Held v Montana Climate Lawsuit

by Judith Curry

My reflections on the Held v Montana Climate Lawsuit – the inside story, my written expert report and why I didn’t testify at the trial.  Don’t believe the PR about this case from Our Children’s Trust, which the mainstream media has accepted uncritically.

What the case is about

This case has received substantial national and international press.  Here is the summary of the lawsuit provided by climatecasechart:

Youth Plaintiffs Filed Climate Lawsuit Against Montana Asserting Violations of State Constitutional Rights. Sixteen young people filed a lawsuit in Montana state court asserting climate change-based claims under the Montana constitution against the State of Montana, its governor, and state agencies. In particular, the case challenges the constitutionality of Montana’s fossil fuel-based State Energy Policy and the “Climate Change Exception” in the Montana Environmental Policy Act. The plaintiffs allege that anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions were “already triggering a host of adverse consequences in Montana, including dangerously increasing temperatures, changing precipitation patterns, increasing droughts and extreme weather events, increasing the frequency and severity of wildfires, increasing glacial melt, and causing numerous adverse health risks, especially to children,” and that defendants had continued “to act affirmatively to exacerbate the climate crisis” despite their awareness that the plaintiffs were living under “dangerous climatic conditions that create an unreasonable risk of harm.” The plaintiffs seek a declaration that their right to a clean and healthful environment includes a right a stable climate system, as well as declarations that the State Energy Policy and the Climate Change Exception violate the Public Trust Doctrine and constitutional provisions that protect the right to a clean and healthful environment; the right to seek safety, health, and happiness; and the right to individual dignity and equal protection. They also seek injunctive relief in the form of orders directing the defendants to prepare an accounting of Montana’s greenhouse gas emissions and to develop and implement a remedial plan to reduce emissions “consistent with the best available science and reductions necessary to protect Youth Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights from further infringement … , and to reduce the cumulative risk of harm to those rights.”

The case was filed in 2020.  A history of the case is provided at the website for Our Children’s Trust (lawyers for the Plaintiffs), including the full text of the Complaint.

As a quick summary of the trial strategies:

• Our Children’s Trust regards this case as a referendum on the climate change inaction by state governments in the U.S., focusing on how this causing serious harm to children.

• The State of Montana views this to be a boring case about procedural law.

My role

In September 2022, I entered into an agreement with the State of Montana to be an expert witness in this case, including preparing written testimony for submission, being deposed, and testifying at trial.  The deadline for my written testimony was Oct 31.

I did not sign a formal agreement with the state of Montana, so I have no legal restrictions on what I say about the case.  However, as a general practice I do not discuss my clients publicly and would never repeat anything said to me in private.  Since my name has appeared in numerous media articles in conjunction with this case, my involvement is hardly a secret. I have received numerous queries from reporters to make a statement, which I have turned down.  I regard it as unprofessional to comment publicly on a case that I am involved with, either before or during the trial.  This blog post comprises my post-trial statement about the case.

The full text of my written expert report can be found here [MT Curry report], addressing the points that the lawyers asked me to.  From the Conclusions of my report:

Based on the evidence presented in this report, the Plaintiffs’ challenge of these two laws is based on the following mistaken assumptions and assertions:

  • Plaintiffs: the release of greenhouse gases from fossil fuel emissions into the atmosphere is already triggering a host of adverse consequences in Montana.                                                                  Section 1 of this Report demonstrates that the climate-related concerns observed by the Plaintiffs are well within the range of historical natural weather and climate variability, with worse occurrences of weather and climate extremes observed during the early 20th century.
  • Plaintiffs: the future threats posed by fossil fuels and the climate crisis are existential.              Section 2 of this Report demonstrates that the Plaintiffs’ concerns about climate change in the 21st century are greatly exaggerated, and not consistent with the most recent assessment reports and research publications.

My report further provided an analysis of the prospects for renewable energy in the state of Montana, rebutting Mark Jacobson’s proposal for 100% renewable energy for Montana.

The Plaintiffs solicited 6 rebuttal reports from their witnesses in an attempt challenge my Report, they even dredged up Kevin Trenberth as a rebuttal witness in attempt to take me down.  Here is the surrebuttal report that I prepared [surrebuttal] (note this was not filed, but served as preparation for my Deposition).

My Deposition was very interesting, I was grilled by Julia Olson (founder of Our Children’s Trust) for almost 8 hours.  She seemed to be pretty frustrated and occasionally too aggressive in her frustration. From my perspective, she didn’t land so much as a scratch.

Bottom line: they were shooting blanks in trying to take me down.

Our Children’s Trust

Our Children’s Trust is a nonprofit public interest law firm based in Oregon that has filed many lawsuits on behalf of youth plaintiffs against state and federal governments, arguing that they are infringing on children’s right to a safe and stable climate.  Most famously, they are behind the Juliana et al. v the United States. All of their cases have been tossed out with the exception of the Montana case (recently they may have found a toehold in Hawaii).

Our Children’s Trust very slickly presented their case before the Montana judge (no jury).  They featured the young Plaintiffs, all of whom are admirable.  The presentation of their case was an impressive infomercial for Our Children’s Trust, which will surely fill their coffers with large donations.  The sad part is that the Plaintiffs and Our Children’s Trust have been so BADLY MISLED about climate change, its causes, its impacts and its remedies.

Our Children’s Trust argues that there is a basic human right to a clean and healthful environment.  Their main agenda is to declare a 350 ppm constitutional standard for a stable climate.

Their witnesses included many of the youth Plaintiffs (all of whom are native Americans), several adults from Montana’s native American community, a number of Montana academics, and Mark Jacobson an advocate for 100% renewable energy. The direct examination of each of these witnesses was aided by slickly prepared ppt presentations that flattered each witness.

Montana’s case

Montana’s approach to the case has evolved since 2020, has evolved rapidly in the last 6 months since a new legal team was brought in, and even evolved rapidly during the course of the trial.  The lawyers I spoke to in Sept 2022 were gone by the end of Oct, with an interim team brought in from the private sector, and then a new team that was hired for the Montana’s State Attorney’s Office in Dec.

MT’s original expert witnesses were apparently tossed, and I and several other expert witnesses were brought on board in the 11th hour, around Sept 2022. Note:  instructions for preparing our written reports were received from lawyers two generations removed from the actual trial lawyers.  As per questioning during my Deposition, I gleaned that the state originally had a collection of witnesses that were pretty subpar (I don’t know who they were).  The new set of witnesses was apparently much better.

The State’s defense is best described in their closing argument.  Unfortunately, I don’t see an online copy of that and it isn’t adequately covered in the news reporting on the trial (which is infatuated with the Plaintiffs’ case).

Simply put, the Montana legal team presented this case as one about procedural law. They claimed that the Plaintiffs did not adequately make a case that Montana’s emissions were harming Montana’s citizens nor contributing to global warming in a measurable way.   They claimed that the injunctive relief they sought would not restrict Montana’s ability to permit new fossil fuel plants.  This line sums it up:

“[this] week-long airing of political grievances that properly belongs in the legislature, not the court of law.”

For the trial, Montana originally listed 3 expert witnesses (including myself) and a number of government witnesses. Media reporting on the status of MT’s witnesses during trial:

“Yesterday, witnesses for the state of Montana testified in court, including Christopher Dorrington, Sonja Nowakowski, and Dr. Terry Anderson. The State declined to call to the stand its single climate science witness, Judith Curry; its only mental health witness, Debra Sheppard; and a number of other government witnesses.”

“Plaintiff counsel Phil Gregory shared with Judge Seeley that Defense expert and climate scientist Judith Curry was canceling her appearance.”

“The attorney general’s office said Monday that “strategy changes as trials progress, and unlike the plaintiffs, the state is not interested in wasting taxpayer resources and the court’s time in presenting unnecessary testimony.” “

And after the trial:

“We know [Curry] watched the whole trial last week,” Julia Olson, chief legal counsel and executive director of Our Children’s Trust, a nonprofit law firm representing the Montana youth plaintiffs, told reporters outside the courthouse on Monday. “It was pretty clear that her testimony wouldn’t stand up against our expert testimony.” (oooh I just looove this one LINK)

Actually I was zoomed in for the entire trial, but watched with 30% of my brain while multi-tasking, mainly focused on MT’s cross-examination of the Plaintiffs’ expert witnesses and the closing statements.

I didn’t cancel my appearance (see below), but I am relieved not to have participated in the trial, especially after seeing how the testimony of expert witness economist Terry Anderson was handled.

I was deeply critical of how the cross-examination of the Plaintiffs’ climate witnesses was going, and very concerned about how my own direct testimony would be handled.  I communicated my concerns to the lead MT lawyer numerous times over the first several days of trial.   To help ameliorate this situation, I provided detailed scripting and powerpoint slides to be considered for use in my direct questioning.  I was more than prepared to answer any questions on cross examination and rebuttal, especially since I had already seen their hand – full of jokers.  My concern was about the direct questioning from MT’s lawyers.

MT’s lawyers were totally unprepared for direct and cross examination of climate science witnesses.  This was not surprising, since this is a very complex issue that they apparently had not previously encountered.  One lawyer who was cross-examining the Plaintiffs’ witnesses kept getting confused by ICP (IPCC) and RPC (RCP).  The Plaintiffs were very enthusiastic about keeping witnesses in reserve to rebut my testimony, with several of the Plaintiffs’ witnesses who were leaving on travel presenting pre-buttals to my anticipated testimony during their direct questioning – all of this totally misrepresented what was in my written testimony, and can now be deleted from the court record since I didn’t testify.  I can see that all of this would have turned the Hearing into a 3-ring climate circus, and at the end of all that I might not have managed to get my important points across, since I am only allowed to respond to questions.

On Thurs eve, I received a call from the lead Montana lawyer telling me that they were “letting me off the hook.”  I was relieved to be able to stay home and recapture those 4 days I had scheduled for travel to and from MT.

But apart from this personal context, the MT lawyers made the right call in making this case about a narrow point of procedural law and avoiding a 3-ring climate circus.

Third grade math

The key mantra of the Plaintiffs is:

“Every ton of emissions counts.”

They used this dozens of times during the Hearing and attributed this to the IPCC (must be WGII, or the highly politicized Synthesis Report).  Well in principle every molecule of CO2 that is emitted adds to the atmospheric concentration, but the key issue is the magnitude of the associated warming.  Each of the Plaintiffs’ expert witnesses said that Montana’s fossil fuel emissions were harming Montana’s children because of the fossil-fueled warming.

Montana’s lawyers asked nearly all of the Plaintiffs’ expert witnesses “how much warming is being caused by Montana’s emissions?” and “how much harm to the children is being caused by Montana’s emissions?”  None would directly answer this question, they would only say that “every ton of emissions counts” and “yes Montana’s children are being harmed by Montana’s emissions.”

Well, with some third-grade math (be careful with the decimal places), you can easily estimate this, and there are several different ways to approach this.  Here is a simple calculation:

With regards to Montana’s CO2 emissions, based on 2019 estimates Montana produces 0.63% of U.S. emissions and 0.09% of global emissions.  For an anticipated warming of 2oC, Montana’s 0.09% of emissions would account for 0.0018oC of warming.  There are other ways to frame this calculation (and more recent numbers), but any way you slice it, you can’t come up with a significant amount of global warming that is caused by Montana’s emissions.

Expertise “bleed over”

The most astonishing thing for me in this trial was listening to Montana’s climate science experts (the “real climate scientists of Montana”). They are all academic ecologists, with several having some national prominence.  They were each very fluent at reciting key IPCC talking points (especially the more dubious ones from WGII and the Synthesis Report), and then exaggerating the implications for the youth Plaintiffs with high confidence.

The key climate issues in this case are:

  • attribution of extreme weather events that the youth Plaintiffs have encountered in their lifetimes (e.g. wildfire, heat wave, hail storm, drought, early snow melt).
  • projections for 21st century warming (several of the Plaintiffs seem to be suffering from  pre-traumatic stress syndrome)
  • the contributions of MT’s emissions to global warming and severe weather/climate events in MT

None of the Plaintiffs’ climate “experts” have any expertise that relates to actually understanding these key issues.  Their ignorance of extreme event detection and attribution is egregious, given the high level of confidence they had in their statements and the inconsistency of their conclusions with the the IPCC AR6 WG1.  In their rebuttal reports and also in their direct questioning under trial, they each used the following logic:

  • There is a long-term warming trend.
  • The long-term warming trend is caused by fossil fuel emissions
  • Any recent extreme weather/climate event in MT is caused by the warming trend and hence by fossil fuel emissions
  • Any extreme (even worse) weather events in MT that occurred during the first half of the 20th century were caused by something else (e.g. La Nina).

They all relied heavily on the implausible emissions scenario RCP8.5 for future projections of impacts.  None could answer the most basic question on the quantitative contribution of Montana’s emissions to global warming.  Ooops.

Unfortunately, the MT lawyers didn’t call them out on any of this in cross-examination.

Nevertheless, their expertise as ecologists who examine the impacts of climate variability on ecosystems, bleeds into labelling them as “climate experts” who are making wildly unjustified and highly confident statements about these broader climate change issues.  If I had been cross-examining these witnesses, I would have shredded their testimony.

An additional issue re experts.  Our Children’s Trust made much of the fact that all of their experts were providing their expertise (written report, rebuttals, deposition, testimony in trial) pro bono — no charge.  Why would these academic scientists do this?  A few reasons come to mind.  They are employed by universities (for the most part funded by the state of Montana); universities place few restrictions on what their employees do and working on the trial might be more interesting than doing other stuff.  Or they might be climate activists, who feel strongly about winning the war against evil fossil fuel companies and government officials that allow them to operate.  And of course, playing the role of climate activist scores you points at most universities and in professional societies.

DeSmog gleefully reported that Montana is Paying a Climate Denier to Give Expert Testimony in Upcoming Trial.  What I am being paid ($400/hr) was elicited in my Deposition. If this sounds outrageous to you, I have been criticized by headhunters recommending me to clients that I am charging far too little.   I was criticized by Julia Olson for not providing my testimony for free. I reminded her that I am in an entirely different position from the University professors that are already on the state government payroll.  The money doesn’t go into my pocket, but MT is invoiced by my company Climate Forecast Applications Network (CFAN), who receives the funds.   This covers my time (and that of my staff members) that would otherwise be used in working on projects for paying clients and working to generate more revenue for the company – as President of CFAN, that is pretty much my job description.  Further, one of the services that my company provides is climate litigation services – this includes educating lawyers and defendants/plaintiffs, evaluating materials, writing reports, helping prepare questions for cross-examination, etc.

Here are the advantages of using expert witnesses from the private sector or a NGO, rather than university professors.  University scientists are narrowly focused and naïve about the role of their science in public policy; further, most are not very good at public communication, they are not used to being challenged and don’t bear up well to cross-examination.  By contrast, scientists working in the private sector/NGO work on a broad range of problems, understand policy/political context, are used to being challenged, are experienced public communicators, and have a staff to do fact checking, reference checking, general quality control.  This difference has been emphasized to me multiple times when I have been contacted by a Congressional staffer for suggestions for witnesses in an upcoming hearing.  My first instinct has been to recommend an academic with the appropriate expertise; their response was that they are looking for someone broader who is a good communicator.  So, if you see a lot of witnesses from the private sector and NGOs testifying before Congress, or the same old experienced academics, this is why.

Being a paid expert witness does not imply that your statements are biased because they are bought and paid for by the lawyers.  Science is a public good, and what I have to say is the same regardless of which “side” might be paying for my services (of course, different “sides” may ask me to respond to different issues).   A biased, partisan expert witness will be discredited by effective cross-examination.  In establishing my reputation as a reliable source for litigation support, it is absolutely essential that my reports and testimony be accurate, relevant, strongly justified, tightly argued, and non-partisan.  You judge for yourself.

Broader implications

There are several additional broader implications here.

Our Children’s Trust, and other advocacy groups filing lawsuits against fossil fuel companies and electric utility companies, aren’t going away and are arguably stepping up their activities. Governments at all levels, companies, judges and lawyers are ill prepared for such lawsuits (MT’s lawyers are a case in point).  Our Children’s Trust is apparently “helping” this situation by educating judges (uh oh).  Montana’s lawyers, in spite of some ineptness, show the way forward here. Focus these cases on narrow legal points and procedures.  Issues surrounding climate change policy related to emissions or whatever, should be addressed by the political and legislative process, not by judicial decree.

There is no right to a “safe and stable climate,” for the simple reason that Earth’s climate is constantly out of equilibrium and evolving.  Montana has a pretty wild climate history.  600,000 years ago there were hugely massive volcanic eruptions from Yellowstone.  Around 20,000 years ago, Montana and the entire northern part of the continent was under a massive ice sheet that was more than a half mile thick.  Around 15,000 years ago there were massive floods that created Lake Missoula.  On the time scales of centuries, the climate is never in equilibrium, even in the absence of external forcing like volcanic eruptions of human-caused CO2 missions.  There is a whole spectrum of time scales in the deep ocean and ice sheets that keep the climate in a state of disequlibrium on century to thousand year time scales.  The impacts of natural (internal) decadal and interannual climate variability are readily evident in the fingerprints of extreme weather/climate events that have occurred in MT since 1900.  There was nothing particularly “safe” about the Earths climate circa 1988 (or different from the current climate), when CO2 concentrations were 350 ppm.

Climate change, both natural and human caused, along with the associated weather extremes, is an ongoing predicament that humans have had to adapt to throughout our history.  We need to get on with it, and not tie one hand behind our back by dismantling our energy systems that support the wealth, infrastructure and technologies that allow us to adapt to extreme weather and climate change.  Sure, lets look forward to advanced energy infrastructure for the 21st century; however, a landscape covered with wind/solar farms and transmission lines that produces unreliable and expensive electricity is far from the only option.  Let the people of MT decide on what they want through the political process.

The IPCC, whatever its flaws, serves as an important reference point for policy and legal challenges.  The IPCC is supposed to be policy neutral.  Well, it most certainly isn’t (see Chapter 4 of my book Climate Uncertainty and Risk).  In the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, the main text of WGI (not the Summary for Policy Makers) did a fairly good job of adhering to policy neutrality.  By contrast, the WGII Report and Synthesis Reports were egregiously horrible in being policy prescriptive.  As a result (including the IPCC’s addiction  to RCP8.5/SSP5-8.5 in spite of the UNFCCC abandoning these scenarios), the IPCC is losing credibility for policy making and has laid its Reports open to challenges in the policy making process and  legal proceedings.

JC reflections

Well, the young Plaintiffs and Our Children’s Trust got to have their day in court.  They have gotten much of favorable publicity and will raise a lot of $$ from this.  However, the fundamental premises behind their lawsuits are deeply flawed, based on a perceived “right” to a safe and stable climate, inappropriate attribution of every extreme weather event to fossil-fueled warming, and pre-traumatic stress syndrome in children from the apocalyptic scenarios and rhetoric that they are exposed to.  Nevertheless, Our Children’s Trust has massive potential to waste everyone’s time and money towards obtaining feel-good policy concessions from state governments, that have no material impact on emissions or the climate but have the potential to do more harm than good overall.

Please, stop scaring and exploiting the kids in an attempt to score political points in the climate/energy debate.  If you are concerned about your grandkids, help them to live their best lives, educate them that bad weather has always happened and will continue to, and don’t lead them to think we can control bad weather by eliminating fossil fuel emissions.  Point them in directions to help make a meaningful difference in developing new technologies and protecting the quality of our air, water and soils.  And if they are interested in climate change, encourage them to learn geology, oceanography and atmospheric science.

So, exactly what is the point of this case?  Even if the Plaintiffs win, this would not restrict permitting of new fossil fuel power plants in MT.  It seems the purpose of all this (apart from publicity and scoring political points) is to make the kids feel like their government “cares” about the climate, because the adults in their lives and the media they are exposed to have irrationally scared them.  Sorry, as attractive as they are, these Plaintiffs don’t get preferential treatment in the political process.

So to me, this whole case seems nonsensical from start to finish.  The judge should rule in Montana’s favor, but who knows — the judge seemed biased in favor of the Plaintiffs.  We shall see.  Apparently, a ruling on this will take several weeks.

One interesting outcome of all this.  I am now described in the leftwing media as “climate crisis denier.”  Apt.

And finally, for those of you who are regretting that this didn’t turn into a 3-ring climate circus, check out some of the ppt slides that I prepared for the MT lawyers for my direct examination on the basic climate issues using NOAA and other government sources [MT trial JC ppt].  The “real climate scientists of Montana,” who are actually ecologists, should have been held to account for their biased cherry-picked presentation of the data, emphasis on the implausible emissions scenario RCP8.5, ignorance on the topic of detection and attribution of extreme weather/climate events (even as cited in the IPCC WGI Report), and poorly justified and overconfident conclusions.  You be the judge as to who is doing the cherry picking (which Whitlock, witness for the Plantiffs, has accused me of doing, which is widely quoted in the media reports on the case).

Well, it would have been fun to take on Our Children’s Trust, plus the “real climate scientists of Montana.”  Apart from my personal notions of “fun”, Our Children’s Trust is owed a serious reckoning on the flaws of their fundamental premises and arguments.  But Montana’s lawyers were right not to waste Montana’s time and money on this.

p.s.  Thanks to all who have purchased my new book Climate Uncertainty and Risk.  The paperback version briefly flickered to be ranked #1 in Climatology at amazon.

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187 responses to “Held v Montana Climate Lawsuit

  1. Thank you for this report Judith. I watched as much as I could and had similar responses to the states lawyers and the plaintiffs testimony. I wanted the defense to ask each witness to define “Climate”. Every one of them used the term “Climate Event” which I maintain is a meaningless term. Every witness for the plaintiff assumed that Montana’s emissions caused forest fires and floods and was continuously making them worse. It was painful to watch the defense lawyers leave these errors go unchallenged.

    • “Climate event,” aka weather, averaged over a 30 year period used to be the WMO’s definition for climate. In today’s post-reality society it means Karma, God’s judgement on a sinful humanity, making it the perfect all-occasion political sculpting clay.

  2. I am half way through your new book.
    Excellent so far.
    I have a few questions, which may be answered later in the book, so I’ll wait until I am finished.
    Thank you for having this online forum.

  3. I love your work! I so appreciate your perspective and your never straying from what science provably shows. Thank you!

  4. joe - the non climate scientist

    Here is my observations from a prior post

    The most notable aspect is the free flow of “experts’ and what appears to be the lack of a daubert challange

    David – A few notes on the trial 16 youths vs state of montana

    A – the youths (plaintiffs ) put forth 10 expert witnesses, which is a very high number of experts.
    B- the color commentary of the experts testimony is the substantial future harms – almost rp8.5 level claims.
    C – I cant locate many of the court filings, though with that many experts, there doesnt appear that there was a daubert challenge by the defendant (state of Montana). (or the equivalent to the daubert standard under Montana state law. Most states have a variation of the daubert standard)
    D – based on what I am heard regarding the plaintiff’s experts testimony, it is quite speculative , thus not meeting the daubert standard.

    As noted by the the ruling in the mann v steyn trial, where all but one expert failed to qualify under the daubert standard, you have to actually be an expert on the specific topic. Quesses and speculation about the future can never met the daubert standard.

    Judith curry was also disqualified under the Daubert standard in the Mann v Steyn case – not because she wasnt an expert on climate change, but that she was not an expert on what was on Styen’s mind – ie expert on what Styen knew about climate change.

    • firstcreateyoursitedotcomaccount

      Researching daubert challange:
      “(e) Whether the technique or theory has been generally accepted in the scientific community.”
      US EPA being reigned in by SCOTUS is an interesting departure from (e).
      The US legal system seems like a poor arena for validating science. Hopefully they kill the minimum number of golden gooses in cases like MT.
      I hope the judicial branch can filter for intelligence this generation. Even yesteryear’s judges whom I think may have been crazy seem smart and literate.

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        first – I completely concur that the legal system is ill prepared to address scientific issues.

        Regarding your first comment –
        firstcreateyoursitedotcomaccount | June 22, 2023 at 3:36 pm | Reply
        Researching daubert challange:
        “(e) Whether the technique or theory has been generally accepted in the scientific community.”

        100% renewables have been extremely well accepted in the subset of renewable advocates science community

        gender reassignment has been extremely well accepted in the small subset of advocates of the gender reassigment medical community.

        its dubious if those two examples have actually been generally accepted in the broader science or medical community, though the gender reassignment has been accepted by numerous judges and valid science.

  5. Because of Joe the non climate scientist’s comment on the other post, I looked up Daubert Standard and found this article from the American Bar Association
    “ Daubert-Proofing Your Expert
    A few tips to help you protect your expert against challenges to their testimony.”

    Within the article this sentence caught my eye.

    “ If another expert cannot replicate your expert’s analysis, you will not survive a Daubert challenge.”

    Given the replication crisis in science generally, how many expert witnesses in any field, would meet that standard? More specifically, given the apparent background of the plaintiffs’ expert witnesses in this case, how did they qualify?

    HT Joe

    This is one of the more fascinating posts in quite awhile. And another reminder of how amateurish the entire debate has become. But then, that is how it’s constantly portrayed in the media and politicians. And the kids, don’t forget the kids. Kids being used as pawns for a litany of purposes by self serving adults.

    My reaction after reading Judith’s comments above, is that she was the only adult in the room, as far as being knowledgeable about the subject matter. But I’m giving a pass to all parties on both sides who are not genuine climate scientists. This is one incredibly complex field and for any attorney to pick up all the terms and concepts in a short amount time is a nearly impossible task.


    • >”This is one incredibly complex field and for any attorney to pick up all the terms and concepts in a short amount time is a nearly impossible task” [quote from CKid above]

      Except this “field” has been around and subject to enormous, continuous amounts of publicity for well over 30 years.

      So in my view no lawyer gets a pass for obdurate incuriosity or plain laziness, let alone the arrogance in assuming they can suddenly learn all they need to know in 30 minutes or so.

      • joe - the non climate scientiest

        concur – this case has been going on since 2020 – more than sufficient time to get up to speed on the basics

      • firstcreateyoursitedotcomaccount

        Thinking about “probably smart” people arguing the “probably not smart” side of a debate for 3 years makes me wonder whether Anthony Hopkins ever considered what his movie co-stars would taste like?

  6. Joe - the non climate scientist

    As noted in another comment, all the plaintiff’s experts should have been struck under a daubert challenge. Though I could see no record of a daubert challenge nor did Curry mention it in her article. JC if there was a daubert challenge, please correct me.

    Its rare that experts get struck, though the new judge in the styen v mann trial did strike all the experts except the statistician.

    JC’s comment regarding the MT lawyers being unprepared strikes me as a common problem in lawsuits dealing with technical issues and the attorneys unable to understand and crack the expert. A prime example is the Chavin trial in the G Floyd murder trial where the defense attorney was never able effectively cross the 3 experts on the fluid in the lungs of floyd and thus the inability to exchange oxygen in the blood via the tiny air sacs in the lungs. Basic 8th grade biology.

    • Mark Steyn is too great a font of misinformation to meet the legal definition of an “expert” as someone who knows more than a layman.

      CF The Climate Wars June 13, 2015

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        No one claimed that Mark Steyn was an expert, thus your point /attack is not relevant.

      • Russell Seitz

        “No one claimed that Mark Steyn was an expert”


        What about Tucker Carlson and Rupert Murdoch ?
        Mark is a Fox TV anchor of long standing

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        Russell Seitz | June 26, 2023 at 8:06 pm |
        “No one claimed that Mark Steyn was an expert”


        What about Tucker Carlson and Rupert Murdoch ?
        Mark is a Fox TV anchor of long standing

        Russell – Again Nobody claimed Mark Steyn was an expert – at least not as an expert for purposes of being an expert witness under the daubert standard, or an expert under the Federal Rule 701/702/703, nor would Mark Steyn be an expert under the Montana Expert standard rule 701-703 (Mt has the same rule numbers as the federal rules)

  7. Stephen Philbrick

    I’ve finished your book; I am looking forward to a forum where it can be discussed in some detail. As an actuary, who has done risk management consulting, I Was particularly intrigued with the subject matter.

    Your billing rate is too low.

    I am mulling over your response to Julia Olson’s criticism that you should be providing your testimony for free. I’ll defer to the lawyers advice but why initial reaction would be to tell him it’s none of their damn business. I’m not disagreeing with the substance of your response, although it comes across as apologetic. I’m not convinced they have a right to expect a response other than “yes I charge for my time”.

    • Thanks Stephen. I was basically trying to counter the accusation of ‘denier for hire,’ and the assumption of ‘pure’ motives for people who don’t charge.

      How would you like to see discussion of the book proceed? I was thinking of a ‘book club’ approach, discussing 1-2 chapters at a time. I would say starting with Ch 4? Was thinking of waiting until July, when enough people have read the book.

      • Stephen Philbrick

        I do have some thoughts.

        I agree it’s a bit too early to start. The book is still brand-new. While I’m sure some of the early acquirers read it close to straight through, it’s not a summer thriller that you can binge read and have it all sink in. Let some time pass so that serious readers have a chance to acquire and read it, especially those that want the hard copy and are waiting for the backorder. I have the Kindle version; I’ve taken some notes but I didn’t start till part way through, so I want to do a reread and take more serious notes.

        As my model, I am participating in the discussion of Roger Pielke’s “The Climate Fix” on Substack.

        He is sharing PDFs of a chapter at a time every couple of weeks.

        An important difference is that’s a 2010 book, so he may well feel that the market for original sales is largely tapped out. It’s way too early to start sharing chapters for free, but you might consider sharing PDFs of substantial portions of the chapter — enough to spark discussion but still limited enough to encourage continued sales.

        I’m new to Substack, so far from an expert but it might be an option for a book discussion.

        You will attract some crazies so there’s got to be some moderation, ideally by you. I don’t know whether that something you can contract out.

      • Yes, the book club idea comes from RP Jr. I can’t make chapter pdfs available at this point, but i could clip certain paragraphs and post them in the blog to focus the discussion

    • Another reply could be: “My company bills for consulting governmental as well as private organizations that are looking for expert information. Please don’t tell my insurance clients that they can get it for free from your experts. On second thoughts, I think they already know that, which is why they hire me.”

  8. “One lawyer who was cross-examining the Plaintiffs’ witnesses kept getting confused by ICP (IPCC) and RPC (RCP).”

    Judith, you were wise to reach out to prepare them for your direct examination. They should have hired you do a crash IPCC climate debate lecture for the legal team. Thought for next time.

    • Actually most of the litigation support that I have done is behind the scenes education of the lawyers and defendants. I was brought in really late on this case.

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        JC – my apologies for my repititive comments on the experts – but was the any indication of daubert challenges ( or the equivalent under MT law)?

  9. Danley B. Wolfe

    it’s worth noting that the Plaintiff’s two claims clearly represent that they do not understand basic logical structure of assertion (not a proof) and evidence or proof. Just saying something is so is not even close to proving the assertatin is true. Also clearly demonstrates the immaturity and arrogance of the climate left.

  10. This is all so fascinating and obvious, yet no one strikes at the core. It’s like the kid cries wolf everyday, but no one has the balls to point out there is no wolf.

    I have suggested someone sue Al Gore for lying to kids for personal gain. Put the Doom on trial once and for all. Let’s get past this. Kids should be confident–We are living in the best of times, not the worst.

  11. joe - the non climate scientist

    I am even more intrigued on how Jacobson was even allowed to testify as an expert. The case is about the harm that is caused by AGW and what is the cause of the warming. Jacobson is supposedly an expert on renewable energy, not an expert on the cause of AGW. Renewables is not even the subject of lawsuit, thus there is no way that he should have been allowed to testify under any circumstances.

    I have spent some time reviewing jacobson’s recent 100% renewable study (attempting to cross check his math). A number of statements jump out as extremely dubious if not outright fraud (academic fraud level). Was his study peer reviewed by anyone with any actual knowledge – doubtful. Several big examples being his test of the reliability of the grid with a “every 30 second” model testing that proved that his 100% renewable grid was reliable. A review of the EIA electric generation by source or the german energewende electric generation by source shows the frequency of 2days to 3 weeks where electric generation by source drops below 10% of name plate capacity. Jacobson uses the astonishing worse case of only 20% name plate capacity during the winter. The average in the winter months north of the 42nd or 43rd parallel is around 7-10%. There is absolutely no way that his model passed “the every 30 second test” using real world data.

    Jacobson substantially corrected his hydro electric generation by source after Clack’s rebuttal, but he still claims hydro storage from dams is massively in excess of what could be actually used. ie he claims the all the water behind existing dams is available for electric generation, yet failing to note that a even a 50% discharge of the water would create ecological problems both downstream and upstream. Along with the depleting the water needed for basis water supply.

    He makes the astonishing claim that EV car batteries can be used to supplement the grid which is a basically an admission that the EV car battery usage is a stop gap measure needed to prevent a collapse of the grid.

  12. Douglas B. Levene

    In a better world, this case would be tossed by the trial judge and the plaintiffs and their lawyers would be ordered to reimburse the State of Montana for its legal expenses.

    • Clyde Spencer

      I’m surprised that a group of minors was given standing. It seems to me that the plaintiffs should have been the minor’s parents, bringing to the court their concerns for their children’s future. How could either be given standing without the ability to unequivocally demonstrate the magnitude of harm that they had suffered?

      • Virgil Middendorf

        Ryan Busse is a left wing activist in Montana and two of his kids are plaintiffs in this lawsuit. His kids are props in the furtherance of his agenda.

  13. Joe - the non climate scientist

    Continuing on my rant of Jacobson.
    On page 10 of the rebuttal, JC makes note of the Clack’s savaging of jacobson’s hydro power published in PNAS. The renewable advocates claim is that Jacobsons 2022 study corrects for the hydro error pointed out by Clack, etal and that no peer reviewed study refutes the new jacobsons study. The reality is jacobson 2022 is just another rehash of his prior study with just a little twisting of the inputs.

    Note the numberous posts from the Russell, the planning engineer that lays out a good base knowledge of the grid and electric generation.

  14. Coverage by The Verge …

    A first-of-its-kind climate trial just ended — will it work?

    The first climate trial of its kind in the US just came to a close. The case brought by young people in Montana could break down barriers for similar lawsuits across the nation. But it’s probably going to take a while before its impact is felt in Montana.


  15. Virgil Middendorf

    One of the children lives on a ranch near Broadus, MT (Southeast) and blamed a wildfire near the ranch on CO2 emissions within Montana. Since I live in Montana, I remember that fire and it is typical in years of drought and was lightning caused. Such fires has been the norm for thousands of years. Too bad the state did not compare how many acres was burned in the state before 1940 to how many acres was burned from 1988 on. The good news is my kids are typical of Montana kids and do not buy into climate alarmism.

  16. Russell Seitz

    It is unfortunate that Judith will not have the opportunity testify, and correct Montana Assistant Attorney General Michael Russell’s observation that:

    “Montana’s emissions are simply too miniscule to make any difference and climate change is a global issue that effectively relegates Montana’s role to that of a spectator,”

    inasmuch as burning Montana’s ~ 300,000,000,000 ton coal reserves would redouble the climate forcing of the last half century by releasing more than a trillion tons of CO2.


    • Coal is being displaced by natural gas in the US. In any case, Montana cannot regulate the future mining of coal on Federal and tribal land. The attorney general’s statement is completely correct and your “factoid” is completely irrelevant.

      • Russell Seitz


        Montana’s Assistant Attorney General made no reference to natural gas, or Federal and Tribal lands in stating that:

        “Montana’s emissions are simply too miniscule to make any difference and climate change is a global issue that effectively relegates Montana’s role to that of a spectator,”

    • Photon Powered RacecaR

      At the current USA coal consumption rate, which is decreasing, that would require about 500 years. Assuming that all the reserves are readily available for use.

      • And we should use coal to ensure a reliable supply of electricity!

      • Russell Seitz

        Which is why Western coal is lobbying for the development of Pacific export docks.

      • The Left Coast is geographically the best location for coal terminals. However, the political risk from the Kommies that run it is huge.

    • So are you suggesting that the plaintiffs are going to prevent all three times ten to the eleventh tons of coal from being burned?

      • Russell Seitz

        No, I’m suggesting the Assistant Attorney General of Montana is at best disingenuous to suggest that his state’s three times ten to the eleventh tons of cheap coal:

        ” are simply too miniscule to make any difference and climate change is a global issue that effectively relegates Montana’s role to that of a spectator,”

      • The real question is will man-generated CO2 create a catastrophe. That is not known with any certainty, so Montana’s coal might very well be perfectly fine to burn.

      • Our children should be made to feel confident that man-generated CO2 will not cause a catastrophe for several independent reasons.

        1) We know that higher atmospheric CO2 ppms are not geologically unprecedented or harmful to life, but just the opposite. They widen latitudinal habitability by making winters milder and climates generally wetter. The harshness of winter and dryness are still the limiting factors for terrestrial fauna and wildlife.

        2) The observed warming rate is ~1.3C +/-.5C per 70 years per doubling of CO2 ppms (transient climate response Lewis and Curry 2014). The ability for the humans to double CO2 ppms from the current 422ppm would be difficult, if at all possible, with the oceans being more and more effective at absorbing CO2 as its ppm rises. At the same time technologies for nuclear and solar are become more competitive to carbon. Thus, there is no time crunch for long term actions.

        3) There is no “point of no return” for rising global mean surface temperature, only for lowering. The geological record, as seen in ice cores, show that the 90% normal state of the planet for the last 500Ka is glacial, including zero habitability above latitude 40 deg north.

        4) The valid fear before 1976 was that humans would hasten the end of our 10Ka-old (and waning) interglacial by impeding sunlight with particulate pollution or by man-caused event like a nuclear war, which would fill the atmosphere with dust to cause a “nuclear winter.” A similar effect is thought to have starved and froze the dinosaurs after the Chicxulub asteroid strike. In fact, a 2 degree advantage over the Little Ice Age minimum might well be considered an insurance policy for nature and humanity.

  17. Thank goodness you were in there! This tactic of standing up young kids as climate plaintiffs should be rejected by judges out of hand. Who cares what Greta or some 10 year old thinks? They are kids who just whine about instant gratification. No 10 year old ever sued anyone without a parent behind it. And what would the remedy be in this case? Outlaw petroleum in the state of MT? THAT’S going to be popular? A suit without the possibility of an award is just vacant. Our courts aren’t crowded enough?

  18. Well.. an interesting topic and thank you for doing this!
    You make a confident statement that you would shred your scientific testimony in an open court.. I am guessing you might be wrong about that one! These lawyers might have good reasons for their behavior after you coached them – none of them having anything to do with science.. dont be arrogant to know how the legal system works on that level..

    Either way, a magic word was used in your article “attribution” an I once again wonder what the current state of research says about this one..
    I am under the impression that Ross McKtrick pusblished an article (and a post here!) shredding the scientific meaning of climate models to zero until they pass these statistic tests..
    It does not matter much if anyone is referrign to RCP 8.5 or 2.4, the models are equally fail to represent anything meaningful for the real world if their analysis is flawed!
    => Just saying this might be legally relevant!

    • Re. Ross McKitrick, another of his articles is relevant to climate court cases.

      In a legal proceeding, a witness can only testify to what he or she personally experienced. Anything reported to them by others is dismissed as “hearsay”, not evidence by direct observation, but rather an opinion offered by someone else.

      In the current public commotion over global warming, almost all the discourse is composed of hearsay. Ross McKitrick explains that the alleged changes in temperatures are so small that no one can possibly notice. Thus, their concern over global warming can only come from repeating hearsay in the form of charts and graphs published by people with an axe to grind. His article in the Financial Post is:


      My synopsis: https://rclutz.com/2019/04/15/climate-hearsay/

      • jungletrunks

        “In a legal proceeding, a witness can only testify to what he or she personally experienced”

        It’s an interesting phenomena when a globally shared non-personal experience leads a self perceived victim class to prosecute yawning do nothings, forcing them into a defendant position; the oblivious victim co-perpetrator class; huh? It’s the prosecutions duty to convince the court that the do nothings are the ones specifically at fault for something society as a whole has facilitated—improving quality of life; conviction by means of damning hearsay.

        The only thing truly clear is the target goal for sentencing; the political bondage of individualism, and enforcement of collectivism. Such would make us all political prisoners, but only the defendants would know it.

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        Ron Clutz | June 23, 2023 at 9:25 am | Reply
        Re. Ross McKitrick, another of his articles is relevant to climate court cases.

        In a legal proceeding, a witness can only testify to what he or she personally experienced. Anything reported to them by others is dismissed as “hearsay”, not evidence by direct observation, but rather an opinion offered by someone else.

        Ron – That is a good point –
        There should have been objections with just about every response from the plaintiff’s

        If there were not objections, then further evidence that the MT attorneys were not very competent (unless they were trying to lose the case)

  19. I’m in the UK. I’m not a climate scientist but I follow climate news and this website with interest. I wondered about the democracy aspects of this case. If the government of Montana has been elected democratically is it right that a small number of activists can overturn a policy which the majority agree with? And was that aspect raised during the trial?

    • Iain Climie

      Instead of bickering as here, why not adopt win-win options which work regardless of the nature, extent, cause and direction of climate change e.g.


      • If “regen farming” techniques are more profitable than current ones, those will be adopted. But no farmer should be forced to farm that way.

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        variations of Regeneration farming is actually fairly common in the US, primarily with crop rotation and reduced tilling.

        On the other hand full blown regeneration farming is a variation of the method used recently in Sri Lanka which was a near catastrophic failure.

        At least the author of the study admits that central planning in farming creates famines as noted in 1930’s in Ukraine the great china famine in the 1950’s

      • Joe – don’t leave out the most infamous case – Lysenko who held that modern genetics was a “bourgeois pseudoscience”.

    • Bill Fabrizio

      oomhead … the USA was formed as a democratic republic under a federalist system. ‘Minority rights’ discussed in Federalists Papers 10 and 51 layout protecting the minority from possible majority tyranny. The 10th Amendment to the Constitution clearly spells out powers not delegated to the Federal are left to the States. And on and on … To your point, the country has had a history of what I’ll call minority power, or political standing. That goes from political groupings down to the individual. Forgiving my short answer, but that is why ‘that aspect’ would never be raised in the trial.

  20. Joe - the non climate scientist and not a legal expert

    Montana, like most states have a provision in their statutes that require an analysis of the environmental impact on a mining operation as part of the permitting process. There is another statute that provides that environmental impacts on “climate” shall be disregarded when conducting that analysis. My apologies if I am oversimplifying the description of the applicable statutes.

    Based on my reading of the pleadings and the court’s ruling of the motion to dismiss, the most likely outcome will be that the provision providing that the analysis of the impact of climate shall be disregarded will be treated as unconstitutional under the Montana Constitution. Thus requiring an analysis of the impact on climate as part of the mining operation, including oil and gas extraction. It would be doubtful that the court would rule that existing mining operations would need to be shut down. I would also suspect that the regulators would agree that any impact on climate would be miniscule, therefore basically ignored for future permitting approvals.

    One interesting aspect is if there is a pro-activist ruling that requires the state of Montana to ban and /or curtail mining and oil and gas operations, then such curtailment will likely be treated as a “taking” under the 5th amendment to the US constitution and therefore require compensation from the government for such taking. I would suspect once this case moves back up to the Montana Supreme court that the Fiscal realities to the states coffers will have an impact on the final results in this case.

  21. Excellent. Love your new book.

  22. This is off-topic to this specific thread, but is a callout to Planning Engineer: https://www.construction-physics.com/p/the-dream-of-deregulation-the-grid
    Parts 1 and 2 are also well worth the read.

  23. Indeed, the efforts will continue to get judges to rule on emissions policies from a rights perspective, rather than legislators dealing with energy security needs of the citizenry. BTW, that issue is what finally stopped the Juliana vs. US lawsuit (also run by Our Children’s Trust). The Ninth Circuit ruling against OCT said (among other things):

    “The plaintiffs claim that the government has violated their constitutional rights, including a claimed right under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to a “climate system capable of sustaining human life.” The central issue before us is whether, even assuming such a broad constitutional right exists, an Article III court can provide the plaintiffs the redress they seek—an order requiring the government to develop a plan to “phase out fossil fuel emissions and draw down excess atmospheric CO2.” Reluctantly, we conclude that such relief is beyond our constitutional power. Rather, the plaintiffs’ impressive case for redress must be presented to the political branches of government.”

    “The crux of the plaintiffs’ requested remedy is an injunction requiring the government not only to cease permitting, authorizing, and subsidizing fossil fuel use, but also to prepare a plan subject to judicial approval to draw down harmful emissions. The plaintiffs thus seek not only to enjoin the Executive from exercising discretionary authority expressly granted by Congress, . . . but also to enjoin Congress from exercising power expressly granted by the Constitution over public lands.”

    “There is much to recommend the adoption of a comprehensive scheme to decrease fossil fuel emissions and combat climate change, both as a policy matter in general and a matter of national survival in particular. But it is beyond the power of an Article III court to order, design, supervise, or implement the plaintiffs’ requested remedial plan. As the opinions of their experts make plain, any effective plan would necessarily require a host of complex policy decisions entrusted, for better or worse, to the wisdom and discretion of the executive and legislative branches. . . . These decisions range, for example, from determining how much to invest in public transit to how quickly to transition to renewable energy, and plainly require consideration of “competing social, political, and economic forces,” which must be made by the People’s “elected representatives, rather than by federal judges interpreting the basic charter of Government for the entire country.”


    And yet the activist Oregon district judge is trying to bring Juliana vs US back to life. A new filing June 1, 2023:

    “Plaintiffs’ Second Amended Complaint thus requests this Court to:
    (1) declare that the United States’ national energy system violates and continues to violate the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights to substantive due process and equal protection of the law;
    (2) enter a judgment declaring the United States’ national energy system has violated and continues to violate the public trust doctrine; and
    (3) enter a judgment declaring that § 201 of the Energy Policy Act has violated and continues to violate the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and plaintiffs’ constitutional rights to substantive due process and equal protection of the law. . . .”

    “Here, plaintiffs seek declaratory relief that “the United States’ national energy system that creates the harmful conditions described herein has violated and continues to violate the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights to substantive due process and equal protection of the law.” (Doc. 514-1 ¶ 1). This relief is squarely within the constitutional and statutory power of Article III courts to grant.”

    Comment: And when there not enough energy for heating and the lights go out, the black robes will fix it?

  24. Josh has a simple courtroom test for “climate scientist”


  25. The nihilists feel compelled to blame America for the problems in the world and feel no shame about riding the backs of the productive while providing nothing of value to society and offer nothing in exchange for the work and sacrifice of others but to live in a meaningless little tent revival show in their heads, busily beating their big runaway global warming AGW doomsday drums to scare children to justify taking the hard-earned property of others by legislative fiat.

  26. firstcreateyoursitedotcomaccount

    “One lawyer who was cross-examining the Plaintiffs’ witnesses kept getting confused by ICP (IPCC) and RPC (RCP). ”

    Words never mean exactly the same thing to sayers and hearers. Lawyers must ask themselves constatntly, did I sound like a …

    That was a lawyer after years of litigation. Imagine how a fry-cook might feel when assigned to a jury trial.

  27. “Please, stop scaring and exploiting the kids in an attempt to score political points in the climate/energy debate.”

    Political activists don’t stop using effective tactics because their opponents are unhappy.

    Much of the western nations’ governments (especially the bureaucracies) and ngo’s are firmly in the hands of the climate alarmists – plus other power centers (e.g., press and colleges). They are lavishly funded and growing more powerful.

    Expanding their tactics into lawfare, another front on which to advance, shows their intelligent and aggressive push to victory.

    • The only problem is they are going to lose because poor people want cheap abundant energy

  28. If you want to laugh and understand why the science has no credibility left, this is amazing.


  29. Governments often give people what they don’t want – and fail to provide what they want.

    • Their failure emulates the comment policy of certain authoritarian Pseudo-Romans who edit crank policy blogs

      O tempora , O mores!

  30. Your withdrawal has been a disappointment. If you cannot stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    • Nabil Sweden,
      Rude and not deserved.
      Be a man and apologise, please.
      Geoff S

    • joe - the non climate scientist

      Nabil – your accusation is incorrect. It was the MT lawyers that decided not to have Curry testify,

      Most likely a strategic decision by the MT lawyers. Probably had indications that the judge was pro-plaintiffs on the “science of global warming” (based on commentary in her ruling on the motion to dismiss). Thus Curry’s testimony would have been disregarded by the judge in the bench trial. If it was a jury trial, Curry would most definitely have testified.

    • Well maybe you should actually read the post. As an expert witness in a trial, I testify at the invitations of the lawyers. The lawyers changed strategies mid-trial, and did not call me as a witness.

    • I am not going to hide my disappointment. I have been posting on Climate Etc. for over 11 years and have respect for Dr. Curry. My position has been and still is that the climate issue is all about the existing climate science, which is incorrect and misleading. Ignorance leads to fear, and fear leads to chaos and frivolous decisions. My message has never had listening ears. Instead, it was thought that the climate issue may be settled through the political and legal systems. The Plaintiffs’ attorney simply found a soft spot that those present in court are in agreement on the fundamentals of the science and greenhouse gas effect. This appears to have placed the Defendants and their witnesses at a disadvantage for now.

  31. Pingback: Held v Montana Climate Lawsuit • Watts Up With That?

  32. Pingback: Held v Montana Climate Lawsuit • Watts Up With That? - Lead Right News

  33. This story illustrates how deeply entrenched and ill-informed are the ideologues. I used to think it would take two years of below average temperatures to get them to look at the science. Now I think it will take a decade!

    • Michael Cunningham aka Faustino aka Genghis Cunn

      More likely they will cling to their nonsense like flat-earthers.

  34. Scott Snell

    Climate activists have many vexatious habits. Among the worst and most ethically dubious is their use of children as human shields. It’s a really dirty trick. First they wind them up with years of fear and agitprop, and then they deploy them as a props in a totally manufactured drama. And when the kids have outlived their usefulness, they’ll be unceremoniously dropped. These people are shameless. But then, fanatics usually are.

    In the court of public opinion, logic loses to blatant emotional manipulation pretty much every time. Not a level playing field.

  35. Facts don’t care about your fear-mongering. In an outcome completely foreseeable after 50+ years of failed climate predictions, it seems that a whopping 36 climate models overestimated warming in America’s Corn Belt — by a lot.

    Longtime climate truth-teller Steve Milloy tweeted out evidence from Dr. Roy Spencer, Ph.D., a climatologist, author, and former NASA scientist. Spencer and Milloy both shared a chart showing how wildly inaccurate climate models were compared to the actual measured temperature trend from 1973 to 2022.


  36. The kids in this case, and kids generally who suffer from climate anxiety, might benefit from doing just a little research about climate variability of the past.

    Just by chance yesterday I came across a reference to the large number of deaths during the heat extremes/droughts/famines of the 1876-79 and 1896-1900 periods. My research turned up this



    I also read estimates in the book The Victorian Holocaust.

    While the estimates of deaths vary widely between 20 and 60 million, and climate was not always the sole cause of these deaths, the magnitude of climate related deaths dwarfs anything we are experiencing now or in the last several decades.

    Adjust even the low end of those estimates for the current global population and we are looking at 100 to 150 million in today’s terms.

    And then reading citations about these periods turned up even more evidence that extremes today are not unusual within the context of the last several centuries.

    Each time I take a deep dive about any extreme event history, regardless of what it is, the literature indicates nothing today is unprecedented.

    Put that in the curriculum of K-12 and voila, we might see a lot more happy kids.

  37. David Andrews

    There is a good reason I would have not have wanted Dr. Curry to testify if I were a lawyer for the defense. Her argument that Montana emissions do little to Montana climate is true literally but leads to nonsensical policy. There is no reason for ME to curb emissions if my neighbor doesn’t. There is no reason for Montana to curb emissions if California does not. There is no reason for the US to curb emissions if China does not. This is the “free rider” problem that indeed makes action more difficult. It is not hard to see where this leads. I am surprised Dr. Curry would make it the centerpiece of her argument. She would have been ripped to shreds by plaintiffs’ lawyers.

    • joe - the non climate scientist

      D andrews – I have testified in 10-12 trials as both a fact witness and expert witness (accounting related so the expert witness hurdle is much lower than for a science based expert witness). Having a moderate amount of exposure to court room tactics, I think I have some ability to read the tea leaves on what is happening during a trial. As Curry noted above, the MT attorneys changed strategies during the trial and decided not to call Curry as a witness.

      the Miniscule amount of MT emissions were a very small part of Curry’s testimony, thus not likely to have been a factor. Further I doubt the plaintiffs attorneys would be effective attacking Curry on that point.

      My sense is the judge (this being a bench trial) had already decided the plaintiffs were correct on the “climate science” based on the language in her ruling on the motion to dismiss. Secondly, Allowing Mark Jacobson to testify as an expert witness in a case that had zero relevance to renewables was another indication of judge that had already decided the merits of the cause of global warming. Renewables are not an issue in the case, thus his expert testimony could not provide any useful information to the trier of facts.

      Thus allowing testimony from Curry (or any other expert ) that questions the robustness of the consensus climate science would likely tick the already biased leaning judge and make things worse off.

      Granted I am reading between the lines, based on news reports of the case, and the language in the judges pre trial rulings. Hope that adds some insight as to why the attorneys decided not to call Curry as a witness.

      • Rob Starkey

        “Thus allowing testimony from Curry (or any other expert ) that questions the robustness of the consensus climate science would likely tick the already biased leaning judge and make things worse off.”

        The judicial system is not about what might piss off a particular judge. It is about presenting evidence and making decisions based on that presented evidence.

        I suggest it was a major mistake by the States lawyers not to present evidence that the climate has always changed, always will and attributing specific adverse weather to CO2 is bad science. We will see how the judge rules, but I would have wanted more evidence presented as it provides for a better case for an appeal.

      • firstcreateyoursitedotcomaccount

        RS: “The judicial system is not about what might piss off a particular judge.”

        Yes of course. I forgot it worked that way.

      • Joe - the non climate scientist

        RS comment – “We will see how the judge rules, but I would have wanted more evidence presented as it provides for a better case for an appeal.”

        I have to agree with you on that point since appellete courts cant make a ruling on facts that is not in the trial court record.

        Obviously different strategy options, unfortunately, my insight is limited to a general sense of what could be happening. thus I cant tell if it was good strategy, bad strategy or a case of the attorneys just not being very good.

  38. Jaana Woiceshyn

    Thank you for all you do to keep us informed about the facts and science about climate change, amidst all the disinformation.

  39. “ Oregon County Sues Fossil Fuel Companies For Billions Because Of Global Warming”

    This won’t be the end of it.


  40. Michael Cunningham aka Faustino aka Genghis Cunn

    A terrific post, Judith, essential reading for those with little knowledge of the issue.

  41. Mike Edwards

    “climate crisis denier”

    I would almost be happy to be called one of those. I certainly think that there is no such thing as a “climate crisis”. The “denier” part is still clearly an insult, but at least the term gets closer to the views involved.

    Thanks for your book – although I bought it via Kobo rather than Amazon, so I don’t know whether that counts towards the Amazon numbers you were looking at.


  42. Ireneusz Palmowski

    SOI is trending upward.

  43. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Large temperature drop in the stratosphere above 60S. Let’s see the size of the ozone hole in previous years. You can see that the temperature in the south was dropping by October.

  44. Jim Veenbaas

    Why do adults keep using children to advance their ideological goals? It’s gross. It’s creepy. And it harms children. Activists for climate change, racial equity, trans ideology, and even Covid, have a seemingly endless appetite for throwing children into the fire.

    • David Andrews

      There is a clear logic in this case for children to be the plaintiffs. If the worst happens, it is their generation which will bear the brunt of the problem.

      • If no damage has been done, there is no case. No harm, no foul. And no, anxiety from global warming unicorns doesn’t count.

      • If they should sue anyone, it should be the public school system. Given the sorry state of public education today, they won’t be able to manage anything more complex than an Instagram account.

      • jim2,
        Well it looks like some slick lawyers managed to convince a court that PFAS is dangerous and managed to extort $10 billion from one of America’s most innovation and environmentally responsible companies.
        “If you’re like 200 million other Americans, when you turned on your tap today you consumed water contaminated with PFAS—short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, but better known as “forever chemicals” because that’s about how long they linger in the environment.

        A class of nearly 12,000 manufacturing chemicals, PFAS have been detected in water supplies nationwide, and have been linked to a range of health ills, including decreased fertility, high blood pressure in pregnant people, increased risk of certain cancers, developmental delays and low birth weight in children, hormonal disruption, and reduced effectiveness of the immune system. In the U.S., DuPont and 3M have historically been the leading manufacturers of PFAS—and both companies currently face about 4,000 lawsuits by states and municipalities seeking compensation for the cost of cleaning up their land and water supplies.

        “The $10.3 billion will be paid out to the communities to install filters in their water supplies—but whether that amount will be enough to cover all 300 communities is uncertain. Stuart, with a population of just over 17,000 people, has already incurred costs of up to $120 million, the city manager told The New York Times. And that was just to replace existing wells; it does not include ongoing cleanup costs, such as groundwater contamination.”

      • Jack, those are present at PARTS PER ***TRILLION*** levels. The evidence that they cause any harm whatsoever is very sketchy. From a chemical standpoint, the reason they are so-called (but probably not really) “forever” is they are unreactive. That is, they don’t react with anything. Argon it is an unreactive gas. It is a forever chemical. So what?

  45. I have a quick question regarding finances. They like to say they offered their testimony pro bono. But the efforts are often funded by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Quadrivium, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Walton Family Foundation in February 2022. On top of that government subsidies come into play to the tune of billions. Is this a philanthropic endeavor? Maybe not.

    • Keith Ball.
      Having done a lot of intensive work on the Rockefeller Foundation and some consequences of the massive corruption of science by misuse of money, power and beliefs, I share your concerns.
      The stupid belief in harm from parts per trillion doses of chemicals like PFAS is almost certainly related to the Linear No Threshold relationship that claims harm exists down to the single molecule level and also excludes demonstrated hormesis. These large tax-avoidance foundations have captured highly arguable key concepts like dose/harm and crushed the opposition. Much like capturing climate change and vilifying denier sceptics. Three part article in prep. Geoff S

  46. Dan Pangburn

    Where CO2 comes from or how much (up to at least 10X current) is irrelevant. The half degree or so human contribution to climate change is from water vapor increase, not CO2 increase. As shown at Sect 2.8 of http://globalclimatedrivers2.blogspot.com , NASA/RSS has now reported average global water vapor through Dec 2022 at https://data.remss.com/vapor/monthly_1deg/tpw_v07r02_198801_202212.time_series.txt . The trend from Jan 1988 thru Dec 2022 is 1.36 % per decade so, given that at ground level average global water vapor is about 1% or 10,000 ppmv, the increase in water vapor molecules in 3.5 decades is about 0.0136 * 10000 * 3.5 = 476 ppmv. From Mauna Loa data at https://www.co2.earth/monthly-co2 the CO2 increase in that time period is 420 – 350 = 70 ppmv. With that, water vapor molecules have been increasing 476/70 = 6.8 times faster than CO2 molecules. Thus regardless of the initial source of warming, water vapor molecules have been increasing about 7 times faster than CO2 molecules. The idea that CO2 starts the increase is ludicrous.
    Description of how the water vapor measurements are made is at http://www.remss.com/measurements/atmospheric-water-vapor

  47. The Canadian wild fires have burned vegetation that was “set aside” as a carbon offset project. Another dumb idea up in smoke!

    (Bloomberg) — Canada’s explosive wildfire season has already pumped millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Some of that carbon is coming from vegetation burned at a carbon offset project, highlighting the fragility of a tool the world is relying on to fight catastrophic climate change.


  48. In a fit of rationality typically absent from government this day and time, Sweden has opted to go all in on nuclear power. Good on them.

    • Did they even have a choice? They are one of the highest per capita users of energy in the world and they committed themselves to net zero by 2045, years earlier than the rest of the world. At least they can afford it.

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  50. Pingback: ≫ Demanda climática de Held contra Montana

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  52. Ireneusz Palmowski

    SOI’s upward trend.

  53. Ireneusz Palmowski

    A hurricane may develop in the eastern Pacific. The ocean surface temperature is very high in this region.

  54. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Hurricane and tropical storm in the eastern Pacific.

  55. Ireneusz Palmowski

    A blocked hurricane west of Central America will cause a strong drop in surface temperatures in the area, and a tropical storm is making its way over land.

  56. When it comes to complex products, like vaccines and wind turbines, it’s not good to rush development just to grab “free” government money.

    Siemens Energy AG is struggling to contain the fallout after discovering a main piece on the frame of its wind turbine can move or twist over time, potentially damaging other critical components, according to people familiar with the matter.

    Executives and board members are concerned that fixing the problem may far exceed the company’s estimate of more than €1 billion ($1.1 billion), said one of the people, who asked not to be named discussing non-public information. The magnitude, which is still being assessed and may involve other issues as well, could determine the viability of a business at the center of Europe’s long-term climate goals and energy security.


  57. And on the solar front, a solar park in Nebraska has been smashed to pieces by baseball sized hail. PPP at it’s best.


    • I have had my solar panels for 11 years and survived at least 4 hail storms. One was bad enough to damage my roof and car but my panels thankfully survived undamaged.

      On the natural gas front, gas explosions destroy over 4,200 homes a year and kill an average of 40 people.

      • Could you post a reference for the nat gas explosion claim?

      • https://www.nfpa.org/-/media/Files/News-and-Research/Fire-statistics-and-reports/Hazardous-materials/osNaturalGasPropaneFires.ashx

        “Natural Gas and Propane Fires, Explosions and Leaks Estimates and Incident Descriptions
        An estimated average of 4,200 home structure fires per year started with the ignition of natural gas. These fires caused an average of 40 deaths per year. The statistics, incident descriptions from NFPA publications and reports from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) show that most major gas incidents involved some type of leak. In the U.S., local fire departments respond to an average of 340 natural gas or LP-Gas leaks per day with no ignition. Although gas leaks are much more common than gas ignitions, they can be precursors to devastating events. “

      • Wait until the id eee ots in charge replace nat gas with hydrogen for home use. You ain’t seen nothin’ yet!

      • And be sure to stay away from them candles!

        From 2015-2019 U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 7,400 home structure fires that were started by candles per year. These fires caused an annual average of 90 deaths, 670 injuries and $291 million in direct property damage.


      • Chill, Jack- You’ll just drive Jim2 to demand the conversion of gas stoves to anthracite to cut down on climate change from anthropogenic water vapor.

      • Jim Thompson

        There was much in the news lately that a recent date in July was the hottest day in the history of the world—followed by information that such world records have been kept only since the early 1970s. Then it was reported that the coldest day on record was in the late 1980s. Obviously this is media buzz not science but how do you make sense of it? This was on National evening news—without any qualifiers.

      • Hottest year ever? Sure, and there will be many more.
        The arrow of time guarantees there will always be new records to be broken. Smallest, fastest, slowest, heaviest, lightest etc., etc….
        Its a distraction, it’s what technology does.

        But I would keep an eye on what’s growing in the water (algae) and not so much that the water is a few degrees above average. Ocean dead zones are especially bad because they deplete oxygen levels and kill marine life with toxins. 50% of the oxygen you breath today came from the ocean.

      • David Appell

        jacksmith4tx wrote:
        Hottest year ever? Sure, and there will be many more.
        The arrow of time guarantees there will always be new records to be broken.

        No, it doesn’t. Because the Earth isn’t an adiabatic system, the strict version of the 2nd law of thermodynamics you seek doesn’t apply.

        Of course, it might be warmer in a hundred million years, or ten million. Certainly in 1-1.5 billion, when the Earth enters a runaway greenhouse effect due to the ever increasing luminosity of the Sun.

        But none of this has anything to do with today’s warming, which is due to anthropogenic greenhouse gases.

      • David Appell

        Jim Thompson wrote:
        There was much in the news lately that a recent date in July was the hottest day in the history of the world—followed by information that such world records have been kept only since the early 1970s.

        Really? There are thermometer measurements that go back to before 1800. And proxies that go back about 20,000 years.

        I read that recent global temperature has been the highest in 125,000 years — since the Eemian. No?

    • jungletrunks

      Jim, it’s not an act of god, it’s climate change! Think soup to nuts renewable subsidies. I can already hear the gears turning for new ways for the government to spend Inflation Reduction Act money.

      We might have something if the IRS would just use the money as a cost of living adjustment for federal taxes; call it the great claw back electric bill subsidy.


      If building out clean energy is a political priority, the federal government may also need to act as “insurer of last resort,” as it does for some flood insurance, said Martin at Norton Rose Fulbright.

      “Any large-scale weather event that reeks of climate change in that it’s unusual and that it’s severe will absolutely trickle its way into underwriting consideration”…

      • God is Mad.
        “Hail has a much larger impact on U.S. life beyond scary encounters and freakish photos and videos. Insured losses from hail have skyrocketed in recent decades, topping $10 billion each year since 2008…

        This year’s insured losses from the full range of threats produced by severe weather – what meteorologists and insurers often refer to as “severe convective storms” – are already on a path to exceed $30 billion, according to Steve Bowen, chief science officer at Gallagher Re. By year’s end, insured losses could end up challenging the two top inflation-adjusted years in the Gallagher Re record: 2020 ($44 billion) and 2011 ($40 billion). Across the past decade, U.S. losses from severe weather add up to a phenomenal total of more than $250 billion; in most years, 60% to 80% of that comes from hail.

      • Rob Starkey

        As population expands and people build and their property increases in value over time due to inflation, damage costs due to adverse weather logically also increase. It isn’t that the storms are worse, it is that more people are exposed.

      • joe - the non climate scientist

        Rob – one of the common themes of the climate change causing more extreme weather with $dollar loses exceeding the rate of inflation as additional proof of AGW caused increased extreme weather .

        AS you correctly note, population increases are omitted in order to mask the primary reason for the increase in $dollar loses. The other reason is overall wealth is increasing faster than the rate of inflation. for example typical home build in the 50’s was 1200 sq ft vs 2000+ sq ft today.

  58. Solar Farms: An environmental disaster in the desert.

    Massive solar development projects in Southern California have strained local water availability, threatening desert ecosystems and angering residents who have been impacted by the strain on the water supply, according to an Inside Climate News report.

    The small communities around Desert Center, California, depend on naturally-occurring underground water reserves, known as groundwater aquifers, but the water-intensive development process for large solar projects has caused groundwater levels to fall, according to Inside Climate News. Crucial local water wells have dried up and land beneath homes has sagged as a result of development activity, while desert ecosystems have been damaged as well, according to Inside Climate News.


    • Even more ridiculous is what we do with this green energy – we buy 4 ton SUVs and pickup trucks of course.

      “A 1993 Ford Ranger compact pickup truck weighed just 2,900 lb. and yet had a longer bed than Ford, Chevy, and Rivian’s massive electric trucks of today. Some comparisons are nearly comical, like Rivian’s 4’6″ bed compared to the 6′ standard and 7′ long bed on the cute little 2,900 lb. Ford Ranger that came 30 years earlier.

      And if you think that’s bad, consider that those two trucks have the same payload capacity. That’s right, they are rated to haul the same amount of weight, around 1,250 to 1,500 lb. depending on the configuration, even though that payload is a full half the weight of the ’90s truck and less than a quarter of the weight of today’s massive trucks.”

      The even smaller 2,600 lb. Chevy S10 compact pickup truck had a 1,216 lb. payload capacity in 1993, which is nearly identical to the 1,300 lb. payload capacity of the 8,000 lb. Chevy Silverado EV pickup truck recently grabbing headlines. One truck weighs over three times as much as the other and yet they can both haul the same amount of weight.”

      The real plan is the common folk will be forced to use Musk’s robo taxis.
      Personally, my next EV must have bidirectional charging and at least a 80KWh battery so I can finish building my micogrid.

  59. Dietrich Hoecht

    I just had three loads of firewood (piled high!) delivered in a small 1993 Toyota pickup truck. Over 400,000 miles. Can you match this, Mr. Electric?

    • Some Edison era nickel-iron battery electrics were still on the road half a century later.

      • Let’s see an nickel-iron powered airplane :)

      • David Andrews

        Google “superconducting aircraft” with electric motors that run on batteries or hydrogen. Not here yet, but active development in Japan, Europe, and US. EV’s are here to stay. Internal combustion engines, maybe not.

      • Right David. And we will run out of oil in 5 years. How often have we heard specious predictions like that.

    • “ Analysis has shown that the average electric car more than doubles the wear on road surfaces, which could lead to an increase in potholes”

      How do EV owners live with the guilt? We could always go back to gravel roads. Except those washboards at 80 mph never were much fun.


  60. Ammonia makes for good fertilizer, but a fuel? No bueno.

    Since the boiling temperature and condensation pressure of ammonia are almost the same as those of propane (Table 1), transport ships designed for propane can generally be used for ammonia. Ammonia utilization as a fuel, however, has its drawbacks when compared to common hydrocarbon fuels. The heat of combustion of ammonia and the maximum laminar burning velocity of an NH3/air flame are about 40% and 20%, respectively of those for typical hydrocarbon fuels as shown in Table 1. Furthermore, the flammability range for NH3/air mixture is narrower and the ignition temperature is higher, indicating that ammonia has low flammability. Ammonia/air flame temperature is lower and radiation heat transfer from the flame is also lower than that of hydrocarbon flames because of the lack of CO2 in the products. An additional challenge of NH3/air combustion relates to the high fuel NOx emission. It is worth noting, however, that NOx is not a final product of ammonia combustion because the overall reaction of ammonia is 4NH3+ 3O2→2N2+ 6H2O when considering the Gibbs free energy of the combustion products.

    Despite these known challenges associated with ammonia as a fuel, attempts have been made to use ammonia as a fuel since the 1940s. During World War II, ammonia was added to coal gas which was used to drive the reciprocating engine of an omnibus [11]. In the 1960s, NASA’s X-15 rocket-powered airplane used liquid ammonia and liquid oxygen, and achieved a world record for the highest manned flight Mach number of 6.7 [12]. In addition, the US Army had a research project to develop an ammonia-fuelled gas turbine but the project was not successful because of the very low combustion efficiency [13], [14], [15]. Ammonia has subsequently not been pursued as a fuel for combustion systems but has been used in combustion research to investigate NOx production and reduction chemistry, especially in the 1970s. The 1990s saw renewed interest in the utilization of ammonia as an energy source to address global warming, and research into ammonia utilization for reciprocating engines and gas turbines, especially using ammonia/hydrogen and ammonia/natural gas mixed fuels, have resumed [16], [17], [18], [19], [20], [21].


  61. High inflation and rising interest rates are driving up the cost of a new generation of miniature atomic reactors that the nuclear industry is relying on to lift sales and help meet climate targets.

    Enter companies like NuScale Power Corp., the first U.S. SMR developer with a licensed design, and which wants to begin generating at the end of the decade. NuScale originally foresaw average generation costs of $55 a megawatt hour in 2016, which was slightly lifted to $58 five years later.

    But new estimates show costs surged to almost $120 a megawatt hour this year, according to company data analyzed by the Institute for Energy Economics. Skyrocketing prices of commodities including steel, carbon fiber and copper drove the increase, according to the report. NuScale’s stock has tumbled a third a third this year.


  62. @ jim2 | June 30, 2023 at 10:40 am in suspense

  63. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Galactic radiation shows strong jumps of the magnetic field of the solar wind in 2023. At the same time, one peak of solar activity is not visible.

  64. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Two hurricanes side by side in the eastern Pacific.

  65. Ireneusz Palmowski

    The hurricane is blocked south of the California Peninsula and will continue to operate until its energy is depleted.
    SOI continues to grow.

  66. So you can no longer view Twitter posts unless you have an account?

  67. Ireneusz Palmowski

    El Niño is limited to the Niño 1.2 region, where circulation is blocked. Circulation in the central Pacific does not allow a large increase in surface temperature.

  68. Ireneusz Palmowski

    Circulation in the South Pacific is unlikely to produce a large increase in temperature in the Niño 3.4 region.

  69. Here is a way to account for property values using GDP as an estimator. Localizing the GDP to coastal areas would be better, but national GDP would be a good place to start. You could use either inflation-adjusted numbers or not adjust for inflation, but both numbers should be of the same classification. So the adjusted damage for storms would be (storm damage)/GDP. That way one could compare this damage ratio for different time periods.

    In sum, GDP can act as reasonable estimator for the progression of residential and commercial real estate markets.


  70. This is the stoop id way to price electricity. It will come back to bite them because solar and wind will always require backup of some kind. If that backup can’t make money, it will cease to exist.

    With an increase in the number of solar panels across the region, power grids from Britain to France and Denmark are being overwhelmed by cheap supplies. Prices settled at -€500 a megawatt hour for some periods in Germany and the Netherlands in an auction for Sunday on Epex Spot SE. Several periods on Monday were negative too, a more unusual occurrence for a weekday when demand is higher.

    Negative prices are common in the summer and during public holidays if it’s particularly windy but now solar panels are causing the same surge. Grid managers have the option to pay to turn down supply or boost demand. The surge of clean electricity has outstripped demand, showcasing power grids’ struggle to accommodate large variations in renewables.


    • Rob Starkey

      Why should we care about how socialist countries price electricity?

      • If you live in the US, you live in one, at least to a large extent. I include as “socialist” regulation to the point that markets aren’t truly free. Such as gas mileage standards, dishwasher energy use standards, EV subsidies … there is so much of this going on in the US, I think it’s’ fair to say we live in a Socialist country.

  71. Rob Starkey

    In the US, electricity is priced on a State by State basis. It gives us 50 experiments to see what works and what doesn’t.

    • Map of the US where electricity prices have gone negative.


      • Does that paper say what you think it says?

        It’s wholesale price, not consumer price. And the authors conclude:

        “[…] negative prices have implications for wind (and solar) deployment and associated decarbonization goals in so much as they indicate locations where the economic value of additional generation resources has significantly declined [12]. They illustrate the possible need for, and value of, added transmission that allows excess electricity to reach distant demand centers […] ”

        Pockets of saturation in generation, and/or more transmission needed for far-away high demand. That maps to what I hear.
        My State utilities are saying more transmission is needed. Down the street, my State’s eco-alarmists are protesting against more transmission lines being built. Guess the protestors didn’t read how renewables need lots of transmission.

      • The beauty of a nat gas plant is you can build it right at the edge of civilization. No suped-up transmission lines needed. Those long transmission lines need to be added to the cost of wind and solar. On top of that, dependent on the terrain, they can be a fire hazard.

  72. David Appell

    It’s pretty clear that Judith didn’t testify because the defendants never called her…. Why?

  73. The catastrophilia that is Mann Made Global Warming ™ truly is a death cult! I mean using these kids is right up there with sending kids on a crusade to liberate Jerusalem back in the old days! The latter failed as the former should.

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  75. Tom Anderson

    I have been looking at research, much of it on Pierre Gosselin’s notrickszone, of CO2 as an overall coolant – as Freeman Dyson argued. Using Wilhelm Wien’s Peak Displacement Law, or Approximation, tropospheric CO2 was found in 2020 to radiate overwhelmingly (99.83%) at the 15-micron wavelength, with an 80-Celsius-degrees-below zero temperature (-80°C). CO2 has been observed also cooling by radiating incoming solar energy and terrestrial heat away to space on Earth, Mars and Venus (!). . Two GISS scientists, considering then perceived global cooling, advised in 1971 against burning fossil fuels because accompanying aerosols made them coolants. To date, seven studies show CO2 concentrations follow temperature change as an effect not cause of anything. Increased plant growth has additional cooling effects. … I have citations for the above.

    • David Andrews

      Tom Anderson’s comment is irrelevant to this conversation and technically wrong. No matter how many citations suggest CO2 increases in the current era are caused by temperature increases, every one is wrong. Anthropogenic emissions are about 2x the atmospheric accumulation, showing that ocean/ land reservoirs are net sinks not sources for the last century and longer. End of story.

    • David Appell

      Tom Anderson wrote:
      …of CO2 as an overall coolant – as Freeman Dyson argued.

      Where did Dyson argue that?

    • David Appell



      CO2 ***obviously*** leads temperature when we are pumping it straight into the atmosphere regardless of what the temperature is.

      Tom, do you wait to turn on your car, and emit CO2, until the temperature first increases?

      I’m so sick of this argument from people who don’t seem to understand the most basic features of what’s going on.

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  79. Dr. Curry, I just finished Climate Uncertainty and Risk. Excellent work. Comprehensive. Helpful third grade math. Liked the foreshadowing quotes, and the organization of the book, which increased its readability: footnoted chapters, enumerated critical points, and cross references (reading the e-version made these especially accessible). Should be required collegiate reading, and even more so, as a starting point for agreement, required Congressional reading by both parties. Thanks.

  80. So sad, Montana paid $96k for their expert testimony and still lost the trial.


    Congratulations to the young Americans who stood up to the corporate interests promoting doubt and uncertainty about human caused climate change.

    • Joe - the non climate scientist

      Without addressing the merits of the case, Your CNN link has no links to the actual court opinion.

      A google search shows numerous stories on the court opinion, though only a few have a link to the opinion.

      FWIW – I did find the link to the court opinion
      bottom of this link


      Reading though the opinion, I find the harms listed far too speculative to be recognizable –

      Another item not mentioned in the case is the banning of oil and gas becomes a taking under 5A.

      • Reading through the findings of fact in the opinion.
        A few observations
        1) lots of findings of facts are either grossly misleading, distorted, lacking context or flat our wrong.
        2) Another “expert witness” testified was credited with winning the nobel prize (nobel peace prize) as one of the coauthors of the IPCC. Just like Mann
        3) another bucket of the harms are either highly speculative, wrong, or simply PRE traumatic stress .
        Those three buckets take up over 2/3’s of the findings of fact.

        Even as a non lawyer, I would expect the judge to get a new one ripped on appeal due to the weakness of the findings of fact.

        Caveat – I havent read the MEPA statute enacted by the state of Montana, so that may have significant bearing on the appeal

  81. Read your report top to bottom. Worth every penny the state of Montana spent on it. Don’t let them grind you down!

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