Archive for the ‘BBC News’ Category

BBC: Coughing up to curb climate change

November 25, 2008

To those claiming that benefits may as well outweigh costs, as per the original DEFRA estimates: can you please remind me of any initiative by any UK Government that has turned out to be cheaper than expected, and providing more benefits than originally claimed?

And the “£10,000 in 42 years” argument is disingenuous. Of course, we will have to pay the £10,000 asap. And of course, we will see any benefit only at the very end of the period.

After all, they will want to get as much as possible now (as long as they can), and then spend 42 years to devise ways to fudge with the results and proclaim victory


BBC News: Can’t Anybody Understand Science?

March 2, 2008

(message sent to the BBC)

The unsigned article on congestion charge and health is highly misleading to say the least. As one of the report’s authors, Cathryn Tonne, told internet publication “spiked online”, “the average increase in life expectancy suggested by the report is 14 hours per person – over their entire lifespan!”.

One worries about the level of scientific understanding when 14 hours are reported as 1,888 years…

BBC News: European probe aims for Mercury

January 18, 2008

The “European probe aims for Mercury” story is incomplete.

Giuseppe [one ‘s’] (Bepi) Colombo did not just complete “many pioneering studies on Mercury”: he allowed NASA to send Mariner 10 to a triple encounter with Mercury, by suggesting for the first time the use of a “gravitational slingshot”.

Such “gravity-assist” maneuver is now commonplace for interplanetary probes, saving considerable amounts of fuel (eg on the Messenger mission to Mercury) and/or time (eg on the New Horizons mission to Pluto).