By Paul Homewood
I reported on the problems with the emergency spillway at Oroville last week. Things have now taken a turn for the worse.
At least 188,000 people were asked to evacuate their homes in Northern California after authorities warned an emergency spillway in the country’s tallest dam was in danger of failing Sunday and unleashing uncontrolled flood waters on towns below.
Lake Oroville, about 150 miles northeast of San Francisco, is one of the state’s largest man-made lakes, and the 770-foot-tall Oroville Dam is the tallest in the U.S.
Sunday’s evacuation order came because of concerns the dam’s emergency spillway could fail. Over five hours later, hundreds of cars carrying panicked and angry people were sitting in gridlocked traffic.
By Paul Homewood
David Rose follows up his story from last week:
They were duped – and so were we. That was the conclusion of last week’s damning revelation that world leaders signed the Paris Agreement on climate change under the sway of unverified and questionable data.
A landmark scientific paper –the one that caused a sensation by claiming there has been NO slowdown in global warming since 2000 – was critically flawed. And thanks to the bravery of a whistleblower, we now know that for a fact.
The response has been extraordinary, with The Mail on Sunday’s disclosures reverberating around the world. There have been nearly 150,000 Facebook ‘shares’ since last Sunday, an astonishing number for a technically detailed piece, and extensive coverage in media at home and abroad.
It has even triggered an inquiry by Congress. Lamar Smith, the Texas Republican who chairs the House of Representatives’ science committee, is renewing demands for documents about the controversial paper, which was produced by America’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the world’s leading source of climate data.
In his view, the whistleblower had shown that ‘NOAA cheated and got caught’. No wonder Smith and many others are concerned: the revelations go to the very heart of the climate change industry and the scientific claims we are told we can trust.
By Paul Homewood
Booker weighs in on the latest NOAA scandal:
Two years ago last week, I wrote a column given the provocative heading “The fiddling of temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever”. It was the second of two articles which attracted a record 42,000 comments from all over the world, reporting on the discovery by expert bloggers in half a dozen countries – led in Britain by Paul Homewood on his site “Not a lot of people know that” – that something very odd appeared to have been done to the official land surface temperature records on which, more than anything else, the entire alarm over man-made global warming has rested.
These derive from the record known as the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN), run by the US government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). By comparing archived data with that now being published, the bloggers claimed to have discovered that temperature records all over the world had, seemingly, been systematically “adjusted” to show older temperatures lower than those originally measured and more recent temperatures higher than those recorded: thus conveying the notion that the world is warming significantly more than the actual data justified.
This scandal has now surfaced again with accusations made by Dr John Bates, a recently retired senior scientist at the NOAA, against his former boss , Tom Karl. Bates alleges that an NOAA paper written before the historic climate conference in Paris in 2015 breached its own rules and was based on misleading and unverified data. That, to many, looks like the paper was designed to stoke up hysteria over global warming in the run-up to the conference.
2015 saw a major climate conference in Paris Credit: Benoit Tessier/Reuters
The warmist lobby had no greater concern at that time than the so-called “pause”: the evidence that, for nearly 20 years, the trend in global temperatures had been failing to rise as all the official computer models had predicted it should.
Karl’s paper won worldwide publicity by purporting to show that there had, in fact, been no “pause”, and that both land and sea temperatures had continued to rise more than was previously accepted.
What Dr Bates now claims is that, in defiance of rules he himself drew up and over his (Bates’s) private objections, Karl’s paper had again been based on “adjustments” that the scientific evidence didn’t justify.
The paper, widely quoted by President Barack Obama and others, played a key part in persuading the Paris conference to sign a “historic” (but non-binding) agreement to take all sorts of hugely costly measures to prevent global temperatures rising by “more than two degrees”.
Dr Bates’s claims could not be more timely; the word from Washington is that a high priority of Donald Trump’s administration, and the science committee in the US Congress, is that they now want a full investigation of all this temperature “adjusting”, which – contrary to the satellite data – looks like it has been giving such a dangerously unscientific picture of just how far and fast the world has in reality been warming. Once this scandal has been properly brought out into the open, it will raise the most disturbing question mark yet over the promotion of the greatest and costliest scare story the world has ever known.
By Paul Homewood
h/t Joe Public
WUWT carries the story of the Oroville Dam emergency spillway in California. In short, the spillway has been damaged at the same time as the dam itself is close to overflowing, following recent heavy rain.
There will doubtless be many questions asked about the design, integrity and maintenance of the spillway. But one question that should be asked is why the dam was allowed to come close to full in the first place.
By Paul Homewood
h/t Joe Public
The Australian Energy Market Operator, AEMO, has issued this statement, following their appearance in front of the Senate Select Committee into the Resilience of Electricity Infrastructure in a Warming World.
They evidently don’t accept that they were in any way at fault for the latest blackouts in South Australia.
What I find particularly interesting though is the implication that a “warming world” was somehow to blame.
According to the BOM, there has been nothing unusual at all about South Australia’s summer daytime temperatures in the last decade.
By Paul Homewood
From the “News you won’t see on the BBC” department.
According to the BM Report data, coal power contributed 16% to the UK’s electricity generation last month, compared to just 9% from wind.
CCGT supplied the bulk, with 45%. Altogether, the conventional sources of coal, gas and nuclear still continue to provide the lion’s share, totalling 80%.
Solar power is estimated to have produced about 1%.
Prince Charles says that we should all switch to renewable energy now.
By Paul Homewood
It is just over a year since Storm Desmond brought devastating floods to Carlisle.
Soon after the Carlisle Flood Action Group was formed, and they have now published a very full and highly technical account of the floods.
This is the first part of the Executive Summary:
Although Storm Desmond was severe by any account (and the report later accepts that it may have been exacerbated by global warming), the real problem was lack of river maintenance and poor management. This of course is a rerun of the Somerset floods in 2014.
By Paul Homewood
From the energy consultants, Platts:
* January average coal output at 17.3 GW, highest since Feb 2012
* Coal, gas ramped up to offset nuclear outages, low wind, demand gains
* Day-ahead power average at 59-month high, spot spikes to 2008-high
German coal and gas-fired power plant output in January rose to its highest in almost five years as cold weather boosted demand while below average wind and record-low winter nuclear availability reduced supply, according to power generation data compiled by think-tank Fraunhofer ISE.
The increased need to ramp up even less efficient thermal power plants helped to lift the day-ahead monthly average power price to its highest since February 2012 with spot prices spiking at their highest since 2008 at the height of the cold spell in late January, S&P Global Platts data shows. Output from coal-fired power plants was 12.9 TWh in January, up 37% on year and averaging around 17.3 GW for the whole month, a level not reached since the extended cold spell back in February 2012, the data shows.
Coal also removed lignite from the top of the power mix in January with lignite plants already running near maximum available capacity.
The full article is here.
Meanwhile Reuters report:
The German Muenster district court on Thursday granted an emission-control permit to Datteln 4, a hard-coal fired power station under construction by utility Uniper that has been held up by an intense legal battle with environmentalists.
Uniper said it aims to begin supplying electricity and district heating from the 1,050 megawatts plant in western Germany in the first half of 2018.
The project goes back to 2009, aims to replace ageing installations taken offline by Uniper, and initially was aimed to start producing in 2011
By Paul Homewood
It was only last week that Jeremy Warner was announcing the death of fossil fuels at the hands of irresistable green energy!
With the publication of the BP Energy Outlook, confirming that oil, coal and gas will still be playing a dominant global role in twenty years time with consumption continuing to grow, he has taken a slightly different tack in his Sunday column:
Few chief executives are ever willingly prepared to put their companies into run-off. To do so seems an admission of failure. Yet is this not the best strategy for the oil giants BP, Shell, ExxonMobil et al? I ask this question not just for its shock value, but because it is the logical conclusion to draw from BP’s latest “Energy Outlook”.
This highlights an increasingly self-evident fact; that despite one time predictions of “peak oil” and other such nonsense, the world is in fact overflowing with oil and other fossil fuel reserves. Today’s known resources dwarf likely consumption out to 2050 and beyond.
As a commodity product, oil has to date been quite unusual in that it accommodates both low and high-cost producers. This is largely because supply is deliberately constrained by OPEC and others with an interest in eking out the resource’s income stream for as long as possible. A barrel of oil, it has long been thought, is worth more left in the ground than extracted.
The now exponential growth of renewables threatens to challenge this established orthodoxy. Indeed, BP admits in its analysis that quite a bit of today’s known reserves will end up never extracted – music to the ears of the green lobby. The implications are clear: oil producers should make hay while they still can, even at the cost of a resulting glut that depresses prices. In any case, there may be little point in developing new sources of supply, particularly at high cost.
Rather, oil companies should be slashing their investment to virtually zero and handing the cash back to shareholders – either that or using their superior credit ratings to invest in renewables.
He is actually totally wrong – BP have not said that quite a bit of today’s known reserves will end up never extracted , simply that they won’t be extracted before 2050.
And he totally glosses over the fact that oil consumption is projected to grow by 16% up to 2035, when it will still be more than triple the energy provided by renewables.
I never cease to be surprised how supposedly knowledgeable business journalists get away with writing such utter rubbish.
But, back to his main point, I have no idea whether it would be a sensible business decision for oil companies to stop investing and pay the money back to shareholders. You could, in any event, use exactly the same analogy with Apple or Google; who knows whether they will still have a profitable business model in thirty years time.
But what I do know is that as soon as oil companies stop investing in new oilfields, supply will tighten, prices spike (with all of the damage to the global economy that would entail), and with new profits beckoning investment will pick back up again.
It does not take a genius to work that one out. It is after all exactly what has been happening in the oil and mining sectors for decades.
In fact, ample reserves of oil will ensure that the world retains access to a cheap and reliable source of energy, which will make it even harder for renewable alternatives to make headway without subsidies and carbon taxes.
Which is rather the polar opposite of what Jeremy Warner has been arguing.
But let’s finish with this chart from the BP Energy Outlook, which Warner bases his assertions on. This is their guesstimate of what might happen after 2035.
They acknowledge that future energy trends are very uncertain, and therefore include wide uncertainty bands, principally concerning GDP growth and road vehicle efficiency.
The base case suggests that oil demand will peak in the mid 2040s. But most significantly, it will still be well above current levels by 2050, even under the lowest scenario.
Given the oil reserves we already know about, there is no reason why oil will not continue to play a key role in global energy for many decades yet.
By Paul Homewood
It’s not long since South Australia’s wind power went AWOL during a storm, plunging most of the state into darkness.
Now, as the Herald Sun reports, there’s blackouts there because there’s no wind:
South Australia’s wind farms fail again, grinding out just 2 per cent power when the wind’s die in a heatwave.
Result: blackouts to 40,000 homes as the temperature soars above 40 degrees. And lives put in danger by this green madness.
Widespread power blackouts were imposed across Adelaide and parts of South Australia with heatwave conditions forcing authorities to impose load shedding.
About 40,000 properties were without electricity supplies for about 30 minutes because of what SA Power Networks said was a direction by the Australian Energy Market Regulator.
The temperature was still above 40C when the rolling blackouts began at 6.30pm to conserve supplies as residents sought relief with air conditioners…
SA Power Networks said in a tweet tonight: “AEMO has instructed us to commence 100MW rotational #load shedding via Govt agreed list due to lack of available generation supply in SA.’’
The interconnector bringing most coal-fired backup from Victoria was working flat-out at the time. South Australia simply did not have enough electricity generation of its own.
Once again it is important to recognise five things.
- South Australia has the country’s most expensive and yet most unreliable electricity because it has scrapped its coal-fired power and relies instead on wind power for 40 per cent of its electricity.
- Expensive and unreliable power costs South Australia jobs, and risks lives as the poor and old cannot afford – or get – cooling in a heat wave or warmth in a cold snap.
- South Australia cannot rely for long on backup from Victoria, which has its own renewable energy targets gthat have already helped to force the announced closure of the giant Hazelwood coal-fired generator, responsible for up to 20 per cent of Victoria’s power.
- What we’re seeing in South Australia will spread to the whole country if Labor is elected federally and imposes its own renewable target of 50 per cent by 2030. This will force us to use triple the wind, solar and hydro power we do now (but without adding any more dams) at an estimated cost of $48 billion. Our electricity will become as unreliable as that of a Third World state. Or South Australia. Same difference.
- And none of this pain – the expense, the lost jobs, the risk to health – will make the slightest measurable difference to global warming. The whole point of switching to green power is to cut the emissions that is blamed for causing the world to warm. But the cuts we make in Australia by building wind farms are too tiny to make any difference that any scientist can measure. It is all pain, no gain.
Madness. This global warming policy is a deliberate policy to make us poor.
Yes, madness indeed!