Take Heart! (New Energy & Climate)

Take Heart! (New Energy & Climate)
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The ideal political perspective seeks to preserve traditional values that positively contribute to the broad social good and to change those that become negative in the context of current realities. The latter, by their very definition, must change to accommodate changing realities in positive and productive ways. Some liberals, especially the most left-leaning, sometimes behave as if there were never any merit in conservative positions of any kind. It should be clear, however, that there are conservative positions that have merit. We need the kind of balance that the positive side of conservative thinking provides.

The world is changing rapidly in many ways: technological, demographic, economic, and environmental. These changes are occurring at light-speed compared to any previous era. But refusing to adapt to change, even denying the possibility of certain vitally important changes, is the trademark of the most negative and dangerous versions of conservatism. This brand of conservatism arises from the unthinking conformist tendency that assigns authority to the norms of a particular social environment.

For example, once long ago I had just read that bus and taxi services that use their headlights during the day got a break on their insurance premiums because actuarial tables showed a lower accident rate corresponded with that practice. I drove to work the next morning with my headlights on in broad daylight. The manager of inventory happened to be standing at the entrance to the employee parking area and signaled me that I had them on.

I told him that it was intentional and explained why. He became very agitated and shouted at me angrily. It violated his sense of what is normal. It disturbed him so deeply that I would do something that so strongly violated widely accepted conventional practice. It didn’t matter to him that what I was doing was not only harmless, but could potentially reduce harm.

There are plenty of other examples like this. The typically unwitting assumption of those who deny any possibility of human-caused climate change, for example, is that the current technological status quo is written in stone for the foreseeable future. Even when they envision what would be necessary to combat human-caused global warming (Anthropogenic Global Warming or AGW), they reflexively think only in terms of reducing energy consumption with great individual sacrifices made in the context of little to no change in current technology.

These folks virtually ignore the possibility of accomplishing this with commercially viable, new technologies, or pretend that these will exist only far into the future. The possibility never occurs to them that we could reduce fossil fuel consumption in ways that eliminate any need to suffer negative economic consequences or make any great sacrifices to avoid AGW. Even when confronted with such possibilities, their brand of conservatism blindly denies that what is proposed could possibly be technologically or economically viable soon enough to be worth encouraging with policy now.

One simple example of a low-cost, perfectly viable means of doing this would involve new, walk-in refrigeration systems in stores, hotels, restaurants, etc. Many such systems in temperate and colder climates take no advantage of outside temperatures that are much colder than those inside during part of the year. Private homes virtually never do. Instead, they use energy for internal heat and then again to refrigerate goods within that warmth, failing to take any advantage of the outside temperature, an example of energy uselessly fighting energy. When outside temperatures are much lower than the temperature in a refrigerated space, there is no need to use much energy to refrigerate anything. Only enough would be needed to circulate an efficient, thermostatically controlled heat transporting fluid.

This is just one of many possibilities that exist right now. They require nothing but a change in thinking to implement. Before electricity, examples of this were commonplace in architecture and many other older technologies. Nevertheless, the advent of cheap energy encouraged the construction of what are effectively solar collectors posing as homes and commercial buildings that require inordinate amounts of energy to cool in the summer for no good reason whatsoever.

Such construction requires excessive burning of limited resources with an enormous variety of other uses, such as the manufacture of plastics and the production of many important chemical stocks. Future generations will pay for our short-sighted thinking even if we were to change yesterday. It is very telling that among those who have the most obvious vested interest in petroleum stocks under their soils are the Arab countries, some of which are working hard to avoid squandering their future by selling it all to be burnt by people who have no political will that shows they care a whit about that. (See the photo caption under the second photo in the middle of this article.)

There is another kind of waste: the inefficiency of current energy generation and that of the technological machinery it feeds. There are two approaches to improving this. The first is simply implementing technologies that require no new infrastructure and still use fossil fuels, but much more efficiently. These represent technologies that potentially transition to the second kind of improvement: entirely new technologies. There are many examples of both that already exist or are imminent.

One example of the first is a new internal combustion engine (ICE) that is much lighter and much more efficient than our current ICEs. Research at Michigan State University has resulted in a prototype gasoline engine with no transmission needed, nor any valves, fuel compression, crankshaft, pistons, cooling systems, or fluids. The aptly named Wave Disk Generator; has a potential to improve the efficiency of gas-electric hybrid automobiles. It could also decrease auto emissions as much as 90 percent compared to conventional ICEs.

This engine uses a spinning rotor equipped with wave-like channels to trap and mix fuel and oxygen. Central inlets close to block flow, building pressure in the chamber. The compressed air and fuel are ignited by the shock wave generated when the pressure is released. This, in turn, transmits the resulting energy via the mechanical output of the rotor.

Sixty percent of the fuel fed to the Wave Disk Generator is converted to propulsion as opposed to standard car engines that typically convert only fifteen percent. It could also reduce a car’s weight by about 1,000 pounds for a further increase in overall propulsion efficiency. As a result it is 3.5 times more fuel efficient than a typical conventional auto engine.

As to completely new technologies, the major roadblock for renewable resources is not in the resources but in the intermittent nature of the naturally existing energies they tap. This requires short-term storage solutions in order to buffer the intermittent supply for continuous energy availability. The principle is the same as using a pond to store rainwater for use whenever you want it. The most convenient way to fulfill this need uses a chemical energy carrier in which we can store the energy for use as needed and even transport it for mobile energy use.

The best candidate for this is generally considered to be hydrogen or some compound that contains a lot of it in dense form, since pure hydrogen has very low energy density. Hydrogen has a lot to recommend it, though, since it turns into water when it releases its energy store and storing energy in it simply requires separating it from water with electrolysis using renewable energy. However, there are a number of significant practical barriers to doing this at a commercially practical cost. They are:

1. The inefficiency of most approaches to electrolysis.

2. The low energy density of hydrogen compared to gasoline, for example, requiring new methods of storing it at a competitive density.

3. The cost of the technology required to convert the energy in hydrogen back into useful work.

4. Safety, since hydrogen in its pure form is highly explosive.

So how are we approaching solutions to these four barriers to what is often called a hydrogen economy? The most efficient way to generate hydrogen from water is direct solar illumination and chemical catalysts to greatly enhance the process. This is called photocatalysis. A European project, Hydrosol, has achieved efficiencies on the order of 30% in converting solar energy directly to hydrogen without the intermediary of electricity. This has already been scaled up successfully from prototypes to a small scale industrial level. The next step is underway to scale it up to the megawatt range. There are other approaches to the same problem touting various levels of success in different parts of the world as well as various other breakthroughs at other research institutions that are now progressing toward potential commercial implementation.

Ammonia as a hydrogen carrier is one approach to solving the problem of low energy density. However, Asemblon, Inc. has developed an organic chemical carrier for hydrogenHydrnol, that rivals gasoline for energy density and is rechargeable with hydrogen after use approximately one hundred times before it degrades. Asemblon is already partnering with the electric/hydrogen fuel cell hybrid Tyrano™ truck manufacturer to power its fleets for customers and begin developing infrastructure.

With hydrogen available in a safely transportable and highly dense form, we need a way to convert it back into useful work that is efficient and cost effective. Fuel cells are the most efficient means for this, but have traditionally used platinum as a catalyst. Platinum is in very limited supply and even with today’s relatively low demand for fuel cells is many, many times more expensive than gold. The demand potential for global conversion of autos to platinum-based fuel cell technology is simply impossible to meet. It is already way too expensive to be economically competitive.

However Monash University, among others, has developed efficient fuel cell technology that avoids the use of platinum. Instead it uses Gore-Tex™, the material used in waterproof but breathable outdoor wear. The Gore-Tex™ is coated with a micro-thin conducting plastic. This works on a par with platinum and eliminates the latter’s degeneration upon contamination with carbon monoxide fumes in conventional traffic. There is a more detailed description at this link. There are also a number of other promising approaches to eliminating platinum in fuel cells, but there are no industrial prototypes to date and may not be for a few years.

So there are technologies available now and others still in the laboratory prototyping stages that threaten to break the barriers to a hydrogen economy. Some are only a few short years away from commercial application. There is much energy industry propaganda declaring that the barriers to a hydrogen economy will persist for decades. This is intended to delay what are perceived as highly disruptive technologies for an industry that until now has had almost total control of energy supply worldwide. It plays on today’s version of the widespread disbelief in the possibility of human flight before the Wright brothers.

Thermo-solar technology is another promising source of renewable energy referred to earlier in connection with Arab participation. There are also new thin-film solar cell technologies that promise to compete in the very near future with electricity from the grid. Nanosolar, Inc. uses a modern high-speed press to print nanotechnology ink onto to a thin substrate. This is a technology already implemented in various places around the world for commercial applications and utilities. Nanosolar claims the potential exists to produce more than one gigawatt (one billion watts) of solar capacity per year at manufacturing costs below $0.50/W of installed power generation capacity. This is well under the current cost of installed power generation capacity in electrical utilities.

Despite our currently troubled economy and some premature risks leading to a downturn of venture capital flowing into renewable energy, it is still viewed by many as the next hugely profitable investment opportunity. Why? Whereas information technology profit potential was realized in terms of billions of U.S. dollars, the profit potential of renewable energy is seen by savvy investors in terms of trillions. This attitude among those knowledgeable in business investment strategies and management demonstrates that the opposition of many if not most conservatives to renewable energy is NOT shared by some of the smartest investors in our capitalist economy.

The most informed among business savvy investors are aware of the realities denied by most conservatives who ironically claim to support the economic system in which these entrepreneurs and investors have been extremely successful. These business-wise folks think for themselves and have access to good information. They research issues intelligently instead of listening to those who make their living feeding some of us only what we already feel comfortable believing.

I have had personal contact with some of the relatively small high-tech companies developing these hydrogen solutions. They are taking a slow and carefully planned strategic path to avoid a showdown with their well established and virtually all-powerful fossil fuel competitors. These competitors are armed with enough political influence to start wars to protect their interests, with history to show they are not at all loath to do just that. This together with the politicians and those voters their lobbies and vast fortunes influence directly or indirectly, are the real barriers to a hydrogen economy.

We went to the moon in less than a decade after President Kennedy made it a goal. We did that with NASA, a strictly government funded institution, although ironically those most opposed to that were liberal. Liberals had the zero-sum game mindset that saw spending on moon trips as something that took away from other things we should be doing. But we would have none of our modern digital technology, laptops, cell-phones, etc. if it had not been for that. Our
per capita productivity would be much lower. It was a super-smart government investment in our economy. Now we have a strange new breed of backward conservatives who oppose the mostly private sector development of renewable energy with precisely the same, invalid zero-sum mentality. The hydrogen economy is going to come. How long that will take is more a matter of political will than of technology.

Copyright May 2013 © Robert P. Wendell

Redistribution freely permitted contingent on the unmodified inclusion of this copyright notice.



Johnny Fever Added May 8, 2013 - 8:39pm
I really don’t understand why I continue to read your dribble. Yes I used an insulting word to describe your work but your work is nothing more than a massive insult to conservatives, first paragraph being an obvious exception. I know nothing of the manager of inventory but his opinion about headlights has nothing to do with conservative thought on climate change as it relates to new technology.

Allow me to give you a brief example why the marketplace and not the Government should dictate our energy policy. Conservatives recognize the fact that corn ethanol essential takes food off the table and puts it into the gas tank of our cars. To the extent humans continue to eat the more corn will need to be planted and because land mass isn’t growing, more land will be utilized for human consumption. This is to say nothing of all the other detriments to ethanol. So liberals in the name of the “environment” have actually done Mother Nature some harm. In addition, they took money out of our pockets via ethanol subsidies and mandates to do damage to planet earth. It’s a disgusting waste of the next generation’s livelihood and it’s another ill-advised Government intrusion into the free market.
Robert Wendell Added May 9, 2013 - 2:35am
So who are you talking to? Ethanol is an economic boondoggle and any intelligent observer of energy economics knows that. And where in the article did I say that goverment should dictate our energy economics? Policy to ENCOURAGE market-driven renewable energy is one thing. Dicating how exactly how that happens in the marketplace is another. The corn/ethanol boondoggle is a perfect case in point regarding how NOT to dictate specifics to the marketplace instead of general policy that encourages market-smart technology. If you look hard enough, you're going to find conservative senators and representatives from corn-growing states who support the stupid boondoggle. As I clearly state in the article, some very smart business people are putting huge bets on a potential multi-trillion dollar energy market. They know a lot more about that than you do. You're a sucker for fossil fuel industry propaganda and their political lackeys. So get off your high-horse and quit spewing unthinking epithets over things I never said. Your misreading is such a typical example of how the strange new brand of conservatives in this country can't think straight.
Robert Wendell Added May 9, 2013 - 2:58am
Oh, and I don't read minds, but I can tell exactly where you went off track. You labeled me "liberal", then assumed all the beliefs you associate with that term are my beliefs. Not very smart, but very typical of the strange, new brand of dizzy conservatives. (And I didn't have to assume anything about your beliefs to observe this.)
Robert Wendell Added May 14, 2013 - 7:26pm
I just can't help but wonder what people think they're contributing to a discussion when they read an article and then just start making bold, bald statements of their opinion of some idea or people or worse, throw accusations of stupidity, idiocy,without addressing anything specific in the article to say exactly what they think is wrong with either the evidence or reasoning. They completely ignore intelligent arguments if we don't count merely calling those stupid without addressing anything they think is flawed except to contradict them. They merely state an opposite opinion with no more attention to justifying their position than attempting to point out any flaws in your position. They seem to think it constitutes a legitimate debate to merely state an opinion loudly, call anything that opposes their opinion stupid and idiotic, and completely ignore any strong, well reasoned, evidence-based arguments in the article.

One commenter to one of my articles dismissed himself from the discussion saying "good debate". I didn't notice anything he said that anyone who knows what a debate is would see as constituting anything even remotely debate-like. All the while they sprinkle their comments with liberal doses of mispelling and bad punctuation. We all make typos in our comments, but some people should get a booby prize for their gross ignorance of the language. And if you respond in any way that calls them out on any of the above, they call whatever you said inflammatory, illustrating the same double standard they apply to the views of those who agree with them as opposed to those who don't and all the rest of their political "judgments". It really degrades the quality of any discussion when these people do this.
Robert Wendell Added May 15, 2013 - 4:08am
Hi, Gilbert. Thank you kindly for your positive review. As Detlev commented here, hydrogen gas leaking into the open air rises so quickly and so disperses so rapidly that explosion in this circumstance is not a practical danger. The Hydrnol organic hydrogen carrier and ammonia may well be the best solutions in that order, since they are as safe or safer than gasoline. There is also a lot of research going into solid state storage media that are chemically "spongy" and which upon absorbing hydrogen represent energy density superior to expensive, inefficient, and complicated cryogenic liquid storage. Thes include hydrides, ammonia borane, amides, composite materials, metal-organic frameworks, carbon nanotechnology structures, etc.

I think the Hydrnol solution wins hands down because it's already a commercially viable technology using an organic carrier that closely imitates gasoline for density, safety, etc. while rechargeable about 100 times before degrading. Current estimates from the manufacturer make it not merely competitive, but substantially cheaper than gasoline. So that part is essentially solved save for infrastructure, which is relatively easy since it uses relatively inexpensive conversion of existing infrastructure. The biggest remaining problems are fuel cell technology for energy reconversion and the efficiency of hydrogen generation using renewables. Very promising solutions to both of these barriers are discussed in the article.
Robert Wendell Added May 15, 2013 - 7:47pm
Thank you for your comments and the heads-up on how to make the links work to open links in a new tab.
Robert Wendell Added May 19, 2013 - 5:54am
Whoever voted this down is showing his/her posterior, anonymously of course . No one the slightest bit reasonable would support the kind of foolishness I mention above. It defies common sense to vote the statements I made above down. We know, though, that "common sense" is not all that common.
Robert Wendell Added May 27, 2013 - 3:16am
Very interesting links, Matt. Thank you for your post. Sorry it took so long to notice it. I've been fortunate to have so many articles rank so high, but that makes it harder to keep up with everything. They seem to attract a lot of comments, especially from those with rabid dissenting comments. Those folks seem to have grave problems justifying them, though. In fact, they don't even try unless you count merely repeating their viewpoints or quoting "facts" from some source they like because it already promotes their viewpoint, but they remain amazingly unaware of how little weight that deserves.

They never notice that whatever sources they view as authoritative often aren't and that quoting them is only one way and the least reliable for judging validity. You need to go to primary scientific data sources and use your own or someone else's solid arguments if you want to build a strong case rather than simply quoting so-and-so that such-and-such is true. I don't believe that this sort of conservative even knows how to follow a solid argument. They sure show no evidence of that in their comments.

No, they just read books or use other sources and decide that whomever they choose to believe is an authoritative source. If it's a conservative source, well then "it's got to be reliable" no matter how politically motivated. If it disagrees with their view, no matter how solid and scientifically powerful, it's automatically a "liberal" source. Wow! Then they accuse you of exactly what they're doing. Hard to deal with that. I'd like to see at least some of them do some original thinking about this stuff, but that's as scarce as hens' teeth.
Robert Wendell Added May 31, 2013 - 4:45am
On the safety issue, what do you find more dangerous about hydrogen for the Hydrnol organic hydrogen carrier? It competes with gasoline for energy density and is just as safe. So I don't know why you raise the safety issue in that context. There are also other technologies that involve metal hydrides in the form of pellets that absorb hydrogen and release it with exposure to fuel cell heat. You can light a match to such a pellet and it just burns like a piece of charcoal.
Robert Wendell Added May 31, 2013 - 8:34pm
By the way, the first paragraph you think is fine refers to positive conservatism that doesn't reflexively reject change, knows how to discriminate what needs to change and what doesn't, and uses reliable information and valid reasoning processes to arrive at conclusions and defend positions. Positive conservatism also knows how to point out perceived flaws in opposing arguments instead of merely calling the opposition idiotic and yelling out opposite opinions just as any ignoramus or slightly intelligent chimp can do. The similarity between that manager and human-caused climate change deniers, who frequently reject new technology as a liberal boondoggle no matter how much sense it makes, and who use examples of stupidity that have nothing to do with anything in the article is that they both are stuck in a static, inflexible worldview that refuses to accept reasonable paths of action and tries to bend facts to justify that. You say you don't have anything to do with that manager and then proceed directly to present compelling evidence that you're essentially just like him.
Johnny Fever Added Jun 15, 2013 - 9:28am
My apologies, it was not my intention to leave you hanging for 30 days but it’s difficult to find responses to comments on Writer Beat and I just stumbled across this one.

Simple answer: Not all problems have a solution. But I did offer a solution, the marketplace. Thanks to the demand for energy the marketplace has given us the gift of natural gas. It’s plentiful, local, comes from underground, burns cleaner than all other fossil fuels, etc. Unfortunately, the Government via the EPA is hell bent on ridding ourselves of it.
Robert Wendell Added Jun 16, 2013 - 6:26pm
Where do you get that the government is trying to get rid of natural gas? My understanding has been that it's a major chip in the government's game plan for a long term transition to renewables. Of course, no fossil fuel is renewable no matter how much of it there is. If the simple fact that the government believes that natural gas is only a much needed transition technology instead of an ultimate solution bothers you, in that case why wouldn't you recognize that we have to think long term or eventually we're screwing all people to come. At least that's true unless you're a fundamentalist Christian and believe it doesn't matter because the apocalypse is just around the corner.
Autumn Cote Added Jan 31, 2014 - 10:42am
I'm looking for an article to promote for next week's email blast. Please consider writing something, all I ask is that you do your best to respond to your commenters.  
Mike Haluska Added Jan 31, 2014 - 3:55pm
Bob - you know what the most economical source of hydrogen gas is?  Natural gas (methane) which goes hand in hand with (God forbid) petroleum deposits.  So we still need to continue exploiting the safest, most economical source of energy - fossil fuels.
And please - until somebody provides solid scientific proof of AGW and explains how the could be so WRONG for the past 50 years and yet be trusted with future predictions, excuse if I don't want to overturn the world's economy on a hunch.
Robert Wendell Added Jan 31, 2014 - 10:03pm
Mike, it's only the most economical for the time being. There is a lot of direct solar photoelectrolysis coming online. Your continued insistence that the predictions of scientists have been so wrong for fifty years is hogwash. You have to cherry pick specific scientists that happen to fit your agenda to make that even remotely seem true.
You just believe what you want to believe and to heck with facts. You never did respond intelligently with valid science to any of my scientific arguments regarding AGW, but you did come up with some really absurd attempts, even laughable, then attempted to defend against your obvious scientific naivete with your engineering credentials.
You do just like all the other self-blinded folks who listen to overpaid talking heads who are the propaganda puppets of industrial self-interest who use anti-intellectualism and red baiting to vaccinate you against infection with the truth. It's amazing to me that anyone with enough intelligence to read and write falls for that junk.
When anyone confronts your views with solid facts and clear, valid logic you just repeat what you've been told by your favorite political and pseudo-scientific sources, like the MIT "scientist" who testified for the tobacco industry when all their executives were baldly lying to congress about not spiking cigarettes to make their products more addictive.
You accuse me of religious conviction on AGW, but the science I cite and I both talk in terms of probabilities, which is the only valid way to look at such a complex issue, whether long term climate change or short term weather. Yet you allow zero probability for the reality of AGW. Now that DOES fit the definition of a religious conviction! So let's just let it go, OK? It's no fun arguing with impenetrable, rock-hard skulls. It gets old and it's obviously useless.
Mike Haluska Added Feb 3, 2014 - 9:34am
Bob - your comment:
"Even when they envision what would be necessary to combat human-caused global warming (Anthropogenic Global Warming or AGW)"
Why "combat" something that doesn't exist?  I'll go back to my previous argument:
According to AGW proponents, the concentration of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere has risen from 200 ppm to 400 ppm over the past 20 years.  The amount of CO2 produced by human activity is less than 1%. 
IF going from 200 ppm to 400 ppm didn't wreck the Earth's climate, WHY would dropping it from 400 ppm to 396 ppm (reduction due to COMPLETELY ELIMINATING human produced CO2) have any effect??? 
According to your argument that if something is "possible" we should take action, it is possible that the increased CO2 is preventing another Ice Age and we should INCREASE CO2 output!!!
Robert Wendell Added Feb 8, 2014 - 12:09am
So how do you explain the discrepancy between going from 200 to 400 ppm and a human production of CO(2) of 1%? What is the your source for this ridiculous oxymoron? 
You ask, "Why 'combat' something that doesn't exist?" That is a blatant example of the "begging the question" fallacy.
(http://www.fallacyfiles.org/begquest.html) You really have a problem with valid reasoning, don't you, Mike?
Mike Haluska Added Feb 8, 2014 - 6:08pm
And you have a problem refuting facts!  I am using data provide by AGW proponents!  You can't refute it - so you obfuscate and misdirect. 
Mike Haluska Added Feb 8, 2014 - 6:12pm
"You just believe what you want to believe and to heck with facts. You never did respond intelligently with valid science to any of my scientific arguments regarding AGW"
Bob - you have no scientific arguments - you have a pseudo-religion belief system based on no observable valid science.  There is no need to "cherry pick" when the predictions for the past 50 years are overwhelmingly bad!
Robert Wendell Added Feb 8, 2014 - 7:00pm
Mike, you have to cherry pick like crazy to say that about the last fifty years. Despite your affirmations to the contrary, I gave you a ton of solid scientific arguments that you reliably ignored by merely making unrelated statements that you alleged to support your position. That was instead of doing anything that directly shot down any of my arguments.
Your sources were ridiculously biased and from third-rate scientists, some of whom were not climate scientists, but meteorologists. That latter is quite a different discipline. One of them had testified for the tobacco industry before congress and had obvious financial ties to the energy industry.
Those arguments you rarely did try do directly address you pretended to counter with absurdly ridiculous, unscientific arguments. When I called you on that, you simply resorted to dumping on my credentials and bragging about yours. It's a matter of record for anyone who cares to read them right here on Writer Beat. You just seem to be so totally clueless that you can't even recognize how obvious it is to anyone with genuine scientific knowledge (credentials aside, since they don't mean anything in the absence of real knowledge).
Robert Wendell Added Feb 8, 2014 - 8:09pm
Mike: " I am using data provide by AGW proponents! You can't refute it - so you obfuscate and misdirect."

So give me your sources. A rise from 200 to 400 ppm is not a trivial difference. It has happened in record time according to records that go back hundreds of thousands of years. So you refute that and show me your sources. I've already provided mine elsewhere to no effect whatsoever on your thinking. Show me exactly where I "obfuscate and misdirect". I have a hard time finding where you don't. I'm giving you solid examples of that right now.
Mike: "WHY would dropping it from 400 ppm to 396 ppm (reduction due to COMPLETELY ELIMINATING human produced CO2) have any effect???"
The simple fact is, if you're willing to look, is that CO(2) has a long term record over the last decades of rising exponentially. If we DON'T stop the way we're doing things now, your scenario of simply going down to 396 from 400 ppm is bogus, since that's not the alternative at all. The alternative you propose will get us to 800 in record time if we don't stop. You don't' seem to get it at all that we know roughly how much CO(2) we're putting out and that only 40% of it is staying in the air. The good news is that some of the rest is going into plants and turning back into carbon and oxygen and most of the rest is sequestered by ocean water so it doesn't contribute AGW. So the 400 ppm in the atmosphere is not nearly the whole story, yet it is still warming the climate.

The bad news is that this same, vast majority of the rest going into ocean water is acidifying it to the point that crustaceans and coral reefs are dying off because of the inability to form their shells in such an acid environment. This is EASILY measured, so we have very hard, irrefutable evidence of this. The REALLY bad news is that at a certain threshold, the climate will reach a temperature that releases all the CO(2) the ocean water has sequestered and we have a super feedback loop that screws up the climate big time.
You also said, " ...you have a pseudo-religion belief system based on no observable valid science." I have used the only scientifically valid way to discuss this subject by always putting everything in terms of high probability and good versus bad bets given the odds and the highly negative consequences if AGW is real. This is called expected value in statistics and game theory. Your side of the argument has a very highly negative expected value even if the odds you're right were even. They're 95% against you according to strong scientific evidence.

I've gone to great lengths to show you that, using valid arguments and strong sources. You've done nothing of the kind. You call my position pseudo-scientific and a religious conviction, yet you swear the odds you're wrong are zero. What could qualify more for a religious conviction than that? You have used a plethora of demonstrably invalid logic and I've called you on it. You've been unable to do that with mine despite your baseless assertions to the contrary, and that's all they are. I show you yours, tell you why they're invalid, and give you references that document their invalidity. I'm not even talking about facts here. I'm talking about blatant, in-your-face logical fallacies.

I rest my case based on your own testimony. No one can reasonably argue that assigning zero probability to the other side of an argument in such a complex scenario is not a religious conviction. Yet you accuse me of that. Absurd on its face!
Mike Haluska Added Feb 9, 2014 - 1:32pm
Back when it was 200, you guys were screaming it will reach 400 and the world will end.  Now you claim it may hit 800 (based on nothing more than what you think) if and when it ever does and NOTHING HAPPENS you will no doubt scream that "wait until it hits 1,600 and then you'll see"!!!
We're still NOT IMPRESSED with any predictions like Al Gore's 5 year old prediction that the Polar Ice Caps would be melted by today or any other ridiculous predictions.  If a conservative group had the same forecasting record you would dismiss them out of hand.
Robert Wendell Added Feb 9, 2014 - 2:48pm
Mike: "Back when it was 200, you guys were screaming it will reach 400..."
So who are "you guys"? There has historically been a great deal of disagreement on the issue if AGW until roughly the last decade to the point that currently the consensus is around 97%+. The reason for this is the evidence is becoming increasingly irrefutable. Your arguments about consensus and bad calls are based on ignoring this simple reality. There have been some all along who were right on track. You cherry pick around them and call the rest "you guys", meaning anyone who thinks the probability is high that AGW is real and dangerous.
You, on the other hand allow zero probability that AGW is real and then absurdly accuse the other side of a religious conviction of their positions. What kind of "rational" is that? I notice you never address that. If that's not hypocrisy, how do you define it?
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 10:59am

By John Coleman


it is the greatest scam in history. I am amazed, appalled and highly offended by it. Global Warming; It is a SCAM.

Some dastardly scientists with environmental and political motives manipulated long term scientific data back in the late 1990's to create an allusion of rapid global warming. Other scientists of the same environmental wacko type jumped into the circle to support and broaden the "research" to further enhance the totally slanted, bogus global warming claims. Their friends in government steered huge research grants their way to keep the movement going. Soon they claimed to be a consensus.

Environmental extremist, notable politicians among them then teamed up with movie, media and other liberal, environmentalist journalists to create this wild "scientific" scenario of the civilization threatening environmental consequences from Global Warming unless we adhere to their radical agenda.

Now their ridicules manipulated science has been accepted as fact and become a cornerstone issue for CNN, CBS, NBC, the Democratic Political Party, the Governor of California, school teachers and, in many cases, well informed but very gullible environmental conscientious citizens. Only one reporter at ABC has been allowed to counter the Global Warming frenzy with one 15 minutes documentary segment.

I do not oppose environmentalism. I do not oppose the political positions of either party.

However, Global Warming, i.e. Climate Change, is not about environmentalism or politics. It is not a religion. It is not something you "believe in." It is science; the science of meteorology. This is my field of life-long expertise. And I am telling you Global Warming is a nonevent, a manufactured crisis and a total scam. I say this knowing you probably won't believe me, a mere TV weatherman, challenging a Nobel Prize, Academy Award and Emmy Award winning former Vice President of United States. So be it.

I suspect you might like to say to me, "John, look the research that supports the case for global warming was done by research scientists; people with PH D's in Meteorology. They are employed by major universities and important research institutions. Their work has been reviewed by other scientists with PH D's. They have to know a lot more about it than you do. Come on, John, get with it. The experts say our pollution has created an strong and increasing greenhouse effect and a rapid, out of control global warming is underway that will sky rocket temperatures, destroy agriculture, melt the ice caps, flood the coastlines and end life as we know it. How can you dissent from this crisis? You must be a bit nutty.

Allow me, please, to explain how I think this all came about. Our universities have become somewhat isolated from the rest of us. There is a culture and attitudes and values and pressures on campus that are very different. I know this group well. My father and my older brother were both PHD-University types. I was raised in the university culture. Any person who spends a decade at a university obtaining a PHD in Meteorology and become a research scientist, more likely than not, becomes a part of that single minded culture. They all look askance at the rest of us, certain of their superiority. They respect government and disrespect business, particularly big business. They are environmentalists above all else.

And, there is something else. These scientists know that if they do research and results are in no way alarming, their research will gather dust on the shelf and their research careers will languish. But if they do research that sounds alarms, they will become well known and respected and receive scholarly awards and, very importantly, more research dollars will come flooding their way.

So when these researchers did climate change studies in the late 90's they were eager to produce findings that would be important and be widely noticed and trigger more research funding. It was easy for them to manipulate the data to come up with the results they wanted to make headlines and at the same time drive their environmental agendas. Then their like minded PHD colleagues reviewed their work and hastened to endorse it without question.

There were a few who didn't fit the mold. They did ask questions and raised objections. They did research with contradictory results. The environmental elitists berated them brushed their studies aside.

I have learned since the Ice Age is coming scare in the 1970's to always be a skeptic about research. In the case of global warming, I didn't accept media accounts. Instead I read dozens of the scientific papers. I have talked with numerous scientists. I have studied. I have thought about it. I know I am correct when I assure you there is no run away climate change. The impact
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 11:07am
The following group of scientists, meteorologists and other professionals issued a challenge to an open, honest debate on AGW back in 2007.  Not a SINGLE AGW "scientist" agreed to meet:

Within the spirit of the first amendment, the following broadcast and private meteorologists support an objective consideration and an earnest and open discussion of all aspects of climate change.
Michael E. Adams, Ph.D, Senior Principal Scientist, General Dynamics Information Technology  David Aldrich, Meteorologist, Fox 29 WTXF Philadelphia  Randy Baker, Aviation Meteorologist, KY William Bauman, Ph.D. Program Manager/Meteorologist ENSCO Justin Berk, Meteorologist, ABC2 (WMAR), Baltimore Andre Bernier, Meteorologist, WJW-TV, Cleveland, OH Sally Bernier, Meteorologist, WJW-TV, Cleveland, OH Edwin X Berry, Ph.D., CCM, Atmospheric Physics, U of Nevada, 1965 Kim R. Blackburn, Geologist, Kentucky Geological Survey Karl Bohnak, Chief On-Camera Meteorologist and author, WLUC-TV, Marquette, MI Bob Breck, Chief Meteorologist FOX 8, New Orleans Mark Breen, Senior Meteorologist, Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium, St. Johnsbury, VT Tom Chisholm, Chief Meteorologist, WMTW ABC Channel 8 Portland, ME  Jim Clarke, Meteorologist, WZVN-TV, ABC-7, Fort Myers, FL Anthony J. Colby, Meteorologist, WKYC-TV 3 John Coleman, Chief Meteorologist, KUSI-TV-9. San Diego and founder of The Weather Channel Bob Copeland, MS Meteorology MIT, 35 years on-air Meteorologist, Boston – WBZ-TV, WHDH-TV, WCVB-TV,  Consulting Meteorologist, Littleton, NH Paul Cousins, Managing Director, AtmosForecast, Portland, ME Dr Tony Cowell, Biologist and Statistician. University of Lincoln, UK  Bob Durrenberger, Past President, American Association of State Climatologists Keith Eichner, Private Meteorologist, TV Meteorologist, Rochester, NY Terry Eliasen, Meteorologist/Executive Weather Producer, WBZ-TV, Boston, MA Gary England, Chief Meteorologist KWTV, Oklahoma City, OK Gordon J. Fulks, Ph.D., Physicist, Gordon Fulks and Asssociates. La Center, WA  Arlo Gambell, CCM, Aviation Meteorologist, Nashua, NH John Ghiorse Meteorologist NBC10, Providence, RI (since 1968) Mel Goldstein, Ph.D., Chief Meteorologist, New Haven, CT Eugenio Hackbart, Chief Meteorologist, MetSul Meteorologia Weather Center, Sao Leopoldo, Brazil  Jeff Halblaub, Meteorologist, Byron Center, MI Ross Hayes, former CNN Weather Producer, NASA Balloon Facility Art Horn, Meteorologist, The “Art” of Weather. Manchester CT Craig James, retired TV meteorologist, WOOD-TV, Grand Rapid, MI  John W. Jenson, Ph.D., Professor at Environmental Geology, University of Guam Tim Kelley, Meteorologist, NECN, Boston, MA Kevin Lemanowicz, Chief Meteorologist, Fox 25, Boston, MA Jerry Lettre, Senior Meteorologist, WSI, Andover, MA Peter McGurk, Senior Meteorologist, WSI, Andover, MA Bill Meck, Chief Meteorologist, WLEX-TV, Lexington, KY Kirk Melhuish, AMS/NWA, WSB Meteorologist, Atlanta, GA Dennis Miller, Former Senior Meteorologist/Programmer, WSI Nick Morganelli, Free-Lance Meteorologist NECN, WFSB Steven Nogueira, NWS Senior Meteorologist  Paul Nuttall, Political Adviser to the IND/DEM Group in the European Parliament, UKIP Party, UK Ben Papandreau, Senior Meteorologist, Andover, MA Christopher Plonka, Major, Meteorologist, USAF  Jason Russell, Freelance TV Meteorologist, Albany NY, City Councilor, Westfield, MA Scott Sabol, Morning Meteorologist at WJW FOX 8 in Cleveland Terry Safford, Private Meteorologist. Lt. Col. USAF Bruce Schwoegler, Meteorologist, Chief Technology Officer, MySky.com  Robert Shipton, MA in Geography from Wayne State University, retired from Environmental Testing Lab Hajo Smit, former climate scientist, meteorologist, journalist, Netherlands James R. Stalker, Ph.D., President, RESPR, Inc., Las Cruces, NM Bill Steffen, Meteorologist, WOOD-TV, Grand Rapids, MI Herb Stevens, The Skiing Weatherman, Grass Roots Weather, North Kingston, RI Dennis Stewart, Meteorologist, Account Executive, AWS Brad Sussman, Meteorologist, FOX 8 Cleveland Bill Wadford, Member Randy Washburn, BS Physics, 1982, Author of Upcoming Book on Climate Joe West, Retired United Airlines Pilot and Weather Enthusiast Chuck F. Wiese, President, Weatherwise, Inc., Portland, OR Kevin Williams, Chief Meteorologist, WHEC Rochester, NY 

© 2007-08 ICECAP, all rights reserved

Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 11:10am
As I said many times previously, there is no research grant money available for those who predict that no imminent danger is present.  Take away the research grants, carbon tax and international wealth transfer and this nonsense will collapse in 24 hours as they move on to the "next crisis".
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 11:19am
If you get your news from the likes of The Huffington Post and the New York Times here are some stories about Global Warming that occurred in 2013 that you probably never heard of.
1. Antarctic Global Warming Expedition Ship Trapped in Sea Ice. You may have heard about the Russian vessel trapped 100 miles away from land in 10 feet thick ice in Antarctica and how three ice breakers have failed to rescue it. What you may not have heard is this ship is filled with Climate Scientists studying Global Warming. They are comparing data from 100 years ago when there was no sea ice in the same location.
2. Yachts Trapped in Sea Ice in the Arctic Last Summer. You probably didn’t hear about all the yachts, sailboats, rowboats, and kayaks that got trapped by sea ice while trying to sail the fabled Northwest Passage. They were promised an ice free passage.
3. Global Sea Ice at Record Levels. Al Gore and John Kerry 5 years ago predicted that 2013 would be ice free in the arctic. You probably haven’t heard that the exact opposite came true. 2013 is currently at the second highest volume of sea ice ever recorded and will probably break the all time record before the season is over.
4. Half of Meteorologists Don’t Believe in Global Warming. Nearly half of meteorologists and atmospheric science experts don’t believe that human activities are the driving force behind global warming, according to a survey by the American Meteorological Society.
5. Only 75 “Climate Scientists” Believe in Global Warming. You probably have heard ad nauseum that 97% percent of “Climate Scientists” believe in global warming. That stat was based on a study which counted only 75 of 77 “Climate Scientists”. Compared to the over 31,000 scientists who have signed a petition saying they don’t believe in Global Warming. That’s only 2.3 in 1,000 or .23% of scientists that actually believe in Global Warming.
6. NASA caught fudging historical temps to make it look like the globe is warming. By massively cooling the past in their recent graphs, NASA has exaggerated the amount of warming they report by nearly twice as much as they did 13 years ago.
7. Polar Bar Population at Record Levels. Since we’ve been keeping count the Polar Bear population is estimated at a record high of 20k to 25k. 5,000 are expected to be born around the New Year in Russia alone.
8. Obama Allows Wind Farms to Kill Eagles Without Penalties. Over 50 years ago the green movement started with the book “Silent Spring” which alleged that DDT was killing the Bald Eagle. Now we have come full circle by allowing wind power companies to kill eagles without penalty because it’s “good for the planet”.
9. The Oceans Aren’t Rising. Remember in 2009 when the officials of the Maldives held a press conference under water to show that their islands were sinking because of global warming. Well a new study done in 2013 shows that there is nothing to worry about.
10. 2013 Was The Least Extreme U.S. Weather Year Ever. 2013 shatters the record for fewest U.S. tornadoes, 15% lower than previous record. 2013 also had the fewest U.S. forest fires since 1984.
11. No Global Warming For Over 17 Years. The RSS monthly global mean lower-troposphere temperature anomalies for Nov
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 11:20am
After my last few posts if your "Bullshit Alarm" isn't pegged to max about the validity of AGW it needs replacement.
Robert Wendell Added Feb 10, 2014 - 12:45pm
Mike: "After my last few posts if your 'Bullshit Alarm' isn't pegged to max ab-out the validity of AGW it needs replacement."
It is indeed pegged, but only by your last post, Mike. For example, there aren't 31,000 climate scientists in the entire solar system. I've seen that source, since you referred me to it long ago, and I debunked it thoroughly then. Your incredibly naive acceptance of that kind of junk "science" is testimony enough that you, like most of the wrong kind of conservative "thinkers", are far too prone to take ridiculously insufficient evidence as "proof" of your position. Some of those "scientists" might as well have been chiropractors (nothing against chiropractors, but they're not climate scientists). The rescue mission near Antarctica is another case in point of your absurd cherry picking of weather events (not much to do with climate science as you have previously pointed out) to "prove" your points. Meteorologists don't necessarily research climate science (hardly any do), since weather is short term and climate science is long term and a fundamentally and qualitatively different discipline. I could keep going, but what's the use?  In light of this last question, see below:
"A man convinced against his will
Is of the same opinion still."
- Source Unkown
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 1:24pm
I just made this one up:
"A man convinced "a priori"
 will believe almost any story"
Not bad eh???
Mike Haluska Added Feb 10, 2014 - 1:31pm
No qualified scientists against AGW???
Check this out:
Outlined below are the numbers of Petition Project signatories, subdivided by educational specialties. These have been combined, as indicated, into seven categories.
1. Atmospheric, environmental, and Earth sciences includes 3,805 scientists trained in specialties directly related to the physical environment of the Earth and the past and current phenomena that affect that environment.
2. Computer and  mathematical sciences includes        935 scientists trained in computer and mathematical methods. Since the human-caused global warming hypothesis rests entirely upon mathematical computer projections and not upon experimental observations, these sciences are especially important in evaluating this hypothesis.    
3. Physics and  aerospace sciences include        5,812 scientists trained in the fundamental physical and molecular properties of gases, liquids, and solids, which are essential to understanding the physical properties of the atmosphere and Earth.
4. Chemistry includes 4,822 scientists trained in the molecular interactions and behaviors of the substances of which the atmosphere and Earth are composed.
5. Biology and  agriculture includes        2,965        scientists trained in the functional and  environmental requirements of         living things on the Earth.
6. Medicine includes 3,046            scientists trained in the functional and environmental requirements of          human beings on the Earth.
7. Engineering and general science includes 10,102        scientists trained primarily in the many engineering specialties         required to maintain modern civilization and the  prosperity required         for all human actions, including environmental programs.
Robert Wendell Added Feb 10, 2014 - 8:16pm
Mike: "A man convinced "a priori"
 will believe almost any story"
Nope, not bad at all. Too bad is applies so well to you. You have never addressed the simple truth that real scientists talk only in the appropriate terms of probabilities and not in absolutes about something as complex as climate change. Yet you give it zero probability of AGW being real. This is the exactly the kind of religious conviction of which you accuse others, including me, and this poem is a case in point. So you explain to all of us here, please, exactly how this asymmetry in your expression of conviction justifies your reversal of who is guilty of religious conviction. You have never confronted this glaring contradiction head on. It should be clear to any thinking person that it is in principle unjustifiable. Could that be the reason you have failed to address it as you have so many other direct contradictions and scientific boo-boos on your part? Your list means nothing. I quoted a study based on peer-reviewed scientific articles rather than a hodge-podge of mere opinions from people in tenuously related disciplines you have to work so hard to defend. If you can't tell the difference in credibility, it just confirms the synonyms that go with your brand of conservativism:
Convention, conformity, unwillingness to accept or adapt to change or truth that fails to fit the world view with which your preferred social environment has indoctrinated you, etc.
Mike Haluska Added Feb 11, 2014 - 7:20am
Bob - my view involves my knowledge, experience and common sense.  There are many things that affect the Earth's temperature - CO2 may or may not be one of them.  In comparison to the other factors, its potential contribution is so miniscule as to be insignificant. 
It's like arriving at the scene of a major building fire and after going thru the remains you find 40,000 bbls of explosive fuel, faulty electrical wiring, leaking natural gas lines and a cigarette butt 100 yards from the site.  Would you believe the fire department if they blamed the fire on the cigarette butt found 100 yards away? 
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 11:54am
Mike, I have gone to great lengths to show you, backed up with strong scientific facts, that this argument does not apply here. There are hundreds of physical cases in which adding a miniscule amount of some catalyst or whatever factor in other, non-chemical contexts will drastically affect the outcome. A simple example, taking my cue from yours, is that a single cigarette butt in the wrong place can burn thousands of acres of forest. Such analogies simply don't apply as if they were general case explanations for anything.
Chaos theory famously implies that a butterfly in Mexico can cause a tornado in Texas. So it is undeniable that extremely small changes can precipitate huge consequences in the outcome. Does that mean that such small changes always make huge changes in outcome? No, absolutely not! So any such overly generalized arguments for or against small changes causing huge results are invalid right out of the gate, yet you keep repeating them ad nauseum.
I've given you information that explicitly applies to atmospheric CO(2). In your rare attempts at actual counterarguments, in contrast with the kind of invalid and completely irrelevant shotgun blasts you just used, you have denied well established scientific principles of the most elementary kind adorned with blatant logical fallacies of every description. I call you on them and back up my responses with links to scientific principles, data, and catalogs of logical fallacies, but all to no avail.
This has almost no effect on your monologues whatsoever. They are indeed virtual monologues, since they take into account practically nothing of what I've said while I specifically address pretty much everything you say and very directly so. You still haven't even addressed your assignment of zero probability that AGW could be real and the equivalence of that to a religious conviction while you accuse those like me of religious conviction despite our only speaking in terms of probabilities and strongly negative expected value. So until you address that, this discussion is ended. I'm just tired of your intellectual subterfuge and evasive replies. Your "common sense" is all too common, yes, common indeed.
Mike Haluska Added Feb 11, 2014 - 12:51pm
Which speaks louder?
The abysmal accuracy of AGW forecasters over the past 40 years .....
or .....
The miniscule probability that although AGW has been wrong for 40 years that "things will change"???
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 1:37pm
I've already thoroughly addressed that question multiple times. Now quit avoiding this issue:
assigning zero probability to AGW = religious conviction
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 1:53pm
By the way, "Which speaks louder, the abysmal accuracy....or the miniscule probability that although AGW has been wrong for 40 years that "things will change???" is a fallacy called loaded question. It's full of implied assumptions that are completely invalid for reasons I've already pointed out in comments to this same article and others in which you've participated, but you never address that. You just skate around it. I see no reason to repeat what these assumptions are and why they're invalid for the umpteenth time just because you refuse to either address my counterarguments or admit that your assumptions are baseless.
Mike Haluska Added Feb 11, 2014 - 2:24pm
Bob -
Why deal in probabilities when the actual, historical physical evidence overwhelmingly says AGW is bullshit?  How far off does a forecast made 5 years ago 
"In 5 years the Polar Ice Caps will have melted and the sea level will rise 20 feet"  
have to be before you start to think maybe these people have another agenda???
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 3:31pm
Who said that? Gore? You're cherry picking again. You stop the bull, man! That's a ridiculous argument right on its face! Why the heck do you fail to recognize that you perpetually indulge in absurd logical fallacies and when I point them out, you just skate right around them with some other cow poop (my favorite euphemism for BS).
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 4:02pm
Think a little, just a little, for once, man! How does some boob making such a bold prediction and being totally wrong about even begin to prove that "AGW is bullshit"? Can you please explain the "logic" behind your absurd conclusion that it does?
Mike Haluska Added Feb 11, 2014 - 5:11pm
That "boob" is the leader of the "climate change" movement!  And he is just one of many who have been making ridiculous predictions for the past 40 years!  You need to stop believing every "humans are the cause of (animal extinctions, acid oceans, garbage oceans, etc.) whatever makes you feel righteous and superior to the rest of the human race.
Robert Wendell Added Feb 11, 2014 - 6:48pm
There is no leader of the "climate change movement" and there is no "climate change movement". Your arguments are irrational and  your positions purely political and utterly unscientific.
Mike Haluska Added Feb 14, 2014 - 11:08am
Just published a new post!
The "Founding Fathers" of AGW
check it out 
Robert Wendell Added Apr 18, 2014 - 5:30pm
Johnny Fever, I think you mean drivel instead of dribble. The dictionary definition of drivel is:
silly nonsense.
"don't talk such drivel!"
nonsensetwaddleclaptrapbalderdashgibberishrubbishmumbo jumbogarbage

Dribble is defined this way:
a thin stream of liquid; a trickle, "a dribble of blood"
synonyms: trickledripdribletstreamdrizzle