Glaciers in Norway, Alaska, growing again

A glacial region in Norway (Source: NRK)
Reposted from the DailyTech
By: Mike Asher

Scandinavian nation reverses trend, mirrors results in Alaska, elsewhere.

After years of decline, glaciers in Norway are again growing, reports the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE). The actual magnitude of the growth, which appears to have begun over the last two years, has not yet been quantified, says NVE Senior Engineer Hallgeir Elvehøy.

The flow rate of many glaciers has also declined. Glacier flow ultimately acts to reduce accumulation, as the ice moves to lower, warmer elevations.

The original trend had been fairly rapid decline since the year 2000.  

The developments were originally reported by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK).

DailyTech has previously reported on the growth in Alaskan glaciers, reversing a 250-year trend of loss. Some glaciers in Canada, California, and New Zealand are also growing, as the result of both colder temperatures and increased snowfall.

Ed Josberger, a glaciologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, says the growth is “a bit of an anomaly”, but not to be unexpected.

Despite the recent growth, most glaciers in the nation are still smaller than they were in 1982. However, Elvehøy says that the glaciers were even smaller during the ‘Medieval Warm Period’ of the Viking Era, prior to around the year 1350.

Not all Norwegian glaciers appear to be affected, most notably those in the Jotenheimen region of Southern Norway.


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Perry Debell

Can someone remind me? Just how think was the ice over central Europe 20,000 years ago? I’ll bet the Wurm glacial started with a little more snow and a slow advance of glaciers. On a balance of probabilities, the present Interglacial has to end some time. Why not now?

Stefan of Perth WA

No matter. Glaciers both growing and shrinking are proof of global warming. Not forgetting that glaciers in a state of equilibrium are also proof of global warming.
Me? I’m stocking up on Ugg boots and thermal underwear.

Freezing Finn

“Good” news for the truth – bad news for people having to live up here in North…


Hmm, this would disprove global warming, given normal logic. However, in AGW logic anything contrary to their “evidence” is just natural variation. And all of the sudden glaciers extents are controlled by a number of variables, where temperature is only one of them. Shrinking glaciers are of course only due to warmer temperatures. To say anything to the contrary would be denialist to say the least. After all thooousands of scientists say so…
Anyway, AGW religion took a huge hit some time ago when some fellows from the BBC(none the less) decided to drive a car to the North-Pole to disprove global warming. And considering that the kayak expedition ended just north of Svalbard with frostbites all over their @$$es. This should be damning evidence to say the least.

And solar activity is quiet as a mouse.
Let’s see how many spotless days we can rack up this time.

D. Quist

Are there any that are growing in the Pacific Northwest? I would love to point that out to the local Seattle AGWs.
I’m itching to ask an unrelated question about CO2. If I built two greenhouses with no plants or anything in them, both with same humidity. One with 385ppm of C02 and one with say 450ppm. What would the temperature difference be? What if I manipulated the CO2. The following article at ICECAP got me thinking about this.
What if I modified the experiment and put a pond that covered 70% of the area inside the greenhouse. Based on some of the AGW, I should get a runaway greenhouse effect, perhaps, due to positive feedback? Now, I know this is simplistic and as usual I am a very hasty person, with simple ideas. But there should be predictions that says what would happen that could be tested?
Any references on such an experiment?
Either way, I might just go down to the store, get some dry ice, drag out a couple of plastic jugs, stick my handy remote temp sensors and see for myself…. I just won’t know what the CO2ppm would be… Probably 50,000ppm. The jug should melt on a rainy day in Seattle….
One day this might be the science experiment that all students use to debunk AGW?


“says the growth is “a bit of an anomaly”, but not to be unexpected.”
Oh its one of those expected anomalies then!


The glaciers in Norway had a major increase in the 1990’s, it’s quite obvious that the Norwegian glaciers might be “disturbed” by the 10 year ocean cycle (NAO). Mass balance observations of maritime glaciers in southern Norway also show an overall increase over the last 50 years. Engabreen, a part of the Svartisen glacier in northern Norway also have an increase over the last 50 years. The source of these observations is the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE). Therefore, I find the 1982 comparing a bit odd. This “information” has been published in several Norwegian newspapers over the last few days. The first observation of mass balance of glaciers started in 1949, and since 1963 we have observations of 5 major glaciers. Why not use 1963?
If we take a look at the glaciers front position, there are observations even longer back. For example had Briksdalsbreen, an arm of the Jostedalsbreen glacier, a decrease of 800m from 1934 to 1951. That’s a huge change. The last decades decrease has been approx 500m, and the speed has surprised the scientists. Well, it doesn’t surprise me. That scientists are surprised or that the glaciers had such a decrease.

Leon Brozyna

And here in the U.S. the glaciers in Glacier National Park are retreating so rapidly that they’ll be gone in approximately a dozen years, at least according to a “news” piece on ABC News. They compared current photos to those from around the 1880’s. Of course they neglected to mention that the older photos were taken near the end of the Little Ice Age. Should the climate cool over the next few years {or decades} and precipitation patterns dump more snow on the glaciers and they expand it’ll probably also be dismissed as an anomaly. And the beat goes on…

Glacier advance and retreat is a function of precipitation, and has nothing to do with a variation in global temperatures of a fraction of a degree C, when the ambient temperature is well below 0 degrees C.
On a related subject: click


D Quist; you’ll find a nifty greenhouse experiment over at David Stockwell’s blog, Niche Modelling, under the threads, ‘Model of Global Warming’ and ‘Greenhouse Quiz’;

Steven Hill

The sky is burning, the world is on fire….do do todo dum

This recent reversal doesn’t surprise me – and whenever any AGW protagonists talk of accelerated melting and trends over the last ten or twenty years, get them to look at the last 5 years for the turnaround – whether glaciers, sea-ice cover, or sea-level – take a look for example at
Hanna, E. and J. Cappelen (2003), Recent cooling in coastal southern Greenland and relation with the North Atlantic Oscillation, Geophys. Res. Lett., 30, 1132, doi:10.1029/2002GL015797.
Hanna E., P. Huybrechts, I. Janssens, J. Cappelen, K. Steffen, and A. Stephens (2005), Runoff and mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet: 1958-2003, J. Geophys. Res., 110, D13108, doi:10.1029/2004JD005641.
Hanna, E., J. McConnell, S. Das, J. Cappelen, and A. Stephens (2006), Observed and modeled Greenland ice sheet snow accumulation, 1958-2003, and links with regional climate forcing, J. Clim., 19, 344-358.
There are signs in Greenland, according to Hanna, of the glacier speeds returning to ‘normal’ and the ice-mass balance to positive. I expect the trends for the 15% of Antarctica that shows a small warming signal, will also have shifted but I haven’t looked yet in detail.
Just tried copying in a graph which didn’t transfer – but if one googles Univ of Colorado sea-level data (TOPEX and JASON) – you can see the shift for global sea level at 2006 – where it levels off after long rise.
I am currently learning a lot from studying the global satellite links that Anthony has – and watching the way clouds and storm tracks follow the standing waves of the jetstream – which has shifted since 2006 (when the sun went quiet) – you can see quite clearly where heat (and moisture) is extracted from and where it is precipitated – currently from northern Pacific in the American NW including Alaska, from western Atlantic into Iceland and Norway, then an uploop from Arabia takes heat into central Siberia – which is why the ducks, geese and swans can’t be bothered to move west. In the summer of 2007 and 2008 the jetstream shifted south and the wave moved eastward, with Britain getting the uploop instead of the downloop and we got torrential rain and floods (and Norway dried out in sunshine!).
People may already know this – so forgive me, but Drew Shindell at NASA published papers on how he suspected the jetstream had shifted similarly during the Maunder MInimum and linked it to a cascade of solar UV effects on the polar vortex – I think this could be the key mechanism for linking solar changes (Leif – I am still not convinced the solar magnetics didn’t change – what about the UV during the spotless cycle?) to climate shifts.
Shindell D.T., et al., (2001) Solar forcing of regional climate change during
the Maunder Minimum. Science, 294(5549), 2149–2152.
happy hunting!


This would normally be great news, but they have already said that growing glaciers are a sure sign of global warming…


“Global cooling proof of global warming”:
This problem was adressed by the team at the UK Tyndall Centre back in 2004: Working Paper 58 – The Social Simulation of the Public Perception of Weather Events and their Effect upon the Development of Belief in Anthropogenic Climate Change
To endorse policy change people must ‘believe’ that global warming will become a reality some time in the future.
· Only the experience of positive temperature anomalies will be registered as indication of change if the issue is framed as global warming.
· Both positive and negative temperature anomalies will be registered in experience as indication of change if the issue is framed as climate change.
· We propose that in those countries where climate change has become the predominant popular term for the phenomenon, unseasonably cold temperatures, for example, are also interpreted to reflect climate change/global warming.
I guess it worked…..

Tim Clark

Freezing Finn (00:14:29) :
“Good” news for the truth – bad news for people having to live up here in North…

After visiting one of your “neighborhood” spas while on my Chevy Chase European Family Vacation two or was it three years ago, I’m having difficulty feeling sorry for you!! Be thankful you don’t live in Barcelona, where I was “furloughed” for three days while the local ground crew went on strike (riot?). According to Spanish Air, my wife’s lost luggage in Spain is considered an act of God.

Glaciers advance when the climate cools–surprise, surprise! Now that we have entered the 30-yr cool cycle in the PDO, we can expect to see the same kind of glacier advances that occurred from 1880 to 1915 and from 1945 to 1977. It’s all part of the natural 30-yr warm/cool cycle that we’ve seen for the past 500 years.

Jeff Alberts

Leon Brozyna (02:31:23) :

And here in the U.S. the glaciers in Glacier National Park are retreating so rapidly that they’ll be gone in approximately a dozen years, at least according to a “news” piece on ABC News. They compared current photos to those from around the 1880’s. Of course they neglected to mention that the older photos were taken near the end of the Little Ice Age. Should the climate cool over the next few years {or decades} and precipitation patterns dump more snow on the glaciers and they expand it’ll probably also be dismissed as an anomaly. And the beat goes on…

They also fail to mention that the vast majority of the glacial retreat in GNP occurred before the 1950s.

Peter Taylor:
Is this the graph you’re looking for?


[sarcasm on] No, no people. Remember the “correct” newspeak term is Climate Change! Any ecosystem change is caused by humans! [sarcasm off]

Pamela Gray

Your experiment sans plants and people idea reminds me of these: If a tree falls in the forest, does it still make a sound? And this: If a bear takes a dump in the forest, does it smell just as bad? If there were no people around to wring their hands of climate change, would the animals start blaming each other?


re.: S.M (02:23:09),
do you have links to data sources?
Would like to have them?
Thanks ahead.

OT: I have seen at least one paper indicating corruption of ice core air bubbles by liquid water, allowing C02 to dissolve, and thus undermining the claim that the Holocene has never seen C02 levels in the current range.
Taking as a given, just for the sake of argument, that there is nothing new under the Sun and that most, if not all, of the pronouncements about historic firsts, including high C02 in the last 12,000 years, are suspect, does anyone know anything about previous coral die-offs, during the Holocene or before, caused by acidification/C02?

Pierre Gosselin

Yet, I keep hearing from some institutes, e.g. Potsdam PIK, that climate change is occuring faster than even what the models predicted.

Pierre Gosselin

Don Easterbrook,
Could you elaborate on what you expect from this PDO cycle? Do you expect it to be somewhat benign. or rather severe? What data should we be looking at to get a clue? Sunspot activity is still awfully quiet and some are predicting some sort of Minimum to occur over the next couple of decades.
Also the latest NOAA SST chart shows a cooling equatorial east Pacific, especially when compared to charts from a couple months ago.

Pierre Gosselin

Peter Taylor,
I found the report abstract by our friends Gavin Schmidt and Michael Mann and others that you mention above.
They state in it:
“Global average temperature changes are small (about 0.3° to 0.4°C) in both a climate model and empirical reconstructions. However, regional temperature changes are quite large.”
I though Mann’s proxies were bristlecones on land and regional with his reconstructions not showing 1-2°C fluctuations. And how can he make the above statement with no real ocean data records from back then?


I pointed this out on another forum and our esteemed “expert” on Climate Change told me that of course the glaciers are increasing in size – more warming = more precipitation = more snow = bigger glacier! I’m afraid it’s impossible to win this argument. You might as well close your blog right now.

Douglas DC

I have a little tale to tell about Glacier.Back in my other life, I was a Co-pilot
on an Airtanker. DC-7,3000 gal retardant load. Back in 1996,I was based in Winslow Az. It had been quiet,we weren’t allowed to play with the big fire up
near Santa Fe in the Sangre’ De Christos… So I washed the Airplane,and watched the whole of The Aero Union,TBM,and Neptune fleets overfly Winslow.Finally near quitting time,6 pm., We get a call:”Go to the Pine Complex!??” Huh? It was out some days before with just some mopup going on. Well, we figgured that something must’ve got away,sooo,off we go. We get to the sea of black that was the Fire.In the middle, there is an island of green,with a smoke curing up.We were told by air attack to:” drop on the edge of the black” as if it was going any where,Ok, so we and the Alamogordo tanker did that.”Go home!” so back to Winslow. Some 200 or so air miles-loved that trip in the evening,
We went right over Monument valley and John Ford Country. We land,service the airplane with one of those Georgia O’Keefe sunsets from the wing of a DC-7 It was a good night. Getting to the Motel I turned on the TV-on the News as this breathless reporter,extolling the the virtues of the the Heroic Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt, fighting the Global Warming caused
fire with his new Pulaski and freshly washed yellow Nomex. A photo op…
Now fast forward to late June,early July-just before the Monsoon season in the Southwest.We’d been working a nasty fire up near Sunset Crater,near the San Francisco Peaks,the Horseshoe complex.Nasty place to work,turbulence,
up and downdrafts,and, as an added bonus, it was UP everywhere,no real
easy way out of that caldera if you lost an engine or couldn’t get rid of your load.Now,that fire went out.As with all big fires,it went out mostly on it’s own. Usually due to the following:it ran out of things to burn,the wind quit
blowing and it rained on it.Ok, we were at Winslow,thankful we’d never go back to that hellhole of a fire again.The clanger goes off:”Load for the Horseshoe complex!” Ok. We launch.We got over the same scene as before:
an Island of green and a sea of black.Except.This is now in the bottom of the Sunset caldera,and the nearest green is a good mile from the Island.”Drop half
in and half out!” Ok.So we do.Now in this mess which now has heavy helicopters,news choppers,Three heavy Airtankers(including ours) D-8 Cats,
Pumpers and-Bruce Babbitt.Upon hearing that,the Air Attack,and the Leadplane Pilot in unison said-“What? this is a photo op,and a waste of Taxpayer’s money-we’re calling the Airshow off!””GO HOME!”-so we did.
now later there were repercussions to that AIr Attack and Lead Pilot,but they
didn’t get fired.Now it is Mid August-the fire trail leads to Billings, Mont.
One of my fave tanker bases. It was slow day, nightly news was on.There with a straight face, was Babbitt.At Glacier. In a suit. Standing in front of a Terminal Morane,with the following signs: 1889,1914,1935,1950,1996.
(ignoring a run of that glacier in the 20’s.)Babbitt then gives us a sermon.
Sort of a “Sinners in the hands of an angry Gaia .” Pointing the bony finger of accusation at US unwashed,it is our Ford SUV’s and Chevy Pickups that are killing the planet!Let’s put it this way.It was exquisite in it’s Irony….

Pierre Gosselin
David Corcoran

Yet, I keep hearing from some institutes, e.g. Potsdam PIK, that climate change is occuring faster than even what the models predicted.
Do they mean global warming or global cooling? I don’t know what “climate change” is supposed to mean.


May I ask? You know how everything is green this, green that and that by being green we will help the planet.
Wouldn’t the ‘green’ in greenhouse gas suggest that we ARE being green?
And the lunacy continues.

anna v

Good to hear of this. Maybe Kivalina will stop eroding:
After another storm forced an evacuation of the island in the fall of 2007, you might say that Kivalina reached the end of its rope. Which is why, on February 26, 2008, this community of 400 Native Americans filed suit in federal court against 24 oil, electricity, and coal companies, including ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, British Petroleum, Chevron, and Shell. Demanding up to $400 million in damages-the estimated cost of moving the village out of reach of the rising sea-the lawsuit accuses the companies of contributing to global warming and creating a public nuisance that has harmed property in the town.
It’s an audacious move-after all, even snowmobile-using Kivalinans bear some responsibility for climate change. But the lawsuit goes further, charging that some of the corporations “conspired to create a false scientific debate about global warming in order to deceive the public.”

The article of course considers global warming a fact.


One of the most interesting climate related discoveries in recent years is that the Earth’s rotation isn’t slowing down as fast as it should. The only explanation is ice accumulation at the poles. Ice accumulation tends to increase the speed of rotation of the Earth by shifting mass closer to the poles, in the same way an ice skater spins faster when they pull their arms closer to their body.
Guess when this started?


Nice pictures of advancing glaciers in New Zealand.
Note, this information is 2 or 3 years old. I have been unable to find current data. Advancing glaciers are obviously not of interest.

L Gardy Roche

Speaking of growing ice,
The National Ice Center ,, contains animations of Snow cover and Ice for the Northern Hemisphere.

Michael J. Bentley

Douglas DC,
Thanks for a hands-on picture perfect pilots view of what you guys go through.
And still in my minds eye I see this old DC-6 diving (DIVING!) on a fire just off the Amtrac tracks in California. Picture Perfect drop – throttles max and that old piece of iron climbed like a lark!


While a lot of folks get worked up about glacial advance/retreat trends, I think that’s interesting, but what’s the bottom line? – ocean level variations.
Lately, it’s been 1.4 mm/year. Over the next hundred years, that’s 6 inches increase. Yet since the last Ice Age, ocean levels have risen 400 feet (48 inches per century). That sounds like a disproportionate change. And yes, I understand the impact of a graduated elevation of the low-sloped edge-of-the-bathtub influence impact on sea level change (i.e., more water into a bathtub with flat-sloped perimeters yields lower increases in depth per gallon contributed to the tub).
But at some point, when do the predictions of catastrophe end and reality intrudes??

F Rasmin

This article in todays ‘The Australian ‘ newspaper is unusual in that it presents (allows) controversy over supposed Climate Change’. It is entitled ‘Cold snap fails to cool protagonists of global warming’. Here is the link:,25197,24723425-11949,00.html

I’ve read a few references to glacial coverage being as low 6,000 to 7,000 years ago as it is now. Not bad, no change over several millennia.
I’ve collected some of them together and stretched the timeframe to 5,000 to 7,000 years.
If anyone has other nice links that fit or reasons behind that glacial retreat, let me know here or through Email.


So whats new, F Rasmin. ABC and Fairfax media are essentially junk. Contrary evidence is presented as “the southern ocean adapting to climate change”. Hilarious.

Greg Spurgin

Another article in an Australian Newspaper the Sydney Morning Herald, critical of the Global Warming Religion. What is interesting is firstly that the SMH even published it – they are very pro human AGW, but secondly this Saturday morning in Australia it is the most watched article on SMH. A sign I think that the sceptics are on the rise.


I think I have located the original NVEreport.
It has a graph of the glacier length change here, it would be nice if this could be added as a visual aid to the article above. 14kB PDF here.
To quote:

Results 2008
Thirty-two glaciers were measured in 2008, eight glaciers in North-Norway, and twenty-four glaciers in South-Norway. Twenty-four glaciers retreated.
Fåbergstølsbreen in Jostedalen in Luster retreated 60 meters, and Brenndalsbreen in Stryn retreated 56 meters. Bondhusbrea, a western outlet from Folgefonna ice cap in Kvinherad retreated 50 meters. At three glaciers the measurements indicated advance. This is partly adjustments to relatively large changes last year. Five glaciers had only minor changes (+/- 2 meters). Mean annual length change was 14 meters. Measurements were resumed at three glaciers – Tunsbergdalsbreen in Jostedalen which was monitored between 1900 and 1965, and Trollkyrkjebreen (measured 1944 – 1974) and Finnanbreen (measured 1950-1974) at Trollstigen in Møre & Romsdal.

Harold Ambler

Peter Taylor, when I try to visit your website I get a malware warning from my mac. Have you heard that before? I would like to be able to e-mail you; my address is
Back to the discussion, as more than one person has recently pointed out, it is amazing how little good data there are at present in re ocean heat content and sea levels, among other items on the list. I’m not saying there is, but it’s as though there is a cabal.
There is no other area of wide public interest where the disconnect between the best of the blogs and the MSM is as great as climate. Thanks as always to Anthony.

Don B

More on Glacier National Park. Figure 6.D shows that of the Sperry Glacier shrinkage between 1850 and 2003, 80.6% of that shrinkage had occurred by 1945.

Will Small

Hello again,
Just trying to understand how this article adds up to global cooling? I don’t see it and I’m sure the good folks here at WUWT can help as you have on the other threads.
You’ve probably followed the fallout on Politico over Erika Lovley’s article “Scientists urge caution on global warming”
Naturally, there’s been a huge backlash over her attempt to push forward the GC theory.
The author relies on the work of Joseph D’Aleo, a meteorologist (meteorology is the study of weather, not climate). D’Aleo’s lack of qualifications in climate science would be less relevant if he had published his work on “global cooling” in peer-reviewed scientific journals rather than the Farmers Almanac.
From the letter to the editor written by Russ Walker and David Roberts of Grist Magazine in response to the original article. Walker and Roberts write:
” While reasonable people may debate the value of cap-and-trade legislation, and it is certainly worth reporting on how its congressional opponents are strategizing to block it, it is simply false to point to a “growing accumulation” of evidence rendering basic climate science “shaky.” There is no such accumulation; there is no such science. If there were, perhaps the author would have cited some of it — it is telling that she did not.”
Politico acknowledges their error in publishing the original article and now recants. The editor writes:
“Giving voice to the losing side of a national debate is often fraught with peril. It requires navigating a terrain littered with grudges, slights, insults and hard feelings.
To do that without becoming ensnared requires extraordinary care. In Politico’s case, we slipped.”
I just don’t get how this glacier post in any way shape or form somehow indicates that GW is slowing rather than accelerating?

very good if the glacier growing again….

Harold Ambler

Hey Will. What you have described is a major U.S. news organization sounding about as cowed as TASS under Leonyd Brezhnev. I recommend that you enjoy the apex of your side’s power. It will never reach this point again.
And while the billions underpinning AGW may be capable of silencing CNN, they will not silence me.


I just don’t get how this glacier post in any way shape or form somehow indicates that GW is slowing rather than accelerating?
Will Small, the IPCC and many others cite retreating glaciers as clear evidence of Global Warming.
While there are multiple factors at work in glacier advance/retreat, it is clear that many ‘short response’ (glaciers that respond fastest to changes that cause advance/retreat) glaciers are now advancing. This is clearly the case in New Zealand.
Either, glaciers are not good indicators of climate change over periods up to a couple of decades and the IPCC and others are wrong, or glaciers are advancing due to climate cooling.
Take your pick.
Otherwise re the article at Politico, the global warming establishment uses unethical and frankly immoral tactics to suppress legitimate debate.

Richard M

Will, did you read Al Gore’s quote? That should be enough to make you think twice.


I’ve read a few references to glacial coverage being as low 6,000 to 7,000 years ago as it is now.
We know from multiple sources that the Holocene Maximum (or Holocene Optimum) was warmer than today. No one really disputes this, including the likes of Hansen.
The Warming Lobby hardly ever mentions the Holocene Maximum because it makes a mockery of the climate tipping point argument. If such a tipping point exists then the Holocene Maximum would have passed it and been much warmer than it was and of course we would still be much warmer.