Jan 132016
 

“In the realm of ideas there has been no better publication in Australia over the last fifty years than Quadrant magazine.”
— Former Prime Minister John Howard

Quadrant Online » Opinion The leading general intellectual journal of ideas, literature, poetry and historical and political debate published in Australia.

  • The Culpable Cruelty of Cowardly Charity
    by Roger Franklin on 2017-08-16 at 05:03

    Until the election of Donald Trump, North Korea had no reason to switch tactics: rant, bellow, threaten -- and pretty soon the West hands over lots more of whatever is demanded, be it money, food or the nuclear technology Bill Clinton made available. This latest president is cut from different clothThe post The Culpable Cruelty of Cowardly Charity appeared first on Quadrant Online. […]

  • A Philosopher Thinks but Fails to See
    by Roger Franklin on 2017-08-15 at 02:58

    AC Grayling's new book concludes with a pipe-dream of supra-national governance. History rejects any possibility of that being a workable option -- evidence rendered irrefutable by Europe's escalating exaltation of ethnicity, language and, in the case of Islam, aggressive intoleranceThe post A Philosopher Thinks but Fails to See appeared first on Quadrant Online. […]

  • Richard Dawkins’ Pussyfooting
    by Roger Franklin on 2017-08-15 at 00:29

    That a leading light of the Left criticises Islam is a rare development, yet it is sophistry pure and simple to distinguish between Islam and an evil offspring called 'Islamism'. Minus a mainstream body of Islamic thought which disavows the creed's vile aspects, it's a cop-outThe post Richard Dawkins’ Pussyfooting appeared first on Quadrant Online. […]

  • Inconvenient Truths for a Gore Groupie
    by Roger Franklin on 2017-08-14 at 01:57

    The literary editor of The Australian's weekend Review section is a gifted journalist, but it seems he couldn't grasp a single key element about Al Gore and climate profiteers if a polar bear fell on him. In an effort to foil an otherwise decent newspaper's promotion of piffle, here's a remedial primerThe post Inconvenient Truths for a Gore Groupie appeared first on Quadrant Online. […]

  • ‘Driver on the way’
    by Roger Franklin on 2017-08-13 at 23:59

    At the Social Justice Taxi Company the dispatcher never knows what the next booking will bring. Today, it's boundless sympathy for an oppressed North Korean dictator and the layabouts, addicts, thump artists and footpads camped in a city plaza. And tomorrow? Well, it might be a gender-equity feminist composers on the line or a penis-tucking consultant en route to the nearest (non-Muslim) primary schoolThe post ‘Driver on the way’ appeared first on Quadrant Online. […]

 Posted by at 06:56
Jan 052016
 

Independent Institute Articles Recent Articles and op-eds from the Independent Institute

  • How the Black Market Helped Me, and Others, Escape North Korea
    on 2017-08-16 at 21:20

    By Yeonmi Park; North Korea's nuclear saber-rattling may be frightening to some, perhaps just as frightening as day-to-day life can be under the Kim regime, from which I was fortunate enough to esc... […]

  • How Donald Trump Is Driving the Democrats Crazy
    on 2017-08-15 at 21:20

    By John C. Goodman; You would think the Democrats would be on cloud nine. Donald Trump's favorability ratings are as low as anyone can remember their being for a sitting president. The Republica... […]

  • The Better Way Tax Plan
    on 2017-08-15 at 21:20

    By John C. Goodman, Laurence J. Kotlikoff; A plan to radically reform the US income tax system has been proposed by House Speaker Paul Ryan and House Ways amp; Means Chairman Kevin Brady. On the personal side, the system would be... […]

  • New Approaches Needed to End Campus Sexual Assault
    on 2017-08-14 at 21:20

    By Samuel R. Staley; The U.S. Department of Education's top civil-rights official set off a firestorm when she told the New York Times--erroneously--that 90 percent of college sexual assault case... […]

  • We Have Lost the War in Afghanistan. We Should Get Out Now
    on 2017-08-14 at 21:20

    By Ivan Eland; In a recent meeting, President Trump correctly told his generals that they were "losing" the war in Afghanistan, rejected their proposed strategy, and sent them back to the draw... […]

 Posted by at 11:25
Jan 052016
 
 Posted by at 10:38
Jan 052016
 
  • Health Effects of Global Warming

    This article reviews three papers on the health effects of warming. A study published in 2015 examined 74 million deaths worldwide from 1985 to 2012 and found that the ratio of cold-related to heat-related deaths was a whopping 17 to 1. A study of heat-related deaths in the USA shows that as heat waves become more frequent, heat-related deaths decrease because of adaptation. There were 41 heat-related deaths/year/million population is the 1960s and 1970s dropping to 17 in the 1980s and to only 10 in the 1990s. A 2017 study of temperature-related hospital emergency visits in China over the period 2011–2014 shows that the risk is far greater for cold temperatures than for hot temperatures. When temperatures fall the risk of an emergency visit increased by 80% but when temperature rise the risk increases by only 15%. The length of hospital stays due to cold temperatures are ten times greater than that due to hot temperatures. […]

  • Friends of Science Newsletter June 2017

    Friends of Science Newsletter June 2017 […]

  • A Review of ‘Skeptical Science’ Alleged Myths

    The website ‘Skeptical Science.com’ is popular among climate alarmists. The website alleges to refute claims by climate skeptics that global warming is not a crisis. The website features a list of 10 “Most Used Climate Myths” by climate skeptics at the top left part of the webpage. I review and rebut each rebuttal of the 10 alleged myths. […]

  • Antarctic Ice Expansion Shows Climate Models Are Unreliable

    Despite a 20 percent increase in atmospheric CO2 over 40 years, and model predictions to the contrary, sea ice in the Antarctic has expanded for decades. Such observations are in direct opposition to the model-based predictions of the IPCC. This should give pause for thought about climate alarmism in general. The IPCC report predicts a multi-model average decrease of between 16 and 67 percent in the summer and 8 to 30 percent in the winter by the end of the century (IPCC, 2013). Models simulations give a 1 million sq. km reduction is sea ice, but measurement show a 300,000 increase from 1980 to 2005 due to falling temperatures. […]

  • To Put America First Is to Put Our Planet’s Climate First

    This article by Marko, Soon et al refutes the "popular delusion that man-made global warming will be dangerous and that, therefore, the Paris Agreement would be beneficial." They write "The Paris agreement is, in practice, a political tool for suppressing growth and redistributing wealth." The historical record shows that CO2 changes lag temperature changes. Climate models predicted that warming over the last 27 years (1990-2016) would be twice as much as actually observed. Extreme weather events like tornadoes and hurricanes have been decreasing over the last several decades. Warming and CO2 fertilization has caused a greening of the earth and increasing crop yields. […]

 Posted by at 10:16
Dec 012015
 

National Post Reveals the Real Reason for the Climate Change Warmism Religion

Peter Foster: The man who shaped the climate agenda in Paris, Maurice Strong, leaves a complicated legacy

Maurice Strong, then special advisor to United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, in 2003. The head of the U.N.'s environmental agency says Strong, whose work helped lead to the landmark climate summit that begins in Paris on Monday, Nov. 30, 2015, has died. He was 86.
Tom Hanson/ The Canadian PressMaurice Strong, then special advisor to United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, in 2003. The head of the U.N.’s environmental agency says Strong, whose work helped lead to the landmark climate summit that begins in Paris on Monday, Nov. 30, 2015, has died. He was 86.

Maurice Strong has died at the age of 86. Multi-faceted does not begin to describe his life. More than any other individual, he was responsible for promoting the climate agenda with which negotiators are struggling this week at the UN meeting in Paris.

Osamu Honda/ Associated Press
Osamu Honda/ Associated Press In a March 17, 1997 file photo, Maurice Strong, left, executive coordinator for United Nations reform, stands with United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, during a news conference, at the U.N. The head of the U.N.’s environmental agency says Strong, whose work helped lead to the landmark climate summit that begins in Paris on Monday, Nov. 30, 2015, has died.

Strong also played a major role in Canadian affairs. When he celebrated his 85th birthday in Toronto last year, he was surrounded by Canada’s left liberal elite — from former prime minister Paul Martin to former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson and her husband John Ralston Saul.

Martin had been an employee and protégé of Strong. Ralston Saul had been chief aide to Strong when Strong was the first chairman, president and CEO of state oil company Petro-Canada, just one of many executive positions in a remarkable career.

Clarkson claimed that Strong had “invented the environment.” While that may have been somewhat exaggerated, he did play a critical role in promoting political responses to environmental concerns. As a lifelong socialist, he saw the potential of the environmental movement to fight capitalism and introduce a system of “global governance” that would co-ordinate all human activity.

Before the last great failed attempt to come up with a global climate agreement, at Copenhagen in 2009, which took place at a time of economic turmoil, Strong said: “The climate change issue and the economic issue come from the same roots. And that is the gross inequity and the inadequacy of our economic model. We now know that we have to change that model. We cannot do all of this in one stroke. But we have to design a process that would produce agreement at a much more radical level.”

Richard Drew/ The Canadian Press
Richard Drew/ The Canadian PressThe late Maurice Strong, special advisor to United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan on North Korea, strains to hear a question outside the Security Council at U.N. headquarters in New York, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2003.

“We must,” he had suggested earlier, “devise a new approach to co-operative management of the entire system of issues… We are all gods now.” (Oh really? Yes, the builders of the Titanic had the same attitude.)

Strong was reputed to be a Buddhist, but when Pope Francis issued his climate encyclical earlier this year, he praised Strong’s Earth Charter, a manifesto of green revolution co-signed by Mikhail Gorbachev, as a document that “asked us to leave behind a period of self-destruction and make a new start.”

Maurice Strong’s own start was extremely modest. He was born in poverty during the Depression in Oak Lake, Manitoba, and escaped home as soon as he could. Pursuing a picaresque early career, he bounced from cabin boy to junior fur trader to United Nations functionary to oil analyst.

He started his own oil company and wound up running Montreal-based Power Corp. at an extraordinarily young age. While he would continue to dabble in business throughout his life, his first love, and prime objective, was acquiring power in pursuit of a “better world.”

Calgary Herald File Photo, CALGARY, AB: March 23, 2009 Maurice Strong January 1976 (Calgary Herald File Photo / ) ( For City section story by )
Calgary Herald File Photo, CALGARY, AB: March 23, 2009 Maurice Strong January 1976 (Calgary Herald File Photo / ) ( For City section story by )A 1976 file photo of Maurice Strong, a man who influenced Pierre Trudeau and was lauded by Justin Trudeau when news of Strong’s death broke.

From Power Corp. he moved to Ottawa and set up in the Canada International Development Agency, CIDA. His amazing networking abilities led him to be asked to organize the first great UN conference on the global environment, at Stockholm in 1972. A glowing profile in the New Yorker described him as “Captain of Spaceship Earth.”

After Stockholm he because the first head of the United Nations Environment Program, UNEP, one of the parents of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, IPCC, the body set up to examine man-made climate change.

He was a key member of the Brundtland Commission, which promoted the notion of sustainable development, whose fundamental rationale was that (relatively) free markets were unsustainable.

In 1992, on the 20th anniversary of Stockholm, he ran the giant UN conference in Rio de Janeiro on the environment and development, which was attended by more world leaders than any previous event. Out of Rio emerged the Kyoto Protocol, to which Paris is still seeking a successor agreement.

One reason Strong was adulated within the UN system was his skill in conceiving agendas, initiatives, studies, meetings and new institutions

Strong had extraordinary influence in the business community, where he set up the World Business Council on Sustainable Development. He was also a significant promoter of the World Economic Forum, whose annual conference at Davos became an unprecedented example of elite networking.

He was at one time chief adviser both to UN Secretary General Secretary General Kofi Annan and to World Bank head Jim Wolfensohn, another of his proteges. Annan put him in charge of UN reform, where Strong cleverly turned what was meant to be a belt-tightening exercise into a program for expansion. He ran relief programs in Africa, and negotiated with North Korea.

One reason Strong was adulated within the UN system was his skill in conceiving agendas, initiatives, studies, meetings and new institutions.

Paris, for example, is the twenty-first “Conference of the Parties” (COP21) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, UNFCC, but it is just one of a much broader series of seemingly-endless international get-togethers.

While spinning off do-good schemes at an astonishing rate, Strong continued to be involved in both public and private business. Apart from Petrocan, he ran the giant utility Ontario Hydro for a period. His private business affairs, like his public ones, were marked by constant controversy.

Ng Han Guan/ The Canadian Press
Ng Han Guan/ The Canadian PressCanadian diplomat Maurice Strong, a special envoy of U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, leaves the Beijing airport, China, after he arrived from Pyongyang, North Korea, Saturday, Jan. 18, 2003. He died at the age of 86.

It was one such adventure, in 2005, when he became implicated in the Iraqi oil-for­-food scandal, that finally dented his international reputation. He claimed that he was unaware that an investment in one of his companies had been laundered from the regime of Saddam Hussein, but a subsequent inquiry suggested that if he didn’t know, he should have.’

In the wake of the scandal he moved to Beijing, (who but an extreme socialist would want to?)  where he had long had connections. For a man with severe asthma problems, it seemed a strange choice, but Strong found China’s political atmosphere amenable.

One of the most remarkable things about Strong was how unremarkable he was in person. Somebody once said that you wouldn’t pick him out of a crowd of two.

He took scarcely-concealed delight in explaining his often Machiavellian political manoeuvrings

Nevertheless, he was an avuncular and likeable figure, even to those who disagreed strongly with his world view, as I did. I interviewed him numerous times over a 20-year period, and found that he took scarcely-concealed delight in explaining his often Machiavellian political manoeuvrings.

Meanwhile his perennially sunny demeanour contrasted starkly with his grim vision, not just of the present, but of the projected state of the world. (Like Rachel Carson, Paul R Erlich (Author: “The Population Bomb”. Paul and Rachel and all the other naysayers were wrong. The present alarmists are in the process of being proven wrong right now, every month when the overall temperature of the world, again does NOT RISE, they are proven to be purveyors of fantasy)

In his 2000 autobiography, Where on Earth Are We Going?, Strong projected that, in 2031, “the human tragedy” would be “on a scale hitherto unimagined.” He wrote that the brightest prospect lay in forecasts that two-thirds of the world’s already diminished population might be wiped out.

Strong’s green agenda now blankets the globe, from the UN through national governments to municipalities

He described this as “a glimmer of hope for the future of our species and its potential for regeneration,” thus betraying a distinctly ambivalent attitude towards the humanity he claimed to be so desperate to save.

Strong’s green agenda now blankets the globe, from the UN through national governments to municipalities.

Paradoxically, Strong freely admitted that governments were incompetent, cumbersome and resistant to change. He also acknowledged that the UN was marked by “petty politics and small-mindedness.” And yet such people were somehow to manage “the entire system of issues.”

The answer for Strong was always more power. “The single greatest weakness of the existing international legal regime,” he wrote, “is the almost total lack of capacity for enforcement.”

Resistance to such enforcement is likely to continue.

Bruno Schlumberger/ Postmedia News files
Bruno Schlumberger/ Postmedia News filesMaurice Strong in 2012. He helped shape the vision for the climate summit in Paris this week.

Strong’s passing was mourned on the weekend by key figures of the movement he did so much to create.

Current UNEP chief Achim Steiner declared “Strong will forever be remembered for placing the environment on the international agenda and at the heart of development.”

Christiana Figueres, head of the UNFCC, who will be running the Paris conference, tweeted “we thank Maurice Strong for his visionary impetus to our understanding of sustainability. We will miss you.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, already in Paris for this week’s climate meetings, declared that “Mr. Strong was an internationally recognized environmentalist and philanthropist who used his remarkable business acumen, organizational skills, and humanity to make the world a better place.” (He may have but it was not because of the green madness that he seemed to love.)

Some might argue with that glowing assessment, but there is no doubting Strong’s extraordinary influence, including with Trudeau’s father, Pierre.

Related

Despite his myriad contradictions, Strong had an astonishing network among rulers, corporations, the “international community,” and capitalist foundations. But perhaps the most important strategic element in his promotion of the environmental agenda was his sponsorship of radical environmental non-governmental organizations, ENGOs, whose government funding and entry into international meetings he facilitated.

Whether they appreciate it or not, the environmental groups that played a key role in demonizing the oil sands and killing the Keystone XL pipeline, and who continue to stand in the way of other Canadian pipelines, are Maurice’s children. They will be present in large numbers in Paris in the next two weeks.

We should mourn the man, but continue to question his vision, which remains very much alive.

(Editor: Maurice may have been a nice guy, which is always a great way to promote a dangerous agenda. So one might say that Maurice was Strongly Wrong about the Environment)

 Posted by at 03:30
Nov 092015
 

[3rd in a Series is presented as an item for education and research on the topic of fantasy global warming and man-made climate change]

Terence Corcoran: Canada’s brand new climate Boy Scout joins countdown to Paris

Terence Corcoran: One of Just Trudeau's first Boy Scout moves is to invite Green Party Leader Elizabeth May to join him and provincial leaders at the Paris meeting.
Patrick Doyle/The Canadian Press filesTerence Corcoran: One of Just Trudeau’s first Boy Scout moves is to invite Green Party Leader Elizabeth May to join him and provincial leaders at the Paris meeting.

Third in a series

Countdown_To_Paris
As the Paris climate summit approaches activists are gearing up for the final push through November and into December, although the movement suffered a bit of a downer over the weekend.

 

Hurricane Patricia, building as a major hurricane of unprecedented proportions, fizzled as a climate mega-disaster into a mere tropical storm, leaving behind no opportunities for media and negotiators to use it as a pre-Paris PR bonanza.

 

As news of Patricia reached Europe at a climate change negotiating session in Bonn on Friday, the head of the Mexico delegation, Roberto Dondisch, said Patricia was evidence the frog was already in the boiling water. A reporter for Climate House quoted Dondish saying “I don’t think I need to say more about the urgency to get this deal done.”

 

When the total death toll is near zero, the climate angle is also near zero. But the climate machine kept rolling. Reports from the negotiation front are garbled and inconsistent, but a major session held in Bonn ended last Friday without any clear proposals for the final Paris sessions. In all, 196 nations will try to come up with a plan to reduce carbon emissions over coming decades so as to keep the world from slipping into what the UN predicts will be climate catastrophe.

 

A so-called draft text of an agreement, now up to 55 pages, is an unreadable mash of clauses, options and parentheses. They are fighting over carbon targets, temperature targets and – above all — cash transfer targets, in recognition of the fact that the major objective of climate change policy makers has always been to orchestrate a massive transfer of wealth from rich nations to poor nations.

 

On Monday, Catholic bishops from “every continent on earth” (in the words of the official announcement) appealed to nations meeting in Paris to adopt a “legally binding” agreement to “strongly limit” temperature increases. To control the weather, forget prayers and get on with the business of “complete de-carbonization by mid-century.” Major new funding transfers will be necessary to develop new models of economic development “to put an end to the fossil fuel era.” The bishops, along with Pope Francis, are apparently unaware that fossil fuels are the source of most of the energy that has helped generate the world’s current level of economic development.

 

And now comes Canada, suddenly transformed from climate embarrassment under Prime Minister Stephen Harper to environmental Boy Scout under a new Liberal government headed by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. One of his first Boy Scout moves is to invite Green Party Leader Elizabeth May to join him and provincial leaders at the Paris meeting. How long can that last?

The Trudeau game plan in Paris and at home is roughly equivalent to a moon shot. Canada aims to land on the surface, but has no idea how to get there or even where the moon is.

The Liberal election platform called for a price on carbon (set by the provinces) under national emissions targets to be determined by reference to the global objective of holding the world temperate increases at the Papal-instructed level of 2 degrees Celsius. Within 90 days of the Paris summit’s mid-December end, a provincial First Ministers meeting will be held “to work together on a framework to combat climate change.”

 

At the same time, the Trudeau Liberals promised to work with the United States and Mexico to develop an “ambitious North American clean energy and environment agreement.” Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, in recent media interviews, also supported negotiation of a major North American climate deal.

 

This Boy Scout flight to the moon is now gathering media attention. Reporters are busy describing how the provinces can be brought on side and how the various regions — despite different economic, carbon and energy-consuming structures — can be herded into a cohesive fight to help rid the world of fossil fuels.

Trudeau and the provinces will go to Paris, pretending the world can be rid of fossil fuels

Some say the provinces are already mostly onside. British Columbia has a carbon tax in place and Quebec has a cap-and-trade emissions regime that Ontario is set to join. The fact the B.C. carbon tax nor Quebec’s emissions trading system has had no impact on carbon emissions in those provinces is conveniently ignored. [Yes, conveniently ignored because when you belong to the fundamentalist evangelical global warming religion, you MUST never let the facts get in the way of massive socialist money transfer schemes.Both schemes are essentially demonstration projects that so far demonstrate that at current price levels nothing is accomplished by these carbon-price regimes.

B.C. fossil fuel consumption for transportation has not declined since its six-cent carbon tax was first imposed in 2008. Under Quebec’s cap-and-trade system, which gives a free ride to big industries, providers of gasoline and other fuels must purchase  emissions permits on a carbon market. At current prices (about $16 a tonne) the price of gasoline in Quebec is hypothetically higher by three cents a litre.   But since the price of gasoline has fallen dramatically, nobody notices the carbon price increase.

Complicating matters is the uncertainty over whether higher gasoline prices brought on by carbon pricing will actually promote a reduction in gasoline use. Much evidence suggests consumers will keep on driving as prices and/or taxes increase—unless, of course, the burden is raised to some astronomically destructive level.

How will it be possible for carbon pricing schemes, in a small country like Canada, to achieve the ultimate UN climate objective, a fossil-fuel free country in a fossil-fuel free world within North America? It’s not possible, but Canada and the world will be spending the next few weeks and all of the next decade pretending it can be done.

Topics: FP Comment, Countdown to Paris

 Posted by at 06:35
Nov 082015
 

[These articles help to explain the massive misinformation provided by people like Al Gore and Others. Therefore we include them for education and research. The global warming alarmists have convinced many that carbon dioxide is a poison and the more we produce the more the earth is becoming poisonous and hotter. Read this article with an open mind and learn.] 

[The TRUTH is that almost ALL the food you eat is PRODUCED by CARBON DIOXIDE!

Green plants from plankton in  the sea, grass, hay, straw, vegetables and fruits of all types PRODUCE the food we eat by their leaves TAKING IN carbon dioxide during periods of light and using it using the process of photosynthesis to convert carbon dioxide and other nutrients into all types of food that we eat. And the meat we eat is produced by animals who also eat green plants. CARBON DIOXIDE! OUR FRIEND, NOT OUR ENEMY!!!

CARBON DIOXIDE is ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY or we would have NOTHING TO EAT! This article addresses that truth!]

 

Indur Goklany: The great carbon boom

People walk on the Champs Elysees during the
AP Photo/Thibault CamusPeople walk on the Champs Elysees during the “day without cars”, in Paris, France, Sept. 27, 2015.

Second in a series

Countdown_To_Paris
On the eve of the UN climate summit in Paris, all delegates would be well advised to reflect on how the story of man-made global warming debate started.

 

Svante Arrhenius, winner of the 1905 Nobel Prize, hypothesized over a century ago that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) due to fossil fuel consumption would warm the world. He also hypothesized that higher CO2 levels would stimulate plant growth. These, he reasoned, would reinforce each other and increase the biosphere’s productivity to the benefit of mankind.

 

Remarkably, proponents of the notion that global warming would be catastrophic unless CO2 emissions are curtailed drastically (or, in short, “warmists,”) embrace the first, but ignore the second hypothesis. “Remarkably,” because both satellite and ground based data confirm that the biosphere’s productivity has increased in managed ecosystems (e.g., agriculture and managed forests) and in unmanaged or natural ecosystems.

The plant-productivity increase has been steady, large and ubiquitous: widespread evidence confirms that the earth is greener; terrestrial ecosystems’ productivity has increased 14% since 1982. Further, the IPCC estimates that the terrestrial biosphere productivity is 5% over pre-industrial times, that is, “carbon fertilization” due to rising CO2 levels has helped overcome any productivity loss from deforestation and other habitat loss. (Habitat loss is the greatest threat to terrestrial biodiversity and natural ecosystems.)

Carbon dioxide emissions over two centuries have produced massive benefits for humanity — and nature. Halting emissions could increase hunger and  habitat destruction

 

This productivity increase is to be expected: the results of thousands of scientific experiments indicate that at current levels of atmospheric CO2, crop yields should increase by 9-15% relative to pre-industrial levels because higher CO2 increases rates of plant growth (i.e., photosynthesis), improves the efficiency with which plants use water, increases their drought resistance and, possibly, increases resistance of crops to pests and weeds.

 

These increases in crop yields, in addition to helping feed a larger population, have limited the need to convert existing habitat to farming. The increased crop yields from higher CO2 levels reduced habitat loss by 11-17% compared with what it would otherwise have been. Consequently, more land has been left relatively wild.

 

Satellite evidence also confirms that increasing CO2 concentrations have resulted in greater productivity of wild terrestrial ecosystems in all vegetation types. Moreover, increasing CO2 concentrations have also increased the productivity of many marine ecosystems, and although this effect may be partially or fully offset by the effect of lower average pH on calcification rates in some marine organisms, the evidence of net harm in wild marine ecosystems remains sparse.

 

Equally important, contrary to warmists’ claims, since fossil fuels helped start the Industrial Revolution in the mid-eighteenth century and CO2 emissions skyrocketed, so have aggregate indicators of human well-being. Data back to 1750 show the dramatic escalation in measures of well being and, as the nearby graph shows, the bulk of the increase has occurred since 1900 as global carbon-based industrial development soared (See graph).

Carbon

Since 1750:

  • Carbon dioxide emissions increased from the relatively imperceptible (3 million tons) in 1750 to 9.5 billion tons in 2011;
  • Population increased nine-fold from 800 million to 1.6 billion 1900 and 7.3 billion in 2014;
  • Average GDP per capita, perhaps the best measure of economic and material well-being, increased thirteen-fold, from $650 to in 1750 to $1,261 in 1900 and $8,500 in 2014 (in 1990 International dollars);
  • Average life expectancy, probably the single best indicator of human well-being, has more than doubled from 26 years in 1750 to 31 in 1900 and to 71 years in 2013.

These indicators show no sign of a sustained downturn.

Empirical trends indicate that climate-sensitive indicators of human well-being have also improved markedly over recent decades, notwithstanding the gloomy prognostications of warmists.

The above-noted increases in crop yields reduced chronic hunger in the developing world from 24% of population in 1990–92 to 14% in 2011–13, despite a 37% increase in population. The increase in GDP per capita reduced the absolute poverty level in developing countries by almost three-quarters between 1981 and 2012 (from 54% to 15%). Between 1990 and 2012, more than 2 billion additional people obtained access to better sanitation and safer water. The global mortality rate for malaria, which accounts for about 80% of the burden of vector-borne diseases that may pose an increased risk due to global warming, declined by 95% since 1900. Deaths from extreme weather events have declined by 93% since the 1920s and, once the increase in the amount of wealth-at-risk is accounted for, there has been no increase in economic damages from extreme weather events.

The wide divergence between dystopian warmist claims and empirical reality can be attributed to the fact that those claims derive largely from unvalidated models. Empirical data, however, indicate that these models have overestimated the rate of warming.

A recent study compared projections from 117 simulations using 37 models versus empirical surface temperature data. It found that the vast majority of the simulations/models have overestimated warming, on average by a factor of two for 1993–2012 and a factor of four for 1998–2012.It also estimated that the observed trend for 1998–2012 was marginally positive, but not statistically significant; that is, notwithstanding model results, warming has essentially halted.

Impact models, likewise, have underestimated direct benefits of CO2, overestimated the harms from climate change, and underestimated human capacity to adapt which enables the benefits to be captured even as it also reduces the harms. Consequently, these models overestimate net negative damages.  Not surprisingly, dire prognostications of increasing death, disease, and decline of human and environmental well-being from global warming are not reflected in the empirical data.

To summarize, compared with the benefits from CO2 on crop and biosphere productivity, the adverse impacts of CO2-induced warming on the frequencies and intensities of extreme weather, accelerated sea level rise, vector-borne disease prevalence, and human health have been too small to measure, are non-existent or swamped by other factors.

It is very likely that the impact of rising CO2 concentrations is currently net beneficial for both humanity and the biosphere generally. No compelling case has been made that the net impacts of climate change will be negative by the end of this century, particularly given the gradual rate of warming observed recently.

In fact, the more gradual the rate of warming, the greater the likelihood of successful adaptation, and the cheaper that adaptation.

Empirical data confirm that the benefits of CO2 are real whereas the costs of warming are uncertain, dependent as they are on the results of climate models and impact methodologies that tend to overestimate negative impacts.

Halting the increase in CO2 concentrations abruptly, or reducing them, would immediately halt or reverse improvements in plant growth rates, increasing hunger and habitat destruction. On the other hand, any consequential change in warming would happen much more slowly. Thus, any reductions in CO2 emissions would deprive people and the planet of the benefits from CO2 much sooner and more surely than they would reduce any costs of warming.

Financial Post

This op-ed is derived from CARBON DIOXIDE: The good news, a paper from the Global Warming Policy Foundation. Indur Goklany, an independent scholar and author, was a member of the U.S. delegation that established the IPCC and helped develop its First Assessment Report. He subsequently served as a U.S. delegate to the IPCC, and an IPCC reviewer.

 Posted by at 21:10
Nov 082015
 

[Note: Since this topic is one of the hottest topics ever discussed in modern times, we have included it here as an educational resource for research.]
Peter Foster: Paris’s scary climate agenda

The earth dome at France's environment ministry has been built to promote the Climate Change Conference 2015.
The earth dome at France’s environment ministry has been built to promote the Climate Change Conference 2015.

First in a series

Countdown_To_Paris
Details of two international agreements were released on Monday. One, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which reduces trade barriers between 12 signatories, including Canada, got lots of ink. The other, which purports to control global weather, end the era of fossil fuels, and place all human activity under bureaucratic control, got very little.

The pretensions of the latter text, released by the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action, ADP, which is assigned to come up with an agreement to put to the vast UN climate meeting in Paris in December, are mind-boggling.

The fact that they attracted little attention means either that the media and public have no idea of the climate agenda’s implications, or that nobody takes the agenda seriously. Probably both. After all, the UN has been promoting the “urgent threat of climate change” for more than 25 years.

 

While the text of the TPP has yet to be finalized, that of the Paris meeting is skeletal. But, like skeletons, it is scary.

 

If anybody doubts the significance of the changes to which the puppeteers of Paris aspire, they should refer to remarks made last week by Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, who suggested that the climate thrust could destroy massive value as oil and gas assets are “stranded” by climate legislation.

 

Carney, former Governor of the Bank of Canada, has been lauded by segments of the Canadian mainstream media as a “rock star.” Indeed, he does bear some similarity – at least in orientation — to icon Neil Young, who has become deranged over the oil sands and recently signed his name to Naomi Klein’s loopy Leap Manifesto.

 

Carney would perhaps see his status as more analogous to another anti-capitalist crusader, Pope Francis, the man who put the “vestment” in “divestment.”

 

In fact, this is not the first time that Carney has addressed the risk of stranded assets. After a similar Bank of England claim earlier this year, Carney gave evidence before a House of Lords committee. Nigel Lawson, the redoubtable former Chancellor of the Exchequer and founder of skeptical think tank the Global Warming Policy Foundation, noted that the bank’s projections were entirely at odds with those of the International Energy Agency, which saw decades of fossil-fuelled growth. Lawson suggested that Carney should stick to his financial mandate, and that the Bank should stop spouting “green claptrap.” (Significantly, the draft Paris text cites “financial institutions” as key partners in its fight against capitalism. Meanwhile Carney isn’t just boss of the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street, he is head of the Financial Stability Board, a global organization of central bankers. He is reportedly to push the climate agenda at a G20 meeting in November).

 

Text of a draft agreement for the UN climate conference betrays a desperation to negotiate a deal

 

The Paris text’s most significant feature is its lack of detail. It starts with the suggestion that the parties recognize “the intrinsic relationship between climate change, poverty eradication and sustainable development.”[Ya, right!: For one poverty eradication is impossible. Many people have the freedom to be poor if they want to and not bother to learn anything about handling money properly. On the other hand we have poorer nations. We cannot help them just by sending them money as many of the leaders of those countries are corrupt and generally keep the money and use it for their own aggrandizement. However there are agencies like Mennonite Central Committee, World Vision and others with great reputations that always have a person in charge in the country receiving the aid to make sure the money gets used to the benefit of those have nots.]

But although the relationship may be intrinsic, it is far from clear. Insofar as the promoters of the agreement seek to starve poor countries of financing for “maladaptive” fossil fuel development, they are promoting poverty. [Thus begins the hypocrisy!] Developing countries want nothing to do with having wind and solar foisted on them. They are gung ho for coal. They are also interested in the annual US$100 billion of handouts, starting in 2020, that was promised six years ago at Copenhagen but that, true to form, has not materialized. [Which brings us to the point. Since these climate conferences have not invited God in order to get permission to change the climate, all resolutions are just empty words. As Shakespeare put it, “

“Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.”
Macbeth – Act 5, Scene 5
I am sure that Shakespeare at the time did not realize that he was a prophet over 500 years ago pointing to climate change conferences. … “It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.” ]

Many countries, including Canada, have committed, with fingers crossed, to emissions reductions targets, but few have specific plans. 

[ Let’s just go and meet the boys, and errr ladies and just have some nice speeches to make ourselves feel like we are actually doing something useful. Then we can go home and forget that the conference does nothing but generate ambitious headlines aspiring to build a new tower of Babel which also got nowhere!”
“And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death”]

The negotiating text betrays that peculiarly UN mindset that demands that all the world’s alleged problems be shouldered and addressed together, a kind of Gethsemane Syndrome. Not only will a giant interlinked series of new bureaucracies oversee programmes to regulate the climate and encourage appropriate technology and development to end poverty. They will negotiate these joint wonders while ensuring sensitivity to women, natives and the disabled. Their call to action claims to be based on “the best available scientific knowledge,” yet it also incorporates “traditional” — that is, distinctly non-scientific — knowledge. Among additional “preambular paragraphs” being considered is a reference to “Mother Earth. Copyright by Dole” This is not just a spiritual add-on. As a provider of “environmental services” Gaia needs to be paid. Since she has no bank account, the UN is more than prepared to act as her proxy.

 

The document is a compendium of parentheses, that is, wording or issues that have yet to be decided. One parenthesis suggests that the famous 2 degrees Celsius rise in global temperatures (since before the Industrial Revolution) that will put us at an existential tipping point might be changed to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Could that be a recognition of the inconvenient fact that global temperatures are refusing to rise despite unprecedented increases in the CO2 that is meant to drive them?

 

The desperation to negotiate a deal is obvious in provisions that signatories may be able to pull out after three years, and that there are no penalties for non-compliance.

 

The document is very big on “capacity building,” which means bureaucrats teaching people to think like them, in terms of “modalities and procedures” and “facilitative dialogues.” Best practices are a top priority, particularly if they are “scalable and replicable.” Needless to say, the world’s most obscure document is big on transparency.

 

In that speech last week, Pope Mark claimed that “climate change will threaten financial resilience and longer term prosperity.” But the primary threat comes not from climate change, but from climate change policy.

 

The Paris text several times stresses the critical importance of cities and non-governmental organizations in promoting the climate agenda. Thus, to the extent that Canadian export pipelines are being opposed by local authorities in Vancouver and Montreal, and challenged legally and illegally by the likes of Greenpeace and ForestEthics, the UN’s agenda isn’t just bureaucratic fantasy. It’s a real threat to prosperity and democracy.

 Posted by at 10:18
Sep 212015
 

Did you know?

 Posted by at 10:07
Jun 242015
 

Helena Rho: A looming whooping cough epidemic — that’s totally preventable

A school nurse prepares a vaccine against whooping cough before giving it to students at Mark Twain Middle School in Los Angeles.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty ImagesA school nurse prepares a vaccine against whooping cough before giving it to students at Mark Twain Middle School in Los Angeles.

A looming whooping cough epidemic — that’s totally preventable

Imagine coughing so hard and for so long that you turn blue and stop breathing. Pertussis, or whooping cough, can do that to an infant. The disease is caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis and causes unstoppable, sustained, violent coughing accompanied by a “whoop” when you inhale. Pertussis can affect anyone, but it poses the most danger to infants.

A pertussis vaccine became available in the 1940s, and incidence of the infection dropped from around 200,000 per year to barely over 1,000 by 1976. But today the United States is in the middle of a pertussis epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 41,000 cases of pertussis were reported in the U.S. in 2012. At least 18 people have died, mostly infants younger than three months of age — too young to be fully vaccinated. There hasn’t been such a major outbreak since 1959. The states with the most cases per capita are Wisconsin, Minnesota and Vermont.

The epidemic is due in part to the reduced effectiveness and the shortened duration of immunity conferred by a relatively new vaccine. But the epidemic is also spreading because of a low vaccination rate.

Vaccination needs a critical mass to effectively confer “herd immunity” on a population. When vaccine rates fall below 90%, diseases spread readily enough to endanger people who can’t be vaccinated because of illness or because they are too young. In parts of Vermont, the vaccination rate is only 60%. It is one of 20 states that allow a philosophical as well as religious exemption to vaccines, and it has one of the highest philosophical exemption rates in the country.

George Till, a state House representative and a physician, tried to change that last year by proposing a bill to eliminate the philosophical exemption to vaccines. Instead, Act 157, which became law on July 1, 2012 — when the current pertussis epidemic was already raging — turned into a complicated, compromise vaccine bill that preserved the philosophical exemption.

The protesters blared the discredited claim that vaccines cause autism

Till lives and practices near Burlington, Vt., and was elected to the House four years ago. In his re-election campaign, he spent $18.55 for dog bones. With dog treats in hand, this soft-spoken doctor went door to door and asked his neighbours to vote for him. Till, an OB-GYN and a Democrat, did not accept donations to his campaign from any group — he even sent back a cheque from Planned Parenthood.

Act 157 originated when a pediatrician neighbour of Till’s came to him with a concern. In a local kindergarten class, 75% of students were not fully vaccinated. Till researched the issue and thought it was reasonable to get rid of the philosophical exemption in order to increase vaccination rates. Till proposed a bill in the House, and state Senator Kevin Mullin proposed an almost identical bill in the Senate.

The Senate bill passed quickly, but not so in the House. The bill languished in the health-care committee. Then the Legislature was off for a week because the first Tuesday in March is reserved for town meetings in communities across the state.

By the time the Legislature reconvened in the capitol building, the anti-vaccination community had organized itself. “They were in the building every day, in people’s faces,” Till says. The activists blared the discredited claims of Andrew Wakefield that vaccines do more harm than good, that vaccines cause autism. Wakefield, a British physician, was stripped of his medical license for fabricating a connection between vaccines and autism. Till could not believe what was happening: “He is God to these people.” Millions of lives have been saved through vaccines, numerous scientific studies have debunked the myth that vaccines cause autism, and the only studies to show a link have been exposed as frauds. Yet anti-vaxxers were successfully spreading misinformation.

The most egregious was their exploitation of the death of seven-year-old Kaylynne Matten of Barton, Vt. The anti-vaccine community claimed her death was due to adverse effects of the flu vaccine. However, the coroner listed the cause of death as complications from parainfluenza virus, a different category of virus from influenza.

Till could not even convince his own health-care committee in the House that Vermont’s declining vaccination rates were a public health problem.

Kevin Mullin, Till’s co-sponsor of the bill, then proposed a compromise: placing a “trigger” into the vaccine bill so that if vaccination rates fell below 90% in any one school, the philosophical exemption would be eliminated for that school. But they could not get enough support for this provision, and it failed to appear in the final bill. The philosophical exemption stayed in place. When it came down to protecting newborns, the immune-suppressed, and children with special health needs, Till says, “This caucus threw the most vulnerable under the bus.”

Act 157 did mandate that parents refusing to vaccinate their children be required to receive educational material about vaccines and also to sign an exemption form acknowledging that they understood the risks to their children and others posed by their personal decision not to vaccinate. The Vermont Coalition for Vaccine Choice engaged an attorney, Mitchell Pearl, to challenge the language of the exemption form as unconstitutional. Pearl wrote in an open letter to the deputy commissioner of health, “signing the form is a violation of their rights under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.” He threatened litigation if the Department of Health did not modify the exemption form’s language. The Health Department capitulated to the demands and neutralized the language of the form.

The most egregious was their exploitation of the death of seven-year-old

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recently issued a report about the safety of recommended childhood vaccines. The 14-member panel examined numerous studies, solicited feedback from many different groups, and found the current schedule of vaccines for children, which includes as many as 24 vaccines by a child’s second birthday, to be safe and effective: “The IOM committee uncovered no evidence of major safety concerns associated with adherence to the childhood immunization schedule.” The IOM acknowledged that some parents’ attitudes toward vaccines have “shifted,” largely driven by concerns about side effects, but said its report, which is the “most comprehensive examination of the immunization schedule to date,” should help reassure these parents. The IOM was clear: “Vaccines are among the most effective and safe public health interventions to prevent serious disease and death.” What’s more, “delaying or declining vaccination has led to outbreaks of such vaccine-preventable diseases as measles and whooping cough that may jeopardize public health.”

George Till is trying again to change the law in Vermont. He believes that the pertussis epidemic was preventable. “We had the chance to be proactive, but we blew it,” Till says. In January, he introduced new legislation in the House to eliminate in public schools both the philosophical and religious exemptions to the pertussis vaccine and to require adults who work with children to be current with their pertussis vaccination. The CDC is recommending that all adults, including pregnant women, receive a pertussis booster.

Schools and homes are where disease spreads. And in Vermont, Till says there are “pockets of unimmunized” posing a threat to their communities, especially in the “hot spots of anti-vaccination.” One such hot spot lies outside the capital, Montpelier. “These young parents were born in the vaccine era and have not seen devastating diseases,” he says. Till says these parents are “picking and choosing which vaccines they give to their children.” One of the vaccines these parents are most often choosing not to give their children is against polio.

Slate.com

 Posted by at 15:43