Why herd immunity to COVID-19 is reached much earlier than thought – update

By Nic Lewis

I showed in my May 10th article Why herd immunity to COVID-19 is reached much earlier than thought that inhomogeneity within a population in the susceptibility and in the social-connectivity related infectivity of individuals would reduce, in my view probably very substantially, the herd immunity threshold (HIT), beyond which an epidemic goes into retreat. I opined, based on my modelling, that the HIT probably lay somewhere between 7% and 24%, and that evidence from Stockholm County suggested it was around 17% there, and had been reached. Mounting evidence supports my reasoning.[1]

I particularly want to highlight an important paper published on July 24th “Herd immunity thresholds estimated from unfolding epidemics” (Aguas et al.).[2] The author team is much the same as that of the earlier theoretical paper (Gomes et al.[3]) that prompted my May 10th article. Continue reading

Apocalypse Never and False Alarm

by Judith Curry

Two important new books to discuss.

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The progress of the COVID-19 epidemic in Sweden: an analysis

By Nic Lewis

The course of the COVID-19 pandemic in Sweden is of great interest, as it is one of very few advanced nations where no lockdown order that heavily restricted people’s movements and other basic freedoms was imposed. As there has been much comment, some of it ill-informed, on how the COVID-19 epidemic has developed in Sweden, but relatively little detailed analysis published in English, it is worth exploring what their excellent publicly-available data reveal. Continue reading

Mass spectrometry and climate science. Part II

by Roland Hirsch

New technologies in mass spectrometry are advancing research in climate science

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Week in review – science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye the past 7(!) weeks.

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Did lockdowns really save 3 million COVID-19 deaths, as Flaxman et al. claim?

By Nic Lewis

Key points about the recent Nature paper by Flaxman and other Imperial College modellers

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Structural errors in global climate models

by Gerald Browning

Climate model sensitivity to CO2 is heavily dependent on artificial parameterizations (e.g. clouds, convection) that are implemented in global climate models that utilize  the wrong atmospheric dynamical system and excessive dissipation.

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Mass spectrometry and climate science. Part I: Determining past climates

by Roland Hirsch

Mass spectrometry is essential for research in climate science.

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Dynamics of the Tropical Atmosphere and Oceans

by Judith Curry

Peter Webster’s magnum opus is now published: Dynamics of the Tropical Atmosphere and Oceans.

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When does government intervention make sense for COVID-19?

By Nic Lewis

Introduction

I showed in my last article that inhomogeneity within a population in the susceptibility and infectivity of individuals would reduce the herd immunity threshold, in my view probably very substantially, and that evidence from Stockholm County appeared to support that view. In this article I will first provide other evidence pointing to such population inhomogeneity being very considerable. I will then go on to consider how the overshoot of infections beyond the herd immunity threshold could be reduced. Continue reading

Culturally-determined response to climate change: Part III

by Andy West

Climate change affirmative responses to all survey questions are culturally determined, and across National Publics related to religiousity.  Cultural attitudes inappropriately push climate policy.

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Greening the planet and slouching towards Paris?

by Patrick J. Michaels

A new paper finds higher than expected CO2 fertilization inferred from leaf to global observations.  The paper predicts that the Earth is going to gain nearly three times as much green matter as was predicted by the IPCC AR5.

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Why herd immunity to COVID-19 is reached much earlier than thought

By Nic Lewis

Introduction

A study published in March by the COVID-19 Response Team from Imperial College (Ferguson20[1]) appears to have been largely responsible for driving government actions in the UK and, to a fair extent, in the US and some other countries. Until that report came out, the strategy of the UK government, at least, seems to have been to rely on the build up of ‘herd immunity’ to slow the growth of the epidemic and eventually cause it to peter out. Continue reading

Week in review – climate science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week — climate science & policy

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Apparent Paradoxes in the relationship of Climate ‘Concerns, Skepticism, Activism, and Priority’, explained by Religiosity

by Andy West

Explores the contrast between Allied and Core belief in the culture of climate catastrophe, and the relationships of these plus religiosity to Climate Change Activism (XR and Children’s Strikes for Climate). Post 2 of 3.

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A sensible COVID-19 exit strategy for the UK

By Nic Lewis

The current approach

A study by the COVID-19 Response Team from Imperial College (Ferguson et al. 2020[i]) appears to be largely responsible for driving UK government policy actions. The lockdown imposed in the UK appears, unsurprisingly, to have slowed the growth of COVID-19 infections, and may well soon lead to total active cases declining. However, it comes at huge economic and social costs, and substantial COVID-19-unrelated health costs.

Worse, the lockdown is merely a holding strategy, which offers no long term solution to the COVID-19 problem. The eventual total number of deaths for COVID-19 are not reduced relative to any less restrictive policy that likewise avoided the health system being overwhelmed. Deaths are merely spread over a longer period, assuming that eventually restrictions are lifted and people’s lives return to normal. Continue reading

Can religiosity predict cultural climate beliefs?

by Andy West

Probing the relationship between religiosity globally, and cultural beliefs in the narrative of imminent / certain global climate catastrophe: Post 1 of 3.

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In favor of epistemic trespassing

by Judith Curry

On the importance of expertise from other fields for COVD19 and climate change.

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Sunday fun: personality testing

by Judith Curry

And now for something different.

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Week in review – climate science edition

by Judith Curry

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

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Imperial College UK COVID-19 numbers don’t seem to add up

By Nic Lewis

Introduction and summary

A study published two weeks ago by the COVID-19 Response Team from Imperial College (Ferguson20[1]) appears to be largely responsible for driving UK government policy actions. The study is not peer reviewed; indeed, it seems not to have been externally reviewed at all. Moreover, the computer code used to produce the estimates in the study – which on Ferguson’s own admission is old, unverified and documented inadequately, if at all – has still not been published. That, in my view, shows a worrying approach to a matter of vital public concern.

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COVID-19: Updated data implies that UK modelling hugely overestimates the expected death rates from infection

By Nic Lewis

Introduction

There has been much media coverage about the danger to life posed by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. While it is clearly a serious threat, one should consider whether the best evidence supports the current degree of panic and hence government policy. Much of the concern in the UK resulted from a non-peer reviewed study published by the COVID-19 Response Team from Imperial College (Ferguson et al 2020[1]). In this article, I examine whether data from the Diamond Princess cruise ship – arguably the most useful data set available – support the fatality rate assumptions underlying the Imperial study. I find that it does not do so. The likely fatality rates for age groups from 60 upwards, which account for the vast bulk of projected deaths, appear to be much lower than those in the Ferguson et al. study. Continue reading

Coronavirus uncertainty

by Judith Curry

My thoughts on coronavirus and deep uncertainty.

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Coronavirus technical thread

by Judith Curry

A thread devoted to technical topics, e.g. epidemiology, immunology, treatments.  A more general thread will be coming shortly.

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Coronavirus discussion thread

by Judith Curry

Discuss.

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