Thursday, March 30, 2006

Farming vs Forestry a perspective in climate reality

The worlds climate is changing,save the forests ,save the planet,protect the forests is the perspective from the purveyors of a stoneage climate.

The perspective is that our national parks and the mature plantation forests are sequestoring carbon and are productive carbon sinks is already accepted as a nonsense,Once the forests reach maturity the sequestion of carbon turns slightly negative,and with heterotrophic respiration of various microflora it has a further negative effect on the GHG emmission budget.

The models assume that croplands and managed farming conversion have a negative balance on the carbon budget,This is not the case plant growth from various arable crops actually outperform forests by 2-6 times due to enhanced growth rates,now further benefits have been identified.

Climate scientists from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory found that models that included recent changes in agricultural practices, such as more irrigation, higher yielding crops, and less tillage, predicted lower temperatures than models that ignored these factors.

Nearly all models used to predict climate changes either ignore agriculture altogether or assume that farmers behave the same way through time," said David Lobell, the lead author on a paper appearing in the March 23 issue of the journal Geophysical Research Letters. "In reality, farmers are changing rapidly in response to new technologies, growth in demand and other factors. This study suggests that these changes may have important cooling effects, especially at local scales."

Human activities are widely recognized as contributing to climate change through the burning of fossil fuel and land use activities. Previous studies had considered the effects of converting natural ecosystems such as forests into croplands. Croplands generally reflect more sunlight than other land covers, and therefore tend to cool local temperatures.

"In our earlier study, we found that historical conversion of forests to croplands had cooled the planet by 0.5 degrees Fahrenheit, and locally by as much as 4 degrees Fahrenheit" said Govindasamy Bala, co-author.
Secondly, the study indicates that climate mitigation policies, which often include incentives to farmers, may be too simplistic. Most proposed climate policies focus only on the ability of farmers to sequester carbon in soils or reduce on-farm energy use.

"This study illustrates that carbon is not the only important way that agriculture affects climate, and so focusing only on carbon may lead to an under- or over-evaluation of agriculture's role," Lobell said.

For example, the study estimated that the increased albedo from reduced tillage had roughly as much of a cooling effect on global climate as the increased soil carbon sequestration.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Worlds largest energy cooperation agreement.

A number of important cooperation agreements have been signed between Russia and China during the visit to China of President Putin.

The most important are in the energy cooperation and a number of joint ventures.It is readily identified that the growth of the Chinese economy has been fueling the demand of commodities and energy products.

The strategy of stability of energy prices and the expansion of the use of technology to sustain energy prices as a priori for the expansion of developing economies is evidenced by a number of important announcements.

First the development and supply of gas from East Siberia by pipeline to northen and western China .The port cities are developing infrastructure for LNG which will be supplied from Sakhalin.The two pipelines will each supply 30-40 billion cu m.

The development of a secondary oil pipline extension (this will also supply Japan and Korea) with capacity of around 80MMT.

The tendering and construction for further nuclear power plants,of which Russia has two under construction in China with the first to go on line later this year.

The construction and supply of electricity from Hydro from Siberia as the Amur project comes online with its 2000 mw and the constructtion of the 3000 mw Boguchansky Hydro.These developments and others are expected to use 5% of the siberian hydro resource.

The agreements between the Russian UES electricity giant,with the upgrading of the Chinese national grid by Russia will allow the further export of 60 billion KWH.

An announcement of additonal vehicle efficiency taxes in China The government has raised the tax on cars with engines bigger than 2 litres from 8% to 20%, as it looks to reduce pollution and oil consumption.
Cars with smaller engines, between 1 and 1.5 litres, will have their taxes cut to 3% from 5%. This is part of the government's strategy of rebalancing growth and reducing energy demand,along with off peak energy rate decreases.This near simultaneous announcement is to seem to balance the criticisms of Chinas growth.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Prescient prescriptions for innovation.

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."AC Clarke third law.

I have a collection of old periodicals dating from the 19th Century.The format and skill of the editors in blending prose,innovation,feedback as well as the lithographs and detail in both the main body of text and the variety of innovation in the classified advertisements still hold me in amazement.Indeed the problems and solutions far exceed the excellence we could expect in innovation today,and I wonder if the suppression of the individuals innovation today is a constraint for evolution.

This piece from the Scientific American september 8 1860 in response to the prize offer from Thadeous Hyatt for a flying machine ...

Of all the inventions of which it is possible to conceive in the future,there is none which so captivated the imagination as that of a flying machine.The power of rising up into the air,and rushing in any direction at the rate of a mile or more a minute,is a power fo which mankind would be willing to pay for liberally.What a luxurious mode of locomtion!To sweep along smoothly how perfectly it would eclipse other means of travel by sea and distance of land.

This magnificent problem so alluring to the imagination and of the highest practical convenience and value,has been left heretofore to the dreams of a few visionaries and the feeble efforts of a few clumsy inventors.We,ourselves have thought that,in the present state of human knowledge,it contained no promise of success.But considering the greatness of the prize and the trifling charecter of the endeavours that have been put forward to obtain it,would it not make sense,as our correspondents suggest ,to make a new and combined effort to realize it,under all the power of modern science and mechanism.?

What little attention of this subject has heretofore received form inventors has been almost wholly confined to two directions-flying by muscular power and the guidance of balloons.Both of these we have been accustomed to regard as impracticable.But as Mr Hyatt suggests,the flying by muscular power is afield of invention that has not been thoroughly explored.Though it may be impossible for a man to raise his own weight by rapidly beating the air,the sustaing of his weight and moving it horizontially is another problem.In the bird the wings are moved by the most powerful muscles in the system.Has this hint been acted upon,and the muscles of the legs and shoulders,been brought to bear upon the wings in the most efficient manner?Again ;has the constancy of the rotary motion been available in a flying machine?If spiral fans were used ,of course ,two sets would be required to prevent the machine from turning in the direction opposite to the direction of the fan.

But the thing that is really wanted is machine driven by some natural power.so the flyer may ride at his ease.For this purpose,we must have a new gas,electric ,or chemical engine.What we require are two or more substances ,solid or liquid,which by bringing into contact ,would be converted into gas.Place these in the reaction or Avery engine,which by running at high velocity,would yield a large power in proportion to its weight,and it is possible-yes probable-that the machine would drive spiral fans with sufficient force to lift itself from the gorund.Would not the binoxoyd of hydrogen and charcoal fill these conditions.This engine would run with such velocity that the fans would have to be very small by proportion;and it is probable that a widening of the arms themselves giving spiral inclination -would be the true plan.There might be two generating vessels that supply the engine that when was was exhausted the other would fulfill its requirements.

We might add severl other hints to inventors who desire to enter on this enticing field;but we will conclude with only one more.The newly -discovered metal aluminium,from its extraordinary combination of lightness and strength,is the proper material for flying machines.

An extraordinary piece of engineering prescience from 1860 ,what I find interesting is the hints to the inventors very interesting.

The Scientific American September 8 1860 page 165.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

G8 energy ministers' talks in Moscow

Russian Minister of Industry and Energy Viktor Khristenko addressed the issues of global energy security, fuel and energy market effectiveness and the stability of the world's energy system at a meeting of energy ministers of the Group of Eight industrialized nations Thursday.

Opening the meeting in Moscow, Khristenko said high oil prices had affected poor nations and hampered global economic growth. "The price situation is not very favorable [on global markets] at the moment, as high oil prices have sent prices for other energy resources and some other products up," he said.

The minister stressed that the oil price fluctuations and their contingency on unpredictable economic factors influenced global economic trends, and were particularly harmful for poor nations.

The minister called for the creation of a reliable global transportation system to ensure the supply of energy resources to world markets, including the construction of pipeline networks and tankers to transport liquefied and gaseous hydrocarbons.

The minister also suggested that international electricity supply networks should be formed as part of the future energy system to ensure the diversification of energy sources and energy consumption centers across the globe.

He said energy efficiency was a key tool to control demand for energy resources and help stabilize markets."We cannot ignore important instruments - like the diversification of the energy resources portfolio according to fuel types, suppliers and consumers, and also the transportation of energy resources - that could lower energy security risks not only for
individual countries, but also for the global community as a whole," he said.

Khristenko said resources should be diversified along various lines, and alternative energy sources and new technologies should be explored."The joint efforts of G8 and other countries on the broader use of sustainable and alternative energy sources, and the development of innovative technologies in the energy sphere...can make a significant contribution to the solution of this strategic task," he said, adding that safe nuclear energy was also important.

He said market approaches aimed at increasing energy supplies and restraining the growing demand for energy were needed to rebuff challenges to energy security, and that these approaches should "boost the development of market mechanisms for pricing, competition, energy efficiency and energy saving."

He pointed to the necessity of creating a favorable investment climate. "Securing sufficient investment in the development of the global energy sector is only possible in a favorable investment climate and given political stability in countries that produce and consume energy resources, as well as in transit states," the minister said.Investment incentives include good legislation, clear tax rules, respect for contracts, reliable dispute settlement procedures, and measures to reduce red tape, he said.

G8 energy ministers see nuclear energy as the only viable option for some industrialized states, Russian Industry and Energy Minister Viktor Khristenko told a media briefing after the Thursday meeting with his G8 counterparts.
The session has come to a conclusion that for some leading economies, nuclear energy will inevitably be part of the future,” he said.
“The meeting touched upon such sensitive issues as nuclear energy, environment, and nonproliferation,” he added.
“Nuclear energy was in the focus of the ministerial meeting. Capabilities of and prospects for world nuclear energy industry are in any case connected with Iran’s nuclear program,” Khristenko said.
The global community should come up with initiatives as to how to ensure energy-hungry nations’ access to peaceful nuclear energy and “how to make sure the access does not become non-peaceful,” the official said.

The Germans also provided some interesting foresights on technology.

G8 will work out an action plan on energy production safety improvement during Russia’s 2006 G8 Presidency, State Secretary of the German Federal Economics and Technology Ministry Georg Wilhelm Adamowitsch said. The energy ministers decided to have the action plan drafted this year and refined next year when Germany takes over the rotating G8 Presidency, he said.

Technologically, the progress made so far is far better than the public debate might suggest, he added.
Adamowitsch also said the issue had been discussed at the G8 energy ministers’ meeting with the U.S. and U.K. counterparts. The discussion resulted in a joint commitment to work on the issue intensively, he vowed. Further progress on the issue could save nearly 2 billion tons of energy within a year, he also said. By 2020, Adamowitsch said, this work could result in a zero-CO2-emission coal-firing power plant.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The BBC discover the art of soothsaying?

On the 13 th March the BBC stated that the CO2 levels have reached record levels in 2005.

BBC News has learned the latest data shows CO2 levels now stand at 381 parts per million (ppm) - 100ppm above the pre-industrial average.
The research indicates that 2005 saw one of the largest increases on record - a rise of 2.6ppm.
The figures are seen as a benchmark for climate scientists around the globe.

Now this is interesting as any good scientist,or reporter should always check the underlying data,and source and the previous publication mechanism to verify the methodology.

The UN Vehicle the WMO is now the authoritive publication for GHG measurement and published the first annual report on Greenhouse Gas Bulletin the following day.

The GGB publication is for the 2004 year,2005 to be released in November 2006.The findings of the world bulletin are CO2 was recorded at 377.1 ppm.

Accurate observations from some 44 WMO Members are archived and distributed by the World Data Centre for Greenhouse Gases (WDCGG), located at the Japan Meteorological Agency. WMO prepares the Bulletin in cooperation with WDCGG and the Global Atmosphere Watch Scientific Advisory Group for Greenhouse Gases with the assistance of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Earth System Research Laboratory.

So certain questions now arise to the accuracy of the BBC report,or the citing of prepublication data that has been collated from some sites or locations but have not been verified.

What can be ascertained is the 381ppm is NOT an accurate statement and one would ask questions of the reporters intent to invent news.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Energy systems expansion and security.

The international energy cooperation and security conference opened in Russia on the 13th.Victor Khristenko the conference chairman and Russian minister of energy outlined the template for the conference and areas of discussion for the G8 leaders conference later in the year.

"Globalization processes under way in the political, economic and other spheres of international life have a powerful effect on the energy sector. Taken together, the extension and growth of international ties, the growing volume and expanding geography of trade in energy resources, and several other factors are molding the global power industry.

The creation of a global energy system, where energy is provided in an uninterrupted mode to broad sections of population around the world at economically substantiated prices, lasting stability is maintained on the global and regional energy markets and environmental security is ensured, is a priority task of the international community's efforts to implement the concept of sustainable development of individual countries and humankind as a whole.

When discussing issues of global energy security, we should focus on the following aspects:

- a growing scale of the energy system and the globalization of energy markets;

- a threat of imbalance between the growing energy demand and offer

- a broad scope of energy poverty: 2 billion of the planet's population cannot get energy services on affordable commercial and technical conditions.

Economically, solutions are mostly about larger investment. The International Energy Agency projected a required global investment of $17 trillion until 2030 to develop the world energy system to an admissible level of energy security, two thirds of this investment to go into production and refining.

In this context, proactive support from international financial institutions would help attract more investment, including from the private sector, to finance energy projects, with a special focus on their economic and financial viability achieved through financial risks' insurance and sharing. In line with the letter and spirit of G8 Gleneagles and Evian statements, the further steps on sustainable energy development include:

- diversification of energy supplies by sources, forms, and routes of delivery; an effort to find a balance between centralized and decentralized energy systems;

- drive toward more predictable oil markets through clearer information on oil reserves, production, trade etc. to help market players adequately assess the situation to alleviate risks of future oil shortages. To achieve this, international initiatives designed to increase hydrocarbons data transparency should be endorsed;

It is necessary to point out the important role of further development of market relations in the energy sector and its stabilization. At the same time, market reforms are not an end in itself, but a mechanism to increase the efficiency and reliability of the global energy sector. The inalienable part of this process is the regulating function of the state, which is seen in creation and constant improvement of the legal framework for the market's functioning, its monitoring, elimination of market distortions, long-term energy planning, honoring of environmental commitments and a set of timely measures to eliminate threats to energy security.

In this connection, I would like to point out the importance of developing a constructive dialog between energy producers and consumers, seeking to exchange relevant information and experience, to promote bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the energy sphere and to reinforce its institutional basis. This dialog should develop involving such multilateral institutional mechanisms as UN profile organizations, the International Energy Agency, the World Economic Forum, etc.

In the first quarter of the 21st century, mankind has to make a scientific and technological breakthrough towards pure" non-traditional and renewable energy sources, as well as towards greater and more rational use of nuclear and hydropower.

We urge science and business to unite their efforts to launch research and development necessary to create new technologies, to improve confidence in them and expand the opportunities for selecting adequate technologies. We call on state officials to take joint efforts to eliminated groundless legal, customs and other barriers that stand in the way of spreading and introducing state-of-the-art, energy efficient and environmentally safe technology and equipment, as well as to help to increase their economic competitiveness.
The threats and challenges to global energy security force countries to work out their national energy strategies and pursue relevant national energy policies. These policies and strategies differ from each other, sometimes significantly. They depend on the individual country's level of economic development and positioning on the global energy market as a supplier, consumer or, a transit country. These strategies and policies are based on own national assessments of a country's possibilities and risks and are used to define its plan of action.
I would like to say that discrepancies, lack of coordination, controversies, uncertainty and non-transparency of national energy strategies and policies generate serious global risks of energy security.

Here we are facing real constraints in the energy sector with oligarchial controls of the energy sector extracting price rises in excess of 50-60% in the last 2 years,The flow on effect is a downsizing of the engineering and manufacturing comple in NZ.

Regulatory constraints on evolution of the energy complex ,and subterranean soothsayers preclude best fit solutions.In addition the Minster of finance wishs to enhance the oligarchial windfalls of the last 2 years by the state monopolies.

Tony Blair will confirm the agenda and outcomes from the G8 energy ministers meeting when he visits next week.It will be with interest if our politicans will listen and interpretate the signals and promote some innovative solutions or if their own percieved importance (of whose ,the rest of the world cares not) will sideline the message .

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Peak oil proponents propose new holocaust

Once again we have the greens raising the issues of Peak oil and its quoting of the ASPO and its expert Colin Campbell.The greens have linked to ASPO on their website.

In Fitzsimmons speech of April 2005 she said..

“The most startling part of his reported statements is that Saudi Arabia may well have peaked in production in 1981. Coupled with Peak Oil geology expert Colin Campbell’s new estimate that production could peak as soon as next year and the International Energy Agency moving its estimates forward from 2037 to 2013, both mentioned in the same report

“Change is inevitable, but we can try to make that change more gentle, more humane and more democratic than just going cold turkey on oil,” said Ms Fitzsimons.

One of the key assumptions of peak oil "die-off" theory is that there are too many people. Oil has allowed human population to balloon, and overshoot the carrying capacity of the earth. Therefore when oil production begins its steady decline, billions of people will have to die to bring humankind back into balance with nature.

According to the doomer hysterics, this is the gospel truth, and cannot be questioned. More sinisterly, they use this idea to justify authoritarian depopulation programs, and culling of the human herd, either as an act or mercy, or to eliminate burdensome and unfit humans.This idea is not limited to the doomer riff-raff in internet chat rooms. It goes to the very top of the PO doomer movement: Colin Campbell.Campbell is the founder of ASPO (Assocation for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas), and is widely respected as the elder statesman of PO today. He currently edits and publishes the widely read ASPO Newsletter from his website, and in the July 2005 issue, he ran an op-ed piece by Wiliam Stanton called "Oil and People". From the article:

To those sentimentalists who cannot understand the need to reduce UK population from 60 million to about 2 million over 150 years, and who are outraged at the proposed replacement of human rights by cold logic, I would say “You have had your day, in which your woolly thinking has messed up not just the Western world but the whole planet, which could, if Homo sapiens had been truly intelligent, have supported a small population enjoying a wonderful quality of life almost for ever. You have thrown away that opportunity.”

The Darwinian approach, in this planned population reduction scenario, is to maximise the well-being of the UK as a nation-state. Individual citizens, and aliens, must expect to be seriously inconvenienced by the single-minded drive to reduce population ahead of resource shortage. The consolation is that the alternative, letting Nature take its course, would be so much worse.

The scenario is: Immigration is banned. Unauthorised arrives are treated as criminals. Every woman is entitled to raise one healthy child. No religious or cultural exceptions can be made, but entitlements can be traded. Abortion or infanticide is compulsory if the fetus or baby proves to be handicapped (Darwinian selection weeds out the unfit). When, through old age, accident or disease, an individual becomes more of a burden than a benefit to society, his or her life is humanely ended. Voluntary euthanasia is legal and made easy. Imprisonment is rare, replaced by corporal punishment for lesser offences and painless capital punishment for greater.

The interesting people that the greens link with make one wonder their agenda.This is not a singular occurance the politics of the people of oilcrash.com also have some worrying connections.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Scientists issue unprecedented forecast of next sunspot cycle

The next sunspot cycle will be 30-50% stronger than the last one and begin as much as a year late, according to a breakthrough forecast using a computer model of solar dynamics developed by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). Predicting the Sun's cycles accurately, years in advance, will help societies plan for active bouts of solar storms, which can slow satellite orbits, disrupt communications, and bring down power systems.

The scientists have confidence in the forecast because, in a series of test runs, the newly developed model simulated the strength of the past eight solar cycles with more than 98% accuracy. The forecasts are generated, in part, by tracking the subsurface movements of the sunspot remnants of the previous two solar cycles. The team is publishing its forecast in the current issue of Geophysical research letters.

"Our model has demonstrated the necessary skill to be used as a forecasting tool," says NCAR scientist Mausumi Dikpati, the leader of the forecast team at NCAR's High Altitude observatory.

The Sun goes through approximately 11-year cycles, from peak storm activity to quiet and back again. Solar scientists have tracked them for some time without being able to predict their relative intensity or timing.

As I have previously commentated on with the Russian hypothesis on solar effects and climate we may be going to get a little cold....
Scientists from the Central Aerological Observatory of the RF hydrometeorological organization Roshydromet and the Lebedev Physics Institute have voiced their views on the subject.They believe that cosmic rays play a large role in this process and they offer a physical explanation for this effect.

A flow of cosmic rays constantly falls onto the upper limit of the atmosphere. Under interaction with the atmosphere it gives rise to secondary radiation. A maximal flow of secondary cosmic rays is observed in the stratosphere at altitudes of 15-20km and it is affected by solar activity. Cosmic rays ionize air in the stratosphere and the troposphere, which explains the electrical conductivity of air at these altitudes and the electrical activity of storm clouds. The electrical field created by the Earth’s charge accelerates adherence of light ions to uncharged aerosol particles, and charged aerosol particles become the centres of water vapour condensation, on which cloud droplets arise, far more easily than uncharged particles. This leads to an increase in nebulosity in the lower part of the troposphere, which influences the flow of solar energy and, accordingly, the temperature of the near-Earth

A reduction in the flow of cosmic rays, observed in the 20th Century, is accompanied by a fall in the speed of ionisation and electrical conductivity of air in the stratosphere and the troposphere, a drop in the storm activity and voltage of the Earth’s electrical field and a reduction of low cloud cover, meaning a rise in the temperature of the near-Earth layer of air.A jump is expected in the 200-year cycle of the flow of cosmic rays in the 21st Century and the authors of the hypothesis believe there will be not a further warming of the climate but quite the opposite – climate cooling.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

lunar tides antarctic
Antarctica ice melt(what they did not tell you)

This week in science and reported widely in the msm was the quantification of the ice loss from Antarctica.The Gravity recovery and climate experiment(grace)using a pair of satellites has measured gravity changes to measure the thickness and size of the Antarctic ice sheets.

Writing in the journal Science, they conclude that the continent is losing 152 cubic km of ice each year, with most loss in the west.Although net effects are only slightly negative.

In his contribution to a recent report on climate change, the director of the British Antarctic Survey, Chris Rapley, described the West Antarctic ice sheet as "a giant awakened". reports the BBC.

The amount of ice loss is miniscule the total loss would take 250k at this rate and raise the sealevel by around 150 mm in 500 years.This is not outside the sealevel change from the end of the last glaciation.

Now prior to this part of the projects publication ,(the Grace project also measures the sealevel changes and the effects of the gravity tides (lunar) there was another publication.

The measurability now possible of the gravity tides allowed the effects on the ice shelfs and NATURAL erosion of the WAIS for the first time.

OSU Proffessor Ck Shum comments
While the tides cause only minute fluctuations in Earth’s overall gravity, they are actually composed of massive amounts of water, he explained.
The ice is a mile thick in parts, and the tides are so large that they can lift the shelves – with a combined area bigger than the state of California – as high as 15 feet.
Scientists believe that these unseen tides can carve into the ice from underneath and eventually cause pieces to break off, as part of the Larsen Ice Shelf broke off in 1995.

As an ice sheet rises with the tide, part of the grounded portion that normally rests on the ocean floor raises up. Researchers call the point of contact between the ice and the rock the grounding line, and the rise of the ice effectively moves the grounding line inland. That means that while the tide is high, more of the ice bottom is contacting the water than when the tide is low.

Wide reporting of massive sea level changes due to GHG emissions ,as the cause of the ice shelf break up ,when the erosion effects of natural phenomena are now identifiable.I would not expect this interesting development to be reported in the MSM .

Friday, March 03, 2006

Amazing Images from around the world

From the photo diary of a mexican heli pilot.

These are not photoshopped

2006 to be a very cold year

Due to a number of cosmic and solar factors namely expected increase of cosmic radiation we can expect a colder winter and colder climatic conditions for 2006.The movement from neutral to La Nina conditions has already occurred as can be observed from the colder winter in eastern europe and north east asia.The lower then average summer temperatures also confirm this with colder water temperatures and one of the coldest Antarctic summers on record.

In a press release, the Geneva-based agency WMO said tempearatures in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific had been between 0.5 and 1.0 C (0.9 and 1.8 F) below normal since the start of the 2006. "Combined with broader tropical Pacific ocean and atmosphere conditions, this is consistent with the early stages of a basin-wide La Nina event," it said.

La Nina, which has the opposite effects to the more notorious El Nino, last occurred from mid-1998 to early 2001. Under La Nina, the sea-surface temperature in the central and eastern tropical Pacific falls below normal. This typically brings far dryer weather to the southwestern United States, Florida and western Latin America and above-average rainfall to Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. But there can also be a knock-on much further afield, with an increase to monsoon rainfall in South Asia, unusual coolness in tropical West Africa, Southeast Africa, Japan and the Korean peninsula. La Nina usually lasts nine to 12 months, although "some episodes may persist for as long as two years," the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says on its website.

The WMO sounded a note of caution. The buildup of this La Nina was so exceptionally swift and intense that it was impossible at the moment to infer what the impact would be, and how long the phenomenon would last, it warned. "Most models and expert interpretations favour the event dissipating quite rapidly over the next three to six months," the UN's weather agency said. "Nonetheless, neither a continuation of La Nina beyond mid-year, nor the development of El Nino in the second half of 2006, can be ruled out as possible outcomes from the current prevailing situation." El Nino, which last ran from 2002-3, occurs when warm water builds up in the western tropical Pacific and creeps eastwards, again causing huge disruption to classic patterns of rainfall and wind.

Scientists from the Central Aerological Observatory of the RF hydrometeorological organization Roshydromet and the Lebedev Physics Institute have voiced their views on the subject with expectations of a longer cold period.The long obseved 11 year solar cycle and its intendent colder period is the return to the global norm.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Nuclear energy roleout commences

In the pathways identified in the Gleneagles energy announcement,and the 6 country agreement the US and India announced the cooperation for nuclear generation technology today.

The Washington post reports ...

Eight years after India startled the United States government by resuming testing of nuclear weapons, Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh signed off on a pact requiring India to separate its civilian and military nuclear programs to gain U.S. expertise and fuel to satisfy its energy rising needs.Under the deal, the United States offered India nuclear fuel and technology in return for India agreeing to put a wall between its civilian and military nuclear facilities and place its civilian program under international inspections.

The joint statement identifies the following issues..

1) Welcomed the successful completion of discussions on India's separation plan and looked forward to the full implementation of the commitments in the July 18, 2005 Joint Statement on nuclear cooperation. This historic accomplishment will permit our countries to move forward towards our common objective of full civil nuclear energy cooperation between India and the United States and between India and the international community as a whole.

(2) Welcomed the participation of India in the ITER initiative on fusion energy as an important further step towards the common goal of full nuclear energy cooperation.

(3) Agreed on India's participation in FutureGen, an international public-private partnership to develop new, commercially viable technology for a clean coal near-zero emission power project. India will contribute funding to the project and participate in the Government Steering Committee of this initiative.

(4) Welcomed the creation of the Asia Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, which will enable India and the U.S. to work together with other countries in the region to pursue sustainable development and meet increased energy needs while addressing concerns of energy security and climate change. The Partnership will collaborate to promote the development, diffusion, deployment and transfer of cleaner, cost-effective and more efficient technologies and practices.

In other news the Iranian negotiator in Moscow said

Iran will not oppose inspections by the UN's nuclear watchdog if its right to a civilian nuclear program is guaranteed, the country's top nuclear negotiator said Thursday.
"If the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] and some leading states guarantee Iran's inalienable right for civilian nuclear energy there will be no obstacles to IAEA inspections," Ali Larijani told a news conference.
"We welcome any IAEA checks. Iran is not pursuing nuclear weapons," Larijani said. He added that UN inspections and Iran's rights must be discussed as one issue.
Larijani also proposed creating a permanent security body in the Middle East.
"We have friendly relations with our neighbors, and believe we can establish a permanent security body in the region," Larijani said, adding this was only possible if the United States stopped creating tensions there.
Also on Thursday, Larijani accused the U.S. of attempting to block an initiative to open a joint uranium-enrichment venture with Russia.

US Ambassador to Russia William Burns told on air of Ekho Moskvy radio station, Russia and US have joint strategic interests in settlement of the Iranian nuclear program, so that Iran could not construct its own nuclear weapon. He also said that US is interested in diplomatic settlement of this conflict, and supports the Russian proposition to create the joint enterprise on uranium enrichment in the Russian territory, because it will lead Iran to understanding necessity to return on uranium enrichment moratorium. Burns said that it clearly represents high level of trust in cooperation around Iran, and denied Iranian accusation that US hampers establishment of Russian-Iranian joint enterprise on uranium enrichment at Russian territory.

President Chirac has praised the India /US agreement Chirac said the US-India deal marked progress both for nuclear non-proliferation controls and for efforts to curb global warming, according to a statement from his office.

Meanwhile in Moscow Experts of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and representatives of the Russian nuclear industry will discuss the role of state bodies in ensuring nuclear and radiation safety and security at a conference in Moscow, Konstantin Pulikovsky, head of the Federal Service for Ecological, Technological, and Nuclear Supervision, told journalists on Monday.
The IAEA International Conference on Effective Nuclear Regulatory Systems, “Facing Safety and Security Challenges,” will be held in Moscow February 28-March 2.
"Its main goal is to determine the role of state bodies in regulating nuclear and radiation security," Pulikovsky said.
The conference is held as part of Russia's Presidency in the Group of Eight to assess the state of nuclear and radiation security regulations in the world and exchange opinions on further cooperation in the sphere.

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