Land of eternal sorrow

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Last updated on May 20th, 2017 at 07:18 am

The Sydney Morning Herald frequently wrote that Australia’s drought was a cause of depression. We’ve had a little rain lately, yet the SMH reports continuing sadness:

Sydney’s run of rainy days in a row – 11 – is the most in April for 77 years …

NSW Bureau of Meteorology climate estimation officer Mike De Salis said the rain was getting people down.

Not the people mentioned in those earlier articles, you’d assume. One fellow who must be feeling blue, however: rainmaker Tim Flannery, who in 2005 foretold of Sydney’s dams running dry by last year. Flannery is currently cooling his heels in Canadian snow, possibly to prepare for global coldening:

Sunspot activity has not resumed up after hitting an 11-year low in March last year, raising fears that – far from warming – the globe is about to return to an Ice Age.

Astronaut and geophysicist Phil Chapman, the first Australian to become an astronaut with NASA, said pictures from the US Solar and Heliospheric Observatory showed no spots on the sun.

He said the world cooled quickly between January last year and January this year, by about 0.7C.

Hmmm … this happened during the year Al Gore organised the Live Earth warmy concerts, was awarded the Nobel Prize, and his Styrofoam movie won an Oscar. Global Gore Effect!

“This is the fastest temperature change in the instrumental record, and it puts us back to where we were in 1930,” Dr Chapman writes in The Australian today.

“If the temperature does not soon recover, we will have to conclude that global warming is over.”

A few people have argued that it was never a big deal to begin with. Meanwhile, Lubos Motl notes an encouraging trend in Amazon’s climatology book sales:

1. Roy Spencer, realist (#116)
2. Bjorn Lomborg, realist (#959)
3. Fred Singer, realist (#1324)
4. Brian Fagan, neutral (#6156), a book about the little ice age
5. James Lovelock, Gaia priest (#8706)
6. Wallace Broeckner, alarmist (#9202)
7. Mark Lynas, alarmist loon (#10308)
8. Patrick Michaels, realist (#12027)
9. Tim Flannery, alarmist loon (#16135)
10. Henrik Svensmark, realist (#16309)
11. Dennis Avery and Fred Singer, realists (#19266)

Climate scepticism is positively raining down:

China’s plans to force Mother Nature’s hand with “cloud seeding” and keep rains at bay during the start of the Olympic Games this August may be all wet, one scientist said today.

“I’m very skeptical about what they claim they can do,” said Roelof Bruintjes, the lead researcher for U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research …

(Via Peter N., Chris P., Arnaud, and Gaia Her Bitchin’ Self)

UPDATE. Further brilliant enviro news: mud crabs – delicious mud crabs – are back. Everybody loves mud crabs. They’re like Prozac in a shell.

Posted by Tim B. on 04/23/2008 at 01:42 PM
    1. Incidentally, while browsing in one of the local bookstores, I noted that Flannery’s book had found a place on the closeout shelf, selling for the princely sum of $2.00.  I even got a picture, although I don’t have it here right now…

      Posted by Vexorg on 2008 04 23 at 02:20 PM • permalink


    1. I wonder what the carbon footprint of just the styrofoam scene was?

      At least they recycled.

      Posted by aaron_ on 2008 04 23 at 02:57 PM • permalink


    1. Okay, yeah, maybe we are going back into an Ice Age.  And maybe the global warming thing isn’t all established and settled.

      But that’s no reason we can’t at least do something to help.  Like transferring all manufacturing and 50% of the US’s GDP to China, India, and the Asian Tigers.

      Posted by wronwright on 2008 04 23 at 03:37 PM • permalink


    1. Hmmmmm.

      About that drought.  Couldn’t you Aussies build some nuclear powered desalination plants?  Or how about grabbing all of those huge ice floes floating around down there?

      Posted by memomachine on 2008 04 23 at 03:46 PM • permalink


    1. #4: No good.  Turns out they’re all styrofoam.

      Posted by Celaeno on 2008 04 23 at 03:54 PM • permalink


    1. I wouldn’t get too excited about “the new ice age” forecasts.  Towards the end of his opinion piece in The Australian yesterday, he ended up getting just as over the top as the global warmening catastrophists.

      Posted by entropy on 2008 04 23 at 05:02 PM • permalink


    1. #6.

      That’s cool (hey what a pun)  Shrill alarmists
      will show the public that both sides are loony.

      Normal pre Gore life can resume.

      Posted by dver on 2008 04 23 at 05:34 PM • permalink


    1. I think it’s hilarious that this solar cycle is being called, “The Gore Minimum.”  That term, however, could also apply to an IQ of 70 being the lowest possible score for a potential career in politics.

      Posted by Hucbald on 2008 04 23 at 05:54 PM • permalink


    1. #3

      Do something. We must!

      Just in case.

      Posted by kae on 2008 04 23 at 06:04 PM • permalink


    1. This morning’s TV headlines are aghast at the highest rate of inflation in sixteen years. It would be useful to be able to see how much of that rapid increase in inflation can be blamed on greenies and AGW alarmists.
      If our new treasurer can’t blame the inflation on the environmentalists, how is he going to explain that it took the Labor gummint only five months to get us back to where they had us in 1992?

      Posted by Skeeter on 2008 04 23 at 06:24 PM • permalink


    1. #10
      Hey, and the unions have decided that now is the time to start a bit of action.Or inaction, to put it more accurately.

      Posted by kae on 2008 04 23 at 06:34 PM • permalink


    1. I’m expecting a run on ice age alarm soon due to this. In particular was this paragraph warning of the consequnces of the system of currents shutting down:

      This system brings warm water into the far north Atlantic, making Europe warmer than it would otherwise be,

      Posted by Contrail on 2008 04 23 at 06:37 PM • permalink


    1. Global sea ice has increased by between 3 and 4 million square kilometers in the last 12 months. If this trend continues for another 12 months we will have a major ice age panic. It will be fun to watch, but the consequences are pretty dire.

      Meanwhile, here in Perth we have had an extraordinarily cold and wet April. We are on our way to double the previous record April rainfall. Yes, that’s right – double the previous record.

      Posted by phil_b on 2008 04 23 at 06:39 PM • permalink


    1. #12 et al

      Either way you look at it, it’s all

      Global Dooming.

      Sea up
      Sea down
      Too much water
      Not enough water
      Famine fights

      Doomed. DOOMED. We’re all DOOOOOOOOOOMED I say!

      Posted by kae on 2008 04 23 at 06:41 PM • permalink


    1. The BoM’s De Salis is out of his cottonpicking mind.  11 days of rain getting us down?  Six consecutive years of oppressive, cracking dry drought makes you despair.  Now every morning that I wake up to grey skies and raindrops on the window glass I have a little inner hurrah and give a mental thank you to above.  It can rain every day till Christmas and we’d rejoice.

      Posted by romeo on 2008 04 23 at 06:48 PM • permalink


    1. That ice age alarmism is not science, according to David Karoly (you might remember him from such movies as “Tony Jones & The Temple Of Climate Heretics).
      The amazing and dramatic cooling during 2007 was, he said, not unprecedented.
      Yes, the climate system did cool from January 2007 to January 2008 quite dramatically. That cooling was associated with changes in the ocean temperatures in the Pacific, a well known phenomenon, the El Nino to La Nina switch. It isn’t unprecedented.
      I would say that any attempt to downplay the Medieval Warming Period, in fact to try and obscure its existence, is not science either. Warming periods are not unprecedented.

      Posted by blogstrop on 2008 04 23 at 06:51 PM • permalink


    1. sorry

      Posted by Pickles on 2008 04 23 at 07:33 PM • permalink


    1. It seems the latest Olympic sport is hurling abuse.

      Posted by stackja1945 on 2008 04 23 at 07:51 PM • permalink


    1. None of this is news; I’ve been monitoring the solar cycle for a while now.

      And everything I’ve read (from reliable sources anyway) classed it as either *speculation* or *hypothesis*.  No one knows for sure, although data indicate that the sun may be quieting down, and putting out less energy.  Only time and HONEST measurements will say one way or the other.

      But I must admit, “The Gore Minimum” tickles me!!!!

      Posted by The_Real_JeffS on 2008 04 23 at 07:53 PM • permalink


    1. #16; karoly and pearman are very nasty numbers indeed; speaking of which, if a crab is prozac in a shell, is prozac a crab in a pill?

      #8; the “Gore Minimum”; I’m going to use that one.

      Posted by cohenite on 2008 04 23 at 07:55 PM • permalink


    1. #19
      The Maunder Minimum

      Posted by stackja1945 on 2008 04 23 at 08:17 PM • permalink


    1. I suspect it’s reading the SMH that depresses you, and not the weather…

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 2008 04 23 at 08:27 PM • permalink


    1. I think the term ‘Gore Minimum’ originated at Anthony Watts blog, Wattsupwiththat.

      Incidentally, beating out my suggestion of the ‘Kyoto Minimum’.

      Posted by phil_b on 2008 04 23 at 08:51 PM • permalink


    1. A few years ago—2005, I think—it rained in Central Florida throughout the month of June. We were stuck under some kind of weird low pressure system, or high pressure system, or whatever, and the rain just wouldn’t quit. Even I, who normally gets really tired of the sun since I live in the freakin’ “Sunshine State,” started to get a little down. I used to joke that on my daily walk to work I was growing moss.

      Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 2008 04 23 at 08:52 PM • permalink


    1. The Gore Minimum: Double Quarter Pounder Meal, supersized. 2 Cheesburgers. Extra large chocolate shake. 12 nuggets. Pack of Ring-Dings and a private jet.

      Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2008 04 23 at 09:36 PM • permalink


    1. The big dry followed by the big wet. Gorey ending?

      Posted by stackja1945 on 2008 04 23 at 10:03 PM • permalink


    1. No one got the memo?  Colder temperatures are the result of global warming…yeah yeah, I was skeptical too…but it seems that EVERY weather event is now the result of GW.  Word!

      I hope the ChiComs don’t go seeding their clouds, knowing them they will probably use lead pellets.

      Posted by Bishop on 2008 04 23 at 10:44 PM • permalink


    1. Global sea ice has increased by between 3 and 4 million square kilometers in the last 12 months.

      Interesting. Do you have a source on this, Phil_B? Thanks.

      Posted by hayesy on 2008 04 23 at 10:50 PM • permalink


    1. We need more data, and less politics. To state the obvious.

      Personally, I think an Ice Age more likely than a Global Heatwave, but we just can’t tell at this point. I could be 100% wrong.

      Unlike the enfant terrible and “hammerer of the moonbats” Tim Blair, I can’t be totally sceptical of the AGW hypothesis. There’s data for it. Not enough though, and I think the data against is more likely.

      That’s the trouble with honest science: when we really don’t have the data we sound as if we’re waffling. In fact, we’re still investigating. Certainties are demanded, and all we have is probabilities, even those subject to change as more facts become known.

      Posted by Zoe Brain on 2008 04 23 at 11:03 PM • permalink


    1. Global Sea ice extent

      Posted by phil_b on 2008 04 23 at 11:47 PM • permalink


    1. The Gore Minimum.

      Some of the comments are hilarious.

      Posted by Hucbald on 2008 04 23 at 11:50 PM • permalink


    1. Do I detect a little Sydney-Centrism, O Tim??………Bloody dry west of the Ranges

      Posted by Rod C on 2008 04 24 at 03:33 AM • permalink


    1. #29 Zoe, you are right and wrong…. I did a B.Sc nearly half a century ago, never practised (joined the Navy), but retain some memory of the discipline and method.  What is honest science nowadays?  When mindless drivel is accorded the accolade “social science”……which is surely the greatest oxymoron ever thought of!!  Who do we trust?  Who CAN we trust?  Perhaps this is what Churchill had in mind when he spoke of “” a new dark age, made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science”

      Pray I’m wrong.

      Posted by Rod C on 2008 04 24 at 03:45 AM • permalink


  1. kae wrote:

    Do something. We must!

    ..start talking like Yoda?

    “Too old for this crap I am getting. Feel it in the morning I will.”

    Posted by Patrick Chester on 2008 04 24 at 02:40 PM • permalink