311 Responses to OPEN Thread Non Petroleum, January 18, 2018

  1. jim says:

    Before the conversation starts up about climate change, maybe this topic could be a welcome change of pace.

    The End of Moore’s Law


    here is the money quote at the end

    “For now, what we can say is that the age of exponential growth of computer power is over. It gave us an extraordinary 40 years, but in our world all exponentials come to an end, and we’re now firmly in the final stage of the s-curve.”

    In 2015 the growth rate for computers has dropped to 3.5% per year down from 52% per year form 1986 to 2003.

    Specialized chips and better software seem to be the only way to get substantial increases in the future.

    How does the end of Moore’s law interact with peak oil?

    • How does the end of Moore’s law interact with peak oil?

      It doesn’t as long as you are referring to computer power. What it does say is that everything has to come to an end sooner or later. Growth in anything must end at one time or another. And if it is exponential growth, it must end a lot sooner than arithmetical or linear growth.

      • robert wilson says:

        Being 87 years old, it is true that I stopped growing vertically about 70 years ago. Then started shrinking about 50 years ago, mostly due to disc degeneration. Or as the old saying goes: “No tree grows to the sky”.

    • Fred Magyar says:

      Specialized chips and better software seem to be the only way to get substantial increases in the future.

      Correct. For practical purposes because of the way computing is evolving, Moore’s Law may no longer be all that relevant.


      …The explosion of specialized processors for handling AI and deep learning workloads is partly a reaction to the fact that CPUs don’t scale the way they used to.

      It’s important to keep in mind the deep learning and AI markets are in their infancy. Companies have floated a huge number of ideas about what AI and deep learning could do, but actually deploying these technologies in the field has proven more challenging. But if the market takes off, you’ll eventually see these capabilities being built into CPUs. Once upon a time (aka the mid-1990s), features like graphics and L2 cache resided on the motherboard, not the CPU. Over time, CPUs have integrated L2 cache, L3 cache, memory controllers, integrated graphics, and the southbridges that used to handle storage and I/O control.

      Jen-Hsun is absolutely right that adding transistors has done little for CPU performance, and so in that sense, Moore’s Law is dead. If you consider the question in terms of what features and capabilities CPUs have integrated, however, Moore’s Law is very much alive. Nvidia has done a great deal of work in AI and machine learning, but the situation is more complicated then Jen-Hsun implies, and we don’t yet know whose cores and designs are going to win out over others. We’re still in the “Throw mud at the wall and see what sticks” phase. It’s entirely possible the best processor designs for handling these workloads hasn’t even been invented yet.

      And that’s not even considering what might be coming down the pipeline with technologies that develop and perfect applications with quantum computing. So if you really think about the continued doubling of transistors on a chip seems a rather outdated thing to be all that worked up about.


      Intelligent Machines
      Supercomputer Simulation Offers Peek at the Future of Quantum Computers
      To find out whether quantum computers will work properly, scientists must simulate them on a classical computer. Now a record-breaking experiment has simulated the largest quantum computer yet.

      by Emerging Technology from the arXiv April 11, 2017

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        That’s the optimistic Fred M. speaking.

        Pessimistic Fred completely disagrees. 🙂

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Perhaps, but neither the pessimistic nor the optimistic Fred thinks that the number of transistors on an integrated chip continuing to double every two years is the limiting factor to progress in most aspects of information technology at this point. AI for example, is progressing by leaps and bounds regardless of Moore’s Law. BTW, I’m willing to wager a considerable sum the the text I have excerpted from the link below is probably created by a journalist bot as well.


          Microsoft at this time is unveiling new synthetic intelligence expertise that’s one thing of an artist – a “drawing bot.” The bot is able to creating pictures from textual content descriptions of an object, but it surely additionally provides particulars to these pictures that weren’t included the textual content, indicating that the A.I. has somewhat creativeness of its personal, says Microsoft.

          “If you go to Bing and you search for a bird, you get a bird picture. But here, the pictures are created by the computer, pixel by pixel, from scratch,” defined Xiaodong He, a principal researcher and analysis supervisor within the Deep Learning Technology Center at Microsoft’s analysis lab in Redmond, Washington, in Microsoft’s announcement. “These birds may not exist in the real world — they are just an aspect of our computer’s imagination of birds.”

          The bot is ready to generate quite a lot of pictures, researchers say, together with every little thing from “ordinary pastoral scenes,” like these with grazing livestock, to the absurd – like “a floating double-decker bus.”

          Microsoft says the bot was skilled on datasets of paired pictures and captions, permitting it to grasp how one can match up phrases to photographs. It discovered to attract a chook, for instance, when the caption says “bird,” and it discovered what an image of a chook ought to seem like.

          Since I’m not sure if I should be optimistic or pessimistic about any of this so I’ll just remain agnostic about it all! 😉

          • Preston says:

            AI is advancing rapidly. I’m still blown away by google’s alpha go. The first version learned go from playing with humans and managed to beat everyone. The second version learned by playing itself and was able to easily beat the original version. But the real mid blower is they gave it the rules for chess and it trained itself for only 4 hours and it was able to beat the old champion computer chess program. They said it was like watching an alien play chess…

      • jim says:

        This is kind of a crappy analogy but I think just like the easy to obtain oil has already been found, the easy to ability to easily increase computer power is also gone. And from a personal level I have noticed this end to Moore’s Law, the computers and phones I use really haven’t gotten a lot better over the last 5 or so years.

        I haven’t really read many discussions about what this end to Moore’s Law means for the future. So I thought it would be a good idea to ask you guys sense you think about the future a lot.

    • Preston says:

      They have been predicting the imminent end of Moore’s Law ever since it was first postulated. I’ll believe it when I see it. I also don’t agree with that “The explosion of specialized processors for handling AI and deep learning workloads is partly a reaction to the fact that CPUs don’t scale the way they used to” – on the contrary, this is a normal evolution of silicon technology.

      The “S curve” mentioned only applies to current silicon based technology just as a similar curve hit early mechanical computers, and later tube based, and then early transistor based computers. Scientists are making huge progress on quantum computers which can effectively process multiple parallel solutions in one step. This looks like the technology to jump to the next level.

    • Michael says:

      “In 2015 the growth rate for computers has dropped to 3.5% per year down from 52% per year form 1986 to 2003. ”

      Well, thank goodness. I was having a hard time keeping up.

      • Preston says:

        Not sure what they mean by “growth”, it doesn’t look like transistor count is slowing down. We now have 1 and 2 Terrabyte flash drives…. Plus even current relatively simple quantum computers are cracking security codes and solving problems 100’s of times faster than traditional computers.

        for a higher res image, see

        • notanoilman says:

          There are 3 barriers to transistor count
          1/ Large chips are more likely to have faults thus cutting yield plus less per wafer.
          2/ Lithography becomes a nightmare (+ cost) with shorter and shorter wavelengths needed.
          3/ Atoms tend to do naughty things at the small scale, like migrate setting a hard lower limit.
          These set hard limits as to how far we can go even moving to the 3rd dimension.


          • Preston says:

            Current technology is moving down to 10 nano meter gate lengths, that’s only about 10 silicon atoms wide so clearly the end of that type of scaling is near. But so far, its gone way further than many believed (me included).

            In late 2006 the iphone was introduced with 4 or 8 GB of storage, in 2016 the iphone 7 top end was 256GB. Next year, they could have a freak-en terabyte (1000GB). That’s way more than 3.5% growth. This sounds like the so called climate change “hiatus” which really was cherry picking the data.

    • alimbiquated says:

      Moore’s law isn’t that big a deal these days anyway. The focus in now on energy conservation to reduce waste heat. The size issue can still be dealt with by increasing the level of integration — that is, putting more stuff on a single chip.

      Both energy and increased integration rely on better quality.

  2. George Kaplan says:

    2017 was a pretty good year for archeological discoveries; I think drones are starting to have a bit of an impact. Here are some top 10 lists from different magazines – not much overlap, which is a good sign.


    Giant Colossus Unearthed under Slums of Cairo
    Solving the Mystery of the Hunley
    No Ecocide on Easter Island
    Long Lost Temple of Artemis
    More Historical Finds at Antikythera
    Ancient Settlement Found in Canada
    First Female Viking Warrior
    The Long Lost City of Alexander the Great
    Scholars Pinpoint Oldest Solar Eclipse on Record
    Metro Workers Discover Roman Aqueduct


    Skull Cult at Göbekli Tepe
    Finding Indianapolis
    Super Fruitcake
    Aztec Warrior Wolf
    Dawn of Egyptian Writing
    Caveman Genetics
    Iron Age Britain’s Oldest Gold
    Rome’s Oldest Aqueduct
    The Square Inside Avebury’s Circles
    Homo sapiens, Earlier Still


    Pagan center discovered at Hippos/Sussita
    Byzantine church mosaics found
    Augustus temple altar at Caesarea
    12th Dead Sea Scrolls cave confirmed
    Seal impressions and tower redating in City of David
    Timna copper camp dated to time of David and Solomon
    Rethinking the identity of Bethsaida
    A relic from the temple that Jesus knew
    Small Roman theater found next to the Temple Mount’s Western Wall


    Mysterious gates in Saudi Arabia
    New Dead Sea Scrolls cave
    Pyramid for a princess?
    Oldest Homo sapiens skeletons
    Ultimate romantic gesture
    Incredible gemstone
    Ancient prenup
    Earliest evidence of winemaking
    Neanderthal medical knowledge
    Oldest evidence of trigonometry

  3. Mushalik says:

    From Australia:

    Energy guzzling NSW had to import up to 1,700 MW on 7 Jan 2018

    • coffeeguyzz says:

      Last night South Australia paid $14,200/Mwh for a short time while Victoria paid $13,000.
      2 hours from this posting, it is expected to happen again.

      The 5 eastern states consumed about 30,000Mwh while wind and solar produced less than 500Mwh.

      Talks of the “De-Industrializstion of Australia” are no longer considered frivolous as representatives from Pennsylvania are travelling the country touting reliable, long term electricity in the 6 to 8 cent per kilowatt hour range.

      Some Aussie companies are already relocating.

      The manager of the Tomago smelter is on record as saying if the three potlines go offline for 3 hours due to electricity disruption, the prudent course of action would be to simply take the insurance payment, shut the plant, and permanently cease production.

      • OFM says:

        I haven’t been able to get my head around the mess that is the Australian electricity industry.

        Not much I read makes a whole lot of sense, unless you read it as the script for a slapstick television show, a Three Stooges or Laurel and Hardy show, or something along that line.

        But here and there I run across something that leads me to believe the basic problem is that the conventional old line industry has succeeded in capturing and hog tying the regulatory authorities, and is fully and gleefully engaged in enjoying involuntary sex with the Australian consumer and with Australian industry.

        The problem seems to be compounded by the consumers, the people , fighting back however they can, mainly by going fully or partially off grid, so that the capital cost per customer of maintaining the grid is higher than it would be otherwise……. but the real problem is apparently still that the companies providing the juice are pretty much free to fuck their customers anytime they like, and that the providers have a permanent woodie.

        It’s also true though that providing grid juice out in the boonies IS an expensive proposition when you have to very few customers per mile of transmission line.

        No body who writes about this cluster fuck in the mass media really seems to actually know anything about it. You can read a hundred articles without finding out a goddamned thing about how much a typical Australian consumer pays for his grid juice, and how the bill breaks in respect to taxes, distribution costs, generation costs, and profit for the utility. You won’t find out in that hundred articles if the transmission lines are owned by the same companies that own the generating plants. You won’t find out if the utilities are owned partially by the coal industry, or if the utilities own pieces of the coal industry, etc.

        Hopefully somebody who actually lives there and has some first hand knowledge of what’s going on will enlighten us.

        There’s at least one silvery spot in the clouds there. Aussie consumers are leading the way in helping drive down the cost of going off grid, partially or wholly, and the more early adapters there are, the cheaper my own system will be when I get around to installing it, lol.

        • sunnnv says:

          OFM – What’s not to understand?

          They privatised much/all of the generation (depending on state).
          No single “the buck stops here” office any more, now just a bunch of finger pointing.

          From Matt from last year:


          Now some did/want to privatise the grid itself, depending on state.

        • islandboy says:

          For a somewhat biased view of the situation I would recommend the web site:


          Top story as of the time of this post (2:50 pm EST)

          Coal unit trips in heatwave as Tesla big battery cashes in

          Apparently the battery installation, roughly one month old, has been cashing in big time, taking advantage of negative prices during periods of extremely low demand relative to supplying and selling during very high price periods.

          While there is an obvious pro renewable bias on this website, I would consider it required reading for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of what is happening down under. It should be dead easy to find the conservative Australian viewpoints from the Rupert Murdoch owned media outlets but, I must admit I have not tried since I’m not particularly interested in listening to very rich people (or their proxies) whining about the threats to their livelihood from disruptive industries!

          From the “About” page at RenewEconomy.com. au

          “Since its launch in early 2012, RenewEconomy.com.au has quickly emerged as Australia’s best informed and most read web-site focusing on clean energy news and analysis, as well as climate policy.

          It is read widely among the industry and policy-makers, and others with a strong interest in the transition to a low carbon economy. By October, 2017, it surpassed 25 million page views in total. It has a strong international readership because it also focuses on global trends. [snip]

          There seems little doubt that the Australian economy – indeed the world’s – is starting the journey through one of the most dramatic transformations since the industrial revolution.

          Like the first, this new energy-focused revolution will be led by changes in technology, this time driven by the need to act on climate change, energy security and resource scarcity. Much of the way the world does business – particularly in the multi-trillion dollar energy and transport sectors, but also in many other sectors – will change profoundly in the decades to come.

          How this unfolds, and at what cost or benefit, is impossible to forecast. But it’s going to be fascinating to watch, to report on, and to analyse.

          That’s the goal of this website – to discuss the ideas, analyse the trends, the new technologies and the policies that will drive this transformation. And it’s the goal of our new sister website, OneStepOffTheGrid.com.au, because of the opportunities and choices afforded consumers by solar, battery storage, and other technologies.

      • Phil S says:

        Hi coffee,
        I’m the aussie who provided the link about the gold plated network a while back. Unfortunately I can’t find any links, but you indirectly raise a question I can’t find an answer to – who actually paid the spot wholesale prices you mention?
        All residential customers in australia getting their electricity from the grid have contracts with a supplier. In Victoria the retail price averages about $AU 0.30 kWh 0r $AU300 MWh on top of a monthly grid connection fee (but when looking at this price you have to remember in Aus the MINIMUM legal wage is about $AU18/hr so prices can’t be so easily compared to US prices). Victoria has the highest retail prices due to an unregulated retail market that was meant to provide competition. I could go on and on about how that’s failed.

        I believe most commercial customers also negotiate long term supply contracts.

        So the spot market prices are only paid for a small (tiny?) proportion of the total electricity supplied, though I can’t find out just how small easily. IMHO any business paying spot market prices has tried to be too clever “playing the market”. I once had a residential power supply contract with a company that owns two large hydropower power plants that gives the appearance of providing customers with “green” power at no extra cost compared to coal plants. Reading their annual reports I found they actually generate a fraction of the electricity they sell. They make their money by buying cheap baseload power from other companies to on sell to their customers, and only bother to generate electricity to sell to other power companies when there is a squeeze on price (they would have loved yesterday).
        As for the comments of the smelter manager, over the last couple of decades large energy users in Victoria seem to have routinely threatened to close their businesses unless governments intervene to increase baseload power generation (and then continue to give them cut rates for the resulting excess power).
        As OFM says, its a clusterfuck here, with lots of misleading information thrown around by vested interests and politicians.

        • OFM says:

          Thank you Phil!

          Now REALLY enlighten me, by telling me how many hours a typical retail customer works, AFTER PAYING HIS TAXES, to pay his electricity bill, WITH all taxes and fees levied included in the bill of course.

          A thousand kilowatt hours per month costs around a hundred bucks, American, a little more or a little less, in most places in this country. The lowest paid jobs around here where I live now typically pay at least eight fifty to nine bucks, after you have a few months experience/ seniority, these being retail store or restaurant jobs such as cashier and stocking shelves, etc. You get home in Virginia or NC with two hundred fifty to two hundred seventy five of that out of a forty hour week, and you will likely get a few bucks back when you file your taxes. That’s if you have no dependents. If you have a family, you pay hardly any income tax at all. Retail sales taxes levied on damn near everything you can buy at a store take a six or seven percent bite out of your pocket .

          So….. two days take home pay covers the monthly electricity bill in a household that typically has all electric appliances that are heavily used, including a washer, dryer, hot water heater, kitchen range, microwave, frost free refrigerator freezer, computer, tv, lights of course as well. I have all these things, and a large food freezer as well (used to have two refrigerators and THREE freezers, down to one of each now ) , and my bill is seldom as high as ninety bucks, except when I use the ac during the hot part of the summer.

          My rental properties have all these things, including heat pumps, supplied by me, excepting the stand alone freezer,computer, and tv, and the worst monthly bill EVER has been a hundred eighty bucks, when it seldom got above freezing except during the afternoon a few days and dropped down to zero F or very close a couple of weeks, and into the teens almost every other night. That place was cozy with the thermostat set at seventy.

          ( No, I don’t rent to people who make only nine bucks, unless there are two wage earners, that’s not enough to cover the rent I charge plus all other living expenses.)

          The tenant was one of the sort that cooks from scratch, and cooked for four people, did laundry for four people, etc. The tv was never turned off, to my knowledge, lol.

          So…… it cost about three days take home to run the total electric house, energy wise, the coldest month in years, for a person who stocks store shelves, no union. Two days covers it on average, with central heat and air , the thermostat set at seventy, tenants choice.

          How many days take home pay does it take a typical lower paid Aussie to pay for a thousand kilowatt hours? How much is the basic connection fee, which costs about eighteen bucks a month here? The bill here is never less than eighteen bucks even if you lock out the main breaker for the full month, but you get the first hundred fifty kilowatt hours included, no extra charge.

          How many kilowatt hours does a typical Aussie family use per month?

          THIS is the sort of information that enables a Yankee to really understand the electricity price situation down your way.

          And one more thing….. how much difference is there between the rates paid by people out in the boonies, where there are only a few customers per mile of transmission line, compared to people in or right around the edges of towns and cities?

          Just how far apart are rural grid customers in extreme cases?

          • Phil S says:

            Hi OFM, sorry I can’t tell you how many hours it takes to pay the bill. I can tell you my brother-in-law from Boston thinks everything in Aus is expensive, e.g. a pair of levi 501 jeans is $120 and a big mac meal including 3.7 oz fries and 13 oz coke is $10.
            Having said that, the Vic government has a pretty user friendly website to compare energy retailers at https://compare.switchon.vic.gov.au I tried a family of 4 living in a 6 room house in my suburb in melb (postcode 3085 if you want to try its pretty easy with buttons and drop down menus to select family size house size heating options cooling options etc) with just electricity not gas and the quotes ranged from $1900 to $2100 a year or about $170 a month. Income tax here is a sliding scale but anyone on less than $50000 a year would effecitively pay less than 25% tax – so let’s say the legal min take home pay is $13.50. That would mean about 12.6 hrs to pay the monthly bill.
            As for people in the boonies, it all depends on whether the existing grid goes past your property. If it does, I understand that electricity prices aren’t that different from those for city folk. But if it doesn’t, these days you pay the cost of connecting to the grid, and that can be crazily expensive – people don’t bother and used to use diesel generators and these days use solar, batteries and generator back-up.

            • scrub puller says:

              Our average use is about 7.5 kwh per day on residential tariff 11 @ around 26 cents per kwh.

              Our panels produce about 8.5 kwh per day which until 2020 is fed back into the grid @ 44 cents per kwh.

              Various charges including meter reading and administration resulted in our electricity costs between 25/05/2017 and 23/8/2017 coming at 18 cents per day.

              There was no A/C during that period but, in the summer we can spike up to 13kwh day for a few days at a time.

              We are in the bush, use pressure pumps for house and garden water, have two fridges, two freezers and all normal appliances . . . I cannot imagine using more than 300 kwh in a month.

        • coffeeguyzz says:

          Brief, incomplete response which I hope to follow up on later …

          I do not know enough about any of these markets, American or Australian, to confidently answer your question.

          However, based on my readings of the New England ISO, it appears the “Day Before” pricing is what is given to the juice providers based on which is the lowest cost and tailored to the amount (forecast from the ISO) that the grid will need.
          If demand exceeds forecast – maybe 10% of the total – then the spot price kicks in, in other words, the high spot is given to the specific juice provider (still lowest cost from these guys) for providing the needed electricity.
          All this money is aggregated into a ‘pool’ from which the monthly bills are tabulated.

          As far as who pays for both the ‘Day Ahead’ and spot, the local utilities do and pass these off to the ultimate customer (you, me) with only a small, regulated markup.
          The different regions, usually but not always the states, Aussie or American, are the defined areas for the various wholesale pricing due – in part – to the tight regulatory and legal control they exert on the utilities.

          Not a very satisfactory explanation, perhaps, but I am still hoping someone can provide a more comprehensive, unquestionably accurate, answer to your question.

          Final thought … you may or may not be correct in minimizing impact of energy costs to industry.
          First new aluminum smelter in 40 years in the US just broke ground near Ashland, Kentucky last week.
          Low cost energy is crucial for modern living and the lowest cost providers have an enormous commercial advantage.

          • Phil S says:

            Hi Coffee,
            After a bit of searching I have established “In Victoria there are no regulated tariffs, which means that retailers set their own prices” (source: vic government website https://www.victorianenergysaver.vic.gov.au/bills-pricing-and-meters/how-the-energy-system-works )
            Customers have contracts with retailers, and retailers are only allowed to change their prices on two fixed days of the year.
            So far I haven’t found how most retailers pay the wholesalers – but the Australian Energy regulator mentions retailers hedging and insuring against the spot price, and companies vertically integrating so they are the wholesaler and the retailer.
            As for your final thought, I know things are complex. My comment was in the context of historical power generation in Victoria, back in the glory days when it seemed we had limitless brown coal to generate electricity with, the government built large power stations well before electricity demand required them, and some companies (aluminium smelters in particular) got great deals on electricity so the power stations didn’t just sit there unused. You could argue the government building power stations brought industry to Vic, but its not an approach governments would take these days.

            • OFM says:

              Here’s a big THANKS for every body that had something to add about Aussie electricity!

              The Aussie dollar is at this time worth about eighty cents Yankee, so it’s obvious any Australian with a job subject to the minimum wage law there is earning more , in electrons or paper terms, than the lowest paid workers here in the USA.

              Thirteen Aussie bucks after taxes is worth well over ten bucks Yankee, and I know plenty of people here who make less than ten Yankee bucks per hour and still pay a considerable percentage of that in taxes.

              Comparing actual wages and taxes from one country to the next is misleading as hell, because you also must factor in the cost of a typical cost of goods and services, and know the wages paid in each country in some typical fields of work to understand who lives best.

              A ten dollar Big Mac combo at ten bucks Aussie is cheaper for the Aussie fast food customer working for minimum wage than it is here, for a minimum wage worker.

              Wages vary wildly here in the USA for any given kind of work, depending on where you live, and who you work for. A carpenter up in Damnyankee New York City makes at least double what a carpenter can expect to make where I live, and more likely double plus, three times, maybe even four times, I don’t know what current union scale is up that way.

              I presume the situation in Australia is probably somewhat the same, in respect to pay variations for the same work.

              I could get my electrical consumption down to Scrub Puller’s, if I really wanted too, but even though I have a rather limited cash income, I have enough discretionary income that I am very comfortable paying anywhere from sixty bucks to a little over a hundred per month for electricity. 300 kilowatt hours would cost me about forty bucks here, maybe a little less. I’m not sure just how much the mandatory minimum bill has to do with the monthly bill when you use as little as three hundred kilowatt hours. The bill might be as low as thirty three bucks.
              I can earn, or save, enough money working to dry a load of clothes in as little as a minute, easily, because it costs me only about forty cents to dry a large load. I’m not about to spend twenty minutes hanging that load outside and bringing it in again for forty cents, not so long as I have discretionary income, lol.

              Yankee grid juices is insanely cheap, if you are in a position to use your time earning, rather than trying to save by using a lot less electricity.

              It would be hard for me to find an hourly wage job within driving distance that pays over fifteen bucks, although there are many that do pay better….. if you have the right qualifications and aren’t too old. I typically expect to make a long term return of a hundred bucks an hour or more working on projects on the farm, improving the value of it for the next owner to come after me, and hopefully I will make a big capital gain profit when (IF) I have to sell it for money to support myself later on.

              Maybe I’m wrong, but I’m a big believer in the Mighty Mighty Market, and the Invincible Invisible Hand, although I am quick to point out that the market and it’s invisible hand don’t necessarily produce fast results, in terms of impatient naked apes hopes and desires.

              But I’m willing to be that within ten years, I will be able to buy a refrigerator that’s comparable in terms of energy efficiency to a new three thousand dollar Sun Frost at a local store for thirty five cents on the dollar, with a nice solid warranty ( not saying Sun Frost does not, but strange it’s not mentioned prominently on their web site if so).

              All that’s necessary is that enough people with money to pay more up front come to realize that the extra money is well invested…… better invested than in saving it as cash, better invested than in the stock market, probably, since the savings are guaranteed every month for the life of the fridge. The more they sell, the cheaper they will get.

              I’m hoping electric bikes catch on really fast here too. Going to buy one as soon as I think the price of it reflects the true cost of mass production, and I can get one with a known well respected brand name at a mass market fair price. There’s no way in hell that a dozen electric bikes should cost as much as a nice electric car, at thirty five grand. The whole dozen together won’t weigh a thousand pounds, lol. The car will have a bigger battery than all twelve combined, three or four times as much total material, etc. A dozen times as much expensive machine work. A far more sophisticated paint job, etc. The whole dozen, plus a dozen more, will fit in a reusable shipping crate as big as a typical car, to be assembled in a matter of minutes each by a semiskilled person at a local distribution center for pickup by local dealers, who may choose to assemble them personally anyway.

              Will a really good reliable, made to last, easily serviced, parts available locally without waiting, electric bike be available in my town in ten years for a thousand bucks within ten years?

              I believe it will. And not long after that, it will have a generic battery specification as well, meaning the battery box comes in a standard size, standard connections, so that you can buy a new battery from an after market company, and install it yourself, just like we buy batteries and tires these days for any car, without having to go back to the dealer.

              • scrub puller says:

                Yair . . . .

                Gotcha OFM.

                I find real world comparisons of how we all survive and thrive (or otherwise) very interesting.

                It always seems to me (we in Australia) should have a huge advantage over folks that have to contend with winter and all its attendant costs. . . that is to say commerce, construction and agriculture are not hampered much by the season.


      • GoneFishing says:

        Some musings on the possible future of Australia. population, society, economy and climate.

  4. Cats@Home says:

    Amazon Chooses 20 Finalists for Second Headquarters
    By Nick Wingfield JAN. 18, 2018


    Amazon said on Thursday that it had whittled the list of possible homes for its second headquarters to 20, including centers of technology like Boston and some surprise locations like Columbus, Ohio.

    The full list of finalists leans toward locations in the Midwest and South and on the East Coast, and away from the tech-saturated hubs of the West Coast. It includes:

    Austin, Tex.
    Columbus, Ohio
    Los Angeles
    Montgomery County, Md.
    New York
    Northern Virginia
    Raleigh, N.C.
    Washington, D.C.

    Many of the finalists, including Dallas, Denver, Raleigh and Washington, were considered shoo-ins from the moment Amazon announced the search, largely because of the attributes that the company said it was seeking for its second home. Those criteria included a metropolitan area with a population of greater than one million and the ability to attract and keep strong technical talent.

    • Paulo says:

      I wondered when I read this list, earlier? Why is Toronto on this list? A throwaway/token vote? Insanely expensive, brutally hot and humid in the summer, stupid cold in the winter, and does anyone really want to live there?

      Vrs Denver? Do the other cities stack up at all to Denver? Chicago? Are there tac vests supplied? Maybe Virginia or Maryland. Atlanta?

      Seems to be a weird list for livability.

      • Cats@Home says:

        From the start Toronto has been a top pick because getting visas for tech workers is easier, and maybe less controversial. Plus having HQ’s in two different countries could let Jeff play the two against each other to get the best tax climate.

      • Lloyd says:

        University of Waterloo’s computer program, University of Toronto’s computer program, and a hotbed of computer Startups and incubators including Ryerson University’s Digital Media Zone and U of T’s Creative Destruction Lab. We got your staff, and we’ve got single-payer health care.

        The Horseshoe, Massey Hall, the Toronto International Film Festival, the Maple Leafs, the Raptors … if you want sports or culture, we got ’em. And the best transit system on the continent so you can get to them (2017 APTA Transit System of the Year).


        • Survivalist says:

          Plus if there’s any mentally ill people you want murdered you can just call the cops on them for creating a disturbance.

          Toronto Police Internal Investigator- “Why did you have to shoot him 17 times?”
          Toronto Cop- “I ran out of bullets.”

          • Lloyd says:

            And if you’re making a joke about the death of Sammy Yatim, you forgot to mention that the cop is going to jail for it.

  5. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    fRed Herrings (and assorted errors and fallacies)

    Continued from here

    “Just as much as arguing that permaculture practices will feed 9 billion people, it can’t and it won’t…” ~ Fred Magyar

    “Caelan MacIntyre aka Killian over at Real Climate… Yes, Caelan as Kevin… over at Real Climate…” ~ Fred Magyar

    “…you are a naive simpleton and have not faintest clue as to how the world really works…” ~ Fred Magyar

    “A red herring is something that misleads or distracts from a relevant or important issue. It may be either a logical fallacy or a literary device that leads readers or audiences towards a false conclusion…

    A straw man is a common form of argument and is an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent’s argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not presented by that opponent…

    Ad hominem… is a fallacious argumentative strategy whereby an argument is rebutted by attacking the character, motive, or other attribute of the person making the argument, or persons associated with the argument, rather than attacking the substance of the argument itself” ~ Wikipedia

    Your near-chronic errors and logical fallacies galore is a large part of why I suspect you couldn’t do science if your career depended on it.

    But, hey, if you can’t do science, you can always ‘claim’ it and ‘make it your own’…
    (and of course utter fallacies along the way for distraction and good measure and which some of the POB readership may not notice.). ^u^

    • Paulo says:

      Why on earth is this bullshit posted here, Caelen? Don’t you have anything better to do than pick a fight before a topic is even considered.

      Fred’s a good guy and I have enjoyed his posts for years. He is very informative with a wide range of experience to draw upon. I don’t always agree with what he says, but what he writes is always worth reading and researching.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        LOL! It’s OK, Paul, I think it’s Caelan’s way of responding to my suggestion that he have himself a ‘Simple Banana’!

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          I’m guessing Paulo won’t take issue with your asinine comment(s) like this.

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        Hi Paulo,

        While you may appreciate that, in any case, my (and others’) time on here has become increasingly sparse, thanks in large part to this kind of garbage coming from Fred and company, (and making POB seem increasingly more like a clique) unless this has changed, unlike TOD, POB allows for carry-over of threads to new threads.

        While all fine and nice, whether Fred is ‘a good guy’ or not or has ‘a wide range of experience to draw on’ is irrelevant to the subject, but I imagine he’ll appreciate your balanced PR nonetheless.

        “I don’t always agree with what he says…” ~ Paulo

        Don’t worry about it.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Let’s see, you falsely accuse me of bringing up the topic of complexity as in your words a “lame excuse”, for not using less energy…

          Sorry Bro, I have always advocated using less energy as one part of a path to reducing humanity’s impact on the biosphere.

          So right there you have engaged in a Red herring, an Ad hominem and a Straw man argument, and a straight out lie, in just one single line.

          I still see no indication whatsoever from you that you understand how the world works so I doubt you would learn much from anything I might have to say about complexity or any other topic for that matter. Your argument that there are solutions to our collective predicament that are so simple that even a child can understand them is indicative of your naïveté!

          I repeat my suggestion:

          Go have yourself a simple banana, Caelan!


          Multidisciplinary perspectives on banana (Musa spp.) domestication

          • OFM says:

            In the trades, the experts travel. The farther from home a man is, the more apt he is to be an expert. Your employer doesn’t put you on a plane and fly you a few thousand miles to work a few days for a major customer unless you know your stuff.

            But every once in a while, a man manages to get on entirely the wrong plane, and winds up in a place where he hasn’t the foggiest idea what the hell is going on.

            It that case, the usual strategy is that since you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, you baffle them with your bullshit.

            Caelan somehow got on a wrong plane, and wound up here, and management seems to be unwilling to buy him a return ticket to wherever he escaped from, lol. They were probably glad to see him go, considering him harmless, but a huge annoyance, lecturing them endlessly on the proper way to run the asylum. 😉

            I doubt very seriously if he could hold down even the most elementary job in any of the fields he talks about as if knows more that guys who have devoted a lifetime to the study thereof.

            I forgot more about agriculture in general and permaculture in particular by the time I was twelve, living on a working small scale farm, than he has ever known or ever will know, given that my folks used a number of methods and strategies commonly considered to be integral to the permaculture paradigm. I tagged along in the field with them, lots of days, until I got tall enough to hoe my own row, lol. Fond memories!

            Fred’s quite knowledgeable, expert, in some fields about which I know only a very little, so I can learn a lot reading his stuff, ditto the rest of us.

            Maybe I’m just too dumb to comprehend Caelan’s comments, but after reading them for years now, I still can’t make heads nor tails out of them, except that he seems to believe nothing works. I guess that if he were one of the tribe of the first early ape/men to pick up a stick or stone to use it as a tool, he would have insisted it wouldn’t work, and that he would have insisted that it’s much better to sleep on the ground outside in the rain, or in the fork of a tree, than in a dry cave with a fire at the mouth of it to keep the lions away, lol.

            When it comes to baffling bullshit, Caelan is as good as they come. He has an apparently infinite supply of it, and is as free as a bird with it.

            He’s so good at it that he almost makes sense, sometimes, if you are about half asleep, lol.

            • Caelan MacIntyre says:

              “I enjoy making a fool of myself in public jousting with Caelan…” ~ OFM/Glen McMillian

              Of course, I can ride your (so declarative ha!) bullshit out, Glen, but, still, it’s nice to see you’re including permaculture now– wow, twice in one comment! ^u^

              Hugz ♥ (gigglez)

          • notanoilman says:

            Please stop insilting bananas.

            • Caelan MacIntyre says:

              I’m less than crazy about bananas, so don’t consume all that much, but they are ok in things like banana bread, cake or pie.

          • Caelan MacIntyre says:

            ” So what pray is your plan if we know we can’t continue to burn carbon? I wait with bated breath for some king of cogent response!” ~ Fred Magyar

            Don’t burn it. Power down. Plant lots of native flora, etc.. I’ve already written about this. It’s so simple that even a child can understand it.” ~ Caelan MacIntyre

            “Surely you jest, Caelan! You obviously do not have a grasp of the level of complexity of the myriad interacting systems that we all depend on for our survival on a daily basis! There is nothing simple about any of them taken individually. Let alone how all the different systems interact with each other.” ~ Fred Magyar

            “Hi Caelan,

            As far as I can tell, when you say ‘power down’ you don’t mean reduce fossil fuel use and replaced it with some other form of energy you mean use less energy.

            The question is simple, how is this done?

            …it would be difficult to live with no energy use, and in much of the US as well.” ~ Dennis Coyne

            ” Hi Dennis, I’m pretty sure you can arrive at countless examples of how to use less energy without my help. I mean, come on.” ~ Caelan MacIntyre

            ‘Don’t burn it’ and ‘power down’ suggest precisely what they do and at the same time make assumptions– explicit and implicit– that you both should be able to ‘fill in the gaps’. You are not babies and should be perfectly able to fill in the gaps without having to be spoon-fed by Caelan.

            Dennis, where did I write no energy use?
            Fred, just because I refuse to spoon-feed you doesn’t therefore mean that I don’t get complexity.

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        “I am grateful to see the familiar names willing to submit their ideas and risk irritating reactions. Thank you for your time, folks…. Most appreciated.” ~ Paulo

        Thanks, Paulo. ^u^

        Your moralizing needs to be less selective, though, so that I can take you more seriously. Grab some balls, maybe.

        It’s a bit like your previous mention hereon, something to the effect of how the cop didn’t make a big deal about your expired license but, as I suggested, may otherwise have if you were ‘black’ for example– assuming you’re not of course.

        You could even associate that concept into why some believe some societies can collapse due to issues surrounding increasing economic and other disparities– you know, say, regarding the HANDY project or the idea of the 1%/99% that the Occupy Movement made famous?

        “In sum, the results of our experiments, discussed in Section 6, 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.” ~ quote from above linked paper

  6. Survivalist says:

    Long-Term Warming Trend Continued in 2017: NASA, NOAA

    • George Kaplan says:

      Applying denier cherry picking methods used to define the non-existent hiatus would (let’s hope incorrectly) give the expected warming at about 0.05K per year based on the average since 2011.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi George,

        Using BEST Land Ocean monthly data for the past 30 years, the trend is 1.96 C per century.

      • GoneFishing says:

        Looks like about +0.04 C/y for global and +0.07 C/y for the Arctic (40 year average). That implies a 3.2 C global rise from current temperature for the planet by 2100, if there is no further acceleration of temperature rise. Arctic regional rise will be at least double that.
        Of course acceleration is expected as the last of the ice leaves the Arctic Ocean during summer, allowing increased heating of the Arctic Ocean and Arctic region and further loss of snow cover. Fall ice cover will be later and spring thaw earlier. Any ice that forms will be annual and thinner. With 4 million km2 ocean ice, 50 million km2 of snow cover to play with and a very distorted jet stream, things should be quite interesting on the RF front over the next couple of decades. Increasing water vapor and other GWG will continue.
        Readers should be aware that annual natural planetary variation can be as large as current global decadal rise rates. This means that short term (less than 5 years) data and averages are not very reliable, ten years is better.

        Note on sea level rise: During the last deglaciation average sea level rise was only about twice what it is now despite the huge amount of ice volume and area that melted. Also despite the much larger RF component involved in the NH due to increased solar insolation there during the deglaciation period.
        Our latest reduction in ice volume is happening with a relatively small radiative forcing, but one which has a different character, one which acts initially across the whole globe. This is due to an initial state of gas driven warming versus an initial state of solar input increase to the northern regions (where the ice sheets were) which was followed by some gas driven warming. Currently the northern ice sheet and ocean is receiving the lowest amount of solar insolation in this orbital cycle which shows the instability of the Arctic at this point in time.

        • notanoilman says:

          Are you taking into account exponential increase or straight forward linear? If using linear then that is REALLY scary.


          • GoneFishing says:

            That was just a linear extrapolation, which I expect will fall below reality in the future. With such short time spans involving such a large and complex system I am generally astounded by the speed of the changes we do observe. Except for a few exceptional cases in the paleo record where massive decadal time order temperature changes seem to have happened, we are well outside the box now.

            • notanoilman says:

              Given the choice between “Are we fucked?” and “Are we really fucked?” I would say the latter. As these are averages then the land temperature increase … ouch!


              • GoneFishing says:

                Please, don’t get overheated about this. 🙂
                I don’t know if we are fucked or not, at least from temperature rise. We have been fucked since I was born without even having climate change in the equation.

                The number of feedbacks is over forty now and we do not have good field data about most of them. Basically humanity doesn’t really care. Maybe one percent do and many of those will not look hard at realities. That is why they keep getting surprised about the observed pace of changes and it’s just starting. Or they keep ignoring much of what is known and refusing to look at what is not.
                NASA was predicting northern heartland temperatures to rise above 3C by 2100 a number of years ago. Now we know more. Arctic temp anomalies will be above +6C. Combine that with the current high insolation that Antarctica and the nearby Southern Ocean has been receiving for a long time, which is probably why the Arctic is showing signs of instability with small forcings. It’s an interactive planet.

                But worry about the continuous destruction of nature, the massive poisonous chemicalization of planet, the nukes waiting to launch at the whim of some nutcase leader, the continuing economic injustice, the rising population, the eventual failure of energy. Lots of things to worry about. I try not to worry about it much anymore, it gets too tiresome. I am just driven by stupid curiosity.
                No amount of math, science or discussion will change reality. The world is what it is and we are where we are. How you live it is up to you. Enjoy the days, we are all under a death sentence from the moment we take our first breath. Nothing new there, nothing to worry about.

                Now off to take another walk out in the snow and among the trees. 🙂

                BTW: It’s all just a big experiment, a trial and error system. Is humanity a success? Up until now. Will it continue to be a success? They won’t know until they get there and they will probably be as puzzled as us about how things turned out.

        • Tran says:

          This here is an interesting scientific study you should read if ever you wish to reevaluate your climate predictions.

          Why models run hot: results from an irreducibly simple climate model

          Sci. Bullitins (2015)
          60(1) : 122–135

          –“There is no unrealized global warming in the pipeline; that global warming this century will be [less than] 1 K” (Note: A temperature change of 1 K is the same as 1 °C or 1.8 °F)

          • GoneFishing says:

            Excellent comedy, good for a laugh, thanks.
            The Many Myths of Monckton
            Climate Misinformer: Christopher Monckton

          • Fred Magyar says:



            Christopher Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (born 1952) is “a caricature English peer”,[2] sacked former deputy leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP)[3] and a climate change denier. He constitutes an excellent argument in favour of revolutionary socialism.

            One Guardian commenter said “If he didn’t exist you really would have to invent him.” It’s not entirely clear the amusement gained would be worth it… wait, Sacha? Is that you?

            Do love his bulging eyes!

            • Hightrekker says:

              Monckton is always good for a laugh.
              Where do the ill informed find these nut cases?

          • George Kaplan says:

            Tran – if that is addressed to me I reevaluate my climate position all the time, through peer reviewed scientific papers and properly researched op-ed pieces, not by reading that sort of bollocks.

            p.s. pretty much every re-evaluation has led me to think things are worse than I thought before, especially when considered together with the other major problems facing us of over population, energy/soil/water resource depletion/exhaustion, wealth inequality, smart phone/social media zombification etc.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Gonefishing,

          Which data are you using? I get 1.86 K per century using the monthly BEST data from Dec 1977 to Nov 2017. Just used OLS in excel. Not sure what data set would give twice that rate of warming (4 C per century).

          Note that the Best data from Jan 2011 to Nov 2017 gives 6K per century, but this is cherry picking as George suggested earlier.

          Using 1996-2017 I get about 1.9K per century. For the past 50 years the trend is 1.75 K per century.

          • GoneFishing says:

            You didn’t take into account the added forcings from Arctic sea ice loss and snow loss over the period, or the 40 year delay in temperature rise from the latest 40 year pulse of GHG’s which have not shown up yet in the average global temp data. Just additive, did not use the interdependency of natural forcings, treated them as independent. Did not throw in the increased water vapor effect later in the century or any of the other 40 feedbacks. Kept it simple and linear. Not quite reality but better than just using a straightedge.
            One cannot assume conditions will be the same across that time period, it would make little sense and be very unrealistic. Conditions are changing now so just extrapolate them forward.

            • George Kaplan says:

              What would you say the expected order of magnitude type influence from loss of sea ice will be say once it is clear for one month in summer in the Arctic (or whatever point you think appropriate). I read a couple of papers from about 2010 saying that the loss then contributed an RF of about 25% of that from GHG. Since then ice loss has increased and Antarctic ice has started to rapidly decrease, when it had been slightly increasing. It seems it might catch the GHG influence up, especially if there are a couple of bad weather years like 2007 and 2012 acting on the thin mobile ice there is now. I think the IPCC ERF (effective radiative forcing) for GHGs, land use, aerosols etc. includes longer term effects but specifically excludes ice loss which is treated separately, I’m not sure what they do about snow cover (which seems maybe to be increasing slightly in the short term because of higher precipitation – from higher humidities I guess)?

              • GoneFishing says:

                Actually if you look at the NH snow cover it is appreciably below it’s early levels. The important loss is in the spring and early summer (high insolation times)where every month shows a downtrend over time right into June. Funny how increased winter snow cover melts off faster than ever.
                Try these for condensed explanations.


                It’s not the extra humidity, it’s the incursions of cold air from the north since the jet stream has changed which is moving snow cover further south in the cold season. However, the increased extent disappears even more quickly as soon as spring shows up, so I suspect winter snow cover will change dramatically when the jet stream pattern changes again.

                As far as the Arctic effect, it will at least double the RF of current gas induced warming, not counting the gases that will be unleashed by the warming. That will mean both poles are maximized with warming at the same time. Think about that one.

                In the graphic below from Rutgers Snow Lab one can see that although lately extent has remained roughly similar there is a difference between 1967 to 1987 anomalies and 1987 to now anomalies.

                • GoneFishing says:

                  Here is another view of NH snow cover.

                  • George Kaplan says:

                    Thanks – looking at that AMAP report that survivalist linked below it shows the snow extent reducing, but thickness increasing in some places – my mistake.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Gonefishing,

              Just reporting past changes.

              For Gistemp its also 0.175 K/decade for the past 40 years and 0.185 K per decade for the past 30 years.

              Land only data eliminates the 40 year lag, for BEST land only data that’s 0.28 K per decade for the past 30 years.

              Future emissions are likely to increase at a slower rate so the 1987-2017 rate of increase is not that likely to continue.

              Using CO2 vs land temps from 1960-2017 to estimate ECS gives about 3.6K per doubling of CO2 implying about 2.5 C of warming for 450 ppm atmospheric CO2 so certainly CO2 emissions need to be cut. Note that the 2.5 C for global land ocean temperatures would be reached in 2450 or so (at 450 ppm). Probably 1000 Pg C of emissions might accomplish this, even lower emissions (maybe 800 Pg C) would be needed to get to 2 C (at the higher 3.6 ECS). Many of the Global climate models have lower ECS in the range of 2.5 to 3.5 C.

              • GoneFishing says:

                “Land only data eliminates the 40 year lag, for BEST land only data that’s 0.28 K per decade for the past 30 years.”
                The oceans heavily influence continental temperatures. Tennessee has had little temperature change over the last century and no change at all in Mississippi and Alabama.

                Ok, going with your land based weather station data, ignoring all the increasing feedbacks and the reduction in future dimming, will add 2.8C over the next century which will give 3.6C. Just a simple extrapolation.

                Of course the rate of temperature rise has doubled over the last 50 years (NOAA). Which makes sense since both the natural forcings and the anthropogenic forcings have been increasing, modified by huge amounts of SOx from coal and bunker fuel burning. We can expect at least another doubling of rate increase over the next 50 years since fossil fuel burning will only decrease partially and natural forcings are on the rise, plus the effects from the previous 40 year plume.
                And the Arctic is already 2C above the 1951 to 1990 average so one can see where that is going.

                Maybe the clouds will change everything. 🙂

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  Hi Gonefishing,

                  Using the Sato data (from Goddard), the influence of aerosols is not that great, so the “dimming” is not as large an effect as you believe. The natural feed backs have been operating over the entire period, so these effects are already included.

                  So you used a 10 year trend using NOAA data to get 0.4K per decade?

                  The 15 year trend is 0.2K per decade and the 20 year trend is 0.176K per decade.

                  A doubling of the rate of increase in temperature is not what the mainstream climate models predict with a reasonable emissions scenario (RCP4.5).

                  Interesting article reviewed at link below and paper can be accessed from the references (#1).


                  The paper’s lead author responds in comments (#22 and #27).

                  Their ECS estimate is 2.8+/-0.6K for the 66% confidence interval and 2.8+/-1.2K for the 95% confidence interval. This analysis is based on 16 CMIP5 models taking the single model from each center that has the lowest RMS error for Temp vs data for the 1880-2016 period.

                  • GoneFishing says:

                    I will make it clear to you. The carbon plume injection is way too fast for the earth system to respond. What has been measured so far is merely a fraction of a longer process and the actual climate acceleration rate is unknown, but higher than what we have seen.
                    Best to look to the far past for guidance as to what the final temperatures will be, but that is not the important point. The acceleration rate is the important point, and we will start to see those effects within the next two decades.
                    You can liken it to any acceleration, putting one’s foot to the floor in a car only starts the process, it takes time to reach full speed and I am not sure the brakes work very well.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Gonefishing,

                    Mid Pliocene warm period, 2 C above pre-industrial and 405 ppm atmospheric CO2 implies an Earth System sensitivity of 3.75 K for a doubling of CO2 (if the relationship is linear between natural log of atmospheric CO2 and change in temperature.

                    If atmospheric CO2 stabilizes at 450 ppm (with a 1100 Pg carbon emission scenario) this implies an Earth system equilibrium of 2.6 C. In reality, over 20,000 years atmospheric CO2 is likely to fall to about 420 ppm which would result in a lower equilibrium temperature of 2.2 C.

                    On the acceleration in ECS that you expect.

                    Using a simple regression of Global land temperature vs natural log of atmospheric CO2 for 1850-2016 we find an ECS of 3.4K vs 1975-2016 where ECS is 4K. So there has been acceleration, especially since 1975 and this may be evidence of a reduction in global dimming as pollution controls became widespread in the OECD. ( I realize this contradicts what I have found when doing a multivariate analysis which includes aerosols.)

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Gone fishing,

                    Using CO2 data and taking the natural log, along with BEST Land temperature data and aerosol optical depth data as a proxy for aerosols (see link below)


                    We can do an OLS on global land temp vs nat log CO2 and aerosol optical dept (AOD).

                    For 1871-1970 the ECS is 4.35 K and for 1971-2011 (end of AOD data) the ECS is 4K.

                    For the entire 1871-2011 period the ECS is 3.3K. Note that when we break up the regression at 1970/1971 there is a deceleration in ECS rather than the reverse. The adjusted R squared for the 1871-2011 regression is 0.83, with F for the regression 340 (138 degrees of freedom).

                    If AOD falls to the 1850-2011 minimum, temperature increases by 0.01K, based on the regression results.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Carbon Aerosol Model (CA Model) regression based on 1871-2011 data, AOD data for 2012-2016 filled with 2005-2011 average AOD to find model temp for 2012 to 2016.

                    click on chart for larger view

                  • GoneFishing says:

                    I see you took the lower boundary of mid-Pliocene temperature which is 2-3C above preindustrial. No the relationship between ln of CO2 and temperature is not linear since there are other effects. The CO2 equivalent is now over 489 ppm.
                    In the future try and use more thoughtful approach. CO2 is not the only GHG and the others do not have the logarithmic responses of CO2. Since, as a professional spectroscopist, you will not listen to me here is your favorite professor to explain some things.

                    The radiative forcing of all GHG’s is now greater than 3.0 W/m2.

                    As far as the Arctic regions in the mid-Pliocene:
                    Scientists continue to add to the PRISM records. One international team drilled a sediment core from beneath a Siberian lake and found that summer air temperatures there, in the mid-Pliocene, were as high as 15° C (about 59° Fahrenheit). That’s 8 degrees warmer than today (SN: 6/15/13, p. 13). Other researchers uncovered clues, such as plant fossils from peat bogs, that suggest mean annual temperatures on Canada’s now-frozen Ellesmere Island near Greenland were as much as 18 degrees higher than today

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Gonefishing,

                    Very familiar with Archer’s lectures.

                    He also wrote the following,


                    where he concludes,

                    It’s the CO2, friend.

                    For mid Pliocene Warm Period, I take James Hansen’s best estimate which is 2 C.


                    from page 14:

                    We conclude that Pliocene temperatures probably were no more than 1-2°C warmer on global average than peak Holocene temperature.

                    The quote above was the basis for my choice of 2 C for mid Pliocene warm period temperature, call pre- industrial Holocene average 0.5 C below peak Holocene, so 1.5+0.5=2 C.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Gone fishing,

                    The more “thoughtful” approach, using Kyoto CO2 equivalent estimate from Magicc6 for 1871-2011 and aerosol data and BEST land temp data as before, gives an ECS estimate of 2.3 K per doubling of CO2 equivalent and suggests warming of 2.75 C for the RCP4.5 scenario (640 ppm CO2 equivalent in 2400 CE).

                    Updated values from 1979-2011 from NOAA and a regression on 1871- 2011 results in an ECS of 1.97 K per doubling of CO2 equivalent, note that data from 1871-1978 remains the MAGICC 6 estimate for Kyoto CO2 equivalent.

                    For the RCP4.5 scenario in 2400 (641 ppm CO2 equivalent) this implies 2.35 C of warming above preindustrial. Aerosols again have a negligible effect of 0.02 K.

  7. GoneFishing says:

    Rocky Mountain High is not so cool anymore.

    Evidence of high-elevation amplification versus Arctic amplification

    Elevation-dependent warming in high-elevation regions and Arctic amplification are of tremendous interest to many scientists who are engaged in studies in climate change. Here, using annual mean temperatures from 2781 global stations for the 1961–2010 period, we find that the warming for the world’s high-elevation stations (>500 m above sea level) is clearly stronger than their low-elevation counterparts; and the high-elevation amplification consists of not only an altitudinal amplification but also a latitudinal amplification. The warming for the high-elevation stations is linearly proportional to the temperature lapse rates along altitudinal and latitudinal gradients, as a result of the functional shape of Stefan-Boltzmann law in both vertical and latitudinal directions.


  8. Preston says:

    I don’t usually go for these fad conspiracy theories, but I’m definitely a girther. There is no way Trump is 6’3″ and 239lbs. That doctor kept sweating and says “don’t ask me” a lot. Trump’s driver license says 6’2″ but in reality I think he is more likely 6’0″, maybe 6’1″ at the most. I’d guess his weight is more like 270lbs.


    It’s all pretty weird, did the doctor not actually check his height and weight? Why is he lying?

    On Trump’s side he does spend a lot of time golfing and even with caddies and golf carts if you do that all day several times a week, it does count as pretty good physical activity.

  9. GoneFishing says:

    The killers of our time are in the air, not so much on the ground with two legs but they kill too. Reminiscent of the “Devil in the White City” where a serial killer wanders in the background of the Great Exposition, “Death in the air : the true story of a serial killer, the great London smog, and the strangling of a city” depicts the details of the killer London smog with another serial killer on the loose at the same time, a human one.


    Haven’t read it yet, but it sounds like a good read and pertinent to our burning of fossil fuel.

  10. OFM says:

    Auto manufacturers are increasing their investment in companies that are working on autonomous cars,etc, at a blistering pace.


    Management at the various car companies may not really believe in this new tech, but management is obviously afraid not to be on board so as to be too far behind if it works out………. and it’s almost dead sure to work out in the opinion of most people who know a lot about computers and sensors and so forth.

    ” In 2017, there were 38 disclosed venture and seed rounds by automakers, up from 26 in 2016 — and astronomically higher than only six in 2015. In other words, automakers are just starting to rev their investment engines”

  11. shallow sand says:

    Venturing over here from the oil side.

    Recently read that Ford is going to commit $11 billion to electric vehicles.

    This caused Ford to revise earnings lower and caused the stock price to fall.

    I’d like to read comments from those that know much more about electric vehicles than I do. Why is the introduction of EV’s causing massive financial losses for the companies that manufacture them?

    For example, Tesla seems to lose more $ as they continue to build and sell more vehicles.

    GM supposedly loses several thousand $ on every vehicle it sells.

    Now, Ford is going to lose a lot on EV’s, and hopes to offset the losses by making more profits on ICE powered trucks and SUV’s.

    Why is it taking so long to for EV’s to become profitable? Will they ever become profitable?

    I try to follow these developments closely as they relate directly to the oil investments we have owned for decades.

    For those that do not know, we do not own shale, but shallow wells that have produced for as long as soon to be 113 years. The oil produced does not just translate into motor fuels, but is also used for roads, chemical manufacture, and many other petroleum based uses which will likely survive the end of ICE transportation, whenever that day arrives.

    • GoneFishing says:

      They are all in a race to the bottom, the bottom in cost of production that is. Profits may be around the corner but it is early days yet. Tesla has the best business approach by not only building cars and batteries but setting up a great charging system. However, like Amazon was it is primarily designed for growth not profit right now.
      EV’s will catch on but the sales are not there yet in the USA.
      But the competition is winding up, here and all over the world. They are fairly sure it is the way things will go.
      General Motors says its new family of electric vehicles will be 30 percent cheaper to build than the current Chevrolet Bolt EV, thanks to battery breakthroughs and other engineering feats that will add to the carmaker’s bottom line, even as it continues to rake in profits from trucks, crossovers and SUVs.

      GM’s new modular EV platform, launching in 2021, will be the basis for at least 20 new battery-powered vehicles by 2023, and will be flexible enough to accommodate nine different body styles in multiple sizes, segments and brands in the U.S., China and elsewhere, CEO Mary Barra told an investor conference Wednesday.

      In the meantime, GM will continue to build on the Bolt platform, introducing three new electric vehicles by 2020 that will share components with the battery-operated hatchback. Two of them will be crossovers, a fast-growing segment.

      It all adds up to a massive EV offensive that will likely swamp Tesla’s efforts to launch its first mass-market EV, the Model 3, followed by its own small crossover, dubbed Model Y.


      Would be nice if there were places to plug in all those cars other than at home. Of course that is one way to get a date to go home with you ” Oooops, looks like we are running low, just a quick detour to charge up the car sweety.” 🙂

      I wouldn’t expect a big dent in oil demand due to electrics anytime soon, maybe in 10 years. I suspect that the big car producers are looking that far down the road and want to be in position for the transistion.
      The charger situation is still abysmal and will spend years playing catch-up to number of EV’s that will sell. It’s almost as if this is somewhat planned to fail or at least discourage a lot of drivers from buying them, since they all think they need to drive further than 1000 miles even though they may never do that. They want the capability for long range, a mental thing.
      The US now has over 16,000 charging stations compared to 125,000 gas stations.

      Looks like five years from now will be the time to start taking the EV seriously(or not) but it will be a long haul to replace the ICE since there are so many of them and they will still be produced in large numbers. Though they will probably get lighter and more efficient with time.

    • Preston says:

      “For example, Tesla seems to lose more $ as they continue to build and sell more vehicles. GM supposedly loses several thousand $ on every vehicle it sells.”

      These statements are a bit misleading. For example, the gross margin at Tesla is 25% and it’s something similar for the GM Bolt. But these cars require huge up front investments in R&D, new production equipment, etc. You shouldn’t expect them to recoup that entire investment from the first product but long term it’s that gross margin and rising sales that matter.

      For a traditional car maker these investments were paid for long ago and they can bring out new models by just re-skinning or bolting on some new feature. Yes, right now Tesla is burning though cash rapidly to bring their new factories up, but that’s just like any new tech company.

    • islandboy says:

      I’ll bite. It’s all about the “D” word, disruption. In case you haven’t yet done so I’d recommend you spend less than an hour watching any of the presentations by Tony Seba available on Youtube. The most recent (yesterday, Jan 18, 2017) is a 37 minute one at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53MfPZjq-i8 (I just listened to it in about 25 minutes, using the settings of the youtube player to speed it up to 1.5 x). Seba also has a report he co-authored at https://www.rethinkx.com/transportation that you might find interesting if you haven’t already seen it.

      For a continuous stream of news and opinions on EVs you can visit https://insideevs.com/. Their take on the Ford story was:

      Ford Ups Electric Car Commitment With Promise Of 16 Pure Electric Vehicles In 5 Years

      As far as Tesla goes, IMO they are only loosing money because they are growing at a blistering pace. Between 2008 and 2012 Tesla produced less than 2,500 cars. The “gliders” (car without battery or drive train) were built in the UK and shipped to California where the battery and drive train were installed. By 2012 they had bought a factory in Freemont, California that used to produce 500,000 cars a year and retooled a section of it to produce the first car they designed and built in house from scratch. They have since added two models to their selection and have delivered over 200,000 cars in the US to date. They have produced over a hundred times more cars between 2012 and 2018 as they did between 2008 and 2012. Their target for 2018 was 500,000 but, it has likely been reduced to to delays in the ramp up of their latest model.

      They have stated that the margin on each Model S produced is about 25% so, I cannot understand how “analysts are saying that they are loosing money on every car sold. Bear in mind that the car has remained essentially the same since 2012 with only a face-lift in 2016 and the major R&D expense for the CUV derived from that car was related to the fancy, “falcon wing” doors. Most of the other software, drive train and suspension development costs are shared between the two models.

      The key to Tesla’s success is their use of commodity cells in their battery packs. This allowed them to avoid cell development cost and instead focus on the battery pack and pack management. Now that they are purchasing massive volumes, Panasonic has developed special cells, tailored for them.

      I also don’t believe that Nissan is loosing money on every Leaf they sell. They may not have apportioned development costs fairly in the beginning. Maybe they took the approach that some of the R&D was necessary to jump start the EV business and the cost could be related to every EV they ever make, having done the basic research and started producing some EVs. They did take the technology developed for the Leaf and apply it, basically unchanged, to their light van, the NV200.

      In the final analysis, the answer to your questions, “Why is it taking so long to for EV’s to become profitable? Will they ever become profitable?” is found in the Seba video I linked to above. Battery cost trajectories have only just started to approach the point where an EV with a single charge range of 200 miles can be sold for the median price of a new car in the US. According to Seba, disruption typical happens from outside so, any major car manufacturer that is aware of this fact, must be concerned about disruption from the likes of Tesla. Tesla wasn’t a problem when they made 2,500 $100,000, two seater sports cars. Toys for the rich! When they started selling 25,000 premium sedans a year for the same price, the makers of premium sedans took notice. Now that they are set to make 250,000 regular sedans at about $40,000 the likes of Ford start getting nervous. What will happen when Tesla comes out with a credible competitor to Ford’s cash cow, the F-150? Tesla’s recently revealed 2020 Roadster is set to send a take through the hearts of the makers of exotic super-cars. The result is the following headline:

      Ferrari Will Make An Unrivaled Electric Supercar

      I thought the above might be an April Fools prank but, it came out January 18!

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      Hi Shallow sand,

      It will take some time for Tesla to become profitable as production ramps up. By the end of 2019 they expect to be producing cars at about a 500,000 car per year rate, up from about 50,000 vehicles sold in 2017, so in 2020 they will likely be producing over 500,000 cars, an increase to 10 times the output in 3 years.

      The economies of scale will quickly bring the company to profitability in the car segment.

      As far as charging, most people, especially in rural areas and suburbs will be able to charge at home.

      In urban areas it will be more of a challenge for those who park on the street, eventually there will be curbside charging which will be paid with an app on a smartphone even for those parking on the street.

      Even in the rural area where I live there is a Tesla supercharger within 10 miles of my home, but I would likely just set up a 240 V outlet in my garage which can charge at a rate of 29 miles for each hour of charge, or about 290 miles in 10 hours.

      I don’t drive more than 100 miles most days, on long trips I would use the Supercharger network where charging is about 170 miles of range in 30 minutes. Just stop and grab a bite to eat while the car recharges.

      At a hotel I stayed at a week ago there were two electric charging stations and at a ski area I visit occasionally as well.

      As more EVs are on the road there will be charging stations at stores, restaurants, and hotels and those places that choose not to offer this service will be at a competitive disadvantage.

      • Longtimber says:

        One of the Problems is traction batteries Paks are not Modular or Dimensionally Standardized. Cylindrical cells are. For example, an AA cell (14x50mm) is a 14500 and can be many voltages depending on the chemistry. The Koreans have announced 21700 production to duplicate Panasonic/Tesla shipping in 2020. That may be a sweet spot for cylindrical TRACTION cells many reasons. Flat pouches have many advantages but are not made in the volume as cylindrical… yet..
        One advantage of Li Batteries is they thrive in Partially charged environments that will quickly trash Lead Acid batteries. I’m replacing 2 Monster Lead Acid Cummings 6.9L Truck Batteries with 24 of these.
        12V systems are not practical for many reasons. ~24V is a practical minimum.
        We build 60V – 14S infrastructure Paks with Panasonic NCR18650B with these. http://vruzend.com/
        Distance metal oxide type cells from a residence. Pak them up an Army box and bury
        them surrounded with gravel.

      • shallow sand says:

        Thank you for the replies.

        There sure is a big debate about EV’s.

        People seem to either love or hate Elon Musk.

        I personally think some type of alternative powered vehicle will replace ICE powered vehicles, but I don’t think it is at all clear what will and how long the transition will take.

        I likely won’t be buying one anytime soon. I drive a pickup truck and trade once every 7 or 8 years.

        We did own a Camry Hybrid and really had no complaints. Got worried about battery life and sold it in 2015 but more importantly no longer needed car.

        I have been surprised that hybrids are not more popular. No hype surrounding them compared to EV’s.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          This is a bit shorter than Tony Seba’s presentation that Island boy mentioned but touches on similar points and is more specifically about EV adoption.

          Barriers to EV adoption | Fully Charged

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi shallow sand,

          Before long there will be EV pickup trucks as well. I also have a camry hybrid, my first prius (basically same battery chemistry), went 200k before traded it in, no battery problems at all (I had it from 2004 to 2015). My Camry is a 2013 with about 70k on it.

          A plugin hybrid pickup (doesn’t exist yet) might work well where you live, maybe it will exist in 2022 when you get your next truck.

          • islandboy says:

            “A plugin hybrid pickup (doesn’t exist yet) might work well where you live, maybe it will exist in 2022”

            Not if these guys have anything to say about it! They plan to start production of their pickup truck pictured below, sometime this year but, it appears they are focusing on fleet sales initially so, the general public might have to wait a while.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Thanks Islandboy,

              As later this year has not happened, it still does not exist in terms of being sold to actual customers.

              Sooner than I thought though.

        • Longtimber says:

          Ready kiloWatt takes over under the hood.
          < 60V Mild Hybrids give regenerative breaking with little-added cost.

  12. GoneFishing says:

    Frozen Tsunami Musk Oxen, no not a local dish but a real occurrence due to chaotic weather and rising tides.
    During one February flight in 2011, one of Berger’s co-authors was in a plane, photographing 55 muskoxen standing in a lagoon. A couple of weeks later, 52 of them were dead, most almost completely buried in ice. One animal had chunks of ice in its throat. The only animal not completely encased was standing and appeared to have been trying to walk.


  13. Survivalist says:

    This blog is an easy intro to several Snow, Water, Ice & Permafrost Assessment (SWIPA) 2017 chapters.



    • George Kaplan says:

      I’m surprised I missed that AMAP paper (Sea, Water, Ice, Permafrost Arctic 2017) last year – did you see it reported much? Quite probably it was posted here and I missed it, or have forgotten.

      However, the Arctic will not return to previous conditions this century under the scenarios considered in the SWIPA 2017 assessment. e near-future Arctic will be a substantially different environment from that of today, and by the end of this century Arctic warming may exceed thresholds for the stability of sea ice, the Greenland ice sheet, and possibly boreal forests.

      Adaptation at the community and regional levels, both in the Arctic and globally, is essential. e near inevitability of accelerating impacts in the Arctic and globally between now and mid-century reinforces the urgent need for local and regional adaptation strategies that can reduce vulnerabilities and take advantage of opportunities to build resilience. – hm, not good.


      • Fred Magyar says:

        Adaptation at the community and regional levels, both in the Arctic and globally, is essential. e near inevitability of accelerating impacts in the Arctic and globally between now and mid-century reinforces the urgent need for local and regional adaptation strategies that can reduce vulnerabilities and take advantage of opportunities to build resilience. – hm, not good.

        Meanwhile in Trump’s fantasy land…

        Trump Drops Climate Threats from National Security Strategy
        The president claimed yesterday that the true danger to U.S. security is not climate change, but regulations

        By Jean Chemnick, ClimateWire on December 19, 2017

        President Trump argued yesterday that the true threat to national security is not climate change but regulations that get in the way of U.S. economic and energy “dominance.”

        Trump introduced his first National Security Strategy, in which he broke from the Obama administration in not listing climate change as a chief threat. His remarks at times sounded like an economic address, frequently veering into discussion of tax and trade, industrial deregulation, and a celebration of the stock market. Trump insisted that wealth and national security go hand in hand.

        “Economic vitality, growth and prosperity at home is absolutely necessary for American power and influence abroad,” he said in an address that heavily focused on global competition over cooperation.

        The World does not agree! Trump and his administration are a disgrace and an embarassment!

        • George Kaplan says:

          Fred – that AMAP report didn’t really cover how much CO2eq is likely to increase as the permafrost melts, but based on estimates of sequestered carbon and expected final melt per degree warming I’m having trouble seeing how we stop below about 5K average warming for any ECS above 3K (and say 4K for 2.5 ECS), especially given that the “missed targets” news pieces are already starting, not just for USA but UK and Germany too recently.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            I’m having trouble seeing how we stop below about 5K average warming for any ECS above 3K (and say 4K for 2.5 ECS), especially given that the “missed targets” news pieces are already starting, not just for USA but UK and Germany too recently.

            I see your missed targets and raise you multiple cascading ecosystem collapses…

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        From the report:

        SWIPA 2017 compared the outcomes of two different
        greenhouse gas concentration scenarios, RCP4.5 and
        RCP8.5. In the RCP4.5 scenario, reductions in emissions
        lead to stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the
        atmosphere by 2100 and a stabilized end-of-century global
        average temperature rise of 1.7–3.1°C above pre-industrial
        levels. RCP8.5 is a high-emission business-as-usual
        scenario, leading to a global non-stabilized temperature
        rise of 3.8–6°C by 2100.

        RCP8.5=4800 Pg C emissions
        RCP4.5=1500 Pg C emissions
        Coyne’s “High” fossil fuel scenario= 1600 Pg C emissions

        My “low” fossil fuel scenario = 1200 Pg C emissions

        The low and high scenarios assume no attempt to reduce fossil fuel use beyond what is needed due to depletion.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          In the RCP4.5 scenario, reductions in emissions
          lead to stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the
          atmosphere by 2100 and a stabilized end-of-century global
          average temperature rise of 1.7–3.1°C above pre-industrial

          Minor detail, that depends on large scale implementation of BECCS technology which so far has not been demonstarted as a viable let alone scalable technology.


          Bioenergy with carbon capture and storage – better known by the acronym “BECCS” – has come to be seen as one of the most viable and cost-effective negative emissions technologies.

          Even though they have yet to be demonstrated at a commercial scale, negative emissions technologies – typically BECCS – are now included by climate scientists in the majority of modelled “pathways” showing how the world can avoid the internationally agreed limit of staying “well below” 2C of global warming since the pre-industrial era.

          Put simply, without deploying BECCS at a global scale from mid-century onwards, most modellers think we will likely breach this limit by the end of this century.

          Let’s try some pixie dust!

          • Doug Leighton says:

            No feedbacks (allowed) in Fairyland Fred.

          • George Kaplan says:

            Even if BECCS worked without a huge inefficiency penalty where do you put all the liquid CO2 (or whatever phase it is – I think dense phase or supercritical, above both crit-P and crit-T at any probable reservoir depth) and where do you grow all the trees? And where do you grow the food that used to grow there?

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Fred,

            To reach the RCP4.5 level of emissions, no CCS would be needed, depletion and limited fossil fuel resources will reduce emissions. The belief that CCS is needed to reach 1500 Pg of carbon emissions from CO2, requires an assumption of nearly unlimited fossil fuels, far more than is realistic (even the 1500 Pg C requires an assumption of very high fossil fuel resources that are not likely to be extracted).

            Fossil fuels peak by 2030, fossil fuel prices rise, transition to alternatives to fossil fuel energy speeds up, use of fossil fuels falls quickly, limiting total carbon emissions to 1000 Pg C or less.

            No CCS required.

            • Dennis Coyne says:


              When I look at the “RCP4.5” scenario I simply consider the emissions assumed by the scenario, not how those emission reductions are achieved. Chart below shows fossil fuel emissions in RCP4.5 scenario, they are positive through 2400 (total is 1445 Pg C from 1765-2400, other CO2 emissions are 176 Pg C for a total of 1621 Pg C anthropogenic emissions as CO2). As there is not likely to be 1445 Pg C emissions due to fossil fuel limitations, no biofuel CCS would be needed to achieve the RCP4.5 scenario.

              • notanoilman says:

                Just curious, why the ledge between 2080 and 2100?


                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  Hi Notanoilman,

                  The scenario aims for radiative forcing of 4.5 W/m2 for ECS of 3 C for a doubling of atmospheric CO2.

                  Based on the MAGICC6 Emulator, that must be the level of emissions that would meet the target for the ensemble mean CMIP3 model.

                  The point of the chart is to show that biofuel CCS is not needed for RCP4.5, just a limited fossil fuel resource, replaced with wind, solar, nuclear, and other forms of energy.

    • Fred Magyar says:

      From the link:

      The oceans are massive and their deeper layers haven’t caught up with today’s fast global warming.

      Oh, yeah and the atmosphere is so huge that human activity couldn’t possibly affect it,,,

      Perhaps some perspective might be in order.

      Left: All the water in the world (1.4087 billion cubic kilometres of it) including sea water, ice, lakes, rivers, ground water, clouds, etc.

      Right: All the air in the atmosphere (5140 trillion tonnes of it) gathered into a ball at sea-level density. Shown on the same scale as the Earth.

      From Science Photo Library


      • OFM says:

        I find it very effective when discussing environmental issues with anybody other than a scientifically literate person to look for analogies that they can relate to.

        Just a tiny ( in relation to the total atmosphere ) bit more CO2 shouldn’t be a problem?

        Just a little too much Tylenol rots out your liver over a few years, right nurse?

        When a person runs just a little in the hole, year after year, with his debts compounding, sooner or later financial disaster overtakes him, right mr accountant?

        But if he saves just a little, every year, and his savings compound, over time he has a substantial nest egg, right? Or in the case of CO2 and heat, we have a substantial nest egg of new heat world wide, but it’s a rotten egg.

        Or if it’s true the world is heating up, why is it so cold here now? Well, think about trying to mop up the last inch of water in the swimming pool, shoving it toward the drain, with that big old squeegee mop. As you push the water off one spot, it just rushes back in from all directions. If lots of hot air travels up to Alaska and Canada, then lots of that cold Canadian air from up that way just naturally rushes south to replace the warm southern air that’s now up north.

        Brother orchardist, we ordinarily use four ounces of this stuff per ACRE on our apple trees. You know what happened when you forgot and put in eight ounces don’t you? All your apples fell off that year, lol, instead of half of them, which was the goal. Half as many big apples compared to twice as many little ones is great. NO apples, now that ain’t so great, lol.

      • Gene Orleans says:

        “Oh, yeah and the atmosphere is so huge that human activity couldn’t possibly affect it,,,”

        You are correct.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Wow! You are almost as capable of learning as my Hermissenda crasicornis were!


          Hermissenda is a sea slug used for research on the neurobiology of learning and memory. In a classical conditioning paradigm, it learns to associate light with vestibular stimulation. Changes to membrane properties are correlated with learning behavior. Because of its simple nervous system and classical conditioning behavior, it is a valuable animal model for studying the mechanisms used by neurons to store memories.

    • GoneFishing says:

      It’s easy to downgrade the temperature sensitivity when the Arctic, Antarctic and large portions of continents are excluded from the temperature measurement.

  14. Konrad Buckle says:

    Has anyone thoughts about if this process could work? Some carbon problems could be solved without unacceptable sacrifice.

    Ohio State chemical engineers create fossil fuel technology that consumes carbon dioxide

  15. Doug Leighton says:


    “There really isn’t an argument that climate change isn’t true in parliament anymore, Prof Pitman says. You’d find a couple of members of parliament that say that, but you’d also find a couple who didn’t believe in evolution and didn’t believe in inoculating children against disease. The issue now is that the scale of concern – and the action under way or committed to both in Australia and internationally – doesn’t match the scale of the problem.”


    • GoneFishing says:

      I wonder how that will affect their ski season.

      • George Kaplan says:

        There was a good youtube documentary I saw some time back about how most of the Australian climate scientists are forming escape plans – mostly to go to NZ or UK – once it starts getting too hot to carry on.

      • Fred Magyar says:


  16. GoneFishing says:

    Eating the Earth

    The reason I’m standing here now is that in 2017 I had a realisation. It is that climate breakdown is only the third most urgent of the environmental crises we face. This is not because it has become less urgent, but because two other issues have emerged as even more pressing. They are the ecological cleansing of both land and sea to produce the food we eat.

    The speed and scale of change beggars belief. All over the world, habitats and species are collapsing before our eyes. The world population of wild vertebrates – animals with backbones – has fallen by 60% since 1970.

    Animals that until recently seemed safe – ranging from lions to house sparrows – are now in danger.

    Insect populations are collapsing, with untold implications for both human beings and the rest of the food chain.


    • Fred Magyar says:

      The reason I’m standing here now is that in 2017 I had a realisation. It is that climate breakdown is only the third most urgent of the environmental crises we face. This is not because it has become less urgent, but because two other issues have emerged as even more pressing. They are the ecological cleansing of both land and sea to produce the food we eat.

      I no longer view these as separate and individual crisis but rather look at them as part of a bigger picture and an integrated systems view that is best expressed by E.O. Wilson in his book The Biophilia Hypothesis and examined further and taken to it’s logical conclusion, in his most recent tome, Half Earth. Granted, I’m not sure I’m quite as optimistic as Wilson is.


      All these things are intertwined, and so we have to learn how to look at them as one combined, nonlinear process that’s just about going to bear us away unless we handle them now as a whole. I think more and more people are thinking like that. They’re deciding that yes, we’ve really got to face it. And if we do it, there’s going to be light at the end of that tunnel. We’ll be so much better off.

      And a slightly contrarian view of things …


      To the McKibbens and Wilsons and other classical environmentalists, true nature, “what remains of Eden” as Wilson sees it, is gone. Dead. Over. We killed it. The anthropocentric arrogance of this view, that humans are special and nature was given to us and it is our job to protect it, rooted in the faith stories of most the world’s major religions, is sentimentally appealing, but piously naive.

      And it’s dangerous, because it is the wellspring for the sweeping rejection of modern processes and technologies that, for all their potential threats to nature, also offer tremendous benefits, including the chance to moderate some of the mess we’re making.

      The naïve belief that the only true nature is what existed before humans is also scientific balderdash.


      The Biophilia Hypothesis and Anthropocentric Environmentalism

      Much anthropocentric environmental argument is limited by a narrow conception of how humans can benefit from nature. E. O. Wilson defends a more robust anthropocentric environmentalism based on a broader understanding of these benefits. At the center of his argument is the biophilia hypothesis according to which humans have an evolutionarily crafted, aesthetic and spiritual affinity for nature. However, the “biophilia hypothesis” covers a variety of claims, some modest and some more extreme. Insofar as we have significant evidence for biophilia, it favors modest versions which do not support a particularly robust anthropocentric environmental ethic. A significantly more robust environmental ethic requires the most extreme version of the biophilia hypothesis, for which there is the least evidence.

      And last but certainly not least I like to go back to Richard Feynman’s view on how we compartmentalize our knowledge base and by doing so we tend to lose our sense of perspective of the whole.

      A poet once said, “The whole universe is in a glass of wine.” We will probably never know in what sense he said that, for poets do not write to be understood. But it is true that if we look in glass of wine closely enough we see the entire universe. There are the things of physics: the twisting liquid which evaporates depending on the wind and weather, the reflections in the glass, and our imagination adds the atoms. The glass is a distillation of the earth’s rocks, and in its composition we see the secrets of the universe’s age, and the evolution of the stars. What strange array of chemicals are in the wine? How did they come to be? There are the ferments, the enzymes, the substrates, and the products. There in wine is found the great generalization: all life is fermentation. Nobody can discover the chemistry of wine without discovering the cause of much disease. How vivid is the claret, pressing its existence into the consciousness that watches it! If our small minds, for some convenience, divide this glass of wine, this universe, into parts — physics, biology, geology, astronomy, psychology, and so on — remember that nature does not know it! So let us put it all back together, not forgetting ultimately what it is for. Let us give one more final pleasure: drink it and forget it all!


      • GoneFishing says:

        That city-boy that thinks scenery is nature and that it’s good enough as long as it serves his purposes (leave the city, distress in the woods, return to more stress, repeat) is a shining example of the nature is a service and people’s depth of comprehension of nature is about a millimeter deep. I am sure he has some fantastic solutions to rewild the planet in an industrial self serving way. He does not get my vote as a caretaker of the planet, more of a BAU whitewasher.

        But we all know that solutions that benefit on large subset of your system thinking benefit the other subsystems also. Or are you against the opportunity of re-wilding the planet over an area the size of the continent of Africa (size of ranchlands now) or allowing the remaining fish stocks an opportunity to build their population? There is no one big solution or adaptation, it takes many fit together to reduce our destructive methods.

        Nature, love it or leave it (alone). If one can’t even see what a tree is how can one understand a forest?

        • Fred Magyar says:

          He does not get my vote as a caretaker of the planet, more of a BAU whitewasher.

          I sympathize with your reaction and I did mention that I considered his view to be somewhat contrarian to my own. However I understand that reality is rather more nuanced.
          I’m also not willing to further deprive the disadvantaged children of truly devastated urban landscapes of what limited contact with nature, they might still have some access to.

          Emma Marris atTEDSummit
          Nature is everywhere — we just need to learn to see it

          Or are you against the opportunity of re-wilding the planet over an area the size of the continent of Africa (size of ranchlands now) or allowing the remaining fish stocks an opportunity to build their population?

          I recently had a discussion with a progressive young African Urban Architect about the fact that Africa is predicted to have a human population of about 2.5 billion by 2050 and I specifically wanted to know how he saw that impacting the preservation of large swaths of African wilderness and its wildlife, fauna and flora. I did manage to convince him to at least read E.O. Wilson’s Half Earth and think about ways of integrating wild spaces into urban areas.

          As for allowing the remaining fish stocks an opportunity to build their population, I also think Wilson’s Half Earth idea should be extended to all the oceans of the world.

          I personally don’t see any path forward with preserving the biosphere on this planet if we don’t seriously address the fantasy of maintaining 9 plus billion humans on it.

          Call me crazy!

          • GoneFishing says:

            We are all crazy Fred. It’s part of being human.

            If we stopped or really slowed eating fish because other protein sources were fully available, the ocean could recover somewhat (along with some bird species). Giving up much of our ranchlands which essentially add up to the size of the African continent but are actually widely dispersed across the world would definitely allow an opportunity for re-wilding.

            Re-defining nature as weeds growing in an abandoned lot removes the loss that needs to be felt. Without that sense of loss, no motivation to re-wild or preserve will be present, for the children will have accepted the handicapped space version as nature and see no real problem. Even as they don’t see the monarch caterpillar anymore, they won’t know it is gone.

            • Fred Magyar says:

              Re-defining nature as weeds growing in an abandoned lot removes the loss that needs to be felt. Without that sense of loss, no motivation to re-wild or preserve will be present, for the children will have accepted the handicapped space version as nature and see no real problem.

              As a young boy my first exposure to nature was exploring abandoned vacant city lots in Sao Paulo.
              I don’t think that experience in any way diminished my appreciation of truly wild places that I have since had the privilege of visiting. If anything I think it just opened my eyes at a very young age. Besides all the insects, wasps, bees butterflies, beetles, ants etc… there were huge stinging caterpillars that fed on castor bean plants and ferns also scorpions, venomous spiders that I collected. I once spent a whole week watching vultures pick apart the carcass of a dead horse. Then there were the stagnant puddles filled with mosquito larvae and damsel flies and dragonflies, little frogs toads and lizards. The algae and the pond scum and the teeming microscopic life that I was able to examine with my low powered microscope.

              Fortunately for me, there was no one around to tell me that this was not nature.

              • GoneFishing says:

                No one says it is not nature Fred, not sure what your point is for all this. Just trying to build one more division within the environmental set? They have enough now.

                I and others have merely pointed out the need for functioning ecosystems beyond bugs and a few fly in creatures. If we accept highly disrupted and segmented levels as nature, then ridding ourselves of jungles and forests is just fine. I think that kind of thinking and division should be avoided. We need to call things as they are not how we find them useful. Otherwise we end up with just a few annoying environmentalists and biology professors clamoring how nature is going away and the rest thinking it is right in their back yard or nearby abandoned lot. More of the same.

                I was lucky enough to spend a lot of my youth and adulthood in more natural areas. I never confused the fact that we had bugs and some birds in the town areas with it being wild or really natural. I did early on realize that life tries to fill every niche possible and that man tries to eliminate a lot of nature if it is inconvenient or in the way.

                Of course now I get to see my lawn (mix of many plants) and gardens being steadily depleted of species, in fact my whole area. Even though that area is mostly tree covered and much more natural than many areas.
                So how would a kid know that he is no longer hearing the sound of the cricket and frog or not seeing a milk snake, or not seeing a bunch of bird species? They won’t know.
                Maybe we should post signs (like cemetery headstones) along all the patches of nature with lists of species gone from that area and those on the descent. Now that would be educational. Then the kids could start asking the proper questions.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  I and others have merely pointed out the need for functioning ecosystems beyond bugs and a few fly in creatures. If we accept highly disrupted and segmented levels as nature, then ridding ourselves of jungles and forests is just fine.

                  I think we are talking about Cauliflowers and Strawberries here…

                  If anything I have ever said, could possibly be interpreted as an argument against doing everything and anything for maintaining fully functioning ecosystems, then perhaps it’s past time for me to throw in the towel!

                  Perhaps I should attempt posting in Mongolian or Hungarian! Obviously my rather crude attempts at communicating in the Anglo Saxon vernacular seem to be failing miserably!

                  My point was just agreeing with Emma Marris’ TED talk that we need to work with what is available to instill an awe for nature. As she says: ” I don’t want to be the one to tell that smiling child holding a flower that it has no value or that it is not a part of nature because some would call it and invasive weed.”

                  Even today I can still find myself in awe when looking at an insect on a weed sprouting out from a crack in a city sidewalk. While perhaps not quite as charismatic as a tree in the Amazonian rain forest, it is most definitely still a part of nature.
                  Imagine one of the Mars Rovers sending us a picture like this…

                  • JN2 says:

                    +1 Fred. Don’t give up!

                  • GoneFishing says:

                    I think we are getting bound up in semantics and a non-existent problem.
                    Sure, tell the kids that is nature. When they are older they can meet what is left of nature and then when they are educated they can get depressed about what is gone and going away.
                    It’s all nature, all the way down.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Reminds me of your spider picture on your car in a previous thread about insects disappearing. Nothing says disappearance quite like moving cars and flying insects.

    • Doug Leighton says:

      “Why do people heedlessly decimate the precious biodiversity of their planet? Some of them feel they have no economic alternative, while others are driven by the desire for short-term profit. Still others uncomprehending. Unfortunately, so much of the depredation which is being inflicted upon areas of great biodiversity is, in the long run, and often in the short run, in vain. While tropical forests now occupy less than half of their former range, and much of what remains is damaged or fragmented, the net profit to humanity is slight. Clearing of tropical forests has provided only a relatively small percentage of total agricultural land, since much of the land converted for farms becomes rapidly degraded and is abandoned. Logging results in a one-time profit, mainly to large companies. Ranching is an activity which, on former rainforest land, is uneconomical, requires subsidizing, and is eventually abandoned. But the damage is permanent and the forest irreplaceable, so forest destruction has dire consequences. It degrades aquatic fisheries, causes floods and has many other consequences – so much harm for so little benefit.”


      • GoneFishing says:

        I think they all have reasons to do what they do. If survival is on the line, nature bats last If their food and money came from elsewhere, they would attempt to protect or at least leave alone the natural forests. Low and short term gain is better than none at all for these people.

        If there were only one million of us, it wouldn’t matter. What population of humans is safe for planet Earth? Maybe one billion, maybe less. All I can say is that no other creature will attempt to keep us from going extinct.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Biodiversity isn’t just pretty: it future-proofs our world

        The global Convention on Biological Diversity defines its subject as variability among living organisms at three different levels: within species, between species, and of ecosystems. The first diversity, ‘within species’, is at the level of the gene. A species is made up of individuals. For example, the 10,000 or so species of ant are estimated to comprise a staggering 10^15 individuals. (That’s 1 followed by 15 zeroes!) With the rare exception of twins, each of these individuals will have their own unique combination of genes. If we destroy half of the ants in each species, we will still have 10,000 kinds of ant, but we’ll have lost 50 per cent of each species’ genetic diversity. In recent history, many species have been reduced to far smaller numbers. Pre-Columbus, 25 million bison roamed the plains of North America, but by the late 1880s fewer than 100 remained in the wild. Although conservation interventions have since increased bison numbers to the hundreds of thousands, the genetic diversity that was lost can never be recovered.
        Bold mine

  17. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    “Just as much as arguing that permaculture practices will feed 9 billion people, it can’t and it won’t.” ~ Fred Magyar

    Yes We Can – Feed 9 Billion with Organic Agriculture

    “That is the conclusion in the paper Strategies for feeding the world more sustainably with organic agriculture in Nature Communications by researchers from the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture in Switzerland, the Institute of Environmental Decisions in Switzerland, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Italy, Institute of Social Ecology Vienna in Austria and the Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences in the UK.”

    • Fred Magyar says:

      I assume you have actually read the entire paper and can therefore cogently argue both it’s merits and potential negatives. I just read it and have many questions about the assumptions on which their models and scenarios are based. For one, right off the bat, I have a problem with the main underlying assumption that we will have a thriving population of 9 billion humans inhabiting this planet and that there will still be ecosystems services available in any meaningful way, considering our current ecological overshoot and the fact that all the assumptions in the paper are based on considerable land use increases which they clearly state will have to come from reductions in forests and grasslands with minimal climate change impacts assumed.

      Here’s a link to the paper in case anyone would like to read it.

      Organic agriculture is proposed as a promising approach to achieving sustainable food systems, but its feasibility is also contested. We use a food systems model that addresses agronomic characteristics of organic agriculture to analyze the role that organic agriculture could play in sustainable food systems. Here we show that a 100% conversion to organic agriculture needs more land than conventional agriculture but reduces N-surplus and pesticide use. However, in combination with reductions of food wastage and food-competing feed from arable land, with correspondingly reduced production and consumption of animal products, land use under organic agriculture remains below the reference scenario. Other indicators such as greenhouse gas emissions also improve, but adequate nitrogen supply is challenging. Besides focusing on production, sustainable food systems need to address waste, crop–grass–livestock interdependencies and human consumption. None of the corresponding strategies needs full implementation and their combined partial implementation delivers a more sustainable food future.

      Feasibility of organic agriculture
      Compared to the base year (calculated using the average of 2005–2009 data; Methods section), cropland occupation increases by 6% in the 2050 reference scenario (which describes agriculture as forecast by the FAO, adopting their assumptions on yield increase, cropping intensities and regional dietary change, and, implicitly, via their production and consumption structure, on underlying elasticities)7. Switching to 100% organic production leads to further increases in land use: 16–33%, for low yield gaps (8% lower organic yields on average) to high yield gaps (on average 25% lower), as reported in the literature17, 21. Land occupation increases further, if adverse effects of climate change (CC) on yields (modelled by reduced yield increases until 2050, down to zero increases for strong CC impacts) are considered (up to +55% for zero organic, 71–81% for 100% organic, compared to the base year; Fig. 1). The differences in land occupation between scenarios with low and high organic yield gaps decrease with increasing CC impact, as the absolute differences in yields due to the yield gap becomes less with increasing CC impact and thus generally lower yields. Deforestation shows similar patterns to land occupation with 8–15% higher values for 100% organic in comparison to the reference in 2050, depending on assumptions of low or high yield gaps (Supplementary Fig. 9). Deforestation is modelled as the pressure on forests from increased land demand, assuming the same relative deforestation rates, i.e. ha-deforested per-ha cropland increase, in each country as reported in the baseline (using deforestation data from FAOSTAT; Methods section). This likely underestimates deforestation impacts for larger cropland increases, given that additional cropland will largely be sourced from forests, as grasslands are assumed to stay constant. Thus, the land occupation and deforestation indicators as used here serve to assess the pressure on land areas and forests that may arise from the dynamics captured in the different scenarios.

      Bold mine.

      Let’s hope that if these processes are fully implemented that Climate Change impacts will be negligible in the next few decades. We won’t have to increase deforestation and grassland destruction to increase land use for agricultural production as their scenarios seem to assume.

      I also have many questions about their other assumptions not the least of which has to do with N2 balance and legume nutritional values specially in the face of potential climate change.

      N-inputs minus N outputs, and covers all N flows, including fertilizer inputs and biological fixation, as well as product outputs, emissions and leaching (Methods section). Due to N inputs from reduced mineral fertilizers and substitution by increased legume shares, the N-surplus is reduced with increasing shares of organic production, and reaches a balanced level at an organic share of 80%. It flips to a deficit of −15 to −35% compared to the base year with 100% conversion (Fig. 3). This reduction in N-surplus needs to be considered in the context of where nutrients are sourced and how they are recycled in organic agriculture:

      • OFM says:

        Organic agriculture feeding nine billion people is almost pure bullshit, with a very light leavening of theoretical truth.

        People, I don’t give a damn who they are, are perfectly willing to crank out papers like this one, for a multitude of reasons , papers that rely on absurd assumptions that will hold up in the real world about as well as snow balls hold up on a red hot stove.

        Now I won’t argue that in theory it can’t be done. In theory, we can colonize Mars and solve the population pressure problem here on Earth.

        The problems associated with organic farming in terms of solving the world food supply can be conveniently discussed as follows.

        One, organic farming differs in actual practice from conventional farming, when practiced on the grand scale, only in that only relatively small quantities of manufactured fertilizers and pesticides are used. I can grow organic apples, but I can’t count on as consistent or as high yields, compared to conventional production, for a number of reasons.

        The biggest single reason is that my trees have to have adequate amounts of the big three, N P and K. Farms aren’t ecosystems, and what gets shipped off the farm has to be replaced, one way or another. There are ways of extracting more nutrients from the soil, in some but not all cases. Lots of soils contain ample amounts of P and K, but seldom to only occasionally in readily accessible form, easily absorbed by the crop. When these forms are readily accessible, when the pH is right, when the soil chemistry and profiles are favorable, well, these nutrients deplete as well. Eventually, if you wish to maintain high yields, you have to adopt crop rotation practices including allowing the land to lie fallow and plowing cover crops back into the soil and so forth to maintain fertility.You don’t get ANY fucking grain the year the field lies fallow, and if the rotation calls for hay or grass sod, well, we can’t eat grass. So we have to let cows eat the grass……… but eating meat is inherently a very inefficient way to eat, in terms of land use and other resource use.

        Nitrogen is another animal altogether. There are ways of replenishing it naturally, we all know about legumes. But legumes don’t produce the yields we are accustomed to when we force feed grains with manufactured nitrates and P and K, and there’s that rotation thing again, growing legumes in a rotation to maintain fertility, but reducing yields on average.

        I don’t need to go into the scary questions associated with the quantity of energy needed to manufacture fertilizers, or the depletion of the mineral deposits mined in the process, in this forum. The regulars here are acutely aware of the coming energy crisis and the overarching depletion of all natures one time gifts of rich easily accessible ores, etc.

        It’s one thing to talk about fish meal or emulsions, composted garbage and grass and leaves, animal manures, even human manure, bone meal, etc etc. It’s another goddamned animal altogether when it comes to actually SUPPLYING this sort of input on the grand scale, with the people mostly in the cities and ‘burbs, and the farms out in the countryside……. often hundreds, even thousands of miles away.

        Beyond the fertilizer issue and the pesticide issue, there’s the stubborn fact that organic farmers still must have trucks and tractors, combines and silos, roads, electricity, irrigation water, boxes and bags and crates to package and ship their production, gas to dry grain that WILL rot otherwise, oh Dear Sky Daddy, it goes on and on, it’s not just fertilizer and bug poison. The food still has to be shipped, processed at least minimally, warehoused, packaged, retailed………

        Besides which, it’s another goddamned hard fact that while organic methods enable us to use very little, sometimes next to nothing or nothing in the way of chemicals, these methods in general are very ill suited to large scale monoculture production.

        And anybody who thinks a corn farmer in Nebraska or Iowa can go out there and rotate his production the way people like the Rodale folks do…….. well, HE CAN’T. Not really, because he doesn’t have the capital, or the ready markets for small quantities of various crops, or the machinery and associated fixed equipment, or the necessary expertise to farm that way , or the skilled help he would have to have. It’s one thing to raise a five hundred or a thousand acres of corn or wheat, you can just about do that all by your lonesome these days with modern equipment, except for the harvest. It takes big crews to produce most specialty crops for now, and for the easily foreseeable future.

        Now it’s possible, in some places, to double and triple crop the land, if the climate and the soil are suitable, and if you are willing to get down in the dirt and grub, peasant style, the way my great grandparents farmed, busting ass, all day, every day, for only a bare living or just a little better than that, you can get some astonishing yields.

        ( If anybody here really wants to know the score in this respect, I STRONGLY urge him to read Farmers of Forty Centuries, which is free on the net. It’s the best single book ever written about sustainable agriculture, period, and I strongly suspect it will remain the best one ever, taken all around. )

        Unfortunately only a relatively small portion of our total endowment of agricultural land is well suited to this sort of high intensity use, and virtually NONE OF US are willing to engage in such work these days, given that the work is hard, the wages to be earned pathetically low, and the style about as desirable as busting rocks on a chain gang.

        If you want some insight into what would be necessary to force a modern western society, or a fairly prosperous modern or modernizing eastern society, to change its way of life to go organic, given the actual state of the art, a good place to start would be a study of Chairman Mao, and his Great Leaps, or the history of the old USSR during collectivization of agriculture. Ain’t gonna happen except at the business end of guns.

        We will be GODDAMNED lucky if we manage to feed nine billion people using conventional methods long enough for the population to peak and begin to decline. I personally believe it is within the realm of the possible that we can do it, using conventional methods, but there’s no way to know until we try it, and see how it turns out.

        IF we manage it, it will be because ONE, ALL THE CARDS FALL RIGHT, , which seldom happens, lol, and two, because we make some very substantial sacrifices in other aspects of our lives to make it possible. These sacrifices include but are not limited to forcing a billion plus people who are ALREADY accustomed to eating a lot of meat to go mostly vegetarian , and forcing a few billion more to give up their dreams of eating like us rich folk. It will mean solving the problem of polluted oceans, and properly regulated fisheries. It will mean putting a hell of a lot of land to the plow that is currently held by private owners who have no intention of farming it, and putting a hell of a lot of publicly owned land currently protected from development into production. It will mean diverting very large sums of money to supplying farmers with the necessities, such as fuel, fertilizers, and pesticides in a world running short of fuels and mineral resources of every description even as the population continues to grow.

        Personally I don’t expect all the cards to fall right. My personal professional opinion is that one hell of a lot of people are going to live hard and die hard before we turn the population corner. Mother Nature has ways of solving problems, she’s self regulatory, and She doesn’t give a shit whether we live or die over the next few generations anymore than she gives a shit about whether the stink bugs or the rats have a good year next year. Overshoot’s real, it’s well understood, and we’re already deep into it, and the odds of our avoiding a massive die off are slim at best in my opinion.

        This is not to say however that the coming dieoff is necessarily going to be world wide and uniform either geographically or temporally. The odds are that it will be sporadic in both respects, and there’s a good possibility that there need be no die off at all in some of the richer countries such as the USA, which still has plenty of land and resources in relation to the population.

        You can take what I’ve said in this rant to the bank.

        I don’t have a doctorate, like probably every last person listed as an author in the paper. You don’t NEED a doctorate to see the obvious if you know your field, and I know mine, although I am not a scientist, but rather a professional practitioner, retired.

        But there’s virtually zero doubt in my mind that even one of the author’s actually thinks there’s even a one in a million chance of ACTUALLY going organic globally and feeding nine billion people……… although he or she would probably maintain otherwise if asked, publicly, having authored this paper. The paper is just an academic discussion, about theoretical possibilities, pure and simple, no more, no less, and has about as much relevance to near term reality as the endless discussions in the science media about water being found on Mars, and how great it is that we can cross off the water problem when it comes to planting a colony there.

        Maybe I’m just a pessimistic old fogey, but I’m willing to bet my farm against a hundred bucks that there will be less than five hundred people living on Mars twenty years from today. Most likely there won’t be ANY people living there, other than MAYBE a couple of dozen scientists engaged in research work, assuming the economy holds up well enough to spend a gazillion Yankee bucks to establish and support such a research station.

        Robots are going to be a hundred times cheaper , probably a thousand times cheaper, and they’ll get the job done. Robots it will be , with only a very small handful of people actually going there, mostly on the basis of establishing bragging rights, since it’s likely only a powerful sovereign government will be able to foot the bill.

        Maybe an outfit like Space X can build the rockets, but can Musk actually come up with cash enough to build them and put crews on them and do it for bragging rights? I can’t see making any money out of putting men on Mars, considering what it will cost to do so.

      • Switching to 100% organic production leads to further increases in land use: 16–33%…

        Hey, not a problem. That land is only used as habitat for wild animals anyway. Who needs them? What good are all those damn elephants, rhinoceroses, giraffes, chimps, gorillas, orangutans, bears, monkeys and all those other useless animals? Get rid of them. We need the land to feed 9 billion people and their cows, chickens, and pigs.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          So simple even a child could understand it…

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          I’m not defending the paper at all, and just added something about EV’s and assorted technodetritus in my most recent previous comment. Jan Lunberg talks about depaving, for example.
          In any case, FWIW, a lot of that land could be reclaimed from suburbia and even some urban and quasi-urban settings.
          Over here in Halifax, Nova Scotia, we have a heritage place in the heart of town– Citadel Hill– whose surrounds of the old fort could be turned into a pretty lush urban garden and where the fort, itself, could become a bustling market for the produce and for just hanging out and people-watching. What happens when you grow a lot of different things on previously bare lawn? More wildlife for one; happier, better-fed people and a better town in general for another.

        • Caelan MacIntyre says:

          The Other Half Earth

          As an afterthought, it would seem that there is an implicit assumption that agro-land and people-land need to be somehow separate. If so, that appears a flawed assumption…

          People are already precariously detached from Earth/nature.

          I like the idea of ‘decentralized (wilderness-enhancing) agriculture’ that seems in a sense a hybrid of hunting-and-gathering and agriculture.

          I got the inspiration in large part by the concepts of seed-bombing, ‘guerilla gardening’ and this quote, which I have used before on POB and/or TOD (Tribe Of Pangaea- First Member moniker):

          “The Eden that Europeans described when they reached North America was not a wilderness, but a well-managed resource, a complex combination of nature and culture, ecology and economy, a system so subtle and effective that it eluded the settlers who saw only natural wealth free for the taking. The result of this land grab in North America is that only 2% of the land is now wild, its major rivers are polluted, its lakes have caught fire, and its forests are dying from the top down. The tragedy of this commons was that it never really was a commons after colonization, but was surrendered to plunder, privatization, and exploitation in the name of Manifest Destiny and progress.” ~ Joline Blais

          With reference to my understanding of E.O. Wilson’s ‘Half Earth’, decentralized agriculture would have to be coaxed/enhanced/human-intergrated wilderness. That would be the ‘technology’, for those who perk up to that word.
          Is decentralized human-integrated wilderness-enhancing agriculture possible, knowing what we know about humans? Well, could the same question be asked of E.O. Wilson’s idea?

          Perhaps both are in order on each half.

          Can wild nature be enhanced to increase the benefits to both nature and people? (Perhaps this is what permaculture strives for.)

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      You offered the quote, Fred, and I simply tied it in with the article, and since they both have the same 9 billion figure and somewhat related subject-matter. I had wondered if you had come across it before and was why you mentioned it.

      I see permaculture different than organic agro– and they are– so right there the two are dissimilar.

      My personal take boils down to holism with nature. 9 billion might be possible, if with a very severe change from the current BAU lifedeathstyle, obviously.

      What pisses me off about some of the comments hereon and elsewhere is the ceaseless blather about EV’s and assorted technodetritus. That’s what I suspect won’t work– not necessarily feeding 9 billion humans.

      If you want to critically analyze papers like this, BTW, you should also be willing to remove your hypocrisy hats and myopia shades and do the same with EV’s, PV’s and whatever else, or at the very least, not give a hard time to those who attempt it, such as myself…
      As an aside, one of my former ‘sticking points’ with OFM/Oldfarmermac, if he will recall, was his comment about running BAU ‘for as long as possible’, whatever ‘for as long as possible’ actually meant to him… Until everything’s dead, Glen? It’s possible.

      Beekeeping, by the way, and for example, along with other forms of integrated holistic natural living might actually be able to enhance nature/natural systems. And the bees are apparently having problems, so it’s a multipronged approach, as much would do well to be. This may be an effect of permaculture, but my verdict is still out.
      And when I talk about integrated holistic natural living, I am also talking about keepsake turds and giving them back more or less in the same spots or at least local/natural contexts, like the natural gifts that they are. If you have ever taken a crap in the woods (in warm weather), you may already know how fast flies and company can set up their festivals.

  18. Survivalist says:

    Earth’s global surface temperatures in 2017 ranked as the second warmest since 1880, according to an analysis by scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). Continuing the planet’s long-term warming trend, globally averaged temperatures in 2017 were 0.90 degrees Celsius (1.62 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than the 1951 to 1980 mean. That is second only to global temperatures in 2016.


    • DimaondJoe says:

      A few facts are here in order, for one the planet experienced a “little ice age” between about 1300 and 1850. Agriculture in Europe suffered with the cold probably contributing to the black death. For the second fact, the little ice age’s end near 1850 means the planet has been in warming mode since long before humans began adding unnatural carbon deposits to the atmosphere. So the third fact would be that warming and cooling is a natural process being blown out of proportion by people with a bias against the scientific facts I have just stated.

      • George Kaplan says:

        Your main logical fallacy is something called affirming the consequent: climate has changed naturally in the past, climate is changing now, therefore climate is being changed naturally now; it’s the same as saying cats are mammals, a dog is a mammal, therefore a dog is a cat. There are a few others in there as well, including there ever-present passive aggressive ad hominem that deniers love so much. If that’s the best you can do to support your denier delusions you need to move on.

      • islandboy says:

        “For the second fact, the little ice age’s end near 1850 means the planet has been in warming mode since long before humans began adding unnatural carbon deposits to the atmosphere.”

        Well, that depends on what qualifies as “adding unnatural carbon deposits to the atmosphere”. The age of steam began about the same time as the industrial revolution back in about 1760 so, by the end of your “little ice age”, humans would have been burning increasing amounts of coal for almost a century. That kind of blows a giant hole in your entire line of reasoning! Sorry!

        • GoneFishing says:

          The steam engine was invented to pump water from coal mines to allow increased coal production. Coal had been burned from the 1600’s for heating since wood was depleting. Of course all that wood burning put up CO2 also.

      • GoneFishing says:

        Hey DJ, here is some light reading on the “little ice age” and the periods surrounding it.


  19. Survivalist says:

    What we learned about the climate system in 2017 that should send shivers down the spines of policy makers


    Displacing coal with wood for power generation will worsen climate change, say researchers


    • GoneFishing says:

      The heat is on. We should see more of this type of adjustment in the future.

      These “top end” risks are more likely to occur than we think, so “it is important to use high-end climate sensitivity because some studies have suggested that 3D climate models have underestimated three major positive climate feedbacks: positive ice albedo feedback from the retreat of Arctic sea ice, positive cloud albedo feedback from retreating storm track clouds in mid-latitudes, and positive albedo feedback by the mixed-phase (water and ice) clouds.”

      When these are taken into account, the researchers find that the ECS is more than 40% higher than the IPCC mid-figure, at 4.5-4.7°C. And this is without taking into account carbon cycle feedbacks (such as melting permafrost and the declining efficiency of forests carbon sinks), and increase methane emissions from wetlands, which together could add another 1°C to warming be 2100.

      And now for the good news.
      As far as using our forests for power generation, a bad idea. Neither coal nor wood. We have other alternatives now and better get quickly thinking how to use them properly and effectively.

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        Some off-the-cuff thoughts…
        Passive solar in colder climates through more sun-facing glass and thermal massing/flows, etc.; retrofitting/subdividing/adaptively-reusing the larger/better-made houses to have more people living in them; possibly deconstructing McMansions or more dubiously-constructed places and reusing their materials in better/smaller constructions; climate refugee-relocations, such as to warmer climates; reorienting entire houses (of course houses are raised to add basements for example) where feasible to face the sun more (rather than the streets) in colder climates; using more local materials; increase natural building/gardening/agro techniques/knowledge; leveraging the land around homes for food forest gardens (yes, against some zoning bylaws); learning about food preservation that doesn’t need refrigeration; and various other resilient, relocalizing stuff like that…

        Look at joining grassroot movements like permaculture and Transition, as well as ecovillages (there are networking sites online for that).

        Try to challenge your thinking in terms of less BAU-influenced thinking and more nature-/natural-/community-/local-/oriented thinking, talking and doing. Tap your inner-hippies. Influence the world and people around you in those regards and beyond just POB or online in general. Create local and online groups and working models, etc..

        Nevertheless, we can also think of ways to use BAU-detritus, since we will have it lying around for some time yet, in ways that minimize and make more efficient their use (and therefore energy/material use), such as by limiting our upgrades and using things longer; communal sharing (car-sharing/car-pooling for example) and modifying many take-for-granted aspects of one’s lifestyle (i.e., sleep/wake at sunset/sunrise). These kinds of things obviously require some sacrifices– as well as putting pressures on the status-quo– but the results might be far better than what we may think, and result in better lives and living.

    • Doug Leighton says:

      Survivalist — very interesting post. Thanks.

      • Survivalist says:

        You’re welcome. Thanks also to you for the many great posts you make here.

    • Fred Magyar says:

      Displacing coal with wood for power generation will worsen climate change, say researchers

      Fom the link:

      “We’re seeing many of the countries, states, and even institutions leading on climate embracing bioenergy from wood because they think it is ‘carbon neutral.’ Our analysis shows that these good intentions may be leading to outcomes that are bad for the climate: net carbon emissions that are worse than coal for many decades and, potentially, for the rest of this century or more,” says co-author Juliette Prof. Rooney-Varga.

      Sounds like maybe BECCS isn’t going to work out so well after all, eh?! Maybe it’s time to reassess those IPCC scenarios that depend on them…

      Maybe we need to just completely stop burning anything that contains carbon, to produce our energy!

  20. Greenbub says:

    A while back (I can’t find it now) I asked what the point of driving an electric car powered by fossil fueled electricity was. Thanks for the replies, they made sense.

    • islandboy says:

      In the meantime China published their year on year growth in electricity production capacity. From the graphic below it would appear that solar is the star performer! The amount of solar capacity added was 68.7% more than the amount installed in 2017. At 53 GW I believe it is safe to say that in 2017, China has installed in a single year more than the cumulative installed capacity of any other country in the world up to the end of 2017. China is continuing it’s tradition of going big on anything it does.

      The actual contribution from solar will not be as significant due to it’s much lower (<20%) capacity factors but at the rate they are going it is a matter of time before solar makes a meaningful dent in their fossil fuel consumption. In addition since it is now winter in the northern hemisphere the contribution from solar is not as useful. It will be interesting to see what happens in China over the coming summer months, Interesting things are happening in Australia and I will probably have more to say about that when I report on the EIA's Electric Power Monthly when the next one is published, probably a few days late because of the US government shutdown.

      • Peter says:


        As I have said several times capacity is meaningless. It is actual production of electricity when people NEED it that counts.

        China CO2 emissions is up even after record installation of wind and solar..



        Germany has installed more solar and wind as a percentage of installed capacity than any other country. Germany’s installed wind and solar capacity than it’s peak demand.


        Yet Germany CO2 emissions is going up, ridiculous!

        • islandboy says:

          Are you suggesting that this will always be the case? IOW are you suggesting that since renewables have not yet impacted carbon emissions, they never will? Interesting concept! The same sort of thing was said before automobiles replaced horses.

          • GoneFishing says:

            Actually renewable energy and efficiency has effected carbon emissions. Plus the graph from the carbon brief shows that the rate of carbon emissions are leveling off.
            Peter apparently has major problems understanding growth and rate equations.

          • Peter says:


            What I have said several times, is renewable energy such as solar and wind are horrendously unreliable. And it does not matter how many graphs of production you see you refuse point blank to understand the problem.

            If solar and wind worked like nuclear. I.E. produced their nameplate capacity when people needed it. Then Germany could close down every single coal and gas power station.

            During 2017 solar and wind produced less than 5% of demand over 200 times, sometimes for days on end. So what did Germany do? Burn loads of coal. And you think you are an environmentalist?

        • GoneFishing says:

          Now now, tell the whole story. Germany has steadily reduced it’s CO2 output and is predicted to have droppedCO2 emissions 32 percent by 2020. This despite their closing nuclear facilities.

          Annual renewable shares of electricity production in Germany. Net generation of power plants for public power supply.

          • Peter says:


            Thankyou for your misleading graph. You obviously do not understand the difference between installed capacity and production.

            This is the actual production of electricity. It is 29%.


            Until storage is cost effective renewable energy will remain a side show.


            On the 21 of January this year if wind were to supply Germany demand they would have to build 15 times the wind turbines already installed.
            A ridiculous idea.

            Germany has 28,000 turbines and it still produces 2/3 of electricity from coal. And 95% from coal over 200 times per year for over 4 hours!

            • Peter says:

              Germany did not close down any nuclear power stations in 2016 and only 1 on the last day of 2017.

              During 2016 and 2017 Germany installed as much wind and solar capacity as 8 nuclear power stations.

              France is the greenest industrial country in terms of electricity production.



              wind does what is does anywhere, producing between 30% nameplate and 2%. In consumption terms between 8% and 0.05%. The other 99.95% being made up with things that work when people are at work.


              At the moment nuclear really is the only real option to reduce CO2 to levels needed.
              Germany proves this with having installed wind and solar capacity of 130% more than peak consumption. Yet still uses coal and gas for over 2/3 of electricity generation.

              • George Kaplan says:

                When France is short they import from coal fired power stations in Belgium. When the UK is short we import it from France and call it nuclear and therefore low carbon, even though it may actually really be coming from Belgium coal at times.

              • GoneFishing says:

                German nuclear phase-out.

            • GoneFishing says:

              Not misleading, directly from the website. this is what was below the graph.
              “Annual renewable shares of electricity production in Germany. Net generation of power plants for public power supply.”

              You seem to be agenda driven, have fun with it.

              • Peter says:


                What website?

                The data I have provided is ACTUAL daily, weekly. monthly and annual production to the MW/h.

                and your other cut and paste confirms what I said. NO nuclear closures in all of 2016 and 2017.

                In that time Germany built the equivalent of 8/9 of the largest nuclear reactors in wind and solar.

                Germany has a peak consumption of 90GW/h and built 15GW of wind and solar in 2 years but it’s CO2 emissions went up in that time.
                Your obviously think, if it does not work, do lots more of it.

        • notanoilman says:

          What a load of bollocks. People can adapt to use renewable electricity when it is available and can be encouraged by beneficial prices. Do you remember the White Meters? Cheap electricity at night. With increasing solar and wind, daytime hydro can be cut back, as it is no longer needed for peaking, and can be saved for overnight peaks. Besides, electricity can store heat and cold for when they are needed. There, storage heaters or boilers can be used. Here, ice can be made for refrigeration or A/C. There is no big problem.


  21. OFM says:

    An interesting bit of trivia, this link is about the world’s oldest and longest lasting battery. When I clicked on it , I expected it to be about a big battery of the sort that used to be used to run telephone exchanges and such.

    They’re not energy efficient, but some of them have apparently lasted over a hundred years, and I’m intrigued as to whether they can be a cost effective solution for homeowners and small businessmen who could charge them with their own solar power.

    Some companies are still making new ones that might actually outlast the old ones.

    Still, money is important. I checked on the price of Sun Frost refrigerators, at their website, and most of them cost around three grand. There was no mention of a warranty, and it would obviously cost like hell to have one repaired, in case repairs are needed. Low volume manufacturers ALWAYS charge the hell out of their customers to send out a tech, and nobody else would be likely to have parts available, or even wiring and troubleshooting guides.

    For an extra two grand, over a very nice conventional unit, I could pay for the electricity to run it a decade, maybe even two decades, and still sell it for three hundred, and get another new one built to the latest energy efficiency standard with a new warranty again.

    My point is that nobody is so far as I can find out yet mass marketing really energy efficient refrigerators at prices that reflect the cost of mass producing them.

    How the XXXX much extra could it possibly cost to put in a more energy efficient motor, compressor, and extra insulation?

    I’ve watched the prices of lots of machinery drop by as much as seventy five percent over the years, as the market for it grows, and more companies enter, and the machine sells in large numbers.

    I’m thinking a really energy efficient refrigerator shouldn’t cost more than a couple of hundred bucks additional, compared to a modern conventional unit, with perhaps a small sacrifice in interior space for the same exterior dimensions, to allow for extra insulation. Boxing it will cost the same, shipping the same, floor space to sell it the same, and the same markup , percentage wise, should be adequate to sell it at retail, compared to a conventional refrigerator.

    I bought a new phone that serves me just fine a few days back for forty bucks. I guess it’s pretty stupid compared to a so called “smart ” phone , but I can use it for just about anything I want to use a phone for, considering I have a computer anyway. Such a phone would have been beyond the reach of the Koch brothers thirty years ago, non existent.

    The potential to cut back dramatically on the amount of energy we use is almost unbelievable. An eighty percent cut in refrigeration is easily doable, and in a properly built new house, you can save that much on heating and air conditioning, meaning a rather modestly sized personal solar system can get you most of the way to a net zero house.

    I just tried a really easy experiment with two identical so called slow cookers, putting them both side by side plugged into the same outlet, filled to the same level with water from the same faucet, one wrapped with a bath towel, the other left just sitting there, the usual way. The one with the towel reached boiling temperature in half the time it took the other one.

    Probably less than one kitchen in ten in the USA has a pressure cooker that is regularly used. I can cook a pot of dried beans in one on the same burner turned to the same spot in a third the time, or less, than is required in an ordinary pot with a lid on it.

    These realities simply haven’t penetrated to the working spaces between the ears of people who don’t think we can manage mostly or totally using renewable energy.

    Some people may get it, but refuse to publicly acknowledge that they have been wrong in the past about the potential of wind and solar power to scale up at ever decreasing energy unit costs.

    He’s a great guy, totally honest, and a real professional physicist, but IIRC his name correctly, Tom Murphy is such a guy. He used to run a blog called Do The Math, and published his far less than satisfactory results experimenting with an early model electric car and so forth.

    But I can’t find a thing on the net that he has published acknowledging the extraordinary progress made in lowering the cost and upping the range and reliability of electric cars in recent years, etc.

    Same thing with Euan Mears. I went on his site for a while , and tried posting some good solid reasons ( nothing original , but rather very commonly known) we should be working to increase the amounts of solar and wind power generated, such as for instance national security, competition and loss of just a small share of the market having the potential to drive down the purchase cost of coal, gas, and oil, economic security improved by not sending so much money out of the country to import ff, etc.

    It proved virtually impossible to get any regular there to acknowledge that such arguments even EXIST, let alone are irrefutable, considering the facts involved in the depletion of fossil fuels. I might as well have tried to explain the details of biological evolution to a back woods Baptist Sunday School class. Such Baptists would have acknowledged I was THERE, and prayed over me, at the very least. If prayer didn’t get any results after a few weeks or months, then they would have chased me out, lol, but at least they would not have totally ignored me, or just made fun of me.

    They’re at least smart enough to try to make new converts, to at least TRY to get outsiders to join forces with them. It’s unfortunate that more environmentalists aren’t smart enough to look for the common ground, to make friends out of enemies or potential enemies.

  22. GoneFishing says:

    And you thought it was just a sci-fi dream.

    Asteroid Mining May Be a Reality by 2025


  23. GoneFishing says:

    Basic income – Free money
    Is unconditional basic income the future of our social security system? Many initiatives testing this “Free money” concept are being implemented around the world.
    Around the globe, experiments are conducted with alternatives for the existing social security system that has become stuck. People no longer believe in centrally organised long-term planning: change can only be brought about by bottom-up small-scale social experiments. Advocates of redistributing our prosperity and disconnecting work and income are fighting for this. In many places and using many different methods they are experimenting with handing out free money.


  24. HuntingtonBeach says:

    Bank Of America: EVs To Lead To Peak Oil Demand In 2030

    While various experts and industry players debate if there will be peak oil demand anytime soon, Bank of America Merrill Lynch thinks that it may be just 12 years away—in 2030—when electric vehicles (EVs) will account for 40 percent of all car sales, thus eating at the demand for oil as a transportation fuel.

    “Electric vehicles will likely start to erode this last major bastion of oil demand growth in the early 2020s and cause global oil demand to peak by 2030,” Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in an emailed report, as carried by Bloomberg.

    The rise of the EVs is considered one of the top threats to oil demand in the long term, and while Saudi Aramco’s chief executive Amin Nasser thinks that EVs won’t be a real threat to oil consumption for decades to come, others—including the oil supermajors

    “The significance of peak oil is that it signals a shift from an age of perceived scarcity to an age of abundance,” Dale and Fattouh wrote.


    • Fred Magyar says:

      From the link:

      “Demand for oil in developed countries will revert to structural decline by 2020, wiping out about four million barrels per day by 2035. In contrast, developing economies will increase their demand for oil by nearly 16 million barrels per day by 2035,” WoodMac said at the end of last year.

      “While transport demand will flat-line around 2030, we forecast continued growth in overall global oil demand, supported by the petrochemical sector. Nonetheless, the prospect of peak oil demand is very real,” the consultancy noted.
      Bold mine

      I’d say that is a very bad bet indeed! A bit like someone at a big telephone company back in the 1980s betting that by the year 2000 the growth of landlines in developed countries would have peaked while the demand for landlines in developing countries would still be growing exponentially!

      The technological advances of cell phones and later smartphones has allowed developing countries to completely leapfrog past the need to install the landline infrastructure at all!

      In the same vein, I’d say that developing economies increasing their demand for oil by nearly 16 million barrels per day by 2035 for transportation needs simply will not happen because EV technology will have allowed them to leapfrog to cleaner cheaper options!

      • islandboy says:

        Yup! If the geniuses at Bank of America Merrill Lynch think that us folks in the developed world are just going to sit back and watch folks in the first world take advantage of all the technological advances, they need to get out more. What makes them think that folks in developing countries will want to buy anything with an infernal combustion engine in it if we can get a BEV for the same price that saves two thirds on fuel and tons more on maintenance? That is already the case for premium sedans (>$70,000), will be the case for anything over $40,000 by the end of this year and I suspect will be the case in less than five years away for the cheapest of cars.

        I have counted seven Nissan Leafs in my neck of the woods and that is with zero advertising, zero support from the local Nissan dealer, hassles with customs, motor vehicle examination departments and tax offices that were totally unprepared to deal with cars with no cc rating, nothing in the way of public charging infrastructure and very little public awareness that such things actually exist.

        Here’s an example of how that works:

        Tesla unofficial service center in Bangkok(Youtube video)

        Because Tesla has not planned to launch in Thailand anytime soon, a company called Sharenovation decided to make their own unofficial Tesla service center in Bangkok. The main purpose is to make it more attractive for Thai people to buy Tesla. They say that 99 % of the issues and service can be done locally.

        These guys had a Nissan Leaf, Nissan e-NV200s (LGV) and a BYD e6 in the video. What do the geniuses at Bank of America Merrill Lynch think is going to happen when EV prices fall in line with ICE powered cars?

        • GoneFishing says:

          Islandboy has a great point. The so called developing countries and third world countries could become the leaders in application and deployment of renewable energy and EV’s.
          It may not be in overall power change, but it could very well be in value returned for energy (money) invested.

          I like the work smarter not harder meme.

  25. Longtimber says:

    PV prices in the US are currently 50-100% above market price. Section 201 is a weapon of economic warfare. History shows that economic wars lead to hot wars. The claim of Asian dumping PANELS is nonsense – Wafers/Cell is another story, US has had punitive tariffs on cells from China for years. PV price reduction has tracked production scale and raw materials. PV Prices have not fallen globally as much as TV Panels since demand volume relative to production is stronger. A 10kW system is ~ 34 panels. Avg 2 TV’s per household? Count on the US gov to botch all things energy. We shall find out soon. https://www.pv-magazine.com/2018/01/22/source-us-solar-tariffs-wont-be-as-severe-as-feared/

  26. Preston says:

    New tax breaks for oil and gas investment in the tax bill weren’t enough so Trump is also adding 30% tariffs to solar panels.

    Trump’s Solar Tariffs Mark Biggest Blow to Renewables Yet


    • Fred Magyar says:

      Trump too shall pass! There is no way he can stop the renewable energy revolution in the rest of the world. 95% of the world’s population lives outside of the USA. That’s a pretty big market.

      • OFM says:

        He won’ t stop it here, either.

        He doesn’t want to stop the importation of solar stuff, not really, because that will cost more jobs than it saves. What he wants is for the R base and working class people in general to believe the R party is hard at work saving and creating jobs for them, and he knows how to play that game.

        Early on, I used to think he didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting the R nomination. Then I didn’t think he had any chance at all of winning the election….. most of the time, although at times I warned people that he might actually win. I lost a three to one bet made around noon on election day still thinking HRC would win, as lousy as she was as a campaigner, and despite her career long baggage train.

        As bad as he is, I have come to understand that Trump, or to be more specific, his political advisors, have a very keen understanding of the fears and desires of the people of this country, and know exactly how to fight the culture war, keeping the Trump voter base happy and motivated.

        Bottom line, most of us are not all that political. Sure the regulars in this forum are all just about all hard core liberals. Birds of a feather flock together. Any body who is a conservative, in the usual sense that word is used today, will not visit this forum more than a couple of times, because of the hard core liberal bias of the regulars. They go elsewhere, someplace they feel more comfortable, more at home, welcome. But that leaves the regulars thinking every body else is like THEM, and that conservatives are few and far between.

        In actuality, hard core conservatives are no longer numerous enough to dominate politically, because there are now enough people around who are hard core liberals to just about balance them off.

        Ten million of hard core socially conservative people are balanced off, more or less , by roughly the same number, ten millions hard core liberals. Neither faction is strong enough to definitely win, politically, on a national basis. Most of us are either politically liberal, or conservative, to some extent, but most of us don’t vote based SOLELY on our cultural values.

        Most of us are predisposed to vote either D or R, but how we actually DO vote is determined to a huge extent by how well the economy is doing. Some of us at least are old enough to remember Reagan Democrats. The D’s have fucked up unbelievably, over the last twenty years or so, in forgetting that the actual single biggest piece of the base of the D party consists of working class people. Black, yellow, brown, red, gay, bisexual, whatever, the largest part of any given block of voters in these categories have to work for a living, for wages. They don’t have investment income , and they mostly have next to nothing to invest.

        And from THEIR pov, as they see things, the D’s have shit all over them, and enough of them are now in favor turning isolationist to elect Trump like politicians. If Trump were actually an honest and competent leader, the R’s would have things sewn up for a good while to come, with the economic cycle working in their favor, on the upswing.

        The D’s are still going to win big in the midterms, but nobody should think that they’re going to flip very many Trump voters. Trump’s giving his voters exactly what they want, in some respects, such as protectionism, very limited immigration, etc and pretending to give them what they want in some other respects.

        I ‘ve been thinking for the last year that the D’s would mop the floor with the R’s, in the upcoming midterms, for all the usual reasons.

        But now the R’s have actually passed a tax bill, and are putting into effect policies that suit their base voters to a T.

        The R’s are smart enough to have figured out that working people will be very grateful for another ten or twenty bucks take home on their forty hours, and that they don’t give a shit about the HUGE breaks the rich are getting, because working people don’t believe rich people pay more than a pittance in income taxes anyway, which happens to be true, at least in relation to their actual incomes.

        The R’s are actually far more responsible for moving so much of our industrial base overseas, compared to the Democrats, but the political cards have fallen in such a way that the D’s are getting the blame, and the R’s are getting the credit for doing something about this loss of jobs, or maybe I should say they are PRETENDING to do something about it, mostly. They aren’t going to do anything to bring very many jobs back here, but the very idea that they are TRYING ( pretending if you wish to dispute the point, that’s ok ) is enough to make a very favorable impression on the vast majority of the people of this country……… people who are NOT PASSIONATE about their politics. They’re more or less liberal, or more or less conservative, but they don’t spend much time thinking about politics. When election day rolls around, they’re going to vote more often than not for whichever party seems to be doing them the most favors, which ever party seems likely to help them earn a living.

        The R’s are playing this game far more skillfully than I expected them to do, and they may do better than I thought they would, up until a few weeks ago, in the upcoming midterms.

        I still think the D’s are going to pick up a lot of seats in the House, but I think the odds of them regaining the majority aren’t as good as I thought before the tax bill passed.

        As far as the Senate is concerned, I’m still thinking that the D’s have a shot at regaining control, with good luck on their part and a little bad luck on the part of the R party.

        Just one hot scandal involving either a senator from either party could determine which party controls the Senate next year. It’s that close, maybe. Probably?

        Remember what Bill Clinton said? About HIS election?

        It’s the economy, Stupid.

        So long as the economy is on the upswing, Trump and the R’s are not in all that much danger of enough voters turning on them to force them out.

        • HuntingtonBeach says:

          “Early on, I used to think he didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting the R nomination. Then I didn’t think he had any chance at all of winning the election….. most of the time, although at times I warned people that he might actually win. I lost a three to one bet made around noon on election day still thinking HRC would win, as lousy as she was as a campaigner, and despite her career long baggage train”

          OldMacDonald aka KGB Trumpster, so what are you saying. Your viral spewed hate was more effective than you realized. Even FoxNews can’t compete with your lies and ignorance.

          • Glad to see you back, HB.

            Call it like you please, I have barely mentioned (recently ) how dumb the D’s were for running the most unpopular candidate they could possibly have chosen, the only nationally known D in the country with a baggage train reaching all the way back to the earliest days, lol.

            I point out WHY people vote the way they do, as best I know how.

            You just sling insults. I enjoy that as much as you do, let’s enjoy a few more rounds.

            If HRC had had the brains of a peanut, in terms of campaigning, she would have won.

            The insufferable empress to be with her it’s mine I’m entitled to it and you stupid ignorant unwashed DEPLORABLE peasants will vote for me, of course, even though I ‘m campaigning on globalism, raking in a couple of million here and there making secret speeches to banksters, not even paying working class voters in working class states a fucking simple VISIT, and it’s my fault she lost.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


            But maybe I have convinced a few people who usually vote D that NEXT time, they should nominate somebody with a little bit of what we call the common touch, somebody who is less arrogant and condescending, less elitist, at a time when the core of the D party is scared for it’s life.

            Somebody who has fucking brains enough to refrain from calling the fucking TRUE CORE of her party names, using the code word “deplorable” which in plain liberal English means white trash, redneck, drunk, bum, Christian, male, gun owner sexual deviate, male predator, toothless hillbilly trailer park trash…

            Well, people tend to take that sort of thing SERIOUSLY when it’s aimed at them…………….

            YOU little worm, you have bragged yourself here in this forum about making big bucks in the oil industry, etc.

            You aren’t a real Democrat, you’re a fucking Republican Lite, pretending to be an environmentally aware person, making a killing, according to YOUR OWN WORDS, in the oil biz.

            Well, the message I have been promoting is that the D’s aren’t going to win easily and maybe they’re going to lose unless they get their shit together and remember that they need working people’s votes.

            HRC couldn’t bring herself down to the level of asking for those votes, in person. She expected them as her DUE, as the EMPRESS. The good people in the last three states that put Trump over the top sent her a message about campaigning on globalism on banksters money.

            Thanks for all the help making my case. It would be harder without you to remind me to remind other members here about Cattle Gate, her friends in the White Water venture rotting in jail, the couple of hundred million she raked into her family slush fund, her secret against the rules email system, which would have landed her in jail if she had been less rich, less well connected , less powerful.

            I forgot , she also ran a bimbo squad to cover for Bill’s bad habits, he was clearly a serial abuser of women. I personally know at least five or six young well educated women, from Sanders meetings, who absolutely refused to vote for her for that sin alone. They voted Green, as I did.

            She managed to lose to the worst candidate the R’s have nominated in at least the last hundred years. The R’s didn’t even WANT Trump,the entire R party establishment did everything it could to get rid of him, it was that bad, truly.

            And yet…… she was such a lousy campaigner that she lost to Trump.
            Ya get it?

            Of course not.

            But at least a few others get it.

            • wharf rat says:

              I try to avoid politics here, but I’ve gone from saying “Anybody who thinks Trump can be president is crazy” on National “Down the Escalator” Day to telling friends that anybody who doesn’t think he can be re-elected is crazy, providing he doesn’t blow up the world first.

              If he can prevent an economic downturn, he can win. He might lose here in Calif by 5 M votes instead of 3M, but that doesn’t change a thing. Everybody is upset about the deportation of that Mexican father last week, but if a black man gets his job, he’ll vote for Trump.

              Black unemployment rate falls to record low –

              “It’s the economy, stupid”
              James Carville

            • HuntingtonBeach says:

              OldMacDonald aka KGB Trumpster, for a year prior to the election you spewed your Russian Republican talking points here day after day. You never wrote about the candidates energy or environmental policy. It was just a continued Republican talking point assault on HRC. Your assault made FoxNews lies look like child’s play. You have the brains of a Southern Christian home schooled racist idiot.

              Your an ignorant coward political hack troll that prefers to sleep with a gun. Keep your politics to yourself.

  27. Hightrekker says:

    Snowmobile riders were never the brightest (I must confess- I have used them) porch lights on the block, but this one i a special case:

  28. wharf rat says:

    The Davos 2018 environment agenda – what you need to know and how to follow online

    This article is part of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting

    2017 was characterized by extreme weather. Seventeen named storms – including Harvey and Irma – battered the US, costing a record $200 billion in damages. Monsoon flooding devastated parts of India, Bangladesh and Nepal, killing over 1,200 people and affecting 40 million. From flooding to wildfires, hurricanes to droughts – our world has become a more unpredictable place to live and work.

    Indeed, this year’s Global Risks Report puts a spotlight on the environment. Four of the top five risks in terms of impact are environmental, and all have a higher-than-average likelihood of occurrence.


  29. GoneFishing says:

    So when will the renewable energy tipping point actually occur? When will one year’s growth in renewable energy (wind +solar) equal the global energy growth for that year?

    Imagining a World After Fossil Fuels
    Most experts have concluded that change will come slowly. Analysts at Shell predict it will take a quarter of a century to reach a tipping point where the annual output of renewable energy matches the overall growth in demand, and the amount of carbon being released into the atmosphere levels off. Their peers at BP think 30 years will pass before then; those at Exxon say 75. The International Energy Agency (IEA) largely agrees, though it recently cut its estimate from 60 years to 35.

    When compared with actual data, however, forecasters’ records have consistently erred on the side of conservatism.
    All conclude that the demand for fossil fuels will continue growing through the 2020s and 2030s at 0.7-1.2 percent per year, though the recent trend has been 0.5 percent.


    • islandboy says:

      Seems like a bit of wishful thinking there! I just hear the voice of Tony Seba inside my head saying, “it’s usually the experts and the insiders and the mainstream analysts who dismiss disruptive opportunities” followed by his question “why do smart people and smart organizations consistently fail to anticipate disruption let alone lead the disruption?”

      When I think about it, I have been anticipating disruptions most of my adult life and have worked in a few careers/companies that got disrupted. I joined the local branch office of IBM shortly after the initial IBM PC was introduced. When I parted company with IBM six short years later, I had grave misgivings about the future of the company. Just this past weekend I was at a gathering where I met someone who is currently employed at the local office of IBM. She told me that IBM has gone from about 100 employees when she joined a couple years after I left, to about 30 now. I was right!

      My gut tells me we are at the cusp of the mother of all disruptions.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        My gut tells me we are at the cusp of the mother of all disruptions.

        I have the same feeling and I too have gone through some major disruptions. I contrast that with my siblings who have had stable long term corporate careers, disruption is not on their radars at all, they expect things to stay the same for a long time…

      • GoneFishing says:

        Islandboy said “Seems like a bit of wishful thinking there!”

        Could you expand on that please, not sure upon what you are basing that conclusion?

        • islandboy says:

          Sorry GF, I just realized that I wasn’t being clear. This is what I was referring to as wishful thinking:

          Most experts have concluded that change will come slowly. Analysts at Shell predict it will take a quarter of a century to reach a tipping point where the annual output of renewable energy matches the overall growth in demand, and the amount of carbon being released into the atmosphere levels off. Their peers at BP think 30 years will pass before then; those at Exxon say 75. The International Energy Agency (IEA) largely agrees, though it recently cut its estimate from 60 years to 35.

          • GoneFishing says:

            Exactly, the FF interests are hoping that they can last as long as possible.

            Although taking the current rate of doubling which is 10 years, that is about 7% gain in output per year for wind/solar. This puts the tipping point at about 2050 for 1 percent growth and 2065 for 1.5% growth. For 0.5% growth the tipping point would be around 2027.
            I would expect growth rates of wind power and PV to slow with time as the needed manufacturing facilities and mining would have to grow exponentially to keep up. Plus if you keep doing that one ends up with far too much manufacturing meeting up with an already filled energy demand.

            Growth rates in global energy are quite variable, with the 2010 to 2015 period varying from 5% down to 1 percent. They rose 37% form 2000 to 2015. (BP statistical review)

          • Fred Magyar says:

            I have a hunch that quite a few oil majors are already hedging their bets behind the scenes. Especially the ones in Europe.


            One of the world’s largest fossil fuel companies is betting on electric cars.

            Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA) revealed a deal on Thursday to acquire NewMotion, one of Europe’s largest electric vehicle charging providers. NewMotion specializes in converting parking spots into electric charging stations. The Dutch firm has more than 30,000 electric charge points in Europe.

            The acquisition, Shell’s first in this space, shows how Big Oil is being forced to confront the long-term threat posed by electric cars and efforts to phase out gasoline and diesel vehicles.

            “This is a way of broadening our offer as we move through the energy transition,” Matthew Tipper, Shell’s vice president of new fuels, told CNNMoney in an interview. “It’s certainly a form of diversification.”

            That may be an understatement. Consider that NewMotion says its founding mission was to “contribute to a cleaner world by eradicating fossil fuels.” Now, it will be owned by one of the world’s largest fossil fuel companies, albeit one that is investing more on renewable energy.
            Bold mine

    • Dennis Coyne says:


      The average annual rate of increase in fossil fuel consumption from 1982-2016 was 1.6% per year.
      For the 2013-2016 period, the rate of growth in fossil fuel consumption has indeed been 0.5%/year.

      I used BP data to check. Also checked wind and solar at BP.

      Wind and Solar consumption grew at an annual rate of 24.7% per year from 1995 to 2016. The rate of growth slowed to 16.9%/year from 2013 to 2016.

      • GoneFishing says:

        So what is he gain in output per year for wind and solar? You say consumption, does that mean actual generation or rated installation?

        • GoneFishing says:

          Just looked it up myself and the table values include geothermal, biomass and waste in those figures.

  30. OFM says:

    A well written and mostly accurate article about the food and population crisis headed our way:


    Later on I will point out a few things in it that I disagree with, to some extent, if there is any discussion of this article.

    • Survivalist says:

      Thanks for this. Will def be reading it tonight. I’m betting on famine induced population edit in my life time. I’m very interested in reading what you have to say about this article.

    • Jason T. says:

      Actually CO2 isn’t the completely evil force they are making it out to be. Here’s a thought experiment to consider. What is different between man made CO2 and all the other CO2 found in the world? (That is not a trick question either)

      • George Kaplan says:

        The man made CO2 has upset what used to be a dynamic equilibrium of glaciations and inter-glacial periods where the overall level of natural CO2 was constrained, and kicked us into a ever warming period which, if not stopped, could render large parts of the planet virtually uninhabitable for most of the life that is currently adapted to live there.

        • Jason T. says:

          The answer is there is no difference between man made CO2 and the other CO2 because CO2 is CO2 no matter where you are in the universe. That is because of chemistry.

          • George Kaplan says:

            The answer is you’re an idiot.

          • GoneFishing says:

            JT, here is an ISOTOPIC educational moment for you.

            Of course you frame a mostly meaningless question because the first effect is physics the second biology. Chemistry of the ocean is being changed, might want to look that one up.
            But head down to your local library and get an atmospheric physics text.

            What is the difference between adding fossil CO2 and the natural system CO2?
            It’s MORE!
            It’s OCEAN pH!
            It’s Global Temperature!
            It’s Global Weather Energy!
            It’s LOSS OF PLANETARY ICE!

            Just a few differences. Change the physics of the atmosphere, change the ocean chemistry, get a new world.
            Got it now?

      • Fred Magyar says:

        What is different between man made CO2 and all the other CO2 found in the world? (That is not a trick question either)

        Might not be a trick question but it is a really stupid one.


        The Crazy Scale of Human Carbon Emission

        …Earth has also been increasing its greenhouse gas concentration pretty steadily over the past couple of hundred years. This is almost entirely attributable to the burning of fossil fuels (we can tell because of the isotopic mix of carbon in those fuels).


        How the World Passed a Carbon Threshold and Why It Matters

        The last time the planet had a concentration of 300 to 400 ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere was during the mid-Pliocene, 3 million years ago — recently enough for the planet to be not radically different than it is today. Back then, temperatures were 2 degrees C to 3 degrees C (3.6 to 5.4°F) above pre-industrial temperatures (though more than 10 degrees C hotter in the Arctic), and sea levels were at least 15-25 meters higher. Forest grew in the Canadian north and grasslands abounded worldwide; the Sahara was probably covered in vegetation. Homo habilis (aka “handy man”), the first species in the Homo line and probably the first stone-tool users, got a taste of this climate as they arrived on the scene 2.8 million years ago. (Homo sapiens didn’t show up until 400,000 years ago at the earliest.)

        To find a time when the planet’s air was consistently above 400 ppm you have to look much farther back to the warm part of the Miocene, some 16 million years ago, or the Early Oligocene, about 25 million years ago, when Earth was a very different place and its climate totally dissimilar from what we might expect today.

        Now, what’s the difference between a moron, an idiot, a troll and Jason T?
        None whatsoever!

        Though you are right about one thing, the atmosphere and ocean chemistry can change drastically without regard to the source or isotopic mix of the CO2 being added to it.

      • Survivalist says:

        CO2 is a molecule. It has no moral disposition. I have made no statement that refers to CO2 as being evil. I’m simply relaying data about its concentration in the atmosphere, a distinction that is obviously lost on you. You should stick to sucking farts out of bus seats, or whatever it is you do.

    • Dennis Coyne says:


      The change in radiative forcing is determined by the natural log of atmospheric CO2 concentration.

      Over the 1960-2017 the acceleration in the rate of increase in the natural log of atmospheric CO2 has been about 1.4% per year. So in 1960 the rate of increase in nat log CO2 was about 0.045% per year and in 2017 it was about 0.1% per year (OLS trend line through data.) A reduction is fossil fuel emissions (after 2025) are likely to reduce this rate of increase (a deceleration).

      Chart below shows annual change in atmospheric CO2 vs annual fossil fuel carbon emissions from 1960 to 2016, more emissions results in faster increase in atmospheric CO2, after the peak in 2025, emissions are likely to fall and CO2 may increase more slowly.

  31. George Kaplan says:

    Global ice extent has hit lowest for the day, equal with last year. Arctic ice extent has stopped growing at the moment because the Atlantic side is about 20°C above normal and showing signs of melting around Svalbard. It will almost certainly set a new lowest March maximum this year, probably by some margin. There was a paper last year indicating that the Arctic Ocean had stopped being a sink for CO2, Presumably as it continues to warm it could start to become a source. The Svalbard permafrost looks likely to be the first that gets studded fairly well as it melts.

    • Jason T. says:

      Antarctica sea ice started growing in size in tune with the halt in global warming and climate change beginning about 20 years ago. Therefore global charts don’t explain the full picture, plus there are holes in the data record since few people live anywhere close to the icy parts of the world.

      • George Kaplan says:

        Antarctic ice started to grow because of changing wind patterns and some increased precipitation, that seems now to have been overwhelmed by the increasing warming overall. Holes in data just means it should be treated with more circumspection, not that it should be ignored just because it doesn’t agree with what you’d like it to be.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Antarctica sea ice started growing in size in tune with the halt in global warming and climate change beginning about 20 years ago.

        Nope, that’s an outright lie! There has been no halt in global warming.

    • Charles Van Vleet says:

      The news earlier said natural gas use was at all time highs on new year’s day. Now I admit, it’s not perfect because more people here nowdays use natural gas but I have always thought one of the best noise filters to climate science is keeping an eye on the energy market. Along with the agricultural market to some extent. In my view, temperature observations can be manipulated but a canary in the coal mine would be energy and food prices. Because supply and demand would be difficult to manipulate for such widespread necessities. Just by intuition you can figure it would be extremely odd to be using a record amount of natural gas for heating if temperatures are warmer now.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Just by intuition you can figure it would be extremely odd to be using a record amount of natural gas for heating if temperatures are warmer now.

        Oh, looky another stupid fucking intuitive troll who can’t tell the difference between a local cold winter weather event and average global climate warming trends!

        • OFM says:

          I’m pretty sure Charles Van Fleet is a troll, maybe a bot programmed to troll, but his prose style says most likely human, to me.

          But I assure everybody that in real life situations, face to face, and in other forums devoted to general interest topics, you will find more people who don’t know any more than Charles than you will people who DO.

          Hence it pays, politically, to speak gently to them. Many people use rules of thumb such as he mentioned to decide what they think about any particular topic or issue.

          You can’t blame them, in a lot of cases they simply don’t know enough to make better informed decisions. And while Charles may be totally ignorant of the fact that more of the world is hotter today, than usual, than is colder today, than usual, that’s not NECESSARILY his fault.

          They’re working with such data as they have available. We all do that.

          Tell them off as trolls here, but it pays to use gentler language in other forums and in face to face encounters.

          There was seldom a day that went by when I lived in the city, hanging out in a university district, that I didn’t run into somebody who had a degree that didn’t know shit from apple butter about the real world.

          We don’t want people to vote for Trump just because we went out of our way to make fun of them, especially in public.

          No problem here, because the people here are virtually all birds of a feather, and so we flock together.

      • George Kaplan says:

        Charles – you’ve always thought wrong, about that and a few other things I expect.

    • Troy Slavski says:

      FYI: 🌡🕵📖📲🇬🇧😊

      • Survivalist says:

        Should Grown Men Use Emoji?


        Why some people use too many emojis


        There are two things that I think make men look like total pussies, one is drinking a highball or cocktail with a little tiny straw (yes I know many places serve highballs and cocktails with a little tiny straw but when they do real men remove it), the other is using emojis.

      • notanoilman says:

        OK, so what is it for Linux?


        • George Kaplan says:

          All that is because first time I didn’t hold the shift key when I typed the degree symbol and got a black dot instead, and didn’t check before posting. It’s like pointing out missing a capital letter or your/you’re: a bit unnecessary I think.

          Is it possible to read those emojis as meaning something? … actually I don’t care either way.

          • notanoilman says:

            I trust that was directed at Troy not myself? I was addressing my comment to him and am quite comfortable with either format.

            • George Kaplan says:

              Yes or pedants in general, which we are happily fairly free of here.

          • Troy Slavski says:

            The emojis always sum up my post. In this case I saw the temperature measurement w/o degree symbol. I put on my investigator suit, looked up how to insert the symbol, posted with my phone, and then made the Brit glad for the help.

    • Survivalist says:

      For date Arctic is record low and Antarctic is 2nd lowest.


    • TheKrell says:

      Isn’t this an example of scientific cherry picking? What I see on the graph is how the ice was higher on every day this year except for the one and only selected date. Isn’t that like waiting for a date with below normal temperatures so then you can tell everyone how global warming must be phony?

      • GoneFishing says:

        Cherry picking would be to only show a trend by taking a segment of the information and not showing the rest for dishonest purposes. All the data is shown and it is an obvious crossing point. Future data will show if it is a trend or not. I see no dishonesty in this presentation.
        Maybe we should look at individual hemispheric sea ice quantities opposed by 6 months to remove the seasonal effect which would be a more meaningful comparison.

        • GoneFishing says:

          Using seasonal adjustment the global sea ice extent would be about 6 million km2 minimum, . The maximum extent would be about 36 million square miles. So we have a 6:1 ratio of seasonally adjusted maxima to minima extent.

      • Survivalist says:

        “What I see on the graph is how the ice was higher on every day this year except for the one and only selected date.”- krell

        The Jaxa Arctic data is linked below.

        Arctic sea ice has been record low most days since December 27, 2017. Arctic sea ice was second lowest for 6 days starting January 13, 2018. Other than those 6 days every day of 2018 has so far been lowest on record. Perhaps we’ll have a new record low annual maximum.


  32. JN2 says:

    Impossible burgers on Fully Charged…

    Compared to a conventional burger:

    96% less land
    87% less water


    • Preston says:

      The beyond burger is pretty good also. Whole foods sells them in the meat department. I tried a couple of days eating vegan this month, very eye opening experience – animal products are in everything.

      There are 3 main reasons people go vegan.
      1. Better for your health – see “What the Health” on netflix
      2. Better for the environment
      3. Better for the animals, less cruelty

      Regarding health, a big part of the problem in the US is iron overload, see https://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/13/a-host-of-ills-when-irons-out-of-balance/
      So if you eat meat every day, be sure to avoid extra iron. The impossible burger includes heme iron from GMO yeast. If going vegan just means beyond burgers and vegan ben&jerry’s, I’m not sure it’s that much better for your health. But, you still get the other benefits.

      I also take a little issue with the vegan philosophy. If you film plants with time lapse photography they clearly have some intelligence. Elm trees have been trained, and remember for 25 years. You can’t have almonds or almond milk without bees – but for vegans almonds are okay, but honey isn’t. What is more cruel? Harvesting honey or maple syrup? But, lots of plant based food isn’t cruel even for the plants – like fruits and grains are at the end of their life cycle anyway.

      • GoneFishing says:

        Going to a high vegetable content diet is one of the potential solutions, as long as we don’t just use the “excess” land and water for further development and extraction.

      • Hightrekker says:

        Ah, someone who has probably (almost surely) not grown food to supply his or her nutrition.
        It is a given by content of post.

      • Survivalist says:

        If everyone went vegan then I’m guessing farm animals would go extinct, unless people kept them as pets. Farm animal extinction is then the solution to farm animal cruelty.

      • OFM says:

        Mother Nature doesn’t deal in nice and rude, or good, and evil.

        Such concepts are at best blinders that keep you from understanding reality.
        Nature truly is red in tooth and claw, even if the tooth is a big flat grinding molar stained green by grass rather than a canine shaped to kill and shred raw meat . If she were to have an intellect capable of dealing with good and evil, a mother rabbit would deem foxes evil indeed.

        Don’t be fooled by the vegan industry’s propaganda, or the nut case dogma preached by people who either have skin in the game one way or another, or else who just don’t fucking know any better.

        There is nothing at all unhealthy about eating meat, or dairy products, or fish, in moderation, except in the case of a relatively small percentage of the population predisposed to certain health issues.

        It’s HARD to eat a balanced diet optimal for growth and long term health consuming only plant foods unless you have a fair amount of money and are willing to spend it on seeking out the relative handful of foods that are generally available in rather limited quantities that are ESSENTIAL to a decent vegetarian diet.

        I raised apples, peaches, and some veggies for half a century plus. I love apples, and apples ARE a super food….. in some respects.

        But chicken at a dollar a pound has a hundred times as much actual NUTRITIONAL VALUE, in absolute terms, as apples that are seldom as cheap as a whole chicken in most supermarkets in the USA. More shopping trips than not, I can buy a whole chicken cheaper per pound than I can apples.

        The key to good nutrition is moderation in all things, and avoiding highly processed foods packed full of potentially extremely dangerous additives, with excess sugar and salt heading the list, and WELL PROVEN to be SLOW POISON.

        If we are to have even a fair shot at providing food for ten billion people, it is essential that we cut way the hell back on meat of course, but that does not mean it’s a good idea to give up meat, eggs, dairy, etc, in the altogether, making a religious issue out of it.

        Chickens, pigs, cows, and most other animals we ordinarily eat can and often to come to market raised mostly or even altogether on rations that are pretty much otherwise useless to us humans as food, or for any other purpose.

        I’m going to have grass fed beef cows again starting this year or next. They will graze on steep hillsides in permanent pasture. No erosion, no pesticides….. this land is otherwise just about worthless for agricultural purposes, except raising timber. I will supplement their feed with some corn raised on the place, letting then into the field using partition fences, over the winter. They will enjoy any left over pumpkins I will get free from neighbors if they can’t sell all they raise, or if they are cut or bruised or have rotten spots, etc. Ditto peaches, apples, potatoes, etc. Ditto any locally produced grain that fails to sell for any reason….. such as being contaminated with TOO MUCH rat shit.

        Rat shit is a reality. Get used to it, lol.

        My three pet chickens get a full third of their rations in the form of leftovers from my kitchen. Another third by foraging, they run loose. Most of the time, they produce as many eggs as I use. I need the high quality protein in eggs. I don’t care for any thing I ever tried made mostly out of soy, and I’ve tried a LOT of them.

        You can take this to the bank. Ag majors with a few courses in ansci generally know more about nutrition than just about anybody excepting medical professionals whose specialty focuses on nutrition. Plus I almost finished nursing school, lol.

        Evil is a human mental construct, ditto good, in purely ecological terms. This is not to say that naked apes and a few other species haven’t evolved to the point that we display cooperative behavior and look after less fortunate members of our species.. part of the time, any way. Within this context, good and evil are valid concepts.

        • Preston says:

          The beyond and impossible burgers main ingredients are pea protein and vegetable oil. It seems obvious that growing a field of peas is easier than growing a cow and the nutrition profile in terms of protein is almost the same. Cows don’t make protein, they get it from the plants they eat.

          Yes, in moderation there is no problem eating meat but the old promise of a chicken in every pot was 1 chicken per week for a family of 4. It is a big problem eating meat at every meal. We have epidemic obesity, heart disease, and diabetes all linked to meat consumption. They show how going vegan can reverse these diseases and people taking handfuls of pills don’t need them anymore, even after just a few weeks.

          It’s hard to fault your backyard chickens, but it would take a lot of land and other resources to have enough chickens to harvest one for meat every day. But that’s how Americans eat, and it’s only possible with factory farms.

          Looking around the world, there aren’t really vegan cultures, almost everyone eats some animal products. That’s a good argument against it but the closer they get, the longer the life spans. In Japan, the Okinawans eat mostly sweet potatoes and rice – they have the longest lifespans. Japanese american’s don’t live as long, so no it’s not just good jeans.

  33. Survivalist says:

    Ten 1st author papers since 1999.
    Pretty weak.

  34. Hightrekker says:

    “There has not in living memory been a better time to be a fascist. We live in a utopia: it just isn’t ours.”
    -China Miéville

  35. GoneFishing says:

    Climate models underestimate global warming by exaggerating cloud ‘brightening’
    We found that the climate sensitivity increased from 4 degrees C in the default model to 5-5.3 degrees C in versions that were modified to bring liquid and ice amounts into closer agreement with observation,” said Yale researcher Ivy Tan, lead author of the paper.

    Climate sensitivity refers to the change in global mean surface temperature due to a doubling of carbon dioxide. Climate models predict between 2.1 and 4.7 degrees C (3.75 to 8.5 degrees F) of warming in response to a doubling of carbon dioxide.

    “We saw a systematic weakening of the cloud phase feedback and increase in climate sensitivity as we transitioned from model versions that readily convert liquid to ice below freezing to model versions that can maintain liquid down to colder temperatures, as observed in nature,” Tan explained.

    These results add to a growing body of evidence(link is external) that the stabilizing cloud feedback at mid- to high latitudes in climate models is overstated. Moreover, several recent studies have concluded that other important cloud feedback also are likely to exacerbate warming rather than dampen it. These include amplifying feedback from increases in cloud top altitude and from decreases in the coverage of subtropical low clouds.


  36. GoneFishing says:

    New Eocene fossil data suggest climate models may underestimate future polar warming

    January 22, 2018

    By studying the chemical composition of fossilized foraminifera, tiny single-celled animals that lived in shallow tropical waters, a team of researchers generated precise estimates of tropical sea surface temperatures and seawater chemistry during the Eocene Epoch, 56-34 million years ago. Using these data, researchers fine-tuned estimates from previous foram studies that captured polar conditions to show tropical oceans warmed substantially in the Eocene, but not as much as polar oceans.

    Importantly, when modern climate models – the same as those used in the United Nations’ recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports – were run under Eocene conditions, many could not replicate these findings. Instead, the models consistently underestimated polar ocean warming in the Eocene.


    Tuning models to somewhat replicate recent history is a great way to get models that replicate recent history.

    • Dennis coyne says:

      Difficult to model 52 My in the past with incomplete information.

      The models have difficulty with mid Permian warm period only 3.2 My in the past.

      I agree the models are not perfect, climate scientists seem to agree.

      • GoneFishing says:

        “Difficult to model 52 My in the past with incomplete information. ”
        Same can be said about current information. But one should try and when models fail, one must strongly ask why, not just keep tweaking and repeating past errors.

        The earth is a very complex system and fully interdependent. We need more field sensors and field scientists and we need them yesterday. Figuring out how the system actually functions may be difficult but not impossible.

        In the meantime, with so much uncertainty, multiply conservative estimates by 2 and add a safety factor on top of that. That should be our general response, we can always draw back later if things turn out not to be so serious. Plus we need to move to a decarbonized and sustainable society anyway. We can’t avoid overshoot but we sure can make it a lot less painful. We can’t avoid sea level rise but we can walk away from the worst areas.

        There is already a large and growing human feedback to climate change, which is not generally considered in any climate model as far as I know. One more major layer of complexity.
        We need to change the way we frame our science on climate change vulnerability. When we think about the impact of climate change on biodiversity, future research needs to be focused not only on modeling the probable impacts of climate change on particular species, but also on how direct human-driven causes of extinction will change as a consequence of climate change and what the anticipated new drivers of extinction are likely to be. This focus on drivers will lead us away from a species and ecosystem centric view on climate change vulnerability to one that focuses primarily on how biodiversity’s major threat – humans – are likely to respond.


      • Fred Magyar says:

        I agree the models are not perfect, climate scientists seem to agree.

        Perfect can be the enemy of good enough!

        Joe Romm addresses climate models towards the end of this podcast.
        A Conversation with Joseph Romm

      • Iron Mike says:

        Hi Dennis,

        The models have difficulty with mid Permian warm period only 3.2 My in the past.

        Permian was over 250 Mya.

        Maybe you mean the Paleocene-Eocene temperature maximum (PETM). Which was around 53 Mya.


  37. George Kaplan says:


    Top ten climate articles from Carbon Brief:

    Global warming and recurrent mass bleaching of corals: Nature
    Biological annihilation via the ongoing sixth mass extinction signaled by vertebrate population losses and declines: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
    Global risk of deadly heat: Nature Climate Change
    Estimating economic damage from climate change in the United States: Science
    Widespread Biological Response to Rapid Warming on the Antarctic Peninsula: Current Biology
    Assessing recent warming using instrumentally homogeneous sea surface temperature records: Science Advances
    Assessing ExxonMobil’s climate change communications (1977–2014): Environmental Research Letters (ERL)
    The climate mitigation gap: education and government recommendations miss the most effective individual actions: Environmental Research Letters (ERL)
    Increasing risk over time of weather-related hazards to the European population: a data-driven prognostic study: The Lancet Planetary Health
    Less than 2C warming by 2100 unlikely: Nature Climate Change

  38. GoneFishing says:

    Antarctic rainfall and a melt area bigger than Texas

    In the Antarctic summer of 2016, the surface of the Ross Ice Shelf, the largest floating ice platform on Earth, developed a sheet of meltwater that lasted for as long as 15 days in some places. The total area affected by melt was 300,000 square miles, or larger than the state of Texas, the scientists report.

    “The story of melt all over the ice shelf rattled through the science community as it happened,” said Robin Bell, an Antarctic researcher at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Institute at Columbia University who was not involved in the study. “Who had heard of rain in Antarctica — it is a desert!”


  39. GoneFishing says:

    As the future unfolds and there are billions of energy generation points all over the globe from small to large, I wonder if the grid as we think of it will even exist. Major energy users will flock to where the sun and wind are more intense and available, away from traditional centers of industry. Various storage systems will fall in price, especially batteries. Local distribution will be based on a pulse system, where intermittency is absolutely expected. Overproduction will be stored and used in various industries/commercial applications. Life will move more with the pace of weather.


  40. HuntingtonBeach says:

    China No Longer Wants Your Trash. Here’s Why That’s Potentially Disastrous.

    The country has been the “world’s wastebasket” for decades. But starting Jan. 1, China has said “no more.”

    On Jan. 1, China made good on its promise to close its borders to several types of imported waste. By the next day, panic had already taken hold in countries across Europe and North America as trash began piling up by the ton, with no one having a clue where to now dispose of it all.

    For more than 20 years, China has been the world’s recycling bin, accepting an enormous quantity of recyclable waste from nations worldwide. In 2016, China processed at least half of the world’s exports of waste plastic, paper and metals — some 7.3 million tons of trash in all. The U.S. exported 16 million tons of waste to China that year, worth about $5.2 billion. Britain sent China enough garbage to fill up 10,000 Olympic-size swimming pools.

    It has long been a mutually beneficial arrangement for China and the exporting countries eager to get rid of their mounting waste. But last year, China told the World Trade Organization that it was no longer interested in playing the role of global wastebasket. Beijing said that, beginning in 2018, it would be banning the imports of 24 categories of solid waste, including waste plastics, unsorted scrap paper and waste textiles. It was the most severe step China had taken since it began building its metaphorical “green fence” earlier this decade, which involved measures aimed at reducing the amount of “yang laji,” or foreign trash, that could arrive on its shores.


  41. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    BAU Solar/Wind & Your Sociopathic System: Eating Your Cake And Having It Too?

    “There are other versions of ‘capitalism’ that are equally rapacious, all of which are iterations of crony-capitalism: gangster-capitalism, theocratic-capitalism, colonial-capitalism, and so on.

    The key feature of these forms of organized pillage that mask their predatory nature by claiming to be ‘capitalist’ is they ruthlessly suppress the three core dynamics of classical capitalism:

    1. Competition

    2. Open/free markets

    3. Free flow of capital in all its forms (financial, social, intellectual, etc.)

    The only way the few can pillage the many is if the many are denied access to competition, open markets and freely flowing capital. All the predatory, parasitic and exploitive systems that hide behind the word ‘capitalism’ skim the wealth of the many into the hands of the few by limiting competition (cartels and monopolies such as sickcare and higher education), controlling markets (you must buy from the state-mandated cartels and monopolies) and… restricting capital to insiders, financial elites and cronies of the state–three terms that describe one elite.

    Once the few eliminate competition, open markets and access to capital, the many are enslaved, regardless of how many times the magic words ‘democracy’ and ‘capitalism’ are invoked to cover the systemic exploitation…

    If a system is a sustainable, transparent, opt-in free marketplace of open competition, no elite could wrest control of the system to benefit itself at the expense of all the other participants.

    I’ve explained why centralized hierarchies have only one possible output: soaring inequality and injustice

    Remember, good ideas don’t require force, and our current socio-economic system is nothing but the application of force on the many to enforce the skims, scams and privileges of the self-serving few.” ~ Charles Hugh Smith

    Special report: Revisiting the cobalt-mining boys

    “Jamica is probably 100% dependant on imports for technology

    … since it does not manufacture PV or even any of the raw materials needed to make PV panels. Ditto for EV’s, Computers, Smartphones, etc. What happens when those items or replacement parts become unavailable do[sic] to a global crisis.

    FWIW: The issue I see with Renewables and the Caribbean islands is the frequent Hurricanes that rip them to shreds. Hurricanes Maria and Irma destroyed any[sic] wind or solar farms in their path.

    PVs, EVs are 100% dependent on globalization. I am sure an average EV or even smartphone contains parts from dozens of countries, and probably double that for the raw materials used to manufacture electronic components. If Caribbean does[n’t?] have the means of manufacturing Renewable components and parts, and there is a major global crisis. Its going to put the islands in a very untenable position. What’s Plan-B?” ~ TechGuy

    Metals Used in High-Tech Products Face Future Supply Risks

    Asymmetrical Stupidity Syndrome (ASS): Got Some Yet?

    “Humans used to scratch at dirt, eat bugs and plants until fire and tools. Nowadays, everywhere you step is concrete, steel and glass. This construction material makes 50% of human emissions. New demand is why world energy demand will grow 100% in 50 years.

    The real problem is that emissions have to hit 0% in 50 years too.

    But not only do we need brand new human infrastructure, we need to convert 80% of our old infrastructure to electricity which will cause a pulse of emissions that will defeat its fitness for purpose.

    Fitness for purpose is the fancy hi brow way of saying self-defeating. It’s like when a bully says, quit hitting yourself again and again. The defeat of fitness for purpose is not a single event. It is a continuum, once it’s realized, it doesn’t end. It’s like the Simpsons of your mind realizing a truth you can’t change. There is no off there.

    In 50 years we need 0% fuel emissions, 100% more fuel, while changing 80% of our old fuel.

    In 50 years we need 50% more food on 50% less land and water.

    In 50 years coasts will flood and storm beyond reckoning, grasslands will dry up and blow away.

    In order to even try to do this we need lots and lots and lots of metals and minerals. Way more of both of them than you can understand. The lower density of renewable energy means the higher density of its infrastructure needs.

    In other words, we cannot distribute renewable energy in time to survive the punishment that’s coming…

    …here’s an overview of the battery metals markets in the following videos by metals and mineral investment experts. Basically what they’re saying is that copper, nickel, cobalt and lithium will face supply constraints by 2025 for 30 million electric vehicles. There’s 750 million cars on earth. We can’t even build 30 million cars with these metals, and people want one billion of them. And investors are lining up to give it to you. They know this will not save earth, and they don’t fucking care because they get rich selling you lies due to asymmetrical stupidity. They’re stupid, you’re not… maybe.

    The reason everything is top secret and classified is because in the current media climate we would lose our fucking minds if we knew what was going on. Naomi Klein is sponsored by the Rockefellers and Fords because she’s selling you a lie. Green energy and justice. Renewable energy is equitably unsustainable.

    The insurance industry uses safety and justice to force you to buy stuff. Rare earth minerals are now a by-product of heavy metal mining. Our hi-tech green energy world is too complex for the way we imagine living our life…

    It’s at this point someone chirps up that youth are moving back to the land, but that doesn’t matter because trendsetters can’t move the big green blob of jello that makes up the silent majority…”

    “If industrial civilization doesn’t last a good long while yet

    “…there won’t be enough economic fat to manage the hoped for transition to renewables.” ~ Oldfarmermac/OFM/Glen McMillian

    “What has been highly disturbing is watching the natural world be run over and steadily destroyed.” ~ GoneFishing

    ”So what pray is your plan if we know we can’t continue to burn carbon? I wait with bated breath for some king of cogent response!” ~ Fred Magyar

    “Don’t burn it. Power down. Plant lots of native flora, etc.. I’ve already written about this. It’s so simple that even a child can understand it.” ~ Caelan MacIntyre

    • Fred Magyar says:

      LOL! Sounds like someone urgently needs a refill on their meds.
      In the meantime watch this, there are other ways of thinking about economic systems:
      Kate Raworth l Doughnut Economics l Meaning 2017

      • Caelan MacItntyre says:

        Doughnut Economics by Kate Raworth review…

        “Ignoring the large parts of the Earth that continue under authoritarian rule, and the rise of kleptocracy elsewhere, Raworth dismisses the political problem of bringing about change with a wave of the doughnut.

        Yes, she admits, proposals for a fairer global tax regime look impossible now, ‘but so many once-unfeasible ideas – abolishing slavery, gaining the vote for women, ending apartheid, securing gay rights– turn out to be inevitable’. This seems close to assuming that a can opener will inevitably wash up on the beach.

        To the extent that Raworth has a political programme it is about changing the language in which we discuss economics. Of course she is right to protest about the narrow ways in which the discipline is framed; of course it is true that the media predominantly casts the issues in ways that play to a neoliberal agenda; and of course rightwing politicians often skew arguments by labelling tax cuts as ‘tax reform’. But although language is important, there is a risk that overstating its power might lead us to neglect certain fundamental economic interests and desires.

        ‘Change one word and you can subtly but deeply change attitudes and behaviour’, Raworth tells us. Perhaps, but is that new word ‘doughnut’? There just might be a hole in the argument.”

        Doughnut Economics: a step forward, but not far enough

        “Doughnut Economics… leaves you with the impression that it missed that extra step that would have led it to define the goal in the right way…

        Raworth doesn’t seem to realize that she is contradicting herself, here: if the ‘business as usual’ scenario produced good results in terms of comparison with the real world’s economy, it is because it contained depletion as a major constraint…

        That’s the thread of the whole book: natural resources are not a problem; we should be worried only about pollution. Raworth doesn’t link the concept of the circular economy to recovering non-renewable resources… it is curious how the question of mineral resources is so conspicuously missing in the book.

        Kate Raworth is described in the book flap as a ‘renegade economist’, but she still reasons like an economist. The idea that the price mechanism will make depletion always irrelevant is old and it goes back to the 1930s, when the so-called ‘functional model’ was presented, stating exactly what Raworth describes. The idea is that market factors will always re-adjust the system and magically make depletion disappear…

        Maybe it is just a question of the lifetime of memes. The meme of depletion started before that of climate change and it is now in its downward trend. Whatever the case, we seem to be locked in a view of the world that misses some fundamental elements of the situation. Where this special form of blindness will lead us is all to be seen.”

        Article Comments:

        Anonymous September 17, 2017 at 1:51 AM

        “…Raworth is vacuous, and has a book to sell with a cute title, nothing more.”

    • Caelan MacIntyre says:

      See also, here.

      BTW, AFAIK, ‘Doughnut Economics’ is merely a book, and a questionable one at that. Unlike permaculture, it is not a widespread global practice over a few decades and with many other books and proofs-of-concept.

      “My ideas and world view are a constantly changing stream of consciousness… My thoughts are turbulently fluid with multiple chaotic swirls and eddies…” ~ Fred Magyar

      “LOL! Sounds like someone urgently needs a refill on their meds.” ~ Fred Magyar

  42. Doug Leighton says:


    “While our planet’s average annual temperature has increased at a steady pace in recent decades, there has been an alarming jump in the severity of the hottest days of the year during that same period, with the most lethal effects in the world’s largest cities…

    Hottest-day-of-the-year measurements for major cities such as Paris, Moscow and Tokyo climbed precipitously by as much as 0.60 degrees per decade during the period studied. More than just temperature readings on a map, these events have taken a severe human toll: A heat wave in Europe in 2003 caused roughly 70,000 deaths, and another in Russia in 2010 killed nearly 55,000 people. In the United States, an average of 658 deaths due to excessive heat were reported per year between 1999 and 2009.”


  43. Doug Leighton says:


    Global surface temperatures surged by a record amount from 2014 to 2016, boosting the total amount of warming since the start of the last century by more than 25 percent in just three years, according to a new University of Arizona-led paper. The research is the first to quantify the record temperature spike of an additional 0.43 degrees F (0.24 C) in just three years and to identify the fundamental reason for the jump. “Our research shows global warming is accelerating,” Yin said.


  44. Doug Leighton says:


    Two of the most rapidly changing glaciers in Antarctica, which are leading contributors to sea-level rise, may behave as an interacting system rather than separate entities, according to a new analysis of radar data. A new study shows that a large and potentially unstable Antarctic glacier may be melting farther inland than previously thought and that this melting could affect the stability of another large glacier nearby — an important finding for understanding and projecting ice sheet contributions to sea-level rise.


    • Fred Magyar says:

      This is how quickly sea level can change.
      The Underwater Forest
      The Underwater Forest, a new documentary by Ben Raines produced by This is Alabama, details the discovery and exploration of an ancient cypress forest found sixty feet underwater in the Gulf of Mexico, due south of Gulf Shores, Alabama. The forest dates to an ice age more than 60,000 years ago, when sea levels were about 400 feet lower than they are today.

  45. Hightrekker says:

    This week marks the 37th anniversary of a pledge made by the United States in 1981:

    The United States pledges that it is and from now on will be the policy of the United States not to intervene, directly or indirectly, politically or militarily, in Iran’s internal affairs.

    So, I guess things change, as do our commitments?

  46. Peggy Hahn says:

    No political comments please! I just wanted to know if its true Downs is being eliminated in Europe because I know there are a few European people who post here?

    SALT LAKE CITY — A bill unveiled Monday would make it illegal for a medical provider to perform an abortion if they have knowledge that the woman seeking the procedure is doing so for “the sole reason” that the child would be born with Down syndrome.

    Rep. Karianne Lisonbee, R-Clearfield, the bill sponsor for HB205, said that if passed, the measure would make performing an abortion in that circumstance a class A misdemeanor.

    Lisonbee said she was alarmed by “the elimination of an entire group of people (simply for) having a single immutable genetic trait.”

    “In recent years there has been a shocking increase in abortions performed for no other reason than because a prenatal test identified the potential for a trait a parent didn’t like,” she said. “For a society that claims to uphold tolerance and inclusiveness, it appears we still have a long way to go.”

    The termination of pregnancies involving a Down syndrome diagnosis is especially prevalent in countries such as Iceland, Denmark and the United Kingdom, according to Lisonbee.

    Sen. Curtis Bramble, R-Provo, who will also sponsor the bill, also presented his case in favor of it Monday.

    “There is nothing more important than protecting those who are most vulnerable among us. An unborn child is a human being, an unborn child is not an unresponsive (group of) cells,” he said. “By announcing by this bill … we will walk the walk, we will do all we can to protect the most precious, the most vulnerable, the most innocent among us.”

    Asked whether she has concerns about how to enforce the law, Lisonbee told the Deseret News, “I think there are ways around every law.”

    “People break laws all the time,” she said. “That’s why we have a criminal justice system.”

    She later added, “As lawmakers, we like to have policy that’s right and true and good.”

    The bill would also require a physician consult with the expectant mother, upon any detection that the unborn child could have Down syndrome, and give the woman a referral to a physician or other medical specialist “who is knowledgeable about providing medical care to a child with” the condition. That consultation would be required to happen in person or over the phone.

    The consulting physician would also be required to refer the woman to “state or national Down syndrome parents’ groups,” the bill states.


    • Russell Boga Flores says:

      Termination rates in Europe (for Down Syndrome babies) are mostly in the 90% or above range. In the US, the situation is thankfully a little better, although still over 50-70% of suspect cases.


      • Survivalist says:

        Welcome to capitalism. Having babies is not longer an investment in the future, they are a luxury good.

    • Fred Magyar says:

      No political comments please!

      Ok sure! Alrighty then, No political comments… Just, why don’t you go fuck yourself?! Same for Russel!

      I think that’s pretty apolitical!

      • HuntingtonBeach says:

        Thank you Fred, the religious mentally challenged don’t understand their being manipulated by wedge issues for the benefit of those seeking power.

        So Many People

        Where do you want to go?
        Are you sure of the road that you’re on?
        Who do you want to be?
        All I know is the world deserves to be free
        Let’s pretend we’re staring from the moon
        Love is not only for the human

        Look at the world you know
        Do you believe it will go on?
        Where do you want to go?
        The things we take will only last for so long
        In the end you know it’s up to you
        Love is not only for the human

        Oh man, we are so many people
        Living different lives under turbulent times
        Oh man, we don’t know good from evil
        Looking through our eyes in the burden of our lives

        Say can we tell for sure
        The North and South will keep their snow on?
        Say can the Earth endure
        Do you really believe we can go on?
        In the end you know it’s up to you
        Love is not only for the human

        Oh man, we are so many people
        Living different lives under turbulent times
        Oh man, we don’t know good from evil
        Looking through our eyes in the burden of our lives
        In the end God is the Universe
        And the Universe is you


    • George Kaplan says:

      There’s a new, non-intrusive test for Down’s, Edwards’ and Palau’s disorders which allows detection before 13 weeks without risking miscarriage. In the UK abortions are offered to the parents for genetic foetal abnormalities. Children suffer significantly and die very young with Edwards’ and Palau’s. Life expectancy for Down’s has been extended for a lot of children but there are different levels of it’s severity – I don’t know if the test can tell the severity – but all affected tend to have physical and mental disabilities and a poor immune system. It’s for the parents, especially the mother as it’s her body bearing the child, to decide, as it should be.

      • Doug Leighton says:

        Abortions in Canada are provided on request and funded by Medicare, to Canadian citizens and permanent residents (as with most medical procedures) in hospitals across the country. Abortion funding for hospitals comes from the various provincial governments (their overall health expenses are however paid for in part by the federal government). One-third of hospitals perform abortions, and these perform two-thirds of abortions in the country. The remaining abortions are performed by public and private-for-profit clinics.

        Current Norwegian legislation and public health policy provides for abortion on demand in the first 12 weeks of gestation, by application up to the 18th week, and thereafter only under special circumstances until the fetus is viable, which is presumed at 21 weeks and 6 days.

  47. GoneFishing says:

    Arctic forest fires of the mid-Pliocene plus 25 meters of sea level rise.


  48. Longtimber says:

    Swallow the Blue Pill? Putin got the Queen? Reminds me when BP paid to shut down the fisherman’s live eddy tracking site post Macondo.
    Email: “Dear Friends of ASPO-USA,
    It is with regret that we write you. The many years we labored together to inform the public and policymakers about the threat of peak oil brought the idea from obscurity into general usage. Unfortunately, short-sighted thinking has combined with a well-funded public relations pushback to undermine prudent action regarding our energy future.

    Support of and interest in the activities of ASPO-USA have now dwindled to the point that we can no longer fund basic operations, and we have no reason to believe this will change. Accordingly, the board of directors has voted for an orderly shutdown of ASPO-USA.

    Fortunately, Post Carbon Institute (PCI) has agreed to continue support of Peak Oil News & Review. If you are receiving either or both, your subscription will continue without interruption during this transition. PCI has also agreed to maintain the ASPO-USA website as an archive so that people may continue to access the valuable information and commentary on it.

    If you’d like to find out more about PCI, you may wish to visit the organization’s website where you can sign up for regular communications. As many of you may know, PCI maintains the Resilience website (formerly Energy Bulletin) and publishes an annual reality check on shale gas and tight oil production in the United States. “

  49. GoneFishing says:

    The atmosphere controls 70 percent of the radiation, while the land and ocean get only 30 percent.
    When the clouds change, the planet changes. The clouds change as the planet warms.

    Planet likely to warm by 4C by 2100
    The scientist leading the research said that unless emissions of greenhouse gases were cut, the planet would heat up by a minimum of 4C by 2100, twice the level the world’s governments deem dangerous.

    The research indicates that fewer clouds form as the planet warms, meaning less sunlight is reflected back into space, driving temperatures up further still. The way clouds affect global warming has been the biggest mystery surrounding future climate change.

    Professor Steven Sherwood, at the University of New South Wales, in Australia, who led the new work, said: “This study breaks new ground twice: first by identifying what is controlling the cloud changes and second by strongly discounting the lowest estimates of future global warming in favour of the higher and more damaging estimates.”


    Not just the clouds, as the ice and snow retreat the forcing gets greater. Good for the alligators at least, at the Virginia border now. Anyone for gators in Pennsylvania or New York? And you thought bears and snapping turtles were a problem.

    • Doug Leighton says:


      In the International Energy Outlook 2017 (IEO2017) Reference case, total world energy consumption rises from 575 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) in 2015 to 736 quadrillion Btu in 2040, an increase of 28%. Most of the world’s energy growth will occur in countries outside of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), where strong, long-term economic growth drives increasing demand for energy. Non-OECD Asia (including China and India) alone accounts for more than half of the world’s total increase in energy consumption over the 2015 to 2040 projection period. By 2040, energy use in non-OECD Asia exceeds that of the entire OECD by 41 quadrillion Btu in the IEO2017 Reference case.

      • Doug Leighton says:

        Oh yeah, they have fossil fuels accounting for 77% of energy use in 2040.

        • And why not? We all know fossil fuel, especially petroleum, is an infinite resource. Hell, we have known that ever since it was proven that peak oil was a myth.

          • Doug Leighton says:

            Yup, Seek and you shall find! Premise of Exploration Geology/Geophysics. Matthew 7:7-8, “Ask and it shall be given you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened to you. For every one that asks receives; and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be opened.” Pretty much proof of infinite resource base I’d say.

            • GoneFishing says:

              Could the EIA have deep roots in the fossil fuel industry or is it just putting out palatable results?

    • Survivalist says:

      page numbered 5 of this document states 4*C temp rise is ” “INCOMPATIBLE WITH AN ORGANISED GLOBAL COMMUNITY”


      • Doug Leighton says:

        I disagree, it’ll simply be organized differently: marauding bands killing neighbors for food, weapons, etc. More-or-less like the (good) old days.

    • Roy Pettigrew says:

      I wonder how much could be reversed with having more trees. I don’t know how to make the math but a 10-20% increase could halve temperature increase. There should be more talk about this where there is so much land where more trees can grow.

      • GoneFishing says:

        In 2010 anthropogenic emissions (not including land use change) were approximately 9167 million metric tonnes. Your data on trees holding 13 lbs (5.9 kg) of carbon per year equates to 169.6 trees per metric tonne of emissions.

        So to take up all of the emissions from 2010 you would need 1,545,000,000,000 trees. A mature forest has only about 100 trees per acre (400 per hectare), so you would need 15,545,000,000 acres of mature forest. This equals an area of 24,290,000 mi2 (62,910,000 km2). This is approximately the land area of Asia, Europe, and Australia combined!
        The surface area of land on the planet is about 150,000,000 km2, so in principle we would need to add cover onto 42% of the current land (or we could take soil from deep ocean floors to landfill 1/5th of the oceans!) in order to plant enough trees to solve the problem.


        Looks like there is not enough Earth to do the job. Need to cut back CO2 output dramatically to even have a chance of planting having much effect.
        Of course planting forests is a great idea, just make sure that they are not chopped up an burned early. Once the forest is mature it really is not much of a carbon sink anymore, but it does provide oxygen and water services as well as habitat for the other inhabitants of the planet.

        But of course it’s a complicated process and a dangerous one since all that carbon is on the surface to burn (intentionally or unintentionally). Plus locale, type of forest and conditions are important.


    • Fred Magyar says:

      Anyone for gators in Pennsylvania or New York? And you thought bears and snapping turtles were a problem.

      Living in Florida, I’ve encountered many a gator over the years, never had a problem. Now people, lot’s of problems! If I had to choose I’d probably choose the gators, they’re a lot more peaceful and tend to mind their own business.

      • GoneFishing says:

        Do you swim with the gators?

        • Fred Magyar says:

          I have, albeit completely inadvertently… I’ve also been out in the Glades with an air boat captain acquaintance of mine to watch him feed marshmallows to a 13 ft. bull alligator. Just not recommended during mating season… otherwise he is usually quite well behaved. (The alligator, not the captain 😉 )
          BTW, Unfortunately I have since found out that feeding wild alligators anything at all is illegal… Don’t want them to become accustomed to being too close to people.

      • Preston says:

        An uncle in Florida had a gator in his pond but when he added some ducks to the pond they harassed the gator day and night until he left… Just kind of surprising.

  50. GoneFishing says:

    Another climate model improvement, modeling actual timing of cloud formation instead of using averages.

    Spotty coverage: Climate models underestimate cooling effect of daily cloud cycle
    When it comes to clouds, climate models have typically focused on mechanisms, spatial areas and timescales — such as air pollution and microphysics, hundreds of square kilometers, and seasons, respectively — that are larger and more generalized, Katul said. “There are practical reasons why data-model comparisons were conducted in a manner that masked the diurnal variation in clouds,” he said. “Diurnal variation was somewhat masked by the fact that much of the climate-model performance was reported over longer-term and larger-scale averages.”

    By capturing the timing and thickness of the daily cloud cycle on a global scale, however, Yin and Porporato have provided scientists with a tool for confirming if climate models aptly portray cloud formation and the interaction between clouds and the atmosphere.
    “The global coverage and emphasis on both ‘timing’ and ‘amount’ are notable. As far as I am aware, this is the first study to explore this manifold of models in such a coherent way,” Katul said. “I am sure this type of work will offer new perspectives to improve the representation of clouds. I would not be surprised to see this paper highly cited in future IPCC [U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] reports.”


    • GoneFishing says:

      I wonder if they put in actual diffuse cloud reflection data. The sides of clouds reflect a lot of light downward. Of course that would mean modeling cloud size and shape over small time periods. Probably not. Still more work to be done.

  51. robert wilson says:

    I retired from radiology about 18 years ago but had a special concern with fetal ultrasound. The diagnosis of Down syndrome was difficult, especially using some of the primitive ultrasound equipment 30 or so years ago. I feared a possible lawsuit over a missed diagnosis preventing a legal abortion. Fortunately it never happened. Participating in the beginning days of ultrasound was exciting. Incidentally, the early visible “beating heart” is not a heart. It is a beating tube. On occasion the movement was faintly visible prior to seeing the actual fetus. The movement had to be differentiated from the slower maternal pulse.

  52. GoneFishing says:

    More model trouble, they are in deep water with GRACE.
    For example, in the Amazon, GRACE estimates a large increasing trend of ∼43 km3/y, whereas most models estimate decreasing trends (−71 to 11 km3/y). Land water storage trends, summed over all basins, are positive for GRACE (∼71–82 km3/y) but negative for models (−450 to −12 km3/y), contributing opposing trends to global mean sea level change. Impacts of climate forcing on decadal land water storage trends exceed those of modeled human intervention by about a factor of 2. The model-GRACE comparison highlights potential areas of future model development, particularly simulated water storage. The inability of models to capture large decadal water storage trends based on GRACE indicates that model projections of climate and human-induced water storage changes may be underestimated.


  53. Doug Leighton says:

    Off topic but…..


    “Researchers have identified the remains of the earliest known modern humans to have left Africa. New dating of fossils from Israel indicates that our species (Homo sapiens) lived outside Africa around 185,000 years ago, some 80,000 years earlier than the previous evidence… The new scientific dating evidence raises the possibility that modern humans interacted with other, now extinct, species of humans for tens of thousands of years. It also fits in with recent discoveries of remains and genetic studies that also indicate an earlier departure from Africa.”


    • Hightrekker says:

      It is quite story.

      • Donn Hewes says:

        It just means they took longer to get here. Not cool.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Looks like we’ve just added an explicitly racist asshat to our growing list of kooks, fundamentalist religious nuts, xenophobic nationalists, climate and science denialist trolls, Putin and Trump supporters, Koch Brothers Fossil fuel lobbyists, right wing ideologues, AI bots, etc… etc…

          I’d say congratulations are in order! POB must be doing something right to attract such high level attention! 😉

    • CatMommie says:

      Off topic in an OPEN Thread?

  54. Longtimber says:

    ‘Doomsday Clock’ NOW T W O Minutes to Midnight
    70-year-old symbol as close as ever to hour of the apocalypse
    A response to the now leaked CLASSIFIED US Deep State policy of Russia and China containment at any cost? Why must these CRIMINALS ratchet up a New Cold war without reason!?
    “The duty of a Patriot is to protect his country from its government.”
    — Thomas Paine
    EDIT: “The duty of a Patriot is to protect his PLANET from its governments.”

Comments are closed.