Anytime fevered proclamations demands instant action—which may be devastating to our economy—it is prudent to look at the other view, and this from CFACT is pertinent.
You just can’t beat the timing of two breathlessly announced reports suggesting that global warming is causing irreversible melting of Antarctic glaciers which will cause a catastrophic sea level rise. Their nonaccidental tandem release follows hyperventilating primal scream conclusions chronicled in the Obama Administration’s new National Climate Assessment that “climate change, once considered an issue for a distant future, has moved firmly into the present.”
Yup. Another meltdown issue is now absolutely clear. Climate changes!
One of those studies conducted by a group at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of California-Irvine used satellite measurements to track “six rapidly melting glaciers” between 1992 and 2011.
The other, conducted at the University of Washington, developed computer models to predict that coastal melting could cause the collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet within 200 to 900 years. This, they claim, might cause global sea levels to rise by as much as 10 feet.
As for influences surrounding this knuckle-biting alarm, the researchers place blame on broad patterns of climate change. Included are rising regional temperatures, warming ocean currents, and changing wind patterns. And while both research teams agreed that the existence of warm water might actually be part of the natural ocean system, they assert that climate change is a contributing factor in bringing the warm water in contact with the ice and causing it to melt.
But wait a minute. This isn’t exactly a new development that is readily attributable to smokestacks and SUVs. The West Antarctic ice sheet has been melting at about its recent rate over thousands of years. This condition is expected to continue until either it entirely disappears, or until such time as the next Ice Age intervenes to stop it.
For some additional perspective, consider that the West Antarctic ice sheet, which has been experiencing modest warming contains less than 10% of the continent’s total ice mass. That other 90% has been getting colder, with no decline in polar ice extent since satellite recordings first began in 1979. As a matter of fact, Antarctic polar ice extent just surpassed the greatest month-of-April measurements in satellite-recorded history.
Retrieved May 20, 2014 from http://www.cfact.org/2014/05/19/antarctic-melting-reports-omit-key-facts/