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Harrabin Confuses Predictions With Reality.

March 2, 2020

By Paul Homewood


I have commented before about the little twitter bubble that Roger Harrabin lives in.

He barely seems to interact with the real world, and instead talks to his closed circle of eco extremists, like the guys at Carbon Brief.

Today on Harrabin’s Twitter feed, he retweets this ridiculous nonsense from the discredited Zeke Hausfather, who works for the pointless Berkeley Earth:




Just look at the video, which only runs for a few seconds.

Note that the title states that “climate change is accelerating sea level rise”.

And watch how the video actually shows that predictions of sea level rise by the end of the century have been rising.

In other words, it is not actual sea level rise which is accelerating, it is the increasingly implausible predictions which have been accelerating away from the actual rise.

This is the make believe world, which Harrabin, Hausfather and their chums now inhabit.

  1. March 2, 2020 7:49 am

    What else do you expect from someone whose level of scientific knowledge is like that of the great majority of the ‘climate crisis’ loons, i.e.close to zero. It’s group-think gone mad.

  2. GeoffB permalink
    March 2, 2020 8:12 am

    “Don’t confuse me with the facts my mind is made up” the mantra of the green loonies.

  3. Pancho Plail permalink
    March 2, 2020 8:30 am

    I am satisfied with the headline. There is a lot of uncertainty. As always, it is instructive to compare past predictions with actuality, and then judge further predictions accordingly.

  4. March 2, 2020 8:31 am

    “ridiculous nonsense from the discredited Zeke Hausfather, who works for the pointless Berkeley Earth”

    Only the English can use the English language with this kind of effect. Thank you.

    More on Carbon Brief

  5. John Wainwright permalink
    March 2, 2020 8:34 am

    PSMSL data is there online for all to see. There is zero acceleration in trends from the decades long history, but don’t expect that fact to be aired by the ‘unbiased’ BBC.

  6. March 2, 2020 8:47 am

    You cannot cure stupidity, such as that exhibited by Harrabin.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      March 2, 2020 1:17 pm

      But you must admit he’s good for a little light relief on a wet Monday 🤪

  7. Derek Reynolds permalink
    March 2, 2020 8:58 am

    I cannot help but think they have mistaken metres for millimetres.

    • NeilC permalink
      March 2, 2020 3:16 pm

      mm to them is 2 meters

      • Up2snuff permalink
        March 2, 2020 3:54 pm

        Shock! Horror!!

        Mind you, I have suspected that the BBC suffers from a collective dementia so why not add dimensia to their catalogue of ‘conditions’ while we are at it.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      March 2, 2020 4:05 pm

      A few months ago the BBC did have some Green spokesman on who claimed that a temperature of 20 degrees Celsius one day was “twice” the average for the month. Leaving aside the fact that the average might contain such temperatures, nobody on the BBC pointed out the utter scientific illiteracy of the comment.

      We are constantly being called Science Deniers by people who have literally no clue about the very basics of science.

      • Ken Pollock permalink
        March 2, 2020 4:09 pm

        I like the idea of the temperature being twice the normal level. I wrote to the BBC R4 Today programme twice when John Humphries referred to a one and half percent increase in temperature being the acceptable limit. Little by way of apology, but it demonstrated a fundamental lack of appreciation about which they were talking…

  8. Chaswarnertoo permalink
    March 2, 2020 9:22 am

    And their idiotic belief that sea level rises due to anthropogenic CO2.
    WAIS has hundreds of volcanoes under it. Harlech castle ( built 1000 years ago ) sea gate is 4 m above today’s high tide………

  9. Ken Pollock permalink
    March 2, 2020 9:48 am

    And the BBC calls him their environmental “analyst”. Sadly, I think he is incapable of “analysis”. Rather he repeats any alarmist statements without comment or qualification.

  10. Vernon E permalink
    March 2, 2020 10:30 am

    When Harrabin was on Politics Live last week he, as always, illustrated his sea level claims by reference to Bangladesh. Could somebody tell him that Bangladesh is one huge delta of some great rivers and like all deltas is subject to constant changes of level through silting and upheavals. The sea into which it flows, the Bay of Bengal, is showing absolutely typical sea level change of 1 – 3 mms per year. If it wasn’t millions would be dying as Calcutta floods.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      March 2, 2020 11:10 am

      The BBC has been around just about every major delta in the world telling the same lie.

      If sinking at 20mm a year, does +2mm of sea level rise make any significant difference to your fate?

  11. MrGrimNasty permalink
    March 2, 2020 10:46 am

    Feb. CET result is out – again mild, but not exceptional, joint 30th warmest of 362 years.
    Re-emphasizes some of the very mild winter months occurring in the 17/1800s.

  12. john cooknell permalink
    March 2, 2020 10:50 am

    This is the actual scientific observations for UK. Climate Change trend 1.4mm per year.

    If we are going to get to even the minimum of what these idiots predict, then sea level had better get a wiggle on!

    The thing I find interesting is that sea levels are much less volatile than they were at the start of C20th, so we have already had high level tides they happened 100 years ago!

  13. Nial permalink
    March 2, 2020 12:21 pm

    “This is the make believe world, which Harrabin, Hausfather and their chums now inhabit”

    It’s not just journalists.

    I saw a tweet by a “Dr Jen Baxter” saying

    “When you get together to try and make a difference.
    Successful Wales, industry, decarbonisation, quality of life. We want all of these and we can have them if we work together.

    I replied saying
    “No, you can’t…..” with a link to Prof Michael Kelly’s analysis on the GWPF

    She then replied
    “There’s no g,w,p or f in team and teamwork makes the dream work”

    Assuming she’s some sort of social scientist I clicked her name to find she’s the IMechE HEAD OF ENGINEERING.

    We’re doomed.

    Thread here (I think)

  14. Broadlands permalink
    March 2, 2020 12:59 pm

    “… it is not actual sea level rise which is accelerating, it is the increasingly implausible predictions which have been accelerating away from the actual rise.”

    This is true for almost all of the ‘global warming’ scare-mongering. The future is little more than climate model predictions….forecasts that accelerate away from actual data. And when the models need adjusting, the data are adjusted to provide the intended result.

  15. Gerry, England permalink
    March 2, 2020 1:40 pm

    I don’t know about ‘now inhabit’ – I think have all been in their own little world right from the start.

  16. mothcatcher permalink
    March 2, 2020 2:34 pm

    Think you are being too hard on Zeke, Paul.
    Yes, he’s signed up to the alarmist camp, but he seems prepared to engage with his critics, often successfully, shows his working, can justify his positions in detail, and generally is a competent scientist. I think I’d call him “fair”.

    Harrabin.. well, that’s another species entirely.

  17. March 2, 2020 4:25 pm

    I’m confused. According to St. Greta the world is on fire (she repeated this in Bristol). According to Harrabin it’s under water, or soon will be. I thought they were supposed to be singing from the same hymn sheet.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      March 2, 2020 4:48 pm

      Welcome to 1984:- “doublethink”.

      Of course Greta/Harrabin will point to Australia recently, one minute ‘unprecedented’ fires, the next ‘unprecedented’ rain/floods.

      Welcome to 1984:- “Every record has been destroyed or falsified….”

      1974/5 never happened. 5 times as much land area (15% of Australia) never burned. There wasn’t nearly double the average rainfall in a year. The most destructive Cyclone (Tracey) never hit Australia to raze Darwin. Cat 5 cyclone Joan never happened. 1974/5 had perfect weather because CO2 was only 330ppm.

  18. Ken Ransom permalink
    March 2, 2020 5:08 pm

    Would like to see your take on this Bloomberg item:

    In 2017, Tesla Inc. installed the world’s largest lithium-ion battery in South Australia, the Hornsdale Power Reserve, owned by Neoen. Friday an engineering consultant group announced the extent to which having this power reserve has stabilized the entire grid in South Australia, and has also facilitated a transition to green energy that can be plagued by boom periods (sunny, windy) and bust periods (night, calm) while still satisfying demand. Aurecon announced that in 2019, the Hornsdale facility reduced network costs by $116 million Australian dollars ($76 million USD). The battery — and the added slack it permits — has cut the cost to regulate the South Australia grid by 91 percent. Neoen announced it will add another 50 megawatts of capacity at Hornsdale in 2020 on top of the 100 megawatts there now.

    James Thornhill, Bloomberg

    • Ken Pollock permalink
      March 2, 2020 6:01 pm

      Ken, I worked out that if the battery was to supply the 500,000 or so homes in S Australia after a blackout, the battery power would last around 2.57 minutes – just enough time for a sensible source of electricity to step in and try to restore power to everyone – including industry, who were not included in my calculation. Big battery? Yes. Useful? Questionable!!!

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      March 3, 2020 4:17 pm

      Once upon a time, in the days before renewables, the grid connected parts of South Australia had a cheap and reliable electricity supply, based mainly on the Port Augusta coal fired power station near the Whyalla steelworks (which fed the Holden factory in Adelaide among other customers), supplemented with some gas and diesel generation from stations like Torrens Island, on the outskirts of Adelaide, and with the benefit of the Murraylink (200MW) and Heywood (~700MW, less in hot weather) interconnection to next door Victoria (which supplied some of the gas from the Gippsland basin), a state which also was predominantly coal fired. The big rotating masses of the generators provided lots of grid inertia, which helped to keep the frequency stable simply as a by-product of operating: the costs of providing stability were consequently inconsequential. You can get some idea of how the system operated by looking at how it works in Queensland, substituting gas and other flexible generation for the solar element:

      Then the greenies started invading. They promoted lots of rooftop solar with installation subsidies and generous feed in tariffs. They said that Port Augusta would not be allowed to refurbish when it reached the end of its useful life, so the economics of preventative maintenance to ensure reliability were hit. They started building wind farms all over. When it was windy, the power stations had to make way. When it was sunny, the power stations had to make way. So their operating hours and capacity utilisation were cut, limiting the times at which they could hope to make a profit. Moreover, all the cranking up and winding down to accommodate wind and solar took its toll on the other generators, with thermal stressing and extra wear from spinning up and down – which served to decrease their reliability and increase their costs for extra maintenance. When the wind didn’t blow on hot summer days that add dramatically to demand from airconditioning (especially after Port Augusta was closed) there was massive reliance on supply from Victoria, and the conventional generators took advantage of the shortages by charging prices that on bad days reached the statutory maximum (currently I think A$14,300/MWh): that still left power cuts by rotation, usually concentrated on voting districts that didn’t vote greenie. Power bills soared because there simply wasn’t capacity to meet demand.

      But that wasn’t all. On windy and sunny days so much conventional capacity was backed out that there was no longer sufficient available inertia on the grid to ensure stability. Without frequency stability, the grid starts to fall over into blackout, as we experienced on August 9th last year in the UK. So the Australian regulator set a rule to ensure that there was always conventional capacity to provide inertia. Of course, we are talking about periods when electricity is basically in oversupply and prices are depressed (the minimum that AEMO permit is minus A$1,000/MWh), so in order to recoup the costs of operating, conventional generators had to charge high rates for providing the FCAS (frequency control and stability service). Look! A squirrel! said the greenies, trying to pin the blame on the conventional generators for the rising bills that their fatuous policies had brought about.

      Then one day there was a storm. Not record breaking, but with winds gusting over 50mph which was enough to see many wind farms shut for precautionary safety. Once again, demand on the interconnectors from Victoria soared to meet the shortfall. Then part of a transmission line was blown over, cutting (IIRC) supply from the Murraylink. The extra demand immediately transferred over to the Heywood link, which overwhelmed it, and it tripped out. A statewide blackout in South Australia followed. Before the entrails of what happened had been properly examined, Elon Musk made his Big South Australian Battery offer claiming it would stop Big South Australian Blackouts. So that is how we got the battery.

      Its main function has been to provide FCAS – the second to second balancing of fluctuations in the grid supply demand balance that were previously provided by conventional generators. Subsidiary to that, they do try to take advantage of the enormous fluctuations in power prices that the high wind and solar South Australian grid causes, and this is the main source of their profit. But given that one bad day of extensive A$14,300/MWh prices can add almost $1bn to bills, perhaps some perspective is called for on what is has done for South Australia as a whole. There are still rotating blackouts – its capacity (100MW) is utterly trivial, even on the very rare occasions it is used to the full. Power bills continue to soar. With Victoria now following a similar path, and a high correlation of wind output between the two states, bills can be expected to soar still further.

      Here’s a couple of recent days of operation:

  19. Eddie P permalink
    March 2, 2020 7:04 pm

    Paul – no doubt you will direct this to the correct spot but I think it relevant to the bubble some of our masters live in. The link is to a motion that was passed by Gateshead Council that declared the inhabitants of this northern borough were in immediate danger from a climate disaster. The opening statement beggars belief –

    Click to access Item%206%20Appendix%20-%20Motion%20on%20Climate%20Change.pdf

    • joe public permalink
      March 3, 2020 9:42 pm

      Eddie, internet search for the opening statement. You will find the exact words repeated in ‘Climate emergency’ motions put before Weymouth, Blackpool, Gloucester, Greenwich, Woodley, Wiggington and many other councils. Then look at the political party that the proposer belongs to.
      They are not living in a bubble, they have organised one of the most remarkable conspiracies in history and they are winning. Hapless Tory councillors, who might be expected to resist on behalf of free enterprise, are frozen in the headlights of this green juggernaut, either out of fear of attack by constituency zealots or a total lack of understanding of what is happening around them.

  20. Ken Ransom permalink
    March 3, 2020 2:11 am

    Thank you

  21. Ken Van de Burgt permalink
    March 3, 2020 3:34 am

    Some people REALLY need to look at the tide gauge.

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