26 Mar 2010, 1:41pm
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DWP plans 37% rate hike over four years to cover cost increases

The L.A. utility’s managers unveiled the plan as the council’s Energy and Environment Committee debated the mayor’s proposal to boost rates to pay for renewable energy.

By David Zahniser, LA Times, March 26, 2010 [here]

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is planning to boost the electricity bills of its customers by 37% over the next four years as part of its effort to cover steadily rising costs.

Officials with the city utility divulged their plans Thursday as the City Council’s Energy and Environment Committee debated Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s plan for boosting rates to help pay for renewable energy. Villaraigosa is seeking a 21% increase over the next year. That effort will be followed by other rate hikes by 2014, however. …

Thursday’s meeting took place an hour after former Vice President Al Gore appeared with Villaraigosa via satellite in support of the mayor’s plan, which would help the mayor meet his goal of ensuring that the DWP secures at least 20% of its energy from renewable sources by Dec. 31.

Villaraigosa has warned that the DWP would renege on a promise to have the utility send $73 million to the city’s troubled general fund, which pays for basic services, if the first increase is not approved by March 31. That money is enough to pay for 1,000 jobs in a year when the city is pondering layoffs.

Council members chastised the mayor for saying in a 14-page briefing paper that a rejection of the rate hike would force the city into bankruptcy since the utility would no longer be able to afford to make the general fund contribution. On Thursday, Villaraigosa disavowed use of the word “bankruptcy” yet continued to warn that unless his plan is approved, the city would run out of money by June 30. … [more]

Note: “Green” energy is a monumental swindle. The purpose of the rate hikes is to fund the insatiable bureaucracy, not to provide “renewable” energy.

25 Mar 2010, 3:13pm
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Why the Mediterranean climate message is all wrong

We have a job to convince people of the gravity of climate change if the worst that is predicted for the UK is a future of balmy Mediterranean summers

George Monbiot, guardian.co.uk, 18 June 2009 [here]

The problem with persuading people in the UK to take climate change seriously is that, as far as we are concerned, it sounds quite attractive. The government’s new climate projections predict drier summers and a possible 5C temperature rise in the south of England by 2080. Isn’t this what we have spent our lives hoping and praying for?

I am writing this (such are the wonders of mobile broadband) on a promenade bench in a windy Welsh seaside town. I can’t sit indoors because the signal’s not strong enough. I’ve buttoned up my jacket and raised the collar, but I’m still freezing. It looks as if the great British summer has struck again. Even as I demand drastic action to forestall the events the government predicts, a small, guilty part of me hopes that they come to pass. … [more]

Note: Don’t feel guilty, George. Warmer Is Better. Go with the flow. Besides which, there is no empirical evidence that higher levels of CO2 (whether natural or manmade) will have any discernible impact on the climate.

25 Mar 2010, 3:12pm
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Wyden and Merkley: No Drilling!

10 Dems warn Kerry: Don’t expand offshore drilling in climate change bill

By Ben Geman, The Hill, 03/25/10 [here]

Ten coastal state Senate Democrats say they’ll oppose a climate bill if it greatly expands offshore oil and gas drilling.

The warning was issued to Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and the two other architects of upcoming energy and climate legislation. …

Wider drilling is part of the compromise bill that Kerry and Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) are drafting and hope to bring to the Senate floor this year.

The coastal Democrats, in a letter to the three this week, laud the effort to write a climate bill, noting their states are at risk from sea level rise, but say a major expansion of offshore drilling will cause them to drop their support.

The letter is signed by Democratic Sens. Bill Nelson (Fla.), Robert Menendez (N.J.), Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.), Barbara Mikulski (Md.), Ben Cardin (Md.), Frank Lautenberg (N.J.), Ted Kaufman (Del.), Ron Wyden (Ore.), Jeff Merkley (Ore.) and Jack Reed (R.I.). … [more]

SUV’s Kill Baby Seals

Climate Change Catastrophe: Worst Ice Year on Record Leads to Harp Seals’ Demise

International Fund for Animal Welfare, PRNewswire-USNewswire, March 25 2010 [here]

CHARLOTTETOWN, Canada — Thousands of harp seal pups are presumed dead in Canada’s Gulf of St. Lawrence and starving pups are being found abandoned on the beaches of Prince Edward Island, tragic victims of the worst ice conditions recorded in eastern Canada.

IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare – www.ifaw.org) reports that the Gulf of St. Lawrence, which is the annual birthing ground of hundreds of thousands of harp seals, is essentially devoid of both ice and seals.

“The conditions this year are disastrous for seal pups. I’ve surveyed this region for nine years and have never seen anything like this,” said Sheryl Fink, a senior researcher with IFAW. “There is wide open water instead of the usual ice floes, and rather than the hundreds of thousands of seal pups that we normally encounter, only a handful of baby harp and hooded seals – animals that are normally found on ice – remain on the beaches.”

Extremely high pup mortality is expected this year, making this one of several such occurrences in the past decade. In 2007, 99% of harp seal pups born in the Southern Gulf of St Lawrence are thought to have died due to lack of ice. In 2002, 75% of pups are thought to have suffered the same fate. Scientists with IFAW are concerned that the cumulative effects of high pup mortality due to the poor ice conditions, and high numbers of pups killed during Canada’s commercial seal hunt could be devastating. … [more]

Note: Arctic ice extent it at its greatest since 2003 [here], just in case you want some facts to go along with the mindless hysteria.

24 Mar 2010, 10:43am
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Killer icicles terrorise Russians

by Marina Koreneva, AFP, Yahoo News, March 24, 2010 [here]

SAINT PETERSBURG (AFP) – Walking along a Saint Petersburg Street immersed in music, Milana Kashtanova, became the latest victim of falling icicles and ice blocks that have killed five people and injured 147 in the city following Russia’s coldest winter in 30 years.

Kashtanova, 21, has been in a coma since February when she was hit by the ice which was being cleared from a rooftop.

“Milana was just walking past a building in the city centre… There was no warning tape, nothing to alert people that people were working on the roof,” Kashtanova’s boyfriend, Irinei Kalachev, told AFP.

The toll has prompted residents and relatives of victims to demand action against those responsible for what they believe to be careless clearing of ice from rooftops.

“Every day, I go out into the street as if I was entering a war zone,” complained resident Boris Ilinsky, 28. … [more]

Weyerhauser Joins Enviro-Industry Climate Coalition

By DARREN SAMUELSOHN of Greenwire, NY Times, March 18, 2010 [here]

Global timber giant Weyerhaeuser Co. said today it has joined the U.S. Climate Action Partnership group that is lobbying for comprehensive climate and energy legislation on Capitol Hill.

The Federal Way, Wash.-based company becomes the 29th member of the business-NGO lobbying coalition, alongside General Electric Co., General Motors Co. and the Natural Resources Defense Council.

“The forest products industry will play a leading role in reducing dependence on fossil fuels and reducing emissions of carbon dioxide using biomass from forests, a sustainable resource and one of the best at sequestering carbon,” Weyerhaeuser CEO Dan Fulton said in a press release. “The role of forest fiber in a low carbon economy will depend on the public policy concepts under debate in Washington, D.C.”

“USCAP,” Fulton added, “has successfully integrated the expertise of numerous stakeholders, and we believe our membership will help positively position sustainable forestry, biomass and forest products in these important policy discussions.”

Membership in U.S. CAP has more than doubled since its inception just prior to then-President George W. Bush’s State of the Union speech in January 2008. The group played a critical role in pushing the House toward passage of climate legislation last June.

But the group has also seen some of its power dwindle after recent defections. Two big oil companies, BP America and ConocoPhillips, and Caterpillar Inc., withdrew last month from the $100,000-a-year membership club. And Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) recently questioned GM and Chrysler LLC’s participation after they received $17 billion in federal bailout funds. Barton also helped drive insurance giant AIG Inc. out of the group after it got $85 billion from the Treasury.

U.S. CAP officials insist they are still playing a big role in the climate debate on Capitol Hill that has been largely in standby mode in the Senate. The coalition’s CEOs are expected to participate today in a conference call with Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), a lead author of the Senate proposal to curb greenhouse gas emissions. … [more]

11 Mar 2010, 4:10pm
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Climategate Stunner: NASA Heads Knew NASA Data Was Poor, Then Used Data from CRU

New emails from James Hansen and Reto Ruedy show that NASA’s temperature data was doubted within NASA itself, and was not independent of CRU’s embattled data, as has been claimed.

by Charlie Martin, Pajama Media, March 10, 2010 [here]

Email messages obtained by the Competitive Enterprise Institute via a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that the climate dataset of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) was considered — by the top climate scientists within NASA itself — to be inferior to the data maintained by the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit (CRU).

The NASA scientists also felt that NASA GISS data was inferior to the National Climate Data Center Global Historical Climate Network (NCDC GHCN) database.

These emails, obtained by Christopher Horner, also show that the NASA GISS dataset was not independent of CRU data.

Further, all of this information regarding the accuracy and independence of NASA GISS data was directly communicated to a reporter from USA Today in August 2007.

The reporter never published it. … [more]

11 Mar 2010, 3:51pm
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California global warming law may lead to job losses, report says

The state’s nonpartisan legislative analyst’s office says the losses could occur in the short term. State Sen. David Cogdill uses the report to criticize climate regulation.

By Margot Roosevelt, LA Times, March 10, 2010 [here]

Debate over the economic effects of California’s first-in-the-nation global warming law flared this week, with a report saying short-term job losses can be expected.

The state’s nonpartisan legislative analyst’s office examined 2008 economic modeling by the California Air Resources Board and concluded that it “may overstate the number of jobs” attributable to future implementation of the 2006 climate law.

While acknowledging the uncertainty of such projections, the report said, “On balance, however, we believe that the aggregate net jobs impact in the near term is likely to be negative, even after recognizing that many of the . . . programs phase in over time.”

The report comes at a politically charged moment, when polls show employment to be Americans’ top concern. Signature gathering began last week on a November ballot initiative that would delay the law, known as AB 32, until unemployment drops to 5.5% for at least a year. California joblessness is over 12% today.

The report came in response to a query from Sen. Dave Cogdill (R-Modesto), a critic of the law. Released by Cogdill on Monday, the report emphasized that job effects are “difficult to accurately predict . . . with gains in some occupations (including so-called green jobs) and losses in others (primarily involving fossil fuel-related energy production).” … [more]

8 Mar 2010, 8:54pm
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NSIDC Reports That Antarctica is Cooling and Sea Ice is Increasing

By Steven Goddard, Watts Up With That, March 8, 2010 [here]

Last month we discussed how NASA continues to spread worries about the Antarctic warming and melting.

A January 12, 2010 Earth Observatory article warns that Antarctica

“has been losing more than a hundred cubic kilometers (24 cubic miles) of ice each year since 2002″ and that “if all of this ice melted, it would raise global sea level by about 60 meter (197 feet).”

But NSIDC seems to be thinking differently in their March 3, 2010 newsletter. They say Antarctica is cooling and sea ice is increasing (makes sense – ice is associated with cold.)

Sea ice extent in the Antarctic has been unusually high in recent years, both in summer and winter. Overall, the Antarctic is showing small positive trends in total extent. For example, the trend in February extent is now +3.1% per decade. However, the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas show a strong negative trend in extent. These overall positive trends may seem counterintuitive in light of what is happening in the Arctic. Our Frequently Asked Questions section briefly explains the general differences between the two polar environments. A recent report (Turner, et. al., 2009) suggests that the ozone hole has resulted in changes in atmospheric circulation leading to cooling and increasing sea ice extents over much of the Antarctic region.

The NSIDC graph below shows the upwards trend in Antarctic Sea Ice. Some recent years have shown anomalies as high as +30%. … [more]

7 Mar 2010, 12:34pm
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Greatest Arctic Ice Extent On Satellite Record

Arctic sea ice has reached its greatest extent since accurate satellite measurements have been made, according to the Centre for Ocean and Ice, Danish Meteorological Institute [here].

Current Sea Ice extent

Total sea ice extent on the northern hemisphere since 2005. The ice extent values are calculated from the ice type data from the Ocean and Sea Ice, Satellite Application Facility (OSISAF), where areas with ice concentration higher than 30% are classified as ice.

The total area of sea ice is the sum of First Year Ice (FYI), Multi Year Ice (MYI) and the area of ambiguous ice types, from the OSISAF ice type product. However, the total estimated ice area is underestimated due to unclassified coastal regions where mixed land/sea pixels confuse the applied ice type algorithm. The shown sea ice extent values are therefore recommended be used qualitatively in relation to ice extent values from other years shown in the figure.

Note: Richard B. points out in the comments that the ice extent today is not as great as in 2002, the first year that accurate satellite data was collected.

4 Mar 2010, 10:59am
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The Global Warming Hoax Money Trail

Joanne Nova, ABC.net.au, 4 March 2010 [here]

Somehow the tables have turned. For all the smears of big money funding the “deniers”, the numbers reveal that the sceptics are actually the true grassroots campaigners, while Greenpeace defends Wall St. How times have changed.

Sceptics are fighting a billion dollar industry aligned with a trillion dollar trading scheme. Big Oil’s supposed evil influence has been vastly outdone by Big Government, and even those taxpayer billions are trumped by Big-Banking.

The big-money side of this debate has fostered a myth that sceptics write what they write because they are funded by oil profits. They say, follow the money? So I did and it’s chilling. Greens and environmentalists need to be aware each time they smear with an ad hominem attack they are unwittingly helping giant finance houses.

FOLLOW THE MONEY

Money for Sceptics: Greenpeace has searched for funding for sceptics and found $23 million paid by Exxon over 10 years (which has stopped). Perhaps Greenpeace missed funding from other fossil fuel companies, but you can be sure that they searched. …

Money for the Climate Industry: The US government spent $79 billion on climate research and technology since 1989 — to be sure, this funding paid for things like satellites and studies, but it’s 3,500 times as much as anything offered to sceptics. It buys a bandwagon of support, a repetitive rain of press releases, and includes PR departments of institutions like NOAA, NASA, the Climate Change Science Program and the Climate Change Technology Program. The $79 billion figure does not include money from other western governments, private industry, and is not adjusted for inflation. In other words, it could be a lot bigger. …

Ultimately the big problem is that there are no grants for scientists to demonstrate that carbon has little effect. There are no Institutes of Natural Climate Change, but plenty that are devoted to UnNatural Forces.

It’s a monopsony, and the main point is not that the scientists are necessarily corrupted by money or status (though that appears to have happened to a few), but that there is no group or government seriously funding scientists to expose flaws. …

Money for the Finance Houses: What the US Government has paid to one side of the scientific process pales in comparison with carbon trading. According to the World Bank, turnover of carbon trading reached $126 billion in 2008. PointCarbon estimates trading in 2009 was about $130 billion. This is turnover, not specifically profits, but each year the money market turnover eclipses the science funding over 20 years. Money Talks. Every major finance house stands to profit as brokers of a paper trade. It doesn’t matter whether you buy or sell, the bankers take a slice both ways. The bigger the market, the more money they make shifting paper. …

The stealthy mass entry of the bankers and traders poses a major force. Surely if money has any effect on carbon emissions, it must also have an effect on careers, shareholders, advertising, and lobbying? There were over 2,000 lobbyists in Washington in 2008.

Unpaid sceptics are not just taking on scientists who conveniently secure grants and junkets for pursuing one theory, they also conflict with potential profits of Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Barclays, Morgan Stanley, and every other financial institution or corporation that stands to profit like the Chicago Climate Exchange, European Climate Exchange, PointCarbon, IdeaCarbon (and the list goes on) as well as against government bureaucracies like the IPCC and multiple departments of Climate Change. … [more]

1 Mar 2010, 2:48pm
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Coldest Irish winter since 1963

Belfast Telegraph, 1 March 2010 [here]

Ireland suffered its coldest winter in almost five decades as the country shivered in the big freeze, it was revealed.

Met Eireann said temperatures were around two degrees lower than average during the season, making it the coldest winter recorded since 1963.

Arctic conditions experienced at the end of last year continued through January and February, with widespread spells of frost, sleet and snow.

Temperatures plummeted to below minus 10C in some places, with minus 16.3C recorded at Mount Juliet, Co Kilkenny, on January 7.

There were as many as 30 days with snow in parts of the east and west, mainly in the form of showers, and up to 80 ground frosts recorded during the season.

The weather summary for the winter months revealed that while the cold snap gripped the country, there was less wind and rain.

Wind speeds were below normal and just half the average amount of rain fell, making it the driest winter at Shannon Airport since 1963/4. … [more]

28 Feb 2010, 4:46pm
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Stop Al Gore Before He Lies Again..and Again…and Again!

by Alan Caruba, Climate Realists, February 28th 2010, [here]

The New York Times once again is Al Gore’s “enabler”, publishing a February 28 opinion editorial, “We Can’t Wish Away Climate Change”, despite the mounting evidence that global warming was and is a complete fabrication.

In November 2009, the Telegraph, a British newspaper, carried a story, “Al Gore could become world’s first carbon billionaire”, so let us disabuse ourselves of the notion that Gore just wants to save the world.

Heavily invested in the “carbon credits” scam and technologies whose success depend on people believing fairy tales about “clean energy” alternatives such as wind and solar energy, Gore has enriched himself by trumpeting the biggest hoax of the modern era.

It is no surprise that The New York Times published his latest collection of lies. The reportorial record of the Times has been decades of lies about global warming. Whatever patina of respectability it once had has been eroded by its participation in the fraud. Why should it stop now?

There is increasing discussion of whether testimony before Congress by Gore and other global warming advocates constitute criminal behavior that begins with lying under oath.

On February 24th The Washington Times reported on a hearing of the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee hearing on the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget. “Republican James Inhofe told EPA head, Lisa Jackson, that man-made climate change was a ‘hoax’ concocted by ideologically motivated researchers who ‘cooked the science.’”

“More than that, Inhofe in releasing a GOP report questioning the science used to support cap-and-trade legislation, hinted that such activities may be part of a vast criminal enterprise designed to bilk governments, taxpayers and investors while enriching those making the false claims.” … [more]

28 Feb 2010, 11:23am
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A perfect storm is brewing for the IPCC

The emerging errors of the IPCC’s 2007 report are not incidental but fundamental

By Christopher Booker, UK Telegraph, 27 Feb 2010 [here]

The news from sunny Bali that there is to be an international investigation into the conduct of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and its chairman Dr Rajendra Pachauri would have made front-page headlines a few weeks back. But while Scotland and North America are still swept by blizzards, in their worst winter for decades, there has been something of a lull in the global warming storm – after three months when the IPCC and Dr Pachauri were themselves battered by almost daily blizzards of new scandals and revelations. And one reason for this lull is that the real message of all the scandals has been lost.

The chief defence offered by the warmists to all those revelations centred on the IPCC’s last 2007 report is that they were only a few marginal mistakes scattered through a vast, 3,000-page document. OK, they say, it might have been wrong to predict that the Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035; that global warming was about to destroy 40 per cent of the Amazon rainforest and cut African crop yields by 50 per cent; that sea levels were rising dangerously; that hurricanes, droughts and other “extreme weather events” were getting worse. These were a handful of isolated errors in a massive report; behind them the mighty edifice of global warming orthodoxy remains unscathed. The “science is settled”, the “consensus” is intact.

But this completely misses the point. Put the errors together and it can be seen that one after another they tick off all the central, iconic issues of the entire global warming saga. Apart from those non-vanishing polar bears, no fears of climate change have been played on more insistently than these: the destruction of Himalayan glaciers and Amazonian rainforest; famine in Africa; fast-rising sea levels; the threat of hurricanes, droughts, floods and heatwaves all becoming more frequent.

All these alarms were given special prominence in the IPCC’s 2007 report and each of them has now been shown to be based, not on hard evidence, but on scare stories, derived not from proper scientists but from environmental activists. Those glaciers are not vanishing; the damage to the rainforest is not from climate change but logging and agriculture; African crop yields are more likely to increase than diminish; the modest rise in sea levels is slowing not accelerating; hurricane activity is lower than it was 60 years ago; droughts were more frequent in the past; there has been no increase in floods or heatwaves.

Furthermore, it has also emerged in almost every case that the decision to include these scare stories rather than hard scientific evidence was deliberate. As several IPCC scientists have pointed out about the scare over Himalayan glaciers, for instance, those responsible for including it were well aware that proper science said something quite different. But it was inserted nevertheless – because that was the story wanted by those in charge. … [more]

26 Feb 2010, 11:27am
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Conflict of Interest or Double Agent?

Attorney General’s Senior Counsel Doubles as President of Law Firm Pushing CO2 Emissions Cap

By Jim Scarantino, New Mexico Watchdog, February 25, 2010 [here]

Stuart Bluestone wears two hats. He is Senior Counsel to Attorney General Gary King. He is also president of the board of directors of the New Mexico Environmental Law Center, the law firm representing petitioners pressing the Environmental Improvement Board to impose an unprecedented statewide cap on emissions of carbon dioxide and gases they claim are causing global warming.

Bluestone has served as a director of the New Mexico Environmental Law Center (NMELC) since 2007. During that time, he has also served as Senior Counsel to Attorney General Gary King. In January 2010 he was named as president of the board of the NMELC.

NMELC is a law firm that represents private individuals and organizations in a wide range of environmental matters across the state. It sues private and public entities, participates in appeals, intervenes in lawsuits and administrative proceedings, and seeks to influence and persuade administrative agencies in adjudications and rule-making. It is the legal counsel representing the petitioners who are pressing the EIB to impose a cap on gases they claim are causing global warming. The cap they seek would cut carbon dioxide and other emissions by 25% below 1990 levels, the most drastic such emissions cap in the country. Electric power utilities, representatives of manufacturing, mining and agricultural industries, chambers of commerce and others fear this cap will have a devastating impact on New Mexico’s economy and tax base. … [more]

 
  
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