From the Cheap Seats: The Cold New Reality of Climate Change

September 13, 2013
The 2012 ice sheet was smaller by a million square miles than it is today

The 2012 ice sheet was smaller by a million square miles than it is today

It was only in April that the weather wonders at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, as they like to refer to themselves, were warning us that the Arctic was on the verge of becoming the world’s hot tub.

“For scientists studying summer sea ice in the Arctic, it’s not a question of ‘if’ there will be nearly ice-free summers, but ‘when’,” NOAA’s know-it-alls declared.

Further, “two scientists say that ‘when’ is sooner than many thought — before 2050 and possibly within the next decade or two.”

NOAA, though, doesn’t quite have the forecasting track record of the biblical Noah, whose meteorological prowess was less sophisticated, but a lot more accurate.

Instead of going Jacuzzi, the Arctic Sea is reverting to form, according to satellite photography that shows the Arctic ice sheet is enlarging, and doing so at a remarkable rate.

The 2012 ice sheet was smaller by a million square miles than it is today, meaning that it’s grown at a 60 percent rate.

In raw numbers, sea ice in the Arctic averaged 2.35 million square miles in August. It was 1.32 million square miles, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

It was only a month ago that an ice-free Arctic was said to be “definitely coming, and coming sooner than we previously expected.”

That’s what Walt Meier, a glaciologist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md, told LiveScience last month. “We’re looking at when as opposed to if.”

Cheap Seats has to wonder why NASA employs a glaciologist, but then again, it makes as much sense as Al Gore becoming a climatologist.

Cheap Seats also wonders Mrs. Sen Mark Udall of the Climate Reality Project (CRaP) will deal with this cold, new reality.

Comments made by visitors are not representative of The Colorado Observer staff.

2 Responses to From the Cheap Seats: The Cold New Reality of Climate Change

  1. October 8, 2013 at 5:06 am

    Bobbyd is right check out this article..people need to be smart about the glercais and global warming: The few plants that live in Antarctica today are hardy hangers-on, growing just a few weeks out of the year and surviving poor soil, lack of rain and very little sunlight. But long ago, some parts of Antarctica were almost lush.New research finds that between about 15 million and 20 million years ago, plant life thrived on the coasts of the southernmost continent. Ancient pollen samples suggest that the landscape was a bit like today’s Chilean Andes: grassy tundra dotted with small trees.This vegetated period peaked during the middle Miocene, when atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were around 400 to 600 parts per million. (Today, driven by fossil fuel use, atmospheric carbon dioxide has climbed to 393 parts per million.)As a result, global temperatures warmed.Antarctica followed suit. During this period, summer temperatures on the continent were 20 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius) warmer than today, researchers reported June 17 in the journal Nature Geoscience. When the planet heats up, the biggest changes are seen toward the poles, study researcher Jung-Eun Lee, a scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a statement. The southward movement of rain bands made the margins of Antarctica less like a polar desert and more like present-day Iceland. [Ice World: Amazing Glaciers]


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