EPA Plans for a Bright Environmental Future

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler delivered an address laying out the agency vision for fulfilling its mission.  Excerpts in italics with my formatting and bolds.

EPA’s mission has been straight forward since its founding. Protect human health and the environment. Doing this ensures that all Americans – regardless of their zip code – have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, and clean land to live, work, and play upon. Under President Trump, we have done this as well, if not better, than any recent administration.  This is great news, and like most great news, you rarely read about it in the press.

  • During the first three years of the Trump Administration, air pollution in this country fell 7 percent.
  • Last year, EPA delisted 27 Superfund sites, the most in a single year since 2001.
  • And agency programs have contributed more than $40 billion dollars to clean water infrastructure investment during President Trump’s first term.

For much of the latter part of the 20th century, there was bipartisan understanding on what environmental protection meant. Some of it was captured in legislation and some it by established practice. These principles formed a consensus about how the federal government did its job of protecting the environment.

But unfortunately, in the past decade or so, some members of former administrations and progressives in Congress have elevated single issue advocacy – in many cases focused just on climate change – to virtue-signal to foreign capitals, over the interests of communities within their own country. Communities deserve better than this, but in the recent past, EPA has forgotten important parts of its mission. It’s my belief that we misdirect a lot of resources that could be better used to help communities across this country.

So, if this is where we are – with misdirected policies, misused resources, and a more partisan political environment – and we want an EPA for the next 50 years – how do we get there? One way to do this – and I’ve spent more than 25 years thinking about this problem – is to focus on helping communities become healthier in a more comprehensive manner.

Communities that deal with the worst pollution in this country – and tend to be low-income and minority – face multiple environmental problems that need solving.  Many of the sites EPA has responsibility for are in some of the most disadvantaged communities in this country. And I will point out a truism. Neglect is a form of harm, and it’s not fair for these communities to be abandoned just because they don’t have enough political power to stop the neglect.

So where does this put us as a country in 2020? The truth is this country is facing a lot of environmental and social problems that have not been dealt with the right way up until now. And while the focus of the next 50 years should not be like the last 50, it should be informed by it.

Many towns and cities in the United States are using the same water infrastructure they’ve used for over 100 years, and many schools use lead water pipes long after such pipes were banned from new buildings. The American public views our pesticide program through the lens of the trial lawyers who advertise on television instead of the way we manage the program. And the Superfund Program – which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, has become focused on process, rather than project completion.

These issues are challenging and would be difficult for any administration in office. But they would be easier to solve if people in power were more aware of the consequences of poor environmental policies.

It’s very disappointing to see governors on the East Coast, such as Governor Cuomo, unilaterally block pipelines that would take natural gas from Pennsylvania to New York and New England. These poor choices subject Americans to imports of gas from places like Russia, even in the face of evidence that U.S. natural gas has a much cleaner emissions profile than imported gas from Europe. Governor Cuomo is doing this in the name of climate change, but the carbon footprint of natural gas to New England through pipeline is much smaller than transporting it across the ocean. It also forces citizens in Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine to use more polluting wood and heating oil to heat their homes because of gas shortages in the winter months, which in turn creates very poor local air quality.

And there are many examples of poor environmental outcomes here in California, despite its environmental reputation. It should go without saying that dumping sewage into San Francisco Bay without disinfection, indeed without any chemical or biological treatment, is a bad idea, but that’s what been happening for many years, against federal law.

And just last month, the rolling blackouts created by California’s latest electricity crisis – the result of policies against power plants being fueled by natural gas – spilled 50,000 gallons of raw sewage into the Oakland Estuary when back-up wastewater pumps failed. As state policymakers push more renewables onto the grid at times of the day when renewables aren’t available, these environmental accidents will happen more often. CARB seems to have no appreciation for baseload power generation. Or at least their regulations don’t.

Instead of confusing words with actions, and choosing empty symbolism over doing a good job, we can focus our attention and resources on helping communities help themselves. Doing this will strengthen this country from its foundation up – and start to solve the environmental problems of tomorrow. We could do a lot of good if the federal government, through Congress, puts resources to work with a fierce focus on community-driven environmentalism that promotes community revitalization on a greater scale.

This will do more for environmental justice than all the rhetoric in political campaigns.

Over the next four years the Trump Administration is going to reorganize how it approaches communities so it can take action and address the range of environmental issues that need to be addressed for people and places in need. In President Trump’s second term, we will help communities across this country take control and reshape themselves through the following five priorities.

  • Creating a Community-Driven Environmentalism that Promotes Community Revitalization.
  • Meeting the 21st Century Demands for Water.
  • Reimagining Superfund as a Project-Oriented Program.
  • Reforming the Permitting Process to Empower States. And,
  • Creating a Holistic Pesticide Program for the Future.

For communities, traditionally, EPA has focused on environmental issues in a siloed manner that only looks at air, water and land separately, and states and local communities end up doing the same. We will change this, and look at Brownfields grants, environmental justice issues, and air quality in each community at the same time and encourage them to do the same.

Since EPA’s Brownfields Program began in 1995, nearly $1.6 billion dollars in grants have been spent to clean-up contaminated sites and return blighted properties to productive reuse. To date, communities participating in the Program have been able to attract an additional $33.3 billion dollars in cleanup and redevelopment funding after receiving Brownfields funds.

And when combined with the Opportunity Zones created in the landmark 2017 Trump tax bill, economic development, job creation and environmental improvements can truly operate together at the same time. A study published last month found that Opportunity Zones, which have only been in existence since 2018, have attracted about $75 billion dollars in private investment, which in turn has lifted about one million people out of poverty through job creation in a very short time. While all the economic data isn’t available yet for 2019, it’s possible that Opportunity Zones are one of the biggest reasons black unemployment in this country fell to its lowest recorded levels ever in 2019.

One other way we are going to help communities is by creating one consolidated grant program that combines several smaller grants from multiple programs. It will help focus local communities to view environmental problems holistically, and it will help refocus EPA.

We can meet the 21st Century Demands for Clean Water by creating an integrated planning approach using WIFIA loans, our Water Reuse Action Plan, and our Nutrient Trading Initiative to improve water quality and modernize legal frameworks that have been around since the 19th Century. Over 40 percent of water utility workers are eligible to retire. We need to do a better job recruiting and training for 21st century threats to the water utilities industry.

And we can reinvigorate the Superfund Program. Roughly 16 percent of the U.S. population lives within 3 miles of a Superfund site today. That’s over 50 million Americans. EPA has allowed litigation and bureaucracy to dictate the pace of Superfund projects, instead of focusing on improving the environmental indicators and moving sites to completion. We need to fully implement the recommendations of the 2018 Superfund Task Force and reimagine the approach to clean up sites using the latest technologies and best practices.

We can improve the way we handle pesticide regulation. We do a good job approving pesticides on an individual basis, but we have not excelled in explaining to the public our holistic approach to pesticide management. The media and the courts tend to view our individual pesticide decisions in a one-off fashion, which has left the American public uninformed on our science-based process.

We will take into account biotech advances and better examinations of new active ingredients. Just this week, we announced a proposed rule that would remove onerous and expensive regulation of gene-edited plant protectants. We will safeguard pollinators to support the agriculture industry. And we can decrease reliance on animal testing to a point where no animal testing takes place for any of the agency’s programs by 2035.

Here are five things EPA is doing – five new pillars that have gone largely unnoticed by the public – that are changing the way the agency operates today.

The first pillar is our Cost-Benefit Rulemaking.
We are creating cost-benefit rules for every statute that governs EPA. The American public deserves to know what the costs and the benefits are for each of our rules. We are starting with the Clean Air Act, which will provide much better clarity to local communities, industry and stakeholders. And we will implement a cost-benefit regulation for all our environmental statutes by 2022.

Our second major pillar is Science Transparency.

The American public has a right to know the scientific justification behind a regulation. We are creating science transparency rules that are applied consistently. This will bring much needed sunlight into our regulatory process. Some people oppose it, calling it a Secret Science rule. Those who oppose it want regulatory decisions to be made behind closed doors. They are the people who say, “Trust us, we know what’s best for you.” I want to bring our environmental decision-making process out of the proverbial smoke-filled back room. The Cost-Benefit and Science Transparency rules will go a long way in delivering that. After finalizing the Science Transparency rule later this year, EPA will conduct a statute by statue rulemaking, much like the Cost-Benefit rule.

Guidance documents are the third pillar of agency change, and it’s an area we’ve made a lot of progress, and we have shined even more light.

The agency for years was criticized for not making guidance documents – which have almost the force of law – available for public review. The costs involved to uncover guidance documents became a major barrier for anyone wanting to improve their communities. Last year, EPA went through all our guidance documents from the agency’s beginnings, and we put all 10,000 documents onto a searchable database. We also rescinded 1,000 guidance documents. Now all our guidance documents are available to the public, for the first time. This is a huge change in administrative procedures at EPA, perhaps the biggest change in at least a generation.

The fourth pillar is our reorganization of all 10 of our regional offices to mirror our headquarters structure.

All the regional offices across the country now have an air division, a water division, a lands division, and a chemical division. This was a change that was needed for decades.

As the fifth pillar of EPA fundamental change, we have implemented a Lean Management System that tracks real metrics with which the agency can measure success or failure.

There is a lot of good news in these changes, but the best news is this: the problems I’ve highlighted are structural, and when a problem is structural or organizational, an agency can be changed. Until the Trump administration, EPA was not able to track how long it took to complete a permit, a grant process, or a state implementation plan, or really any meaningful task the agency had before it. Organizations do change; it can be hard, but they do change, and when they change, it’s usually for the better.

As I said at the beginning, EPA data points to 2020 air quality being the best on record. Here in California, where the modern environmental movement began – and from where President Nixon brought it to the rest of the country – it’s important to acknowledge the role states have in being laboratories for democracy, and in this case, laboratories for environmental policy.

But for environmental policy to work nationally, the federal government and states must work together as partners, not as adversaries. To do this involves a new vision, and for a country searching for a new consensus, on the environment as well as on many other things, this can seem tough. But I believe we can find a new consensus, if we strive to.

I believe that by focusing EPA toward communities in the coming years, our agency can change the future for people living in this country who have been left behind simply for living in polluted places. We are a nation made up of communities, and communities are the foundation of this nation, not the other way around.

If we can do the work before us – break down the silos between us as an agency and elsewhere – I believe we can both protect the places we love and bring back the places that have been hurt by pollution – and make them even better than they were before.

I see EPA beginning its second half century with big challenges, but ones that can be overcome with the same skill and tenacity that helped this agency, and this country, overcome the challenges of the last 50 years.  I hope everyone can support our agency as we work to deliver this vision of a great environmental future for all Americans – regardless of where they live.

Thank you.”

via Science Matters


September 4, 2020 at 02:37PM

Friday Funny: Mann and Cook Get the Vapors

This is hilarious! It’s seems our favorite Klimate Konsensus Kooks went apoplectic when finding an article on the EPA website from Professor Richard Lindzen, blaming…of course…”fossil fueled climate deniers” marching lock-step with President Trump.

There’s only one problem; it’s 12 years old!

Not really unexpected given Mann’s problematic history with dating proxies and such. His Tweet says it all:

Even funnier: 97% consensus fabricator John Cook did the work of “debunking” the twelve year old article. He writes:

Wow! The EPA website features a webpage about global warming using a slideshow by climate denier Richard Linzen which is packed with old, well-debunked climate misinformation https://www.epa.gov/environmental-economics/global-warming-what-it-all-about h/t @bud_ward

He commits the false dichotomy fallacy arguing CO2 lagging temp in the past disproves greenhouse warming. This is debunked at http://sks.to/laghttp://youtu.be/dHozjOYHQdE (Denial101x MOOC) & http://youtu.be/mTJ3MRsULVc?list=PL1xbdG-NAkB3Jg1iemNXT8W9wGHd53YY4 (Cranky Uncle)

He argues that ocean cycles could be causing observed warming, despite the fact that they only move heat around while the planet is building up heat (at a rate of over 4 atomic bombs per second).


There’s single cause fallacy in that old chestnut “climate has always changed so it must be natural”, debunked at http://sks.to/pasthttp://youtu.be/H5kejSYPD7U (Denial101x), & http://youtu.be/JPTORGuLWOo?list=PL1xbdG-NAkB3Jg1iemNXT8W9wGHd53YY4 (Cranky Uncle)

He misrepresents the tropospheric hot spot as a signature of greenhouse warming when it’s the result of *any* type of warming – debunked at http://sks.to/hotspot & http://youtu.be/LM_sKZCv26A (Denial101x)

Much more, including a lot of ranting about consensus (recommend reading http://sks.to/consensushttp://sks.to/coc, & the Story of Climate Consensus http://youtu.be/BPNr9BeMNLk for an overview of this topic).

Originally tweeted by John Cook (@johnfocook) on September 3, 2020.

Former NYT climate apologist Andrew Revkin tried to bring some sanity to the discussion, once they all realized what had happened.

Gleick chimed in:

I hope their supply of valium is adequate to get them through the weekend.

Speaking of which, Anthony and I wish everyone a much needed rest and relaxation weekend.

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via Watts Up With That?


September 4, 2020 at 03:33PM

Biden’s “Clean Energy Standard” Will Increase Electricity Prices as Demonstrated by California’s Quest for “Clean Energy”

California set its first renewable portfolio standard in 2002 and currently requires 60 percent of its generation to come from renewable energy by 2030 with the next 40 percent of generation to come from zero-carbon sources by 2045. These non-carbon sources will likely be wind, solar, geothermal, and hydropower. California is shuttering its last nuclear plant in the next few years and new nuclear cannot compete economically with these other non-carbon sources.

During a recent heat wave, California was forced to implement rolling blackouts because it had insufficient power to meet demand when its solar generation declined in the evening, Normally, it purchases power from neighboring states when this occurs, but those states did not have extra power to sell due to the heat wave. California got caught because it had retired many natural gas and nuclear plants, and did not have sufficient back-up power to fill in when its intermittent renewables could not find enough sun or wind to continue operating.

Democratic Party presidential nominee Joe Biden, if elected, will be forcing the rest of the country into a similar plight with his “clean energy standard,” which requires 100 percent electricity to be generated from non-carbon sources by 2035. Whether it is even feasible on a national scale is doubtful, but it will undoubtedly be expensive to electricity consumers and to taxpayers.

Electricity Prices

While electricity production from fossil vs. renewable sources varies by state, the energy decisions that each state makes ultimately affect the price of generation and costs to consumers. For instance, Massachusetts had the third highest residential electricity price in the nation in 2019 mainly due to the lack of natural gas pipeline infrastructure, but also due to the premature retirement of fossil fuel generating capacity. California had the seventh highest residential electricity price in the nation in 2019 because of their zeal for carbon free and non-nuclear generating capacity. In 2019, 30 percent of California’s utility-scale electricity came from non-hydroelectric renewable energy, including 5.6 percent that came from industrial geothermal production, in which California leads the nation with 70 percent of U.S. geothermal production. Including hydroelectricity, 49 percent of the state’s utility-scale power was generated by renewable energy in 2019. (See graph below.)

Source: Energy Information Administration

Besides utility-scale generation, one million Californians have put solar panels on their homes—a requirement for newly built residences, despite the added cost. Some homes are installing battery systems, like Tesla’s, which cost about $10,000.

Other States Compared to California

California is not the only state pursuing an all carbon-free and mainly renewable electricity future. In New York, Governor Cuomo has called for the expansion of the state’s “clean energy standard” so that 70 percent of New York’s electricity comes from renewable energy sources such as solar and wind by 2030, followed by 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2040 and an 85 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. New York is shuttering the Indian Point nuclear plant that supplies power to New York City—one unit was closed in April and the second unit will be shuttered next April. By shutting down just one of Indian Point’s two reactors this year, New York lost more carbon-free electricity than produced annually by every wind turbine and solar panel in the state. New York still needs to figure out how to replace their output.

One project currently under negotiation in New York is the Champlain Hudson Power Express transmission line, which is expected to deliver 24,000 megawatt hours of hydropower daily through a transmission line that runs from Québec, Canada to New York City. However, environmentalists are calling for the city to scrap the project because of concerns about the environmental impacts of the transmission line that include the potential creation of new dams in Québec and the impact of the transmission line cable that will be buried into the Hudson River’s riverbed.

New York has the eighth highest average residential electricity price in the nation and shuttering Indian Point will only raise it. But, thankfully for consumers, not all states are following California’s and New York’s lead. The following map depicts the 43 states that have lower residential electricity prices than California and provides how much lower their residential electricity price is relative to that of California’s price. For example, New York’s average residential electricity price in 2019 was 6.7 percent lower than California’s in 2019.  California’s average residential electricity price was 32 percent higher than the nation’s average residential electricity price in 2019.

Residential Electricity Prices Relative To California

Source: Energy Information Administration

Note: The states depicted in black are California and the 6 states that had higher electricity prices in 2019 than California. 

Not all states are endowed with renewable resources, such as the southeast where wind resources are poor. As a result, one size does not fit all and using California’s electricity system as a pattern for the nation, as Joe Biden is doing, is not beneficial to Americans for it will only increase electricity prices in the 43 states that have lower prices than California.


Americans need to see where Joe Biden and his party platform are taking the nation with their Green New Deal Clean Energy Standard. Americans complain if legislators torque their gasoline prices, but they should also keep an eye on policies that will increase their electricity prices and threaten the competitiveness of their businesses because these will not only affect their pocketbooks as consumers, but also as taxpayers since Biden indicates he needs $2 trillion—to start! If energy is made too expensive in the United States for businesses to produce things domestically, they will move to places that do not have such policies, taking jobs and opportunities with them.  With American companies finally moving jobs back to our own shores, now is not the time to artificially increase the cost of energy in the United States.

AUGUST 28, 2020



New mathematical method shows how climate change led to fall of ancient civilization

Chaos paper by RIT Assistant Professor Nishant Malik applies method to Indus Valley Civilization


Research News


A Rochester Institute of Technology researcher developed a mathematical method that shows climate change likely caused the rise and fall of an ancient civilization. In an article recently featured in the journal Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science, Nishant Malik, assistant professor in RIT’s School of Mathematical Sciences, outlined the new technique he developed and showed how shifting monsoon patterns led to the demise of the Indus Valley Civilization, a Bronze Age civilization contemporary to Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt.

Malik developed a method to study paleoclimate time series, sets of data that tell us about past climates using indirect observations. For example, by measuring the presence of a particular isotope in stalagmites from a cave in South Asia, scientists were able to develop a record of monsoon rainfall in the region for the past 5,700 years. But as Malik notes, studying paleoclimate time series poses several problems that make it challenging to analyze them with mathematical tools typically used to understand climate.

“Usually the data we get when analyzing paleoclimate is a short time series with noise and uncertainty in it,” said Malik. “As far as mathematics and climate is concerned, the tool we use very often in understanding climate and weather is dynamical systems. But dynamical systems theory is harder to apply to paleoclimate data. This new method can find transitions in the most challenging time series, including paleoclimate, which are short, have some amount of uncertainty and have noise in them.”

There are several theories about why the Indus Valley Civilization declined–including invasion by nomadic Indo-Aryans and earthquakes–but climate change appears to be the most likely scenario. But until Malik applied his hybrid approach– rooted in dynamical systems but also draws on methods from the fields of machine learning and information theory–there was no mathematical proof. His analysis showed there was a major shift in monsoon patterns just before the dawn of this civilization and that the pattern reversed course right before it declined, indicating it was in fact climate change that caused the fall.

Malik said he hopes the method will allow scientists to develop more automated methods of finding transitions in paleoclimate data and leads to additional important historical discoveries. The full text of the study is published in Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science.


From EurekAlert!

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via Watts Up With That?


September 4, 2020 at 12:22PM

Hachijojima, Isolated Rural Island In Pacific, Shows No Warming In 80 Years

By Kirye
and Pierre Gosselin

Hachijojima is a volcanic Japanese island some 287 kilometers south of Tokyo, to which it belongs. 7,522 people live on its 63 km2 of area.

Image cropped from Google Maps.

What makes Hachijojima interesting climatically is its rural, non-urban features – in the middle of the ocean –  making station siting there less prone to factors that could corrupt the data, such as airports, asphalt, concrete, steel and other heat-sink-acting infrastructure.

Today we look at data from the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) going back almost 80 years. Hearing all the claims about a rapidly warming world from the media, many readers would think that there must be warming happening there as well. The data have a surprise in store.


Now that summer has ended, we plot the latest data to see if summers have indeed been warming at this island.

Data source: JMA

As the above data show, there has been virtually no trend at all over the past 80 years. Warming? Still no sign of it at all.


Next we look at the mean winter temperatures at this location since 1947:

Data source: JMA

Like summer, also winter has shown no long-term trend one way or the other. Where’s the bad climate change news here?


To round out the analysis and to summarize, we plot the annual mean temperature data recorded for Hachjojima:

Data source: JMA

Interestingly, the annual temperature behavior appears to follow a cyclic behavior that very much resemble some ocean surface temperature cycles we see from around the globe, like the PDO or AMO. Climate indeed changes, but what we see above it cannot be due to anything anthropogenic.

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via NoTricksZone


September 4, 2020 at 10:27AM

August Land and Ocean Air Temps Stay Cool

With apologies to Paul Revere, this post is on the lookout for cooler weather with an eye on both the Land and the Sea.  UAH has updated their tlt (temperatures in lower troposphere) dataset for August 2020.  Previously I have done posts on their reading of ocean air temps as a prelude to updated records from HADSST3. This month also has a separate graph of land air temps because the comparisons and contrasts are interesting as we contemplate possible cooling in coming months and years.

Presently sea surface temperatures (SST) are the best available indicator of heat content gained or lost from earth’s climate system.  Enthalpy is the thermodynamic term for total heat content in a system, and humidity differences in air parcels affect enthalpy.  Measuring water temperature directly avoids distorted impressions from air measurements.  In addition, ocean covers 71% of the planet surface and thus dominates surface temperature estimates.  Eventually we will likely have reliable means of recording water temperatures at depth.

Recently, Dr. Ole Humlum reported from his research that air temperatures lag 2-3 months behind changes in SST.  He also observed that changes in CO2 atmospheric concentrations lag behind SST by 11-12 months.  This latter point is addressed in a previous post Who to Blame for Rising CO2?

HadSST3 results were delayed with February and March updates only appearing together end of April.  For comparison we can look at lower troposphere temperatures (TLT) from UAHv6 which are now posted for August. The temperature record is derived from microwave sounding units (MSU) on board satellites like the one pictured above.

The UAH dataset includes temperature results for air above the oceans, and thus should be most comparable to the SSTs. There is the additional feature that ocean air temps avoid Urban Heat Islands (UHI). In 2015 there was a change in UAH processing of satellite drift corrections, including dropping one platform which can no longer be corrected. The graphs below are taken from the latest and current dataset, Version 6.0.

The graph above shows monthly anomalies for ocean temps since January 2015. After all regions peaked with the El Nino in early 2016, the ocean air temps dropped back down with all regions showing the same low anomaly August 2018.  Then a warming phase ensued with NH and Tropics spikes in February and May 2020. As was the case in 2015-16, the warming was driven by the Tropics and NH, with SH lagging behind. Since the peak in January 2020, all ocean regions have trended downward in a sawtooth pattern, returning to a neutral anomaly in June, close to the 0.4C average for the period. July and August are little changed with NH and SH offsetting slight bumps.

Land Air Temperatures Showing Volatility

We sometimes overlook that in climate temperature records, while the oceans are measured directly with SSTs, land temps are measured only indirectly.  The land temperature records at surface stations sample air temps at 2 meters above ground.  UAH gives tlt anomalies for air over land separately from ocean air temps.  The graph updated for August 2020 is below.

Here we see the noisy evidence of the greater volatility of the Land temperatures, along with extraordinary departures, first by NH land with SH often offsetting.   The overall pattern is similar to the ocean air temps, but obviously driven by NH with its greater amount of land surface. The Tropics synchronized with NH for the 2016 event, but otherwise follow a contrary rhythm.  SH seems to vary wildly, especially in recent months.  Note the extremely high anomaly last November, cold in March 2020, and then again a spike in April. In June 2020, all land regions converged, erasing the earlier spikes in NH and SH, and showing anomalies comparable to the 0.5C average land anomaly this period.

After an upward bump In July SH, land air temps in August returned to the same flat result from the prior month.

The longer term picture from UAH is a return to the mean for the period starting with 1995.  2019 average rose and caused 2020 to start warmly, but currently lacks any El Nino or NH warm blob to sustain it.

These charts demonstrate that underneath the averages, warming and cooling is diverse and constantly changing, contrary to the notion of a global climate that can be fixed at some favorable temperature.

TLTs include mixing above the oceans and probably some influence from nearby more volatile land temps.  Clearly NH and Global land temps have been dropping in a seesaw pattern, NH in July more than 1C lower than the 2016 peak.  TLT measures started the recent cooling later than SSTs from HadSST3, but are now showing the same pattern.  It seems obvious that despite the three El Ninos, their warming has not persisted, and without them it would probably have cooled since 1995.  Of course, the future has not yet been written.

via Science Matters


September 4, 2020 at 09:47AM

Klima: Kälter, nicht wärmer – Solares Minimum hat Versorgungsprobleme im Schlepptau [Neue Studie]

Während Politiker hektisch versuchen, ihre Klimakrisen-Hysterie auszuleben und so schnell wie möglich die Weichen dafür zu stellen, dass die Strompreise weiter steigen und Energiewende-Profiteure weiterhin viel Geld verdienen, sind Wissenschaftler bereits im Solaren Minimum angekommen.

Es besteht kein Zweifel: Wir leben seit Anfang 2020 in einem Solaren Minimum, das bis zum Jahre 2053 anhalten soll. Was das bedeutet, das hat Valentina Zharkova gerade in einem Beitrag für “Temperature” deutlich beschrieben:

  • verkürzte Wachstumsphasen,
  • sinkende landwirtschaftliche Erträge,
  • Versorgungsengpässe,
  • Gletscherwachstum, dem Weiden zum Opfer fallen,
  • saukalte Winter, die Flüsse wie die Donau und die Themse regelmäßig zufrieren lassen,
  • eine Nordatlantische Oszillation, die aus dem Gleichgewicht gerät und dauerhafte Kälte nach Europa bringt.

Das alles ist kein Schreckensszenario, das alles, war schon einmal da, im Maunder Minimum, das von 1645 bis rund 1710 angedauert hat. Aus dem Maunder Minimum stammen Gemälde, die Londoner darstellen, wie sie im Winter auf der gefrorenen Themse spazieren gehen. Wer in Großbritannien lebt, der weiß, wie selten heute überhaupt eine Frostnacht im Vereinigten Königreich ist, geschweige denn eine gefrorene Pfütze. Was für eine Veränderung ein solares Minimum mit sich bringt, kann man sich vor diesem Hintergrund relativ gut vorstellen.

Und dass wir bereits in einem solaren Minimum leben, das zeigen die Ergebnisse von Zharkova, die sie im Editorial mit dem Titel “Modern Grand Solar Minimum will lead to terrestrial cooling” zusammengestellt hat. Sie basieren auf zurückliegender und aktueller Forschung.

Das Hauptergebnis, im Zeitraum von 2020 bis 2053 wird die Durchschnittstemperatur um im Durchschnitt 1 Grad Celsius sinken. Das klingt nach wenig, ist aber erheblich, denn seit dem Maunder Minimum ist die durchschnittliche Temperatur nur um rund 1,4 Grad Celsius gestiegen. Eine Abkühlung um im Durchschnitt 1 Grad Celsius liegt nur um 0,4 Grad Celsius über dem Maunder Minimum, das die Folgen hatte, die eingangs beschrieben wurde.

Die Methode, mit der dieses Ergebnis errechnet wurde, ist neu und spannend und basiert auf der Beobachtung, dass die Sonnenaktivität von Magnetismus getrieben wird, der sich in zwei magnetischen Wellen äußert, die in unterschiedlichen Schichten der Sonne erzeugt werden. Die beiden Wellen sind in der folgenden Abbildung oben dargestellt und unten in ihren Effekten kombiniert. Die Besonderheit an der unteren Kurve, sie bildet die Sonnenaktivität der Vergangenheit recht gut ab, weshalb Zharkova vorschlägt, die kombinierte Kurve als “a new proxy of solar activity” zu nutzen.

Zharkova (2020).

Wie man deutlich sieht, ist die Sonnenaktivität für die Jahre 2020 bis 2040 sehr gering, viel geringer als bisher in diesem Jahrtausend, und das hat erhebliche Folgen, denn, mit einer verringerten Sonnenaktivität geht eine verringerte Sonnenstrahlung einher und damit eine Abkühlung von 1 Grad Celsius, wie Zharkova berechnet, aber nicht nur das, denn im Solaren Minimum ist das Magnetfeld der Sonne schwächer, seine Aktivität um bis zu 70%, wie Zharkova schreibt, reduziert. Das führt dazu, dass die Intensität galaktischer und extra-galaktischer kosmischer Strahlung, die auf die Erde trifft, steigt. Steigt deren Intensität, dann bilden sich auf der Erde mehr Wolken. Bilden sich mehr Wolken, dann hat dies einen zusätzlichen die Temperatur reduzierenden Effekt. Mit anderen Worten: Dass die Temperatur der Erde im solaren Minimum, in dem wir uns seit 2020 befinden, um 1 Grad Celsius sinkt, verdeckt erhebliche lokale Unterschiede, die durch eine zunehmende Wolkendecke noch maximiert werden können. Ihre Ergebnisse fasst Zharkova wie folgt zusammen:

During these grand solar minima, there is a significant reduction of solar magnetic field and solar irradiance, which impose the reduction of terrestrial temperatures derived for these periods from the analysis of terrestrial biomass during the past 12,000 or more years. The most recent grand solar minimum occurred during Maunder Minimum (1645–1710), which led to reduction of solar irradiance by 0.22% from the modern one and a decrease of the average terrestrial temperature by 1.0–1.5°C.

This discovery of double dynamo action in the Sun brought us a timely warning about the upcoming grand solar minimum 1, when solar magnetic field and its magnetic activity will be reduced by 70%. This period has started in the Sun in 2020 and will last until 2053. During this modern grand minimum, one would expect to see a reduction of the average terrestrial temperature by up to 1.0°C, especially, during the periods of solar minima between the cycles 25–26 and 26–27, e.g. in the decade 2031–2043. The reduction of a terrestrial temperature during the next 30 years can have important implications for different parts of the planet on growing vegetation, agriculture, food supplies, and heating needs in both Northern and Southern hemispheres. This global cooling during the upcoming grand solar minimum 1 (2020–2053) can offset for three decades any signs of global warming and would require inter-government efforts to tackle problems with heat and food supplies for the whole population of the Earth.

Während Spinner, Klimawandel-Kultisten und Klimawandel-Profiteure alles daran setzen, eine Klimakrise zu bekämpfen, die es nicht gibt, durchläuft die Erde einen Zyklus, der eine erhebliche Abkühlung mit sich bringt, eine, die es notwendig machen würde, sich Gedanken darüber zu machen, wie die wachsende Menschheit angesichts von geringeren Ernten und einer geringer werdenden Anbaufläche in den nächsten Jahrzehnten versorgt werden soll. Das Solare Minimum ist eine Realität, die man jeden Tag aufs Neue bei Spaceweather.com in Augenschein nehmen kann.


Statt sich darum zu kümmern, was ist, hyperventilieren Polit-Darsteller und bringen Politiken auf den Weg, die allen schaden werden, weil sie eine Chimäre bekämpfen, ein Klimakrise durch Erwärmung, die es nicht gibt und nicht geben wird, wie die Ergebnisse von Zharkova zeigen.



Sonnenzyklen, globale Temperatur und atmosphä­rische CO2-Konzentra­tionen seit Beginn der Industri­alisierung

Wird der Anstieg der globalen Erwärmung kausal verursacht durch den Anstieg atmosphärischer CO2-Konzentrationen oder ist es der Anstieg der globalen Erwärmung, der sekundär die atmosphärischen CO2-Konzentrationen ansteigen lässt? Diese Frage ist elementar für die Betrachtung des Klimawandels. Sie ist aber leicht zu beantworten, wenn man sich die vorliegenden Messwerte anschaut.

In der nachfolgenden Abbildung sind die Länge der Sonnenzyklen, die atmosphärischen CO2-Konzentrationen und die globalen Temperatur-Anomalien von 1860, als die kleine Eiszeit zu Ende ging und die Industrialisierung begann, bis 1990 aufgezeigt.

Von 1860 bis 1890 gab es noch keine nennenswerten Veränderungen der dargestellten Parameter. Von 1890 bis circa 1945 nahm die Intensität der Sonnenzyklen zu, gefolgt von einem Anstieg der globalen Temperaturen um etwa 0,4°C. Während dieser Zeit lag die europäische Industrie aufgrund des 1. Weltkriegs für lange Zeit am Boden und – wie aus der Abbildung zu erkennen ist – die CO2-Konzentrationen der Luft blieben niedrig. Sie stiegen erst ab Ende des 2. Weltkriegs deutlich an, d.h. mit einer Verzögerung von gut 50 Jahren.  

Obwohl nach dem 2. Weltkrieg die Industrialisierung weltweit große Fortschritte machte und die CO2-Konzentrationen deutlich anstiegen, wurde es von 1945 bis circa 1970 auf der Erde im Durchschnitt um etwa 0,2°C kälter. Dieser Temperaturabfall ging einher mit geringerer Sonnenaktivität. Die Medien waren damals voll von der Hysterie, wir stünden vor einer neuen Eiszeit und machten dafür die Verbrennung fossiler Energieträger und damit den Anstieg des COverantwortlich. Basierend auf den Angaben amerikanischer Wissenschaftler prognostizierte die Washington Post vom 9.7.1971, dass die globalen Temperaturen in den nächsten 50 Jahren – also bis zum Jahr 2021 – um 6°C fallen würden.

Jedoch, die Sonne als die wahre Verantwortliche für die Temperaturschwankungen auf der Erde verstärkte von 1975 bis 1995 wieder ihre Zyklen und lies die globalen Temperaturen um etwa 0,3°C ansteigen. Nur während dieser 20 Jahre stiegen auch die CO2-Werte parallel zur globalen Erwärmung an. Obwohl seit etwa 1995 die CO2-Werte deutlich weiter gestiegen sind, blieben die Temperaturen davon wenig beeinflusst (siehe nachfolgende Abbildung):

Fazit: Zwischen globaler Erwärmung und atmosphärischen CO2-Konzentrationen gab es seit Beginn der Industrialisierung nur in der Zeit von 1975 bis 1995 eine positive Korrelation. Zwischen 1945 und 1975 war die Korrelation sogar negativ. Ganz offensichtlich hingegen ist die Korrelation zwischen Sonnenzyklen und globaler Temperatur während der gesamten 150 Jahre. Bei weiter steigenden CO2-Konzentrationen blieben im 21. Jahrhundert die globalen Temperaturen wenig verändert. Dies ist keineswegs verwunderlich, denn der derzeitig zu Ende gehende Sonnenzyklus Nummer 24 ist deutlich schwächer als die beiden vorhergehenden Zyklen (siehe nachfolgende Abbildung):

Bei alledem müssen wir bezüglich des Temperaturanstiegs aber auch in Betracht ziehen, dass sich in den letzten 50 Jahren die Städte vehement vergrößert haben. Es wurden neue Flughäfen gebaut und alte erhielten zusätzliche Start- und Landebahnen. Viele neue Straßen wurden gebaut, auch auf dem Land. Die Städte rückten immer näher an die Messstationen heran, die ehemals auf dem freien Land standen. In diesem Zusammenhang kann man durchaus vom Menschen verursachten Temperaturanstieg sprechen, doch hat das CO2 damit offensichtlich überhaupt nichts zu tun. Städte werden gebaut und sie sind nun mal wegen der Heizungen, der Klimaanlagen, der Wärme produzierenden Automotoren, der Wärme speichernden asphaltierten Straßen  usw. wärmer als Felder, Wiesen und Wälder. Und je näher ein Wohngenbiet, ein Flughafen oder eine Autobahn an eine Messstation heran rückt, desto höhere Temperaturen werden gemessen und täuschen somit eine möglicherweise gar nicht existierende Klimaerwärmung vor.

Übrigens, die Durchschnittstemperatur auf unserem Nachbarplaneten Mars ist seit den 1970er Jahren um 0,65°C gestiegen, obwohl dort keine Menschen leben (http://www.wissenschaft.de/erde-weltall/raumfahrt/-/journal_content/56/12054/1017880/Klimawandel-auf-dem-Mars/)

(http://www.wissenschaft.de/erde-weltall/raumfahrt/-/journal_content/56/12054/1017880/Klimawandel-auf-dem-Mars/) .

Auch aus den Messungen der letzten 400 Millionen Jahre wird deutlich, dass immer erst die globalen Temperaturen anstiegen und erst mit etwa tausendjähriger Verspätung die CO2-Konzentrationen. Das macht auch Sinn, denn wenn sich die Ozeane erwärmen, können sie weniger CO2 speichern und das CO2 geht in die Luft.

Diese auf wissenschaftlicher Basis erhobenen Zahlen sprechen eine andere Sprache als die Panikmache der Medien, die man mit voller Überzeugung als „Leugner der Wissenschaft“ bezeichnen kann.

4. September 2020 Chris Frey


Ugandan Activist: “Many people are not yet aware of the dangers of climate change”

Black climate activist Vanessa Nakate was cropped from an AP image. Source Buzzfeed

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

h/t Dr. Willie Soon; Ugandan climate activist Vanessa Nakate, who was “accidentally” cropped from a picture of white climate activists in Davos in January, thinks people need to be better educated about the dangers of climate change.

Vanessa Nakate: ‘Many people are not yet aware of the dangers of climate change’

As a prominent Fridays for Future activist, Vanessa Nakate tells DW how climate activism looks different in her native Uganda and why she’s recently been tweeting in German.

How does climate activism in your country differ from what it looks like in Europe? We’re used to seeing big Fridays For Future strikes here, but what does it look like in Uganda?

Well, of course there is a big difference between the activism in Uganda and in Europe. This is mainly because of two things.

One is awareness. Many people are not yet aware of the dangers. They don’t have the facts. They don’t have the clear science about what is happening when it comes to the climate crisis.

And then the other thing is freedom of expression. Freedom of expression is not the same as we see it is in Europe and it’s also harder for students here to walk out of school and do the climate strikes.

Recently, you’ve actually been tweeting in German to try and get the message across. What made you do this?

Well, I did that because I was really angry and disturbed by the fact that Germany chose to push coal to 2038. I feel like that helps them and that doesn’t help communities that are already being affected by the climate crisis. I feel like 2038 is too late. It’s unnecessary and very dangerous for communities that are already facing devastating impacts of climate change.

Read more: https://www.dw.com/en/fridays-for-future-uganda-climate-change-africa-activism-food-security-water/a-54732304

Despite being a climate activist, Vanessa seems quite an impressive person.

Her own country doesn’t care about climate change or hasn’t heard of it. Europe pretends to care, but I mean, they cropped her out of at least one picture of climate activists. Who knows how else she is being mistreated.

Despite lip service to climate activism, Germany and other European countries are pushing ahead with coal projects.

Yet Vanessa is still determined to try.

What a waste of talent. I hope one day soon Vanessa wakes up to how she is being used, and applies that remarkable determination and guts to achieving something genuinely useful, for herself or for her country.

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via Watts Up With That?


September 4, 2020 at 08:21AM