How to terrify liberals

Larry Kummer writes in by email:

Today’s responsible climate reporting, terrifying liberals: “A glacier the size of Florida is on track to change the course of human civilization” by “Pakalolo” at the Daily Kos.

Reposted at Alternet.  Number 5 in today’s daily links at NakedCapitalism, one of the major nodes in Liberal America. It will be seen by pretty much the entire Left in America by sunset. The headline photo is about a crying person after a hurricane. Here is the opening:

Thwaites glacier in West Antarctica is enormous and is often referred to as the most dangerous glacier on Earth. It has also been dubbed the Doomsday glacier. The glacier holds two feet of sea level but, more importantly, it is the “backstop” for four other glaciers which holds an additional 10-13 feet of sea level rise. When Thwaites collapses it will take most of West Antarctica with it. This is not new information for those of us that follow the science. For example, Eric Rignot in 2014, stated that the loss of West Antarctica is unstoppable. (You can listen to an excellent interview from 2019 between Rignot and Radio Eco-shock on Antarctica).

According to researchers at the University of Washington back in 2014, Thwaites is already collapsing. “The simulations indicate that early-stage collapse has begun,” notes their news presser. What’s more, the Thwaites Glacier is a “linchpin” for the rest of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet; its rapid collapse would “probably spill over to adjacent catchments, undermining much of West Antarctica.” 

About that statement by Eric Rignot in 2014. It is from a NASA press release “West Antarctic Glacier Loss Appears Unstoppable” that announces “Widespread, rapid grounding line retreat of Pine Island, Thwaites, Smith, and Kohler glaciers, West Antarctica, from 1992 to 2011” in GRL, 12 May 2014. The paper’s conclusion (with the only mention in it of timing):

“We conclude that this sector of West Antarctica is undergoing a marine ice sheet instability that will significantly contribute to sea level rise in decades to centuries to come.”

Rignot provides additional detail in the press release. No mention of timing in the story, or of uncertainty.

“This sector will be a major contributor to sea level rise in the decades and centuries to come. A conservative estimate is it could take several centuries for all of the ice to flow into the sea.”

This is just the first two paragraphs. Long quotes from reporters for Wired and Rolling Stone. The article runs on for 2300 words.


Added: NASA says in January 2019:

A gigantic cavity — two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall — growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is one of several disturbing discoveries reported in a new NASA-led study of the disintegrating glacier. The findings highlight the need for detailed observations of Antarctic glaciers’ undersides in calculating how fast global sea levels will rise in response to climate change.

Researchers expected to find some gaps between ice and bedrock at Thwaites’ bottom where ocean water could flow in and melt the glacier from below. The size and explosive growth rate of the newfound hole, however, surprised them. It’s big enough to have contained 14 billion tons of ice, and most of that ice melted over the last three years.

“We have suspected for years that Thwaites was not tightly attached to the bedrock beneath it,” said Eric Rignot of the University of California, Irvine, and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Rignot is a co-author of the new study, which was published today in Science Advances. “Thanks to a new generation of satellites, we can finally see the detail,” he said.

Note the last quote from NASA, about being able to see the detail for the first time. Here’s the thing: before there were advanced satellites, this sort of activity went on for millennia, blissfully unnoticed. It’s business as usual for glaciers; they melt, breakup, and calve into the sea. The Earth and humanity survived then and will now. -Anthony


Larry Kummer is the editor of the Fabius Maximus website and a frequent contributor to WUWT.

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coaldust
April 3, 2019 8:57 am

No mention of how much sea water will evaporate and be deposited as snow in Antarctica whilst the glaciers are calving.

Bryan A
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 9:56 am

Well, If AOC is correct and we have only a Decade, The melt over the next Centuries is meaningless.
If AOC is Wrong (and she most definitely is), and the Centuries long Melt is still inevitable, wouldn’t the Trillion$ of expenditure be better spent on Adaptation to rather than mitigation of something we can’t stop anyway?

Philo
Reply to  Bryan A
April 3, 2019 10:32 am

Don’t bet on a superlong glacier melt. We are already 14,000 years into a nominal 10,000-20,000 year interglacial.

No way to know but to imagine what suits you.

Bryan A
Reply to  Philo
April 3, 2019 12:00 pm

And of course what suits you is only acceptable if it fits the narrative

Mack
Reply to  Bryan A
April 3, 2019 12:42 pm

Yup, and how are those 91 fossil fuelled volcanos, recently discovered under the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, doing? Not to mention those pesky south boring ocean currents undercutting the fringes of the shelf? And the completely natural processes of glacier calving? All our fault of course!

Yirgach
Reply to  Bryan A
April 3, 2019 3:57 pm

Calling King Cnut! Calling King Cnut!

What we need today is a good $0.05 Cnut.

Taphonomics
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 10:03 am

To paraphrase Ecclesiastes:
All the glaciers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the glaciers come, thither they return again.

R Shearer
Reply to  Taphonomics
April 3, 2019 10:30 am

I thought that was Jimi Hendrix. 🙂

Steven Fraser
Reply to  R Shearer
April 3, 2019 1:21 pm

Jimi did not playmthe ‘thither’

John Endicott
Reply to  Taphonomics
April 3, 2019 10:42 am

To be specific, you are paraphrasing:
Ecclesiastes 1:7 7All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  John Endicott
April 3, 2019 1:02 pm

Glaciers are just frozen streams.

Samuel C Cogar
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
April 4, 2019 6:51 am

It’s quite easy to put a “stop” to glacial calving.

Just “stop” it from snowing.

Red94ViperRT10
Reply to  John Endicott
April 3, 2019 3:07 pm

Something I want to tell every warmist comes just 2 verses later…

Ecclesiastes 1:9

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

…and that includes not only current condition(s), but the rate(s) of change of that(those) condition(s). Everyone can relax, we have plenty of time. We can wait and see which direction the actual changes actually take, and even wait to see what those changes might do to us, then we decide what to do about it. And the what-to-do options can still include Nothing!

Dave N
Reply to  Red94ViperRT10
April 4, 2019 9:10 pm

“..there is no new thing under the sun”

Except for the GND.

Red94ViperRT10
Reply to  Red94ViperRT10
April 4, 2019 10:21 pm

@Dave N April 4, 2019 at 9:10 pm

Nope. Just another progressive Marxist power-grab attempt. We have seen those before, also. Even dressing it up in a new outfit has been tried before.

Philip of Taos
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 10:48 am

How ice was added to Greenland, some where about a trillion tonnes the past few years.

Thomas
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 11:25 am

It was published on April fool’s day, for obvious reasons.

Duane
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 11:52 am

If that hole underneath is really as big as estimated, and is only three years old (which seems very hard to believe), then the volume of water that was formerly in that hole has already contributed to global sea level rise … which as all the sea level gages show, is not increasing any faster for the last 140 years.

In other words, a great big nothing burger of another vewy vewy scawy global wahming stowy

ATheoK
Reply to  Duane
April 3, 2019 12:50 pm

I’ll follow up Duane’s excellent comment with a referencing of Anthony’s comment.

“A gigantic cavity — two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall — growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is one of several disturbing discoveries reported in a new NASA-led study.

The size and explosive growth rate of the newfound hole, however, surprised them.

It’s big enough to have contained 14 billion tons of ice, and most of that ice melted over the last three years.

Startling new discovery,
explosive growth,
melted over the last three years are very alarming words. Words that conflict and contradict each other.

A new low for NASA.

It really is time an independent audit team to review NASA and NOAA data collection, data handling, data storage and maintenance and data presentation.

Big T
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 2:03 pm

Where the hell is griff when we need him?

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Big T
April 3, 2019 5:23 pm

We never need him.

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
April 3, 2019 6:36 pm

I don’t know about that. Sometimes it’s nice to know what the latest socialist misinformation and eco-loony talking points are.

Goldrider
Reply to  coaldust
April 3, 2019 3:26 pm

Replete with the usual weasel words. This is now a mental illness, fear of the future on steroids. People who need to make the rent aren’t up at night worrying about this, trust me.

Nor are the owners, apparently, of hi-rise hotels and condos on the edge of the sand in Miami.

Edwin
April 3, 2019 8:57 am

So what the heck has this glacier doing what glaciers do got to do with global warming. Certainly the temperature in the “big hole” is not above freezing. Or is the evil molecule CO2 sneaking in and warm it all up?

Walt D.
Reply to  Edwin
April 3, 2019 9:34 am

+10

Bryan A
Reply to  Edwin
April 3, 2019 9:59 am

Considering the Thwaites Glacier Terminus is right over the Antarctic Geologic hot spot, I would say probably very little.

R Shearer
Reply to  Edwin
April 3, 2019 10:32 am

Glacier melting and hurricanes never happened before. That’s why we have such a difficult time finding gold laden galleons on the ocean floor.

Bryan A
Reply to  R Shearer
April 3, 2019 12:02 pm

Dang, I’m going to have to change my History Notes now….

Greg Woods
Reply to  R Shearer
April 3, 2019 1:46 pm

like the San Jose…

Andy in Epsom
Reply to  R Shearer
April 4, 2019 9:35 am

Sarc>
The gold laden galleons are only there due to the terrible English pirates sinking them and being some of the first to start global warming by burning carbon to launch their cannonballs.

Rocketscientist
April 3, 2019 8:57 am

Last week NPR (that vaunted source of unbiased propaganda) was running a daily report from a from researchers on a ship currently studying the Thwaites Glacier. The reports were made as they steamed along the front of the glacier. Their final report was that the glacier was growing in size once again.

John Bell
Reply to  Rocketscientist
April 3, 2019 9:25 am

Funny how studying such things always requires lots of fossil fuel to be burned, making them all flaming hypocrites for then telling the world to slow down on fossil fuels, but of course they all hold lofty stations in life and can preach to the little people. I bet they also used a helicopter for the study.

Taylor Pohlman
Reply to  Rocketscientist
April 3, 2019 2:22 pm

I bet it wasn’t “steaming along”, more likely “chugging along” on it’s diesel-powered engines. Pity they couldn’t have used some of those solar-powered ships to do their research. At least the Russians got that right – nuclear-powered icebreakers at least leave the Arctic more pristine than their diesel cousins.

Robertvd
April 3, 2019 9:02 am

It looks like VERY dangerous idiots now run the show in a lot of western governments like in The Netherlands.

https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2019/04/climate-change-plans-at-risk-as-carbon-tax-confusion-continues/

‘The government’s plans to tackle climate change may be falling apart because of disagreements about the introduction of a carbon tax, the AD said on Wednesday.

The Labour party and GroenLinks say the reported proposals for a carbon tax do not go far enough and that the government is now backtracking on earlier commitments.

The Dutch employers organisation VNO-NCW have written to the government urging it to ditch the carbon tax plans altogether. It fears heavy industry may relocate out of the Netherlands if the proposal goes ahead.

Employers are also concerned that both company and home owners will be faced with huge bills for improving the energy efficiency of their premises when the use of gas is phased out. They put the cost per house at €60,000.’

Bill Powers
April 3, 2019 9:08 am

Well it would appear from Chicken Littles proclamation there is no need for our typical knee jerk over-reaction. Given the hobgoblin hot topic here, there is absolutely nothing our Government or any collection of Governments can do to reverse this, by their own admission.

Everybody gather up your belongs, load them into your CO2 belching motor vehicles and move to a point 2 feet higher than current sea level.

Assuming, that is, you are interested in beach front property, otherwise it is advised that you keep moving inland a “smidge” further.

Andre Lauzon
April 3, 2019 9:11 am

To the millions of people that will be flooded out of their homes, I invite them to buy land in northern Canada because our Liberal gov’t has decreed that Canada is warming up MUCH< MUCH faster than the rest of the world. We will soon be the next paradise on earth …….. as soon as all the snow melts and the polar bears migrate to Antarctica. (if IT is not all melted).

Wharfplank
Reply to  Andre Lauzon
April 3, 2019 9:21 am

I’ll bring my palm trees…

Hugs
Reply to  Andre Lauzon
April 3, 2019 11:25 am

Sounds like I could make some $$$ as a property developer by selling tundra futures to unwitting gullibles.

Mickey Reno
Reply to  Andre Lauzon
April 3, 2019 6:15 pm

Just don’t crowd me and my sweet baboo, Rachel Maddow, after we’ve moved to our new seaside homestead on the sunny slopes of Mount Vinson, once all the ice is melted AND after I convince her that she loves men after all, generally, and me, specifically. And also I’ll need to convince her that it is her obligation to be the mother of future generations in order to restart the whole durn shootin’ match of human civilization. Living with my sweet baboo, Rachel, will be paradise. And because there will be no electricity or TV, she won’t scowl quite as much as she does when she’s on TV now, meaning she won’t get wrinkles on her face, and she’ll look young again, like before Donald Trump was president. , I’m so excited about this, that I’ve been eating nothing but hamburgers and I bought a huge Ford F350, to try to emit CO2 like crazy in order to hurry the day of my future happiness. Suck on that, Eric Holthaus.

/(ya maybe think sarc?)

Joey
April 3, 2019 9:17 am

Well the, I suspect the U.N. will quickly be relocating from the headquarters in Manhattan given that it is only 100 feet from the East River and only a few feet above sea level…..never mind that they recently spent billions renovating that building recently. You would think if they believed their own hubris, they would have abandoned it years ago and moved to higher ground.

Stewart Pid
Reply to  Joey
April 3, 2019 12:56 pm

We need a ” in 1980 the UN headquarters in New York was 50 feet above sealevel and after 40 years of GLO-BULL warming and sea level rise the UN headquarters is only 50 feet above sealevel” measurement. Only 12 years until the sky falls for real!!

Reply to  Stewart Pid
April 3, 2019 8:17 pm

“Only 12 years until the sky falls for real!” Imagine. They might actually be inconvenienced enough to shut up !

Steven Fraser
Reply to  Joey
April 3, 2019 1:28 pm

A
Nd, Trump will buy it at a great price, and turn it into useful office space, hotel and conference venue. Or, perhaps, a Renaissance combat dinner theatre…

Greg Cavanagh
Reply to  Steven Fraser
April 3, 2019 10:17 pm

Some years ago there was a great discussion thread about what to do with the abandoned UN buildings. (I can’t remember if it was Brietbart of WUWT.) The most popular answer was “target practice”.

Latitude
April 3, 2019 9:17 am

…and not one word about China, India, Asia, etc

markl
Reply to  Latitude
April 3, 2019 10:20 am

Or the rest of the world for that matter. Only Western industrial countries are committing CO2 suicide. And that’s the plan. The MSM can’t hide that fact forever…. although they’ve done a good job of it so far.

mark from the midwest
April 3, 2019 9:21 am

“West Antarctic Glacier is Unstoppable!”

I tried to stop a glacier once, pushed and pushed, even asked a couple tourists from Indiana for help, they declined. Couldn’t stop the thing at all, came back two months later, it had advanced a whole 23 inches. For those keeping score that’s 0.0000002521 mph.

Editor
April 3, 2019 9:37 am

It’s been “unstoppable” since the end of the Pleistocene…

The history of deglaciation of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) gives clues about its future. Southward grounding-line migration was dated past three locations in the Ross Sea Embayment. Results indicate that most recession occurred during the middle to late Holocene in the absence of substantial sea level or climate forcing. Current grounding-line retreat may reflect ongoing ice recession that has been under way since the early Holocene. If so, the WAIS could continue to retreat even in the absence of further external forcing…

The collapse (retreat of the grounding line) began about 20,000 years ago. It is irreversible because “the WAIS could continue to retreat even in the absence of further external forcing” and there are no topographic obstacles to prevent it from flowing downhill into the ocean.

One has to wonder why this paper didn’t merit panic-stricken headlines in 1999.


Reference

H. Conway et al, 1999. Past and Future Grounding-Line Retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Science 8 October 1999: Vol. 286 no. 5438 pp. 280-283

DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5438.280

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/286/5438/280.abstract

Abstract

The history of deglaciation of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) gives clues about its future. Southward grounding-line migration was dated past three locations in the Ross Sea Embayment. Results indicate that most recession occurred during the middle to late Holocene in the absence of substantial sea level or climate forcing. Current grounding-line retreat may reflect ongoing ice recession that has been under way since the early Holocene. If so, the WAIS could continue to retreat even in the absence of further external forcing.

Sara
April 3, 2019 9:38 am

“The glacier holds two feet of sea level but, more importantly, it is the “backstop” for four other glaciers which holds an additional 10-13 feet of sea level rise.”

“… glacier holds two feet of sea level but…” What astonished me is not the birdbrained assumptions, but the absolutely dumb, dimwitted, uninformed information being provided here, for the sole purpose of scaring the bejiisus out of people. The glacier holds two feet of sea level WHAT?”?”? nitwit? What are you referring to? Is it bourbon and branch water? Cracker crumbs? The cartons of Snickers ice cream bars that you’re going to have to buy now, so as to avoid starvation later? Have you thought of moving to Mars, where the only available water (so far) is far less than adequate to support life????

That is the worst piece of crap prose I’ve seen in a long time, and if it’s someone at NASA who cranked out that twaddle, s/he/it should be shown the door. It is absolutely awful, incorrect, and inaccurate. And that bit about Thwaite glacier NOT being attached to the bedrock below the surface?? It’s been known for a couple of decades NOW that most of those glaciers are NOT attached to anything, and that, in fact, they float on the surface and grind chunks off their undersides, which helps them slide into the sea. They are supposed to calve. It is part of a natural process that takes pressure off the tail of the glacier further inland. The square footage mentioned is hardly something to even worry about.

And in regard to that blurb from NASA, a meter is 3.3 feet, not 3 feet, so a measurement of 1000 feet of ice is NOT 300 meters at all. It is, in fact, 303.0303 meters. Rounding it off is inaccurate.

I want my tax money back from these bozos.

edi malinaric
Reply to  Sara
April 3, 2019 10:52 am

Hi Sara – 1 m measures 3.281 ft.

1000 ft = 304.785 m.

cheers edi

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  edi malinaric
April 3, 2019 11:45 am

How many Smoots is that?

Bryan A
Reply to  John F. Hultquist
April 3, 2019 5:00 pm

What about Manhattan’s or Olympic Pools

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Bryan A
April 3, 2019 5:28 pm

“What about Manhattan’s or Olympic Pools”

Hmm, I’m curious. Why sis you write “Manhattan’s” but not “pool’s”?

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Bryan A
April 3, 2019 5:28 pm

And there I typo’d. sis=did.

Sara
Reply to  edi malinaric
April 3, 2019 4:23 pm

Thanks for the heads up, edi. I will accordingly correct my escape velocity math for the Sun, on behalf of sungrazer comets and the few that occasionally fall into the Sun .

April 3, 2019 9:39 am

Alarmists act like the ocean water is now hot. SST may have increased by 0.35°C(?). That is not something that will have any significant impact on melting glaciers.

Reply to  Jeff in Calgary
April 3, 2019 9:49 am

To add to my last post; Use of terms like “collapse” when talking about a multi century process is truly disingenuous. The term is intended to miscommunicate, causing more Alarm than is justified.

Words and Communication are tools to allow understanding. When words are selected with the intention of creating misunderstanding, we may as well just stop using them. Somehow our society is devolving.

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  Jeff in Calgary
April 3, 2019 11:57 am

“collapse” when talking about a multi century process is truly disingenuous. The term is intended to miscommunicate,

I tend to agree, but . . .
Not sure about the last bit, not being aware of the writer’s mind.
However, the concept of “Deep time” (also: geologic time) has been internalized
with some branches of science. The following is from Wikipedia:
Physicist Gregory Benford addresses the concept in Deep Time: How Humanity Communicates Across Millennia (1999), as does paleontologist and Nature editor Henry Gee in In Search of Deep Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life (2001)[10][11] Stephen Jay Gould’s Time’s Arrow, Time’s Cycle (1987) also deals in large part with the evolution of the concept.
John McPhee discussed “deep time” at length with the layperson in mind in Basin and Range (1981), parts of which originally appeared in the New Yorker magazine.[12] In Time’s Arrow, Time’s Cycle, Gould cited one of the metaphors McPhee used in explaining the concept of deep time:
Consider the Earth’s history as the old measure of the English yard, the distance from the King’s nose to the tip of his outstretched hand. One stroke of a nail file on his middle finger erases human history.[12]

In the “Deep Time” sense, if something goes in 10,000 years the term “collapse” can seem appropriate.

Jon Salmi
Reply to  Jeff in Calgary
April 3, 2019 4:08 pm

Jeff, are you not aware that in this Post-Truth world words mean what the speaker/writer intends them to mean. Creating understanding is not the objective of words in the Post-Truth world. What is their objective, I shudder to think.

Mick
Reply to  Jeff in Calgary
April 3, 2019 11:12 am

And what is the margin of error?

Greg Cavanagh
Reply to  Mick
April 3, 2019 10:23 pm

The second quote:

“We conclude that this sector of West Antarctica is undergoing a marine ice sheet instability that will significantly contribute to sea level rise in decades to centuries to come.”

I think the IPCC would call this “robust”!!! (with three exclamation marks!).

April 3, 2019 9:46 am

I looked at the original article and the comment was that the Thwaites is not attached to base rock.
This to liberals is the fearsome thing.
But to realists and if it is the case, it means the glacier is mainly floating.
Displacing an amount of sea water equivalent to 9/10s of the ice.
Already yet.
90 percent of the imagined threat is in the sea levels now.

edi malinaric
Reply to  Bob Hoye
April 3, 2019 10:57 am

Hi Bob – Archimedes he say “If the glacier is mainly floating – the effect on sea level will be neglible”

cheers edi

Sara
Reply to  Bob Hoye
April 3, 2019 4:32 pm

Put some cold water into a large drinking glass. Measure the depth from top to bottom. Add some ice cubes to it. Measure the depth again. Then when the ice cubes have melted into water, measure it again.

The additional volume of melted water is so negligible, that it’s nearly invisible. If the oceans have a chunk of ice calved into them by a glacier, it is comparable to the same thing. Every time – every confounded time!!! – an Antarctic glacier breaks off or calves, the media go into a feeding frenzy about it, because it’s the size of Rhode Island or Manhattan or my clothes closet and we’re all DOOMED!!! DOOMED!!! I tell you!!!

They do NOT have anything intelligent to say so they make stuff up. When there’s no drowning of Manhattan, they try something else.

Well, Florida used to be four times the size it is now, before this warming period started. It was covered with NOT tropical woodlands. It’s going happen again, and the Keys won’t be islands any more. That’s more likely to happen in our lifetimes than an iceberg the size of Manhattan doing anything to damage any coastlines anywhere.

I still want my tax money back from those dorks at NASA who put this stuff out as announcements.

philincalifornia
April 3, 2019 9:53 am

Looks like the left, i.e. the dems are going all in on scaring people (scarring them even) with the weather for a possible GND platform in 2020. Hello kids – what and who they’re trying to to dupe you into voting for is far scarier than the weather, or the climate even.

Skiing on the Pennines today my UK friends ??

Patrick in Louisiana
April 3, 2019 9:53 am

“Pakalolo” is Hawaiian for “marijuana”. Fitting.

Doug Huffman
Reply to  Patrick in Louisiana
April 3, 2019 12:21 pm

Paka Lolo is ‘Crazy Weed’ idiomatic marijuana.

AndyE
April 3, 2019 9:54 am

I love Anthony’s very few last few sentences – and that is exactly why we can all just sit back and laugh heartily at it all. After all, humankind only stands to lose a bit of money from all this alarm (i.e. if governments take it seriously and start wasting trillions of dollars “preparing” for the disasters about to happen) – and wasting a bit of money does not really matter that much. Sit back and enjoy the circus. Laugh out loud.

Tegiri Nenashi
April 3, 2019 9:58 am

Loss of West Antarctica Ice Shield has been predicted long long time ago: in 1978 Mercer’s paper in Nature magazine. His estimates was 50 years for WAIS to disintegrate. Now, 50 years are almost gone; does false prediction affect his career?

Tegiri Nenashi
April 3, 2019 10:04 am

Actually, there was an editorial in Nature about Mercer’s research:
https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-01390-x
It is amazing how alarmists can spin false predictions and junk science. His work is still valid even though none of his predictions came through!

kenji
April 3, 2019 10:09 am

I’m having trouble visualizing how a floating glacier the size of Florida is going to raise sea level by 2 feet.

The total surface area of the oceans are: 138,996,777 sq.mi. The total land area of FL is: 54,136 sq.mi. 138,996,777/54,136 = 2,567 “Florida’s” cover the surface area of the oceans. 2,567x2ft=5,135ft. So I am being told that the floating glacier is 5,135 ft. thick/deep? The glacier is a uniform 1 mile thick?

I don’t think so. What am I missing ?

Urederra
Reply to  kenji
April 3, 2019 11:01 am

Kenji, if it is already floating, it is not going to raise sea level because it is already displacing as much water as its weight. Archimedes, remember?

kenji
Reply to  Urederra
April 3, 2019 11:21 am

Of course. So how do the Chicken Littles reason this “Florida-sized” (I also read it was “England-sized”) glacier is going to drown $850 Trillion in beachfront properties?

kenji
Reply to  Urederra
April 3, 2019 11:23 am

“Not tightly attached to the land” ?

Phil R
Reply to  kenji
April 3, 2019 12:43 pm

Kenji,

Couple rough figures for back-o’-the-envelope calculations. Glacial ice, pure water, and salt water have slightly different densities, but if you don’t have all the specific info at hand, a useful approximation is that 1 km3 of ice is approximately equal to 1 gigatonne (Gt). it takes 361.8 Gt of ice (melted) to raise global sea level by 1 mm. this is equivalent to a glacial volume of approximately 361.8 km3 (394.7 km3, if you adjust for density differences).

Anyway, forget the number of “Floridas.” If you estimate the volume of the glacier (km3) and divide it by 362 (envelope) or 394.7 (density adjusted), AND assume it’s not floating, this will give you the estimated sea level rise. If it is floating, see other comments.

Kenji
Reply to  Phil R
April 3, 2019 1:22 pm

Thank you. As you can tell, I am a ‘visual thinker’ so, area and volume are the terms I use. But of course density matters. So much for my layman approach

Moderately Cross of East Anglia
April 3, 2019 10:11 am

Radio Eco Shock ? What next – Radio Eco Deranged ? These people need to take stronger medication and are in need of serious help.

JEHill
April 3, 2019 10:21 am

I realized they were talking about playing video games after this part of the press release:

“The simulations indicate that early-stage collapse has begun,”

So not a true observational scientific report.

Furthermore they are making wild speculation based off completely new data and again hubristically thinking they understand all the input and output vectors.

How wrong were most of the world’s planetary scientists with regards to Pluto?

ResourceGuy
April 3, 2019 10:24 am

Oh, I thought calling another vote in the Senate on the Green New Deal for all to see was the most terrifying thing.

Rob
April 3, 2019 10:30 am

Liberals terrified by an assortment of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary and all of them created by liberals.

April 3, 2019 10:36 am

“before their were advanced satellites,” should be
“before there were advanced satellites,”

Reply to  Hans Erren
April 3, 2019 11:00 am

fixed

Joel Snider
April 3, 2019 10:46 am

Well, there are precious few ‘liberals’ out there anymore – they are now militant ‘progressives’.

And if you REALLY want to scare them, show them a mirror – most of the things they despise are their own personality traits projected on others.

Petit_Barde
April 3, 2019 10:47 am

I implore all the climate’s saviors to go there as soon as possible and try to stop this terrifying glacier:

– Do not forget to take (eco-produced) picks, saws, hammers, nails and some beams !

ResourceGuy
April 3, 2019 10:51 am

Interesting. So there are strawman arguments used for attack purposes and hobgoblin arguments use to keep sufficient terror levels in a defensive move. Is this like advanced climate psychology weapons class?

Urederra
April 3, 2019 10:52 am

Last decade was about Arctic melting, because Antarctica wasn´t melting.
Next decade will be about Antarctic melting, because the Arctic stopped melting.

(Ok, maybe the dates are a bit off, but you get the point)

tty
Reply to  Urederra
April 3, 2019 11:44 am

About right. Arctic sea-ice stopped shrinking in 2007, and the Greenland ice-sheet did the same in 2012.

This means that it is getting hard to hide any longer.

Rich
April 3, 2019 10:54 am

There’s only one way to snap a liberal out of this condition: Giant multicolored squirrels.

https://www.foxnews.com/science/amazing-giant-multi-colored-squirrels-caught-on-camera-become-internet-sensation

Walter Horsting
April 3, 2019 10:57 am

No mention of the 90+ volcanoes on a rift line under West Antarctica…

Radical Rodent
April 3, 2019 11:11 am

Do note that this entire scare is based on the phrase, “Simulations indicate…” Nothing about observations (which, it would appear, directly contradict the “simulations” but – hey! – what have FACTS got to do withis, eh?).

Not Chicken Little
April 3, 2019 11:17 am

I just love that I don’t even have to pay for climate porn!

Just like any other kind of porn, though, it’s unrealistic and never happens in the real world…

Not Chicken Little
Reply to  Not Chicken Little
April 3, 2019 12:41 pm

Oops I just realized they ARE making me pay, whether I want the climate porn or not!

Now I’m really mad!

Reply to  Not Chicken Little
April 3, 2019 2:41 pm

Imagine if other types of porn were funded by taxpayers?

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Jeff in Calgary
April 3, 2019 6:52 pm

I cannot honestly imagine how bad it would be if created by any government. Just considering the concept would be enough to put anyone off, so I guess it would probably help anyone with an addiction.

tty
April 3, 2019 11:38 am

Actually Thwaites glacier and the rest of the WAIS is not floating, it is resting on rock as other glaciers, but those rocks are often below sea level. It is this that makes the WAIS potentially unstable (if a number of other conditions are also right).

However this means that if the WAIS collapses much of the meltwater will be needed to fill out the space where the ice was, particularly as seawater is about 12 % denser than glacier ice.

The end result is that the maximum possible collapse of the entire WAIS can only raise the sea-level about 11 feet. Of course this will take millennia, ice flows pretty slowly.

The further conditions needed to make a glacier unstable is:

1. The depth of the sea at the glacier front must be >90% of the thickness of the ice
2. The depth to bedrock must increase up-glacier (=the ground must slope downwards going away from the coast)
3. This slope must be steeper than the increase in thickness of the glacier
4. There must be no thresholds or pinning-points up-glacier

As you might imagine it is not easy finding a glacier that satisfies all these conditions, Thwaites Glacier is the current favorite, but even that is doubtful. Recent measurement shows that the bedrock under it is rising extremely fast as the ice-load decreases, so it might well be self-pinning. This fast isostatic adjustment is due to Thwaites lying on top of a volcanic hot-spot with an unusually low-viscosity mantle. The phenomenon has been noted before on Iceland where the complete isostatic adjustment at the end of the ice-age only took about a thousand years, while it is still going on after 12,000 years in Canada and Scandinavia which are Precambrian shield areas with high-viscosity mantle.

icisil
Reply to  tty
April 3, 2019 1:11 pm

“Actually Thwaites glacier and the rest of the WAIS is not floating, it is resting on rock as other glaciers, but those rocks are often below sea level.”

I think they are talking about a cavern at the bottom of the glacier. I wish I knew where on Thwaites that is. There is another glacier south of Thwaites (can’t remember the name at the moment) that has a 200 m (I think) tall cavern beneath it, and there is currently, or was just recently, an expedition exploring that cavern with submersible drones.

Stephen Skinner
April 3, 2019 11:39 am

So is the Ice Age that we are supposedly still in, officially over? Did we just end the regular and enormous ice sheet expansions? This appears to have been determined by comparing 30 years or 100 years of temperature data with glacial patterns that last over 100,000 years?

Bryan A
Reply to  Stephen Skinner
April 3, 2019 12:05 pm

Only according to Revisionist History

kevin kilty
Reply to  Stephen Skinner
April 3, 2019 12:14 pm

We’ve been in an ice age for several millions years. We are presently in an interstadial.

kevin kilty
April 3, 2019 12:12 pm

One reason I enjoy coming to this site is to be directed by the erudite and astute who post here toward interesting science. The various articles concerning the WAIS are a prime example of this. The 1968 contribution by Mercer regarding “Antarctic ice and Sangamon sea level” is a solid piece of earth science in the old form where an argument was carefully framed based on observational evidence. His 1978 article in Nature was marred by the prediction that atmospheric CO2 levels would double in 50 years (double the 1978 level of 350ppm to something like 700ppm in 2028) which would lead to the collapse of WAIS. Thence to the sorry Nature editorial from 2018 giving him credit for raising the alarm about WAIS catastrophic collapse–thus conflating a true crisis with a mere caution about something that could happen over several centuries at some unknown point in the future, and never mentioning the varied misleading evidence and misdirection.

icisil
April 3, 2019 12:13 pm

I wonder where the climastrologists and glaciologists think glacial melt water from the volcanic heat flux beneath Thwaites and the other glaciers is going. Or don’t they think about such things?

Joel Snider
Reply to  icisil
April 3, 2019 1:03 pm

Heh. He said ‘think’.

Steven Fraser
Reply to  icisil
April 3, 2019 1:39 pm

Didn’t you mean ‘Glaciaholics’?

papertiger
April 3, 2019 1:00 pm

Did you read the part where the Penn State guy is going to take a ton of explosives, drill holes in the “cork” (their formulation, not mine) leading edge of the glacier, then let off explosions, just like mining a quarry of marble? These aren’t scientists. They don’t deserve public funding. They’re terrorists.

That’s the plot from “State of Fear”. This Indian scut is using the plot from State Of Fear to try and induce a glacier collapse.

I’ll bet you money they did the same procedure to Larsen B.

icisil
Reply to  papertiger
April 3, 2019 1:20 pm

It wouldn’t matter. They can blast all they like and there will be no catastrophic collapse. It’s purely theoretical.

Greg Cavanagh
Reply to  papertiger
April 3, 2019 10:27 pm

If it’s cold enough to be ice now, blowing it up won’t turn it into water, just ice cubes.

Jerry
April 3, 2019 1:16 pm

WOW. They need more grants and satellites.

icisil
April 3, 2019 1:53 pm

Thwaites’ calving edge: sailing through what was solid ice sheet just a few years ago, my elation matched only by my grief.

Gawd these people are pathetic. Their incessant, melodramatic virtue signaling makes me want to spew.

https://twitter.com/ElizabethaRush/status/1100470310363717632

Taylor Pohlman
April 3, 2019 2:26 pm

I invite you to come to my little town in Maine, where we deal with 10 feet of sea level rise on a daily basis. Mitigation technology exists, particularly if you have 100 years to solve the daily increase we experience.

William Astley
April 3, 2019 2:43 pm

Any observed change is presented as somehow proof of AGW.

It is interesting that the actual observed changes in Southern high latitudes are not in agreement with the climate simulations and are not unusual compared to the paleoclimatic record.

https://www.nature.com/articles/nclimate3103

Assessing recent trends in high-latitude Southern Hemisphere surface climate

Over the 36-year satellite era, significant linear trends in annual mean sea-ice extent, surface temperature and sea-level pressure are superimposed on large interannual to decadal variability.
Most observed trends, however, are not unusual when compared with Antarctic palaeoclimate records of the past two centuries.
With the exception of the positive trend in the Southern Annular Mode, climate model simulations that include anthropogenic forcing are not compatible with the observed trends.
This suggests that natural variability overwhelms the forced response in the observations, but the models may not fully represent this natural variability or may overestimate the magnitude of the forced response.

lower case fred
April 3, 2019 3:12 pm

IF, and that is a big IF, this glacier system is unstable, then do these people propose that they can assign a cause and effect relationship for that instability to anthropogenic CO2?

I mean, can they say CO2 is responsible rather than the end of the last glaciation (that’s rhetorical, I know they can’t)?

Even if CO2 were responsible can they do anything about it (rhetorical again, no they can’t)?

Chicken Little must either run or adapt.

Prjindigo
April 3, 2019 3:38 pm

It is already displacing its own mass in magma, nothing is going to happen.

PHYSICS, BAYBAY!

High Treason
April 3, 2019 3:42 pm

I remember as a child the same West Antarctic ice sheet collapse scenario touted at primary school 45 years ago. Boy that called wolf stuff.

Flight Level
April 3, 2019 7:01 pm

Interviewer:
Can you please develop how your bartender experience of serving whiskey on the rocks qualifies as “degree in iceberg climatology” ?

griff
April 4, 2019 12:41 am

If you post stuff like this, you are declaring climate skepticism a political opinion, not a scientific one.

There is no reason why the science should be more obvious to one side of the political spectrum than the other.

Flight Level
Reply to  griff
April 4, 2019 3:52 am

Ah, the paycheck dilemma.

Liberals and co. plan to get worldwide momentum on what tenured scientists establish.

No warming, no tenure. That’s precisely how politics steps into the trade.

sycomputing
Reply to  griff
April 4, 2019 8:55 am

There is no reason why the science should be more obvious to one side of the political spectrum than the other.

There is when one side isn’t doing science to reach their conclusions.

Joel Snider
Reply to  griff
April 4, 2019 2:12 pm

Grift – your ‘declaring’ anything does not make it so.

That’s another trick used by your type – false definitions and equivalency.

See, what’s REALLY the case is that WARMISM is the political position – and they prove it every single day. This article is just one example.

Lutz
April 4, 2019 5:12 am

14 billion tons of ice adds 1 cm of water to 1.4 million sq km of ocean.

Johann Wundersamer
April 4, 2019 8:30 pm

Larry Kummer [ sic! ]

are you “bekummert” maybe the world doesn’t hold space for a floating “glacier the size of Florida“.

No Angst, no Kummer – who needs such a small world. Anyway.

Michael 2
April 5, 2019 7:54 am

“Pakalolo” is Hawaiian slang for marijuana

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