Saturday, June 21, 2014

Heat kills! Pat'n Chip argue for survival of the wealthiest at WUWT

Sou | 4:43 PM Go to the first of 19 comments. Add a comment

Paul C. “Chip” Knappenberger and Patrick J. Michaels (Pat'n Chip) keep plugging away at their weird notion that no matter how hot it gets, humans will adapt and fewer will die from heat-related causes.  Here is part of what they write at WUWT (archived here):
The cause of the observed decline in the sensitivity to extreme heat in the face of rising heat is likely found in a collection of adaptations including increased access to air-conditioning, better medical care, improved building design, community response programs, heat watch/warning systems, and biophysical changes. There is no reason to think that such response measures won’t continue to exist and be improved upon into the future.In our recent study summarizing the findings on declining heat-related mortality trends in both the U.S and Europe, we made this observation (Knappenberger et al., 2014):
Credit: Plognark

So everyone who lives somewhere that's affected by heatwaves, make sure you upgrade your air conditioner and try to find one that will work at 47°C plus. (I picked that number because I once had to drive my car in 47°C heat for half an hour or so to try to get the air conditioner fixed. I don't know how I made it without passing out. Also, I'm sure I'm not the only one whose home air conditioner is only rated to 43°C, the best we could find at the time.)

Not that your air-conditioner will do you much good when the power goes out because either it's broken down or can't cope with the stress on the system, caused by the heat wave. Heat can kill hundreds of people in a single heat wave. Maybe Pat'n Chip live in a very mild climate.

Make sure your local hospital is equipped to cope with the influx of people who get caught in future heat waves (those that don't collapse and die on the spot). And don't forget to boost your paramedic services. Hospitals won't help if you can't get there.  Stuff more insulation in your ceiling space and walls and don't go outside, whatever you do. Even if that means you get the sack from your job or your sports team (see also here).

I really don't know why Pat'n Chip keep beating this dead horse. Where I live there is a big spike in the number of deaths in a heat wave. Horrid heat is not something you want to inflict on anyone, unless you're like Pat'n Chip who don't care about those suffering the heat in India or South America or Australia or elsewhere.

Although it hasn't happened yet, as the world warms it's conceivable that large areas could become uninhabitable. That's not because of heat alone. It's because when temperatures soar enough alongside humidity then it exceeds the physiological tolerance of humans. This was described by two researchers a few years ago. Stephen Sherwood from the University of New South Wales and Matthew Huber from Purdue University did the maths and this is documented clearly and succinctly in their abstract:
Despite the uncertainty in future climate-change impacts, it is often assumed that humans would be able to adapt to any possible warming. Here we argue that heat stress imposes a robust upper limit to such adaptation. Peak heat stress, quantified by the wetbulb temperature TW, is surprisingly similar across diverse climates today. TW never exceeds 31 °C. Any exceedence of 35 °C for extended periods should induce hyperthermia in humans and other mammals, as dissipation of metabolic heat becomes impossible. While this never happens now, it would begin to occur with global-mean warming of about 7 °C, calling the habitability of some regions into question. With 11–12 °C warming, such regions would spread to encompass the majority of the human population as currently distributed. Eventual warmings of 12 °C are possible from fossil fuel burning. One implication is that recent estimates of the costs of unmitigated climate change are too low unless the range of possible warming can somehow be narrowed. Heat stress also may help explain trends in the mammalian fossil record.

So although it would be quite a few decades before global temperatures rise 7 °C, there will still likely be parts of the world where those conditions could arise for short periods of time later this century. Particularly if we don't reduce carbon emissions enough.

Heat waves don't just kill people directly. They also affect the ability to supply electricity, they spark fires and cause them to turn into catastrophic killers, they dry up bodies of water and exacerbate drought. Heat is very pleasant in moderation. Too much of a good thing will kill.

I consider people like Pat'n Chip a menace to society.

From the WUWT comments

Eve doesn't give a rats for people who die in the heat and says:
June 20, 2014 at 7:36 pm
I have been freezing in Canada since I returned from the Bahamas. I have not had the quilt off since I arrived, plus having to wear long pants, long sleeves, no heat wave, just cold. Where is Obama that he is so hot? Tell him to turn down the heat.

Tom Harley is deluded about southern Australia. It can get much hotter down south than it does in the tropics. He says:
June 20, 2014 at 9:21 pm
Majormike1 is right, here in the tropical north of Australia, thousands of climate refugees are towing their camper vans, trailers and wotnot all over the region, clogging up the roads, hotels, resorts and camping grounds, just to get away from ‘the cold’ in the ‘Southern Australian States’.
Those of us who have lived here long enough, hate to leave here, even in the summer.
If you want your cold, you can keep your cold. Stay away Mr President. Bring global warming back, now. 

Eric Worrall suggests everyone move to beautiful Hervey Bay and says:
June 20, 2014 at 9:28 pm
I’ve got good news – when it gets too hot, here in Sunny Hervey Bay, 25 degrees south of the Equator, we wear shorts and t-shirts.
Hervey Bay has a lot of retired people, because of the year round pleasant climate, a lot like Florida. So far, heat related mortality does not seem to be an issue. 

Sherwood, Steven C., and Matthew Huber. "An adaptability limit to climate change due to heat stress." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107, no. 21 (2010): 9552-9555. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0913352107


  1. I wonder if this form of denial is for people who are geographically challenged, or whether a large part of the globe's population - those who do not live in an air conditioned world - just don't matter.

    1. The "argument" is that the non-AC world will only get AC if we let them burn cheap fossil fuels, and that refusing them access to those will in turn refuse them access to the wealth needed for buying AC units comma you monster.

      The argument is horseshit in every way (except it's not good fertilizer) obviously, but that's what Chip and various like-minded lukewarmer "economists" like to spout.

    2. I wonder if people like Pat'n Chip want regions that are bypassing coal for renewables to trade in their solar panels and wind turbines for dirty diesel generators and filthy coal-fired power stations.

      It's more likely Pat'n Chip don't care how many people fry, as long as it's not them.

    3. Unless your typical mud hut comes complete with a mains supply I guess its the 'fry' option then.

    4. Millicent: Under the belief system of Pat'n Chip (and Lomborg), the typical mud hut denizen will get richer if we let them burn coal and cheap oil, so that they aren't going to be in a mud hut when it comes time to fry, and thus all will be well. Consider that 150-200 years ago, much of the West was agrarian and living in mud huts or the equivalent. Burning cheap coal and cheap oil got us rich, urbanized, and solid, insulated homes on the grid, with A/C. So that's what today's agrarian mud hut societies should do, right? And if they don't make all the mistakes our forebears did, they won't develop and they will suffer. For some reason, they don't argue they should be driving model T's, but they definitely shouldn't use pollution control, because it's not free.

      Sou: yes, I'm pretty sure they believe that. If poor people buy solar panels, according to them, they are wasting money and should have bought coal-fired power plants instead. That part of their argument almost wasn't stupid five years ago, when solar cost 4x as much as it does now, except that even then it had the huge advantage of being much easier to deploy solar in a place where the central government is ineffectual.

      This gang spend a lot of time talking about how the third world should develop just like we did. I think they're deluded, but I don't think they're heartless. I could be wrong.

    5. numerobis: excellent summary. This is a more useful view of Michaels, at least, to frame discussions with him or about him. He's the one, after all, who told the Heartland conference that they should stop pretending AGW doesn't exist.

      Of course, he also lied (or demonstrated extreme ignorance) in a congressional hearing, but he's not the worst of the bunch.

    6. "So that's what today's agrarian mud hut societies should do, right?"

      Meanwhile back in the real world the agrarian mud hut societies are on the verge of collapse and their men folk are off to join Boko Haram for want of a better option.


    7. And the Syrian war was caused by the government's disastrous response to drought -- the drought being now linked to global warming.

    8. I note a certain lack of developmental economists amongst their number, Tol being a political economist, which is not the same.

    9. To be sure, numerobis, the war erupted because that government decided to shoot protests of, among other, bankrupt farmers to bits. A disastrous response to climate change effects indeed.

  2. The trouble with heat exchangers is in the name these units have to shunt the heat somewhere. After all, what happens if you don't allow ventilation behind a refrigerator.

    Anybody who has worked in confined spaces in ships the tropics knows the truth of this. The engine rooms of steam turbine driven vessels were notorious and anybody who has served on warships knows about this.

    I once had to get used to working in an aircraft hangar on a carrier in the tropics and even with a lift down to aid ventilation frequent breaks swallowing mugs of 'limers' with added salt were essential to replace fluid as pools of sweat ran down the Phantom F4K stabilator (tailplane) to gather in a large puddle on the steel deck.

    In the nearest 'heads', toilets, there happened to be an air-conditioning system heat exchanger adding its heat load to the surrounds causing sweat to dissolve the special water soluble toilet paper on touch placed therein for the use of. This to satisfy local pollution laws in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

  3. Wait a second, I thought only "warmists" thought the earth was getting warmer. If we're actually cooling or going through a "stadium wave" or we're "paused" forevver, then why does there need to be an article discussing adaptation to warming? These deniers confuse me to no end.

    1. This crew get assailed at WUWT for admitting the world is warming. They generally don't attack the scientific findings; they just downplay them, and argue that we'll adapt to everything just fine. But only if we don't adapt just yet.

    2. Some deniers will admit that the Earth may be warming with the caveat that it certainly can't be us and that there is "not a single shred of evidence that warming is caused be CO2," don't you know.

      Trying to provide graphic evidence for CO2 effect on climate is a exercise in pointlessness - because they just deny it.

      Deny, deny, deny and then deny again. It is like a bizarro world where the basic laws of physics do not exist and the greenhouse effect has not been known for 150 years.

  4. The place where the rubber will melt on the road is the Indus and Ganges Valley's in South Asia. Given that both India and Pakistan have nuclear weapons that will not end well

    Eli is tempted to try and post that over at Willard Tony's

  5. What idiots. P&C have forgotten that peak summer temperatures impact crop yields. *That* is going to hit lots of people where it hurts - in the stomach.

  6. Matt Ridley adds his distortions for the delayer/deniers to lap up:

    Junk Science Week: IPCC commissioned models to see if global warming would reach dangerous levels this century. Consensus is ‘no’.

    Note that Matt invokes Ross McKitrick who has recently been responsible for another misleading article:

    McKitrick tries and fails to move the goalposts on climate action.

    Ross, Matt,Pat & Chip are despicable and beneath contempt all they have left is zombies, but sadly zombies that much of the developed world want to believe in.

    Aside, has anybody else noticed the volume of Zombie, Vampire and other fantasy programming come out of US TV channels of late, many with sickening portrayals of violence? A nation is being conditioned for the hell to come, hell that is being disavowed by the likes of the suspects mentioned here.

  7. Sou, you ask: "I really don't know why Pat'n Chip keep beating this dead horse."
    Well, that's simply what fantasists do… and they enjoy it.

  8. "I really don't know why Pat'n Chip keep beating this dead horse."

    Well, perhaps because that is their job. They are professional lobbyists, and they are paid to present their sponsors in the best light possible.

    Regardless of reality, or those ever so pesky facts.


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