Ideology + methane needlessly threatens farm livelihoods

These emissions figures are well over ten years old. You’d think by now, for such a topical matter, the Royal Society might have found the 2017 data. Oh, and the MfE claiming agriculture produces nearly half our emissions is a scandal driven only by ideology. They should start pretending they are non-partisan: reduce methane’s atmospheric lifetime to a more realistic five or six years, remove its demented GWP of 28 times carbon dioxide’s and finally acknowledge that the country is a net carbon sink.1

refer The NZ Farmers Weekly – 22 July, 2019

The Government say farmers should pay for emissions from 2025—just six years away—so long as we devise a means of calculating those emissions.

To get their taxes altered, to reflect changes on the farm, farmers will have to provide evidence like invoices and receipts to prove their animal emissions have gone down.

But they’re having to prove they reduce what cannot be proved causes harm.

Because, which is extremely odd, the government has not produced evidence to show the emissions alter the weather, or that there’s a “climate emergency”. That can’t be fair.

The government will say (because they’ve told us before), “we listen to the IPCC.” But to that we say, “We did exactly that too, we examined what they said, and they have no evidence.”

The situation couldn’t be more pig-ignorant if you threw chicken bones on the ground and claimed to know the future. Continue Reading →

Sheep and cows on methane roundabout

Letter the Herald declined to publish

Jamie Morton’s recent Herald article How NZ could cut agriculture emissions by to [sic] 10 per cent states:

Nearly half of New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions come from agriculture – the main source being methane burped from cattle and sheep.

It’s indeed surprising to again hear this non-factual assertion that methane in ruminant eructation constitutes cumulative emissions, when it’s well established that the methane arises from the digestion of recently-eaten grass as part of a cycle.

One has to wonder where the government gets its scientific advice.

There is no evidence to claim that ruminant methane is one-way traffic, for it moves in a cycle, and has done for millions of years. After a short time in the atmosphere the methane breaks down, the carbon dioxide is released to contribute to more grass growth, the grass is consumed and digested and around it goes again. Nothing is added to beyond wool, milk, meat and the rest of the beast (at slaughter nothing is wasted).

To continue claiming that farmers are in this way adding to global warming signals deep ignorance.

Continue Reading →

Does Reisinger have any evidence?

Methane – CH4

 

Dr Andy Reisinger wrote an opinion piece in today’s Herald. Here are some answers.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that global methane emissions are responsible for more than 40 per cent of the total warming effect so far of all human activities. … Our livestock sector is making the concentration of methane in the atmosphere higher than it would be otherwise, and this results in the world becoming warmer than it would be otherwise.

Continue Reading →

Fart tax lacks facts

Here are the facts that find the “fart tax” lax. Let’s get physical. With physics.

To northern hemispherites, climate-centred farming taxes mean little, since they affect only farmers and who cares about farmers? It’s not as though they’re important to the economy or anything.

But Kiwis knowing the abiding value of farming to their prosperous way of life say, you toucha my farmer, I breaka you face.

Here are more reasons for our politicians not to toucha my farmer. This will keepa them safe. Continue Reading →

More Antarctic melting threats

caption

A five-year study just published says methane hydrates buried under kilometres of Antarctic ice and sediment could accelerate global warming if released into the atmosphere. This has given the warmists much grist for their mills of alarm.

The paper, Potential methane reservoirs beneath Antarctica, published on 30 August as a letter in Nature, is behind a paywall, so I’ve only seen the abstract and Supplementary Information (pdf).

The paper contains some interesting information. The sediments are in surprisingly deep basins – down to 10 km or even 14 km in rifts (measured from the earth surface, not the top of the ice), although most are between 0.3 km and 3 km deep. That’s a lot of silt. The amount of overlying ice is similar, from 1 km to 3.5 km. That must all melt before the sediment has any hope of warming enough to release the methane clathrates. Chance would be a fine thing. Continue Reading →

Frame on methane GWP

Here’s good news for all those who despair at the defects and sheer incompetence (it seems) in the calculation of the Global Warming Potential of methane: it’s about to get a high-level airing. I emailed Professor David Frame a few days ago. Prof Frame is Director of the NZ Climate Change Research Institute at the Victoria University of Wellington, taking over from Martin Manning in October last year. He’s given us a prompt and encouraging response. – h/t Barry Brill

30/06/2012 12:21 pm

Dear Professor Frame,

Your opinion piece in the Dominion of 22 June makes good reading, thank you. I was especially struck by Tom Schelling’s remark describing the EU’s emissions targets as indicating its insincerity.

But I write concerning your comment following the post. There’s been much discussion at the Climate Conversation Group about the calculation of GWP for methane, what it should be and what might be done to make it more reasonable. Set too high, it is a considerable impost on NZ farming, which as you know is among the world’s most efficient. You say:

Shorter-lived gases (such as methane) are not obviously as important for the overall properties of climate change as is commonly thought, and the way we count them – or rather the way the folks who came up with Kyoto ended up counting them – masks this by giving them high emphasis. [Unwarrantedly high emphasis in my view, but that would be another article, which is a bit more technical to write.]

Now, Dave, this is like the aroma of frying bacon to a hungry man. Continue Reading →

Real Climate smashes methane disaster theory

David Archer, contributor at Real Climate, gives much reassurance today about the dangers of methane clathrates. Interesting article, with lots of things I hadn’t heard of. Nice of him, too, to put our minds at rest.

I wonder why he didn’t explain all this long before now, about ten years ago or more? Why he let all the wild, alarming speculation continue in the world’s press and in the blogs for quite so long. Why he let us worry for so long. Why, especially, he now calls us “friend” (see the end).

He says the ocean hydrates are “mostly so deep in the sediment column that it would take thousands of years for anthropogenic warming to reach them.” Well, that’s a good piece of sense, David; thanks for bringing it up. I’m sure some of us have said so already, but good of you to confirm it. Continue Reading →

Gas or coal? The quandary, the indecision!

coal protest

It’s hard to know what to say about Tom Wigley’s new paper on the climatic repercussions of replacing coal with natural gas: he says gas and coal are both good, and they’re both bad, but the truly remarkable thing is that, where for years the greens have been telling us to hate coal and everyone who uses it, now it’s hard to choose between coal and gas.

It doesn’t matter whether you believe mankind is warming the planet dangerously or not, Wigley tells us that it makes hardly any difference to the warming whether you use gas or coal. So why switch to gas? There’s no advantage in it. Continue Reading →

Methane, m’thane: methinks it stinks

The methane molecule

In July last year, and after more than a year’s absence, NIWA got around to publishing another issue of their “flagship” publication, Water & Atmosphere. It’s an attractive magazine, but it contains some curious information which deserves comment.

First, we notice a helpful comment by NIWA Chief Executive, John Morgan:

NIWA has a responsibility as a Crown Research Institute to share the results of publicly-funded science.

Hmm. Morgan should compare that statement with the conclusion of the methane article in the same issue:

if any real solution [to agricultural emissions] is on the horizon it’s likely to be a closely kept secret.

The article has some gems:

methane levels have grown by 150 per cent since organised animal farming began in the early 1700s.

They tell us methane’s a problem

Was farming disorganised until the 18th century? That’s not what the history books say. Continue Reading →