Doing Advance Work

News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Monday, March 2, 2015

University of Colorado rightly stands behind Professor Roger Pielke, Jr.-Denver Post Editorial Board

3/2/15, "CU rightly defends Roger Pielke Jr. against political bully," Denver Post Editorial Board

""We stand behind him." 

It was good to see University of Colorado-Boulder Provost Russell Moore rally decisively on behalf of Professor Roger Pielke Jr. after the ranking Democratic member of the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources, Rep. Raul M. Grijalva, launched an inquiry into the professor because of his academic views. 

Grijalva has written CU (and six other institutions that employ researchers whose views on issues related to climate change he dislikes) demanding a mind-boggling amount of information, including Pielke's funding sources, communications and "all drafts" of testimony before "any government body." 

Grijalva's purported purpose is to ferret out "conflicts of interest," specifically funding by energy companies, but in fact his gambit amounts to a bold, abusive assault on academic freedom. 

Moreover, as Pielke noted on his blog, "I have no funding, declared or undeclared, with any fossil fuel company or interest. I never have. Rep. Grijalva knows this too, because when I have testified before the U.S. Congress, I have disclosed my funding and possible conflicts of interest. So I know with complete certainty that this investigation is a politically-motivated 'witch hunt' designed to intimidate me (and others) and to smear my name." 

Pielke, by the way, has never disputed a role of human activity in climate change. He even favors a carbon tax and supports federal regulatory attempts to crack down on carbon emissions.
But his sin, it seems — as Grijalva tells it — is to have told the U.S. Senate that it is "incorrect to associate the increasing costs of disasters with the emission of greenhouse gases." 

In short, he disagrees with the Obama administration and various environmental groups, which repeatedly claim — contrary to what Pielke documents as mainstream scientific thinking— that natural disasters have gotten more frequent, intense and costly as a result of global warming.

Pielke happens to have spent much of his career studying disasters and climate change, and is an international authority on the subject,. But his careful opinions have resulted in repeated attacks by those who demand fidelity to the most alarmist view of present-day climate — to the point that he's apparently had it. 

"The incessant attacks and smears are effective, no doubt. I have already shifted all of my academic work
away from climate issues," he wrote on his blog.

It's a sad day when bullies such as Grijalva can push honest brokers such as Pielke into another line of research." via Junk Science
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Comment: To this country's great embarrassment it now has only one functioning political party (democrat) thereby rendering it a totalitarian dictatorship. You either "partner" with government or you're out. Credit the Bush family, Rupert Murdoch, and their pals for this great feat. And they're not done.





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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Experts say cold weather and snow keep criminals off the street. Major crimes have dropped in Boston, NY City reported 12 consecutive days without a murder-NH Union Leader

2/28/15, "Bad weather keeps criminals off the street and out of trouble," New Hampshire Union Leader, Paul Feely

Manchester, NH, in front of Kay's Bakery




"The historic stretch of winter weather gripping New Hampshire in recent weeks is helping to prove an old adage among law enforcement circles: Crooks like it hot. Police say the steady string of storms into the Granite State since mid-January show the special relationship between weather and crime: as the snowflakes and temperatures fall, so do the number of certain types of crime - particularly assaults, burglary and robberies.

"Burglars can be stupid, but they're not completely dumb," said Lt. Dan Bailey of the Nashua Police Department. "They're not going to break into a house when they'll leave footprints in the snow.

Reports from areas hit hardest by record-breaking cold and heavy snow appear to support the idea. Police calls are down in Concord and Nashua. Same thing in Manchester. Major crimes have dropped in Boston. New York City police reported 12 consecutive days without a murder, the longest such streak since the department started collecting crime data in 1994.

"You don't have people out and about," said New Hampshire State Police Major David Parenteau. "If people aren't out, there are fewer potential victims for criminals."

It's science

The theory has been tested by researchers, who say the data prove their point.

"Weather has a strong effect on the incidence of criminal activity. For all offenses except manslaughter, higher temperatures lead to higher crime rates," writes Matthew Ranson, an economist for the Cambridge, Mass. consulting firm, Abt Associates.

Ranson recently published results of a study combining 30 years of data across the country and found "a very strong historical relationship between temperature and crime."

Ranson writes in the report that he began looking at the data in an attempt to picture what the world might look like if global temperatures rise. He believes crime, and social disorder, could increase along with temperatures, and said the evidence shows colder stretches over the last 50 years marry up to drop-offs in criminal behavior.

Ranson looked at nine major crime categories, ranging from theft to murder, and reports offense rates decreased when the temperature dropped below about 50 degrees. In most cases, the rates continued to drop as the temperature got colder. The exception was car theft, which jumped when temperatures got below ten degrees."...

Image above from New Hampshire Union Leader, David Lane. via Free Rep.
Regis Chagnon shovels snow in front of Kay's Bakery as a city crew removes snow in the "The Hollow" neighborhood of Manchester. A month of snow and cold has a silver lining. Officials say, certain types of crime, such as assaults, burglary and robberies, are way down. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)) - See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20150301/NEWS03/150309973#sthash.piFBYd7L.dpuf


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Ranson recently published results of a study combining 30 years of data across the country and found "a very strong historical relationship between temperature and crime."
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20150301/NEWS03/150309973#sthash.piFBYd7L.dpuf

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Bad weather keeps criminals off the street and out of trouble

- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20150301/NEWS03/150309973#sthash.kRB9acNp.dpuf
The historic stretch of winter weather gripping New Hampshire in recent weeks is helping to prove an old adage among law enforcement circles: Crooks like it hot.

Police say the steady string of storms into the Granite State since mid-January show the special relationship between weather and crime: as the snowflakes and temperatures fall, so do the number of certain types of crime - particularly assaults, burglary and robberies.
"Burglars can be stupid, but they're not completely dumb," said Lt. Dan Bailey of the Nashua Police Department. "They're not going to break into a house when they'll leave footprints in the snow."

Reports from areas hit hardest by record-breaking cold and heavy snow appear to support the idea. Police calls are down in Concord and Nashua. Same thing in Manchester. Major crimes have dropped in Boston. New York City police reported 12 consecutive days without a murder, the longest such streak since the department started collecting crime data in 1994.
"You don't have people out and about," said New Hampshire State Police Major David Parenteau. "If people aren't out, there are fewer potential victims for criminals."

It's science

The theory has been tested by researchers, who say the data prove their point.
"Weather has a strong causal effect on the incidence of criminal activity. For all offenses except manslaughter, higher temperatures lead to higher crime rates," writes Matthew Ranson, an economist for the Cambridge, Mass., consulting firm Abt Associates.
Ranson recently published results of a study combining 30 years of data across the country and found "a very strong historical relationship between temperature and crime."

Ranson writes in the report that he began looking at the data in an attempt to picture what the world might look like if global temperatures rise. He believes crime, and social disorder, could increase along with temperatures, and said the evidence shows colder stretches over the last 50 years marry up to drop-offs in criminal behavior.
Nine crime categories

Ranson looked at nine major crime categories, ranging from theft to murder, and reports offense rates decreased when the temperature dropped below about 50 degrees. In most cases, the rates continued to drop as the temperature got colder. The exception was car theft, which jumped when temperatures dropped below 10 degrees.
Manchester police Lt. Brian O'Keefe compiled statistics last week that support Ranson's theory.

Looking at crime statistics for January and February 2015 - when the heaviest snow fell this winter - compared to the same time frame in 2014, robberies in the Queen City have dropped 10 percent. Homicides have dropped 100 percent. Reports of larceny are down 19 percent. In total, property crimes were down 11 percent.
But consistent with Ranson's report, incidents of auto theft in Manchester rose 65 percent from 17 in 2014 to 28 in 2015. O'Keefe believes the increase could be tied to more people leaving their cars running to warm up in the extreme cold, while they wait indoors, and when they come out the vehicles are gone.
Statistics provided by Bailey also show crime rates falling during cold and snowy weather in Nashua. Comparing statistics from Jan. 1 through Feb. 27 for 2014 to 2015, reports of burglaries in the Gate City dropped from 44 to 18. Simple assaults fell from 116 to 100, and intimidation cases dropped from 21 to 15.
"It makes sense, that if people aren't leaving their homes, certain crime rates would go down," said Lt. Bailey. "If people are staying home, it's less likely someone would try to break in."

Numbers provided by Concord Deputy Police Chief Greg Taylor show similar results in the Capital City. Comparing police reports filed between Jan. 1 and Feb. 20, 2014, to 2015, reports of burglaries fell from 23 to 11. Robberies dropped from 3 to 0, and theft and stolen property offenses fell from 110 in 2014 to 93 in 2015.
"It would be hard to say that the cold weather was the cause of the reduction in offenses reported in 2015, but there is certainly a reduction from 2014," said Taylor. "Weather conditions probably played a role in this reduction, but to quantify this would be difficult. The patrol officers on the street have reported a lot fewer people being out and about in the late evening and early morning hours, most likely due to the weather. It would appear to be much harder for criminals to access certain buildings due to snowfall and escape routes would certainly be limited as well."
Statewide, in January and February 2015, New Hampshire State Police troopers were assigned to 1,685 cases, according to Parenteau. That represents a 1.06 percent drop from the same two months in 2014, when troopers were assigned to 1,703 cases.
Not weather related

The snow and cold doesn't deter everyone from behaving badly. Last month, Alexander Twardosky, 21, of Manchester, wanted for damaging his grandparents' car, was tracked down by Merrimack police who followed the footprints he left behind in the snow to a home on Timber Lane. Police say they found him inside a garage hiding behind a motorcycle. He was arrested and charged with criminal mischief, domestic-related, and criminal trespass.
"During one of the recent storms we had a trooper out patrolling I-89," said Parenteau. "The snow was falling heavy and the speed limit was reduced to 45 mph, and he was behind someone driving 81 mph. There's always people out there who don't care what the weather is."
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20150301/NEWS03/150309973#sthash.kRB9acNp.dpuf

Great Lakes total ice cover 88.8% on 2/28/15, up from 76.6% on 2/16/15-NOAA

2/28/15, "Great Lakes Surface Environmental Analysis (GLSEA)," NOAA

"Great Lakes total ice cover: 88.8%"






















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Sure, I'll settle that science for ya. 15 years ago they said: Snow is a thing of the past...Children aren't going to know what snow is, per elite, taxpayer funded, government endorsed, UK climate scientist, March 2000




3/1/15, "Sunday Funnies," Hockey Schtick

March 20, 2000, "Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past," Independent UK, by Charles Onians 

"According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, within a few years winter snowfall will become "a very rare and exciting event."

"Children just aren't going to know what snow is," he said....

But very little research has been done on the
  • our notion of Christmas might have to shift....
David Parker, at the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in Berkshire, says ultimately, British children could have only virtual experience of snow. Via the internet,
  • they might wonder at polar scenes - or eventually "feel" virtual cold.
Heavy snow will return occasionally, says Dr Viner, but when it does we will be unprepared. "We're really going to get caught out. Snow will probably cause chaos in 20 years time," he said.

The chances are certainly now stacked against the sort of heavy snowfall in cities that inspired Impressionist painters, such as Sisley, and the 19th century poet laureate Robert Bridges, who wrote in "London Snow" of it, "stealthily and perpetually settling and loosely lying". Not any more, it seems."










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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Cold weather kills electric car range, climates in only 16 states are moderate enough to be best option for electric cars-mnn

Climate Central found "that electric cars are the best option for the climate in 16 states."
 
2/27/15, "Cold weather kills electric car range," mnn.com, Jim Motavalli



Image caption: "Carbon dioxide emissions per mile go up in colder climates, worsening the environmental equation. (Graphic: Environmental Science and Technology)"

"Range is a huge issue with EV owners, and for very good reasons. The Volt has the gas engine in reserve, but 100 miles is the standard top end for battery electrics. And that’s only under optimal conditions; bad weather makes the range much worse.


A new study published in Environmental Science and Technology (EST) looks at the range-and-weather equation, and reports, based on driver testimony, that cold days (using the heater) or very hot ones (air conditioning) can reduce range up to 40 percent. Remember that gas cars generate their own electricity for accessories like that; in electrics, everything drains the battery. Also, batteries simply aren’t as efficient in extreme weather (especially if they lack pack heating and/or cooling).
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And I’ve seen much the same in winter EV driving — the 100-mile car becomes the 60-mile (at best) car. A Volt I drove during a New England winter went 28 miles before switching to the gas engine, which isn’t bad — Nissan Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV cars I drove did much worse under frigid conditions. One December, I got 34 miles from an i-MiEV that’s rated at 62. Mitsubishi has warned i-MiEV drivers not to use the heater because it will cut the range in half; a refreshed 2016 model may improve that dilemma.

I like heat in the winter (and air conditioning in the summer), which is one reason my results are worse than average. Patrick Wang, a San Francisco Volt owner, told me that 40-degree weather reduced his range modestly to 34 miles, and he compensates by pre-warming the car while it’s plugged in at home, then setting the heater to low.
EST’s research suggests that that in a city with a moderate climate, such as San Francisco, the median range for a Nissan Leaf battery electric is around 76 miles, and it’s above 70 miles more than 99 percent of the time. In a super-hot city like Phoenix, it can drop to 49 miles on the worst day of the year, while in super-cold Rochester, Minnesota, a 36 percent range drop was observed. Even within a big state like California, there can be energy-consumption-per-mile variations of 18 percent because of differences in weather.


Range (in all weather) is king, and that’s why the Tesla Model S’ 265 miles is so prized. And it’s also why the Volt’s 2016 improvement is so welcome.... 
Jeremy Michalek of Carnegie Mellon University, co-author of the EST study, told me, Climate is one extra factor that electric car buyers should consider depending on where they live....


Michalek also points out that Californians’ environmental equation is also bettered by the fact that the state gets most of its electricity from clean sources. A Union of Concerned Scientists report found, encouragingly, that 60 percent of the U.S. population lives in regions where, all factors considered, the battery electrics emit fewer greenhouse gases than a Toyota Prius hybrid. Climate Central also investigated, concluding that electric cars are the best option for the climate in 16 states..


But these are moving targets. The electric grid is getting cleaner, and as it does the EV’s environmental scorecard improves in most of the country." via Junk Science, via Steven Goddard
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Linked in above article:
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8/8/13, "A Roadmap to Climate-Friendly Cars: 2013," Climate Central
 



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Battle to keep Hudson River open amid big freeze, three of five Great Lakes frozen over










Hudson River image caption: "Frozen over: The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Sturgeon Bay breaks ice in the shipping channel on the Hudson River in Catskill, New York, on Friday. With the prolonged cold winter weather, that is set to continue into March, the Coast Guard has been busy clearing shipping lanes," AP

"Three of the five Great Lakes had completely frozen over by Thursday." Image caption, Lake Michigan, Xinhua

2/27/15, "Battle to keep the Hudson open: Ice breakers sent out in New York big freeze as hundreds flock to see ice caves opened by perfect winter conditions," UK Daily Mail, Wills Robinson 

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Ed. note: The white panel beginning at the top of this post is vandalism by my longtime hackers. They don't like free speech. 
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Exploring ice caves on Lake Superior, 3 of 5 Great Lakes are completely frozen over












Image caption: "Edward Mitchell, front, of Detroit, and James Kuhn, of Seattle, explore an ice cave at the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore on Lake Superior," AP

"Three of the five Great Lakes had completely frozen over by Thursday." Image caption, Lake Michigan, Xinhua
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I'm the daughter of an Eagle Scout (fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers and Mets) and a Beauty Queen.