Great Barrier Reef

The curious case of the reef that didn’t die

2017: Can no longer be saved.

The GWPF reprints an article from the paywalled The Australian where Peter Ridd writes about the Great Barrier Reef. Peter Ridd used to be a physicist at James Cook University?s marine geophysical laboratory until he was fired this year for not toeing the climate scare line. Quote.

2018: Oops, no, as you were, nature is doing what nature does.

This unreliability of the science is now a widely accepted scandal in many other areas of study and it has a name: the replication crisis. When checks are made to replicate or confirm scientific results, it is regularly found that about half have flaws.

Scientists from James Cook University have just published a paper on the bleaching and death of corals on the Great Barrier Reef and were surprised that the death rate was less than they expected, because of the adaptability of corals to changing temperatures. End quote.

Golly gosh, who’d a thunk it? Nature can cope with natural variations in temperature. Quote.

It appears as though they exaggerated their original claims and are quietly backtracking. End quote.

Noooo! Climate scientists exaggerating claims? Never! Quote.

To misquote Oscar Wilde, to exaggerate once is a misfortune, to do it twice looks careless, but to do it repeatedly looks like unforgivable systemic unreliability by some of our major science organisations.

The very rapid adaptation of corals to high temperatures is a well-known phenomenon; besides, if you heat corals in a given year, they tend to be less susceptible in the future to overheating. This is why corals are one of the least likely species to be affected by climate change, irrespective of whether you believe the climate is changing by natural fluctuations or because of human influence.

Corals have a unique way of dealing with changing temperature, by changing the microscopic plants that live inside them. These microscopic plants, called zooxanthellae, give the coral energy from the sun through photosynthesis in exchange for a comfortable home inside the coral. When the water gets hot, these little plants effectively become poisonous to the coral and the coral throws them out, which turns the coral white ? that is, it bleaches.

But most of the time, the coral will recover from the bleaching. And here?s the trick: the corals take in new zooxanthellae, that floats around in the water quite naturally, and can select different species that are better suited to hot weather.

Most other organisms have to change their genetic make-up to deal with temperature changes ? something that can take many generations. But corals can do it in a few weeks by just changing the plants that live in them.

They have learned a thing or two in a couple of hundred million years of evolution.

The problem here is that the world has been completely misled about the effects of bleaching by scientists who rarely mention the spectacular regrowth that occurs. For example, the 2016 bleaching event supposedly killed 93 per cent, or half, or 30 per cent of the reef, depending on which headline and scientist you want to believe. […] End quote.

And, presumably 97% of scientists agreed. Quote.

But this is just the tip of the exaggeration iceberg. Some very eminent scientists claim that bleaching never happened before the 1980s and is entirely a man-made phenomenon. This was always a ridiculous proposition.

A recent study of 400-year-old corals has found that bleaching has always occurred and is no more common now than in the past. Scientists have also claimed that there has been a 15 per cent reduction in the growth rate of corals. However, some colleagues and I demonstrated that there were ?serious errors in their work and that, if anything, there has been a slight increase in the coral growth rate over the past 100 years. […]

But the truth will out eventually. The scare stories about the Barrier Reef started in the 1960s, when scientists first started work on it. They have been crying wolf ever since. But the data keeps coming in and, yes, sometimes a great deal of coral dies in a spectacular manner, with accompanying media fanfare. It is like a bushfire on land ? it looks terrible at first, but it quietly and rapidly grows back, ready for the scientists to peddle their story all over again. End quote.

The Australian

Puffery and perfidy from scientists colluding with media over climate change

Puffery or Perfidy?

Puffery or Perfidy?

Puffery is a term often associated with advertising. It is variously described as ?publicity or acclaim that is full of undue or exaggerated praise?, or ?advertising or sales presentation relying on exaggerations, opinions, and superlatives, with little or no credible evidence to support its vague claims?.

Sometimes the claims are straight lies. It is difficult to dress it up any other way. Truth becomes a casualty.

It is not confined to the world of advertising of course. Those with strongly held causes indulge in puffery. Emotion overtakes rationality and common sense.

The case for there being widespread poverty in New Zealand is regularly propped up with banal puffery and perfidy. Global warming, which had to morph into climate change to try and stay roughly credible, is another cause that falls prey to puffery.

So what, you ask. We all know to adjust our intake of what we read and hear to allow for the added colour. Headlines have become increasingly exaggerated and extreme to catch attention. Today the Herald used the word ?brawl? to capture interest in a story that involved one punch. The Australian Tennis Open is a ?bloodbath? because a couple of players have injuries. A surfer is getting ?smashed? by waves but gets up and walks away.

We instinctively know now to discount the headline grabber, look for the balance in the body of the story or cross check with another source. ?? Read more »

Meanwhile sea level rises won’t affect Pacific islands

After seeing what $100k of troughers coin gets you…a report into a possibility, maybe, sometime ?in the future ,Wellington might, just maybe have a problem with rising sea levels, you might be surprised to find out that other academics think sea level rises are a but ‘meh’ especially for the Pacific.

Rising sea levels caused by global warming are unlikely to swamp the small atoll nations of the South Pacific, a University of Auckland academic claims.

Writing for the?Australian science website Conservation, Professor Paul Kench said new evidence suggested that low-lying coral reef islands would be more resilient to sea-level rise than thought.

Sand and shingle islands lying one to three metres above the current sea level were considered among the most vulnerable places on Earth.

“The new findings suggest that, rather than being passive lumps of rock that will be swamped by rising seas and eroded by storms, the islands are dynamic structures that can move and even grow in response to changing seas,” he said.

Kench closely examined how reef islands formed over the past 5,000 years, including Jabat Island in the Marshall Islands. That island was created 5,000 years ago as sea level rose to 1.5 metres above its present level. ?? Read more »

Mental Health Break

Climate Change is killing the reefs…oh wait

? Brisbane Times

The Climate Change’Global Warming proponents have at various times claimed all sorts of calamities are going to befall us unless we spend massive amounts trying to mitigate natural earth cycles. Slowly, one by one their claims are being proven to have been alarmist at best and fraud at worst:

Rising ocean temperatures caused by climate change are unlikely to mean the end of the coral on the Great Barrier Reef, according to a new scientific study.

The Cell Press journal?Current Biology?this morning published what it says is the first large-scale investigation of climate effects on corals and found while some corals were dying, others were flourishing and adapting to the change in water temperatures.

For the study researchers identified and measured more than 35,000 coral colonies on 33 reefs across the length of the Great Barrier Reef to see how they were responding to warming ocean waters.

In results they have described as ??surprising?? the study found while one species declined in abundance, other species could rise in number.

One of the researchers, Professor Terry Hughes from James Cook University, said while critical issues remained he now believed rising temperatures were unlikely to mean the end of the coral reef.

??The good news is that, rather than experiencing wholesale destruction, many coral reefs will survive climate change by changing the mix of coral species as the ocean warms and becomes more acidic,?? he said.

??That?s important for people who rely on the rich and beautiful coral reefs of today for food, tourism, and other livelihoods.??

He said earlier studies of climate change and corals had been done on a much smaller geographical scale, with a primary focus on total coral cover or counts of species as rather crude indicators of reef health.