Guest post by Steve Goddard
Reading through the recent blog posts of the Catlin expedition, it has become apparent that they have made errors in judgment. Team member Martin Hartley is suffering from frostbite, and hasn’t been able to sleep for nearly a week.
The current temperature is -42C (-44F.) The sensible course of action would be to evacuate Martin to someplace warm where he can receive proper medical attention. Cold and lack of sleep make healing impossible and threaten his health. I have camped in tents in -30C weather, and it is all about survival – nothing else has any meaning when you are that cold.
The wet sleeping bags are apparently the result of a poor decision.
Any seasoned expeditioner will tell you that pretty much anything is bearable, providing that one has the ability to enjoy a warm and dry night’s sleep. However, for various reasons the team chose not to take vapour barrier liners for their sleeping bags, and now with a sudden warming (up to a sultry -24 from a nippy -40 degrees Celsius) their frozen sleeping bags are just starting to feel like sorbets.
Indeed, the scientific merit of the expedition is questionable.
What is the point of taking a lot of measurements at one location on the same day? Arctic ice continuously shifts and melts or freezes, and the ice they are standing on will have moved hundreds or thousands of miles by next year. The temperature is -42C. No doubt the ice is getting thicker at that temperature.
Meanwhile, the expedition sponsor (HRH The Prince of Wales) has been jetting around South America enjoying the life of entitlement currently reserved for global warming patrons. The formula is simple – as long as a celebrity keeps talking about global warming, their carbon footprint and lifestyle excesses are above reproach. Perhaps if AIG had of named their bonuses “carbon offsets,” they could be partying in South America too.
As of today, global sea ice area is again above normal.