Ah, I see you have the Wishart that goes “ping”

by Gareth on May 3, 2010

n Ian Wishart’s lexicon, to “ping” someone seems to mean catching them out in a mistake or false claim. It’s a word he’s fond of using in his regular attacks on Hot Topic, most recently over my post on sea ice volume, and a comment thereunder by William “Stoat” Connolley. My post was “bad science” and I’m a “science illiterate” it seems. Unfortunately, all Ian does is demonstrate that his own science literacy is somewhat limited. His ping, like sonar, comes bouncing right back at him…

 

My post Feel floes (gone by 2016) was mainly concerned with looking at the issue of whether the Arctic sea ice was “recovering” from the record minimum of 2007. Wishart says it is “recovering strongly for the third year in a row”, but the volume data shows that to be nonsense. Wishart’s main bone of contention, however, seems to be about the impact of sea ice reduction on northern hemisphere climate. Here’s his first misdirection:

Gareth, incidentally, tries to argue in reply that volume is relevant because of the heat exchange to the atmosphere involved in re-freezing water.

My reply made no mention of volume versus area — I was just pointing out that albedo effects (though important) are not the only climate impact to be expected from a reduction in sea ice. The last three years have averaged around 2 million square kilometres below the average minimum over 79-00. That huge area of ice has to refreeze in autumn, and in so doing releases heat to the atmosphere. It seems Ian doesn’t have the foggiest how much is involved.

But here’s some news that evidently they missed over at HT: when ice grows in volume, it’s because sea water is converting to solid ice, with the same heat exchange taking place in regards to the first six inches of ice, the next six inches of ice, and all the ice thereafter. And sea ice grows because it is freakishly cold, and what little heat is liberated in the process is not strong enough to compensate for the cold.

Read that last sentence again: “what little heat is liberated in the process is not strong enough to compensate for the cold.” Time for today’s lesson. The heat required to warm 1 kg of water by 1ºC is a little over 4,000 Joules. The heat required to melt 1kg of ice is 333,550 Joules (aka the enthalpy of fusion) — about 80 times as much. The same applies in reverse — that is, when 1 kg of water turns to ice, it releases 333 kilojoules of energy. Now consider how much extra heat (compared with the long term average) is being liberated by the formation of 2 million km2 of new ice, which over winter will become about 1.5 metres thick. It’s a very big number indeed — my back of the envelope calculation (corrections and precisions welcome — William?) suggests it’s of the order of 11.5 x 1011 GJ (gigajoules). A big number. Let’s halve it, to allow for ice acting as an insulator. Still more than big enough to show up in the figures for Arctic climate. And it does.

Wishart dislikes Skeptical Science almost as much as Hot Topic (he describes John Cook as my alter ego, which is much more flattering to me than John). There’s a recent post there about a new paper describing the feedback loop between summer sea ice reductions and autumn and winter warming (also at Science News). But there’s an earlier paper to refer to, that I’ve written about before: The emergence of surface-based Arctic amplification by Serreze et al (The Cryosphere, 3, 11–19, 2009 – PDF) who examined Arctic climate data up to 2007 and found them to be “consistent with the emergence of surface-based Arctic amplification associated with declining sea ice extent”. There’s a good discussion of what this is and what it might mean for climate and weather in Mark Serreze’s chapter in last year’s WWF Arctic report, discussed at Hot Topic here. In any event, it’s not news. You might have expected someone as au fait with the literature as Wishart to have been keeping up. Or perhaps not…

Still, I did learn something interesting from his post. He’s finished his “Climategate” revision of Air Con, and apparently this “new edition also contains extensive new information on why ocean acidification is not being caused by CO2“. Oh really? That’ll be news to the oceanographers of the world. An excellent excuse for another look at his “work”, perhaps… ;-)

[The hospital sketch (bonus audio edit)]

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 1:51 am

I don't think anyone has built a paleoclimate database for sea ice cover that goes that far back, though I think (from memory) there was some Danish work last year that suggested that current reductions were unusual in the context of the last few hundred years. My understanding is that the Arctic Ocean is thought to have had a permanent sea ice cover for at least 700,000 years, and possibly 4 million years.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:31 am

3 my tops. The mid-Pliocene was much too warm for summer sea ice.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 3:51 am

Why not read the reference? Instead of assuming, you can see what people know.Antarctica is not the Arctic. One pole does not compensate for other.

William May 3, 2010 at 8:31 pm

I'm an "arch global-warmist" am I? Hmm, somehow I think that sort of comment only comes from people who know me by reputation rather than by actually reading what I say. And if we're nit-picking, it would be nice if could spell my name properly. I think TBR's claim – "oh, I was just going to post the same thing, but, err, didn't" is implausible.

I'm still betting on Schroeder and Connolley, BTW. And the claim that Arctic ice is "recovering strongly" is odd; it is clearly in long-term decline. The only issue is how fast.
My recent post Wallingford

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:27 am

Well, I have read you and I say you're guaranteed to be one or the other meaning of "arch." :)

The wily Maslowski still has 6-and-a-fraction years to be right. Don't count him out yet.

Gareth May 3, 2010 at 10:56 pm

(For the uninitiated, Schröder and Connolley is Schröder, D., and W. M. Connolley (2007), Impact of instantaneous sea ice removal in a coupled general circulation model, Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L14502, doi:10.1029/2007GL030253 — in which S&C removed all the sea ice from a model and watched it grow back. This was a formative moment for WMC… :) )

Le_Chat_Noir May 3, 2010 at 11:12 pm

So Mr Wish-it-were-so has once again outsmarted all those ninnies at the National Academy of Sciences! They recently released a report on ocean acidification which includes the conclusion that:

The chemistry of the ocean is changing at an unprecedented rate and magnitude due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions; the rate of change exceeds any known to have occurred for at least the past hundreds of thousands of years. Unless anthropogenic CO2 emissions are substantially curbed, or atmospheric CO2 is controlled by some other means, the average pH of the ocean will continue to fall. Ocean acidification has demonstrated impacts on many marine organisms. While the ultimate consequences are still unknown, there is a risk of ecosystem changes that threaten coral reefs, fisheries, protected species, and other natural resources of value to society.

Le_Chat_Noir May 3, 2010 at 11:12 pm

So Mr Wish-it-were-so has once again outsmarted all those ninnies at the National Academy of Sciences! They recently released a report on ocean acidification which includes the conclusion that:

The chemistry of the ocean is changing at an unprecedented rate and magnitude due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions; the rate of change exceeds any known to have occurred for at least the past hundreds of thousands of years. Unless anthropogenic CO2 emissions are substantially curbed, or atmospheric CO2 is controlled by some other means, the average pH of the ocean will continue to fall. Ocean acidification has demonstrated impacts on many marine organisms. While the ultimate consequences are still unknown, there is a risk of ecosystem changes that threaten coral reefs, fisheries, protected species, and other natural resources of value to society.

Richard Christie May 3, 2010 at 11:27 pm

Question from lay person:
Shouldn't meaningful discussion of ice formation and its associated energy ledger include energy transfer figures of the melt season as well as the freeze season? The annual equation must surely give the better seasonal picture.

Gareth May 3, 2010 at 11:54 pm

I discussed the overall energy budget of the Arctic in the "warm jets" article linked at the end of this post. If annual "energy in" was matched by the energy lost over winter, then the Arctic wouldn't gain or lose ice (though the seasonal cycle would remain, obviously). It's clear that the volume reductions over the last decade (of around 1,000 km3 per year) must have been driven by an imbalance in the annual energy budget — more heat in than can be lost over winter. If the volume data is somewhere near the truth, and the energy imbalance continues, then eventually the Arctic sea ice will become something more like the situation in Antarctica, where the sea ice cover mostly melts away in summer, to refreeze completely in winter. When that happens, the northern hemisphere climate will have changed significantly (see the Serreze WWF reference above).

bill May 4, 2010 at 5:52 am

I've read a few articles now on the ice melt, esp over Greenland. One of the 'rebuttals' that I've heard is that, although, the ice melt each year, is massive, it's only a small fraction of the total ice there. Seems unconvincing to me.

What I'm interested in, is there a 'tipping point' where if it crosses a given coverage or volume, that the melt accelerates?

RW1 May 4, 2010 at 12:41 am

Wishart is clearly an idiot on these matters. I suspect that the smartest AGW-denier that I've read will never turn up here – he knows he would be bested, so he sticks to political blogs.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 12:49 am

Who might that smart denier be?

C3P0 May 4, 2010 at 1:23 am

What does the artic ice trend look like if we go back 10,000 years?

Rob Taylor May 4, 2010 at 1:38 am

Wishart's "physics" seems to come out of his arse – clearly, to paraphrase his own post, he pontificates because he is freakishly odd…

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 2:01 am

This is from the exec summary of Past Climate Variability and Change in the Arctic and at High Latitudes, published by the US CCSP early last year, available here (17.6 MB pdf):

The Last Glacial Maximum peaked approximately 21 ka when the Arctic was about 20°C colder than at present. Ice recession was well underway by 16 ka, and most of the North- ern Hemisphere ice sheets melted by 7 ka. Summer sunshine rose steadily from 20 ka to a maximum (10% higher than at present due to the Earth’s orbit) about 11 ka ago, and has been decreasing since then. The extra energy received in summer in the early Holocene resulted in warmer summers throughout the Arctic. Summer temperatures were 1°–3°C above 20th century averages, enough to completely melt many small glaciers in the Arctic and to slightly shrink the ice sheet on Greenland. Summer sea-ice limits were significantly less than their 20th century average. As summer sunshine decreased in the second half of the Holocene, glaciers re-established or advanced, and sea ice became more extensive. Late Holocene cooling reached its nadir during the Little Ice Age (about 1250–1850 AD), when most Arctic glaciers reached their maximum Holocene extent. The Little Ice Age temperature minimum may also have been augmented by multiple large volcanic eruptions that lofted a reflective aerosol layer into the stratosphere at that time. Subsequent warm- ing during the 19th and 20th centuries has resulted in Arctic-wide glacier recession, the northward advance of terrestrial ecosystems, and the reduction of perennial (year-round) sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. These trends will continue if greenhouse gas concentrations continue to increase into the future.

RW1 May 4, 2010 at 2:16 am

Alan Wilkinson. In his world, anyone who is not of the libertarian right is a deluded fool.

C3P0 May 4, 2010 at 3:44 am

And it still has a sea ice cover.

Of course the current coverage is smaller than the last few hundred years. You are comparing to the little ice age.

So in the absence of a record of the Arctic sea ice, why not look at a record of a Greenland ice core and presume it is a yardstick for the Arctic?
http://www.foresight.org/nanodot/?p=3553

The present doesn't look so scary.

Also note that the Earth has two poles. What is the other doing?
http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/last_2000_yrs.h

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 9:10 am

This evening Wishart updates his original post, shifting goalposts by taking on one of my comments above, and then adds this:

But Gareth simplistically applies a dualistic model regarding the heat transfer from melting or freezing water to a chaotic environment that's influenced by far more powerful forces than the energy released by ice. All the evidence in fact points to warmer ocean currents from the tropics reaching higher, and the peer reviewed studies suggest the Atlantic warmed because of a reduction in dust coverage and aerosols, which allowed more direct solar radiation. The heat transported north by the Gulf Stream is far more significant than the atmospheric heat, in terms of its impact on sea ice and wind flows. And it's natural, not CO2 related.

It is worth remembering the Arctic was warmer in the 1930s than it is now, and in fact was darn near ice free about two hundred years ago, as well, naturally.

Astonishing. Incoherent at first, his "update" then becomes risible. "The peer-reviewed studies" he refers to are but one paper, which doesn't say what he wants you to think it does. His claim about the 1930s might have been true ten years ago, but isn't now, and the idea that the Arctic was "darn near ice free" 200 years ago is pure fiction. For once, I'm lost for words. He might as well be asserting that Arctic warming is caused by aliens beaming heat rays from flying saucers launched from their hidden base on the dark side of the moon. But perhaps that's in the new edition of Air Con…

Rob Taylor May 4, 2010 at 7:53 pm

Let me guess – Wishart wrote this whilst sitting under a pyramid and channeling Monckton

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 9:27 am

It's true enough. The current rate of Greenland melt would take a long time — centuries to thousands of years — to melt the whole ice sheet. But the rate is accelerating. It is thought there is a "tipping point" beyond which Greenland is committed to losing a large proportion of its ice mass, but there is considerable debate about when that point might arrive.

Richard Christie May 4, 2010 at 11:10 am

"n fact was darn near ice free about two hundred years ago, as well, naturally.

lol, I guess that's why the North West Passage was so easy to find.

dappledwater May 4, 2010 at 11:22 am
ctg May 4, 2010 at 8:04 pm

I might have to revise my earlier prediction – I think the skeptics are going to lose interest in Arctic sea ice much earlier than September. Have a look at what the sea ice trend has done in the last few days.

First off, notice that in 2007, the trend for this part of the year was actually slower than the long term average, at least through to the end of May, yet 2007 still ended up with the lowest minimum. So although this year's melt started off around about the long-term average, that is no guarantee it is going to end up at the long term average in September. And judging by that down-tick of the last week, I'd say we are heading for something significantly below average this year.

ctg May 4, 2010 at 8:04 pm

I might have to revise my earlier prediction – I think the skeptics are going to lose interest in Arctic sea ice much earlier than September. Have a look at what the sea ice trend has done in the last few days.

First off, notice that in 2007, the trend for this part of the year was actually slower than the long term average, at least through to the end of May, yet 2007 still ended up with the lowest minimum. So although this year's melt started off around about the long-term average, that is no guarantee it is going to end up at the long term average in September. And judging by that down-tick of the last week, I'd say we are heading for something significantly below average this year.

ctg May 4, 2010 at 8:04 pm

I might have to revise my earlier prediction – I think the skeptics are going to lose interest in Arctic sea ice much earlier than September. Have a look at what the sea ice trend has done in the last few days.

First off, notice that in 2007, the trend for this part of the year was actually slower than the long term average, at least through to the end of May, yet 2007 still ended up with the lowest minimum. So although this year's melt started off around about the long-term average, that is no guarantee it is going to end up at the long term average in September. And judging by that down-tick of the last week, I'd say we are heading for something significantly below average this year.

ctg May 4, 2010 at 8:04 pm

I might have to revise my earlier prediction – I think the skeptics are going to lose interest in Arctic sea ice much earlier than September. Have a look at what the sea ice trend has done in the last few days.

First off, notice that in 2007, the trend for this part of the year was actually slower than the long term average, at least through to the end of May, yet 2007 still ended up with the lowest minimum. So although this year's melt started off around about the long-term average, that is no guarantee it is going to end up at the long term average in September. And judging by that down-tick of the last week, I'd say we are heading for something significantly below average this year.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 8:34 pm

I wouldn't read too much into the current figures. The NSIDC Sea Ice News update today suggests that a lot of ice is primed to melt fast, but there's not much correlation between May extent and final minimum. But if you look at the NASA MODIS Arctic daily mosaic you can track what's going on — highly interesting eye-candy.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 8:34 pm

I wouldn't read too much into the current figures. The NSIDC Sea Ice News update today suggests that a lot of ice is primed to melt fast, but there's not much correlation between May extent and final minimum. But if you look at the NASA MODIS Arctic daily mosaic you can track what's going on — highly interesting eye-candy.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 8:34 pm

I wouldn't read too much into the current figures. The NSIDC Sea Ice News update today suggests that a lot of ice is primed to melt fast, but there's not much correlation between May extent and final minimum. But if you look at the NASA MODIS Arctic daily mosaic you can track what's going on — highly interesting eye-candy.

Gareth May 4, 2010 at 8:34 pm

I wouldn't read too much into the current figures. The NSIDC Sea Ice News update today suggests that a lot of ice is primed to melt fast, but there's not much correlation between May extent and final minimum. But if you look at the NASA MODIS Arctic daily mosaic you can track what's going on — highly interesting eye-candy.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Also, just a change in the wind can result in this sort of excursion, which is another reason why it makes more sense to pay attention to volume.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Just to note that AMSU Channel 5 is firmly back in all-time (satellite) record territory again, having been there for what looks to be about half of the year so far. The prior MSU data doesn't show individual years when added to the graph, but I assume 2010 is "competing" against the record warm months from early '98. Interestingly the '98 trend crashed when the El Nino ended around mid-year, which is when the AMSU data starts, although it was still enough for a solid record. By contrast, the tapering off of the relatively weak 2010 El Nino hasn't weakend the temp trend at all, noting thatit continues to track very consistently warmer than the already pretty warm 2009.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Just to note that AMSU Channel 5 is firmly back in all-time (satellite) record territory again, having been there for what looks to be about half of the year so far. The prior MSU data doesn't show individual years when added to the graph, but I assume 2010 is "competing" against the record warm months from early '98. Interestingly the '98 trend crashed when the El Nino ended around mid-year, which is when the AMSU data starts, although it was still enough for a solid record. By contrast, the tapering off of the relatively weak 2010 El Nino hasn't weakend the temp trend at all, noting thatit continues to track very consistently warmer than the already pretty warm 2009.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Just to note that AMSU Channel 5 is firmly back in all-time (satellite) record territory again, having been there for what looks to be about half of the year so far. The prior MSU data doesn't show individual years when added to the graph, but I assume 2010 is "competing" against the record warm months from early '98. Interestingly the '98 trend crashed when the El Nino ended around mid-year, which is when the AMSU data starts, although it was still enough for a solid record. By contrast, the tapering off of the relatively weak 2010 El Nino hasn't weakend the temp trend at all, noting thatit continues to track very consistently warmer than the already pretty warm 2009.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Just to note that AMSU Channel 5 is firmly back in all-time (satellite) record territory again, having been there for what looks to be about half of the year so far. The prior MSU data doesn't show individual years when added to the graph, but I assume 2010 is "competing" against the record warm months from early '98. Interestingly the '98 trend crashed when the El Nino ended around mid-year, which is when the AMSU data starts, although it was still enough for a solid record. By contrast, the tapering off of the relatively weak 2010 El Nino hasn't weakend the temp trend at all, noting thatit continues to track very consistently warmer than the already pretty warm 2009.

Steve Bloom May 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Just to note that AMSU Channel 5 is firmly back in all-time (satellite) record territory again, having been there for what looks to be about half of the year so far. The prior MSU data doesn't show individual years when added to the graph, but I assume 2010 is "competing" against the record warm months from early '98. Interestingly the '98 trend crashed when the El Nino ended around mid-year, which is when the AMSU data starts, although it was still enough for a solid record. By contrast, the tapering off of the relatively weak 2010 El Nino hasn't weakend the temp trend at all, noting thatit continues to track very consistently warmer than the already pretty warm 2009.

bill May 5, 2010 at 2:28 am

On the subject of the prominent and factually-challenged, readers may enjoy Australian ABC's MediaWatch take on Ian Plimer's recent assertions re the unpronounceable Icelandic volcano

http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s288

Deniers now have to add yet another vulcanologist to the conspiracy. (This is now the largest and most well-qualified cabal in human history! Surely resistance is futile?)

Glad to see the ABC remembering that it's obliged to fact-check and not just play the 'he said – she said' game.

bill May 5, 2010 at 2:28 am

On the subject of the prominent and factually-challenged, readers may enjoy Australian ABC's MediaWatch take on Ian Plimer's recent assertions re the unpronounceable Icelandic volcano

http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s288

Deniers now have to add yet another vulcanologist to the conspiracy. (This is now the largest and most well-qualified cabal in human history! Surely resistance is futile?)

Glad to see the ABC remembering that it's obliged to fact-check and not just play the 'he said – she said' game.

TomG May 5, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Sir John Franklin had a bit of a problem with arctic ice in 1845.
A bit short of 200 years ago, but it's "about" that long ago.
Things didn't turn out very well for his expedition and if there were such a thing as ghosts, I suspect Sir John just might have a few choice words for Ian Wishart.

Richard Christie May 5, 2010 at 3:05 am

Wishart has just made some truly pathetic attempts in comments to that post trying to justify his claim that the arctic was almost ice free two hundred years ago. A whole heap of quotes that can only support the claim in his own feverish imagination.

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 3:39 am

It would be amusing if it wasn't tragic. I feel sorry for the people who take him seriously.

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 3:39 am

It would be amusing if it wasn't tragic. I feel sorry for the people who take him seriously.

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 5:49 am

Just to deal with one piece of Wishart wibble. His claim: the Arctic was warmer in the 1930s than now. My claim: Wishart's wrong. Evidence:
<img src="http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/figures/Fig5b1_2008-450.png&quot; width=440>

From the latest Arctic Report Card.

Nuff said.

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

Gareth May 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

I also checked the reference under his comment here:

1930s warmth has recently been debunked? Not according to this 2009 paper (and it's not the only recent one)

The paper in question (9MB pdf) looks at data to 2007, relies on climate modelling, and is about Greenland , which. the last time I looked, was only a small part of the Arctic. It's an interesting paper, by the way, because it discusses the differences between the 1930s warming and the current episode. Here's the concluding paragraph. which is rather striking:
Climate warming has pushed the Greenland ice sheet beyond its threshold of viability in recent years (Rignot et al. 2008). The ice sheet seems poised not to grow without substantial regional and global climate cooling. It therefore seems much more likely that not that Greenland is and will be for the foreseeable future be a deglaciating Pleistocene Ice Age relic.
But of course Wishart is still pushing his "Greenland's not melting" line (Air Con p183). Unless, of course, he's updated that section in the new edition. It will be interesting to see whether he's gone back and corrected mistakes…

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