“Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme” Reduction Scheme

John Maynard Keynes famously said “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?”. Today the government said that would be delaying the start of the CPRS until July 2012 until the earliest. How much of this delay is due to the GFC and how much is it due to the fact that the government got the scheme wrong and that they knew it would not get through the senate?

The opposition should be using this to their advantage, but will their message get through? Just watching Andrew Robb on Lateline just now, and his message is confused and muddled. They need to get their act together.

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98 Responses

  1. Just when Climate Change gets a bit of traction as an issue and it looks like people will finally accept something being done about it, along comes Capitalism and chokes, like Bob Scott, on its own vomit.

    Bummer.

    AccaDacca lived on. I just hope the Earth does in some form that will support human civilisation.

    As for the Libs, they’re still trying to agree on whether climate change exists and whether there is a Global Financial Crisis.

    Good luck with that, fellas.

  2. “From new, highly fuel-efficient cars to renewable sources of power, there are a host of energy technologies that can spur the growth of new business, while creating millions of new jobs,” President Obama said in making the budget announcement of $106 Billion in funding designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    “If we take the time now to start transforming our economy, we will enjoy the benefits of a lower-cost and more efficient energy supply for years to come,” Obama noted.

  3. Around the half the money spent bailing out criminal/incompetent bankers in the past year could have ‘fixed’ global warming in the developing and developed world.

    Nice to see the human race still has its collective priorities so right.

  4. “Hot-air doomsayers”

    “The huge number of recent letters tell me that there are winds of change. The average punter has been told for more than two decades that we are all going to fry. He is not stupid and is blessed with a rare commodity missing in many academic circles: common sense.”

    Indeed……..

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25429080-7583,00.html

  5. Wouldn’t we all…………….

    “I would like to see some fundamental questions answered by the climate catastrophists. If CO2 drives temperature, why were there past ice ages when the atmospheric CO2 content was many times greater than at present? Why has the role of clouds been ignored, especially as a 1per cent change in the amount of cloudiness could account for all the changes measured in the past 150 years? If natural forces drove warmings in Roman and medieval times, how do we know that the same natural forces did not drive the late 20th-century warming? Why didn’t Earth have acid oceans and a runaway greenhouse when the atmospheric CO2 was hundreds of times higher than now? Is the present increase in atmospheric CO2 due to the medieval warming?”

    “It is human arrogance to think that we can control climate, a process that transfers huge amounts of energy. Once we control the smaller amount of energy transferred by volcanoes and earthquakes, then we can try to control climate.”

    “Until then, climate politics is just a load of ideological hot air.”

  6. It’s a pity Krudd didn’t put off some of his other idiotic policies as well, starting with the bogan bonuses that have put us into massive debt with sweet FA to show for it all

  7. Plimer on the ‘science’

    It is human arrogance to think that we can control climate, a process that transfers huge amounts of energy. Once we control the smaller amount of energy transferred by volcanoes and earthquakes, then we can try to control climate.

    Until then, climate politics is just a load of ideological hot air

    More here. http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25429080-5013479,00.html

    Note that Plimer is a Professor at the University of Adelaide. No mention of his area of expertise however. Lol.

    And here’s Tim Lambert in reply:

    Plimer didn’t just one thing wrong here, he got everything wrong.

    Footnote 17 is Santer et al Nature 382, 39 – 46 (1996). It did not show “warming from 1943 to 1970”. It looked at the spatial pattern of temperature change in the atmosphere from 1963 to 1987 and this didn’t just show tropospheric warming, it showed stratospheric cooling. And the point of the study was not to the existence of warming as Plimer implies but the attribution to human influences on carbon dioxide, sulphates and ozone. That’s four mistakes about his footnote that Plimer made in just half a sentence.

    More here. http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/05/the_australians_war_on_science_39.php#more

    As for Rudd he’s copped a flogging in the popularity stakes – now down to 64%. Lol. But the ALP primary vote is down 5% with the two-party preferred at 55%. Turnbull still stuck on 19%.

    The honeymoon continues.

  8. N5

    Plimer is a geologist.

  9. joni, on May 5th, 2009 at 8:49 am Said:

    Plimer is a geologist.

    joni, I know he is (and where he’s been) but why doesn’t the OO tell us that? Not exactly a full and frank disclosure. Lol.

  10. Note that Plimer is a Professor at the University of Adelaide. No mention of his area of expertise however. Lol.

    Perhaps I can help:

    Name: Professor Ian Plimer

    Position: Professor of Mining Geology

    Organisation: University of Adelaide

    Department/Division: Earth and Environmental Sciences/Civil and Environ

    Primary Areas: Mining and energy Science and technology

    Expertise: Mining; mineral exporation; zinc; lead; silver; gold; Broken Hill; Cobar; global warming; greenhouse

    Organisation type: Academic

    Website: http://www.adelaide.edu.au

    Notes: Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, Eureka Prize (x2), Fellow of the AusIMM, Fellow Geological Society, Centenary Medal, Clarke Medal, Leopod von Buch Plakette, Sir Willis Connolly Medal

    Now perhaps you’d like to list ‘your’ ‘expert’ Tim Lambert’s qualifications.

  11. Oh, (from his blog) Lambert’s a computer scientist at the University of New South Wales.

  12. This , from Rudd et al, is disappointing but entirely to be expected.
    What may or may not happen to the planet in the next 100 years is always going to be secondary to re-election.

  13. Now perhaps you’d like to list ‘your’ ‘expert’ Tim Lambert’s qualifications.

    Tim Lambert makes no attempt to hide his qualifications which are in computer science. But let’s not muck about try this quote:

    If the book was handed to me as an assignment in my undergraduate earth science classes, it would have failed— not because I don’t agree with the answers, but it doesn’t support the answers with sources,” says Melbourne University climate change expert Professor David Karoly, who accuses Plimer of using data
    misleadingly.

    doesn’t support the answers with sources says the climate change expert Professor David Karoly.

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/the-sceptics-shadow-of-doubt-20090501-aqa1.html?page=-1

  14. doesn’t support the answers with sources says the climate change expert Professor David Karoly.

    Oh? Then clearly you haven’t read the article you linked to above where Plimer responds to that accusation:

    In The Age (Insight, May 2), David Karoly claims that my book “does not support the answers with sources”. Considering that the book has 2311 footnotes as sources, Karoly clearly had not read the book.

    (I can confirm from the copy in front of me that there are multiple footnotes on almost every page.)

  15. FFS, why does the debate about when or what form the response take always revert back to whether or not Climate change is or isn’t occuring or is or isn’t attributable to human influences.

    The reasons for delay and the changes to the CPRS have nothing (I repeat NOTHING) to do with any scepticism or doubt about whether or not action is needed.

    BTW Tony, the difference between Lambert and Plimer is colossal – Lambert doesn’t pretend to be a climate scientist, he just reads a lot about it and defers to other people’s peer reviewed work to support his arguments. Plimer might make himself out to be a climate scientist but he has not published a single peer reviewed piece of work on the recent observed increases in global temperatures.

    Some of his critics say they are surprised that a former head of the University of Melbourne geology department, with more than 120 published papers to his name, would include unsourced graphs in his book. Asked where he found one graph showing temperatures across the 20th century differing markedly to the data used by the IPCC or the world’s leading climate centres, Plimer says he can not recall.

    Plimer damns himself. He might be a very good geologist but he is a piss poor climate scientist (and this IS playing the ball and not the man).

  16. Nature 5,

    How about answering some of the questions posed by Plimer instead of attacking him…….You are proving his accusation in the article I provided…Surely one of “your guys” has already answered these very basic and fundamental questions?

  17. What’s gonna be really interesting is if Labor drops the “promised” tax cuts (as they probably should) how loud will Malcolm & the gang squeal about broken election promises?

  18. Plimer might make himself out to be a climate scientist but he has not published a single peer reviewed piece of work on the recent observed increases in global temperatures.

    No? Well he has published a 504 page book on the subject, which is something of an Australian publishing sensation. People in the street are evidently liking what he has to say.

  19. For the record, I am all for the technology and protecting the enviornment but don’t feel “scare” tactics are the route to go….Nor do I feel we should fund “theories” that may bankrupt our economies….Seems a hell of a gamble…

    Why not focus on what we can influence with measurable results like sustainable population growth and practices that benefit the enviornment minus a “bogey man”?

  20. On the policy side of this,
    John Quiggan here and Joshua Gans here.

    I would still like to see less grandfathering of credits but overall, the tweaks aren’t too bad and the extra year”s delay won’t make musch difference on the climate front given’s Australia’s low worldwide contribution to emissions and the amount of the cut the would have occured in the first year.

    The loans for energy efficiencies is an excellent idea – it places the risks of efficiency gains on the Government but there is extesive work out there to suggest that the returns are there and the Liberals own report from CIE lobbied heavily for extra incentives on energy efficiency. Other than the lack of additional modelling on the CPRS, there is nothing in the CIE report that is overly critical of the Government’s CPRS when the efficieny program is taken into account.

  21. “Why not focus on what we can influence with measurable results like sustainable population growth and practices that benefit the enviornment minus a “bogey man”?”sparta

    AGW aside, that makes very good sense to me sparta.

  22. Dave,

    and the extra year’’s delay won’t make musch any difference ever on the climate front given’s Australia’s low worldwide contribution to emissions

    There. Fixed it for ya.

  23. “No? Well he has published a 504 page book on the subject”

    Perhaps he should have just made a 2 hour movie titled “Inconvenient REALITY”…..LOL

  24. Tony,

    a 504 page book on the subject isn’t a peer reviewed document. Footnotes are all good and well, and we would expect them in such a book BUT have a look at Tim Lambert’s post and you’ll find that some of them don’t support what he is actually saying. See also this

    Also, why is Plimer’s book any more authoritative than Tim Flannery’s The Weather Makers.. It has footnotes too and they haven’t been as discredited anywhere near as much as Plimer’s have. Oh but wait, Flannery’s a Paleontologist so he doesn’t have any any credibility comparred to … say …a geologist 🙄

  25. Sparta, I make no claims re scientific expertise. I an the first to admit I don’t have the specialist background required to make informed judgements re the veracity of AGW. It’s a bit like a medical diagnosis. I leave it to the ‘experts’ who seem to be in general agreement when it comes to AGW. And of course they could be wrong.

    As for:

    People in the street are evidently liking what he has to say.

    Lol. A new basis for scientific ‘truth’. Unbelievable.

  26. not ‘an’ but ‘am’.

  27. Dave,

    Lambert is a polemicist, and his blog is political, not scientific. Why else would he have posts on gun-control, or the Iraq-Lancet controversy, to cite just two examples?

  28. There is a question of pre disposition of those that spend their career investigating climate change.

    I’d expect that most ‘professionals’ in this disciple would initially be attracted to an undergraduate ‘environmental science’ degree. People interested in the environment, doing good work for preservation of our resources and reduction in pollution. Nothing wrong with this at all.

    For those with a genuine, strong interest, there would be various post graduate courses and studies, and eventually a doctorate for the most committed.

    Most committed is distinct from the most capable or intelligent.

    Commitment to a cause and obtaining an academic qualification in an ever narrowing specialisation is not actually synonymous with clear thinking, intelligence and capability.

    Environmental science draws on traditional social sciences, humanities as will as scientific disciplines. To suggest that a range of these other disciplines are therefore less qualified to provide an informed commentary on the subject is elitism at its worst.

    Engineering and geology are traditionally hard evidence based disciplines. Those with these qualifications are entirely within their rights to provide an informed commentary on the subject.

  29. Toiletboss,

    In all honesty, I am a bit skeptical for some of the very same reasons Plimer states not because I am some big bad neo-con, far from it……I am also well aware of the profiteering being made from this “debate that is over” and that there is an untapped market Plimer is now going to be profiting from as well but if the “devoted” want to silence us skeptics, address the questions he has raised. Taking a snap shot of Earth in the context of its age and stating your theory is justifiable just strikes me as foolish……..Forget the politics…..

    It seems population growth (as I have gone into at nausea with Tim) is our biggest threat. Even the messiah “Gore” said as much but everybody wants to fixate on what can’t be proven……Talk about a “straw man”………..I don’t have much use for politicians of any stripe!

  30. Nature 5,

    No problem, I am certainly no expert either but have you ever asked yourself the same questions Plimer has posed? I have on more than one occasion and never seem to be able to find the answer? Does seem a bit odd we are fixating on the past 150 years for the most part. Don’t you think?

  31. Lol. A new basis for scientific ‘truth’. Unbelievable.

    Not at all. I am merely pointing out that the largest demographic of all has been ignored or spoken down to in this debate. The average voter apparently knew there was another side to this story, and have been hungry for someone to tell it. They weren’t getting it from the ABC, the Age or the SMH, that’s for sure.

  32. Tom of Melbourne, on May 5th, 2009 at 9:54 am Said:

    Those with these qualifications are entirely within their rights to provide an informed commentary on the subject.

    Indeed! But the criticism I’m hearing of Plimer relates to informed commentary or at least the absence of same. It seems to me that the criticism of his work is so fundamental that it represents a real problem which is a pity because he has a very good reputation in his field of expertise.

    As for:

    Commitment to a cause and obtaining an academic qualification in an ever narrowing specialisation is not actually synonymous with clear thinking, intelligence and capability.

    Tom that would be a real problem if the numbers involved were limited but I suggest that ‘group think’ on such a large and widespread scale is highly unlikely.

  33. N5

    Sparta, I make no claims re scientific expertise. I an the first to admit I don’t have the specialist background required to make informed judgements re the veracity of AGW. It’s a bit like a medical diagnosis. I leave it to the ‘experts’ who seem to be in general agreement when it comes to AGW. And of course they could be wrong

    Actually N5, there are verery few is any scientists who are across every bit of the science re AGW because it draws in work from so many disciplines. This is why the IPCC was established – so it could draw all the work together and arrive at a collective scientific view on what was happeneing.

    Tony

    Lambert is a polemicist, and his blog is political, not scientific. Why else would he have posts on gun-control, or the Iraq-Lancet controversy, to cite just two examples?

    While Tim Lambert obviously has his own opinions and these affect what he writes about (it is HIS blog after all, he would hardly write about sioomething that doesn’t interest him), the posts you link to are all about the science or statistics related to those subjects. The posts themselves may profer Tim’s political take on something but it is always supported by a review of the science. The Lancet posts are excellent in this regard in the depth that they look at the flaws (and virtues) of the study. I suggest that you read them.

  34. I really have to do some work now so I won’t be posting for a while today – happy to keep the debate going later this evening though (that is if you’re all still interested in keeping it going).

  35. Sparta of Phoenix, AZ USA, on May 5th, 2009 at 9:58 am Said:

    but have you ever asked yourself the same questions Plimer has posed?

    Sparta, I have read extensively on the subject but I still don’t claim to understand aspects of it. The mathematics, for example, are way above my head and therefore I have to rely on the ‘expert’ and ‘informed’ to determine what is clearly for me (and most others) an ‘ideological’ position.

  36. This is why the IPCC was established – so it could draw all the work together and arrive at a collective scientific political view on what was happeneing.

    Dave, you really must be more careful. 😉

  37. N5, I agree that there are a lot of professional groups and associations that broadly agree on the causes of climate change.

    There are plenty of individuals that don’t agree. Some of the individuals that don’t agree are well qualified, and their opinions ought not to be disregarded on the basis of qualification.

    Until quite recently, there was on such thing as a qualification in environmental science. It is a new and evolving discipline. Some of the established disciplines have more depth, more structure and more established systems of investigation.

    It is annoying to see capable people disparaged on the basis of their qualification.

  38. Nature 5,

    “Sparta, I have read extensively on the subject but I still don’t claim to understand aspects of it. The mathematics, for example, are way above my head and therefore I have to rely on the ‘expert’ and ‘informed’ to determine what is clearly for me (and most others) an ‘ideological’ position.”

    Point taken but a truly “active mind” which you undoubtedly have, asks questions. So in your “opinion” why do you think some of the basic questions Plimer asks remain unanswered by the “experts/informed”? I simply raise such a question not to “score points” but because the answer to these questions seem fundamental if we are going to make the “claim” of AGW, let alone alter our lives around such a claim? Don’t you think? Oddly, they are avoided by the “informed/experts”….or perhaps it isn’t odd at all?

  39. Sparta

    Give us an example of one of Plimer “basic questions”.

  40. An artcle directed at those who propose the precautionary principle.

  41. *article*

  42. Joni,

    Not trying to be a smart ass here but see my post above….It is a snip from the Australian, the same article Nature 5 posted again anyway….To be clear: (a.k.a. not amibiguous, it is the questions Plimer raises in the article). I am convinced now you folks really don’t read anything I post which explains why so many have no idea were I am coming from…LOL……………

  43. I believe these are those, Joni.

  44. Tom of Melbourne, on May 5th, 2009 at 10:28 am Said:

    Until quite recently, there was on such thing as a qualification in environmental science.

    Agree!

    It is a new and evolving discipline.

    Can’t agree with that. As Dave points out AGW because it draws in work from so many disciplines. . And while it is annoying:

    to see capable people disparaged on the basis of their qualification

    It is equally annoying to see the ‘Professor’ tag used or should I say misused by the OO in an arena where his credentials are highly suspect.

  45. Tony,

    Indeed…….

  46. Apologies to Tony and Sparta – I now see the questions (been trying to get on with some work here and have been skimming) and from what I gather, there is no dispute that atmospheric CO2 was higher in the past, but the problem (as again as the way that I see it presented) is that the rate of change now is far greater than in the past, and that it is the speed of change that is the primary issue.

  47. Joni,

    I know your not in a position to get into this but I was always under the assumption that we were debating the “cause” hence the “AGW” debate…..Seems that higher CO2 levels without man’s input would call in to question whether we are really the “cause” to begin with? That is just me though…….

  48. Yes – and for the “cause” it is the speed of change that is important for the AGW debate. Plimer works in millions of years.

    It is the rate of change that is the problem. Just like having high inflation is an issue as opposed to a gradual change.

  49. “It is the rate of change that is the problem. Just like having high inflation is an issue as opposed to a gradual change.”

    But again, it seems discussing the “rate” of change in terms of AGW is irrelevant when we are unsure of what is causing that “rate of change”. Proponents argue it is “man”, the fossil record suggests otherwise and hints that there are changes that we have no control over? My contention/and others I am sure, is how can we claim that it is man’s input and not some cyclic or event outside of our understanding?

  50. Joni,

    From the introduction (page 21) of Plimer’s book:

    “To argue that we humans can differentiate between human-induced climate changes and natural climate changes is naive.To argue that natural climate changes are slow and small is contrary to evidence.”

  51. Tony/Sparta

    Fair enough.

    If Plimers evidence stands up then he should issue a peer-reviewed paper to allow the science community to review.

  52. What’s gonna be really interesting is if Labor drops the “promised” tax cuts

    Toiletboss, on May 5th, 2009 at 9:28 am Said:

    Unlikely as they are already legislated.

    So both Houses would need to sit again in order to pass new legislation.

  53. Tony
    Re the IPCC:
    http://www.ipcc.ch/about/index.htm

    The ‘summary for policy makers’ is a politicised document however to think that it is politicised to make AGW seem much more severe that the science suggests is a v. deluded view. The earlier summary reports were soundly criticised for the conclusions being diluted by the political influence of, in particular, the US.
    The actual science that forms the backbone of the IPCC Summaries (ie the actual Assessment Reports and the technical papers) are scientific and not political.

  54. Dave,

    however to think that it is politicised to make AGW seem much more severe that the science suggests is a v. deluded view.

    In your opinion.

  55. Tony,

    Not my opinion actuually.

    I can’t find any links to it in my lunch break but there was definately a lot of conjecture that US lobbying behind the scenes diluted the summary for policy makers following the IPCC’s TAR. I have no firm view on it, it may have or may not have happened. What I recall though was that there was considerable criticism in 2001 that the ‘politicisation’ of the IPCC reports resulted in it being less extreme in its conclusions/ predictions than at least some of the scientitsts believed was warranted.

  56. Dave,

    Many policy makers, environmental groups and the media conclude that an IPCC Summary For Policymakers is actually the consensus view of a large number of scientists. It is not. It is the consensus of governments with a great diversity of agendas. At times, the Summary for Policymakers has been underpinned by fraud, undetected by environmental agitators, journalists or the public.

    The IPCC is clearly an ascientific political organisation in which environmental activists and government representatives are setting the agenda for a variety of reasons including boosting trade, encouraging protectionism, adding costs to competitors and pushing their own sovereign barrow.

    Heaven+Earth, Global Warming: The Missing Science, Ian Plimer, pp22-23.

  57. Tony,

    That is what I have been saying! The summary is not the IPCC. Plimmer criticises the summary and then uses that criticism to debase the IPCC and the scientitsts preparing the science BEHIND the summary. Plimmer’s criticisms may quite rightly be made against the summary process but to make the next statement requires a connection that isn’t there.

    As Plimmer himself notes, the politics of the summary is complex but please name just one country that sees huge benefits in a summary for policy makers that shows them up for not doing enough. Not one country in the world has made binding commitments on the scale necessary as identified in the4AR Summary document. To say that the IPCC is on some politically agenda being driven by exactly the same people that won’t even live up to that agenda is so flawed in logic its laughable.

  58. BTW, What are Plimmer’s references for those statements?

  59. BTW, What are Plimmer’s references for those statements?

    Dave,

    There are 19 footnote references in the Chapter One section on the IPCC alone. Since I am transcribing you’ll forgive me if I don’t list them all, but here’s one relevant to the above paragraphs:

    ²³Holland, D. 2007: Bias and concealement in the IPCC process: The “hockey stick” affair and its implications. Energy and Environment 18: 951-983.

  60. Tony,

    Holland’s article relates to the TAR in 2001, whether it can be applied to the 4AR report is debatable. At any rate, to assert that the ‘hockey stick graph’ was a fraud is wrong anyway ( I know I keep using Lambert’s blog but it is a good collection of the science on this): http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2006/06/nas_report_on_hockey_stick_rel.php Ultimately, Mann et al’s work has ultimately been shown to be correct.

    There is nothing in Holland’s paper that supports Plimmer’s second paragraph. It is debateable whether Holland’s paper could even be used to support all of the assertions in the first paragraph. Conjecture and innuendo don’t cut it for me I’m afraid.

    One final point on that first paragraph of Plimmer’s; it seems to me the more and more that I read that it is the non-scientists who use the claim consensus and not the scientists. As I noted earlier, no-one knows all of the links and science behind the AGW theory – the science is too varied and complex for any one person to have a thorough understanding of it all. The IPCC’s job is to go through the science and work out what it it is all saying when it is put together. This isn’t consensus, it’s collation and the two are vastly different. The summary for policy makers is a further condensationsation of this work which is politicised by the involvement of Government’s. But please point out to me why these Governments would allow a summary that demands more action than anyone is actually prepared to undertake. This conspiracy theory put forward by Plimer and (apparently) blindly adopted by you Tony simply doesn’t stack up on any logical assessment. The conclusion drawn from the collation of science (and the political approach) is that humans are almost certainly contributing to the observed (and continuing) rise (trend) in temperatures over the last 100 years or so.

  61. ( I know I keep using Lambert’s blog but it is a good collection of the science on this)…Ultimately, Mann et al’s work has ultimately been shown to be correct.

    Perhaps you should broaden your horizons, Dave, and have a look at a couple of places with a different slant on this:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?page_id=354

    http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/trc.html

  62. I thought that if we don’t act now the cost in the future would be far greater???

    That has always been this governments rhetoric and now they hide behind the GFC to avoid the fact that their policy was shit, not even their guru, Garnaut. would back it!

    I recall Garnaut saying that it would be better to have no scheme than the flawed model Wong was pushing.

    I remember Nelson saying that we should wait for the outcome of the Copenhagen Summit first but he was derided!

    Well, well, a thought out policy by this government that doesn’t make the grade, but at least it contained the detail…well done!

  63. There is nothing in Holland’s paper that supports Plimmer’s second paragraph. It is debateable whether Holland’s paper could even be used to support all of the assertions in the first paragraph. Conjecture and innuendo don’t cut it for me I’m afraid.

    In fairness Dave, I picked only one of the 19 footnotes in that section. Any of the others might have some bearing on the strong language used in those two paragraphs.

  64. Tony

    Or it could be that Plimers footnotes generally do not support his arguments, which is the observation that David Karoly made in the first place.

  65. Joni,

    That wasn’t my understanding of what Karoly said, nor was it Plimer’s, judging by his response.

  66. Tony,

    Plimer may well have a footnote that supports those comments but proper referencing style requires that the footnote identifier occur in the text so you can see what footnote supports the comment. Plimer is a good geologist, he knows this. If you make an assertion, you need evidence to support it and this must be referenced. If the footnote he attributes to those assertions doesn’t support the assertion, it is quite proper to be critical of the statement and the overall document, particularly when there are more examples of problems.

    Plimer’s comment that he has over 2000 footnotes really means SFA if the footnotes don’t support what he asserts they do.

    Re the Hockey Stick debate, the NAS Panel Report (Climate Audit Link here) effectively found that while some of the criticisms of the study (in particular related to the use of Bristle Cone data) were valid, the overall evidence tended to support the overall conclusions of the Mann Study which identified the hockey stick graph. Plimer’s assertion by the use of Holland’s paper is that the use of the Hockey Stick graph in the TAR was fraudulent; the NAS Report makes a nonsense of the argument that it was fraudulent although the emphasis placed on it may, with the benefit of McIntyre’s scrutiny and the NAS report, in hindsight have been misplaced. I stress though that the 4AR does not rely on the Mann study nor does it reuse the hockey stick graph. The 4AR report reveals even stronger links between human emissions of CO2 and the increased temperatures and this is with the benefit or the lower than the extreme 1998 global temps since then (although still very high and consistent in trend with the AGW theory). Where is the evidence of the politicisation of the 4AR to ‘overstate’ the effect?

  67. Dave,

    The paragraphs I chose were part of a summary of the seven pages that went before them. It’s not possible to take just two paragraphs from a book and make any meaningful asumptions about the author, the book, or the rigour used in its referencing.

  68. As for the hockey stick, it seems we will have to agree to disagree.

  69. *assumptions*

  70. Tony,

    If you can’t provide a link to support what Plimmer says, then your referencing of him to support your arggument isn’t credible either. That’s the point I was trying to make.

    On the hockey stick thing, it’s importance, IMO, is overstated by both sides. It isn’t necessary to support the conclusions of the latest 4AR report so any flaws in the study don’t taint that report.

  71. Dave,

    I was transcribing from the book, and it was unfair. Not to you, but to the author.

  72. “If you can’t provide a link to support what Plimmer says, then your referencing of him to support your arggument isn’t credible either. That’s the point I was trying to make.”

    No Dave, it suggests that you are a true believer and instead of entertaining the very “basic” questions Plimer raises you would rather spend your time trying to “discredit” him, which is the mainstay of your religion. It is rather simple; as I submitted to others, please point me in the direction of one of “your guys” who actually entertains these fundamental questions Plimer raises, anywhere. People in your camp are beginning to lose the public simply because you refuse to answer such questions and the longer you avoid answering them the more skeptical we become……..

    “I would like to see some fundamental questions answered by the climate catastrophists. If CO2 drives temperature, why were there past ice ages when the atmospheric CO2 content was many times greater than at present? Why has the role of clouds been ignored, especially as a 1per cent change in the amount of cloudiness could account for all the changes measured in the past 150 years? If natural forces drove warmings in Roman and medieval times, how do we know that the same natural forces did not drive the late 20th-century warming? Why didn’t Earth have acid oceans and a runaway greenhouse when the atmospheric CO2 was hundreds of times higher than now? Is the present increase in atmospheric CO2 due to the medieval warming?”

    Such questions simply speak to the validity of your claims….I find the silence concerning the “fundamentals” to be deafening. A true “theory,” should be able to hold up against such “basic” challenges……Plimer simply raises what many have been asking for clarification on for years but still, no response……….

  73. DESPITE the Government announcing it has backed away from early action to reduce carbon emissions, the Prime Minister’s website continues to say, “The cost of inaction on climate change will be much greater than the cost of taking action now.”

    Like others working for Kevin Rudd, his website managers can’t keep up with his policy changes. Costs of “inaction on climate change” have just assumed a new meaning. At the very least the PM, in postponing the carbon trading tax, is acknowledging that immediate measures to reduce emissions would be costlier than doing nothing.

  74. Sparta,

    Why do you think that those simple questions are the going to alter things.

    I asked myself those very questions back in the early 90s and was a disbeliever then. Since then I have studied, read, studied some more and have a better understanding of the differences between what is happening now and what has happened in the past when climates and CO2 levels have fluctuated. Plimer’s major failing is that there he does not address what the consequences of increasing CO2 alone will have on the climate. There is no past record of CO2 preceding temperature increases as is occuring now. Increases in CO2 in an atmosphere have been known to result in an increase in temperatures since the late 19th century. Plimer completely disregards this based on the geological record and ice core data but the science indicates that the past records are entirely consistent with the greenhouse gas nature of CO2 acting as a negative feedback where there is a differernt initiating event for increased temperatures. Accordingly, Plimer’s arguments about past temperature rises preceding CO2 rises are interesting but not partuicularly illuminating to the present situation where there are no other sources of temperature increase.

    I firmly believe that, based on the science done by thousands of others in their fields of expertise, human incerases in greenhouse gases are having an influence on global climate at present. I will however continue to read as much as I can on the matter (including stuff from climate audit, WUWT and other skeptic sites) because I hope to hell that we are wrong about AGW.

    I haven’t read Plimmer’s book (and don’t intend to BTW) but will read any scientific papers Professor Plimmer wishes to release on matter.

  75. Shit Tony, talk about clutching at straws for criticisms.

  76. Shit Tony, talk about clutching at straws for criticisms.

    Which comment are you referring to, Dave?

  77. Dave,

    “There is no past record of CO2 preceding temperature increases as is occuring now. Increases in CO2 in an atmosphere have been known to result in an increase in temperatures since the late 19th century.”

    I understand that much at least, but as Plimer points out (according to such things as Ice core readings), If high CO2 levels cause warming, why did we have ice ages in the past when there was much higher levels of CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere than we see now?

    “Plimer completely disregards this based on the geological record and ice core data but the science indicates that the past records are entirely consistent with the greenhouse gas nature of CO2 acting as a negative feedback where there is a differernt initiating event for increased temperatures.”

    The “science”; I am confused, the geological record is suspect but the computer models are not? Not trying to pick a fight, but you haven’t answered/or explained any of the phenomena/questions above. For those of who have “read” and are versed on this subject, why can none of you answer the basics? Perhaps you could point me to just one of the many “thousands” of experts you mention that have answered just that question alone. I repeat, why did we have “ice ages” in the past with atmospheric CO2 levels much greater than they are now?

  78. BRISBANE environmental lawyer Jo Bragg and her partner, Gary Kane, spent $28,000 on three roof panels to generate solar power for their home in the inner Brisbane suburb of Highgate Hill.

    After receiving a federal government rebate of $8000, they hoped to recover their investment in a cleaner planet within a few years by selling excess power into the mains electricity grid.

    In the three months to April, they used 1384 kilowatt hours and produced 388 kilowatt hours of excess power, for which they received the princely sum of $12.96 after taxes.

    “Governments are not being serious about reducing energy consumption with lousy amounts of money like that,” Ms Bragg said.

    By the way, has anyone heard from TB Queensland? 😉

  79. Tony,

    TB’s struggling with a laptop at the moment (his PC is on the blink), so he’s just been making the odd appearance here and there…

  80. Tony

    And how much money did they save in not having to pay any money for the electricity they used?

  81. Not sure, Joni, but Ms Bragg doesn’t seem happy.

  82. Tony,

    Shit Tony, talk about clutching at straws for criticisms.

    Which comment are you referring to, Dave?

    Your one immediately before my comment you’re responding to.

  83. Tony,

    Re your Ms Bragg comment – I have no sympathy for her. If she didn’t do the maths, that not the Government’s fault.

    I said before, people who want to be financially rewarded for their altruism aren’t doing it out of altruism.

  84. Well you’d better criticise Alan Moran, Dave – they’re his words, not mine.

  85. Here is a very good article (IMHO) on Plimer’s book, and why it is the rate of change that is the main factor here – not the fact that the climate changed.

    The author is someone who actually debates Plimer on points of science.

  86. Link please?

  87. Sparta,
    This is a very rough and bastardised version of the science but it is as suscinct as I can make it:

    The ice ages that occur AFTER an increase in CO2 arise because events triggered by the warming phase (in which CO2 levels were increasing) throw other systems out of whack which trigger an ice age. I am not aware of any instances where CO2 levels have risen and the initial rise has bot occured in conjunction with rising temperatures; rising CO2 has never occured after a cooling phase has started to the best of my knowledge.

    While there are flaws in the science in the movie (mostly related to the time scale of the events and the super cyclone thing), The Day After Tomorrow actually shows how increased temperatures can affect ocean currents which in turn affect climate – this is very well understood. Plimer would be well aware that continental drift and the closure of waterways have affected the ocenan currents in the past and triggered climate changes.

    The increase in CO2 AFTER warming starts relates to the release of CO2 and methane from stores in the earth (such as tundra). If the initial warming factor in the past was solar activity say, CO2 levels would start out low and increase as the additional warmth released stores. This CO2 in turn acts as a feedback and further increases warming until something like the stopping of the atlantic currents triggers an about turn (if this about turn doesn’t occur, we run the risk of runaway climate change which only the most extreme climate scientists believe will occur). CO2 levels may still rise for some time after the temperature switch due to localised events but ultimately the CO2 levels see a dramatic drop shortly after entering the ice age stage. As I said, this is entirely consistent with the current theory that anthropogenic CO2 is causing global temperatures to increase.

    The reason that the terminology has moved from global warming to climate change has nothing to do with 1998 being higher than some subsequent years but everything to do with a recognition that the initial warming phase caused by increased GGs has the potential to trigger a dramatic cooling which is, unsuprisingly, a “climate change”.

  88. Tony,

    So what exactly were you trying to illustrate by posting a link to the Moran article and comment. If you don’t say otherwise, I’ll assume (probably correctly) that you agree with the comments in the extracted quote.

    Moran’s comments are clutching at straws. Rudd is still pushing the legislation through this year – I’d still call that imediate action to commiting to cuts even if the actual cuts are only mandated to start 2 years hence.

  89. Dave55 says:

    it seems to me the more and more that I read that it is the non-scientists who use the claim consensus and not the scientists.

    Here’s a scientist who appears to be doing just that, Dave:

    (I actually think it’s rather silly to debate the science, because this the role of the scientific community as a whole, and in doing so they’ve reached a view that this is a serious problem — but one-on-one debate is what the media demands.)

    (From Joni’s link.)

  90. “Governments are not being serious about reducing energy consumption with lousy amounts of money like that,” Ms Bragg said.

    Yep, discouraging the solar industry and not even entertaining the setup of one of the worlds leading solar manufacturers in this country comes to mind.

  91. I’d still call that imediate action to commiting to cuts even if the actual cuts are only mandated to start 2 years hence.

    A bit like the six-year temporary deficit.

    Dave, I usually avoid commenting on others’ motives, but you’ve finally convinced me that Kevin Rudd could do just about anything, and you’d try to find a way of justifying it.

  92. I’m over this never ending debate if there is or not CC or AGW!

    The way I see it, if there is AGW then the world won’t cooperate because we haven’t lived in peace and never will and the usual suspects will keep polluting.

    If this AGW is indeed a hoax based on the unknown science of the cycles of climate that might be 20,000 years for all they know then there will be an adverse reaction that could well kill off the movement to sustainability, which is the direction we should be moving in, regardless.

    So the way I see the ETS…we are fucked if we do and fucked if we don’t!!!

    Oh well.

  93. FFS Tony, I’ve been critical of Rudd for the targets and I would prefer it if an ETS system was already in place (I’ve been pushing for one for around 10 years) BUT, being pragmatic, if deferring it for a year gets the Senate votes necessary to get an ETS and start reducing greenhouse gas emissions then that sure as shit beats no system at all or another couple of years of delay in coming up with a similar scheme with similar targets and less time to reach them (which will cost even more),

    As you point out time and time again, reducing Australia’s emissions will have SFA impact on global emission levels and the climate; I’m not going to pretend otherwise. So delaying the implementation of the scheme by a year (and not reducing emissions by a small amount in that year and deferring those reductions will mean we contribute slightly less than SFA to world wide reductions. From a climate science POV, us deferring for a year means absolutely nothing. What is important in us committing to reductions is the actually commit to cut. Developing and other developed countries will not commit to reductions unless others also do it – given Copenhagen is at the end of the year, this is why immediacy of policy action is necessary and important and the Government is still comitted to that.

    Oh and temporary is anything that isn’t permanent. If you weren’t the least bit cynical about the amount of wiggle room in that word when the Government’s first uttered it I’d be surprised (and a little disappointed to tell you the truth).

  94. Tony,

    Re your Barry Brooks quote, that’s a nice bit of selective quoting there. What Barry was talking about was one on one debating with Plimmer on issues that the broader scientific community had already debated and agreed on, That Plimer is coming in late and with the same debating points that have already been refuted doesn’t give him any more entitlement to re agitate those issues again.

    Plimer’s book brings nothing new to the debate except furrther debate in non-scientific circles and subsequent delay on political action.

    Oh, and you still haven’t rebutted any of the science or the flaws in logic re the IPCC politicisation argument that I have put forward.

  95. Dave,

    Here’s a relevant article that might interest you:

    CO2, Temperatures, and Ice Ages

    (Please don’t spend too much time on this on my account – I have neither the energy nor the inclination to argue the point with you, but I do appreciate the effort you have put in up till now.)

  96. Tony,

    You might be interested in this site…..

    http://climaterealists.com/about.php

    I just hyperlinked to the “about” page…..The site itself is more or less a collection of dissenting pieces that simply asks some very basic questions like those of Plimer……It can be used as a launching spot for further investigation……I have heard Dave’s opinion before but the problem is, it is in dispute now given further study into the “Vostok” ice core data sets….Which actually looks at the “big picture” instead of a snap shop of the last 150 years. Notice now, the change in language? More and more we are being told it is “Climate Change” now that the “warming trend” seems to be shifting….

  97. Dave,

    Well as I said to Tony, my short response is take a look at the numerous articles relating to the Vostok Ice Core samples…..Certainly puts your explanation in doubt…Again, not trying to pick a fight here……..

  98. Check this out!

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25443416-12377,00.html

    Pollution good for the planet???

    Is there no middle ground to reduce our polluting in tandem with new technology without an ETS?

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