Climate rhetoric will not save us

Bryan Appleyard has an article in yesterday’s Sunday Times in which he provides his own rambling reaction to the so-called “ClimateGate” furore. Appleyard is on the side of the angels, and when it comes to the science he is mostly correct. The problem is that he’s right for the wrong reasons. What we have here […]

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The case for mandatory carbon sequestration

Given that between three and five trillion tonnes of carbon remain locked up in fossil fuel reserves in the ground, and that a release into the atmosphere of just half a trillion tonnes would lead to a two degree warming, scientists from Oxford and the US are calling for the mandatory sequestration of carbon emitted […]

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“I dub thee Sir Gobbler”

Happy Thanksgiving, dear American readers! I so wish we had a similar festival here in England, but the British people would struggle to find anything to give thanks for. They spend much of their time complaining about this, that and the other. Whingeing poms. It’s at times like these I fondly recall my New Zealand […]

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Ridges and fractures

NASA has just released some stunning photographs of the moon Enceladus taken from the Cassini spacecraft as winter nears in the Saturnian system. The word spectacular doesn’t do justice to the images, one of which I include here. Image: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute This unprocessed image was taken during the 21 November flyby of Enceladus, and […]

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Climate tricks

It would seem that the climate septic blogosphere is currently in an onanistic frenzy over a large number of email files and other electronic documents stolen by hackers from the servers of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia. One can understand why the authors of the texts in question are reluctant […]

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Brits for Rumpy

Later today the political leaders of the EU’s 27 member states will gather to select the supranational entity’s first president and foreign minister. Former British prime minister Tony Blair, who was once a leading candidate for the president’s job, is now out of the running owing to his arrogance and gittishness. There is also the […]

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What’s at stake in Copenhagen?

You could be forgiven for not fully understanding what’s what with the forthcoming UN-sponsored climate summit in Copenhagen, popularly unknown as “COP15”. Lobbying from all parties in the weeks leading up to the meeting has been fast and furious, politicians are sending out confused and contradictory messages, and journalists struggling to keep up with developments. […]

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Dark skies over Galloway

“Darkness is as essential to our biological welfare, to our internal clockwork, as light itself.” I woke up this morning to the news that Galloway Forest Park in the southwest of Scotland is the first in the British Isles to be granted the status of Dark Sky Park. The award, announced by the International Dark […]

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Crescent Earth

Crescent Earth, as seen from the Rosetta spacecraft during its final flyby (image: ESA) The picture above shows parts of South America and Antarctica, as seen from the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft. Yesterday, the interplanetary probe flew by Earth for one last time, picking up a few kilometres per second of speed to boost […]

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Moving earth and air

Look at a photo of our planet from space, and what you see is a relatively large ball of rock and water cloaked in a thin, tenuous atmosphere. The latter seems so insignificant compared with the solidity of the earth, yet its influence is crucial, and not just because of weather and climate. Tides in […]

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