ICSC rejects notion of “climate debt”

Attention: News Editors, Political, Science and Environment Reporters


International Climate Science Coalition Rejects Durban Agreement to set New Greenhouse Gas Emission Targets

No “Climate Debt” is owed to developing countries

Ottawa, Canada, December 11, 2011: “Developed nations are not guilty of causing the climate change that developing nations claim they are suffering,” said Tom Harris, executive director of ICSC which is headquartered in Ottawa, Canada. “Climate changes all the time—both warming and cooling—due to natural causes and there is nothing that we can do to stop it. However, to the degree possible, and considering our economic circumstances, developed nations still have a moral obligation to devote a proportion of their foreign aid to helping the world’s most vulnerable people adapt to natural climate events.”

ICSC chief science advisor, Professor Bob Carter of James Cook University in Queensland, Australia, and author of the best selling book, “Climate: the Counter Consensus” says, “Science has yet to provide unambiguous evidence that problematic, or even measurable, human-caused global warming is occurring. Consequently, any agreements—Durban, Cancun, Copenhagen or Kyoto—to reduce humanity’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are utterly futile. Governments need to recognize that the really dangerous climate hazards are natural events and change, and to prepare more fully to adapt to them when they occur.”

New Zealand-based Terry Dunleavy, ICSC founding chairman and strategic advisor, expands on this point: “The UN’s nonsensical attempts to ‘stop climate change’ have diverted world attention, and hundreds of billions of dollars, away from helping those already being hurt by natural climate variation and weather-related events. The health and wellbeing of people suffering today is infinitely more important than the remote possibility that our GHG emissions might threaten those yet to be born.”

”We urge citizens from across the political spectrum to take a more mature perspective, one that is based on real science, engineering and economics, not political correctness,” asserts ICSC energy issues advisor Bryan Leyland, of Auckland, New Zealand. “Whether you are socialist or capitalist, industrialist or environmentalist, no one wants to pour money down the drain. Yet, that is exactly what is happening as a result of the global warming scare. Expensive and ineffective alternative energy projects such as wind turbines and solar cells are receiving massive government support, in the belief that they will reduce GHG emissions which are wrongly blamed as a cause of dangerous global warming. Meanwhile, the conventional power sources that we rely on for our very survival, let alone the economic progress we need to create a better world, are deliberately starved of support. This is a very dangerous situation.”

ICSC science advisor Professor Ole Humlum, of the Institute of Geosciences, University of Oslo, explains, “Today’s climate debate is essentially about the relative influence of human-produced carbon dioxide (CO2) versus natural climate variations. In my mind, there is no doubt that the data available clearly show that the natural variations are the dominant of these two factors, including during the last few years. The net temperature effect of our CO2 emissions appears to be insignificant.”

Mr. Harris concluded: “As is well demonstrated by the Nongovernmental International Climate Panel on Climate Change (www.nipccreport.org), warming alarmism is not based on a correct interpretation of the science. The climate scare has largely been fuelled by computer-generated misrepresentations that bear little relationship to modern climate or to its observed history.”

As nearly all independent observers have now concluded, a new approach is needed to address climate change. The best (indeed, self-evident) Plan B is that nations should prepare for and adapt to the onset of damaging climate-related events and change as and when they occur.


The ICSC is a non-partisan group of scientists, economists and energy and policy experts who are working to promote better understanding of climate science and related policy worldwide. We aim to help create an environment in which a more rational, open discussion about climate issues emerges, thereby moving the debate away from implementation of costly and ineffectual “climate control” measures. Instead, ICSC encourages effective planning for, and adaptation to, inevitable natural climate variability, and continuing scientific research into the causes and impacts of climate change.

ICSC also focuses on publicizing the repercussions of misguided plans to “solve the climate crisis”. This includes, but is not limited to, “carbon” sequestration as well as the dangerous impacts of attempts to replace conventional energy supplies with wind turbines, solar power, most biofuels and other ineffective and expensive energy sources.

For more information about this announcement or ICSC in general, visit http://www.climatescienceinternational.org, or contact one of the following ICSC representatives:

In North America:

Tom Harris, B. Eng., M. Eng. (Mech.)
Executive Director, International Climate Science Coalition
P.O. Box 23013
Ottawa, Ontario K2A 4E2
Email: tom.harris@climatescienceinternational.net
Phone: 613-728-9200
ICSC Webpage: http://climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=393

In Australia:

Professor Robert (Bob) M. Carter, PhD, Hon. FRSNZ
Chief Science Advisor, International Climate Science Coalition
Emeritus Fellow, Institute for Public Affairs, Melbourne
Marine Geophysical Laboratory
James Cook University
Townsville, Queensland, 4811
Phone (mobile): +61-(0)419-701-139
Phone (evening): +61-(0)7-4775-1268
Email: bob.carter@jcu.edu.au
ICSC Webpage: http://www.climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=394

In New Zealand:

Bryan Leyland, M.Sc., FIEE, FIMechE, FIPENZ, consulting engineer
Energy Issues Advisor, International Climate Science Coalition
Auckland 1022
New Zealand
Phone: +64 9 940 7047; mobile: +64 21 978 996
Email: bryanleyland@mac.com
ICSC Webpage: http://www.climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=395


Terry Dunleavy, MBE, JP
Founding Chairman and Strategic Advisor, International Climate Science Coalition
Hauraki, North Shore City 0622
New Zealand
Phone: +64 9 4863859 – Mobile: +64 274836688
Email: terry.dunleavy@nzclimatescience.org.nz
ICSC Webpage: http://climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=432

In Europe:

Professor Ole Humlum, PhD
Professor of Physical Geography, Department of Physical Geography,
Institute of Geosciences, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Phone: +47 79 02 33 00 (department); +47 79 02 33 20 (direct). Fax: +47 79 02 33 01.
E-mail: ole.humlum@geo.uio.no
Webpage: http://www.unis.no/35_staff/staff_webpages/geology/ole_humlum/olepersonal.htm

Visits: 189

46 Thoughts on “ICSC rejects notion of “climate debt”

  1. val majkus on 11/12/2011 at 7:26 pm said:

    thank goodness for some sensibility
    but nothing like buearacrats with their nose in the trough

  2. Richard C (NZ) on 12/12/2011 at 7:29 am said:

    Saw this at JoNova (Wild ambit fails, but money flows):-

    Peter Miller
    December 11, 2011 at 9:26 pm ·

    The proposed system of wealth distribution is so simple it works like this:

    Country A gives UN administative body $100 million:

    Step 1: 15%, or $15 million, goes on UN admininistration expeneses, including thousands of extra, well-paid, bureaucrats.

    Step 2: 20%, or $20 million, goes to consultants, as the bureaucrats are too incompetent, or too lazy, to make their own decisions.

    Step 3: 5%, or $5 million, goes on transfer costs – difficult to understand what these are, but they make bankers and others of similar ilk smile.

    Step 4: 15%, or $15 million, goes on receiving country’s new bureaucracy set up to administer the funds.

    Step 5: 20%, or $20 million, goes on consultants, which the UN’s consultants (probably closely related)insist are necessary to ensure the correct usage of funds.

    Step 6: 10%, or $10 million, goes to banks in a country with lots of mountains, to compensate receiving countries’ top bureaucrats for their ‘low salaries’.

    Step 7: 10%, or $10 million, goes to banks in a country with lots of mountains, to compensate despotic and progressive Third World leaders for their enlightenment in negotiating the funds.

    Balance of 5% is spent on something, which may or may not be useful.

    This is classic wealth redistribution in action, taking money from those who work hard (western taxpayers) and giving it to those who don’t (bureaucrats, consultants and politicians). Such is the way of the world – nothing ever changes.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 12/12/2011 at 7:38 am said:

      Seems to be a realistic assessment:-

      December 12, 2011 at 1:43 am · Reply

      #5 Peter Miller –

      You have those numbers and the mechanisms nailed pretty neatly.

      I had several professional interactions with the World Bank and a few NGOs a decade or more ago, and what you’ve illustrated is exactly what happens in that perverse universe.

      Internally, all these bodies operate from a foundation of nepotism, corruption, and cronyism. Bribery and graft are the foremost drivers on the recipient side. I’ve seen ministerial-level officials making third-world salaries who send their kids to foreign private schools, and have heard of other officials who begin all contract negotiations by openly stating the bribes that will be required (and these are non-trivial sums). It’s all pretty shameless.

      As for the “consultants,” they typically lead rather luxuriant lifestyles with chauffeured SUVs, personal home staff, private schools for the kids, tropical vacations, and on it goes. Most of their personal expenses are fully-paid under the “development” contract. The luxurious perks of COP17 are a shining example of how things actually work.

      From top to bottom it’s an obviously corrupt, greedy, and useless system. As you noted, most of the world’s “development” funds don’t actually support anything resembling “development.”

  3. Jim McK on 12/12/2011 at 1:42 pm said:

    Some pretty amazing spin picked up in US media – similar from Washington Post


    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 2:10 pm said:

      This would be difficult for NZ I think, said this about it at JoNova:-

      This is interesting because it is a more radical approach than simply discontinuing any further KP-1 activity.

      Formal withdrawal indicates to me that it nullifies all that country’s obligations, credits, transactions etc accrued under KP-1 from 1997 – 2012 i.e they are unwinding everything. That would be extremely difficult for NZ and it’s ETS at this stage so I don’t see that happening here unfortunately (Oh Canada – onyer).

      I don’t know if OZs carbon tax is linked to KP-1 at all but I was of the understanding that it was an an interim arrangement until OZ set up an ETS. That plan has hit a snag and it looks like OZ will be saddled with the tax for some time to come or unless a new gov curtails it.


  4. Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 2:19 pm said:

    I would have thought that the International Climate Science Coalition would have wholeheartedly embraced the Durban Agreement to set New Greenhouse Gas Emission Targets given that by default (no KP extension), the only targets are now voluntary until 2020 (if then).

    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 2:53 pm said:

      It was under the Copenhagen Accord that Annex I Parties “Quantified economy-wide emissions targets for 2020”


      There was no change to Copenhagen Accord targets at Durban (no new emission targets). So for Canada, they will escape an $87bn bill by formally withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol but they will still have emissions reduction targets under the Copenhagen Accord.

      NZ cannot incur new KP financial obligations beyond 2012 (only voluntary compliance to a defunct protocol would, something the Europeans are doing) but will still incur another years obligations if it doesn’t formally withdraw now (difficult with the ETS). Like Canada, NZ will still have emissions reduction targets it agreed to under the Copenhagen Accord.

      It will be interesting to see if Canada withdraws from the Copenhagen Accord also.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 4:11 pm said:

      $13.6bn not $87bn bill – sheesh, eye strain.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 3:20 pm said:

      The KYOTO PROTOCOL “Party Quantified emission limitation or reduction commitment” table is here:-


      The USA commitment is listed but USA was never a party to KP. USA did however make commitments to the Copenhagen Accord as did China and India.


      Those KP commitments are now only voluntary if a country wishes to continue to adhere to the defunct KP. Japan, Russia, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada do not but the 27-nation European Union, Norway and Switzerland will continue voluntarily (or not)

      The Copenhagen Accord is still operative but is not a legally binding treaty. The ‘Durban Platform’ seeks to implement legally binding emissions reductions from 2020 onwards but nothing will be agreed to until 2015 (if then). That is probably what the ICSC was referring to.

  5. bulaman on 13/12/2011 at 3:01 pm said:

    Simples.. Any public servant with Climate Change in the job description or job title ..down the road.
    Central North Island Iwi return the $400 million they were given not to turn Kaingaroa into dairy farms so they can get to it. Law repealled so there is no longer any obligation or liability under NZ law. Those that had a payout well that’s their good luck.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 3:23 pm said:

      Over optimistic I think bulaman – but worth expressing the sentiment.

  6. Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 7:40 pm said:

    The print media reporting (and opinion) of the Durban result is premature rubbish.

    Adam Morton in an SMH op thinks:-

    “the Kyoto Protocol was extended for a second period”

    It wasn’t, only the Europeans are adhering voluntarily to the defunct KP past 2012 but even that’s conjecture and the new ‘Durban Platform’ road-map is a whole new ballgame.

    Ben Cubby also in the SMH says:-

    “The Kyoto Protocol, which was to end next year, will be extended to bridge the gap until a new agreement comes into force”

    It wont be as above.

    First prize for journalistic rubbish must go to the AP (a warmist enclave) for their article printed in the NZ Herald:-

    “Nkoana-Mashabane said the package of four documents, which were being printed as she spoke, were an imperfect compromise, but they reflected years of negotiations on issues that had plagued UN climate efforts.

    The 100-plus pages would give new life to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, whose carbon emissions targets expire next year and apply only to industrial countries.”

    Nope, superseded. The ‘Durban Platform’ is one document, less than two pages and no “new life” to the KP – just hope for a new “something-arother” post 2020.


    “A separate document obliges major developing nations like China and India, excluded under Kyoto, to accept legally binding emissions targets in the future, by 2020 at the latest”

    Nope, superseded. That all has to be agreed to at COP 21 2015 under the ‘Durban Platform’ (and the chances of that are…….) and further down, four documents plus a separate document adds to “two documents” apparently.

    These guys have gone off half cocked and/or just want readers to think what they want them to.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 10:12 pm said:

      Same with Reuters on Teletext and TVNZ site:-

      “……Durban, where countries agreed to extend Kyoto for five years”

      Well sort of. The Europeans are carrying on regardless (maybe) but the KP expires at the end of 2012 nonetheless.


    • Richard C (NZ) on 13/12/2011 at 10:34 pm said:

      WSJ is the closest I’ve seen so far:-

      Global Warming Wash Out
      The Kyoto Protocol can now be ignored for another five years.

      “What emerged was an agreement of sorts to extend the Protocol, never ratified by the U.S., to 2017. Yet Russia and Japan have said they’ll ignore the extension, Australia is wavering, and yesterday Canada said it is quitting Kyoto entirely. This pretty much makes the Durban extension an “agreement” Europe has made with itself”


    • Richard C (NZ) on 14/12/2011 at 10:04 am said:

      Brian Fallow gets it:-

      “Deep in injury time, the Durban conference agreed to negotiate by 2015 a comprehensive agreement to come into force, if ratified, in 2020.


      Although the “Durban platform” resorts to some elastic language on the the vexed issue of the legal form of the 2020 accord to come – “a protocol, a legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force” – it gave the European Union enough comfort to agree to sign up in the interim for a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol”


      Although if Brian could refer us to the documented decision of the Europeans and the accompanying signatory list of those that actually do “agree to sign up” “in the interim” and have done so, it would be appreciated.

  7. Gary on 13/12/2011 at 8:06 pm said:

    Amazingly today the NZ Herald Published that Canada is dumping the Kyoto Protocol. Well done Canada for having a Government with vision and guts to tell the UN where to go.

  8. Alexander K on 14/12/2011 at 11:00 am said:

    I watched a NZ Greenpeace activist on NZTV news during this last weekend, spitting tacks about the awfulness of the decision-making by governments at the Durban conference. I found her self-righteous and profound ignorance both worrying and funny. I also wondered who would pay for this sort of person to attend such gabfests. Since I recently returned after almost a decade in the UK, I have been stunned by the ‘environmental’ nonsense that gets banner treatment by Aunty Herald, mostly reprints from the English Guardian and Independent.

    • Andy on 14/12/2011 at 11:55 am said:

      Was it Cindy Baxter? She is head of Greenpeace NZ and was in Durban. She did a series of posts on Hot Topic recently.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 14/12/2011 at 12:23 pm said:

      No, Greenpeace NZ head Bunny McDiarmid.

      When Greenpeace gets elected into govt (via Green Party, perish the thought) then they can call the shots – but I checked the results of the last election and they’re not govt right now thankfully.

    • Andy on 14/12/2011 at 3:07 pm said:

      For some reason the Otago Easter Bunny shoot springs to mind.

      BTW, The Herald are at it again
      Rapid rise in Arctic methane shocks scientists
      Note the complete absence of any attribution of this methane phenomenon to anthropogenic causes.


  9. Alexander K on 14/12/2011 at 4:18 pm said:

    My reaction to the Russian discovery of methane ‘springs’ in the Arctic is somewhere between ‘so what’ and ‘tell me why this is important’.
    The article seems to be along vaguely similar lines to Chicken Little’s.

    • Andy on 14/12/2011 at 5:02 pm said:

      It’s important because it’s another piece of unsubstantiated propaganda from the Herald.
      The title is Rapid rise in Arctic methane shocks scientists
      but the reality is that they have discovered methane plumes, without any indication that these are increasing.

      Furthermore, they subtittle the picture with “the retreat of Arctic ice has released the deadly greenhouse gas.”

      There is no evidence that the retreat of Arctic Ice has caused the methane plumes. Whilst “deadly” if breathed in in any quantity, methane in current concentrations is anything but.

      Greenhouse gases are certainly not deadly.

      Sorry this is off topic. Maybe we need a special “propaganda” thread.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 7:07 am said:

      That was my thinking. The plumes would have been bubbling up for yonks pre-discovery – ice or no ice. There was probably an accumulation of gas under the ice over winter but as soon as it melts over summer the gas is released year after year.

      And thanks for pointing out the title Andy. I was so busy going through the article I missed that.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 8:01 am said:

      There’s a map of the area in the Independent (similar title – “retreat of Arctic”?):-

      Methane discovery stokes new global warming fears Shock as retreat of Arctic releases greenhouse gas


      The surface area cannot have only recently become ice free because the Russian research team “has been surveying the seabed of the East Siberian Arctic Shelf off northern Russia for nearly 20 years”, or were they surveying previously by drilling through the sea ice or something.

      The question of the seabed permafrost melting doesn’t get much coverage except that it’s “already melting” but what about seismic activity? Dr Semiletov only “thinks” the plumes are increasing in scale: “I think on a scale not seen before”

      There’s nothing conclusive to say that the large plumes were not there all the time undiscovered, Semiletov “Earlier we found torch-like structures like this but they were only tens of metres in diameter. This is the first time that we’ve found continuous, powerful and impressive seeping structures more than 1,000 metres in diameter”. Were the “about 115 stationary points” monitored over the 20 year period? I don’t think so going by the article.

      The actual paper or “findings” would be worth a read.

    • Jim McK on 15/12/2011 at 9:38 am said:

      “Artic methane has increased to 1.9 ppb”

      When will they work out that atmospheric water is typically 5,000,000 to 20,000,000 ppb

    • Andy on 15/12/2011 at 10:41 am said:

      This is serious.
      Al Beeb needs to commission David Attenborough and Jeremy Clarkson to head up to the pole and investigate.

      Attenborough can go on skis, Clarkson can take a dirty great Landcruiser, and whoever finds the methane first wins

    • Andy on 15/12/2011 at 10:48 am said:

      From the Independent article:

      Natalia Shakhova, a colleague at the International Arctic Research Centre at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, said that the Arctic is becoming a major source of atmospheric methane and the concentrations of the powerful greenhouse gas have risen dramatically since pre-industrial times, largely due to agriculture.

      Is that a bit of a contradiction? Is there any evidence that the increase in methane is caused by agriculture, and why is it flattening off?

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 11:48 am said:

      I smell a rat. Lake Baikal in Southern Siberia is connected to the East Siberia shelf by the River Lena. That river is not the major lake drain, the Angara River is but the Lena drains it also. Wiki says this:-

      “Lake Baikal is in a rift valley, created by the Baikal Rift Zone, where the Earth’s crust pulls apart. ………The bottom of the lake is 1,186.5 metres (3,893 ft) below sea level, but below this lies some 7 km (4.3 mi) of sediment, placing the rift floor some 8–11 kilometres (5.0–6.8 mi) below the surface: the deepest continental rift on Earth.[6] In geological terms, the rift is young and active—it widens about two cm per year. The fault zone is also seismically active; there are hot springs in the area and notable earthquakes every few years”


      “Lake Baikal is furthermore the only confined fresh water lake in which direct and indirect evidence of gas hydrates exists”




      “Abstract: Methane, which is at least partly stored in the bottom sediments of Lake Baikal as gas hydrates, is released on the lake floor in the deeper parts of the basin along major faults, forming venting structures similar to small mud volcanoes. The CH4 venting structures are considered to be the surface expression of escape pathways for excess CH4 generated by the dissociation of pre-existing hydrates. The existence of a local heat flow anomaly associated with the seep area is most likely due to a heat pulse causing the dissociation of the underlying gas hydrates. The heat pulse may be caused by upward flow of geothermal fluids along segments of active faults, possibly accelerated by seismic pumping. It is assumed that this fluid flow is tectonically triggered, considering that left-lateral strike-slip movements along the border faults act as a major factor in fluid accumulation: even a reduced lateral displacement is able to generate fluid flow in the compressional direction, resulting in fluid escape along faults directed along the main direction of extension. The tectonic effect may be coupled to the sediment compaction due to a high sedimentation rate in the area of mud volcanism. Both processes may generate a large-scale convective fluid loop within the basin-fill sediments which advects deeper gases and fluids to the shallow sub-surface. Even in the extensional tectonic environment of Lake Baikal, local compressional forces related to a strike-slip component, may play a role in fluid flow, accumulation and gas escape along active faults. The mechanisms that result in the expulsion of the CH4 in the Lake Baikal sediments are considered as an analogue of what could happen during CO2 sequestration in a similar tectonic environment


      And sure enough, there’s a fault running parallel to the Lena from inland Yakutsk to Tiksi on the coast where the methane fountain “discovery” was made:-

      East of the River Lena are mountains. This is a much faulted disturbed region. About 100 million years ago, a great volcanic rift started to split what is now African from South America, and continued north to push apart North America and Greenland from Europe. (Leaving a bit of Newfoundland on top of Scotland).

      The Atlantic ocean was formed and continues to spread apart a few centimetres each year, along the central volcanic ridge which can be seen on the surface where it passes through Iceland.

      It does not stop at Iceland. This massive fault creating new ocean floor and land, continues as the Gakkel Ridge across the Arctic Ocean to hit the continental shelf in the Laptev Sea, off the coast of Yakutia east of the Lena Delta.

      This fault continues across the continent, west of the river Lena. It creates the mountain ranges of the Kolyma region – throwing up gold as it does so. It reaches the Pacific ocean at Okhotsk. This forms a corner. For the fault splits two ways, across the bay of Okhotsk, one end continuing down to Sakhalin and Japan to meet the Pacific. It also joins the seam which marks the south of Siberia, to which the southern part of Asia is joined.

      This creates a complex geology. Since the contents of America and Eurasia were being pushed apart on the other side of the globe, by the time the fault crosses Yakutia, it cannot push them apart for they have to go somewhere so this marks the boundary where the continents of Eurasia and America are pushing against and thrusting past each other. This can be seen in the relief map showing earthquakes from 1990 to 2000.

      The eastern part of Yakutia and Northern Asia is actually part of the North American plate.

      All this complex seismic activity has thrown up valuable minerals, the most famous being gold, in the east and southern parts of Siberia.


      And now methane, I posit.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 11:58 am said:

      Further down at the last link:-

      “In the last two million years – the time associated with the evolution of humans, the Earth’s climate became colder than before, and fluctuating more widely that before. Sudden bursts of global warming, are followed by a longer ice-age, when the temperatures are much colder than today.

      The existence of ice wedges in the strata where the early stone tools were once left on the ground, shows that although it was a time of global warming, when the tools were made and used, the winters were freezing as they are today.

      This region basks in hot summers – when I was there in July 1993, the afternoon temperature was a baking 36 degrees Celsius. But extremely cold winters. Even today with global warming, minus 40 degrees Celsius is normal – and it can be lower.

      This has important implications. The oldest traces of permafrost at Diring Yuryakh can be linked with the general fall in temperature on Earth about 2.2 to 2.5 million years.”


    • Jim McK on 15/12/2011 at 2:07 pm said:

      2010 report from EPA has some good background


      Including (summarised)

      “The current release from permafrost is less than 1Tg/year versus 127.6Tg/year from tropical swamps.”

      “A [doomsday] scenario of loosing 60-90% of permafrost by 2100 would see CH4 emmissions rising to 5-30Tg/year before falling back to previous levels.”

      A significant point here is that the major naturally occuring global source is bacteria production in wetlands. This process best takes place between 27 & 32C. Permafrost release is almost exclusively release of anciently produced CH4.

      That is not to say that the arctic would not be a nice place to visit in summer if someone else is paying.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 2:20 pm said:

      No mention of methane induced warming at Tiksi that I can find:-

      Climate variability in the region of Tiksi Hydrometeorological Observatory

      A. Makshtas1, V. Dmitriev1, N. Ivanov1, S. Shutilin1


      Correlation Between Cloud Cover Trends and Surface Temperature Trends: A Comparison Between Barrow, Alaska and Tiksi, Russia

      L. Matrosova1, T. Uttal2, A. Makshtas3 and N. Ivanov3


      “These two stations have unusually long meteorological records”

      “……….in Tiksi, trends between 1935 and 2007 range from -0.02 °C/year to +0.02 °C/year (warming in January, February, May, June, July and cooling in March, April, August, September, October, November).

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 4:18 pm said:

      Click on the Tiksi monthly temperature plot below and set the pdf at 125%. You get a good idea of the period 1933 – 2004.25ish.

      Arctic Monthly Temperature Plots

      Some of the arctic stations have long-term temperature records. Here we plotted monthly mean temperature records from the three arctic stations: Barrow(Alaska), Eureka(Canada), and Tiksi(Russia). The data goes as far back as 1945, 1947, and 1933 respectively. The data comes from the Integrated Surface Hourly Global dataset (National Climate Data Center). Using this dataset, we calculated daily average temperature data first. Then in turn, we calculated monthly mean temperature data. If there were more than five days of missing data, we counted that month missing.

      In order to decipher the temperature trend for each station, further sophisticated analysis is necessary. -i.e. Calculations might involve finding seasonal, annual, or even decadal mean.


      I tried to download some recent data (to 2008) but it’s such a mission I gave up. If methane really is a warmer and the adjacent fountains have any effect, it should show up in this record eventually.

      Tiksi data is here:-


      Files are compressed in bzip2 format. 7-zip or gnu bzip2 should uncompress the text files – good luck.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 4:32 pm said:

      Make that [1955] – 2004.25ish.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 16/12/2011 at 8:09 am said:

      Revkin has killed the story stone dead:-

      Methane Time Bomb in Arctic Seas – Apocalypse Not

      A very important research effort has been under way during recent summers in the warming, increasingly ice-free shallows off Russia’s Siberian coast. There, an international array of scientists has been investigating widening areas of open water that are disgorging millions of tons of methane each year.

      Given that methane, molecule for molecule, has at least 20 times the heat-trapping properties of carbon dioxide, it’s important to get a handle on whether these are new releases, the first foretaste of some great outburst from thawing sea-bed stores of the gas, or simply a longstanding phenomenon newly observed.

      If you read the Independent of Britain, you’d certainly be thinking the worst. The newspaper has led the charge in fomenting worry over the gas emissions, with portentous, and remarkably similar, stories in 2008 and this week.

      If you read geophysical journals and survey scientists tracking past and future methane emissions, you get an entirely different picture:



      Links to the paper.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 19/12/2011 at 7:24 pm said:

      More commentary:-

      Commenting on the possible causes of the recent return of the upward trend in methane concentration after its 10-yr pause, Dlugokencky, in a paper published in 2009, pretty much ruled out a significant contribution from the Arctic:

      Near-zero CH4 [methane] growth in the Arctic during 2008 suggests we have not yet activated strong climate feedbacks from permafrost and CH4 hydrates [contained in the Arctic Ocean seabed].

      Apparently, Dlugokencky’s way of thinking hasn’t changed much in the intervening two years even in light of the continued growth of atmospheric methane concentrations (Figure 1). Just a few days ago he told Andy Revkin that:

      [B]ased on what we see in the atmosphere, there is no evidence of substantial increases in methane emissions from the Arctic in the past 20 years.

      So despite a warming Arctic, the feared large methane release has not been manifest. Which fits very nicely into the new results from Dmitrenko and colleagues. They find that the methane observed to be bubbling up from the Arctic seafloor off the coast of Siberia to be the ongoing and long-term response to the flooding of the seabed there that occurred some 8,000 years ago and not a response to recent warming in the region. Dmitrenko et al. write:

      The CH4 [methane] supersaturation, recently reported from the eastern Siberian shelf, is believed to be the result of the degradation of subsea permafrost that is due to the long-lasting warming initiated by permafrost submergence about 8000 years ago rather than from those triggered by recent Arctic climate changes.

      The new Dmitrenko result pretty much throws cold water on the “shocking” news that has been making its way through the global media in recent days that reports from a recent survey of the Siberian Arctic Shelf indicate that vast quantities of methane are bubbling to the surface of the ocean and that this is “stok[ing] new global warming fears.”


      Dlugokencky, E. J., et al., 2009. Observational constraints on recent increases in the atmospheric CH4 burden. Geophysical Research Letters, 36, L18803, doi:10.1029/2009GL039780.

      Dmitrenko, I.A., et al., 2011. Recent changes in the shelf hydrography in the Siberian Arctic: Potential for subsea permafrost instability. Journal of Geophysical Research, 116, C10027, doi:10.1029/2001JC007218.


    • Andy on 15/12/2011 at 9:04 am said:

      I met some New Yorkers the other week (in Wanaka of all places, on a canyoning trip) who worked for a hedge fund.

      They were buying up insurance policies to insure against sovereign debt risk in Europe, on the assumption that these policies would increase in value as the risk increased.

      Basically, they are betting on Europe going bust

  10. Andy on 15/12/2011 at 11:02 am said:

    O/T Some poetic justice that 67 bird choppers are to be built near Renowden’s place


    but says:

    The Environment Court decision recognises that there may be an increase in native bird populations as a result.

  11. Richard C (NZ) on 15/12/2011 at 12:01 pm said:

    An “increase” in native bird populations as a result ?

    • Andy on 15/12/2011 at 2:24 pm said:

      Hilarious I know.
      “Bird choppers increase bird life” makes for an interesting headline

      I think the bird mincing company are planting some natives to increase wildlife in the area as some kind of fig leaf to the objectors.

    • Andy on 15/12/2011 at 2:53 pm said:

      Here’s some pictures of the area they are proposing to chop up with 67 turbines, access roads, pylons etc.

      It’s quite close to the main road to Hanmer I think


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post Navigation