Climate scientist Judith Curry believes that if climate scientists more readily would acknowledge the inherent uncertainties of the issue, skeptics would more likely accept the established central tenets of global warming

In een gastbijdrage op mijn blog speculeerde Rob Lemeire afgelopen vrijdag over het mogelijke effect van een Brexit op het klimaatbeleid, ofwel een Clexit.

Het blijkt namelijk dat de Brexiteers over het algemeen bepaald niet tot de politiek correcte groenbevlogenen behoren. Uit een analyse van de opvattingen van de kiezers uit beide kampen bleek:

By large majorities, voters who saw multiculturalism, feminism, the Green movement, globalisation and immigration as forces for good voted to remain in the EU; those who saw them as a force for ill voted by even larger majorities to leave.

Bron hier.

Onder de titel, ‘Brexit and climate change’ schonk ook de onvermoeibare Judith Curry aandacht aan een Clexit-scenario op basis van een brede inventarisatie van hetgeen daarover in de media is verschenen. Ik pik er een aantal krenten uit.

Ha ha.  Well, the politics of climate change policies seems to have influenced the voters.  There seems to be a substantial confluence of British climate change skeptics and people that voted ‘yes’ for Brexit.  Climate policies are one of the topics of concern regarding EU overreach. It turns out that a large percentage of the British population are skeptical of human caused climate change. … Funny that AGW skepticism was sold as an American aberration. It seems to be alive and well in Britain and elsewhere in Europe.

There are numerous dimensions to the potential impacts of Brexit on the Paris Agreement:

• Guardian: Leave victory risks delaying EU ratification of the Paris deal, leaving the door open for Obama’s successor to unpick the pact

More importantly, for the rest of the world, the Leave campaign’s victory provides a fillip globally for groups opposed to climate action, and if it causes delays to the Paris accord coming into effect, it could provide an opening for aspiring right-wing leaders – including Donald Trump – to try to unpick the pact.

The Brexit vote will be used as a rallying cry for an agenda that frequently includes climate scepticism among its tenets, alongside curbs to immigration and to government regulation.

Many climate sceptics around the world will have been encouraged by the Brexit vote, as there is so much overlap between the two camps, and environmental and carbon goals under the EU were a key target of the Leave campaigners.

• Politico: 5 ways Brexit will transform energy and climate

One oft-voiced concern is that the departure of Britain — which has been a climate leader within the bloc — could weaken the E.U.’s climate ambitions, on top of the general chaos expected to ensue as Brexit now unfolds (which will surely distract all parties from climate policy).

“The UK has generally argued for stronger action on emissions within the EU, so its absence will make it more difficult to counter the arguments of those Member States, such as Poland, which want slower and weaker cuts in emissions,” said Bob Ward, policy and communications director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

• WaPo: Why an E.U. without Britain is bad news for the fight against climate change 

“We don’t know how long the exit process is going to take, and secondly, whether that would end up with the UK still in the single market, like Norway, and therefore still within the burden sharing agreement, or completely outside the EU as a separate state, and therefore, would submit its own [climate pledge],” Jordan said. “And in fact, it could take years until that’s clear.

“UK will not now take part in the sharing out of the EU 2030 target contained in the EU [pledge], and Brexit will likely make it more difficult for the EU to achieve that target as UK has been cutting its emissions by more than the EU average,” Ward said by email.

• Climate Change News: Six questions for UK and EU low carbon ambitions as British voters reject continued membership of world’s largest single market

In the short term, it could benefit global efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions growth, former UK climate chief Chris Huhne told Climate Home. That’s because the market volatility set loose by Brexit is likely to lead to a UK recession, and potentially a global slowdown. In the 2008-09 economic crisis emissions fell 1.4%.

Longer term the EU will lose its second-largest economy and a key driver of the region’s low carbon policymaking, the founding member of the 13-strong Green Growth Group of EU nations. Despite a vocal quorum of climate sceptics the UK has consistently argued for Europe to target 50% greenhouse gas emission cuts by 2030, as opposed to the current 40%.

Historically, the UK has adopted a European leadership role with France and Germany on arguing for tougher emission cuts, rolling out a regional carbon market and formulating energy policy.

London is a centre for global green finance and services, UK hi-tech companies are pioneering smart, energy efficient devices, electric vehicles are a major part of the car industry’s long-term strategy.

For one, don’t expect the EU to ratchet up its 40% cuts target with the UK no longer a player.

Secondly, expect eastern states like Poland to play merry hell over the effort sharing deal with a Brussels leadership they are already in conflict with.

Britain has been a strong proponent in the EU for aggressive emissions reductions.  There has been a positive feedback effect in the context of the EU, whereby Britain influenced the EU and the EU reinforced the UK commitment politically within the UK.  There seems to be a large segment of the UK population that does not support drastic emissions reductions, and if the new PM (possibly Boris Johnson or Nigel Farage) does not support these policies, then we might see a change. But it may be that Britain’s overall response to climate change may not change.

However, in deciding how to accomplish emissions reductions, Britain will no longer be constrained by EU preferences. Dare we hope that nonsensical policies such as importing wood chips from the U.S. to be burned at Drax may be dropped in favor of nuclear power?

En zo behandelt zij nog een aantal commentaren. Voorts gaat zij in op de vraag of het UK nog wel in staat zal zijn om talentvolle klimaatwetenschappers vanuit het buitenland aan te trekken, waarbij een aantal klimaatalarmisten aan het woord komt, die daarover somber zijn gestemd.

Zij besluit haar ‘posting’ met enkele persoonlijke overpeinzingen.

Well Brexit is quite astonishing really in terms of the democratic process. It is exhilarating, really, regardless of which side you are on.  …  Whether Brexit turns out to be good or bad (and for exactly what and for whom), within Britain and the EU,  remains to be seen. It will surely shake up Brussels and the UNFCCC regarding climate change, which is a good thing.

With regards to climate science, scientists from elite institutions are overwhelmingly against Brexit, and the concerns that have been raised are important ones. But the political rise of skepticism about AGW in Europe could be long-term advantageous to getting climate science out of its current myopic focus on human-caused climate change.

The other demographic that was adamantly against Brexit was younger voters, who highly value the seamless ability to live and work in any of the 27 countries of the EU. Surely this will influence the decisions of many students as to whether to attend a British University and the decisions of many young faculty members as to whether to seek employment at British Universities. The potential dynamics for a ‘brain drain’ are there; it will be a challenge to Britain to ensure that such a drain does not materialize.

The economic impacts of Brexit are the big wild card, of particular relevance here are the political viability of the environmental agenda and support for science. …

Aldus Judith Curry.

Lees verder hier.

Britse klimatologen hebben een actieve èn dubieuze (Climategate!) rol gespeeld bij de verspreiding van het klimaatalarmisme. Het zou m.i. dus goed zijn indien talentvolle wetenschappers zich met nuttiger zaken zouden bezighouden.

Voor mijn eerdere bijdragen over klimaat en aanverwante zaken zie hier, hier, hier, hier en hier.