Tous les articles par Alain Préat

Full-time professor at the Free University of Brussels, Belgium • Department of Earth Sciences and Environment Res. Grp. - Biogeochemistry & Modeling of the Earth System Sedimentology & Basin Analysis • Alumnus, Collège des Alumni, Académie Royale de Sciences, des Lettres et des Beaux Arts de Belgique (mars 2013). • Prof. Invited, Université de Mons-Hainaut (2010-present-day) • Prof. Coordinator and invited to the Royal Academy of Sciences of Belgium (Belgian College) (2009- present day) • Prof. partim to the DEA (third cycle) led by the University of Lille (9 universities from 1999 to 2004) - Prof. partim at the University of Paris-Sud/Orsay, European-Socrates Agreement (1995-1998) • Prof. partim at the University of Louvain, Convention ULB-UCL (1993-2000) • Since 2015 : Member of Comité éditorial de la Revue Géologie de la France • Since 2014 : Regular author of texts for ‘la Revue Science et Pseudosciences’ • Many field works (several weeks to 2 months) (Meso- and Paleozoic carbonates, Paleo- to Neoproterozoic carbonates) in Europe, USA (Nevada), Papouasia (Holocene), North Africa (Algeria, Morrocco, Tunisia), West Africa (Gabon, DRC, Congo-Brazzaville, South Africa, Angola), Iraq... Recently : field works (3 to 5 weeks) Congo- Brazzaville 2012, 2015, 2016 (carbonate Neoproterozoic). Degree in geological sciences at the Free University of Brussels (ULB) in 1974, I went to Algeria for two years teaching mining geology at the University of Constantine. Back in Belgium I worked for two years as an expert for the EEC (European Commission), first on the prospecting of Pb and Zn in carbonate environments, then the uranium exploration in Belgium. Then Assistant at ULB, Department of Geology I got the degree of Doctor of Sciences (Geology) in 1985. My thesis, devoted to the study of the Devonian carbonate sedimentology of northern France and southern Belgium, comprised a significant portion of field work whose interpretation and synthesis conducted to the establishment of model of carbonate platforms and ramps with reefal constructions. I then worked for Petrofina SA and shared a little more than two years in Angola as Director of the Research Laboratory of this oil company. The lab included 22 people (micropaleontology, sedimentology, petrophysics). My main activity was to interpret facies reservoirs from drillings in the Cretaceous, sometimes in the Tertiary. I carried out many studies for oil companies operating in this country. I returned to the ULB in 1988 as First Assistant and was appointed Professor in 1990. I carried out various missions for mining companies in Belgium and oil companies abroad and continued research, particularly through projects of the Scientific Research National Funds (FNRS). My research still concerns sedimentology, geochemistry and diagenesis of carbonate rocks which leads me to travel many countries in Europe or outside Europe, North Africa, Papua New Guinea and the USA, to conduct field missions. Since the late 90's, I expanded my field of research in addressing the problem of mass extinctions of organisms from the Upper Devonian series across Euramerica (from North America to Poland) and I also specialized in microbiological and geochemical analyses of ancient carbonate series developing a sustained collaboration with biologists of my university. We are at the origin of a paleoecological model based on the presence of iron-bacterial microfossils, which led me to travel many countries in Europe and North Africa. This model accounts for the red pigmentation of many marble and ornamental stones used in the world. This research also has implications on the emergence of Life from the earliest stages of formation of Earth, as well as in the field of exobiology or extraterrestrial life ... More recently I invested in the study from the Precambrian series of Gabon and Congo. These works with colleagues from BRGM (Orléans) are as much about the academic side (consequences of the appearance of oxygen in the Paleoproterozoic and study of Neoproterozoic glaciations) that the potential applications in reservoir rocks and source rocks of oil (in collaboration with oil companies). Finally I recently established a close collaboration with the Royal Institute of Natural Sciences of Belgium to study the susceptibility magnetic signal from various European Paleozoic series. All these works allowed me to gain a thorough understanding of carbonate rocks (petrology, micropaleontology, geobiology, geochemistry, sequence stratigraphy, diagenesis) as well in Precambrian (2.2 Ga and 0.6 Ga), Paleozoic (from Silurian to Carboniferous) and Mesozoic (Jurassic and Cretaceous) rocks. Recently (2010) I have established a collaboration with Iraqi Kurdistan as part of a government program to boost scientific research in this country. My research led me to publish about 180 papers in international and national journals and presented more than 170 conference papers. I am a holder of eight courses at the ULB (5 mandatory and 3 optional), excursions and field stages, I taught at the third cycle in several French universities and led or co-managed a score of 20 Doctoral (PhD) and Post-doctoral theses and has been the promotor of more than 50 Masters theses.

Judith Curry: Legacy of Climategate – 10 years later

by Charles the moderator, November 15, 2019 in WUWT

As we approach the tenth anniversary of Climategate and are deluged with whitewashing and revisionist history, we will post a few articles, but cannot counter everything.

As far as we are concerned the tenth anniversary is on November 17th, the day I personally received the files.

The following post by Dr. Curry is one of the best historical retrospectives I’ve seen on the topic.~ctm

Reposted from Dr. Judith Curry’s Climate Etc.

Legacy of Climategate – 10 years later

Posted on November 12, 2019 by curryja | 121 Comments

by Judith Curry

My reflections on Climategate 10 years later, and also reflections on my reflections of 5 years ago.

Last week, an email from Rob Bradley reminded me of my previous blog post The legacy of Climategate: 5 years later. That post was the last in a sequence of posts at Climate Etc. since 2010 on Climategate; for the entire group of posts, see  [link]  Rereading these was quite a blast from the past.

While I still mention Climategate in interviews, the general reaction I get is ‘yawn . . . old hat . . . so 2010 . . . nothingburger . . . the scientists were all exonerated . . . the science has proven to be robust.’ I hadn’t even thought of a ’10 years later’ post until Rob Bradley’s email.

Now I see that, at least in the UK, the 10 year anniversary looks to be rather a big deal. Already we are seeing some analyses published in the mainstream media:

Two starkly different perspectives. While I personally think Delingpole’s article is a superb analysis, it would not surprise me if the ‘establishment’ media in the UK is looking to rewrite history and cement the ‘exoneration,’ especially with this forthcoming one hour BBC special Climategate: Science of a Scandal, set to air November 14.

According to Cliscep  (not sure what the source of this information is), McKitrick and McIntyre were both interviewed for the BBC special, but apparently McKitrick was cut completely. Lets see how they edit McIntyre.


Also:  It’s Officially the Tenth Anniversary of Climategate – and they’ve learned nothing

The Corals That Don’t Exist

by Donna Laframboise, November 18, 2019 in BigPictureNews

In December 2015 Peter Ridd, then a physics professor at Australia’s James Cook University, contacted a journalist. Researchers affiliated with his own institution, he said, were misleading the public about the Great Barrier Reef.

As an example, Ridd cited photos taken approximately 100 years apart near Bowen, a community of 10,000 on the Australian coast in the vicinity of the Reef. These photos tell a stark story: previously vibrant coral expanses are now desolate wastelands.

Ridd complained that this pair of photos was spreading across the Internet. They were appearing in official reports and news stories. Even though the 1995 paper in which they’d first been published had cautioned against viewing them as evidence the Reef was in “broad scale decline,” that’s exactly how they were being used.

Ridd supplied the journalist with recent photos from the same area. These showed healthy, abundant coral.

Climategate And Post-Normal Science

by Michael Kile, November 16, 2019 in WUWT

It was an important moment in the Climategate saga. Yet few remember Jerome Ravetz’s damning critique of the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) posted on WUWT in early 2010.

Ravetz is an eminent American philosopher of science and an Associate Fellow at Oxford University’s James Martin Institute for Science and Civilisation. (Personal web page here; Oxford pages here and here.) For much of his career he has been challenging claims of scientific objectivity and developing a concept of “post-normal science” (PNS).

We can understand the root cause of Climategate as a case of scientists constrained to attempt to do normal science in a post-normal situation. But climate change had never been a really ‘normal’ science, because the policy implications were always present and strong, even overwhelming.  Indeed, if we look at the definition of ‘post-normal science’, we see how well it fits:  facts uncertain, values in dispute, stakes high, and decisions urgent.  In needing to treat Planet Earth like a textbook exercise, the climate scientists were forced to break the rules of scientific etiquette and ethics, and to play scientific power-politics in a way that inevitably became corrupt.  The combination of non-critical ‘normal science’ with anti-critical ‘evangelical science’ was lethal. (J Ravetz, WUWT, 9 February, 2010)

Some environmentalists had been using Ravetz’s PNS concept to drive a looser – more subjective – approach to decision-making under uncertainty, urging greater use of the so-called “precautionary principle”, a “principle” of pseudoscience, not genuine science.

The late Stephen Schneider (1945-2010), then Stanford University professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies and editor of the journal Climatic Change, was one of them. He was also an IPCC lead author. Schneider advised other lead authors how to deal with uncertainty in a climate context in the IPCC’s Third and Fourth Assessment Reports.


by Cap Allon, November 16, 2019 in Electroverse

The GFS and it’s ensembles are forecasting a dramatic reduction in westerly Zonal winds over the North Pole during the latter half of November and throughout December.

Conversely, October and the first half of November brought very strong Zonal winds at 60N, which went hand-in-hand with below-average temperatures at the Pole — Zonal winds in the stratosphere strengthen as the temperature over the North Pole drops:


Following the onset of an SSW event, temperatures at the pole will often climb sharply, and the high altitude winds will have reversed to flow in an eastward direction instead of their usual westward one.

These eastward winds progress down through the atmosphere and weaken the jet stream, often resulting in easterly winds near the surface which usually bring with them a dramatic drop in temperatures across Europe and North America.

Check out what happened to temps over the South Pole in September as an SSW took hold there:



by Cap Allon, November 12, 2019 in Electroverse

Northern Africa caught the edges of Europe’s polar blast over the weekend and into Monday. Heavy snowfall affected several wilayas (provinces) in Algeria yesterday, as reported by

The key national road 33, linking Bouira to Tizi-Ouzou, was closed during Monday morning rush-hour near the town of El Asnam. As was the RN30, the alternative route connecting Bouira to Tizi-Ouzou.

Heavy early-season drifts also shut national road 15 near Iferhounene, in the wilaya of Tizi-Ouzou.

Same case for the RN109 linking Sidi Bel Abbès and El-Bayadh.

And the road 172, located between Djbel Chélia and Lyabous (Khenchela) was also shut.

N. Hemisphere In Hypothermia! Widespread Early Winter…”Historic Snowstorms”…”Record Books Rewritten”

by P. Gosselin, November 13, 2019 in NoTricksZone

Winter has not even officially arrived, but already large areas of the northern hemisphere are seeing “historic snowfalls”, frigid temperatures and even avalanche alarms.

The Northern Hemisphere has certainly caught a major cold, one certainly not caused by the human CO2 virus. Instead of fever, parts of the northern hemisphere are in hypothermia!

Alarmists, media desperate

Though global warming scientists will never admit it, they are really surprised and stunned. All that is left for them is to make up some cockamamie warming-causes-cold explanations and hope there are enough severely stupid among the media and masses to believe it.

“United States — Rewrite the Record Books”

Beginning in North America, “sub-zero temperatures are now blasting” millions of Americans following “the three historic snowstorms which buried parts of the U.S. last month,” reports weather site here.

Electroverse writes that “lows throughout the week will be more like January temperatures” with readings below zero for many U.S. states and “temps down into the teens are even forecast as far south as Texas.” Yesterday, 97 records toppled.

“It’s a big deal,” Electroverse writes in its headline.

Solar activity suspected

Réflexion sur la pétition des 11 000 ‘scientifiques’

by Paul Berth, 15 novembre 2019 in ScienceClimatEnergie

La “pétition des 11 000” a été publiée dans le journal BioScience le 5 novembre 2019. Dans un style ultra-alarmiste, Ripple et ses collaborateurs nous apprennent que le CO2 et les gaz à effet de serre (GES) sont à la base de tous nos problèmes. Rien de nouveau ici : rappelons que le même auteur a publié un article très semblable il y a deux ans, en novembre 2017, et ce dans la même revue (BioScience). Il avait cependant fait mieux il y a deux ans puisqu’il avait récolté 15 000 signatures. Au total, 4 000 scientifiques se sont donc désistés cette année… Avant de lire le présent article, commencez par l’analyse de 2017 (cliquez ici). Comme vous le verrez, les conclusions tirées peuvent être appliquées au nouvel article de 2019.

La solution proposée par Ripple et ses “suiveurs” est simple : il faut arrêter immédiatement d’extraire du pétrole, du gaz et du charbon et laisser tout cela dans le sous-sol.Comme charité bien ordonnée commence par soi-même vous pourrez déjà vérifier, en consultant la liste des pétitionnaires, que les 234 scientifiques belges signataires de la pétition vont travailler le matin à vélo et se chauffent aux éoliennes. Dans le présent article nous allons analyser le nouveau texte publié dans BioScience.

1. Le journal BioScience

Also : An Analysis Of The 11,000 ‘Micky Mouse’ Climate Scientists

170 Years of Earth Surface Temperature Data Show No Evidence of Significant Warming

by T. Bjorklund, October 16, 2019 in WUWT

Key Points

1. From 1850 to the present, the noise-corrected, average warming of the surface of the earth is less than 0.07 degrees C per decade.

2. The rate of warming of the surface of the earth does not correlate with the rate of increase of fossil fuel emissions of CO2 into the atmosphere.

3. Recent increases in surface temperatures reflect 40 years of increasing intensities of the El Nino Southern Oscillation climate pattern.


This study investigates the relationships between surface temperatures from 1850 to the present and reported long-range temperature predictions of global warming. A crucial component of this analysis is the calculation of an estimate of the warming curve of the surface of the earth. The calculation removes errors in temperature measurements and fluctuations due to short-duration weather events from the recorded data. The results show the average rate of warming of the surface of earth for the past 170 years is less than 0.07 degrees C per decade. The rate of warming of the surface of the earth does not correlate with the rate of increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. The perceived threat of excessive future global temperatures may stem from misinterpretation of 40 years of increasing intensities of the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) climate pattern in the eastern Pacific Ocean. ENSO activity culminated in 2016 with the highest surface temperature anomaly ever recorded. The rate of warming of the earth’s surface has dropped 41 percent since 2006.

Propagation of Error and the Reliability of Global Air Temperature Projections

by Patrick Franck, September 6, 2019 in Frontierin EarthScience

The reliability of general circulation climate model (GCM) global air temperature projections is evaluated for the first time, by way of propagation of model calibration error. An extensive series of demonstrations show that GCM air temperature projections are just linear extrapolations of fractional greenhouse gas (GHG) forcing. Linear projections are subject to linear propagation of error. A directly relevant GCM calibration metric is the annual average ±12.1% error in global annual average cloud fraction produced within CMIP5 climate models. This error is strongly pair-wise correlated across models, implying a source in deficient theory. The resulting long-wave cloud forcing (LWCF) error introduces an annual average ±4 Wm–2uncertainty into the simulated tropospheric thermal energy flux. This annual ±4 Wm–2 simulation uncertainty is ±114 × larger than the annual average ∼0.035 Wm–2 change in tropospheric thermal energy flux produced by increasing GHG forcing since 1979. Tropospheric thermal energy flux is the determinant of global air temperature. Uncertainty in simulated tropospheric thermal energy flux imposes uncertainty on projected air temperature. Propagation of LWCF thermal energy flux error through the historically relevant 1988 projections of GISS Model II scenarios A, B, and C, the IPCC SRES scenarios CCC, B1, A1B, and A2, and the RCP scenarios of the 2013 IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, uncovers a ±15 C uncertainty in air temperature at the end of a centennial-scale projection. Analogously large but previously unrecognized uncertainties must therefore exist in all the past and present air temperature projections and hindcasts of even advanced climate models. The unavoidable conclusion is that an anthropogenic air temperature signal cannot have been, nor presently can be, evidenced in climate observables.

Scientists: Climate Records ‘Correlate Well’ With Solar Modulation…A Grand Solar Minimum Expected By 2030

by K. Richard, November 11, 2019 in NoTricksZone

International and NASA solar scientists find their Total Solar Irradiance reconstruction extending to 1700 can “correlate well” with Earth’s global temperature records, including a positive net TSI trend during 1986-2008. A new Grand Solar Minimum is expected to commence during the 2030s.

Surface climate records that have been uncorrupted by coastal (ocean-air)/urbanization biases suggest there has been a long-term oscillation in temperature since 1900, with peaks during the 1920s-1940s and again during recent decades (Lansner and Pepke Pedersen, 2018).

Paris Won’t Cut Emissions–Bob Watson

by P. Homewood, November 10, 2019 in NotaLotofPeople KnowThat

It’s apparently taken ex IPCC Chair Bob Watson four years to work out that the Paris Agreement did nothing to reduce emissions.

It’s a pity he did not read this blog, because I was saying the same thing when it was signed!

Steve Milloy reports:


The truth behind the Paris Agreement climate pledges

Almost 75% of 184 Paris Agreement pledges were judged insufficient to slow climate change; Only 28 European Union nations and 7 others will reduce emissions by at least 40% by 2030


  • Only 28 European Union nations & 7 others will reduce emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030
  • China & India, top emitters, will reduce emissions intensity, but their emissions will increase
  • U.S., second top emitter, has reversed key national policies to combat climate change
  • Almost 70 percent of the pledges rely on funding from wealthy nations for their implementation

Almost three-quarters of the 184 climate pledges made under the Paris Agreement aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions are inadequate to slow climate change, and some of the world’s largest emitters will continue to increase emissions, according to a panel of world-class climate scientists. It is these increasing greenhouse emissions that are driving climate change.

The Truth Behind the Climate Pledges, a new report published by the Universal Ecological Fund, examines in great detail the 184 voluntary pledges under the Paris Agreement, the first collective global effort to address climate change.

The Fossil Fuel Dilemma

by David L. Debertin, November 9, 2019 in WUWT

California again easily could become one of the top three fossil fuel producing states in the nation, but the largely liberal state has made drilling for fossil fuels within the state very difficult if not impossible. So the drillers have wisely looked elsewhere for locations that pose less of a political burden. North Dakota and its leaders welcomed the drillers. The result is tax dollars flowing into the state treasury from a variety of oil-related taxes levied not only on the drillers, but on individuals receiving mineral royalty income. In the past dozen years or so this has meant that taxpayers outside the oil producing counties have seen state-level taxes drop and the state can pursue projects that benefit the residents in a host of different ways simply by using funds that would not have been available had the drilling not occurred.

The new revenue coming into New Mexico as a result of recent oil drilling on the New Mexico side of the Permian basin via fracked oil wells is a more recent phenomena, only about 3-years old. The dilemma is that New Mexico has long been left-leaning politically whereas North Dakota has been a right-leaning state. Left-leaning politicians when they hear about new state revenue from an unexpected source generally think about new government program benefiting certain favored groups (maybe the younger voters who tend to favor left-leaning politicians) rather than lowering other taxes (sales, income) that would benefit a broader base of residents both young and old. Hence, we have the New Mexico idea of offering free college tuition to the state’s residents using oil-related tax revenue.

Predictions are Hard, Especially About the Future

by Les Johnson, November 10, 2019 in WUWT

Gasoline vs Electric Vehicle Future Fuel Costs


1. There will be no Idiot Swan events. There will be no outright bans on drilling or frac’ing. Tax policy will not provide heavy subsidies for renewable power or batteries, nor will tax policy unduly burden oil and gas production.
2. The difference in purchase price for an EV and ICE vehicle will be almost immaterial to the economics of vehicle choice. This is based on the assumption that TAAS will push vehicle lifetime mileage closer to 1,000,000 miles, at which point the dominant economic driver will be fuel cost.

Vehicle Fuel Cost:

Based on today’s cost of gasoline and electricity (my latest bill) the cost of each at the wheel is:

• Gasoline: $0.3415/kWh ($2.50/gallon, 20% efficiency)
• Electricity: $0.2667/kWh ($0.16/kWh, 60% efficiency)

(efficiencies from your link

This places gasoline at a 30% price disadvantage relative to electricity (not the more than 2:1 price disadvantage in your link

So if fuel cost for an electric vehicle is lower and the initial purchase price differential is assumed to not be a factor and TAAS effectively eliminates the charging management and range issues that affect EV acceptance, then why do I believe the EV’s will not take over the world anytime soon?

Simple. I have reason to believe that the cost of electricity will rise both because of rising demand and the move to renewable power generation. I also have reason to believe that the availability of electricity will be a constraining factor; we just can’t build it fast enough.

The Future Cost of Electricity:

Scientists and Their Petitions

by Donna  Laframboise, November 11, 2019 in BigPictureNews

Many scientists are now activists. They’re just another flavour of politician. Armed with a particular worldview, they’re willing to do questionable things to advance that worldview – including dragging the good name of science through the mud.

As I’ve explained recently, this isn’t a new phenomenon. It was well underway by the 1970s. Those of us who are aware of this history aren’t likely to get overly excited by the latest 11,000 scientists say it’s time to panic headlines (see here, here, here, and here).

The typical journalist, on the other hand, is a babe in the woods, totally lacking in historical perspective. Every iteration of this very old song gets treated like something fresh and new.

2019’s statement/petition is published in BioScience, the journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. Down in the ‘Conclusions’ section we read the following. The bolding has been added by me:

As the Alliance of World Scientists, we stand ready to assist decision-makers in a just transition to a sustainable and equitable future…such transformative change, with social and economic justice for all, promises far greater human well-being…prospects will be greatest if decision-makers and all of humanity promptly respond to this warning and declaration of a climate emergency…

Nope, these people don’t have a messiah complex. If all of humanity drops whatever it’s doing and follows their advice, they won’t just save us from the climate emergency. They promise to toss in universal justice and equity, as well.

New Paper: Ocean Temperature Changes Are Uneven And Uncertain

by DR.  B. Peiser, Nov. 8, 2019 in ClimateChangeDispatch

A new paper from the Global Warming Policy Foundation looks at how scientists monitor changes in ocean temperatures and finds a story of huge uncertainties and surprising findings.

For example, while warming might be expected to be fairly uniform, measurements suggest that it is regionalized, with parts of the South Pacific, in particular, warming more than elsewhere.

As the report’s author, Dr. David Whitehouse, says, it is hard to draw firm conclusions about what is happening in the seas:

“The oceans can absorb far more heat than the atmosphere, so temperatures changes are extremely small and therefore hard to measure reliably.”

“The energy that would raise the temperature of the atmosphere by 4 degrees C would only raise the ocean temperature by thousands of a degree, barely detectable.”

“Measuring changes in the ocean heat content are at the limits of our current capability and are made with significant uncertainties and unknowns.”

A recent claim that warming of the oceans was accelerating had to be withdrawn after errors were found in its uncertainty estimates by an independent scientist.

Cold Water? The Oceans and Climate Change can be downloaded here (PDF)