(h/t Steven C.) Judicial Watch announced today that it filed a lawsuit on December 2, 2015, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia seeking records of communications from National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) officials regarding methodology for collecting and interpreting data used in climate models (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Commerce (No 1:15-cv-02088)). The lawsuit sought the same documents unsuccessfully subpoenaed by a House committee. Less than week after Judicial Watch served its lawsuit on NOAA, the agency finally turned over the targeted documents to Congress.
Amid the media’s elation over the United Nations climate deal reached in Paris on Dec. 12, one significant outcome has been overlooked. The European Union failed to achieve its main objective, namely that the agreement adopt carbon-dioxide mitigation commitments that are “legally binding on all parties.” While this may appear to be a major setback, it liberates Europe from the restrictions of the Kyoto Protocol—which runs out in 2020—and opens the way for more flexible and less damaging policies. The toothless nature of the Paris agreement finally allows EU member states to abandon unilateral decarbonization policies that have damaged Europe’s economies and its international competitiveness. Under such circumstances, the unconditional climate policies of President Obama would be left out in the cold. --Benny Peiser, The Wall Street Journal, 22 December 2015
Worldwide economic losses from river flooding could increase 20-fold by the end of the 21st century if no further actions on flood risk reduction are taken. Over 70% of this increase can be attributed to economic growth in flood prone areas.
The study was published today by a Dutch research team in Nature Climate Change, and gives an overview of river flood risk all over the world until the end of the 21st century.
Dr. Hessel Winsemius (Deltares): 'Our conclusions show that besides keeping global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius target, as negotiated during the COP21 meeting to reduce adverse effects of climate change, a lot of future risk can be prevented by spatial planning and flood resilient building in the rapidly growing economies in flood-prone regions.'
Today the non-partisan group Vermont Watchdog announced that a renewable energy developer funded a study that supports a $500 million carbon tax in Vermont that targets fossil-fueled energy sources. The developer would also stand to benefit from the carbon tax as the money would go toward building more wind and solar farms. The issue arose on Dec. 3 when pro-carbon-tax representatives of Energy Independent Vermont "debated leaders of the free market think tank the Ethan Allen Institute on taxing gasoline, propane, natural gas and other fossil fuels to combat global warming."
During the debate, backers repeatedly referred to the 2014 study to support the $500 million carbon tax and to claim it would boost Vermont's economy and create jobs. The study, called the Economic, Fiscal, Emissions, and Demographic Implications from a Carbon Price Policy in Vermont, was prepared by Regional Economic Models Inc., and was funded by Vermont's most "prominent green-energy CEO." The study, however, only targets fossil-fueled energies while ignoring any such taxes on wind and solar, which are far less reliable sources of energy.
From The Telegraph, no less:
I rushed to the window. I opened one. I opened another – and I closed my eyes and waited for the cooling breeze. Then I opened my eyes, and wafted my hand in amazement in front of the window. Hot damn: the air coming in – from the streets of London in December – was, if anything, actually warmer than the air in my office, which had itself been raised to Reptile House temperatures by the ping-pong. What in blazes was going on?
And then I had a ghastly vision. What if this is it? What if this is the long-awaited inflexion point – the moment that has been prophesied since the Eighties? What if winter is over – for ever?
Aaargh, I thought: and in that moment of horror, I contemplated the loss of something so intrinsic to our psychology. Imagine: no more snow. No more tobogganing on Primrose Hill, no more waking up to see the magic prints of the dog on the lawn.
A heated exchange regarding global warming and magisterial teaching between a top Vatican official and various other presenters ended a December 3 Acton Institute conference in Rome. Argentinean Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, a close advisor to Pope Francis and the Chancellor of both the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences stressed that the pope’s declarations on the gravity of global warming as expressed in the encyclical Laudato Si’ are magisterial teaching equivalent to the teaching that abortion is sinful.
Father Joseph Fessio, SJ, the founder of Ignatius Press who obtained his doctorate in theology under Joseph Ratzinger prior to his elevation to the pontificate, told LifeSiteNews, “Neither the pope nor Bishop Sorondo can speak on a matter of science with any binding authority, so to use the word ‘magisterium’ in both cases is equivocal at best, and ignorant in any case.” Fr. Fessio added, “To equate a papal position on abortion with a position on global warming is worse than wrong; it is an embarrassment for the Church.”
Amid the media’s elation over the United Nations climate deal reached in Paris on Dec. 12, one significant outcome has been overlooked. The European Union failed to achieve its main objective, namely that the agreement adopt carbon-dioxide mitigation commitments that are “legally binding on all parties.”
While this may appear to be a major setback, it liberates Europe from the restrictions of the Kyoto Protocol—which runs out in 2020—and opens the way for more flexible and less damaging policies.
During the Paris negotiations, European Climate Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete warned that the EU “cannot make the mistake we made in Kyoto” where “all the big emitters were outside the legally binding agreement.” For Europe, the Kyoto Protocol has forced EU states to adopt unilateral, and disastrously costly, decarbonization policies. With their manufacturers rapidly losing ground to international competition, governments are increasingly concerned about the threat high energy prices pose to Europe’s industrial base.
Another week, another study showing that our official climate data gatekeepers have been exaggerating the extent of “global warming” to make it look more scary, more urgent, more desperately in need of extra funding for our official climate data gatekeepers…
This one, co-authored by meteorologist Anthony Watts (of Watts Up With That? fame) shows that at least half of the “global warming” in the US since 1979 has been fabricated by NOAA.
While satellite records have shown no global warming for at least 18 years, the land based data sets like the ones maintained by NOAA for the US Historical Climate Network (USHCN) continue to show a warming trend.
Meteorologists have blamed El Niño and the polar vortex for record-breaking warm temperatures across the US this week, saying the pair of weather systems will likely keep 2015 warm enough to be the hottest year on record. This year’s El Niño, a recurring weather pattern caused by unusually warm water in the Pacific Ocean, is particularly strong and reaching its peak. The 2015-16 El Niño is expected to rank as one of the three strongest in half a century. --Alan Yuhas and Oliver Milman, The Guardian, 15 December 2015
We need a revolution if we are to survive as a people and as a nation. While the changes in federal policy needed to undo the damage of leftism are high-profile presidential election issues, the real revolution needs to come at a different level of government and with a different purpose.
What we are fighting, really, is fifty years of leftist indoctrination from education, information, and entertainment. Until we fight back and win the battles at this level, we will continue with the drearily familiar mind control of the left over our lives.
It’s time to count down the top stories of the year, looking back at the big events of 2015 and reviewing my own coverage of them.
We’ll start the countdown with #5, which is the least important of the big stories because it’s not about something that’s actually happening. It’s about how a whole section of our top political and cultural leadership is pretending that something that isn’t happening is actually the most vital and pressing issue of the day. That is pretty important in its own right.
I’ll call this The Phantom Menace, which you can consider a tribute to the return of the Star Wars saga, or perhaps an unwelcome reminder of everybody’s least favorite prequel. (It’s a close call between the three, but Phantom Menace had the most Jar-Jar Binks, so it wins.)
Britain cut more renewable energy subsidies on Thursday, putting jobs at risk and drawing criticism for losing credibility in tackling climate change, a week after the landmark deal in Paris. Britain's Conservative government has been reining in spending on all renewables subsidies since it took power in May, saying the cost of technology has come down sharply and subsidies should reflect that. Thursday's cuts came a day after it allowed the use of fracking to extract shale gas below national parks and protected areas and as it is expected to announce the winners of new onshore oil and gas licenses. --Reuters, 17 December 2015