Monday, August 20, 2007

Is Global Warming Really A Hoax?

On August 13th it appeared that editors of Newsweek Magazine had an epiphany. The cover featured a photo of the glowing sun. Superimposed on top of it, was the headline: “Global Warming is a Hoax*” However, the asterisk revealed their true motives. The article does little to give an honest look at global warming and instead carries on the mainstream tactic of trashing anyone who disagrees with the prevailing thought. They did not attack CARE. (We are not big enough to be noticed, nor do we actually disagree. We do, however, present viewpoints that differ from the mainstream.) Nor did they attack the viewpoints of the author of this posting. Known for his expertise, Michael Economides (a member of CARE's Energy Counsel) has no shortage of opinions. Upon reading Newsweek’s cover story, the following reaction flowed from his finger tips. Did you read the Newsweek piece? If not, please check it out and then come back and add your comments on the topic.

One of the vilest, most venomous pieces of writing masquerading as journalism was the Newsweek cover story on August 13, 2007.

With the sun as the backdrop, which in the piece got a minor supporting role for global warming, compared to man-produced CO2, the magazine screamed “Global Warming is a Hoax” * and the asterisk led to the clincher as a large enough footnote: “ Or so claim well-funded naysayers who still reject the overwhelming evidence of climate change. Inside the denial machine”.

The attack was so vicious that MIT meteorologist Richard Lindzen, a well known climate expert and a strong doubter of any unusual global warming is “the kind of man who, if you’re in the minority, he opts to be with you.” Just before the writer gave a hint for the reason for Lindzen’s character flaw. His parents fled Nazi Germany. (I checked my facts. Lindzen is not funded by oil companies or their proxies.)

Well, I am also not in anybody’s pay and I am not even, heaven forbid, a Republican. And I have not relied on the “hundreds of scientists” constantly invoked as signing petitions but never publishing causal papers. I have personally worked on radiation heat transfer and I do not need the opinions of others about anthropogenic global warming, maybe 0.1 degrees centigrade. The postulated global warming simply cannot be caused by man-made CO2.

I am not a climate expert and I am perfectly willing to accept that global warming is happening. But the writer, Sharon Begley, did not even bother to really distinguish between global warming, an occurrence that has demonstrably happened over and over again in earth’s history, something that the climate experts are debating, and the politically loaded anthropogenic part. Make no mistake. The latter is far more salient to the Gores of the world and it is an undisguised, ideologically driven, full frontal attack on American and developed world lifestyles and the energy industry.

Had the writer attempted even remote due diligence, just by asking some of the 800 “authors” of the IPPC report to produce just one reference, she would discover that there is not one paper in the peer reviewed heat transfer or thermodynamic literature that shows the causal relationship between the presumably observed and, especially, forecasted global warming and the increased CO2 at the 300 parts per million levels. Correlation does not prove causation. That’s what I thought until now. I am even willing to accept that global warming can cause enhanced CO2 in the atmosphere by reducing the solubility of the gas in the oceans. But the other way around is what is at issue.

Instead, the well funded machine, with only ExxonMobil identified as a funder, is supposed to cast aspersions to what Newsweek thinks is the obvious. By the way ExxonMobil in a well publicized move a few years ago gave $100 million to Stanford University to study global warming issues. Much of that money went to environmentalist type projects.

First, oil companies should love the rhetoric of global warming. They would be watching with glee. If the public is conditioned to believe in alternatives such as wind at $200 per barrel of oil equivalent or solar at $1,000, if taxes are supposed to force conservation while the public uses more and more energy, guess what gift is handed to those that manage oil and gas. The reason we use those energy sources is not because of some ideological propensity. They are the easiest and cheapest to use. The profits margins of oil companies will soar in a preposterously legislated remedy-global-warming future. Environmentalist silliness will strengthen the presumed devils all the while preventing the market to develop into real technologies and alternatives. Solar and wind will never do that.

Second, while slogans and magazine articles lament what they consider to be a looming catastrophe, other than saying oil, gas and coal are bad for you, they are not really suggesting what else can be done because if they did they would quickly find the insurmountable costs. Unless committing economic suicide is what’s in their mind. If the recent virtual economy hiccup can cause the problem that it did, imagine what a forced energy supply disruption will mean for the world.

I have calculated that sequestering just the expected incremental CO2 between today’s levels and 2030 will require 1.7 million wells at a cost of over $7 trillion. Alternative energy sources will cost more.

I am sure that all this nonsense will be swept away by the economy and reality. There is no need to worry. Oil and gas will be the dominant sources of energy for another 50 years, at least.

Prof. Michael J. Economides, University of Houston and also Editor-in-Chief Energy Tribune Houston, TX

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Lower Gas Prices' Positive Effect on Industry

Does it seem that the media loves to report on gloom and doom, but seldom presents the positive side of things? This is especially true when referencing gas prices and the oil and gas industry in general. This short piece from one of our favorite sources, the Business and Media Institute, looks at the media’s dire predictions about gas prices, where they really are today and how the lower prices do actually benefit the industry, not just the consumer. reported on August 7 oil prices are declining and gas prices are reciprocating.

“With gasoline prices peaking in May and subsiding a bit since then, it was only a matter of time before oil followed suit,” wrote Ruthie Ackerman, a reporter at “Since the summer driving season is also wrapping up, oil demand should naturally decrease, putting a downward pressure on price.”

Leading up to the summer driving season, some in the media warned of $4, $5 and $6 a gallon gasoline. They may have to wait even longer to see those predictions come true as prices fall.

Contrary to conventional wisdom from those in the media, lower oil prices do have a positive effect on the oil and gas industry, as Ackerman pointed out.

“Lower oil prices are not only good for the consumer, but also boost investor confidence. ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) shares jumped 1.7%, or $1.42, to $83.50 at the close of the day Monday, while Chevron (NYSE:CVX) shares shot up 1.2%, to $1.00, to $82.02. BP (NYSE:BP) shares were boosted 1.6%, or $1.04, to $67.54 and Sunoco (NYSE:SUN) increased 1.0%, or 61 cents, to $63.48.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Water Experts Find Earth’s Warming, Rainfall Linked To Sun

As global warming issues continue their presence in the news media, we at CARE continue to share viewpoints that may not make it to the mainstream media who seem to have totally accepted the “sky is falling” mentality without doing further investigation. We believe that people are smart, that if those seeking answers are provided with the complete picture, they will come to their own conclusions that will be more accurate than the spoon-feeding the media offers. Here is an interesting piece from one of our Energy Counsel Members that presents insights into the viewpoint that links the earth’s warming to sun spots. If you are truly searching for answers to the global warming debate, please take the time to review all of the various posting available here on the CARE Blog.

A team of water experts says the pattern of droughts and floods in South Africa shows our global warming was triggered by the variability of the sun’s irradiance rather than by human-emitted CO2. They say variations in South African rainfall patterns are keyed to periodic reversals of the sun’s magnetic field—and to the constantly changing distance between the sun and the earth as both move through space.

In South Africa, alternate 11-year sunspot cycles produce opposite rainfall results. One complete “double sun cycle” occurs every 20.8 years: the “first” cycle brings a big flood, followed by a small drought; the next brings a big drought, followed by a small flood.

Lead author Will Alexander used the double sunspot cycle to publicly predict the end of major South African droughts in both 1995 and 2006. He notes that South African droughts have often been broken at 11-year intervals by severe floods associated with sunspot maxima—as in 1822, 1841, 1863, 1874 and 1885. The research summary appears in the June 2007 issue of the Journal of the South African Institution of Civil Engineering.

The South Africans’ conclusion is reinforced by Dr. Robert Baker of Australia, who told a recent meeting of the International Geographical Union that he has found the same 21-year cycle in Australian drought and rainfall. Baker says “the sun is like a musical instrument, vibrating in complex patterns,” with all of the planets moving in similar relationships.

H. N. Bhalme and D. A. Mooley published similar conclusions about India’s floods and droughts in the Journal of Applied Meteorology, September, 1981, based on an Indian flood index compiled from 1891 to 1979. They reported that “a highly significant 22-year cycle in the flood area index was nearly in phase with the 22-year double sunspot cycle.” Bhalme and Mooley also noted that the western U.S. has a similar relationship with the double sunspot cycle and severe flooding.

Clearly, what these water experts are all describing is a global climate connection with the sun.

The number of sunspots on the sun, and their intensity, varies in a cycle averaging 11 years. The distance between the sun and the earth keeps changing slightly and predictably because 1) they move on slightly varying paths through space; and 2) both bodies accelerate and decelerate constantly depending on the combined gravitational forces of the other big planets.

These factors apparently produce the moderate 1,500-year climate cycle on earth, which was discovered in the Greenland ice cores in 1980s and has since also been found globally in seabed and lake sediments, fossil pollen, tree rings and peat bogs.

Earth’s recent global warming occurred too early—before 1940—to be blamed on human CO2 emissions. The net global warming since 1940 is only 0.2 degrees C, with none at all since 1998. There’s little correlation between the earth’s recent temperatures and CO2 levels, but a strong correlation between the sunspot index and subsequent changes in our sea-surface temperatures.

The 1,500-year climate cycle shifts temperatures about 2 degrees C above and then 2 degrees C below the long-term average at the latitude of Washington and Paris, with greater temperature changes near the poles. Temperatures change little near the equator, but rainfall patterns can change greatly; for example, 5,000 years ago the Sahara was wet enough for grazing and hunting, while Kenya was very dry.

The UN climate change panel has declared the solar variations “too small” to produce the climate warming of the past 30 years. However, a recent Danish experiment showed that the solar variations may be amplified fourfold because they create significant changes in the earth’s cloud cover. More clouds cool the earth by deflecting more of the sun’s heat back into outer space.

The evidence for a sun/climate connection keeps pouring in, while all we hear from the Kyoto crowd is “The computer models agree with each other.”

DENNIS T. AVERYFormer senior policy analyst for the U.S. State Department, co-author Unstoppable Global Warming--Every 1500 Years