21.17 Fake Climate Alarms
The release of the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has triggered an explosion of bad news stories about the impending disasters that will be caused by global warming.
The Critical Issue is that fake news is circulating regardless of the best available evidence.
Much of the bad news comes from the 41 page Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis , Summary for Policymakers that is released for the benefit of politicians and journalists who are too busy to read the report.
Frequently the alarming news in the summary is contradicted by the scientific papers in the 4000 pages of the main report
Some of the bad news is not even in the summary, like the widely reported “Code
21.03 Australia is Probably a Carbon Sink
Purpose. To pose the question, do we need to pursue “net zero” if we are already a carbon sink?
Background. According to the Climate Council “Net zero emissions refers to achieving an overall balance between greenhouse gas emissions produced and greenhouse gas emissions taken out of the atmosphere.”
Proposal. It is time for the Government to stop playing the “net zero” game for two reasons.
- Australia is probably already a carbon sink.
- The push to eliminate fossil fuels in favour of RE is not sustainable with the storage technology that is available at present or in the near future.
By comparing Australia’s annual CO2 absorption with the total Australian emissions, we may conclude
21.16 The Failure of RE in Europe
To signal the failed energy policies of the UK and Europe.
Currently the UK House of Lords is conducting an inquiry into the cost of Net Zero.
The Critical Issue
John Constable of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) has questioned the UK Government’s cost of achieving Net Zero, claiming that is significantly underestimated, citing former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Lawson’s suggestion that the cost will be 2 to 3 times the estimate of 1.4 trillion pounds.
Constable confirmed that the GWPF is currently undertaking a detailed analysis of the Government’s calculations and he noted that many of the assumptions are not supported by empirical evidence and indeed fall well short of the
21.15 The Impossible Task of the Green Energy Transition with Existing Technology
Background. The Energy Security Board is preparing recommendations for market reforms to make the green energy transition as quickly as possible
The Problem. The fundamental problem is the gap in supply of wind and solar power on windless nights. Very high levels of installed RE capacity provide no power in the absence of wind and sun.
Windless nights are the limiting factor in the process, in the same way that a chain is only as strong as the weakest link and the flood protection wall is only as effective as the lowest point. For information on the depth and duration of wind droughts see note 20.2
21.14 The False Claims about Net Zero Progress Overseas
Purpose: To explain that Australia cannot be accused of underperforming in the quest for net zero.
Background. When overseas national leaders make verbal commitments to move towards net zero, many commentators think that this means we are making progress.
Almost the only evidence of progress is the statements themselves.
Countries world-wide are failing to live up to their self-imposed obligations under the Paris agreement – where the goals are often nominal – let alone the tougher requirement of net zero.
Not everyone is convinced that we need to be alarmed about CO2 emissions and that is a topic for another note. This note is about the difference between the alarm that is expressed and the actions, or lack of actions, that