A science reporter who does not understand science

Jamie Morton is the “science reporter” for A Newspaper but in a recent column Jamie shows a woeful lack of understanding of even the most basic concepts.  (The word “mug” came with the photo.)

Jamie Morton, staff, mugshot. Photo Sam Ackland.

Buildings could be belching out 20 percent of New Zealand’s carbon pollution – and much more needs to be done to make them greener.

My science teacher told me that carbon could exist in three forms, diamonds, graphite and buckminster fullerene (or ‘buckyballs’).  If Jamie could post the address of the buildings belching out diamonds, I would be most grateful.  (Not so interested in buildings belching out the other two – although I suspect they are few and far between!) Quote:

That’s according to a new report by sustainability consultants thinkstep, which the New Zealand Green Building Council (NZGBC) says highlights a “hugely significant” area for action on climate change.

Buildings produce carbon pollution when using energy for things such as heating and lighting, and also during their construction, when pollution is emitted through the extraction of raw materials and the manufacture of building products.End of quote.

So, diamonds, graphite and buckyballs are ’emitted’ when you turn the lights or heaters on or during “the extraction of raw materials and the manufacture of building products.”  So, we need the address of the factories emitting diamonds, please Jamie.  I have heard of Light Emitting Diodes, but lights emitting diamonds is a whole new deal. Quote:

Previous estimates, including last month’s report by the Productivity Commission, suggested that our buildings were responsible for roughly 5 percent of emissions – and maybe even as low as 2 per cent.

But the new report showed that buildings could amount to 20 percent of New Zealand’s carbon footprint when considering their lifetime “embodied” emissions, and the products and services that New Zealanders consume – rather than those that are destined for offshore markets.End of quote.

Embodied means included as a component part so if it is included how can it be simultaneously included and discharged, or emitted? Quote:

[…] This approach differed because it allocated emissions to a sector at the point of consumption, rather than production, and because it considers the entire life cycle of buildings, including the extraction of raw materials, material production, the electricity and energy use of the building, and the treatment of construction waste.

“Buildings and infrastructure are some of the longest-lived parts of our society,” said Jeff Vickers, thinkstep’s Australasia technical director and lead author of the report.

“So it is crucial we act now to reduce their contribution to climate change pollution – both through reducing emissions from energy used during the building’s life and through reducing the emissions embodied in the building products that we choose.

[…] “But they really do need to do more to tackle the emissions of our buildings, which make up a significant portion of our overall pollution.

“If they do, they’ll ensure that our families will live in a cleaner, less polluted Aotearoa, and will also ensure that we’ll achieve our important international obligations to tackle climate change.” End of quote.

Poor Jamie, so confused.  I think that what he is actually trying to talk about is gaseous carbon dioxide emissions as solid carbon tends not to emit.

So not content with the US EPA declaring carbon dioxide a pollutant we now have a “science reporter” parroting the same nonsense.

The New Zealand economy is heavily dependant on tourism, silviculture, agriculture and horticulture for its growth and tax revenue.   A thriving economy is good for us all, especially Grant trying to fill the budget hole.

Tourism: the bush, wetlands, bird-life etc, silviculture, agriculture and horticulture are in turn heavily dependant on plant food for growth and the primary raw material utilized by plants to produce the organic matter out of which they construct their tissues is carbon dioxide.

Carbon dioxide is not, and never has been, a pollutant and a “science reporter” should know better. Back to school, Jamie.


Do you want:

  • Ad-free access?
  • Access to our very popular daily crossword?
  • Access to daily sudoku?
  • Access to Incite Politics magazine articles?
  • Access to podcasts?
  • Access to political polls?

Our subscribers’ financial support is the reason why we have been able to offer our latest service; Audio blogs. 

Click Here  to support us and watch the number of services grow.

In solidarity with the those in the world’s most despised demographic, WH has decided to ‘come out’ as an old white male. WH enjoys exercising the white-male privilege that Whaleoil provides for him by writing the occasional post challenging climate change consensus; looking at random tech issues that tweak his interest, as a bit of a tech nerd; or generally poking the borax at anyone in public life who goes on record revealing their stupidity. WH never excelled on the sports field because his coaches never allowed him to play in his preferred position on the right-wing. WH also enjoys his MG.

Listen to this post:
38%