Winds are Dominant Cause of Greenland and West Antarctic Ice Sheet Losses

Above image is not part of original papers, but included to demonstrate teh issue. Animation of Arctic sea-ice being pushed by wind patterns
Above image is not part of original papers, but included to demonstrate the issue. Animation of Arctic sea-ice being pushed by wind patterns. Note that the animation is large, about 7 MB and may take awhile to load on your computer. Source: National Snow and Ice Data Center

From Climate Research News

Two new studies summarized in a news article in Science magazine point to wind-induced circulation changes in the ocean as the dominant cause of the recent ice losses through the glaciers draining both the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets, not ‘global warming.’

The two stuides referred to are:

‘Acceleration of Jakobshavn Isbræ triggered by warm subsurface ocean waters’ by Holland et al, published in Nature Geoscience.

The Abstract states:

Observations over the past decades show a rapid acceleration of several outlet glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica1. One of the largest changes is a sudden switch of Jakobshavn Isbræ, a large outlet glacier feeding a deep-ocean fjord on Greenland’s west coast, from slow thickening to rapid thinning2 in 1997, associated with a doubling in glacier velocity3. Suggested explanations for the speed-up of Jakobshavn Isbræ include increased lubrication of the ice-bedrock interface as more meltwater has drained to the glacier bed during recent warmer summers4 and weakening and break-up of the floating ice tongue that buttressed the glacier5. Here we present hydrographic data that show a sudden increase in subsurface ocean temperature in 1997 along the entire west coast of Greenland, suggesting that the changes in Jakobshavn Isbræ were instead triggered by the arrival of relatively warm water originating from the Irminger Sea near Iceland. We trace these oceanic changes back to changes in the atmospheric circulation in the North Atlantic region. We conclude that the prediction of future rapid dynamic responses of other outlet glaciers to climate change will require an improved understanding of the effect of changes in regional ocean and atmosphere circulation on the delivery of warm subsurface waters to the periphery of the ice sheets.


‘Modelling Circumpolar Deep Water intrusions on the Amundsen Sea continental shelf, Antarctica’ by Thoma et al, published in GRL.

The Abstract states:

Results are presented from an isopycnic coordinate model of ocean circulation in the Amundsen Sea, focusing on the delivery of Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) to the inner continental shelf around Pine Island Bay. The warmest waters to reach this region are channeled through a submarine trough, accessed via bathymetric irregularities along the shelf break. Temporal variability in the influx of CDW is related to regional wind forcing. Easterly winds over the shelf edge change to westerlies when the Amundsen Sea Low migrates west and south in winter/spring. This drives seasonal on-shelf flow, while inter-annual changes in the wind forcing lead to inflow variability on a decadal timescale. A modelled period of warming following low CDW influx in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s coincides with a period of observed thinning and acceleration of Pine Island Glacier.

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Leon Brozyna
October 3, 2008 3:42 pm

What are they doing here, actually trying to do a scientific study? Don’t they know that the science is settled? Global warming causes everything. Everybody knows this. They must be in the pay of big oil or big coal or big whatever. /sarc off>
What these studies do appear to show is that the reality is a lot more complicated than any AGW press release.

Robert Wood
October 3, 2008 3:56 pm

The flow of ice into the North Atlantic down the East coast of Greenland is really noticeable.

Les Johnson
October 3, 2008 4:09 pm

Lots of similar work out there….note the dates…..
From Koberle et al:

These results make connecting “global warming” to Arctic ice thinning very difficult for two reasons. First, large decadal and longer-term variability masks any trend. Restricted time series…produce trends that are more or less arbitrary….Second, the wind stress strongly effects the long-term development of ice volume. A long-term change in wind stress over the Arctic, possibly by an increase in the number of atmospheric circulation states that favor ice export, would effect the ice volume in a similar manner as a temperature increase.

Köberle, C., and R. Gerdes, 2003. Mechanisms determining the variability of Arctic sea ice conditions and export. Journal of Climate, 16, 2843-2858.

Two other papers:
Rigor et al suggests that Arctic warming is not melting the ice, but thinner ice is warming the arctic.

…ice pack is thickening in some places, thinning in others, due to AO. …that is, that the thinning ice has warmed SAT by increasing the heat flux from the ocean.

Rigor, I.G., J.M. Wallace, and R.L. Colony, 2002. Response of Sea Ice to the Arctic Oscillation. Journal of Climate, 15: 2648-2663.

Holloway et al suggests that shifting winds are responsible for ice thickness change.

Holloway, G. and T. Sou, 2002. Has Arctic sea Ice rapidly thinned? Journal of Climate, 15: 1691-1701.

Brian D
October 3, 2008 4:13 pm

AGW changed the atmospheric circulation. Didn’t you know that. God forbid it should be of natural causes.

Colin Aldridge
October 3, 2008 4:14 pm

I wonder if this change in glacier melt is caused by the AMO ( atlantic multidecadal oscillation ) which was warming during the 90’s and is incidently now entering a cool phase. The AMO correlates well with global temperature variation over the past 100 years, not as well as CO2 but the two together give a pretty good fit.

Colin Aldridge
October 3, 2008 4:28 pm

The papers, now I read the full text does suggest AMO as the cause for the the Arctic and ENSO and SAO for Antarctica.

October 3, 2008 4:29 pm

Do you notice the great blue hole that appears over the volcano in 1999? Supposedly clouds covered the area so no one know if the area was open sea or warmer ice, or what. Andy Revkin knows someone who can get the photos, and I’d like some meteorologists to look at the clouds to see if they are normal Arctic clouds or the sort of clouds that would appear over open water or warmer ice. I don’t think anyone knows for sure what effect the volcano of 1999 had. I submit that you can see its effect, first with the great blue spot suddenly appearing, surrounded by thicker stuff, then the dissolution of the spot as it moves south, finally flushed out in 2001 and carrying some old ice with it.
Just go look and see; the spot is right over the ridge, in the approximate area of the volcano.
REPLY: huh???? what volcano are you talking about? -Anthony

Les Johnson
October 3, 2008 4:42 pm

Plus the interaction between them. These authors suggest that all temperature anomalies of the 20th century can be explained by major cycles and their interactions.
Click here for Science Daily article
“American Geophysical Union (2007, August 2).
Synchronized Chaos: Mechanisms For Major Climate Shifts.”

Les Johnson
October 3, 2008 4:49 pm

and thanks to the moderator for cleaning up my HTML. Its appreciated.

Mike Bryant
October 3, 2008 5:00 pm

Kim ok I think I did see a blue spot at 1999…

October 3, 2008 5:40 pm

Yes, Anthony; it is approximately over the volcano on the Gakkel Ridge which erupted in 1999. The cloud photos are satellite ones, and hard to get.

Bobby Lane
October 3, 2008 5:40 pm

This is so off topic, but I was reading on EUReferendum dot com and saw this:
“…Smurfit School of Business and the Management Institute of Paris”
Have a Smurferiffic day! La la la la la la, Laaa la la la laa…La la la la la la, la la la la laaa……

Mike Bryant
October 3, 2008 5:41 pm

That fast animation of the arctic reminds me of a beating heart. It’s still beating.

October 3, 2008 6:05 pm

This is what Kim is referring to. She brought this up some months ago as well.
It is said there wasn’t enough heat from the volcano(s) to affect the Arctic ice melt.

Mike McMillan
October 3, 2008 6:51 pm

Winds are Dominant Cause of Greenland and West Antarctic Ice Sheet Losses
Doesn’t look much like the Antarctic to me. 🙂

Mike Bryant
October 3, 2008 7:19 pm

Mauna Loa September CO2 number is almost exactly on the trend line.
I predict that in a few months we’ll never even be able to see the little stumble. After all, the new carbon economy will require a very stable and trustworthy data set.

Edward Morgan
October 3, 2008 7:31 pm

I’ve been reading this very interesting Watts site for some time (thank-you) and previous to that I was looking into the solar based weather forecasts made by a man called Piers Corbyn in the UK. You’ve probably heard of him but if not I thought these links may be of interest to your readers. I personally studied his stuff and found him to be accurate to what he says which took some time to glean from the forecast indexes. He doesn’t believe CO2 drives the weather at all. An article about spotless sun by Piers
Main site
Global Forecasts
Cheers, Ed.

Bill Illis
October 3, 2008 8:44 pm

As predicted by the objective scientists, (as opposed to the warmers who predicted the Arctic would be free of ice nearly in perpetuity as a result of global warming according to media reports), the ice has rapidly refrozen in the Arctic over the past three weeks (an increase of 780,000 km2) as it has every year for probably a very long time (if not for the entire timeline noted in the following paragraph).
As predicted by the astronomers, the North Pole has gone into 24 hours of darkness (as opposed to the warmers who have no idea this kind of thing can actually happen) for the next six months as has happened every year for the last 4.5 billion years and it will continue to get colder until the North pole reaches its normal middle of winter -40C to -60C.

October 3, 2008 8:49 pm

It is interesting to note, wind…or the moon’s gravity, can load up a bay with water then instead of the water relaxing back from whence it came learn it may escape down a trough to emerge at a far distance to effect a change in weather.
Celestial influence on ocean currents, weather, climate!? are computer models tuned into the horoscope?

October 3, 2008 9:55 pm

“the ice has rapidly refrozen in the Arctic over the past three weeks (an increase of 780,000 km2) as it has every year for probably a very long time”
Looks like a swifter rebound than the average:
I wonder if anyone would publicize a record increase, if it so happens.

October 3, 2008 10:26 pm

“What actually happening during July, August and September has now been analysed by the same scientists. They found that the summer melting period for 2008 was unusual in that more first-year ice survived at the end of the 2008 summer compared to 2007. This was due to a combination of factors, such as the more northerly latitudes where the first-year ice was found, the warmer temperatures, and winds that had not compacted the ice as they had done in 2007. As a result, 2008 came second to 2007 in terms of record melting of sea ice – and the North Pole remained iced up.”
More first year ice didn’t melt because of warmer temperatures. I wonder if this is just a typo.

Glenn Rowe
October 3, 2008 10:44 pm

Re: Glenn (22:26:41) :

More first year ice didn’t melt because of warmer temperatures. I wonder if this is just a typo.

Unlikely, since the Independent is one of the UK’s leading warmist alarmist papers. They probably have some convoluted chain of reasoning that will ‘prove’ that warmer temperatures result in less ice melting. After all, ‘climate change’ predicts (supposedly) more unusual weather patterns, and warm temperatures resulting in less melting is certainly unusual, you have to admit. Therefore, since this is unusual behaviour, climate change must be responsible for it. Obvious, really, when you don’t think about it.

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 12:32 am

This article has a few more details about Gakkel Ridge and thermal activity:
The map of Gakkel Ridge reveals that the ridge is enormous. It practically bisects the Arctic. Besides that and the recent eruptions, the surveyors were very surprised by the ongoing thermal activity.
“We have completely unexpected results,” said Charles Langmuir, of Columbia University. “The ocean ridge below the Arctic is completely unique. We found 12 new volcanoes where we expected to find none, and we found unexpected and abundant hydrothermal activity.”
“Our discovery of these signals clearly show that hydrothermal vents similar to those present on faster-spreading mid-ocean ridges are present in abundance here, too” said Henrietta Edmonds, of the University of Texas.
According to Charles Langmuir the expedition “found more hydrothermal activity on this cruise than in 20 years of exploration on the mid-Atlantic ridge”.
If the animation above had a white line showing the exact location of Gakkel Ridge, I believe it would be enlightening. Could this slightly warmer water have affected the ocean currents in the region? Or the wind currents? The clouds? Could the recent eruptions have increased the reported “unexpected and abundant hydrothermal activity” over the past decade? Twelve volcanoes? How many erupted? Wow.
The melting Arctic is one of the last remaining “wheels” supporting the AGW hypothesis. I think it’s getting a little wobbly.

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 12:48 am

One more question and then back to bed. Does the topography of the ridge actually direct the prevailing currents upward to flow across the bottom of the icecap?

October 4, 2008 3:29 am

Yes, Mike, I believe you can see the Gakkel Ridge represented on the animation. There is persistently thinner ice over the ridge than elsewhere. I know there was a discrete event in 1999, but whether the whole ridge has been more active or not lately, I don’t know. Obviously, the vulcanism along that ridge is acting like a bunsen burner at the bottom of a basin. I suspect the heat from that vulcanism is not so easily dispersed as in the less circumscribed oceans.
Thanks, DR. Andy Revkin had this animation last summer and we all went round and round the DotEarth over it in several posts. That’s how I know there were clouds overlying the ‘great blue spot’, so the photographic record is inadequate for determining whether the ice melted there or not. I’d like to know if they were ordinary Arctic clouds, or the sort of clouds that would appear over open water or even just over warmer ice. By the animation, the ice suddenly thinned there, while intact ice around it did not, which suggests that winds and currents might not have had much to do with the generation of the ‘great blue spot’ of 1999.

October 4, 2008 5:10 am

Arctic ice floats on water and about 90 percent of the ice is under water.
As a zeroth-order estimate of where to look for the dominant physical phenomena and processes that govern both the thermal and structural responses of the ice I say look under the surface. Not above the surface.
Additionally I have read that the surface of the ice might be covered with soot and stuff, thus increasing the direct radiative energy input component to energy (and thus the ice mass) balance for the ice. Look there, too.
Full disclosure: I am not a Certified Climatologist.

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 5:45 am
“Seismic activity began in mid-January (1999) and continued vigorously for three months; a reduced rate of activity persisted for an additional four months or more. In total, 252 events were large enough to be recorded on global seismic networks. Although a limited number of volcanic-spreading events have been observed globally, the duration and magnitude of the Gakkel Ridge swarm, when compared with volcanic seismicity at ridges spreading at intermediate and fast spreading rates, suggest that a negative power-law relationship may exist between these parameters and spreading rate.”
I wonder if anyone is watching the more recent seismic activity.

Patrick Henry
October 4, 2008 6:35 am

Temperatures in the interior of the Greenland ice sheet are averaging -44F (-42C) this month, starting one week after the end of summer.

Patrick Henry
October 4, 2008 6:36 am
October 4, 2008 7:30 am

Has anyone else seen this posting on the 2nd October on the NSIDC website?
“The 2008 season strongly reinforces the thirty-year downward trend in Arctic ice extent. The 2008 September low was 34% below the long-term average from 1979 to 2000 and only 9% greater than the 2007 record (Figure 2). Because the 2008 low was so far below the September average, the negative trend in September extent has been pulled downward, from –10.7 % per decade to –11.7 % per decade (Figure 3).
NSIDC Senior Scientist Mark Serreze said, “When you look at the sharp decline that we’ve seen over the past thirty years, a ‘recovery’ from lowest to second lowest is no recovery at all. Both within and beyond the Arctic, the implications of the decline are enormous.” ”
With an observation such as that, how can he possibly expect to be taken seriously?

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 7:51 am

“When you look at the sharp decline we have seen over the past 30 years, a recovery from lowest to second lowest is no recovery at all,” Serreze said.
The recovery is not a recovery.
Droughts caused by Global Warming. Increased rainfall caused by Global Warming. Warming is warming. Cooling is warming. Wind is because of warming. Lack of wind is because of warming.
Is there nothing that Global Warming can’t do?
See here for a list of some of the things caused by Global Warming:

October 4, 2008 7:58 am

I’ve always thought that there had to be more causes of climatic shift than just CO2. Vulcanism, magnetosphere variation, wind and current pattern shifts all seem to play a far greater part than just a trace atmospheric gas.
To me, one trace atmospheric gas alone could not be responsible for the increases and decreases in temperature we see. CO2 warming as outlined by the IPCC and the Gore AGW faction always struck me rather like trying to boil a bucket of water using your kid sisters toy hairdryer. Try it sometime when you’ve got a year to waste.

October 4, 2008 8:24 am

And here’s something from the other side of the world.
Penguins in Brazil

October 4, 2008 8:27 am

They’re now beating the drum for record low for arctic sea ice in 2009.
From Arctic Ice in “Death Spiral,” Is Near Record Low:
The ice is in a “death spiral” and may disappear in the summers within a couple of decades, according to Mark Serreze, an Arctic climate expert at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colorado.
“With the climate feedbacks kicking in,” Serreze said by email, “we’ll lose the summer ice cover probably by the year 2030.”
“The remarkable thing about this summer is that we got all the way down to second lowest without especially favorable atmospheric patterns that would hasten melt,” Serreze said.
This near record low in 2008 was expected because warming has melted much of the older ice pack, resulting in thinner sea ice, which melts rapidly.
So even without special conditions like those seen in 2007, next summer could set a new record low, [Sheldon Drobot, a climate scientist at the University of Colorado, Boulder] added.

Terry Ward
October 4, 2008 8:50 am

Sheldon D Robot
Good robot. Sleep now. The teat of funding is here.

Jeff Alberts
October 4, 2008 8:59 am

Full disclosure: I am not a Certified Climatologist.

Lucky for you!

October 4, 2008 10:59 am

Why do they use the average for 1979-2000 for comparison to 2008 instead of an average from 1979 to 2005 or pick another year?

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 11:11 am

I just love these long range predictions. Serreze is learning from the climate modelers. I predict that in thirty years no one will remember this “death spiral”.
Mike Bryant

Mike Bryant
October 4, 2008 11:14 am

Where is the over/under action on 2009 Arctic sea ice extent?
I’m going with the over.

October 4, 2008 11:36 am

Anthony et al: Sorry for contributing late. Based on the ERSST.v3 version of Arctic SSTs, they skyrocketed after the 1997/98 El Nino. Since there’s up to a year lag between ENSO events and peak Arctic response, we may not see the results of last winter’s La Nina until this winter.
Arctic, Northern Hemisphere, and Global SST anomalies from Jan 1978 to April 2008:
Arctic, Northern Hemisphere, and Global SST anomalies from Jan 1880 to April 2008:
The ERSST.v2 version of Arctic SSTs had a much flatter curve in recent years, no anomalous rise. I covered it in this post:
Whatever the cause of the recent ice melt, it surely doesn’t appear to have an anthropogenic basis.

October 4, 2008 6:01 pm

Why is the animation not filling in the NW passage? Looks as though I could make a winter trip in my skiff with ports of call at every village in Northern Canada!

October 4, 2008 7:22 pm

[…] “Two new studies… point to wind-induced circulation changes in the ocean as the dominant… […]

October 4, 2008 8:30 pm

I have doubts about volcanic activity affecting the icecap (that takes a lot of heat!) but there has been some seismic activity up there detected. A search from 90,0 with 1000 km radius does show assorted shaking. Some seem to be near the Ridge.

October 4, 2008 9:58 pm

As those with the patience to read my ramblings will know, I am just a simple lawyer from London with no scientific training or experience. So, I want to make a wholly unscientific observation.
When the sun shines on me I feel warmer. When a cloud comes over to block the sun I feel cooler. When a cold wind blows I feel colder. When a warm wind blows I feel warmer. I know that the hairs on my arms (but no longer, sadly, the top of my head) have an effect on my experience of wind, fortunately I have lots of flabby pink chins to allow the delights of warm and cold winds to be experienced by several square feet of minimally haired flesh.
You can produce any number of fancy theories and intricate mathematical equations, but none will persuade me to discard the certain knowledge of my physical experience.
Every day starts with the world around FatBigot Towers at a certain temperature. The sun (or lack of) and wind (or lack of) dictate how the temperature of my little world changes. Cars, air conditioning units (not that we have many of those over here) and other random sources of heat might make a small difference but only small.
That being the case for my modest hovel in Highbury, North London, I see no reason why it should not be the same for everywhere else on the planet, after all, where I live is not an exception it is an example.
It goes without saying that when Mr Sun has shone on me other parts of the planet will want to share in the glory, so I allow the little heaty-things to bounce up. But even when they have done so and they sit up above throbbing with excitement, a warm wind will be the thing that melts my ice cream on a cloudy day and a cold wind will be the thing that makes me put on an extra layer of clothing when the sun is shining.
The ice up at the top bit of our planet is no different from me. The sun and the winds will determine whether it feels warm or cold. AGW theory is one step removed. It is only responsible for the melting/freezing if it enhances or reduces either the effect of the sun or the effect of the wind.
Just a layman’s thought; I know nothing, I have not been peer-reviewed.

October 5, 2008 6:34 am

“Sea ice at the top of the planet has apparently reached the lowest *volume* ever recorded,”
Notice the shift from extent and area. Can’t win? Just change the rules. It’s like playing Calvinball.

Mike Bryant
October 5, 2008 7:23 am

MattN, From the article you linked to above this quote:
“We’re pretty confident this is a record low,” said Walt Meier, a research scientist at the center.
I guess since he is “pretty confident” that it’s a record low that completely justifies the screeching headline “Arctic Sea Ice Shrinks to Record Low”
I’m afraid that government subsidies to these entertainers may be headed for a “death spiral”.

October 5, 2008 7:46 am

[…] what is actually causing ice sheet loss in Greenland and the west Antarctic? Anthony Watts has the […]

October 5, 2008 9:48 am

I presume that all this warming and increase in Ocean depth, is the natural course intended for the entirety of the whole of big bang/creation.
Based on history, the Ocean waters are slowly increasing as the Ice melts.
If we Research history, as I did this morning, it is just common to the history of earth to be constantly warming.
The early wonderers that slowly drifted from where ever the first humans orignated, were able to walk from one continent to another. Because there was more land. And then as the earth began to warm, the Ice melted, the Ocean waters rose and they had to use other modes of transportation. So in about 600 years, there will be very little dry land maybe if any at all left. It is just the course of a Seven Thousand year Plan.
Then the earth will rest for a thousand years. Then creation will start all over again, but this time things will be different.

October 5, 2008 9:55 am

I think that the translation that the earth would be layed to rest by fire, really just meant that the earth would just get really, really, warmer and warmer. And some day it would be covered with water like it was in the very beginning.

October 5, 2008 11:29 am

Earth is just the footstool of a greater of a greater world.
There is a much greater world, much, much, larger than earth.
We are just the footstool.

October 5, 2008 12:06 pm

On a semi-related note:
SOI is continuing to go positive:
Just sayin’…

Kohl Piersen
October 5, 2008 2:03 pm

People seem to think that the AGW proponents want to have it all ways at once – warming is warming, cooling is warming etc etc.
But perhaps one should be somewhat more sympathetic to their predicament.
If you are an AGW proponent, then evidence that global temperatures are falling might at any moment be fatal to your whole position. That is to say that you simply can’t support the position that anthropogenic CO2 is causing dangerous global warming if the fact is that the temperatures are actually falling.
BUT if you are an AGW opponent, then you are in the (much) happier position of being able to maintain your contrary AGW view in the face of evidence showing EITHER warming OR cooling.
Why? Because, necessarily, you take the position that climate is variable, it goes up AND down and always has done without any, or with very little, ‘help’ from anthropogenic CO2.
So please be kind to the AGW proponent; be aware that s/he labours under a much tougher burden than do you. Notice that it is really you, the AGW opponent who has it both ways, and not the unfortunate AGW proponent.

October 5, 2008 2:11 pm

The long-term effects of soot on the ice are well known with the effects most profound on terrestrial glaciers & ice shelves. However, with the possible exception of the huge volcanic mid-Arctic ridge blast (circa 1999?) ongoing geothermal effects are blocked by halocline and thermocline gradient barriers from melting the sea ice at the surface (Kim & I were involved in an in-depth discussion of this on Andy Revkin’s NYT dot Earth blog).

Kohl Piersen
October 5, 2008 2:19 pm

@ Yakoba
“I think that the translation that the earth would be layed to rest by fire, really just meant that the earth would just get really, really, warmer and warmer. And some day it would be covered with water like it was in the very beginning.”

October 5, 2008 3:52 pm

The earth is old and has gone through many cycles of change.
Some predict that the earth would be destroyed by fire. I think that is a bad translation.
I think what it means is that there will be a resting point for the world at some point. And that it will be a natural occurance. Such as the ice melting. With the continueation of rising Ocean water.
The earth was frozen at one point. It is now melting and will continue to melt intil the earth is covered with water.
This cycle of life as we know it will be finished.
The sun will turn on it’s axis away from earth and it will become frozen again.
Earth is the footstool of a Greater Earth.
The earth as we know it will be layed to sleep. It will rest in a Deep frozen state for a long time.
Then at some point it will start all over again.

Mike Bryant
October 5, 2008 4:14 pm

Kohl, now that you put it that way, I do feel sorry for AGW proponents. Thanks for explaining it to me.

Kohl Piersen
October 5, 2008 5:36 pm

Mike Bryant – “I do feel sorry for AGW proponents”.
Yeah, but not too sorry!! 🙂

Kohl Piersen
October 5, 2008 5:51 pm

Yaakoba, I’m not sure what you’re on but I reckon it must feel good!
In some billions of years when the sun is dying, it will expand and swallow the earth. I suppose that’s “ending by fire”.
As for the rest. There will never be any “resting point for the world”. The various cycles of warming and cooling, the drift of the continents and all that, will continue as they have always done. The one constant is change.
Of course, in the span of one mere lifetime, don’t expect to notice much of it!
“at some point it will start all over again.” In a sense, yes. Human beings, the planet, the entire solar system for that matter, are recycled ‘star-stuff’. The very elements of which we are made having come from long-dead stars.
Indeed there is no reason to think that we will not be recycled in the same way. Again, I don’t expect to see that in my lifetime!

October 5, 2008 10:26 pm

Yaakoba (11:29:22) :”Earth is just the footstool of a greater of a greater world. There is a much greater world, much, much, larger than earth.
We are just the footstool.”
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
The signal/noise ratio is getting bad enough without Yaakoba. What if her whole tribe shows up?

October 6, 2008 7:32 am

its refreezing a lot faster than normal, its all that 1 year old water iquess 🙂

October 6, 2008 7:57 am

Be assured, Yakooba Yertelsdotter, that it is turtles all the way down.

October 6, 2008 11:14 am

[…] TigerHawk: So, you think that climate change is responsible for melting the ice in the Arctic Sea and thereby, allegedly, endangering the polar bear? Are you among those who attacked Sarah Palin for opposing the designation of the polar bear as endangered because of climate change? Well, there is some new science you need to read. […]

Derek D
October 6, 2008 12:49 pm

Let me see if I have this right. So warm winds and currents have shifted northward?
I mean sure this would explain melting arctic ice, melting glaciers in greenland, warmer oceans at more northern latitudes, and hurricanes reachig Maine. It also explains cooling in the southern hemisphere and extensive ice GROWTH and record snowfalls and ice in Antarctica. And sure it makes sense that most of the population lives in the northern hemisphere making it appear to the majority that the world that they know is heating.
However I have been indoctrinated to the church of GLobal Warming and therefore cannot accept such a logical, and scientifically complete conclusion. Obviously this study was funded by ExxonMobil and GW Bush (using money he stole from black people). It is well known that CO2 causes air pollution, acid rain, nuclear fallout, teen pregnancy, and AIDS. The science is settled. You’re all stupid jerks, you don’t care about the earth or it’s children and you won’t stop until all of the polar bears are dead. How much did Dick Cheney pay you to spread this propaganda?
I will now put my fingers in my ears, close my eyes and hold my breath until you all stop talking about this…

Burch Seymour
October 6, 2008 1:39 pm

Interesting… And, at the risk of stating the bloody obvious, I’ve been wondering when we’d discuss the cause of the ice melt. As one who lives in snow country (Chicagoland), I know that a few degrees in temp don’t matter all that much, at least when considering the melt rate of those big parking lot snow/ice-bergs we accumulate over the course of a winter. I’m not sure how well these things scale, but rain, wind, and sunlight will melt things faster than a small increase in air temp. Heat transport is key. A constant flow of above-freezing water or air will transport more heat than static air. I’ve seen big snow piles disappear in a day of brisk breezes, leaving only the piles that were shielded from the wind by a structure. Rain works even faster.
My driveway faces south, and even when the temp is well below freezing, on a sunny day, any snow accumulation will melt, whereas the folks across the street (in the shade) maintain their snow cover. The sun heats my black driveway to a temp far higher than ambient air, and well above freezing, and the stuff melts, or sublimates, but in any case it’s almost always gone by the time I return from work.
Alton Brown – host/creator of the show “Good Eats” on the Food Network did an experiment thawing a duck-shaped ice cubes on one of his shows. See scene 6 and 7 here:
The result was that cold, slow running water melted the ice faster than a 200 degree oven (non-convection I assume).

Mike Bryant
October 6, 2008 2:13 pm

Can you imagine spending your life in the belief that each breath you take harms your own grandchildren? And then, as you hold that belief, you must drive vehicles and use other things that expel this same poisonous gas in order to make a living.
If I held those beliefs, I don’t see how I could function at all.
However some of these people that hold this terrible contradiction within themselves, Have the nerve to berate you and me for doing the things that they do themselves.
I really think it is time that some leader of the AGW proponents leads the way for these poor souls to a better and cleaner CO2 free existence.
If something like this were to really happen I would be able to hold this group in very high regard. As it stands, however, they are only living a lie.
I really, really do feel sorry for all who find themselves in this moral bind.

Mike Bryant
October 7, 2008 7:14 am
Probably doesn’t mean anything, but the deepest snow in the continental US on 10/7/06 was about 18′.
10/7/07 was about 37′
10/7/08 is about 50′ today.
Must be in the rockies somewhere.

Gary Gulrud
October 7, 2008 8:34 am

“The signal/noise ratio is getting bad enough without Yaakoba. What if her whole tribe shows up?”
Careful, friend, “He brings rain to fall on both the heads of the righteous and the wicked”.
Your current estate is not an end.

October 7, 2008 9:40 am
October 7, 2008 10:07 pm

I know nothing, I have not been peer-reviewed.
Peer and ye shall find.

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