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Stop Press !! ............ Stop Press !
Storm Chasing in Tornado Alley (13 Aug 2002)
You saw the movie, now read my account, with photos and movie clip, of a close encounter with a super-cell thunderstorm in Texas and Oklahoma during my recent visit to the U.S.
Dr Alex Robson
A Statement by Professional Economists Against Ratification of the Kyoto Protocol
Australia's choices in dealing with global warming are important. Because the Kyoto Protocol is based on uncertain science and does not constitute conclusive scientific evidence regarding the effect of human activity on global warming, it is very difficult for economists to perform complete cost-benefit analyses of the economic, social and environmental consequences of the policy. Even if adverse consequences of global warming could be identified and measured with complete certainty (and they cannot), these consequences must be valued at the time they occur, and some allowance must be made for the fact that the value today of costs and benefits in the future - particularly in the distant future - is not the same as their value when they actually occur. Ill-conceived, poorly chosen policy responses might marginally reduce potential global warming costs, but they could cost every ordinary Australian more than their share of potential global warming costs.
Protocol is a good example of such a flawed policy response. It involves
measures that would have large negative social and economic impacts on all
Australians and citizens in other countries. The OECD estimates that
Thus, even if we accept the dire predictions regarding the economic, social, and environmental consequences of climate change, under the policies advocated by the Australia Institute and the signatories to its petition, ordinary Australians could end up paying twice for any climate change: living standards will be permanently cut for every year that the policies are in place, and then when 2100 arrives they could pay again because of higher temperatures, which are virtually unaffected by the Kyoto Protocol.
importantly, it is simply not true - as the Australia Institute claims -
that serious alternatives to the Kyoto Protocol have not been put forward.
Many sensible alternatives to the Kyoto Protocol have been suggested by
economists in Australia, the United States, and Europe. For all of
these reasons, we, as professional economists, believe that it
In east Asia,
the summers have seen a toxic brown haze spread all over the region, from
China to India to southeast Asia and Indonesia. It has been caused by a
combination of forest burnings, kitchen fires, dirty combustion of fossil
fuels, choking traffic in major cities, and poor environmental standards
for heavy industries. Although the haze obscures the sun, suggesting
cooling, the reality is that the haze particles get directly heated by
sunlight and thus heats the atmosphere. This must increase temperatures
throughout the region, an increase unrelated to greenhouse gases
There has already been two brief stories recently exposing the use of incorrect temperature trends for Alaska by the New York Times. They did it not once, but twice when their `correction' to the first story proved to be just as false as the original story.
The press are the guardians of the public interest against abuse by government and government officials. But to whom is the press accountable when they publish stories which are false, and demonstrated to be so by the very institutions they are quoting?
Miceal O'Ronain has researched the origins of the NYT errors, and reveals the full comedy - or tragedy - of errors in the Guest Papers section here -
See - Alaska at the Limits
Britain will be represented by Environment Minister Michael Meacher at the upcoming Johannesburg Earth Summit. His job will be to negotiate through the complexity of climate and other issues. Here is a short extract from an interview transcript he gave on 9th August to the Sunday Times.
Meacher: I mean floods in Britain is one
we are having to explain, rising sea levels, but in America quite serious
things are happening, certainly stronger hurricanes on the east coast
which are to do with, what is the name of that hurricane that comes every
2 - 3 years?
Meacher thinks El Niño is a hurricane, (which it patently is not), thinks it is becoming more frequent (which it is not, as there has been 5 years between the start of the last one in 1997 and the start of this one in 2002, exactly the average time interval for El Niño events), thinks it is becoming more violent (which this latest one is not), and cannot even remember the name of the phenomenon considering its importance to global climate.
His assertion that America is having more violent hurricanes is also not supported by the facts.
But cheer up Britain. Mr Meacher will do a fine job for you at Johannesburg and will doubtless sign on the dotted line, in complete ignorance of what he is actually signing. The BBC's take on his interview.
This week, floods have ravaged parts of central and eastern Europe, Prague being particularly hard hit.
While the media knee-jerk reaction has been to blame it on global warming, the British climate establishment has been more circumspect and instead blamed it on storms tracking further south than is usual in summer.
That was never in the global
warming script. Under global warming, the heating of the atmosphere would
push storm systems further north in the northern hemisphere and further
south in the southern. Instead, they have moved south, dumping rain on
areas normally drier. Indeed, storm system tracks moving south would
be more indicative of global cooling, not warming.
Green organisations are by now hyperventilating over the Australian government's refusal to ratify the Kyoto Protocol. Greenpeace even did one of their usual publicity stunts to voice their disapproval.
GreenPeace melodramatics aside, there is a real debate going on within Australia about the Kyoto issue and `Online Opinion', a discussion based website is hosting 5 articles on the issue, followed by reader debate.
One of these articles is by yours truly -
and I discuss several reasons why Kyoto would be highly damaging to Australia.
Michael Meacher, Britain's Minister for the Environment, talking to the Sunday Times in response to a question about his government's concentration on `spin' and `trivia' -
"As you well know we are not engaged in spin any more."
This begs the question as to whether Meacher really means it this time or is still dishing out spin with his claim that he not engaged in spin anymore.
Etc. etc. etc.
A recent Greenpeace exposé on a glacier on the island of Svalbard in the Arctic Ocean, claiming it to have receded dramatically due to global warming, has proved to be a complete beat-up - as is usual for Greenpeace whose economy with the truth is legendary.
Scientists on Svalbard itself dismiss the entire story as false. The glacier retreated alright - 80 years ago!
GreenPeace falsely represented this event as a recent occurrence.
For Previous "Stop
This week, Australia's Prime Minister, John Howard, attending the South Pacific Forum (an annual meeting of all South Pacific countries), was confronted by the Prime Minister of Tuvalu, making the usual false claim that his country was sinking under the waves due to `rising sea levels'. He held Australia somehow responsible, even though Australia only accounts for 1.5% of the world total emissions. Howard looked bemused, no doubt briefed by his own officials that sea level data collected by Australian tide gauges actually on Tuvalu show no sea level rise there. Indeed, this year the sea level will be falling due to the current El Niño (as the chart below shows, sea level always falls temporarily in the south-eastern Pacific during an El Niño). Tuvalu's problem with the sea is land misuse resulting in erosion. Greenhouse gases provides the Tuvalu government a convenient pretext to deflect responsibility for a mess entirely of their own making
Here's a sea level chart from the tide gauge at Funafuti Atoll, Tuvalu As this and many other Pacific tide gauges show, the alarmist claims of recent sea level rise made by the IPCC are quite false. This data could well be used as evidence in court should the Tuvalu government choose to sue the United States and Australia for causing a non-existent sea level rise. There are numerous reports of Pacific island governments making unsubstantiated claims to the United Nations and World Bank about their sea levels as a lever to extract more aid money from western nations like the U.S. and Australia.
Recent Media Stories
(This is a new segment to the page. Information on positive media stories would be appreciated)
Science Daily - "Satellites
Show Overall Increases In Antarctic Sea Ice Cover" (24
See Wyoming State Climate
Office website for more media stories from around the
Special Reports on Major Climate Issues
"Australia ratifies the Kyoto Protocol - and implements it how, exactly?" (21 Aug 02) - A discussion on the economic impact Kyoto would have on Australia.
Badwater (19 Jul 02). A world record in the making...
TOPEX-Poseidon Radar Altimetry: Averaging the Averages (5 Dec 2001). Just how accurate is sea level monitoring from satellites?
`Making' the News: The Sunday Times and British Climate (20 Nov 2001). How the London Sunday Times has distorted climatic data for Britain without so much as a murmur from the originators of that data.
The Nenana Ice Classic: Betting
- CRU Style (15 Aug
Stick': A New Low in Climate Science
The `National Assessment': Regional Pain with No Gain (14 Sept 2000). A critical analysis of the NAS treatment of the US regions.
The `National Assessment' Overview: Politics Disguised as Science (22 Aug 2000). A critical review of the US `National Assessment report to the US Congress.
A Clap of Thunder (12 May 2001). The saga of the Barrow Thunderstorm of 19th June 2000 in Alaska.
The Return of `Moby Dick' (17 April 2001) Two papers in Science about the deep oceans which make lots of questionable assumptions.
A Smoking Pea-Shooter (19 March 2001) Human influence on the greenhouse effect has now been measured in a British study of two sets of satellite data 27 years apart. This report reveals some surprising facts about the study not reported in the media.
The Top of
the World: Is the North Pole Turning to Water?
Testing the Waters: A Report on Sea
Levels (July 2000)
The Surface Record: Global Mean Temperature and How it is Determined at Surface Level (June 2000) An argument for an independent review of the `surface record'. The satellites were reviewed, so why has the `surface record' escaped independent examination?
Translations into Spanish/Español
Una Gomera Podrida por
John L. Daly (17 Aug 02)
Melbourne Herald-Sun story on the `Isle of the Dead'
Testing the Waters: A Report on Sea
The `Isle of the Dead' - Zero Point of the Sea?
Recent Guest Papers
Alaska at the Limits by Miceal O'Ronain (USA). How the New York Times completely mangled their reportage of recent Alaska temperatures, and could not even get their `correction' right.
A New Metric to Detect
CO2 Greenhouse Effect Applied To Some New Mexico Weather Data
Coloring the Models: Climate Change through Color Change by Miceal O`Ronain (USA). See Preview regarding this latest National Assessment scandal.
Each week a rural or small town weather station(s) with a long consistent record of temperature will be posted to see if it exhibits `global warming'.
Three stations are presented, San Antonio Oeste, Trelew, and San Julian. Of the three Trelew has the longest record - 100 years.
Click below for many other, mostly rural, weather station records from around the world.
Latest Weather & Climate Information
Image of Australia
MSL Synoptic Chart of Australia
Daily Global Sea
Latest U.S. Temperatures (time in GMT, temp. in ºF)
Mean Sea Level - from TOPEX-Poseidon
Arctic Sea Ice
Click on the image for the latest on the
Other Site Contents (Click the section label)
The `Surface Record'
It's not really a record at all, but a statistical composite from station records from all over the world, most of them from towns and cities, and most from countries which do not maintain their stations or records properly.
This record is compiled by the Goddard Institute (GISS) in the US, and the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) in Britain. This GISS graph indicates a global warming of +0.8°C. Is it real? Or is it just a statistical product of urban warming skewing the data, and bad site management in non-OECD countries?
The warming up to 1940 has now been
conceded by the IPCC to have been caused by the warming sun during the
earlier part of the 20th century.
The U.S. Record
This is the composite record from hundreds of weather stations in the 48 states of the contiguous USA., the early 1930s being the hottest years of the 20th century. This is completely at variance with the GISS global record shown above.
Is the US record a better reflection of the global picture? Urbanisation has been more successfully corrected for in the US than in the rest of the world where there is a lack of rural baseline data from which to make urban adjustments to city records.
The US has the best maintained network of weather stations in the world, and this must surely be a better representation of the global picture too. The US record also agrees with the satellites (below)
The new way to determine global temperature is to use satellites to measure the temperature of the lower atmosphere, giving the Earth a uniform global sweep, oceans included, with no cities to create a false warming bias. This second method, used since January 1979, is accurate to within one hundredth of a degree, and is clearly the best record we have. Here is Global Mean Temperature (anomalies in °C) of the Lower Troposphere (lower atmosphere) for the 23-year period January 1979 to July 2002, as measured by NOAA satellites. It shows a very different picture to that of the global `surface record' over the same period.
Global trend per decade = +0.065°C,
(Northern Hemisphere = +0.137°C, Southern Hemisphere =
The actual data from which the above graphs
Surface Record: Global Mean Temperature and How it is Determined at
Surface Level by John L. Daly.
`What the Stations Say' page now has new stations added and some existing ones updated
(See `El Niño and Global Temperature', to see why some years are hot, and some are cool.)
You are the th visitor since Oct. 1996
© John L. Daly, 2002