Author: Fact Not Fiction Media

A worthwhile 20 minutes on nuclear

Michael Shellenberger makes a sensible case for nuclear power. A worthwhile 20 minutes with a lot of interesting statistics especially in comparing nuke power to renewables in terms of life cycle costs.

Some interesting stats are as follows:

Germany’s carbon emissions have been flat since 2009, despite an investment of $580 billion by 2025 in a renewables-heavy electrical grid, a 50 percent rise in electricity cost.

“Consider California. Between 2011–17 the cost of solar panels declined about 75 percent, and yet our electricity prices rose five times more than they did in the rest of the U.S.”

Building a solar farm is a lot like building any other kind of farm. You have to clear the whole area of wildlife…Thanks to its energy density, nuclear plants require far less land than renewables. Even in sunny California, a solar farm requires 450 times more land to produce the same amount of energy as a nuclear plant.”

“Solar panels require 17 times more materials in the form of cement, glass, concrete, and steel than do nuclear plants, and create over 200 times more waste…We tend to think of solar panels as clean, but the truth is that there is no plan anywhere to deal with solar panels at the end of their 20 to 25-year lifespan…Experts fear solar panels will be shipped, along with other forms of electronic waste, to be disassembled—or, more often, smashed with hammers—by poor communities in Africa and Asia, whose residents will be exposed to the dust from toxic heavy metals including lead, cadmium, and chromium.

Bernie can whip up crowds too

17,000 showed up to Bernie Sanders’ latest rally in Washington. We shouldn’t underestimate the scope of his support despite not being able to cost healthcare for all, free education or canceling student loan debt. Some pundits put it at $60 trillion.

While we still think Trump will win 2020, the Democrats need to carefully weigh their hatred of the president vs their dislike for Sanders stealing the Democratic nomination as an independent. The DNC is no stranger to dismissing democratic process in the primaries.

Evil corporations doing the right thing

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Coles supermarket has confessed, much like Woolworths last year, that it underpaid some staff members. Yet this has more to do with classifications in pay, rather than anything sinister on Coles’ part. Yet watch the media spin it into a nasty takedown of corporate greed. Politicians, including AG Christian Porter, were making capital out of it – pathetic.

In real terms, it is $20m over 6 years across 1% of its staff. The company made $31bn in revenue and $1.3bn EBIT in the last fiscal year. The unpaid salary amounts to 1.54% of EBIT or 0.06% of revenue. Or over 6 years, around 0.25% and 0.01% respectively. Things may be tough in retail, but we don’t believe for a second that Coles was acting unethically or intentionally.

Declaring a Climate Emergency without many scientists

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On Feb 14-15, the likes of Dr Keryn Phelps, John Hewson, Peter Garrett, Michael Mann, Adam Bandt, Jane Caro and others assembled in Melbourne to pontificate at the National Climate Emergency (NCE) Summit where they slammed the table and demanded we hold politicians accountable under a new democracy!

While we vigorously defend their right to free speech, we question the glaring lack of scientists that wanted to participate as speakers at this event. This was the breakdown of the 100 speakers.

NCE

That is right, there were as many high school student activists as people who could profess to be legitimate professional climate scientists. There were even more lawyers present. In fact, media (the majority who have worked or work at the ABC), activist/lobby groups and politicians made up 67% of the total. Therefore one can work out quickly enough that there were precious little scientific-based facts behind the agenda.

At the very least, several poets were invited to speak to add to diversity. Many academics who spoke weren’t actually from climate fields.

Here are a few speaker profiles in no particular order:

Recently elected Darebin councillor, Trent McCarthy, had written in his profile, “Trent is the proud parent of two primary school student strikers.

Another panellist, Costa Georgiadis was referred to as “a TV personality and landscape architect. Since 2012, he has hosted the ABC’s Gardening Australia

Bernie Hobbs is an award-winning science writer and presenter at the ABC.”

“[Paddy] Manning has more than a decade of experience as a journalist for the ABC, Crikey, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Australian Financial Review and The Australian.”

“Natasha Mitchell is a multi-award winning science journalist, presenter, and podcaster with the ABC.”

“Leigh Ewbank is the current Act on Climate coordinator at Friends of the Earth.”

Precious little diversity of thought among the 100 speakers.

Yet we have seen this type of shallow content activism before. Remember when we reported that 268 Australian academics cosigned an open letter supporting the Extinction Rebellion.

While the content was predictable, the statistics were anything but convincing. We noted,

Perhaps the most hilarious signatory to the letter was Matthew Flinders of Flinders University. Unless the university website has another Matthew Flinders listed as an active member, our esteemed explorer seems to have navigated his way back to life…simply adding to the total lack of credibility of the cabal of 268 academics who believe they have some sort of intellectual superiority over us. If one ever wanted proof of our judiciary leaning hard left, 12% of the people that signed this document were in law-related fields.

“…Many of the woke academia come from fields such as stand up comedy, poetry, arts/education, sports management, archaeology, LatAm studies, sex, health and society, social services, veterinary biology, culture, gender, racism…are you catching the drift of those supporting XR? Even Monash University’s Campus Operations Manager and Telephony Application Administrator signed it! Wonderful individuals but should we hold our educators to such high standards when anyone’s opinion will do?”

“…Eerily, over 90% of the signatories do not appear to be renowned experts in teaching science, much less climate science. Which means, why weren’t the scientists in these universities willing to commit their names to a cause that fits their ideology? Who needs them when one faculty member from Monash University deals with ‘Imaginative Education‘?…”

“61% of the signatories were from universities situated in the Democratic People’s Republic of Victoria. Within that, 65 (more than all those that signed from NSW universities = 63) of those 164 names from Victoria were from RMIT, the school where the lecturer offered bonus points for sending selfies from the school climate strike. Precious little free thought one imagines.  Monash had 44. So two universities in Melbourne made up 109 of the 268 Add La Trobe University and half of the signatories are from Victoria. Premier Dan Andrews must be proud.

Tinonee Pym, a research assistant at the Swinburne University of Technology in NSW helped pen,

C’mon, no one wants a dick pic’: exploring the cultural framings of the ‘dick pic’ in contemporary online publics

Undoubtedly this research has only certified climate science credentials at Swinburne University to convince sceptics of the validity of XR.”

Once again, the force of numbers means absolutely nothing. We are often told by climate activists that we should listen to the climate scientists. We would most gladly do so provided events like this managed to herd a much larger representation of such expertise, including those with dissenting opinions. As it stands when only four scientists attend, including those with very contentious records, there is little hope for sensible debate.

As it stands, the NCE Summit was nothing more than a confirmation bias gathering of activists trying to swing policy to suit their crony capitalist desires.

The NCE forum only wanted to indoctrinate, not educate. Is it any wonder FNF Media was blocked from XR Australia. Identical mentality.

Net zero heroes won’t save us

What is it with net zero emissions by 2050? It is so simple for politicians to blurt out these words as near as makes no difference none of them will be in office to take responsibility for any outcome.

As for Australia, PM Scott Morrison has a point that it should be technology led. However let’s think logically about the “cost” which he says Aussies have right to know about.

First of all, no one has worked out how to decarbonize steel. Carbon fibre is derived from petrochemicals. So that is two vital structural materials taken out. Aluminum is hideously power intensive to produce despite recyclability. Scrub the 170,000 jobs in mining. Manufacturing? Another 840,000 roles no longer needed.

No steel or fossil-fuel derived plastics will make it complex for tradesmen to be able to construct let alone repair homes or buildings. Glass also requires a lot of energy. As does gyprock. Bin 1.1mn jobs in construction.

What of a net zero carbon emissions world in other areas?

Let’s start with tourism:

$60bn industry. 8.5million visitors came to Australia in 2018. 1.4m from China. 789k from the US, 733k from the UK and 470k from Japan.

These numbers don’t include Aussies that want to take holidays abroad. 9.5m trips were made by Australians to overseas destinations.

Still to get to net zero, we need to ban air travel. With that, might as well stop Badgery’s Creek airport construction immediately. No point building such extra capacity if we won’t have much time to use it. Wasteful spending.

Tourism? Throw another 1m jobs into jeopardy.

Hotels? Bring your own towels and sleeping bag.

Coffee? Bring your own mug only.

Retail? No carry bags and no goods that are derived from fossil fuels can be sold. Gone. Of the 1.3m jobs in retail, most no longer needed.

Restaurants? There will be no gas to cook your meal. Bring your own utensils.

We need to ban long distance trucks and the haulage business. Forget those living in remote areas who rely on road trains. Forget your out of season fruit and veg at Woolies. Another 600,000 jobs.

Cars? Get rid of them too. The batteries in EVs create 150,000km of CO2-e in the production process before leaving the factory. For safety, cars will be required to use materials to meet crash standards. Even if autonomous driving succeeds, it won’t be 100% foolproof. Better off banning cars outright to meet 2050.

Synthetic rubber in the tyres and door seals made from fossil fuels. Out. Brake and electric motor materials – all made from fossil fuels. Scratch. Air bag with pyrotechnics? Fossil fuel derived. Dashboard, seats, seat belts or iPad centre console? Petrochemicals.

The power grid to charge them? All fossil fuel derived – from wind farms to solar panels and the equipment to make the charging stations. If there are miscalculations on power needs after Dec 31st, 2049 then too bad. Rationing will be required.

No TVs or smart phones or computers. All fossil fuel derived.

No hospital equipment or life saving medicines. All made from petrochemical and fossil fuel derivatives.

In short, in order to decarbonise to net zero by 2050 we’d need to spew carbon emissions like there was no tomorrow to meet the crushing penalties that would result.

Why are governments even entertaining such ridiculous stupidity?

We only want to see Mad Max in the cinema, not in real life.

Here is a picture of HK International Airport check in last night for a bit of context on how a virus can slam an economy before we bother with net emissions

Vale Holden

Car maker Holden has been executed. The American parent said the brand dies at the end of 2020. Not a big deal for GM – La Salle, McLaughlin, Oakland, Oldsmobile, Opel, Pontiac, Hummer, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall no longer exist under her garage.

PM Scott Morrison can complain all he wants about the $2bn in subsidies given to keep the car maker afloat but it was on the nose since the maker closed manufacturing in October 2017. Market share all but evaporated. It was a matter of time.

GM never got Australia. Selling a front wheel drive 4-cylinder Commodore to replace the working class aspirational V8 was a mistake. No matter how brilliant the replacement was, it didn’t resonate. As a result these cars flooded the rent-a-car market and had among the worst resale out there.

There is no surprise that Holden was terminated. Aussie sales were the worst in decades. It was a regular Top 3 maker but in its dying days slumped to 12th. Market share shrunk to 3.1%, the lowest in history. Commodore sales in November 2019 crashed 56%.

Interestingly, the desirability of the last of the HSV models based on the Commodore will jump further with scarcity value. Just like this example. $300,000. Who would have thought?

Mt Panorama won’t be the same.

Extinction Rebellion Australia commits fratricide

FNF Media commented on XR Australia’s (XRA) FB post which praised Russell Crowe‘s video on climate change and how we all needed to do our bit. We merely suggested that Hollywood lead by example rather than give them a free pass by highlighting the cause. We suggested Crowe force players and coaching staff of the South Sydney Rabbitohs (where he is an owner) to commute to training by bicycle, play only during the day and attend away games by public transport if he was to live up to his words.

Initially, the early XRA gatekeepers made a polite response to say Australia was the highest emitter of GHG/capita globally and 10x the global average. We pointed out Australia was 13th and only 3.5x the global average and suggested XRA correct their error. They did not. We thanked them at the very least for refusing to be feral.

Sadly the XRA bodies that assumed the night watchmen role decided to delete the discourse of FNF Media. Why?

Simple.

Many of the XRA supporters threw praofanity laden comments to FNF Media’s data driven responses using sources that they themselves often view as gospel (eg IPCC, World Bank, IMF, USGS, IEA etc) with ad hominem attack after another. All points were refuted with data and polite discourse but rebutted with personal attacks. We expected this.

Sadly. XRA deemed the amount of triggered followers and bile spewed without a single data point being offered to refute FNF Media that they deleted us.

We wear it as a badge of honour because there was nothing but “follow the science” type angles and put downs. Unfortunately if any comments are made which refutes the narrative, they play the man not the ball.

Unfortunately, one person that called FNF Media out for questioning a response to another XRA follower eventually criticized XRA for censorship. They have since left the cause. Their response is at the top.

Once again, when the argument doesn’t stack up, deleting dissenting voices is all that is left. Sadly they abandoned their own followers in the process.

Typical.