Regular as clockwork now, within days or weeks of an extreme weather event, be it flooding, heatwave or devastating storm, the climate crisis hypesters sell it to the public as the latest ‘evidence’ of their entirely mythical man-made ‘climate emergency’ whose solution requires a very illiberal dose of global communism. The Pakistan floods are no exception and World Weather Attribution has rushed out an analysis, which the BBC hypes like mad, as does its lead author, quoted by the BBC, in order to try and convince us all that a very inconclusive study is somehow scientific evidence that global warming played a ‘significant role’ in the Pakistan floods.
Here’s the BBC hype:
Climate change: Pakistan floods ‘likely’ made worse by warming
Global warming is likely to have played a role in the devastating floods that hit Pakistan, say scientists.
Read further than the headlines though and you will actually discover that – amazingly – the BBC is a bit more balanced in its reporting than the lead author of the study. Here for instance:
Right from the start, politicians pointed to climate change as having made a significant contribution to the desperate scenes.
But this first scientific analysis says the picture is complex.
But extreme rainfall events are hard to assess. Pakistan is located on the edge of the monsoon region where the rainfall pattern is extremely variable from year to year.
Further complications include the impact of large-scale weather events such as La Niña, which also played a role in the last major floods in Pakistan in 2010.
During the 60-day period of heaviest rainfall this summer scientists recorded an increase of about 75% over the Indus river basin, while the heaviest five-day period over the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan recorded a rise in rainfall of around 50%.
The researchers then used climate models to determine how likely these events would be in a world without warming.
Some of the models indicated that the increases in rainfall intensity could all be down to human-caused climate change – however there were considerable uncertainties in the results.
The lead author, Friederike (‘Freddie’) Otto, is not so reserved about her own inconclusive analysis. She is quoted as saying:
“Our evidence suggests that climate change played an important role in the event, although our analysis doesn’t allow us to quantify how big the role was,” said Friederike Otto from Imperial College London, one of the report’s authors.
“What we saw in Pakistan is exactly what climate projections have been predicting for years. It’s also in line with historical records showing that heavy rainfall has dramatically increased in the region since humans started emitting large amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. And our own analysis also shows clearly that further warming will make these heavy rainfall episodes even more intense.”
“So while it is hard to put a precise figure to the contribution of climate change, the fingerprints of global warming are evident.”
This is total bullshit. If you cannot quantify the influence of man-made climate change on an event, if you can identify various other natural influences which also likely played a role, then you cannot, by definition, state that your scientific “evidence suggests that climate change played an important role in the event.” But the weasel word here is ‘suggests’. ‘Scientists’ suggest, empirical evidence does not. It either stands up to scrutiny or it does not. Just to drive home the point that Otto is in fact misrepresenting the results of her own analysis, here is what that analysis says:
Many of the available state-of-the-art climate models struggle to simulate these rainfall characteristics. Those that pass our evaluation test generally show a much smaller change in likelihood and intensity of extreme rainfall than the trend we found in the observations. This discrepancy suggests that long-term variability, or processes that our evaluation may not capture, can play an important role, rendering it infeasible to quantify the overall role of human-induced climate change.
I’ll be going through the actual study when I get the time and reporting on its main conclusions, but it looks very much like, having failed to find any significant, conclusive, scientific and observation-based evidence that climate change played a significant role in the Pakistan floods, the authors and the media have just winged it to give the public the impression that the study did find evidence of a significant role. Appalling.
Hot on the heels of Pol Pot Belly telling us we will freeze this winter and be happy – because evil Putin Nazi and Global Warming – the head of the Environment Agency now informs us that we must drink recycled sewage because of climate change.
People must be ‘less squeamish’ about drinking water from sewage, says agency boss
Squeamish? No, I’m not squeamish. I’m not eating bugs and I’m not drinking recently flushed human effluent, no matter how ‘safely recycled’. End of. FRO, go forth and multiply etc., etc. I’ll put a bucket outside to capture the rain water which these lying zealots say does not exist and grow my own food rather than submitting to such deprivations. No doubt they’ll tell me I can’t ‘illegally divert’ the water which falls from the heavens or grow my own food without a licence. Let them try that. Just let them try.
Sir James Bevan outlined measures ministers, water companies and ordinary people should take to avoid severe droughts.
He believes homeowners must seriously consider drinking recycled lavatory water or face the threat of shortages in as little as 20 years.
Suppliers are planning “toilet-to-tap” systems that will turn sewage from lavatories, sinks and bathtubs into drinking water by treating it.
Writing in The Sunday Times Sir James, the agency’s chief executive, said: “We will need to be less squeamish about where our drinking water comes from.
It’s the usual arrogant, dismissive spiel from the privileged ruling elite to the peasantry: put up and shut up. Why? Because it’s ‘necessary’ for the greater good, to preserve a dwindling resource. Because science and facts and evidence and experts and stuff – and because we know best.
“Part of the future solution will be to reprocess the water that results from sewage treatment and turn it back into drinking water.”
He said it was “perfectly safe and healthy, but not something many people fancy”.
It is hoped that the measure will ease the pressure on rivers, groundwater and reservoirs, which are being depleted by climate change.
‘Depleted by climate change’ eh? That can only mean that there is less water going into our rivers, ground water reserves and reservoirs because it is raining less. Sure, really hot summers might evaporate some surface water, but that is a minor issue. the major issue is supply of water – all year round, not just in summer. So let’s look at the supply issue shall we. The Met Office provide us with this graph of annual precipitation since 1836:
Notice something? Yeah, it got wetter, not drier.
“Yebbut, this is for the UK as a whole, not England, where climate changed droughts are really becoming a problem.” Hmmm:
“Yebbut, this is for England as a whole, not SE England, where climate changed droughts are really becoming a problem.” Hmmm.
This is the annual precipitation data for central and SE England for 2000 to 2021 (last column highlighted yellow):
Here’s the same for the years 1836 to 1875:
Only two years where the annual total was above 1000mm and several years where it was below 600mm. Compare this with the 21st century data: four years above 1000mm and no years where the total fell below 600mm. Conclusion: the 19th century was much drier in central and SE England than the early 21st century, which is allegedly the era of the Climate Changed Drought.
“Yebbut, this is annual precipitation, not summer, when climate changed droughts are really becoming a problem.” Hmmm.
No overall long term trend. Similarly with Spring and Autumn:
The only season where we see a definite trend to wetter conditions is during winter, when reservoirs, rivers and ground sources should be replenished:
So, Mr Head of the Environment Agency: what’s happening to all our lovely free water that drops out of our leaden grey winter skies such that we are now forced to drink treated raw sewage? Because it ain’t ‘climate change’ wot stole it, that’s for damn sure, you lying sod.
“Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.”
Well World Weather Attribution have gone one better:
“If you exclude the probable and can’t eliminate the impossible, then what remains must be the truth.”
In which case, ‘No shit Sherlock’ becomes ‘That is some shit Sherlock’.
You think I’m joking don’t you? I’m not joking. So, fasten your seatbelts, fix your grins (or grimaces) on permanent and allow me to lead you into the dark heart of extreme weather attribution.
There are no less than 21 expert authors of this report, coming from a total of 17 prestigious global academic institutions including our very own (Chinese owned) Imperial College London and the Met Office. So it must be the business, right?
The magenta box is the study area and the authors chose to analyse the one day maximum temperatures on the 19th and the average of the two day maximum temperatures on the 18th and 19th inside the study area.
To investigate the extent to which human-caused climate change altered the frequency of occurrence of the extremely high temperatures, across the region affected by the most extreme heat (see Figure 1), we choose to analyse the 2-m temperature over land in the region 51.25-54 ºN, 3.5W-0.5 ºE (highlighted by magenta box in Fig. 1). This region covers the area of the red alert warning issued by the Met Office, including London, and the station where the daily maximum UK temperature record was broken on the 19th of July 2022. To account for the event itself, which lasted two days and nights, as well as for the record breaking temperature, we decided to use two event definitions, i.e. we analyse the annual maximum of 2-day average temperatures over this region as well as the annual maximum of the daily maximum temperature (TXx). Additionally, we analyse the change in frequency and intensity of the maximum observed daily temperature of 2022 at 3 locations: London’s St James Park, Cranwell in Lincolnshire which is geographically close to Coningsby, where the new UK record has been set, but has a longer observed time series, and Durham, which although is located outside the red alert area, has a very long record going back to 1880 and also experienced very high temperatures given its latitude of ~54.78 North. Temperatures at Durham were 36.9ºC, breaking the previous record by 4ºC.
Including Climate Change and Excluding Everything Else
That’s what the authors do here. They assume that the long term rise in global temperature (attributed almost entirely to man-made greenhouse gases) is the main driver of very brief periods of extreme temperatures locally. They mention other factors which might also have an influence, but then totally ignore them in order to arrive at their event attribution!
In most parts of the world there is very high confidence that the duration, intensity and likelihood of extreme heat has increased dramatically due to human-induced climate change (Seneviratne et al. 2021). This is particularly also the case in Europe, including the UK. The first event attribution study related to the European heatwave of 2003 (Stott et al 2004), and more recently, the joint UK temperature record set during the 2018 heatwave was found to be 30 times more likely due to human activity (McCarthy et al 2019).
Long-term changes in heatwaves are influenced not only by globally well-mixed greenhouse gases but also by more localised influences, including aerosol trends (Péré et al., 2011), land use changes (Cowan, Hegerl, et al., 2020), vegetation and soil moisture changes (Seneviratne et al. 2010, Donat et al., 2017), irrigation (Thiery et al., 2017), and urbanisation effects (Heaviside et al., 2017). Furthermore, the meteorological conditions conducive to heatwaves could change regionally by potential changes in mean atmospheric circulation or in the frequency of specific weather patterns leading to extreme heat (Horton et al., 2015).
Heatwaves, on the scales people experience them, are strongly influenced by the local energy budget that determines the use of energy between evaporation and heating, set by the land surface, vegetation, irrigation, and urbanisation. Other factors such as circulation changes or aerosols may also be important and feedbacks may well be misrepresented in climate models during these extreme circumstances (Vogel et al. 2018). Many of these drivers and feedbacks are not well-simulated in current climate models as evidenced by striking discrepancies between observed and modelled trends and variability in certain regions of the globe. Van Oldenborgh et al. (2022) show that the discrepancies cannot always be explained by natural variability and in some cases are well outside the range of CMIP historical simulations even in well-understood regions (Cowan, Undorf, et al., 2020; van Oldenborgh et al., 2018).
That’s what you call eliminating the probable.
Statistical Analysis – Temperatures at 2 Stations were so Extreme they were Impossible!
You read that right. Impossible. They had to include the impossible event in the trend in order to make it fit the statistical trend! Got that?
Although the attribution analysis in this study is performed with gridded data for events that are defined as regional averages, as an additional line of evidence, we also analyse the trends in annual maxima of daily maximum temperatures at 3 locations where peak temperatures were reported during the event, and estimate the return period of the 2022 records in the current and a 1.2 ºC cooler climates. Fig. 2 shows the time series of annual maxima at 3 stations- St James’s Park (Fig. 2(a)), Durham (Fig. 2(b)) and Cranwell (Fig. 2(c)). All stations show increasing trends for this period, consistent with global warming signals observed for Central England temperatures (CET; Karoly and Stott, 2006).
Here comes the best bit (my bold):
Fig. 3 shows the trend fitting methods described in Philip et al. (2020) applied to the annual maxima of daily maximum temperature, for these three stations. The behaviour of the location parameter with respect to the GMST (panels a,c,e in Fig. 3) is found to increase with GMST. At St James’s Park and Durham, the chances of observing 2022 values are only possible, when the possibility of the event occurring is included in the fit; Fig. A(b, d)). At Cranwell, such temperatures are still extremely rare, with a return time of 1600 years when the event is not included in the fit (Fig. 3(f)). By including the 2022 event in the fit, the return times of the 2022 event, although rare, are found to be significantly reduced- 590, 1100 and 150 years, respectively, for the three stations (not shown).
What on earth is going on here? To get to the bottom of what they are saying you have to dig a little deeper.
Generalised Extreme Value (GEV) Distributions
Very briefly, this is what the authors use to generate their upper bound extreme temperatures, based on the long term rise in mean global surface temperature. Don’t quote me on this, because I’m not familiar with the exact statistical methods they use to generate extreme values, but basically I believe they assume a normal distribution of local temperature, with extreme tails, like so:
When global mean surface temperature increases, this normal distribution ‘shifts’ to the right by an equal amount and what happens is, extreme high temperatures, previously virtually impossible under the old normal distribution become more likely, though still rare. This method assumes that the rise in global mean surface temperature is the only factor which affects the consequent increase in the probability of experiencing extreme high temperatures. Hence the authors cite Phillip et al (2020) above, which says (my bold):
It is assumed the events follow a theoretical distribution, such as a Gamma distribution (based on all data) or one of the extreme value distributions discussed below that is based on events in the tail only. If the event is not very extreme, a normal distribution can also be used. In general this implies that we assume that more moderate extremes behave the same as the more intense extreme that is under investigation, and these provide the higher number of events necessary to detect a trend.
It is assumed that the main changes in the distribution are due to global warming. In the global mean temperature, the influence of natural forcings over the last 70 or 120 years has been very small compared to the anthropogenic forcings (Bindoff et al., 2013). If we take the smoothed global mean temperature as a covariate, both anthropogenic and natural forcings are included. Note that while using smoothed global mean temperature we cannot attribute changes to local forcings, such as aerosols, irrigation, and roughness changes, which can also have large influences on extremes (Wild, 2009; Puma and Cook, 2010; Vautard et al., 2010). This should always be kept in mind and checked when possible. If factors other than global warming are important for changes in the distribution, attribution to global warming alone is not appropriate and additional investigation should be conducted.
It is assumed that the distribution of temperature extremes shifts due to global warming without changing the shape.
So there you go. Using their GEV fit, the authors of this current attribution study make the above assumptions (i.e. they exclude the probable) and they find that, in 2 stations out of 3, the temperatures recorded would be impossible even in a world which is 1.2C warmer due to global warming! Thus, they have to shoe-horn those ‘impossible’ extreme temperatures into a new statistical distribution in order to arrive at realistic probabilities of the return times.
Climate Model Simulations Also Fail To Simulate Extreme Temperature Observations
The climate models also confirm the results of the statistical analysis, namely that the extreme high temperatures recorded, especially on the 19th, are just too extreme. In fact, the climate model simulations predict only a 2C rise in extreme temperature for this event, not a 4C increase as observed.
As has been observed in previous attribution studies on European heat waves (e.g. Vautard et al., 2019), climate models show a systematically lower trend than the observations which in particular means that the change in intensity in the models is much lower than in observations. They also often show too high variability. Even for models that do capture the trend, this often happens for the wrong reasons as has been assessed in van Oldenborgh et al. (2022). Using De Bilt in the Netherlands as an example they found that in many locations the discrepancies between observed and modelled trends are much larger than can be expected on the basis of natural variability and model spread alone.
Because of this systematic discrepancy, providing quantitative synthesised estimates of the change in intensity and frequency is difficult as the upper bound is very ill defined and largely infinite, while the lower bound is almost certainly an underestimation given the model deficiencies.
The change in intensity is only about 2C in the models, while it is 4C in the observations.
The observational analysis shows that a UK heatwave as defined above would be about 4C cooler in preindustrial times.
To estimate how much of these observed changes is attributable to human-caused climate change we combine climate models with the observations. It is important to highlight that all models systematically underestimate the observed trends. The combined results are thus almost certainly too conservative.
These are not ‘cool’ models either; the authors’ list of models included in the analysis contains some very ‘hot’ models indeed.
It’s not the full list above but CAN ESM and HadGem GC3.1, just for example, have equilibrium climate sensitivities well in excess of 5C, so if anything, you would expect the climate ensemble simulations to overestimate the increase in extreme high temperatures, not seriously underestimate it.
There is obviously something very amiss here. The models and the statistical analyses fail miserably to account for the observed 2 day extreme temperatures and especially the 40C+ temperatures recorded very briefly on the 19th. Something else is going on. It’s not global warming. My guess is that it is a combination of changing atmospheric circulation patterns, increasing urban encroachment upon weather stations and changes in land use, all contributing to the very high temperatures observed.
But hey, when you’re a climate ‘scientist’ and your models don’t work and your statistical analysis requires you to make the impossible possible, then you just say it was Climate Change (TM) wot dunnit regardless; therefore we should be afraid, be very afraid, because even the Science (TM) underestimates the severity of what’s happening.
We had two climate changed extreme heat days in July and we’ve had an extended period of very warm, sunny, settled days (formerly known as a nice summer) in August. But it’s all gone pear-shaped now. This is tomorrow’s chart.
After a sweltering week of blue skies and light winds, it was blowing a gale on the beach today, with driving rain. I came back soaked with numb hands. The rest of August doesn’t look particularly auspicious for the Extreme Weather Moonies hoping to attribute another few hot days to some nasty Thermageddon Molecule consisting of two atoms of oxygen and one of carbon, released in huge quantities by the Satanic ritualised burning of fossil fuels. But what of September. Will we get an Indian Summer? September last year was very warm. The long range jet stream forecast for early September hints at some more settled weather after a generally unsettled end to August. So who knows.
It would be nice to have an extended warm settled summer before we are faced with a nightmare scenario of blackouts and extreme energy price hikes beginning in October, I must admit.
**Which reminds me; a director of Ofgem quit today claiming that the regulator was not doing enough to protect customers from massive price hikes and was working more in the interests of the energy companies. Martin Lewis probably thought similar when he called them a “fucking disgrace” a couple of months ago, but then he apologised and went rather quiet. Why was that?**
Anyway, back to Indian Summers. The most notable warm Septembers in England, ranked warmest, are as follows:
2021 comes in at 7th and you can see there are a fair few other warm Septembers in the 21st century, but the warmest by quite a margin was way back in 1895, and in fact the 1890s decade saw three very warm September months. The 21st century so far has been outstanding – seven Indian summers in the space of 21 years. Will we see an eighth? Will September 2022 surpass 1895 even? Probably not, which is perhaps just as well because we would never hear the last of it. But just supposing it did, a word of caution. 1895, the year of the warmest September recorded (in terms of maximum daytime temperature), curiously experienced the coldest October ever recorded. In fact, the 1890s stands out as a decade where the top three coldest Octobers were recorded in the UK, 1895 ranking first.
How odd is that? Seems almost like if you get a record-breaking warm September, you pay for it in October. However, there’s not much evidence of that happening so far in the 21st century, so I’m sure we’ll be fine.
‘The free market is the best model of the environment we can generate.’
This article is too important not to repeat in its entirety. Originally printed in the Telegraph here:
“Deloitte is the largest “professional services network” in the world. Headquartered in London, it is also one of the big four global accounting companies, offering audit, consulting, risk advisory, tax and legal services to corporate clients.
With a third of a million professionals operating on those fronts worldwide, and as the third-largest privately owned company in the US, Deloitte is a behemoth with numerous and far-reaching tentacles.
In short: it is an entity we should all know about, not least because such enterprises no longer limit themselves to their proper bailiwick (profit-centred business strategising, say), but – consciously or not – have assumed the role as councillors to believers in unchecked globalisation whose policies have sparked considerable unrest around the world.
Whilst not directly responsible, they offer an insight into the elite groupthink that has triggered these events; into the cabal of utopians operating in the media, corporate and government fronts, wielding a nightmarish vision of environmental apocalypse.
In May this year, Deloitte released a clarion call to precipitous action trumpeting the climate emergency confronting us. Called ‘The Turning Point: A Global Summary’, it is a stellar example of a mentality more common among officials in the EU: one of fundamental bureaucratic overreach (and one which generated Brexit – a very good decision on the part of the Brits, in my view) that threatens the very survival of that selfsame EU.
The report opens with two claims: first, that the storms, wildfires, droughts, downpours, and floods around the globe in the last 18 months are unique and unprecedented – a dubious claim – and implicitly that the “science” is now at a point where we can say without doubt that experts can and must model the entire ecology and economy of the planet (!) and that we must modify everyone’s behaviour, by hook or by crook, to avoid what would otherwise be the most expensive environmental and social catastrophe in history.
The Deloitte “models” posit that “climate impacts” could affect global economic output, and say that unchecked climate change will cost us $178 trillion over the next 50 years – that’s $25,000 per person, to put it in human terms.
Who dares deny such facts, stated so mathematically? So precisely? So scientifically?
Let’s update Mark Twain’s famous dictum: there are lies, damned lies, statistics – and computer models.
“Computer model” does not mean “data” (and even “data” does not mean “fact”). “Computer model” means, at best, “hypothesis” posing as mathematical fact.
No real scientist says “follow the science.” Yet this is exactly what bodies such as the EU consistently pronounce, pushing for collectivist solutions that do more harm than good.
Solutions in sovereignty
What might we rely on, instead, to guide us forward, in these times of accelerating trouble and possibility?
Valid authority rests in the people. Truly valid structures of authority are local, not centralised for reasons of efficiency and “emergency”. This must not become the generation of yet another top-down Tower of Babel. That will not solve our problems, just as similar attempts have failed to solve our problems in the past.
Ask yourself: are these Deloitte models – which are supposed to guide all the important decisions we make about the economic security and opportunity of families and the structures of our civil societies – accurate enough even to give those who employ them any edge whatsoever, say, in predicting the performance of a stock portfolio (one based on green energy, for example) over the upcoming years?
The answer is no. How do we know? Because if such accurate models existed and were implemented by a company with Deloitte’s resources and reach, Deloitte would soon have all the money.
That is never going to happen. The global economy, let alone the environment, is simply too complex to model. It is for this reason, fundamentally, that we have and require a free-market system: the free market is the best model of the environment we can generate.
Let me repeat that, with a codicil: not only is the free market the best model of the environment we can generate, it is and will remain the best model that can, in principle, ever be generated (with its widely distributed computations, constituting the totality of the choices of 7 billion people). It simply cannot be improved upon – certainly not by presumptuous power-mad utopians, who think that hiring someone mysteriously manipulating a few carefully chosen numbers and then reading the summarised output means genuine contact with the reality of the future and the generation of knowledge unassailable on both the ethical and the practical front.
The impact of delusional thinking
Why is this a problem? Why should you care? Well, the saviours at Deloitte admit that there will be a short-term cost to implementing their cure (net-zero emissions by 2050, an utterly preposterous and inexcusable goal, both practically and conceptually). This, by the way, is a goal identical to that adopted last week by the delusional leaders of Australia, which additionally committed that resource-dependent-and-productive country to an over 40 per cent decrease by 2005 standards in “greenhouse gas emission” within the impossible timeframe of eight years. This will devastate Australia.
Here is the confession, couched in bureaucratic double-speak, from the Deloitte consultants: “During the initial stages the combined cost of the upfront investments in decarbonization, coupled with the already locked-in damages of climate change would temporarily lower economic activity, compared to the current emissions-intensive path.”
The omniscient planners then attempt to justify this, with the standard empty threats and promises (the suffering is certain, the benefits ethereal): “those most exposed to the economic damages of unchecked climate change would also have the most to gain from embracing a low-emissions future.” Really? Tell that to the African and Indian populations in the developing world lifted from poverty by coal and natural gas.
And think – really think – about this statement: “Existing industries would be reconstituted as a series of complex, interconnected, emissions-free energy systems: energy, mobility, industry, manufacturing, food and land use, and negative emissions.”
That sounds difficult, don’t you think? To rebuild everything at once and better? Without breaking everything? Fixing everything in a few decades in a panicked rush while demonising anyone who dares object?
And what will it take to do so? Here’s the most alarming part: nothing more than “a coordinated transition” that “will require governments, along with the financial services and technology sectors to catalyze, facilitate and accelerate progress; foster information flows across systems; and align individual incentives with collective goals.”
A clearer statement of totalitarian inclination could hardly be penned.
Certain outcomes versus predicted outcomes
The one thing the Deloitte models guarantee is that if we do what they recommend we will definitely be poorer than we would have been otherwise for an indefinite but hypothetically transitory period.
Yet any reduction in economic output (however “temporary” and “necessary”) will be purchased at the cost of the lives of those who are barely making it now. Period.
Have you noticed that food has become more expensive? That housing has become more expensive? That energy is more expensive? That many consumer goods are simply unavailable? Can you not see that this is going to get worse, if the Deloitte-style moralists have their way? How much “short-term pain” are you going to be required to sustain? Decades worth? All your life, and the life of your children?
It’s very likely. For your own benefit. Remember that.
All this painful privation is not only not going to save the planet, it’s going to make it far worse.
I worked for a UN subcommittee that helped prepare the 2012 report to the Secretary-General on sustainable development. Whether or not it was a good idea to contribute to such a thing is a separate issue: I do believe at least that the report would have been much more harmful than it was without the input of the Canadian contingent. We scrubbed away several layers of utopianism and Cold-War era conceptualisation and cynicism. That was something.
I garnered a key and crucial insight from the several years’ work devoted to my contribution: I learned that the fastest and most certain pathway forward to the future we all want and need (peaceful, prosperous, beautiful) is through the economic elevation of the absolutely poor. Richer people care about “the environment” – which is, after all,outside the primary and fundamental concern of those desperate for their next meal.
Make the poor rich, and the planet will improve. Or at least get out of their way while they try to make themselves rich. Make the poor poorer – and this is the concrete plan, remember – and things will get worse, perhaps worse beyond imagining. Observe the chaos in Sri Lanka, if you need proof.
There are clearly more important priorities than costly and ineffective emergency climate change reductions. Bjorn Lomborg’s work (among others such as Marian Tupy and Matt Ridley) has demonstrated that other pressing problems could and should take political and economic priority, from the perspective of good done per dollar spent.
Money could and should be spent, for example, to ensure the current health and therefore future productivity (and environmental stewardship) of currently poor children in developing countries. How about remedying the actual world of pain and deprivation of such children rather than saving the hypothetical world, and the hypothetical world of future children, in abstraction?
Stirrings of revolt
Citizens are waking up to this. Dutch farmers and fishermen are rising up, Canadian truckers are pushing back. Such protests are spreading, and increasing in intensity. As they should.
Why? Because, Deloitte consultants, and like-minded centralists are pushing things too far. It will not produce the results they are hypothetically intending. This agenda, justified by emergency, will instead make everyone poorer, particularly those who are already poor. This use of emergency force will, instead, make the lives of the working men upon whom we all depend for our daily bread and shelter more difficult and less rewarding.
Finally, this use of emergency force will also make the “environment” worse, not better. Why? If you wreck your temporary economic havoc, to (eventually) remediate the world, those whom you sacrifice so casually in the attempt will descend into chaos. In that chaos, they will then, by necessity, turn their attention to matters of immediate survival – and in a manner that will stress and harm the complex ecosystems and economies that can only be maintained with the long-term view that prosperity and nothing else makes possible.
Critics of my view will say “we have to accept limits to growth.” Fine. Accept them. Personally. Abandon your position of planet-devouring wealthy privilege. Join an ascetic order. Graze with the cattle. Or, if that’s too much (and it probably is) then purchase an electric car, if you want one (but no diesel-powered emergency backup vehicle or electric power generator for you). Buy some stock in Tesla. That’s probably the best bet (but you don’t approve of Elon Musk, do you?). Stop flying. Stop driving, for that matter. Get on your bike, instead. In your three-piece business suit. In the winter, if you dare. I’ll splash you with icy and salty slush as I drive by, in my evil but warm Ford Bronco SUV, and help you derive the consequent delicate pleasure of your own narcissistic martyrdom.
Save the planet with your own choices. But quit demanding that the rest of us blindly follow your diktats. Quit demonising and castigating us, merely because we don’t just happily cede to you all the extant power. We’re not evil just because we don’t believe that you are omniscient. We’re not evil just because we don’t want you to assume omnipotence and omnipresence too.
There is simply no pathway forward to the green and equitable utopia that necessitates the further impoverishment of the already poor, the compulsion of the working class, or the sacrifice of economic security and opportunity on the food, energy and housing front. There is simply no pathway forward to the global utopia you hypothetically value that is dependent on force. And even if there was, what gives you the right to enforce your demands? On other sovereign citizens, equal in value to you?
An alternative solution
A better way forward would be to prioritise the problems that beset all of us on this still-green, functional and increasingly abundant planet with the requisite focus and attention demanded of a true political class, elected by the people, capable of and willing to look at everything, trying to fix where necessary, trying to maintain as much freedom and autonomy as possible, and stop simply capitalising narcissistically on the mere appearance of action, knowledge and virtue.
We should obtain true, cooperative consent from those affected – farmers, truckers, working-class people who have turned in irritated desperation to figures such as Donald Trump – and work with them, rather than forbidding them with your power or improving them so they will be finally worthy of your time and attention. Help replace dirty energy with clean, if you must, but do it on your own dime, and make sure that the results are cheap and plentiful, if you want to help the poor, and the planet.
The warning bells are ringing. Listen to them, before they turn into sirens.
We will not advance without resistance through the straits of your enforced privation. We will not allow you to steal and destroy the energy that makes our lives bearable (and that produces our food and shelter and housing and the sporadic delights of modern life) just to address your existential terror (particularly when it will fail to do so in any case). We will not allow our children to be criticised first for having the temerity to merely exist and then be deprived of the prosperous and opportunity-rich future we strived so hard to prepare for them. We remain unconvinced of your frightened and self-congratulatory moralising and intellectual pretension, ignorance of the limits of statistics, and misuse of arithmetic.
We do not believe, finally and most absolutely, that your declared emergency and the panic you sow because of it means that you should now be ceded all necessary authority.
So leave us alone, you centralisers; you worshippers of Gaia; you sacrificers of the wealth and property of others; you would-be planetary saviours; you Machievellian pretenders and virtue-signallers, objecting to power, all the while you gather it around you madly.
Leave us alone, to prosper or not, as a result of our own choices; as a result of our own actions; in the exercise of our own requisite and irreducible responsibility.
Leave us alone. Or reap the whirlwind. And watch the terrible destruction of what you purport to save, in consequence.”
Here is the Youtube version, narrated by Petersen himself.
Here’s the data from the Met Office’s England and Wales Precipitation database. I had to use the Wayback Machine to access it. They seem to have changed the address of the old website access. Maybe it’s available elsewhere, I don’t know. Whatever, the Met Office don’t seem to be very keen to refer to their own data.
You will notice that, up until 2021, there were no 21st century dry Julys in the top 20. Of the top 5 driest July months on record in England and Wales, four occurred in the 19th century. 1911 was the odd one out. It is extremely unlikely that July 2022 will come anywhere near the drought conditions experienced in 1800 and 1825, before alleged man-made global warming supposedly ruined the climate of the British Isles. 2022 might make the top 20 or might displace 1911 in the top 5 (unlikely), but that does not prove anything about the supposed effect of climate change upon summer precipitation in England and Wales (and I can tell you, Scotland has not experienced a particularly dry July – neither has Cumbria!)
The driest summer since 1766 is 1995, the second driest 1976. 1800 comes in at third. The only 21st century summer which makes the top 20 is 2018 and it’s way down the list. Three out of the top 5 driest summers in England and Wales occurred in the 19th century. So much for the ‘hotter, drier summers’ narrative.
I responded to a tweet from Mark Changizi recently (screenshot because I’m sure they’ll erase my account – and Mark’s too – soon):
As you can see, Ben replied, which set off a brief conversation.
I think the ‘I’ll never understand that’ comment may have been a challenge to my subconscious because I spent half the night awake, tossing and turning, with my brain refusing to shut down and I’ve come up with an explanation of sorts for what are the most puzzling and deeply disturbing series of events I have ever experienced in my entire life; namely the last two years of lockdowns and Covid hysteria. I’m sure it’s not original and that many people have come up with similar explanations, but it’s original to me and represents to me a simple theory based upon my own personal observations which adequately explains the facts as I experienced them.
So I’ll start with events as I experienced them. With the scare-stories coming out of China about a deadly new zoonotic plague, I believed, at first, that they were real and not exaggerated. I had a reasonable knowledge of previous zoonoses and it seemed quite plausible that a virus originating in bats had indeed jumped from bat to human via an intermediary host and was now spreading from person to person, causing serious disease in a significant number of people and death in an estimated 3.4% (34 times more lethal than ‘flu) of those infected. That was the official line we were fed and I ate it up.
The WHO and China cried wolf, so I reacted accordingly on the evidence I had. I purchased some FFP3 high filtration masks with the intention of minimising the risk of myself and my partner being infected with airborne respiratory virus particles whilst shopping in supermarkets. It seemed sensible to me and went against government and medical advice at the time. I got some odd looks from the normies and my partner was aggressively challenged on one occasion for choosing to wear a mask. The mask wearing didn’t last more than a few weeks, because I felt physically and psychologically uncomfortable with them. But the point is, I was fearful enough to wear one, against official advice, yet very few other people were, or maybe even then the vast majority relied exclusively on what they were told by the ‘experts’.
I looked at what was happening in Wuhan with the extreme lockdowns and people actually being welded inside their homes, dogs and cats being thrown out of high rise apartment windows because residents were terrified of catching some deadly disease from them and it made me extremely uneasy. Something was very badly wrong. Then lockdowns were implemented in Italy and Johnson issued some stern advice to the British populace on March 16th 2020, based on Professor ‘Pantsdown’ Ferguson’s projections of millions of fatalities in the absence of non-pharmaceutical mitigating measures to control the spread. I thought people would heed that advice. I was wrong. They carried on more or less as normal. I remember being quite irritated by that, thinking that this would result in compulsory restrictions and sure enough Pol Pot Belly went the full monty a week later and shut the entire country down, going beyond even the recommendations of the Ferguson Imperial paper. Why was that?
Around this time, it was becoming obvious that the lethality of the virus had been grossly overestimated by China and the WHO and that it was more comparable to ‘flu, albeit a lot more lethal to people in their 80s and 90s, but less lethal to younger age groups, especially children. There were also disturbing rumours that it was a ‘gain of function’ virus escaped from the Wuhan lab. The facts changed but the ‘science’ didn’t. It grew legs and started running, right across the globe. Hence ‘3 weeks to flatten the curve’ turned into months and months of ridiculous, society destroying, human rights busting and economy flattening restrictions. By April, I was a fully-fledged Covid sceptic and never looked back once as our world fell apart. But the majority sucked it up, much to my amazement and increasing horror and I never could figure why, until perhaps now.
So here’s the explanation I have come up with. Myself and a significant minority of others are Outsiders – people on the edge of the herd, who tag along with the herd, but are not really part of it. When China and the WHO and successive governments and health ‘experts’ cried wolf, we were the first to hear and respond. Some, better than me, realised this was a scam right from the word go and responded by rejecting the (mis)information they were receiving. I was caught up in that frenzy of misinformation and false alarm for a short while, then quickly came to my senses.
Meanwhile, the Herd did not register alarm. They were quite content to continue grazing, oblivious to the apparent danger, whilst they gazed with complacency at the jittery actions of the Outsiders, having either not heard the Shepherd Boy’s warning, or ignored it. This was where Britain was on March 16th. The roads were still full of traffic, people were going out and about, all living their lives more or less normally, without a sense of alarm or impending doom. The Old Normal was still very much alive, existing in a state of stubborn inertia. Then on March 23rd everything changed. Pol Pot Belly addressed the nation urgently and told the British people what to do. He told them to stay at home, not to gather together, avoid all unnecessary contact etc. and he told them that he was shutting the country down – shops, schools, cinemas, gyms, theatres, virtually every place of commerce, work or leisure that was not deemed ‘essential’ and he told them that this would be the law. Only then did the Herd register the cry of alarm from the Shepherd Boy. Inertial resistance disappeared and they acted as one to the perceived threat.
This is vitally important to understand. Myself and others on the fringes of the herd responded as individuals to the perceived threat. The vast majority, the Herd, acted as a single entity. All rational, independent thought was extinguished at that moment in preference for moving as one, with the Herd, away from danger. This happened because the Herd were told to move. It needed that definite, unequivocally stated order for them to act, which they did, in perfect synchrony. The shops emptied, the roads, the parks, town centres became like scenes from a post apocalyptic movie. The Age of Lockdown had begun. the problem is, the Herd never really stopped running, because once told, it was difficult to untell them. They could never stop running as a unit. All that could happen is that individual members of the Herd would gradually slow their flight as they came to realise that the threat was no longer imminent or in fact they were too weary to keep running. As Charles Mackay said, nearly two hundred years ago:
“Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.”
This brings me back to Ben Irvine and his theory that it was the unions who pushed the government into lockdowns, not the other way round. I don’t know if that is the case. It was the Shepherd Boy who first cried wolf and I don’t know for sure the true motivations of the Shepherd Boy for doing so, or the true identity of the Shepherd Boy or whether somebody else was instructing him.
Modern human society is obviously a lot more complex than a herd of animals. It is structured into special interest groups. The academics, the unions, the medical profession, politicians, the main stream media, science ‘experts’ are all examples of those special interest groups. So it could be that, before the main Herd reacted to the Shepherd Boy’s definite cry of alarm, these groups reacted early, just like the Outsiders, but most importantly, not as individuals but as a group. They then attempted to communicate this alarm to the Herd, on behalf of the Shepherd Boy but also on behalf of themselves and their special interests in supposedly ‘staying safe’ or else adopting the saviour mentality that they were charged with the unique responsibility of keeping the Herd safe.
None of this contradicts my sincerely held view that the Shepherd Boy’s intentions in crying wolf were mailgn. I believe that is amply demonstrated by the abundant evidence of ill intent on the part of bad actors that we have now.
My fear is that, having been spectacularly successful with Covid, these bad actors are now trying exactly the same tactics with climate change alarm, to nudge us into yet another new normal, which will be even worse than lockdowns. So far, the Herd seems somewhat scattered and confused on this issue and not ready to act as one again, but the nudge merchants are not giving up, having tasted so much power and controlling influence with Covid. They are determined to change the world permanently – to their advantage – and they see climate action to supposedly ‘fight’ an alleged ‘climate crisis’ as their way of doing that. That along with phoney wars.
That’s the basic message from World Weather Attribution who have – of course – run off a quick-fire, non peer-reviewed attribution analysis of the two day ‘heatwave’ which affected the UK on July 18th and 19th which – of course – concludes that it was man-made climate change wot dunnit.
Here’s what they say about their study, which we’ll look at in detail in Part II:
The likelihood of observing such an event in a 1.2°C cooler world is extremely low, and statistically impossible in two out of the three analysed stations.
The observational analysis shows that a UK heatwave as defined above would be about 4°C cooler in preindustrial times.
To estimate how much of these observed changes is attributable to human-caused climate change we combine climate models with the observations. It is important to highlight that all models systematically underestimate the observed trends. [My emphasis]. The combined results are thus almost certainly too conservative.
Combining the results based on observational and model analysis, we find that, for both event definitions, human-caused climate change made the event at least 10 times more likely. In the models, the same event would be about 2°C less hot in a 1.2°C cooler world, which is a much smaller change in intensity than observed.
This is a roundabout way of saying basically that the two day heatwave which was observed was not predicted by any climate models. The average maximum two day temperature observed was twice the intensity of that predicted to occur by the climate models. Hence, they all completely and comprehensively failed to simulate this event by a very wide margin (100% to be exact). In a normal world, this would prompt scientists to conclude that the models were faulty and that perhaps the science and a priori assumptions which are built into them need to be re-examined. Or they would ask themselves, did some other factor or factors contribute significantly to this event? But no, in the world of post-normal, post Enlightenment ‘science’, the conclusion is that the models are right, but not right enough, in that they underestimate how bad heatwaves are getting, so then we get the inevitable siren call of alarmists everywhere: “Arrggghhh, it’s much worse than we thought! Urgent action is now super-urgent! Act now or we’re all going to die!”
Friederike Otto, one of the scientists at WWA is quoted as saying in the Guardian (of course):
Friederike Otto, a senior climate lecturer at the Grantham Institute for Climate Change, Imperial College London, said: “In Europe and other parts of the world we are seeing more and more record-breaking heatwaves causing extreme temperatures that have become hotter faster than in most climate models.
“It’s a worrying finding that suggests that if carbon emissions are not rapidly cut, the consequences of climate change on extreme heat in Europe, which already is extremely deadly, could be even worse than we previously thought.”
It’s not the first time WWA have done an attribution analysis of a heatwave and found that the climate models just don’t simulate the observed temperatures, therefore, by definition, cannot be used to positively attribute the event to alleged man-made climate change. I wrote about it here. But that doesn’t stop them doing so. They pulled exactly the same trick with a heatwave in June 2019, telling us how climate change made the event more likely even though the models failed to simulate the observed event by a large margin.
This consistent failure is, apparently, not cause to re-examine the accuracy of the models, it just means that we should be even more afraid! Hence the Graun states boldly:
Extreme heat in western Europe has increased more than climate models have predicted. While models estimate greenhouse gas emissions increased temperatures in this heatwave by 2C, historical weather records suggest the heatwave would have been 4C cooler in a world that had not been warmed by human activities.
Climate experts are concerned this means the impacts of global heating will be even more drastic than previously thought.
Meteorologists have said the results of this study are “sobering” as they confirm what was previously feared – that climate change is having a large impact on temperatures, making extreme heat more likely.
Experts have called for rapid cuts in emissions to prevent the situation from worsening. Extreme heat kills thousands of people across Europe, and it is thought hundreds of excess deaths in the UK were caused by the recent heatwave.
The Graun headline and sub-title says it all:
Climate breakdown made UK heatwave 10 times more likely, study finds
Recent extreme temperatures were higher than those simulated by climate models, analysis reveals
Then comes the inevitable picture of a fire, in all likelihood started by arsonists, just to drive home the fear narrative.
Only post normal climate scientists and their mouthpieces in the main stream media could turn a failure of The Science into a reason to act faster and harder based on the failed predictions of the models which underpin The Science!
Yes, the sub-heading is what the report actually demonstrates, but being the global warming obsessed Met Office, they claim the complete opposite of course. Here’s what they say in the blurb which introduces their actual report:
A new event summary from the Met Office shows that the UK’s recent extreme heat was far more intense and widespread than previous comparable heatwaves. This was the first time 40°C has been recorded in the UK.
Yes, it got extraordinarily hot, but it was only for two flipping days! The Met Office, in their desperation to accredit ‘heatwave’ status to the event, say it was three days, but then they just focus on the two hot days of July 18th and 19th. Two very hot days does not a heatwave make. Temperatures across the UK on the 17th were nothing out of the normal.
The UK experienced a brief but unprecedented extreme heatwave from 16 to 19 July 2022 . . . .
New provisional national temperature records were also set for Wales and Scotland. On 18 July, 37.1°C was recorded at Hawarden Airport, Flintshire, while 35.1°C was reached at Floors Castle, Borders on 19 July.
The post-event report from the Met Office shows that the record-breaking temperatures seen as part of the heatwave demonstrate much more widespread and significant heat than previous noteworthy extreme heat events.
‘More widespread and significant’ is the claim, so let’s test that against the actual facts (as presented by the Met Office themselves) shall we. One particularly noteworthy previous event was 1976. That summer saw a prolonged heatwave which, though less intense in terms of absolute temperature, lasted for months (June right through to the end of August), not two days. Virtually every person who was alive in the UK at that time and managed to miraculously survive, can still vividly recall the event 46 years later! What the miracle survivors of the July 2022 event will remember most in decades to come is not the extreme heat, but the extreme propaganda and scaremongering bullshit, I guarantee.
Here’s how the Met Office choose to graphically represent 18th and 19th July in comparison to one hot day in 1976, 2003 and 2019:
Note the whites, violets, deep lurid purples and even ‘unprecedented’ browns of 2022 compared to the decidedly tame looking red heat of 3rd July 1976. It’s an extremely deceptive portrayal using vivid colouration, focussed on just single days, which makes 2022 look like Thermageddon in comparison to 1976. But the Met Office give the game away near the end of their report, presumably because, behind the highly politicised agenda of propagandising extreme weather, which is their current remit, they just can’t help themselves by reporting on actual, meaningful weather statistics too. Here’s the killer bar chart which reveals that summer 1976 was a far more significant weather event than an isolated couple of record-breaking hot days in July 2022:
Approximately 2100 stations in 1976 reported temperatures exceeding 30C and about 750 reported temperatures in excess of 32C. In 2022 (so far) only 600 or so stations have reported temperatures exceeding 30C, a little under 300 exceeding 32C. In 1976, 32C was reported by one or more stations for 15 consecutive days, a record that still hasn’t been beaten. So you can see, what 1976 lacked in terms of absolute temperature, it more than made up for in terms of duration and extent across the country. This is reflected in the Met Office’s second bar chart, showing stations exceeding 34C and 36C, which makes 2022 look more impressive, but again, the impression is deceptive.
Look at the absolute numbers of stations. less than 250 reporting in excess of 34C in 2022 and only 150 reporting temperatures exceeding 36C. Peanuts compared to 2100 and 750 exceeding 30C and 32C respectively in 1976, when the world as a whole was considerably cooler and only just on the cusp of warming again after cooling significantly in the 50s, 60s and early 70s.
Finally, in an effort to remind us that July 2022 was in fact weather, generated by an unusual but naturally occurring large scale stationary wave pattern, the Met Office say:
The heatwave in the UK and more widely across western Europe was associated with a naturally-occurring large-scale wave pattern in the northern hemisphere, with a chain of five high pressure regions around the globe, and heatwaves also being experienced during summer 2022 in China and the US.
The exceptionally hot weather was associated with a ‘heat-dome’; an area of high pressure with falling air in the atmosphere trapping warm air at the surface. By the 19th a cold front tracking from the west resulted in some thundery rain and somewhat fresher air to parts of the country.