This thread is for discussion of Australian aspects of global warming.

265 Thoughts on “Australia

  1. Richard C (NZ) on March 11, 2012 at 10:48 am said:

    But this desal madness was clear at the time. Where were the experts?

    Andrew Bolt
    Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 08:03am

    It’s all very well to point out the financially-bleeding obvious now, but where were the experts when a few of us were trying to stop this madness before it was too late?

    VICTORIA would need to be in drought for eight years before a drop of water was required from the Wonthaggi desalination plant, scientists say.

    But taxpayers will pay more than $5 billion in that time to have access to the water.

    As floods swamp the northeast, critics have questioned why the plant was built.

    Prof Hector Malano, a water resource management expert at the University of Melbourne, said …”Desalination is the last option that you want to use…”

    There are two things we need to know. First, how did the maniacs in the then Labor Government come to decide on a hideously expensive desalination plant rather than a cheap dam? Second, how was almost all scientific and engineering dissent suppressed or muffled?

    Is the very same process now occurring on an even vaster scale with the carbon dioxide tax?

    “Permanent” El Nino prediction documented in Nat Geo here:-

    2009 Scientific Consensus : El Nino To Become Permanent

    ENSO has been negative continuously since May, 2010 [just gone neutral I think] – and has been negative for 38 out of the last 52 months.

    Nowhere to hide now.

    • Richard C (NZ) on March 11, 2012 at 4:55 pm said:

      Dam full but desalination plant on line at $500m a year

      Rachel Browne, Heath Aston

      IT WILL be more than four years before the Sydney desalination plant [Kurnell] produces a drop of water again, if the water level at Warragamba Dam declines at the same rate as the last time it topped out in August 1998.

      Even if levels drop at the same rate as the fastest decline it would be two years before the dam falls to 70 per cent – the point at which the desalination plant would be turned on.

      Assuming the former rate, a private owner of the plant – to be announced by the State Government this year – will take more than $500 million from NSW taxpayers without producing a litre of water.

      Based on estimates from the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal, a private sector owner would take $591 million in ”availability charges” from Sydney Water – payment for keeping the plant available.

      Taking away fixed costs, including $1.1 million a month to be paid to the plant’s operator, Veolia Water, and financing debt on the expected $1.1 billion price tag – which excludes a possible privatisation of the $600 million pipeline – a little over $50 million a year will go to the owners in profit.

      Read more:

      $50m profit from nil production – nice.

  2. Richard C (NZ) on April 6, 2012 at 11:47 am said:

    Good news: the Department of Climate Change will scrap up to 300 jobs.

    Bad news: there’ll still be 600 of em left.

  3. Bob Brown has resigned as leader of the Australian Greens

  4. Richard C (NZ) on April 19, 2012 at 8:25 am said:

    HERE’S proof the climate really is changing. The Melbourne Theatre Company is putting on a play next month with a global warming sceptic as the hero. Swear to God.

    Andrew Bolt

    As the MTC describes it: “Dr Diane Cassell is a serious scientist lecturing in what has become the cool degree at university; Climate Science…

    “For nearly 20 years, Diane has been measuring sea levels in the Maldives.

    “When her empirical data contradicts the prevailing view on the causes for climate change, she finds herself pressured by her funding-driven boss, Professor Kevin Maloney, not to publish her findings.”

    That plot is straight from reality.

    Dr Nils Axel-Morner, one of the world’s greatest authorities on sea levels, has done just this research at the Maldives.

    And top Australian physicist Prof Brian O’Brien last year warned of the pressure on scientists to conform to the warming faith, telling of a colleague who’d confessed: “Brian, I completely support what you’re saying, but I have 65 researchers in my laboratory and the only funding I can get for them and to get their PhDs is greenhouse funding from Canberra or wherever.”

    • Mike Jowsey on April 19, 2012 at 12:17 pm said:

      Aha! Exactly what we skeptics have known all along. This is the real reason for corruption of science. These department heads are corrupt gravy-train trough-slurpers who care nothing for the integrity of the scientific method. Grow some and harden up you parasites. Universities should be funded by a generic education-targeted source rather than scholarships, grants and junkets handed out by politically-driven bureaucrats according to the agenda-du-jour.

      RC – that link goes to the headline only, with a login required. Seems the Herald Sun now paywalls its articles. :(

    • Richard C (NZ) on April 19, 2012 at 12:50 pm said:

      Odd. I get the full article when I click on the link via the Google Reader CCG feed (you’ve got to get that Mike) but paywall login when I click on the same link via the the CCG blog comment.

      You can get the full article by copying the headline “Arts warming to climate sceptics” into Google News and searching for it (comes up top of list).

      That works for me (also for WSJ) but I’d be interested to see it if it doesn’t for others.

    • Mike Jowsey on April 20, 2012 at 12:13 am said:

      What’s Google?

      Anyhoo, thanks for the tip. Using a reputable search engine, I found the article reproduced in full on GWPF here:

      Many thanks.

  5. Mike Jowsey on June 22, 2012 at 11:41 am said:

    Here is one of the best blog posts I have ever read. It is on Jo Nova’s article regarding Paul Bain’s use of “Denier” in a Nature paper. Worth the 10 mins to read. In fact, worth its own article!

    • Andy on June 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm said:

      There was quite a lot on this topic at Bishop Hill.

      I think it underlines the state of groupthink when the author says it is “accepted practice” to use the term “denier” in his field

    • Richard C (NZ) on June 22, 2012 at 7:09 pm said:

      Whew! Dead right Mike. E.M. Smith is Cheifio BTW and Joanne has in fact turned the comment into a post article

      Yet ANOTHER outside specialist decrying the shoddy state of climate science; this time a computer programmer/economist and marketer of same (with patents no less) with a sound engineering pragmatism.

      And his smack down of Bain and “denier” is top-shelf.

      Glad you pointed out the comment Mike, I’ve only got a vague handle on that controversy because I’ve had my head in BOM’s ACORN – SAT – what a bizarre series the first location I’ve looked at, Alice Springs Minimum, is. The adjustments make NIWA’s NZT7 handiwork look rather ordinary.

      For example the very first step working back in time from the last open site is +0.8 C. The cumulative step change total by the time you get back to the start of the series is -1.7 C. Have a think what that does to a before and after raw to adjusted linear trend.

      The steps are VERY LARGE e.g. in 1975 there’s a -1.6 C step.

      More starting here and up-thread

      I seem to be left on the thread by myself. I don’t whether the Aussies are struggling with step change methodology (I’ve detailed it), they’ve all got bored and moved on, they resent a Kiwi lecturing them, they’re stunned at what is being turned up, or they’re mulling over it and will rejoin in the weekend. I suspect Ken Stewart has been traveling and hasn’t had time to crunch what I’ve posted.

      Probably a number of those reasons combined.

    • Andy on June 22, 2012 at 7:23 pm said:

      Mike, sorry I didn’t initially read the E M Smith post you linked to. I had been following the discussion on BH and there wasn’t a lot of interest there.

      I have to agree this is pretty powerful stuff and mirrors my experience too.

      Thanks for sharing.


  6. Mike Jowsey on July 6, 2012 at 12:57 pm said:

    NEWS: New legal approach — consumer protection laws may protect citizens against misleading BOM statements

    Could a similar case be brought in Australia challenging the validity of the Australian temperature record which is prepared by the Bureau of Meteorology [BOM]? There are similarities between BOM and NIWA: both have adjusted their temperature record and both have created a warming trend through the adjustments. The BOM’s has adjusted their temperature trend by approximately 40%. This appears not to be consistent with criteria for adjusting temperature laid down by Torok and Nicholls and Della-Marta et al.

  7. Richard C (NZ) on July 7, 2012 at 4:57 pm said:

    Strange. What happened to those “heat trapping” GHGs?

    As Melbourne residents hid under doonas, in Coldstream, on Melbourne’s eastern fringes, the temperature dropped to minus three.

    Bureau of Meteorology duty forecaster Andrea Peace said Mt Hotham was the coldest place in the state with minus seven degrees while Rutherglen, Strathbogie and Corryong dipped to minus five.

    A large high pressure system centred over Australia’s southeast was the culprit, bringing clear skies and light winds overnight that allowed yesterday’s warmth to dissipate.

    Read more:

    Dissipating heat huh. Does the IPCC know about this?

    • Mike Jowsey on July 7, 2012 at 5:14 pm said:

      Muahaha! The IPCC only knows about keeping the gravy train a-rollin’. Some real doozey frosts here in the south. My holiday house at Hanmer has no water – underground pipes are frozen. First time in at least ten years. More GHGs please! Oh wait, what was that about dissipation?

    • Mike Jowsey on July 7, 2012 at 5:53 pm said:

      Actually, Richard, maybe you could help out an aging brain here…. For clouds (water vapour) to be a positive feedback mechanism, my understanding is that that argument depends on cloud cover raising the minimum temperatures. Which is okay by me, I mean when it is cloudy at night we won’t get a frost. Usually.

      But you have underscored a point that seems to me overlooked or minimised by the CAGW climate scientists: Increased cloud cover surely must decrease the daily maximum temperature. Which is a negative feedback.

      So, my question is this: Is the overall effect of increasing night-time temperatures and decreasing day-time temperatures positive or negative?

    • Richard C (NZ) on July 7, 2012 at 8:37 pm said:

      First thing Mike, clouds are liquid but water vapour is gas so there’s two feedback mechanisms being studied – cloud and water vapour. What complicates things is that these two are interrelated and you have to look at radiation, sensible heat, latent heat of evaporation, wind and whatever.

      In terms of AGW, the posited positive water vapour feedback is tied to a posited increase in evaporation and proponents point to night-time minimums rising faster than day-time maximums [but BOTH rising] as “evidence” of positive water vapour feedback but that in isolation does not prove a positive feedback. What must be shown also is increasing evaporation measured by water vapour levels at the various atm pressure levels. The WV metrics are anything but conclusive on that (long tortuous tale). Generally, at low level WV has risen but fallen at higher levels.

      All climate models assume clouds result in net positive feedback (see below) but models utilizing superparameterized cloud modules (none in AR4) return negative feedback.

      So if you will permit me to rephrase your question: Is the overall [water vapour] effect of increasing night-time temperatures [rising faster than] day-time temperatures [combined with cloud levels] positive or negative?

      AGW says positive, but when you look at all the factors in concert there’s a growing body of papers saying those override AGW evaporative effects so that the net effect is negative. Latest paper being ‘Understanding sudden changes in cloud amount: The Southern Annular Mode and South American weather fluctuations':-

      A paper published today in the Journal of Geophysical Research finds that a natural atmospheric oscillation, the Southern Annular Mode, is correlated to significant increases in cloud cover resulting in “large scale” local cooling of approximately -2.5C. All climate models falsely assume clouds result in net positive feedback and increased temperatures, however this new paper and several others show clouds instead result in net negative feedback and cooling.

      It’s complex and to be honest I’m struggling to get to grips with it myself. I’ve been in contact with Dr Roy Clark (‘A Null Hypothesis For CO2′, US EPA Submission) and he’s just today sent me a bunch of stuff on this very topic e.g. he says:-

      The clouds ‘close’ the LWIR transmission window, but this does not warm the ocean. The wind driven evaporation is too large and variable for the clouds to have much effect. There may be a slowing of the rate of cooling, but no heating. This gets a little complicated. Clouds cool the Pacific Warm pool by reducing sunlight.


      The heat transfer from the surface is by moist convection. The troposphere consists of two independent thermal reservoirs. Almost all of the downward LWIR flux reaching the surface comes from the first 2 km of the atmosphere. This is heated by convection during the day and cools more slowly by radiation at night. This is the ‘dynamic’ greenhouse effect. The radiation to space comes from the water [vapour] bands around 5 km. These just keep on radiating and cooling until they get more convective heat from below. There is a dynamic balance, but no equilibrium.

      Along with a 100 page comment on a US Fish and Wildlife regulation!documentDetail;D=FWS-R8-ES-2010-0070-0127 that I’ll grind through in time he made these references:-

      CA Climate Change is Caused by the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, Not by Carbon Dioxide

      Written by Roy Clark

      The analysis of minimum temperature data using the PDO as a reference baseline has been demonstrated as a powerful technique for climate trend evaluation. This technique may be extended to other regions using the appropriate local ocean surface temperature reference. The analysis found no evidence for CO2 induced warming trends in the California data. This confirms prior ‘Null Hypothesis’ work that it is impossible for a 100 ppm increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration to cause any climate change.


      One thing you might want to try and do for NZ is the weather station trend analysis I described in the SPPI article. The minimum temperature data should track the local ocean temperatures. This also worked for UK stations. I am currently working on a more detailed analysis for California.

      Finally these papers:-

      I want to make sure that you have the papers by Lisan Yu. They are available at the Woods Hole Website:

      Yu, L., X. Jin, and R. A. Weller, 2008: Multidecade Global Flux Datasets from the Objectively Analyzed Air-sea Fluxes (OAFlux) Project: Latent and sensible heat fluxes, ocean evaporation, and related surface meteorological variables. Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, OAFlux Project Technical Report. OA-2008-01, 64pp. Woods Hole. Massachusetts. [PDF]

      Yu, L., 2007: Global variations in oceanic evaporation (1958-2005): The role of the changing wind speed. J. Climate, 20(21), 5376–5390. [Abstract] [PDF] [Reprint]

      Yu, L., and R. A. Weller, 2007: Objectively Analyzed air-sea heat Fluxes for the global oce-free oceans (1981–2005). Bull. Ameri. Meteor. Soc., 88, 527–539. [Abstract] [PDF] [Reprint]

      The ‘changing wind speed’ 2007 paper basically says that the change in ocean evaporation due to changes in wind speed is larger than any possible change from CO2.

      I have attached 2 illustrations from Yu that show the global distribution of the average ocean surface temperature and the evaporation. The two do not coincide and the reason is the wind speed.

      I’d like to have given a nice simple answer Mike but ‘fraid not – I’m still stuck on the questions.

    • Richard C (NZ) on July 8, 2012 at 10:23 am said:

      I might be misunderstanding what you are asking Mike. What I’ve outlined is what is happening over climate-span time. The hydrological cycle (H2O in all its forms – solid, liquid and gas) is the attenuator in the feedback loop that limits amplification and maintains stability in a system similar to an electronics control loop (“B” in this diagram Wikipedia describes this:-

      Electronic engineering

      The use of feedback is widespread in the design of electronic amplifiers, oscillators, and logic circuit elements. Electronic feedback systems are also very commonly used to control mechanical, thermal and other physical processes.

      If the signal is inverted on its way round the control loop, the system is said to have negative feedback; otherwise, the feedback is said to be positive. Negative feedback is often deliberately introduced to increase the stability and accuracy of a system by correcting unwanted changes. This scheme can fail if the input changes faster than the system can respond to it. When this happens, the lag in arrival of the correcting signal can result in over-correction, causing the output to oscillate or “hunt”.[24] While often an unwanted consequence of system behaviour, this effect is used deliberately in electronic oscillators.

      The Melbourne day-by-day experience is more instructive I think to understand just how overwhelming water vapour and clouds are in terms of dissipation or retention of heat as compared to the minor GHGs, CO2 being foremost.

      High pressure, dry air, clear skies and Melbourne got cold in a day with no CO2 effect whatsoever. Andy reported similar at his local Dobson ski field: wind blew the snow away, a high pressure system moved in, dry air, cold but no snow.

      The US heat wave on the other hand is/was accompanied by moisture and a jet-stream/circumpolar vortex system that is/was not allowing heat dissipation at a higher level. That situation is now easing and life will go on. Good news for the overweight who have been deprived of their air-conditioning.

    • Mike Jowsey on July 8, 2012 at 2:01 pm said:

      Richard – many thanks for taking the time to fill in the blanks for me. This is really interesting stuff. In fact I would like to nominate your post as a guest article here – I think many other Climate Conversation readers would appreciate the insights and links you share.

      Roy Clark’s paper was particularly interesting, concluding that:

      The PDO record provides a baseline that can be used to identify urban heat island effects and anomalous data in the station records. This provides a powerful technique for investigating climate change in California and may be extended to other Western States and other areas of the world where there is an ocean influence on the climate that may be used to provide a local reference. Unexplained ‘adjustments’ made to weather station records for use in climate trend analysis have now become a major concern.[7,8] This technique may also provide an independent reference for the analysis of climate trends in weather station data to detect such ‘adjustments’.

    • Richard C (NZ) on July 8, 2012 at 2:53 pm said:

      Probably should read:-

      “All [AR4] climate models assume clouds result in net positive feedback”

      Just one of the pitfalls of plagiarism I guess.

    • Richard C (NZ) on July 8, 2012 at 3:25 pm said:

      I don’t agree with everything that Dr Clark states (for what that’s worth) e.g. :-

      “Unexplained ‘adjustments’”

      The fact is that NZCSC accept the need for adjustments to the NZT7 but they dispute the application of them. Similarly, Blair Trewin covers adjustment explanations for Australia’s ACORN – SAT in ‘CAWCR Technical Report 049′ but replication of them starting from raw data is almost impossible (plus they’ve introduced “weather dependent” (?) adjustments).

      I think we should be careful about innuendo in regard to temperature record adjustments. There’s been plenty of uninformed comment at JoNova wrt BOM’s HQ and ACORN – SAT lately. I think that if more people read NZCSET’s ‘Statistical Audit of the New Zealand Temperature Series’ and the CAWCR TR 049 they would have a better appreciation of what it’s all about.

      I’m sure too they would conclude (as I have) that NZT7 is an easy issue compared to the HQ can of worms, that is an eye opener. Ken Stewart did a 10 Part series on HQ, Part 10 is worth a read at least down to the start of the individual site examinations:-

      The Australian Temperature Record- Part 10: BOM’s “Explanations”

      Apparently, from the 049 report, BOM has “fixed” the HQ problems in ACORN. A bit like the way NIWA “fixed” the 7SS problems perhaps.

    • Mike Jowsey on July 8, 2012 at 3:50 pm said:

      I agree with your point about uninformed innuendo. However, Dr. Clark’s point was that the PDO should, according to his research, cause ocean temperatures to have good correlation with land temperatures (near Pacific shorelines) and therefore provide an independent yardstick to check that any adjustments to the land temperature record are appropriate. I think this is a very interesting concept which warrants closer study. I also agree with you, that his term “unexplained adjustments” is a little inflammatory – he could have put it better.

    • Richard C (NZ) on July 8, 2012 at 6:14 pm said:

      ARGO era SST data should be obtainable for NZ but it’s the early to mid 20th century adjustments that are the problem in the NZT7. I don’t know if NIWA (or anyone) has reliable local SST data that far back.

      Only the Pacific seaboard stations would come into Australian consideration as you say.

      Salinger may have already done something like this in one of his papers, he did do some good work prior his recent vicissitudes. It does seem familiar and something he would have done. I’ll have a look sometime when I’m looking though his papers.

  8. Richard C (NZ) on July 14, 2012 at 11:14 am said:

    Libs want ban on teaching climate science

    A body representing nearly 70,000 Australian scientists has criticised a Queensland Liberal National Party resolution calling for mainstream climate science to be cut from the state’s school curriculum.

    LNP delegates at the party’s state conference passed a motion yesterday calling on Education Minister John-Paul Langbroek to stop the teaching of ”environmental propaganda material, in particular post-normal science about climate change”.

    The mover of the motion, Noosa-based LNP member Richard Pearson, attacked ”false prophets who would poison the minds of our children in our schools”.

    ”Few people understand that the so-called science of climate change is really what can be defined as post-normal science,” he said, arguing it went beyond traditional understanding of science based on experimentation and falsifiable theories. The motion was passed with overwhelming support.

    Science & Technology Australia chief executive Anna-Maria Arabia said the resolution was ”extremely harmful” and risked undermining faith in science more broadly.

    The central principles of climate science – including that man-made greenhouse gases trap heat in the lower atmosphere and have warmed the planet – are backed by all the world major’s scientific academies.

    ”The message this sends is ‘we do not treat the science as an issue of testing ideas, we treat it as a belief system’,” Ms Arabia said.

    ‘We shouldn’t be telling students that testing ideas is propaganda.”

    Read more:

    But we are being browbeaten into accepting the “ideas” Ms Arabia, no dissent – and so are those students I’m pickin. That’s why it’s propaganda.

  9. Richard C (NZ) on August 12, 2012 at 12:39 pm said:

    Gillard’s about to go along with the carbon tax going by this:-

    “Our prime minister is a crook” Part I (and “Is our prime minister a crook?” Part II) UPDATE: and now Part III

    Caution: sordid details

  10. Al Gore praises inspirational Australia

    The Gillard government’s carbon price has already ‘‘inspired the world’’ to press ahead with measures to tackle climate change, former US Vice President Al Gore says.

    Labelling Australia one of the ‘‘canaries in the coalmine’’ for the effects of global warming, Mr Gore told a breakfast launch in Canberra of a new Climate Commission report there was much cause for optimism about global efforts to solve the problem.

    Speaking via video presentation, Mr Gore said that the Queensland floods and Black Saturday bushfires of recent years showed that ‘‘we must act now’’.

    ‘‘The consequences of the climate crisis of course are already visible all round the world, and some of the worst, unfortunately, can be seen in Australia over the last few years,’’ Mr Gore said.

  11. Richard C (NZ) on September 18, 2012 at 6:14 pm said:

    Regulator wants energy target dumped

    The NSW pricing regulator IPART has called on Canberra to abandon its renewable energy target now that a price has been put on carbon.
    The main reason for rising prices in NSW has been a doubling in real terms in transmission costs, which now make up about $654 of a typical household’s annual electricity bill.

    However, the combined cost of the carbon price, the renewable energy scheme, the climate change fund and the energy savings scheme adds a further $316 to the bill.

    Read more:

  12. Allan Taylor’s blog

    He has quite a lot to say about green buzz words and wind farms etc

  13. Richard C (NZ) on December 6, 2012 at 1:57 pm said:

    Most Useless Flagrant Flop of Government (MUFFOG 2012): Finalist — Victorian Desal

    “In 2007 the Victorian Government thought it was a good idea to spend $24 billion to build a humungously big desalination plant. There was a drought on at the time, and a specialist in small dead mammals said the drought would never end

    “With only 150 years of rainfall data to go from, who could possibly have predicted that it would keep raining?”

    # # #

    Would be hilarious if it wasn’t such a massive boondoggle.

  14. In Australia, it is now OK to compare climate sceptics to paedophiles

    In the article. Lubos makes the point that in his Czech homeland, they used to put out this kind of garbage until about 1989, when it became unacceptable

    No doubt the knuckle draggers in the NZ media and blogosphere will be happy about the ABC ruling

  15. Ice rinks feeling the heat of the carbon tax

    Aussie ice rinks getting pushed out of business to save the planet.

    Those pesky ice rinks eh?

  16. Richard C (NZ) on February 3, 2013 at 6:16 pm said:

    Climate change signals raining down but proof will take centuries

    ……………it looks a lot like climate change is kicking in – or does it?

    Professor John McAneney, the director of Risk Frontiers, an independent research group funded mostly by the insurance industry, says that based on a database of natural hazard events in Australia, including some dating back to 1803, “there has been no increase in the frequency of natural hazard events since 1950″.

    But what of the spiralling insurance claims in the wake of hailstorms, floods, cyclones (think Yasi at $1.4 billion) and bushfires ($4 billion for Victoria’s Black Saturday firestorms)?

    “What we can see very clearly is that when this dataset … is corrected for the increases in numbers of buildings at risk and their value, no long term trend remains,” Professor McAneney said.

    ”It is indisputable that the rising toll of natural disasters is due to more people and assets at risk.”

    He said US hurricane modelling to identify a signal climate change is contributing to storm strength suggests it could be a while before the data is definitive. Averaging 18 different climate models, “it’s going to take 260 years”, he said.

    “This whole thing about climate change being responsible for an increase in extreme weather, or natural disasters, is just a fiction really.”

    Read more:

  17. The MacArthur windfarm in Australia consists of 140 turbines in grid formation, and is causing a great deal of distress to the locals

  18. Richard C (NZ) on April 17, 2013 at 8:26 pm said:

    Combet’s carbon system scheme rocked: Budget to lose billions

    Andrew Bolt

    Europe’s carbon permits have crashed to record new low prices, leaving the Federal Government facing a budget hole of more than $4 billion a year from 2015.

    The price of Europe’s Emissions Trading System permits dropped overnight to just $3.33. Australia’s price is $23 a tonne – by far the most expensive in the world.

    This doesn’t just mean the Gillard Government is pricing business out of the market with a huge new tax. It also means the Government could be left with a gaping hole in its Budget in two year’s time, when Australian companies can buy cheap European permits instead of our own to offset their emissions.

    The Government is counting on raising more than $9 billion a year with its carbon tax. But that tax take will be slashed by billions if Australian companies can buy European permits for around $4.

    That now looks almost certain, after a plan to drive up the price of carbon dioxide emission credits was rejected overnight by the European Union’s Parliament:


  19. Houses next to Lake Macquarie face demolition in a council plan to adapt to sea level rise

    Good idea, why don’t Christchurch City Coincil follow suit and demolish most of the city?

    • Mike Jowsey on April 30, 2013 at 9:01 am said:

      The council is completely bonkers Andy. The comments under this article make good reading. Here’s an example:
      What garbage! What foolishness! Do these idiots now know what they have done? They have overnight collapsed the property values in these suburbs. No lenders will lend in these suburbs, no one will want to build, no development will ever occur because these ‘the sky is falling in’ drama queens have just screwed the people. They state ‘risk’! Not certainty! SAck this bloody council and their lunatic sustainability department. Blood idiots playing with matches…the lot of them.!!!

  20. Bob Carter and John Spooner’s new book “Taxing Air” is available for purchase

  21. Richard C (NZ) on June 26, 2013 at 11:34 am said:

    “So much for “higher” education. James Cook University (JCU) has blackballed Professor Bob Carter, not because of any flaw in his scientific reasoning, but because he speaks outside the permitted doctrine” – Jo Nova

    Dr Nickolas Drapela, PhD, was fired from Oregon State University for being an outspoken critic of the theory of Anthropogenic Global Warming.

    Still, two datapoints doesn’t make a trend.

  22. I guess all bets are are off now. Rudd has defeated Gillard and will be new Aus PM

    Probably an early election on the cards.

    • Richard C (NZ) on June 27, 2013 at 10:44 am said:

      I wonder if we’ll hear climate change is “the greatest moral, economic and social challenge of our time” again from Rudd.

    • Richard C (NZ) on June 27, 2013 at 11:21 am said:

      Combet has resigned from Climate Change Minister

  23. Richard C (NZ) on June 27, 2013 at 10:57 am said:

    ‘Generators pass on 115pc of carbon tax: power report’ – Financial Review

    According to the report for the EUAA, which represents many big companies, gas-fired generators were able to profit the most, recovering 44 per cent more than their emissions costs.

    Even brown coal generators have been able to pass through 95 per cent of the carbon tax and they will also receive $5.5 billion in compensation under the scheme, meaning they will be more profitable.

  24. Ms Gillard nominated health reform, the carbon price, the DisabilityCare insurance scheme, the Gonski school reforms and the royal commission into child sex abuse among her proudest achievements.

    The carbon price one of her proudest achievements?

  25. Climate sceptic MP Dennis Jensen wants to be science minister

    Coalition MP Dennis Jensen, who is a vocal climate science sceptic, has called on Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott to appoint him as science minister.

    “At the moment to be honest I’m feeling under-utilised,” said Dr Jensen, the member for Tangney in Western Australia, who has a master’s degree in physics and a PhD in material science.

  26. Coalition scraps Climate Commission, dispensing with Tim Flannery

    ‘Dismayed’ Flannery says Australians have ‘a right to independent and accurate information on climate change’

    Greens leader Christine Milne went further, calling prime minister Tony Abbott a “climate criminal” for dismantling bodies such as the commission and the Climate Change Authority, which sets targets on Australia’s emissions reductions.

    “Shooting the messenger does not alter the fact that Australia has to do a lot better than 5% in order to contribute fairly to the global challenge of constraining global warming to two degrees,” she said.

    “In the context of global warming this action is a crime against humanity. In one swoop, [Abbott] has demonstrated his contempt for climate science and for the health and wellbeing of future generations.

  27. Richard C (NZ) on October 15, 2013 at 8:04 am said:

    Wynarka grain grower Peter Rose:

    “Up until 2000 I didn’t really know what a frost was.”

    He’s lost about 80 hectares of grain. “We now seem to be getting frosts more regularly.

  28. Some fairly tenuous links between the bush fires and climate change presented by Roger Jones

    This bit caught my attention

    This also relates to the so-called hiatus. This hiatus is normal, and what we’d expect from a climate that evolves in a non-linear manner.

    The models do predict these steps, even if some people claim they don’t. Model data shows periods up to 20 years when there is little or no increase in warming.

    Which models predict 20 years of little or no warming?

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 3:11 pm said:

      >”Which models predict 20 years of little or no warming?”

      Most of them – randomly i.e. one model run several times will produce hiatus periods at different intervals for each run and same for all the other models.

      None projected a mid-troposphere hiatus period corresponding to the current one and no more than 3 CMIP5 submissions projected the current hiatus at near-surface level (e.g. Russian Academy of Science INM-CM4 was closest).

      Random hiatus projections unrelated to observations don’t make validity however.

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 3:26 pm said:

      [Jones] “The warming component, which is non-linear, is climate change”

      Well yes in anthro forcing terms, dF = 5.35 ln(C/Co). Except that’s the problem, temperature has not been conforming to that formula. And never has except for the brief period 1980 – 2000.

      A miss-attribution and a bogus formula.

      But in terms of natural cyclicity, Jones is perfectly correct.

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 3:50 pm said:

      >”And never has except for the brief period 1980 – 2000″

      Oops, wrong on reflection:

      “And never has” was sufficient. Law Dome CO2 had no relation to temperature and Mauna Loa – Temp is a stretch at best. The splice is another story.

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm said:

      In my defense, I had the IPCC SPM attribution and Figure 1(a) in my head – amazing how propaganda sticks……..

    • Jones’ specialities include

      Climate change risk assessment methods
      Communication of climate science; risk perception and the science-policy interface
      Technical skills in hydrology; climate scenario development; historical climate data analysis; impact modelling and uncertainty analysis

      ” Communication of climate science” I give E for effort

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm said:

      Also at bottom of article:

      Roger Jones is currently shortlisted and seeking funding from the Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre.

      “seeking funding” – no surprises, aren’t we all?

      “Bushfire and Natural Hazards” – wait, what?

  29. Irony alert

    Christine Milne (Australian Greens) tweets

    PM Abbott has no regard for evidence based science and prefers ideology. What is future of science in Australia?

    — Christine Milne (@senatormilne) October 23, 2013


    PM Abbott insulting .@cfigueres is symptomatic of his climate denial and real losers are those who will suffer from extreme fires, floods.

    — Christine Milne (@senatormilne) October 23, 2013

    More here

    I think Tony Abbott is actually doing something about the fires in his role as a volunteer fire fighter, and doesn’t appear to be doing any grandstanding about it either, unlike these Greens

  30. Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 5:28 pm said:

    ‘UN official ‘talking out of her hat’ on bushfires and climate change, says Tony Abbott’

    Judith Ireland, Breaking News Reporter

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott has dismissed the comments of a senior UN official who said there was a clear link between bushfires and climate change, arguing ”fire is a part of the Australian experience”.


    Mr Abbott batted away the comments on Wednesday, saying that Australia had had ”bad fires” since the beginning of European settlement.

    ”Well I think the official in question is talking through her hat, if I may say so,” he told Fairfax Radio.

    ”Climate change is real as I’ve often said and we should take strong action against it. But these fires are certainly not a function of climate change, they’re a function of life in Australia.”

    In the interview with Fairfax Radio Mr Abbott also defended his decision to keep up his volunteer firefighting role.

    The Prime Minister spent Saturday night with the Davidson Rural Fire Brigade on a backburning operation near Bilpin.

    ”I love my service with the brigade, it helps to keep me grounded, quite apart from being an important form of community service,” he said.

    Read more:

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 5:47 pm said:

      ‘Bushfires in Victoria 1851 Black Thursday’

      The largest Australian bushfire in European-recorded history that burnt an area of approximately 5 million ha. which covered a quarter of Victoria.

      1: Historical account of ” Black Thursday ” 1851.

      The year 1850 had been one of exceptional heat and drought……………….[…]

      2: Damage incurred during the four days of the bushfire.

      Fires covered a quarter of what is now Victoria.
      This spans approximately 5 million hectares.The areas affected include Portland, Plenty Ranges, Westernport, the Wimmera and Dandenong districts. Approximately 12 lives, one million sheep and thousands of cattle were lost.

      After five weeks of hot northerly winds, on the 6th of February,1851 known as Black Thursday, probably Victoria’s most extensive bushfires, apparently started in the Plenty Ranges when two bullock drivers left some logs burning which set fire to long, drought-parched grass.

      From an early hour in the morning a hot wind blew from the NNW, accompanied by 47C temperatures in Melbourne………..[…]

      4: Glowing embers land on ships 20 miles out to sea.


    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 5:59 pm said:

      Summary of Major Bush Fires in Australia Since 1851

      Select an article on this page.
      1: Major bushfires in Victoria.
      2: Chronology of Bushfires, hectares burnt and the death toll incurred.
      3: ” Black Saturday ” 7 th of February. 2009 Bushfire.
      4: The most vulnerable 52 Towns identified as high bushfire risk areas.
      5: Map of 52 Towns identified as high bushfire risk areas.
      6: The largest bushfires in Australia.
      7: Australian Bushfire Map 1997 – 2008.
      8: Deaths from wildfire / bushfire disasters worldwide
      9: Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission 2009 Public-Hearings
      10: The causes of bushfires, an 1855 and present perspective.
      11: Current Active Bushfire Map and Victorian Roads closure.

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 6:09 pm said:

      3: ” Black Saturday ” 7 th of February. 2009 Bushfire.

      “The energy of the fires was equivalent to more than 1500 atomic bombs the size of the one used at Hiroshima,”

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 7:46 pm said:

      6: The largest bushfires in Australia.

      The largest and most frequent fires in Australia occur in the southern winter and spring – and occur in northern Australia.
      Over 98% of large bushfires occur outside the more densely populated south-east and south-west of the country.
      The Northern Territory experiences fires annually on a scale which dwarfs those in southern Australia.

      During the extreme year of 1974-1975
      “over 117 million ha or 15% of the total land area of the continent was burnt in central Australia during the fire season.

      # # #

      But you wont learn that from media reports, they only focus on “the more densely populated south-east and south-west of the country” where the human interest stories are.

    • I find something a bit distasteful about climate change activists using the fires as an excuse to promote their political agenda, whilst people are still in mortal danger

    • Richard C (NZ) on October 23, 2013 at 7:28 pm said:

      Yes and survivors too, constrained by ‘green” regulations, who have already lost their homes and possessions. The Summary page above states:

      “Bushfires are a natural part of ecosystem processes in Australia. However, as human settlements expand into or adjacent to bushland areas, the risk to lives and property increases.” Source: The Australian Journal of Emergency Management, Vol. 22 No. 2, May 2007

      Ain’t that the truth? I’m always amazed at the proximity of houses to scrub and trees (fire fuel) but it’s the Australian way and the risk is attendant. Green anti-mitigation regulations only exacerbate the risk however. Then to blame a conflagration on climate change for political ends as it it has never happened before is very distasteful given that the regulations are a recent imposition.

      BTW I even find the filming of people in such distress distasteful at times (almost schadenfreude), it must be devastating. Apparently some of the volunteer firefighters lost their own homes while working in another location. These people are shocked and it makes an emotional film clip but what’s forgotten is that only an instant is shown, their loss goes on for years (like from earthquakes, tornadoes and tsunamis – but you know that).

  31. Mike Jowsey on October 27, 2013 at 2:17 pm said:

    Aussie PM: carbon tax is ‘socialism’

    The carbon tax was basically socialism masquerading as environmentalism, and that’s why it’s going to get abolished.”

    “If the Labor Party wants to give the people of Australia a Christmas present, they will vote to abolish the carbon tax. It was damaging the economy without helping the environment. It was a stupid tax. A misconceived tax,” Abbott added.

    • Mike Jowsey on October 27, 2013 at 10:59 pm said:

      Is any other political party in the world likely to campaign on a carbon tax? Is any government in the world not likely to start retrenching their carbon tax plans? Good on Tony Abbott for his pragmatic and grass roots attitude. Maybe even our PM will start to have quiet discussions with Nick Smith about his reduced climate budget. Time to pressure them both methinks.

      The carbon tax is bad for the economy and it doesn’t do any good for the environment,” Abbott told The Washington Post.

  32. Richard C (NZ) on November 9, 2013 at 7:34 am said:

    97% topical in OZ at the moment:

    ‘Wendy Bacon’s Warmist Wonderland’

    The UTS academic’s 222-page study of Australian newspapers’ treatment of climate change is far worse than silly. It is more than a bit sinister

    by Tony Thomas

    ’97 per cent of warmists cite a 97 per cent that’s false’

    by Andrew Bolt

    Reader James on a deceptive meme that’s repeated by warmists with little seeming interest in the truth:

    “I have submitted this to ABC Fact Checkers”

    # # #

    Note that one of the last acts of the Keven Rudd government was to give ABC AU$10m for “fact checking”.

  33. Richard C (NZ) on November 13, 2013 at 7:40 pm said:

    Remember Bill at Hot Topic?

    bill October 25, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    At my workplace we are frequently plagued by a type of person who’s moved to the wooded hills, and then wants the place more-or-less nuked in order to protect them from inevitable bushfires…………………

    If he works in NSW he wont be “plagued” anymore:

    ‘Vegetation clearing rules to be eased in fire-prone parts of NSW’

    Peter Hannam, Environment Editor, The Sydney Morning Herald

    The NSW government plans to loosen planning rules to give residents in bushfire-prone regions more freedom to clear vegetation around their homes without a permit.

    The new rules, to be introduced next year in the next session of Parliament, would allow homeowners in designated areas to fell trees within 10 metres of their homes and clear shrubs and other vegetation out to 50 metres on their own land without requiring planning permission.

    Read more:

    “10 metres of their homes” = 20m diameter (1256.6 m2 or 0.1 hectares) + area of the home.

    “….out to 50 metres on their own land” = 100m diameter on their land (up to 31,415.9 m2 or 3.1 hectares) + area of the home

    So in a semi-rural cul-de-sac of 10 homes that’s potentially 1 hectare and 30 hectares respectively if everyone clears their land.

    The “carbon” released will be horrendous.

    • Richard C (NZ) on November 13, 2013 at 8:23 pm said:

      Well, that was rubbish. Correcting:

      “10 metres of their homes” = 20m diameter ([314] m2 or [0.03] hectares) + area of the home.

      “….out to 50 metres on their own land” = 100m diameter on their land (up to [7854] m2 or [0.7] hectares) + area of the home

      So in a semi-rural cul-de-sac of 10 homes that’s potentially [0.3] hectare and [7] hectares respectively if everyone clears their land.

    • That’s shocking. Putting people’s lives above those of trees. Bill won’t be happy at all

  34. Richard C (NZ) on December 22, 2013 at 7:44 am said:

    [Jennifer Marohasy] – I was disappointed to recently reread an article written in 2011 about the Murray River entitled ‘Water under the Bridge’. While its author, Kate Jennings, was sympathetic to my work, until I reread the piece I had forgotten her disparaging comments about my AGW scepticism. She wrote: “Jennifer Marohasy is a prominent climate-change sceptic, so her work on the barrages is dismissed out of hand.”

  35. Richard C (NZ) on February 14, 2014 at 7:17 pm said:

    ‘Confusion should give alarmists pause for thought’

    Written by Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun on February 12 2014.


    It’s farce like that [Ship of Fools] which helps explain why the CSIRO reported last week only 47 per cent of Australians buy its spin that the climate is changing and we’re to blame.

    Australians now rate global warming of “low importance”, the CSIRO sighed, and warmists faced “the challenge of finding the right language” to gee them up. But up bobs another Climate Change Research Centre scientist to show the warmists’ problem isn’t the “right language” but the false hype.

    Two years ago, Professor Matthew England appeared on the ABC’s Q&A to attack Nick Minchin, the former Howard government industry minister and a sceptic. Minchin had raised a puzzling fact: the planet had not warmed further since 1998.

    “Basically we’ve had a plateauing of temperature rise,” he said. CO2 emissions had soared, but “we haven’t had the commensurate rise in temperature that the IPCC predicted”.

    England’s response?

    “What Nick just said is actually not true. The IPCC projections from 1990 have borne out very accurately.”

    England later even accused sceptics of “lying that the IPCC projections are overstatements”.

    So imagine my surprise when England admitted last week there had been a “hiatus” and “plateau in global average temperatures” after all. Startled readers asked England to explain how he could call sceptics liars two years ago for mentioning a “plateau” he now agreed was real.

    England was defiant: “In terms of my comments on Q&A, I stand by them. Back then, the observations had not departed from the model projection range. In the past year or two, 2012 average and also 2013, that’s no longer the case.”

    What bull. In fact, five years ago the pause was already so obvious that Family First senator Steve Fielding confronted Penny Wong, Labor’s climate change minister.

    “Global warming quite clearly over the last decade hasn’t been actually occurring,” Fielding said, and showed Wong the temperature charts. Wong and her advisers — chief scientist Penny Sackett and climate scientist Will Steffen — said he was wrong. Journalists mocked him. Except, of course, the warming pause is now so obvious even England now admits it.

    True, the warmists always have excuses and the ABC reports each without noting how the latest contradicts the last. Last week it reported England’s new paper explaining the warming pause: “Stronger than normal trade winds in the central Pacific are the main cause of a 13-year halt in global surface temperature increases …”

    England now claims those stronger winds somehow drove the missing warming into the deep ocean.

    But only eight years ago the ABC reported the opposite: “The vast looping system of air currents that fuels Pacific trade winds … has weakened by 3.5 per cent over the past 140 years and the culprit is probably human-induced climate change.”



  36. Richard C (NZ) on August 28, 2014 at 2:09 pm said:

    ‘The crazy world of Renewable Energy Targets’

    JoNova, August 18th, 2014

    […] The RET scheme in Australian pays a subsidy to wind farms and solar installations. Below, Tom Quirk shows that this is effectively a carbon tax (but a lousy one), and it shifts supply — perversely taxing brown coal at $27/ton, black coal at $40/ton and gas at up to $100/ton. Because it’s applied to renewables rather than CO2 directly, it’s effectively a higher tax rate for the non-renewable but lower CO2 emitters. […]

    Renewable energy sources – Complications!

    Guest post by Tom Quirk

    • Richard C (NZ) on August 28, 2014 at 8:00 pm said:

      RET Review report
      Renewable Energy Target Scheme
      Report of the Expert Panel

      Report of the Expert Panel – Full Report [PDF]
      Report of the Expert Panel – Executive Summary and Recommendations [PDF]

      ACIL Allen Modelling Report

      ACIL Allen RET Review Modelling – Full Report [PDF]
      ACIL Allen RET Review Modelling – Executive Summary [PDF]

      Report of the Expert Panel – HTML Version

      Executive Summary

      Executive Summary
      Key points

      # The objectives of the Renewable Energy Target (RET) are to: encourage the additional generation of electricity from renewable sources; reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the electricity sector; and ensure that renewable energy sources are ecologically sustainable.

      # The RET has encouraged significant new renewable electricity generation, which has almost doubled as a result of the scheme. Installations of small-scale systems have exceeded expectations, with output from these systems already exceeding levels anticipated for 2020. To date, the RET has delivered a modest level of emissions reductions.

      # With the renewables industry now established in Australia, the main rationale for the RET hinges on its capacity to contribute towards the Government’s emissions reduction target in a cost effective manner. However, the RET is a high cost approach to reducing emissions because it does not directly target emissions and it only focuses on electricity generation. It promotes activity in renewable energy ahead of alternative, lower cost options for reducing emissions that exist elsewhere in the economy. In the presence of lower cost alternatives, the costs imposed by the RET are not justifiable.

      # The economic landscape has changed significantly since the current RET was adopted in 2010. In particular, demand for electricity has been declining and forecasts for electricity demand in 2020 are now much lower. Rather than adding generation capacity to meet growth in electricity demand, the RET is contributing to a large surplus of generation capacity.

      # The current RET would require a further $22 billion cross-subsidy to the renewables sector in net present value (NPV) terms over the remainder of the scheme (in addition to the $9.4 billion cross-subsidy provided from 2001 to 2013) and encourage more than $15 billion (in NPV terms) of additional investment in renewable generation capacity to 2020. This investment comes at the expense of investment elsewhere in the economy and the additional generation capacity is not required to meet the demand for electricity.

      # Analyses suggest that, overall, the RET is exerting some downward pressure on wholesale electricity prices. This is not surprising given that the RET is increasing the supply of electricity when electricity demand has been falling. Artificially low wholesale electricity prices can distort investment decisions in the electricity market and are unlikely to be sustained in the long term. Over time, all other things being equal, wholesale electricity prices could be expected to rise to better reflect the cost of generating electricity.

      # The direct costs of the RET currently increase retail electricity bills for households by around four per cent, but modelling suggests that the net impact of the RET over time is relatively small. The impact on emissions-intensive trade-exposed businesses and other industries is significantly greater. The RET does not generate an increase in wealth in the economy, but leads to a transfer of wealth among participants in the electricity market.

      # The Expert Panel has recommended options to the Australian Government for both the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target and the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme. The Panel considers the Government should emphasise alternative, lower cost approaches to reducing emissions in the Australian economy. In putting forward its recommendations, the Expert Panel has been mindful of the impacts particular options will have on those who have invested in renewables on the basis of the RET as currently legislated.

  37. Richard C (NZ) on September 11, 2014 at 12:14 pm said:

    ‘Newspapers as the guardians of hot history’

    By Jennifer Marohasy

    […] I went and checked not only the old newspapers but also the book in the national archive, because, guess what? The Bureau of Meteorology is claiming it was all a clerical error. They have scratched this record made on 3rd January 1909 from the official record for Bourke, which means it’s also scratched from the NSW and national temperature record.

    Yep. It never happened. No heatwave back in 1909.

    They have also wiped the heatwave of January 1896. This was probably the hottest January on record, not just for Bourke, but Australia-wide. Yet according to the rules dictated by the Bureau, if it was recorded before 1910, it doesn’t count.

    ‘1953 Headline: Melbourne’s weather is changing! Summers getting colder and wetter’

    By Joanne Nova

    Once upon a time — before the Great Politicization of Climate Science — CSIRO was able to analyze trends from 1880 to 1910. In 1953 CSIRO scientists were making a case that large parts of Australia had been hotter in the 1880s and around the turn of last century. >>>>>

    See also ‘Temperature Records’ thread:

  38. Richard C (NZ) on September 11, 2014 at 12:40 pm said:

    ‘Bureau of Meteorology warms to transparency over adjusted records’

    Graham Lloyd, The Australian
    September 11, 2014 12:00AM [Paywall]

    THE Bureau of Meteorology has been forced to publish details of all changes made to historic temperature records as part of its homogenisation process to establish the nation’s climate change trend. Publication of the reasons for all data adjustments was a key recommendation of the bureau’s independent peer review panel which approved the bureau’s ACORN SAT methodology.

    ‘Scientists should know better: the truth was out there’

    Graham Lloyd, The Australian
    September 11, 2014 12:00AM [Paywall]

    IT reflects poorly on key members of Australia’s climate science establishment that tribal loyalty is more important than genuine inquiry. Openness not ad hominem histrionics was always the answer for lingering concerns about what happened to some of the nation’s temperature records under the Bureau of Meteorology’s process of homogenisation.

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