There’s a lot of buzz about this in the blogosphere because of the constant barrage of alarming reports being fed by the media on Arctic sea ice melt. As we pointed out yesterday, the WUWT forecast is that sea ice is on its way to a recovery again in 2010.
Here’s where the problem is, the magenta marker is the Baltic sea:
And the AP video follows with this description: A passenger ferry with nearly 1,000 people on board broke free early Friday from heavy pack ice that had trapped it for hours in the Baltic Sea of Sweden’s east coast. Dozens of other ships remained stuck and awaiting assistance. (March 4)
Richard North at the EU Referendum writes of this event:
Sceptics can, of course, make hay with these reports – as indeed the warmists have exploited any number of transient weather phenomena – but it is germane to note that the Baltic incident is partly the result of gale-force winds which are compacting the ice and making it difficult to navigate.
Something very similar happened during September 1983 in the Northeast passage, when an unusually early freeze-up and persistent northwesterly winds that drove heavy multi-year ice into Proliv Longa and against the Siberian coast of Chukotka. Dozens of ships were trapped, creating a major emergency which lasted several months, a fascinating account latterly published in the journal Arctic in 1985.
This brings home the salient point that mass shifts in Arctic ice have more to do with wind patterns than they do temperature, something Anthony Watts helpfully confirms in a recent post. As a result, Arctic ice extent is recovering from its 2007 low and is currently within a million square kilometres of normal and increasing as peak coverage approaches.
Here, then, we have a complex, multi-factoral phenomenon, but it is one which the warmists have chosen to interpret almost entirely as evidence of global warming, claiming that temperature rises are the main if not sole cause.
Meanwhile, the setup for increased Arctic sea ice is looking good for 2010.