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Messages - crandles

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Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 11, 2018, 07:19:58 PM »

Tesla: The Q3 Accounts Receivable Mystery  By John Engle.
Tesla reported blowout earnings in Q3.

Further analysis reveals many of the methods used to engineer the quarter cannot be repeated.

One mystery involving the balance sheet, and thus not directly impactful on the income statement was an unusual spike in Accounts Receivable.

The 10-Q did little to answer the mystery, but we may now have an idea of what caused it and why.

On Saturday, Nov. 3, a Tesla spokesman told The Times that a large receivable from one of its partner banks for loans issued to US customers is the 10% entity noted in the 10-Q, and almost all of this receivable was cleared in the first few days of Q4.

This can be viewed as a simple explanation. US customers buy car under some finance deal so the bank/finance company pays the money to Tesla. The accounts receivables do look high and by more than a week ends sales. This could be seen as supporting hypothesis of some large fleet sales being put through just before the quarter end.

If this is the explanation, why are sales and accounts receivables being recognised? It isn't because the money is received so the logical conclusion is it is because the cars have been delivered. If the cars are delivered then there is nothing unsustainable here.

So do these critics go with this simple explanation?

Oh no:

In essence, if Tesla’s statement is true, then the 10% institution must be a lease partner to which Tesla is providing residual value guarantees on leased vehicles. That would mean that the Accounts Receivable spike is the result of Tesla receiving returned Model S and Model X leased vehicles. The implications.....

We find this explanation rather compelling ... First, it explains the mystery of the Accounts Receivable spike. ...   It also fits with the short-sighted behavior on the part of Tesla management .... it also deals with the issue of how finished goods value could rise even as inventory dropped.

Wait what? At end of lease, Tesla receives the used car back and receives a large chunk of money just after the year end. What sort of nonsense is this? It is either nonsense or Tesla have pulled some remarkable financial engineering which has resulted in remarkably cautious recognition of profit. And they find it "rather compelling" huh???

This seems much much more like they reached conclusion that Tesla was padding the accounts in some unsustainable way then go looking for evidence, find high accounts receivable numbers then spin some story to explain it hoping people won't think through the implications of their lease return vehicles explanation.

If you are wondering if there is anything in finished goods or inventories that need explaining, the numbers are

Code: [Select]
Item                  Sept 18   June 18  Dec 17
Raw materials   $ 997,476 $ 972,739 $ 821,396
Work in process   358,113    350,443    243,181
Finished goods  1,657,339 1,721,860 1,013,909
Service parts       301,199   279,601    185,051
Total              $ 3,314,127 3,324,643 2,263,537

Given Q3 production numbers of  80,000 vehicles and deliveries of 83,500 vehicles, I might have expected mix to change to reduce average cost and for finished good to have reduced a little more and for other categories to have increased a bit more than they have. But is this to such an extent that you need to start inferring some weird lease return accounting effects? I think not.

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: November 09, 2018, 04:45:20 PM »
That image is fig 2a (showing PIG) of the following paywalled reference, and the attached image is fig 2b for Thwaites.  As I am too cheap to purchase this paper, the images come from sidd, but these images make it clear that the red line shows the local grounding line and the yellow line shows some short of time averaged (from 2009 to 2014) position for the ice face of the associated ice shelves (note the dotted yellow line across the active calving front for the Pine Island Ice Shelf, PIIS, indicating that this ice face was actively shifting during the 2009 to 2014 period).

Just enter paper name into

and you get

New bathymetry of the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) of West Antarctica with
the a) Pine Island, b) Thwaites/Haynes and c) Smith/Kohler glaciers. Grounding line positions
are red (year 1996), ice front positions (year 2008) are yellow, AUV tracks are green, and seismic
data are black crosses. Bed elevation is color coded from brown/yellow and green (above sea
level) to light blue and dark blue (-1,400 m), with light contours every 100 m and thick contours
every 400 m. Profiles A-A’ to F-F’ in orange with dots every 10 km are shown in Figure 3.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (November)
« on: November 09, 2018, 02:39:22 PM »
Latest update on the ASIB: PIOMAS November 2018

I'm still unable to login in order to comment over there.

The last successful comment was on October 24th.

Seems like I am signed in with Typepad because I can reach edit profile page. However Neven' blog pages still say "Sign in with ...." rather than having post comment boxes. Not sure if that is the same for everyone.

Policy and solutions / Re: The Keystone Pipeline
« on: November 09, 2018, 02:18:42 PM »
Thread has gone rather quiet and out of date, but seems I may as well resurrect it:

A United States judge has blocked the construction of a controversial oil pipeline from Canada to the US.

The judge in the state of Montana said the Trump administration had "discarded" facts when it approved the Keystone XL Pipeline in 2017.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (November)
« on: November 08, 2018, 10:09:41 PM »
Yes warning re not https and looks same.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 03, 2018, 05:43:22 PM »
Tesla’s contracts with suppliers specifies payment terms.  When they were starting out, as a small company, suppliers would agree to maybe 30 days, maximum.  Now that they are an established company, Tesla regularly gets terms of 60 to 90 days.

But they can save millions by decreasing the time between when a car is manufactured and when it is delivered/paid for. 

Did you mean to switch from suppliers and account payables to customers and accounts receivables at this point? It doesn't seem clear why you are making this switch.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 03, 2018, 05:25:23 PM »
It is old news:

In response to the Wall Street Journal report [dated 26th October 2018], Tesla said in a statement:

Earlier this year, Tesla received a voluntary request for documents from the Department of Justice about its public guidance for the Model 3 ramp and we were cooperative in responding to it. We have not received a subpoena, a request for testimony, or any other formal process, and there have been no additional document requests about this from the Department of Justice for months.

then 2 Nov article
Tesla Inc said on Friday [2 Nov] it had received a subpoena from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

(My bold both cases.)

That seems like a fairly major development between 26th Oct and 2 Nov to me, unless there is some evidence that one of these statements is wrong.

Seems to me WSJ knew what it was talking about when they reported on 26th October that
Tesla Faces Deepening Criminal Probe Over Whether It Misstated Production Figures

even if at that stage Tesla didn't know that. The accusation levelled at WSJ that it was old news looks wrong or is at the very least misguided.

Another Edit:
The 2nd Nov article can be interpreted to be confused/confusing about what was said Fri Nov 2 and what was in quarterly filing released Wed 24th Oct.

10-Q was released Fri 2nd Nov and p51 of that is quoted by Sigmetnow

Yet another Edit:
FWIW The 2nd quarter 10-Q in the same position just says
Other Matters
From time to time, we have received requests for information from regulators and governmental authorities, such as the National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration, the National Transportation Safety Board and the Securities and Exchange Commission. We are also subject to various other legal
proceedings and claims that arise from the normal course of business activities. If an unfavorable ruling were to occur, there exists the possibility of a material
adverse impact on our business, results of operations, prospects, cash flows, financial position and brand.
which therefore fails to mention the subpoena and this suggests the subpoena is since Aug 6 2018 when 2nd Quarter 10-Q filed.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 03, 2018, 01:37:27 PM »
ps: I do analysis, I don't do FUD.
Sorry, didn't mean to imply you were doing FUD.

>All big companies do.

Yes well, big companies do tend to have more of a reputation for extending the terms. But 30 days from end of month is really a minimum for any regular supplier of any size and then the orders tend to be arranged for most to come at the beginning of the month and then it doesn't take much of a delay to get to 60 days. This may be depressingly normal but that's more of a fact of life than something to single out as a reason to not like Tesla's results.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 03, 2018, 01:05:08 AM »
Had a quick look at the Tesla Qu3 SEC filing.

The bit I didn't like was growth in current liabilities especially Accounts payable, only partially offset by growth in accounts receivable.
Accounts Payable 3.6 billion iron men
The more I look at it, the less I like it.

Yes, I would like to see total staff costs to exclude them and calculate creditor days. But lets compare what we have got to Ford:

Tesla Qtr ending 30 Sept 18
Accounts payable 3,596,984 ($1000)
COGS plus operating exp for qtr 6,407,656
So 0.561 of quarters expenses

Ford Qtr ending 30 Sept 18
Accounts payable 23,273 ($1,000,000)
COGS plus operating exp for qtr 34,450
So 0.675 of quarters expenses

Tesla Qtr ending 30 June 18
Accounts payable 3,030,493 ($1000)
COGS plus operating exp for qtr 4,623,623
So 0.655 of quarters expenses ($1000)

Ford Qtr ending 30 Sept 18
Accounts payable 22,743 ($1,000,000)
COGS plus operating exp for qtr 35,972
So 0.632 of quarters expenses

So they were marginally slower paying creditors at the end of June but they are now significantly faster.

Are Staff costs (and any other costs included which do not give rise to credit terms) as a percentage of COGS + operating costs likely to be so different between Tesla and Ford that it significantly changes the view given by this analysis? I doubt it.

Why do you dislike it so much? AFAICS, it yet again shows the FUD of not paying suppliers suggested by Tesla critics to be nonsense. 

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: November 03, 2018, 12:23:44 AM »
U.S. securities regulator subpoenas Tesla on Model 3 production estimates

Seems like that wasn't an old story dragged up.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Glossary ... for newbies and others
« on: November 02, 2018, 07:48:41 PM »
Since someone said they didn't know what GISS was:

GISS / GISTEMP Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Does a global temperature record including LOTI (Land Ocean Temperature Index)

LOTI Land Ocean Temperature Index (Combined Land-Surface Air and Sea-Surface Water Temperature Anomalies) see GISS / GISTEMP

GHCN-v3 NASA's global meteorological station Temperature Index data (version 3)

ERSST-v5 NASA's Sea Surface Temperature Index data (version 5)

NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) division does a global temperature record.

NCDC National Climatic Data Center. Division of NOAA that does a global temperature record.

HadCRU UK Met office Hadley Centre Climate Research Unit. Does a global temperature record, HadCRU4.

Science / Re: Ocean temperatures
« on: November 01, 2018, 08:24:49 PM »
Paper is at

For ocean heat content implications, Fig 1 seems the relevant graph:

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: November 01, 2018, 05:29:55 PM »

This is largely background information to get readers oriented, and to reduce idle speculations.

Thank you.

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: November 01, 2018, 02:34:53 PM »
I am not at all an expert but my reaction to

"the current stabilization mechanism (besides Evans Knoll) is the point of contact with the SW tributary glacier, which has just been lost or seriously weakened."

is to wonder what happens. I imagine that both PIG and SW tributary advance more rapidly until Evans Knoll and SW tributary again provide stabilisation pressures. This advancement further thins the glaciers so that might make PIG more prone to calving in response to pressure from SW tributary. OTOH the Arndt paper suggests the rift that recently calved was induced by (intermittent) back pressure from the grounding point that is no longer playing a part. It is not at all clear to me whether Evans Knoll will play that same role nor, if it does, whether more or less effectively.

That is no more than wild speculation by me. Anyway, any comments or further or different speculation welcome.

Science / Re: Ocean temperatures
« on: November 01, 2018, 01:13:23 PM »
A higher ΔOHC will also affect the equilibrium climate sensitivity,
recently estimated at between +1.5 K and +4.5 K if CO2 is doubled1.
This estimated range reflects a decrease in the lower bound from 2 K to
1.5 K owing to downward revision of the aerosol cooling effect (in the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment
Report, as compared with the Fourth Assessment Report)1,24, but
relied on a low ΔOHC value (0.80 × 1022 J yr−1
 for 1993–2010).
An upward revision of the ocean heat gain by +0.5 × 1022 J yr−1 (to
1.30 × 1022 J yr−1  from 0.80 × 1022 J yr−1 ) would push up the lower
bound of the equilibrium climate sensitivity from 1.5 K back to 2.0 K
(stronger warming expected for given emissions), thereby reducing
maximum allowable cumulative CO2 emissions by 25% to stay within
the 2 °C global warming target (see Methods).

I wondered if this meant that it mainly affected the lower bound rather than all points on the pdf being pushed up.

James Annan is quick to respond:

I think they are just focusing on the lower bound as it provides a strong constraint on what we'd need to do to stay under 1.5 or 2C. Their revision will affect the upper bound too. Longer post coming!

and that longer post is at

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: November 01, 2018, 01:08:51 PM »
Maybe not on topic on this thread. But here, anyway:
Oceans 'soaking up more heat than estimated'

Researchers say that the world has seriously underestimated the amount of heat soaked up by our oceans over the past 25 years.

Their study suggests that the seas have absorbed 60% more than previously thought.

They say it means the Earth is more sensitive to fossil fuel emissions than estimated.

Being discussed at,2434.msg179047.html#new

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: October 30, 2018, 11:11:18 PM »

Konrad et al. (2017) show how changes to the ice shelf
and grounding line region of PIG and other Amundsen Sea
embayment glaciers propagate upstream on a timescale of a
few years. Thus, the recent reduction of back stress can be
expected to propagate to the grounded trunk of PIG, causing
further acceleration of flow and thus further dynamic thinning.
Accordingly, a restabilisation of the ice shelf due to repinning
at a ridge, e.g. by a very rapid advance or thickening
of the ice shelf, cannot be expected in the foreseeable future,
at least for as long as rapid basal melting driven by CDW
incursion continues. Instead, the ice-shelf calving line seems
to have made an irreversible step to a new position and orientation
in 2015, which has been confirmed in 2017, following
progressive detachment from the pinning point over the
previous decade. We do not expect further significant rapid
calving line retreat in the next few years. The northern margin
is now stabilised by a pinning point near Evans Knoll,
which rises above sea level where the nearby ice-shelf thickness
is about 450 m, and the southern margin is stabilised by
thick tributary ice inflow (Fretwell et al., 2013). Nevertheless,
continued rapid ice-shelf thinning as observed in other
studies (Pritchard et al., 2012; Rignot et al., 2013) and as
confirmed by our observation of pinning point loss (Fig. 3)
will further destabilise the PIG ice shelf in the future and
at some stage is expected to lead to calving occurring even
further upstream.

The triangular feature is Evans Knoll.

Has calving now gone past Evans Knoll such that further calving can be expected? Or will the glaciers just accelerate so the calving front advances to stabilisation points of Evans Knoll and the SW tributary?

Perhaps also worth noting
rapid thinning of the ice shelf that has occurred over the past two decades,
exceeding 5 m yr−1 in recent years (Pritchard et al., 2012; Rignot et al., 2013)

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: October 30, 2018, 07:27:56 PM »
Are these the same features visible on last image and gif?

Policy and solutions / Re: Coal
« on: October 29, 2018, 08:12:57 PM »
Another reason not to use it ...

Study Finds Unexpected Levels of Bromine in Power Plant Exhaust

A new study published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, a journal of the American Geophysical Union, finds unexpectedly high levels of reactive bromine-containing chemicals in plumes emitted by coal-fired power plants not using a particular type of exhaust-cleaning technology.

Bromine species impact the chemistry occurring in the atmosphere as sunlight can convert them into extremely reactive chemicals. These could then react with and alter the breakdown process of compounds such as nitrogen oxides and ozone, which are both pollutants that can have detrimental effects on respiratory health. ... Some of the by-products produced by these reactions are considered possibly carcinogenic after long-term exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

... Some coal-fired power plants artificially enhance their fuels with bromide salts because they help reduce the emission of mercury, a chemical with highly toxic effects. But this strategy can introduce bromine-containing chemicals into the atmosphere in an uncontrolled way, according to the study's authors. ... "In their attempt to clean up the mercury, they created a secondary problem with the bromide."

Because bromine emissions from coal-fired power plants have not been studied until now, their impacts on the atmosphere, which might extend into regions far from the point of emission, are not well understood. (... Arctic?)

Ben H. Lee et al. Airborne Observations of Reactive Inorganic Chlorine and Bromine Species in the Exhaust of Coal-Fired Power Plants, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres (2018)

 (... Arctic?)
Sure you don't mean ozone holes?

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 27, 2018, 05:50:39 PM »

Isn't it striking that this period of huge warming anomaly is coincident with the La Niña minimum (though not coextensive with)?

Super El Nino spikes do seem absent. Perhaps this area does not see much ENSO correlation or even is correlated the opposite way to most areas?

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 26, 2018, 03:24:40 PM »
If the Tesla statement also means it expects to pay back the $900m of debt in Q1 2019 AND also produce $300m in profit, then we're talking a totally different ballpark for profit.

But, if you are a bear, you are not going to look under that stone very hard.  Are you?

Profit and cash flow are different things. Debt repayments do not come off profit. So your "totally different ballpark" looks a bit weird.

We achieved GAAP net income of over $300 million, increased cash and equivalents by $731 million and achieved a greater than 20% gross margin for Model 3. And moreover, we expect to again have positive net income and cash flow in Q4. And I believe our aspirations I think it will be for all quarters going forward. I think we can actually be positive cash flow and profitable for all quarters going forward, leaving aside quarters where we may need to do a significant repayment, for example in Q1 next year. But I think even in Q1, I think we can be approximately flat in cash flow by end of quarter.

I wondered if the better cash flow was more depreciation than capital expenditure but they were about the same $503 depreciation vs $510 capital investments. So most of the difference $351 million was in sorting out working capital reducing time to delivery to 20 days from 30 days. While they may gets some further gains in Q4, they can't keep doing that so this is likely to be small in Q1 2019.

If the debt repayment is $920 million in Q1 and depreciation is again similar to capital investment  and the work capital changes are small this implies aspirations for profits of about $920 million.

Automotive sales gross profit is nearly $1.5 billion and increasing the number of car sales by circa 46% (13wks *(7k M3cars/week - 4k averaged this quarter) / 85k cars produced) might be expected to push $311 million profit to close to a $billion profit in Q1 2019.

$920 million profits being aimed for looks like a high proportion of that $billion profit in a quarter and I would have to disagree with the 'guidance looks weak'.

Of course they might be planning very little capital expenditure and then they could be cash flat with profit of just $0.5 billion and I would then have to agree with 'guidance looks weak'.

So IMO whether the guidance is weak is a bit open to interpretation. (Possibly mainly dependent on the amount of capital expenditure that is planned for Q1 2019.)

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 25, 2018, 05:20:09 PM »

Also wanted to let all interested parties know that James Hansen just published another document on his website in which he elaborates on the acceleration claims:

Global warming accelerated markedly in the past several years. What is driving that acceleration? I suggest that at least a portion of the increased warming rate is probably because growth of atmospheric aerosols is no longer keeping pace with growth of greenhouse gases.

Indeed, global aerosol forcing of climate may have stabilized or even decreased slightly during the past several years, because of efforts to reduce air pollution in parts of the world such as China...


So reduced aerosol forcings not feedbacks. That could be faster and acceleration emerge with continued ff emissions. (Comparing strong La Nina with weak La Nina still seems dodgy.)

I also note the carbon fee and dividend news from Canada:

The policy announced today by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau applies a tax on carbon starting at $20 per ton in 2019, rising $10 per ton annually until it reaches $50 per ton in 2022.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 25, 2018, 03:47:31 PM »
It would take just over one year at 5K/week to get through that if they were only filling reservations.

We may be trying to calculate different things here. If you want to know the wait from placing order today to delivery then I think there is less than 420k orders (as deposits are 4% lower) and at 7k per week, this is less than 60 weeks. This is maybe customer relevant but varies with what you are ordering: If they are producing it now then it will be shorter but if they are not yet producing it then it is longer.

But I was thinking of a different number that is more production oriented: When does supply catch up with orders such that you would have to curtail production to just supply what is ordered. This involves not only producing the current order list but also the orders received in the time while you produce not only the order list but also those ordered in this period. Clearly this takes quite a lot longer.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 25, 2018, 01:40:01 PM »
Looks like about two years at 10k per week.

Not sure how you calculated that 2 years.

942 down to 906 looks like about 4% fall in deposits which could suggest about 25 quarters to catch up with orders. However, I didn't include that calculation because there are lots of factors: If there is more deposit per vehicle (or is the $1000 on initial order and extra $1500 when you configure details unchanged?) and more vehicles manufactured in future quarters then these are both factors towards catching up with demand much sooner.

Note that we don't have a breakdown. If semi deposits are going up (and there are no completed orders for them to be going down) perhaps model 3 orders are going down rather more rapidly.

With lots of 'going bankrupt' FUD, perhaps people held off putting down a deposit. If Q3 results solve that concern, perhaps those orders will now be put in and the orders will start going up not down in future quarters.

4% change in deposits could easily be just seasonal pattern or noise.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 25, 2018, 12:00:45 AM »
                           30Sept18 31Dec 17
                           USD (000) USD (000)
Customer deposits 905,838 853,919

Up on Dec but down on $942 million at 30 June 2018. Not sure if there might be seasonal fluctuation but clearly will take a long time to work through the backlog at this rate of decline.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 24, 2018, 12:19:58 AM »
I did read that a "change of just 1% to the Earth's albedo has a radiative effect of 3.4 Wm-2, comparable to the forcing from a doubling of carbon dioxide"

No idea where the number comes from unfortunately.

But I did some quick math. Surface Area of the Earth is 510,064,472 km2. 1% change would be 5,100,644.72 km2.

The 2000-2009 avg. for summer minimum sea ice in the arctic drops 968,139 km2 from the 79-99 avg (almost .2%).

The 2010-2018 avg drops 2,040,500 km2 from the 79-99 avg (~0.4% change in earth surface) giving, 1.36 Wm-2 difference

See the graph I've attached.

Of course it probably doesn't work like that (with a linear relationship to the amount of forcing), and I do know that this doesn't account for what the rest of the earth’s albedo change was during that time, and that the change in albedo would only be during a few summer months...

Still I wanted to offer up these back of the envelope calculations, since if I’m lucky enough to receive any criticism, it will be quite the education for me and probably some other lurkers.

I probably ought to be able to offer more and better constructive criticism but FWIW:

Average albedo of Earth is roughly about 0.3
whereas Arctic figures vary see

If we say snow and ice average 0.57 and open water looks like about 0.07 then you have a change in albedo of around 0.5. So perhaps your figures are a further factor of two from explaining the size of the effect.

I think your numbers are correctly telling you that arctic sea ice retreat is not hugely significant. I think land areas formerly covered by snow may well reveal larger numbers. Rutgers has some numbers if you want to play with them.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 23, 2018, 11:56:42 PM »
Lagged temperature effect following ENSO is such that we are likely near a global temperature minimum even if it hasn't already been reached.

Still it is clear the last La Nina was pretty weak so it does seem dubious to connect strong La Nina minimum to weak La Nina minimum.

I think Hansen is getting a bit carried away with talk of more than a doubling in rate. If there was valid reason for doubling of the rate over just a few short years, why has the temperature record from 1970 to date looked pretty much like a straight line?

I wouldn't be surprised if Hansen does publish a paper claiming acceleration in rate is now detected. However if this happens then I would predict that this detection will be of a very weak acceleration not anything anywhere near a doubling in rate.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 23, 2018, 04:30:44 PM »
Wow!  Much earlier than expected.  The news must be really good!

Market seems to agree with price up $14 to $275. (Of course, that is still way down on ~$342 before taking private tweet.)

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 23, 2018, 02:35:59 PM »
Forgive my colloquialism. I simply meant that he repeated it in a second post on his website, which suggests he's quite confident that it has some merit (which I recognize does not mean that it does).

No worries. I meant at least in part that the repetition seemed part of some timing issue with an improved version.

I assumed he was referring to oceans but also to increased warming from decline in albedo due to loss of summer sea ice. I thought this was widely accepted as an amplifying (or positive) feedback? I don't quite understand your explanation for the arctic graph. The annual data looks like there could be an acceleration kicking in around 2013, which is in keeping with Hansen's graph. Again, I understand it's a rough approximation, but what I don't understand is that there would be surprise if there were acceleration, that it would be evident in the arctic, or that it would be due to the loss of arctic sea ice... Granted I'm a newb.

Yes albedo feedback is widely accepted as positive feedback. It causes faster rate of rise but do you see acceleration with 'continued high fossil fuel emissions'?

A really fast feedback like water vapour feedback increases the rate immediately so with "continued high fossil fuel emissions" you wouldn't expect to see acceleration.

Albedo feedback from sea ice and land snow cover isn't quite so fast so maybe some acceleration but seems to me to be likely small enough to be lost in the noise. Glacier and ice sheet retreat are pretty slow feedbacks and I don't think we would expect continued high fossil fuel emissions to continue long enough at accelerating rates to keep the radiative forcing constant in order to see such acceleration.

Airborne fraction changes from failing carbon sinks also seems pretty slow and again I don't  think we would expect continued high fossil fuel emissions to continue long enough.

So I am still confused about precisely what he is saying about feedbacks.

I am suggesting that the arctic graph looks like it could be fitted with two straight lines which I tried to describe as a point acceleration. Ongoing acceleration would look more like a smooth curve like:

My explanation for the curves would be high ocean heat capacity causing inertia not climate feedbacks.

A slow curve is not much different from the straight line Hansen notes that we have observed so far, when you only look at a small portion of it. So I get that Hansen is saying that just because what we have observed so far looks like a straight line, this doesn't mean we shouldn't expect the acceleration to emerge. (It is just his explanation for the acceleration that seems dubious to me.)

Edit: Perhaps he is thinking about methane emissions from permafrost and methane clathrate burbs as feedbacks from temperature rises. Ocean heat capacity inertia seems more solid explanation to me for the moment.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: October 22, 2018, 11:00:57 PM »
Hansen doubles down on his claim of La Niña minima implying acceleration in warming:

"Acceleration is predicted by climate models for continued high fossil fuel emissions as a result of amplifying climate feedbacks and is a cause for concern. We expect global temperature to rise in the next few months and confirm that the global warming rate has accelerated."

I am not sure he has 'doubled down'

La Nina minima probably provide a better estimate, and they provide a more recent rate. As the figure shows, the most recent two La Ninas imply a warming rate of 0.38°C per decade, at least double the longer term rate! Acceleration is predicted by climate models for continued high
fossil fuel emissions as a result of amplifying climate feedbacks and is a cause for concern.

This is only saying using La Ninas minima is 'probably' better than using El Nino peaks. This doesn't mean the 'double the longer term rate' is a reliable measure and it seems quite possible to believe that a better methodology would remove the ENSO signal then look for acceleration in the remainder.

Doesn't this graph of Arctic seasonal anomalies also suggest that acceleration has been occurring? Or am I misreading it.

P.S. NCEP vs GFS anomaly outlook is continuing up, up and away....

10 day average - that is surely weather not climate.

Arctic graph looks more like point change in rate (which is acceleration) rather than ongoing acceleration. However, I think this can be explained by extra heat from albedo difference from ice to water stored in ocean then released in fall. If we see a gompertz shaped curve in the ice extent and volume graphs, then perhaps this explains the point acceleration look of the graph rather than ongoing acceleration.

Acceleration is predicted as a result of amplifying climate feedbacks

Not sure I understand this part. I would expect acceleration as a result of high heat capacity of oceans causing inertia so not all of effects are felt til later. Is he referring to carbon uptakes reducing in effect changing the airborne fraction?

Arctic sea ice / Re: When will the Arctic Go Ice Free?
« on: October 08, 2018, 02:54:43 PM »
which proves the point: extrapolation does not work. It doesn't work, beacuse it is a nonlinear system, and melting the shelf is not the same as melting the central pack. Therefore extrapolations are rather a waste of time.

Seems a bit sweeping to me. It certainly doesn't work when a new trend is emerging or when you use the wrong curve type or when trying to predict a long way outside the data range. Using exponential when the models suggest something more like gompertz was asking for big miss and even more so when the trend was beginning to show a levelling off and there were explanations in the literature to explain an acceleration and deceleration.

You pick out two reasons: non linear and central vs shelf. Certainly it is much easier to extrapolate with a linear system and I also agree re central vs shelf. But I would suggest that there are other reasons and maybe the two you picked alone wouldn't automatically mean that extrapolations will always fail.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: October 08, 2018, 03:08:34 AM »

Will eliminating 50% of fossil fuels be enough to halt the increase? (since natural sinks currently absorb half of emissions)... I'm not sure, I think it won't quite be enough,...

Sorry to disappoint, but ...

It is much closer to cut our emissions by 50% and natural sinks will reduce to absorbing just half of that. But cut our emissions by 80% and that will give us quite a bit more time.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (October)
« on: October 06, 2018, 03:49:48 PM »
Anyway, I think all those extrapolations should be taken with a grain of salt.

So extrapolating data up to 2010, it was 5 years ahead and extrapolating data up to 2018, it was 6 years ahead ..... So extrapolating data to 1970, we must have already reached ice free!  ;D

Hmm. yes I think you are right,  these extrapolations should be taken with a grain of salt.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (October)
« on: October 04, 2018, 04:46:23 PM »
Here is the graph with different curve fittings. Compared with a year ago, most extrapolations to "zero ice" have also advanced by about a year. Extrapolating the extrapolations gives zero ice at infinity.

 ;D It's not just my 4 parameter gompertz fit that does this.  ;D

More seriously, extrapolating the curves from last year to this year is a bit crazy. Wouldn't it make more sense to compare the fits from 5 or 10 years before and extrapolate that?

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 04, 2018, 02:33:21 PM »
Think the 5k/wk rate refers only to model 3. 53,329 is nicely in the 50-55K guidance. If they were only doing around 3k/wk in first 4 or 5 weeks of the quarter then it seems like they have averaged 4.5k/wk in the last couple of months. Am I concerned about 4.5k vs 5k in last couple of months? Not really, what matters more is whether they can consistently get above 6k without a lot more capital expenditure in the near future.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 03, 2018, 04:35:48 PM »
The bears were wrong.  Tesla met its production and delivery guidance for Q3.

I'll use this as a teaching opportunity rather than insulting you. THIS is what a straw man argument is. Has anyone on here claimed that production or deliveries would be significantly under guidance for Q3...NO. Implying that they have is making a straw man argument.

So, posting bloomberg tracker graph image showing a sharp fall in numbers more than once was not a 'claim that production or deliveries would be significantly under guidance for Q3'

I guess it is possible for you to believe this is true, but at best it is on a technicality that you posted graph but didn't mention guidance for Q3. Personally I think there certainly is enough implications in your posts that Tesla is in terrible shape and couldn't continue producing at the 5k per week rate that I don't think calling that argument a strawman works.

if I need words rather than just graphs, consider for example
Building 5,000 model 3s in a tent in the last week of June makes no longer term business only makes sense if you are trying to continue a ponzi scheme and need some point you are able to hype ....

If you thought they were going to continue at 5000 per week rate, then why did you post the graph and why call it a ponzi scheme? If you accept the cars are real, just that they are going to create loads of warranty issues then it isn't a ponzi scheme. That is just a quality issue and the reality is that you, like the rest of us, don't know how difficult it will be to sort out warranty and quality issues but you are just intent on playing up all issues due to (for lack of any other suitable term) your hatred of Tesla. Your motivated reasoning shows through very clearly and this undermines everything you say.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 01, 2018, 05:53:59 PM »
Just one quick, short opinion, and somewhat uninformed. One thing that's been bugging me about the whole SEC business, is that the one thing I remember the SEC from, is the total failure when it comes to monitoring the crazy financial products that triggered the Great Recession of 2018. In my view (at the time), everyone involved with monitoring financial institutions was completely corrupt.

I don't know if the SEC still is, but they protected Big Finance at the time. Maybe they're keen on protecting Big Oil and Big Auto (which is the same) this time around.

Am I just being a conspiracy nut? I'm not a Tesla fanboi, even though I don't want them to fail.

2018 or 2008?
I may well not be better informed.

Total failure of SEC circa 2008? Yes wouldn't disagree with that.

Completely corrupt?
Well maybe I suppose, but hindsight is a wonderful thing. Before the crash the firms buying mortgage products seemed to have sophisticated models of the risk and it seemed to be working well to generate profits. If it is working well to generate profits then it makes sense to expand such operations. Afterwards knowing the whole story is easy to say it is obvious this will end in disaster. At the time, lots of people knew their part of the story and their part seemed to be working well.

SEC protected big finance?
Did they? Or did they just explain to government what would happen if government didn't step in and seeing the consequences, government decided they would act to improve bank liquidity situation.

We are obviously not seeing the situation the same. I suspect you would be quick to say any complex financial product was 'capitalism gone crazy' and therefore the complex financial product is crazy. But maybe it is me that is naive and too accepting of the need for complex financial products.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: September 30, 2018, 12:39:10 PM »
the fact that one cannot purchase them does not mean that their technology is not better and more developed. they just don't want to throw out unfinished tech and abuse customers as beta testers at the risk of their and other traffic participant's lifes.

While this is possible with a reputation to lose, does this work as a criticism of Tesla if the vehicles drive more miles per accident on autopilot than not on autopilot?

Just how safe do these other manufacturers have to make their tech before they release it?

Even a 130 k drop to 4.375 to make 4-4.5 a better bin than 4.25 to 4.75 looks highly unlikely now.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: September 18, 2018, 01:26:55 PM »
Curious if the elderly need to bring their own cleaning gear on pickup or if these fan-dangled new driverless taxis are self-cleaning when a drunk has vomited everywhere inside on the prior trip? :)

Driverless car will have credit card details of previous passenger and right to charge them for necessary cleaning services. If someone refuses use of car due to its state then different car goes to pick up the customer, the allegedly dirty car drives to valet service company who photographs for evidence and considers whether it needs a clean allowing last passenger to be charged or doesn't need a clean, car goes to next customer and passenger refusing trip gets charged for two unnecessary trips and the valet company's assessment. I think this creates appropriate incentives that most people will try to leave the car clean and tidy and not accept car in unsuitable state.

Maybe this need to be expanded with customers photographing any minor issues they are prepared to accept and emailing photo to driverless car management company, but I don't see a major issue with creating such systems.


Yes one of the best things is the potential to redevelop some of the city centre parking locations that are no longer needed.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: September 18, 2018, 01:29:16 AM »
Why do you believe that the elderly would prefer a solitary journey to one in the company of others?

Who says they won't be able to if they want and can afford it? If there becomes a choice between current taxi prices for human driven car vs half the price for driverless, would you want everyone to be stuck with only the first of these options or for everyone to have the choice? There is possibility of demand for former choice falling drastically and either pushing up price of that option or even making it too scarce so people are left with only the latter choice. But at least this is the cheaper option so you are less likely to be deprived of mobility because of unaffordability.

Arctic sea ice / Re: NSIDC 2018 Arctic SIE September average: August Poll
« on: September 17, 2018, 05:41:04 PM »
4.9 on Sept 1st falling to 4.553 on Sept 16th and likely to rise to about 5 or maybe a little more by end of month. Seems almost certain average will be closer to 4.75 than 4.5 or 5. Getting more likely for the average to be under 4.75 rather than over it now, I think.

I went for 4.5 to 5 here but between 4 and 4.5 on the daily JAXA number. Probably shouldn't have had that much difference.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: September 17, 2018, 05:19:11 PM »
I see no advantage to a driverless car, but recognize that it would eliminate millions of jobs. Buses, trolleys, light rail, subways, and high speed rail all have a place in a sustainable future. Cars, garages, driveways, charging stations, life might go on without them.

Those who are so agoraphobic that they don't wish to share a vehicle with others should at least be willing to pilot the damn thing.

>eliminate millions of jobs
Do you see this as a good thing - how society get wealthier, or a bad thing - job losses & capitalism, or something that makes it inevitable or ... ? 'no advantage to a driverless car' seems a bit weird; disadvantages outweighing advantages I could understand even if I disagree.

>Buses, trolleys, light rail, subways, and high speed rail all have a place
An elderly person with mobility issues and poor eyesight might take issue and suggest a driverless car also has a place.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: September 17, 2018, 03:48:43 PM »
Are self driving autos something that we need, or even want?


No doubt there are petrolheads that don't want them. Elderly people worried about losing mobility certainly should and do want them assuming they will improve safety and not lose mobility. But more important than such special interests, driver is usually largest cost of car/van transport so I think it is coming whether we like it or not. Reduced cost is likely to result in more usage. We may not like or want the effects of this, but it probably makes economic sense.

You will note I expect more congestion from this not less. There may be fewer vehicles more easily shared which makes economic sense (less cost) but those fewer vehicles will do a lot more miles such that there will be more vehicle miles making more congestion.

So it is lower cost driving this which we want, even if we don't like consequences.

I do wonder about other effects, does concentrating on difficult tasks like driving safely with poor eyesight keep the brain active and help reduce speed of degeneration of the mind.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: September 17, 2018, 03:24:37 PM »
Who buys a car in 24 hours?

Remember that Tesla sells their cars online. People that might have considered buying a Tesla for a while may be swayed by the prospect free fuel for the life of the vehicle. A twit like that might be worth a few hundreds, maybe thousands of sales. He has 22 million followers.

I like companies where the CEO's try to sell their products. Obviously, not everyone agrees.

Interesting freudian slip calling it a twit rather than a tweet!

Yes, some thinking about it might complete before deadline. But would more get the chance to complete before deadline if it was announced 2 weeks before and 1 week before and 1 day before rather than just the single one day before tweet. The approach taken is clearly not trying to sell cars. It suggests they are selling well enough than a benefit that was always going to be withdrawn can be withdrawn and they don't need to resort to pressure tactics to get people to sign up.

I prefer companies that don't have to resort to pressure sales tactics, therefore this seems good about Tesla.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: September 17, 2018, 02:14:05 PM »
Who buys a car in 24 hours? If the deadline was to attract new buyers then they would have given a few weeks notice. It was going to end sometime. Doing it this way with just 24 hours notice makes it look like they are being ordered well enough to me. Obviously some people biases are making them see what they want to see.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: September 17, 2018, 12:26:40 AM »
Musk just tweeted about an update to the Tesla Referral Program....could it be more obvious there is not endless demand for the cars Tesla is producing? Every piece of info that comes about related to Tesla, further corroborates the Tesla bear thesis.
Really? What was the update? I assume Tesla is enhancing the program in a desperate bid to attract some new buyers? At least you make it sound that way. Or maybe you haven't checked the details?

New Model S, Model X, and Model 3 Performance buyers still have a chance to get free unlimited Supercharging for the lifetime of their ownership by ordering before the end of the day with a referral code.

After that, the referral program will give $100 of Supercharging credit to new buyers, which is a major drop in value from the unlimited free Supercharging for the lifetime ownership of the car.

Tesla has been talking about ending the valuable referral incentive for years now, but it looks like this time is the one.

CEO Elon Musk even tweeted the deadline last night:

Obviously selling so badly that withdrawing a benefit will entice new orders ??????

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: September 15, 2018, 02:49:59 PM »

Other miscellaneous comments showed Shotwell at her best, ad-libbing one-liners that were lucid, accurate, and entertaining.

“We’ll be going to Mars … with NASA and with ESA. It’s gonna be like extreme camping… for 100 years. And then it might be okay.”
“[Space] tourism is inevitable but [SpaceX] doesn’t want to do it too soon”, the goal is to launch “test pilots before families”
“The first cars on Mars will be Teslas.”

Someone's confident Tesla will survive a few years  ;)

The rest / Time person of the year
« on: September 13, 2018, 09:41:59 PM »
I hear of betting odds for 2018 winner

Donald Trump 7/4
Elon Musk 2/1
Kim Jong-un 7/1
Robert Mueller 25/1
Teressa May 66/1

Seems like plenty to irk certain people ;)

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: September 10, 2018, 09:06:05 PM »
to be positive a start with (b)

here Tesla and/or Musk did a great and important job/contribution which outweighs any
shortcomings and mistakes IMO, it brings major manufacturers ultimately up to speed which
is 100% good, nothing negative can be said about that effect and the way it was done


so both is possible, what is not possible is that the company as what it is now and how it's doing things now and where it stands now is surviving.

Largely, yes, I agree. (Re expectations of electric vehicles, of course people will try to say negative things, but it won't change the truth of this Musk success.)

Re 'both possible': Yes it won't survive as it is now, but you seem to be ruling out possibility of company evolving from what it is now through hiring appropriate personnel rather than by a takeover. Care to explain a little more as to why this is unlikely?

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