‘This beautifully written book tells the climate story with an unflinching and deeply personal honesty.’ Clive Hamilton. Age feature writer Jo Chandler is a seasoned worrier, but not a catastrophist. She has worried about the looming spectre of climate change for years, while always clinging to the modicum of comfort that it was something gradual, even stoppable.

Lately, the most sober and serious of scientists are increasingly preoccupied with climate ‘tipping points’—sinister, swift, and inescapable, plunging the planet into something unrecognisable. So many graphs, all tracking emphatically in the wrong direction. Together they conjure a picture of all of humanity crowded aboard a leaky boat, on a darkening sea, under a thunderous sky. In a attempt to understand what is happening to our planet, Chandler travels to climate science frontiers Antarctica, the Great Barrier Reef, the Wimmera and North Queensland’s tropical rainforests, meeting the scientists and discovering the realities embedded in the science.

Written in the vein of Susan Orlean’s The Orchid Thief, Feeling the Heatis part detective story and part quest. Chandler puts together some of the pieces in the climate puzzle, meets many passionate and eccentric characters, discovers what makes them tick, and learns a thing or two about herself.Jo Chandler is a Walkley Award-winning senior writer with The Age. She has particular interests in reporting on climate change, human rights and development, indigenous issues, social affairs, and medical and science news. She has two teenage children.

The Bolt Report: ‘generally dull’.

Andrew Bolt ... same topics, without the impactWith the debut of the Bolt report, even I thought it would be better than it was! All the music and excitement at the start of the show! Wow – I was expecting fireworks with our very own Glen Beck equivalent rising up out of the smoke and hype!   Unfortunately, all the bang and whiz was not matched by pizazz or content.  It was if he was reading straight from his pitiful column in the Sun Herald.  If I were Gina Rinehart, I would be asking for my money back!  It seems that almost everybody was disappointed with the content.  I guess Channel 10 will continue on its downward slide.

What was Andrew thinking? Here is an amusing review of the ‘Bolt Report’ by Tim Dick,  Sydney Morning Herald’s media editor.  His review is insightful and entertaining.  Surely Boltie’s show should be called ‘Nuts and Bolts’ (as a good friend suggested the other day).  Actually, that title would be misleading given that practical mechanics is a lot more exciting than the drivel we saw on Sunday!

The Bolt Report: all Bolt, no report

Tim Dick, Sydney Morning Herald media editor, May 9 2011

Read the original article here

Not having seen every attempt at television current affairs in Australia, it is impossible to judge The Bolt Report the worst. But surely it comes close.

Continue reading

Jeremy Grantham must-read, “Time to Wake Up: Days of Abundant Resources and Falling Prices Are Over Forever”


I have been reading Paul Gilding’s excellent book, “The Great Disruption”.  In it he talks about a major switching of market activity and strategy driven by sudden and reduced access to resources.  What do the market experts think?  A friend sent me this relevant article written by Jeremy Grantham, a British investor who is Co-founder and Chief Investment Strategist of Grantham Mayo Van Otterloo (GMO), a Boston-based asset management firm. GMO is one of the largest managers of such funds and holds around US $107 billion in assets under management as of December 2010. According to Wikipedia, Grantham is regarded as a highly knowledgeable investor in various stock, bond, and commodity markets, and is particularly noted for his prediction of various bubbles.

Here is what Jeremy has to say about the impending shift.

UPDATE: Mass mortality of corals on West Australian reefs.

UPDATE-2:  Looks like the Ningaloo reefs are likely to escape major mortality given they have remained just outside the main hot spot.  These reefs are likely to lose about 10% of their corals. Things still remain serious in this analysis for the Houtman Abrolhos Islands (well inside the hotspot – see map and Tyler’s comments).  We will have to wait for the results of the surveys to be completed and analysed.

UPDATE:   Tyler Christensen of NOAA‘s Coral Reef Watch commented:

“A small correction… the “hottest” color code for that DHW image really means “16 or more”. The DHWs off Western Australia got much higher than just 16. Our virtual station at the Houtman Abrolhos Islands got to a staggering 30.7 degree-weeks! Ningaloo maxed out at a comparatively cool 9.05 degree-weeks.”

Posted by Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, May 6 2011

On 12 April, we put up a report from Dr Tyrone Ridgway on West Australia’s reefs that were bleaching for the first time as result of high temperatures.  Unfortunately, the accumulated heat stress has got worse and appears to be hitting all-time records, with the latest degree-heating-week data from NOAA (May 5, 2011) reaching 16 along the West Australian coast as shown.

This amount of heat stress is not only driving record coral bleaching (as has already been seen in the region), but will also cause the mass mortality of corals and other organisms.

NOTE – to understand the novelty of the thermal stress seen across West Australian coral reefs, have a look at the NOAA ‘Hotspots’ time series data.  It looks like the problem relates to the exceptional warming that began around October-November last year. Continue reading

Australia prepares to swallow Monckton yet again

GRAHAM READFEARN from the ABC Drum Unleashed; May 6 2011

Graham Readfearn

Denial of the seriousness of human-caused climate change or the reliability of the science comes in many guises but none are more eccentric, more rhetorical or more consistently wrong than that manifested in the human form of Lord Christopher Monckton.

English hereditary peer Lord Monckton, the Third Viscount of Brenchley, is one of the world’s most charismatic and omnipresent climate change deniers, despite having no science qualifications.

He’s coming to Australia. Again. Continue reading