Thursday 29th of October 2020

stronger westerly winds...



Sea levels may rise much faster than predicted because climate models have failed to account for the disruptive effects of stronger westerly winds, Australian-led research has found.

Recent studies of Antarctica have suggested the giant glaciers of West Antarctica may have begun an irreversible melting that will raise sea levels by as much as 3 metres over 200-500 years.

That estimate, though, may prove optimistic because models had failed to account for how strengthening westerly winds in the Southern Ocean would start to impinge coastal easterlies, upsetting a delicate balance of warm and cold waters close to the Antarctic ice sheets, said Paul Spence, an oceanographer at the University of NSW’s Climate Change Research Centr

“It’s the first time that I looked at my science and thought, 'Oh my god, that is very concerning'!”, he said. “You hope it’s wrong and you hope it doesn’t happen.

“If you were buying land in Australia and wanting to pass it down to your kids or your grandchildren, I suggest it’s a couple of metres above sea-level,” Dr Spence said.

The research, published in Geophysical Research Letters, found that the coastal temperature structure was more sensitive to global warming, particularly the changes to winds, than previously identified.

“The dynamic barrier between cold and warm water relaxes, and this relatively warm water just offshore floods into the ice-shelf regions, increasing the temperatures by 4 degrees under the ice shelf,” he said.

“If you look at how sensitive the coastal ocean is to these changing winds, you could put a lot more heat under these ice shelves than people have previously thought,” Dr Spence said.

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Spring is here... Yes I know we are still in the middle of winter in Sydney but the "natural" signs are that spring is here. Not coming but here. Flowers, bees, birds seem to be a couple of weeks or more early this season. I don't know about the butterflies that seem to have gone into winter with a new batch of caterpillars. Weird. But spring is here. 


after arthur in the US comes neoguri in japan...

Meanwhile as Mr Kobe is in Australia enjoying a cool winter day in Canberra:

Neoguri, once a super typhoon, still poses a serious threat to lives and property in Japan.

Neoguri intensified into a super typhoon early Monday morning local time (Sunday afternoon EDT). Currently Neoguri is a typhoon with maximum sustained winds of 205 kph (125 mph). meteorologists expect Neoguri to be close to super typhoon status when it crosses the gap between the Ryukyu Islands of Miyako Jima and Okinawa on Tuesday, local time.

Neoguri is expected to track 75-100 miles west of Okinawa. Okinawa will likely get the worst impact from the cyclone late Monday night through Tuesday with rainfall rates of 50 mm (2 inches) or greater per hour at times, sustained winds as high as 160 kph (100 mph) with gusts up to 210 kph (130 mph).

Westernmost parts of Okinawa, home to the United States' Kadena Air Force Base, will be at greatest risk for the strongest and most devastating winds.

abbott — the reckless wrecker...

One of the UK's leading Tory politicians has launched a scathing attack on Tony Abbott's plan to scrap the carbon tax, accusing the Prime Minister of "recklessly endangering" the future of the world.

The legislation to abolish the tax passed the House of Representatives last month and is expected to pass the Upper House this week thanks to the support of the Palmer United Party.

Among the howls of protest from Labor and the Greens has been the unlikely voice of Lord Deben, who remains Britain's longest serving environment minister.

Lord Deben, a former head of the Conservative Party who served under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, is now the head of the UK Committee on Climate Change.

He has issued a statement saying the Abbott Government "appears to be more concerned with advancing its own short-term political interests" than dealing with global warming.

it's about energy source switching, you dork...


ACF posted the email exchange on its own Facebook page, prompting supporters to attack Laming for a “misleading” and “simplistic” response. ACF said more than 360 comments were posted on Laming’s page in protest at the email, most of which were deleted.

The conservation group itself directed a post to Laming, saying: “Australians are taking individual responsibility through solar, wind and investment in renewables. Your redirection of the conversation to the size of some person's car shows a lack of understanding of the need for national climate policy to significantly reduce emissions to mitigate the impacts of climate change.”

Laming, who recently provided a whiteboard explanation to Guardian Australia of this year’s budget, was unbowed, however.

He posted on ACF’s page: “Please everyone. Instead of confected indignation, address the point of the post.

“How much are you personally doing to reduce emissions; before you go supporting tax policies that take away jobs from low-income families. Fair question, if you are up for a genuine debate. If not, I can’t do much about it. Lovely to see all this aggro from people who don’t live in my electorate!”


Andrew Laming views are simplistic... The point is not about not using any energy but to do some elegant footwork to switch energy source in order to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. For example, I am freezing my butt off in my office this morning. No heaters. I have exchanged all my light bulbs from hallogen and incandescent to low wattage globes and now switching all of them to LED. I am working on green energy sources. 


And as I consume less, my power bill goes up by 1.4 per cent... I believe there must some new gold plated poles in the area



the devil is in the global warming...



The 200-page book, RRP $29.95, claims wind farms and solar panels use more energy to build than they will ever generate. Plimer, an academic at the University of Adelaide with a background in mining and energy, says renewable energy policies have left hundreds of thousands of people in “fuel poverty”. He says greens have a “totalitarian approach … the greens are not interested in environmentalism”.


Plimer makes his money from digging dirt not by smelling flowers. And that's his problem. His "fuel poverty" thesis has been taken up by Tony Abbott's climate experts advisors, Maurice Newman and Dick Warburton — who are no expert on climate change, nor on global warming, but rely near exclusively on Plimer to give them the dirt on these subjects. Maurice and Dick would not have a clue beyond their white conservative picket fence. And of course we know that Tony Abbott lies. 

I have not read Plimer's new book. But if it's similar to his Heaven & Earth, It's going to be full of erroneous platitude and giant porkies. But because guys like him have a lot of clout in conservative ranks, they manage to influence politicians into making BAD policies. 

The title of his book is silly: "Not for Greens: He who sups with the Devil should have a long spoon" But that's the way some people think they are funny or sarcastic but end up being stupid. I have no idea what he means or if he has a historical context for this. I could guess he means if you're a Greenie, you're supping with the devil... So, is Ian Plimer a Christian as well as a miner?... His book is published by a very very conservative Catholic publishing house whose other authors include many religious figures, such as B A Santamaria (deceased) and our own Cardinal George Pell.

Plimer's basis for all his books on "climate change" I thus guess is:


"According to a presentation by Plimer with the Friends of Science: [5]

”- [The] Earth['s climate] always changes

- Climate change is normal

- Climate change occurred well before humans were on Earth

- The rate of climate change today is no different from thousands, millions or billions of years ago

- >80% [of the] time, Earth has been warmer and wetter than at present

- Ice is rare

- Just because [climate] change occurs in our lifetime does not mean that we humans are driving the change”



Gus: If you know earth sciences like I do, you would see three MAJOR (simplistic) errors here: The last four lines. 

Yes The climate of the planet has been changing since the year dot... 

To say that "climate change is normal" appears to me as a weirdo statement. What is "normal"?

Yes climate has changed before humans were on earth (sorry creationists!)

NO, THE RATE OF CLIMATE CHANGE has been different from thousands, millions or billions of years ago — climate change rate varies according to various factors which are atmospheric gases, wobble of the earth axis, the sun performance, and other factors such as albedo and the state of general cooling of the planet core.

No. Ice did happen through the various eras and aeons. though icing is a more recent phenomenon on the planet. There were quite a few ice ages in the recent "Quaternary" and one massive cooling around 700 million years ago (see my debate of Lord Monckton's views on this subject), plus many warm and cool period which influenced the various evolutions of faunas and floras.

Wrong. The present rate of change is beyond the rate of natural change and goes contrary to the expectation of moving towards an ice age (10,000 to 15,000 years from now).. This is why what we are seeing is not "climate change" but anthropogenic global warming. It is important to make this crucial difference.

Global warming is presently driven by excess CO2 in the atmosphere. The science is 99.9 per cent correct after having accounted for all other factors. According to the scientific records, the maximum natural CO2 atmospheric concentration of CO2 has been 300 ppm, being the signature of warm periods over the last 500,000 years. The signature of cooler periods (ice ages) has been 160/180 ppm of atmospheric CO2.

The excess of atmospheric CO2 is coming directly from our burning of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are carbon sinks that have not been part of the "surface" carbon equation for a very very long time — millions of years... It is known that CO2 is a moderately warming gas (oxygen is a "cooling" gas), even in small quantities, but its influence on the behaviour of water vapour (the most important warming gas in the atmosphere) is a most important aspect. As well, This combination of warming, helps the release of methane, a highly warming gas even in small quantities. Thus it is my simpleton view that Ian Plimer is hiding behind clever fudge and does not want to know. 


In the sales pitch Ian Plimer uses to sell his new book, he says:

The processes required to make a humble stainless steel teaspoon are remarkably complicated and every stage involves risk, coal, energy, capital, international trade and finance. Stainless steel cutlery has taken thousands of years of experimentation and knowledge to evolve and the end result is that we can eat without killing ourselves with bacteria. We are in the best times to have ever lived on planet Earth and the future will only be better. All this we take for granted.


Yes. I know that making stainless steel is complicated. I was a metallurgist once. I have had many jobs in my life. 

I talk to scientists in many fields, I talk about the economics of derivatives to bankers. I talk with physicists about dark matter and quantum mechanics. And should we worry so much about "bacteria" we've muck this subject a bit by over use of antibiotics. 

But the point is not that we've got to stop making stainless spoons, but to reduce our carbon dioxide emissions... Yes making windmills is carbon intensive but these can soon become carbon neutral and carbon negative for the energy produced. Building power stations (coal, gas) is also carbon intensive and in their operations while the cost of nuclear energy is such it has to be subsidised heavily. 

No, we are not taking anything for granted... what we need to do is to think outside the box — our present energy supply set up — to preserve our comforts while reducing our emissions of CO2... Simple. 


Note: my apologies about having to repost this article every two minutes... My old computer is not coping well tonight (Safari is unstable) and I have had to use two different programs to enter this post. This has enabled me to correct the bolds and italics (which were behaving badly), but by some annoying conflicts some of the post kept disappearing. Thus you may have read something that is now slightly differently expressed since I had no original copy to fall back on.

a big earthly fart near the north pole...


By now, you’ve heard of the crater on the Yamal Peninsula. It’s the one that suddenly appeared, yawning nearly 60 metres in diameter, and made several rounds in the global viral media machine. The adjectives most often used to describe it: giant, mysterious, curious. Scientists were subsequently “baffled”. Locals were “mystified”. There were whispers that aliens were responsible. Nearby residents peddled theories of “bright flashes” and “celestial bodies”.

There’s now a substantiated theory about what created the crater. And the news isn’t so good.

It may be methane gas, released by the thawing of frozen ground. According to a recent Nature article, “air near the bottom of the crater contained unusually high concentrations of methane — up to 9.6 per cent — in tests conducted at the site on 16 July, says Andrei Plekhanov, an archaeologist at the Scientific Centre of Arctic Studies in Salekhard, Russia. Plekhanov, who led an expedition to the crater, says that air normally contains just 0.000179 per cent methane.”

The scientist said the methane release may be related to Yamal’s unusually hot summers in 2012 and 2013, which were warmer by an average of 5 degrees Celsius. “As temperatures rose, the researchers suggest, permafrost thawed and collapsed, releasing methane that had been trapped in the icy ground,” the report stated.

Plekhanov explained to Nature that the conclusion is preliminary. He would like to study how much methane is contained in the air trapped inside the crater’s walls. Such a task, however, could be difficult. “Its rims are slowly melting and falling into the crater,” the researcher told the science publication. “You can hear the ground falling, you can hear the water running; it’s rather spooky.”

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I know, I know, most farts do not have methane in them, by hydrogen... Animal belching however is full of methane...


Note that methane is a global warming gas, far shorter lived than CO2, but at least 10 times more potent...