The weather isn't getting weirder

Big weather for sure, but weather just the same

Try telling that to Bob Brown, or Tim Flannery or any of the countless other alarmists who have no concept of geological time, or even recent weather history. All you need to do is search the news archive to find countless stories of terrible disasters well before man’s emissions of carbon dioxide could possibly have had any effect.

But instead, whenever we suffer extreme weather, the Chicken Littles rush to blame “man-made global warming” because they cannot think of anything else, and they have a political agenda to advance by whatever means possible. We saw it with the Queensland floods, and Cyclone Yasi, the Big Dry and the Victorian bushfires, and we will no doubt continue to see it for every extreme weather event in the foreseeable future.

But unfortunately, a recent study shows no evidence of increasing severe or extreme weather, as the Wall Street Journal reports:

Last week a severe storm froze Dallas under a sheet of ice, just in time to disrupt the plans of the tens of thousands of (American) football fans descending on the city for the Super Bowl. On the other side of the globe, Cyclone Yasi slammed northeastern Australia, destroying homes and crops and displacing hundreds of thousands of people.

Some climate alarmists would have us believe that these storms are yet another baleful consequence of man-made CO2 emissions. In addition to the latest weather events, they also point to recent cyclones in Burma, last winter’s fatal chills in Nepal and Bangladesh, December’s blizzards in Britain, and every other drought, typhoon and unseasonable heat wave around the world.

But is it true? To answer that question, you need to understand whether recent weather trends are extreme by historical standards. The Twentieth Century Reanalysis Project is the latest attempt to find out, using super-computers to generate a dataset of global atmospheric circulation from 1871 to the present.

As it happens, the project’s initial findings, published last month, show no evidence of an intensifying weather trend. “In the climate models, the extremes get more extreme as we move into a doubled CO2 world in 100 years,” atmospheric scientist Gilbert Compo, one of the researchers on the project, tells me from his office at the University of Colorado, Boulder. “So we were surprised that none of the three major indices of climate variability that we used show a trend of increased circulation going back to 1871.”

In other words, researchers have yet to find evidence of more-extreme weather patterns over the period, contrary to what the models predict. “There’s no data-driven answer yet to the question of how human activity has affected extreme weather,” adds Roger Pielke Jr., another University of Colorado climate researcher. (source)

And the conclusion makes even more sense: “prosperity and preparedness help”. In other words, we must have strong economies in order to adapt to the inevitable climate changes that will affect humanity in the future, not economies that are fatally crippled by pointless emissions reduction taxes.

(h/t Peter C)

Yasi: media madness

Stirring up the gullible

TC Yasi has brought all the gullible hysterics out of the closet, especially in the Fairfax press, which has had a field day cynically cashing in on the oh-so-obvious link to “climate change”. Mike Carlton first, whose ranting piece oh-so-wittily entitled “Flat earthers [that’s us, by the way – Ed], it’s time for a cold shower”, sums up the idiocy of the warmists who have no concept of Australia’s (or the planet’s) climate history:

PARDON me for pointing out the bleedin’ obvious but for those who have not been paying attention much of the planet has been devastated by extraordinary weather in the past year.

We have had our floods in eastern Australia and, as the doughty Anna Bligh called it, the most terrifying cyclone of all [since the last one, that is – Ed]. Floods have also swept China, India, Pakistan, the Philippines and southern Africa, killing thousands and leaving tens of millions homeless.

Kenya is suffering a long drought that threatens widespread famine. A vast area of South America is also in severe drought, although record January rains in Brazil triggered mud slides that killed more than 700 slum dwellers near Rio de Janeiro.

Massive and unseasonally early snow storms pummelled Europe and North America before Christmas, taking more lives, and this week again the US has been hammered by what the US National Weather Service called ”a historic killer blizzard”.

Given this catalogue of global disaster, would now be a good time for the climate change flat-earthers to shut up and listen, do you think? Just for a day or two, or even five minutes?

They won’t, of course. The global warming denialists ignore the great body of world scientific opinion. When the Queensland catastrophe leaves the headlines the local lot will be at it again, barfing up their crackpot notions. (source)

What more can you say about that? Life is too short. Next up is The Age, or Pravda on the Yarra as it is less than affectionately known, writing a sombre editorial about how we have “created a fierce new climate”, and using the clever trick of claiming that they are not making a link to climate change, and then immediately make a link to climate change!

THE debate has already begun over whether climate change and global warming caused cyclone Yasi, or somehow made it worse. It is an oversimplification. No direct link could ever be proved. This week is likely to see the longest sustained period of temperatures above 30 degrees since records have been kept. Is that proof climate change is happening? By itself, no, it is not. Weather statistics cannot prove a link. But as the government’s adviser on climate change, Ross Garnaut, says, as global warming continues, larger cyclones will become more frequent. There will be more cyclones, and more of them will be as big as Yasi. There will be more long hot spells. Australia has just emerged from a long drought. There will be more of those, too, and longer ones, as weather becomes harsher around the world. The extreme events seen in the past 12 months in Europe and the US will become more common. Even if, as seems rather unlikely now, the world manages to keep the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere below its current target of 450 parts per million, the world’s average temperature will still rise 2 degrees, with untold environmental consequences. (source)

Again, because man-made global warming is the current scare, and because The Age is desperate to push the climate change agenda, it rushes to link it to current events, ignoring the obvious fact that more severe events like this have happened in the past. I guess if they had happened in the early 1970s, The Age would have linked them to global cooling. They always need to blame something – they just don’t understand that as the saying goes “shit happens” and has done so for thousands of years.

Even The Australian isn’t immune:

Meanwhile, as attention returns to the immediate dangers of these natural climatic systems, there is more trouble on the horizon because of global climate change. Scientists stress that a single event such as Yasi cannot be attributed to global warming.

However, Walsh says sea surface temperatures in tropical waters, typically about 27C, will continue to rise, maintaining a 50-year warming trend due to global climate change.

However, air in the upper atmosphere, where temperatures currently reach about -50C, will warm more rapidly, and this will decrease the temperature gradient between the sea and the atmosphere, lessening the frequency of tropical cyclones.

“In the Australian region, the prediction is for a decline in the number of tropical cyclones, but the most intense cyclones are likely to become even more intense,” he says. (source)

So whatever happens, be it more frequent cyclones, less frequent cyclones, more intense cyclones, less intense cyclones, you can be sure of one thing. Man-made climate change is the only explanation. The belief is that climate is static and only man-made influences can possibily change it – the reality is that climate change happens for a whole raft of natural reasons, but those are studiously ignored…

And The Oz also regurgitates an AAP scare piece as well:

QUEENSLANDERS should brace for more ferocious storms and floods in the wake of Cyclone Yasi, climate researchers say.

Warmer temperatures are expected to produce more intense torrential downpours, particularly in the state’s tropical north.

“For Queensland, this is likely to spell storms and floods of increasing ferocity over a greater part of the state,” The Climate Institute says in a fact sheet released today.

The think tank’s chief executive John Connor is calling for urgent measures to arrest global warming as north Queensland recovers from the category five cyclone.

“Sadly, Australia must prepare for more of these types of catastrophic events and even greater extremes as climate change drives more frequent and more intense wild weather,” he said. (source)

The Climate Institute isn’t a think tank, it’s an environmental advocacy group which has made up its mind on climate change, which, like The Age, demonstrates that it has no concept of history, believing that what we have seen in the last few weeks is somehow “unprecedented”.

But the public aren’t buying the hype any more. It’s telling that all five letters in The Australian’s Talking Point are critical of Ross Garnaut’s latest pronouncments:

ROSS Garnaut tells us that climate change has played a large part in the recent extreme weather events in Queensland.

There is nothing to support this scientifically. It is more scaremongering and pressuring for a repressive, controlling carbon tax. Some could equally conclude that the weather events are due to Australia and Queensland having leaders that are openly atheist and are being punished by God.

The proof for either conclusion comes down to personal perception.

And for today’s best rebuttal of all the hysterical Yasi nonsense, head to Andrew Bolt’s column:

IT HADN’T even hit yet, and already a gibbering horde was shrieking that Cyclone Yasi proved we’d warmed the world.

There was Christine Milne, of course, deputy leader of the Greens, the most deceitful party to shame Parliament. How fast she flapped up the microphones to crow: “It is a tragedy of climate change.”

Then there was ABC Melbourne 774 host Jon Faine, snapping that sceptics should finally “join the dots”, and inviting alarmist scientist Graeme Pearman to say we’d never had such cyclones before.

Oh, and here comes John Hewson, the former Liberal leader and sniffer of business opportunities, saying warmists had predicted “more frequent cyclones” and “that’s what we’re seeing”.

John, give up the green, mate. The colour doesn’t suit and that market’s set to tank.

Add to them the Gillard Government’s warming guru, Professor Ross Garnaut (actually an economist), who groaned that “a warming climate does lead to intensification of these sorts of extreme climatic events that we’ve seen in Queensland”, and “you ain’t seen nothing yet”.

Wrong, Ross. We have actually seen all this before, and worse. Nothing new here at all, expect this shameless scare-mongering.

But the trouble is that we no longer remember our past, and that’s what the warmists are exploiting: our deep forgetting.

Read it all.

Garnaut's cynical opportunism


Turning up like a bad penny [Wong? – Ed], Ross Garnaut appears at the most inappropriate moment, this time by cynically citing TC Yasi as an example of the more severe weather events which are “consistent with global warming” … or something:

CYCLONE YASI is probably early real-world evidence of scientific predictions that global warming will lead to more extreme weather events, according to the government’s expert climate change adviser, Professor Ross Garnaut. [Who is an economist, by the way – Ed]

He says that if it is, given the evidence that global warming is tracking at the highest end of international predictions, then future cyclones could prove that we ”ain’t seen nothing yet”. [Total, utter, horse shit, as anyone who reads this blog would know. Global temperature anomaly is below zero this month – Ed]

Professor Garnaut said scientists and climate change modelling had predicted global warming would lead to more frequent extreme weather events, including cyclones and bushfires. [Which is why accumulated cyclone energy is at its lowest for 30 years – Ed]

The prediction of more extreme storms already appeared to be verified by data from the north Atlantic. While there was not yet sufficient statistical data to prove more frequent extreme cyclones in Australia, ”there is no reason to think the physics will work differently in Australian air than north Atlantic air”, Professor Garnaut said. ” [Who cares if there’s not enough data, it’s never stopped us before! – Ed]

”I would say the odds seem to favour the proposition that cyclonic events will be more intense in a hotter world and bear in mind … if this is the case we are just at the beginning of the warming process, the warming since pre-industrial times is 1 degree, the science says without mitigation … that first degree is just the beginning, and so if we are seeing an intensification of extreme weather events now, you ain’t seen nothing yet.” (source)

You’re right, we ain’t seen nothin’ yet. We haven’t yet seen a fraction of the hysteria and alarmism from ill-informed commentators and politicians with an agenda to push, who have the memory span of a goldfish and don’t have the intellectual capacity to understand that cyclones have been part of Australia’s climate for thousands of years, like floods and droughts. Total climate madness.

The Australian injects some sanity by quoting the eco-tards who have tried to link Yasi to global warming, and it’s all the usual suspects: ABC, Fairfax, Clive Hamilton… yawn.

Yasi in context


I have just had the misfortune to listen to a nauseating, kid-gloves interview by Deborah Cameron on ABC Sydney of Ian Lowe, president of the environmental activist group Australian Conservation Foundation and global warming extremist (see here for previous form), in the wake of Cyclone Yasi. No transcript yet, but from the ABC blog:

This morning an interesting perspective from Professor Ian Lowe, President of the Australian Conservation Foundation. He told Deborah there is a clear relationship between increased (man-made) Greenhouse emissions and changes in the climate – and the evidence is there to suggest that weather patterns are intensifying. (source)

There were so many misrepresentations one hardly knows where to start… I telephoned the producer and asked if he was going to get Bob Carter to provide an alternative viewpoint for balance, but I won’t wait up for a reply. The ABC made up its mind on climate change years ago, and anyone who questions the consensus is just a filthy, ignorant denier.

So here are some more considered views of Yasi, firstly from Roger Pielke, Jr:

[…] a systematic evaluation of the long-term tropical cyclone landfall record in eastern Australia was published last summer in Climate Dynamics by Jeffrey Callaghan and Scott Power (2010). Callaghan and Power find a long-term trend of much fewer landfalls of intense cyclones (i.e., Category 3, 4, and 5) in the region.  They write:

The linear trend in the number of severe TCs making land-fall over eastern Australia declined from about 0.45 TCs/year in the early 1870s to about 0.17 TCs/year in recent times—a 62% decline.

The figure at the top of this post comes from their paper and comes with the following caption:

Fig. 1 The number of severe tropical cyclone (TC) land-falls in each TC season from 1872/1873 to 2009/2010 inclusive. The corresponding linear trend of -0.0021 TCs/year is also shown. This represents a decline of approximately 60% over the full period.

They find evidence for a relationship between intense cyclone landfall activity and the ENSO cycle, reflecting the natural variability of the system. (source)

And from Jo Nova:

As usual, it’s the name-callers who cling to 100 year time-frames and deny the long term evidence, while we cherry-picking denialists gravitate towards long term studies based on real observations. (The evidence lies in an obscure industry newsletter called Nature.) The way researcher, Jon Nott, describes it, things have been unusually quiet in our high CO2 world for the last few decades, but cyclones used to be a lot worse, and “worse” is coming back.

Thanks to The Australian for putting together a very timely piece about the historical pattern of cyclone activity.

[Johnathon] Nott is an expert on the incidence of super cyclones. By analysing ridges of broken coral pushed ashore by storm surges, he has catalogued the incidence of super-cyclones over the past 5000 years.

In a paper published in the scientific journal, Nature in 2001 his research shows the frequency of super-cyclones is an order of magnitude higher than previously thought.

Nott’s work puts into perspective current debate about whether climate change is responsible for the extreme weather events in Queensland.

Over recent centuries, massive cyclones have been relatively common. And after an extended period of relatively little activity their return is overdue regardless of rising global temperatures. (source)

TC Yasi reaches Category 5

TC Yasi

Our thoughts are with the people of Queensland as Cyclone Yasi approaches – a monster storm indeed.

Check out its progress at the Bureau page here.

For those still tempted to use the words “unprecedented” or biggest/worst “ever”, nothing helps more than a look at history:

Tropical cyclone Mahina hit on 4 March 1899. It was a Category 5 cyclone, the most powerful of the tropical cyclone severity categories. In addition, Mahina was perhaps one of the most intense cyclones ever observed in the Southern Hemisphere and almost certainly the most intense cyclone ever observed off the East Coast of Australia in living memory. Mahina was named by Government Meteorologist for Queensland Clement Wragge, a pioneer of naming such storms.

Within an hour, the Thursday Island based pearling fleet anchored in the bay or nearby, was either driven onto the shore or onto the Great Barrier Reef or sunk at their anchorages. Four schooners and the manned Channel Rock lightship were lost. A further two schooners were wrecked but later refloated. Of the luggers, 54 were lost and a further 12 were wrecked but refloated. Over 30 survivors of the wrecked vessels were later rescued from the shore however over 307 were killed, mostly immigrant non-European crew members.

A storm surge, variously reported as either 13 metres or 48 feet (14.6 meters) high, swept inland for about 5 kilometers, destroying anything that was left of the Bathurst Bay pearling fleet along with the settlement.

Eyewitness Constable J. M. Kenny reported that a 48 ft (14.6 m) storm surge swept over their camp at Barrow Point atop a 40 ft (12 m) high ridge and reached 3 miles (5 km) inland, the largest storm surge ever recorded. However Nott and Hayne reviewed the evidence for this. They modelled the surge based on the 914 hPa central pressure and found the surge should only have been 2 to 3m height. They also surveyed the area looking for wave cut scarps and deposits characteristic of storm events but found none higher than 5 m. Of the 48 ft surge they suggest the ground level cited may not be correct, or that terrestrial flooding was also involved. (source)

Greens blame Cyclone Yasi on "climate change"

Bunch of cynical ecotards

Does anyone really give a flying f**k what the Greens think any more? Why yes, the ABC does, which reports their every petulant outburst with wholly undue reverence. It was only a matter of time before the eco-totalitarians in the Greens, desperate to advance their Marxist agenda by any means possible, blamed the (yet to arrive) Cyclone Yasi on climate change. Tell me Senator Milne, where is your evidence for that ludicrous statement? Oh, yeah, I remember, we don’t need evidence, do we, just desperate appeals to ignorance and emotion.

I run these stories to demonstrate to my readers how irrelevant the Greens are in modern politics. I know it’s painful, but it has to be done.

The Australian Greens say Tropical Cyclone Yasi is a “tragedy of climate change”.

The party was heavily criticised after it linked the Queensland floods to climate change and blamed coal miners.

Greens deputy leader Christine Milne says the cyclone is another example of why it is important to cut carbon pollution.

“This is a tragedy, but it is a tragedy of climate change,” she said.

“The scientists have been saying that we are going to experience more extreme weather events, that their intensity is going to increase, their frequency.” (source)

To think that people have been stupid enough to vote these idiots into the balance of power in the Senate beggars belief.

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