Sunday, May 19, 2019

Australians choose a rocky road

Sou | 9:49 AM Go to the first of 45 comments. Add a comment
Australians voted yesterday and, against the odds, decided to opt for speeding up climate change and destroying our wonderful land.

We had two main choices: a plan to invest in a "fair go" future setting the tone for the difficult years ahead; and a choice to defer that investment, wreck our agriculture, and transfer more wealth to the high end of town.

Australians chose the latter.

Don't get me wrong. The Australian Labor Party is far from perfect. It, too, doesn't fully appreciate the damage we are doing to our world. Nor does it fully appreciate the fragility of Australia and the dangers we face. Nevertheless, overall the choices it offered were a lesser evil than those of the Liberal National coalition.

The question is, should Australians and the world suffer because a slim majority voted against the well-being of farmers, fishers, foresters and everyone in our towns and cities? Should we stand by and allow the destruction of our rivers, grasslands, forests and precious seas because that's what slightly more than half the population voted for?

The answer is a partial yes. That's democracy. That's how our society works.

We chose to elect a government that promises continuing economic mismanagement, increasing the divide between rich and poor, delaying technological advances, depriving Australians of modern transport, and ruining our rivers and seas.

The part that is not "yes" is that we don't have to see this election as the "final nail in the coffin" of Australia. It is tempting to fall into the despair trap and believe our fate is sealed forever. It is understandable but unproductive to lie down and accept that we chose to wreck our world and continue on a path of destruction - and that's the end of that.

Now is the time to get up, dust ourselves off, and continue to push for responsible government and responsible action.

Remember that about half the country did vote for a fairer, more compassionate country. Half of us want to repair our damaged rivers, look after our farmland and forests, protect our remaining wildlife, and do what we can to save the reef. Around one in two Australians know that we will sooner rather than later need to work with the rest of the world to deal with climate migration. We will need to continue to produce food, feed and fibre for more people despite the worsening weather. To survive if not thrive we will need to work as a cohesive society, not the divided nation that people like the execrable Peter Dutton want.

That means we must continue to do what we can, but do it better. We need to continue to push for businesses and industries to take the lead where our federal government won't. We need to support the efforts of state governments to expand renewable energy and get off the fossil fuel train. And we need to demand accountability and openness from our politicians. We need to make sure everyone can see the impact of making the rich richer, the poor poorer, and the land and water degraded.

We might not succeed. That doesn't mean we shouldn't try.

Australians yesterday chose a rocky road, maybe confusing it with the sweet. We could have chosen a slightly smoother (though still rough) path, but we didn't. Let's do what we can to show the world Australia can be better.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

How about changing and clarifying IPCC targets for global mean temperature

Sou | 5:25 PM Go to the first of 29 comments. Add a comment
The aim is to limit global warming to 1.5 C above pre-industrial temperatures; however, there has long been some contention and confusion around what is meant by the targets of 1.5 C and 2 C.

I don't know that anyone will ever agree on what pre-industrial means exactly, which gives a lot of room for inept leaders to wriggle out of their obligations. That's why I'm suggesting the IPCC and its member countries set and agree on targets where the meaning is clear, tangible, more precise, and to which people can relate more readily.

My idea is to change the simple message of 1.5 C or 2 C above pre-industrial to 1 C or 1.5 C above the 1951-1980 mean.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

A portrait of a denier: Sheldon Walker trolls RealClimate

Sou | 11:04 PM Go to the first of 88 comments. Add a comment
While we're trying to cope with this dastardly Australian heat wave, I'm avoiding hard work. Instead, here's some entertainment in the form of a self-portrait of a denier.

I don't know why deniers take offense at being called deniers. After all, all they boast about is how the science is wrong, the scientists are frauds, and they don't "believe in" science. They delight in their denial.

There's an entire post at the climate conspiracy blog WUWT today about how offensive it is for scientists to call science deniers "deniers". The WUWT article is from Sheldon Walker, who's been here in the past to get some tips. On another occasion I wrote about a pickle he got into. He's an odd chap :)

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

El Niño has been cancelled

Sou | 11:27 PM Go to the first of 50 comments. Add a comment
In case you missed it, the latest ENSO wrap-up from the Bureau of Meteorology has downgraded El Niño status from "alert" to "watch". The atmosphere didn't come to the party and so it's no longer as likely to happen imminently.

An El Niño might still emerge in coming months, based on model outlooks.

From the Bureau:
ENSO Outlook lowered to El Niño WATCH
Recent observations and climate model outlooks suggest the immediate risk of El Niño has passed.

However, there remains an increased likelihood that El Niño will develop later in 2019. The Bureau's ENSO Outlook has therefore moved to El Niño WATCH, meaning there is approximately a 50% chance of El Niño developing during the southern hemisphere autumn or winter.

Tropical Pacific sea surface and sub-surface temperatures remain warmer than average, but since late 2018 they have cooled from El Niño-like values towards ENSO-neutral values. Atmospheric indicators such as cloudiness, trade winds and the Southern Oscillation Index all continue to generally remain within the ENSO-neutral range.

While most climate models indicate ENSO-neutral conditions for the immediate future, the current ocean warmth and likelihood of ongoing warmer than average conditions mean the risk of El Niño remains. Three of eight models suggest that El Niño may establish by mid-2019.

The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is neutral. The IOD typically has little influence on Australian climate from December to April.

By the way, no matter what some cranks might try to tell you, El Niño isn't what's causing global warming. "It's getting hotter because it's getting hotter" isn't an adequate explanation for climate change!

Monday, January 21, 2019

Trump was only joking - sez WUWT. (Global warming is happening)

Sou | 1:02 PM Go to the first of 21 comments. Add a comment
Are climate science deniers' opinions changing? (Short answer, No, but they are very confused little mites.)

Eric Worrall, a nondescript but prolific "guest" on the conspiracy blog WUWT said that when Donald Trump tweeted about snow and global warming he was only joking. Eric wrote (archived here):
Climate change activists simply cannot seem to handle even a joke which contradicts their obsession, without getting riled about it and providing long boring monologues about why they disagree with whatever was said.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Greetings of the season - enjoy it while you can

Sou | 12:57 AM Go to the first of 8 comments. Add a comment
Happy holidays, happy Christmas, happy furlough, and I wish you all the best for 2019.

This is the time of year when you might see lots of advice about how to talk to your wacky uncle about climate, suggestions about finding common values etc.

In my view, if you're having a family get-together it's better to just be nice to your denier relatives. Anyone who still rejects climate science is a lost cause on that subject.

Family get-togethers can be trying enough without adding more tension. In any case, if you don't know yet what values you share with your weirder relatives then you probably never will.

Instead of explaining how devious disinformers have played a hoax on them, find out what other conspiracy theories they entertain. Shift the conversation to something more innocuous that will amuse you and won't get you worked up, like how they know that gravity is a hoax :)

If you have the opportunity to take some time off from work (forced or otherwise), make the best of it.

I'll see you all back here in 2019.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Remember when solar alarmists said our sun would grow into a red giant? Never mind. It's corny!

Sou | 5:58 PM Go to the first of 14 comments. Add a comment
He's done it again!

In the past, Anthony Watts from the denier blog WUWT has implied that because something hasn't happened yet it never will (to a ludicrous extent). He wants his readers to think that climate science is a hoax, or global warming won't be that bad and might even be good on balance. He's used evidence such as predictions that something is likely to happen in 60, 80, 100 years or more hasn't happened by today. It makes you wonder if he thinks he's immortal.

Today he's done it again, with one of his "Never Mind" headlines. This is one of his formulaic headlines, (another is "Claim:") which he uses to signal that he doesn't believe science. Note that in the USA, maize is called corn.

No discernible change points in WUWT temperature conspiracies

Sou | 4:26 AM Go to the first of 4 comments. Add a comment
The hogwash from science deniers continues, this time with a rather silly claim by Bob Tisdale. He doesn't accept the maths behind the use of anomalies in science, and reckons the reason anomalies are used to illustrate changes in global temperature is to hide seasonal differences throughout the year, or between land and oceans, or some such nonsense.

Bob Tisdale is what at best could be termed a pseudo-scientist. He specialises in rejecting climate change science, usually using very poor and unscientific graphs to get his audience to clap. And he chooses to publish on denier blogs where the audience will clap anything, as long as it's one of climate science is a hoax, the world is cooling, it can't be happening, Trump is the best, and all the scientists in the world are wrong, or stupid, or similar.

Today he's "supported" his silliness by putting up some charts, which he says he based on data from Berkeley Earth and NOAA's sea surface temperature, ERSST v5. He seems very surprised to find that the hottest months globally are July and August.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Global warming is in the air, in the UAH lower troposphere

Sou | 2:16 PM Go to the first of 9 comments. Add a comment
The UAH data for October is out. John Christy and Roy Spencer from the University of Arizona Huntsville have a contract with NOAA to analyse temperature changes in the atmosphere. Each month they publish the latest data.

Deniers dislike it less than other data sets, especially since John and Roy revised the latest version considerably downwards, making their data an anomaly!

I came across a chart I prepared a few years ago and thought I'd do it over again using the latest UAH data.

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Norman Page, the ice age comether, is back at WUWT

Sou | 11:47 PM Go to the first of 27 comments. Add a comment
There are a few strange climate cranks who still resurface from time to time. Today Anthony Watts is host once again to the ice age comether, Dr Norman Page. (Despite being a sun-worshipper, he is, or was, an oil consultant of the fossil fuel type, not suntan oil.)

No Re-evaluation from Norman

Five years ago, Norman had another one of his spurious articles at WUWT proclaiming a coming ice age. At the time he qualified his prediction, writing:
If there is not a 0.15 – 0.20. drop in Global SSTs by 2018 -20 I would need to re-evaluate.
If he did re-evaluate, it doesn't show.