Study: Antarctica's ice sheet survived warmer times, remains stable today

Antarctic study shows central ice sheet is stable since milder times


Central parts of Antarctica’s ice sheet have been stable for millions of years, from a time when conditions were considerably warmer than now, research suggests.

The study of mountains in West Antarctica will help scientists improve their predictions of how the region might respond to continuing climate change. Its findings could also show how ice loss might contribute to sea level rise.

Although the discovery demonstrates the long-term stability of some parts of Antarctica’s ice sheet, scientists remain concerned that ice at its coastline is vulnerable to rising temperatures.

Researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh and Northumbria studied rocks on slopes of the Ellsworth Mountains, whose peaks protrude through the ice sheet.

By mapping and analysing surface rocks — including measuring their exposure to cosmic rays – researchers calculated that the mountains have been shaped by an ice sheet over a million-year period, beginning in a climate some 20C warmer than at present.

The last time such climates existed in the mountains of Antarctica was 14 million years ago when vegetation grew in the mountains and beetles thrived. Antarctica’s climate at the time would be similar to that of modern day Patagonia or Greenland.

This time marked the start of a period of cooling and the growth of a large ice sheet that extended offshore around the Antarctic continent. Glaciers have subsequently cut deep into the landscape, leaving a high-tide mark – known as a trimline — in the exposed peaks of the Ellsworth range.

The extended ice sheet cooled the oceans and atmosphere, helping form the world of today, researchers say. Their study is among the first to find evidence for this period in West Antarctica.

The research, published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters, was done in collaboration with the Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre. It was funded by the UK Natural Environment Research Council and supported by British Antarctic Survey.

Professor David Sugden, of the University of Edinburgh’s School of GeoSciences, said: “These findings help us understand how the Antarctic Ice Sheet has evolved, and to fine-tune our models and predict its future. The preservation of old rock surfaces is testimony to the stability of at least the central parts of the Antarctic Ice Sheet — but we are still very concerned over other parts of Antarctica amid climate change.”


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May 5, 2017 8:24 am

Of course they’re “concerned.” That’s their job. As for part of the Larsen C ice sheet about to break off. What do they expect… it’s floating in the ocean.

Reply to  daveandrews723
May 5, 2017 8:43 am

…thorazine used to fix it

Reply to  daveandrews723
May 5, 2017 3:17 pm

The ice is stable. Climate Scientists….not so much….

James Bull
Reply to  Caleb
May 6, 2017 2:25 am

Brilliant observation.
James Bull

May 5, 2017 8:27 am

Seems to me they don’t need to “fine tune” their models…just throw them out! As always the obligatory hand wringing in the last sentence.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Alastair Brickell
May 5, 2017 9:03 am

We need to keep on “fine tuning,” boy, do we ever!!comment image
(“The Farside” by Gary Larson)
That’s how we get PAID, you know. 🙂
Handling “tuning.”
Fun, too! 🙂

Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 9:50 am

ristvan, I’ll remember that – avademic
‘fine tuned’ academic ‘computer models’ –
‘climate avatars’ where we can’t / won’t go.
And no /sarc !

Mike McMillan
Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 12:46 pm

Totally fake and fabricated cartoon. No one wears a hat in the cockpit.

Robert B
Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 1:57 pm

That’s the problem with sceptics like Mike Mc.
Don’t let the truth ruin a good joke.

Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 4:28 pm

Nor details like that captain sits in the left/port seat?

Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 5:55 pm

Now, now. Tis Janice’s climate aviators whose avocation is tweekin’ and twirlin’ de airplane model through the avademic computers in aviolation of nature’s cycles.

Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 6:28 pm

Thanks for that post, Love “The Farside” … Phil

Janice Moore
Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 7:41 pm

You’re welcome, Phil! And thank you Robert B and R. A. — I appreciate your support! 🙂

Reply to  Alastair Brickell
May 5, 2017 12:13 pm

I wonder if there is a name for the closing sentence used like this. It is common in news to use a closing sentence which sums up what everyone should know, and these sentences are often of extremely high banality multiplier.

The preservation of old rock surfaces is testimony to the stability of at least the central parts of the Antarctic Ice Sheet — but we are still very concerned over other parts of Antarctica amid climate change.

Yes, absolutely more research is needed to protect the consensus, which is that we are extremely concerned of the possible future catastrophic continental ice loss that is going to drown Washington DC. Insert here a sentence on how much the sea levels would rise if the glacier melted.
I stress we’re concerned and could we get some money so that we could continue this being concerned stuff. Not that being concerned would make any difference but it sounds good and alarming. You escape predicting when you say you’re concerned. And then you add the hypothetical how much sea levels would rise should the ice melt – which you didn’t predict.

Reply to  Hugs
May 5, 2017 9:00 pm

“I wonder if there is a name for the closing sentence used like this.”
Fake Summary & Conclusion.

Clive Bond
Reply to  Hugs
May 5, 2017 10:39 pm

You took the words out of my mouth Hugs.

Reply to  Hugs
May 5, 2017 11:19 pm

Fake conclusive line. I’ll go with that. It is not often it’s fake as such, it might be fully true, but still a politically selected talking point. In this particular case, I don’t have a clue if the author in question is really concerned or paying lip service. I suspect there’s a code between glaciologists in which they try to not raise public mud throwing my adhering to concerned-consensus even when their results are fully relieving and contrary to cagw.

May 5, 2017 8:31 am

Data says WAIS is stable. Zwally’s 2015 IceSat analysis. The redo of GRACE with differential GPS GIA correction in 2013. The Andrill program on Ross. Yet a new paper showing the center of the sheet is stable still gives lip service to the warmunist myth about WAIS. The O’Leary paper (Nature Geoscience 2013) purporting to show WAIS instability during the Eemian comprises avademic misconduct. Essay By Land or by Sea in ebook Blowing Smoke lays out the indisputable forensic evidence from the SI.

Reasonable Skeptic
May 5, 2017 9:10 am

Who would have thought that glaciers would respond glacially to changes in the climate?

May 5, 2017 9:26 am

“— but we are still very concerned over other parts of Antarctica amid climate change.”……That is the money shot.
Imagine your Doctor, “your body is in great shape, never been better considering previous worst times, everything appears to be normal, yet we fully expect you to be dead in a few months because you stubbed your toe.”

May 5, 2017 9:52 am

They have to say something. How else can they justify their existence?

R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 9:58 am

Don Easterbrook @ Senate Hearing: “The Antarctic Ice Cap is 15000 ft thick and has remained stable for 15 million years. We know this because there are no gabs in the ice cores.
Since we record Antartic temperatures there is no temperature increase detected. Antarctica creates it’s own weather and it isn’t going anyware. To get any ice melt, we would need to raise the average daily temperature from -58 degree F +32 degree F(Melting point of ice, + another 10 degrees F, a total avaerage daily temperature increase of + 100 degree F”.
“How likely do you think that is going to happen?”
And about Co2:
“Current level of atmospheric Co2 is (2015) 39 one thousand of one percent which is nothing.
The raise in Co2 gas been 8 one thousand of a percent which is as near as nothing as you can get.
Co2 on it’s self is not able to cause any significant increase in Global Temperatures, Let me repeat that, Co2 on it’s self is not capable of any significant increase in Global Temperatures. The effect of increased Co2 is less than 0,1 degree F”.
I am a big fan of Don Easterbrook.
Just watch his testemony and I’m sure you will be a huuuge fan too.

Reply to  R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 10:37 am

He is a legend….masterclass in how to cut through B.S. by stating facts.
My favourite…”the oceans are not acidifying, they are not acidic, they are alkali….”

Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 12:28 pm

This is funny by all means, but saying decreasing pH is not acidifying is more playing on words than talking about facts. His sensitivity assertion is too low. In my opinion something which is subject to a scientific controversy as the sensitivity value / spread, can not honestly be asserted away. Neither can a consensus be asserted, since clearly it does not exist. This is something that main stream media fails to recognize, it’s too complicated.
Not that I’d believe in significant future change in ocean pH.

Robert B
Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 2:12 pm

Hugs, in any other field, if you asked your assistant to make the solution more acidic they would drop it to less than 7. If you chastised them for making the solution acidic, I’m sure there would be a major incident.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 3:26 pm

Hugs. (btw: can’t you change your sickening NAME??? ugh — you are not “sickening,” just to be clear, that name is)
{Note: This is directed more at the AGW propagandists, not you, so, please don’t take my “tone” to heart.}
If your dad told you to keep on cranking that ice cream maker until the ice cream solidified,
only cranking it until it was the consistency of pudding would
“Solidified” = having become solid.**
“Acidified” = having become acidic.
“Solidifying” = a process which if not stopped will create a solid.
“Acidifying oceans” (as used by the AGWers) = a process which, given all the facts about the ocean and CO2, will
never create an acid.
** And quibbling over just how “solid” ice cream is (even glass is a “liquid” by some criteria) would just be silly — like your NAME (well, it is — and I would guess 97% of us think so — I’m sorry if that was hard to hear, but, better to know, don’t you think?…. I once represented a girl named (not nick-named, named!) “Kissy” — the best thing I could have done for her would have been to legally change her given name…. RESPECT <– don't you WANT it??).

charles nelson
Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 4:01 pm

I use the pH thing as the perfect example of how Warmists distort science to their own ends.
Trying to explain to someone with no science that the pH scale works from the centre outwards and that there is a reversal in the direction of an ionic process is flogging a dead horse!

Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 11:38 pm

Guys, as I said, this not about the fact, but just words. I understand perfectly well the seas are mildly alkaline almost everywhere. Acidifying is an easier concept than saying water becomes less alkaline, or where it is neutral, becomes acidic, and where it is acidic, becomes more acidic.
I used to swim a lot in a lake; the lakes we have here are often slightly acidic. Alkaline does not happen because the bedrock itself is acidic. Nothing bad happened, fish live there as well, but there are no corals around. CO2 won’t much acidify these lakes. Nor it will acidify the vast oceans so that the corals could not adapt to.

Reply to  Acidohm
May 5, 2017 11:45 pm

if you asked your assistant to make the solution more acidic they would drop it to less than

Have you ever asked your assistant to do that? To make alkaline solution ‘more acidic’? I’m not a chemist so I don’t do that. I’d just do the software for driving lab equipment.
There’s a hint. I’ll shut up because I’m not a chemist.

Robert B
Reply to  Acidohm
May 6, 2017 5:36 pm

Never did it, Hugs. Purely hypothetical. Just pointing out that you can get away with the oceans acidifying claims but it does imply a catastrophe rather than milder conditions to even those with a strong chemistry background.

R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 10:05 am

We should focus our money and resources on how to prevent the next extinction event from space (big meteorite or comet) instead of wasting our time with zealous scarmishes fighting a “settled” political ideology that can only be stopped if we break down the established powers behind this horrible scheme.

Reply to  R. de Haan
May 6, 2017 6:43 am

But taxpayer-funded academics, scare-“journalists” and CAGW cronies need salaries!

Moderately Cross of East Anglia
May 5, 2017 10:21 am

Following an excellent explanation about the Arctic being almost certainly a negative climate feedback (one of yesterday’s blogs) because it’s dark there for six months, ice reflects the low angle of summer sun which thanks to the curvature of the earth sheds fewer watts of energy per square of area than at mid latitudes, am I right in concluding that Antarctica won’t be able to lose a significant amount of its ice until continental drift takes it to warmer mid-latitudes?
I presume not even the most extreme climate alarmist is going to suggest the current state of the continent suggests meltdown is imminent . Seems the above study and comments pretty much nail it.
Looks like we’re in for a long wait.

Roger Knights
Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
May 5, 2017 11:07 am

Hansen and other alarmists believe that Antarctica won’t melt, but rather that its glaciers will become unblocked and then accelerate their flow into the sea.

Reply to  Roger Knights
May 5, 2017 11:44 am

Not exactly unblocked. A glacier can theoretically calve out quickly (in geological terms) if:
1. The depth of water at the glacier front is >90 % of the thickness of the glacier
2. The depth to rock bottom upstream in the glacier increases faster than the thickness of the glacier
3. The glacier is cold-based (under a warm-based glacier the hydrostatic pressure at the bottom of the glacier will usually be greater than the pressure of the seawater, so the seawater can’t penetrate)
4. There are no thresholds in the glacier bed
Which real-life glaciers, if any, conform to these requirements is uncertain.

Moderately Cross of East Anglia
May 5, 2017 10:32 am

Oh and great taste in your cartoonists Janice, Gary Larson is a favorite of mine…

Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
May 5, 2017 11:02 am

For no particular reason, I present my favourite Gary Larson:
Heck, maybe that’s the way some on the CAGW side feel as what they thought were Truths are being revealed as otherwise.

Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 11:33 am

Reminds me of an old pilots joke:
“Why do pilots hate clouds?”
“Because there are rocks in some of them”

Janice Moore
Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 11:54 am

lol, PaulH — good one! Yeah, their models (97% of them!) said that they were well above 30,000 feet ….

Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 4:47 pm

Mine as well, Paul 😉

Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 5:08 pm

There were three things useless to Naval Aviators (or any aviator): 1) the sky above you; 2) the runway behind you; and 3) fuel in the fuel truck. After spending 30 minutes trying to pump fuel out of a fuel truck, my fourth useless thing is no fuel in the fuel truck.

Phil R
Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 6:26 pm

Oy vey, +many!

Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 8:39 pm

“Why do pilots hate clouds?”
“Because there are rocks in some of them”
It’s hard to fly through cumulo-granite.

Reply to  PaulH
May 5, 2017 11:52 pm

lol, PaulH — good one! Yeah, their models (97% of them!) said that they were well above 30,000 feet ….

Funny! I like Larson, but some of the jokes require a lot of knowledge on the US history and popular culture.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
May 5, 2017 11:56 am

Thanks, MCEA. Hope you are now only a tiny bit cross…. perhaps, not cross at all (for a few seconds)?

Moderately Cross of East Anglia
Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 4:15 pm

I reserve my crossness for people who misuse science to line their pockets, mislead the young and harm poor people throughout the world by practicing eco-terrorism. WUWT makes me feel there is still some hope and its contributors -like you Janice – often make me smile with their optimism and humor.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Janice Moore
May 5, 2017 4:53 pm

Aw, MCEA. Thanks! 🙂 Take care, over there.

R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 10:32 am

It is typical of our zealous times that we worry about the Antarctic ice sheet while in Colorado thousands of cattle died during a rare (for now) blizzard and Kansas lost almost all of it’s wheat crops due to the cold and snow. The late cold spells that hit the NH this spring have caused severe damage to blosseming fruit trees, vineyards and winter crops all over Europe and North America.
Are we stupid or what?

Reply to  R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 11:35 am

I would guess about a quarter to half of the wheat crop was lost, depending on how much wheat in the northwest had already headed out. The most prolific wheat growing areas in the southcentral did not get cold enough and the prolific counties in the northwest may not have been mature enough to be susceptible to frost. Either way, it’s probably safe to buy grain now anticipating the price to increase soon.

Reply to  R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 4:06 pm

And a lot of the English, and I believe some of the western European, wine crop is suggested as ‘lost’ due to an unusual [but certainly NOT [sorry but shouting may attract the watermelons] unprecedented] frost in late April, after a warm March/early April led to budding and some flowering.
OK – the likely loss of a bit of local wine, when containerships can bring tens of thousands of tonnes of wine from elsewhere in the world, is not a civilisation-ending event.
Not while I get my cheap French red, anyhow!
PS – I am less then ten miles from Denbies of Dorking.
It has been decidedly cool in London – with grey skies and a smidgeon of rain, over the past week.
We are already seeing articles about hose-pipe bans here.

Frederik Michiels
Reply to  R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 5:08 pm

in Belgium we had the media trumpetting the warmest april 9th under climate change….
… but a week later…
dead silent when nearly 80 to 90% of the fruit harvest loss due to a late frostbite of -6°C for 4 nights in a row. If they didn’t just light hay bales on fire during the nights, the loss would have been the full 100%
i suspect that we’re in for a more “blocking type weather pattern” here….
which seen the research on blocking and solar activity would not surprise me.

May 5, 2017 10:44 am

Just goes to show you that no matter how positive the data is the alarmists can find the dark clouds.

Reply to  markl
May 5, 2017 8:51 pm

Mannian clouds?
You know, the upside down ones ?

May 5, 2017 10:54 am

If they really want to worry, they should be looking at this:
and this:
There is evidence of a current, longish term decrease in marine oxygen levels. As the second link above observes, marine biota have trouble with low dissolved oxygen. The explanatory views of both papers lean heavily on AGW, which in this case very likely demonstrates the serious damage “consensus” and policy compliant research does to science. The experimental results and the empirical observations coupled with the association with the Permian extinction made in the Nature paper appear reasonably sound. The most recent evidence indicates the final days of the Permian were actually marked by an ice age contradicts the warming argument, but that oxygen drop is still there. One of the great “mysteries” of the Permian extinction is that it affected the oceans more than the land. That is worth worrying about.

Reply to  Duster
May 5, 2017 11:30 am

Completely anoxic bottom water is extremely unlikely in an icehouse world with thermohaline circulation. It would require an enormous increase in productivity in the photic zone.
Curently it only occurs in isolated basins with freshened surface layer which causes permanent stratification. At the moment it only occurs in the Black Sea and locally and intermittently in the Baltic, but during past warmer and wetter interglacial it has also happened in the eastern Mediterranean.

Reply to  Duster
May 5, 2017 11:58 am

Add another one to the list of laughable scareseasrch. Extrapolate their numbers to most points in Earth history when the global oceans were much warmer and you’d find that life on Earth never made it out of the Cambrian because it was too warm.

May 5, 2017 11:22 am

I HATE press releases that don’t have a reference to the actual paper. Here it is:
Now having read the paper I can say that it is moderately interesting and supports the results of similar studies elsewhere in West Antarctica, but doesn’t relly contain much new data on ice sheet stability.The results in short:
1. There is a trimline that indicates the highest level that ice ever reached in the area. It was earlier thought to be from the last glacial maximum, but is actually vastly older, at least 3 million years and quite possibly much more.
2. This trimline was created by an ice-sheet that was warm-based even near the edges, which means that the climate at the time was at least 15 degrees warmer than now.
3. The ice has been moderately thicker than now repeatedly during the Pleistocene.
This paper thus does not directly address the stability of the WAIS, but the fact that the only material deposited in the area since the very old maximum glaciation is blue ice moraine suggests a continuously high arctic climate. And more important (and this is a point they don’t make in the paper), since the exotic clasts in the blue-ice moraine is sourced in the glacially overdeepened troughs around Ellsworth Mountains, the complete absence of young marine sediments among the clasts suggests that there hasn’t been any marine incursions in these troughs since they were created.
And that “we are concerned yada yada” is of course just the obligatory declaration of loyalty to the party line. There is not a trace of it in the paper.

Reply to  tty
May 6, 2017 12:03 am

Thanks for your comment, tty.

May 5, 2017 12:12 pm

On an unrelated topic, does anyone know why the DMI Arctic temperature data has not been updated since Tuesday?

Reply to  Mickey
May 5, 2017 12:37 pm

At least it’s been updated up to that point. For the last year, the once very accessible polar ice data has been harder to find.

tony mcleod
Reply to  Mickey
May 6, 2017 1:04 am

Decline? Oh this decline.comment image

May 5, 2017 12:25 pm

To create a glacier must be a lot of snow.
Three processes determine whether the ice sheet grows or diminishes. Accumulation of snow on top increases mass. In time, the snow is transformed to ice that flows down through the ice sheet and out towards the margins. Melt in the lower regions of the ice sheet and iceberg calving from glaciers reduces the mass. If mass loss exceeds mass gain the ice sheet will shrink. Graphics Diego Winterborg.

Jaakko Kateenkorva
May 5, 2017 12:40 pm

climate some 20C warmer than at present

Say what? Why was climate so much warmer? What happened to the runaway greenhouse effect? Why are crops lost to frost nowadays?

Ron Williams
Reply to  Jaakko Kateenkorva
May 5, 2017 2:44 pm

Obviously, it has to be Climate Change, formally known as Global Warming. It doesn’t matter now what happens, if it freezes, floods, draught, or no major hurricane hits the last 10 years, then it is still all the fault of CO2. This is now the new communism, where we need a common enemy to rally around. This is very dangerous since this misinformation campaign has now gotten so out of control, they teach kids in our schools that CO2 is a pollutant. Of course, the innocent kids have no idea and have to assume that this must be true, and if they don’t, well I guess they will fail.
I just saw on TV business news a new scientific study out today that air travellers can expect to see an increase of up to 150% in air turbulence in the future. This was because as global warming becomes more entrenched, the jet stream will become that much faster they said.
I would think if anything, the jet stream might slow down since the temperature gradient between the equator and the poles is much less in a warming world. Maybe I am wrong, but if they think their prediction is right, then why hasn’t there already been an increase in turbulence in a warming world.

Reply to  Ron Williams
May 5, 2017 8:22 pm

The jet steam is moving in a meridional fashion at present. I guess that slows the west-east speed.
My local weather forecaster said today that an “Omega block” weather pattern was forming up over the central U.S., which means a high pressure system flanked by low pressure systems on either side, and the jet stream curving its way in between them and keeping the pressure systems separate and moving as though they are one object.,71.17,265
The link shows the Omega block centered on the central U.S. The deep dip in the jet stream located at the U.S. west coast was the same feature that dipped down into Hawaii and gave them a very surprising cold spell a few weeks ago. Now it has worked itself around to the west coast.
If the high pressure system just sat over the central U.S., a heatwave would ensue. Of course, it would have to sit there for a couple of months to do that, and it’s not unusual for it to happen, but not this early in the year.

Ron Williams
Reply to  Ron Williams
May 5, 2017 10:02 pm

This might be a chicken and egg scenario. Is it the slowing jet stream that is causing the meridional Omega blocking, or vice versa? I wish I would have taken some in depth meteorology courses in my younger days since if one wants to study climate, then you better know how the weather works. After all, climate is just long term weather averaged.
I saw on the news/weather report tonight that the flooding in Quebec/Ontario is a result of the Omega Block in the jet stream over North America. The jet stream pattern has been moving slowly from west to east as you say, while keeping the Omega Block pattern. This brought widespread flooding to the American mid west the last week as well, and is now digging deep into the south picking up the humid gulf air and taking it almost straight north where the low is now stalling out over the great lakes, hence the current rain and flooding in eastern Canada. Now that everything is paved over in the cities, a flood is bound to happen a lot quicker.

Reply to  Ron Williams
May 6, 2017 11:03 am

“This might be a chicken and egg scenario. Is it the slowing jet stream that is causing the meridional Omega blocking, or vice versa?”
I don’t know, but this Omega block formation formed rather suddenly out of pretty much straight-line jet stream winds. When I first saw it, I thought maybe there was something wrong with nullschool, because the western dip (I think I heard one meteorologist call it a “slot”) moved so quickly from where the west-east jet stream was moving, down to around Hawaii. The distances covered in that short time period by the slot was very surprising to me.
I haven’t been watching the jet streams long enough to discern any particular patterns. I watch these jet stream movements for a while and wonder how in the world anyone could make a computer program that could predict all that.

Reply to  Ron Williams
May 6, 2017 11:15 am

I forgot to note that when that slot hit Hawaii, it caused unusually cold weather there, by, I suppose, bring cold air down with it from up north.
I’ve been watching the jet stream on nullschool for less than a year so really don’t have any patterns down yet, and this is my first Omega block to observe. I’m wondering how the Omega block and the Burmuda high are going to interact.
And I think that watching the jet streams and seeing how the weather systems proceed from west to east all around the northern hemisphere, one day a big low pressure system is crossing the U.S. than a couple of weeks later it is moving into Europe and points east. And then Hansen and some other alarmists want to claim that U.S. weather and termperature profiles are different from the rest of the northern hemisphere. I don’t think so. I think the northern hemisphere is a well-mixed mass of air.

May 5, 2017 12:54 pm

… fine-tune our models and predict its future.

Anyone who says they can predict the future should be tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail. link
Here’s a link to a 2013 WUWT story about failed predictions. My guess is that Madam Zalonga, palm reader and crystal ball gazer, is probably more accurate even though her activities are technically illegal. It should also be illegal for folks with PhDs. They do more damage. Madam Zalonga does retail fraud. The climate prognosticators are doing trillions of dollars worth of damage.

Reply to  commieBob
May 5, 2017 1:30 pm

Apologies to Madam Zalonga. I was too harsh.

Reply to  commieBob
May 5, 2017 3:58 pm

Big difference: Madam Zalonga’s predictions sometimes come true.

May 5, 2017 2:44 pm

“Although the discovery demonstrates the long-term stability of some parts of Antarctica’s ice sheet, scientists remain concerned that ice at its coastline is vulnerable to rising temperatures.”
If it is only the coastline, doesn’t that mean it is the warm ocean that is melting it ?

May 5, 2017 3:03 pm

“beginning in a climate some 20C warmer than at present.” Whaatttt??
Was that man made or dinosaur warming? And here we are with some worrying about 1 degree of warming.

Reply to  Robber
May 6, 2017 12:10 am

Locally. Everybody knows there are traces of warm climate at Antarctica. But it wasn’t yesterday, it wasn’t the south pole then, and it isn’t a global result.

Bill Illis
May 5, 2017 5:52 pm

I built this chart long ago after going through tons of evidence about what has happened in the paleo-climate history.
The fact that Antarctica reglaciated 14 million years ago was known a long time ago. I don’t know why these studies keep getting recycled but that is a constant in climate science. Why are we spending $billions each year so that copy-cat studies keep getting repeated. It is an industry just like many others which are designed to siphon money off and keep PhDs employed and generating study revenue.
It is the small cratons between Antarctica and South America in the Drake Passage that are responsible for allowing the Antarctic Circumpolar Current to start up and/or stop for the warming period between 27 Mya and 14 Mya. Known long ago.
It is just grant money. It needs to be cut-off and the non-objective pro-global warming scientists need to find a different job other than re-parroting known issues and/or making up new scare-stories. Cut them off tomorrow and some real science will rise to the forefront again.

Reply to  Bill Illis
May 5, 2017 6:02 pm

Sobering graphic. Thank you.

Reply to  Bill Illis
May 5, 2017 6:55 pm

$billions each year so that copy-cat studies keep getting repeated…
amen to that one

Reply to  Bill Illis
May 6, 2017 1:59 am

Bill Illis:
Yes, and their theory is that the maximum (warm-based) glaciation was the first ice advance after the 14 mya re-freeze. I think it is also possible that it is from the mid-Pliocene warm interval when glaciers in the Transantarctic Mountains reached their maximum extent in e. g. the Dry Valleys area.
I think you aren’t quite fair in this case. This isn’t copycat science, at least not quite. The glacial history in this area hasn’t been studied before. Admittedly they are publishing their results according to the LPU (Least Publishable Unit) method, but that is the name of the game in Academia these days.
Also this research is further proof that the WAIS was very moderately larger than now at the LGM, and that huge GIA adjustments are unrealistic. Which is bad news for the CAGW crowd since the “catastrophic melting” of Antarctica is 100 % GIA adjustment as the raw GRACE data is not significantly different from zero.

May 5, 2017 6:13 pm

Yesterday, I got to visit the National Ice Core Labs, located in my home town of Denver Colorado. They have 20 000 cylinders holding a meter of ice in each. We briefly visited the storage room, kept at -30 degrees (the same Fahrenheit as Celcius). We saw a piece of Greenland ice–you could see the annual layers, created because more dust falls in summer than winter.
We had an interesting lecture on how the cores are gathered in Antarctica and Greenland , and the many universities that get pieces of ice to analyze for carbon dioxide, methane, temperatures and many other things. The collective graph of all that research we see frequently on WUWT.
The tour guide was only of only two full-time employees there. I asked him what would happen if he got “wrong,” politically incorrect results. He was an innocent lamb who thought he was simply dealing with the data.

Phil R
Reply to  ladylifegrows
May 5, 2017 6:51 pm

-40 is the same.

Ian L. McQueen
Reply to  ladylifegrows
May 5, 2017 7:12 pm

FWIW, the actual temperature at which C and F are the same is -40. I assume that this was a case of hitting the wrong key.
Ian M

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  ladylifegrows
May 5, 2017 8:22 pm

Once I gave a test and a student got 30% right. He questioned that, and said it should be 40%.
Okay, I said. 40% it is.

Jim G1
Reply to  John F. Hultquist
May 6, 2017 7:13 am

Reminds me of an advanced stat course I once took from a prof from a SE European country visiting my undergrad school that did not speak very good English. I got a B and was very happy and thanked him and indicated that I was surprised that I did that well on the final. He said, ” Well, B, is relative to others, on absolute scale, F”. Took me down a notch but thank God for the curve.

Richard Barraclough
Reply to  ladylifegrows
May 6, 2017 5:12 am

And Anders Celsius spelt his name like this

R. de Haan
May 5, 2017 7:51 pm

0.8 degree C of warming over a period of more than 100 years….
Earth has experienced temperature changes that were magnitues bigger over a period of less than 3 years.
I refer to the start and the end of the Younger Dryas which can be found in the Antarctic Ice core records.
The descent into an ice age is another example as is, although on a much smaller scale in terms of temperature fluctuations, but pretty dramatic, the start of the Late Antique Ice Age that took off in the year 535-536, a sudden cold spell that came with wide spread famine and a rapid decline in population a.o triggered by the Justinian plague epidemic, resulting in the Dark Ages. The Roman Empire didn’t survive the onset of this period.
Population levels recover again with the start of the Medieval Warmth period, another jump in average temperatures and within a period of 140 years a benign warm climate and plentiful food crops have created so much wealth and resources that all over Europe the fantastic Catherdrals are build. Than suddenly the building spree comes to an end as the Little Ice Age begins, crops fail, famine weakens the population and the Bubonic Plague wipes out half and in some area’s 2/3 of the population. A long period of slow recovery and set backs, wars, famines and returning plague epidemics follw and in the middle of the Little Ice Age a short peak in temperatures triggers the Renessance.
Than the Littel Ice Age conditions return with a vengence and temperatures get so low that glaciers experience their biggest growth in 10.000 years. It is from the ascend out of this cold period that we have gained an average temperature rise of 0.8 degrees and if we look at the average temperatures of today, much of that gain has been eliminated and we don’t need very much cooling to arrive in Little Ice Age territory again.
This summery makes two tings very clear. In opposition to what the AGW proponents claim, warm periods bring prosperity and bloom of societies. Cold periods mean death and decline. The seceond conclusion is that a 0.8 average temperature increase over a period from approx. 1850, the end of the Little Ice Age into our times is absolutely nothing to worry about and their hysterical attitude has absolutely no grounds.
We still don’t know what mechanism triggers the Ice Ages that come and go like clockwork and thanks to the massive waste of capital and resources on zealous AGW fraud and scare projects, research in this field is choked.
In the mean time Colorado farmers lost over 10.000 cattle in a blizzard on the same day a March for Science, read Global Warming, was held. This madness has to stop. These people have become an embarresment to our civilizations and if they are not stopped, a real threat to our civilization.
We seriously run the risk to crash into a new ice age with a totally demolished energy infra structure.
As I see it, we have two certainties, the onset of two future events that will take place with 100% certainty if we like it or not.
1. The next Ice Age will come, just try to imagine the scale of the implications.
2. The earth will be hit by a killer meteorite, astroid or comet from space and with killer I mean an object with the size, speed and inclination to trigger a total extinction of human kind and our earth’s biosphere.
We now know that at least 500.000 objects with extiction potential cross our planet’s track in space and we only charted a fraction of them. We have the technology and the resources to prevent such an object hitting the earth and even make money from it by mining those baggers. Greenies and our establishment obviously have other idea’s but a hit will finish them off too and with more power than all our nuclear capacity put together.
With these two certenties in mind I conclude that we have our priorities totally wrong and that we are wasting money, resources and extremely valuable time. Climate Change is not the biggest threat human civilization ever faced… Stupidity is.

Jim G1
Reply to  R. de Haan
May 6, 2017 8:19 am

Very well put!

Reply to  R. de Haan
May 6, 2017 11:32 am

Yes, we need a planetary defense system. NASA has the attitude that we have all the time in the world to find these dangerous asteriods and comets. They put resources into finding these objects, but it is nothing like a crash course. Way too leisurely for my taste.
And as far as actually preventing one of these asteriods from hitting Earth, NASA has done almost nothing.
NASA isn’t sure of what it wants to do in space at this time. It needs some leadership. A good leader would see these asteriods and comets, in their millions, as a potential danger that must be adequately addressed.
NASA is drifting. The NASA bureaucrats are great at getting increased budgets, and now they are building a heavy-lift launch vehicle, and a crew capsule, but haven’t figured out what they want to do with them. Moonbase? Go to Mars? What do you want to do, NASA? What’s the plan?
NASA has for decades had all the money, hardware and expertise it needed to conquer space, including the Moon and Mars, but for lack of vision on the part of NASA’s leadership, none of this has come to pass. We should already have humans living on the Moon, and humans orbiting Mars, at a minimum. NASA has wasted the last 30 years.
I have been saying this for a long time and I’m still having to say it.
Trump needs to call Buzz Aldrin and ask Buzz about what the U.S. should do with its space program. Buzz is where you will get the right answer, Mr. President. There may be others out there with the vision, but I know for sure Buzz has it. You don’t have to hire him, just listen to him and follow his advice. One can always hope.

Bruce Cobb
Reply to  R. de Haan
May 6, 2017 12:36 pm

Yep, human stupidity and the universe are the only two infinite things. And maybe not the universe.

Bruce Cobb
May 6, 2017 4:47 am
May 6, 2017 6:54 am

Meanwhile on the other side…
The CBC resident propagandist Bob McDonald writes:
“So rather than wait for the world to transition away from fossil fuels toward alternative forms of energy production, geoengineers at Arizona State University are proposing a radical idea to save the ice before it’s gone. They’re proposing a series of windmill-powered pumps stationed around the Arctic that would pump water from below the ice up onto the surface, increasing the ice growth during winter and compensating for ice loss during summer.”
And the obbligato drill on Trump:
“A more sensible idea might be to take that $50 billion and put it towards research into alternative energies, but in light of the recent decision by U.S. President Trump to open the Arctic to more drilling for oil and gas, it looks like, in the short term, oil derricks might be more likely to rise above the northern landscape than windmills.”

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