Tous les articles par Alain Préat

Full-time professor at the Free University of Brussels, Belgium apreat@gmail.com apreat@ulb.ac.be • 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). http://www.academieroyale.be/cgi?usr=2a8crwkksq&lg=fr&pag=858&rec=0&frm=0&par=aybabtu&id=4471&flux=8365323 • 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 http://geolfrance.brgm.fr • Since 2014 : Regular author of texts for ‘la Revue Science et Pseudosciences’ http://www.pseudo-sciences.org/ • 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.

US Has Produced More Oil Than Saudi Arabia For 4 Straight Years

by Andrew Follett, July 7, 2017


Saudi Arabia has lagged the U.S. in oil production for the last four years, according to federal data compiled by University of Michigan economist Mark Perry.

Perry created a chart Saturday showing just how far behind Saudi oil production has trailed U.S. production. Rising U.S. production combined with OPEC policies drove crude oil prices down to new lows. Monday, a barrel of oil costs $46.26, while the same barrel would have sold for $109.04 in June 2014.

CO2 Contributed Only 0.12°C To Global Temps Since 1850

by Kenneth Richard, July 17, 2017


A Swiss scientist known to have published hundreds of scientific papers in physics journals has authored a new scholarly paper that casts serious doubts on the effectiveness of CO2 as a greenhouse gas influencing Earth’s temperatures.

This paper has been added to a growing volume of peer-reviewed scientific papers that seriously question estimates of a high climate sensitivity to significant increases in CO2 concentrations.

Flourishing ocean drives the end-Permian marine mass extinction

by Martin Schobben et al., July 2014,


The Permian geologic period that ended the Paleozoic era climaxed around 252 million years ago with a sweeping global mass extinction event in which 90 to 95 percent of marine life became extinct. It would take 30 million years for planetary biodiversity to recover. Understanding the contributing factors of the end-Permian mass extinction is critical to understanding and perhaps mitigating the current anthropogenic climate change.

Engineers have dispelled a 100-year-old scientific law used to describe how fluid flows through rocks

by Imperial College London, July 17, 2017, in ScienceDaily


The discovery by researchers from Imperial could lead to a range of improvements including advances in Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS). This is where industrial emissions will be captured by CCS technology, before reaching the atmosphere, and safely stored in rock deep underground.

See also here

On the Validity of NOAA, NASA and Hadley CRU Global Average Surface Temperature Data

by Dr. J. Wallace III et al., June 2017


Abridged research Report, 30 pages, .pdf

The conclusive findings of this research are that the three GAST data sets are not a valid representation of reality. In fact, the magnitude of their historical data adjustments, that removed their cyclical temperature patterns, are totally inconsistent with published and credible U.S. and other temperature data. Thus, it is impossible to conclude from the three published GAST data sets that recent years have been the warmest ever –despite current claims of record setting warming.

See also here

Satellite battle: Five reasons UAH is different (better) to the RSS global temperature estimates

by JoNova, July 10, 2017


There are two main groups that use essentially the same NASA and NOAA satellites to estimate global temperatures. In the last year, they’ve both made adjustments, one down, and one up, getting further apart in their estimates. In ClimateWorld this is a big deal. Believers are excited that now a satellite set agrees a bit better with the maligned “hot” surface thermometers. But UAH still agrees more with millions of weather balloons. The debate continues. Here’s my short synopsis of the  Roy Spencer (and John Christy) from the “Comments on the new RSS lower tropospheric temperature set.” (If something is wrong here, blame me).

Alarm about alarmism

by Judith Curry, July 15, 2017 in ClimateEtc.


In understanding climate change risk, and deciding on the ‘if’ and ‘what’ of ‘action’,  we need to acknowledge that we don’t know how the climate of the 21st century will play out (Deep Uncertainty, folks).  Four possibilities:

  1. It is possible that human-caused climate change will be swamped by much larger natural climate variability.

  2. It is possible/plausible  that the sensitivity of the climate is on the low end of the IPCC envelope (1.0-1.5C), with a slow creep of warming superimposed on much larger natural variability.

  3. It is possible/plausible that the IPCC projections are actually correct (right for the wrong reasons; too much wrong with the climate models for much credibility, IMO).

  4. It is possible that AGW and natural variability could conspire to cause catastrophic outcomes

Arctic Sea Ice Extent

by DMI (Danish Meterological Institute), July 2017


The graphic shows the mean September sea ice extent on the northern hemisphere. The plotted values correspond approximately to the sea ice area that ‘survived’ the summer melt in the respective years

The graph illustrates a decreasing trend in sea ice extent since 1978, with annual variations of occationally more than 1 million square kilometres. The 2012 sea ice minimum extented set a new minimum record.

See also here

The 2400-year Bray cycle

by Javier, July 11, 2017 in ClimatEtc.


In our attempt to better understand the nature of our planet’s abrupt climate changes I have already reviewed the glacial-interglacial cycle, and the Dansgaard-Oeschger cycle’s that take place during glacial periods. I now start reviewing the millennial climate cycles that abruptly impact the slowly changing Holocene climate. The most significant and regular one is the ~ 2400-year Bray cycle.

Focusing on worst case climate futures doesn’t work. It shouldn’t work

by Larry Kummer, July 15, 2017 in WUWT


After 30 years of failure to gain support of the US public for massive public policy measures to fight climate change, climate activists now double down on the tactics that have failed them for so long. This post explains why it will not work. Nor should it. Instead they should trust the IPCC and science, showing both the good and bad news.

The ‘hiatus’ in global warming is the hottest topic in climate science right now, whether alarmists like it or not

by David Whitehouse, June 22, 2017 in Financial Post


Few things illustrate the poor state of the communication of climate science better than the reaction to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt’s comments about global temperatures in the past 20 years. It was made in written comments to the Senate following his confirmation hearing. He wrote, “over the past two decades satellite data indicates there has been a leveling off of warming.” Has the temperature increase of the Earth’s surface and lower atmosphere “stalled” in the past 20 years or so? Does this change our view of climate change?

Abrupt summer sea ice decline has not affected polar bear numbers as predicted

by  Dr. Susan J. Crockford, July 14, 2017 in ClimateChangeDispatch


Yes, Arctic sea ice has declined since satellite records began in 1979 but polar bears have adjusted well to this change, especially to the abrupt decline to low summer sea ice levels that have been the norm since 2007. Some polar bear subpopulations have indeed spent more time on land in summer than in previous decades but this had little negative impact on health or survival and while polar bear attacks on humans appear to have increased in recent years (Wilder et al. 2017), the reasons for this are not clear: reduced summer sea ice is almost certainly not the causal factor (see previous post here).