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Category — Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Loren Steffy (Houston Chronicle) to Pew Environmental Group: "So What?" About China’s Renewable Energy Policy

“Instead of the fear-baiting warnings that the U.S. is being outspent on renewables [by China], a better question might be: what are we getting for our money?”

- Loren Steffy, “Scrubbing the Data on Clean Energy Investment,” Houston Chronicle, March 27, 2010.

Loren Steffy is the most read and respected voice at the Houston Chronicle on business and related policy issues, the paper’s editorial board notwithstanding. And on energy, he smells a rat with the ‘clean energy’ mantra that comes on high.

Steffy has documented the role of Enron in the government-created Texas wind power boom. He deconstructed the all pain-no gain nature of the House-passed Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill before the rest of the country caught on. And most recently, he has called out the non sequitur of a new study, “Who’s Winning the Clean Energy Race,” recently released by the Pew Charitable Trusts via the Pew Environmental Group.

The Pew study tries to shame the U.S. (us) into throwing good money after bad by further subsidizing uneconomic, unreliable wind and solar–the very energies that the marketplace cannot support without the heavy hand of government. The exception is off-grid solar, indicating that renewables are more of a bridge fuel to nonrenewables than the other way around.

Some Hard Questions

The Pew Environmental Group is dedicated to one-sided climate alarmism. It is thus part of a one-two punch with the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, which has been of long interest here at MasterResource.

The Pew Center has admitted that “settled science” is a misnomer in the physical-science climate debate. But they have never commissioned a study critical of climate alarmism despite momentum toward the “skeptics” side in recent years.  Eileen Claussen, the head of the Pew Center, has recognized that binding targets are a nonstarter in the developing world. (Adaptation, anyone?)

But with the bits of good here and there come something much different–such as the Pew Charitable Trusts. Here are some questions I have to add’s to those of Loren Steffy (reprinted below). [Read more →]

April 1, 2010   10 Comments

What Does the Last Decade Tell Us about Global Warming? (Hint: the ‘skeptics' have the momentum)

“Worldwide temperatures haven’t risen much in the past decade…. If you are a climate-change activist pointing to year after year of mounting climate crises, you might want to rethink your approach.”

- Richard Kerr, Science, May 2, 2008.

There has been a flurry of activity in recent weeks in the discussion as to the significance (scientific, political, social) of the evolution of the global average surface temperature during the past 10 years or so.

For those of you who don’t know, the surface temperature of the globe, as a whole, has not warmed-up by anyone’s calculation since at least the turn of the century (January 2001) and depending on your dataset and statistical technique of choice, perhaps as far back as January 1997. And all of this non-warming occurred over a period of time during which the global emissions of CO2 increased faster than ever before (thanks primarily to China). In fact, anthropogenic greenhouse-gas forcing is about 5 percent greater now than a decade ago (about 16 parts per million).

To many folks who have, for years, been fed a constant course of “the-world-is-heating-up-faster-than-ever-before-and-you-are-the-cause,” 9 to 12 years of no warming at all seems to indicate that something is amiss with this mantra.

This was reflected in a Gallup Poll last spring, which found the highest percentage yet of people who think that “global warming” is being “exaggerated.” And this number has been growing.

IPCC “Consensus” and Unwarming

The growth in climate realism (i.e., a realization that alarmists are overplaying the probable impact of CO2 emissions) has most certainly been sparked by the fact that the rate of the earth’s temperature rise has been slowing rather than accelerating, contrary to general IPCC conclusions. This development, naturally, plays into the political debate about (at the 11th hour if not midnight) “mitigating” potential climate change through carbon dioxide emissions reductions. [Read more →]

September 28, 2009   13 Comments

"Dirty" Waxman-Markey: How Small Can Small Get?

“Binding emissions targets for the developing nations are out of the question.”

- Eileen Claussen, Pew Center on Global Climate Change, March 2009

As I demonstrated in my analyses last week (here and here), the impact on global temperatures of U.S. actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions pursuant to the Waxman-Markey climate bill (which called for a whopping 83% reduction by 2050) was close to nil. Or more precisely, about 0.05°C (0.09°F) by the year 2050, expanding to maybe 0.1°C–0.2°C by the end of the century, depending on, among other things, which future emissions course is assumed as the baseline.

And as the negotiations continue into the specific details of the proposed legislation, the emission reduction schedule has begun to slip—and so too does the potential climate impact.

So what is the temperature impact of a dirty Waxman-Markey bill versus the “clean” bill’s 0.05°C/0.09°F? (Hint: divide by half and even half again.) [Read more →]

May 11, 2009   7 Comments

Pew Center Realism Towards 'Kyoto II': Game, Set, Match Adaptation?

“I can find virtually no one—in government, in the environmental community, in business or in the press—who thinks that the Kyoto Protocol has even the proverbial snowball’s chance in hell of coming into effect in anything approaching its current form.  This is every bit as true internationally as it is in the United States.”

- Paul Portney [then president: Resources for the Future], “The Joy of Flexibility: U.S. Climate Policy in the Next Decade,” Keynote Address, Energy Information Administration Annual Outlook Conference, March 22, 1999, mimeo, p. 2.

Joe Romm at Climate Progress is increasingly fighting his own flank as a number of Left environmentalists are moderating their climate views in response to scientific and political realities. His enemies list grows and grows, the latest being Newsweek’s Jacob Weisberg, whom Romm challenges (and more!) for seriously considering Freeman Dyson’s conclusion that climate alarmism is exaggerated.

Dr. Romm is also upset at Eileen Claussen, president of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, who said recently: “Binding targets for the developing nations is [sic] out of the question.” To which Dr. Romm posted [Read more →]

April 8, 2009   1 Comment

Climate Alarmism Bullying: L'affaire Schmidt (new) … L'affaire Wigley (old)

Chris Horner’s Red Hot Lies: How Global Warming Alarmists Use Threats, Fraud, and Deception to Keep You Misinformed (Regnery, 2008) documents a number of instances of questionable, peculiar, and even reprehensible behavior by climate alarmists toward their critics.

And the problem continues. [Read more →]

February 6, 2009   6 Comments

Is the Pew Center on Global Climate Change Open to Non-alarmist Science?

The Pew Center on Global Climate Change is premised on the notion that climate science is settled and we must move toward major, open-ended government intervention with energy and the economy. “Climate change poses an extraordinary challenge that demands immediate action,” begins the Science Impacts page on the Pew Center’s website.

Thus I was surprised to read this from a Pew representative in a debate over climate-change science hosted recently by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. As debate participant Lawrence Solomon reported the Financial Post:

“I really detest phrases like the science is settled,” asserted Dr. Jay Gulledge, a climate specialist at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change in his opening statement. “To characterize myself and the Pew Center as viewing the science as settled is a bit of a red herring.”

It is encouraging to see the Pew Center debate climate alarmism–and none too soon given recent developments.  As Chip Knappenberger shows in a post today, scary alarmist scenarios that have driven Pew since its founding in 1998 (the year global temperature peaked according to some records) are becoming less and less plausible.

January 7, 2009   No Comments