The New Pause Lengthens to 8 years 1 Month

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

Just in time for the latest UN Assembly of Private Jets at a swank resort in Egypt, the New Pause has lengthened again. It is now 8 years 1 month, calculated as the longest period for which there is a zero least-squares linear-regression trend up to the most recent month for which the UAH global mean surface temperature anomaly is available:

The trend on the entire dataset during the 527 months from December 1978 to October 2022 is 0.59 C°, equivalent to a modest and beneficial 1.34 C°/century:

If global warming were to continue at 0.134 C°/decade for 77 years to the turn of the next century, there would be just 1 C° more global warming this century. Is that a crisis, emergency, catastrophe, cataclysm or apocalypse? No. It is a good thing.

Why, then, the continuing worldwide pandemic of panic about the mildly warmer weather we are enjoying? In Britain this summer, for instance, we had a proper heatwave for a few days. Where’s the net harm in that?

The reason for the hand-wringing and bed-wetting is that policy continues to be made on the basis of computer predictions which have long been proven wildly exaggerated by mere events. In 1990, for instance, IPCC predicted that by now the warming rate should have been not 0.134 but 0.338 C°/decade:

At the same time, IPCC predicted that midrange equilibrium sensitivity to doubled CO2 would be 3 C°. Corrected for the reality/prediction ratio 0.134 / 0.338, that long-falsified prediction should have been reduced to 1.2 C°. But that is below the already-harmless 2 C° lower bound in IPCC (2021), and even below the 1.5 C° lower bound in IPCC (1990).

If the global classe politique were not innumerate, someone would have asked IPCC how it justified increasing the lower bound of its prediction by a third even though observed warming has proven to be only 40% of the original midrange prediction.

There are some who argue that IPCC (1990) had very greatly overstated the trajectory of business-as-usual emissions compared with subsequently-observed reality. That being so, why has IPCC not revised its business-as-usual trajectory to bring it somewhat into conformity with observation, and why has IPCC not consequently reduced its medium-term warming predictions?

But let us pretend that all the snorting and honking, whining and whinnying, twittering and twattling at Sharm-al-Shaikh will lead to anything other than the continuing bankruptcy of the Western economies as unaffordable energy drives our staple businesses into the willing arms of Communist China.

Let us pretend that the world will continue to ignore the observed reality that global warming is and will continue to be small, slow, harmless and net-beneficial, and that all nations will move together to attain net zero emissions by 2050 (the British Government’s fatuous and economically suicidal policy).

That won’t happen, of course, because 70% of new emissions these days are in nations wholly exempt from any obligation, legal, moral, religious or other, to forswear their sins of emission:

But let us yet again ignore mere reality, just as the private-jetsetters of Sharm al-Shaikh will do, and pretend that by 2050 the whole world will have fallen to its knees, craved Gaia’s forgiveness for its sins of emission, and abandoned entirely the use of coal, oil and gas for static and electricity generation.

In that event, a startling fact must be – but has not hitherto been – taken into account. We have plentiful iron and steel, for there is a lot of it about. And when we build good, solid coal-fired power stations or gasoline-fired autos, they go on running for up to half a century. When I was a lad I used to roar through the countryside on a Triton motorcycle that was then 20 years old. There are hundreds of examples still on the roads 70 years after they were built, even though they are ridden hard and fast by hoons and hooligans like me. They endure.

However, in the Brave New World of net-zero emissions, iron and steel will play a far smaller role. Instead, we shall be dependent upon what are known to geometallurgists as the techno-metals, the rarer, fancier, very much costlier, less-recyclable metals needed to make onshore and offshore windmills, solar panels, electric buggies and their batteries, and, above all, static batteries to provide backup power at sundown when the wind drops.

Quietly, for several years, a leading geometallurgist at a national geological survey somewhere in the West has been working out how much of each techno-metal would be needed to attain net-zero emissions.

I must not say who he or she is, for the blanket of the dark is descending, and those who are quietly doing serious work that questions the official narrative the climate question are persecuted beyond endurance if they put their heads above the parapet. Indeed, a leading conference on climate change from a skeptical perspective has just written to tell me that its next session will be held in secret because the Government in question would otherwise be likely to ban it.

The geometallurgist has produced a 1000-page paper setting out, with detailed calculations, just how many megatonnes of techno-metals will be needed to attain net zero. Based on those calculations, I have looked up the prices of just seven of the techno-metals in question – lithium, copper, nickel, cobalt, vanadium, graphite and germanium:

Just to get to the first ten-year generation of net zero energy infrastructure, we shall need almost a billion tonnes of lithium, which, at today’s prices, would cost nearly $60 trillion. But a billion tonnes is more than 9000 times the total global output of lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide in 2019.  Known reserves are a tiny fraction of the billion tonnes we need every ten years.

Indeed, according to the Global Warming Policy Foundation, if Britain were to abandon real autos and continue with the present government’s heroically stupid policy of replacing all new autos with electric buggies by 2030, some three-quarters of existing annual lithium production would be required. The rest of the world will have to go without.

China is responsible for some 95% of lithium mining and production. Peking supported the Taliban by ordering Mr Biden to withdraw all troops precipitately from Afghanistan. He readily consented not even to retain hard-point defence at Kabul and Baghram air bases, even though the cost of such focal strongpoints would be minimal and the Taliban, with covert Chinese support, had previously tried and failed to capture Baghram.

In return for Peking’s assistance in getting Western troops simply to pull out, and to retreat so precipitately that $85 billion in valuable military materiel was left behind as a gift to the People’s Liberation Army/Navy, China was rewarded with control of the vast lithium deposits in Afghanistan, by far the world’s largest.

China has also been quietly buying up lithium mines and processing plants all over the world. When I recently pointed this out at a dinner given by a U.S. news channel at London’s Savoy Hotel, a bloviating commentator who was present said that Britain would be all right because we had a large deposit of lithium in Cornwall. “Yes,” I snapped back, “and China owns 75% of that mine.” The bloviator had no idea.

Recently, this time at the Dorchester, another swank London hotel, I met the guy who gives strategic advice to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. He too must remain nameless to protect him from the Rufmord – Goebbels’ word for deliberate reputational assassination – directed at all of us who have come to realize that climate Communism is a (for “a” read “the”) clear and present danger to the West.

He told me he had recently negotiated a deal on behalf of the Chinese to acquire control in perpetuity of all minerals, including large deposits of rare earths, in a certain African country for a mere $300 million. The ruler had promptly spent the money on three private jets. China would like us to call such bilateral deals “the belt and road initiative”. Internally, however, the Communist Party calls this “wolf-warrior diplomacy”. We call it debt-trap diplomacy.

In south-western Greenland, where large lithium deposits have been discovered, the Chinese have a placeholder stake. But if Greenland fails to make even a single loan repayment to China on time, the entire deposits become China’s exclusive property in perpetuity.

And that is just lithium. Much more could be said about it. However, after persistent importuning by the likes of me, the Western intelligence services have at last begun to wake up to the strategic threat posed not by net-zero emissions but by the insane policies, targeted exclusively against the West, that are supposed in theory to address it. Therefore, the Five Eyes – the five leading Western nations – have now joined forces at long and very belated last to try to find new deposits beyond the influence or reach of China. Australia and Arizona are both proving to be useful here.

The other six listed metals are also in grossly short supply to allow global or even regional net zero. China knows this full well, which is why Peking announced a month or two back that it would build 43 new, large, coal-fired power stations. And China is the nation praised to the skies by the Communists who control the conferences of the parties, for its supposed commitment to net zero. It is indeed committed to net zero, but only in the hated West.

As anyone who knows anything about finance will at once understand, now that the former free market in energy has been replaced by a managed market, the consequent sudden dash for net zero, even confined (as it is) solely to Western countries, will cause a dramatic surge in the prices of all metals, including the seven listed above. For the law of supply and demand is not up for repeal.

In short, as we skewer our economies in the name of Saving The Planet, the commodities economy of Russia will make an even larger fortune from the inevitable and dangerous increases in the cost of the techno-metals necessary to the new energy infrastructure than the Kremlin is already raking in from the increases its economic advisers know would result from its special military massacre in Ukraine.

China, too, will make an even larger fortune from the rampant coming increases in the prices of lithium and the other techno-metals that Peking substantially controls than it already makes from the transfer of Western heavy industries to the East as they are driven to closure here by the ever-increasing cost of electricity whose sole cause is the strategically dangerous, climatically pointless and economically nonsensical pursuit of net zero emissions.

Such weak, insubstantial figures as Sunak, Biden, Trudeau, Scholz, Macron, Ardern and Albanese, who strut the corridors of impotence, are handing over the economic and political hegemony of the world from democratic hands in the West to dictatorial hands in the East: from freedom to tyranny, from constitutionalism to Communism.

It may be said of the West in general what the Spanish-American philosopher George Santayana said of England: “The world never had sweeter masters.” When the now-failing West, fooled by climate Communism, is at last laid to rest, the world will not be a happier place for our passing.

via Watts Up With That?

November 3, 2022 at 09:02PM

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