Tuesday, April 05, 2022

Faulty domestic violence messaging: study

Focusing on attitudes to women misses other factors leading to abusive behaviour. The abusers tend to be men who are violent offenders generally. So precise targeting is pointless. Violent behaviour in general needs to be targeted. And the only way of doing that is by heavy penalties -- mostly in the form of long and onerous prison sentences. About a third of ex-prisoners do learn from it and cease to offend

New research published in international journal Homicide Studies suggests there could be little difference between men who murder their partners and other killers.

But policymakers continue to place emphasis on behaviours and circumstances that “may not be as important as we think”, the study found.

Men who kill their female partners have long believed to be fuelled by gender factors like “power and control” and “entitlement”.

However, the report’s co-author Dr Samara McPhedran said socio-economic factors, upbringing and education played just as great a role — and were too often overlooked.

“Attitudes [towards women] are important; but have we reached a point in policymaking that we are so focused on addressing men’s attitudes to women that we are overlooking all these other factors that occur alongside that?” Dr McPhedran said.

The study — designed to get to the nub of Australia’s shocking domestic violence epidemic which sees a woman slain by her partner each week — used data from the Australian Homicide Project that interviewed more than 250 men convicted of murder or manslaughter.

She said traumatic experiences in childhood, including abuse and neglect, a lack of education, socio-economic differences were just as prominent.

“All these factors are very well known to contribute to homicide and are present with intimate partner homicides as other forms of homicide,” she said.

“When you look at the dialogue that’s been unfolding around intimate partner homicide, it has become very much focused around things like coercive control. And that’s important because, yes, coercive control is a part of this, but not to the exclusion of everything else. We were really surprised with the results that we got. And particularly what surprised us was just how similar in attitudes the different groups of men were.”

Dr McPhedran said the study findings should prompt an urgent education rethink.

“Have we focused too heavily on one set of responses at the expense of others? Because what our work is really suggesting is there is no one theory of men killing people that’s going to fit everyone. There’s no theory of men’s violence against women that’s superior,” she said.

Dr McPhedran said there was a danger of Australians dying who could have been saved.

“We want to maximise our chance of reducing violence or preventing homicide against women,” Dr McPhedran said.

Chief executive of Full Stop Australia Hayley Foster said there were a lot of generalised offenders who were responsible for “high repeat” incidents.


There Is No Evidence Bleaching Threatens Great Barrier Reef

The Washington Post (WaPo) published an article today discussing the fact that Australia’s Great Barrier Reef (GBR) recently suffered its “sixth massive bleaching event,” blaming it on climate change. The evidence that long-term climate change, as opposed to a short-term fluctuation in ocean temperatures, is to blame for the present bleaching event is limited. Also, the WaPo presents no evidence of a tipping point. Indeed, based on past bleaching events, reports of the extent of the current bleaching are likely overstated. What is clear from the history of the GBR is that most of the coral that suffered bleaching are likely to recover.

In a WaPo article titled, “Climate warming has dealt yet another blow to the Great Barrier Reef,” Darryl Fears writes:

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is experiencing its sixth massive bleaching event as climate change has warmed the ocean, raising concerns over whether one of the world’s natural wonders is nearing a tipping point.

Reef managers confirmed Friday that aerial surveys detected catastrophic bleaching on 60 percent of the reef’s corals....

Unusually high ocean temperatures, up to 7 degrees Fahrenheit above normal, probably triggered the event. It is the sixth massive bleaching the reef has suffered in two decades, and the fourth since 2016. Back-to-back bleaching events in 2016 and 2017 affected two-thirds of the world’s largest reef.

Data does not support WaPo’s claims about the extent of previous bleaching events in the GBR. Although some scientists widely quoted in corporate media reports on the 2016 bleaching event claimed 93 percent of the GBR suffered bleaching in 2016, subsequent research from the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) showed just 22 percent of the reef had bleached with AIMS estimating more than 75 percent the bleached coral would recover. As discussed in Climate Realism, AIMS’ survey determined there was “minimal impact” from the 2016 bleaching with hard coral across 85 percent of the reefs expanding year over year.

Indeed, rather than recent bleaching events indicating corals might be approaching a tipping point for the collapse of the reef, AIMS’ survey showed, as late as August 2021 corals were at a historic high for numbers. AIMS reported “Hard coral cover increased across all three regions (Northern, Central, and Southern) and most reefs surveyed had moderate or high coral cover. Overall, 59 out of 127 reefs had moderate (>10% – 30%) hard coral cover and 36 reefs had high (>30% – 50%) hard coral cover.”

Citing AIMS’ data, in late-July the United Nations World Heritage Committee (WHR) rejected calls to list the GBR as “in danger.” The WHR’s decision came despite last minute pleas by climate alarmists to ignore AIMS’ report and list the GBR as being threatened with extinction due to climate change.

The present bleaching may be due to unusual temperature conditions in the oceans surrounding Australia. However, climate change can’t have been responsible for the six bleaching events that occurred over the past 20 years because there has been no long-term temperature increase in the seas around Australia.

As discussed by meteorologist Anthony Watts, reporting on recent research, Bill Johnston, Ph.D., a former New South Wales Department of Natural Resources research scientist, Johnston compared temperature data from 1871 to recent data derived from 27 Australian Institute of Marine Science data loggers in a reef area where recent bleaching events occurred.

Johnson concludes:

No difference was found between temperatures measured at Port Stephens and Cape Sidmouth by astronomers from Melbourne and Sydney using bucket samples in November and December 1871 and data sampled at those times from 27 AIMS datasets spanning from Thursday Island, in the north to Boult Reef in the south. Alarming claims that the East Australian Current has warmed due to global warming are therefore without foundation.

If there has been no long-term average warming of the seas containing the GBR, warming can’t be threatening the GBR’s survival.

Indeed it would be surprising if warmer waters did pose a threat to the GBR or other coral reefs around the world. Coral have existed continuously for the past 40 million years, adapting to often abrupt and significant temperature shifts repeatedly. Historically, coral have thrived during periods when ocean temperatures were significantly warmer than they are today.

Most coral require warm water, not cold water, to thrive and survive. They are unable to live and colonize outside of tropical or subtropical waters. As a result, as the Earth has modestly warmed, coral are extending their range toward the poles while still thriving at and near the equator.

Coral reefs are natural marvels, providing unique habitat for abundant sea life and contributing the health of the oceans. No coral reef is more justifiably famous than the GBR. Fortunately, as recoveries from previous bleaching events show, contrary to the demise of the GBR implied by WaPo as a result of the recent bleaching which it blames, without providing a scintilla of evidence, on human caused global warming, the majority of the corals bleached this year is likely to recover.

Fears should stop promoting climate fear and put the present bleaching in the wider context of history and science. Corals have proved adaptable and resilient across the millions of years of their existence. There is no reason for believing they can’t adapt to modest warming, should it continue.


Australia set to be a double winner in renewables shift

Australia will be an “enormous winner” from the global transition to renewables because it has both old and new energy resources, according to PwC Australia chief executive Tom Seymour.

He said that despite reports of $50bn of local investment heading to clean energy projects in Britain, Australia could expect strong capital flows from Japan and South Korea to develop new mines around minerals at the core of new energy products.

“We are probably the richest, the most regionally endowed nation in lithium, cobalt, rare earths, palladium, copper and nickel, all of which are somewhere between 200 and 1000 per cent under-supplied,” he said. “We’ll do well on the old world energy in the transition stage and we will be catalysts for the new world … a massive amount of capital is going to come from Korea and Japan to build our critical minerals industry.”

Mr Seymour said the transition to renewable energy would take longer than people expected, not because of a lack of will but because of the logistics involved in supply chain inputs, including labour skills for the “huge engineering feat”.

“It’s just going to be harder and take longer to rebuild electricity grids to create the renewable capacity,” he said. “It will absolutely happen but it is going to be harder … and that means traditional energy sources like gas and coal are going to go to very high prices for a very long time because no one’s invested in new gas and coal in relative terms for the last four or five years. Those old world ­commodities are going to be ­really highly priced for longer than people think.”


The despised coal is still the lowest cost power source

We are continuously fed the narrative that wind and solar are cheap and reliable when the opposite is true. Their capital costs are enormous and ultimately come out of the pockets of ordinary citizens

There is a transition underway in our electricity sector.

Fundamentally, the people financing, regulating, designing, and operating these systems, are driving a public relations campaign promoting renewables as cheap and effective. Activism disguised as leadership is bringing about significant changes in the electricity system, changes that are having far-reaching consequences on the Australian economy and security.

Until recently, economists, engineers, and CEOs could be relied on to objectively consider all sides of a problem, making fact-based decisions for the best outcomes for their clients and shareholders (and themselves). But the much-vaunted ‘transition’ in the electricity sector has seen the share price of our two ASX-listed electricity retailers (AGL and Origin) shrivel.

In February 2021, AGL announced the write-down of AUD $1.9 billion of wind power contracts. AGL paid too much for long-term fixed-price contracts with wind developers and Origin had a similar write-down for the same reasons in July 2021. Combined, these two companies supply over 50 per cent of the Australian retail electricity market.

Further afield, Germany’s wind and solar gamble is failing too.

As Michael Schellenberger notes, Germany spent US$36 billion on wind and solar in the five years prior to 2019 while emissions flat-lined and prices skyrocketed. The Ukraine situation has exposed the weakness of Germany’s energy security and in the UK, Matt Ridley exposes a similar illogical political love affair with wind turbines.

Domestically, government bureaucrats are amplifying the problem.

Queensland’s state-owned CleanCo rewarded its CEO with $674,000 last year for overseeing a multi-million dollar loss. Queensland has to date guaranteed the income of fifteen wind and solar projects (2,266 MW). That is almost one-third of the state’s coal-fired power capacity contributing less than 10 per cent of the state’s electricity supply. Meanwhile, Queensland’s Stanwell operating over 3,300 MW of coal-fired generators returned a net profit after tax of $375 million (a plant breakdown caused a net loss of $266 million for CS Energy, the other state-owned generation company).

Origin CEO Frank Calabria recently expressed his intention to close Australia’s largest coal-fired generator, Eraring in New South Wales, and replace its 2,800 MW output with gas ‘operating over days and weeks’, batteries, hydro, and virtual power plants. That doesn’t sound cheap to me. Ex-Macquarie Bank chief Nicholas Moore (YouTube 28min), cited Lazard as evidence that wind and solar are cheaper than gas; he did not explain why subsidies remain critical to development of wind and solar projects.

Across Australia, every energy minister is promoting emissions reductions targets, wind and solar targets, or both, all underwritten by taxpayers. Politicians, desperate to bolster woke credentials and shore up falling polls, are eagerly handing over taxpayer dollars to so-called ‘green’ industries on top of the myriad of subsidies still on offer for wind and solar projects.

This casual disregard for our critical infrastructure has been abetted by the bureaucrats appointed to regulate and coordinate the electricity sector.

The previous CEO of the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), Audrey Zibelman, said AEMO staff prioritise decarbonisation over keeping the lights on (podcast 24min). The current CEO, Daniel Westerman, fresh from ramping up wind and solar farms in America, is pushing for the Australian grid to be made ready to accept 100 per cent wind and solar by 2025. The Chair of the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC), Anna Collyer, describes her organisation as ‘striving for Net Zero’.

The heads of our mostly foreign-owned electricity network companies encourage the push for more wind and solar, as this requires massive upgrades to the grid. Since they receive a regulated return, more transmission means more guaranteed income, even as network productivity declines year on year. Engineer’s Australia, the peak body overseeing Australian engineering competencies and registrations, had Al Gore as keynote speaker at the Climate Smart Engineering Conference in November 2021. CEO, Bronwyn Evans, is signatory to a IPCC capitulation statement.

Despite the contrived support for all things green, opposition is mounting around Australia to new transmission lines and land-hungry renewables. Even the ABC can’t always ignore the negative impacts and growing ire of those affected by encroaching solar farms, wind farms, and transmission lines. Amongst the ABC’s activist headlines, the occasional piece on environmental destruction makes an unusual appearance alongside quotes from experts opining on the low cost of wind and solar.

The 1,000 MW MacIntyre Wind Farm in Queensland will need 180 towers for $2 billion ($2,000/MW). The 750 MW Kogan Ck coal-fired power station was built in 2007 for $1.2 billion ($1,600/MW). Kogan Ck coal mine is not linked to a port and is therefore not subject to export coal price changes, making its fuel costs amongst the lowest in the country. According to AEMO data, Kogan Ck offers its output in three bands: 300 MW at $36/MWh, 150 MW at $49/MWh, and the rest at $56/MWh.

The low cost of coal-fired generation is confirmed elsewhere. AGL’s FY21 annual report states total fuel costs for coal at $18.3/MWh and running costs at $11.5/MWh for a total of $29.8/MWh – comparable to Kogan Ck. Meanwhile the same annual report shows green compliance costs at $26.4/MWh and renewable Power Purchasing Agreement (PPA) costs at $52.9/MWh. Origin’s FY21 annual report shows renewable PPA costs much higher than coal at $95.3/MWh, and fuel costs (coal and gas) at $47.9/MWh. South Australia, the unashamed leader in shutting down fossil-fuelled electricity, has retail electricity rates 50 per cent higher than Queensland and New South Wales.

Our electricity system is in unchartered territory with wind and solar growth tenfold the global average.

We are continuously fed the narrative that wind and solar are cheap and reliable when the opposite is true.

Wind and solar are forced into the market despite the market desperately signalling oversupply with negative prices. Our industry and political leaders subscribe to every green woke agenda, neatly dovetailing with a lost and confused media, while our critical electricity system requires daily intervention to keep the lights on.

Wishful thinking implies a kind of innocent naivety. Does anybody think this is innocent?


Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM -- daily)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com/ (TONGUE-TIED)


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