Cold Focus : Disturbing Trends

After several key projects to alert the general public to the melting of the Arctic, some have concluded that pictures of unusual calving icebergs, sea ice scans and time lapse series of glacier disappearance are not enough, not sufficient, to make the case.

Sometimes, the simplest charts and graphs can stimulate somebody’s interest in the nature of the crisis, such as this regularly updated image of the Arctic Sea Ice Volume, based on the PIOMAS analysis :-

Of course, the Climate Change denier-delayer-sceptics are all over it like a nest of ants, trying to pick holes in it. But I think the general downwards trend is pretty hard to fault, even if you are as creative with your interpretation of reality as Steve McIntyre, Anthony Watts and their ilk seem to be.

Here’s what David Barber has had to say about the quality of the remaining Arctic Sea Ice, at the International Polar Year Oslo Science Conference, held between 8th and 12th June 2010 :-

http://ipy-osc.no/article/2010/1276262463.72

“Data on ice loss in the Arctic Ocean can be misleading : Published: 11.06.2010 : …”Last summer we studied sea ice recovery in the Southern Beaufort Sea aboard the research vessel Amundsen. We expected to be stopped at some point by thick multiyear ice, but the Amundsen, only ice classed to break ice 1.2 metres thick, was able to continue at full speed. We realised that the ice was rotten.””

“Dr Barber and his team saw swells penetrating far into the Beaufort Gyre and breaking up huge ice sheets. Normally, the ice should be too strong for this to happen. “We also observed that melt pond formation on the multiyear ice had continued all the way through the ice, leaving separate chunks of multiyear ice. When the freeze started, a thin layer – only about 5 cm – of first-year ice formed across the surface, and the combination was mistaken by the radar for multiyear ice.” This means that some of the data on the extent of multiyear ice are misleading.”

This is a genuinely disturbing trend. I think it necessary for public communications from governments and Media to place some cold, hard focus on the melting Arctic. People might become a little angry as they find out what’s really happening, and this could potentially have the useful side-effect of shaking the Climate Change denier-delayer-sceptics off the bucking people bronco.

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