BREAKING: UK climate change minister resigns

Just like the Belgrano... (image from Guido)

Yesss! Chris Huhne, UK Energy and Climate Change minister (or Mr Windmill 2011, as he should be named) has resigned after being advised he will face charges relating to a speeding violation – but there’s more to it than that.

It’s alleged he arranged for his ex-wife to take penalty points on his behalf, which I guess you would call “perverting the course of justice”, perhaps?

Huhne will not be missed for a nanosecond, by this blog or the poor suffering population of the UK – his dangerous brand of environmental extremism has done more to damage the UK’s economy and future energy security than anyone else in living memory.

Here is a selection of previous posts on Huhne, just for old time’s sake:

Guido Fawkes has more here.

UK freeze may kill 2000 a week

Brass monkeys

A bit of gentle warming is catastrophic, so we are repeatedly warned, but in reality, it’s cold that’s the real killer:

BRITAIN’S big freeze could kill up to 2,000 people a week, as temperatures plunge lower than at the South Pole, health chiefs warned last night.

The Department of Health warned the elderly and vulnerable to take extra care as temperatures fall to -11C (12F) in parts of the country and icy winds make it feel closer to -12C.

In comparison, yesterday the   research centre in Antarctica was a relatively mild -3C.

Chief Medical Officer Sally Davies said the number of cold-related deaths could rise “substantially”.

In one week in last year’s big freeze the number in England and Wales rose from 9,220 to 11,193.

Forecasters, who have warned that the cold snap could last all month, said today would be one of the winter’s chilliest days.

And by Friday, temperatures will fall as low as -11C at night in the North and -8C in the South. In some places they are not expected to rise above freezing during the day. (source)

And the effects of this dangerous cold will be greatly exacerbated by the spiralling cost of energy, a direct result of the UK government’s mad emissions reduction targets and renewable energy policies to “tackle climate change”, inevitably leading to many more of the population being unable to heat their homes. UK climate madness.

(h/t EU Referendum)

Eco-extremists have nothing left but abuse

Lord Lawson

Lord Lawson, of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, was interviewed on the BBC yesterday. The “environmentalists” were furious:

LORD LAWSON had barely removed his microphone when the vitriolic attacks began.

The veteran politician had just taken part in a calm debate about the merits of extracting gas from shale. During the discussion on the BBC’s Today programme he stated his firmly held view that there has been no global warming so far this century.

It was the catalyst for an outpouring of venom on message boards and social networking sites. In a selection of the printable insults Lord Lawson was described as “a rabid climate change denier”, “a liar” and “a lone nutcase”. One listener even posted: “Why isn’t he dead yet?” (source)

The “environmentalists” have lied, spun, and misrepresented the global warming debate for their own ends for so long that people are switching off in droves. And now, when faced with some inconvenient truths that challenge their sacred belief, they attack like wounded dogs. Click the image below to see some Twitter responses to Lawson’s interview. Hardly any address substantive issues, but plenty talk about Lawson being a “shill” for Big Oil:

Twitter rage (click to enlarge)

As if that wasn’t enough, the green juggernaut is desperately trying to establish who “funds” the GWPF – three men in a shed somewhere, with a computer. Funny how no-one asks who funds the greens, because the greens have the moral high ground, and therefore are above grubby concerns like that.

The reality is that sceptical organisations like the GWPF survive on the tiniest fraction of the massive funding streams that green groups like FOE, Greenpeace or WWF receive.

Big Green = Good, Tiny Oil = Bad. So don’t even think of mentioning sceptics funding…

P.S. I put “environmentalists” in quotes, because that term is too nice for them, makes them sound like harmless tree-huggers, instead of the anti-human totalitarians that they really are.

Christopher Booker: UK in a "mad little bubble"

Mad bubble

Climate sense as always:

In the 20 years since the scare was launched, global man-made CO2 emissions have risen by 50 per cent. But at the end of 2011, global temperatures measured by Nasa satellites stood barely a tenth of a degree Celsius higher than their average throughout the 32 years since satellite measurements began – far lower than the projected warming. The computer models on which the scare relied have proved so wrong that it is incomprehensible how they were ever taken seriously.

Hardly surprisingly, in 2011 any attempt to get global agreement on drastic meaures to meet this supposed threat finally expired, as the third mammoth UN conference in as many years fizzled out in Durban. There is no chance that China, India, Brazil, Russia or even the US will agree to a replacement for the failed Kyoto Protocol – not when China alone, with its coal-fired power stations, is increasing its CO2 emissions each year by an amount greater than the UK’s entire annual output.

On all sides, mad schemes dreamed up to meet this imaginary crisis are falling apart. The EU’s carbon trading scheme is collapsing, The dream of solar power is disintegrating, as country after country slashes its subsidies, and firms set up to cash in on the bonanza close in droves (5,000 in Germany alone). Evaporating likewise is the fantasy of “carbon capture and storage” – CO2 from power stations being piped away, at vast expense, and buried in holes in the ground.

More and more, this leaves Britain isolated in a mad little bubble of its own, the only country in the world committed by law to the completely unrealisable goal of cutting CO2 emissions by 80 per cent within 40 years. (source)

Add Australia to the mad little bubble as well, with its pointless carbon tax, albeit nowhere near as insane as the UK’s efforts to destroy its economy permanently.

Aussie carbon tax "a trip to the moral high ground" – Guardian

Totally screwed. Thanks, Labor.

When even the Guardian thinks that you’ve screwed up, you know you’ve REALLY screwed up. Julia, Greg, Kevin, Penny and all you other Labor no-hopers and no-brainers, read this editorial, bemoaning the fact that Durban achieved essentially nothing:

Bold unilateral moves like the Australian carbon tax, due to take effect from July next year, now look like a trip to the moral high ground at the expense of international competitiveness. 

Gee, who’d a thunk it? Answer: anyone on planet Earth with a couple of functioning brain cells (which excludes most of the ALP). Even bivalve molluscs washing up on Bondi beach have more intelligence than the average Labor MP and could have worked this out.

Let us all take a moment to despair at the depths to which our great country has sunk. Time to get angry.

Read it here (and weep).

UK: Climate madness and climate sanity


The UK is further along the road to climate madness than Australia, but where the UK now stands provides a possible vision for the future in Australia, if the Labor/Green policies are allowed to continue unhindered. Both the UK and Australia have the same characters in this vulgar melodrama, just a different cast.

In the UK, the long-suffering public has to deal with that eco-lunatic Chris Huhne, Mr Windmill, who is systematically strangling the UK’s fossil fuel energy production capacity, without having seriously considered what can replace it. In Australia we have Bob Brown, a blinkered environmental extremist, completely disconnected from the real world.

Today we have two articles from the UK Telegraph which demonstrate the ever widening gap between the rarified atmosphere of government and the harsh reality outside. Firstly, we have Huhne on the forthcoming Durban conference, sincerely believing that it will achieve something significant:

If we have learnt anything from the financial crisis, it is that clear rules implemented properly can prevent the toxic build-up of risk. A recent survey of large global firms found that 83 per cent of business leaders think a multilateral agreement is needed to tackle climate change. Businesses want certainty; only the politics lags behind.

A commitment to a new agreement will provide that certainty – and Kyoto provides the basis of the rules we need to manage a destabilising climate. Durban must not be the end of Kyoto, but a chance to build on what it began.

We recognise that it will take time to negotiate this.

So we also want immediate action. Current voluntary pledges to reduce emissions are not yet enough; in Durban, we should agree that we must close the gap, building momentum towards a major review of ambition.

We must build the system we use to measure and verify emissions cuts. We must do more on long-term financial support for developing countries and agree how the new Green Fund will operate. And we must continue to reduce emissions from deforestation.

Above all, we must show leadership. Next year I will continue to press for a more ambitious EU emissions target: a 30 per cent reduction by 2020. That will help us raise our sights globally.

Milton Friedman once said: “Our basic function is to keep good ideas alive until the politically impossible becomes the politically inevitable.” That is a good description of the task that awaits in Durban. (source)

To quote The Thick of It, Huhne is “disconnected to the point of autism”. When the rest of the world is backing away (apart from Australia, of course), the UK is heading for even deeper emissions cuts! And his quoting of Friedman shows that this entire facade is pure politics. Skating over the fact that this isn’t keeping a good idea alive, but a bad idea struggling for breath and surviving only thanks to a ventilator, Huhne is on a political crusade which will not be sidetracked by trivial matters like another GFC. Pity the poor Brits.

A third article in the Telegraph here, explains how Huhne will give such long-term financial support to developing countries: GBP 1 billion of British taxpayers’ money will be sent to Africa to help them “tackle climate change.” Given the parlous state of the UK economy, you’d have to conclude that their priorities are a little out of kilter… Check out the comments on that one.

At least they have an antidote in Christopher Booker, one of the few commentators who fully understand the desperate situation the UK is heading towards. His near-weekly dose of climate sanity is always essential reading, but particularly so today:

To grasp the almost suicidal state of unreality our Government has been driven into by the obsession with global warming, it is necessary to put together the two sides to an overall picture – each vividly highlighted by events of recent days.

On one hand there is the utterly lamentable state of the science which underpins it all, illuminated yet again by “Climategate 2.0”, the latest release of emails between the leading scientists who for years have been at the heart of the warming scare (which I return to below). On the other hand, we see the damage done by the political consequences of this scare, which will directly impinge, in various ways, on all our lives.

It is hard to know where to begin, after a week which opened with The Sunday Telegraph’s exclusive on a blast of realism from Prince Philip over the folly of our Government’s infatuation with useless windmills. Then came an excoriatory report from the House of Lords on how we have so run down our nuclear expertise that it is doubtful whether we can hope to run a new generation of nuclear power stations. Next, there was a report from a leading Swiss bank finding that the EU’s “emissions trading scheme” has wasted $287 billion (£186billion) over six years – paid by all of us, to achieve nothing in terms of reducing “carbon emissions”. There was also a front page story in another newspaper, warning that (as readers of this column have long been aware) within nine years we could all be paying nearly £300 a year to subsidise solar panels and those same useless windmills.

All this madness ultimately rests on a blind faith in the threat of man-made global warming, which no one has done more to promote than the scientists whose private emails were again last week leaked onto the internet.

It is still not generally appreciated that the significance of these Climategate emails is that their authors, such as Michael Mann, are no ordinary scientists: they are a little group of fanatical insiders who have, for years, done more than anyone else to drive the warming scare, through their influence at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. And what is most striking about the picture that emerges from these emails is just how questionable the work of these men appears.

We see how they torture the evidence to support their theory – even to the point where some of them seem to lose faith in the story they are trying to tell. And we also see how rattled they were as soon as their work was challenged by expert outsiders such as Steve McIntyre, the mathematician who exposed the methods used to create Mann’s “hockey stick” temperature graph, which the IPCC had made Exhibit A for their theory.

Again and again we see them trying to defend the indefensible, giving vent to wild personal abuse of the enemies of what they call their “cause”, and stopping at nothing to keep their critics’ evidence out of IPCC reports and scientific journals, and prevent dissenting views from getting media atention.

This is no longer science worthy of the name. As I wrote when the first Climategate emails appeared in 2009, the global warming scare is far and away the greatest scientific scandal of our generation. When we then contemplate the insanity of the measures the politicians have imposed on us in consequence, we know we are looking at a collective flight from reality which has no precedent in the history of the world. (source)

Australia is actually better placed than the UK to retreat from the madness. At least we have a political party that opposes pointless carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes. All the major parties in the UK support the kind of nonsense Huhne is proposing, although there are signs of retreat there as well.

The big question, however, is this: Will sanity prevail before it’s too late?

UK: Green subsidies slashed

Fake green jobs

You see? Julia and Greg are right – the rest of the world is “rushing ahead” and Australia will be left behind [sarc off].

So just as Australia is careering headlong into a pointless carbon taxation regime, the government of the UK is waking up to the grim reality of the non-existent “green economy” and cutting solar subsidies. “25,000 green jobs cut” they shriek, but it probably means three times that many real jobs saved:

Hundreds of solar companies are likely to go bust by Christmas after the Department for Energy and Climate Change confirmed it is looking to halve subsidies for new panels.

Greg Barker, minister for climate change, said the “feed-in tariff” subsidies are currently too generous, because the cost of installing solar panels has fallen.

The proposed cuts, due to come into force from December, will see the amount earned from each panel fall from 43.3p per kilowatt hour of solar power to 21p. This will save energy customers around £23 a year – or £700m in total – because the subsidies are funded through electricity bills. (source)

More at WUWT.

Delingpole on the carbon tax

"What's that you say, Skip? They've all topped themselves?"

James kindly linked to my post on Ian Chubb’s nonsensical utterances (see here), and his piece is well worth a read, as always:

Australia commits suicide

One of the worst aspects of living in these apocalyptic times is that whenever you look around the world, wondering where you might escape to, you begin to realise that everywhere else is just as bad if not worse.

Take Australia, an island built on fossil fuel with an economy dependent on fossil fuel. What would be the maddest economic policy a place like that could pursue as the world tips deeper into recession? Why, to introduce a carbon tax, of course. Which, for reasons just explained above, means a tax on absobloodylutely everything. Which is exactly what Julia Gillard’s Coalition (why is it that word always makes me want to reach for my Browning?) has just gone and done, obviously.

Read it all.

UK: Climate action "a vote losing issue"

Osborne: reality bites

The UK government of David Cameron was held up as a shining example of a “green” success story – bravely taking the hard decisions and setting ludicrously ambitious emissions reduction targets in order to face up to the greatest moral challenge of our time, or something. But, as was inevitable, reality bites, and the UK chancellor, George Osborne, has begun to realise that the green utopian fantasy was just that:

In his speech to the Conservative Party conference, Mr Osborne said: “We know that a decade of environmental laws and regulations are piling costs on the energy bills of households and companies.

“Yes, climate change is a man-made disaster, yes we need international agreement to stop it.”

“But…we are not going to save the planet by putting our country out of business. (source)

Of course, Osborne is still deluded about the effect of even an international agreement on the climate (zero – witness Kyoto), but the last sentence is the key. And in an article entitled “David Cameron’s Green Agenda Fades”, The Guardian wails over the change of direction:

It was the week the husky died. Since David Cameron was pulled across the Arctic ice in 2006, the promise of environmental action had been at the heart of rebranding the Conservative party as modern and compassionate. “Vote blue, go green” was the slogan.

But at the Tory conference in Manchester this week, George Osborne for the first time publicly attacked green laws and regulation as “piling costs on to energy bills” and appeared to abandon earlier aspirations of leadership for the UK in the low-carbon economy.

Cameron, who has made no major speech on the environment since pledging in May 2010 to lead the “greenest government ever”, made a single passing reference to “green technology” in his conference closing speech.

What is clear is that the politics have changed, if not yet the policies, according to Tim Montgomery, editor of ConservativeHome. “The government has decided that this is now a vote-losing issue,” he said, following briefings from the government.

“Soaring energy prices are what has forced Cameron to change. The government is now in sync with the vast majority of the Tory party who think it is futile to try to tackle climate change without a world agreement.” (source)

One of my commenters in a recent open thread wrote:

David Cameron endorsed the carbon tax in Australia. Discuss.

Perhaps we should rephrase that to read:

We are not going to save the planet by putting our country out of business. Discuss.

We in Australia (except the entire Labor/Green government) have known for some time that unilateral climate action is a pointless, vote-losing policy. Finally, other countries are reaching the same conclusion.

Times World Atlas falls prey to climate alarmism

(Click to enlarge)

Some things you really believe you can trust. The Times Comprehensive Atlas of the World, for example. Not any more. Like so many grand old institutions, it has fallen prey to nonsensical claims that 15% of the Greenland ice sheet has disappeared in the last few years. So the cartographers meekly acquiesce, showing a massive retreat in the ice sheet in the latest edition (see image).

But having been pilloried in the press for the ridiculous claim (even by the BBC and Guardian), they’ve had to back down, as the Guardian reports:

The publishers of the Times Atlas were forced to admit on Tuesday that they were wrong to claim the Greenland ice pack had shrunk by 15%, asArctic scientists rounded on the company for misinterpreting data and failing to consult them.

The humiliating climbdown for HarperCollins – part of Rupert Murdoch’s publishing empire – came after key sources of data on the Greenland ice denied that their research, cited by the Times Atlas, warranted the claims. Despite criticism of the claim by scientists, a spokeswoman for the atlas had, as recently as Monday, issued a robust defence of the claim, saying: “We are the best there is … Our data shows that it has reduced by 15%. That’s categorical.”

But HarperCollins put out a statement on Tuesday saying: “For the launch of the latest edition of the atlas we issued a press release which unfortunately has been misleading with regard to the Greenland statistics. We came to these statistics by comparing the extent of the ice cap between the 10th and 13th editions of the atlas. The conclusion that was drawn from this, that 15% of Greenland’s once permanent ice cover has had to be erased, was highlighted in the press release not in the atlas itself. This was done without consulting the scientific community and was incorrect. We apologise for this and will seek the advice of scientists on any future public statements.” (source)

Maurizio Morabito has a theory:

So the following series of events is consistent with the observations:

  1. Times Atlas personnel read or listen from somewhere that the Greenland ice sheet is melting
  2. They open the Wikipedia page on the Greenland ice sheet
  3. As if by magic…that page contains a map of Greenland
  4. Times Atlas personnel convert that map to the Times Atlas high-quality standard

Now where’s the evidence for it? Where is it indeed, as Michael Corleone would have asked.

And furthermore, Hockey Schtick reports on a new paper that shows an ice sheet on the northern tip of Greenland has remained unchanged or grown slightly in the last few years:

Warmists tell us the effects of AGW should be most evident at the poles. A paper published today in the Journal of Geophysical Research closely examines the Flade Isblink Ice Cap at the northern tip of Greenland using data from two satellites from 2002-2008 and finds a slightly positive/near zero change in surface elevation and no change whatsoever in mass. However, according to the experts at The Times Comprehensive Atlas of the World, this entire ice cap has completely disappeared.

Another blow to alarmist credibility – and the Times Atlas – thanks to its desperation to advance an agenda by any means possible.

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