Think an EV is the Next Car for You? Might Want to Reconsider

Electricity storage is the boogie man stalking EVs and our portable device (ie convenience) culture. For the time being, cobalt is an essential element in making the current generation of high-efficiency batteries. But this comes at a high price. In fact, it looks like a deal with the devil. Most of the cobalt we use comes from the Democratic Republic of Congo, and much of it is mined using child labor. Many of whom pay with their lives.

This week, International Rights Advocates filed a lawsuit against Tesla, Apple, Dell, Microsoft, and Alphabet for knowingly benefiting financially from child labor in the DRC.  A deal with the devil, indeed. Selling children’s lives as cheap labor to keep the cost of electric car batteries and mobile computing devices low-ish.

Read more here. And the next time you or someone you know wants to virtue signal how much they are helping the environment by buying an EV, think about whose life it probably cost.

And to further deflate any virtue signalling about the use of EVs, it is pretty conclusive there is a high hidden environmental cost to actually making the batteries. A two year old study out of IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute, which was commissioned by the Swedish Transport Administration and the Swedish Energy Agency to investigate the climate impact of litium-ion batteries from a life-cycle perspective, found that Tesla car battery production releases as much CO2 as 8 years of gasoline driving. Hmm. Math doesn’t look so good from that perspective, either.

So, what are we saying here. Given that science supports that CO2 does not impact the climate (read elsewhere on this blog), when we net climate change cost out of the equation, since it equals zero, on the cost side, EVs are expensive to buy, inconvenient to drive over distances and recharge, and they exploit child labor. Tesla batteries are warranted for 8 years, but outside of warranty, replacement costs are estimated to be as high as $20,000, though the range is likely $7-10k. As of this writing, there is not a precise answer on this, probably because EV builders don’t want to scare off potential buyers. Tesla is deliberately vague, but Elon Musk insists it will be on the lower range. Notwithstanding, at some point, older EVs will need a battery replacement, and it is reasonable to put this cost at about $10k. Ouch. This expected expense, plus rapidly outdated technology will crater used EV prices.

On the benefit side, they are easier to maintain and the cost to recharge them is less than the equivalent cost of gas, by some estimates less than half. But where does that electricity come from? Coal? Natural Gas? Nuclear? Hydro? Its unlikely that it is renewable, wind or solar.

So, pick your poison. Internal combustion engines or EVs. Both have costs. CO2 emissions is a red herring and irrelevant in the cost-benefit assessment. EV exploits child labor, so negates any virtuous signalling. You can guess what I will keep driving.

Yeah, That Didn’t That Work Out Well, Did It

A great article and video from JustFactsDaily.com: Climate Change Fears of Teen Activist are Empirically Baseless. I’m not going to waste any time or space commenting on anything Greta. Cancelled. Not worth the effort. However, read the article and/or view the video. There’s lots of solid, factual information puncturing the climate hysteria CO2 dirigible.

For example, 30 years ago, Stephen Schneider, a well-credentialed climate scientist of the day, told Discover magazine that:

“In order to reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climate change, we need to get some broad-based support to capture the public’s imagination. That, of course, entails getting loads of media coverage. So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have. This “double ethical bind” which we frequently find ourselves in cannot be solved by any formula. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both.”

Let me parse that out: Our models predict disastrous scenarios. But noone is going to believe us or care what we have to say, let alone take any action. So, in order to get the coverage we need for our cause, we need to make up outrageous stuff and try to scare the hell out of people to get them to see that we are reasonable and that they need to listen to us and take the action that we advocate. So, let’s all panic together ... Or something like that.

So, the environmental and climate scare mongering we have had to endure for the last 4 or 5 decades is just story time. Grimm’s Fairy Tales in the modern era, only with climate-monsters rather than wolves and witches. Designed to scare us into submission. Straight from the source. Got that?

Whether you look at plant life, forest coverage, agriculture, rainfall, temperatures, or extreme weather, the hysteria around the dire predictions have all failed to come true. For decades. “Our models predict the sky is falling.” CO2!!

One of the best anecdotes, and most telling failures, is in extinctions. In 1989, Sandra Henderson, a biogeographer at EPA’s Environmental Research Laboratory, wrote that “scientists are warning of a possible loss of 20 percent of the earth’s species before the end of the century, [i.e. 2000]” and “a major factor in this modern species extinction may be our alteration of the earth’s climate: global warming due to increased concentrations of greenhouse gases.”

Okay, sure. Hmm. Let’s take a look at that. Let’s consider some basic math and the observed and verified science of extinctions. Roughly 1.2 million species have been cataloged. A loss of 20% would be 240,000 species. Yet, during 1984–2004, the International Union for Conservation of Nature recorded 27 confirmed species extinctions. This is not an exact figure, as the report notes that other extinctions may have occurred, such as “eight species of birds” whose status is uncertain. So, 27-35, give or take. Regardless of the precise number, it is low. The actual loss was orders of magnitude (35 vs 240,000) below Henderson’s projected extinctions. Basically a rounding error, and consistent with the average historical extinction rate observed before climate hysteria. Darwinism in action.

All this to say, be a skeptic. This is more ammunition in your quiver when a climate alarmist tries to browbeat you into submission, pointing an accusing finger … “How dare you!”

Grievance Scholars and Idea Laundering

Ahh, so that’s how it works. This is a bit off the beaten path I have been on recently, but it answers so many things. Peter Boghassian is an Assistant professor of philosophy at Portland State University. He sees things with a particular clarity which I appreciate.

His opinion piece in the WSJ is worth a read if you want to get some insight into how scholarly sausage is made — ‘Idea Laundering’ in Academia: How nonsensical jargon like ‘intersectionality’ and ‘cisgender’ is imbued with an air of false authority.

Well worth the read if, like me, you wonder what the heck are “gender studies” and how did they become academic fields of study.

Full disclosure is I think this and similar “academic’ fields are a farce. Taken to be as serious as Monty Python’s Ministry of Silly Walks. Comedy gold when Michael Palin requests a government grant to develop a new silly walk. Kind of strikes at the heart of the matter. At least Monty Python was funny. Though several of the troupe have come out against the PC culture, commenting that Monty Python would never make it past the censors. This seems to be borne out, as the head of BBC comedy programming opined that Monty Python is out of step with modern times, and would never make it on TV today. He further attempted to slur Monty Python as six “Oxford White Blokes,” unforgivable in a cancel culture that demands diversity … or else. A comment refuted by John Cleese.

Patrick Moore: The Positive Impact of Human CO₂ Emissions on the Survival of Life on Earth

CO2 is a minor greenhouse gas (GHG). H2O is by far the most important, contributing about 95% of the climate effect. CO2 and temperature are not in synch at all through most of Earth’s history.

Patrick Moore’s peer-reviewed paper on the benefits of CO2 gives the time-line of CO2 decline and the cause of that decline, sequestration of CO2 into the shells of marine calcifying species. Shells that become limestone, CaCO3, removing carbon from the life cycle. Download the PDF here.

And after you do that, you can check out this video “CO2 is Greening the Earth”. Same theme, CO2 benefits life on earth.

The total wrongheadedness of blaming CO2 for the fake climate apocalypse seems to have peaked. Cooler, more informed heads are taking on this religion with actual science and facts. Couldn’t happen soon enough. However, next perhaps they’ll go after H2O, water vapor.

William Happer at COP25 in Madrid. Wake up and smell the CO2

William Happer, whom you no doubt have never heard of, is nonetheless worthy of your time. He is well-qualified to speak on climate change. Here is a video of his presentation at COP25 in Madrid.

He minces no words. Climate alarmism is a fraud. He quotes the hapless Democrat Senator Hirono of Hawaii, “Believe in climate change as a religion, it is not a science.” – Nov 12, 2019. True dat.

At the outset, Happer points out that the real boogie man in all this is air pollution. Everyone wants a clean environment. We don’t like breathing brown air. If you can see it, its not CO2, N2O or CH4.

At 10:38, he strikes at the heart of the matter, the crux of climate alarmism — that CO2 increases in the atmosphere are the cause of climate change. Not. He shows a graph of the Planck energy spectrum of a black body (radiation emitted as a function of frequency for various gases). (ref: Max Planck and Karl Schwartzchild.) The chart shows how much radiation (energy) is emitted as a result of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Doubling CO2 in the atmosphere would result in no significant change in the amount of energy transmitted through the atmosphere, and thus no impact on the climate. This is indisputable, verifiable science. It is not religion.

At 16:27, he skewers the inability of models to predict anything related to climate and air temperatures. In addition to always being wrong, they systematically predict higher temperatures than actually end up being recorded. Meteorologists can barely predict weather from day to day. How can climate “scientists” possibly predict climate years or decades out. With such abject predictive failure, it is folly to make policy decisions based on these models. And yet the climate alarmists bray on about restructuring the global economy to battle climate change. After decades long parade of predicted environmental catastrophes and end of times, nothing has come true. And this is somehow going to turn out differently? Err, no.

At 16:47, he shows a chart of paleo-CO2 levels going back 600 million years. Across such a timeline, we are in a CO2 starved environment. Anyone who says that we are in an unprecedented period of high CO2 in the atmosphere is wrong, wrong, wrong. The only thing close to being unprecedented is how low the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere are today when placed in a long historical context. The only real effect of more CO2 would be increased greening of the earth. There are no links to CO2 and storms or climate. The most visible impact of more CO2 in the atmosphere is that plants are able to live in drier climates. With even the relatively low increases in CO2 we have experienced, plant yields are going up, agriculture yields are going up. What is wrong with that.

His final key takeaways: scientific truth is determined by experiment and observation, not by voting; experiment and observation contradict alarmism; CO2 is a benefit, not a pollutant. Costly CO2 mitigation schemes are not only not helpful, they are harmful to the world.

This video is well worth 30 minutes of your time. If you are a climate skeptic, this will reinforce your position. If you are on the fence, this will convince you that climate alarmism is a sham with political and financial agendas. If you are a climate alarmist, perhaps you will open your eyes to the truth and stop being manipulated. If you are a climate alarmist with your head hopelessly stuck up your a$$, I hope the CH4 (methane) kills you.

Killing the Planet One Cell Phone at A Time

A new study suggests that the ICT (Information and Communications Technology) industry will contribute, by 2040, a carbon footprint greater than 14% of all contributing industries, up from 1.6% in 2007. That’s half as large as the carbon projected impact of the entire transportation industry. ICT represents computers, monitors, servers, smartphones, tablets, telecom and the like.

The study fingers smartphones as a stealth culprit in generating a high planet killing carbon footprint. As we shift away from laptop and tower PCs towards smaller mobile devices, the overall environmental impact of technology is getting worse. From Fast Company:

Smartphones are particularly insidious for a few reasons. With a two-year average life cycle, they’re more or less disposable. The problem is that building a new smartphone, and mining the rare materials inside them, represents 85% to 95% of the device’s total CO2 emissions for two years (my note: not to mention the truly destructive strip mining required to obtain rare earth minerals). That means buying one new phone takes as much energy as recharging and operating an existing smartphone for an entire decade.

Zerohedge does a good job of spanking Apple and its peers for cultivating and building business on a replacement culture. Apple certainly plays the part of being an obedient progressive company, but its success requires rapid replacement of Apple technology by users. I’m sure you Apple users are acutely aware that the company is particularly aggressive in crippling the functionality of its “older” products with a variety of tricks to force (i.e. dupe) customers to buy a new device, such as software updates that cripple and slow down the device.

So, raise your hand all you climate alarmists. How long do you keep your cell phone before getting a new one? Perhaps, before the next smartphone upgrade cycle, just replace the battery in your existing phone and suffer through not having the latest shiny spiny thingy. I mean, after all, it is the planet we are saving.

Mickey Mouse and Hogwarts’ own Albus Dumbledore join an Alliance of World Scientists declaration of a “climate emergency”

The 11,000 name-petition that accompanied a statement of concern of climate change has been blocked as the signatories are being reviewed. Dozens of obvious fake signatories have been removed, and who knows how many more are just fake names, given that anyone with internet access could “sign” the petition.

The original statement from Oregon State University on the petition claimed the support of 11,000 world scientists in declaring a “climate emergency.” But, given access to sign the petition was unmoderated, open to anyone on the internet, this petition has zero legitimacy.

Rebelnews.com decomposes this little propaganda piece. Not many actual “climate scientists” on the list.

Is this even allowed? Maybe they should pull her Green card

Elizabeth May, the leader of the Canadian Federal Green Party, showed up at the Victory Day parade in … wait for it … a solar-powered car? eh, no. How about a gas guzzling Dodge Vipre muscle car. You’d think her spider sense must have tingled when her ride showed up. But, obviously not. With the human race on the verge of extinction because of climate change, I guess she wanted to go for one more joy ride before things go blinky.

Exposing The Bogus “97% Consensus” Claim Over Climate Change ‘Science’

Robert Murphy decomposes the fake 97% consensus climate alarmists use to bolster their argument about human caused climate change.

In the original source study for that statistic, of the abstracts the authors surveyed, 2/3 did not take a position on human caused climate change. These abstracts, 65% of those considered, are not included in the 97% figure. Further, what the original authors, Cook et al., actually found in their 2013 paper was that 97.1% of the relevant articles agreed that humans contribute to global warming. That is not equivalent to saying that humans are the main contributors to observed global warming (since the Industrial Revolution).

An accurate reading of the actual 2013 source of that bogus statistic is: “Of the approximately one-third of climate scientists writing on global warming who stated a position on the role of humans, 97% thought humans contribute somewhat to global warming.” Hardly anything to get your knickers in a knot over.

The additional distortion climate alarmists use is that, by stating “97% of scientists …”, it assumes there is a list which comprises 100% of scientists. Clearly, no such list exists, rendering even the original 97% figure meaningless baffle-gab.

update 240120: Here is an article from Forbes that challenges the 97% consensus. The author, Earl J. Ritchie, does a good job of rebutting the basic idea that 97% number has any meaning, and is nonsensical bafflegab.