Obama in Oklahoma claims credit for half a pipeline. A Limerick.

Obama as president: he is not fit.

Approves half a pipeline: he is a half-wit.

The way he refuses

With lots of excuses.

His own credibility took yet a hit.

This morning in Cushing, Oklahoma, in front of a stack of steel pipes stored for construction of the most Southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline, President Obama delivered a short message to a few busloads of loyal supporters, mostly women. Spring break could have something to do with that. There were also a much larger number of protestors kept out of range booing the speech as they listened to a live feed.

The President tried to claim credit for this segment of the pipeline. The trouble is, it was going to start in June anyway since it already had and only needed State and Army Corps of Engineers approval. The stacks of stored pipes bear witness of the imminent start of construction. No presidential approval was needed. The speech contained his usual mantra that we must wean ourselves off dependency on fossil fuels and go green, which in a way contradicts his eagerness to claim credit for something that is being built despite his efforts

The Keystone XL pipeline decision. Crony Capitalism at work.

 

The President has decided to delay the permission to build the Keystone XL pipeline until after the 2012 election, thus satisfying the environmentalists that want to wean us off our dependency on carbon based products, such as fuel and fertilizer. The arguments for delaying the decision are nearly exclusively political, while the arguments to build the pipeline are concerns for our national security and economy.

Here is the deal:

Canada has the tar-sands and is extracting the oil. This was not our decision. If we don’t buy the oil, China will.

We are importing crude oil from the Middle East, Nigeria, Venezuela and other volatile places, leaving us exposed to supply and price disruptions.

We export refined products to the Caribbean islands, which by the way have a larger carbon footprint per person than the U.S. This is good business, since the islands are too small for a refinery.

It takes more energy to run a refinery up north in a cold climate than in hot, humid Baytown, Texas.

The last time a major oil refinery was built in the U.S was 1976. A small refinery was built in 1993, in Valdez, Alaska. The  US. regulatory climate is hostile to refineries. Colombia, O.K, US. No.

It costs about $5 per barrel to ship oil through a pipeline from Canada to Texas, nearly all of it capital costs. It costs about $15 per barrel to ship it via railway; much of it is energy cost.

Warren Buffet’s bought Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad in February 2010 and paid 44 Billion dollars for it. The railroad paid Berkshire Hathaway 2.25 Billion in dividends during the first 13 months. Warren Buffet bought the railroad after Obama took office.

This railroad can handle all the oil shipped from Canada to Huston during the next decade, even longer with expansion. It is therefore in Buffet’s interest not to build the pipeline.

Warren Buffet is a major player in the Obama Administration; he has frequent access to the White House and is a major contributor to Obama’s campaign.

Sarah Palin succinctly coined the phrase: “This is Crony Capitalism.”

The cause of Climate Change is still up in the air.

The cause of Climate Change is still up in the air. Sherlock Holmes: “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts”. From: “Scandal in Bohemia” A. Conan Doyle.

The first Earth Day in Philadelphia 1970, April 22 (the 100 year anniversary of Lenin’s Birth) featured Ira Einhorn (The Unicorn Killer) as master of Ceremonies. The big environmental scare of the day was the threat of a new Ice Age. The clarion call was: “In the year 2000 temperatures will have fallen 10 degrees”, the culprit was pollution, especially acid rain. The acid rain was so bad in the Adirondacks, Canada, Norway and Sweden that the Rainbow Trout died in droves, and even the oceans were in danger of getting too acid. Regulations were enacted to add scrubbers to power stations, waste water was purified, and – wouldn’t you know it, the cooling trend reversed itself and was followed by warming. Since the cooling trend was “obviously man-made” they had to find a reason for the sudden warming. Never mind that around the year 1200 there was at least one farm on South West Greenland that exported, among other things, cheese. How do we know that? They have excavated the ruins of a farm, “Gården under Sanden”, buried under permafrost for five centuries.  During these five centuries the Northern Hemisphere experienced what is called “the little ice age” a time when the winters could be so cold that in 1658 the Swedish army, cavalry and artillery crossed the Belts in the southern Baltic over ice and sacked Copenhagen.

Picture left: Gården under sanden excavation.

Picture right: The crossing of the Great Belt 1658.

To predict future climate changes many computer models have been developed dealing with how the earth responds to changes in atmospheric conditions, especially how it responds to changes in CO2 levels.  Most were developed in the 1970 to 2000 time frame, a time of rapid temperature rise and as such they were all given a large factor for the influence of rising CO2. Since 2005 we have had a cooling trend, so the models cooperate less and less and are given more and more unreliable predictions. It is no wonder then that they all have failed to model the past. None of them have reproduced the medieval warm period or the little ice age. If they cannot agree with the past there is no reason to believe they have any ability to predict the future. The models are particularly bad when it comes to predict cloud cover and what time of day clouds appear and disappear. Below is a chart of a number of climate models and their prediction of cloud cover versus observed data. Note especially to the right where they completely fail to notice the clear skies over Antarctica.

Is there a better way to predict future temperature trends? When you go to the doctor for a physical, at some point and without warning he hits you under the knee with a hammer and watches your reaction. He is observing your impulse response. Can we observe impulse responses for the earth? One obvious case is volcanic explosions. Sometimes the earth burps a lot of carbon dioxide or methane. But the most interesting response would be how the earth responds to a solar flare  with a sudden change in the amount of cosmic radiation hitting the earth. That would give the best indication how the sun and cosmic radiation affects cloud formation. A couple of solar flares lately have been giving us a hint how the cloud cover responds to changes in cosmic radiation, and they are consistent with the latest results from the CLOUD project conducted using the CERN particle accelerator, a confirmation of a theory forwarded by the Danish Physicist Henrik Svensmark. He first presented the theory in 1997 and finally got the results verified and published in 2007, but the prevailing consensus has been slow to accept the theory that the sun as the primary driver of climate change. We have many reasons to be concerned about the well-being of the earth, but rising levels of CO2 is not one of them. In fact, CO2 is our friend. Rising CO2 levels increases crop yields, makes the impact of land use changes less pronounced and the photosynthesis process more efficient, using less water and allowing us to grow crops on land once deemed unprofitable.

Picture right: The CERN Cloud apparatus in 2009.

James Hansen, a world famous climate science activist/NASA physicist writes in one of his publications, called “Earth’s Energy Imbalance and Implications“. It contains a quote that ties nicely in with Sherlock Holmes observation:  The precision achieved by the most advanced generation of radiation budget satellites is indicated by the planetary energy imbalance measured by the ongoing CERES (Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System) instrument (Loeb et al., 2009), which finds a measured 5-year-mean imbalance of 6.5 W/m2 (Loeb et al., 2009). Because this result is implausible, instrumentation calibration factors were introduced to reduce the imbalance to the imbalance suggested by climate models, 0.85 W/m2 (Loeb et al., 2009).

There we have it. The observed data does not fit the climate models. Change the observed data! Then use that data to validate the climate models! How convEEnient, as the SNL Churchlady used to say. Shenanigans like this have been exposed in what has been named “Climategate1.0”, followed by “Climategate2.0” and soon to be released “Climategate3.0” This is what happens when politicians take over science and make further funding contingent on obtaining desired results.

 

Obama and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Keystone XL pipeline decision.

The Obama administration announced Nov. 10 it would delay a politically explosive decision on the proposed Keystone XL oil sands pipeline until after the 2012 elections.

Congress corrected this dithering by forcing Obama to make a decision one way or another. He chose not to build it.

This decision was bad on so many levels it is hard to count them all.

Let’s try to look at the ways: Canada has oil sands and is exploiting the resources.

U.S. is dependent on importing a large portion of its crude oil.

The cheapest and most efficient way to transport crude oil is through a pipe line. It is also the safest and most reliable way of getting crude oil from point A to point B. To not O.K. the pipeline increases the cost and makes us more dependent of crude oil from the Middle East and Nigeria, as well as Venezuela. The cost of shipping this oil via pipeline is $5/barrel. To ship it via rail is about $15/barrel. This is the way it is done right now.

Canada really, really wanted this deal. It would help improve our relations. Now they are strained.

The unions really wanted the jobs. It would supply them with more than 20000 direct, well-paid jobs. In addition there is secondary business generated whenever a project of this magnitude is undertaken. Why not generate jobs?

The newly discovered oil fields in North Dakota and Montana could use the pipeline as well. Now they will have to go it alone or transport their oil on railroad or barge traffic instead, a more expensive and less safe option.

So why did Obama delay the decision? It was because of the environmentalists.

Let us examine why this decision was equally horrible from an environmentalist’s perspective.

Canada is a sovereign nation. They have the oil and will sell or use it one way or another.

The most energy conserving way is to transport it through a pipeline. Transport via train, truck or barge uses more energy (read more CO2), Canada will sell it’s oil to China if we don’t want it. China has a well deserved reputation for producing a lot of pollution.

The best environmental solution is for us to import this oil.

Nebraska protested there was a danger to damage their aquifer. The Keystone XL management offered to reroute the pipeline away from this sensitive aquifer, thereby solving that objection.

By not importing oil from Canada the total carbon footprint will increase. We lose, and Canada loses. (I am not concerned that the CO2 is increasing, but that a valuable natural resource is excessively depleted.) Now it turns out that Canada has left the Kyoto Protocol, thereby being free to burn as much of its carbon as they want. Was that really what the environmentalists wanted?

So why did Obama first delay the decision until after the 2012 election, and then, when forced, deny the permit? Here are five possibilities:

1. Obama is a true believer that ”this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal”. As a true environmentalist his role can not be overestimated .

2. Obama is deliberately wrecking our economy, refuses to have an energy policy that will create jobs, but will support protest movements and foment unrest.

3. Obama is acting on orders from Global Governance people that do want U.S. to be totally dependent on international law and U.N. mandates.

4. Obama promised to be Brazil’s best customer from their deep sea oil drilling success, paid for by U.S. loan guarantees. He must be true to his promises.

5. Obama is half insane and surrounded by bad advisors.

This is the best I can do to explain the reasons for this decision.

The Keystone XL pipeline decision: A view from Canada and rebuttal from the Obama campaign.

From our neigbor in the North comes this unbiased opinion about the Keystone XL pipeline decision:

Here is the other side of the story, given to you by your friendly Obama/Biden 2012 campaign:

Obama and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Keystone XL pipeline decision.

The Obama administration announced Nov. 10 it would delay a politically explosive decision on the proposed Keystone XL oil sands pipeline until after the 2012 elections. Congress corrected this dithering by forcing Obama to make a decision one way or another. He chose not to build it.

This decision was bad on so many levels it is hard to count them all.Let’s try to look at the ways:

Canada has oil sands and is exploiting the resources. U.S. is dependent on importing a large share of its crude oil.

The cheapest and most efficient way to transport crude oil is through a pipe line. It is also the safest and most reliable way of getting crude oil from point A to point B. To not O.K. the pipeline increases the cost and makes us more dependent of crude oil from the Middle East and Nigeria, as well as Venezuela.

Canada really, really wanted this deal. It would help improve our relations. Now they are strained.

The unions really wanted the jobs. It would supply them with more than 20000 direct, well-paid jobs. In addition there is secondary business generated whenever a project of this magnitude is undertaken. Why not generate jobs?

The newly discovered oil fields in North Dakota and Montana could use the pipeline as well. Now they will have to go it alone or transport their oil on railroad or barge traffic instead, a more expensive and less safe option. So why did Obama delay the decision?

It was because of the environmentalists. Let us examine why this decision was equally horrible from an environmentalist’s perspective. Canada is a sovereign nation. They have the oil and will sell or use it one way or another. The most energy conserving way is to transport it through a pipeline. Transport via train, truck or barge uses more energy (read more CO2) and costs about $15 per barrel vs. $5 for a pipeline.

Canada will sell it’s oil to China if we don’t want it. China has a well deserved reputation for producing a lot of pollution. The best environmental solution is for us to import this oil.

Nebraska protested there was a danger to damage their aquifer. The Keystone XL management offered to reroute the pipeline away from this sensitive aquifer, thereby solving that objection. By not importing oil from Canada the total carbon footprint will increase. We lose, and Canada loses. (I am not concerned that the CO2 is increasing, but that a valuable natural resource is excessively depleted.) Now it turns out that Canada has left the Kyoto Protocol, thereby being free to burn as much of its carbon as they want. Was that really what the environmentalists wanted?

So why did Obama first delay the decision until after the 2012 election, and then when forced deny the permit? Here are five possibilities:

1. Obama is a true believer that ”this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal”. As a true environmentalist his role can not be overestimated .

2. Obama is deliberately wrecking our economy, refuses to have an energy policy that will create jobs, but will support protest movements and foment unrest.

3. Obama is acting on orders from Global Governance people that do want U.S. to be totally dependent on international law and U.N. mandates.

4. Obama promised to be Brazil’s best customer from their deep sea oil drilling success, paid for by U.S. loan guarantees. He must be true to his promises.

5. Obama is half insane and surrounded by bad advisors.

This is the best I can do to explain the reasons for this decision.

Warren Buffett profiting from working on the railroad.

 Warren Buffett’s Burlington Northern Santa Fe LLC is among U.S. and Canadian railroads that stand to benefit from the Obama administration’s decision to reject TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone XL oil pipeline permit.

With modest expansion, railroads can handle all new oil produced in western Canada through 2030, according to an analysis of the Keystone proposal by the U.S. State Department.

 

I’ve been workin’ on Obama,

All the live long day.

And I told him without drama

Ship the oil my way.

Don’t you hear the hot air blowing?

Rise from the pundits every morn.

Don’t you hear the people shouting

“Sarah, won’t you run?”
Sarah, won’t you run,
Sarah, won’t you run,
Sarah, won’t you run the race for us?
Sarah, won’t you run,
Sarah, won’t you run,
Sarah, won’t you run the race?

Something big is cooking with Sarah.
Something is cooking up, I know.
Something big is cooking with Sarah
Strumming on the old banjo.

Fee, fie, fiddle-e-lies
Fee, fie, fiddle-my-Obama.
Fee, fie, fiddle-e-lies
Strumming on the old banjo.