Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Why should we wreck our economy when it is North America and Europe that are the big polluters? What happened to the "polluter pays" principle? Among the developed nations, only Europe has inflicted a carbon tax on itself, and that would never have happened without Brussels. Should we really be the only developing nation to commit economic suicide this way?
Friday, May 13, 2011
Earthlife Africa's Saliem Fakir has a long piece about how it was the 'unknown unknowns' that caused the disaster at Fukushima. http://www.polity.org.za/article/japans-nuclear-crisis-shows-up-the-unknown-unknowns-2011-05-13
He is wrong, of course. For instance, he says "Nobody expected the reactor fuel would leak radiation so quickly owing to cool water not being able to get into the reactor after most of it had evaporated in the essential stages." What does Fakir think they provided emergency generators at a power station for?? Everyone expected that the reactor fuel would fail if cooling failed. The designers did their best to ensure that cooling would not fail. The tsunami proved them wrong.
And then he stoops to guilt by association - "And the Japanese economy lost close to $300-billion in the first few weeks of the disaster." That was the result of the tsunami, NOT the result of the nuclear incident. Soon we will be told that over 10 000 died at Fukushima.
Finally he moves into the prophet mode - "The long-term damage is significant. The area around the disaster won’t be habitable for decades." How does he know? The accident happened in March; the levels of radiation in the present exclusion zone have fallen nearly to background over much of the area.
Long term gloom is so very easy to predict - the prophet is dead by the time his falsehoods become apparent.
Saturday, May 7, 2011
Can I suggest that crop yields might be improving worldwide because of improvements in farming and in the strains of seeds planted? It is called the Green Revolution, and has been taking place for the past 50 years.
Could I also suggest that increased CO2 might be playing a part? Plants demonstrably do better with more CO2. If you doubt this, visit CO2 Science (http://www.co2science.org/index.php) and you can read hundreds of references to the fact - and even watch great videos.
Then I have to ask how the heck they can calibrate their models, if indeed the climate is changing? An uncalibrated model is as much use as a Porsche and no driving licence.
Finally, let me remark that this crowd of modellers really should stick to their choo-choos. Real farmers know that getting high crop yields takes skill and luck in equal quantities. It is not an exact science.
Thursday, May 5, 2011
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
A global anti-corruption coalition Transparency International has published a ‘Global Corruption Report: Climate Change’. “Where huge amounts of money flow through new and untested financial markets and mechanisms, there is always a risk of corruption,” it said.
Indeed! Look at how the EU had to shut down its carbon market, when it found that VAT fraud on carbon trading had cost it €5 billion. When you try to trade in something as ubiquitous as carbon, you face real problems - which is why the Kyoto Protocol has been such a dismal failure. It has cost billions, and achieved nothing.
I think there has to be a lesson in there somewhere.
Monday, May 2, 2011
I hadn't been following the debate between the good Dr Caldicott and George Monbiot. http://www.monbiot.com/2011/04/04/evidence-meltdown/. I don't always agree with Monbiot, but I admire his honesty. In this case, his experience in debate caused him to dig deeper, and he found:
The anti-nuclear movement to which I once belonged has misled the world about the impacts of radiation on human health. The claims we have made are ungrounded in science, unsupportable when challenged and wildly wrong. We have done other people, and ourselves, a terrible disservice.
My own response to the Caldicott piece agrees:
The people of Japan need help, sympathy and comfort. The losses they have suffered from the tsunami are of a warlike dimension. It is irresponsible of Caldicott to add her nonsense to their woes. As a medical doctor, she should have more care for human well-being than the publication of lies.