A Surprising Look at Oil Consumption

The EIA publishes oil consumption numbers for all major nations. However they have data for most nations only through 2013. They do have data for some nations through 2014. Nevertheless a lot can be gleaned from just looking at those consumption numbers. If oil consumption numbers are growing year after year, then there is a good chance that nation is growing economically. But if oil consumption numbers are continually declining year after year, then it is more than a little silly to say all is well, economically, with that nation. Or that is my opinion anyway.

First, who’s oil consumption is increasing year after year, or who’s economy is booming? All charts below are consumption as total liquids in thousand barrels per day. Some charts are through 2014 while others are through 2013. Whatever the last year is on the yearly axis is the last year for that data.

Important: All charts are consumption, not production. 

C. Middle East

No doubt the Middle East is booming. The reason, most of them are oil producers and oil, for most of this chart anyway, the price of oil was increasing. They had lots of income, their consumption was increasing every year as was their economies.

C. Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia, by far the Middle East’s largest consumer, has increased consumption every year since 1995.

C. Asia & Oceania

One third of all total liquids consumption is in Asia and Oceania. The area has experienced tremendous growth in oil consumption.

C. China

And Asia and Oceania’s largest consumer is China. China has increased oil consumption 6.5 percent per year since 1985.

Most of the rest of the world has not seen the consumption boom that was experienced by the Middle East and Asia & Oceania.

C. Russia

This chart dates only from 1992, the first year after the break up of the Soviet Union. Russian consumption declined by almost 2 million barrels per day to 2.5 million barrels per day during the next 6 years. Russian consumption later recovered but is still almost 1 million barrels per day below the FSU breakup point.

The combined consumption of the rest of the former Soviet Union nations declined by over 52 percent over the next 8 years and has not yet recovered.

Most of the rest of the world has seen a serious decline in consumption in the last decade.

C. Europe

Consumption peaked for Europe in 2005 and 2006. The largest drop was in 2009. For Europe we only have data through 2013. Europe’s oil consumption is down 13 percent, 2006 to 2013.

C. Germany

Germany is Europe’s largest economy. Germany’s oil consumption started to drop in 1999 but has leveled out since 2007. Germany’s oil consumption is down 18 percent since 1998.

C. France

France’s oil consumption has been dropping since 2006 and really took a dive in 2014. France’s oil consumption is down 17 percent since 2001.

C. United Kingdom

The UK peaked in 1996 then again in 2005. Oil consumption in the UK has dropped by just over 17 percent since 2005.

C. Spain

Spain’s oil consumption started dropping in 2007 but leveled out in 2014. Spain’s oil consumption is down 25 percent since 2007.

C. Italy

Pity poor Italy. Her oil consumption peaked in 1998 and has dropped 36.4 percent, over one third, since.

C. United States

US held peak oil consumption at around 20,700,000 barrels per day from 2004 through 2007, dropped in 2008 and 2009 but has leveled out since then. US consumption in 2004 stood at just over 19 million barrels per day, down about 8 percent since the four year peak period.  The recession has not hit the US nearly as hard as it has hit Europe.

C. Mexico

Mexico has fared better than Europe as well. Their peak consumption was in 2007 at 2,173,000 barrels per day and had declined by 9.5 percent by 2014.

C. Japan

Japan has been in the doldrums for almost two decades. Their oil consumption peaked in 1996 at 5,704,000 barrels per day. They recovered slightly in 2012 but dropped again in 2013 and 2014, reaching a low of 4,297,000 barrels per day in 2014. That is a decline of almost 25 percent. 

C. OECD Europe

The EIA has OECD monthly oil consumption data through April 2015. As you can OECD Europe has not improved much, if any at all since 2013.

C. OECD

Total OECD oil consumption may have a slight uptick in the last two years.

And last but not least, China has peaked, or so says the Japanese financial holding company Nomura. This chart is China oil production, past and predicted.

No turning back for China’s oil production

China Peaks

China’s domestic oil production likely peaked this year and is about to enter a long-term structural decline, according to Nomura. It notes the experience from Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay, which peaked in 1988: “Once the steep stage of the terminal decline output phase begins, there is generally no turning back.” The takeaway is that China could be a buyer on global energy markets next year, importing bigger volumes as it seeks to offset waning domestic production. Nomura says demand from China should help offset new supply from Iran, with prices stabilising at an average US$55 per barrel next year.

My comment: The recent decline in oil prices had at least as much to do with falling consumption as it did rising production. We don’t yet have consumption numbers for 2015 yet but from the build in inventories it does not look like that consumption has improved significantly. 

With China’s economic growth slowing it looks like world oil consumption will get worse before it gets better. This is one reason I expect oil prices to stay low for quite a while longer.

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599 Responses to A Surprising Look at Oil Consumption

  1. Fred Magyar says:

    In the United States, production costs are $36 a barrel — still below the trading price.

    At least according to:
    http://money.cnn.com/2015/11/24/news/oil-prices-production-costs/index.html

    • Mario says:

      The problem with that type of very broad brush approach is that it tries to “average” things out which is not particularly helpful. If production costs in some fields are $20 and in others are $50, there is little consolation to the guy producing at $50 that his national average is $36.

    • AlexS says:

      Thanks Fred

      This chart is using the numbers from the article. To calculate breakeven prices, should be added
      IRR (internal rate of return)

      Capital and operational expenditure by country ($/bbl)
      Source: Rystad Energy

  2. Mario says:

    From what I can determine, most of the major agencies have historically been wrong on the low side in predicting oil demand. In other words, demand has tended to be stronger than forecast. I saw a piece from Raymond James that suggested that over the last decade or so, the IEA had underestimated the following year’s demand by an average of almost 700,000 barrels per year.

    My guess is that is probably because they have underestimated the growth in demand in developing economies and perhaps overestimated the demand from the US in some cases, certainly this past year.

    For this year, it appears that overall, growth in demand will be not too far off of 2mm barrels per day, which is awfully robust. While oil is not the most elastic of commodities, there is some at the margin, and this has certainly been demonstrated in the US this year where gasoline driven demand has certainly risen considerably with lower prices at the pump.

    My guess would be that if anything, the EIA is light again in their forecast of demand growth of 1.2mm barrels per day for next year. The caveat being that if prices rebound significantly relatively soon, then that number may be optimistic. Again, while oil is not the most elastic commodity in the world, there is some at the margin.

    The bigger question to me is what happens on the supply side. There are more moving parts there, including Iran, Iraq, Libya, US shale and not to mention what the impact of low prices for the last 15 months or so will mean to production from a number of legacy fields in the North Sea, Africa, South America etc…

    I do believe that we are closer to balance than most people think. While there has been emphasis on bloated inventories, the reality is that inventories have not been rising close to the levels one would expect if the major reporting agencies were correct in their estimates of current overproduction. My guess is that their error is in underestimating current demand, but we will only know the answer to that many months from now.

    • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

      Regarding US and global C+C inventories, I suspect that what we are actually seeing is a global condensate glut, and I suspect that US refiners, in late 2014, pretty much hit the limit of how much additional condensate that they could take, if they wanted to maintain their distillate output.

      For example, Reuters had an article earlier in the year documenting case histories of refiners increasingly rejecting blends of heavy crude + condensate that technically meet the API gravity ceiling of 42 at Cushing, but that were deficient in distillate content and that can leave a “foul aftertaste,” from the point of view of refiners.

      U.S. refiners turn to tanker trucks to avoid ‘dumbbell’ crudes
      March, 2015


      http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/03/23/us-usa-refiners-trucks-analysis-idUSKBN0MJ09520150323

      In a pressing quest to secure the best possible crude, U.S. refiners are increasingly going straight to the source.

      Firms such as Marathon Petroleum Corp and Delek U.S. Holdings are buying up tanker trucks and extending local pipeline networks in order to get more oil directly from the wellhead, seeking to cut back on blended crude cocktails they say can leave a foul aftertaste. . . .

      Many executives say that the crude oil blends being created in Cushing are often substandard approximations of West Texas Intermediate (WTI), the longstanding U.S. benchmark familiar to, and favored by, many refiners in the region.

      Typical light-sweet WTI crude has an API gravity of about 38 to 40. Condensate, or super-light crude that is abundant in most U.S. shale patches, ranges from 45 to 60 or higher. Western Canadian Select, itself a blend, is about 20.
 
While the blends of these crudes may technically meet the API gravity ceiling of 42 at Cushing, industry players say the mixes can be inconsistent in makeup and generate less income because the most desirable stuff is often missing.

      The blends tend to produce a higher proportion of fuel at two ends of the spectrum: light ends like gasoline, demand for which has dimmed in recent years, and lower-value heavy products like fuel oil and asphalt. What’s missing are middle distillates like diesel.

      Subject: COLUMN-U.S. crude inventories might be tighter than they look: Kemp
      September, 2015


      http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/09/08/usa-crude-storage-kemp-idUKL5N11E2YE20150908

      The amount of on-site storage available at refineries has changed little and remains around 150 million barrels, compared with 156 million in 2004 and 164 million in 1994.

      But the amount of storage available at tank farms, most of which is leased either long-term or short-term to traders, has surged.

      • Watcher says:

        Recent article I didn’t save, but posted something of it here, US gasoline consumption 47% of its total “oil” consumption, while gasoline is only 20 and lower % in other regions.

        Diesel is the big guy elsewhere.

        Possible signif issue . . . condensate does or doesn’t need refining pre feedstock factory arrival? If not, won’t need to be in refinery storage.

      • What’s missing is hydrogenation units able to take the heavy crude molecules and rebuild them as suitable syncrudes.

        • oldfarmermac says:

          There is only ONE potential source of cheap hydrogen, in the quantities needed, and that is natural gas or methane, true?

          It might be a bad move to invest big time in upgrading heavy crudes betting on gas staying cheap.

          • AllanH says:

            Oldfarmermac

            Yes, methane is used in the commercial production of free hydrogen, but it only contributes half the hydrogen in the steam reforming process. The rest of the hydrogen comes from water. This two step process runs at temperatures 700 to 1100 C in the initial step.
            Guess what the other major process product is? Hint: it’s a major greenhouse gas.
            “There are four main sources for the commercial production of hydrogen: natural gas, oil, coal and electrolysis; which account for 48%, 30% 18% and 4% of the world’s hydrogen production respectively.”

            Water is the best source of hydrogen since it is the only one that does not produce greenhouse gases in the reaction.

            • Yes, methane is used in the commercial production of free hydrogen, but it only contributes half the hydrogen in the steam reforming process. The rest of the hydrogen comes from water.

              I was not aware of this. Could you give us a link that explains how half of the hydrogen comes from water in the steam reforming process?

              • AllanH says:

                CH4 + H2O –> CO + 3H2
                CO +H2O –> CO2 + H2

                You can get general information from Wikipedia “Hydrogen Production”

                The NREL has an informative page on hydrogen production methods http://www.nrel.gov/hydrogen/proj_production_delivery.html

                • Allan, nope, there was nothing at the link you posted that 50% of the hydrogen produced from steam reforming. Not one word about a single hydrogen atom being split from water using that process.

                  Water is basically spent hydrogen fuel, if you consider hydrogen a fuel. To get hydrogen from water you have to “un-spend” it or “un-burn” it. To do takes more energy than you get when you burn it again.

                  I have never heard before that steam reforming produces hydrogen from water. You were the first person I have ever read who made that claim. I need proof. You have not provided it… so far. But I am a patient man and am willing to wait.

                  • AllanH says:

                    Add up the hydrogen atoms in the equations provided. Water provides half of them.
                    Since you apparently did not look up the Wikipedia info I told you to check. Here it is all neatly packaged for you.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_production
                    “For this process at high temperatures (700–1100 °C), steam (H2O) reacts with methane (CH4) in an endothermic reaction to yield syngas.[8]

                    CH4 + H2O → CO + 3 H2
                    In a second stage, additional hydrogen is generated through the lower-temperature, exothermic, water gas shift reaction, performed at about 360 °C:
                    CO + H2O → CO2 + H2
                    Essentially, the oxygen (O) atom is stripped from the additional water (steam) to oxidize CO to CO2. This oxidation also provides energy to maintain the reaction. Additional heat required to drive the process is generally supplied by burning some portion of the methane.”

                    You can also see this at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steam_reforming

                    Why else would they use steam if the water was not involved in the reaction?

                  • Anton Koffield says:

                    Ron,

                    Allan H is correct.

                    http://energy.gov/eere/fuelcells/hydrogen-production-natural-gas-reforming

                    This DOE site documents the same equations which AllanH posted, and add the (+Heat) to the left side of the first equation…the site goes on to explicitly state that this process is endothermic (requires external heat to proceed) and also states 700-1000 Decrees C as thr process temperature. The site also explains that catalysts are used to facilitate these reactions. The site does not name the catalyst(s), so right now I don’t know if they are rare/expensive/scalable to greatly increased production or not. Platinum and I l think other platinum group metals are used for auto catalytic converters, as an example. The process explanation is straightforward/simple to grasp.

                    Interestingly, this DOE site advocates another hydrogen-production process called ‘partial oxidation’, which is apparently exothermic.

                    So, I wonder what the ‘rub’ is…if this alternate process is so much better, why isn’t it widely used?

                    I also question the fascination with using hydrogen as an energy carrier: It is challenging to transport, store, and handle…and both purpose-designed ICE and Fuel cell power-plants for autos and other uses can use methane directly and skip the hydrogen production process and also take advantage of CH4 being much easier to store and transport.

                    I would be ecstatic if the World stopped flaring off methane resulting from oil production. We need that resource for the future.

                    Here is the top page of my Google search for Producing Hydrogen using the steaming reformation process…there are numerous information sources to examine.

                  • Okay, perhaps you are right but you still do not gain twice as much hydrogen as the methane provides.

                    Additional heat required to drive the process is generally supplied by burning some portion of the methane.

                    So you burn methane. That methane is used to provide heat to drive the process. So essentially it would be a wash.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Anton,

                    Steam reforming is the primary source of commercial hydrogen. It’s already scaled up.

                    Ron,

                    I think Allan was talking about the hydrogen molecules. The methane burnt for the heat input (which could come from any energy source: nuclear, coal, wind, solar, etc) doesn’t supply any of those molecules. So, yes, if you count the number of hydrogen atoms (4 from the methane and 2 from the water in the first reaction, and then another 2 from the water in the 2nd reaction) water provides 50% of the elemental hydrogen output.

                  • AllanH says:

                    Never said that water provides twice the amount of hydrogen as the methane, said it provides an equal amount (50%)

                    Nick, it’s hydrogen atoms not molecules 🙂

                  • Yeah, I realize you said 50%. My mistake. Nevertheless the laws of thermodynamics cannot be violated. Water is hydrogen oxide, or spent hydrogen fuel. For all the hydrogen you get from water you must expend more energy separating it from the water molecule than you get when you burn it, turning it back into water.

                    Hydrogen from water can never be an energy source. It is always an energy sink.

                  • AllanH says:

                    Ron, no one said that thermodynamics was violated (although most people do not understand thermodynamics anyway, so they wouldn’t know if it was). Don’t see your point. If you had read the provided sites you would see that there is a loss of energy, the stated efficiency is somewhere around 70%. The excess energy is usually provided by burning methane to heat the reaction.
                    The point is not to create energy, but to use hydrogen in further reactions to make other fuels and chemicals. We need that hydrogen to make ammonia for fertilizer, to make synfuels and many chemicals. It’s a 100 billion dollar business and people don’t worry about where the energy comes from because the products are more valuable than the fuels and components used to make them. At least from a business point of view.

                    Ron, hydrogen is an energy source just as any fuel is an energy source. When it is oxidized it provides energy. Just remember that the energy source that created all those fossil fuels was the sun, so fossil fuels are not a primary energy source. Yet they are considered energy sources. So by that definition, hydrogen is an energy source.
                    All fossil fuels are energy carriers just like hydrogen. Their non-oxidized energy state was provided by sunlight.

                    Actually, hydrogen is the primary energy source for all fossil fuels, since hydrogen fusion provided all the energy to place them in a non-oxidized state. 🙂

                  • Nick G says:

                    Hydrogen from water can never be an energy source. It is always an energy sink.

                    Everyone agrees on that point – it’s just a conversion to something more useful. Heck, converting methane to hydrogen is a conversion in which you lose a lot of energy. Even converting crude oil to distillates is a conversion in which you lose about 10% of the energy.

                    Converting coal or gas to electricity is a conversion in which you lose a lot of energy. Electricity is just an energy carrier, just like hydrogen.

                    Not that anyone here is advocating a hydrogen economy (though it might have some fairly big niche applications, like storing surplus wind & solar power for the seasonal lulls in power production).

                  • AllanH says:

                    Anton, partial oxidation probably refers to a non-stoichiometric reaction that produces CO instead of CO2. Think coal gas (water gas), it is formed from carbon (coal or coke) and water to form a mix of CO and hydrogen.
                    The advantage over coal was that coal gas could be piped into houses and streetlamps for illumination. Not something I would want in my house, but it worked. Was banned in Europe, but the wild US kept using it until electric lighting came along.

                  • Ron, hydrogen is an energy source just as any fuel is an energy source. When it is oxidized it provides energy. Just remember that the energy source that created all those fossil fuels was the sun, so fossil fuels are not a primary energy source.

                    No, no, no, no, now you are getting downright silly. There is no free hydrogen anywhere on earth. There are hydrocarbons in the ground, almost free energy there for the taking. Of course at first they were almost free as it took one dollar of energy to recover one hundred dollars worth of oil. Now that is not the case.

                    But you are just being absurdly silly to claim that hydrogen is an energy source because it is the source of the sun’s energy. Come down to earth and talk common sense Allan.

                    We must expend more energy from whatever source we have to produce energy from hydrogen. Hydrogen, as we know here on earth, not on the sun, is an energy sink, not an energy source.

                    If you really wish to carry on an intelligent conversation Allan, you must stop talking silly by claiming that hydrogen is an energy source.

                    Hydrogen, as a fuel, makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. If you just use the electricity it takes to generate hydrogen from water, you would wind up with about 5 times as much energy. Even if you get it from steam reforming from methane makes no sense because you would get far more energy if you just burnt the methane.

                    The Hydrogen Hoax

                    The above article was written in 2007. It is just as valid today as it was the day it was written. Hydrogen is not just a hoax, it is a cruel hoax because it gives the false hope that we will one day power the world with fuel from water. That is pure bullshit. You should learn to live with that fact.

                  • Javier says:

                    Allan H,

                    Hydrogen is not an energy source on the Earth. It is an energy carrier and a pretty lousy one.

                    Not for nothing it has been called the Houdini of gases.

                    And remember the Hindenburg. That stuff is not very safe when there is oxygen around.

                  • AllanH says:

                    OK Ron, I guess that bright thing up in the sky is not powered with hydrogen and fossil fuels were not formed by sunlight. At least in your world.
                    Hydrogen has powered life on earth, formed all those fossil fuels for eons on my world.
                    Hydrogen is an energy carrier just as fossil fuels are. It is much more efficient than fossil fuels by many orders of magnitude. You are just taking the narrow view that since it is already here it is magically an energy source. It is merely stored energy. The only energy sources we know of are nuclear or gravitational. Hydrogen fusion produces light which powers the ecosystem and warms the world. Dead portions of the ecosystem in the past were buried away from oxygen and formed into fossil fuels. Now we bring them back to the current surface and oxidize them, this produces heat and light. Sound familiar?

                  • Allan, now you are just being fucking stupid. Repeat after me: Free hydrogen does not exist anywhere on earth. It never has and it never will. Free hydrogen cannot exist in the presence of oxygen because it will, upon the first source of heat, lightening, etc., be oxidized into water.

                    Hydrogen is an energy carrier just as fossil fuels are.

                    Of course it is, where it exist, like in outer space or on the sun. But free hydrogen does not exist anywhere on earth. That is the one very simple fact that you simply don’t seem to understand, or simply don’t want to understand.

                    Hydrogen has powered the sun. Carbon has powered life on earth, not hydrogen. End of story. You cannot, with your silly stories about energy sources that power the sun being the same energy sources that produce work on earth. They are not the same.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Hydrogen, as a fuel, makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

                    Sure. But, please note that the article you cite is about passenger cars. For instance, here’s a quote: “This means that even if hydrogen cars were available and hydrogen stations existed to fuel them, no one with the power to choose otherwise would ever buy such vehicles. ”

                    He’s arguing that EVs would be better. And, again, everyone here agrees. H2 for passenger cars was a cruel hoax, a deliberate red herring to slow down the progress of EVs.

                    So, one more time:

                    everyone here agrees that H2 is no good for cars!

                    But, that doesn’t mean that electrolytic hydrogen won’t have it’s uses. Container ships might use it. It’s probably good for central storage of surplus wind & solar power for seasonal lulls in power production).

                  • Techsan says:

                    Well, no, not everyone here agrees that hydrogen is no good as a fuel for cars.

                    Toyota is actually producing hydrogen fuel-cell cars for the consumer market:

                    http://www.toyota-global.com/innovation/environmental_technology/fuelcell_vehicle/

                    I don’t always agree with Toyota’s approach, but they aren’t stupid.

                    Think of Hydrogen + Fuel Cell as a battery. Then you have a battery-electric vehicle where the battery can be recharged quickly by filling up with more hydrogen.

                    Of course, every battery technology delivers less out than was put in. But, I find that our Nissan Leaf gives 7 times the miles per energy equivalent gallon as gasoline cars. A hydrogen fuel cell car can be similarly efficient, and this can more than compensate for the cost of the hydrogen.

                    Electrolysis is pretty simple, and it is possible to have home electrolysis from grid electricity or PV solar. Given that the raw materials are water and sunlight, those are quite cheap.

                    The only remaining hangup is cost of the fuel cells, and Toyota seems to think they have that solved.

                  • Nick G says:

                    I’m puzzled by Toyota’s fuel cell push: the cars are pretty expensive (somewhere above $60k for a very small, slow car); the H2 is 3x as expensive as electricity and a bit more expensive than oil; and the infrastructure doesn’t exist and would be very expensive to build out.

                    On the other hand, I would guess that the rate of single family garaged cars (for convenient charging) is low in Japan – anyone seen statistics??

          • So…Now that we got the hydrogen issue out of the way…making hydrogen to hydrogenate heavy oil and asphalts is worthwhile at very high natural gas prices. Besides, it doesn’t use that much hydrogen. The expense is more in the process vessels and fuel used to heat all that crap.

            • oldfarmermac says:

              Thank you Fernando,

              I take it that most or nearly all of the hydrogen used at oil refineries is sourced from methane aka natural gas.

              But all refineries might not have natural gas available. In that case, if hydrogen is needed, where do they get it? Which process do they use?

              It would appear that steam reformed hydrogen would be substantially more expensive.

              So you are saying a refinery operator CAN afford to pay a steep price for natural gas, that this is profitable EVEN at a high natural gas price.

              • Mac, refineries with hydrogenation capacity usually have access to natural gas. But it’s possible to use a light hydrocarbon such as propane (C3H8).

    • Fred Magyar says:

      Could be a cold Winter.
      That might be better than a really ‘HOT’ one…

      • Longtimber says:

        Rodger that.. so far appears plane was indeed Turkish Airspace and ignored warnings , so Gas cutoff unlikely.

        • Fabio says:

          ’’so far appears plane was indeed Turkish Airspace and ignored warnings’’

          depends on who you wish to believe. Anyway, when a lie is repeated over and over it becomes truth to one’s ears

        • Dave P says:

          The ISIS ‘moderates’ will be pleased. The flow of illegal oil to Turkey will continue, good work Turkey.

        • twocats says:

          yeah, i’m gonna have to call “bullshit due to complete lack of evidence”. The pilot that survived claimed there was no warning. a fighter jet versus a bomber? um, they coulda done loopty loops around it for a half hour, eaten a sandwich, and then shot it down. 19 seconds of violated airspace to potentially kick off WWIII? Seems pretty stupid – and probably wouldn’t be done without the nod from Washington.

    • Glenn Stehle says:

      Yep.

      Russian President Vladimir Putin said the downing of the Russian plane would have “serious consequences for Russia’s relationship with Turkey.”

      The shooting down of the plane, Putin said, “represents a stab in the back by the terrorists’ accomplices. I can’t describe what has happened today in any other way. Our plane was downed over Syrian territory by an air-to-air missile from a Turkish F-16 jet.

      “The plane fell on Syrian territory 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) away from the Turkish border. It was flying 1 kilometer away from the Turkish border when it was attacked. In any case, neither our pilots nor our jet posed any threat to Turkey. That is obvious. They were carrying out an operation fighting against ISIL in Northern Latakia.” (ISIL is another acronym for ISIS.)

      Turkey’s ambassador to the United States, Serdar Kilic, was equally aggressive in his comments, tweeting: “Understand this: Turkey is a country whose warnings should be taken seriously and listened to. Don’t test Turkey’s patience. Try to win its friendship.”

      http://edition.cnn.com/2015/11/24/middleeast/warplane-crashes-near-syria-turkey-border/index.html

      • Glenn Stehle says:

        This video confirms that the plane was shot down over Syria and not Turkey.

        You can see the pilots being shot by ISIS or some other terrorist group after they parachuted from the plane.

        http://edition.cnn.com/videos/world/2015/11/24/turkey-russian-plane-syria-pilot.cnn/video/playlists/russian-fighter-jet-shot-down-over-turkey/

        • Watcher says:

          Typical velocity 400 knots. 400 nautical miles/hr. 1 knot = 1.852 km/hr.
          400 X 1.852 = 741 km/hr.

          Time to go 4 kilometers thus .0054 hrs = 19.4 seconds. That’s how fast one
          would be across border from 4 km out. That is if velocity vector is precisely perpendicular to the border.

          As for warnings, there may or may not be a frequency all countries’ aircraft would be tuned to on which they could hear them, and if they can hear them (seems unlikely) a non commercial (non airline) Russian pilot probably isn’t required to speak English. So do the Turks have ground controllers who speak Russian? (Also seems unlikely). The warning thing is probably meaningless.

          One aircraft, on radar, skirting the border . . . isn’t procedure to scramble aircraft and do an escort away?

          • Glenn Stehle says:

            Watcher,

            And you don’t believe the Russian jet would have experienced a rapid deceleration after being struck by the Turkish missle?

            Here’s a video of the Russian jet falling to earth. I don’t see much horizontal movement there. It’s mostly straight down.

            http://edition.cnn.com/videos/tv/2015/11/24/russian-warplane-syria-turkey-crash-shot-down.cnn/video/playlists/russian-fighter-jet-shot-down-over-turkey/

            • Fred Magyar says:

              I don’t see much horizontal movement there. It’s mostly straight down.

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                Fred,

                So let me get this straight.

                Your claim is that a jet aircraft traveling at 741 km/h, after having been struck by a missle, and after having lost the thrust of its engines, would continue to travel at the same horizontal velocity for 19 seconds?

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  No, I didn’t claim anything of the sort! The graphic is obviously intended to be tongue in cheek and it is more about the fact that there are some basic laws of motion to contend with. Even if the the jet was hit by a missile it would not simply fall vertically but it would follow a path that would be the vectorial result of a number of factors such as its horizontal velocity, speed and mass of the missile, and the effect of gravity… All I was trying to say is that it would NOT fall vertically or as you put it straight down.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Oh well Fred,

                    My lying eyes!

                    Take another look at that video of the jet falling out of the air. When it strikes the ground its direction of travel is almost straight down.

                    Accelleration due to gravity is about 10 m/s/s under ideal circumstances. If it took 19 seconds for the jet to hit the ground from the time of being struck, as per Watcher’s hypothetical, then the maximum vertical component of its velocity would be 190 m/s, or 19 x 10 m/s/s.

                    If the jet were to have continued unimpeded at its horizontal velocity of 741 km, then the horizontal component of its velocity would be 206 m/s.

                    What this means is that the jet would have been traveling in a direction 43% from the horizontal when it hit the ground.

                    Obviously, as anyone can plainly see from watching the video, this didn’t happen. When the jet struck the ground, it was traveling in a direction almost vertical, or 90% from the horizontal.

                    http://edition.cnn.com/videos/tv/2015/11/24/russian-warplane-syria-turkey-crash-shot-down.cnn/video/playlists/russian-fighter-jet-shot-down-over-turkey/

                    So can you explain to me how it was possible that jet traveled 4 km after being struck? That is, after all, the point of contention. The plane undoubtedly experienced a rapid deceleration after being struck, and anybody with two eyes and a scintilla of knowledge about those “basic laws of motion to contend with” can see that.

                    But I get your drift.

                    Up is down.

                    Black is white.

                    War is peace.

                    Ignorance is strength.

                  • AllanH says:

                    Fred, consider drag. At the moment of impact, the thrust was equal to the drag on the aircraft. Once the thrust was reduced or eliminated, drag of many thousands of pounds force would slow the aircraft quickly. Drag would be maximized right after impact. It would also enter a flight configuration which at first would not be ballistic, but would induce forces of drag, as can be seen from the wobbling pattern of the aircraft in the video. This would be modified by forces developed across the flight surfaces, each of which would also induce additional lifts and drag in various directions. Thus the aircraft would not follow a typical ballistic trajectory. From the two videos I watched it appeared to follow almost a linear downward slope until not long before it crashed, where is appeared to take a more vertical position.

                    You are right on that count Fred, it did not fall straight down or anywhere near it for most of it’s time after the strike. Nor did it follow a typical ballistic trajectory.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    AllanH, Yep, thanks for the reminder about drag!

                • Ralph says:

                  A full jumbo jet, travelling at 30,000 feet, losing all 4 engines simultaneously, will not hit the ground for half an hour. Horizontal range about 150 miles.

                  This has happened. The passengers on board were extremely happy about that. The pilots managed to restart two of the engines.

                  That of course is an extreme case for comparison. The flight paths were tracked. The jet was on Turkish airspace for 17 seconds. By the time the missile hit it was over Syrian airspace. It then travelled several more miles before hitting ground.

                  • Nora Kearney says:

                    fighter aircraft have nowhere near the glide ratio of commercial aircraft. Their abilities in that regard more closely resemble those of a rock.

                    Fred is right in citing basic laws of physics – there would have been some forward momentum, but if the engine cut out there would be no further forward propulsion and the effect of drag would be considerable.

                    Nonetheless, even if the russian aircraft had entered turkish airspace – all 17 seconds worth, it is hard to see how that posed any risk to turkey. It does smell like an ambush. Hard to see what turkey may have gained from this action.

                  • AllanH says:

                    “A full jumbo jet, travelling at 30,000 feet, losing all 4 engines simultaneously, will not hit the ground for half an hour. Horizontal range about 150 miles.”

                    Not the same. A jumbo jet struck by a missile with major damage and on fire would be a better comparison. Plane needs operating control surfaces and structural integrity to maintain a glide aspect.
                    That has happened, they don’t stay up very long.

                  • TechGuy says:

                    “A full jumbo jet, traveling at 30,000 feet, losing all 4 engines simultaneously, will not hit the ground for half an hour. Horizontal range about 150 miles.”

                    Russian fighter lost its tail section after it was hit. It did not continue moving aero-dynamically. Also Jet Fighter/bombers have far less wing surface area as they are designed to travel significantly faster and have more maneuverability than a commercial jet. You are comparing an apple with a pineapple.

                    Bottom line: There was no risk of a single Russia fighter invading of Thursday, and the pilot never a visual received a warning. Turkey is “displeased” that Russia is defending Assad. This is just an attempt to make it difficult, and raises the game up a notch to full global war.

                    That said, The Russians made a tactical error by not escorting the fighter/bomber with a second fighter to watch the back of the fighter/bomber that was focusing/looking for ISIS ground targets. I am sure they will have changed operation procedures. Next time the Russian pilots will engage the Turkish Airforce resulting expanding the war to include Russia and Turkey. I remind you that Turkey is a NATO member.

                    Face facts, The West Proxy war in Syria has cost the lives of probably a close to million people and displaced more than 5 million people in Syria alone. And probably another 2 to 3 million in Libya. For the West to suggest its for human rights and humanitarian aid, is a page right out of George Orwell’s 1984. Its getting so bad, that even 1984 seems subdued compared to reality.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Semena Mertvykh

                    “When you think of Iraq, do you think of cedar forests so thick that sunlight never touches the ground? That’s how it was prior to the beginnings of this culture. The Near East was a forest. North Africa was a forest. Greece was a forest. All pulled down to support this culture. Forests precede us, while deserts dog our heels.” ~ Derrick Jensen

                    Come To Dust

        • Brian Rose says:

          This is an image of the SU-24s flight path.

          It passed through a border of Turkey that is a peninsula into Syria. My best guess is that it was hit when flying through that peninsula, and by the time it crashed it had crossed back into Syria.

          In fact, that’s exactly what the image of its flight path indicates.

          • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

            NBC reports, citing Pentagon sources, that the Russian jet was over Turkish territory for perhaps two to three seconds.

            I wonder if this is mostly Turkey trying to get Russian aircraft away from ethnic Turkish population areas in Syria along the Turkish border.

            • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

              An analyst on MSNBC described it as an ambush by the Turkish Air Force.

              • Javier says:

                I would tend to concur. There was no need to shoot that plane down and kill two pilots. Turks wanted a message sent by a conduct other than a diplomat.

                Suddenly the world is a little more dangerous. Why?

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Could this have something to do with it?

                  Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia. An Agence France-Presse report claimed Assad’s rationale was “to protect the interests of [his] Russian ally, which is Europe’s top supplier of natural gas”.

                  Instead, the following year, Assad pursued negotiations for an alternative $10 billion pipeline plan with Iran, across Iraq to Syria, that would also potentially allow Iran to supply gas to Europe from its South Pars field shared with Qatar. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the project was signed in July 2012 – just as Syria’s civil war was spreading to Damascus and Aleppo – and earlier this year Iraq signed a framework agreement for construction of the gas pipelines.

                  The Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline plan was a “direct slap in the face” to Qatar’s plans. No wonder Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, in a failed attempt to bribe Russia to switch sides, told President Vladmir Putin that “whatever regime comes after” Assad, it will be “completely” in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will “not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports”, according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.

                  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Competing pipelines?

                  Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field…with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia….

                  Instead, the following year, Assad pursued negotiations for an alternative $10 billion pipeline plan with Iran, across Iraq to Syria, that would also potentially allow Iran to supply gas to Europe….

                  The Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline plan was a “direct slap in the face” to Qatar’s plans. No wonder Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, in a failed attempt to bribe Russia to switch sides, told President Vladmir Putin that “whatever regime comes after” Assad, it will be “completely” in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will “not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports”, according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.
                  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Could this have something to do with it?

                  Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field…with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia….

                  Instead, the following year, Assad pursued negotiations for an alternative $10 billion pipeline plan with Iran….

                  No wonder Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sulan…told President Vladmir Putin that “whatever regime comes after” Assad, it will be “completely” in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will “not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports”, according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.
                  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Pipelines and opening up natural gas supplies to Turkey and Europe which are not controlled by Russia and its allies?

                  No wonder Saudi Prince…told President Vladmir Putin that “whatever regime comes after” Assad, it will be “completely” in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will “not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports”, according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.
                  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Opening up natural gas supplies to Turkey and Europe which are not controlled by Russia and its allies? This requires a pipeline across Syria but Assad nixed the deal.

                  No wonder Saudi Prince…told President Vladmir Putin that “whatever regime comes after” Assad, it will be “completely” in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will “not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports”, according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.

                  THE GUARDIAN, “Syria intervention plan fueled by oil interests, not chemical weapon concern”

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Opening up natural gas supplies to Turkey and Europe which are not controlled by Russia and its allies? This requires a pipeline across Syria but Assad nixed the deal.

                  THE GUARDIAN, “Syria intervention plan fueled by oil interests, not chemical weapon concern”

                  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

                • Jimmy says:

                  Something tells me Putin is gonna turn up the dial on Turkeys little Kurdish problem. Putin has a lot of levers to choose from in dealing with Turkey. Whilst Russia does need Turkey perhaps more than Turkey needs Russia they certainly don’t need Erdogan.

                • twocats says:

                  thank you, all this talk of vectors and calculus and 19 vs 10 seconds. It’s absolutely bizarre. It’s like you guys have a collective political IQ of 25. This is some of stupidest back and forth I’ve ever seen on this site. but now we that we are past bernoulli’s theory we can get to actual politics of it, and the points raised since I first posted this have improved dramatically. Thanks for all the interesting angles!

                  • wimbi says:

                    Nah, I too prefer problems with simple arithmetic and simple answers, no matter how irrelevant they might be to the problem at hand. Politics has nothing at all simple about it. No fun there.

                    But, while we are at the simple stuff, why not a simple what-if – – we took all the $ trillions spent in this hellish ME from Saddam on, and instead, put it into switching to solar, thus allowing us to painlessly sit back in our nice cosy armchair and watch all those incomprehensibles kill each other off ?

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    wimbi,

                    And if we take a look at polling information, that argument historically seems to be much more believable and salient to the American public than the one about global warming.

          • Glenn Stehle says:

            Brian Rose,

            If it occurred as your map indicates, and the Russian jet was traveling at 741 km/h as Watcher says, then the jet was only over Turkish airspace for about 12 seconds.

            Could the Turkish fighter pilots draw a bead, fire their missle, and have it stike the Russian jet during that short of a period of time?

            Your speculation that, “My best guess is that it was hit when flying through that peninsula, and by the time it crashed it had crossed back into Syria,” doesn’t pass the smell test.

        • Synapsid says:

          GlennS,

          A Turkmen commander said they shot the pilots.

          • Opritov Alexandr says:

            “A Turkmen commander said they shot the pilots.”
            ——–
            No Turkmen commander-Turkish : http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/2491068.html#comments

            • The Turkish looking dudes living in Syria are known as Turkmen or Turkoman. The languages aren’t even the same. They are related to the Turkmenistan tribes.

              • Synapsid says:

                Fernando,

                The Turkmen came out of what is now Turkmenistan, as you indicate, a millennium ago, into the Middle East. That’s where the Osmanli Turks, the Turks of modern Turkey, came from too. Turkey views the Turkmen as close relatives and takes a paternal interest in them (this is a big thing in Turkey) and views itself as their protector. There are lots of Turkmen in Turkey.

                The languages are closely related and I believe they are to some degree mutually intelligible.

                Turkey views itself as Big Sibling of all the Turkic peoples of Central Asia: Turkmen, Uzbek, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Uighur–Turkey has protested formally to China about Chinese treatment of the Uighur in western China.

        • twocats says:

          I’m calling “completely irrelevant due to the fact that it’s irrelevant”. Is Turkey at war with Russia? Are they in a direct conflict in any way really? Does ISIS have bombers? So there’s absolutely positively no way they could have “mistaken” the bomber for something else. And unless they are ready to declare war directly with Russia, the attack is on the verge of insanity. I know sovereignty is important and all, and they could certainly buzz and even fire “shots across the bow” pretty easily. If we are disputing between 19 and 10 seconds of air space violations, we are idiots. Geeky idiots, but idiots nonethe less.

          • The Turks were defending Turkmen on the Syrian side. Erdogan said so. The Russians may sit down with turkey and concede a portion of Latakia to Turkey. The excuse will be the fact that it’s populated by Turkmen. If Turkey agrees and redraws the border it will be huge win for Russia. It will give them the precedent to justify taking over the Crimea and the Donbas. 😐

      • Hickory says:

        I don’t trust Putin as a partner for international stability,
        but I sure trust him more than Erodgan.
        He is an islamist extremist in moderate clothing.

        • Glenn Stehle says:

          Germany apparently has come to a similar conclusion.

          German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said:

          This incident shows for the first time that we are to dealing with an actor who is unpredictable according to statements from various parts of the region – that is not Russia, that is Turkey.

          https://www.rt.com/news/323240-russia-turkey-warplane-downed/

          NATO, however, has closed ranks with Turkey. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that the alliance backs Ankara:

          We stand in solidarity with Turkey and support the territorial integrity of our NATO ally.

          https://www.rt.com/news/323240-russia-turkey-warplane-downed/

          Obama joined NATO in closing ranks with Turkey:

          http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/plane-shootdown-could-lead-to-nato-conflict-with-russia/

          and

          http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/hollande-and-obama-address-isis-threat/

          The MSM talking heads are also swinging into action to defend Turkey, arguing that even if the Russian jet was not shot down over Turkey (something an anonymous Pentagon official told Reuters is the case, since video evidence makes further denials by Anakra and Washington unplausible) then Russia still had it coming. Nick Burns, former National Security Council Director for Russian Affairs, charged:

          There’s an important principle at stake here… Every nation has a right to protect its own borders. And President Obama sided with the Turks today in saying that they have that right. It was a gross violation of international law for the Russians to even fly close to that border…

          The Russians may have thought that the Turks weren’t serious but they found out today they were.

          http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/analysis-of-russian-plane-shootdown/

          This incident should shed light on the fact that neither the great powers (like the US, France or Russia) nor the regional players (like Turkey, Saudi Arabia, or Iran) are participating in this conflict to fight a common enemy, ISIS. They are there for other reasons.

          Russia, however, is in a tough spot. Pepe Escobar, for instance, noted in Asia Times that Russia has eight times the Islamic extremists living on its soil as does France:

          Bajolet tells us that at least 500 French jihadis from “Syraq” might present a threat; compare it with 4,000 in respect to Russia (and that explains Putin’s determination to go after all shades of jihadism).
          http://www.sott.net/article/306819-Pepe-Escobar-Paris-terror-attacks-who-profits

          So Putin may have to put some of his other goals in the region on the back burner in order to actually wage war on ISIS and other Islamic extremist groups.

          • Javier says:

            Glenn,

            It is a very complex issue as every player has different interests. Putin is right in saying that Turkey, a NATO member, is backing ISIS, not only financially but militarily. For Turkey their main interest is in Syrian Kurds not getting organized, armed, and in control of their own territory. When Turkey says they are fighting ISIS, they are dropping most of the bombs on Syrian Kurds. And they have never respected Iraq borders when attacking Iraqi Kurds.

            Saudi Arabia is also supporting ISIS, not only because they also defend an extremist Sunni Islam as Wahabbist Saudi Arabia, but also because it is part of their proxy wars against Shia Iran, and Syria is one of the Shia States with Sunni majority. Saudi Arabia is probably the biggest supporter of Islamic terrorism.

            The Alawites of Syria (including the al-Assad family) are also happy that ISIS is in Syria. Without them they have no chance of keeping power, but in a three sides war with one of them being unacceptable to Occident, they are no longer looking so bad.

            Syrian opposition is the big loser here. They are bombed by Turkey and Russia (different targets) and attacked on land by Alawites and ISIS as each one wants to expand first at their expense.

            This is why refugees are coming out in droves now as the war is getting much worse.

            Turkey feels pretty safe. NATO has no choice but to close ranks, and the European Union is paying big money to Turkey to keep a lid on the refugee problem, as Spain does with Morocco.

            Holland stupidly wants to march on ISIS, but nobody else wants to put troops on the ground. The only ones with troops on the ground fighting ISIS are Syrian army and Kurds. The latter ones are unacceptable to Turkey, so the former ones might become our new ally.

            Alawites, the core of the Syrian army, are paying a very high price for the war. About a third of their manpower has died in the 5 year war. They only keep fighting because they know they face extermination if they lose the war, whether from Syrian Sunnies or from ISIS.

            • Ves says:

              Javier,
              You got all ingredients right but all your conclusions are not correct.

              • Paulo says:

                I wonder what Obama will say about the right of a country to shoot down an aircraft for airspace violation….when one of theirs gets shot down over the Spratleys by China?

  3. Brian Rose says:

    The historic rally in the value of the US Dollar is also a sizable portion of current oil prices. The intriguing feedback loop is that the dollar rally has a lot to do with the U.S. LTO boom.

    From one angle, the LTO boom created hundreds of thousands of jobs. Not only were these high wage jobs, BUT it was a large pay increase from these workers previous jobs. If I go from $60,000/yr to $65,000 the economic impact is marginal; if I go from $25,000/yr to $65,000/yr the economic impact is quite large. Clearly the jobs directly created had a wide range – from sales reps for drilling equipment manufacturers to engineers and roughnecks.

    People at the bottom end of the wage scale are more likely to spend any increase in wages. The ancillary impact on other industries is therefore magnified. More directly (yet hidden), a huge boom in Wisconsin sand causes cities seemingly removed from the fracking boom to experience radical growth:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-09-21/oil-bust-claims-unusual-american-victim-far-away-from-shale-rigs

    Between June 2009 and August 2011 Texas created 47% of the new jobs in the U.S. In that same period the oil and gas industry increased their employment by 40%. Those numbers ignore the jobs created by increased demand for sand, drilling chemicals, rail cars, and dozens of other industries that help make fracking happen.

    As a result, GDP growth in the U.S. was higher, quarter after quarter, than most other OECD countries for several years. That rise in GDP was just enough to have the Federal Reserve taper QE3 from $80 billion a month to $0. The Federal Reserve ended QE when other developed countries started QE; In December the ECB will increase its QE. Two weeks later the Federal Reserve will likely raise interest rates for the first time since 2006.

    That dichotomy in interest rate policy has sparked a truly historic rally in the value of the USD over the last 2 years.

    However, that is not the only feedback loop between the fracking boom and the value of the USD.

    A currencies value is impacted heavily by import/export ratios. The fracking boom, in tandem with other factors, cut U.S. imports of oil by 50%. Oil imports are down by 7 million barrels per day since their peak. The impact on the trade deficit was meaningful, and the effect would be a rise in the value of the USD.

    Ultimately, rising U.S. oil production led to a combination of:

    1. Oversupply, and thus lower oil prices.

    2. A significant rise in the value of the USD, and thus lower oil prices.

    These positive feedback effects explain the shear magnitude of the impact on oil prices. Many people don’t appreciate how much the value of the USD has rallied, and how LTO played an important role in that truly historic rally.

    Now, what happens when U.S. oil production experiences large declines in 2016?

    Certainly, prices will rise as supply declines, and demand rises coming into Spring/Summer 2016.

    U.S. oil imports will rise, and the trade deficit will grow as price increases AND volume increases (nothing severe, but again, meaningful) causing downward pressure on the USD.

    QE in Europe and its impact on Euro value and loan interest rates will cause a rise in European exports and domestic demand in Europe. Later in 2016 inflation and growth will lead to talk of the ECB tapering QE. This would cause a Euro rally, and put major downward pressure on the USD.

    All together this could lead to exactly what we’ve seen since the dollar started rallying 18 months ago – but in the opposite direction.

    There’s obviously many factors I didn’t mention, and I don’t want this comment to be any longer than it already is, so please, anyone, everyone, expand on these thoughts, criticize it, or talk about kittens. I know others can help refine my thinking here.

    • Watcher says:

      Certainly, prices will rise as supply declines, and demand rises coming into Spring/Summer 2016.

      • Watcher says:

        Certainly, prices will rise as supply declines, and demand rises coming into Spring/Summer 2016.

        How did I lose my edit button?

        Regardless, you’re going to be rich. Gonna mortgage everything and buy oil futures, eh.

        This one has an edit button.

        • Brian Rose says:

          I was going to buy a monocle, but why buy a monocle if you have no gold pocket-watch to stare at?

          Then again, why buy a gold stopwatch before you have a silk vest to store it in?

        • oldfarmermac says:

          “Certainly, prices will rise as supply declines, and demand rises coming into Spring/Summer 2016”

          Watcher has finally admitted that supply and price are inversely related, that supply and demand are real phenomena. ;-).

    • Mario says:

      The strength of the US dollar has been a big part of oil’s decline for certain.

      Predicting the future movements of currencies is way above my pay grade though.

      Rallies do always eventually end though, and if that is the case with the US dollar and if it comes at the same time as when oil demand meets or exceeds supply, then that would certainly be the case for a significant rebound in oil prices.

      I do think for certain that we are heading to some balancing in supply and demand, probably sometime in 2016. Where the US dollar will be at that time and how traders feel about the dollar is far too complicated for me to decipher.

    • BC says:

      Brian, well said. Thanks.

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2FbB

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2FeK

      WRT to TX job creation, note from the chart at the link above that TX has quite likely rolled over into recession as of Q2-Q3 to date (as have ND, WY, and LA).

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2Fcf

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2Fcs

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2FcU

      As for the US$, the currency’s rise started coincident (and predictably) with US and Japanese supranational firms’ FDI to China-Asia peaking and then contracting beginning in 2013 to date, which, given the large FDI multiplier for China, resulted in a decline in US net exports to GDP and a resulting plunge in China’s investment, production, and exports, reducing China’s GDP by at least 2-3% (GDP is widely known by now to be grossly overstated since the late 2000s).

      With regional capital, investment, and trade flows and GDP having achieved parity since the mid- to late 2000s, the long-term trend is likely to be the major fiat digital currencies normalizing at, or around, par with one another hereafter, as growth of “trade” effectively ceases with diminishing (or no) trade-weighted returns from offshoring, labor arbitrage, etc.

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2Fde

      As for growth of demand in 2016, I am guarded, as US final sales less health care spending and the fiscal deficit have decelerated below the historical “stall-speed” rate of 3% YoY as of Q2-Q3.

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2CDh

      Health care spending (ACA) at an appalling ~20% of GDP ($10,000 per capita and an equivalent of $26,000 per household, twice after-tax profits, 50% of wages and salaries, and 100% of federal gov’t spending) has again accelerated to more than twice the rate of final sales, which occurred at the onset of the previous two recessions.

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2vmr

      https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?g=2Fdr

      Moreover, the broad equity market has entered a bear market with growth of gov’t receipts to GDP having earlier decelerated to around 0% and the improvement in the fiscal deficit appearing to have peaked in recent quarters, suggesting that decelerating growth of the economy will result in the deficit/GDP expanding and the requirement for the Fed to resume QEternity at some point in 2016 to fund banks’ balance sheets to finance the deficit to prevent nominal GDP from eventually contracting for the cycle (why the ECB has ramped up QE for the EZ).

      Under the foregoing conditions, it is bizarre that the Fed would choose precisely now to begin raising the reserve and discount rates.

      • TechGuy says:

        BC Wrote:

        “Under the foregoing conditions, it is bizarre that the Fed would choose precisely now to begin raising the reserve and discount rates.”

        The fed has been “talking” about a rate hike for about a year now. First they planned to raise rates in March, then May, Then July, Then Sept, and now Dec. I am not sure why Dec. will be different than the past. I have a great headline for a story: “The FED that called Wolf”.

    • Heinrich Leopold says:

      Brian Rose,

      Your comment summarizes also my view about the current situation. Shale oil and gas are extremely important for the position of the US in the struggle to secure energy in the future. The most important issue now is if shale oil and gas can fulfill its expectations. Over the last two years the decline rate has doubled (see below chart) and production from new wells can only cover 40% of the decline rate. If this persists, US production will slow down significantly over the next years and the US will need alternative sources of energy in the future.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Heinrich,

        Are you using legacy decline from the drilling productivity report?

        Those estimates are not very good, I think they must assume the number of new wells added is unchanged from previous months, this is unlikely, as the number of new wells added decreases, legacy decline also decreases, so your estimates after Sept 2015 are likely to be over stated.

        • Heinrich Leopold says:

          Dennis,

          The data from the drilling report are subject to revisions from time to time, yet the revisions are only marginal in comparison to the huge downward trend. It is important to see the big picture and discussions about the last comma are not useful. What is the most important is that the legacy decline is huge (-150 kb/d and month, see chart). If companies would not add new wells, Eagle Ford would be extinct in about 8 months. Secondly – and this is what you obviously do not understand – the legacy decline is still moving downwards as the legacy decline is dependent on past production increases and not current production. As production rose last year at lightning speed, the legacy decline will be declining until late spring next year, until moving upwards again. Until then production in the Eagle Ford will be down at around 500 000 b/d or less, which represents a 1 mill b/d decline for Eagle Ford alone. As Bakken has the same trend – yet is behind around three months – the decline for Bakken and Eagle Ford will be down by 1.5 mill b/d by next fall – if prices stay low, which I think is very likely. What most people are not aware of is that the decline rates in the US oil patch are tantamount. Eagle Ford and Bakken have to replace their production every year by 100%. This requires tremendous amounts of capital. Yet the reality is that drilling has been reduced threefold, when actually a substantial increase in drilling would be necessary.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            The dpr forecast will be wrong.

            • Heinrich Leopold says:

              Dennis,

              DPR forecasts just one month. What is important is the trend. Below chart about Marcellus shows the trend for the last two years which does not include the forecast for December 2015. In 2013 production from new wells covered over 300% of the decline, which was really impressive. Today, production from new wells covers just 60% of the decline and the trend is still down. Marcellus has significantly lost momentum and this is not just a short term blip.

              • Toolpush says:

                Heinrich,

                If the Marcellus was to produce more gas, with storage at 4.009 trillion cuft, where would they put it?
                In other words, maybe they are not producing more, because they have run out of storage capacity?
                We will see what happens when demand catches up to supply, Marcellus price normalizes with HH, and HH scrapes itself off the floor?

                • Toolpush says:

                  Heinrich,

                  Just a quote from your favourite Nat Gas information source.
                  http://www.bentekenergy.com/

                  Wednesday, November 25, 2015 – 9:25 AM

                  Northeast production reached an all-time high of 21.5 Bcf/d on Nov 11/22 as colder temperatures blanketed the region over the past few days. The increase was driven by receipts from TETCO in Appalachian PA South, but were none of the listed meters from the project shipper contracts.

                  So demand went up, and supply followed!

                • Heinrich Leopold says:

                  Toolpush,

                  Inventory build decreased this year by around 300 bcf. Yet as the base level this year has been much higher than last year, total inventories are also much higher. It remains to be seen if the Marcellus decline is just voluntary or if companies can increase production at a fingertip. The next few months will be very interesting in this respect. As decline rates increased to 50% it is more and more difficult to replace existing production with production from new wells in the future. My personal view is that natgas is a perfect lifeline for shale companies and they should wait until prices go much higher rather than produce as much as possible, depress prices and damage investors. It is in the meantime clear, that shale gas companies are not profitable and do a lot of harm to share- and bondholders. So what do the companies try to achieve here? In addition, there is also the law of high numbers. The share of financial resources which just go to keep production even is growing and the profitable part of production is shrinking. This is a natural law and brings down eventually any wave or bubble. It will be interesting how companies can manage this. In any case, shale gas and oil is a very interesting showcase of a financial bubble.

                  • Toolpush says:

                    Heinrich,

                    I agree with several of your points.
                    1/ The next few months will be insightful, on whether the shale player can respond with supply when it is demanded, and of course at what price.
                    2/ The shale gas plays can not be economic at the current price, but what price is profitable? As the gas market is mostly confined to the US, then a self correcting price should be more forth coming than for oil.
                    The one point I can’t see, is your previous claim $20 per mcf. But time will tell!

                  • coffeeguyzz says:

                    Mr. Leopold

                    As of last week, Ohio had over 500 DUCs and 1,100 producing unconventional wells.
                    Pennsylvania has 2,500 drilled but not producing wells (unconventional) and 7,000 producing.

                    The Scotts Run well targeting the Deep Utica in PA has produced 2.6 BCF in its first 86 days, is on restricted choke and is producing a STEADY 30 MMcfd.
                    This well is on track to produce over 7 Bcf its first eight months online.
                    Expressed in energy equivalence on oil terms, this well is producing 5,000 boed, has put out over 400,000 boe in less than three months, and in eight months time is projected to produce way over one million boe.
                    The well’s lateral is 3,000′ long.

                    There are a half dozen nearby Deep Utica wells that are either being drilled or have been brought online on extremely constrained choke so as to evaluate/maximize drawdown pressures and ultimate total recovery.

                  • Heinrich Leopold says:

                    coffeegyuzz,

                    We will see soon if all the hype materializes. For my part I do not believe it and I do not invest in it. And I have made a lot of money by not investing into it. I am waiting for the right point to step in. This is price fixing and it has never worked. At some point this will be huge, yet it is difficult to say when. At least there has been no flood of natgas over the summer as previously indicated. I understand the argument, that companies have an inventory and want to use it when prices recover over the winter. RRC is down on its way to new lows and the bond market is in collapse mode. These are very good signals for a lot of trouble in the market. Even if production is up, it is already clear by now that companies cannot make any money out of it and resources are drying up quickly. When investors wake up, there will be panic.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Trends can change.

                • coffeeguyzz says:

                  Dennis

                  So can a person’s point of view.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi coffeeguyz,

                    I was referring to Heinrich’s comment that the ratio of output from new wells to legacy decline had been declining. The trend in his chart looks relatively steady during 2014.

                    I believe he thinks the trend will continue.

                    Often trends change, points of view can change as well, but that was not really what I was referring to.

                    You are correct of course, people change their minds all the time as new information becomes available.

  4. dmg555 says:

    If Rickards is right, we are looking a larger problem than the past sub prime issue of 2007-8

    The $5 Trillion Oil Debt Bomb
    Jim Rickards October 22, 2015
    Reddit
    oil_lge

    The drop in the price of oil from approximately $100 a barrel to the $40–60 range roughly constitutes a 40% decline or more.

    That’s extreme.

    That’s only happened three times in the past 70 years.

    Oil and other commodities are volatile, but don’t think for one minute that this is a normal fluctuation.

    It’s not. This would be like an 8,000 point drop on the Dow.

    When the oil price dropped it came as a shock. No one expected it, other than maybe a handful of people who were plotting it behind the scenes.

    When the price of oil goes from US$100 to US$60, which as I said is extreme, people say, ‘Now it’s going to go to US$50, then it’s going to go to US$40 and then, soon after, to US$30.’

    You can’t rule anything out, but it does look as if oil is going to oscillate around US$60. It will go above that and below, but it will gravitate towards US$60. That’s still a big deal and will cause a lot of damage.

    Why do I say $60? It’s not because I think I’m smarter than a lot of other analysts. I don’t have a crystal ball, either. But I did have the opportunity to speak to various people in the industry, and US$60 is the number they’re expecting.

    The oil price didn’t drop out of the blue.

    Obviously, Saudi Arabia is the marginal supplier. They can dial up the supply or dial it down. They’re well aware of what’s going on in the rest of the world.

    Thanks to the ‘fracking’ revolution in the US, they saw that the US is now the world’s largest energy producer and is close to becoming a net oil exporter.

    Yet, even if we give the US credit for being stronger than some other economies, there’s no question about the global slowdown.

    Therefore, Saudi Arabia sees demand slowing down. But the question is, how much lower, and what does Saudi Arabia want to do about it?

    If they can’t make fracking go away, they at least want to bankrupt a lot of the fracking companies and make them slam on the brakes.

    To do that, Saudi Arabia wants to get the price low enough to hurt the relatively higher cost fracking industry.

    The power of Saudi Arabia comes from the fact that they have the lowest marginal cost of producing oil.

    It only costs them a couple of bucks to lift the oil out of the ground. That oil was discovered, explored and drilled when their entire infrastructure was put in place decades ago.

    Because their marginal cost of production is just a few dollars, they can still make money — even at US$40 and US$30 per barrel.

    Obviously, the lower the oil price, the more money that’s taken out of Saudi Arabia’s profit.

    In theory, there’s a number that’s low enough to hurt the frackers, but high enough so that Saudi Arabia still maximises their revenues.

    It’s called an optimisation or a linear programming problem.

    That number, which comes from a very good source, is about US$60 a barrel.

    It’s not a number I made up or pulled out of a hat. Think of US$60 per barrel as the sweet spot where we have all the bad things in terms of fracking — corporate bonds and junk bond defaults — but not so low that the Arabs hurt themselves more than necessary.

    Oil below US$60 is more than low enough to do an enormous amount of damage in financial markets.

    Losses are already all over the place. We’re only starting to learn about them right now.

    But I guarantee there are major losers out there and they’re going to start to merge and crop up in unexpected places.

    The first place losses will appear are in junk bonds. There are about US$5.4 trillion — that’s trillion — of costs incurred in the last five years for exploration drilling and infrastructure in the alternative energy sector.

    When I say alternative I mean in the fracking sector.

    A lot of it’s in the Bakken and North Dakota but also in Texas and Pennsylvania. That’s a lot of money. It’s been largely financed with corporate and bank debt.

    When many oil producers went for loans, the industry’s models showed oil prices between US$80 and US$150.

    US$80 is the low end for maybe the most efficient projects, and US$150 is of course the high end.

    But no oil company went out and borrowed money on the assumption that they could make money at US$50 a barrel.

    So suddenly, there’s a bunch of debt out there that producers will not be able to pay back with the money they make at US$50 a barrel. That means those debts will need to be written off. How much? That’s a little bit more speculative.

    I think maybe 50% of it has to be written off. But let’s be conservative and assume only 20% will be written-off.

    That’s a trillion dollars of losses that have not been absorbed or been priced into the market.

    Go back to 2007. The total amount of subprime and Alt-A loans was about US$1 trillion. The losses in that sector ticked well above 20%. There, you had a US$1 trillion market with $200 billion of losses.

    Here we’re talking about a US$5 trillion market with US$1 trillion of losses from unpaid debt — not counting derivatives.

    This fiasco is bigger than the subprime crisis that took down the economy in 2007.

    I’m not saying we’re going to have another panic of that magnitude tomorrow; I’m just trying to make the point that the losses are already out there.

    Even at US$60 per barrel the losses are significantly larger than the subprime meltdown of 2007. We’re looking at a disaster.

    On top of those bad loans, there are derivatives

    Some of these fracking companies are going to go bankrupt. That means you may have equity losses on some of the companies if they didn’t hedge. Then, many frackers issued debt which is going to default.

    That debt, whether it’s bank debt or junk bond debt, is going to default.

    Some other companies are going to be fine because they bought the derivatives. But then, the question is: Where did those derivatives go? Think back to the housing bust. We now know that a lot of the derivatives ended up at AIG.

    AIG was a 100-year-old traditional insurance company who knew that they were betting that house prices would not go down. Goldman Sachs and a lot of other institutions were taking that bet too. When house prices did go down, everyone turned to AIG and said: ‘Hey, pay me.’

    But AIG of course couldn’t pay and had to be bailed out by the US government to the tune of over US$100 billion. That’s the kind of thing we’re looking at now. These bets are all over the place, because nobody thought oil was going to go to US$60 or lower.

    The losses are going to start to roll in, but they’ll come in slowly.

    I’m not suggesting that tomorrow morning we’re going to wake up and find the financial system collapsed. This is just the beginning of a disaster.

    The first companies to be hardest hit will be second tier or mid-tier drilling and exploration companies.

    Don’t worry about the big companies. Exxon Mobil is not going go bankrupt.

    But the smaller, higher cost producers with lots of debt will.

    With oil in the US$45–55 per barrel range, those projects are no longer profitable and that debt will begin to default in late 2015 or early 2016.

    The oil price decline is due to a weakening global economy.

    Global demand is slowing down. China is crashing. Japan fell off a cliff in the past six months. Europe is slowing down.

    Weak global demand for oil means prices are unlikely to regain past heights.

    Investors shouldn’t assume a return to $100 oil anytime soon.

    Regards,

    Jim Rickards
    Strategist, Strategic Intelligence

    • BC says:

      There is a technical bearish flag pattern for WTI implying the potential for the $20s this winter.

      See my post above in response to Brian as to why it is not inconceivable (at least for a capitulation selling climax and V- or W-shaped bottom).

    • BC says:

      As to Rickards’s point about today being worse than 2007-08, he is correct. Shadow banking leverage for offshore equity, fixed-income, and forex positions to bank capital is now 50-80:1 vs. 20-30:1 in 2006-08.

      IOW, the banksters have done it again, only this time to an even more reckless extent, enabled and encouraged by central banks (that they own) and regulators not charged with much oversight of the banksters who own them.

      Consequently, for example, as little as a 10% decline for the S&P 500 that persists for 2-3 months is sufficient to risk deleveraging of the COLOSSAL leveraged global derivatives market. Therefore, in this context, a bear market for the major equity indices theoretically cannot be permitted to happen or face a larger global deflationary bear market and recession than in 2008-10.

      Yet, the Fed intends to raise rates under these conditions. Surreal.

    • Arceus says:

      The House of Saud cares little about the U.S. frackers at this point, and it is unlikely they were ever a major concern anyway. Does anyone really think at this point the U.S. frackers will begin exporting their oil overseas to “compete” with the Saudis? Did anyone ever seriously think that? No, the Saudis have far bigger fish to fry.

    • anon says:

      This is the same Rickards who has been extremely bearish on the USD for the past 5 years, called gold to $7,000 a few years ago (which he then brought down to $4,000 a couple years ago then up to $10,000), was one of the “masterminds” behind Long Term Capital Management and has never had any success managing money. He should talk to George Costanza….

      • BC says:

        “He should talk to George Costanza….”

        Opposite day is ever day. Or is it no day is opposite day? 🙂

        “Shrinkage!!!” 😀

      • Ves says:

        LOL – yeah classic Sainfield – “analysis about nothing”

        Like we don’t it’s all perpetual debt for frackers. Was he hiding under the rock all these years?

        Look at this pearl of his analysis: “Thanks to the ‘fracking’ revolution in the US, they saw that the US is now the world’s largest energy producer and is close to becoming a net oil exporter.”

    • oldfarmermac says:

      “Thanks to the ‘fracking’ revolution in the US, they saw that the US is now the world’s largest energy producer and is close to becoming a net oil exporter.”

      This guy ought to be wearing a dunce cap.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Old Farmer Mac,

        If we add up oil, natural gas, and coal production, the US is likely the largest energy producer. Probably not the case with being a net energy exporter, in 2012 (last EIA data point) US consumed 20% more energy than produced.

        • oldfarmermac says:

          Hi Dennis,

          I agree with your reply, but anybody who says the USA is getting close to being a net oil exporter is delusional and ignorant of even the most basic facts concerning oil production and consumption in the USA.

          When a person makes make such a glaring error as that in a peak oil forum such as this one, he loses all credibility.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Old Farmer Mac,

            When looking at US production vs consumption of coal,natural gas, and oil, in April (a peak production month) the US produced about 89% of its total fossil fuel energy consumption (in barrels of oil equivalent terms). We do export some coal so we are getting closer to being self sufficient in total fossil fuel energy consumed vs produced. On an annual basis however this is not likely to be the case as April is a low consumption month. I am trying to give the guy a break here, basically you are correct and it is not very likely the US will ever be a net exporter of fossil fuels on an annual basis (for coal, oil and natural gas in tonnes of oil equivalent).

            • oldfarmermac says:

              Hi Dennis and back atcha,

              I must agree this guy raised some good points, and maybe I should cut him a little more slack myself.

              But we sure as hell are not getting close to being a net oil exporter.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Agreed.

                I think he said net energy.

                • oldfarmermac says:

                  HI Dennis,

                  Once more.

                  This is EXACTLY what he said, copied and pasted.

                  “Thanks to the ‘fracking’ revolution in the US, they saw that the US is now the world’s largest energy producer and is close to becoming a net oil exporter.”

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Yes you are correct.

                    I agree the US is not close to being a net oil exporter.

                    Anyone making such a claim loses credibility.

                    100% agreement.

  5. Chris Alemany says:

    Thanks for this information. I am going to have to disagree on your ultimate conclusion though that a decline in oil consumption means a struggling economy.

    Take Germany for example. It is perennially and colloquially known as the ‘engine’ that drives Europe. The link below has data for GDP growth between 1992 and 2014. In that time, growth has never been above 2% nor below -1% except the great recession when it plummeted to 4% for a very short time.
    http://www.tradingeconomics.com/germany/gdp-growth

    I think what we are seeing is slow decoupling of oil from the greater economy. That bad thing probably for producers and lobbyists, but is an extremely good thing when we are faced with the notion of having to rapidly reduce GHG emissions in order to keep the world away from dangerous warming.

    (Link below to presentation given by Environment Canada scientists to the Prime Minister and Premiers yesterday)
    http://ec.gc.ca/sc-cs/Default.asp?lang=En&n=A5F83C26-1#fn1

    • Ralph says:

      The larger economies in Europe have seen significant falls in oil consumption without major falls in economic activity. They are a special case with local economic factors. Largest of these is the fact that oil in Europe is primarily used for transport, and a long term very high consumer tax on petrol and diesel has worked through to people driving smaller, more efficient cars. With the dense population and electrification of rail, and stable population, domestic oil consumption has partly decoupled from economic growth. However, overall fossil fuel consumption probably has not, and by shutting down heavy industry and piling on debt, we have continued to accelerate consumption and economic growth for over a decade through growing imports. This is not sustainable.

  6. Arceus says:

    Interesting charts and interesting post. However, it bears keeping in mind that these charts are a look in the rear view mirror. Nonetheless, asia is clearly the future. But what it tells me is that:

    growing population + gdp growth + growing auto sales = increasing oil usage

    mature economies + low population grown + high level of climate concern = decreasing oil usage

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      I agree, very succinct.

      I would add that GDP correlates well with primary energy use, oil can be used more efficiently and there can be some fuel switching, natural gas, propane, or electric for heat and hot water, for example, more use of trains and light rail, and some switching to EVs and plugin hybrids (so far this last effect is very minor.)

      • Ulenspiegel says:

        “I would add that GDP correlates well with primary energy use”

        Check e.g. the German data, then you observe a clear decoupling of GDP from primary energy, you will find other countries too. Modern mature economies do not work with the simple correlation promary energy or oil = GDP.

        • GDP is connected to energy consumption to a greater or lesser extent. But it can never be completely “decoupled” from energy or even oil. It was massive amounts of cheap fossil energy that brought about the industrial revolution. It is insane to think that now, at this late date, that we can “decouple” GDP from fossil energy.

          Of course there is not a one to one direct correlation between energy and GDP. No person with the slightest bit of knowledge about economics would ever make that claim. But by the same token no sane economist would claim that GDP could be decoupled from energy.

          • Nick G says:

            It was massive amounts of cheap fossil energy that brought about the industrial revolution.

            Well, no. Coal wasn’t cheap per ton-mile or passenger-mile in the 18th and 19th centuries, when the industrial revolution happened. Oil wasn’t especially cheap before WWII. When we think of cheap oil we’re thinking of the very recent past.

            • oldfarmermac says:

              Hi Ron,

              The first online dictionary I checked gives one all or nothing definition of the word “decouple”. You are correct using that definition.

              But the second one uses this as the primary definition:

              “to cause to become separated, disconnected, or divergent; uncouple. ”

              It may be only quibbling on my part, but I believe most people use the word the way it is defined in my second example.

              In that case, energy use in general, and oil use in particular, can be “decoupled” from economic growth, as you say yourself.

              I don’t have an “economics dictionary” and cannot say if economists use the word in an absolute sense, all or none.

              Even if economists define the term narrowly, the typical person in the mainstream uses it in the broader sense.

              This can be quite a problem when dealing with technical economic terms.

              I rant occasionally about the misuse of the term “demand” for consumption when consumption is clearly what the speaker or writer has in mind.

              DEMAND DOES NOT CHANGE with a change in price. CONSUMPTION changes upward as prices go downward. Consumption falls as prices increase. Anybody who does not understand this would fail the very first econ course at a community college level.

              DEMAND properly defined is a MATHEMATICAL FUNCTION relating price and quantity at any given instant. If you use the term demand as a specific quantity, to specify a given POINT on the function, then you must include the price to use the term correctly.

              Pointing this out one more time is a waste of my time of course, but the regulars in this forum would never tolerate such a misuse of the language of physics or engineering or biology.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi old farmer mac,

                Economists often will say the quantity demanded and use this interchangeably with consumption, one way to think of it is the quantity demanded (or of demand) is a point on the demand curve (a function as you correctly say), and demand refers to the entire demand curve. Unfortunately people often leave out the “quantity of” and simply say demand, leaving it to the reader to decifer whether they are talking about a point or a curve ( defining “demand” at all prices).

                In my experience “decouple” is not a technical term in economics and is probably used in different ways by different economists, just like here at POB.

            • oldfarmermac says:

              Ron is right about “cheap” fossil fuel, namely coal, being a key factor in the coming of the Industrial Revolution. Coal sure as hell was dirt cheap compared to wood, which was available only in very limited quantities and mostly had to be hauled from farther away at greater expense than hauling coal.

              But Nick is right too, coal was still quite expensive in those early industrial days, compared to later, when mining it matured as an industry and barges and railroads were available to deliver it.

              A ton of good quality coal is worth a couple of tons of wood, which is apt on average to have a good bit of rot and moisture in it, and coal is substantially less bulky as well.

            • Well, no. Coal wasn’t cheap per ton-mile or passenger-mile in the 18th and 19th centuries, when the industrial revolution happened.

              Coal, compared to human labor or even animal labor was very cheap. Nick you should not make statements like that which have no foundation in fact unless you can back them up with reference. The industrial revolution was founded on cheap fossil energy pure and simple.

              So if you have evidence that the fossil fuels did not power the industrial revolution, as you suggest, then I suggest that you post that evidence. In the meantime:

              Fossil Fuel

              The widescale use of fossil fuels, coal at first and petroleum later, to fire steam engines enabled the Industrial Revolution.

              • twocats says:

                MOST of the people I know that have been making real money in the past 15 years in the US have been about as far away from industrial production as I could imagine: movies, IT, finance. You could say that its all funny money and doesn’t have any real production behind it, but Toy Story was worth at least one supertank of oil. Toy Story 3 not so much.

              • Nick G says:

                Ron,

                I’m not arguing about whether Fossil Fuels powered the Industrial Revolution. It’s worth mentiongin that the IR started without FF, and FF wasn’t essential to that process continuing, but it would have taken quite a bit longer to mature, and there’s no question that FF was the primary source of extrasomatic energy for most of the period of the IR. So, no, that’s not my argument.

                I’m arguing about the word “cheap”. Coal wasn’t cheap. It was affordable, but it required quite a lot of work to dig up, transport and turn into something useful: early mines required a lot of work; coal trains were an enormous pain, and required a lot of labor; and early coal powered engines were inefficient and blew up often (rail passenger was very dangerous, more than contemporary cars).

                Contemporary wind, solar and even nuclear, even in the worst settings, are far cheaper than coal powered transportation.

                • Nick, “cheap” is a relative term. Coal was one hell of a lot cheaper than what it replaced. Had it not been then it would never have replaced it. Fossil energy was cheaper than horse power and just one hell of a lot cheaper than man power.

                  Trains were powered with coal and so was steam ships. There was nothing else that even came close to creating cheap transportation as did coal.

                  Yes, the industrial revolution was powered by fossil fuel. Before the industrial revolution water power did grind some grain and wind power moved ships. But it was massive amounts of very cheap fossil energy that powered the industrial revolution.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Sure.

                    “cheap” is a relative term

                    Exactly.

                    Fossil energy was cheaper than horse power

                    Yes, and more convenient too.

                    I agree with all that: hydro power, nuclear, wind and solar all took longer to become affordable than digging up coal. So coal powered the Industrial Revolution.

                    But…contemporary hydro, nuclear, and wind are all cheaper than coal, both pre-WWII coal and contemporary coal (if you include the cost of basic pollution controls for sulfur, mercury, etc). Even solar is cheaper if you include all of the pollution costs of coal (even excluding CO2). They’re all perfectly affordable.

                    So, to say that “cheap” fossil fuels powered the Industrial Revolution is incorrect. They were affordable. They were cheaper than horse power. But, by contemporary standards, they were very far from cheap.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Ulenspiegel,

          It is important to look at it from a World perspective and on that basis the relationship holds, there has been some improvement in Energy consumed per unit of GDP produced, but these will probably diminish over time.

          Many OECD countries appear to be improving because many of the high energy products (requiring more primary energy to produce) are being imported.

          Looking at the entire World we eliminate this data artifact.

          • Nick G says:

            Dennis,

            Have you seen good data to support the idea that declining oil consumption is caused by high energy products being imported?

            I have a hard time believing that’s true for Germany, for instance.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Yes just look at country vs world data and invoke logic.

              • Nick G says:

                ??

                That’s invoking an untested assumption.

                US manufacturing is 1.5x as large as 1979, GDP is 2.5x as large, and oil consumption is significantly lower.

                Have German production and exports of hard goods declined sharply over the period in which it’s oil consumption has dropped?

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  Hi Nick give it some more thought and you will come around.

                  group A GDP 100 Energy 50
                  group B GDP 100 Energy 200
                  World GDP 200 Energy 250

                  Lets say World= Group A plus Group B.

                  Do you now understand?

                  The data is pretty much telling the story above.

                  If you don’t understand, I cannot make it any simpler.

                  Oh and keep in mind you have to look at the import of unfinished goods used to produce the exports. The energy intensive steps have mostly been offshored, that is the basic point.

                  • Ulenspiegel says:

                    “The energy intensive steps have mostly been offshored, that is the basic point.”

                    Do you have hard data for Germany?

                    Hint: You have to analyse where primary energy goes, much of it is simply used for doemstic activities that do NOT deped on exports. Therefore, I can reduce primary energy demand with higher efficieny of the domestic contributions, I do not have to out source the indiustry.

                    Hint2: Energy intensive industry is not dying in Germany, quite contrary, Germany is attracting this industry. Your working thesis is IMHO faulty.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Of course I understand the trends you illustrate. But, that analysis is still faulty.

                    1st: this is a large and complex topic, so let’s narrow it a bit. Ron’s post is about oil, and that’s what I’ve been talking about.

                    2nd, just because China’s oil consumption goes up at the same time as Germany’s goes down doesn’t mean that China is using “Germany’s oil”.

                    3rd, oil is mostly used for transport, not manufacturing.

                    4th, German industrial production and exports haven’t fallen. Neither has those of the US. Now, US industrial production has stopped growing in the last 15 years, in part due to Chinese exports to the US, but German and US industrial production and manufacturing have not fallen. So, falling oil consumption in those countries is not primarily caused by “off-shoring”.

                    Make sense?

                • twocats says:

                  Anecdotally – hell yes.

                  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2012-01-27/sany-will-buy-cement-pump-maker-putzmeister-in-biggest-china-german-deal

                  doesn’t get much heavier industry than these bad boys.

                  As for US manufacturing – not to be too glib but are you sure those numbers don’t include fast food “manufacturing”?

                  • Nick G says:

                    Remember: ownership is different from production. The article says: “Aichtal in Germany will become Sany’s new headquarter for concrete machinery and Norbert Scheuch will remain in his position as the head of Putzmeister under the Chinese owner.”

                    So, it may be owned by a Chinese company, but it will still be German production: German plants, German employees, etc.

                    It’s like Japanese car production in the US: just because Nissan owns a car plant in Tennessee doesn’t mean that it’s not US production. That depends on other factors, like where the parts come from and where they’re assembled.

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  HI nick

                  Do you see that manufacturing has grown less than gdp?

                  I am talking about energy consumption. Focusing on oil only is a mistake. There will be substitution for oil as prices rise.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Do you see that manufacturing has grown less than gdp?

                    Of course. Manufacturing is a mature sector of the economy. Agriculture matured, and plateaued, long ago, and manufacturing did so relatively recently. That’s why China’s energy consumption ballooned: they’re still building out their infrastructure and manufacturing sector (primarily for domestic consumption, though obviously exports are very important for China).

                    Focusing on oil only is a mistake.

                    Oil is what Ron’s original Post is about, and Arceus’s comment that started this thread.

                    Why is the correlation of energy & GDP important? What question are we trying to answer?

                    There will be substitution for oil as prices rise.

                    As there will be for coal, as we recognize and internalize the true, very high costs of coal.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Nick,

                    Oil is used to provide energy, and in my view the focus should be on energy and transitioning from fossil fuels to other forms of energy. So yes the post was about oil, but it is energy that is more important than oil and the peak in fossil fuel energy will force a transition to non-fossil fuel sources of energy.

                  • Nick G says:

                    in my view the focus should be on energy and transitioning from fossil fuels to other forms of energy.

                    I strongly agree.

                    peak in fossil fuel energy will force a transition to non-fossil fuel sources of energy.

                    And what in your view does that idea imply for the transition away from FF?

                    To me, that suggests that we should transition relatively quickly, so that we minimize the cost and pain of the transition. As OldFarmerMac often says, the risk is asymmetric: there’s a very low risk of transitioning too quickly, and a high risk of transitioning too slowly.

                    Make sense?

      • Brian Rose says:

        Dennis,

        To exemplify your point, we hosted a conference 9 months ago for a chemicals industry lobby. I learned that several billions dollars have been spent over the last few years to switch from petroleum feedstocks to gas feedstocks at chemical manufacturing plants.

        I was, frankly, shocked. My assumption was, and has been, that the massive investment required to switch from oil to gas was large enough that few companies would gamble with such a capital intensive endeavor.

        That level of spending on infrastructure is… well, again I was surprised, to say the least. That investment is a permanent bet, inelastic in its own right.

        We could go on about increasing efficiency of oil consumption in OECD countries, but any devils-advocate would say “what about growing demand in developing countries? What about the impact of population growth, which is primarily FROM the countries with the greatest potential for growth in oil demand?”

        They’d be correct. By “correct” I mean intellectually factual.

        Oil demand will increase from numerous factors. Oil demand will also decrease from numerous factors. All dependent on price, its perceived stability, and trajectory.

        How rapidly can the developing world move past the fact that for the last 200 years growth and prosperity have required more consumption of oil?

        When we talk about inelastic demand we all need to consider that even multi-billion dollar investments that transfer feedstocks from oil to gas are more like molasses than concrete. Inelastic doesn’t mean immobile, it just means that it takes a longer time period to adjust.

        How does the advent of the internet change the relationship between growth and energy consumption?

        The internet is still a very recent invention. A recent panel with Bill Gates and Elon Musk exemplifies this fact. Until I heard these two individuals, who I would consider well informed, elucidate that reality I had considered the internet and its impact as a late stage technology. After a well questioned panel with them I adjusted my thinking on what “the internet” means and how pervasive it is.

        Internet and its applications are still young. Smartphones didn’t exist 10 years ago.

        Clearly many genuinely intelligent people here believe, by means of legitimate, verified data, that economies, especially developing economies, cannot grow without equivalent growth in oil consumption.I used to unapologetically assert such ideas myself.

        Many do not realize that the internet, smartphones, computing, cloud storage, and numerous other interlocking inventions are reducing energy consumption. These products and inventions are reducing energy consumption while they are brand new. We feel as though the internet is established, but a reliable connection still requires digging into the Earth, laying cable, and charging for access.

        20 years from now this model will look as outdated as landlines… literally. Small satellites, in low earth orbit, launched more cheaply (thank you SpaceX), will move the internet from the landline phase to the mobile phase globally.

        I am no Cornucopian. There’s no magic fairy dust that solves every, or even any, issue that humanity faces as we grow in population, prosperity, and global impact.

        Perhaps the answer to the Fermi Paradox, the Great Filter, is that intelligent life requires billions of years to evolve (on Earth it took 2 billion years to get the first multi-cellular organism, much less a nervous system).

        Well the universe is 13.7 billion years old. Plenty of time! However, the atoms life is made of – Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Carbon, Oxygen, Sulfur, Iron – didn’t exist in sufficient quantities for billions of years.

        Our planetary system formed 4.5 billion years ago. In relation to how long it took the universe to create heavier elements, and the acquiescence of cosmic “events” (be it supernova, gamma ray bursts, etc) we, Homo sapiens, are in a unique situation.

        3.8 billion years of evolution. On Earth that lead, in a meandering, random direction, to Homo sapiens. Evolution has no purpose, but it is clear that there is a long term progression toward complexity.

        Life happens, life dies. Some life supporting planets experience a period of time where the life that converts solar energy to chemical energy is sequestered, and preserved for hundreds of millions of years.

        Eventually, a point is reached where these stored forms of reduced carbon and life capable of utilizing this stored energy meet.

        Homo sapiens has accomplished numerous things that are firsts for life on Earth, even before fossil fuels.

        Given the realities of the time span of the universe, the requirements for sustainable life, evolution of complexity after the ingredients of life exist… We may be among the first in our galaxy. The process of turning solar energy into chemical energy is the basis of life, it is photosynthesis.

        What if the Great Filter of the Fermi Paradox is answered by these conjectures:

        1. The universe couldn’t sustain and develop complex life until recently.

        2. “Intelligent” life becomes capable of utilizing the sequestered form of ancient life.

        What if the Great Filter of the Fermi Paradox is a combination of the reality that the lottery is cosmologically new, and the ability to utilize unfathomable amounts of sequestered energy is a lottery where, like any lottery, wining is luck as opposed to the norm.

        Without the lottery ticket of fossil fuels how long would it take Homo sapiens to reach the moon? Without fossil fuels, life in 2015 would be nearly identical to life 5000 years ago, just as life for Homo sapiens 5000 years ago was nearly identical to life 500 years ago.

        We’d all be farmers without much potential to advance society.

        I feel that this mentality is the most convincing aspect of anyone’s idea that we “need” fossil fuels to maintain anything and everything we have built over the last 250 years.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Internet and its applications are still young. Smartphones didn’t exist 10 years ago.

          Clearly many genuinely intelligent people here believe, by means of legitimate, verified data, that economies, especially developing economies, cannot grow without equivalent growth in oil consumption.I used to unapologetically assert such ideas myself.

          Many do not realize that the internet, smartphones, computing, cloud storage, and numerous other interlocking inventions are reducing energy consumption. These products and inventions are reducing energy consumption while they are brand new.

          Clearly many genuinely intelligent people still believe that a linear consumptive economic model is the only way to to produce prosperity! All one has to do is take a look around the world with open eyes to see that this model isn’t working. Time to try something different!

          BTW, I think it is way past time to stop equating ENERGY with OIL as if oil were the only possible source of energy!

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          HI Brian

          One thing I would change is that oil has only been important for about 100 years not 200.

          Prior to 1910 coal was king.

          • Nick G says:

            True.

            In fact, as far as it’s contribution to the overall economy, we’re probably really talking about after WWII. Oil really only started to take off in 1910.

    • Javier says:

      Arceus, you forget about debt.

      The only thing that stands between European and Japanese post-Peak Oil economies and economic depression is debt expansion. Once debt saturation takes place as it did for PIIGS in 2010-12 due to poor economic performance, lack of collateral, and too high indebtment, during the next economic softening or crisis, Europe will have again a very serious debt crisis, probably worse than last one as more and more countries are starting to look worse.

      The role of debt in simulating economic growth should be recognized.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Javier,

        The debt is more of a problem in Europe due the the unified currency, Greece made a big mistake not leaving the Eurozone. There is a reason some countries chose not to join the Euro, it means giving up control over monetary and fiscal policy, not really a smart move, in my opinion. It only works well when the economy is doing well, in an economic crisis, it is a problem.

        • Javier says:

          Hi Dennis,

          It is easy to see in hindsight that joining the euro was a mistake, but for Southern European countries whose economies depend on good measure on tourism, not joining the euro would had been also a big mistake as it would had mean a huge loss of tourism market share to those countries that joined.

          Leaving the euro is not so much a clear case. It is really cold outside the euro for heavily indebted economies. It would be so painful as very likely to trigger a revolution. Greece was almost pushed to leave the euro when it tried to blackmail the eurozone last June and found to its dismay that Germany liked the idea. They decided instead to humiliate themselves and accept every imposition disappointing their voters.

          • Ves says:

            Javier,
            Conclusions are all wrong.
            This is not at all about currency, tourism, olives & feta but about sovereign servitude to the EU banking Politburo.

            • Javier says:

              Ves, you don’t seem to grasp the implications of leaving the euro for an over-indebted country whose credit line depends on ECB support. It means an instant devaluation of 30-60%, while all your debts remain denominated in euros. It means you are instantly in default and not credit worthy. The impact of this on the population cannot be overstated. Already in Greece people that go to hospitals have had to take their own sheets from home and be ready to externally buy and pay any medicine required for the treatment. This while unemployment shoots to mind-boggling numbers. Then multiply this by three or four if they get out of the euro.

              Armchairs economists have it very easy. Governments know they won’t last one week if their country leaves the euro.

              As for getting into the euro it was all for European integration, that was supported in most countries for over 90% of the people. Spain for example saw in Europe a way to disarm the separatism of several regions and so was very happy to surrender as much sovereignty as possible. If the European Union was to become a single country, the problem was pretty much over.

              • Ves says:

                Javier, please don’t parrot official line that you probably heard zillion times and now you are convinced that is the explanation on what is going on. I am only asking to have beginners mind – and that is open mind to rationally think what is really going. Please don’t give me “slogans” that you hear at 6 o’clock news .

                Current Greek government will chose their most opportune time to leave the EU if there is no restructuring of debt. That is the only reason why it did not happen yet. When that time comes they will do it, as well other countries.
                As for the debt, the debt that cannot be paid will not be paid regardless what currency you have. It is simple as that.

                Javier: ” Spain for example saw in Europe a way to disarm the separatism of several regions”

                Well that is what was SOLD to the Spanish public by corrupt Spanish politicians at that time. But the reality is separatism was not disarmed. So you have to look at the facts on the ground and NOT what politicians talked. Talk is cheap.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Javier,

                The political union has to come first. Europe put the cart before the horse. Greece would have been better off defaulting on its debts and leaving the Euro. Plenty of people would continue to go to Greece as the exchange rate would be favorable so that travel there would be attractive.

                In fact, they would probably be at an advantage. Changing currency in today’s world is as easy as pulling your credit card from tour wallet or going to an ATM.

                • Javier says:

                  Actually fiscal union is the most important.

                  Leaving the euro is a terrible gamble. That is uncharted territory. Nobody can guarantee that one is going to be better off in the short to medium term. Politicians don’t care about the long term and also in the long term it is clear that a solution has to be found to current situation by all players.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Clearly the Greeks agree.

                    I think they would be better off with their own currency.

                    It is a gamble to continue with the status quo.

                  • Javier says:

                    Dennis,

                    “It is a gamble to continue with the status quo.”
                    Yes, but it is a collective gamble. Loses can be shared. It is very cold when you are outside and alone.

                • Brian Rose says:

                  Greece pays low interest rates BECAUSE of its rather complicated relationship with the Euro, the ESF, and the IMF.

                  Defaulting, leaving the Euro, and paying debts with a new, worthless currency would immediately result in failure of Greece’s banks.

                  This isn’t hypothesis. Greece experienced a harbinger of this outcome just 6 months ago.

                  The interest rate Greece would receive with its own currency, after defaulting on its debt and leaving the Euro (its only backstop).

                  Greece runs a deficit, like every country on Earth. Through the Euro and the ESF it pays an interest rate of less than 2% ( honestly, just Google search Greece’s loan program).

                  Greece’s choice is stay in the Euro and pay 2% interest, or leave the Euro and pay the market value. When Greece nearly defaulted earlier this year the market rate was around 30%.

                  Greece would benefit from a cheaper currency. However, achieving that end through defaulting and leaving the Euro would be catastrophic for the Greek economy.

                  You can’t max out a credit card, default on it, and then hope to open a new credit card from scratch. The interest you pay will reflect your history.

                  With nations it is even worse. Bank closures and freezing of commerce create a feedback loop where a new currency losses value, interest rates rise precipitously, and yet you STILL haven’t dealt with the fact that you maxed out your credit card because you spend too much relative to what you take in. Will tax revenue increase or decrease during insolvency?

                  Long story short, there’s a good reason that even Greece’s current govt, when faced with the reality of leaving the Euro, decided that the other option was truly scary and nonsensical

      • Arceus says:

        Yes, good point. The countries with declining oil usage also tend to have high levels of debt.

        Maybe change to the following:

        lots of babies + gdp growth + high vehicle sales growth + less debt = increasing oil usage

        mature economies + few babies + high level of climate concern + high debt = decreasing oil usage

        • Hickory says:

          Don’t forget that a big part of Europes poor economic performance (and resultant need to take on more and more debt), is the combination of aging populations and large entitlements. The USA can follow that path if it doesn’t start seriously thinking about rationing entitlement spending (especially med care).

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Hickory,

            Europe’s poor performance after 2008 was due to austerity measures in the face of a recession. Just very poor economic policy akin to Herbert Hoover.

            • Hickory says:

              Hi Dennis.
              I was referring to Europes large entitlement programs, which are unsustainable and have only been able to be “funded” thus far by an ever increasing debt load. The funding of these programs, and the debt service on them, are contributing to the slow growth scenario entrenched in Europe.
              If by austerity you mean living within a reasonable budget, then austerity is by all means proper- in your family, in your state, and in your country. Simply live within your means, without drowning in debt.
              An analogy is is that you have a mortgage (a pretty big one), and also a home equity line of credit that you have maxed out, and now you want to go get a payday loan as well, so you can buy a trailer for your cousins in the back yard. Too much.
              I am very progressive in many ways, but I am conservative when it comes to personal fiscal matters, and I expect my elected leaders/government, and my bank, to be so as well.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Hickory,

                I guess you think Hoover had the right idea?

                It is a silly policy to try to balance budgets and keep inflation low in the face of a severe recession. This was the European policy. In a true political union like the United States, when one state is doing poorly they get aid from the central government and funds are transferred from states that are doing well to states that are doing poorly. Only in that case does a fiscal and monetary union make sense. When Texas has an oil bust, you don’t get a lot of people in the US complaining about those lazy Texans, the way Europeans point a finger at the Greeks.

                You are wrong about the Europeans having too many government benefits, they have exactly the benefits they choose, it is their country and their choice.

                On government borrowing being a bad idea, only true if they cannot pay back the loan. Have you ever borrowed money to buy a home? Was that a bad idea?

                • Hickory says:

                  Dennis,
                  Of course carrying some debt makes sense, like if you have a good secure longterm income and then get a mortgage to buy a home. Or, for a country to take on debt to build a hydroelectric plant.
                  What doesn’t make sense is to take on so much debt that you risk bankruptcy.
                  On a national scale that is extremely painful. Ask the Greeks, or Iceland or Ireland or many Americans in 2009.
                  What I am saying is that many countries, through lack of discipline, have funded far to much of their growth on debt, and are now unstable or have poor growth prospects as a result. Far better to live within your means, and have stability. At least that is my choice.
                  And don’t put words in my mouth- comment about hoover. That is a rude habit sir.

                  • Brian Rose says:

                    There are fundamental differences between federal debt and private debt.

                    They are completely, mutually exclusive.

                    Did the Great Recession involve federal debt?

                    The U.S.’ debt to GDP ratio is sustainable, and markets reflect that fact.

                    What is Japan’s debt to GDP? What price are market participants willing to pay for that debt?

                    What percent of Japan’s debt is internal? How much is external?

                    Zimbabwe could set interest rates at 0%. That does not mean anyone would buy those bonds. A bond market, and interest rates, reflect demand. Interest rates can be at 0.25%, but no buyers enter until rates hit 25%.

                    QE and interest rate policy influence interest rates, but they don’t set interest rates. The Fed Funds rate is a base. Markets determine the price investors are willing to pay for mortgages, car loans, municipal bonds, and corporate bonds that vary from company to company.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    Of course carrying some debt makes sense, like if you have a good secure longterm income and then get a mortgage to buy a home.

                    And what if you took out that mortgage at a time when you had what you thought was a good long term secure income and then circumstances beyond your control suddenly change and you lose your income?

                    Oh, wait, that never happens unless you are stupid or lazy, right?!

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    HI hickory,

                    Had all countries in the world followed the austerity policies of the European governments in 2009. The great recession would have been much worse.

                    Hoover advocated a balanced budget in the face of recession much like the recent European experience.

                • Caelan MacIntyre, On Social Inertia's Victimization of Dennis 'u^ says:

                  “On government borrowing being a bad idea, only true if they cannot pay back the loan. Have you ever borrowed money to buy a home? Was that a bad idea?” ~ Dennis Coyne

                  Hey, Dennis, do you dream in black and white?

                  If we had real government, then they would be spending their own money. Since we do not have real government, it is other people’s money they are spending. Fast and loose.
                  (I think that’s how the World Bank and/or WTO lock-in the populations overseas, while, back home, the tax-imprisoned public bail out the so-called private TooBigToFail failures.)

                  It’s about ownership. Participatory democracy is about self-ownership; about the control of and participation in one’s own life. Rather than by a governgang.

                  As for borrowing money for a home, the bank owns some of it until it is paid off, if it ever gets so. Also, to pay far more to the bank than the home was worth at the end of the mortgage is another aspect of a bad way to obtain a home– as is the cost of the home in general, but that’s another can of worms tied to pseudogovernment, money and land-grabbing, etc..

                  Best way would seem to be to build your own home with your own hands and with the help of real community– another thing that has been gutted– then the house is yours, mortgage-free.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    HI caelan

                    You still need materials to build the home.

                    Not everyone has the skills to build a house.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    “You still need materials to build the home.
                    Not everyone has the skills to build a house.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Of course not everyone has the skills, time, opportunity or energy to squander to build oversized 2500+ square-foot large-scale industrial-manufactured/governpimp-controlled (zoning/building-codes/etc.) cookie-cutter/developer-shlock/McMansions/snout-houses from dubious/toxic processes and materials shipped in from vast distances, and that often, if not always, cause health and/or environmental problems, etc., and that relatively-rapidly degrade in various ways.

                    Natural/Recycled materials can be had locally, and people can learn as they go, along with some return and support of real community. (This is about our re-self-empowerment/de-infantilization that I talk about.)
                    This is already occurring with the Transition, ecovillage, small house, and permaculture movements for examples.
                    The longer we jerk around within this dystopia of yours, the harder it may be to get out of it in one piece.

                    “If you still have a job, get everything in order, and quit. Do it as soon as you can, because we’ve never had a more important work to do.” ~ Kyle Chamberlin

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Caelan,

                    Doesn’t really matter the size of the house, it will usually require some material to build.

                    What is your home built from? Did you build it yourself?

  7. anon says:

    Check out vehicle miles driven in the US. It has grown at very fast levels for all of 2015 after being flat to slightly down since 2007/08. This is the biggest factor for US oil consumption; therefore, I would expect to see quite solid oil consumption growth in the US for 2015. Look at the 10 year chart:
    https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/M12MTVUSM227NFWA

    • TechGuy says:

      “therefore, I would expect to see quite solid oil consumption growth in the US for 2015.”
      The DAT says NO:
      http://www.dat.com/resources/trendlines

      US trucking is down 42% year to date. Its up a bit for for the early month due to the Holiday season, but trucking is likely to follow its year long trajectory (already falling this week). After the holiday season there will be “significant” retail store closings in the US (Target, Sears, JCPenny to name a few). Sears and JCP may shutdown completely in 2016. Retailers have become so desperate that many will be open during thanksgiving.

      Unless the US or China does a massive QE stimulous soon the US will be in an official recession. Thus lowering Oil consumption.

  8. Jeffrey J. Brown says:

    A Car Dealers Won’t Sell: It’s Electric

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/01/science/electric-car-auto-dealers.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

    Industry insiders and those who follow the business closely say that dealers may also be worrying about their bottom lines. They assert that electric vehicles do not offer dealers the same profits as gas-powered cars. They take more time to sell because of the explaining required, which hurts overall sales and commissions. Electric vehicles also may require less maintenance, undermining the biggest source of dealer profits — their service departments.

    Dealers’ caution, whatever their reasons, has created a “reality check to the idealism,” said Eric Cahill, who recently completed a dissertation on electric car sales for the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis. Retailers are a “bottleneck,” his research shows. They may hold the key to growing the niche, but dealers “may have very good reasons for steering a potential buyer away from an E.V.”

    The vehicles are not for everyone. They typically go only 80 miles or so before they need to be recharged. While many people charge them at home, public charging stations remain limited, particularly outside California. Air conditioning and heat drain the battery quickly, so weather can affect performance.
    But the cars have big selling points. Owners can ignore fluctuating gas prices. Government subsidies can lead to price breaks of $10,000 or more. The cars accelerate quickly, too.

    Edmunds estimates five year repair & maintenance costs for a 2015 Nissan Sentra would be about $4,900 versus $3,300 for a 2015 Nissan Leaf (assuming 75,000 miles in five years in both cases).

    • robert wilson says:

      The oily cornucopian Michael C Lynch on electric cars. http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaellynch/2015/11/18/electric-vehicles-for-dummies/

    • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

      My first comment vanished into the cyber ether, so I just posted the link the second time.

    • Stilgar Wilcox says:

      “Electric vehicles also may require less maintenance, undermining the biggest source of dealer profits — their service departments.”

      Pretty big incentive not to push EV’s. That begs the question though, why do they have them for sale in the first place? Are they forced to by the car maker?

      • Nick G says:

        Some of the car manufacturers understand that they need to look to the future (though many employees even in those companies don’t really get it – you can tell from their advertising, which apologizes for the differences with ICEs, rather than promoting them). Other just make compliance cars.

        The dealers have different motives, and their sales people tend to steer buyers away from EVs.

        One reason why Tesla doesn’t use dealers.

        • Arceus says:

          EVs are just a hard sell in low oil price environment. If a buyer comes onto the lot, I can guarantee you that no car salesman will try to persuade him to buy an EV. No conspiracy, it’s just common sense. Salesmen want to close the deal immediately and get the commission, not introduce brand new unknowns into the process. And assuming a care salesman did go the extra mile to convince a buyer to go EV, those buyers would likely have a much higher vehicle return rate.

          On the other hand, if a buyer comes to the lot looking for an EV, I would guess most salesmen would not try to change their on that either. Salesmen like the path of least resistance.

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Speaking as the forum’s only resident sometime gearhead ( and professional rolling stone) I can verify personally that the money is in the service department rather than in sales at new car dealerships.

        Getting geared up to sell a very small handful of cars such as the typical Chevy dealer can expert to sell in most locations for the next few years is an expensive headache, and the dealers are not going to invest in the special tools and training for mechanics that MIGHT just move on to the NEXT Chevy dealer down the highway any sooner than necessary.

        Beyond that, such services as even a typical new ice car needs are not nearly so profitable as in times gone by. It is nothing for a new car to go for years nowadays with nothing more than a couple of routine maintenance visits per year, depending on the mileage driven,and most people have learned that the warranty is still valid if you get your oil changed at Walmart and buy your tires there too. The ten thousand mile tune up has morphed into the thirty or forty thousand mile tuneup, and strictly speaking, you are not apt to NEED a tuneup for even longer. . Tires last twice as long as they used to, ditto batteries, starters, fuel pumps, and just about every thing else.

        If I were running a dealer service department, I would be worried about where the business is going to come from in years to come, for sure.

        The bright spot is having dealer only access to the magical potions needed to chase gremlins out of the black boxes, and dealer only parts. After market parts for low volume cars, other than routine maintenance parts, are scarce to nonexistent in the aftermarket.

        So if a VOLT happens to need any particular part of the drive train, it is apt to be a dealer only part for a long time to come.

        But ever since import brand competition broke the big three Detroit oligopoly, forcing Detroit to do better, cars have been getting noticeably more dependable from one year to the next.

        If you buy a make and model noted for dependability and longevity, you have an even chance or better of going right on past two hundred thousand miles with NO major repairs, and very few minor repairs. I personally know of lots of cars and pickups that have rolled right on past three hundred thousand miles without ever having a mechanical issue except routine ones such as worn out brakes or batteries etc.

        And newer cars are not much subject to rusting out any more, at least not within the first ten years.

        Pure electrics are going to be even better, once battery prices come down, and they will- UNLESS electric cars start selling so well that the battery manufacturers can sell all they can make at premium prices. It could happen that way, for a few years at least.

        Let a crisis force the super tankers to sit in port for a few months, and a used Volt could be worth as much or more than it sold for new.

  9. Petro says:

    A bit off topic Ron, but maybe not by much:

    -Shallow Sand et al.

    who want higher oil prices might have had their wish granted today after the downing of the russian SU-24 inside syria from a turkish F-16 (you will hear loads of shit in CnnAbcFoxNbcNewYotkTimes…please feel free to complete the alphabet soup here …they are all the SAME! that it was in turkish air space but THAT IS A LIE!!!!)

    Let us ALL hope and pray that Putin does not take this at face value (Act of WAR!….which indeed is….probably ordered by your and my tax dollars in DC)….for if He does, oil prices are going to be the last thing we have to worry about, dear Shallow Sand!!!!

    Be well,

    Petro

    P.S.: sorry for the off topic comment Ron and thank you for the post!

    • (Act of WAR!….which indeed is….probably ordered by your and my tax dollars in DC)…

      Petro, that that the shooting down of this Russian plane was probably ordered by the President, or the Pentagon, is the most ignorant thing I have ever read on this blog. Any goddamn fool with half a brain would know better than that.

      Sorry for the strong language but when someone posts something so utterly stupid just to take a swipe at our President, or government, really pisses me off.

      That being said, I agree that Turkey shooting down that Russian plane was a very stupid and dangerous thing for Turkey to do. But to say such action was ordered by the US is beyond belief.

      • Petro says:

        Dear Ron,

        First, I would like to apologize for being caught in your “cross-hairs” as the result of my unorthodox comment.
        It will not happen again!

        Second, I genuinely respect the tremendous amount of time and information with which you so generously enable all of us frequenting this great forum each and every week!
        As I have mentioned on numerous comments of mine here, I feel lucky and empowered every time I read one of your well written “mind-teasers”.
        I truly do!
        -For those reasons (and a couple of others) I will not engage on answering:
        “…is the most ignorant thing I have ever read on this blog. Any goddamn fool with half a brain would know better than that….”
        and
        “…when someone posts something so utterly stupid…”.

        I would sincerely hope however, that in this forum we refrain from using word concoctions such as : “goddamn fool”, “utterly stupid”, “most ignorant thing I have ever read” aimed at the PERSONAL level – even when scientifically and logically (with regard to this blog) they are “deserved”
        – i.e. when Peter writes “If 2015 is the peak Oil year, then it is the $45 per barrel peak.
        This should give people pause for thought. How on earth can we really be at peak oil, with prices this low. We cannot.”
        -or RDG writes “Peak Oil is irrelevant because the world’s methane potential is underestimated…”
        -or Arceus writes”I suspect if the Saudis could double their production to 20 million boepd they could almost double their market share. The only downside would be oil would likely be selling at 20 dollars per barrel.”
        -to which you (to my delight-I might add) replied:
        “That’s the funniest thing I have read in weeks.”

        It is your right to believe that Erdogan/Turkey -and they alone- are “brave” enough to shoot down a Russian aircraft while flying OUTSIDE their territory;
        It is your right to believe that Maidan/Kiev protests and the ousting of Yanukovich happened/grew genuinely from the Ukrainian people;
        It is your right to believe that the pro-russian rebels shut down the MH17 in Ukraine;
        It is your right to believe that our army and air force cannot destroy a bunch of white-basketball-shoe-wearing-mid-eval -lunatics after a year of bombing campaign and that we cannot disrupt their tens of thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of barrels of oil per day production/selling which brings them millions of dollars per day in hard currency (…yet somehow russians did it in a month);
        It is your right to believe that russians are threatening Europe even though we are expanding NATO right at their borders;
        It is your right to believe that a bunch of illiterate, ugly, smelly morons with rusted AK-47 can defeat France and Belgium;
        It is your right to believe that: “…they hate us for our freedoms…” and “…our troops are fighting over there to keep us safe over here…” and other “lovely” narratives as such.
        It is your right!

        What I am trying to suggest however, is that there is quite a bit of very logical and credible evidence that points to other versions of the “truth”.
        …and NO!
        I do not follow idiots akin to Alex Jones and Rush Limbaugh…, nor do I wear a tin foil hat.
        You say: “…our President, or government…”
        I say that the LAST president to be considered truly OURS was JFK.
        How did we go from Jefferson/Adams/Payne/…..JFK to ReaganBushClintonBushWO and worse- seriously considering idiots like TrumpHillarious – is beyond me and only Heavens know (I guess A.Bartlet applies even with regard to “worse” and “worse-er” and “worse-rer-rer” people).
        What is really done in our name and with our money dear Ron, shall give a “heart attack” to us all …very soon.

        In any case, I tried to follow up with Shallow since he was worried about oil prices and I have replied to him (and others) about that on several previous comments.

        Again, I apologize for my unorthodox comment and for any unintentional insult.

        Be well,

        Petro

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          Petro, where are you located?

        • Petro, I stand by my comment. The plane was in Turkish air space for seconds. If you think someone in Washington said “shoot the goddamn thing down” then you are a fool.

          There was not time to notify anyone except Turkish officials on the ground.
          Turkey does not take orders from Washington.
          Nothing else going on in France, Belgium or anywhere else had anything to do with what I wrote or what I was replying to. You simply saw an opportunity to blame the US government for something they very obviously had nothing to do with. I would have agreed with everything you wrote in that one post had you not took the opportunity to blame it on Washington. If you are going to post on this blog then you have the obligation to use a little common sense.

          • Glenn Stehle says:

            Ron Patterson said:

            The plane was in Turkish air space for seconds.

            Are you absolutely sure of that?

            The Russians are saying that’s not true, that the plane never entered Turkish air space. Russia’s side is presented in this video:

            https://www.rt.com/news/323369-turkey-downed-russian-jet/

            If a person is indeed on a truth-finding mission, is it not incumbent upon that person to listen to what all sides have to say, and then make up one’s mind based on the evidence which is presented?

            RT, for instance, has a short clip of an interview with retired U.S. Airforce general Thomas McInery where he asserts that the downing of the Russian jet “had to be pre-planned.”

            One could probably do no better than to heed the advice which Thomas Jefferson gave his nephew in a letter dated August 10, 1787:

            [S]hake off all the fears and servile prejudices under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear….

            • Caelan MacIntyre says:
            • Hey, that was not my point. My point was that the shoot down was not ordered by the US Government in Washington.

              Shooting down that Russian warplane was an extremely stupid thing for Turkey to do. But what is even more stupid is to say that the shoot down was ordered by Washington.

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                Ron,

                I was referring to your argument:

                The plane was in Turkish air space for seconds. If you think someone in Washington said “shoot the goddamn thing down” then you are a fool.

                If what General McInery says is correct — that the downing of the Russian jet “had to be pre-planned” — then there was plenty of time for Anakra to get Washington’s approval before the pre-planned attack occurred. I’m not saying that this happened, only that it is not outside the realm of possiblity.

                I have a feeling like these cat-and-mouse games between pilots probably go on continuously during conflict situations. However, I have no experience in these matters, and oddly enough, the only fighter pilot I’ve ever known in my entire life was transgendered:

                I also worked for “T” vets inclusion in GLBVA during those years and VA support of “T” vets (which finally happened recently) – I’m a retired USAF Major and Command Pilot. During the ‘90s I was a rather prolific writer; although, quite a bit of it is probably lost to transgender antiquity. I’ve been lecturing on gender, gender roles, and the “T” topic at Trinity University for the past 16 years.

                http://research.cristanwilliams.com/2012/03/09/tere-fredrickson-interview/

                • there was plenty of time for Anakra to get Washington’s approval before the pre-planned attack occurred. I’m not saying that this happened, only that it is not outside the realm of possiblity.

                  Goddammit, will the stupid shit never stop. It is just down in the dirt stupid to suggest that the President would want such a thing. It could lead to the break-up of NATO. Also, the very idea that Turkey would cot-tow to Washington’s wishes is also stupid.

                  To shoot this plane down was the stupidest thing Turkey could possibly do. But a lot stupider things have been done by Middle East Islamic rulers causing things to get a lot worse. But to suggest that our President is just as stupid is beyond the pale. Can you guys just not use a little common sense?

                  To suggest that Washington was behind this smacks of a conspiracy theory. I think all conspiracy theorists have a screw loose.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Ron,

                    Well as far as I am concerned, President Obama circling the wagons around Turkey hardly qualifies him as being one the brightest lights on the Christmas tree.

                    Obama is attempting to defend the indefensible. Why do you believe that is?

                    And you don’t believe that reinforces the appearance of impropriety, of him being complicit in Turkey’s shooting down the plane? Talk about bad optics!

                    Mark Ames minces no words:

                    Russia will just have to play and replay the shooting down of its jet, and the Syrian rebels gloating over the dead pilots, to see Putin’s already sky-high popularity ratings push even higher….

                    Point being: this is working out wonderfully for Putin.

                    In fact, if there’s any conspiracy I can make sense of with what’s gone on over the past year and a half, it’s that anti-Russia neocons and their pals have been doing everything possible to increase Putin’s popularity and power at home, in order to build him up as an even more plausible villain over here. Or maybe they’re straight-up Putin moles. But that of course gives everyone, especially these idiots, too much credit.

                    https://pando.com/2015/11/24/turkey-shoots-down-russian-plane-wars-have-funny-way-taking-life-their-own/eba0108e463df65f823e3f435b3eead1d41c6e25/

                  • Glenn, the idea that Obama ordered the shooting down the Russian plane is pure ignorance, stupidity gone to seed. I will not lower myself by arguing such an utterly stupid scenario.

                    One more point. This is not a conspiracy theory website. We do not discuss conspiracy theories here.

                    Bye now.

                  • twocats says:

                    What if this conversation happened:

                    Turkey, “A lot of recent missions by Russia has put them very close to our borders if not outright in our airspace. What do you want us to do.”

                    White House, “You have the right to defend the sovereignty of your airspace by any means you deem necessary. We feel that Russia is being very reckless in their choice of targets and are endangering stability in the area.”

                    NATO, “You do realize that if Turkey provokes Russia it could draw us directly into the conflict.”

                    White House, “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.”

                    I mean, if you can’t see some version of the above dialogue happening then all I can say to you that you’ll understand is, “God Bless America, the greatest country that ever existed.”

                • Nick G says:

                  pre-planned attack

                  I can’t resist.

                  Isn’t planning always “pre-planning”?

            • Javier says:

              Glenn,

              Does it really matter? There is international consensus that planes are not shot down for briefly entering foreign airspace without permit when the nations are not belligerent. Airspace is not clearly delimited up in the air and pilots are often too busy to check.

              It is clear that this was an hostile deliberate act by Turkey against Russia regardless of where that plane was at the moment. Where the plane was is only relevant to see if it was legal or illegal, but the deliberate hostile act remains either case.

              To me it looks like the Russian plane was flying in circles and was passing over a small tip (~2 km wide) of Turkish territory each time. This was used as an excuse to shoot down the plane in what cannot be claimed as a self-defence act, but clearly a hostile warning.

              Turkey doesn’t like the way Russia is helping the Syrian government, but they just proved to NATO that they are unreliable and more a liability than a trustworthy ally. This is how wars start, by unjustified escalation.

              • This time I agree 100% with Javier’s assessment of the situation.

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                Javier said:

                There is international consensus that planes are not shot down for briefly entering foreign airspace without permit when the nations are not belligerent. Airspace is not clearly delimited up in the air and pilots are often too busy to check.

                If one watches the RT video I linked above, Erdogan can be heard saying exactly that same thing back in 2012 after Syria shot down a Turkish jet because of an air space violation. Here’s what Erdogan said then:

                A short-term border violation can never be a pretext for an attack.

                https://www.rt.com/news/323369-turkey-downed-russian-jet/

                Now, however, the Ministry of Truth in Washington, Anakra and Brussels is saying just the opposite.

                • Ves says:

                  Blowback. Sinking fast due to their own narrative.

                • Javier says:

                  Hahahaaa, that’s a good one.

                  Politicians, or the art of defending one thing and the opposite without any blush.

            • twocats says:

              fuck an A glen, you’re back to the minutiae of that!! stop derailing these conversations about whether or not the plane was in airspace of turkey. I mean really does it matter?! 1km, 40 km, I don’t know, irrelevant. But whether the US might have given the green light for such an act, and the potential reasons for such a thing. Well, now that’s interesting, despite Ron’s insistence that it’s absolutely untenable position. I say, very tenable for a country that has invaded and overthrown dozens of governments in just my short lifetime.

              I personally think Ves’ comment below about Turkey’s desperation about losing their proxies is probably closer to the mark though. I’ve seen over the past couple decades Turkey has seen itself as a regional player linking the middle east and Europe and global economic hub.

              Or it could just be the pilot took the wrong pills getting into the cockpit.

          • Petreo says:

            “If you are going to post on this blog then you have the obligation to use a little common sense.”

            Dear Ron,
            I clearly was!
            Not just a little, but a lot of common sense.
            In my comment to Shallow I wrote: “…sorry for the off topic comment Ron…”
            In my second comment to you I wrote: “…First, I would like to apologize for being caught in your “cross-hairs” as the result of my unorthodox comment.
            It will not happen again!…”

            I did that, for I did not want to remind you of our first exchange on this site -in which you got a taste of how good I am at “shooting back” (just as Erdogan shall taste how good Putin is at shooting back …very soon!)
            -Yet, you continued with your hysterical, inflammatory bursting!
            I am not certain what pricked your “bubble” -holiday shopping not going well, perhaps – my condolences!
            In any event, you GROSSLY misunderstood and misrepresented what I wrote.
            Nowhere did I write that: ” …ourPresident ordered: shoot the goddamn thing down…” – as you so eloquently put it.
            Let me repeat to you what I wrote (short term amnesia – especially when one is enraged – is a bitch!):
            “….probably ordered by your and my tax dollars in DC…”.

            -What I was trying to convey (obviously fruitlessly!) was that even though Erdogan/Turks pulled the trigger (or maybe you prefer: “pushed the button”) and shot the SU24 down, our un-Kosherly dumb (at the very best!) policies for the last 15 years (and maybe longer!) in the region (and wider), have GREATLY empowered “Erdogan” types.
            Key word is “at the very best” here, for there is unmistakable and unambiguous evidence to suggest the other extreme of that spectrum (hint: intent)!

            -Whether you consider a senior senator (i.e.McCain) posing with known international criminal be-headers, or viceSercretaryOfState (i.e.V.Nuland) hand picking puppets for the head of KievGovrmt after orchestrating, directing and financing a CLASSIC “coup d’etat” to overthrow the previous govmt there, part of ourGovrmt, or NOT – is your business.
            However, that does not give you the moral and social (let alone the common sense one!) right to engage in hysterical, inflammatory and wildly accusational burstings against somebody – even on your blog site!
            If that is your idea of patriotism, you surely missed it!

            -Yes!
            It was theTurks who shot down theRussian aircraft – not us!
            But to put it in a historical context, SIMPLER for you to understand:
            it was NOT Great Britain, France and US (among others) that in 1933 made Adolf Hitler Reich Chancellor;
            it was the Germans – whether they be German elites, or German plebes!

            Behavior(s) and decisions by political and economical/financial leaders in those Countries however, GREATLY facilitated Hitler’s ascend to power!
            In December 1938, less than 10 months before starting the carnage that killed 100 million people worldwide , Hitler was Time Magazine’s “Man of the Year”.

            I would strongly suggest to you sources other than NYT and Fox for your world news updates – you would be enlightened!
            If you do not want me to comment here and this is personal, be a man and say so without wild explosions of nastiness!
            We are all adults here (one can only hope!) and can take it.
            And stop throwing the “conspiracy” label around, as well!
            Makes you sound very foolish and brainwashed.

            -Have a good Thanksgiving tomorrow and maybe/hopefully by Friday feel more relaxed…

            Be well,

            Petro

            • twocats says:

              Hey Petro, yeah, just on the face of it I didn’t see your comment as being that outlandish. the united states has a very very very long history of making moves that seem quite “beyond the pale”

              http://www.amazon.com/KILLING-HOPE-William-Blum/dp/B007K517VE

              in this specific case, ron’s point that this move seems really really stupid does ring true for me. but i think we need to wait a little longer and see how it plays out to know for sure.

            • Back in 2010 I was living in Pensacola, FL. Right after the Deep Water Horizon disaster everyone was pointing the finger, blaming somebody. And there was a lot of blame to go around but I met several folks here that blamed Obama. Yes, they said, Obama planned and ordered the whole disaster. Just why he would order such a thing no one seemed to know. A few came up with a reason, but no one had the same reason as the other nut cases.

              I see the same thing in almost every other disaster throughout the world, “Obama planned and ordered the whole disaster”. So whenever I see someone blaming Obama, or Washington, for this or that disaster, it really pisses me off.

              And like the other nut cases that blamed Obama for the Macondo disaster, they cannot come up with a reason that Obama would do such a thing, but he is the US president and they hate everything that comes out of Washington so he must have been somehow responsible.

              Some people never ever miss a chance to blame Obama, or Washington, for some evil act especially when it cannot be proven otherwise.

              • twocats says:

                Yep I’ll definitely give you the anti-Washington, and vehement anti-Obama thing (gotta be a lot of rascism wrapped up in that). But I’m assuming you are aware of the fairly well known shenanigans of the United States in terms of intervening and influencing countries in order to make terrible terrible things happen:

                1) training Saddam to help overthrow Qasim which led to, well Saddam
                2) overhthrowing Mossadeg to install Shah which led to Iranian Revolution
                3) giving Saddam chemical weapons to kill 100s thousands of Iranians
                4) training Al-Qaeda to fight Russia in Afghanistan, and latter trained again to fight in Kosovo
                5) Backed wahabi tribe of Saud and backed their play for power in Arabian penninsula which led to of course Saudi Arabia, despised totalitarian regime which regularly beheads and then crucifies people.

                i mean i could go on for hours. so the idea that United States hinted to Turkey that it wouldn’t be upset if it 1) defended its border, 2) defended Turkmen majority cities on Syrian side (thanks Fernando), these are not such crazy notions. (see article from oriental review – http://orientalreview.org/2015/11/25/whys-the-us-hanging-turkey-out-to-dry/)

              • twocats says:

                and just for giggles here is a more direct corollary

                http://foreignpolicy.com/2011/01/09/wikileaks-april-glaspie-and-saddam-hussein/

                Petro’s post was a little long and poorly written so i didn’t read it all and he may have been overstating it. To say, if he did, that the US directly said, “shoot a plane down ASAP” is probably unlikely. But Turkey, a member of NATO, might be a little hesitant to take such an action unless it felt that the United States had its back. Now Turkey has been a bit “rogue” in recent years – http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/13/turkey-denies-agreement-open-air-bases-us-isis. I mean the final answer is really above my pay grade, but I think you are beginning to see that there are a lot of moving parts to this equation and I’m beginning to agree with wimbi – can we go back to how much drag there would be on a bomber if it lost its tail section?

                • but I think you are beginning to see that there are a lot of moving parts to this equation

                  I am beginning to see there is a lot of bullshit in this equation and it is getting deeper and deeper. As I said, it is very easy to throw out bullshit when it cannot be proven otherwise. You can seem like a master of knowledge when all you really are is a master of bullshit.

        • AlexS says:

          Russian jet hit inside Syria after incursion into Turkey: U.S. official

          http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/25/us-mideast-crisis-syria-turkey-impact-idUSKBN0TE04M20151125

          The United States believes that the Russian jet shot down by Turkey on Tuesday was hit inside Syrian airspace after a brief incursion into Turkish airspace, a U.S. official told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.
          The official said that assessment was based on detection of the heat signature of the jet.
          ———————————————

          Russia to move S-400 air defense system to Syria — defense minister

          http://tass.ru/en/defense/839109

          MOSCOW, November 25. /TASS/. Russia will move its air defense system S-400 Triumf to the Hmeimim air base in Syria, accommodating its air and space group, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Wednesday.
          The Russian General Staff has warned that Russia will be destroying all potentially dangerous targets over Syria and moved towards the Syrian shores its guided missile cruiser The Moskva armed with the Fort system (the sea-launched equivalent of S-300).
          —————————————————–
          Second pilot of downed Su-24 jet safe, brought to Russian base — Russian defense minister

          http://tass.ru/en/defense/839080

          MOSCOW, November 25. /TASS/. The second pilot of the Su-24 bomber downed by Turkey has been rescued by the Russian and Syrian forces and is safe and sound, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Wednesday.
          “The operation ended successfully. The pilot has been taken to our base. Safe and sound,” Shoigu said.
          He said the rescue operation lasted for 12 hours.
          ———————————————————–

          Turkey’s Erdogan says does not want escalation after Russian jet downed

          http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/25/us-mideast-crisis-syria-turkey-erdogan-idUSKBN0TE0QT20151125

          President Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that Turkey did not want any escalation after it shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian border, saying it had simply acted to defend its own security and the “rights of our brothers” in Syria.
          But while neither side has shown any interest in a military escalation, Russia has made clear it will exact economic revenge through trade and tourism. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Wednesday that important joint projects could be canceled and Turkish firms could lose Russian market share.
          Increased tensions could have significant economic and political repercussions which are in neither Moscow nor Ankara’s interests, analysts warned. But both Putin and Erdogan are strong-willed leaders ill-disposed to being challenged.
          “If Erdogan becomes involved a cycle of violence, FDI (foreign direct investment), tourism, and relations with the EU and U.S. will all be in jeopardy,” risk analysis firm Eurasia Group said in a note.
          “Our bet is that the episode will not escalate … National interest will probably prevail over emotion, but given the players, that’s not a sure bet.”
          Turkey imports almost all of its energy from Russia, including 60 percent of its gas and 35 percent of its oil. Russia’s state Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom) is due to build Turkey’s first nuclear power station, a $20 billion project, while plans are on the table for a gas pipeline from Russia known as TurkStream.
          Turkish building and beverage companies also have significant interests in Russia.
          Shares in Enka Insaat, which has construction projects in Russia and two power plants in Turkey using Russian gas, fell for a second day on Wednesday. Brewer Anadolu Efes, which has six breweries in Russia and controls around 14 percent of the market, also saw its shares fall on Tuesday.
          Russians are second only to Germans in terms of the numbers visiting Turkey, bringing in an estimated $4 billion a year in tourism revenues. But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Tuesday advised them not to visit and one of Russia’s largest tour operators to the country said it would temporarily suspend sales of trips.

          • Javier says:

            Interesting, Alex,

            Turkish might have built themselves a no-fly zone at their Syrian border. Russians have Syrian permit to fly their space, while Turkish have not. After what has happened any Turkish plane over Syrian space can be considered a dangerous target by the Russians and shot down.

            I don’t understand Turkish actions. If it was a military decision from some commander, they should have tried to apologize, and not run to NATO for cover. If it was a presidential decision, I fail to see what good can come from it for Turkey.

            Anyway, I hope those Russian tourists going to Egypt or Turkey can find some solace in Spain [grin].

            • Ves says:

              Javier: ” I don’t understand Turkish actions.”

              It is very obvious what they want. They want NATO boots on the ground. Do you want to go? Do you know any of Germans that want to go? Greeks, Italians? There are no takers in Europe. Even Obama is not biting.

              • Javier says:

                I’ve never been in favor of bombing other countries, much less of sending troops.

                NATO is a defensive pact in theory. I could understand NATO troops in Turkey if invaded by Russia, but not NATO troops in Syria because Turkey shoots down Russian planes. And I don’t believe Turkey is trying to trigger a Russian aggression. Too much to lose.

                Your words still don’t make sense to me.

                • Ves says:

                  What part does not make sense?

                  That Turks are so desperate to stop their proxies in Syria being annihilated within next few months?

                  Shooting down Russian plane is what desperate party does in order to change war dynamics on the ground.

                  • Javier says:

                    Found a much better explanation than yours over at Euan Mearn’s blog in a Syrian drought article in the comments.

                    Unlike US, Russia is very active attacking oil trucks that smuggle ISIS oil to Turkey. Those trucks belong to a shipping company BMZ that belongs to the son of Erdogan. Russia is causing a personal economic loss to the Erdogan family.

                    The international coalition against Syria and Russia is beginning to crack on the wake of the Paris attacks by ISIS. Turkey doesn’t want that to happen.

                    This explains the shooting of the plane and the rushed going of Turkey to NATO to ask for support. It is intended to dynamite any possibility of understanding between US-lead coalition in Syria and Russia against ISIS. Obama has his hands tied, as he needs to use his base in Turkey.

                    Putin is probably too smart to respond. He’ll find another way. Perhaps supporting Kurds.

                  • Ves says:

                    Javier,
                    Drought? So we have all armadas of the world, including Lichenstain’s one plane, circling Middle East for the last 30 years because of – drought??!!!
                    No wonder you believe that one of the stated EU goals is for everybody to hold hands and sing Kumbaya at Eurovison contest. Javier, it’s always having been delusions of power, control and mucho dinero that caused the conflict- not drought.

                  • Ves says:

                    Glenn,
                    that is exactly what explained to Javier. Cutting the oil line for the finance of the Turkish proxies. Once the money line is cut even the proxies don’t fight for free.

                  • Javier says:

                    Ves

                    Did I say anything about drought being related to the conflict?
                    I just pointed where I got the information.

                    You seem to like to engage in straw man arguments. Please continue, don’t let yourself be bothered by reality.

                  • Ves says:

                    Javier said: “Found a much better explanation than yours over at Euan Mearn’s blog in a Syrian drought article ”

                    I am sorry but I don’t know who is Euarn Mearn’s and what Syrian drought article has to do with all this. Leave a link or something.

                  • Javier says:

                    Ves,

                    Euan Mearns is a frequent visitor and commenter in this blog. He was also a frequent contributor of The Oil Drumm. He has a very good blog on Energy and also some Climate. If you just google his name you get there. The link to the article is this:
                    http://euanmearns.com/drought-climate-war-terrorism-and-syria/
                    The information I posted was in one of the comments.
                    The article actually argues against the climate change-Syrian war-ISIS connection that has appeared in some media.

                  • Ves says:

                    Thanks Javier. Okey with that little bit of info from you I know what to expect when I click on that link. I will read it.

                    You have to understand that I limit my reading to only few limited sources just not to corrupt my mind. You see there are expert internet oil “analysts” who claim that US is oil exporter so there are very dangerous stuff out there in cyber space.

                  • Ves says:

                    Javier,
                    I agree with article but I am floored that he actually spent all that energy debunking that nonsense that drought caused all this. Who armed all these people, who financed illegal oil operations, where thousands oil tankers are from, why after 4 years of civil war refugees just suddenly start flowing to Europe this summer, so someone let them purposely go, who is blackmailing Europe?

                  • Refugees showed up over several years. I have a half Syrian boy living with me, he has a Sunni friend who arrived about two years ago.

                    The flood increased exponentially as the flesh traders got better organized, the camps in turkey filled up, Isis got stronger, and people elsewhere realized Merkel was a big pussy who would welcome darth Vader if he asked for asylum.

        • Peter says:

          Petro

          What is your problem with my statement, it was not rude. Nor is it unreasonable, higher oil prices were bringing on a considerable amount of Shale oil. Once prices start to increase oil drilling will respond.
          When I said oil production had not peaked on the oil drum back 7/8 years ago people dismissed my comments just like you. Turns out I was right, so you may not be a clever as you think. So find a little humility and you just might learn something from other people.

      • twocats says:

        the most ignorant, craziest, stupidest, outrageously reasonably explained plausible fitting into global and regional goals possible thing that’s ever been said on this blog:

        http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-11-25/guest-post-why-us-hanging-turkey-out-dry

    • shallow sand says:

      Petro. I really don’t want prices where they were 2011-2014 pre crash. $60-70 WTI would be wonderful on our end. Gas should remain in $2.50-2.75 range in most of US at those oil price levels.

      Sub$50 WTI is tough on us, we have high OPEX, but thankfully very low decline.

      Not wanting war, just better supply demand balance, which hopefully is starting to occur.

      • Petro says:

        Shallow,
        you know where I stand on oil price, for I have replied to you on that topic on several occasions. Therefore I will not expand.
        I truly do understand your angst with regard to prices (…at the very least theoretically).
        What I am trying to convey to you different from others (i.e. Dennis ) is that this time is indeed different!
        This time the true and trusted classical supply/demand is “irrelevant”.
        Prices will stay here ($40-ish/brl) and drift/aim downwards and when they will rise/spike…..hide, run for the hills…literally!

        Be well,

        Petro

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          If the uneconomy is already depressed, then the prices reflect it, yes? I mean, we’re in a glut supposedly, but if the uneconomy still isn’t doing well– (which is good of course)– then the glut is going to remain and the prices may go down further still, yes? (I mean, how much oil can be stored, how many tankers can be traffic-jammed, and how easily can the wells be shut off and then restarted?)
          If so, this doesn’t bode well for PV’s or EV’s does it? Or highway repair and maintenance? Or jobs?

          Besides, where would everyone be going in their EV’s, such as if there are much less jobs and working highways and the uneconomy becomes something much different than the current in the face of higher entropy?

          We really do seem to be in the beginning stages of a bit of a classic feedback loop, where the feedback is the increasingly-inferior energy extracted that is used to extract increasingly-inferior energy, while bumping up against this uneconomy’s vested interests, while the so-called middle class is apparently gutted and more so-called poor, become poor.
          And when this happens, ostensibly, ‘revolution’ is only a hop, skip and jump away… Well, it’s here already…

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Petro,

          Interesting. So you expect oil prices to remain under $50/b long term?

          Supply and Demand don’t matter. How so?

          I don’t agree with some people who think that US output will decline by 3500 kb/d from the April peak. I do think US supply will decrease by around 1250 kb/d from the April peak (another 1000 kb/d from August levels) and maybe in 12 months or so oil prices will reach $65/b or higher.

          I also agree with Ron that things may get worse for a time, but I disagree that it will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

          • Dennis I expect there will be ups and downs. But each up will not quite reach the level of the previous up and each down will be just a little lower than the previous down. Or at least that is what I am expecting. I hope I am wrong.

            It is the long term trend that is down. There will be lots of bounces on the way down.

            • Nick G says:

              It is the long term trend that is down.

              Ron, I can see why you’d say that about the environment – extinctions, GHGs, etc.

              But I don’t see evidence for that in the economy. Do you see any specific statistics that make you think that?

              • Nick, I would not say that about the environment. There are no ups and downs with what is happening to the environment. There are only downs. There are no ups with extinctions, with rain forest disappearing, with desertification or ocean fisheries, or falling water tables, or topsoil erosion or… I could go on and on. There are no periods where these things get better then worse. They only get constantly worse.

                And that is one reason I say the economy will get worse even though there will be ups and downs. The economy is, in the long run, dependent upon the environment. As water tables drop food production gets harder and more expensive. As climate change wrecks havoc, we have more floods and droughts. That also plays havoc with food production.

                Economics in much of the world is already collapsing. More people in the third world age getting hungry… and they are revolting.

                The economics in China is basically a ponzi scheme. They are building empty cities keeping the cement factories churning, keeping the steel industry going, keeping people working and keeping a place where the newly middle class can invest their money. But it cannot possibly last. It may have already started to collapse.

                And there are other reasons. But I just don’t have time to write a book.

                • Nick G says:

                  As water tables drop food production gets harder and more expensive. As climate change wrecks havoc, we have more floods and droughts. That also plays havoc with food production.

                  But, there’s no sign of that affecting food production or prices. Remember, the US used to keep food prices artificially low with subsidies. Now, they’re helping US farmers with the opposite tactic: raising food prices by diverting 40% of corn production to ethanol blending requirements.

                  Economics in much of the world is already collapsing. More people in the third world age getting hungry… and they are revolting.

                  And…no. Developing countries, overall, are still growing. Overall, the number of hungry people isn’t growing either.

                  Here’s food production from our old friend Stuart Staniford:

                  http://earlywarn.blogspot.com/2013/04/global-crop-production.html

                  • But, there’s no sign of that affecting food production or prices. Remember, the US used to keep food prices artificially low with subsidies.

                    Nick, I wasn’t referring just to the United States but to the entire world. India for instance:

                    1,500 Indian Farmers Commit Mass Suicide: Why We Are Complicit in These Deaths

                    The headline has been hard to ignore. Across the world press, news media have announced that over 1,500 farmers in the Indian state of Chattisgarh committed suicide. The motive has been blamed on farmers being crippled by overwhelming debt in the face of crop failure.

                    The UK Independent reported:

                    The agricultural state of Chattisgarh was hit by falling water levels.

                    “The water level has gone down below 250 feet here. It used to be at 40 feet a few years ago,” Shatrughan Sahu, a villager in one of the districts, told Down To Earth magazine.

                    “Most of the farmers here are indebted and only God can save the ones who do not have a bore well.”

                    Nick, to say that falling water tables are not affecting food production could only mean that you have been living under a rock for the last two decades.

                  • twocats says:

                    Yeah, let’s see if the “no affect on food production or prices” when you factor in California drought going forward.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Maybe Nick has been living under a water table.

                  • sunnnv says:

                    Nick – read the Euan Mearns post.

                    http://euanmearns.com/drought-climate-war-terrorism-and-syria/

                    Population QUADRUPLED in Syria in just 51 years.
                    What’s going on in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc.?

                    The idiocy of letting in refugees is they just aren’t being responsible for overpopulation. And by participating in more developed economies, they increase oil consumption even more.

                  • Nick G says:

                    I wasn’t referring just to the United States but to the entire world.

                    Ron,

                    Look at the chart. It’s world production. World production has been rising, with no sign of an overall decline.

                    The motive has been blamed on farmers being crippled by overwhelming debt in the face of crop failure.

                    The number of farmers (but not farm production) is shrinking. Farmers are going out of business. Competition is ruthless, and small farmers can’t compete. When crops fail, they’re in debt and they have no reserve.

                    This has been going on for, oh, 300 years (think FarmAid). India is just a little late to the event.

                    It’s a tragically painful process for the farmers being pushed out of business, but it’s actually a sign of the overall health of the industry: production is rising, costs are falling…and small inefficient farmers have to go do something else.

                    In countries with healthy economies, they go to the big city and find another trade. In unhealthy economies, they can’t find anything else to do, and they commit suicide, emigrate or join ISIS.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Ron,

              When looked at from a World perspective, I think the same as you except a slightly upward trend with ups and downs, which will level off as population peaks, but on a per capita basis I don’t think things will get worse over the long term, but will eventually flat line (after our great grandchildren are dead). Note that I agree that things have not seemed good for the past 7 or 8 years, but for many in China and India things may have improved (though pollution is pretty bad in many Chinese cities and India seems poised to make the same mistakes).

  10. ezrydermike says:

    The U.S. economy grew at a healthier clip in the third quarter than initially thought, but strong inventory accumulation by businesses could temper expectations of an acceleration in growth in the final three months of the year.

    The Commerce Department on Tuesday said the nation’s gross domestic product grew at a 2.1 percent annual pace, not the 1.5 percent rate it reported last month, as businesses reduced an inventory bloat less aggressively than previously believed.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/24/us-gdp-usa-idUSKBN0TD1M520151124?feedType=RSS&feedName=newsOne&google_editors_picks=true

  11. Doug Leighton says:

    NO SUBSTANTIVE EVIDENCE FOR ‘PAUSE’ IN GLOBAL WARMING

    “There is no substantive evidence for a ‘pause’ or ‘hiatus’ in global warming and the use of those terms is therefore inaccurate, new research has found.”

    “Our study raises the question: why has so much research been framed around the concept of a ‘hiatus’ when it does not exist? The notion of a ‘pause’ or ‘hiatus’ demonstrably originated outside the scientific community, and it likely found entry into the scientific discourse because of the constant challenge by contrarian voices that are known to affect scientific communication and conduct.”

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151124081510.htm

    • oldfarmermac says:

      I personally just ask the doubters where the cool years are.

      The ones who are capable of thinking a little generally do a little thinking if you ask them that, in a courteous, non confrontational, but serious manner.

    • Arceus says:

      The lead on this paper is experimental psychologist Stephan Lewandusky

      Amid complaints about the veracity and ethics of his psychological research trying to equate climate skeptics to conspiracy theory nuts and “moon landing deniers”, it seems that Professor Lewandowsky is no longer at the University of Western Australia and has moved to the UK and is practicing his craft at Bristol University.

      I know of at least two, possibly more, professional complaints that are in progress against Lewdandowsy (and his sidekick, Skeptical Science’ s John Cook) at the University of Western Australia for his data fabrication and his questionable science composed of outlandish made-up claims designed to smear climate skeptics worldwide.

      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/04/28/stephan-lewandowsky-flees-australia-in-wake-of-investigations/

      • Doug Leighton says:

        Let’s not get carried away, all these guys are saying is the evidence does not support the notion of a “pause” or “hiatus” as an identifiable phenomenon that’s implied by standard dictionary definitions and common understandings of these terms.

        • Arceus says:

          Doug, just thought it was interesting. I imagine that an experimental psychologist might not find it as easy to get grants and other funds in the field of experimental psychology as it would be for climatology/global warming. I wonder if there might have been any confirmation bias in his study.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        I’m going to make an exception to the promise I made about not weighing in anymore about anything related to climate change topics…

        …outlandish made-up claims designed to smear climate skeptics worldwide.

        Hmm, I didn’t think that was even possible… Case in point, could they possibly come up with stories to top the recent smear campaign and witch hunt engaged in by Congressman Lamar Smith (T-Rex) against scientists at NOAA? The truth is more outlandish than anything anyone could possibly make up about him… I think calling asshats like him, a conspiracy theory nut, would probably be a grave disservice to all
        ‘legitimate’ conspiracy theory nuts everywhere!

        And please, if you want to be considered credible in any way then refrain from posting information from a premier conspiracy theory nut site, such as WUWT!

        Disclaimer: I haven’t read Prof Lewdandowsy , paper and I’m not going to, but whatever he said it can’t be even half as bad as the truth about pseudo climate skeptics, sorry, deniers everywhere!

        • Doug Leighton says:

          “….the promise I made about not weighing in anymore about anything related to climate change topics…”

          I’ve reached the same conclusion. The number of angels able to prance on the head of a pin; a more productive discussion. Therefore, I hereby promise….

      • Fred Magyar says:

        I have to question anyone who puts forward something that appears on WUWT!
        WUWT, is a well known climate denialist and conspiracy nut site!

        “Recursive fury”[edit]
        On 28 March 2013, Lewandowsky published “Recursive fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation” in the journal Frontiers in Psychology. This paper described the reaction of climate change deniers to pre-publication versions of the “NASA Faked the Moon Landing—Therefore, (Climate) Science Is a Hoax” study that he had submitted to Psychological Science in 2012. His analysis found that, of the hypotheses generated by climate change deniers in response to his 2012 study, “many…exhibited conspiratorial content and counterfactual thinking.”[20]

        The Frontiers in Psychology journal received immediate complaints, and took the paper down while it carried out an investigation.[21] The paper was retracted with a notice published on March 2014, which stated:[22]

        In the light of a small number of complaints received following publication of the original research article cited above, Frontiers carried out a detailed investigation of the academic, ethical, and legal aspects of the work. This investigation did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study. It did, however, determine that the legal context is insufficiently clear and therefore Frontiers wishes to retract the published article. The authors understand this decision, while they stand by their article and regret the limitations on academic freedom which can be caused by legal factors.[22]

        Ars Technica reported that its questions were referred by the publishers to their lawyer, who told Ars: “Frontiers is concerned about solid science, and it’s obviously a regret when you have to retract an article that is scientifically and ethically sound.” Freedom of Information requests made by DeSmogBlog had obtained copies of the complaints, which included allegations of misconduct: some used legal terms such as “defamatory”.[23]

        Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephan_Lewandowsky

        BTW if you want a real smear campaign from someone on a witch hunt you need go no further than congressman Lamar Smith’s (T-Rex) harassment of NOAA scientists!

        • Javier says:

          Fred,

          Lewandowsky, Cook, Oreskes, et al. are not climate scientists. They are global warming activists subject to the strongest case of confirmation bias. What they produce is totally useless from a scientific point of view, but very useful as propaganda. They are promoting being politically used and enjoying their notoriety, and no doubt making a living out of their activism.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            Lewandowsky, Cook, Oreskes, et al. are not climate scientists.

            Never said they were! For that matter neither are you, so what does that prove?

            • Javier says:

              It proves that they are living out of promoting alarmism and attacking those that challenge it. They have a vested interest.

              “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”
              Upton Sinclair

              I could be wrong or I could be right about climate change, but as most scientists (not all, some scientists career has been built on alarmism), I am just seeking the truth.

        • Javier says:

          Fred,

          BTW if you want a real smear campaign from someone on a witch hunt you need go no further than congressman Lamar Smith’s (T-Rex) harassment of NOAA scientists!

          When one is a scientist employed by a public institution one has to be aware that e-mails on public servers at work belong to the employer that has any right to inspect them. As a scientist I have been on the payroll of the State of California, and the governments of UK and Spain, so I know what I talk about.

          NOAA is producing political weapons for the Obama administration like when they issued a communication defending that 2014 was the warmest year on record the day before Obama used it in his speech to the Nation, only to say a few days later that they were only 48% sure of that. If you get into politics, it is only fair that politics gets into you.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            When one is a scientist employed by a public institution one has to be aware that e-mails on public servers at work belong to the employer that has any right to inspect them. As a scientist I have been on the payroll of the State of California, and the governments of UK and Spain, so I know what I talk about.

            If you really believe that what Lamar Smith is doing is legit then we have nothing further to discuss!

            NOAA is producing political weapons for the Obama administration…

            Really now?!

            • Javier says:

              AFAIK legit means legal; conforming to the rules. I know of no law or rule that that congressman is breaking, so I have no reason to doubt it.

              If they were scientists working for a private company and the company wanted to check their mails on the company servers, would you be making a fuss about it or would you think that they have the right to do so? What is different here?

            • Rick Herzenberg says:

              I’ve been wondering if any of the climate news posters here worked for NOAA and what you might think about the email scandal at an agency already teetering on the verge of illegitimacy due to all the controversial positions regarding climate change that have been developed over the years. The truth is, in an ideal world the NOAA scientists would have no problem with releasing all their emails (which Javier points out are already a matter of public record since NOAA employees work for us, the taxpayers) that contain the highly technical discussions among climate change scientists. However no doubt the problem from the scientists’ perspective and the reason why the emails haven’t been forthcoming is that the discussions mix in personal comments such as jokes, sarcasm, and snark directed toward what the scientists probably perceive to be scientifically illiterate politicians (likely mostly Republicans). In light of that, I can understand why the scientists are reluctant to turn over all the emails. They also have to be considering the precedents that have been set showing what happens when emails are edited and rearranged to imply something different than what was originally intended.

    • Javier says:

      Doug,

      I am afraid that the scientific consensus is against this notion that “the pause does not exist” as the ratio of papers acknowledging the pause to papers saying it does not exist is easily 25-50:1.

      Furthermore, in 2007 IPCC predicted 0.2°C/decade (AR4), but depending on the temperature dataset chosen the rate of warming since 2001 comes as 0-0.1°C, well below 1975-2000 trend. This is for a period when 25% of all human CO2 emissions since industrial revolution have been put in the atmosphere. There is no future warming rate prediction in AR5. When IPCC stops making predictions (they call them projections) it will finally be right, but useless.

      Besides, the temperature record is full of pauses or hiatus in warming. Kevin Trenberth, a prominent defender of AGW, recognizes multiples hiatus in the temperature record. He acknowledges the “big hiatus” of the 1943-1975 period in his Science article, and a previous one that ended in the 1920’s.
      http://www.ccpo.odu.edu/~klinck/Reprints/PDF/trenberthScience15.pdf
      It is clearly a cyclical feature that had been ignored by most scientists thinking that CO2 is so powerful in its warming that had overwhelmed all natural variability. Nature proves scientists wrong all the time.

      The sad truth is that since 2001 we have seen more warming in each revision of certain temperature datasets than in the world. Being at the warmest period since Little Ice Age, that everybody recognizes, means that every single year is between the warmest years in centuries and that the chance of a single year of breaking the warmest year on record is pretty high. Statistically is meaningless. It comes from the fact that we are at Peak Warm since LIA, but it is a good sell for the media. 2015 strong El Niño is very likely to make it “the warmest year on record” again and we will no doubt see most people defending that the pause that did not exist has finally ended, but the truth is that given the nature of El Niño we will have to wait at least two more years to see if the pause has ended or continues.

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Lamar Smith is the biggest fool and most embarrassing idiot alive so far as real, technically literate conservatives are concerned.

        Now as far as cynical,hypocritical REPUBLICANS are concerned, he is a faithful and capable soldier fighting the good fight using any and all the usual means employed in politics, including lies, slander, character assassination, etc, to further the ends of his partisan masters.

        I don’t have any arguments, not significant ones, involving actual climate SCIENCE.

        But when it comes to the POLITICS associated with climate science, and the management and manipulation of these politics by government bureaucracies, environmental organizations, and most of the MSM, well the goddamned truth, as I see it, is that Javier, in general, is correct about data being manipulated, reports being issued on particular dates, etc, for political impact.

        Thus it used to be, thus it is today, and thus it will ever be. I have acquaintances on both sides of the political spectrum, and quite a few among them , on both sides, are perfectly willing to use hypocritical, cynical, and blatantly false arguments in pursuit of what they consider to be worthwhile goals.

        They say you should never watch the making of laws and sausages.

        Nine out of every ten teachers I know are perfectly willing to sacrifice the future of every kid in every catastrophically failed and failing school in the country in order to maintain their current professional public/ private monopoly, irrespective of party or politics. Yet they make pious speeches at every opportunity about their dedication to THE CHILDREN, even as they put their OWN kids in better schools by moving across political boundaries, enrolling them in private schools, doing a little extra tutoring at home.

        The vast majority of working scientists present their work in measured, even, non partisan language, doing their best to COMMUNICATE their findings, rather than ADVOCATE particular policies or courses of action.

        A few, reasoning that the end justifies the means, twist or cherry pick the truth to some extent in order to influence public opinion.

        Only a few sell out for a few pieces of silver, in plain language.

        I have respect for the first sort. Nobody respects the second kind, most especially including the people who pay them.

        Anybody who does not understand that I am telling it like it is , is either utterly naive or a fool. Anybody who denies it is a lying partisan.

        Have I made my point?Partisans are easy to identify, they virtually always take the party line, on EVERY issue.

        The making of sausage and public policy can be a nauseating affair, but both sausage and policy can turn out well.

        It takes a while to find an article in the MSM press, excepting Fox , etc, that does not present any and all climate news in sensational and alarmist tones. It’s hard to find anything in the conservative press that does not pooh pooh current day climate science. We shouldn’t expect it to be any other way.

        • Glenn Stehle says:

          Hey OFM,

          Now I resent that remark about Lamar Smith.

          We down in Texas know how to do politics right!

          Smith was elected to the Texas House of Representatives back in 1980. His big claim to fame as state rep was his illustrious tenure on the Fire Ants Select Committee.

          As you know, down in Texas everybody only gets to vote once, except the dead, who get to vote as many times as they want. Just a couple of months ago an investigation revealed that 8 Texas counties still had more registered voters than residents, that is if we limit “residents” to those still amongst the living.

          In San Antonio I had a next door neighbor whose grandfather, George R. Brown, openly bragged about what it cost to buy a U.S. senator. (Did you know that Brown, besides being one of the founders of Brown and Root, was also a successful oil man?)

          Brown was of course speaking of Lyndon Johnson and his politcal allies, folks like the South Texas political boss George Parr. Parr made sure Johnson “received the votes of the dead, the halt, the missing and those who were unaware that an election was going on,” as one savy political commentator put it, speaking of Johnson’s 1948 senatorial election.

          Smith was always a solid ally of “traditonal family values” and the Christian Coalition. (Remember Ralph Reed? Now that was a silver tongued devil for you.) Back in 1992 some of Texas’ more progressive lawmakers mounted a legislative push to repeal the state’s archaic sodomy law. The law held only homosexual sodomy to be illegal, which made it vulnerable to being overturned by the courts. The Texas Conservative Coalition set out to remedy this flaw, proposing to amend the law to make all sodomy illegal, whether it be between a man and a woman or two persons of the same sex. This gave the progressives an opening on the house floor to argue against the law.

          Just as the hastily penned, quite explicit amendment was being introduced, a group of fourth-grade students on a civics class outing entered the visitors’ gallery above. As they quietly took their places in their chairs, a hot and colorful debate began over the amendment prohibiting anal and oral sex between consenting adults. Debra Danburg stood to face Warren Chisum, president of the Texas Conservative Coalition, and said in her honeyed drawl: “Mr. Chisum, what if it…slips?” Chisum, wondering if he had heard correctly, said, “What?” Danburg, enjoying the tweaking, elaborated, “What happens if my husband’s penis accidentally touches my anus?” she said with a straight face. “Is that a crime?” Amid titters below, the teacher escorting the fourth-grade class gasped, rose, and quickly escorted her charges out of the building.

          The old sodomy laws remained on the books, until they were struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003 in Lawrence v. Texas.

          So like I say, we down in Texas know how to do politics right, and don’t cotton to criticisms from you Yankees up north about how dead people shouldn’t vote or gay people should have civil rights.

          • oldfarmermac says:

            LMAO. ROTF.

            I have it in for both parties. Democrats are not in my estimation noticeably more concerned with ethics than Republicans.

            I live far enough south a couple of my idiot neighbors fly the Stars and Bars, and more of my ancestors wore gray than blue in the YANKEE WAR OF AGGRESSION. 😉

            I will say this much for republicans. In private they are more likely to be honest about partisan politics, and admit it is a dog eat dog world, and that they intend to eat rather than be eaten, if they can manage it.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Javier,

        Any peer reviewed papers suggesting that the temperature data has been “manipulated” as you clearly imply? Or are you relying on insinuation on blogs and the MSM.

        • Javier says:

          Dennis,

          My exact words are:

          since 2001 we have seen more warming in each revision of certain temperature datasets than in the world.

          This is a fact easily demonstrated by comparing different releases from several temperature datasets. For example by comparing GISS global temperatures from meteorological stations from 2000 (blue) to 2015 (red).

          More warming has been subtracted pre-1960 and added post-1970 than the warming that has taken place between 2000 and 2015.

          You are the one that is talking about manipulation. I am just stating a fact. Certain temperature datasets are warming faster than the planet.
          This is indisputable as the evidence is for all to see.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Javier,

            The data is never perfect, do you think the data improves or becomes worse over time. It was pretty clear what you were implying.

            Many people have complained about problems with the data. The temperature data is fine.

            • Javier says:

              Hi Dennis,

              It is not the data that is changing, but the analysis of the data. And it is a serious problem that the analysis of the data keeps changing because any scientific study using a previous analysis becomes instantly invalid and non-comparable. Science is supposed to be built over the past, not keep changing it.

              And it introduces an interesting problem. As the new analysis falls completely outside the 99% confidence range of the previous analysis and vice versa, does it mean that the new analysis cannot be true or that the previous analysis could not be true? Being capable of going outside the 99% confidence range of the previous analysis demonstrates that the former confidence range was bogus and therefore that the new one is also bogus, because it has been obtained in the same manner.

              Data does not improve. Result of the analysis becomes more to the taste of the people doing the analysis. The error bars of those analysis are meaningless. Science cannot be done properly.

              A sad state indeed.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Javier,

        What do you estimate the peak warming has been for the last 800,000 years, relative to the 1960 to 1990 average. The BEST study has land temperatures up by 0.9 C in the last 50 years and the Holocene maximum was about 0.45 C above the 1960-1990 average.

        http://berkeleyearth.org/summary-of-findings/

        Do you believe previous interglacials had higher temperatures? And can you point me to some peer reviewed literature with those temperature estimates?

        • Javier says:

          For Christ sake Dennis,

          In order to believe in dangerous AGW you are questioning everything science knows about past climate of the Earth.

          Holocene maximum was about 0.45 C above the 1960-1990 average

          That is just one estimate. Most estimates put Holocene Climate Maximum at +1-2°C. We already discussed that when you brought up the issue in a previous post of the blog.

          Do you believe previous interglacials had higher temperatures?

          Science is quite sure that was the case at least for the Eemian interglacial (previous), because:
          -Sea level was several meters above Holocene maximum as stranded beaches from Eemian indicate.
          -Ice cores from Greenland usually end at Eemian because most of the ice in Greenland melted during that interglacial.

          Anctarctic ice cores show that several of the past 5 interglacials should have been warmer than present.

          Just one paper. You can find yourself a dozen or more if you are interested.
          http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v493/n7433/full/nature11789.html
          Eemian interglacial reconstructed from a Greenland folded ice core

          • oldfarmermac says:

            Hi Javier,

            “In order to believe in dangerous AGW you are questioning everything science knows about past climate of the Earth.”

            I am afraid I am going to have call bullshit on you at this point, although you have a valid point when you say forced warming is not a danger to the PLANET Earth.

            There is zero doubt in my mind that if we fired off every nuke in every arsenal, etc, the biosphere would survive and rebound and thrive again, EVENTUALLY.

            But this discussion is more about the lives of men. I am a pro ag guy, and you can take this to the bank. IF the average temperature rises two to four degrees, and the climate guys are right, then a lot of places are going to suffer twice that increase, in terms of peaks and valleys, over the course of a year.

            This much variation from current day conditions would be enough to put us all at each others throats in terms of food production, water supplies for cities, timber production etc.

            I cannot grow Christmas trees on my place. But my neighbors only a couple of miles away as the crow flies do very well with them,simply because they are another thousand feet up.

            Just a little can mean a hell of a lot.

            • Javier says:

              Hi Oldfarmermac,

              Perhaps I did not make myself clear. Some climate scientists, in order to highlight how unusual present warming is, are trying to rewrite past climate history. I have not defended that we would be just fine with two more degrees.

              What does it mean +2°C?
              As far as we know most of Greenland ice melts and this means about +3-5 m of sea level raise. This is not good news for humankind.
              Yet polar bears survive, because as well as almost every species on Earth including us, they already went through that.

              However current warming rate is +0.15°C per decade at most. If we were to extrapolate it means 135 years. But extrapolation never works because climate is cyclical, not linear, and we are already having trouble increasing our CO2 emissions.

              And a new factor is going to act against the warming. Solar activity is decreasing and should reach a minimum around 2050.

              A factor that almost nobody is taking into account is that as the warming proceeds, temperatures are farther and farther from where they should be according to Milankovitch cycles. All along, the Earth’s axis is tilted less and less, so the insolation at the poles is less and less. These cooling factors are not properly accounted for. Milankovitch cycles are the strongest climatic factor. They get the planet in and out of glacial periods.

              So we may very well find out that in the future we are not capable of warming the Earth no matter how hard we try.

            • Javier says:

              Climate Change Will Not Be Dangerous for a Long Time

              Slower warming than predicted gives the world time to develop better energy technologies
              By Matt Ridley | November 27, 2015

              http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/climate-change-will-not-be-dangerous-for-a-long-time/

              “The climate change debate has been polarized into a simple dichotomy. Either global warming is “real, man-made and dangerous,” as Pres. Barack Obama thinks, or it’s a “hoax,” as Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe thinks. But there is a third possibility: that it is real, man-made and not dangerous, at least not for a long time.

              This “lukewarm” option has been boosted by recent climate research, and if it is right, current policies may do more harm than good. For example, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and other bodies agree that the rush to grow biofuels, justified as a decarbonization measure, has raised food prices and contributed to rainforest destruction. Since 2013 aid agencies such as the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the World Bank and the European Investment Bank have restricted funding for building fossil-fuel plants in Asia and Africa; that has slowed progress in bringing electricity to the one billion people who live without it and the four million who die each year from the effects of cooking over wood fires.

              In 1990 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was predicting that if emissions rose in a “business as usual” way, which they have done, then global average temperature would rise at the rate of about 0.3 degree Celsius per decade (with an uncertainty range of 0.2 to 0.5 degree C per decade). In the 25 years since, temperature has risen at about 0.1 to 0.2 degree C per decade, depending on whether surface or satellite data is used. The IPCC, in its most recent assessment report, lowered its near-term forecast for the global mean surface temperature over the period 2016 to 2035 to just 0.3 to 0.7 degree C above the 1986–2005 level. That is a warming of 0.1 to 0.2 degree C per decade, in all scenarios, including the high-emissions ones.

              At the same time, new studies of climate sensitivity—the amount of warming expected for a doubling of carbon dioxide levels from 0.03 to 0.06 percent in the atmosphere—have suggested that most models are too sensitive. The average sensitivity of the 108 model runs considered by the IPCC is 3.2 degrees C. As Pat Michaels, a climatologist and self-described global warming skeptic at the Cato Institute testified to Congress in July, certain studies of sensitivity published since 2011 find an average sensitivity of 2 degrees C.

              Such lower sensitivity does not contradict greenhouse-effect physics. The theory of dangerous climate change is based not just on carbon dioxide warming but on positive and negative feedback effects from water vapor and phenomena such as clouds and airborne aerosols from coal burning. Doubling carbon dioxide levels, alone, should produce just over 1 degree C of warming. These feedback effects have been poorly estimated, and almost certainly overestimated, in the models.

              The last IPCC report also included a table debunking many worries about “tipping points” to abrupt climate change. For example, it says a sudden methane release from the ocean, or a slowdown of the Gulf Stream, are “very unlikely” and that a collapse of the West Antarctic or Greenland ice sheets during this century is “exceptionally unlikely.”

              If sensitivity is low and climate change continues at the same rate as it has over the past 50 years, then dangerous warming—usually defined as starting at 2 degrees C above preindustrial levels—is about a century away. So we do not need to rush into subsidizing inefficient and land-hungry technologies, such as wind and solar or risk depriving poor people access to the beneficial effects of cheap electricity via fossil fuels.”

              I know it is disturbing for a lot of people at this forum to see that Scientific American agrees with what I say.

              • Nick G says:

                we do not need to rush into subsidizing inefficient and land-hungry technologies, such as wind and solar or risk depriving poor people access to the beneficial effects of cheap electricity via fossil fuels.”

                When I see unrealistic ideas like this, the author loses credibility.

                Land hungry and inefficient…seriously?

                Coal power is far more expensive than wind power, if you include pollution costs (even without climate change).

                • Bob Nickson says:

                  Didn’t see your comment until after I’d posted mine Nick. Thanks for your perspectives. I enjoy your comments.

              • Bob Nickson says:

                Setting aside the climate question entirely, the statement at the end of your quote that:

                “[…] we do not need to rush into subsidizing inefficient and land-hungry technologies, such as wind and solar or risk depriving poor people access to the beneficial effects of cheap electricity via fossil fuels.”

                seems ridiculous.

                Neither solar or wind power are inherently land hungry. There’s plenty of rooftops and car parks we can cover with PV, and onshore turbines don’t preclude the land from other uses to which they are already dedicated, such as agriculture.

                Subsidies have worked, and are working to bring the cost of renewable technology closer to price parity with fossil fuels, which regardless of climate issues, are finite.

                Trapping the poor into dependence on fossil fuels by investing in that infrastructure seems utterly foolish.

                Here once again I’ll provide an illustration of just how much “inefficient and land hungry” solar technology one must have to provide the U.S. average daily vehicle range for a Nissan Leaf. Each blue rectangle represents a 330W PV panel:

                It’s almost large enough to provide an adequate carport for the vehicle – almost.

                That’s $1200. worth of panels, excluding soft costs; good for that average daily 30 miles of range for 30 years or more.

                And for those poor people who haven’t had the misfortune of already participating in the “greatest misallocation of resources in the history of the world”* by making themselves utterly dependent on cars, those same panels would provide 20km of daily range for 55 people with 500W electric bicycles (@10Wh/km).

                *http://www.kunstler.com/mags_cities_of_the_future.html

                If your climate claims are true, it simply means that we may have time to transition to sustainable practices from a CO2 emissions perspective, but of course that is only one part of the fossil fuel dilemma.

                • Bob Nickson says:

                  Thinking about cheap power for the poor, I thought I’d compare coal to PV at the most basic level.

                  One 330W PV panel can be had for $200. At the current price of $43.50 per ton, I could buy ~4.6 tons of coal for the same price. That coal would produce 8.84 MWh’s of electrical power.

                  Over its 25 year warrantied life span, the PV panel would produce 16.5 MWh’s of electrical power – nearly twice as much power for the same price.

                  Of course that coal power still needs transmission lines to deliver it to the point of use. The PV can be at the point of use.

                  If it were me in my little hut with a cell phone, an LED bulb, and an electric bicycle, I’d much rather have the solar panel than a pile of coal.

                  I wonder which Matt Ridley would rather have?

              • Fred Magyar says:

                I know it is disturbing for a lot of people at this forum to see that Scientific American agrees with what I say.

                Not really, it says a lot more about how low Scientific American’s quality, as a disseminator of science, has sunk.

                It’s been many years since I gave up my subscription. It seems most of the comments to that article, which is really just an opinion piece by a non climate scientist, agree that the once reputable magazine has become something which today is only slightly better than tabloid journalism.

                Note: Matt Ridley is a zoologist and a conservative businessman. He was the 2012 recipient of the Julian Simon award! Now if ever there was an award a scientist would like to eschew, that would be it! Julian Simon, is the guy who thought you could make copper from other metals…

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Javier,

            The the level of the earth changes over time as the earth moves due to geological changes. So this has very little to do with temperature.

            Some pretty basic geology here you seem to be missing.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Javier,

        It is clearly a cyclical feature that had been ignored by most scientists thinking that CO2 is so powerful in its warming that had overwhelmed all natural variability. Nature proves scientists wrong all the time.

        Not true of climate scientists, perhaps “most scientists” know less about climate science than the specialists in the field. I don’t really care what “most scientists” think about climate science.

    • sunnnv says:

      speaking of Lewandowsky, et. al.

      The latest from realclimate.org
      http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2015/11/hiatus-or-bye-atus/


      “In an article published in BAMS this year (Lewandowsky et al, 2015), we reported on the results of a blind expert test by professional economists. Blind tests are the methodological gold standard in many fields of enquiry, from pharmaceutical research to cognitive science. The economists in our sample were shown the global temperature data (NASA’s GISTEMP) but it was labeled as “world agricultural output” as shown in the figure below.

      The experts in our sample clearly disagreed with the notion of a pause or hiatus

      Those crafty, lying experimental psychologists – telling some economists the GISTEMP data was agricultural productivity, and the economists look at the data and don’t find any pause in growth … LOL

      • Javier says:

        Lewandowsky just shows his ignorance about what the hiatus or pause is and gets a shitty publication about the meaning of the word pause and why the hiatus is incorrectly named. Science cannot get any lower, and alarmism cannot get any stupider.

      • I did an experiment, plotted the climate model forecasts for 2007-2015, did the same with both actual surface and troposphere temperatures, and gave the graphs to 100 PhDs to identify which climate models seemed good enough to be useful. The average was 7 models out of 40. And those 7 models predict much lower warming (duh).👹👻🙊

  12. R Walter says:

    Those pilots in the Turkish air force are good at downing aircraft. A turkey shoot. In Turkey, all trespassers are shot.

    Sow the wind, reap a whirlwind.

  13. Vlas says:

    Oil consumption in developed countries will decline
    ———————————–
    Today, automobiles and trucks consume a large percentage of global oil production, and global economic growth, especially in developing regions, will significantly increase demand. Around the world, efforts to minimize the impact are accelerating, driven by both environmental concerns and the desire to reduce dependence on oil. Government regulations to improve efficiency and reduce harmful emissions are becoming increasingly stringent in all regions, including the developing world
    http://www.tulatech.com/the-opportunity.html

  14. R Walter says:

    I suppose it is going to be another one of those days where all the news is bad and getting worse. I don’t even want to buy a gallon of gas, oil is making everything worse, not better.

    It is too bad there are airplanes, missles, rockets, drones, things like that used to deliver ordnance that causes suffering and grief. It is too bad oil has become a tool to finance an army of aggressors willing to kill. Another war, human stupidity on display at its finest in its most desperate hour of dire need.

    All is fair in love and war, and we’re all finding out the hard way these days. The truth is now a casualty, happens every time.

    Humans might want to do some soul searching on at least one of those days on earth these days while they still have those days. The Old Adams are at it again, they never learn.

    There has got to be better things to do. It doesn’t have to be so evil, wicked, mean and nasty all of the blessed time, Good Lord.

    Might as well pray for peace, you just never know, a little prayer can’t hurt. Might just prevent a world of hurt, for the world is in a serious world of hurt. What is being done by humans now is causing a world of hurt, and it sure as hell ain’t prayer that they’re doing.

    Give it all a rest. At least for one day, today would be as good a day as any. Gather some gopher wood, something worth the while.

    • AllanH says:

      Good one R Walter. They Adams do learn, but the wrong things and surprisingly driven by the Eves.

      Speaking of giving it a rest. Solid bulk shipping is definitely taking a rest, almost hibernating.
      While we are generally concentrated upon land bulk shipping (trains,trucks), the other efficient means of bulk shipping has been taking a real beating lately. I am talking about those big floaty things called ships.

      The Baltic Dry index has been running quite low the last few years, which is the cost to move dry tonnage by ship. The low fuel prices lately have been a big help but increased regulation of the high sulfur bunker fuel means moving to low sulfur fuels at increasing costs. Reductions in iron ore shipping and other commodities due to oversupply has the ocean solid bulk freight industry on it’s knees.

      “9/6/2015 The dry bulk shipping market will remain in recession due to contracting demand for iron ore and coal, and any recovery is not expected until 2017, according to the Dry Bulk Forecaster report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry.

      Falling demand and oversupply has severely impacted commodity values, with iron ore and coal prices in virtual free fall.

      Less than 60 bulkers were contracted in the first seven months of 2015, a drop of 91% YoY, and down from more than 1,200 in full year 2013. Combined with the firm pace of deliveries, this has led to a 20% decline in the bulkcarrier orderbook since the start of 2015..”

      Iron ore ships from Australia to China for $8 a ton and from Brazil to China is around $21.

      Grain is at $32 to $35 a metric ton to ship to Japan or China from the US and $25 a ton from Brazil.

      Makes the problems railroads are having look like nothing more than a speed bump in comparison.

      Of course if you are thinking of shipping a Panamax size load, it’s a good time to do it.

      All of you have a great Thanksgiving and stay out of the way of those crazy Black Friday shoppers.

  15. dmg555 says:

    My point in posting the Richards article, was to focus some attention on the amount of debt that may be in the system with regards to US tight oil development. It doesn’t matter if Richards was wrong or right about past predictions. If he is right about the amount of Tight oil debt, 5 Trillion, and most of that debt was added under the assumption that oil would stay above $80, then all of that debt is in jeopardy. Arthur Berman recently penned an article pointing out that only 1% of the tight oil companies are profitable with $80+ oil. Ron asked in his last article, for someone to explain how oil and gas companies could be still drilling and developing resources, given the pricing structure that exists today; a good question by the way.

    The only reason I could come up with for this behavior (I’m open to alternative suggestions) is that those companies need all the money they can get their hands on, in order to meet their interest payments. They are strapped for cash. If the size of that problem is 5 times the subprime crisis, then that puts all the major banks and insurance companies that funded that debt in severe trouble. A one Trillion $ margin call (20% of the total) is the kind of problem that could only be fixed by the Fed. They would have to, again, buy back those bad loans and place them on their own balance sheet where they don’t have to be marked to market. That oncoming crisis, if oil prices don’t increase, could be immense, and could, with the need for QE4, put the dollar in jeopardy as well.

    • Heinrich Leopold says:

      dmg555,

      There is definitely a correlation between High Yield market and oil price. Interestingly, over the last decade this correlation inverted as the US is now in my view treated as oil producer. Previously, a low oil price has been a huge benefit for the US economy. It all comes down to the question if US shale producers can still be able to produce and finance at low prices. Currently decline rates are high and it is an open question in which direction this will work out. The best option in my view is QE4.

  16. Watcher says:

    Tidbits that don’t matter . . . sorta.

    Missile type. Likely sidewinder. Infrared seeker, all aspect.

    Aspect means the relative velocity vectors of missile firing aircraft and target. Likely pure tail aspect in this case in that the Russian plane had no reason to expect it, so the attacking aircraft could maneuver to be shooting up tailpipe and at very close range (less than 5 miles).

    Air to air missiles do not hit targets. They come close. One of the detonation criteria for the warhead is gimbal rate limit of the seeker. As the missile closes and errors accumulate, the seeker has to move angularly faster and faster to maintain lock. When the rate of angular motion gets high enough, that’s deemed close enough and boom. Very very rare for the missile to actually hit the target (meaning the gimbals are at low rates all the way to impact). The warhead then spreads . . . stuff that should penetrate the fuselage surrounding the hot engine and carve up the compressor turbine blades. What happens to severed blades spinning over ten thousand RPMs can’t be known, but nothing good. So in general the missile will essentially pass by the target with the warhead exploding as it passes.

    Turkey no doubt had ulterior motives. They have some significant insulation from reprisals in that NATO would probably like the opportunity for fiscal (military) stimulus expenditures. But more important, perhaps, is the SouthStream replacement that will wipe out Ukraine’s sashay westward via the natgas routing to Europe via Turkey/Greece/assorted Serbia types and then into Austria for distribution. That won’t happen without Turkey.

    The theory of Turkey’s PM’s family getting money from ISIS oil is as good as any, and better than most.

    (another snippet, that little peninsula of territory was disputed by Syria at . . .some time in the past)

    • Synapsid says:

      Watcher,

      By “South Stream replacement” do you mean what’s being called Turk Stream? That one has had a rocky career so far but at least it’s still alive (though Turkey just diminished its chances of being built, I should think.)

      South Stream was cancelled some time back, as I’m guessing you know. Just checking.

  17. Javier says:

    Stanford researchers uncover patterns in how scientists lie about their data

    Some people got pretty disturbed that I could call scientists that were clearly and purposefully miss-representing scientific data as liars, as if scientists were not capable of lying.

    It appears to me that most people are naturally born with a certain amount of faith that they must deposit in some faith bank. It used to be religion and priests were considered examples of honesty and rectitude. But humans can rarely rise to the challenge and priests are seeing in these days with suspicion as pedophiles in potency by many. Apparently many people have turned to science to deposit their faith believing that it is going to solve all our problems and that scientists are pristine examples of honesty and rectitude. Scientists are also not going to be up to the challenge. As priests and politicians they are just human beings.

    In truth there is the dirty little secret that lying in science has been on the rise. Some mild forms of lying, like wildly exaggerating conclusions or defending conclusions not supported by evidence are tolerated because of an understanding that these days scientists are forced by the system to sell their results as used cars sellers to survive the very competitive environment. Some scientists are very good at hyping and selling obvious and uninteresting results without anything more than an eyebrow raise from their peers.

    Thankfully science does not tolerate lying with the data. This does not mean that some scientists don’t lie or manipulate the data, it means that if they are caught there are consequences. Since scientists don’t want to get caught they try to hide their lying.

    A pair of Stanford researchers have cracked the writing patterns of scientists who attempt to pass along falsified data.

    The work, published in the Journal of Language and Social Psychology, could eventually help scientists identify falsified research before it is published.

    The results showed that fraudulent retracted papers scored significantly higher on the obfuscation index than papers retracted for other reasons.

    The researchers say that scientists might commit data fraud for a variety of reasons. Previous research points to a “publish or perish” mentality that may motivate researchers to manipulate their findings or fake studies altogether.

    http://news.stanford.edu/news/2015/november/fraud-science-papers-111615.html

    Scientists should not be idealized. We are just highly skilled operators of the most powerful tool in our arsenal to advance knowledge, the scientific method. Nothing less, nothing more.

    • Arceus says:

      At one time in our society, athletes, scientists, lawyers and journalists were put on a pedestal. That is no longer the case. People are more skeptical, more cynical. This widespread rejection of establishment thinking may eventually lead to a ban on certain types of thinking or expression. It is becoming more and more apparent everyday. This new fascism comes from the left which may surprise some (not others) and is highly intolerant of differing viewpoints. Active dissent is not allowed. This repression by force is nearly always a confession of the inability to win by open public debate. Interesting times.

      “They are utterly intolerant and are not prepared to allow any discussion. Every advocate (of the Left) ….is a potential dictator. What he plans is to deprive all other men of all their rights, and to establish his own and his friends’ unrestricted omnipotence. He refuses to convince his fellow citizens. He prefers to ‘liquidate’ them.”

      Ludwig von Mises

      • Nick G says:

        It sounds like you want to protect civil liberties.

        What do you think of the Patriot Act and the NSA?

        • Arceus says:

          Honestly, I have nothing of interest to say on those topics. Has there been a change I should know about (haven’t been keeping up)?

        • The NSA uses enormous resources to search for people like Sheik Osama bin Laden, who says that Allah told him the Great Satan would be defeated by the forces of mujahideen from Mecca.

          There. This blog will now be analyzed by a dozen NSA specialists, I put in the key words they look for. Now all we have to do is get them to warn the president about peak oil.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Arceus,

        Do you think all claims should be treated equally and given equal weight regardless of their scientific merit?

        There are some claims which are clearly false:

        The earth is the center of the universe and all celestial bodies revolve around it. Cigarette smoking is not harmful to your health. Each view has been defended vigorously in the past and today anyone attempting to do so would be ridiculed.

        Is that the oppressive left that is responsible, or does the right also take a dim view of false assertions.

        • No child alive has experienced global warming. That must be terribly painful for you, that is reality and your pet theory being so divergent. What if your theory is wrong and you are condemning people to poverty for no good reason? To quote John Lennon,”How do you sleep, nights?”

          • Nick G says:

            Well, that’s the thing: fossil fuels are expensive, polluting and risky, even without Climate Change!!

            It’s time to kick the oil & FF habit, even if we’d never ever heard of global warming.

          • ezrydermike says:

            every child alive has and is experiencing global warming.

          • ChiefEngineer says:

            Now David, if I had the same quality diplomatic skills as Ron. I would say something like- That is the most stupid ass comment I have read hear since Javier last posted. But of course I’m a rookie and wouldn’t say something like that.

            Why The French Ambassador Isn’t Worried About Climate Skeptics Derailing Paris Talks-

            “The conference is committed to raising $100 billion to help poorer countries in the Global South prepare for climate-related disasters; the White House hopes to donate $3 billion to that fund”

            “Congressional Republicans seem determined to ignore the challenge. The 2016 GOP presidential field is no better — most candidates maintain that there is still scientific debate about whether climate change is occurring, a claim that has been repeatedly debunked for years.”

            “Araud has spent significant time talking to American power players about the catastrophe that unchecked climate change could wreak on the U.S. and the global economy. What has he learned? Most were ready to deal with the problem — except Congress.”

            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/french-ambassador-climate-change_5655c96be4b072e9d1c1490a

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi David,

            I wonder how well the merchants of doubt sleep at night, the playbook is exactly the same as the cigarette manufacturers.

            I sleep fine, thanks for asking.

            • The Earth’s temperature peaked in 1998 and has fallen since. Doesn’t that make you even little bit curious? It has been 18 years now. What if you are condemning poor wretches to poverty simply because you don’t have the intellectual curiosity to find out why your theory has gone wrong, that is reality refusing to play along?

              • Doug Leighton says:

                “The Earth’s temperature peaked in 1998 and has fallen since.”

                What? According to NASA, Earth’s 10 warmest years in the instrumental record, with the exception of 1998, have occurred since 2000 (2014 topped the list of hottest years ever recorded). Why would you make a statement like that? http://climate.nasa.gov/blog/2224

                • clifman says:

                  Not only is 2014 the hottest year on record, but 2015 is certain to eclipse it, and by a wide margin. The ‘pause since ’98’ myth, which never held water, is dead and buried. http://www.resilience.org/stories/2015-11-25/hottest-five-year-period-on-record-is-2011-2015-says-wmo

                  • Javier says:

                    Too early to claim victory.

                    As 2015 warming is a consequence of a strong El Niño, we have to wait a couple of years to see what happens to global temperatures. El Niño could be followed by a cooling La Niña.

                    But somehow it seems strange to me that you are so eager that the pause ends and warming resumes, if that is the case.

                • Javier says:

                  Doug,

                  That depends on what temperature dataset one chooses. David Archibald is choosing RSS which shows a slight cooling, while you are choosing GISS which is the one showing most warming.

                  There is no a priori reason to choose one over the other, but it is interesting to notice that both showed very good agreement during the 80’s and 90’s but have come to diverge significantly since early 2000’s.

              • Hickory says:

                David,
                you are either ignorant of the facts, or you are purposefully lying. I suppose you go to the trump school of public relations. Trump off.

        • Arceus says:

          Dennis, your example of the dangers of cigarette smoking is relevant.

          The general public, including smokers, largely dismissed assertions that cigarettes were not especially harmful despite those studies being backed up by science and health experts. People were right to mistrust the information they were being given.

          There is now an equal amount of skepticism concerning the dangers of global warming. Are people not right to be skeptical? Is it not possible that we might just as well experience global cooling in 20 years as global warming? Do we put all our faith, childlike, into a man-made computerized model of the environment that is just as likely to be wrong as right given the number of assumptions and unknowns?

          Do you not share the common cynicism toward governments. Isn’t it possible these appointed bureaucrats have little to no concern for the environment – and are simply using their position and “the environment” as a pretense to create new rules and regulations that will affect some companies negatively while providing a windfall to other companies in the pursuit of political leverage and administrative power. Are their not solutions outside the common government paradigm, that allows for activist individuals, not governments, to hold polluters personally and financially accountable?

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Arceus,

            So you are a free market guy. Private police and military maybe?

            You are kidding right? No limits on pollution, let the free market take care of it. That has given excellent results in the past, I like my rivers to burn 🙂

          • oldfarmermac says:

            There are no solutions to pollution, on the grand scale, other than the coercive power of government, when it comes to stopping it.

            Anybody who thinks otherwise has simply failed to think the problem thru. He has no conception of the scope of it, or of the economic and political power of the polluters.

            You might as well have been a citizen in Stalin’s Russia and proposed that individuals could singly or collectively have held the Soviet government to account for its countless crimes. Ditto Nazi Germany.

            Frontal political assaults on industries that employ most of the people needed as soldiers (voters ) in the fight are not apt to work. Coal miners are not afraid of clean air, they are afraid of being unemployed.

            I am old enough to remember the smoking and cancer controversy personally, from the fifties on. I do not remember a single person who was technically literate in terms of health issues who did not take it seriously. I remember plenty of doctors and nurses who were smokers. Some of them quit, and some kept on smoking although they knew better. I still know some who smoke.

            All the people who denied the dangers of smoking, among my acquaintances back then, were ignorant of the evidence, which once gathered was as clear as the sun at high noon. They refused to CONSIDER the evidence, if they were well enough educated to understand it. The evidence in this case was statistical, with smokers known to fall victim to various health troubles such as heart attack at rates from double to a hundred or more times higher than for non smokers.

            If an individual dismisses forced climate change as a grave danger, I must conclude he is either ignorant of the science, or in denial for some reason. In this case however, one must have some basic science courses on his transcripts to evaluate the evidence for himself.

            The beautiful thing about science is that it is basically an open book, accessible to every body who has by luck or plan learned the basics.

            • Glenn Stehle says:

              °°°°OFM said:

              There are no solutions to pollution, on the grand scale, other than the coercive power of government, when it comes to stopping it.

              So OFM, in this dictatorship of virtue you advocate, it is the scientist kings who will be the arbiters of truth and virtue?

              Just for the record, this hasn’t worked out too well in the past.

              Scientists, it turns out, don’t seem to have any special immunities to the enticements of self-interest and ideological passions, no more than anyone else. Or, to put it in Cornel West’s words, W.E.B DuBois’ “talented tenth” of elite individuals who can supposedly rise above the fray “is a Victorian myth.”

              In The Origins of Totalitarianism Hannah Arendt addresses some of the pitfalls of putting too much faith in science and scientists.

              “Totalitarian propaganda,” she notes, “is characterized by its almost exclusive insistence on scientific profecy as distinguished from the more old-fashioned appeal to the past.” She then adds that,

              Totalitarian propaganda raised ideological scientificality and its technique of making statements in the form of predictions to a height of efficiency of method and absurdity of content because, demogically speaking, there is hardly a better way to avoid discussion than by releasing an argument from the control of the present and by saying that only the future can reveal its merits.

              °°°°OFM said:

              Anybody who thinks otherwise has simply failed to think the problem thru. He has no conception of the scope of it, or of the economic and political power of the polluters.

              But, like all socialist thinkers, you ignore “the most difficult political problem facing mankind: the centralization of power in highly technological societies.”

              “If it requires an army responsive to a central political committee to domesticate the corporate state,” Lawrence Goodwyn asks in The Populist Moment, “who, in the name of democratic values, would domesticate the party and the army?”

              “No socialist citizenry has been able to bring the post-revolutionary central party apparatus under democratic control,” he adds,”any more than any non-socialist popular movement has been able to make the corporate state responsive to mass aspirations for human dignity.”

              • oldfarmermac says:

                Hi Glenn,

                I have never thought of myself as a socialist, quite the contrary. I do however think of myself as a practical guy, and when the so called free markets either can’t work for fundamental reasons, or fail to work for particular reasons, then I support such socialist or government managed options as DO WORK.

                I have never heard of or read about any scheme that could be implemented to clean up the air and the water on the grand scale, and keep them clean, that would not depend on the power of government to initiate said scheme and enforce it.

                Perhaps you know of some ways to accomplish such tasks other than by way of the powers of LEVIATHAN?

                I am eager to hear about them if you do.

                Among the regulars here in this forum, I am one of the quickest to point out that scientists are humans, subject to human failings, and that various coalitions of people and institutions are ready willing and able and actively engaged in pushing cherry picked and false arguments to further their own various agendas.

                I am all for the smallest possible government that can get the job done, so long as all the CRITICAL jobs get done.

                You are not going to convince me , or anybody else with a working brain, that some critical jobs can be accomplished OTHER THAN by way of government, or that some critical problems can be understood OTHER THAN thru the study of science.

                I do not wish to write a book trying to make this point, but when you go to school, and learn to add subtract multiply divide, you are NEVER taught that these are invalid procedures, subject to failure, even in the course of earning a doctorate in math at an Ivy.

                The BASICS of all the real sciences, such as chemistry, physics, mathematics, geology, medicine, agriculture, biology, ( some are variants of larger classifications ) etc etc are known to the majority of all scientifically literate people, and to the vast majority of all real scientists.

                ANY technically literate person for example knows that matter and energy are never created or destroyed in industrial processes or chemistry experiments. Any literate person knows that you cannot put on fat unless you consume more calories than you burn.

                Now as you move up the ladder into more complicated questions, then you need more and more expertise to understand and judge a question for yourself. It is PERFECTLY obvious to any professionally literate farmer for instance that farming on the grand scale, moving food from remote areas to far away cities, requires the replenishment of soil nutrients by artificial means, BECAUSE said nutrients are REMOVED from the farm along with the crop, but NOT RETURNED.

                A person with a freshman level of understanding of chemistry and biology can understand this argument instantly- once it is pointed out to him.

                NOW – since SCIENCE IS AN OPEN BOOK- MOST scientists, as a general rule, DO NOT have any personal stake in any particular agenda that might be advanced by scientists in some other field.

                Climate scientists may indeed pander and exaggerate and go along in order to get along, BUT the physicists, most of them NOT being in climate work, work are out there, and more than ready, actually EAGER, to point out bullshit arguments.

                My biology professors back when I was an ag undergrad were FURIOUS about ag professors advocating the use of antibiotics in animal feed.

                Virtually every scientist alive condemns every pie in the sky free energy scheme he hears about.

                This is what I mean when I say science is an open book, accessible to anybody who cares to learn the basics.

                Is there a danger that scientists will set themselves up as a priesthood? I am willing to go so far as to say this is a REMOTE possibility. DAMNED remote.

                Priests maintain their power by forbidding their followers to question doctrine.

                The most fundamental doctrine of all, in science is to question authority, and verify claims, independently.

                Scientists themselves are in my estimation our best guarantee that science will never be used to set up a priesthood intended to control us.

                But we have created a world wherein we can only continue to survive by listening to what scientists tell us.

                If we ignore what biologists, and medical scientists, tell us about clean water, and quit maintaining water treatment plants, and start drinking river water, untreated, we will NOT have an OVER population problem after a few months.

                Humanity will never be safe from itself.

                I cannot think of any particular class of people, personally, who are MORE likely to keep us straight and tell us the truth, than the scientific community, taken as a WHOLE.

                We MUST choose some courses of action, and since most of us are woefully ill educated, we collectively must take the advice of SOMEBODY in choosing.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  “Houston, we have a problem.”

                  And the problem is that most people in the United States just aren’t buying what the climate scientists are selling. (And if you don’t believe it, just look at the series of tracking polls I have attached below. Only 36% believe that global warming “will pose a serious threat to you or your way of life during your lifetime.”)

                  It seems to me the options boil down to two:

                  1) Ignore majority public opinion and sentiment, and promulgate government policy based on what the scientists believe, or

                  2) Honor majority public opinion and sentiment, and promulgate government policy based on what the people believe.

                  So which one is it, OFM?

                  I don’t know how to make it simpler than that.

                  • oldfarmermac says:

                    “So which one is it, OFM?”

                    That remains to be seen.

                    Most people these days do understand that the earth is round, and that it orbits the sun, etc and most people with some education beyond grammar school believe in evolution.

                    For now, the man on the street here in the USA is not very much concerned about forced climate change, but the intellectual leaders of the country ARE concerned.

                    As you pose the question, we are looking at something akin to a long drawn out athletic contest, such as the professional baseball season , which lasts from spring training until the World Series.

                    This one is going to take YEARS to play out, and it has already been in play for years.

                    Either side might win.

                    The “average” man on the street nowadays UNDERSTANDS that smoking is a very dangerous habit. Fifty years ago this was not true.

                    We collectively get to be a little better informed as time passes, we all believe in germ theory these days, etc.

                    The medical establishment forced the tobacco issue, successfully, beginning before the public took it seriously. Twenty years after the Surgeon Generals report came out, I forget which year, I was still being told in no uncertain terms by many people – who took exception to my refusal to support the tobacco industry – that I was no better than a pinko commie socialist. I was hauled before some state level supervisors for refusing to teach a unit on tobacco production without also mentioning the health issue. I would have been fired, had I stood my ground another year, but I was ready to quit anyway, and went down to the local nuke for a four hundred percent raise.

                    Personally I believe that the climate science community is on bedrock solid ground in predicting substantial forced warming and associated changes, and I personally have enough science courses on my transcripts to be qualified to have an opinion.

                    “Which it will be”, in terms of public policy, will be determined by the public, in the last analysis.

                    If the current leftish /liberalish/ democratic coalition maintains power, it will go their way.

                    If they get their way, and there is a big enough backlash, or if they lose the current fight, symbolized by the PARIS summit, it will go the other way.

                    I have pointed out in this forum within the last couple of days that the leftish liberalish political wing in this country is in my own opinion basically responsible for the R party mopping the floors of Washington using them as the mop, and taking over state governments, etc, IN VERY LARGE PART because the left/ socially liberal element OVERREACHED in forcing unwanted social change on social conservatives.

                    They won in court- but they sure as hell lost control of the congress as ONE result, and control of numerous state governments.

                    With so many R type politicians in power, and maybe a hard core R type in the White House after the next election, who knows ?

                    The fortunes of men and mice and whole civilizations are often determined by chance events.

                    Abraham Lincoln referred to Harriet Beecher Stowe as ” the woman who started the war”. If Hitler had been killed as an enlisted man fighting in the trenches in WWI, there would never have been a Nazi Germany.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  ..

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  °°

                • aws. says:

                  Top Democratic pollsters agree: climate change is a winning issue for Democrats

                  Updated by David Roberts, Vox.com, on November 23, 2015

                  Three things Americans agree on when it comes to climate change and energy

                  These are the three main elements of consensus, quoting directly from the memo:

                  1. A large majority of Americans consider climate change to be a serious problem and want action to be taken now to address it.

                  2. There is broad support for the EPA’s Clean Power Plan to limit carbon pollution from electric power plants and require greater use of clean energy sources.

                  3. There is avid support for increasing our use of clean, renewable energy sources, and voters expect the shift to these cleaner sources will lead to more jobs and lower electricity costs over the long term.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    So aws, you find polling data too ambiguous?

                    Well maybe so. But consumer behavior is not.

                    When it comes to voting with their feet and their pocketbooks, Americans are increasingly tuning climate scientists out.

                    Hybrid, EV sales tumble in 2015

                    Sales of hybrid and electric vehicles fell sharply in the first half of 2015….

                    This is shaping up to be the toughest year for electrically powered vehicles since General Motors Co. and Nissan Motor Co. launched mass-market advanced vehicles in 2010.
                    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/2015/07/01/hybrid-ev-sales-tumble/29565265/

                    Flagging interest for fuel-sippers

                    “Dealer contacts noted increased sales of larger vehicles such as trucks and SUVs, and slower sales for small and hybrid cars,” the bank said….

                    The latest figures from the Electric Drive Transportation Association, a trade group that advocates electric, electric-hybrid and fuel-cell car technology and infrastructure, reveal a diminished share of the car market.

                    Cars that either partially or entirely use electricity to function make up slightly more than 3 percent of the U.S. auto market, the lowest share since 2011 and a sharp contraction from 3.5 percent last year, according to EDTA….

                    Americans are also driving more….

                    The Federal Highway Administration, housed within the Department of Transportation, said in mid-August that Americans drove more in the first half of the year than ever before in the same time period. U.S. drivers covered 1.54 trillion miles in their cars from January through June, besting the previous record of 1.5 trillion miles set in June 2007.

                    “This is more than double the amount driven during the same period in 1981, continuing a trend of America’s driving mileage doubling nearly every generation,” FHWA said.

                    http://www.eenews.net/stories/1060024321

                    Hybrid and Electric Vehicles Struggle to Maintain Owner Loyalty

                    Car buyers are trading in hybrid and electric cars for SUVs at a higher rate than ever before, according to a new analysis from car-buying platform Edmunds.com….

                    According to Edmunds.com, about 22 percent of people who have traded in their hybrids and EVs in 2015 bought a new SUV. The number represents a sharp increase from 18.8 percent last year, and it is nearly double the rate of 11.9 percent just three years ago. Overall, only 45 percent of this year’s hybrid and EV trade-ins have gone toward the purchase of another alternative fuel vehicle, down from just over 60 percent in 2012. Never before have loyalty rates for alt-fuel vehicles fallen below 50 percent.

                    “For better or worse, it looks like many hybrid and EV owners are driven more by financial motives rather than a responsibility to the environment,” says Edmunds.com Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell. “Three years ago, when gas was at near-record highs, it was a lot easier to rationalize the price premiums on alternative fuel vehicles. But with today’s gas prices as low as they are, the math just doesn’t make a very compelling case.”

                    http://www.edmunds.com/about/press/hybrid-and-electric-vehicles-struggle-to-maintain-owner-loyalty-reports-edmundscom.html

                    Light truck and SUV sales have increased over the past two years to where they now make up 60% of new car sales.
                    http://online.wsj.com/mdc/public/page/2_3022-autosales.html

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    When it comes to light truck and SUV buyers, studies reveal that less than 2.4% consider fuel economy to be at the top of their list of priorities.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Glenn, this again seems to be straight out of the book/course of Peak Oil 101: Namely, that the uneconomy would hit (exponentially-increasing?) resource constrains and then slowly swirl down the can along with prospects and financing for things like EV’s and PV’s– that vanishing horizon that, if recalled, Nicole Foss spoke about; and that ‘we should have started this transition 30 years ago’ that others have said.

                    Much of the effects seem counterintuitive, but then, greed or debt is antithetical to depletion or contraction.

                    Anyway, and coincidentally, I just heard that Nissan is coming out with a new EV called the Vanishing Horizon. It’s supposed to be fast and good at acceleration. I’m surprised that Nick G hasn’t mentioned anything about it.

                    Twilights

                  • Javier says:

                    Gosh Glenn,

                    That speaks volumes about the transition away from fossil fuels. Not good news to anybody concerned about an approaching Peak Oil.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    And aws,

                    I got a good laugh out of that article about “Top Democratic pollsters agree.”

                    It reminded me of this billboard from the Chick-fil-A “Eat More Chicken!” advertising campaign.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    ..

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Javier,

                    Could it be a classic tale of the little boy who cried “Wolf!” too many times?

                    As Samuel J. Best and Benajamin Radcliff point out in Polling America:

                    Through the 1970s, a time leading up to and following the second OPEC oil shock, approximately 40 percent of respondents consistently indicated their belief that the energy situation was very serious. By the ealry fall of 1990, this had dropped to 28 percent, but there was another rise to about 40 percent in 1991. It was during this time frame that the United States became embroiled in the first Persian Gulf War. By early 2001, the percentage of Gallup poll respondents indicating their belief that the energy situation was very serious had again fallen to about 30 percent, only to rise to nearly 60 percent in mid-year, about the time that California was experiencing extreme electricity shortages. From early 2002 through early 2004 (a period closely following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in New York and Washington), the number again stood at less than 30 percent, although the corresponding percentage of respondents indicating their belief that the energy situation is fairly serious hovered around 60 percent (presumably in response to the war in Afghanistand and Iraq). Thus, public opinion about the severity of the energy situation has historically moved in tandem with world events.

                    But, as Best and Radcliff also point out, consumer behavior (what polsters call “willingness to pay” or WTP, has been much more consistent that polling data:

                    Majorities of residential customers say they are willing to voluntarily pay at least a modest amount more per month on their electric bills for power from renewable sources. WTP follows a predictable pattern with an average majority of 70 percent stating they are willing to pay an increment of $5 per month for electicity from renewable sources….

                    Although majorities indicate they are willing to pay an increment on their utility bills for renewable sources, only a small percentage of customers actually pays an increment when offered the choice to do so by their utility company. In 2003 the customer participation rates in the top 10 utility green-pricing programs ranged from 3.9 to 11.1 percent.

                    Why the huge difference between what people say they will do and what they actually do, or what is known as “the energy paradox”? NADA offers these suggestions:

                    [T]he National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found that U.S auto buyers will be willing to pay $6,000 per vehicle for standards achieving a combined 49.6 mpg in MY 2025….

                    In response to a request from the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), Defour Group LLC has prepared this assessment….

                    The discrepancy between the agencies’ projections and the levels that auto buyers freely choose and can be expected to choose is found to be more than adequately explained by misspecification of the agencies’ mathematical/engineering model….

                    Advocates of higher fuel economy standards often point to surveys indicating popular support for increases in the mandate. For example, a Consumer Reports survey “found” that 93 percent of those surveyed would be willing to pay for a standard of 55 mpg or more.

                    But as Jeremy Anwyl, CEO of Edmunds.com, points out, there are at least three reasons why this estimate is biased dramatically upward:

                    1) [S]uch surveys do not ask consumers to “make tradeoffs” between fuel economy and other attributes that are much more important to them, as shown in Figure 1.

                    2) What Anwyl calls “social desirability bias” or the tendency of respondents to provide answers that will be “socially acceptable” – that will give the answers the respondent thinks will please the pollster and “help the environment.”

                    3) The way in which questions are worded often biases respondents towards answers the pollster wants to see… [T]he surveys seldom confront respondents with the true costs of the standards: they are often left to assume “Detroit” or “Tokyo” will foot the bill or, as the agencies erroneously assume, the full costs of the standards will not be passed on to the customer.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Glenn,

                    I think we all agree that prices matter. If gas prices drop sharply, no one will be surprised if fuel efficiency becomes a lower priority in the minds of car buyers.

                    Now, we know that the real price of oil is much higher than the pump price, due to pollution, security costs, etc.

                    Right?

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      Hi Javier,

      I agree the science should be judged on its merits. This does not mean that everything that is published is correct, but it seems that some people would insinuate that everything published by climate scientists is “alarmism” or at least “untrue”.

      • Javier says:

        Hi Dennis,

        Those people would be wrong. Most scientists are doing an honest important job as they have always done, independently of current climate theory being right or wrong.

        The people that believe most climate scientists are engaged in a conspiracy to hide the truth are clearly not usual readers of scientific literature. This is absurd.

        Yet there is a clear group of scientists that are taking their results and engaging in alarmist extrapolations and reaching conclusions unsupported by the data. They are being given an extraordinary share of attention, while moderate scientists get none, creating an information bias to the general public. No doubt some of these scientists are simply voicing their personal convictions and worries but in doing so they are abusing science, because they should do so as citizens, not scientists, as science is not saying what they say. Also there is no doubt that some of those scientists are also doing it because of personal gain even if they disguise it as moral imperative. There is a lot more money in climate science and that money goes preferentially to those showing an anthropogenic cause because of a double effect:
        -They get to publish more and better because it is the current scientific fashion.
        -They are looked more favorably by funding agencies that are more responsive to political climate.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Javier,

          There are scientists that are concerned that climate change may be a big problem.
          In the political realm they are battling against the distortions by scientists (who are mostly not experts in the field of climate science) who claim that we should not worry about climate change. The distortions in most cases are by a small number of people on both sides of the debate.

          The subject is complex and there are areas of uncertainty. That is the reason it is better to play it safe. In addition fossil fuel output will peak, so for two reasons it makes sense to transition to other forms of energy.

          • Nick G says:

            Three reasons: the 3rd is that fossil fuels have large external costs: conventional pollution (mercury, NOX, sulfur, etc., etc.,) and security of supply (oil wars, terrorism, Homeland security, etc).

            Even without peak concerns or climate change, we’d have plenty of reason to kick the FF habit.

            With all three reasons, it should be overwhelmingly convincing to all.

    • Heinrich Leopold says:
      • Javier says:

        Hi Heinrich,

        Well, that is the basic problem faced by climate science at present. The hypothetic climate model is facing increased pressure from mounting evidence that contradicts it. Most scientists are still adhering to the model because abandoning it without another model that better explains the evidence is unthinkable.

        Since the scientific debate has become political and has raised to public debate, the stakes have raised so much that there is a lot of pressure to close ranks to defend the climate model. This has the negative effect that very little effort is being put into developing alternative models as people working on it are seen by scientific establishment as giving arguments to the anti-science group of the public debate.

        As the current climate model is forced to accommodate more and more contradictory evidence, it is starting to drift out of the realm of science as it becomes unfalsifiable, because it will fit any evidence and will adjust to any failed prediction.

        It is a sad situation indeed. There is the possibility that one day the climate change will turn to a significant cooling, exposing the nakedness of the emperor to all to watch, and the damage will be profound. The other possibility is that CO2 emissions do fall due to peak oil or cuts before that happens, and the model will continue to be alive and slowly eroding in the background unnoticed by most until science finally settles the issue. Or we collapse and it all becomes irrelevant to the survivors, back to adapt to climate changes the best they can.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          The hypothetic climate model is facing increased pressure from mounting evidence that contradicts it.

          That statement is pure unmitigated Yak Dung!

          LETTER • OPEN ACCESS • IOPSELECT
          Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the scientific literature

          http://goo.gl/vLhpbc

          Among self-rated papers expressing a position on AGW, 97.2% endorsed the consensus. For both abstract ratings and authors’ self-ratings, the percentage of endorsements among papers expressing a position on AGW marginally increased over time. Our analysis indicates that the number of papers rejecting the consensus on AGW is a vanishingly small proportion of the published research.

          • Javier says:

            Fred,

            We have already talked about that paper. If you want to know scientist opinion you poll scientists. If you get a group of amateur global warming activists from an alarmist forum without relevant degrees to read articles’ abstracts and subjectively rate them, you produce rubbish.

            A more recent article that actually polled scientists and also includes John Cook between authors clearly shows that 66% of scientists believe GHG’s account for >50% of recent warming, and only 17% agree with IPCC in that they account for >100% of recent warming.

            http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es501998e

            • Fred Magyar says:

              Just curious, why would it be necessary to be a climate scientist in order to be able to quantify the consensus on anthropogenic global warming or any other area of scientific consensus in the scientific literature?

              Does one have to be an evolutionary biologist in order to quantify the consensus among biologists that evolution is a fact?! Of course not! One only needs to be competent in analyzing data which in this case happens to the be the responses of climate scientists to a poll!

              If you want to know scientist opinion you poll scientists.

              Which is precisely what they did!

              Endorsement percentages from self-ratings
              We emailed 8547 authors an invitation to rate their own papers and received 1200 responses (a 14% response rate). After excluding papers that were not peer-reviewed, not climate-related or had no abstract, 2142 papers received self-ratings from 1189 authors. The self-rated levels of endorsement are shown in table 4. Among self-rated papers that stated a position on AGW, 97.2% endorsed the consensus. Among self-rated papers not expressing a position on AGW in the abstract, 53.8% were self-rated as endorsing the consensus. Among respondents who authored a paper expressing a view on AGW, 96.4% endorsed the consensus.

              You either did not want to read the paper or just decided that the conclusion was incompatible with your deeply held beliefs.

              • Javier says:

                Pardon me, Fred. It looks like I read it better than you did:
                “2. Methodology

                This letter was conceived as a ‘citizen science’ project by volunteers contributing to the Skeptical Science website (www.skepticalscience.com). In March 2012, we searched the ISI Web of Science for papers published from 1991–2011 using topic searches for ‘global warming’ or ‘global climate change’. Article type was restricted to ‘article’…

                We classified each abstract according to the type of research (category) and degree of endorsement. Written criteria were provided to raters for category (table 1) and level of endorsement of AGW (table 2).”

                In case you still don’t understand what they did, they enlisted volunteers (no scientific degree required at all) from an alarmist website, in other words already pre-biased. They provided instructions and let them loose against scientific literature, for many for the first time in their lives. They just read the abstracts where a minimum of information is contained. During the process instead of acting independently, they were communicating within the website private forum reaching a consensus on some of the articles, contaminating the procedure.

                Had they summited the article to a social sciences journal with experience in survey research they would have instantly trashed it. So they sent it to an environmental journal where they have never seen a survey research before. The reviewers probably didn’t have any experience in survey methodology.

                Now that you know, you can still believe the finding because it fits your creed. But anybody with an ounce of independent thought will reach the conclusion that that article does not demonstrate what it says it demonstrates and will stop quoting it.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  In case you still don’t understand what they did, they enlisted volunteers (no scientific degree required at all) from an alarmist website, in other words already pre-biased. They provided instructions and let them loose against scientific literature, for many for the first time in their lives. They just read the abstracts where a minimum of information is contained.

                  Really?! Then what part of this do you not understand?

                  We emailed 8547 authors an invitation to rate their own papers and received 1200 responses (a 14% response rate). After excluding papers that were not peer-reviewed, not climate-related or had no abstract, 2142 papers received self-ratings from 1189 authors. The self-rated levels of endorsement are shown in table 4. Among self-rated papers that stated a position on AGW, 97.2% endorsed the consensus. Among self-rated papers not expressing a position on AGW in the abstract, 53.8% were self-rated as endorsing the consensus. Among respondents who authored a paper expressing a view on AGW, 96.4% endorsed the consensus.

                  So they directly asked 1200 climate scientists to self rate their own positions with regards whether or not they endorsed the consensus and 96% of those scientists polled who had specifically authored a paper expresing a view on AGW did.

                  • Javier says:

                    It was not anonymous. They were rating their own paper with their own name. One of the most sacred principles of polling was violated.

                    I see you are a convert. Doesn’t matter how faulty a research is, if it supports your beliefs then is good to you.

                    That is called CONFIRMATION BIAS
                    You are suffering a bad case.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    It was not anonymous.

                    And when and where exactly did I say it was anonymous?!

                    That is called CONFIRMATION BIAS
                    You are suffering a bad case.

                    Says the pot while calling the kettle black!

                  • Javier says:

                    Fred,

                    That article is worthless. It is flawed in so many ways as being shameful.

                    You did not know, but now you do, yet somehow you still support its conclusions as if it was possible to reach the right result with the wrong method. Even if the conclusion was right, that article does not demonstrate it.

                    By insisting in the validity of its conclusions when it has been demonstrated that the article is flawed, you show your confirmation bias, not me.

                    I have shown another article that supports the conclusion that the majority of the climate scientists believe that GHGs are responsible for the majority of the recent warming. I may not like the results but the article is correct and therefore I accept its conclusions. That is the difference between showing confirmation bias or not.

                    Curiously John Cook is an author in both articles so in one he is defending one result and in the other he is defending a different result. I suppose that not being a scientist makes it easy to incur in such contradictions.

                  • Ok. So we are in agreement. Cook et al is trash. There.

        • Heinrich Leopold says:

          Javier,

          Thanks for your comments. There is some evidence ( the correlation between temperature and CO2 concentration) yet there is also some contradiction as the concentration of CO2 is simply too small to have a material greenhouse effect. In my view it is required to see it from a different angle: Climate change is basically a function of sun activity. If sun activity is high, the CO2 level rises as solubility of CO2 in oceans sinks. This would also explain that the CO2 level increased and decreased manifold, even before the advent of humans.

          • Javier says:

            Heinrich,

            I am afraid we disagree in some details. I have no problem with CO2 physics. CO2 has increased enormously in the atmosphere and we are the ones putting it up there. That CO2 produces a warming effect because it elevates the outgoing longwave radiation layer that emits from a colder altitude.

            The physics is correct, what it is incorrect is the climate model. Somehow most of that warming is not making it to the surface because the climate system, probably clouds and water, is getting rid of most of it. Negative feedbacks that are not correctly accounted for are acting before the surface warms, and so the observed warming is only partially due to the increase in CO2.

            I also think that the most reasonable explanation is that the long term variability in Sun activity coupled to a delayed ocean contribution must be responsible for most of the warming.

            It is going to be easy to demonstrate as solar activity is predicted to be lower than average until 2050 and CO2 levels are not predicted to reduce in hundreds or even thousands of years. Although I wouldn’t put much faith on IPCC predictions, they never come to pass.

            • oldfarmermac says:

              Hi Javier,

              I tend to agree with you to some extent when it comes to the POLITICS involved in global warming, but otoh, I am quite cynical when it comes to politics in any case.

              Now as far as the scientists getting the physics right, but the models wrong, I agree about the physics. I am currently inclined to believe that the planet IS gaining heat energy at about the rate the models predict, but that much more of it ( most of it actually) is winding up in sea water than expected.

              So- atmospheric warming is happening, but at a rate be slower than predicted.Personally I expect atmospheric warming to accelerate within the easily foreseeable future as the seas warm up a bit, and global ice and snow cover decline a bit, from year to year.

              Here is a quote from quora by a respected scientist, regarding warming, which tends to support your pov , to some extent at least.

              xxxxx

              Why do people say “the science is settled” when it comes to climate change? Isn’t the point of science that nothing is “settled?”
              Richard Muller
              Richard Muller, Prof. Physics UC Berkeley, author “Physics for Future Presidents”
              5.2k Views • Richard is a Most Viewed Writer in Science with 13 endorsements.
              When people say that the science is settled, that is a political statement. It isn’t true. Let me explain.

              I believe that global warming is real and caused by humans. My reasoning is based on research done by my own research organization, Berkeley Earth. This research confirmed prior results that had been published by government groups.

              However, much that is said about “climate change”,other than warming, is not based on science. We do not have clear evidence that hurricanes are growing more powerful, or less. We do not have compelling evidence that tornadoes are growing stronger, or weaker. This science is not settled. There is no compelling evidence that variability of climate is increasing. (I’ve looked at the data myself and see no evidence for that.) Were hurricanes Katrina and Sandy attributable to global warming? Not if you use as your standard the traditional level of scientific objectivity.

              So, the fact is, I believe that global warming is real, caused by humans, but so far fairly small (1.5 C in the last 260 years; see our data at
              berkeleyearth.org
              Home – Berkeley Earth). But I believe that most of what is claimed about “climate change” is speculative, and not based on solid science. That’s why I said that the statement that “the science of climate change is settled” is not true.

              xxxx

              Muller is saying the basic science is sound, but that the media in general are guilty of sensationalism and exaggeration in presenting the work of the climate science community. I agree to substantial extent.

              I am as sure as sure can be that forced climate change is real, and that the results of it are going to be simply awful for humanity and the rest of the biosphere.

              I am not so sure the timetables worked up by the modelers are in the ball park, or that we are going to continue to burn fossil fuels at the rates projected, or that the world population will ever reach the levels projected in creating the models, etc.

              • Javier says:

                Hi Oldfarmermac,

                Yours is a very sensible opinion and I believe Prof. Muller is quite right. We will have to work out to separate the anthropogenic contribution from the natural contribution to global warming, but the problem is that IPCC entrenchment and political division have made very difficult to research a moderate climate scenario.

                But you are not giving this planet enough credit. It has been able to maintain its temperatures within the narrow margin compatible with life for thousands of millions of years, while suffering from the most tremendous pushes, from huge meteorites to millions of years of ice ages, huge vulcanism that created volcanic winters and acidified the oceans and a constant increase in solar output. That homeostatic capability is due to the water of the oceans. We are just putting less than one twentieth of the CO2 that the atmosphere had in the past. It is small peanuts for the planet. It has mechanisms to get rid of that extra heat without sweating. Many of the things that we study but don’t understand yet, like clouds and ENSO, are part of those mechanisms and we don’t know how.

                A big part of those 1.5°C of the last 260 years comes from the fact that the planet was too cold during the LIA for the current state of the Milankovitch cycles, so it is part of a natural warming. We are overestimating our capacity to change the climate of the Earth. One of these days the planet will decide to start cooling and if we are still alive you will see that your fears were unfounded. In the meantime we might as well enjoy the warm weather. We are having an unusually warm November in Southern Europe, courtesy of El Niño. I am not worried. I believe is fantastic. Next year could be colder, nobody knows.

              • Well, in a while we should know. If heat goes into sea water then sea level rises. So the question is whether the heat went into sea water during the hiatus.

                • Javier says:

                  Fernando,

                  It might not be that easy. Any instrument that shows data contrary to current dogma is immediately discounted.

                  When they put the Argo buoy system in place several of the buoys were reporting cooling. Since that was contrary to expectations it was assumed that those buoys were malfunctioning and data from those buoys was simply removed.

                  When tide gauges report decrease in sea levels, it is assumed that subsidence of the tide gauge location is being higher than sea level rise, and a correction is introduced.

                  When some meteorological stations report cooling, they are assumed to be reporting spurious weather, so homogenization and infilling takes care of that.

                  So even if a shift in climate takes place, we are so imbedded in current dogma as to ignore it.

                  In fact Central England Temperature record, the longest running instrumental record on Earth, has been on a cooling trend since about 2004, despite some very warm years. Everybody in climate science is dismissing this evidence on account of being regional, despite CET showing good agreement on the long term with Northern hemisphere land temperature averages.

                  Thankfully the people at CET are good scientists, so they are not introducing corrections so the data meets expectations of what should be happening.

                  So even if the climate changes or has changed in the wrong direction, we are going to ignore it for quite some time. We are pretty good at ignoring evidence that contradicts our beliefs.

                  • oldfarmermac says:

                    Javier,

                    You are getting way out on a limb and sawing it off yourself.

                    I don’t have the link stored on this computer, but Muller has a presentation, outlining the fact that he once doubted the data for the very reasons you listed in your four thirty five am , and investigated the question thoroughly, spending quite a lot of time and manpower on it.

                    The results convinced him that even using the socalled bad data, including it , the indicated trends are all still there, and at about the same level.

                    He was a public doubter himself before he undertook this investigation of the data, EXPECTING to find it flawed. He publicly changed his mind.

                    I will try to find the link again, it ought not be too hard.

            • sunnnv says:

              Javier says: “Although I wouldn’t put much faith on IPCC predictions, they never come to pass.”

              If you go to the First Assessment Report (FAR) of 1990 summary, you see the IPCC said:

              “1.0.3 Based on current model results, we predict:
              • An average rate of increase of global mean
              temperature during the next century of about 0.3°C per
              decade (with an uncertainty range of 0.2—0.5°C per
              decade) assuming the IPCC Scenario A (Business-as-
              Usual) emissions of greenhouse gases; this is a more
              rapid increase than seen over the past 10,000 years.
              This will result in a likely increase in the global mean temperature of about 1°C above the present value by
              2025 (about 2°C above that in the pre-industrial
              period), and 3°C above today’s value before the end of
              the next century (about 4°C above pre-industrial). The
              rise will not be steady because of other factors.”

              https://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/1992%20IPCC%20Supplement/IPCC_1990_and_1992_Assessments/English/ipcc_90_92_assessments_far_overview.pdf

              Have you looked at temperatures?
              Berkeley Earth is a good place…
              So how is that prediction wrong?
              Looks like they’re within the .2 C per decade uncertainty range,
              and “unsteady” (and delayed due to ocean heat sink, etc.) rise.
              You lost credibility here.

              I don’t think you’re being very scientific, hand wringing about possible fraud, etc.
              I think you’re JAQing off
              http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Just_asking_questions

              Now that http://www.realclimate.org has their domain renewal issue sorted out, please take the climate rant over there.

              • Javier says:

                sunnnv,

                Thank you for such a beautiful example of IPCC failed prediction.

                1. 0.3°C per decade since 1990. Uncertainty 0.2-0.5°C
                According to HadCRUT4 it has been 0.38/2.5 = 0.152°C per decade. Just half and outside the uncertainty range.
                According to RSS it has been 0.3/2.5 = 0.12°C per decade. Less than half and outside the uncertainty range.

                2. 1°C by 2025
                At just one decade from 2025 it would have to raise by over 0.6°C. This is four times the observed trend. It just ain’t gonna happen.

                This is a clear example that IPCC scenarios are wild exaggerations. By 2007 they had reduced the predicted trend to 0.2°C per decade. By 2013 given that they had failed again they stopped predicting warming trends.

                • Jef says:

                  Jav – All predictions fail.

                  Malthaus – Fail
                  Hubbert – Fail
                  Limits to Growth – Fail
                  Climate Change – Fail

                  Funny thing is all are based on hard cold facts and are not going to go away because you point out a discrepancy.

                  Javier – Real Fail

                  • oldfarmermac says:

                    I wish to make it clear that I believe forced warming is real, and a real threat. It may not turn out as bad or as soon as current models predict, but OTOH it could be WORSE.

                    Averages are one thing. Local extremes and changes in rainfall, snow cover etc are something entirely different, and a couple of degrees on AVERAGE might turn out to mean TEN DEGREES , sometimes , or twice as much, or half as much rain, in some places- places where tens and hundreds of millions of people live, with most or all of them already at the edge of sustainability in terms of food and water supplies etc.

                    My personal seat of the pants opinion, based on years of extensive reading, and my own professional knowledge, is that any significant amount of warming is going to be VERY BAD for humanity as a whole.

                    Now if it weren’t for human beings engaging themselves in so many desperate undertakings to get rich, or simply stay alive, a few degrees of warming would not really matter much to the natural world. The biosphere would take it in stride , and adjust, with minimal species losses etc.

                    But MEN are going to wipe out entire ecosystems, continent wide, in attempting to survive. Guns are now common enough in Africa for instance for any animal big enough to justify a couple of rounds of ammo as food to be shot. If the people don’t destroy the last refuges by clearing the land, they will still wipe out the larger animals by hunting them for food. Ditto many species of fish etc.

                    Given undesirable positive feed back effects, it is impossible to know how bad the final impacts will be – but they will be VERY bad indeed.

                    Wiping out one species of fish or bird might result in ten more going extinct, or another species running wild- and that species might be a beetle that eats rice, etc.

                  • Javier says:

                    Most people assume that sooner or later warming is going to continue and continue. However the hard cold fact of climate change is that nothing contradicts the notion that long climate cycles continue.

                    The planet has started to move from an interglacial towards a glacial period, that is why the LIA took place. The Holocene period between 5500 yr BP and the end of LIA is called Neoglacial. The last millennium is the coldest millennium of the Holocene. The natural path points towards cooling, not warming. Sooner or later the planet will start cooling and the safest prediction of all is that the Holocene will have an end and will be followed by another glacial period.

                    Whoever thinks Milankovitch cycles-induced glacial-interglacial periodicity has come to an end is delusional. Present warming is a temporal anomaly. We simply do not know how long it will last.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Javier, that would seem to make sense that anthropogenic climate change (ACC) would occur within a superset of geologic climate change (GCC), but that doesn’t make ACC any less of a concern does it?

                    Still though, my question might be, then, is if ACC might somehow become GCC via runaway effects that tip some balances.

                    What do you think?

                    I mean, remember that species that fundamentally ‘forever’ changed the composition of the atmosphere? Could we be another of those? And what with our nutcase lifestyle, general toxins and nuclear wastes’ radiation all under the atmosphere and nice and cozy like a blanket with the living creatures hereon? I get a feeling we might be one of those pivotal species– self-lethal to us, perhaps, but pay dirt in the far future to new (and really cool) forms.

                  • Javier says:

                    Caelan,

                    I would be very concerned if ACC was pushing climate towards cooling, since it would be adding to the cooling trend that Milankovitch cycles are imposing on the Holocene. Since ACC is pushing in the opposite direction its net effect is going to be to counter some cooling, and that can only be a good thing to us.

                    So your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points. This obviously depends on one beliefs, because there is no evidence at all that runaway effects and tipping points exist if the planet gets warmer or has more CO2 in its atmosphere. In fact the evidence suggests that it is not the case.

                    The Eemian interglacial was estimated to be about 2°C warmer than present, and it did not show any runaway effect or tipping point from that, so there is evidence that temperature will not cause any runaway effect nor get us to a tipping point at least until +2°C, but probably not even further, because the evidence from 600 millions of years shows that temperatures have oscillated up to +10-12°C without the system showing runaway effects. At any point in the past temperatures were tightly regulated by the system, whatever they were.

                    Regarding CO2 we know that the atmosphere has had twenty times more in the past and know that most plants show an optimum at 1000-1500 ppm. And we are never going to get to those values. We would get out of things to burn much earlier. So no evidence of runaway effects or tipping points from CO2 either.

                    I refuse to be worried about hypothetical scenarios that are not based on evidence. What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating while CO2 increase has been accelerating. This incontrovertible evidence is incompatible with any alarmist scenario.

                    Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.

                  • Javier says:

                    I would be very concerned if ACC was pushing climate towards cooling, since it would be adding to the cooling trend that Milankovitch cycles are imposing on the Holocene. Since ACC is pushing in the opposite direction its net effect is going to be to counter some cooling, and that can only be a good thing to us.

                    So your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points. This obviously depends on one beliefs, because there is no evidence at all that runaway effects and tipping points exist if the planet gets warmer or has more CO2 in its atmosphere. In fact the evidence suggests that it is not the case.

                    Eemian interglacial was estimated to be about 2°C warmer than present, and it did not show any runaway effect or tipping point from that, so there is evidence that temperature will not cause any runaway effect nor get us to a tipping point at least until +2°C, but probably not even further, because the evidence from 600 millions of years shows that temperatures have oscillated up to +10-12°C without the system showing runaway effects. At any point in the past temperatures were tightly regulated by the system, whatever they were.

                    Regarding CO2 we know that the atmosphere has had twenty times more in the past and know that most plants show an optimum at 1000-1500 ppm. And we are never going to get to those values. We would get out of things to burn much earlier. So no evidence of runaway effects or tipping points from CO2 either.

                    I refuse to be worried about hypothetical scenarios that are not based on evidence. What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating while CO2 increase has been accelerating. This incontrovertible evidence is incompatible with any alarmist scenario.

                    Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.

                  • Javier says:

                    Caelan,

                    As ACC acts in the opposite direction to GCC, your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points. But there is no evidence at all that runaway effects and tipping points exist if the planet gets warmer or has more CO2 in its atmosphere. In fact the evidence suggests that to not be the case.

                    Eemian interglacial is estimated to have been about two degrees warmer than present, and it did not show any runaway effect or tipping point from that, so there is evidence that temperature will not cause any runaway effect nor get us to a tipping point at least until above two degrees, but probably not even further, because the evidence from 600 millions of years shows that temperatures have been about 10 degrees higher without the system showing runaway effects. At any point in the past temperatures were tightly regulated by the system, whatever they were.

                    Regarding CO2 we know that the atmosphere has had twenty times more in the past and know that most plants show an optimum at 1000-1500 ppm. And we are never going to get to those values. We would get out of things to burn much earlier. So no evidence of runaway effects or tipping points from CO2 either.

                    I refuse to be worried about hypothetical scenarios that are not based on evidence. What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating while CO2 increase has been accelerating. This incontrovertible evidence is incompatible with any alarmist scenario.

                    Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.

                  • Javier says:

                    Caelan,

                    As ACC acts in the opposite direction to GCC, your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points. But there is no evidence at all that runaway effects and tipping points exist if the planet gets warmer or has more CO2 in its atmosphere. In fact the evidence suggests that to not be the case.

                    Eemian interglacial is estimated to have been about two degrees warmer than present, and it did not show any runaway effect or tipping point from that.

                    Regarding CO2 we know that the atmosphere has had twenty times more in the past and know that most plants show an optimum at 1000-1500 ppm. And we are never going to get to those values. We would get out of things to burn much earlier. So no evidence of runaway effects or tipping points from CO2 either.

                    I refuse to be worried about hypothetical scenarios that are not based on evidence. What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating while CO2 increase has been accelerating. This incontrovertible evidence is incompatible with any alarmist scenario.

                    Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.

  18. AlexS says:

    Table 1. Annual percent change in global GDP (constant prices, PPP-based), energy consumption and oil consumption

  19. AlexS says:

    Table 2. Cumulative change in global GDP, energy consumption and oil consumption
    (1979 = 1)

  20. AlexS says:

    Table 3. European Union: cumulative change in GDP, energy consumption and oil consumption
    (1979 = 1)

  21. AlexS says:

    Table 4. U.S.A: cumulative change in GDP, energy consumption and oil consumption
    (1979 = 1)

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      Thanks Alex,

      Chart below with World Real GDP in trillions of 2005US$ (vertical axis) vs Primary Energy (BP data) in millions of tonnes of oil equivalent (horizontal axis) from 1970 to 2014.

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      World Primary Energy (in tonnes of oil equivalent) per million 2005US$ of GDP from 1970 to 2014 with exponential trendline (dashed black line).

      • AlexS says:

        Thanks, Dennis
        This is called energy intensity of GDP.
        Your chart shows that the decline in energy intensity has stopped in the 2000’s due to the effect of rapidly rising consumption in China and other emerging economies, but resumed in the past few years, as growth in China is becoming less energy intensive.

        BTW: GDP in 2005 dollars is from IMF WEO database?

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Alex,

          I forget where I got the data, title on worksheet below:

          “Real Historical Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Growth Rates of GDP
          for Baseline Countries/Regions (in billions of 2005 dollars) 1969-2010”

          I used IMF data after 2010 but use market exchange rates rather than PPP,

          Rune Likvern preferred the market exchange rates and when I read up on it, I found I agreed with him, he is nearly always correct.

          You can also find Real GDP per capita from FRED and use UN population data to convert to Real GDP, this data is from the World Bank rather than the IMF.

          https://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/NYGDPPCAPKDWLD

          • AlexS says:

            Thanks Dennis

            IMF has long-term GDP data in constant dollars for individual countries, but not for the World.
            In the recent past, they had it for the World as well (in USD billions). That’s why I am asking.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi AlexS,

              I believe they still have growth rates for the World in constant dollars, so using those and data for real GDP for the World for one of the years the real GDP can be estimated. Or you can use the FRED GDP per capita and UN population estimates to find World real GDP from 1960 to 2014.

  22. AlexS says:

    Table 5. Japan: cumulative change in GDP, energy consumption and oil consumption
    (1979 = 1)

  23. shallow sand says:

    There is another BH rig count out, early due to holiday.

  24. Verwimp says:

    Thanks, Ron, to point attention to consumption data.
    One needs to consider, when one compares GDP-growth with energy- or oil growth, that economies transform from agriculture to industry, and then to services. In the first step energy growth is more or less in line with GDP-growth. In the second step, there is a disconnection. That disconnection (growing GDP without growing energy use) looks like a good thing. In a certain sense it is. But one must not forget a service economy needs a base. There is a need for clients that purchase these services. One can not, in a sustainable way, keep eachother busy providing services to one and other and vice versa without a base, without some real thing it is all about. Without enough agriculture or industry the entire service economy is doomed to collapse sooner or later.
    Consider Uber, challenging taxi services worldwide. It crashes all reglementations and surrounding services about getting a ride. People just want a ride. Consider AirBNB: it challenges hotels and accommodations worldwide. Reglementations and controls on fire safety, food safety, … are hunted. People just want a bed.
    All of this, the transformation from industry to services, the collapse of industry and the collapse of services a decade later, was predicted bij M.I.T.-researchers Meadows et.al. in their Limits to Growth report. It is all becoming reality as we speak.

  25. Don Wharton says:

    There has been some commentary elsewhere about how the US rig count for both oil and gas is down in the last Baker Hughes report.
    oil 555 -9
    gas 189 -4

    However Canada more than compensates for our decline:
    Canada oil rigs 81 +14
    Canada gas rigs 103 +4

  26. Jeju-islander says:

    A comment about the situation in Syria. Wars in the Middle East are about oil. I didn’t post in the section above where the shooting of the Russian bomber was discussed because I think it is irrelevant whether the plane was or wasn’t in Turkish airspace for 10, 12 or 17 seconds. Russia has been bombing Turkish oil trucks bringing oil from ISIS controlled territory in Syria to Turkey. 1000s of these trucks. Supposedly being run by a company owned by Bilal Erdogan the son of the Turkish president. This is a lot of oil / a lot of money.

    On the other hand we see how the United States is responding to the sale of ISIS oil.
    “U.S. sanctions businessman helping Syrian government buy oil from Islamic State”
    see – http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/25/us-mideast-crisis-usa-sanctions-idUSKBN0TE23P20151125

    War is a dirty business, it seems both the Syrian government and the Turkish government have been profiting from ISIS oil. What is also clear is that neither the US or the Russians are being fully honest when they say they are fighting ISIS.

    • Glenn Stehle says:

      Two things appear to be in play:

      1. Control of natural gas flows to Turkey and Europe, and

      2. The future of NATO, as reported by CNN yesterday:

      NATO survived Cold War, but downed Russian jet provides biggest threat
      http://edition.cnn.com/2015/11/25/europe/nato-putin-turkey-syria-analysis/index.html

      The two issues are inextricably intertwined, but on both fronts it seems Turkey has dealt Putin one heck of a friendly card. Nevertheless, how well Putin will play his ace, or other players their cards, and how the cards will fall in the future are still to be seen.

      Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, yesterday leveled two very serious charges against the United States:

      1) The United States was complicit in the downing of the Russian jet:

      The Russian minister said there was a question of American involvement in the downing of the Russian plane. According to his sources, the US demands all members of the anti-IS coalition led by Washington, who use US-made military aircraft, coordinate all deployments with the US military.

      “I wonder if this demand of the Americans covers… Turkey. If it does, I wonder whether Turkey asked permission from the US to fly its US-made planes and take down – let’s say ‘an unidentified’ – plane over Syrian territory,” Lavrov said.
      https://www.rt.com/news/323404-lavrov-syria-s24-turkey/

      2) That ISIS’s lifeline — its oil sales as well as its supply of armaments, ammunition, equipment, and soldiers — runs through Turkey, and that the United States has balked at Hollande’s suggestion to close that border:

      The senior Russian diplomat said the problems at the Turkish-Syrian border could be solved by simply closing it, as suggested by French President Francois Hollande during his meeting with US President Barack Obama in Washington.

      “President Hollande suggested measures to close the Turkish-Syrian border to stop the flow of militants and finances to terrorists. It’s remarkable that President Obama didn’t react to it. I believe it’s a good suggestion and that during the visit tomorrow President Hollande will tell us details. We are prepared to consider these measures in earnest. Many people say that sealing the border would effectively eliminate the terrorist threat in Syria,” Lavrov said.
      https://www.rt.com/news/323404-lavrov-syria-s24-turkey/

      What Lavrov does not say, however, is that closing the Turkish-Syrian border would also eliminate the armed resistance to the Assad regime. Or in other words, it would be a win for Russia and US/NATO dreams of regime change in Syria, as well as plans for any future natural gas pipeline connecting the Gulf States to Europe, are quashed.

      Lavrov’s narrative is crafted for a European audience and attempts to drive one point home, and that is US/NATO are not in the ISIS fighting business, but the Assad fighting business.

      Europe is of course much closer to the fire than what the United States is, and ISIS can wreck much more havock on Europe than the United States. So Europe would like to see the ISIS threat eliminated. Nevertheless, Europe would also like to be freed from the stranglehold Russia has on its natural gas supplies. So Europe faces a tough choice.

      NATO’s soft underbelly appears to be Germany, with statements from German officials, unlike those of Obama and NATO spokespersons, being not at all supportive of Turkey’s action.

      This is completely consistent with opinion polls, which show a significant majority of Germans to believe the United States to have a mostly negative influence on the world, with only 21% believing it has a mostly positive influence.

      Germany bolting from NATO would be like a tectonic plate shift in geopolitics, and would have untold negative consequences for the United States.

      Russia of course marshals a great deal more evidence in making its case, such as can be seen in this article which appeared in one of the Mexico City dailies yesterday. It cites, among other pieces of “forensic evidence” as the author calls it, a declassified DIA document from 2012 which explicitly states “es deseable un Estado Islámico en Siria oriental para implementar las políticas de Occidente en la región” (an Islamic state is desirable in eastern Syria to implement Western policies in the region).
      http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2015/11/25/opinion/020o1pol

      Do you believe the United States’ influence in the world is mostly positive or mostly negative?
      By Country, 2014

      http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/country-rating-poll.pdf

      • Ves says:

        Glenn,

        for your 2): resounding Yes.
        At this moment Angela and Holland are probably praying that Turks don’t force the issue and purposely allow one of their own fighter planes to be in the Russian crossfire and get brought down. That moment will be moment of truth for European elite to pick a side. I believe Americans will be surprised who they will side with.

  27. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    “As Watcher says, ‘I don’t have to find the murderer.’ So burden of proof is silly, any one can say ‘prove it’, it says nothing at all.” ~ Dennis Coyne

    In fact, I was talking about the murderer, themself, so your analogy is false. The murderer, like your pseudogovernment, has to justify their ‘murderous’ lifestyle.
    Your pseudogovernment and pseudoeconomy are just that– murderous– so thanks for the analogy.

    “A false analogy is a faulty instance of the argument from analogy.” ~ Wikipedia

    “How does your proposed society deal with coercive behavior by bad actors without resorting to coercion?” ~ Dennis Coyne

    Bad actors? You mean like your pseudogovernment/pseudoeconomy?
    Do you deal with what is or don’t you? So then let’s.

    But also, this is another question/issue (thus, one I don’t have to necessarily answer [even though I can and have– Permaea, for one.]), and seems to imply the fallacy of The Appeal to Common Practice (“I deal with what is rather than what might be, as far as governments.” ~ you):

    “X is a common action.
    Therefore X is correct/moral/justified/reasonable, etc.
    The basic idea behind the fallacy is that the fact that most people do X is used as ‘evidence’ to support the action or practice. It is a fallacy because the mere fact that most people do something does not make it correct, moral, justified, or reasonable.” ~ Wikipedia

    I have also added and will repeat that you too need to help with the appropriate answers, which don’t consist of a small few silver-bullet ones either, or involve your joke-for-a-government.

    If we were part of a team that improved some product that wasn’t working for people and you refused to help in that regard with the rationale that you ‘preferred to deal with the product as it is’, you’d likely be fired.
    The problem is that your ‘product’ is coercive. It doesn’t work. It mucks things and people up. It doesn’t mind its own business.

    I talk about ‘government’ here and there and far too many just don’t like the things– can’t stand them, even. So enter you into the room with some quip about taxing them just like that and see what happens. That’s your shnoz there. Go ahead and ram it right in. And ruin a perfect day; a perfect life; a perfect planet.

    My other answer of course, is that it starts with ethics (real, participatory democracy, etc.)– and ethics-based narratives. We can’t do that as easily when people like you are singing the praises of illegitimate coercion, pseudogovernment and pseudoeconomy that’s supposed to somehow solve the problems it creates, like the racket it is.

    Social Inertia

    …According to Bourdieu, each person occupies a position in a social space, which consists of his or her social class as well as social relationships and social networks. Through the individual’s engagement in the social space, he or she develops a set of behaviors, lifestyle and habits… which often serve to maintain the status quo. Thus, people are encouraged to ‘accept the social world as it is, to take it for granted, rather than to rebel against it, to counterpose to it different, even antagonistic, possibles.’ This can explain the continuity of the social order through time.

    …In particular, Bourdieu found in his studies of Algeria that even during times of rapid economic change, cultural and symbolic factors limited the flexibility of the society to quickly adapt to change.

    Therefore, social inertia has been used to explain how dominant social classes maintain their status and privilege over time…” ~ Wikipedia

    Sovereign Raiders

  28. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    “Money creation… is a promise of future extraction. The creation of interest bearing debt assumes that at some point in the future we will have the resources to cover the debt plus interest.” ~ tristan

    “I would say the hidden ‘profit’ taken by the issuing private banks for the privilege of printing our money supply seems to be used to further corrupt societies, pillage resources in the form of ‘black budgets’ financing coups, hidden agendas, and starting wars to control the diminishing resource base.
    As sovereign peoples, we should not be charged to use a means of exchange.” ~ gamedog

    “What happens when we can no longer service the growing debt with real economic growth?
    The great recession happens. Without real growth, central banks desperately print money (more debt) by the trillions and hold interest rates close to zero (Q.E.), in an attempt to heist future growth and to ease the pain of the existing debt. But prescribing more debt to cure debt only digs the hole deeper and means that even more real growth is required (read: more work, more energy)…

    The economy is the summation of all goods and services and these are produced from work.
    High order energy is required for work.
    Oil is the master high order energy resource powering 95% of transport in our trade based economic paradigm.
    Therefore increasing debts are, in part, a bet that oil production will increase indefinitely.

    In our economy of false signals, (Central Bank inflated stocks, a Quantitative Eased Bond Market, mind-numbingly exotic derivatives, quirky University of Michigan numbers, manipulated CPIs, arbitrary debt ceilings, smashed VIXs , etc. etc.) OIL is screaming the truth.
    Price is falling because demand is falling because the real economy is contracting.
    Deflation is coming and The Pyramid Scheme of Our Age is about to unravel.” ~ Peak Oil

    “One way to explore the resulting mismatch is to look at how the three economies, in reality and theory, are affected by the least popular of all the laws of physics: the second law of thermodynamics, more popularly known as the law of entropy…
    Entropy is the gold standard of physics… What makes it unpopular… is that it stands in stark conflict with some of the most deeply and passionately held convictions of modern industrial humanity.” ~ John Michel Greer

    “…the big issue I see is an affordability issue. I don’t see oil prices bouncing back up again, or certainly not bouncing up very long, for very far. So, for oil production, this is basically the beginning of the end… what we’re seeing is the beginning of Peak Oil, basically. The oil production will actually permanently turn down at this point because we will not be able to get it back up, and because of all the financial situations coming along.” Gail Tverberg

    “…prices do not reflect the fundamentals of supply and demand in any particular industry. If they did so, equities and different commodities would not move in relative synchrony, yet they have often done so.
    Instead, prices reflect a combination of general confidence (or lack thereof) and the perception of future scarcity or glut, whether or not that perception is, in fact, accurate.” ~ The Automatic Earth

    “And no amount of technology can fix the problem. Hagens points out that oil extraction has evolved by leaps and bounds since the early 1900s, and yet companies must expend much more energy to get less and less oil than they did back then.

    ‘It isn’t that there’s no technology’, Hall said. ‘The question is, technology is in a race with depletion, and that’s a whole different concept. And we think that we can show empirically that depletion is winning, because the energy return on investment keeps dropping for gas and oil.’

    The most pessimistic of the biophysical economics camp sees the oil-fueled world economy grinding to a halt soon, possibly within 10 years. They are all working to get the message out, but not all of them believe their peers in other professions will listen.

    ‘Of course I’m trying to send a message’, said Joseph Tainter, chairman of Utah State University’s Department of Environment and Society. ‘I just don’t expect there’s anyone out there to receive it.’. ” ~ Nathanial Gronewold

  29. SAWDUST says:

    Dec. could get interesting for oil price. 3 major things that could tip oil in either direction.

    1. Does OPEC cut or not?
    2. Does ECB get even more negative with interest rates?
    3. Does FED hike rates?

    If OPEC doesn’t cut and ECB gets more negative and FED hikes. Then we’ve not seen the bottom in oil price yet.

    • TechGuy says:

      “If OPEC doesn’t cut and ECB gets more negative and FED hikes. Then we’ve not seen the bottom in oil price yet.”

      The future of Oil prices is how fast and hard the Emerging markets will fall. The EM is been the main driver of Oil consumption in probably the past 10 years. As long as EM consumption declines, so will the Oil prices unless there is a “significant” disruption in production (ie a KSA/Iran/Israel) war, or revolt.

      At best OPEC might talk about cutting, but in reality not a single OPEC member will. Even KSA is heading into a liquidity crunch as its foreign currency reserves collapse. They will not cut production since they need every dime of revenue. There is a Proxy war going on the Middle East, that threatens the stability of gov’ts there (Mainly KSA, and its neighbors). I believe KSA has been the biggest consumer of Military equipment and Arms for 2015.

      • SAWDUST says:

        Emerging market are under pressure from a strong USD. Any rate cut by the ECB or rate hike by the FED will compound the dollar shortage that emerging markets have.

        Yes the Saudi’s and the Chinese are selling their USD denominated assets hand over fist because they are short of USD. There is a long list of countries that are short of USD they need.

        USD is flowing out of every nook and cranny that it flowed into when FED dropped rates from 5.25% to 0.25% The flow of dollars has just started to leave emerging markets.

        • TechGuy says:

          “Emerging market are under pressure from a strong USD. Any rate cut by the ECB or rate hike by the FED will compound the dollar shortage that emerging markets have.”

          Sorry, that does not compute! 🙂 EM sell goods and services into the US economy, a Stronger dollar means EM can sell them cheaper to Americans and makes US companies less competitive. The EM market is falling because it reached maximum debt entropy. They spent trillions in building up their economies, but don’t have the internal demand to support it, nor is their adequate demand in the West (Way over-capacity)

          Just about all of the EM growth was fueled by cheap debt (which by historic standards is still very cheap). As best an argument can be made that the FED enabled the EM boom, by making credit cheap and abundant to the Subprime EM economies.

          Sorry, but you also goofed on the Interests & QE too. Lowing rates and issuing QE in the US or the EU would weaken the USD or the EURO since investors get even less return as will as increased inflation. It was low interest rates and QE that kicked off credit growth in the EM as investors poured money into the EM in search of better capital returns.

          • SAWDUST says:

            Funny you must either have a comprehension problem or you just don’t understand capital flows.

            The rate cut the FED made from 5.25% to 0.25% flooded the emerging markets with $7 trillion of dollar denominated debt. Searching for a yield higher, ie dollars flowing into emerging markets. Emerging markets local currency debt is not much of an issue since their local Central Bank can produce any amount of their local currency to buy or cover any debt.
            But they can’t create the dollars they need to service their dollar denominated debt.

            Anything that makes the dollar strengthen forces the flow of dollars back in the other direction, particularly when a Central Bank like both the ECB and BOJ are forcing the dollar higher with every QE euro and yen they create.

            ECB and BOJ QE is forcing dollar denominated debt out of emerging markets by forcing the dollar higher. The fact that the FED has been talking of rate hike for about a year also contributes to capital flight in emerging markets.

            Not all QE is created equal. When the Fed does it they export inflation to the emerging markets. When ECB and BOJ do it they export their deflation to the rest of the world.

            I do agree that i don’t think Saudi can cut. They get the USD they need from selling oil or by selling their USD assets or dollar reserves as some call them. They need USD to buy weapons and the other stuff they import. Don’t believe there local currency is accepted for international trade.

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      Agreed; nuff false dichotomies said.

      ISIL/etc. is apparently a State wannabe, ‘incubated’ by other States.

  30. oldfarmermac says:

    I often try to impress people who want to use the courts and media pressure to change the ground rules of our society that they should think about what they want, and that sometimes you get something you DON’T want. There IS such a thing as political backlash.

    It is sometimes better, in terms of the big picture, to wait for the opposition to lose interest and die of old age than it is to constantly poke the opposition hornet nest with a sharp judicial stick, forcing issues in court.

    It is my opinion, for what it is worth, that the single most important reason the republicans control congress these days is that the left wing overreached itself in its eagerness to force social change on a citizenry that for the most part did not want to see such changes forced on it, and responded by electing republicans.

    I AM NOT ARGUING RIGHT OR WRONG, or even right or left, but simply what was, and what IS.

    For some reason I could not copy the link directly, but google this headline and it ought to take you to an article in today’s USA TODAY about republican control of congress.

    Now of course Democratic PARTISANS will erupt full cry about republican gerrymandering , but I have read enough history to know that democrats are perfectly happy to gerrymander when the opportunity arises, and do so quite as enthusiastically as republicans.

    “Democrats may be a generation away from recapturing House” is the headline.

    The truly tragic aspect of this political dog fight is that environmental considerations have gotten to be inextricably linked, in the minds of socially conservative voters, with social liberalism.

    Social conservatives are not going to align themselves with liberals on any issue,and this is an US versus THEM question. Tribal politics trump every other consideration.

    Victories on the social front just might have come at the expense of a decade or two of losses on the environmental front, if republicans do maintain control of congress for the next few election cycles.

    I am not sure they will, as the old generation is dying off fast, and younger people are far more liberal, socially, than their elders, on average. The left has for all intents won the social wars, with only mopping up operations remaining, and the country as whole still has at least a non zero chance of winning the environmental wars.

    The connection between this argument and peak oil should be obvious enough even to a ninny. Republican congress critters and presidents are not nearly as apt to support renewable energy etc as democrats.

  31. R Walter says:

    Turkey buys stolen oil? That’s just not right. Stolen oil being transported in stolen tanker trucks too, I just know it. This is an outrage! And the Russians are bombing the culprits into submission, even more of an outrage! The Russians! They can’t do that!

    All that oil not making it to market, enough! Just being wasted!

    Those doing all of the dirty work in the new no man’s land over there need money and selling stolen oil to get that money is the only way they know how at the present time, so the Russians really should stop bombing those oil truck lines going into Turkey. It is just not fair, the fighters need that money to keep fighting and if Russia puts a stop to it all, how can they keep up the fight? To keep this war fair and square, Russia should really stop the bombing, it is interrupting the progress of the war and Russia might even win! The war would be over, the killing would end, everything about it would change and the fighters would have to go to work, make a life for themselves, what fun is that? They should have thought about that before going to war, that after the war is over and they are still alive, they’ll be working for a living! That would be too much to bear, can’t be at war and have to go back to work? To hell with that noise, it is more fun and it is better to keep warring. Work sucks, who wants to work when war is what’s happening?

    Nonetheless, Russia will keep giving the fighters a taste of their own medicine until the fighters finally get the message, enough medicine will eventually cure the patient, even if it kills them.

    That is what war is all about, keep killing until it all grinds to a screeching halt. That is how it is going to be for a while, so get used to it. Russia is on the job and is making sure the work of war is getting done the best way they know how. Just how it is going to work in the war zone.

    Wait a minute!

    Who started this mess? Somebody is to blame, at fault. Always is.

    Somebody call the cops!

    • sunnnv says:

      The technology is not vapor, just another Lithium Iron Phosphate maker trying to distance themselves from the pack,
      note they use “ferrous” instead of “Iron” as most do/did, and in their comparison table use their trade name vs generic chemistry names for the other contenders.
      And I think they stretch the truth about size and ventilation for lithium cobalt, and do an “NA” for cycle life, and only 700 cycles for lead acid is quite dubious.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithium_iron_phosphate_battery

      A lot of competition… good luck to all.

      • Longtimber says:

        The Last Pb smelter in North America closed in 2014. Pb is not really
        recyclable for Premium Batteries. Premium high cycle batteries require pure Pb
        and command a premium price. Many Pb Battery suppliers have reduced warranty lifespans which may reflect feedstock quality issues. 700 cycle life is not far from average. We get 3000 cycles at no MORE than 10% daily discharge rate for lighting applications, but only with premium batteries that costing twice as much.

        • sunnnv says:

          Interesting.

          I found this paper that validates your comment.
          http://www.phlsci.com/support/CatPaper10.pdf

          “Lead Purity: The mother of all VRLA problems”
          VRLA = valve regulated (i.e. sealed) lead acid

          “VRLA batteries seem to have a multitude of problems leading to low capacity and short life including dryout, plate growth, high float current, high hydrogen evolution and negative plate discharge to name a few. This paper shows that all these are related and stem from a single source problem – the fundamental problem of VRLA batteries. That problem, which was not recognized by the industry for many years, was the use of slightly impure lead in the plates. Given that improving lead purity is not feasible the best solution to the problem must fit the given circumstances of the current environment. How this problem can be corrected is explained both for new production cells and for reclaiming older cells in service.”

          They propose either high purity lead (if one can afford it, and provide a new testing method for “pure enough”), OR use of a recombination catalyst in the headspace to recombine the oxygen with hydrogen so free oxygen doesn’t self-discharge the negative plate.

          Down the road (literally, I-80), a company is looking at the high purity lead refining problem:
          http://www.aquametals.com

          They’re building a plant at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center (where Tesla’s Gigafactory is), to electrochemically refine recycled lead.

          We’ll see how much future lead-acid has though, with the rapid improvement in lithium batteries.

  32. Javier says:

    PROBLEM SOLVED (alarmism unjustified)
    Global growth in CO2 emissions stagnates

    “After a decade of rapid growth in global CO2 emissions, which increased at an average annual rate of 4%, much smaller increases were registered in 2012 (0.8%), 2013 (1.5%) and 2014 (0.5%). In 2014, when the emissions growth was almost at a standstill, the world’s economy continued to grow by 3%.

    The trend over the last three years thus sends an encouraging signal on the decoupling of CO2 emissions from global economic growth. However, it is still too early to confirm a positive global trend. For instance India, with its emerging economy and large population, increased its emissions by 7.8% and became the fourth largest emitter globally.

    The EU continues to show leadership on CO2 emission reductions

    In 2014, despite an overall increase of 1.4% in the GDP for the European Union, the EU decreased its CO2 emissions by 5.4% with respect to 2013. This comes after reductions also in the two previous years, although the reductions in 2012 and 2013 were at much lower rates (-0.4% and -1.4%). The results illustrate the continued decoupling of Europe’s economic growth from CO2 emissions. Total EU CO₂ emissions are now 23% below the 1990 level.

    The study suggests three main reasons for this drop: 1) a 4.5% emissions reduction from industrial facilities and power plants that are part of the EU Emissions Trading System, 2) a mild winter which resulted in a 10% lower heating demand and 3) a 0.5% reduction in oil consumption for transport.

    Significant reductions in national CO2 emissions were recorded for Slovakia (10.6%), the United Kingdom (9.0%), Denmark (8.8%), France (8.4%), Italy (7.7%), Finland (6.9%), Greece (6.3%), Austria (6.0%), Germany (5.6%), the Netherlands (5.3%), Portugal (3.6%) and Poland (3.4%). Of the 28 EU Member States, only Bulgaria and Cyprus increased their emissions, by 6.9% and 0.5%, respectively.

    For the first time, the EU’s share of global CO2 emissions fell below 10%. Responsible for 9.6% of the global emissions, the EU is still the third largest emitter globally after China (30%) and the United States (15%).

    Global emissions stalled in 2014

    Apart from the EU, other countries such as Japan (-2.6%) Russia (-1.5%), and Australia (- 2.1%) also reduced their emissions. In total, only a 0.5% increase in global CO2 emissions was recorded in 2014 with respect to the previous year. The total emissions from fossil fuel combustion and industrial processes amounted to 35.7 billion tonnes CO2 in 2014, compared to 35.3 billion tonnes in 2013.

    China emissions also slowed down

    Although it remains the largest emitter world-wide, China has also managed to slow down its emissions growth. After the surge in CO2 emissions recorded over the past 10 years, China’s emissions increased by only 0.9% in 2014, the same rate as the United States. A big part of the overall curbing of global emissions can therefore be attributed to China’s structural changes in its economy favouring less energy-intensive services, a high value-added manufacturing industry and investments into more low-carbon energy options.

    US per capita emissions among highest

    The United States still has very high emissions per head of population, with 16.5 tonnes CO2 per capita in 2014. This is more than twice as high as those of China (7.5 tonnes CO2 per capita) and the EU (7.1 tonnes CO2 per capita).”

    News report: https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/news/global-growth-co2-emissions-stagnates
    Report: http://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/news_docs/jrc-2015-trends-in-global-co2-emissions-2015-report-98184.pdf

    I cannot help but notice that the data from this report is almost identical to the Surprising Look at Oil Consumption that Ron Patterson has posted. Those countries that are reducing emissions most, are those countries that are reducing fossil fuels consumption more, and are those countries that are growing less.

    One of the consequences of Peak Oil is that it might as well constitute Peak CO2 emissions.

    • Peter says:

      The figures for China are wrong, they were worked out based on what China said it consumed.

      http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/04/china-underreporting-coal-consumption-by-up-to-17-data-suggests

      China is run by an unelected bunch of gangsters. When they import wood they don’t care if it comes from criminals cutting down the trees illegally, that would get in the way of profits.

      http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/04/china-underreporting-coal-consumption-by-up-to-17-data-suggests

      China is the main destination of ivory from butchered elephants and sold openly, the police in China do not try very hard to stop the trade.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-26165143

      Chinese factories openly make counterfeit goods a blind trading standards inspector could close them down.

      http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/10/26/us-china-counterfeit-idUSTRE69P1AR20101026

      As I said a country run by a mafia that cannot be voted out of office.

      • Javier says:

        The figures for China are wrong.

        How do you know? Have you checked them?
        The new figures for China were released earlier this year by China’s Bureau of Statistics and the change was discovered by the press three weeks ago.

        This report on CO2 was released two days ago so they knew about the new figures before releasing it. Therefore there is a good chance that China’s figures in the report are up to date. I am not going to check because I don’t care that much, but you should not say that they are wrong if you have not checked them.

        • Peter says:

          Dear Javier

          The Chinese government are a bunch of criminals who will do anything to stay in power. They allow the importation of ivory via criminal gangs with no impediment what so ever.

          If you believe anything a government that can do this, then i pity you.

          http://cubanexilequarter.blogspot.co.uk/2015/06/26th-anniversary-of-june-4th-tiananmen.html

          http://australiafirstparty.net/china-trade-only-endorses-1989-tiananmen-square-massacre-so-clive-palmer-keep-pissing-off-the-chinese/

          • Javier says:

            Peter,

            As has been shown in a post above by Glenn S., the opinion of the world about the US influence is no better than the opinion about China influence. Neither is seen as a positive influence in the world by a majority. Perhaps you should stop seeing the world in black and white.

            • Peter says:

              HI Javier

              Do I see the world in black and white? You do not have a clue what I think about other countries.
              I am not too interested in what mainly ill informed people think about other countries, I am more interested in real data.
              Such as actual corruption levels in various countries and how this effects ordinary people.
              http://www.transparency.org/cpi2014/results
              Why do some people think China as mainly positive?
              Is it because they like the idea of a group of ruthless thugs in power who crush people under tanks?
              Or perhaps they like to buy lovely ivory ornaments cheaply.
              http://www.transparency.org/exporting_corruption
              Perhaps they think people working 12 hours per day for $20 is great cos they can buy cheap cloths.
              Asking peoples opinions on something teaches you nothing about what is happening in a country.
              Reading detailed impartial research will do.

              • Javier says:

                I don’t know how impartial it is to present only negative things about a country.

                I have no interest in defending China but your opinion looks to me anything but impartial. In the last decades Chinese economy has had a phenomenal development, with salaries rising correspondingly, and the general wealth of the population increasing.

                You are free to consider that civil liberties are more important, and Chinese people are free to consider that they are not.

                • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                  Javier, a lot of this so-called wealth is just a temporary illusion if it is predicated on draw-down, lock-in and undermining the fundamentals of our ultimate long and short-term comfort and survival.
                  I have been to China and some of the ‘Bladerunneresque’ sights near terrified me. I’m pretty sure I saw a ghost city or two without knowing at the time what they were or were called.

                  • Javier says:

                    I can agree with that Caelan.

                    I am not defending China. I am showing information that indicates that global growth in CO2 emissions is stagnating.

                    Without any data Peter is disputing that on the grounds of Chinese unreliability. But we have lots of evidence supporting a slower increase in energy consumption in China. One only has to look to electricity data. But I am pretty sure no Chinese data is going to be good for Peter as he prefers to rely on newspaper articles.

                • Peter says:

                  You are free to consider that civil liberties are more important, and Chinese people are free to consider that they are not

                  Javier

                  What a ridiculous statement.

                  In Nazi Germany the economy improved, Germans were fine unless they disagreed with the Nazi’s and suffered for it.
                  https://www.kz-gedenkstaette-dachau.de/index-e.html
                  You have no idea how many Chinese hate the government but are too afraid to say anything.
                  http://www.rfa.org/english/news/china/school-09052014141700.html

                  https://en.rsf.org/china-china-12-03-2012,42077.html
                  They are ruthless suppressors of freedom

      • sunnnv says:

        It turns out that coal by ton (or by tonnes) doesn’t directly translate into CO2,
        because the quality of coal is declining.
        Hmmm, could this be due to nearing peak fossil fuels? Nah, [insert crazy cornucopian arguments here].

        Blurb in Nature (that includes link to real article):
        http://www.nature.com/news/china-s-carbon-emissions-overestimated-1.18199

    • Damon says:

      PROBLEM SOLVED (alarmism unjustified)

      Get a clue, if there is a reduction in CO2. It’s because of alarmist.

  33. Enno Peters says:

    On a completely different topic: Niobrara.
    I was surprised to see that the Niobrara rig count held up pretty well compared with the other main 3 shale plays (Permian, EF, Bakken).

    I therefore had a look at the Colorado oil and gas website, and found that they also provide detailed individual well data. Based on that I created the following charts. I focused on the 4 main counties (Weld, Garfield, Lincoln, and Rio Blanco), and the main formations. I only include wells that started production since 2010. In total, the wells in these graphs represent about 80% of the current oil production in Colorado. I have no idea on well costs, or any other issues related to Colorado/Niobrara. Maybe you have. What does appear to be the case is that this is mostly a gas play, especially after the first year of production of a well. Also, I read that these wells are drilled much faster compared with e.g. Bakken wells.

    1) Contribution from past wells, for the selected Niobrara wells in Colorado

    • Enno Peters says:

      2) Average daily oil per well

    • Enno Peters says:

      3) Average cumulative oil per well

    • Enno Peters says:

      4) Average daily gas per well

      • Enno Peters says:

        The header is wrong: this chart shows the average daily GAS production

    • Enno Peters says:

      5) Average cumulative gas per well

      • AlexS says:

        Enno,

        Thanks for the charts.
        It seems that decline rates for Niobrara wells are steeper than for the Bakken. (?) That may explain the fact that production in Niobrara is declining faster than in the Bakken, although the decline in rig count is slower.

        • shallow sand says:

          For all the talk about Bakken LTO decline rates and EUR, my feel after looking at a lot of well data is that possibly the only LTO with lower decline than Bakken could be some formations in the Permain Basin. However, some in Permian appear higher than Bakken.

          EFS, SCOOP, Niobrara, Mississippian all seem steeper to me.

          Further, haven’t seen EUR for oil any higher than Bakken. Permian maybe higher BOE, much more gas and NGLs.

          Can’t see why anyone would want to develop either oil or gas right now, but if I had to pick, sure would not be gas.

          Again, just my observations.

      • sunnnv says:

        Thanks Enno, for some peak oil related info.

        Seems clear that the rate of improvement in well quality has stabilized between 2014 and 2015, are we peeking at the peak of the Niobrara?

        • coffeeguyzz says:

          Enno

          The Niobrara is significantly smaller in area and estimated resources than the Bakken, but it has a few advantages.
          The ‘Big Three’ in this formation are Noble, Whiting and Anadarko.
          At less than 7,000′, wells are being drilled and completed for about $4/$4.5 million per, with some claiming lower costs yet.
          There are 3 to 4 benches with productive potential, and the down spacing off pads combined with relatively developed infrastructure – relative to ND – makes a somewhat low risk environment to produce wells with lowered EURs.

          • Watcher says:

            You need to embrace the reality that there is no magic.

            If your cost is down, it’s because you’re not doing as much.

            Encana reported that the average Niobrara well will cost $5.4 million to drill and complete and contain an estimated ultimate recovery (EUR) of 525,000 BOE per well. The average well will have a lateral length of 4,200 feet and a total vertical depth of 7,300 feet.

            That’s less than half a typical Bakken lateral.

            Whenever you see BOE, it means the company is getting gas. Gas is less viscous than oil. Fractures need be less wide.

            Gas doesn’t put groceries on the shelf.

            • coffeeguyzz says:

              Watcher/Enno

              What? No magic? Next thing ya know, you’ll be sayin’there’s no Santy Claus.
              Axually, Watch, this site is so focused on oil that the associated gas is, somewhat understandably, shunted aside in significance.
              As the extraction, processing, transportation of associated gas can be a HUGE headache when oil us the primary goal, a lot of E&P guys would agree it’s a pain in the ass … all the more so as the rapid decline rate manifests in gas output as well as oil.
              However, in areas where gas is the primary focus, many of these factors are minimized, as in Colorado’s Garfield and Rio Bianco counties where the Piceance Basin is.
              This area has always been a ‘gas’ play and that may reflect in Enno’s numbers.

      • Enno Peters says:

        Thanks for all the comments.

        Alex, Shallow: Indeed the wells seem to produce about half the oil as a Bakken well in the first 2 years, and after that it gets worse. These fast declining wells are nice when a period of high oil prices strikes, as you can quickly produce a lot of oil, but they seem like a liability to me in the present situation.

        Sunnnv : At least for the present, it definitely looks like a peak to me. The current rig count will not sustain the current production, and I don’t see a build up of DUCs.

        Coffee : Thanks for the “additional colour” 🙂 In this part of Colorado, the major producers in my list seem to be : Kerr-McGee, Noble, and then Encana. Interestingly, I see that EOG has been steadily reducing its presence here since 2011 (1.9 mbo in 2011, vs 0.4 mbo in 2014).

        After seeing so many misleading statements by the shale companies, I can’t help but notice that a nice feature of this play: the initial promising oil/gas ratio, followed by just lots of gas. This allows an operator in the early phase to demonstrate a good oil output, while also booking a lot of BOE reserves..

        • shallow sand says:

          Enno, I appreciate your Niobrara data.

          I think the SCOOP play in OK is also one which has a high oil decline, with mostly gas making up BOE over the life of the well.

          I haven’t looked at too many SCOOP wells, and do realize there are some areas which produce more oil, while others are almost all gas. However, much of the “oil” in SCOOP is above 45 API.

          I think OK database is not cheap, so the info I have seen is from royalty and non-operated WI for sale. It appears CLR is focusing almost all effort there now, and I have to assume it make sense for them to do so financially. However, the few wells I have reviewed looked far worse than Bakken.

          One other point about Niobrara, both CO and WY have oil and gas that are sold at deep discounts to the benchmarks. I assume prices are better in OK, so maybe why rigs haven’t dropped as much there? I recall AlexS posting a graph illustrating this.

          The one major SCOOP project I was able to review was CLR’s high density Poteet unit. They spent over $100 million there, and as I recall, didn’t have a lot to show for it. Mostly gas, with much higher cost and much lower production than Utica and Marcellus.

          • AlexS says:

            DJ Niobrara oil production (incl. conventional) vs. oil rig count
            Sources: EIA DPR Nov’15; Baker Hughes

            • Enno Peters says:

              Thanks Alex. The rebound in rig count in the Niobrara is, based on the data provided here, quite curious to me.

          • AlexS says:

            Bakken oil production vs. oil rig count
            Sources: EIA DPR Nov’15; Baker Hughes

        • coffeeguyzz says:

          Enno

          Garfield and Rio Bianco are over in the west, in the Piceance Basin. This has always been considered primarily a gas play. (In 2011, Encana drilled a world record 52 wells – 51 producing – on a 4 1/2 acre pad here).
          Encana recently sold its Niobrara wells.
          Anadarko bought out Kerr McGee a while back.

          This Niobrara formation and the relatively nearby Powder River Basin up north should show steady, long term output if the economics allow.

          The Permian, however, with its vast expanse, ultra thick (cumulatively) payzones will be the big enchilada for decades to come.

      • Enno Peters says:

        Coffee,

        In the above charts, I focused on the most oily counties (Weld, Garfield, Rio Blanco, Lincoln), and the most oily formations (designations: NBRR, NB-CD, CODL, N-COM, N-COM1). If we further only look at the 2014/2015 wells, as these deliver more oil than the earlier wells, then the following 2 graphs make clear that even the most oily wells are still inferior to the Bakken, and decline much faster. You can see that after 18 months, 50% of the Bakken wells still produce more oil than the best 10% of these Niobrara oil wells.

        “This Niobrara formation and the relatively nearby Powder River Basin up north should show steady, long term output if the economics allow.”

        I therefore am not sure about these steady returns. If you can suggest counties/fields/formations/operators that should be able to deliver those, let me know.

        • coffeeguyzz says:

          Enno

          Good stuff, as always. Appreciate the time and effort as well as broadening the scope of knowledge to all readers of this site.

          Couple of points …
          The Bakken is in many ways a far superior formation than the Niobrara (and, certainly, the PBR).
          But, there are aspects to the Niobrara that may make for more objective, accurate evaluations of this area.
          The biggie may be length of the laterals.
          Until recently, a high proportion of these horizontals were under 5,000′ long. I do not know of any operator drilling 10,000 footers like they regularly do in ND.
          The depth of many wells is barely over 6,000′, which plays a role in rapid decline as the pressure is much lower.

          Did a quick check on PDC, another significant operator in Colorado, and they claim a figure of $3.6 million to drill and complete an average well in 2015.
          The attraction to operating here will NOT be in producing wells like in ND, rather it will be a relatively lower cost, more efficient return on capital as the operators continue to maximize their operations.

      • Enno Peters says:

        And the corresponding chart for 2014/2015 wells in Niobrara (Colorado).

        • Enno Peters says:

          Note for those who are interested:
          – the above chart for the Bakken now shows the output per calendar months, and now also includes wells with monthly output of 0. There is therefore no survival bias anymore. In my impression, it shows nicely that some wells after 5 years are subject to refracs, which unnaturally lifts the top percentiles.
          – the above chart for Colorado does not include wells if they were not reported for a month, and therefore can suffer slightly from survival bias. That is, assuming that non-reported wells weren’t producing, the performance should be somewhat worse if those wells were included.

          • coffeeguyzz says:

            Shoot, Enno, now you got me on a tear checking up on the Niobrara boys … something I’ve not done in quite a while.

            Synergy just put 11 wells on one pad with the average drill/completion cost of $2.5 million per.
            They project future well costs in the $2 1/2 – $3 million on average for standard length (sub 5,000′), 22 stage laterals.

            At these reduced financial outlays, horizontal drilling and frac’ing is getting within shouting distance of conventional, vertical drilling.

            • Watcher says:

              Sub 5000′ is not standard.

              9-10,000 feet of Bakken rock is.

              One more time. There is no magic. If your costs are lower, it’s because you’re doing less. You didn’t magically get more efficient. If your suppliers are cheaper, it means you were letting them gouge you before, and nobody does that. And they didn’t get magically more efficient either.

              You borrowed money. Period.

              BTW If you do less, you get less out.

              • coffeeguyzz says:

                Watcher

                If the DSUs are one square mile, as I believe they are in Colorado, sub 5,000′ long laterals most certainly are the standard length. Combining adlacent DSUs are enabling operators to extend laterals to 7,300′ and 9,200′, which more of them are in the process of doing.

                You and I are in agreement (now THAT’S magic right there) in saying you get less out when you put less in.
                Enno compared output from Bakken wells with Niobrara, and saw the significant disparities.
                I pointed out with half the length (or less) and WAY less cost, Colorado operatons are simply not on equal footing to their Bakken counter parts.

                • Watcher says:

                  What are you talking about. Look at his chart. Those are IPs of 1/3 Bakken with laterals 1/2 Bakken.

                  They aren’t doing better on a proportional basis.

                  They’re doing worse.

  34. The Baker Hughes Rig Count came out yesterday. I did not realize it until I saw something on Google News. But here it is.

    US oil rig count down 9, gas rig count down 4. Texas down 6, Permian down 4, Eagle Ford down 2, Williston down 1.

     photo Baker Hughes.gif_zpsyrrcrrjh.png

  35. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    Ecology and Money

    “…For centuries, financial schemers have created speculative value and sold it to gullible citizens. Roman bankers reduced the silver in ‘silver’ coins, eventually to zero. Two thousand years later, Enron Corporation shuffled assets and liabilities through shell companies and sold the bogus stocks to their victims.

    …Since the economic collapse of 2008, world banks have created some 10 trillion dollars… and loaned this money to governments and corporations. Debt-based currency is fake energy.… if an economy won’t grow, bankers reduce interest rates to make the fake energy cheaper to borrow…

    Once interest rates hit zero, bankers and governments lose their primary tool to stimulate the economy. The US government debt now stands at over $18 trillion, so even a meagre 1/4-percent would mean $45 billion more, annually draining from US public coffers to the banks. The bankers would love to get this money, but they fear crashing the economy and exposing the ephemeral nature of their overvalued currencies and stocks. The US Federal Reserve Bank is now stuck in this trap… The banks have lost control. The economy will not behave as their theories had predicted. Now, we approach closer to the connection between money and ecology, because the greatest error in industrial economic theory — capitalist and socialist — is that they failed to account for Earth’s contribution, conditions, and limits.

    …In the fifteenth century, European aristocrats — experiencing land and resource constraints at home — gained access to the western hemisphere, Africa, and the South Pacific, which they viewed as resources colonies… to confiscate from the Inuit, Naskapi, Cree, Ojibwa, and other nations, who lived there…

    They wanted the stuff… The European occupation of the Western Hemisphere, Africa, and the south Pacific was not a campaign for democracy, ‘progress’, or religious freedom; it was a conquest for plunder

    European oligarchs grew extremely rich from the looting, which has not ceased. At the most fundamental level, the last three centuries of Western economic ‘growth’ was made possible by plundering the wealth of the Western Hemisphere, Africa, the oceans, and the rest of Earth’s biophysical stores.

    …We’ve reached Earth’s limits, and we have to make human economies work here.

    New technology does not save us from these realities…

    Ingenuity does not create materials or energy. Ingenuity focused on wealth and possessions only helps us plunder Earth more quickly. Efficiency doesn’t save us either… Fancy batteries that require a massive mining industry and leave a trail of waste, are not energy sources; batteries are energy sinks

    Real fundamentals are not ‘job growth’ or ‘low inflation’, and certainly not the tortured statistical versions fed to the public by governments and stock salesmen. The real fundamentals of economy are found in ecology.

    …How much evidence do we need? Disappearing species, forests, and soil? Melting glaciers and expanding deserts? A billion hungry humans and nine million starving to death annually?

    …There is no economy on a depleted Earth.

    Financial bubbles represent fake value, based on the fake energy of debt… When the insiders get caught still holding the fake assets… they demand to be ‘bailed out’ by the citizens… The stock markets resemble a giant casino, where insiders always win, a few lucky or clever players may win occasionally, but most players lose. The net flow of cash in global markets is to the wealthiest players.

    Atop this house of cards sits a ‘derivatives’ market worth an estimated — and completely presumptuous — quadrillion US dollars! Just when we’re getting our heads around ‘trillions’, here come the quads. This massive figure… does not reflect economic growth; it reflects economic inflation, speculation, and debt.

    … Derivatives allow super-rich casino patrons to bet for or against certain rates, indices, or the likelihood that Greece or Japan will default.

    This delusion is fading… Real economy will be driven by solar income, and real economists will help restore and protect our one and only Earth.”

    Now, if, after you’ve read this, you (still) don’t think that these issues boil down in large part to ethics, then you may wish to consider a possible problem with your moral compass.

  36. The Wet One says:

    Ok, this is slightly (read majorly) off topic.

    It’s about one of our favourite bugaboos around here. Climate change. However, it demonstrates a different response to Climate Change than the usual, namely geoengineering.

    https://www.cigionline.org/sites/default/files/gswg1_scenario_planning_for_srm_august_2013.pdf

    It’s also from Yale, which I find interesting, since it’s not just some mickey mouse outfit or some lone wolf talking it up. It’s also supported (funded?) by the government of Ontario, which I find, well, weird. But it’s right there on page 2.

    Someone is taking geoengineering somewhat seriously as a response to Climate Change. Not that I’m really surprised, because if we miss the boat on keeping it at 2.0 C of change, it’s no surprise that geoengineering will be tried. I’m just surprised it’s as well documented and addressed at as high a level as this report seems to suggest. On the other hand, perhaps I ought to be gladdened by this fact. After all, they are taking it seriously.

    Well, enough of my off topic discussion.

    Cheers everyone and Happy Thanksgiving to the Americans amongst us.

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      Geoengineering of certain sorts strike me as lunacy, unless we are talking, say, about mobilizing and planting a whole lot and diversity of plants native to their respective locales. Plants absorb C02 and help create new soil.

      I’d add to that, ‘permaculture food forest gardens’, but if we do that to the general exclusion of native plants, we risk yet again disrupting more of the natural balance.

  37. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    Encyclopedia of Forlorn Places
    (A travel resource for the misanthropic)

    Forlorn

  38. Doug Leighton says:

    Pissing Contest?

    NEW SKYSCRAPER PLANNED FOR IRAQ WILL BE WORLD’S TALLEST BUILDING

    “Designed by AMBS Architects, the planned building is called ‘The Bride’ and would be located in Basra, Iraq.
    Comprised of four connected towers, the new construction would supersede Dubai’s 829.8m-tall Burj Kahlifa as the planet’s tallest building.”

    https://ca.news.yahoo.com/skyscraper-planned-iraq-world-tallest-125340875.html

  39. Doug Leighton says:

    WILL COAL BE ON THE DOLE AFTER COP21?

    “It’s a nice fairy tale, to make ourselves feel a bit better.”

    http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-34904127

    • oldfarmermac says:

      Hi Doug,

      Personally I believe that barring miracles on the renewables front that China and India and any other developing country will continue to burn coal to the extent they need it to generate electricity and can mine it domestically or buy it on international markets.

      We MIGHT get almost totally away from coal in richer countries so long as the natural gas supply holds up.Personally I am not ready to bet gas is going to stay cheap, given that we use it for a lot of other things as well. There might not BE enough readily accessible and affordable gas to convert the western developed world to gas fired electricity, even with renewables growing like crabgrass, NEVER MIND the devoloping world.

      Maybe I am too cynical, but if it comes to a choice between electricity and political agreements limiting coal use, countries such as India and China are imo going to use the agreements for toilet paper.

      As bad as nukes are, they are still safer than coal, statistically, and if the anti nuke movement had not succeeded in blocking new nukes, by now we would most likely be building a new generation of nukes that would be substantially safer than the old ones we are going to HAVE to decommission soon.

      By the time it becomes obvious that the choice may actually be EITHER nukes OR coal, it may be too late to build the nukes.

      Personally I have never believed the spent fuel problem is that big a deal. There are ways it COULD be stored safely, and indefinitely, or it could be used in a new generation of reactors.Safe storage is a political rather than an engineering issue imo.

      I am still waiting for somebody to tell my why , in principle, spent fuel could not ground to a powder and be injected into an old exhausted oil field like fracking sand. Getting it back out, in any useful amount, would appear to be just about impossible, at least for a terrorist organization. A government, or a super major oil company, might manage to retrieve a little of it , but it be a herculean job.

      I took only a basic course in geology, and have forgotten most of that, but the strata that hold oil are most definitely and unquestionably geologically stable for millions of years, right?

      • Doug Leighton says:

        Hi Mac,

        I agree spent fuel storage seems mainly a political rather than an engineering issue, perhaps procrastination comes into play as well. But remember, both military and civilian stocks of fissile materials have to be addressed. As I expect you are fully aware, this unfinished business has dragged out over fifty years now and, so far, prevented the licensing of a geological repository (spent fuel or high-level waste) anywhere except in Finland where the Onkalo spent fuel repository is a deep geological grave for the final disposal of spent nuclear fuel: the first in the world. Injecting the stuff into abandoned oil reservoirs probably wouldn’t be a good idea but maybe preferable to having it lay around in rusting steel tanks. Hanford, in the US, is a national disgrace.

  40. R Walter says:

    http://www.bnsf.com/about-bnsf/financial-information/weekly-carload-reports/

    Petroleum cars: 7,598 week 46 of 2015.

    Week 46, 2014: 11,140 petroleum cars.

    11,140-7,598=3,542, 650 barrels per car, 650×3,542=2,302,300 fewer barrels in one week.

    Times 4 weeks totals 9,203,200 barrels in a months time. Looks like hauling oil by rail is losing ground, there is a better way.

    The production is not falling by 9 million barrels per month, pipelines have to be moving oil, or even tanker trucks. A truck pulling a trailer to haul oil, and the tanker holds 150 barrels, 6,300 gallons, close to 46,000 pounds, you’re hauling too much weight for the roads, at twelve dollars per barrel to haul the oil, the haul will cost 1800 dollars. Not that efficient.

    Pipe the oil to destinations, build another pipeline, instant storage plus the ability to move oil more efficiently, will cost less too.

    In October of 2006 the Williston Basin in North Dakota had a monthly total of approximately 3,500,000 barrels of oil. October of 2015 production was 36,696,000, some few hundred more, barrels of oil, a ten fold increase plus. The oil is going somewhere, demand has to be there. More than ten times increase in production, supply, has to be going someplace. Gas tanks is the easy answer, where the demand is at. What would you rather do, have a car with one gallon of gas to take you 20 miles or walk twenty miles? You’ll need food and water after twenty miles of walking, it will cost more than a gallon of gas. The gas keeps you in better shape financially and you won’t need three days of rest after a 20 mile walk, plus some aspirin. The economics of a gallon of gas trumps all. Hence, you have a car and ten bucks for gas. It only makes sense. Demand for gasoline provides comfort and convenience. Ride a horse for 20 miles, by then, you and the horse will need to be watered and fed, two dollars for a gallon of gas is by far the better bargain. A pure no brainer.

    Those extra 32 million barrels of oil causes pressure on prices, looks that way, anyhow. Increased production has an effect on the price, it lowers the price, falls through five six floors and thumps purdy hard. What actually is happening in the world of trading oil for money, oil providing energy? The lowest price possible to get the kids off of the street. It’s an oil price war, like a gas war, the strong beating the weak meek to a pulp. The beatings will continue until the morale improves.

    We will not submit to your bullshit say the Russians. Should be no big surprise there, the Russians are taken aback. The beaches in Turkey are absent of vacationing Russians as of now.

  41. shallow sand says:

    Gasoline in some parts of the US has dropped below $1.60. Today I filled up the truck for $35.

    Oil exporters are really getting thumped. Even those with refining.

    But for owning an interest in US stripper wells, I would be really happy about this.

    As 99.5% of US citizens have little to no interest economically in oil production, they are having a wonderful thanksgiving.

    Thank you US LTO, Canadian tar sands, OPEC and Russia, say 99.5% of the citizens of the United States.

    Never would have thought this would have been possible in 2013. Wonder how long it will last?

    • coffeeguyzz says:

      Shallow

      Not much longer.
      It is clearly unsustainable … and that which cannot be sustained, will not be.

      Hang in there. Things are deteriorating at an accelerating pace due to low oil prices for the countries, societies, and businesses that need higher revenue.
      The survivors coming out the other side of this downturn are apt to reap significant benefits. Gerard

  42. Venezuela update: 9 days to D Day. Production shut down at a large heavy oil field due to explosion (event not reported in the media that I can access). Senior opposition leader shot and killed at the end of a political rally being held in a small town. Poll results show Bolivar state, home of the iron mines and the large steel mills, is now swinging nearly 100 % to opposition. Narconephews due to see the judge on Dec 2. Government pushing out the little food left to popular markets this weekend. Maduro offering houses, tablets, cash, and threats to get votes.

    • oldfarmermac says:

      Hi Fernando,

      It looks like the hottest summer EVER coming up in Venezuela , and I am NOT talking about climate.

      I pray that any of your friends and relatives still stuck in Cuba make it out, if they prefer to leave. Some will want to stay, probably, especially if they are old already.

  43. Patrick R says:

    Clearly it is possible to reduce the rate of oil use in a healthy and growing economy; decline in oil use is not always and simply a sign of a weakening economy. That is a view firmly stuck in the last century when the correlation between the two was much tighter. And of course the future will in fact belong to those economies that are better at divorcing the old king input from performance.

    That, in many ways, is the subtext of Ron’s great work here; a world with less easily available oil. Though he of course prefers TEOTW scenario, more interesting, I think, to explore transitions to other futures especially as that process is already observable. The trend is always more instructive than the status quo. And has been mentioned up thread, the rapidly developing and industrialising economies are in a different process than the OECD. China v Germany. The US, as ever, exhibits every trend at once; is both improving oil intensity and now a return to driving on cheaper pump prices [although still lower VMT per capita].

    This is from 2014 so the data points are a little dated now by the theme is still good:
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/amorylovins/2014/07/18/energy-intensity-the-secret-revolution/

    ‘Michael Liebreich, chairman of Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s advisory board, points out that the U.S. fracking revolution and the consequent 2004–13 rise in domestic oil output displaced oil imports equivalent to 10 percent of domestic consumption—while two little-noticed demand-side trends, less driving and more-efficient vehicles, saved 18 percent, nearly twice as much. Drilling advocates somehow forgot to mention that their impressive achievements were almost lapped by demand-side shifts. Those saved barrels were nearly invisible because we can’t see energy we don’t use or buy.’

  44. aws. says:

    How does it make sense to forsake a salmon fishery for a one off LNG project?

    The Dubious Environmental Science Behind a $36B Energy Project in British Columbia

    By Jake Bleiberg, Vice, November 25, 2015 | 11:00 am

    The May 4 [proponent commisioned] Stantec report states, “survey data suggest that salmon do not use Flora Bank eelgrass habitat for nursery habitat or other life dependent processes.” This conclusion runs in direct contradiction to Moore’s contemporary research and government documents going back decades. In 1973, the DFO issued a report urging the government to reject a plan to build a major shipping port on another island around Flora Bank, less than two kilometers from Lelu Island. It concluded that the area is “of high biological significance as a fish (especially juvenile salmon) rearing habitat,” and that “the construction of a superport at the Kitson Island — Flora Bank site would destroy much of this critical salmon habitat.”

    “I’m not going to say that they’re doing anything dishonest, but what I’ll say is that I don’t think the science supports their conclusions,” Moore said. “There’s a disconnect between what the data are and what their conclusions are.”

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      I’ll just embellish your fine post with a short video link: Tsimshians Confront Petronas.

    • Ves says:

      aws,
      Of course it makes sense from the point of making quick buck by the narrow interests that have .gov captured. Nothing makes sense anymore. There is no functional economy and it never was. The whole economy is just one big open mining pit. But don’t you worry you have a chance to get distracted and take the “green” pill by marching this weekend for that green “thing” summit in Paris.

      • Glenn Stehle says:

        George Orwell, writing in his famous essay “Politics and the English Languge,” noted that, “Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidty to pure wind.”

        And as Christopher Simpson points out in Science of Coercion: Communication Research & Psychological Warfare, science and scientists have played a star role in crafting and disseminating “political language.”

        It’s not that individual scientists are like a bunch of trained goats that can be led around by the nose, no more than laymen can. But as Simpson explains:

        The state usually did not directly determine what scientists could or could not say, but it did significantly influence the selection of who would do the “authorative” talking in the field….

        “The primary nexus between government and social science is an economic one,” write Albert Biderman and Elisabeth Crawford of the Bureau of Social Science Research. It is “so pervasive as to make any crisis of relations with the government a crisis for social science as a whole.”….

        The earliest cumulative data concerning government funding of social science is provided by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 1952; that report shows that over 96 percent of all reported federal funding for social science at that time was drawn from the U.S. military….

        The informal authority…reveals a distinctly centrist ideological bent: Projects that advanced their conception of scientific progress and national security enjoyed a chance to gain the financial support that is often a prerequisite to academic success. As is discussed more fully in later chapters, projects that did not meet these criteria were often relegated to obscurity, and in some cases actively suppressed. One result of this selective financing has been a detailed elaboration of those aspects of scientific truth that tend to support the preconceptions of the agencies that were paying the bill.

  45. aws. says:

    I can’t find a link to this report. I was sent a copy.

    THE PREDICTED FATE OF FLORA BANK

    SUMMARY OF RESEARCH PREPARED ON BEHALF OF THE LAX KW’ALAAMS BAND AND THE SKEENA FISHERIES COMMISSION

    By: Patrick McLaren Ph.D., P.Geo. SedTrend Analysis Limited, October 21, 2015

    Given the formation and behaviour of Flora Bank, it is clear that anything that reduces the energy that serves to maintain its sand will result in the sand crossing the barrier and being lost to the sea. The trellis structure composed of 488 pilings that are 1.22 m in diameter will serve as a barrier that will decrease wave and tidal energy resulting in the wall becoming “broken” in the lee of the trestle. As shown in Fig.3 it is reasonable to predict that sand will be moved off the bank as it is driven from the higher energiessurrounding its perimeter to the region of lower energy where the “wall” has become broken. The eel grass and its importance to juvenile salmon habitat will be lost and there is no mechanism available to allow the sand to be replaced.

  46. Javier says:

    I am having problems posting this comment. This is a sixth attempt. It is directed to Caelan comment here:
    http://peakoilbarrel.com/a-surprising-look-at-oil-consumption/comment-page-1/#comment-548391

    I would be very concerned if ACC was pushing climate towards cooling, since it would be adding to the cooling trend that Milankovitch cycles are imposing on the Holocene. Since ACC is pushing in the opposite direction its net effect is going to be to counter some cooling, and that can only be a good thing to us.

    So your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points. This obviously depends on one beliefs, because there is no evidence at all that runaway effects and tipping points exist if the planet gets warmer or has more CO2 in its atmosphere. In fact the evidence suggests that it is not the case.

    Eemian interglacial was estimated to be about 2°C warmer than present, and it did not show any runaway effect or tipping point from that, so there is evidence that temperature will not cause any runaway effect nor get us to a tipping point at least until +2°C, but probably not even further, because the evidence from 600 millions of years shows that temperatures have oscillated up to +10-12°C without the system showing runaway effects. At any point in the past temperatures were tightly regulated by the system, whatever they were.

    Regarding CO2 we know that the atmosphere has had twenty times more in the past and know that most plants show an optimum at 1000-1500 ppm. And we are never going to get to those values. We would get out of things to burn much earlier. So no evidence of runaway effects or tipping points from CO2 either.

    I refuse to be worried about hypothetical scenarios that are not based on evidence. What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating while CO2 increase has been accelerating. This incontrovertible evidence is incompatible with any alarmist scenario.

    Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.

    • Jef says:

      “What the evidence says is that since late 1990’s temperature increase has been decelerating ”

      I guess Ron won’t say so I will… Fuck Off!

      The oceans have absorbed around 90% of global warming and yes they are warming.

      “Study drives a sixth nail into the global warming ‘pause’ myth”

      http://www.skepticalscience.com/study-drives-sixth-nail-into-pause-myth.html

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Here is a link about Muller’s conversion from doubter to believer. I will find the precise video sometime.

        http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2012/0730/Prominent-climate-change-denier-now-admits-he-was-wrong-video

      • Jeffrey Bromberg says:

        But the simple fact is, warmer oceans lead to an increase in clouds, which increases precipitation, which further leads to a natural increase in irrigation to grow the crops that a steadily rising global population demands. So a mere realization that the temperatures of the oceans are increasing isn’t an automatic cause for concern since the change could help humanity in the long run by putting more food onto everybody’s table.

        Now, yes, I do understand that if land-based temperatures start increasing again at the rates we saw prior to 1998, there will be some areas of the world lost as far as growing crops are concerned. However, the recent research shows that on a global scale, most of this lost land will be counteracted by the addition of newly warmed land that will be more than suitable for agricultural use. Please refer to the figure below, which depicts the full extent of worldwide migrated farmland by the year 2100.

        • oldfarmermac says:

          This shifting soils may is a goddamned poor joke. It has the southeastern coast of the USA, which has been and is still heavily farmed, what of it is not under asphalt and concrete, for the last three centuries, listed as new farm land.

          I have never looked into the soils of northern ASIA , but when you get into the far north of Canada, you are basically looking at a shallow bog on top of bedrock. The yankee breadbasket is what it is because the glaciers stripped off the soil farther north and left it mostly south of the Canadian border.

          Growing anything there would be quite a challenge under any circumstances.

          And lets not forget that virtually nothing in the way of infrastructure necessary to support agriculture exists up that way. NOTHING.

        • aws. says:

          I am always amused by deniers who suggest we can farm the Canadian Shield.

          Gotta laugh to keep from crying.

      • Javier says:

        Jef,

        Most climate scientists don’t believe that shit of the heat hiding in the oceans. When a theory starts to make up things to explain why it doesn’t work, it is time to change that theory.

        • oldfarmermac says:

          Show us some links that say the upper layer of the seas are not warming up significantly in recent times.

          “Most climate scientists don’t believe that shit of the heat hiding in the oceans”

          This is a pretty bold statement. Show us the evidence.

          Everything I have read for the last year or two indicates that sea water temperatures down to several hundred meters are increasing. This increase is slow of course, due to the enormous capacity of water to store heat, and we do not yet know how much of the extra heat is or will be making its way into really DEEP waters.

          But it takes only a small increase in surface water temperatures to have a major influence on climate or perhaps I should say global weather.

          When the top seven or eight hundred meters warm even a tenth of a degree, that is a hell of a lot, and the water will STAY warmer for many many years.

          • Javier says:

            Oldfarmermac,

            I can show you below the official NOAA graph that shows that sea surface temperatures are experiencing the same pause as the rest of the climate.

            You can check at this link that the warming trend in 0-700 m global ocean heat content has not changed:

            https://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/heat_content55-07.png

            So we have to believe that somehow the missing heat is making it to below 700 m, where we essentially were not measuring before Argo system and we now measure very sparsely giving how huge the oceans are. How convenient.

            It is so unbelievable that there is very little research published on that, while there are dozens and dozens of papers on the pause. Proponents cannot explain how the heat could get so deep without warming waters above, as everybody knows that there is very little mixing of water below 200 m.

            And even if we were to ignore all that and accept that somehow the heat made it to great ocean depth, we know of no mechanism that could bring it back to the surface. Deep waters take from hundreds to thousands of years or even more to come back to the surface.

            • oldfarmermac says:

              I am no expert myself, and understand that oceanographers and climatologists recognize that there are known and probably some unknown periodic cycles involving sea water temperatures.

              The graph you posted shows steadily rising temperatures since about 1950. Now these may peak and start down again- but it is MY expectation that the ups and downs are going to exhibit higher peaks and higher troughs as time passes.

              We don’t have good water temperature records going back far enough to know for SURE about the lengths of the various natural cycles, they could vary a lot more than we think they do.

              I do not expect world wide average temperature to decrease noticeably anytime soon, the trend to warming is unmistakable in my opinion.

              Where are the cool years ?

              I remain convinced the “missing ” heat is mostly in the top thousand meters of the sea, with some of it no doubt having found its way into very deep water.

              NOW IF the oceans turn over FAST ENOUGH, we might NOT experience extremely disruptive warming due to our burning fossil fuels, because the oceans are big enough and deep enough to absorb the heat for a lot longer than fossil fuels, and also longer than the fossil fuel legacy co2 we put into the atmosphere.

              But so far as I know, there is no evidence that ocean waters turn over fast enough to remove this extra heat to the bottom waters within a time frame relevant to our daily lives and the lives of the ten or twenty generations .

              IF the heat does get hauled down to extreme depths, it will take it a very long time to emerge at the surface again, and by then the fossil fuel age will be history.

              There is a possibility, but only a very slight one in my estimation, that you will be proven right in the end.

              • Javier says:

                Oldfarmermac,

                There is no missing heat. The planet knows very well if it has excess heat and how to get rid of it in that case.

                Most of the heat enters the climatic system by conversion of solar radiation into heat in the tropical oceans as most of the radiation over land is either converted in chemical energy by plants or reflected by high albedo deserts and poles.

                Part of that oceanic heat is transferred to the atmosphere in the form of direct warming or water evaporation that raises that energy to high in the troposphere where condensation releases it. The atmosphere then transfers part of that heat towards the poles through atmosphere circulation in the Hadley, Ferrer and Polar cells.

                The oceans transfer most of the remaining heat towards the poles through the thermohaline circulation (also known as conveyor belt). The poles radiate to space a lot more energy that they receive from the Sun. Waters around the poles are thoroughly cooled and sink.

                The oceans have such huge heat capacity that they do not equilibrate during an interglacial. It is too short a time for that and there is very little water mixing. The temperature of the oceans reflects the Ice Age cold with a little warming for the past 15,000 years. Obviously the warming of the oceans will continue until we are back into a new glacial stage.

                You can think of the Earth as a bucket of very cold water (≈4°C) with a warmer inch of water on top and a peel of orange floating over it. Our climate depends on the water not mixing, because if it did we would be instantly back to glacial conditions.

                During the Pleistocene the average temperature of the Earth has been decreasing reflecting the progressive cooling of Earth’s oceans over millions of years of Ice Age. Pardon me for not being worried for a little interglacial warming of the oceans.

                The planet measures the temperature gradient between the equator and the poles. If there is too much warming the gradient increases and the planet activates additional cooling measures. One of this measures is known to us as El Niño. In essence El Niño constitutes an extraordinary emergence of oceanic heat at the Equator that is directly transferred to the atmosphere and afterwards radiated to space, bypassing the decades long oceanic currents transport. It represents a net loss of heat to the system, although to us, surface creatures, it looks like global warming. In reality the more Los Niños, the more the planet is venting excess heat.

                We know this to be the case because periods of high El Niño activity precede Bond events. Once a Bond event cools the planet, El Niño activity ceases.

                Where are the cool years ?

                There are no cool years. We are at Peak Warm.
                I have already showed you that Central England Temperatures is recording cooling, and it is not the only one. RSS satellite temperature dataset shows also slight cooling and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF, an independent intergovernmental organisation supported by 34 states) also shows cooling in its reanalysis data (look for figure at the bottom of page linked if you are interested):
                http://www.ecmwf.int/en/about/media-centre/news/2015/ecmwf-releases-global-reanalysis-data-2014-0

                We are at Peak Warm and nobody on Earth can tell you if we are going to warm further or we are going to cool from now on, because our understanding of the climate is too limited and our models don’t work.

                Remember that the cooling must necessarily come when we are at Peak Warm and almost nobody expects it. Sounds familiar?

                • oldfarmermac says:

                  Hello once again, Javier

                  I am not an oceanographer, nor am I a climatologist, but I do have a sound education in the basic physical sciences, and I have supplemented it for the last half century by reading at least a thousand books on the sciences- always being careful to make sure the ones I read are written by real scientists,mostly ones associated with good universities, and not crackpots.

                  Some people hang out in bars, others watch tv or play cards. I have always spent my free time mostly reading science and history. I have always had TONS of free time, except when working in bursts for a few months. I have had a full time job less than a third of my adult life. I lived for many years in the woods, for months on end at a stretch, reading book after book simply because that is what I wanted to do.

                  So I know about as much about topics such as climate and oceanography as any layman is likely to know. Most likely less than you do though, since my own knowledge tends to be a mile wide but only an inch deep in a lot of places, like the famous River Platte.

                  You could conceivably be right. But I don’t think so.

                  We do agree about a lot of things, especially the MANY OTHER critical environmental issues and the way the media handle the politics of climate change and sensationalize the coverage thereof.

                  It is time to let this one rest, for a while at least.

                  As Petro says,

                  BE WELL.

                  And hang in there. Gad flies are essential species in political ecologies.

                  Never give up.

                  • Javier says:

                    Thanks and fair enough, Oldfarmermac.

                    I am not here to convince you or anybody. As I defend nobody knows how the climate is going to turn out the next decades, so you also may be right. The important thing is that people have access to correct unbiased information so they can take their own informed decision on a matter that is not scientifically settled.

                    Stay well.

                  • Nick G says:

                    Javier,

                    Everyone agrees that there is uncertainty. Actuaries will tell you that risk is a very real cost – that’s what insurance is all about.

                    The cost of risk can’t be ignored, right?

                  • Javier says:

                    The calculation of risks requires knowing (or a good estimate of) several figures, like probability of damage, actual cost of damage, and so on.

                    The truth is that objectively every fraction of a degree of warming for the last 350 years has been beneficial. It is very easy to show that our production of food is at a maximum and that our population is at a maximum, while no actual damage can be attributed to warming with certainty.

                    We are at our best ever.

                    Do you insure against beneficial events?

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  Hi Javier,

                  We know more than you think. I will repeat there is natural variability, everyone agrees on that. Much of that is explained by the Earth’s orbit, the variation in solar output, volcanoes, and ocean circulation. There are also changes in ice sheets, vegetation, ocean heat content, and atmospheric carbon dioxide in response to these various changes.

                  It is not enough to say the earth will adjust, and the Earth will get rid of the excess heat. That is hand waving. The Earth will adjust to more heat input with rising temperatures.

                  • Javier says:

                    Dennis, how do you know what I think?

                    I know that you know quite a lot about present warming and current model hypothesis. But I see that you know a lot less about paleoclimatology. This is very common, to the point that many climate scientists clearly don’t know much about paleoclimatology. I have dedicated hundreds of hours to study what we know about past climate of the Earth. While not an expert by any measure, I am quite knowledgeable about it. And the key to understand present climate change is to understand past climate changes.

                    The figure below is figure 2 from this article in Nature:
                    ftp://met.dgf.uchile.cl/pub/rgarreau/GF600_2011/NeffBurnsetal01-OmanCaved10OvsC146-9Kyr.pdf
                    Neff, U. et al. Strong coherence between solar variability and the monsoon in Oman between 9 and 6 kyr ago. 2001 NATURE 411, 290.

                    It shows the correlation between variations in the Sun measured by changes in 14C generation, and variations in monsoon precipitations measured by changes in 18O deposition in a cave. The correlation is remarkable.

                    This is not an exceptional case. The Sun-climate connection is all over the literature, with very good articles and very strong data supporting it.

                    All this data is in such flagrant contradiction with the current hypothesis that you could put any article like this showing an important role for Sun variability in climate change directly in the pile of skeptics without asking the authors.

                    Because Sun variability is very small, about 0.1% change in TSI, current hypothesis does not assign any important role to it. Yet tons of evidence from past climate changes demonstrate that Sun variability is having a disproportionate effect on climate, being amplified at least four times by a presently unknown mechanism.

                    The key to understand why we are getting current climate change wrong is in past climate changes.

        • Nick G says:

          What are your thoughts on ocean acidification?

          • Javier says:

            I have not studied ocean acidification. I know it is a recent issue and research is incomplete and there are a lot of contradictory findings. It is probably too early to conclude anything.

            • Stilgar Wilcox says:

              Javier,

              I can tell from your posts you know little to nothing about climate change/global warming. If you think you’re some kind of an expert on the topic, I challenge you to go to the link below and post your thoughts. On that website are many highly educated scholars with in the field experience that can help set you straight on all of your deluded presumptions.

              http://neven1.typepad.com/

              • Javier says:

                Stilgar, I am pretty sure I know more about climate change than 99% of the population. Of course I know less than most climate scientists although some of them are pretty specialized and don’t know much outside their specific subfield. For example I know more about the 8.2 Kyr event than anyone that hasn’t read the papers, climate scientist or not. As a scientist, because of my training, I am perfectly capable of judging if the evidence presented supports the conclusions or not, and if the null hypothesis can be rejected or not.

                Still I don’t see why I would want to go to a blog set by alarmists. I am in this blog to learn about oil and energy related issues. Since the blog owner allows and enjoys discussing climate issues, I try to dispel misinformation, that is so common in climate change, using scientific literature and official data. In a way I am returning a favor, so I pay my oil learning with climate change teaching.

                I don’t have anything to learn or to teach in an climate alarmist blog. All my climate change learning comes from scientific literature, and surely nobody there want’s to learn anything from me. I don’t like to waste my time.

                • ChiefEngineer says:

                  Quack quack quack quack quack quack quack
                  I don’t like to waste my time quack quack quack quack quack quack

                  • IanH says:

                    As in the Larson cartoon, Javier talking, but not in a language that alarmists understand?

                    http://tinyurl.com/kcqb9vp

                    At least he didn’t tell you to F off Javier.

                    As a lurker I find the abuse, rather than debate, that Javier’s reasoned posts attract depressing.

                    The oil related stuff on this blog is most interesting ; 40 USD oil and 1 USD mmcf Leidy hub gas needs some explaining. Bakken and Marcellus economics baffle me. There are a zillion alarmist blogs out there for the True Believers. Perhaps the ‘TB’ers should have their own non 0il/gas production thread.

                  • ChiefEngineer says:

                    Hello Ian,

                    You don’t need to be a scientist to figure out humans are destroying planet earth. We live in a thin layer of atmosphere on a plant which only about 10% of the surface area is habitable to humans.

                    I suggest you start up your car in your enclosed garage and sit in the drivers seat to see what happens after 30 minutes. Oh, and take Javier with you for your scientific experiment.

                    RIP

        • aws. says:

          You’re making stuff up Jav.

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      “I would be very concerned if ACC was pushing climate towards cooling, since it would be adding to the cooling trend that Milankovitch cycles are imposing on the Holocene. Since ACC is pushing in the opposite direction its net effect is going to be to counter some cooling, and that can only be a good thing to us.”

      Javier, I just took a cursory look at a graph that you just posted and it seems to clearly show a temperature rise. The planet is a complex system, and I’m unsure I would want to think of these two effects– warming and cooling– as simple as cancelling each other out. If you and I pushed, on opposite sides, toward each other and against a cardboard box, the box wouldn’t only stay where it is, but would also be substantially crushed (along with whatever’s inside, like maybe some lifeforms). And then there is the apparent geo-relatively fast speed of the warming.

      One or two thoughts about about water surface/depth mixing are about how energy can propagate through water on the surface: The water doesn’t really mix but, rather, the energy propagates through it as a wave/oscillation and it is at the ends– the walls/beaches/etc.– that receive much of the energy. So, I wonder if there is something like that going on with regard to ocean warming. Also, consider sunlight going through some windows. It doesn’t heat the windows as much as the surfaces inside the building which then release at least some of the heat, but also retain some of it. So maybe the ocean subsurface crusts need to be thermometered (too or better)? Water is a funny medium. For example, it expands when it loses energy.

      “So your question rests on the existence of runaway effects and tipping points.” ~ Javier

      My questions concern complex dynamics that we don’t fully understand and never will. My idea of tipping points and runaway effects involve keystone species disappearing and ocean chemistry changes, and their results, for examples. Biology is part of geology insofar as it affects it and vice-versa. Earth is alive. Smoking fossil fuels a few million packs a day seems near-bound to give her chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. This is quite outside her experience, although of course she’s had others before, and some of them wiped out most of her children. Like us, kiddo.

      “Regarding your description of Homo sapiens as a toxic species to the biosphere, I fully agree with it, and our efforts should be directed towards protecting the environment and placing it as our foremost concern, above economic development.” ~ Javier

      Hear-hear. Time to kick the bad habits.

  47. oldfarmermac says:

    In the last analysis, I hang out here because there is an ongoing, literate discussion about the BIG PICTURE, including population, resources, climate, etc , with the regulars mostly all having something to say worth listening too.

    Now here is one aspect of the inevitable end of growth, the baked in end of growth, once we REALLY hit the wall when it comes to nature’s one time gifts, an aspect well worth discussion.

    We have gotten to the point we depend on certain industries, such as home building and automobiles, to keep the economy up and moving.

    Now there are tens of millions of poorly housed people in this country, and billions in the world, but I am mostly focusing on rich western countries for the moment. Let us take the example of my own family, and see where it in turn takes us in the discussion of housing.

    The birth rate in my family has been dropping like a stone for the last three or four generations, and is now below replacement level. Damned near every one of the COUPLES of MY generation owns a nice house, in a one good condition, that can be expected with good maintenance to last AT LEAST a hundred years. Ditto the old maids and bachelors. Hey folks, we aren’t going to NEED very many new houses in coming years, compared to bygone days. There will be a GLUT of houses on the market as the population peaks.

    We are not going to need a lot of new roads, and although it is going to cost plenty to maintain existing roads, maintenance costs peanuts compared to new.

    Ditto damned near every sort of expensive infrastructure, hardly any of it is going to be SCRAPPED wholesale, but rather it will be refurbished. If you tear down a coal fired generating plant, and build a gas fired plant it its place, you do not have to buy a new site, get it permitted, get the powerlines going away permitted and built etc.

    A modern brick, concrete, and steel elementary school can be refurbished to any standard for peanuts compared to the cost of building a new one from scratch.

    Ditto most or nearly all of the commercial buildings we have these days. We are at or very near peak shopping centers, peak office buildings, etc unless I am badly mistaken.

    And automobiles are so much better than they used to be that only an OLD GEARHEAD has any real appreciation of the difference between a car built in the sixties or seventies or eighties compared to a car built since the turn of the century. I see cars that look and run like new with over two hundred thousand miles on the odometer many times a day, cars that have never had a serious repair.

    Finding work for people a generation or two down the road is apt to be a bigger problem than lack of sound infrastructure.A lot of future workers will find jobs in renewable energy and in the business of upgrading existing houses, stores, schools etc. But whether there will be work enough is questionable.

    We are collectively in a position where we can easily afford to back off on working so long and hard, and just wait for my generation to DIE, and move into the vacated houses. We don’t NEED a new car every four years, one new car will last a couple of decades, at least, if cared for properly.

    This sort of thing is going to have an enormous impact on society going forward.

    Hopefully we can get a discussion going as to the size of this impact.

  48. oldfarmermac says:

    This is still not the Muller video I am looking for, but it is good enough.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqPuKxXUCPY

    • Javier says:

      Oldfarmermac,

      I praise Richard Muller for examining the evidence himself and reaching his own conclusion. I just wish more people would do the same.

      His conversion however means very little. Most skeptics were previous believers, as myself, because in the late 90’s and early 00’s the model fitted the evidence a lot better, so almost everybody believed that global warming was being caused by CO2. At least I did until pretty recently. A lot of contrary evidence and a lot of knowledge of the past climate has come out in the last two decades.

      And his public conversion in July 2012 from skeptic to believer must be seen with a healthy dose of skepticism itself, because he was on record several times years before saying things like:

      “Let me be clear. My own reading of the literature and study of paleoclimate suggests strongly that carbon dioxide from burning of fossil fuels will prove to be the greatest pollutant of human history. It is likely to have severe and detrimental effects on global climate.”
      Richard Muller, 2003
      http://www.technologyreview.com/news/402357/medieval-global-warming/page/2/

      Hardly the words of a skeptic.

      “I was never a skeptic […] I never felt that pointing out mistakes qualified me to be called a climate skeptic.”
      Richard Muller, 2011
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/15/-ex-skeptic-richard-muller-congress-global-warming_n_1094966.html

      I would suspect that this supposed conversion might have been a public relations act to promote himself.

      Nothing is what it seems in climate science.

  49. oldfarmermac says:

    Statistics can be very misleading. Things can change pretty fast. I agree with Nick that food production world wide is holding up or growing slightly, at this time and recently.

    But we are about at the point where food production is going to start declining in some major agricultural areas due to ground water depletion, salt build up in soils, urban sprawl, etc. A drought that afflicts a native ecosystem for ten or twenty years is not apt to DESTROY that ecosystem beyond recognition, it can be expected to recover over time when the rains return.

    When land is farmed intensively on the grand scale, and drought hits hard, the people who farm it, especially subsistence farmers who live on it, have little choice except to use whatever techniques they can to stay solvent, or simply stay alive.

    Land cropped or overgrazed or aquifiers badly overpumped may not recover for centuries or even for thousands of years if badly abused, and the abuse HAPPENING NOW is the only thing really allowing food production to hold steady or grow slightly.

    The California situation is the ugly poster child that gets the most attention here in the USA.

    But there are towns in rural areas around the edges of the Oglalla that have died because the Oglalla is dying too, along with many other critical aquifers world wide.

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/nov/28/california-central-valley-sinking-farmers-deepwater-wells

    This is not going to end well, but it is going to play out in MY favor, because I own some prime farmland in the mid south where it is likely to continue to rain, and I have a lot of frontage on a good sized stream,coming down out of a mountain that is not farmable,with no farms upstream of mine, and I will be grandfathered to irrigate using that stream water.

  50. scrub puller says:

    Yair . . .
    OFM. I generally agree with most of your thoughts but I think your comments about infrastructure in particular and vehicles to some extent need to be questioned.

    Houses, shopping centres, commercial buildings and so on are demolished every day because it is more economical to replace than refurbish.

    The cost to the economy of doing major highway reconstruction is astronomical and, in many cases I suspect it would be better to construct a second right of way rather than deal with traffic which makes it difficult or impossible to operate on a viable or economic scale . . . I don’t believe the thousands of hours logged by trucks waiting at stop/go signs and lights are taken into consideration.

    As far as vehicles go we didn’t drive 4×4 SUV’s back in the sixties and seventies the normal sedans and wagons offered by General Motors, Ford and some of the lesser builders served us well on roads that would reduce the current equivalents and pretenders to junk in a few months.

    Cheers.

    • oldfarmermac says:

      A major repaving job on a busy highway is a real hassle for sure, but generally it is just not possible to actually build a new road, especially in highly developed areas, to replace an old one. The difficulties of just arranging the new right of way are usually enough to prevent it happening. So mostly the old road gets an upgrade, and the people using it just have to put up with it.

      I don’t know of any houses built since the sixties, to the standards of that time, which have been well maintained, which are not good for another half century. Some are torn down due to urban blight, some are allowed to rot due to failure to control termites or fix leaky roofs etc. Some are torn down because the land under them gets to be more valuable without the house than with it, and large fancy new houses or offices etc are built on the ground.

      But modern buildings built to modern codes just don’t wear out or rot down. Take care of them, and they are good for a hundred years at least, if cared for.

      My local government has built some new school buildings to replace older ones, but there was essentially nothing at all wrong with the older buildings that could not have been corrected and updated.The people just wanted new stuff.

      Hardly anybody buys a new car because it is cheaper to own than an older one. Repairs on car between five and ten years old are apt to be a rather minor fraction of the depreciation on a new car over the same five years.

      What I am getting it is that if we cannot AFFORD new stuff, there will be plenty of perfectly serviceable OLD stuff around. We will not have to do without once the population peaks and starts to decline.

      • scrub puller says:

        Yair . . .

        Gotcha OFM, I can see your point, well said.

        We have just suffered years of upgrading the main North/South highway running through our state and it is falling apart already.

        This Road is just a two lane with occasional passing lanes (in our area) running through rural and grazing country for hundreds of miles, plenty of room to run a second right of way and leave the traffic flowing.

        One of the reasons they are getting pavement failures I believe are all the transitions between the short sections.

        Cheers.

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          Generally how much do railway lines cost (new and to maintain) and how long do they last compared to highways?

          • aws. says:

            Queue Matt Mushalik… if I recall correctly he has written quite about about the madness of new highway construction in Australia… and the absence of investment in rail.

          • oldfarmermac says:

            Building a rail road costs a minor fraction of what it costs to build a highway, excluding the costs of obtaining right of way and clearing and grading said right of way in both cases.

            BUT building a rail road over rough ground can cost a lot more, because you can’t have steep grades or sharp turns. So grading a rail road thru mountains can cost a fortune compared to grading a two lane highway with steep grades and hairpin curves.

            Laying track is a LOT cheaper than paving a highway suitable for heavy truck traffic.

            Half a dozen men working off a specialized truck that runs on the rails as well as on the highway can replace cross ties and bad stretches of rail for peanuts compared to the cost of repaving a highway.

            Taken all around, rail is DIRT CHEAP to maintain compared to highways and generally cheaper to build as well, if the terrain is favorable for rail construction.

            • Toolpush says:

              OFM,

              I know what you are saying about the cost of rail. To me it also should be relatively cheap,but for some reason it is no so clear.
              I had trouble finding actual costs for new rail track, so I looked up the last long distance rail line built in Oz, the Alice Springs to Darwin railway. 1420 km call it 1000 miles for convenience.
              The project cost $1.3 b, Australian dollars, about $1 million per km or about $1.5 per mile. This is built over relative flat land, near zero acquisition cost, no nimbys. It involved 90 bridges and culverts.
              http://www.aarail.com.au/railway/corridor/
              The best I could find for freeway construction.
              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Road

              Construction costs[edit]
              According to the New York State Thruway Authority,[67] some sample per-mile costs to construct multi-lane roads in several US northeastern states were:

              Connecticut Turnpike — $3,449,000 per mile
              New Jersey Turnpike — $2,200,000 per mile
              Pennsylvania Turnpike (Delaware Extension) — $1,970,000 per mile
              Northern Indiana Toll Road — $1,790,000 per mile
              Garden State Parkway — $1,720,000 per mile
              Massachusetts Turnpike — $1,600,000 per mile
              Thruway, New York to Pennsylvania Line — $1,547,000 per mile
              Ohio Turnpike — $1,352,000 per mile
              Pennsylvania Turnpike (early construction) — $736,000 per mile

              I am sure if these are old prices or near current, but the railroad cost I quote was from circa 2000. Though some of these freeway cost are higher,they would have also had much higher land acquisition costs ,due to acreage required as well as cost per acre.

              The railway quoted is a heavy rail, and I can only presume it is the compliance to grade, and the foundations required that add to the cost,compared what is involved building a freeway.

              As for passenger rail. It allows and requires high population densities. Therefore a lot of people in the way, and therefore often end up underground, costing up to $40m per Km, on the other hand light rail happily runs on current roads with minimal foundation work required,after the rails are laid of course for fairly low cost.

          • Caelan MacIntyre says:

            Ok, cool, thanks guys and fair enough… How long would the railways last compared to highways (and before either would need to be maintained)?

  51. Longtimber says:

    Debt Bomb Ticking for US Shale
    “Much has been made about the resiliency of US oil production in the face of low prices, but the truth is that many producers are maximizing their output — even unprofitable volumes — because they need the cash flow to service their debt”
    http://www.energyintel.com/pages/worldopinionarticle.aspx?DocID=907631

    Debt? What’s that got to do with Oil Anyway? Anyone got any Bankster Jokes to Share ?

  52. Longtimber says:

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/nov/25/abengoa-obama-green-energy-project-on-verge-of-ban/?page=all
    Distributed PV is sucking Green out of ALL Centralized Generation Schemes. Centralized Solar can be really NOT Brilliant.

    • Nick G says:

      It’s hard to tell anything from this article, it’s so obviously biased against solar.

      • Longtimber says:

        There is good Solar and not as good Solar. People get Solar Thermal and PV & Centralized vs Distributed Gen Confused. Like a house, an asset mortgaged by an Investor Own Utility for decades ends up costing many times over it’s net worth. The inflated energy cost is passed on since IOU’s are guaranteed an ROI.

    • oldfarmermac says:

      I read the Washington Times occasionally because the editors and reporters are really good at getting all the dirt on democrats, and I enjoy reading it, and like to know both sides of the issues. I get my dirt on republicans from other papers.

      The WT is about as partisan as partisan can get, it’s a rag of a paper.

      When it comes to renewable energy, you can take this to the bank. The WT has never and probably never will print anything even remotely balanced or favorable concerning renewables.

      If a company that gets a government loan involving renewables does well, that company will NEVER be mentioned in the WT.NO MATTER WHAT.

      If such a company gets in trouble, it will be front and center until the editors can find something else that makes any and all environmental legislation, incentives, etc look bad.

      Cherry picking is an art at the WT. Right wing Wall Street fossil fuel partisanship is the name of the game.

      But I still enjoy reading the dirt on democrats there, they put it all on the front page where it is nice and handy. 😉

      It does my soul good to hear somebody lambaste a democrat such as HRC for being sleazy.

      I have been reading the papers since the fifties, and I am utterly convinced that every last fucking pundit out there who is telling us that she didn’t do anything wrong, illegal, foolish, etc regarding the email stuff etc, would be screaming bloody blue murder if a republican had done the same.

      I would vote for a dog before I would vote for Carson, but the mainstream has totally forgotten Cattlegate, I haven’t seen it mentioned in years, except in far right publications. But they rake Carson over the coals for something that was a thousand times worse. Bragging is one thing, stealing is something else altogether.

      Anybody who doesn’t get it should reflect on the fact that she was the wife of the governor, the broker was a sleaze bag, the so called mentor one of the the most powerful businessman in Arkansas, the odds against her doing it honestly are WORSE than astronomical, etc etc etc.

      Complete and total silence on the part of the msm while pouring it on poor old Carson, who merely told a few little fibs to make himself look better.

      And they used to call Reagan the teflon president. LOL

      I intend to vote for Bernie if I can.

      • Nick G says:

        I still enjoy reading the dirt on democrats there, they put it all on the front page where it is nice and handy.

        The trouble with biased sources is that you can’t trust anything they say. So, all you can say is that they print potential dirt – it still has to be verified elsewhere.

        This can be tedious to do, to the point of being worthless. I’ve tried using “contrary” sources, but my experience is that the ratio of truth to lies is generally too low.

        • oldfarmermac says:

          Hi Nick, I agree absolutely about biased sources, and read various papers off and on a couple of hours every day, such as the Washington Post, New York Times, a couple of local city papers, and a couple of foreign ones such as the Gaurdian and Der Spiegel etc.

          I’m stuck in the house playing nurse in recent times, and most likely will be for some time yet, maybe five to ten more years, so I read way too much, and spend way too much time at this site too, by a mile. Thank Sky Daddy for the internet!

          The WT comes up with this stuff oftener, and adds more tabasco sauce to the descriptive rhetoric. So far they have done a fairly decent job of finding real dirt, they seldom have to retract anything.

          I get of reading about anything a republican does generally being described in terms of hell fire and brimstone, and then the same paper soft pedals the living shit out of what a democrat does. Read the coverage of HRC and her emails in most papers and if you cannot see the way the editors pussy foot around trying to avoid saying anything BAD,giving her the benefit of the doubt, continuously, using delicate language to the extent possible, then I can only conclude your are a partisan and blinded by your partisan loyalty.

          NOTICE that I DID say the WT is a partisan rag and totally devoted to the fossil fuel/ Wall Street / republican crowd.

          The coverage of some issues is actually pretty decent, but it is still a partisan rag.

          Anybody who depends on reading any ONE particular paper, or just the tv news or just NPR or just talk radio is out of touch with reality.

  53. Pingback: The Next Turn - World Oil Supply & Demand from a Different Perspective

  54. Longtimber says:

    Perfect Shuttle for the Climate Talks. Buffet’s 505HP Hybrid SUV.
    http://truckyeah.jalopnik.com/warren-buffetts-chinese-car-company-is-making-a-cheap-s-1680864438

  55. R Walter says:

    Here three Sundays ago the temp was 57° F, the record low was -28° in 1914, the record high was 69° in 1933.

    Sometimes the weather does erratic changes, temperature swings more than you know or think are possible.

    18,000 years ago, the glacier was four to five thousand feet high and covered the top half of the northern hemisphere. It was a cold climate back then, colder than hell, as they say.

    There weren’t enough humans to cause much climate change, so the cooling had to have causes other than anthropogenic.

    A lot of shivering going on, fire was an important part of the day, searching caves to see if there was a hibernating bear inside. At some point, your stomach will empty and food will be the number one item on the agenda. A whole bear for supper will feed the whole tribe. Everyone will give thanks for sleeping bears and fire.

    For two hundred dollars, the 4.6 tons of coal will heat a house probably all winter. For two hundred dollars, it is the least expensive and best heat money can buy. Forty pounds of coal per day for heat, you can heat your home for 250 days with 4.6 tons of coal. Six panels of solar will not be able to do anything like that.

    I’ll take the coal, it will be right at the point of use when it is needed most.

    It will be the most cost savings, a ready resource at your disposal, no danger of losing a heat source at all. All in all, the bargain, saves your hide.

    You’ll be glad you took the coal.

    • oldfarmermac says:

      Delivered coal costs twice that where I live.

    • Fred Magyar says:

      You’ll be glad you took the coal.

      Merry Xmas, with Frosty the Coal Man!

      https://goo.gl/iNJOHP

      Frosty the Coalman is a jolly happy soul.
      He’s abundant here in America,
      and he helps our economy roll.
      Frosty the Coalman’s getting cleaner every day.
      He’s affordable and adorable and helps workers keep their pay.
      There must have been some magic in clean coal technology,
      for when they looked for pollutants there were nearly none to see.

      • Doug Leighton says:

        When I was a kid a snowman had coal for eyes (and teeth), a carrot nose, plus a corncob pipe. Now it would likely be called a snowperson, the pipe would be a no-no and it would be hard to find any coal. Alas, times are a changin. But, Frosty the Coal Man, you can’t be serious.

    • Jef says:

      R Walter – you confuse weather with climate.

      But then I guess all deniers do that. Stick your finger in your mouth, hold it up in the air….nope there is no such thing as global warming. Idiots!

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Jef,you are making a mistake when you take Ronald seriously.His comments are mostly tongue it cheek humor mixed in with a little sarcasm, a little dose of anti PC. He pokes fun at just about every thing mentioned in this forum.

        He is a very smart guy, but it is hard to impossible to say what he really thinks most of the time.

      • Javier says:

        The Mayans already understood the need for sacrifices to combat climate change.

        • Nick G says:

          Ah, but did they think it was a good idea to sacrifice their health, economy and children (as soldiers) for special interests like oil and coal producers?

          • Javier says:

            I do not defend the fossil fuel industry or the oil wars. I just point to the folly of thinking that we can control climate change with ridiculous measures. As I have shown above, global growth in CO2 emissions is stagnating.
            http://peakoilbarrel.com/a-surprising-look-at-oil-consumption/comment-page-1/#comment-548228

            • Nick G says:

              But what do you mean by ” ridiculous measures”? Eliminating oil and coal is only beneficial, regardless of climate change.

              As I have shown above, global growth in CO2 emissions is stagnating.

              This is akin to saying that we needn’t have taken any precautions against Y2K, because it worked out ok, right?

              Let me spell it out: CO2 emissions are stagnating in large part because of a deliberate transition away from coal.

              • Javier says:

                Eliminating oil and coal is only beneficial

                Are you talking by experience? Because I can tell you that the reduction in oil consumption by 25% and the increase in renewable energies since 2009 in Spain has resulted in an economic disaster and electricity prices higher than ever. A little more oil elimination could kill us.

                Let me spell it out: CO2 emissions are stagnating in large part because of a deliberate transition away from coal.

                I knew alarmists would take credit for it. You should notice the correlation between CO2 reduction and lack of economic performance. It is the economic crisis that is doing the reduction.

                • Nick G says:

                  Are you talking by experience?

                  Sure. The recent closure of nearby coal plants brought measurable health improvements. But, I’m not primarily going by anecdote – these things are clear from reliable national and world-wide statistics.

                  the reduction in oil consumption by 25%… resulted in an economic disaster

                  No. The economic disaster caused a reduction in oil consumption. The statement above reverses the arrow of causation.

                  Now, high oil prices did cause some harm to the PIIGS countries, oil importers all. But, that means that oil dependence did the damage, and transitioning away from oil & coal would only help the PIIGS countries – it would make them more prosperous, safer and healthier.

                  and the increase in renewable energies since 2009 in Spain

                  Was caused by mismanagement of the program. They set the tariffs too high, and then didn’t audit for fraud. They induced 10x as much construction as they intended, and much of it was wasted due to fraud.

                  It is the economic crisis that is doing the reduction.

                  Not for the world. The PIIGS countries are outliers, and not significant consumers of Fossil Fuel in the world picture. China, Germany, the US….those are far more important to the overall FF picture, and their economies are growing.

                  I knew alarmists would take credit for it

                  The word “alarmists” is an emotional term: part of a “us vs them” perspective. It’s a sign of bad thinking.

                  And, the people who have succeeded in implementing elements of a transition away from oil and coal do indeed deserve much of the credit.
                  ———————–

                  Javier, I’m not an expert on Climate Change. But I can certainly tell that you’ve been badly led astray by misinformation and disinformation based on the things you’ve said in this particular conversation.

    • Bob Nickson says:

      You can only burn that coal once.

      Just to be clear, you don’t get six solar panels for $200. You get one.

    • wimbi says:

      Coal is WAY too expensive. It cost the paradise I grew up in the mountains of Tennessee.

      I live in all solar house/car. ALL of it cost less than that fat pickup down the road, driven by the hillbilly who just lost his coal mining job.

      Coal stinks.

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Hi Wimbi,

        I have a dozen or so relatives buried forever in coal mines in West Virginia and nearby places. I agree about coal stinking, and the REAL price of it. If anybody wants to know how tough it was in the mines a century or more ago, my branch of the family left all thru the eighteen hundreds there to take up subsistence farming and logging by hand here where they could still buy a few acres of nearly vertical land and build a log shack on it. No job was better than a job in the mines in their opinion. I never knew any of the miners personally but my grandparents had horror tales to tell, passed along from the older folks that stayed behind.

        It is going to take a hell of a long time to get away from coal, and I fear that some countries are simply going to refuse to give it up.

        I find it hard to fault them, because they have little actual choice in terms of living better for the next generation or two.

        The idiots who bad mouth wind and solar farms in favor of coal are so INEXCUSABLY WRONG it is perfectly obvious they are just political partisans, nothing more and nothing less, and spouting the party line.

        Having said this much, I do still know some people, not relatives, who are retired miners and who own some coal land.

        They are absolutely convinced that environmentalists and democrats are determined to bankrupt them. That is understandable too.

        Being well educated myself, I have no problem understanding that we need to closely regulate my own industry of agriculture, and that most of the chemical pesticides we used to use which are banned NOW should have been banned sooner.

        But it makes it HARD to grow apples here as nice as the ones they can grow where the climate is drier, using irrigation.

        Explaining unpleasant truths to people who have only their own experience and their own eyes to see to use in passing judgement is a damned tough job.

        A poor man can see his crop grow when he pours on the NPK, but he cannot see the algal bloom in the Gulf of Mexico.

        • Nick G says:

          China is making a real effort to move away from coal – China has decided that they can afford to take health costs into account when deciding what’s cheapest.

          US coal consumption is dropping like a rock.

          India…not so much.

  56. Greenbub says:

    The head-butting about climate change is really tedious.

  57. Greenbub says:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/columnist/2015/11/29/loveless-iran-opec-impact/76456886/

    (regarding Saudi Arabia): “They won’t mind seeing record low prices greet Iran’s crude”.

    • shallow sand says:

      Regarding Saudi Arabia not minding seeing Iranian crude greeted by record low prices.

      Doesn’t Saudi Arabia sell oil?

      I’m with the Omani oil minister. Why would someone who sells oil want very low oil prices? This makes no sense to us.

      OPEC cannot break the back of US LTO. US LTO has no finding costs, outside interest on the debt. If I borrow ten billion dollars to drill and complete 1000 LTO wells, and can roll the debt indefinitely till I default, and the ten billion in bonds go to zero, there were no finding costs for those 1000 LTO wells, other than the interest paid on the bonds pre default.

      If the Saudis think they can outlast a country that can rack up $18+ trillion of Federal Government debt (not even including accrued entitlements) they have got another thing coming.

      Someday the US will not be able to borrow, but my bet is the tap will be shut off to KSA before USA, assuming KSA is dumb enough to want to find out.

      I do not blame KSA and their cohorts for their strategy or wanting to crush US shale oil. However, it isn’t going to work. The experiment launched Thanksgiving, 2014 has failed. No reason for OPEC countries to commit suicide.

      • Greenbub says:

        I would not say they failed considering the amount of capex reductions from the E.&Ps. I think it was Watcher that pointed out that US LTO was not their primary target.

        • shallow sand says:

          Who really knows what the strategy is, or if there is one.

          OPEC never expected $40 oil. That was not in the plan, I’ll bet.

          Maybe the primary target was themselves, that is who has lost the most $$.

          • oldfarmermac says:

            We had a more or less continuous debate going about the motives of the Saudis for weeks sometime back, then the discussion shifted elsewhere.

            My opinion remains the same. The Saudis are no doubt happy to see the tight oil industry here in the USA on the ropes, but I don’t believe they ever expected to DESTROY tight oil in the USA. I argued then, and argue now, that as soon as the price of oil goes up high enough to justify new tight oil production, drilling in the USA will take off again.

            Some people said the workers would all disappear, or that the banks will refuse to loan the industry money again, but neither argument holds water so far as I am concerned. The banks will be more cautious , but they will lend, and if they don’t, there are plenty of people with money enough to get into the industry WITHOUT bank loans, and get it up and rolling again. Workers can always be found, and so far as I can see, most of them are not even oil field specialists, but rather truckers, equipment operators, welders, concrete men, iron workers, surveyors, road builders,cooks, bookkeepers, etc. The drillers will poach the necessary specialists from other operators in other oil fields by offering higher wages.

            The Saudis are not stupid, and they have to understand that they cannot keep keep our tight oil off the market except by keeping prices PERMANENTLY low. It is insane to think they want PERMANENT low prices.

            Shallow Sand is right imo, the tight oil industry cannot be kept down, at least not forever, although I do expect it to continue to contract so long as prices stay in the doldrums.

            There are other reasons for them to refuse to cut production.

            Personally I believe the most important one is that they are fighting a defacto WAR against their perceived enemies, and that they believe the best and maybe the only hope they have is to do all they can to keep the price of oil as low as possible in order to deprive those OIL EXPORTING enemies of revenues needed to fight.

            It does not hurt of course that they are also impressing all the OPEC members who cheated like hell last time around when they DID cut that they will not get away with such cheating the next time -IF and WHEN the Saudis cut again.

  58. Glenn Stehle says:

    So these are the kinds of claims that climate scientists are making these days?

    Climate change: Another terror

    Last change to fight global warming?

    Can we avoid apocalypse?

  59. Nick G says:

    You’re right – it’s Sunday night, and it’s time for cartoons! Here’s an oldie, but goodie:

  60. Chad Tevlin says:

    Glad to find your blog, Mr. Patterson. I think I will learn a lot about this whole global warming thing here. From my perspective it does seem to be losing its public support, a little bit at a time. I figure that when I had to wear long sleeves in July in the middle of summer, that might have had something to do with it. 😆 God Bless!

    • Chad Tevlin says:

      Of course it is possible that I will be wearing the same thing in January in the middle of winter. 😆 God Bless!

    • It don’t look like you are learning much Chad as you haven’t learned the difference between weather and climate. Also public support doesn’t change any facts whatsoever.

      One more thing, we don’t do god here. Please don’t close out your posts with any more god shit.

  61. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (Update)

    “‘Human and Nature Dynamics (HANDY): Modeling Inequality and Use of Resources in the Collapse or Sustainability of Societies’.

    It is an independent study by the university researchers utilizing research tools developed for a separate NASA activity…

    Abstract There are widespread concerns that current trends in resource-use are unsustainable, but possibilities of overshoot/collapse remain controversial. Collapses have occurred frequently in history, often followed by centuries of economic, intellectual, and population decline. Many different natural and social phenomena have been invoked to explain specific collapses, but a general explanation remains elusive. In this paper, we build a human population dynamics model by adding accumulated wealth and economic inequality to a predator-prey model of humans and nature. The model structure, and simulated scenarios that offer significant implications, are explained. Four equations describe the evolution of Elites, Commoners, Nature, and Wealth. The model shows Economic Stratification or Ecological Strain can independently lead to collapse, in agreement with the historical record. The measure ‘Carrying Capacity’ is developed and its estimation is shown to be a practical means for early detection of a collapse. Mechanisms leading to two types of collapses are discussed. The new dynamics of this model can also reproduce the irreversible collapses found in history. Collapse can be avoided, and population can reach a steady state at maximum carrying capacity if the rate of depletion of nature is reduced to a sustainable level and if resources are distributed equitably
    —-
    In sum, the results of our experiments… indicate that either one of the two features apparent in historical societal collapses — over-exploitation of natural resources and strong economic stratification — can independently result in a complete collapse. Given economic stratification, collapse is very difficult to avoid and requires major policy changes, including major reductions in inequality and population growth rates. Even in the absence of economic stratification, collapse can still occur if depletion per capita is too high. However, collapse can be avoided and population can reach equilibrium if the per capita rate of depletion of nature is reduced to a sustainable level, and if resources are distributed in a reasonably equitable fashion.” ~ Keith Cowing on March 20, 2014

    Summary

    “Collapses of even advanced civilizations have occurred many times in the past five thousand years, and they were frequently followed by centuries of population and cultural decline and economic regression. Although many different causes have been offered to explain individual collapses, it is still necessary to develop a more general explanation. In this paper we attempt to build a simple mathematical model to explore the essential dynamics of interaction between population and natural resources. It allows for the two features that seem to appear across societies that have collapsed: the stretching of resources due to strain placed on the ecological carrying capacity, and the division of society into Elites (rich) and Commoners (poor).

    • sunnnv says:

      great find Caelan,

      They roll Tainter, Turchin, Catton and Diamond into a simple model with great explanatory power.

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        Hi sunnnv, glad you like it and that’s a good description… And it’s not like we’re not sitting at the world’s greatest library, with text-based automatic search engine computerized librarians at our call. Might as well make use of them for other things than old television reruns before things decline too far.

        • Yes, this is a really great site and a great source of information for all those who majored in math.

          • old hermit says:

            Ron:

            I would also like to suggest that the readers of this blog, who take the time to read the essay, also go to the link provided, and read the comments. There is a selectable link in the middle of the page that will take you there. Many of the comments to that post, are very well written

    • oldfarmermac says:

      Hi Caelan,

      This is imo your best post ever.

      REALLY GOOD FIND.

      Unfortunately for me , most of what you post is rather obscure, and hard for me to understand. This one jibes well with my own intellectual background.

    • Glenn Stehle says:

      Caelan,

      I’m all in favor of fighting for greater equality.

      However, the greens send mixed messages when it comes to inequality, such as photos of when France’s minister arrived at the COP21 conference. I mean, the guy can’t carry his own umbrella?

      Things like the following also muddle the inequality-fighting (both economic and political) messaging of the greens:

      Why Are Taxpayers Subsidizing Elon Musk’s $100,000 Tesla?

      One problem: The success of electric cars generally — and of Tesla in particular — is due in no small part to a government mandate.

      http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-02-17/elon-musk-s-teslas-don-t-need-a-government-subsidy

      And while you’re shopping for your new $100,000 Telsa, you can also pick up a $300 tote bag at your nearby Telsa store.

      Inside the New Tesla Store: Cars, Info Kiosks and $300 Tote Bags
      http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-08-21/new-for-fall-tesla-revamps-retail-stores-and-adds-apparel-gear

      The rub, of course, is that $100,000 automobiles and $300 tote bags are inaccessible to all but a very small handful of highly privileged world elites.

      • Glenn Stehle says:

        $132,000 Telsa Model X

        • Ves says:

          Does Tesla provides also a high paid job for the buyers considering the price tag? 🙂

          • Glenn Stehle says:

            Ves,

            Good question.

            I did a quick search, and it looks like Elon Musk runs a non-union shop.

            He has quite a colorful history of taking an outspoken stand against labor unions.

            There’s quite a gap between what Telsa says it pays its workers and what researchers say it pays them:

            Tesla dispute over $25/hr wage vow won’t hurt tax breaks

            Contract negotiations this year between the United Auto Workers and Detroit automakers are likely casting a spotlight on Tesla wages, said Kristin Dziczek, research director at the Center for Automotive Research. Tesla’s Fremont, Calif. manufacturing operation, however, might be playing a bigger role in the wage issue, Dziczek said. The Free Press story noted, for example, that the starting pay at Tesla’s Fremont facility is $17 per hour.

            “They don’t pay ($25 per hour) for their assembly wage,” Dziczek said….

            Tesla declined to comment on personnel-related matters at the Fremont facility. The company, however, said future employees in Northern Nevada will be an important part of Tesla.

            “We offer a package of competitive wages, great benefits, and equity; our employees are company owners,” a Tesla spokesperson said by email. “We couldn’t be more excited about Tesla’s future in Reno.”

            http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2015/04/17/tesla-wage-tax-break/25922769/

            • Ves says:

              Glenn,
              So in the nutshell powers to be are peddling a Tesla product that practically consumers can not afford and at the same time Tesla employees cannot live off their work. Wow, Glenn that is ultimate pinnacle of delusion. Kind like combination of unaffordable Shale oil product produced with Chinese wages. I have to admit Shale guys at least paid living wages (although with “Some others people’s Money”) but at least they shared the spoils. You got a give a credit where it is due 🙂

        • oldfarmermac says:

          Hi Glenn,

          You are VERY good at cynically pointing out what is wrong with just about EVERYTHING, including what is wrong with any attempts to fix or change things for the better.

          But you never seem to say what you are FOR, in real world concrete terms.

          Where for instance do you stand on the science of global warming?

          Do you suppose that if we were to organize a conference about energy availability, security, pollution, climate , etc, and left the running of it to some randomly selected peasants or assistant professors of physics at PODUNK U that the rest of the world would pay any attention at all?

          Do you recognize that we are a species of animal that looks to alpha males ( mostly males anyway ) for leadership, and that the leader having a flunky to carry his umbrella is an obvious badge of IDENTIFICATION ?

          As Ron says, we don’t do God here, but sometimes a preacher has something profound to say. One thing I heard one say once was this, paraphrased as best I can remember it:

          You can fritter away your entire life contemplating your doubts. You will accomplish little or nothing as a result. Forget your doubts, focus on what you BELIEVE, and you will live a useful and satisfying life.

          No doubt many a philosopher has said the same, and a thousand years sooner.

          Life is all about what is POSSIBLE, if your goal is to make a fortune, or to change things hopefully for the better, or both, as I believe is the case with Musk and TESLA.

          Do you REALLY think there is a snowballs chance in hell that the we will have electrified cars sooner by waiting for somebody to build them AFTER we experience a crippling oil supply crisis ?

          Do you believe the LEAF or the VOLT will soon win over the hearts and minds of people who actually buy new cars, people who are understandably cautious about such an expensive new technology ?

          It just MIGHT be the case that hearing about TESLA cars will open their minds to the possibility of going electric a decade or longer SOONER.

          Do you believe we need not hurry in breaking our dependence on oil? Will people buy elcheapo electric cars, NOW, while gasoline is still cheap, and they still believe electrics are slow, ugly, prone to breaking down and running out of juice on the way to the hospital?

          Do you understand that just MAYBE people have to be SHOWN something SUPERIOR to their current car, in order to get them to thinking about switching ?

          Personally I believe there Musk is maybe the smartest marketer of a new idea around, when it comes to changing people’s perceptions.

          Consider.

          The typical Tesla owner will NEVER drag race his car. The people that can afford them, excepting a very few individuals , are not reckless drivers prone to racing on the highway.

          But the way the mind of the public works, and the mind of the auto enthusiast in particular works , makes it NECESSARY for a TESLA, which is the flagship of the electric car industry, to go just as goddamned fast at the drag strip as any HOT ROD sports car.

          Otherwise the naysayers ( looking at YOU ) would be constantly and FOREVER saying an electric car is no good because it won’t out accelerate the competition.

          Do you think maybe TESLA can get the job done, by starting at the high end of the luxury scale, paying the cost of research and development by selling super expensive cars, and eventually driving down the cost of the technology ?

          Do you even believe electrified cars are a useful innovation? Or do you believe they are a scam foisted off on us by greenie weenie types out to make THEIR fortune via subsidy?

          WHAT do you BELIEVE , for Sky Daddy’s sake?

          About ANYTHING?

          I could post pictures of a dozen gasoline fueled high end cars that cost as much or more than a TESLA.

          Would that prove anything?

        • R Walter says:

          A private jet, a Boeing airliner, is better. You’re flying at 35,000 feet and you don’t have to drive the Tesla, it’s a collectible, a toy. A Bentley is what you want. However, from what I have seen on the internet, a Tesla can really do some road work, that’s for sure.

          Wish I had all three, not to be a pig about stuff, it would be nice to be flying (by wire) a nice new 787 to the climate change summit. Just for the fun of it. har

    • Javier says:

      Caelan,

      The study is interesting, yet in my opinion deeply flawed and therefore demonstrates nothing. I have a problem with many Social Sciences studies. They set a preconceived theory, they build a model, and without any real data they claim their model supports their theory. BFD.

      For a start they are supposed to be working with collapse, yet they clearly have no idea of the meaning of the word collapse, and have no functional definition of it to work with. They say things as “The Roman Empire’s dramatic collapse.” When exactly did the Roman collapse took place? We have known for centuries that the Roman Empire declined and fell (to put it in Gibbon’s words). That is not a collapse. It is more like a long disease that ends in death.

      The idea that excessive draw on essential resources breeds collapse is so obvious as to not merit any discussion. But the idea that inequality breeds collapse is slightly more original. Prior to the French Revolution they would have a hard time arguing it, but since then everybody knows that at the very least inequality breeds social turmoil. But does it breed collapse?

      Let’s see how the model works:

      “Running the model in different scenarios produces two kinds of collapses, either due to scarcity of labor (following an inequality-induced famine) or due to scarcity of Nature (depletion of natural resources). We categorize the former case as a Type-L (Disappearance of Labor) Collapse and the latter as a Type-N collapse (Exhaustion of Nature). In a Type-L collapse, growth of the Elite Population strains availability of resources for the Commoners. This causes decline of the Commoner Population (which does the labor), and consequently, decline of Wealth. Finally, Elite Population plummets since its source of subsistence, i.e., Wealth, has vanished.”

      Collapse by “Disappearance of Labor”? Are they serious? So the workers extinguish and the wealthy are left without source of income?. That is ridiculous even as a theory. We know pretty well that the number of wealthy population depends on the wealth of the society. In poor societies there are very few elite. If a society becomes resource-constrained the expectation is that the elite will decline as fast if not faster than the commoners. Small consolation though.

      If the principal thesis of the work was true, and inequality breeds collapse, then we would have some evidence by now that egalitarian societies should be more resistant to collapse as they don’t suffer from “scarcity of labor”. Egalitarian societies should be more abundant. They clearly are not. Much to the contrary I believe there is not a single example of a complex egalitarian civilization without an extractive elite. I would like to be proven wrong on this, but even small tribes have a chief, and a chief’s family, and if big enough they have a nobility.

      To say that we have to develop an egalitarian society without an extractive elite to avoid collapse (which is a statement not supported by evidence) is the same as to say that we have to grow wings on the shoulders to avoid collapse from peak oil. It just is not going to happen.

      We have to be specially skeptical of “scientific” articles that claim to demonstrate what we believe to be true. It is one of the ways of fighting confirmation bias.

      • IanH says:

        And then there is Pareto’s wealth distribution function, supposedly applicable to all the societies that he studied (the 80/20 rule) – wealth disparities are an intrinsic of collective human behaviour. But I dont know how good Pareto’s data were.

        My guess is that the America of the industrial robber barons and Victorian England had at least as much disparity in wealth as today. I would think that a civilisation with a huge, bloated parasite bureaucratic class, taxing and meddling in every aspect of commerce and society, along with ‘war is the health of the state’ pointless foreign wars, would be more prone to collapse than a classical liberal nation with great wealth disparities yet greater levels of ‘rugged individualism’.

  62. R Walter says:

    http://koeppen-geiger.vu-wien.ac.at/shifts.htm

    World climate classification map.

    A climate is a series of weather patterns. A hot humid climate will not have weather that produces cold temperatures like -25° F. It will remain warm all year round, all of the time. You’ll be at the equator, less than 500 m in elevation. Af is the classification, equatorial, fully humid.

    A polar climate will have weather patterns that will probably not be above 50° F during the summer months, full sun, 24/7.

    Antarctica, ET, polar, polar frost.

    I would still choose the coal over a solar panel array, especially when it is a cold day and especially a colder night. -20° F will be the deciding factor. 1200 dollars for six solar panels or 1200 dollars worth of coal at 60 dollars per ton is twenty ton of coal. It will be an easy haul, the heat is what is desired, not the electricity.

    I use electricity for a heat source, which comes from the coal-fired power plant, so I choose coal no matter what. I will pay more for the added convenience, don’t have to haul ashes or worry about a fire, so it is the preferred choice.

    The ugly side of solar panels:

    http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2008/03/the-ugly-side-o.html

    Have a nice day.

    • wimbi says:

      I live 40 north in about as close as can get to average eastern USA climate. Minus 20 F is about as cold as it gets in a usual winter. We boost our heat pump (solar) with nice safe porch load of wood, since we like to warm our butts after going down to the barn, the corner of which acts as a fantastic wind tunnel.

      So I am with you on the beauty of solid fuel just sitting there, no matter what.

      But what about that wind tunnel down at the barn? Gotta be good for something, yes? After all, Scott and his team died of stupidity on their way back from south pole, all the while whining about the screaming wind! A real little windmill could have roasted them well-done – as well as propelled their sled. Gawd, don’t want to forget that little lesson.

      BTW, your ref. to bad side of solar concluded it was still better than coal, worse case.

      Have a nice day.

    • Glenn Stehle says:

      WHOA!

      Any talk of the benefits of carbon energy is strictly taboo.

      And any inference that the consequences of climate change might not be as dire as the MSM’s full court press is telling us is also taboo:

      French TV weatherman sacked for book questioning ‘hype’ over climate change

      A weatherman for French state television has been fired for writing a book questioning what he calls the “hype” around climate change.

      Philippe Verdier, a meteorologist for France 2, announced his sacking in an online video released Saturday, in which he opened his letter of dismissal before the camera.

      http://edition.cnn.com/2015/11/03/europe/france-weatherman-sacked-climate/index.html

      • Javier says:

        Funny thing is he is not a skeptic, but a believer. He believes the IPCC hypothesis entirely. As a meteorologist he just questions most of the more drastic meteorological scenarios, some of which are not supported either by IPCC.

        I guess they are circling the wagons, and anybody outside is being shot.

    • Bob Nickson says:

      Sure Walter, it’s easy to envision a scenario where I’d also rather have the coal.

      Coal is better for the direct production of heat than it is for electricity. The energy content of the coal is basically equal to the energy production of a 330W panel over 25 years. If you aren’t turning it into electricity, you aren’t rejecting half of its energy content.

      I think it’s important to note that my coal to PV comparison was of the commodity cost of the coal, to the infrastructure cost of the panel, but of course without a whole lot of additional capex and opex, you don’t get any electricity from the coal at all.

      I do devoutly hope though that the real choice we face as humans in the 21st century is not whether we prefer a ton of raw coal or a solar panel as we sit shivering naked in front of our caves.

  63. oldfarmermac says:

    This is a link to Fernando’s blog, which contains a really good humorous (?) twitter account of the current Sand Country status quo.

    It is relevant, because Sand Country politics are absolutely dead center relevant to any oil question.

    Read it and weep, Ronald Walter. This is one you could have written yourself on one of your best days.

    It may not make much sense, literally, but it is PERFECT in illustrating how LITTLE sense the entire mess in Sand Country makes.

    http://21stcenturysocialcritic.blogspot.com/2015/11/syria-explained-in-twitter-document.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+21stCenturySocialCritic+%2821st+Century+Social+Critic%29

    In any case, it is good for a real laugh, which is good, because the situation is so bad it makes any compassionate person want to cry, which is bad. LOL

  64. Peter says:

    From Ron
    “My comment: The recent decline in oil prices had at least as much to do with falling consumption as it did rising production.”

    Ron

    Global consumption has not fallen.

    http://www.iea.org/newsroomandevents/news/2015/november/iea-releases-oil-market-report-for-november.html

    2015 saw a 1.8 million barrel per day increase in demand, a 5 year high.

    • Peter, I said “falling consumption”. You assumed I meant “falling global consumption.” I did not. I know global consumption has risen but not nearly as fast as production has risen. The reason is because of falling consumption in much of the world. Where? Well that is what my post is all about. Just look at the graphs I posted above and you will see just where consumption has risen and where it has fallen. Or at least where it has risen most and where it has fallen most.

      I hope this clears it up.

      • oldfarmermac says:

        Consumption right now is rising in the USA, but mostly imo because people are driving more this last year or so plus they are opting – for now- for the bigger vehicle and the bigger engine. It is true that the fleet average fuel economy improvement has stalled, but the economy of any particular TYPE of vehicle is trending up, with the new Ford F150 being the stellar example due to it being so popular.

        So- between regulatory pressure and almost for sure higher gasoline prices, I believe the new vehicle fleet average will start going up again pretty soon.

        Whether this improvement in average new vehicle economy will be enough to offset rising population and more driving miles is a big question mark, but my guess is that our national oil consumption will continue to go up slowly for the next few years if the economy doesn’t fall flat on its face.

        One thing is for sure. With the average new vehicle costing many thousands of dollars a year in total, including depreciation, interest, property taxes, maintenance, insurance, etc, with the WEEKLY amount being well over a hundred bucks even for a cheap car, people who can afford a new vehicle are not focused on fuel economy right now.

        But when oil shoots up again- and it WILL, eventually, fuel economy will be a big selling point again.

      • Peter says:

        Hi Ron

        Obviously I thought you meant global consumption, as the first half of your sentence you were referring to global production.

        You also said consumption in the doldrums, it is not, it has increased 1.8 million barrels per day, the highest consumption increase in 5 years.

        China y-o-y increased by 0.6 million barrels per day, the Americas are up and so is Europe. You were simply making assumptions based on. as you said no data.

        Here is the data.

        https://www.iea.org/oilmarketreport/omrpublic/

        On the right hand side. Table 1

  65. Pingback: Quali consumi petroliferi nelle principali economie mondiali | NUTesla | The Informant

  66. shallow sand says:

    Ron and all interested:

    I read a research article today which indicates that US Conventional Onshore production declined from 2,665,671 bopd in 12/14 to 2,447,836 in 6/15. Further, that Canadian Conventional Onshore production declined from 690,149 bopd in 12/14 to 610,019 bopd in 9/15.

    Further, that although lower cost non-OPEC conventional onshore production is increasing in places like Russia and Oman, higher cost non-OPEC conventional onshore production is falling in places such as South America, Egypt, India, Mexico and China, in addition to US and Canada. However, of the 420,000 bopd decline in these regions’ conventional onshore production, almost 300,000 bopd has occurred in US and Canada.

    The report also notes that Chinese conventional is set for a large drop, as apparently the Chinese National oil companies are decreasing CAPEX in their onshore fields, fields that in many instances are 50+ years old and are under some form of EOR (waterflood, CO2 flood, steam). It is often forgotten that China is number 4 in bopd following Russian, KSA and USA, although admittedly it is a distant 4.

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