Eyes Wide Shut: Media Blind To Facts As The Climate Circus Rolls On
Journalists who have followed the United Nations’ torturous path toward a global climate change deal have known for years its real bottom line is a wealth transfer from the First World to poorer nations.
Political manipulation of science by the UN was discussed in this column on October 23. [emphasis, links added]
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s AR6 report, released before last year’s Glasgow COP26, actually presented less scary scenarios than AR5 but was sold by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, a former Socialist Party Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002, as “code red for the planet”.
This column has long argued forecasts of imminent climate emergencies are not supported by the IPCC’s assessment reports and are about using fear to create political and media consensus.
It all looks ever more silly as countries are urged at COP each year to make ever earlier commitments to net zero emissions of CO2 and each year the world burns ever more fossil fuels.
It should be obvious to all but the most naive catastrophist journalists that national leaders, presiding over a 6 percent rise in global emissions this past year, don’t actually believe in an imminent emergency.
Nor will many national leaders fall for the reparations line that is being repackaged as “loss and damage” payments at this year’s COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.
Even former Tory PM Boris Johnson, who risked his prime ministership and his country’s economic security in the name of climate action, has said the UK does not have the financial resources to pay reparations to low-income countries affected by climate change, according to a report in the London Financial Times on November 7.
But there’s a better reason for skepticism about “loss and damage”. The Daily Telegraph in London the same day reported:
“China has emitted more carbon dioxide over the past eight years than the UK has since the start of the industrial revolution. Between 1750 and 2020, the UK emitted 78 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide … compared with China’s emissions of 80 billion tonnes since 2013.”
This newspaper’s environment editor Graham Lloyd described the real UN climate agenda in 2011 when reporting that year’s COP17 in Durban, South Africa, ignominiously dubbed “Flop 17”.
Lloyd wrote that much of the Durban conference looked like “an exercise in extravagant foreplay with a very messy ending” until the situation was rescued by a commitment from developed countries for a $US100bn a year fund “to finance mitigation and adaptation in the developing world”.
Nothing much has come of that; hence the focus on Egypt. Most journalists, especially those at the ABC and Guardian Australia, refuse to call all this out for the diplomatic pantomime it is.
Yet the general public is starting to understand fossil fuels are not being abandoned in most countries and the UN’s preferred power sources – wind and solar power – are not proving cheap or reliable.
RN Breakfast host Patricia Karvelas seemed surprised by the point former Energy Security Board chair Kerry Schott made during an on-air interview last Monday morning.
Karvelas wanted to discuss Schott’s proposed appointment by Grok Ventures’ Mike Cannon-Brookes to the board of AGL, which Cannon-Brookes hopes to wean off fossil fuels earlier than present management plans.
Asked by Karvelas to comment on a warning the previous week by AGL chair Patricia McKenzie that closing all the company’s generators early would destroy the reliability of the electricity grid because replacement capacity cannot be built in time, Schott said: “Well, I think it may not be possible but I think we’ve got to try.”
This column, looking at Cannon-Brookes’s bid for AGL at the time, interviewed Schott last February. She said intermittent wind and solar could only be firmed by building thousands of kilometers of new poles and wires across the continent so power could be fed to major population centers from wherever the sun was shining and the wind blowing.
That network infrastructure would need to be backed up by billions of dollars of new pumped hydro projects because batteries only harmonize the network and cannot yet store power for long periods.
It’s time journalists reported what is really happening. Copenhagen Consensus president Bjorn Lomborg in this newspaper on October 1 wrote:
“Even the Biden administration expects the world in 2050 to be dependent on fossil fuels for 70 percent of energy.
“Rich countries are showcasing the policies to avoid. Germany is on track to spend more than $US500bn ($A770bn) on climate policies (per year) by 2025, yet has managed to reduce fossil fuel dependency from 84 percent in 2000 to only 77 percent today.”
Wind and solar account for about 10 percent of global power supply despite global investment of about $US1 trillion in such renewables every year.
So what does the future hold for the climate and for the business of climate reporting? In the digital age, it is a business strategy aimed at securing clicks from vulnerable young media consumers who have not seen and read all the doomsday scenarios for 30 years and understood they never arrive.
For the real climate, warming oceans will increase evaporation and rainfall, but the IPCC is clear no single weather event can be attributed directly to climate change.
Tropical storm data shows cyclones and hurricanes are becoming less frequent in the Pacific and Atlantic. Some evidence suggests such storms may be becoming more powerful.
Weather patterns such as this country’s east coast La Nina since 2020 will come occasionally but always have done. The La Nina events from 1954-56 and 2010-12 killed more in floods than this La Nina.
The global temperature sits about 1.2C above the pre-industrial era, which also coincided with the [end of] the Little Ice Age.
Evidence suggests temperatures were higher during the Medieval Warming and the Roman Warming. The latest research suggests the climate is less sensitive to CO2 than previously thought. Media consumers seldom see these facts.
The world will need to build for resilience, but no serious scientist expects a climate emergency by 2030: the IPCC has essentially abandoned the scam RCP8.5 warming scenario upon which that scare campaign was based.
Coal and gas will continue to be burned in advanced countries, and we will continue to export both because our fuels are cleaner than those extracted elsewhere, but Australia will lose almost all of its domestic manufacturing industry, which will move to countries with lower emissions standards as we drive towards more renewable, less reliable power.
The political right here will be disappointed because Australia will never go down the nuclear path, even though it should. But Australia will continue to export uranium to countries that see the obvious benefits of clean, emissions-free, baseload power.
Finally, while Australia will most likely pay climate bribes to Pacific Islands, the public will eventually find out what the ABC Fact Check unit confirmed in December 2018: most island nations in the Pacific are growing rather than shrinking.
Don’t expect ABC reporters to admit that or to challenge Pacific Island leaders complaining about CO2 but taking Chinese money when China is the biggest contributor to global emissions.
Read more at The Australian
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