Temperature Measurements Challenged; More Attacks on Coal Usage; US Drones over Syria; UK Muslim Leader Coaching Australian Extremists; Newspoll Supports Additional Powers but Only Slight Improvment in TPP

Climate Change

Today’s Australian reports Professor Karoly, a lead author from Australia to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, as defending the “adjusted” temperature data published by the BOM with an ad hominem attack on scientist Dr Marohasy’s questioning of that data. My letter below notes that others (including myself) have also previously questioned the accuracy but have failed in attempts to obtain substantive responses. As with the CSIRO, the group of scientists in BOM has locked itself into the dangerous warming scare thesis.

I am aware that some analysts are attempting to respond publicly to Karoly and it will be interesting to see if The Australian keeps the debate going.

Also relevant is the continued strong attack on the mining and usage of coal. The unsubstantiated argument being used in regard to Queensland coal mining is that there would be associated damage to the Great Barrier Reef as a result of port construction and clearing of sand and this risk should lead to abandoning such action (see Cater article below). Separately, Garnaut asserts that China, which is the major emitter, is now reducing its usage of coal and usage there may now fall. The graph published with the article below (but not shown) appears to depict continued strong growth in usage up to 2012.

It is hoped that the sudden departure of Alan Moran from the IPA, not related to climate change issues according to Terry McCrann in today’s Herald Sun, will not prevent him from continuing the important contribution he has been making to the climate change debate.

Islamic State

As a Newspoll shows strong support amongst both Coalition and Labor voters for additions to counter-terrorism powers (but only a marginal improvement – 48 to 49 TPP – in political support for the Coalition), increasing evidence appears of the need for such additions/involvement both here and in the Middle East.

It appears, for example, that a UK Muslim preacher, leader of “Islam in the UK” before it was banned there, has nonetheless been busy converting Australian Muslims to radicals and advising on the establishment of an extremist group in Sydney. One wonders why this wasn’t revealed before now and even then only via a story by a journalist (see below).

In the US the approval by Obama of drone surveillance of parts of Syria is a small additional step against the Islamic State but, even if US air strikes start there, it seems unlikely that the advance of IS or other extremist groups will be stopped. The capture by IS of an airbase in NE Syria, and reports of aircraft bombings by extremists in Libya, open up the possibility that radicals may soon have an air force. Abbott’s offer to contribute Australian aircraft to the US force may well be accepted.