC

    • Joshua: State-to-state comparisons are extremely useful. I’m distressed that there aren’t bigger differences between states that were more aggressive in their restrictions, but that is reality. The spread in cumulative infections is barely two-fold. We need to learn what interventions help the most in the real world and abandon or improve the others. (I live in a small town that reports separately from the large suburban sprawl that fills the entire county. For some reason, we have 3-fold fewer cumulative cases than the county that surrounds us and 5-fold fewer than the national average. I don’t know why. Are we richer? More socially responsible about wearing masks and social distancing? When the Dakotas led the nation in cumulative cases last fall, I looked at the various counties to see how much population density mattered. “Rural counties” appear to be composed mostly of small towns with local population densities similar to major population centers. Fewer are social distanced on farms. (The counties with state prisons stand out.)

      FWIW, yesterday I made an X-Y scatter plot of state % vaccination vs the number of current cases. For all 48 continental states, a linear fit showed a 1% increase in vaccination was associated with a 4/100,000/day decrease in new cases. The relationship explained 50% of the variance in infections. When I dropped out the poorly fitting 8 hardest hit states (where other factors may be enhancing transmission), the decrease was 9/100,000/day. Extrapolating the latter relationship to 100% vaccination yielded a central estimate of zero cases. Both plots tells me that transmission from the unvaccinated is currently the main driver of this pandemic, despite the fact that transmission from breakthrough cases has been documented. Even with the limited vaccines we have today, mandatory vaccination (plus immunity acquired by infection) might bring the delta variant under control despite breakthrough infections. If this included a mandatory booster (increasing antibody levels 10X immediately after vaccination), the chances of success would be higher. (Those who revolt at the term “mandatory” might want to reflect where we would be if vaccination for smallpox, polio and a half dozen other infectious diseases had not been mandatory.) Voluntary vaccination was good enough to beat the alpha variant, but delta is more challenging. The Great Barrington Declaration crowd are already beginning to advocate a burnout strategy.

      If I understand correctly, the upper respiratory system apparently has access to less antibody than the lower respiratory system. Breakthrough infections of delta replicate to high levels in the upper respiratory system, but the lower respiratory tract is protected, preventing most serious infections and hospitalizations. Aerosols are generated by sheer in the narrowest air passages in the lungs, which means that the most challenging form of transmission (and super-spreader events) may be limited by vaccination.

      • Frank –

        I just think there are way too many confounding variables for state-to-state comparisons to be of much use. Drawing conclusions from such comparisons is further complicated by the heterogeneity of states in and of themselves. How could we know which regional attributes make which (and how much) contributions? In that sense, country-to-county comparisons would make more sense to me – except that there, also, there are so many, important, confounding variables.

        Again, I go back to the relative rankings of New York or California or Florida on metrics such as per capital infections (relative to per capita testing) and per capital mortality. What could explain why Florida and New York have so drastically shifted relative to each other?

        > Aerosols are generated by sheer in the narrowest air passages in the lungs, which means that the most challenging form of transmission (and super-spreader events) may be limited by vaccination.

        One issue I think is relevant here is that there seems to be much uncertainty as to the relationship between particle size and viral load. I saw a study recently that speculated that the smaller particles may not be particularly infectious. I wish I could find it but I can’t.

      • Actually, I did find it:

        https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-78110-x#author-information

        I was speaking to someone recently who is involved in developing new ways for modeling aerosols. He spoke of how different the different behaviors of differently-sized particles is, and how they are so affected by ambient air movement and how they dry out and fall to the ground an all of that.

      • …county-to-county comparisons would make more sense…

      • Joshua wrote: “I just think there are way too many confounding variables for state-to-state comparisons to be of much use.”

        You are right, there are confounding variables. However, interventions need to work in a world of confounding variables. Contact tracing and quarantine work on Taiwan and South Korea, so they can work here for the next pandemic, if we understand and eliminate the confounding variables.

        The effectiveness of masks depends on compliance, snugness of fit and quality of the filter. Without understanding those factors, you can’t tell how well masks can work, just how well they did work.

        At the moment, there may be few confounding variables in the X-Y scatterplot I described above. Current new cases are a function of the growth of the delta variant over the past 10 weeks in states with differing amounts of vaccination. What I really needed to plot was the growth in new cases, not the absolute number of cases, in areas with different percentages of vaccination.

        I was shocked when ourworldindata.org started showing data on the reproduction number. After the initial surge and before delta, the US reproduction varies only from 0.7 to 1.3. In March, the reproduction number was 3.5. The average infected person has gone from infecting 3.5 people to between 0.7 and 1.3 for more than a year. That is a huge change due to people working from home, masks and social distancing. All those large changes in new cases are due to small changes in transmission integrated over a month or two. It seems as if individual and government fear are powerful enough to keep the reproduction number below 1 when hospitals begin overflowing, but it doesn’t stay below 1. (Europe did a good job in late spring and fall.)

        The US is a very heterogeneous place. The variation in reproduction number in a small country like Israel may be more representative of how local people and governments are changing.

      • Thanks for the info about emission of aerosols and droplets under a variety of circumstances. We breath all the time, but we speak, sing, talk and cough only a small fraction of the time. The larger particles that are emitted during the latter activities quickly fall and can be avoided by masks and social distancing. The former remain suspended. FWIW, I’m optimistic that the protection that vaccination provides to the lungs will have a significant impact on emission of infectious aerosols and lower transmission despite breakthrough infections with high viral titers in the upper respiratory tract of the vaccinated with breakthrough infections. As you can now see from reproduction rates, even a 20% change in transmission can be a big difference.

      • Re the models and state to state comparisons. The death rate in Florida .8 per 100k in the last 7 days, is lower than that in NY minus NYC (1.5 per 100k) and lower than NYC (1 per 100k) and New Jersey (1.4) and Michigan (.9) and is four times less than Washington state and Oregon (3.8 and 3.5 respectively). Alabama leads the pack at 15 per 100k right now.
        If there are no more deaths at all in NY (including NYC) it would take Florida almost 5 months to catch up to NY (if you assume no decline in the death rate in Florida). But there were more deaths in NY over the last 7 days than in Florida, so catching up will never happen.

        But the big problem with state-to-state comparisons is that New York’s “lockdown” or “stay at home” order was never real. Most cases in the US had their origin in New York and as late as March 28 the NY governor was suing other states to force them to allow infected New Yorkers to visit.
        https://www.providencejournal.com/news/20200328/ny-gov-andrew-cuomo-threatens-to-sue-ri
        Little Rhode Island had a higher death rate than Florida cumulatively and still does today (1.2 over the last 7 days)

        The biggest lessons from Covid is that “stay at home” is the most important restriction and people will not stay at home.
        Second biggest lesson, get the vaccine into the most vulnerable population first (FL has a higher vaccination rate for old people than New York does).
        Third, don’t politicize the virus- those “sophisticated, vaccinated” crowds at Obama’s NY birthday party and the Met gala thought they were safe because they weren’t in red states or hanging out with evangelical Alabamians. Ditto the ridiculously low vaccination rates for Black people in NYC that nobody will mention or address because of the narrative.

        Masks? Anyone really want to argue that folks in Oregon or NYC are less likely to mask up than they are in Tampa? You can’t get any bluer than NYC, 78% of Democrats tell pollsters they wear a mask “all the time” (51%) or “most of the time” and 80% tell pollsters they are vaccinated.*

        Why is NYC doing worse than Florida? We don’t know and politics insist we don’t try to find out. That’s sad.

        Poll: https://docs.cdn.yougov.com/h4zvi2yb6c/econTabReport.pdf

      • Jeff –

        > But there were more deaths in NY over the last 7 days than in Florida, so catching up will never happen.

        It’s truly hilarious how many times, so many so many of you, are so driven to confirm a bias, that you make the sale mistake, over and over, of not accounting for the lag in reporting (in this case exacerbated by the recent change in how Florida is reporting covid stats).

        No way that once all the data are in, Florida will have seen fewer deaths than NY in the last week, even if they are REPORTING fewer deaths at this point. You really think that Florida has gone from over 340 deaths a day @ 3 weeks ago to less than @40 deaths a day now?

        Really. Hilarious.

        I’m not saying that Florida will catch up all the way (because of the huge lead NY built up early in the pandemic) and I repeat that comparing across states is basically nothing other than an exercise in confirmation bias, but Florida had made a very large jump over the past couple of months in per capita deaths relative to NY, and even in the last month, and even in the last couple of weeks,

        Thanks for the chuckle.

      • Jeff –

        From August 21 to Sept 7, Florida went from @45,513 deaths to 50,781 deaths.
        From August 21 to Sept 7, New York went from @55,472 to 55,044 deaths.

        So assuming that the difference in their deaths for that period doesn’t grow any more as more Florida reports come in (it may well grow more) during that period, Florida had about 4800 more deaths, or about 1600 a week more. And you think that some two weeks after that period ended, New York had more weekly deaths than Florida?

        That says about we need to know about your analytical skills. Thanks for chiming in with your opinion. It was quite useful

        Lol.

      • Oops.

        > From August 21 to Sept 7, New York went from @55,472 to 55,044 deaths.

        Should be 54,472 to 55,044

      • “Really. Hilarious.”

        Got it, Joe Biden’s CDC (where I get the numbers from) is lying to pump up DeSantis.
        Really.
        Hilarious.
        You know that the CDC says Florida’s reporting change made it more accurate, right? You grasp that the date of the actual death is more accurate than the date that the report came in when you look to count who died and when, right?

        Oh, and you know this change in reporting happened in August, right? August was not within the last seven days.
        Deaths in New York (including NYC) over the last seven days per the CDC- 246
        Deaths in Florida over the last seven days per the CDC 116

        By the way, did you know that one of these two states actually got caught fiddling with Covid stats for political purposes?

        It’s not the one you think.

        https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/04/nyregion/cuomo-nursing-home-deaths.html

        They also got caught tying vaccine distribution to political support:

        https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/cuomo-vaccine-czar-called-county-execs-assess-their-loyalty-n-n1261105

        and testing:

        https://www.tampabay.com/news/health/2021/03/25/cuomo-told-health-officials-to-prioritize-his-relatives-associates-for-coronavirus-testing-report-says/

        But, DeSantis! I guess something had to replace TDS

      • Jeff –

        > You know that the CDC says Florida’s reporting change made it more accurate, right?

        I never said word one about the merits of their cjsnf Don reporting.

        What I said was that your interpretation of the numbers is laughably wrong and bard in ignorance.

        It’s simply not true that more people died in NY from COVID last week than in Florida.

        Wait two weeks and it will become in arguable even for you.

      • Never said word one about their change in reporting.

        Of course, I never said word one about DeSantis either, etc.

        Your squirrels are even more ridiculous than understanding of the numbers.

      • bard in ignorance = based on ignorance.

        >
        Deaths in New York (including NYC) over the last seven days per the CDC- 246
        Deaths in Florida over the last seven days per the CDC 116

        When the data are all in from Florida, there will be significantly more deaths recorded in Florida over the last week than in New York. How do I know that? Do I have a crystal ball?

        No. I know that because I’m not trying to push a partisan agenda and a victim of confirmation bias in order to do so – as you are.

      • “It’s simply not true that more people died in NY from COVID last week than in Florida.”

        Understood.
        You think the CDC is lying, I don’t.
        Interesting that using the actual date of the death presumably causes no lag in reporting by New York (which is known to fiddle with their stats) but is yuuuuge in Florida (which is known to have been falsely accused of fiddling with their stats).
        Since the NY Times reports that most of the deaths and cases in Florida are courtesy of the state of New York, how should we factor that into our state to state comparison?
        It’s a pretty nifty trick to be responsible for infecting another state and then complaining that other state is mishandling things. But partisans gotta partisan.

        My main point is that the partisan (and false) attacks on Florida are counterproductive if you actually want to influence an epidemic. If less than 30% of your adult Black population 18-44 is vaccinated (as is the case in New York) and 300 people a week are dying of Covid (as is the case in New York) you aren’t doing anyone any good by running constant attacks on Florida, evangelical white people, and Republicans (as is the case with the entire MSM). All while claiming New York is a bastion of Covid perfection.
        You tell me- how do you find a bureaucrat in New York willing to say the governor, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, the NY Times, and CNN are all wrong and the state needs to step up its game and do a vaccination program designed with reality in mind?
        You can’t, of course, unless you give the poor dear the cover of honesty in which to do her job. But that won’t happen, so that number in CDC report for New York will tick up and up and up causing the yelling at Florida to get louder and louder and louder.

      • Jeff –

        > You think the CDC is lying,

        Stop being a dope.

        I don’t think the Cdc is “lying.”

        I’ve already explained this to you.

        The CDC will be updating their reporting as more data comes in from Florida’s reportkng. Check back in two or three weeks.

        We’ll see then whether you have any sense of accountability.

      • Jeff –

        > Interesting that using the actual date of the death presumably causes no lag in reporting by New York (which is known to fiddle with their stats) but is yuuuuge in Florida.

        If you bothered to read about the methodological change Florida made in how it reports COVID data, maybe a month or so back (which is different than NY) then you would understand why there is a different lag in Florida than In NY.

      • Here. This may help. Ignore anything that triggers your partisan defensiveness and just look at how it describes how the data are handled.

        https://www.miamiherald.com/news/coronavirus/article253796898.html

      • Jeff –

        7-day rolling average on August, 31: Florida 352, NY 27

        .
        And you think the 7-day total from Sept 15-22 was higher in NY than in Florida?

        Freakin’ hilarious.

        I love me some “skeptics.”

      • I see many squirrels in my future.

        Are, that crystal ball came in handy after all.

      • Herd immunity kicks in at some 80% exposure for polio and 95% for measles. We can get there by exposure to the virus itself or by vaccination.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2021/09/compare-state-trends-1.png

        I note that Joshua dominates the comment count in this thread by a lot. And indulges in his usual partisan fanatic food fight.

      • RIE.
        “I note that Joshua dominates the comment count in this thread by a lot. And indulges in his usual partisan fanatic food fight.”

        The secret is to be nice to him.
        When you are he may go away.
        Not much help I know.
        .

      • There is a cohort of neo-socialist fanatics with a slew of tawdry and scurrilous behaviours they use on those they deem to be deniers. They cannot admit to not being smarter because then the flimsy flimflam edifice would crumble. Classic groupthink. Ignoring them doesn’t work. It encourages them – they pile on. It’s not as if communication is the game. So for good or ill – Joshua has my attention now.

  48. Australian startup is beating China to efficient and cheaper solar panels

    Potentially. Yet to be demonstrated via mass production.

  49. Ireneusz Palmowski, thank you for your several links.

  50. Hey all, here is a novel non-CO2 based mechanism for anthro climate change — via low freq high power broadcasts affecting ozone –
    https://youtu.be/g51uWNCeTGo

  51. Judith, thank you again for this selection. It does take me a while to read them, but I appreciate your posting them.

  52. The carbon tax and renewables (unreliables) have sent Europe spiraling into Energy Hell. It will happen here in the US if we don’t change course very soon. This crisis will arrive sooner and be much worse than any hypothetical “climate crisis.”

    Of course, the usual id-eeee-ots will blame the problem on natural gas. If unreliable energy and carbon taxes are such a great thing, why does Europe need any natural gas at all? They have completely mismanaged their energy infrastructure. Now the Devil has come for his due.

    MOSCOW (Bloomberg) –Europe is bracing for a tough winter as an energy crisis that’s been years in the making leaves the continent relying on the vagaries of the weather.

    Faced with surging gas and electricity prices, countries from the UK to Germany will need to count on mild temperatures to get through the heating season. Europe is short of gas and coal and if the wind doesn’t blow, the worst-case scenario could play out: widespread blackouts that force businesses and factories to shut.

    The unprecedented energy crunch has been brewing for years, with Europe growing increasingly dependent on intermittent sources of energy such as wind and solar while investments in fossil fuels declined. Environmental policy has also pushed some countries to shut their coal and nuclear fleets, reducing the number of power plants that could serve as back-up in times of shortages.

    “It could get very ugly unless we act quickly to try to fill every inch of storage,” said Marco Alvera, chief executive officer of Italian energy infrastructure company Snam SpA. “You can survive a week without electricity, but you can’t survive without gas.”

    Read more: Europe isn’t buying LNG despite record gas demand – here’s why.

    Energy demand is rising from the U.S. to Europe and Asia as economies recover from the global pandemic, boosting industrial activity and fueling concerns about inflation. Prices are so high in Europe that two major fertilizer producers announced they were shutting plants or curtailing production in the region.

    https://www.worldoil.com/news/2021/9/17/europe-faces-a-winter-energy-crisis-years-in-the-making

    • Jim2: I think the usual idiots are likely to blame Trump, who delayed completion of the Nord Strem 2 natural gas pipeline. Now, I personally think it is idiotic to allow Putin to control even more of Europe’s energy supply and bypass Ukraine, but Trump never had the power to stop Nord Strem 2 – only the power to sanction any European company that finished the pipeline. Since Russian companies didn’t care about US sanctions, they would finish the project if a European country didn’t. This probably explains why Biden abandoned Trump’s sanctions. There was some possibility that the other European countries could have used anti-monopoly laws or legislation to block the project, but Trump doesn’t believe in working with allies.

      FWIW, carbon taxes and renewables don’t have to make electricity unreliable. Natural gas generation is the ideal technology for converting unreliable renewable energy into reliable energy. The bulk of the cost of generating electricity from natural gas is the cost of the gas. It costs only about $0.01/kWh to have a natural gas plant standing idle when renewables are delivering electricity to ensure 100% reliability. When renewables are not delivering, you just turn on the gas and pay for it (which is no problem, since you don’t need to pay wind and solar farmer when they aren’t producing.) The problem is that the idiots are focused on 100% CO2-free electricity from renewables, rather than 100% reliable electricity from renewables while emitting as little CO2 as practical.

      The best way to prevent natural gas from being used to make renewables 100% reliable is to restrict fracking and create shortages that drive up the price. That is what Biden is doing. (:)) Of course renewables will always cost whatever they agreed to pay when the plant was being built. Electricity from solar farms in cloudy, high-latitude German is always going to be relatively expensive. It was even more expensive when contracts were signed when the price of solar panels was 10-fold higher than today (:)). Stupidity takes many different forms. Today solar panels can produce electricity in Southern California for $0.02/kWh, but often they are already buying all the power they can use from older, more expensive solar farms.

      In any case, the Europeans must import a lot of natural gas. If gas doesn’t come from Russia, it will likely come from the US, which wasn’t much of a reliability improvement under Trump. And tankers with US gas must be off-loaded at special facilities in major harbors – great targets of terrorist and alarmists.

    • Hey Jim –

      What’s your updated view on Sydney Powell and Lin Wood?

      Still think they’re going to come up with the goods on how the election was stolen?

      Where is that Kraken, anyway?

  53. 1. Earth’s Without-Atmosphere Mean Surface Temperature calculation
    Tmean.earth

    So = 1.361 W/m² (So is the Solar constant)
    S (W/m²) is the planet’s solar flux. For Earth S = So
    Earth’s albedo: aearth = 0,306

    Earth is a smooth rocky planet, Earth’s surface solar irradiation accepting factor Φearth = 0,47
    (Accepted by a Smooth Hemisphere with radius r sunlight is S*Φ*π*r²(1-a), where Φ = 0,47)

    β = 150 days*gr*oC/rotation*cal – is a Rotating Planet Surface Solar Irradiation Absorbing-Emitting Universal Law constant
    N = 1 rotation /per day, is Earth’s axial spin
    cp.earth = 1 cal/gr*oC, it is because Earth has a vast ocean. Generally speaking almost the whole Earth’s surface is wet. We can call Earth a Planet Ocean.

    σ = 5,67*10⁻⁸ W/m²K⁴, the Stefan-Boltzmann constant

    Earth’s Without-Atmosphere Mean Surface Temperature Equation Tmean.earth is:
    Tmean.earth= [ Φ (1-a) So (β*N*cp)¹∕ ⁴ /4σ ]¹∕ ⁴
    Τmean.earth = [ 0,47(1-0,306)1.361 W/m²(150 days*gr*oC/rotation*cal *1rotations/day*1 cal/gr*oC)¹∕ ⁴ /4*5,67*10⁻⁸ W/m²K⁴ ]¹∕ ⁴ =
    Τmean.earth = [ 0,47(1-0,306)1.361 W/m²(150*1*1)¹∕ ⁴ /4*5,67*10⁻⁸ W/m²K⁴ ]¹∕ ⁴ =
    Τmean.earth = ( 6.854.905.906,50 )¹∕ ⁴ = 287,74 K
    Tmean.earth = 287,74 Κ

    And we compare it with the
    Tsat.mean.earth = 288 K, measured by satellites.
    These two temperatures, the calculated one, and the measured by satellites are almost identical.

    Conclusions:
    The planet mean surface temperature equation
    Tmean = [ Φ (1-a) S (β*N*cp)¹∕ ⁴ /4σ ]¹∕ ⁴
    produces remarkable results.

    The calculated planets temperatures are almost identical with the measured by satellites.
    Planet…….Tmean….Tsat.mean
    Mercury…..325,83 K…..340 K
    Earth……….287,74 K…..288 K
    Moon………223,35 Κ…..220 Κ
    Mars………..213,21 K…..210 K

    Te.correct vs Tsat.mean comparison table
    Planet………..Te……..Te.correct…….Tmean….Tsat.mean
    Mercury….439,6 K…….364 K……….325,83 K…..340 K
    Earth………255 K………210 K………..287,74 K…..288 K
    Moon……..270,4 Κ…….224 K……….223,35 Κ…..220 Κ
    Mars……..209,91 K…….174 K……….213,21 K…..210 K

    The 288 K – 255 K = 33 oC difference does not exist in the real world.
    There are only traces of greenhouse gasses.
    The Earth’s atmosphere is very thin. There is not any measurable Greenhouse Gasses Warming effect on the Earth’s surface.

    There is NO +33°C greenhouse enhancement on the Earth’s mean surface temperature.
    Both the calculated by equation and the satellite measured Earth’s mean surface temperatures are almost identical:
    Tmean.earth = 287,74K = 288 K

    https://www.cristos-vournas.com

    • Christos: Φ – your the dimensionless Solar Irradiation accepting factor – is just an arbitrary fudge factor needed to make predicted surface temperature agree reasonably with the observed surface temperature in the absence of a GHE.

      “In optics, Lambert’s cosine law says that the radiant intensity or luminous intensity observed from an ideal diffusely reflecting surface or ideal diffuse radiator is directly proportional to the cosine of the angle θ between the direction of the incident light and the surface normal; I = I0cos(θ).” When integrated over a hemisphere, Lambert’s Cosine Law shows that the power absorbed by an illuminated hemisphere is the same as the power absorbed by a radiation arriving perpendicular to a disk of the same radius with the same albedo (absorptivity). In other words, Φ = 1.

      In the “reality-based” community, real scientists don’t add arbitrary fudge factors to established physics. Schwarzschild’s equation for radiative transfer predicts that the average 390 W/m2 of LWR exiting an average 288 K surface of the earth will be reduced to an average of 240 W/m2 of LWR crossing the TOA by absorption and temperature-dependent emission. (390-240/390 is 0.38, roughly equal to your dimensionless Solar Irradiation accepting factor. Both Lambert’s Cosine Law and Schwarzschild’s equation for radiative transfer can be found at Wikipedia.

      This explains why your methodology doesn’t work for Venus.

      • Franktoo
        “Christos: Φ – your the dimensionless Solar Irradiation accepting factor – is just an arbitrary fudge factor needed to make predicted surface temperature agree reasonably with the observed surface temperature in the absence of a GHE.”

        Franktoo
        “When integrated over a hemisphere, Lambert’s Cosine Law shows that the power absorbed by an illuminated hemisphere is the same as the power absorbed by a radiation arriving perpendicular to a disk of the same radius with the same albedo (absorptivity). In other words, Φ = 1.”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lambert%27s_cosine_law

        “In optics, Lambert’s cosine law says that the radiant intensity or luminous intensity observed from an ideal diffusely reflecting surface or ideal diffuse radiator is directly proportional to the cosine of the angle θ between the direction of the incident light and the surface normal; I = I0cos(θ).[1][2] The law is also known as the cosine emission law[3] or Lambert’s emission law. It is named after Johann Heinrich Lambert, from his Photometria, published in 1760.[4]”

        the radiant intensity or luminous intensity observed from an ideal diffusely reflecting surface or ideal diffuse radiator is directly proportional to the cosine of the angle θ between the direction of the incident light and the surface normal;

        Lambert’s cosine law does not say anything about absorbed power.

        I am explaining about Φ -factor in my site:

        https://www.cristos-vournas.com

        Thank you Franktoo for your respond.

      • Christos: I skimmed your explanation at your website before commenting here. The phrase “dimensionless Solar Irradiation accepting factor” was copied and pasted from there. That translates to a fudge factor. Did you read about Lambert’s cosine law and Schwarzschild’s equation for radiation transfer (in an atmosphere)? Both are discussed by Wikipedia?

    • Earth has an atmosphere that absorbs and reradiates infrared photons.

    • Sorry, Christos. Lambert’s Cosine Law applies to both emission and absorption. By Kirckhoff’s Law, absorptivity must equal emissivity. You can’t have Lambert’s Cosine Law apply to emission at an angle to a surface and not have it apply to absorption by a surface.

  54. Judith: You may want to include this link in your next Week in Review. There is a common misconception that COVID isn’t much more serious that influenza. However, influenza can only infect cells in the respiratory tract, while the ACE2 receptor used by SARS2 also allows infection of heart, brain and other tissues. Serious problems (including dementia) arising from infection of some of this tissues in patients needing hospitalization. (The author is not a medical professional, but the article contains links to primary sources.)

    The Case for Covid Booster Shots Is Strong
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/long-covid-19-booster-shots-third-dose-vaccine-delta-cognitive-decline-severe-illness-11631651778

  55. Mornin’ Tony (UTC),

    I’m trying a little experiment, especially for you and Joe:

    https://twitter.com/GreatWhiteCon/status/1440947540128681990

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