Doomed Planet

In Egypt, Climate Catastrophism as Usual

Another year, another United Nations Conference of the Parties (COP) on how to persuade the bogeyman of our age, climate change (CC), to cease misbehaving. Time – and money – is running out yet again.

With more than 30,000 delegates attending this “watershed moment” – yes, over 30,000 — COP27 will be full of sound and fury, dire warnings, purveyors of dodgy carbon credits (including the UN’s own carbon offset platform), utopian fantasists and the usual crowd of jeremiahs, politicians and bureaucrats preaching “climate chaos”. Many will have form too, having spent years hyping the issue at every opportunity.

The event is being held in Sharm El Sheikh, a resort city located at the southern tip of Egypt’s South Sinai Protectorate. There has not been as much excitement there since the 1967 Six-Day War. The discovery of the Great Green Pyramid of Gaia a decade ago in the Ruba’ el-Khali (Empty Abode) also drew world attention to the region.

As the days turn into weeks, around midnight on the final day “transformative climate solutions”  could emerge from COP27’s so-called “innovation hubs”. If so, they will include demands for more climate finance. Yet many developed countries are themselves moving closer to recession (or worse) after joining the UN’s Race to Zero. Aptly named, given its ultimate destination is surely the Valley of the Jackals or the Tomb of Anubis.

That said, the Race to Zero is promising to deliver virtually everything on a green activist’s wish list: “A healthy, resilient, zero carbon recovery that prevents future threats, creates decent jobs, and unlocks inclusive, sustainable growth.” Led by “high-level champions” Mahmoud Mohieldin and Nigel Topping, it strives to “mobilize actors outside of national governments to join the Climate Ambition Alliance.”

A lot of countries also want a new UN fund to “compensate” them for any and all loss and damage inflicted on them – not by witches, as in the 1589 case of Anne of Denmark – but allegedly by the developed world. The UN’s existing $11 billion Green Climate Fund apparently is unable to take on this controversial role. It was, however, “delighted to attend the #COP27 high-level roundtable on the future of energy, exploring ways to harness Green Hydrogen for the benefit of developing nations. GCF is committed to playing its part to help accelerate access to renewable hydrogen at scale & unlocking its potential.”

As for the “loss and damage” concept, it has been tricky territory for years. In the unlikely event COP27 agrees to create another cash cow, presumably it would have to develop some way to determine how disasters would qualify for compensation, hopefully a methodology more sophisticated than the number of “victims” or a show of hands in a boardroom.

Yet why is every nasty “weather event” today assumed to be caused by dangerous anthropogenic CC (DACC)? Dismissing concerns about dodgy “climate-induced” attribution statements with more pseudoscience and alarmist rhetoric is a tactic, not an argument.

In simple terms, computers compare an imaginary climate without human-caused carbon dioxide with the current one full of unknown complexities. The modellers then announce they have ‘proved’ the ‘climate emergency’ hypothesis. Since the outputs of these models are unfalsifiable – one cannot prove that a wholly imagined scenario is ‘false’ – their notions are no more than worthless opinions.  Daily Sceptic, October 24, 2022

To raise such matters publicly today, either in Egypt or anywhere, is probably enough to get one hanged or beheaded in the public square. One could quickly find oneself deep in the Red Sea without an aqualung. Anyway, few folk have the desire to commit DACC heresy; certainly not the UK’s new PM, Rishi Sunak.

Indeed, after a backward one-and-a-half, PM Sunak surprised everyone by flying to the COP27 World Leaders Summit. He urged global leaders to “move further and faster” to renewable energy (RE), to great applause. For according to UN agencies, RE is the only way humankind can get rid of nasty weather and limit global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.

The WMO’s provisional 2022 State of the Global Climate report is, predictably, “a chronicle of climate chaos”:

a dizzying catalogue of worrying climate events, taking place against a backdrop of record levels of carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide – the three main greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming – which is currently estimated to be around 1.15 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Making the atmosphere of an entire planet dance to the UN’s tune is a big call. It would require rather more than rhetoric. A little divine intervention would help Gaia get her act together too.

For me, there is still no way of confidently distinguishing so-called extreme weather from natural variability, or legitimising the dodgy attribution statements proliferating everywhere. The UN, however, clearly believes demonising — and monetizing — a trace gas can get it a long way, especially in a world obsessed with getting its hands on all that “loss and damage” lucre. Some folk even propose writing off developing country debt as “climate-change resilience” expenditure. What a novel idea!

As for the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Britain’s Rishi Sunak suggested it actually “reinforced” the importance of ending dependence on the very “fossil fuels” (FF) now so desirable, not vice versa.

Ironically, the COP27 host country, Egypt, is the second-largest producer of natural gas in Africa. According to Chatham House’s Karim Elgendy, it is also emerging as a fossil gas hub for the eastern Mediterranean.

Egypt is one of only a few countries which failed to submit an updated NDC in 2021 and its upcoming update will not include an economy-wide carbon reduction target. The country also has never published a long-term strategy and has no decarbonization plans. Independent estimates suggest it should cut rising emissions by one-quarter by 2030, and by two-thirds by 2050 to be aligned with the Paris Agreement. This partly explains why observers rate Egypt’s climate action as highly insufficient. — Karim Elgendy, Chatham House, July 6, 2022)

As for the Curse of COP27, there are plenty of contenders for this title. Take your pick. A lot of punters are still backing Greta Girl. It’s a long shot. No longer the UN’s favourite poster child, she’s likely to be scratched for being a no-show.

Climate activist Greta Thunberg has joked that she is adopting a “net-zero” approach to cursing, an apparent response to criticism of her use of strong language at a demonstration earlier this week.

The 18-year-old Swede was filmed singing “You can shove your climate crisis up your a**e” to the tune of well-known children’s song “She’ll be coming ‘round the mountain,” alongside fellow climate campaigners on the first day of the COP26 summit in Glasgow, Scotland.

Following a backlash by some over her choice in words, Thunberg posted a tongue-in-cheek response to her five million Twitter followers on Wednesday morning.

 “I am pleased to announce that I’ve decided to go net-zero on swear words and bad language. In the event that I should say something inappropriate I pledge to compensate that by saying something nice. #COP26,” she wrote. CNN, November 3, 2021

Ms Thunberg, alas, still struggles to say something nicer about COPS than “blah, blah, blah”. She recently described them as an “opportunity for leaders and people in power to get attention, using many different kinds of greenwashing.” Launching her book, The Climate Book, at the Southbank Centre London Literature Festival on October 30 this year, Thunberg said: “I’m not going to COP27 for many reasons. The space for civil society this year is extremely limited.”

So some bookies are turning their attention to Clap Trap, Fickle Folly, Hot Stuff, Miss Model, Monsoon Mischief and two previous winners with an impressive track record:

António Guterres: Humanity must co-operate or perish. The clock is ticking. We are on a highway to climate hell with our foot still on the accelerator. — UN Secretary General, address to world leaders, COP27, November 7, 2022

Former vice-president of the United States, Al Gore, has just been speaking at COP27:

We have a credibility problem, all of us….we’re talking, we’re starting to act but we are not doing enough. We have to see the dash for gas for what it really is, a dash down a bridge to nowhere, leaving the countries of the world facing climate chaos and billions in stranded assets, especially here in Africa.

A lot of money is on the curse of demography. According to the UN’s World Population Prospects 2022, the world population will reach eight billion next week, on November 15. India will surpass China as the world’s most populous country next year. Despite growing at its slowest rate since 1950, global demographic momentum will still drive it to 8.5 billion in 2030 and at least 9.7 billion in 2050. For better or worse, the UN expects it to peak at 10.4 billion during the 2080s and remain near that level until 2100.  If the “planet is sending a distress signal”, could it be that there are too many of us?

There is a probability of 95 per cent that the size of the global population will lie between 9.4 and 10.0 billion in 2050, and between 8.9 and 12.4 billion in 2100 (box III.1). Thus, the size of the world’s population is almost certain to rise over the next several decades.” World Population Prospects 2022

The biggest curse of all, of course, is the curse of existenceEverything is in a state of change, including the climate. Even with the best of intentions, we cannot create a global utopia with “climate stability”, one with a Goldilocks climate that would suit everyone, everywhere and forever. To believe otherwise is surely magical thinking.

It is not a comforting outlook.  Worse still, as Nietzsche noted, Nature is indifferent to us.

Imagine to yourselves a being like Nature, boundlessly extravagant, boundlessly indifferent, without purpose or consideration, without pity or justice, at once fruitful and barren and uncertain: imagine to yourselves indifference as a power: how could you live in accordance with such indifference?Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil: Prelude to a Philosophy of the Future, 1886

In some remote corner … of the universe there was once a star on which clever animal animals invented knowledge [and climate prophecy]. It was the most arrogant and mendacious moment of ‘universal history’: but only a moment. Nature took a few breaths and the star grew cold; and the clever animals had to die. Someone might invent such a fable as this and yet still not have illustrated well enough how pitiful, how shadowy and fleeting, how aimless and capricious the human intellect appears within nature. There were eternities in which it did not exist; when it has gone again nothing will have happened. For there exists for that intellect no mission extending beyond the life of man… — Friedrich Nietzsche, On Truth and Lies in a Non-moral Sense, 1873

After three decades of CC hyperbole and the emergence of a “there is noPlanet B” religion, the future looks grim. We are either on a highway to climate hell, “backsliding” on a road to nowhere, or stuck on a swinging bridge over rising, troubled waters.

All one can do is seek refuge in an enclave of sanity somewhere, or a sacred text or verse. It will not be easy, but try to keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you and your pal, carbon dioxide.

The worldly hope men set their hearts upon
Turns ashes – or it prosper; and anon,
Like snow upon the desert’s dusty face
Lighting a little hour or two – is gone.

19 thoughts on “In Egypt, Climate Catastrophism as Usual

  • March says:

    The never ending gravy train soon to run over the cliff of reality.

  • Stephen says:

    When based on fraudulent science, compensation for loss and damage has another name. Theft.

    By the way, what is the ideal temperature. Is it a couple of degrees cooler, or maybe a couple of degrees warmer? I’ve never heard anyone address this question. Can anyone offer an answer?

    • STD says:

      Thoughts from a peanut.
      Stephen, the ideal temperature is climate dependent (dependant)..….. the four seasons are its barometer – Spring, Summer,Autumn and Winter…………it has variance, it is free to be cooler and warmer.
      The mass of an element or compound dictates the created response, effect and impact. More water more potential for growth, more CO2 more sugar ,more girth and more O2 needed/produced.
      Light is the conductor- quality is embedded in (ITS) the DNA – change of light- Flowers please!
      The predicted increase of 1.5 degrees(down there) is the very thing miners make a good living sweating from.
      If I go for a run on a winter or summer day my body temp will increase – both water vapour ( latent heat) regulates temperature to the will of truth as does CO2 -homeostasis – Plant life, more specifically the protein Robisco is the homeostatic mechanism by which the biosphere commands CO2 to stasis. Shifting temperatures ,Yes, but always to equilibrium. Climate is just another chemical equation on the equilibrium continuum of the Physics,-Chem,-Biolog Eq-ation.
      On which days will it be + or minus 1.5 degrees ensconced at the rarified gaseous compound ,code named Cop27?
      I dare say the touted idea of 1.5 – is related to degrees of control!!!!!!!!

  • Charles says:

    All this climate stupidity is really starting to get to the dizzy limit where all we are doing is inflicting further self-harm on ourselves. There appears to a be an epidemic of people across the world who are completely unable to think for themselves, and are being led around by a claque of rent-seekers who are plundering them blind. I do wonder at times if our dysfunctional education systems across the Western world are responsible for this mess.

    It doesn’t take much intellectual horsepower to look at the facts of CO2 and know that it is just not mathematically possible for it to be the evil agent it is supposed to be, but hardly anyone ever questions the dogma. True, when they do stick their head above the parapet they are usually shot down pretty quickly by a political, media and religiously inclined complex who have blind faith that the ‘vibe’ of apocalyptic climate change is a reality.

    It’s like a mass event of cognitive dissonance and I confess there seems to be no easy answer to it just yet.

  • Katzenjammer says:

    A changing climate would not cause only floods, droughts and famines as the apocalypticists claim. The weather every day would be the result – all those days perfect for a picnic, the days with snow is just right for a ski, days that seem just ordinary – all caused by the same changing climate.

  • Biggles says:

    When it comes to unusual climate, which always occurs somewhere, most claims of evidence for global warming are guilty of the Prosecutor’s Fallacy. For example, this confuses the near-certainty of the fact that if A shot B, there will be evidence of gunpowder on A’s hands, with the assertion that if C has evidence of gunpowder on his hands, then C shot B! However, with global warming, the line of argument is even sillier. It generally amounts to something like; if A kicked up some dirt, leaving an indentation in the ground into which a rock fell, and B tripped on this rock and bumped into C who was carrying a carton of eggs which fell and broke, then if some broken eggs are found that shows that A kicked up some dirt! These days we go even further and decide that the best way to prevent eggs being broken is to ban dirt kicking. – Prof. Richard Lindzen, MIT

  • ianl says:

    I expect some people secretly hope that after the lights go out a few times, everyone will come to their senses and hastily repair the damage.

    Nope … destruction is unavoidable now. The whole “dynamic” is completely out of control. The Tower of Babel has won. Underlying this widespread, almost global hysteria, is fear and free-floating guilt – droughts, bushfires, floods are to be feared and sinful, easy living is to blame. Homo sapiens is a combination of some startling brilliance and primordial, unthinking herding.

    Now we are to pay “developing” countries, defined by borders of course, for bouts of bad weather. This has no end. There is true insanity present now, goaded by fear and guilt. And this Cassandra comment will remain unremarked as have all of them for well over 30 years because although optimism in the face of this overwhelming primordial bog is just as insane, some will yet find comfort in it.

  • Biggles says:

    Yet another ‘scare piece’, Shame on you Michael . Before I run and hide under my bed:-
    1. At what precise time (GMT) on 15 Nov. will the world’s population tick-over 8 billion?
    2. *If the “planet is sending a distress signal”, could it be that there are too many of us?* The old, ‘too many people on the planet’ BS, so beloved by Greenies and their ilk.
    Yuval Noah Harari’s tells us in his book Sapiens, that the combined weight of all the people on the planet is 300 million tons , (Grocers error check; 37.5 kg each. Seems reasonable.)
    So, to get an equivalent volume, if we take the weight as that of water, we find that, were there no air spaces between the bodies, the 8 billion would occupy a cube 720 metres on side. Too many people?

  • Daffy says:

    COP…the mind wonders: Clowns on Parade? Clods on Patrol? COnfidence Pranksters? Other C words spring to mind, but not to print.

  • Alice Thermopolis says:

    Great comment, ianl. Agreed.
    Biggles, 12 noon GMT, I think, or was it midnight?
    From UN Economic Development agency news release on 11 July 2022:
    “15 November 2022 is predicted to be the day that the global population reaches eight billion. The projection is revealed in the UN’s World Population Prospects 2022 report, which also shows that India is on course to surpass China as the world’s most populous country in 2023.
    The latest UN projections suggest that the world’s population could grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030 and 9.7 billion in 2050, before reaching a peak of around 10.4 billion people during the 2080s. The population is expected to remain at that level until 2100.”,at%20that%20level%20until%202100

    • Biggles says:

      Alice. My point was that things such as the UN report you mention are speculation; they are not facts, never have been facts and never will be facts. (Lemma. Having just read Kevin Donnelly’s Dictionary of Woke, I find that instead of calling Michael’s article a ‘scare piece’, I should have used the woke term ‘worry porn’. My apologies, Michael.

  • Alice Thermopolis says:

    Biggles: “worry porn”?
    For me, the author is more worried about the climate change worriers than climate change.
    As for seeking “refuge in a sacred text”, it’s been happening since the Flood. “Christian, Muslim, Jewish, and other religious figures will participate in a UN conference on climate change [COP27] that is taking place this week and next. In conjunction with the UN event, a group of faith leaders is taking an alternative approach, seeking a faith-based solution to the ecological crisis by promoting the “Ten Principles for Climate Justice” in a global initiative.”
    A new Ten Commandments of CC can’t be far away.
    Expect it will be mandatory to wear one of Al Gore’s Carbon Trackers soon too.
    Big Brother has morphed into Big Climate.

    • Biggles says:

      Alice. I don’t see why religious leaders shouldn’t become involved. After all, it is their duty to look after their flocks. Unfortunately though, I can’t find any mention of climate change in our family bible, an old, black, leather-bound tome. All the pages are blank; it’s the non-fiction edition.

  • Geoffrey Smart says:

    We must exhale less to save the planet, and stop farting

    • Alice Thermopolis says:

      Geoffrey Smart: “We must exhale less to save the planet, and stop farting.”

      GS: According to my Devil’s Dictionary of Climate Change, the allegedly nasty emissions are from the other end:

      Eructation, n., 1. The process of belching in a ruminant to expel fermentation gases, esp. methane; sometimes confused with flatulence. See cow.

      During the middle ages, eructation in a person was an audible expression of appreciation of the host’s culinary accomplishments. In ruminants, it is a quiet, almost inaudible, well-developed reflex mechanism. Because of the large quantities of fermentation gas formed in the first two compartments of the four-compartment ruminant stomach, a well-developed eructation reflex is necessary for the health and even the life of domesticated ruminants. (R Dougherty, Gastrointestinal Gas, February, 1968)

  • Geoffrey Smart says:

    The science is in and settled (as if ) and Galileo was wrong. Giordano Bruno was cooked and Galileo knew he was wrong so he recanted

  • MaxQMcGraw says:

    Where would we be in this woke world without the IPCC and the UN, who are forever fighting, tackling and harnessing harmless gases, these invisible enemies? Compare their soldier salaries with those who fight real enemies.

  • Alice Thermopolis says:

    When the UN was formed in 1945, there were 45 countries, now there are 195.
    The so-called Small Island States now comprise almost 20% of the UN vote.
    Our Minister of CC is in Sham El-Sheet courting their votes to bring COP31 here.
    Tuvalu just announced it’s so frustrated with COP27 “progress”, it ‘s heading for the “metaverse”.

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