Final preparations are under way for a key UN climate summit that will attempt to reach a deal on what should replace the Kyoto Protocol, which ends in 2012.
Talks will centre on whether binding targets are needed to cut emissions.
BBC New website: ‘Nations gather for climate talks’
Eduardo Zorita sent Steve McIntyre an interesting paper from Kiehl, a prominent climate modeler, which analyzes the paradox of how GCMs with very different climate sensitivities nonetheless all more or less agree in their simulations of 20th century climate. Kiehl found that the high sensitivity models had low aerosol forcing history and vice versa. Kiehl observed:
These results explain to a large degree why models with such diverse climate sensitivities can all simulate the global anomaly in surface temperature. The magnitude of applied anthropogenic total forcing compensates for the model sensitivity.
Eduardo’s take was as follows:
surprisingly the attached paper, from a main stream climate scientist, seems to admit that the anthropogenic forcings in the 20th century used to drive the IPCC simulations were chosen to fit the observed temperature trend. It seems to me a quite important admission.
BALI, Indonesia: Coal-burning power plants belch pollutants into the air in China, contributing to global warming that experts say has destroyed billions of dollars in crops. In India, melting Himalayan glaciers cause floods, while raising a more daunting long-term prospect: the drying up of life-sustaining rivers.
The two economic giants are becoming increasingly aware of the effects of rising temperatures. But though they are among the biggest contributors to the problem, both say they will not sign any climate change treaty that would slow the pace of their development.
International Herald Tribune: Spotlight on China and India as delegates gather for U.N. global warming summit in Bali
MORE TROUBLE FOR CLIMATE ALARMISTS
Green scientists have been accused of overstating the dangers of climate change by researchers who found that the number of people killed each year by weather-related disasters is falling. Their report suggests that a central plank in the global warming argument – that it will result in a big increase in deaths from weather-related disasters – is undermined by the facts. It shows deaths in such disasters peaked in the 1920s and have been declining ever since. Average annual deaths from weather-related events in the period 1990-2006 – considered by scientists to be when global warming has been most intense – were down by 87% on the 1900-89 average. The mortality rate from catastrophes, measured in deaths per million people, dropped by 93%.
The Sunday Times: ‘Fall in weather deaths dents climate warnings’
Airlines stand to make billions of pounds in “windfall profits” from an emissions trading scheme that was supposed to make them pay for the environmental damage they cause, according to a government-commissioned report.
They will take advantage of the scheme to raise fares substantially, even though their costs will hardly change. The windfall will be highly embarrassing for the Government because it has heavily promoted the trading of aviation emissions to justify its plans to allow air travel to double by 2030.
Ruth Kelly, the Transport Secretary, claimed last week that emissions trading would ensure that the proposed third runway at Heathrow would not add to overall climate-change gases. She said that the scheme would force the industry “to take its environmental responsibilities seriously”.
It will be the second time that an industry has made huge profits from emissions trading. There was widespread public outrage last year when it emerged that British power generators had made more than £1 billion from the scheme, under which industries have to obtain a permit for each tonne of carbon they emit. The theory is that they will become more efficient so that they need fewer permits.
The problem with the power generators arose because they were given billions of pounds of free permits at the start to cover their existing emissions. The same problem could occur with airlines, which are due to join the scheme in 2011, because the European Commission is proposing that they be given enough free permits to cover 96-97 per cent of their present emissions.