The Twilight Zone

by Gareth on March 3, 2011

Introducing The Twilight Zone: a repository for comments that are off-topic, obvious trolling, or from the terminally bemused — a feature of Hot Topic’s new comments policy. Do not expect to find good sense herein — consider it a record of failed communication and fantasy.

[Intro]

{ 90 comments… read them below or add one }

Carol Cowan March 5, 2011 at 9:12 pm

C’mon guys, don’t be shy. I’ve been visiting here every day but it’s been as quiet as a pub with no beer.

Dappledwater March 5, 2011 at 11:33 pm

Err Carol……… Introducing The Twilight Zone: a repository for comments that are off-topic, obvious trolling, or from the terminally bemused — a feature of Hot Topic’s new comments policy. Do not expect to find good sense herein — consider it a record of failed communication and fantasy.

Doh!, I just posted here!.

Thomas March 6, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Still no beer ….. ;-)

Pete Ridley March 10, 2011 at 12:50 am

I mentioned previously about Gareth responding to Stephen Schneider’s 1989 call for “ .. loads of media coverage. .. scary scenarios .. simplified, dramatic statements, and .. little mention of any doubts we might have”. Trenberth appears to fully support Schneider’s approach to “educating” the general public – tell them any old scare story as long as it concerts them to the CACC doctrine.

In January Anthony Watts opened a thread “Trenberth’s upcoming AMS meeting talk: ClimateGate Thoughts” (http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/13/trenberths-upcoming-ams-meeting-talk-climategate-thoughts/) which was followed nicely by:
- LuboÅ¡ Motl in his “Kevin Trenberth’s weird opinions about the climate” (http://motls.blogspot.com/2011/01/kevin-trenberths-weird-opinions-about.html),
- Steve McIntyre in his “Trenberth’s Bile” (http://climateaudit.org/2011/01/13/trenberths-bile/),

All three are worth reading carefully but I repeat here the piece most relevant to what I have said above QUOTE:
In his most recent outburst, Trenberth says:
Debating them ["deniers"] about the science is not an approach that is recommended. In a debate it is impossible to counter lies, and caveated statements show up poorly against loudly proclaimed confident statements that often have little or no basis. Scientific facts are not open to debate and opinion because they are evidence and/or physically based. Moreover a debate actually gives alternative views credibility.
Trenberth described his recommended tactic in a Climategate email as follows:
So my feeble suggestion is to indeed cast aspersions on their motives and throw in some counter rhetoric. Labeling them as lazy with nothing better to do seems like a good thing to do.
Trenberth now complains .. :
But their critics are another matter entirely, and their false claims have not been scrutinized or criticized anything like enough!
However, Trenberth himself advocated the strategy of casting aspersions on critics instead of scrutinizing their arguments and, as one of the architects of this strategy, is hardly in a position to complain ..
UNQUOTE.

22 years ago Schneider said “ .. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest .. ” (http://www.americanphysicalsociety.com/publications/apsnews/199608/upload/aug96.pdf). That comment, coming from a scientist of Schneider’s status, who chose to say “I HOPE that means being both” rather than “For scientists to retain the respect of the general public, that MUST mean being both”, must have made the great scientists who came before turn in their graves. Did Schneider ever retract that statement during the next 22 years? – no, he simply tried to justify it and claim that he had been quoted out of context.

It seems that Trenberth, like many other scientists who are “disciples” of the CACC doctrine, carries on deciding between being effective and being honest, instead of simply being honest. Is there any wonder that sceptics like me trust them not one little bit. When non-scientists such as politicians, journalists, the power hungry, investors, religious dogmatists and used car salespersons offer their opinions they have been shown time and time again to lie in support of their particular agenda.

It is no coincidence that those scientists who are distrusted by the sceptics are closely associated with the UN’s IPCC, which is, after all, not a scientific association but a political one in which the members are selected by politicians. Politicians also have significant influence over the publications coming out of the IPCC and we all know how political influence can “spin” the truth in a chosen direction. The extent of political influence is outlined in the “WORKING GROUP I CONTRIBUTION TO THE IPCC FIFTH ASSESSMENT REPORT (AR5) Implementation Plan”, 2. Proposed Timetable (http://www.developpement-durable.gouv.fr/IMG/pdf/WG1-17-plan.pdf).

Give me an honest “denier” any day in preference to a lying “disciple”.

Best regards, Pete Ridley.

Pete Ridley March 10, 2011 at 9:30 am

Gareth, the exchanges here are far more enlightening than those elsewhere on your blog. Stick around and you might learn something, but it does require that your remove your blinkers.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Pete Ridley March 10, 2011 at 9:32 am

PPS:

BTW, I gave your blog a mention on Tom Moriarty’s far superior blog. Pop over there too and learn about climate science.

Pete Ridley March 11, 2011 at 6:47 am

Hi John D, at least you and I can have an intelligent exchange without CACC “disciple” Gareth and his followers spoiling it. You mention Michael Mann & his statistically straightened mean global temperature “hockey stick” but there is another highly suspect hockey stick. This is the one claimed to represent how mean atmospheric CO2 content has changed during the past few millennia.

Zbiniew Jaworowski first raised his concerns in 1992 about the claims made by the paleo-climatologists that, apart from some diffusion during the early stages, air “trapped” in ice remained virtually unchanged in composition for the decades, centuries and millennia since the ice fell as snow. His papers “Do glaciers tell a true atmospheric CO2 story?” (1992), “Ancient atmosphere- Validity of ice records “ (1994), “Ice Core Data Show No Carbon Dioxide Increase” (1997), “Solar Cycles, Not CO2, Determine Climate” (2004), “The Greatest Scientific Scandal of Our Time” (2007) and “The Sun, Not Man, Still Rules Our Climate” (2009).

CACC disciples try to claim that Jaworowski’s arguments have been refuted, particularly by Professor Hans Oeschger in 1995 (http://www.someareboojums.org/blog/?p=12), but this is not the case. As Jaworowski said in his 1997 paper “Attempts to support the global warming thesis with analyses of the carbon dioxide content of air bubbles in glacial ice samples, are based on fudged data and ignorance of the physical processes of glacial ice formation”.

Professor Hartmut Frank wrote a forward to Jaworowski’s 1994 paper and to this day supports what Jaworowski says. He recently sent me a slide that he uses in presentations which summarises processes involved from the formation of snow in the atmosphere through to compaction into solid ice. If you’d like a copy send me an E-mail address and I’ll forward it to you.

One area of concern to Jaworowski was diffusion effects within the ice as it became compressed towards solid ice. I have asked ice core reconstruction “experts” like Richard Alley, Jeffrey Severinghaus and Michael Bender about why the paleo-climatologists pay no attention to the fact that CO2 molecules have a smaller kinetic diameter than do O2 or N2 but have not received a satisfactory response. All that they seem prepared to say is that empirical evidence supports their opinions. I find that to be a strange attitude for scientists who have been made aware that experts in the gas purification industry use kinetic rather than the larger collision diameter.

I have raised this matter on various blogs but again, no-one can answer the question. My opinion is that because the CO2 molecule is smaller that O2 or N2 there will be a preferential fractionation of CO2 out of the air mixture during the long time when the ice is being compacted towards the state where remaining air components are “trapped” in closed-off pockets. I can’t see anyone on this blog being able to resolve this issue.

As for the “hockey stick” Mann(ufactured) by the team from bristle-cone pine data mixed with “real” temperature measurements, I prefer an alternative global temperature reconstruction. That’s the one “ .. inferred from the isotope ratios for carbon (carbon-12 and carbon-13C) and oxygen (oxygen-16 and oxygen-18) in the skeletons of sea foraminifers, in the bottom deposits in Sargasso Sea (Northern Atlantic). These indicate that in the last 3,000 years, the climate on Earth has been constantly changing, and the scope of changes in modern times does not differ from those of the past” (http://www.ourcivilisation.com/aginatur/cycles/fig2.htm). Jaworowski also preferred that one (see http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/Articles%202004/Winter2003-4/global_warming.pdf Page 55, Fig 2)

Best regards, Pete Ridley

John D March 11, 2011 at 9:34 am

Hi Pete
Maybe you and I should communicate via email

jd19611961@gmail.com

I don’t think we are welcome round here

RW March 11, 2011 at 10:55 am

You finally said something many can agree with.

bill March 11, 2011 at 1:30 pm

Zbigniew Jaworowski – that’d be the guy who ‘publishes’ in Lyndon LaRouche’s little (*cough*) journal? (that’s the 2004 article, but the 2007 and 2009 papers are also ‘published’ by the LaRouchies! So much for the 21st century examples provided…

More fine company to be keeping… remember what I said about your fellow-travellers, John?

Hey, you’re considering private communication: I can certainly see what you guys could have in common! Here’s a link to a page on confirmation bias, and some of the silly things it can lead people to do. Not that it will do any good, mind.

John D March 11, 2011 at 1:44 pm

Well, you could always email me Bill, I am open to suggestions
All and sundry (including spammers) are welcome.

John D March 11, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Thanks for the link to confirmation bias, Bill.

I really had no idea about that before. You learn something new everyday. Thanks.

Pete Ridley March 11, 2011 at 11:56 am

Is that an ostrich that I see before me – oh, no, its only CACC “believer” RW again. I’ve been checking his comments on this blog. All highly enlightening observations that must really have stretched him to his intellectual limit

On JohnD – “You finally said something many can agree with.” & “This ignorant quasi-libertarian’s obfuscating rants are specifically designed to annoy and ultimately drive away anyone who wants to see something worthwhile”.
On Bob Carter – “Let’s just call him a liar. His name will go down in infamy”.
On “deniers” generally – “The “we don’t understand” mantra used by obstructionist deniers exactly parallels the “no proof” and “controversial” mantras emanating from tobacco companies ad nauseum.”
On me – “If that’s the best Ridley can do, it’s simply feeble”.
On “sceptic plonkers – “Their whole raison-d’etre – to delay, annoy and confuse. John D and his friends are not true sceptics at all, of course”.

RW, no wonder you are reluctant to use your real name – but then again, maybe I’m being unfair and have simply missed an original though-provoking comment of yours hidden away somewhere. Perhaps you can provide a link to one.

Better still, how about resolving that issue about kinetic v collision diameter! Now there’s a challenge for you and an opportunity to show that you are capable of more than mere invective.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

RW March 11, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Ridley isn’t worth replying to directly. He certainly hasn’t read the comments and information, mine among them, in the lengthy thread on the CSC’s brain-dead attempts to discredit the NIWA temperature record.

Since (eg) none of Ridley’s denier friends have been prepared to comment or offer their explanations of the “poleward march” and associated rainfall decreases in the southeast and southwest of Australia, perhaps he can do so? I won’t hold my breath.

That done, let’s hear his expert opinion on Carter, de Freitas, Treadgold et al.

Ridley’s new bosom buddy John D has used plenty of invective, some of it necessarily snipped, against many contributors to this forum. That included an obscene message sent to me privately.

Enjoy the twilight Zone – from here on I prefer to stay away from such a swamp. None of my scientist acquaintances and friends would give any of you lot the time of day – commendable judgement.

Pete Ridley March 12, 2011 at 2:16 am

I see Gareth waxing lyrical today on his “Bob Carter: innumerate and irrational?” thread. I love his attempt at a punch line “What’s the term I’m striving for? Is he being economical with the truth or simply telling lies? I leave that for the reader to decide”. That illustrates beautifully Gareth’s bias. Only a few days earlier I commented on the manner in which Steven Schneider in 1989 encouraged scientists involved in researching global temperature change to “ .. offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have. Each of us has to decide the right balance between being effective, and being honest.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Schneider). Any even-handed individual would have acknowledged that Schneider was encouraging other scientists to think along the lines that being honest was not obligatory. Gareth just ignored it, as though lying could be considered to be an acceptable option for scientists who are “disciple” of the CACC doctrine – but not for “deniers”.

The full quote is available on the “Unearthed video: .. Stephen Schneider .. In Search Of…The Coming Ice Age .. ” (http://algorelied.com/?p=2839) along with a very interesting 1978 TV show presentation.

There’s an interesting comment on the ABC’s “The Great Global Warming Swindle” thread (http://www2b.abc.net.au/tmb/Client/Message.aspx?b=89&t=1&a=0&ps=50&m=7951&dm=1) which includes this Steven (wind-vane) Schneider QUOTE: .. As more CO2 is added to the atmosphere, the rate of temperature increase is proportionally less and less, and the increase eventually levels off. … doubling CO2 would change global temperature by 0.8° K .. UNQUOTE. He said that in 1971, at a time when there was great concern about the globe heading towards another ice age, then the globe appears to be warming up again and low and behold, Schneider hops on the bandwagon encouraging scare stories about runaway warming.

Let’s get back to Jaworowski’s concern about preferential fractionation of CO2 in ice. It seems that we have an expert in our midst – Bill somebody. OK Bill, please enlighten me. Why is the smaller molecule CO2 not able to migrate through the porous ice when the larger O2 and N2 molecules are too large to pass through the pores? A layman’s explanation from you will suffice to start with as I don’t expect too much science from you.

I may get some help from Carol Cowan, who seems to firmly believe that “Human life and farming arose, and has flourished, at a time when the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere remained at a steady 280 parts per million. It has been at that level for at least 800,000 years” (http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/opinion/3937465/Your-view-Drugs-correction-Doubtful-Sound-servants-climate-change-pollution). As samv said “March 7, 2011 at 2:41 pm .. How very oddly specific .. ” (http://hot-topic.co.nz/the-climate-show-8-kevin-trenberth-and-our-shaky-future/).

I don’t expect that Steve Meacher (who complains about lack if “balance and accuracy” at ABC but not at Hot Topic) or Sam Vilain (I get the impression that he’s a cut below the rest – https://www.socialtext.net/perl5/index.cgi?sam_vilain) will offer much of value but I understand that this is a favoured blog of staff and students at Otago U. For example we have one:
- David Lewis, possibly the Associate Professor, Vascular Surgeon and Senior Lecturer, Department of Surgery,
- Nigel J???, of which there are many at the University,
and there may well be others who have some expertise in this area. Although I can’t see RW having anything worth contributing maybe some of his “ .. scientist acquaintances and friends .. have some understanding of this topic. I’d love to hear from them if they understand this complex subject which appears to be poorly understood by paleo-climatologists. Does Otago have anyone with expertise in the migration of molecules in porous substances?

Thought for the day – we have power hungry investors, the politicians and the environmental activists around the globe agitate in support of their various agenda about Nature providing us with a beneficial but trivial (less than 1C) rise in mean global temperature in 150 years. On the other hand globally there is comparatively scant heed to the catastrophes Nature has in store for us. I’m talking about those shifting tectonic plates (e.g the recent earth quake in NZ and today’s in Japan, La Palma island (http://www.es.ucsc.edu/~ward/papers/CSEG.pdf) and last but not least, the Super Volcano under National Park. If you want something worth worrying about, try that one. “It is most dangerous because it is an active super-volcano which means a volcano capable of producing a volcanic eruption with ejecta greater than 1,000 cubic kilometers which is nearly a thousands of times larger than most historic volcanic eruptions. Super volcanic eruptions typically cover huge areas with lava and volcanic ash sufficient to threaten the extinction of species and can even be one of the causes to bring end to the world because once this volcano erupts, it causes all other volcanoes to erupt causing massive tectonic activity” (http://www.smashinglists.com/10-most-dangerous-active-volcanoes-on-earth/).

BTW, take a look at the first photo on that page – isn’t that where Professor Keeling chose to make his estimates of mean global atmospheric CO2 concentration. I’ve forgotten why he chose that as being the perfect spot to take representative samples of “clean” air. Can someone remind me before one of those conspiracy theorists comes along and says it was in order to justify significant statistical manipulation.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Mike Palin March 12, 2011 at 7:42 pm

I know I shouldn’t respond, but Pete you gotta read a bit about geology before spewing crap about “super-volcanoes” and the end of the world.

Pete Ridley March 12, 2011 at 9:32 pm

Hi Mike (Palin) thanks for that response. If you can just confirm that there is no reason to be concerned that the super volcano under Yellowstone will not erupt then I can pass it around the blogosphere. We can’t have nonsense like that misleading the ignorant, can we. (BTW, I made no mention of “the end of the world” – you did).

I see that you are another of those “wiz-kids” from Otago. How about coming up with a response on kinetic v collision diameter?

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Mike Palin March 13, 2011 at 10:33 am

Pete-
An eruption of the Yellowstone super-volcano or our own Taupo would be a huge disaster, but the largest impact would be regional and short-lived, not global. You are perhaps confusing these single eruptions with the longer duration – but still very rapid on geologic time-scales – volcanism of large igneous provinces that accompanied mass extinctions at the end of the Permian, Triassic and Cretaceous. The former involves felsic magma generated within the continental crust and the latter mafic magma from the deeper mantle – quite different beasts. Increased atmospheric CO2 and consequent global warming (and associated oceanic changes) was a principal effect of several of large igneous provinces that would have contribute to the mass extinctions.

(BTW, with regard to the “end of the world”, read your post again. It included this passage:
“Super volcanic eruptions typically cover huge areas with lava and volcanic ash sufficient to threaten the extinction of species and can even be one of the causes to bring end to the world because once this volcano erupts, it causes all other volcanoes to erupt causing massive tectonic activity.” The second bit about “causes all other volcanos to erupt causing massive tectonic activity” is absolute Ken Ring-like crap.)

Finally, it is no news that the molecular proportions of gases in air are fractionated during the process of trapping in ice core bubbles. Fortunately, the scientists who do research on these problems have developed corrections for thermal and gravitational diffusion effects on the molecular proportions of the gases using isotopic fractionations that must accompany these processes. More recently, Jeff Severinghaus has found that the molecular proportions and isotopic compositions of the heavier noble gases Kr and Xe exhibit excellent preservation in the ice cores. This would not be the case for a kinetic process of the type you envision.

It appears you have been misled by nonsense.

Carol Cowan March 15, 2011 at 11:26 pm

“…when the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere remained at a steady 280 parts per million. It has been at that level for at least 800,000 years”
Reference:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090618143950.htm

samv March 16, 2011 at 9:38 am

Speaking of the Great Global Warming Swindle, I’ve recently heard from Chris Merchant of the University of Edinburgh GeoSciences School, and he has put up a new version of Scam of the Great Global Warming Swindle. This one is “a bit shorter and better sound”.

Update: Er, actually you might not want to download from that link, it’s over 5GB – I’ll download and re-code it to a lower bitrate…

samv March 16, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Rats, my transcoder couldn’t grok the Quicktime format sufficiently well to do the job. I’ve mentioned the problems to Chris…

Pete Ridley March 14, 2011 at 10:31 am

Hi Mike, thanks again for responding (March 13 at 10:33 am) but please don’t play games and distort what I say, which is a common ploy by CACC disciples. I was not QUOTE: .. spewing crap about “super-volcanoes” and the end of the world .. UNQUOTE as you claimed. As you are fully aware, I was pointing out things what people might consider more worthy of having concerns about than the small yet beneficial amount of global warming that we have enjoyed since the Little Ice Age.

I can assure you that I was not “ .. confusing these single eruptions with the longer duration .. volcanism of large igneous provinces .. ” and the mention of “ .. end to the world .. ” was not by me but by someone else who I was clearly quoting. If you would like to learn more about this topic try the blog of The Geological Society of London (you may have heard of it) on “Super-volcanoes and super-eruptions” (http://www.geolsoc.org.uk/gsl/education/page2970.html). I don’t expect that you will find any “ .. Ken Ring-like crap .. ” there (although I must say that much of what CACC disciples like Al Gore, Steven Schneider, Kevin Trenberth (not to forget our dear Gareth) offer comes across like that.

Now let’s get back to the much more challenging issue of the migration of CO2 in ice. You claim that “the scientists who do research on these problems have developed corrections for thermal and gravitational diffusion effects on the molecular proportions of the gases using isotopic fractionations that must accompany these processes. More recently, Jeff Severinghaus has found that the molecular proportions and isotopic compositions of the heavier noble gases Kr and Xe exhibit excellent preservation in the ice cores. This would not be the case for a kinetic process of the type you envision”.

Since you were reluctant to provide a link to your source or even a paper title, I make the assumption that you are referring to the 2006 paper “Fractionation of gases in polar ice during bubble close-off: New constraints from firn air Ne, Kr and Xe observations” by Severinghaus & Battle. In their paper they suggested that in ice cores “This size-dependent fractionation during bubble close-off must be taken into account by ice core studies that employ Ne, O2 or Ar. Importantly, no evidence for close-off fractionation is seen for molecules larger than 3.6Å. This is true for the noble gases Kr and Xe as well as the greenhouse gases CO2, CH4 and N2O, confirming the integrity of the ice core archive for records of these atmospheric gases”.

I refer you to their Table 1 (Page 482) for collision diameters and to “VUV absorbing vapours in n-perfluorocarbons” by E. Albrecht et al. Table 3 (Page 268) for kinetic diameter (http://wwwcompass.cern.ch/compass/detector/rich/publications/NIMA510-262.pdf ).

Xe is shown as having a collision diameter of about 0.40nm and a kinetic diameter of about 0.40nm.
Kr is shown to have a collision diameter of about 0.37nm and a kinetic diameter of about 0.36nm.
O2 is shown to have a collision diameter of about 0.35nm and a kinetic diameter of about 0.35nm.
N2 is shown to have a collision diameter of about 0.38nm and a kinetic diameter of about 0.36nm.
CO2 is shown to have a collision diameter of about 0.39nm and a kinetic diameter of 0.33nm.

Note that for Xe, Kr and O2 there is little difference between the two measures, for N2 the kinetic diameter is slightly smaller but for Co2 there is a significant difference, the kinetic diameter being much smaller. More importantly, CO2 has a kinetic diameter which is much less that the 0.36nm for which Severinghaus and Battle concluded “ .. no evidence for close-off fractionation is seen for molecules larger than .. ”.

I refer you to my comment of March 11 at 6:47 am QUOTE: .. I have asked ice core reconstruction “experts” like Richard Alley, Jeffrey Severinghaus and Michael Bender about why the paleo-climatologists pay no attention to the fact that CO2 molecules have a smaller kinetic diameter than do O2 or N2 but have not received a satisfactory response. All that they seem prepared to say is that empirical evidence supports their opinions. I find that to be a strange attitude for scientists who have been made aware that experts in the gas purification industry use kinetic rather than the larger collision diameter. … ”. Your response to that question is even less helpful than those of experts Severinghaus, Bender and Alley in their recent E-mails to me. You (and they) made no attempt whatever to explain why the smaller kinetic diameter of CO2 molecules is irrelevant. I suspect that the simple reason is that you have no idea whatsoever, as was suggested by Zbiniew Jaworoski.

Have you ever considered the possibility that perhaps it is you who has “ .. been misled by nonsense .. ”?

Is there anyone out there who can give me a sensible response to my question “why is CO2 not able to continue to migrate through the ice at the stage where the closing pores are too small to allow O2 and CO2 to pass through them but are still large enough to allow CO2 through?” I suspect that bill (whoever) will have nothing to offer. All that he was capable of on March 11 at 1:30 pm was to ridicule the journal rather than refute Jaworowski’s argument. Perhaps he should consider the relevance of “confirmation bias” to his own position.

John D, you are unlikely to get any E-mails from Bill as he will be reluctant to remove his CACC blinkers. Unlike us sceptics, he has no desire to learn.

BTW, Carol “Cowan) am I correct in thinking that you have no scientific or engineering qualifications whatsoever?

Best regards, Pete Ridley.

Carol Cowan March 14, 2011 at 10:12 pm

“Carol “Cowan) am I correct in thinking that you have no scientific or engineering qualifications whatsoever?”

No, Peter, you are incorrect.

Pete Ridley March 17, 2011 at 12:34 am

Well Carol, I’ve found plenty complaints about you waxing lyrical about CACC but cannot find any evidence that you have scientific or engineering expertise. I get the impression that you are simply a parrot, but please, prove me wrong.

For example, take up the challenge that Mike Palin has decided to chicken out of.

Best regards, Pete

Gareth March 17, 2011 at 11:12 am

Note to all: DNFTT

Pete Ridley March 17, 2011 at 11:42 am

Hi Gareth, as I said earlier, this is the only thread on yoour blog where worthwhile exchanges are taking place.

Best regards, Pete

RW March 17, 2011 at 12:44 pm

Seconded. DNFTT.

Pete Ridley March 18, 2011 at 12:50 am

Once again another worthless contribution from RW. Just admit it – you have no idea about the migration of CO2 in ice, have you. There is no shame in ignorance RW.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Pete Ridley March 14, 2011 at 10:53 am

Correction to the third last paragraph of today’s comment.
QUOTE: Is there anyone out there who can give me a sensible response to my question “why is CO2 not able to continue to migrate through the ice at the stage where the closing pores are too small to allow O2 and N2 to pass through them but are still large enough to allow CO2 through?” UNQUOTE.

Mike Palin March 15, 2011 at 3:04 am

Pete-
What a little piece of work you are. You included the quote referring to “end of the world” in your post and then have the parts to deny it and blame me for bringing it up? Transference, dude, pure and simple.

Look, I’ll try to explain this business of CO2 fractionation to you once and for all, so read very slowly for comprehension. Kinetic fractionation of molecular proportions of a gas mixture will necessarily be accompanied by isotopic fractionation within the constituent gas species. It is the “fingerprint” of such a process (think 235U enrichment by the UF6 process for example). So, if atmospheric isotopic compositions of Kr and Xe have been preserved in the ice cores, then it can reasonably be concluded there has been no significant fractionation of their molecular proportions. This is confirmed when it is found that the molecular proportions of Kr and Xe in the ice cores match those in the atmosphere. So the question of CO2 fractionation has been carefully examined using gas species of similar size and there is simply no evidence of the process you envision. It was a reasonable hypothesis, but the evidence speaks otherwise. Get over it.

R2D2 March 14, 2011 at 6:26 pm

I just want to say that my thoughts are once again with the people caught up in a natural disaster. I can’t imagine how terrible things are in Japan right now. It seems whole communities are lost to the sea following the devastating tsunami.

I also want to say I find it quite revolting that some green groups have been so quick to try and use the disaster as a reason not use nuclear energy. There may well be lessons to be learnt from this disaster in regards to nuclear energy, but now is not the time to debate them. We need to focus on rescue and recovery, allowing the Japanese people to get back on their feet, and then, once the facts of what has occurred is clear, we can look at lessons that need to be taken on board in regard to nuclear energy use.

Pete Ridley March 15, 2011 at 5:54 am

R2D2, I don’t think that many normal humans are not thinking about the destructive power of natural and human forces, considering the horror of the recent Japanese earthquake and tsunami. Unfortunately many in the world face horror every day. I’ve been one of the lucky ones so far (touch wood) and so, I suspect, are most who blog here, but there is little that most of us can do but sympathise.

I see that Mike Palin is keeping very quiet about preferential fractionation of CO2 in that nano-porous ice as it approaches close-off. Maybe he’s trying to learn something about the science, although I would expect an “expert” geologist to be aware of such matters. Geologists in the petroleum industry deal with this subject as a part of their day-job and use the science to extract and purify hydrocarbons. As Zbinew Jaworowski said in his E-mail (25th June 2010) “I am also not versatile in diffusion, and writing my paper in 1994 I was advised and
enlightened by a geologist from the Norwegian oil industry, who was specializing in diffusion, a subject of great importance for oil industry. This is a highly specialized field of science. My impression is that it is a terra incognita for glaciologists”.

On 23rd December in an E-mail to Jeff Severinghaus I commented on his 2006 paper and pointed out to him that QUOTE: .. The diameters estimated for atmospheric gases (collision/kinetic in Ã…) are:-
O2 = 3.5 /3.5; CH4 = 3.8 /3.8; N2= 3.8/3.6; CO2 = 3.9/3.3. Ne = 2.82/2.75 .. It appears to me that collision diameter is relevant during the time in the firn that pores are much larger than the molecules, i.e from macro/ultra-porous to micro-porous, however, as the firn is further compressed until it becomes nano-porous it is the kinetic diameter that becomes relevant. As compression increases during that nano-porous stage pores will eventually become too small for any but the smallest gases to pass, i.e. CO2 and smaller. In other words, CO2 will be preferentially fractionated over N2 and O2, hence distorting the composition of the finally trapped air as well as enriching the air above .. UNQUOTE.

Severinghaus responded immediately with the following surprising comment “As you note the diameter of CO2 is larger than that of our inferred effective threshold size of 3.6 angstroms. So one would not expect CO2 to be fractionated, from a theoretical point of view. Taken together these two points suggest that the CO2 records from ice cores are not significantly affected by this process. Also, in the Huber et al paper, we wrote that our findings support the integrity of the records of large-molecule gases such as CO2 from ice cores (pg. 71, conclusions)”. Rather than “note the diameter of CO2 is larger than that of our inferred effective threshold size of 3.6 angstroms” I had specifically pointed out to him that the CO2 kinetic diameter, being 3.3Å, was significantly less than the magic 3.6Å yet he chose to completely ignore that important point. If he had considered that point properly he could not have arrived at the conclusion that “ .. one would not expect CO2 to be fractionated .. ”.

Severinghaus went on to say “Also, in the Huber et al paper, we wrote that our findings support the integrity of the records of large-molecule gases such as CO2 from ice cores (pg. 71, conclusions)” again ignoring the fact that CO2 has a smaller kinetic diameter.

It is worth looking at that Huber et al. paper that Severinghaus considered supportive of his opinion on preferential fractionation of CO2. “Evidence for molecular size dependent gas fractionation in firn air derived from noble gases, oxygen, and nitrogen measurements” covers research into “ .. elemental and isotopic measurements of noble gases (He, Ne, Ar, Kr, and Xe), oxygen and nitrogen of firn air from two sites”. The paper talks specifically about a fourth size-dependent fractionation as an additional mechanism which distorts the composition of air that is being gradually “trapped” with ice yet makes not a mention of CO2! Why is this? – in my opinion it is because the researchers overlooked the significance of collision v kinetic diameter for the CO2 molecule. This is highlighted by Table 2 (Page 65) “Molecular properties used in the model and close-off fractionations factors” which shows CO2 having a diameter of 3.9Å and Fig. 8 (Page 69), which show that N2, Kr and Xe effectively enjoy close-off fractionation factors for 1 (i.e. no size-dependent fractionation). This gives the impression, when considering only collision diameter, that CO2 also experiences no such fractionation and end of investigation – but is it? Once again this highly regarded paper gives no consideration to kinetic diameter.

On 24th December I asked Severinghaus “ .. why you are not impressed by the fact that CO2 has a significantly smaller kinetic diameter than O2 or N2. .. ”. No response, so I E-mailed again on 29th, providing several references to papers that give support to my hypothesis, but again he made no response.

The area of concern that I have relates to the phase in the compresson of the ice where close-off is approached but not reached for the smaller CO2 molecule. Part 3 “Model of the bubble close-off fractionation and lock-in zone” of the Severnghaus/Battle paper, particularly Fig. 3, describes the situation to a degree, including the pressure gradient towards the surface. The text book “Hydrocarbon migration and its near-surface expression: outgrowth of the AAPG” page 174 describes how Ficke’s Law needs to be modified to cater for the migration of molecules within porous media (including sedimentary rocks). I consider that the following extract is relevant to the migration process in ice at this stage of compression QUOTE: .. pressure must be taken into consideration as an additional and possible predominant driving force for molecular migration. At the extremely low permeabilities .. a differentiation between volume flow and molecular transport becomes impossible, that is, mass flow can only occur by the movement of molecules .. Knudsen diffusion .. UNQUOTE.

In my opinion paleoclimatoligists appear to have misled themselves into assuming that because the CO2 collision diameter is so much greater than other major atmospheric constituents, most of which exhibit little difference between collision and kinetic diameter, preferential size-dependent fractionation of CO2 it experiences close-off ahead of the others therefore need not be considered on its own. I suspect that gas purification specialists would agree – but please prove me wrong.

Mike, although I’m not a geologist but just a retired Chartered Engineer, I hope that this has been helpful for you, but you will need to double check before getting back. Maybe you should look carefully at those kinetic diameters for the different gases then read those papers again before getting on your high horse.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Thomas March 15, 2011 at 10:51 am

Pete, don’t you have a home on your own blog page? I see you have three friends there already waiting for the publication of your next great discoveries and revelations.

Mike Palin March 15, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Pete-
You email a guy on Dec 24 and bitch about him not getting back to you! What kind of sad life do you lead?

I’m sorry that you can’t find the right equation to plug and chug the answer for this, but get a freaking life. As I pointed out, the absence of resolvable isotopic fractionation means there is no significant fractionation of molecular proportions. End of story.

Pete Ridley March 15, 2011 at 10:21 pm

Mike, were you simply attempting to wave away the likelihood of size-dependent fractionation within nano-porous media like sediments and firn by throwing in the concept of “kinetic fractionation” and the accompanying isotopic fractionation? I don’t reject this process as being another of the several that can distort the amount of CO2 in air as it journeys from the atmosphere, into the falling snow to the ground and becomes more and more compressed until it becomes “trapped” in a pocket within “solid” ice, but it is a minor process compared with size-dependent fractionation.

The impression that I get is that you are deliberately introducing an unnecessary complication to the discussion at this stage simply to cloud the real issue of your own uncertainty. Hand-waving away the issue with comments like “ .. the evidence speaks otherwise. Get over it” and “ .. End of story .. ” is not a proper response to the challenge that I put to you and others here. This was “how about resolving that issue about kinetic v collision diameter!” In this discussion the only connection between kinetic fractionation and fractionation arising from differences in the size of gas molecules is the word “kinetic” – end of!

I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and adopt the stance that you are getting a little confused by the terminology. Let’s recap on what that real issue is, i.e. size-dependent fractionation of the smaller CO2 molecule out of the air mixture “trapped” in ice as close-off is approached. When referring to “size-dependent” fractionation of different gas molecules Severinghaus, Battle, Huber, etc. are not talking about size in terms of mass, but in terms of space occupied. I haven’t had breakfast yet so a food analogy comes to mind. A meat ball may well have the same mass as a sausage but a sausage can pass through a smaller aperture than the meat ball if it is long and thin enough.

When discussing this issue with others many find it surprising that a CO2 molecule can have a smaller diameter than an O2 or even a CO molecule, but often truth is stranger than fiction (see Table 3 of Muler et al. – http://wwwcompass.cern.ch/compass/detector/rich/publications/NIMA510-262.pdf). When discussing this issue on Chris Colose’s “Richard Alley at AGU 2009: The Biggest Control Knob” thread (http://chriscolose.wordpress.com/2009/12/18/richard-alley-at-agu-2009-the-biggest-control-knob/) one Marcus initially rejected the notion out of hand (just like you?) until he had words with Josh Halpern (AKA Eli).

Both Marcus and I learned something from those exchanges, so it worked out well in the end. He doesn’t need to feel bad about his ignorance, any more than you or I should, but please stop ignoring the sterling work that Severinghaus et al. have done in relation to this issue (although they stopped short of properly researching the fractionation of CO2).

Severinghaus and Battle clearly stated in their paper “Fractionation of gases in polar ice during bubble close-off: .. ” QUOTE: … Ne, O2 and Ar appear to be preferentially excluded from the shrinking and occluding bubbles, and these gases therefore accumulate in the residual firn air, creating a progressive enrichment with time (and depth) in firn air. .. A simple model of the bubble close-off fractionation and lock-in zone enrichment fits the data adequately. The model presumes that fractionation is caused by selective permeation of gas through the ice lattice from slightly overpressured bubbles. The effect appears to be size-dependent, because Ne, O2 and Ar have smaller effective molecular diameters than N2, and fractionation increases strongly with decreasing size. Ne is fractionated 34±2 times more than O2 in South Pole firn air and reaches an enrichment of 90‰ in the deepest sample. The large atoms Kr and Xe do not appear to be fractionated by this process, despite the large size difference between the two gases, suggesting a threshold atomic diameter of 3.6Å above which the probability becomes very small that the gas will escape from the bubble UNQUOTE.

At this late stage in the firn compression process the migration of molecules is no longer Fickian but Knudsen and it is kinetic rather than collision diameter that is relevant. As I have pointed out before, CO2 has a much smaller molecular diameter than N2 or O2 and slightly smaller than Ar – as you have said “Get over it.”.

If you don’t understand the issue well enough and wish to withdraw from the challenge then that’s OK by me. I’m sure that others will be keen to tackle it, however, others who are not commenting here are enjoying our exchanges and learning from them along with us both.

BTW, you may find it enlightening to read “Materials science of membranes for gas and vapor separation” by Yuri Yampolskii, Ingo Pinnau, Benny D. Freeman, especially pages 8/9.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Mike Palin March 16, 2011 at 2:14 am

Pete-
You clearly don’t understand the fundamental principal that any physio-chemical process that preferentially enrichs or depletes a particular species from a gas mixture must induce isotopic fractionation. The magnitude of the isotopic shift scales with the relative change in molecular proportions and the mass difference in between the isotopes according to a power law.

I’m not going to continue with you any further because it’s like arguing with a puddle of mud. Bye-bye.

Mike Palin March 18, 2011 at 4:25 am

Hmm, perhaps a black hole is a better analogy.

Pete Ridley March 17, 2011 at 10:09 pm

Now that Mike Palin has withdrawn is there anyone here who is able to take up the challenge to disprove my hypothesis about preferential fractionation of CO2 from the atmospheric gas mixture “trapped” in ice. Surely all that is require is to demonstrate that smaller CO2 molecules (0.33nm diameter) cannot preferentially escape from the air pockets through 0.34nm diameter pores – leaving behind the larger O2 (0.35nm) and N2 (0.36nm) – and migrate towards the surface down the pressure gradient. I know that this could be difficult to show because energy industry gas purification engineers use to good effect commercially the fact that different gases have different molecular kinetic diameter, e.g. to bring coal mine gas (CMG) – ranging from 25-95% CH4 – up to natural gas transmission system standards (typically no more than CO2 1.5%, N2 2.0% O2 0.05%).

Come on you expert paleo-climatologists at Otago U, all that you have to do is prove that those numerous commercial systems that have been in operation for years don’t really work and all of that “purified” CMG pushed into the national grids was and is substandard. That’ll be a catastrophe for them of far greater proportions than CACC. It will also be disappointing for the UN, because it’s Economic Commission for Europe said in its 2010 “Best Practice Guidance for Effective Methane Drainage and Use in Coal Mines” (http://www.unece.org/se/pdfs/cmm/pub/BestPractGuide_MethDrain_es31.pdf) “ .. the world will continue to depend on coal as an energy source for the foreseeable future. .. CH4 released during coal mining .. is an energy resource lost forever .. ”. Mind you, if you can do no better than Mike Palin then I don’t think the UN or the purification plant manufacturers need to worry too much.

Green Gas (Beijing) Clean Energy Technology. Ltd. have a helpful slide presentation (http://www.globalmethane.org/documents/events_coal_20100830_vorholz.pdf) on CMG which includes representative constituent gases, such as CH4 (5-75%), N2 (10-60%), O2 (1-15%) and good old CO2 (0.1-3%).
Purification processes result in pipeline quality natural gas of 97% CH4 and popular technologies for removing the CO2 is Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) and Molecular Sieve Adsorption (MSA)

Johnson Mathey Gas Purification Technology (http://pureguard.net/cm/Library/Zeolite_Molecular_Sieve_Purification.html) provide a helpful description of Zeolite/Molecular Sieve Purification which I suspect is a similar process to what occurs in firn. Also, NERC provide the abstract of a paper “Carbon dioxide capture using a zeolite molecular sieve sampling system for isotopic studies (C-13 and C-14) of respiration”. This brings us nicely back to Mike Palin and his claim of March 15 at 3:04 that “ .. Kinetic fractionation of molecular proportions of a gas mixture will necessarily be accompanied by isotopic fractionation within the constituent gas species. .. ”. That NERC abstact appears to say something different with “ .. Results showed that CO2 could be trapped and recovered for both δ13C and 14C analysis by isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS), respectively, without any contamination, fractionation, or memory effect .. ”.

Never mind, I’ve asked several recognised experts to advise me, then I’ll get back.

Best regards, Pete Ridley.

Mike Palin March 20, 2011 at 6:23 pm

Damnit Pete, I can’t stand your dumbass comments. You aren’t claiming 100% recovery of CO2 from a gas mixture as with the activated molecular sieve traps – a technology I have used in my research in the past so I know exactly what I am talking about. You are claiming that just enough of the “smaller” CO2 is lost from an air mixture dominated by N2 and O2 to result in residual CO2 concentrations that vary regularly between 180 and 280 ppm AND just happen to correlate with microfossil oxygen isotope-derived sea-surface temperatures through repeated glacial/interglacial cycles over the past 600 thousand years. And don’t forget that systematic 800 year offset you contrarians are so fond of.

Pete Ridley March 21, 2011 at 1:41 am

Hi Mike, good to hear from you again. I thought that you wouldn’t be able to stay away for long but you may have upset Gareth and resident scientific genius RW for FTT. I’m sorry that you’ll have to wait until tomorrow for my more detailed response but here’s a short reply to your latest submission.

You are absolutely correct to say that I am not ” .. claiming 100% recovery of CO2 from a gas mixture as with the activated molecular sieve traps .. “. I never have done and don’t expect that I ever will – but what brought that “dumbass” statement on? I’m delighted to hear that you ” .. know exactly what (you are) talking about, as that is what I hope for when a scientist expresses no doubt whatever when offering me the benefit of his expert opinion. However, when I hear one scientist confidently stating one thing and another equally confidently contradicting ten you can understand my scepticism.

As for me ” .. claiming that just enough of the “smaller” CO2 is lost from an air mixture dominated by N2 and O2 to result in residual CO2 concentrations that vary regularly between 180 and 280 ppm AND just happen to correlate with microfossil oxygen isotope-derived sea-surface temperatures through repeated glacial/interglacial cycles over the past 600 thousand years .. “, where did you dream up that “dumbass” comment up from.

There are several different processes taking place within the firn/ice during those many decades, centuries and millennia that air is resident before extraction and aalysis which can distort the concentration of the various gas components – as you well know. For the moment I’m interested in one specific process and one specific gas, i.e. migration of CO2, both in firn and then in “solid” ice (see e.g. http://ns.geocraft.com/WVFossils/Reference_Docs/CO2_diffusion_in_polar_ice_2008.pdf).

You may recall me asking “RW, .. how about resolving that issue about kinetic v collision diameter! Now there’s a challenge for you and an opportunity to show that you are capable of more than mere invective”. I repeated this for your benefit on 12th March “How about coming up with a response on kinetic v collision diameter?” Are you able to explain why collision diameter is used in preference to kinetic diameter when discussing migration along pores having a diameter similar to that of the molecules themselves.

I invite you to discuss that without rancour and I’ll try to do the same. Must dash as she who must be obeyed is calling.

Reply

Pete Ridley March 21, 2011 at 9:59 pm

Hi Mike, sorry that I had to dash off yesterday, but as I keep telling my grandchildren “when the boss says jump you don’t ask why you simply say – Yes ma’am, how high”.

As well as trying to have a reasonable discussion here about something that I see as being rather important – the validity of the CO2 “hockey stick” I am doing the same on the “Climate Conversation Group” group “It’s not warming, you nitwit — it’s cooling” thread (http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2011/03/its-not-warming-you-nitwit-its-cooling/#comment-45314). That group says “We explore the science behind global warming, free from dissimulation and rancour, and we publish it freely” (http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/about/) and this is what I am finding there. I’m not getting agreement about my hypothesis but the comments coming (particularly) from Richard C (Cumming? – I wish people would use their full name because I have no idea what is his area of scientific expertise/specialisation, if any) but he is giving me food for thought without any rancour.

There seems to be some connection between the group and the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition and I suspect from what I have read here that there is no love lost between supporters of the CACC hypothesis here and the NZCSC. Let me make it clear that the only connection that I have with the NZCSC is after reading his booklet “The Greenhouse Delusion” I had exchanges with Vincent Gray, initially in 2007/8 relating to my article “Politicization of Climate Change & CO2” (http://nzclimatescience.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=374&Itemid=30) and more recently relating to computer model validation, sea level rise (http://globalpoliticalshenanigans.blogspot.com/2010/09/death-by-drowning-next-phase-of_29.html) and very recently indirectly in relation to “the Slayers” who killed the “Sky Dragon” (http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/11/29/new-book-slaying-the-sky-dragon/) and are begging for money to set up their publishing company PSI (http://funds.gofundme.com/1v39s).

If you bother to read my comments you may realise that I do try very hard to be a real sceptic, not simply a dogmatic “denier” – I was at one stage, in December, invited to become a member of that “worthy” group of Slayers but declined the invitation.

I have spent time on the previous bit of information in an effort to encourage exchanges here without rancour, now back to those attempts to reconstruct past atmospheric CO2 content from air “trapped” in ice.

The exchanges taking place over at the Climate Conversation blog have now been moved to a new thread “Fallen snow” (http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2011/03/fallen-snow/) and my most recent comment there (yesterday) is relevant here so I’ll simply quote the pertinent bits QUOTE:

Richard C, .. On your comment “ .. Would not the nanometer diameter apertures only occur in ice .. ”, I think not. I .. did look at “Diffusion of air molecules in antarctic ice-sheet” by Professor Fukazawa. That one is concerned with migration through the ice after close-off, which is an additional process that distorts the composition of the air “trapped” in pockets in the ice .. I’m talking about the situation that arises in the firn at a time before “close-off” when the pores (that exist in the snow from the beginning) have been compressed until they are too small for the larger molecules (N2, O2, CH4, etc – see my comment of March 14 at 10:47 am).

You ask “ .. is migration necessarily toward the surface? .. ” and I hypothesise that, although there will be migration in any direction where a large enough pore exists, mean flow will be towards the surface because that is the direction of least resistance. CO2, being one of the smaller molecules, will escape from the air pockets and head towards the surface, enriching the levels above with CO2.

.. “Evidence for molecular size dependent gas fractionation in firn air derived from noble gases, oxygen, and nitrogen measurements” by Huber et al (http://icebubbles.ucsd.edu/Publications/Huber_closeoff_EPSL2006.pdf). .. talks specifically about a fourth size-dependent fractionation as an additional mechanism which distorts the composition of air that is being gradually “trapped” with ice yet makes not a mention of CO2! Why is this? – in my opinion it is because the researchers overlooked the significance of collision v kinetic diameter for the CO2 molecule. This is highlighted by Table 2 (Page 65) “Molecular properties used in the model and close-off fractionations factors” which shows CO2 having a diameter of 3.9Å and Fig. 8 (Page 69), which show that N2, Kr and Xe effectively enjoy close-off fractionation factors for 1 (i.e. no size-dependent fractionation). This gives the impression, when considering only collision diameter, that CO2 also experiences no such fractionation and end of investigation – but is it? Once again this highly regarded paper gives no consideration to kinetic diameter.

.. “Fractionation of gases in polar ice .. ” by Severinghaus and Battle (http://icebubbles.ucsd.edu/Publications/closeoff_EPSL.pdf) .. Section 3.1. Permeation model they say “The model is based upon the hypothesis that the close-off fractionation occurs because the ice lattice is slightly permeable to gases, with permeability being much higher for some gases than others”. Their Fig. 3 (Page 478) presents a simplified picture of three firn air bubbles A below B below C as a QUOTE: Schematic of our idealized model for permeation-related fractionation during bubble close-off. Bubble A is in a more advanced stage of compression than bubble B, as is bubble B relative to bubble C, which has not yet closed off. Bubble pressure therefore decreases from A to B and from B to C. It is assumed that most fractionation occurs because of gas permeation through the ice lattice from bubble B to bubble C, through the thin wall of ice separating the two. Gases are assumed to be free to diffuse quickly into the open firn from bubble C. No net fractionation of the bulk ice occurs by the permeation from bubble A to bubble B, because the fractionated gases simply accumulate in bubble B. The model also assumes that bubble C will close off when a constant amount of compression has occurred (5% in the present model) relative to the porosity at the moment that the adjacent bubble (bubble B) closed off, on average. ..

I hypothesise that size-dependent fractionation of CO2 (and molecules with kinetic diameters smaller than 0.33nm) occurs not only due to permeation through the ice lattice (as investigated by Professor Fukazawa and assumed by Severinghaus ans Battle) but also by Knudsen diffusion through those small pores, leaving moledules of N2, Os and CH4 behind in the lower air bubbles. As compression progresses, bubble A closes off for all air components, the number of pores capable of passing CO2 and smaller molecules to bubble C reduces and pores out of bubble C to higher level reduce to a size that only allows CO2 and smaller to a bubble D. The CO2 that has enriched the air in bubble C is forced into bubble D due to the increased pressure. Effectively the CO2 and smaller molecules are squeezed up the ice sheet towards the surface, a process that takes place over the long period during which close-off is progressing.

Let’s not forget the statement in the abstract that “The large atoms Kr and Xe do not appear to be fractionated by this process, despite the large size difference between the two gases, suggesting a threshold atomic diameter of 3.6Å above which the probability becomes very small that the gas will escape from the bubble” or the fact that the kinetic diameter of CO2 is well below that magic 3.6Å.

Now, where does my hypothesis contradict the laws of physics? UNQUOTE.

With your expertise in molecular sieves you should be able to explain why kinetic diameter is not relevant and why smaller molecules do not diffuse (Knudsen) through pores that are too small to allow larger molecules to get through.

That’s enough for now as I have to get back to Richard C on “Fallen snow” (http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2011/03/fallen-snow/). I can’t understand why he draws such a sharp dividing line between firn and “solid” ice. I see the change as being a very slow one.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

Pete Ridley March 27, 2011 at 11:14 am

If anyone on this blog wants to engage in intelligent exchanges that question the validity of the attempts by paleoclimatologists to reconstruct past atmospheric CO2 composition from air “trapped” in ice for millennia then please join us on Richard Treadgold’s Climate Conversation thread “Fallen Snow”.

What a shame that Mike Palin withdrew from the discussion here.

Best regards, Pete Ridley

joe.fone April 14, 2011 at 5:09 pm

You warmists will never learn… A new study by a team of climate MODELLERS and a paper based on MODELLING! Forget real world evidence and empiricism. Modelling is where the money is.

But this is how serious it is according to Dr. David Suzuki: “I do despair. My wife and I huddle at night and weep for our helplessness. We are losing big-time and I’m enough of a scientist to see we are heading right down the tube. Judging by the past twenty years, we are going backward”.

Good grief! How sad is that? Poor guy. Good for a laugh I suppose.

joe.fone April 19, 2011 at 7:59 pm

Actually Gareth, it is your good self who misses the point. And, as usual, you are clutching at straws. What is the term in common usage Gareth? Common parlance. What was the standard jargon used by warmists from Gore to Hansen? What term was most commonly used until it went out of fashion? For years it was all about “global warming”, but since that obviously isn’t happening, man-made or otherwise, the new popular terminology had to change to suit. So now it’s called “climate change”, aka “climate disruption”, aka “climate challenges” so that no matter what happens you can’t lose, whether warming or cooling because the emphasis is now on climate “change”.

So naturally you want (nay, NEED!) to downplay global “warming” because every year we see yet another record COLD winter. This obviously doesn’t suit the global warming dogma, despite the tortured efforts all the warmists go to in order to save face and rescue a semblance of respectability. So you shift the goal posts and change the terminology accordingly. The problem with that, as you must be aware by now, is that it’s wearing a bit thin and smacks of desperation.

Globull warming is old hat. It’s boring. No one cares or believes it. Even the media has gone cold on it (pun intended). So get over it. You should celebrate carbon dioxide as Nature’s fertilizer! It’s wonderful stuff. Quite simply there’s not enough of it in the atmosphere!

joe.fone April 20, 2011 at 7:26 pm

LOL!! Moved my post. Can’t handle the heat Gareth? You’re so committed to the AGW cause, you’ve barricaded yourself inside your impregnable castle of steadfast ignorance and bolted the door! You’re safe inside, wearing the armour plate of religious conviction, impervious to reason and searching questions of doubt. The hallmarks of religious fundamentalism. But I take my hat off to your staunch loyalty to the cause because you laugh at reason and science and logic and common sense. It all slides off your armour like water off a duck’s back.

Good luck with that!

Steve Wrathall April 21, 2011 at 10:38 am

With Charles Manson as your latest champion, is it any wonder that the public is turning off warmism?

Shaquita June 20, 2011 at 5:06 am

Matt Ridley has as much right to be talking to Kim Hill on National radio as any shill for global warming, such as James Hansen, who lied the entire time he was in NZ. While I didn’t agree with everything Matt said he doesn’t deserve to be rubbished by the “haters and wreckers’ who frequent this site. Jim’s lies have not changed over the years. It goes right back to Bert Bolin and the IPCC. Bert knew that the residence time of CO2 had been calculated to be 5 – 7 years and had been quantified and measured using different methods from 1957 – 1992. However it didn”t stop him announcing the 2 lies that underpin the fraud of AGW. Lie 1- CO2 is like the glass of a greenhouse, traps IR radiation and heats up the earth.(Even acts like an electric blanket and continues to back radiate heat – according to Arrhenius, the Nostradamas of climate science). Lie 2- The “lifetime” of atmospheric CO2 lasts 50 – 200 years, the climate we are having today is a result of fossil fuel burning in the past and our activities today will lead to disaster for our children in the future. This lie gives “Grand Daddy Jim” the chance to brainwash his grandchildren, and encourage teenagers to sue governments. That ancient reptile, Maurice Strong has stated- “Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialised civilisations collapse? Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?” I recently discovered that Maurice Strong is now residing in China.(A commies home away from home). Goodness we can put 2 and 2 together now. Jimmy Boy is Maurice’s best mate. Remember the trip Jim took to China. He praised the Chinese government, called for increased taxes on American imports, and said that the American industrial complex should be destroyed. There were comments on this website recently that ordinary people weren’t getting the message and didn’t understand the true situation. The warmist brainwashing has been unrelenting, scorn and derision has been poured on those who have taken the time to find the truth. Climate science is very complex and those who oppose the dogma find it difficult to argue the facts scientifically. You must bear in mind that the ultimate purpose of the IPCC is to cherry pick and misuse climate science in order to eventually control humanity’s access to energy. By the way “Annoying Know-all Bryan Walker” you are completely wrong when you wrote in The Waikato Times that ” volcanic activity has been dwarfed by the rapid release of carbon dioxide from our burning of fossil fuel.” See how a lie is promoted.[Surely Brian knows that CO2 emissions of volcanic origin are isotopically identical to those of fossil fuel emissions.] This was worsened by the editor’s footnote that “This letter and Mr Cox’s piece do not re-ignite the debate in this column.” See what I mean – censorship!

robint June 20, 2011 at 11:50 am

Right on, Shaquita, except you forgot to mention the tooth fairy, who will surely save us from the consequences of our actions in the real world…

Richard C2 January 15, 2013 at 1:16 pm

SkS are out on a limb now that the UKMO has revised its decadal forecast. The Foster and Rahmstorf trajectory follows the 2011 HadCM3 forecast but the 2012 HadGEM3 forecast is no longer on that trajectory now that the new model accounts for natural variability better (apparently) than the obsolete model:-

http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/09/shift-in-british-climate-analysis-blunts-governments-short-term-warming-forecast/

I would point out too that the new HadGEM3 (too late for AR5) forecast is about 0.2 C below the lower StDev dotted line for most of CMIP5/AR5 ensemble at 2017 going by this incomplete graph here:-

http://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/christy-fig.jpg?w=808&h=622

Admittedly, the 2012 forecast is a synthesis of a 10 run spaghetti plot but what does the divergence of CMIP5 ensemble average from observations AND from at least two improved models (see below) say about the CMIP5/AR5 ensemble?

Most of the CMIP5 ensemble have failed to mimic the 21st century trajectory of observations let alone absolute level. Any model that fails to mimic observations is superfluous i.e. UKMO obviously decided HadCM3 was rubbish and had to be discarded in view of HadGEM3 results. By that reasoning, all but about 4 CMIP5 ensemble projections are now redundant and should be discarded from AR5.(INM-CM4 is the best, right between RSS and UAH in an update plot) – how did they achieve that?.

Furthermore, at 2017 the 2012 UKMO prediction has peaked at 2016 and is on a down phase. Now, UKMO have (apparently) introduced the influence of natural cycles to HadGEM3. Given that there is no cycle (e.g. solar, PDO, AMO) that would boost temperature above 2016, what possible mechanism is there to take temperatures back up above 2016 remembering that GHG forcing (valid or not) is simply recycled solar energy?

And why the peak at 2016? Have UKMO gained the ability to predict El Nino for example? That 2016 peak is totally reliant on the release of residual ocean heat now that the sun is going into recession but that residual heat will not just keep boosting temperatures higher and higher if the solar force for accumulation is removed will it?

The new utility (possibly) of HadGEM3 underscores the flawed F&R rationale i.e. El Nino energy say, cannot be “taken out”. The way to deal with it is smoothing over time (as in the 7 yr smoothing in the above model vs observations plot) for like-for-like comparison but not taken out because although models don’t mimic El Nino events but they DO account for the solar input and accumulation of ocean energy that is released by El Nino via the atmosphere after lag time which can be decades i.e. there are fast responses and slow responses from solar input and not all prior accumulation is released by an El Nino, there is residual energy carried over to subsequent release. There’s still accumulation from the solar grand maximum of the late 2000s to be released in the future but the accumulation phase (high solar levels) is over.which tends to negate the possibility of further rise in the future.

The acid test will be fully on the notion of continued warming over the next 5 years or so.now that improved models are not only mimicing the 21st century flat trajectory but are forecasting a continuation of it too.

Richard C2 January 15, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Correction

“(INM-CM4 is the best, right between RSS and UAH in an update plot) – how did they achieve that?.”

Should be,

(INM-CM4 is the best, right between RSS/UAH and GISS/NCDC/HadCRUT in an update plot) – how did they achieve that?.

That is, INM-CM4 is between satellite and land-based series, and on the same trajectory.

John D March 8, 2011 at 4:33 pm

The Hockey Stick has been discredited because of the utterly hopeless use of statistics and over-reliance of Bristlecone pine data.

However, I have really no interest in having a discussion with someone who thinks that AIT is a valid science movie.

I might as well talk to someone in the pub about Ken Ring.

RW March 8, 2011 at 7:13 pm

Finally at least placed where you belong, you tedious energizer-bunny troll.

Feel feel to leave, and do your talking in your local instead.

John D March 8, 2011 at 7:38 pm

What a delight.
The cophophagist RW has joined me in the Twilight Zone

John D March 8, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Oh here we go.

“Only credible sources”

Top pissing me around Mike.

John D March 8, 2011 at 9:22 pm

Mike,
Try this charming little video designed to frighten children
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BptZ7CXHziA

I am not sure if YouTube is a credible source though, apologies in advance.

RW March 8, 2011 at 9:39 pm

You misspelt your insult. That’s appropriate, given your track record on this site.

John D March 9, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Steve
I realise that you don’t agree with what I say, and that you think indoctrination of children is acceptable.

I realise that you come from a group of people who are completely intolerant of any other opinions other than your own. I have a name for these kind of people, but I will spare you that. Needless to say, we have seen several of these cultures thrive temporarily in the 20th century.

I have read your comments on Joe Romm’s site, and they are completely consistent with my perceived view of you.

Contrary to what people say, I do actually provide references to back up my claims (e.g the Pielke Jnr comments).

Carol Cowan March 9, 2011 at 10:15 pm

“I realise that you come from a group of people who are completely intolerant of any other opinions other than your own”

pot, kettle, black.

Thomas March 10, 2011 at 9:03 am

John, I am not sure what your stance is on the “Evolution Debate” but never mind, there are may people in the USA in particular who declare the teaching of Evolution to be indoctrination of children with an unproven theory. The truth is that Evolution is happening and is scientifically undisputed. Teaching Evolution is therefore not indoctrination. To the contrary, teaching children religious nonsense is definitely indoctrination of the worst kind.

Back to AGW: We have reached on the matter of climate change a position in science that is equally firm when it comes to the basic theory and its predictable effects. Teaching about AGW is therefore not indoctrination. It is a necessary preparation for society to deal with a very serious situation.

Gareth March 10, 2011 at 9:07 am

Thomas: The Twilight Zone is not meant to be a discussion — just a place for daft comments to moulder!

John D March 11, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Thomas,
I wasn’t aware that there was “an evolution debate”.
Even if there was, I don’t really care.

It doesn’t affect me.

Thomas March 10, 2011 at 10:11 am

OOps, just could not help myself when seeing JDs rantings…..

John D March 10, 2011 at 10:38 am

So Thomas, you find it important that kids know about AGW?

Well, so would I, if that is what they are being taught.But are they?
Do they learn about radiative forcing, positive and negative feedbacks?
Do they learn about the role of solar and cosmic rays?
Do they learn about PDO, AMO, ENSO, etc?

The short answer is no, they don’t

Kids are not being taught science at all.

They are being trained to be “little activists”, as John Shade asserts.
This, in fact, is illegal in many countries.

RW March 10, 2011 at 12:55 pm

Also, of course, he has failed to answer even the most elementary questions or challenges put to him. He is probably an acolyte of the libertarian crank Perigo. Typically for his type, John D flings out lies, smears and discredited stories, then objects if anyone returns fire. I think in due course he will be put in a zone of his own, like Dewhurst, if the Twilight version doesn’t work out well.

John D March 10, 2011 at 1:28 pm

You have some evidence that sea level rise is accelerating? I thought the opposite was true.

John D March 10, 2011 at 6:58 pm

Which elementary questions have I failed to answer, RW?
Please specify.

John D March 10, 2011 at 9:06 pm

Hi “tom”

By your remark :If indeed he understands the question/s.” I assume that you think that I am intellectually retarded.

I assume, by your rather incomprehensible prose, that you are the same “tomfarmer”

So perhaps you could rephrase your questions(s) in terms that us simpletons can understand.

Otherwise, we are all wasting bandwidth, and we know what a terrible carbon cost that is to humanity.

John D March 11, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Yes you are right bill.I am dreadfully sorry.

I forgot that I am an ignorant troll, Not a genuine Person ™, a crank, denier, numpty, moron, not worth listening to (just some of the terms used against me).

I realise that expressing my personal experience from residents of Christchurch in response to a comment about the residents of Christchurch is COMPLETELY INAPPROPRIATE and I am extremely sorry.I will confine all further comments in the Twilight Zone, which I am sure Gareth will be happy to oblige by moving me there.

OK?

John D March 12, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Steve
Can you tell us how you intend to reduce Australia’s emissions to 40% below 1990 levels in the next 9 years?

You know, numbers, plans, power station roll-outs etc? I have got some figures from Pielke Jr’s book that suggests even a fraction of this is fantasy.

joe.fone April 12, 2011 at 5:53 pm

Doug: “In their case they pick facts out of context that agree with their view and ignoring facts, and the context, that don’t… Which is worse the greenie with the car or the denier?”

On the first point, I have three words for you: pot, kettle, black! Think Steig, Callendar, Mann, Gore… I mean Gore is so into cherry picking he even used a cherry-picker on his tragie-comedy! A bit of humour there for you Doug.

On the second point, “Which is worse the greenie with the car or the denier?” Denier of what exactly? This is a question befitting religion, Doug, not science. You should know that. But I forgive you because it is a subtle admission on your part that the issue has nothing to do with science. It is rather all about religion, a religious conviction of some entrenched belief system that is also a fad. What is it called these days anyway? Global warming? Climate change? Climate disruption? Climate challenges? What’s the fashionable new term?

In any case, as nearly every poll indicates these days, no one gives a toss about it anymore. Joe and Jane Public are sick of hearing about it, don’t believe it, don’t care and have moved on to far more important issues, of which there are plenty (not that AGW was ever important anyway). They are afflicted by alarm fatigue Doug.

radishman February 21, 2012 at 1:09 pm

cant say anything against mann he a god cant be wrong but a look at history shows he is not even close with his hockey stick .There several studies showing little ice age and medieval warm period and they are peer reviewed makes a mockery of his work ,cheers brian

andyS November 23, 2012 at 11:11 am

My “anti-wind crusade” as you call it is based primarily on seeing my native country get wrecked (both environmentally and economically) by the stupidity of wind power.

Apparently the proposed Sizewell C nuclear power station would provide 1/5 of the UKs power, yet the want to smother the country in wind factories that require 100% backup from gas, and on occasion produce no power at all.

Only this morning, I learn of yet another scam where large turbines are being throttled back so they attract more subsidies.
Turbine manufacturers are even making turbines specifically to exploit this loophole in UK law.

Anti-wind sentiment is getting very strong now in the UK. hardly a day goes by where there is no mention of some issue with turbines or their impact on communities and the landscape.

Wind, eventually, will pass as a fad, but we will be left with the legacy of rotting turbines and concrete bases that will scar the landscape for decades.

I don’t expect the Warmist Creed to show any empathy for this of course. The eco-crucifix is one of the main icons of this secular religion, and the ritual sacrifice of landscape, heritage and community is part of the Creed

bill November 23, 2012 at 12:54 pm

*wibble* The spaceships land at dawn! It’s in the Book of Revelations, people!! Won’t someone think of the children?!?!

What a towering Pile of Shite!

Personally, I’m in favour of every one of these multiply-refuted, foam-flecked, narcissistic, abusive, hysterical and disingenuous anti-wind tantrums ending up here.

andyS November 23, 2012 at 1:26 pm

It is great to have you here with me Bill. I enjoy your company.

Of course my opinions merely represent the views of half of my native country, possibly more. We wouldn’t expect a member of the brethren to understand this of course.

Your junk science & economics and comtempt for humanity and nature means that you will eventually be marginalised in society and follow the path of all the other “-isms” to their logical historical conclusions.

I can only hope that I see this happen in my lifetime.

bill November 23, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Of course my opinions merely represent the views of half of my native country, possibly more.

Ah, the Neverending Outfall of Bullshit! Wrong, Sonny Jim. Is it the voices in your head that give you these numbers, or is it all just too much time around Lord Monckton?

Here’s a kid who listens to scientists rather than her inner demons, and hence who’s got a better grasp on reality than you do. And, Gareth, I’ll flag this video as rather cool!

andyS November 23, 2012 at 5:18 pm

Bill, I really do hope you get to have a nice holiday in Britain in a few years when they have built their proposed 30,000 turbines (plus the backup gas plants that are required to support the wind fleet when the wind isn’t blowing)

You will have a choice of holiday destinations. perhaps the Gower or North Devon coast might tickle your fancy, where you will be able to gaze upon the magnificent vista of 200 x 700 ft industrial turbines placed offshore. You will be able to visit the former fishing villages whose livelihood was destroyed by these machines. Or perhaps you’d like to visit Lundy Island, a wildlife and nature sanctuary where you require permission to erect a TV aerial, yet 700 ft industrial turbines a few miles offshore seem to get a free pass.
You may wish to spend time in a visitor centre to read about the dolphins and other creatures that were wiped out by the intrusion of 200x700ft wind turbines in a protected marine environment under EU law. of course there are “special” laws for tackling climate change which require mere species extermination to be put as a secondary issue, even though there is no evidence that turbines actually reduce CO2 emissions or have any effect on the climate whatsoever. The important thing is to be seen to be doing the right thing, giving lots of subsidies to our rich chums, and impoverishing the public. This is of course the purpose of modern government

Perhaps you could delight yourself by staying at a bed and breakfast near a modern wind factory. There will be plenty of space there, as no one visits anymore.

Perhaps you’d like to visit the North Devon wind factory called Fullabrooke. I am sure we can all agree that this picturesque Devon village is enhanced by these beautiful things. We need not concern us about the problems that the locals have with noise, claiming that they sound like a tumble drier in their house on all night. Even though these stories exist from around the world, there is no peer-reviewed evidence (apart from one) which supports it, therefore it is not true.

You will be able to sleep soundly in your bed all night, marveling at the beautiful windmills, safe in the knowledge that the sleeplessness is Not True, and are made up lies by Big Oil and the Koch Brothers.

There are many places that will delight you Bill. Turbines, pylons, the gas backup plants, and the “funny” poor people who can’t afford to pay their power bills.

But never mind, there is always a visitor centre where you can watch a video about how it used to be.

Gareth November 23, 2012 at 5:52 pm

The Twilight Zone is not intended as a venue for a debate; just a place for old bores to fester.

However, my interest was piqued by Andy’s descriptions of the supposed impact of the Atlantic Array on the Gower (a place that I know very well indeed).
Easy enough to check: here’s a map. The wind turbines will be 20km away from the tip of the Gower, and their visual impact will be tiny. The Array will be closer to Lundy – about 10km. You’ll be able to see the turbines on the horizon, but that’s about it.

The rest of Andy’s supposed impacts appear to be the product of his extremely fertile imagination.

andyS November 23, 2012 at 5:56 pm

Maybe you would like to watch the movie Lost Horizons

http://losthorizons.org

I think that there are areas a lot closer than 20 km away

bill November 23, 2012 at 6:11 pm

I know, Gareth. There are, however, certain levels of dishonesty I find it hard not to respond to. Looking through the ‘Greatest Twits’ list above reminds me, though – did you(/anyone?) ever read/review Joe Fone’s e-tome? Sort of a train-wreck fascination there…

And I’ll point out the science-girl clip I linked to above again, and the Cabot Institute lecture that’s top of the list in the Hot Tweets is interesting, too.

Beaker November 23, 2012 at 11:18 pm

If andyS can not even get his maths honest or even plausible, we should not be surprised by the laughable efforts in the fields of marine biology, power grid management, quantity surveying, ornithology, landscape architecture, planning policy etc.

Gareth November 23, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Your recommendation pretty much assures I won’t waste any time on it.

And the least you can do is look at the bloody map. Or does your affliction extend to believing that they’re all “fiddled” too?

andyS November 24, 2012 at 8:41 am

20 km is actually quite close if you are talking about 200x 700ft turbines, especially if you are standing on the cliff top walks.

The comments in the movie that you won’t watch from James Lovelock’s daughter describe this quite well

The wind factory at Fullabrooke completely dominates the local scenery and can be seen from Barnstable and Exmoor

andyS November 24, 2012 at 8:46 am

Beaker, I appreciate our expertise in the wind industry. I wonder if you could confirm the following issue that has been circulating?

The subsidies for UK turbines < 500kW are greater than those above this value. Therefore wind operators are down-rating the turbine to produce more subsidies and less electricity.

EWT now produce a 500kW turbine, which is identical in size (tower height and blade diameter) to the 900kW turbine, specifically to get the higher FiT rate in the UK.

Can you confirm that this is the case?

Of course, I don't blame the wind operators for this. It is a failure of government policy as often happens when governments skew the market with subsidies.

Beaker November 24, 2012 at 11:56 pm

“appreciate” – admit through gritted teeth
“issue that has been circulating” – ill informed comment on Bishops Hill

In the UK we have two incentive systems for adding new renewables to the grid, Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROC) and Feed-in Tariff (FiT). Both allow the developer of a new renewable generator to earn supplementary income for units of electricity generated. ROC is the standard for utility scale renewables, you either keep your certificates to meet your obligation targets and avoid a penalty, or trade your excess to a rival keen to avoid a penalty. FiT is a more recent addition that was targeted at smaller developments where the owner would not want to get involved in marketing their ROC. With FiT you get a fixed and attractive price per unit generated. FiT rates vary by technology and capacity band, the maximum being 5MW. The price drops as you go over a threshold, and in the 0.5MW to 5MW wind band you get effectively the same incentive as ROC. In my opinion it is not a well designed scheme because it does not support matching the generator to the site. If your site could accommodate a 900kW turbine, your financial return can be greater if the generator is limited to 500kW, generating less power but earning FiT at a higher rate.
Your comment “Therefore wind operators are down-rating the turbine to produce more subsidies and less electricity.” suggests to the ill-informed that existing generators are downrated to benefit from the higher FiT rate. Not True. You only get a FiT payment if the generator is commissioned into that FiT band.
As for skewing markets, to me, FiT was an attempt to promote homeowner and business micro generation because that would be popular rather than cost effective. I don’t think incentives should be variable by technology, for instance onshore wind gets a low ROC rate. Give every renewable the same incentive and wind would romp away as it is cost effective and scaleable. Likewise remove the existing massive skew by obliging fossil fuel to pay for its externalities and wind would romp away as it is cost effective and renewable.
I hope that puts your phoney wind outrage de-jour into context.
As we are in the twilight zone, I may indulge in goading you a little more. Every once in a while I word-search ‘Wegman’ in bishops hill and marvel at the absence following significant development regarding his work. After your pride in your cherry picking being picked up by Montford and Booker (cringe) I tried your name in the word search. There was an old comment from one of your excitable friends asking you to keep them all up to date with developments on the exciting NZ weather station court case. It was not well covered in the UK media, why don’t you give them all an update?

andyS November 25, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Thanks, your comment above

In my opinion it is not a well designed scheme because it does not support matching the generator to the site. If your site could accommodate a 900kW turbine, your financial return can be greater if the generator is limited to 500kW, generating less power but earning FiT at a higher rate.

is in essence what I was trying to say.
This issue was raised at The Spectator and there has been a follow-up

The great British wind scam: the government responds

where they state

Manufactures have cottoned onto this opportunity and now produce models that are marketed to maximise revenue from the government. Compare Dutch firm EWT’s 52/54 500kW model and their 52/5400kW model. Both have the same blade diameter and same pillar height. The only difference is the power output and rated wind speed. I spoke to an EWT salesman, who informed me that inferior internal components are behind the limited power output. The physical difference between these two models — the height of seven double decker buses — is non existent.

and later, there is an update

UPDATE: BusinessGreen reports that after the publication of this story, a DECC spokesperson has said the department will tackle the subsidy loophole ‘as soon as possible’:

‘As we indicated in our Government response to the FiTs consultation published in July, DECC takes the issue of turbine de-rating seriously,” she said. “We have acted to address this issue for hydro sites and are committed to doing the same for wind. Following publication of the response we have already met with representatives from the sector to take this forward’

In fact it is easy to verify the derated turbines from the links provided in the article

500 kW model

900 kW model

The only difference between the two model, from what I can see, is the rated power and the rated wind speed. In all other aspects, the turbines are identical

Beaker November 26, 2012 at 8:00 am

“is in essence what I was trying to say”
Funny then that what you actually wrote was
“Therefore wind operators are down-rating the turbine to produce more subsidies and less electricity.”
Perhaps you don’t actually know what you were were trying to comment on, just repeating anything with an anti wind power spin because it fits with your prejudice.
Re derated turbines, you can find lots of turbines with several different generator capacities and the same rotor diameter, all way above the FiT threshold. For instance, look at the various power outputs available for the Vestas V90 or Enercon E82. They build these to satisfy the range of different markets and wind resources, not to fit the FiT. The only ‘downrating’ that has attracted your attention is one that is convenient for the UK small renewables incentive, the FiT. Perhaps you should not get your info from the Spectator, after all this is a magazine that gives space to Dellinpole to pontificate on sea level change with evidence taken from a dowser. Are you comfortable with that sort of magical thinking andyS, or just dishonest enough to add it to your wind NIMBY Gish Gallops.

andyS November 26, 2012 at 8:10 am

Beaker, thanks for taking the time to give me a techical and detailed response to my query.

So do you agree that the lower rated turbine I quoted was designed to take advantage of the FiT loophole that DECC acknowledge exists, or is there another reason for this?

Beaker November 26, 2012 at 10:42 pm

What we agree on is that the UK FiT scheme could be better designed. We differ in our reasons for thinking this. I know what I am talking about whereas you are a mendacious troll who will repeat any old trash, often after the fallacy is pointed out to you, just as long as it fits your wind NIMBY agenda – in short, you are a twit.
I don’t know (and you certainly don’t know) if the turbine you refer to was already proposed prior to the UK FiT roll out, but was not on the market because there was not a niche large enough to justify manufacture. In the far bigger global market for multi MW turbines, manufacturers provide wind turbines with a single rotor diameter but a range of different generator capacities, not to exploit a particular market incentive but because that is what the developers want. I have given you info to demonstrate this but you prefer your shlock horror from the Spectator (no hat tip to BH? Montford will be sad) – The Spectator, a mag that publishes Dellingpole pontificating on sea level rise, citing a Dowser. You are a twit.
Back to ‘down-rating’, odd when you stop to think about it (you wont, I know) that after all the wind NIMBY harping on about the no issues of capacity factor and variability of output, you lot are now complaining about ‘down-rating’ that raises capacity factor and lowers variability of output at the cost of reducing MWh generated. Have you all seen the light and realised that MWh generated is the key issue?

andyS November 27, 2012 at 8:54 am

I’m sorry, I still don’t understand your point.
There are turbines rates for 500kW and 900kW, with identical external physical specifications.

The only reasons, other than exploiting FiT loopholes, is that these are provided for cost or for differing wind conditions.

I find it a little hard to believe that turbines with identical physical characteristics would have a significant cost differences.

Therefore, I am drawn to the conclusion that any other technical reason must be due to differing wind conditions.

However, I don’t really see how a better gearing mechanism within the turbine could not cope with these differing wind ranges.

As an example, I have a 17 sq m (kite-boarding) kite that I can ride on from 8 to 20+ knots of wind. Previous designs would have required several kites to achieve this wind range.

I would have thought a modern wind turbine, could be designed to cope with a wide range of wind conditions as well, without the need to provide a range on offer

Or are there other reasons to produce less power for the same device?

Beaker November 27, 2012 at 11:47 pm

“However, I don’t really see how a better gearing mechanism within the turbine could not cope with these differing wind ranges.” The turbine you are talking about is direct drive so no gears – keep up!
I don’t think that your analogy of power kites and wind turbines is going to get you very far, the wind turbine is going to be sold with an aprox 98% availability warranty and will have a design life of 25 to 30 years. It will also be pale grey rather than this years hot new design. Economics kicks in and you get pragmatic economic products. You could design something to do everything everywhere for longer than everyone else, but your customers could not afford it. There are no utility companies that I am aware of that others scoff at with ‘all the gear, no idea!’
“I find it a little hard to believe that turbines with identical physical characteristics would have a significant cost differences.” well then, why don’t you ask Vestas the cost difference of the various generators (1.8 to 3MW) for their V90, along with all the associated power electronics, electrical infrastructure and grid access that the developer has to pay for.
What you find hard to believe regarding wind turbines should not be taken as a measure of credibility, given the tosh that you are prepared to believe, or mendaciously repeat knowing it to be tosh.

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