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MSE Creative Consulting Blog: Another Absurd Tipping Point



On October 25, in the runup to last week’s global warming meeting in Scotland, I explained:

A few minutes ago, we saw a perfect example on CBS “Sunday Morning.” Big Climate’s formidable public relation arm created a video with a dinosaur addressing the United Nations. Even though it had a number of factual errors, was highly effective propaganda. It ended with the following absurdity:

In the above, 2030 is another global warming “tipping point,” the first of which was published in 1989! Here’s a list a published in 2013.

These are designed to give a false sense of urgency with regard to global warming. They are always set a few years into the future with the hope you will forget about them when they pass without the forecast catastrophe. 

We can fix the problem with nuclear energy and hydroelecric energy. But, the straightforward solution does not allow the opportunities for power and graft that keeping the issue alive does. So, if we continue on our present course, we will kill our standard of living and our liberty, while making environmental problems worse. 


Help, what is happening with our universities? – Watts Up With That?



By Prof. Dr. IR. Guus Berkhout

This is an English translation of a letter by Guus Berkhout of CLINTEL that was published in De Telegraaf, the largest newspaper in The Netherlands earlier this week.

In recent years we have seen the strangest things happening to our universities. Professors must be extremely careful about what they teach. If they present scientific results that do not fit the ideology of activist movements, their lives are made difficult and they even run the risk of being excommunicated. Joining the consensus is by far the safest. The Boards of Governors do not protect their professors; on the contrary, they are solidly behind the activists.

The University of Amsterdam believes that every student should become woke. It is no longer about developing talents, but about making white, heterosexual, serious students feel guilty. After all, their ancestors have blood on their hands and they are the new generation of oppressors. Radboud University in Nijmegen has bowed to climate activism and has just decided that all students must be taught the sustainability narrative. The climate crisis is central to this, whether that is scientifically correct or not, that does not matter in Nijmegen.

My own university, TU Delft, has recently adopted the fashionable label climate university. This university also indoctrinates its students by telling them that there is a man-made climate crisis that must be solved with solar panels, windmills and biomass plants. Criticism is not tolerated. But I say to the Board of Governors, surely the university must be a sanctuary for the unbiased exchange of knowledge? How free is the discussion at TU Delft if everyone is pushed into an ideological straightjacket? Do you still want to send your child to such a university?

Honorary Doctorate
But the worst is yet to come. TU Delft has just announced that it will award EU Vice President Frans Timmermans an honorary doctorate (doctoratus honoris causa), because of the extraordinary achievements he has made with his energy transition policy. But I say to the Board of Governors, Frans Timmermans has done untold damage with his energy policy! He is the great champion of biomass plants, which have been destroying unique ecosystems for many years by massive logging.

Timmermans also believes that sustainability can be achieved with windmills. A technical university such as Delft University of Technology knows perfectly well that such a policy is technically and scientifically nonsensical! Hard figures show that wind farms incur heavy losses; their operating costs are seriously underestimated. Partly due to Timmermans policy, energy prices are skyrocketing. And then grant such a person an honorary doctorate? It is an insult to all Delft alumni.

Intertwined interests
Universities have moved in a direction unworthy of science. The interests of science and politics have become strongly intertwined. As a result, critical thinking and truth-finding have not been the starting point for years. Boards of Directors should bear in mind that universities are supposed to be breeding grounds for new ideas. This requires an inspiring research and teaching environment, where new concepts are welcomed and students can develop their talents. Filtering out bad ideas should be done by exposition, argument and observation, not by muzzling creative minds.

Guus Berkhout is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and cofounder of CLINTEL.

Editor’s note: “critical thinking and truth-finding have not been the starting point for years.” How very true.

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President Bidens Latest Oil Directives Lead To Nowhere Very Fast – Watts Up With That?



Reposted from Forbes

Tilak DoshiTilak Doshi

Tilak Doshi

Millions of American consumers, already struggling with the highest inflation rates in over 30 years, will be hitting the road this Thanksgiving weekend and paying the highest gasoline prices since 2012. They might well ponder on Lewis Carrols fantastical novel Through the Looking Glass, when Alice keeps running but remains in the same spot and she tells the Red Queen “Well, in our country you’d generally get to somewhere elseif you run very fast for a long time, as we’ve been doing.” “A slow sort of country!” says the Queen. “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”

Raiding the US Oil Stockpile

In President Bidens America, it seems, oil policy keeps morphing as fast as it can, but with scant achievement. Indeed, it has proved regressive for the country. Energy analysts tracking US oil policy since President Bidens inauguration find themselves deeper and deeper into the absurdities of Alices Wonderland. The latest in President Bidens approach to soaring fuel prices is to release crude oil from its strategic crude oil reserves. This marks the first time in decades that a sitting US president has resorted to releasing its emergency oil stockpile to handle market-determined rising fuel prices. The stockpile, to remind the reader, was set up in concert with other members of the International Energy Agency as a national security instrument to meet unexpected supply shocks from wars (such as Libya in 2011) and extreme weather events (Hurricane Katrina in 2005).

Bidens announcement on Tuesday that the United States will release 50 million barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve to try to tame fuel prices was in coordination with small stockpile releases from China, India, South Korea, Japan and Britain. Chinas Foreign Ministry spokesperson, it should be noted, said the country will arrange a release of oil from Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) according to its own actual needs, declining to comment if it would be releasing crude in the coordinated effort led by the United States. Goldman Sachs GS -1.8% called the US-led coordinated release of crude oil which may amount to some 70 to 80 million barrels a drop in the ocean for a global market that is running at about 100 million barrels per day. Hours after the announcement the international bellwether Brent crude oil prices rose by over $2.00 a barrel, since the market had expected a more substantive release when it was first mooted by the Biden administration.

Blaming OPEC+

The Biden administrations SPR release follows its repeated high profile requests for increased production from the OPEC+ group. Back in August, US national security adviser Jake Sullivan had criticized big oil producers in OPEC+ which include Saudi Arabia and Russia for what he said were insufficient crude (oil) production levels. At a critical moment in the global recovery, this is simply not enough. In a TV interview on November 6th, US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm responded to a question on what could be done about the US gasoline price increases by stating that Oil is a global market. It is controlled by a cartel. That cartel is called OPEC, and they made a decision yesterday that they were not going to increase beyond what they were already planning. The sheer effrontery of castigating the OPEC+ oil producers groups for not increasing its planned output schedule while the Biden administration is doing its best to hobble domestic oil and gas production in its climate change crusade did not seem to concern the Energy Secretary.   

In early November, President BidensaidI do think that the idea that Russia and Saudi Arabia and other major producers are not going to pump more oil so people can have gasoline to get to and from work, for example, is not, is not, right. This is after Biden called Saudi Arabia a pariah state when he was on the campaign trail. Adding further insult after having won the Presidency, Biden refused to communicate with the de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman,insistingthat he would only be speaking to the frail and aging King Salman as his appropriate counterpart. Unsurprisingly, Crown Prince Salman, kingpin of OPEC policy, ismore concernedwith global oil supply and demand fundamentals than the political needs of a flailing US President worried about high gasoline prices and sinking popularity polls. The OPEC+ group, wary of overshooting scheduled oil supply increases and risking an oil price crash when the resurgence of covid cases in Europe and China threatens to mute global oil demand growth, has repeatedly ignored Bidens requests.

…And US Oil And Gas Producers

Having blamed OPEC+ for high US fuel prices, the Biden administration turned next to another familiar whipping boy: the US oil and gas producers. Last week, President Biden wrote to the Federal Trade Commission to probe possible illegal conduct in US gasoline markets, citing mounting evidence of anti-consumer behaviour by oil and gas companies.  White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki asserted at a press briefing that we will continue to press oil companies who have made record profits and are overseeing what we consider to be price gouging out there. Calling Bidens demand for an FTC investigation a distraction, the American Petroleum Institute retorted Rather than launching investigations on markets that are regulated and closely monitored on a daily basis or pleading with OPEC to increase supply, we should be encouraging the safe and responsible development of American-made oil and natural gas.

In what must surely be the highlight of our tour of Bidens Energy Wonderland, the President offered these words of wisdom: For the hundreds of thousands of folks who bought one of those electric cars, theyre going to save $800 to $1000 in fuel costs this year, referring to the $112,595 electric Hummer pickup he test drove at a General Motors GM -1.4% factory in Detroit earlier this month. It did not seem to occur to President Biden that the average American households struggling to put a turkey dinner on the table or gas in their tank this Thanksgiving weekend might not have $100,000 to spare.

Further Down Alices Rabbit Hole

Since its inception, the Biden administration has done just about everything to wage war on US oil and gas. President Biden signed an Executive Order in his second day in office to protect public health and the environment and restoring science to tackle the climate crisis, cancelling the $7 billion Keystone XL pipeline. A series of executive orders prioritized fighting climate change across all levels of government, halted all new oil and natural gas leases on public lands and waters, and began an obstructive review of existing permits for fossil fuel development. Blaming OPEC+ and US oil and gas producers in rapid succession and then following up with an ill-considered release of oil from its stockpile to handle self-inflicted fuel price increases mark this administrations disastrous management of energy affairs.  
The Biden Administration’s Attack On Oil And Gas Is Destroying LivesOn his first day in office, Biden waged a war on the oil and gas industry, effectively destroying thousands of w…

For the hapless American consumer, running fast enough to keep ahead of the US energy policy not only not keeps him in the same spot, as Alice found out in her adventures, but may well push him further down the rabbit hole.

Tilak Doshi

I have worked in the oil and gas sector as an economist in both private industry and in think tanks, in Asia, the Middle East and the US over the past 25 years. I focus on global energy developments from the perspective of Asian countries that remain large markets for oil, gas and coal. I have written extensively on the areas of economic development, environment and energy economics. My publications include Singapore in a Post-Kyoto World: Energy, Environment and the Economy published by the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (2015). I won the 1984 Robert S. McNamara Research Fellow award of the World Bank and received my Ph.D. in Economics in 1992.


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Late Freeze-Up For W. Hudson Bay Polar Bears At Odds With Ice Conditions Elsewhere – Watts Up With That?



From Polar Bear Science

Dr. Susan Crockford

Sea ice is finally starting to form along the western shore of Hudson Bay, lagging well behind ice formation in the rest of the Arctic. Oddly, however, last year it was just the opposite: some WH bears were able to start hunting as early as 31 October (see photo below) while ice formation lagged behind in the Chukchi and Barents Seas.

Sea ice conditions on Hudson Bay 2021

Newly formed shorefast ice (see below at 24 November 2021) rapidly becomes ridged and buckled enough to hold the weight of a polar bear because of the compressing action of wind, tides, and waves. This means Western and Southern Hudson Bay polar bears should be back to hunting seals within the next few days (unless a south wind blows the wind offshore, which sometimes happens at this early stage):

Global ice extent 2021

There was so little ice on the west shore of Hudson Bay yesterday it is barely visible on the NSIDC global chart yet there was abundant ice in the Chukchi and Bering Seas and east of Svalbard in the Barents Sea:

Global ice extent 2020

Last year was quite a different story: a lot of ice in Hudson Bay but little in the Barents and Chukchi Seas:

Despite the slow start, its looking like 2021 will not be as late a freeze-up for Western Hudson Bay polar bears as it was in 2016, which as far as we know had no negative effect on polar bear survival.

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