Chicken Little and the North Pole Icecap

Christopher C. Horner - Author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming and Environmentalismby Christopher C. Horner

Late last week, the Drudge Report amplified a “shock claim” that “for the first time in human history, ice is on course to disappear entirely from the North Pole this year”. Drudge linked to the claims originally trumpeted by the UK’s fading left-wing rag The Independent.

Just for context, that is a paper that in late 2005 ran a story about me leading a Big Oil-funded global conspiracy against the Kyoto Protocol — not true, but I am willing to listen to offers — based on a cobbling of unrelated offal-smeared papers taken from my trash and given them by the dumpster divers of Greenpeace. But at least they called me first, unlike The Guardian which pulled the same stunt the same day.

This time the Indy writer also claimed “The polar regions are experiencing the most dramatic increase in average temperatures due to global warming and scientists fear that as more sea ice is lost, the darker, open ocean will absorb more heat and raise local temperatures even further.” This is what we call a lie.  Overlayed with Homeric prose, it expands to become a scare.

“The polar regions are experiencing the most dramatic increase in average temperatures due to global warming” only in computer models. These taxpayer-funded PlayStations will crank out any result – cooling or warming – that you want. Given that warming is (for now) where the money is, our modern-day Willie Suttons queue up to model warming.

In fact, the Antarctic – South Pole – is gaining ice mass, and cooling.

In truth, the North Pole has warmed, but has more ice now than a year ago. And the researcher supposedly making this claim didn’t actually make it: moreover he rushed to say that his words were being salaciously hyped.

Having once before fallen for a “North Pole is melting!” scam, even the New York Times — on its blog, mind you, no need to tamp down alarmism on its print pages – admitted that the hyperventilated headline and lede “go way beyond what Mark Serreze of the National Snow and Ice Data Center tells the reporter.” Serreze claimed on an alarmist blog that his actual claims “quickly grew out of all reasonable proportion,” admitting that a summer loss of ice at the North Pole “summer would be purely symbolic, but symbolism can be pretty darned powerful” (prompting an alarmist, taxpayer-servant to call on his team to invoke such stunts more often).

This is what we should expect from a press corps fully vested in the global warming industry. It has gotten so bad that in January NBC News showed a moving piece on the plight of the Antarctic, with footage of polar bears. The news would’ve been how in the world those bears got to the other side of the planet from where they really live. Outdoing itself, NBC recently also ran a piece on the Arctic, and showed us penguins. Sigh.

To show how bad things were last week, the less alarmist portrayal came from CNN. Of course, CNN made no effort to inform viewers that the “on record” they were talking about is simply since satellites began sending images in 1972. Nor did they bother with relevant details about the Northwest Passage though it was traversed regularly before the cooling that began about 1940.

Putting things in that perspective, you could say we are simply returning to what we believe was normal before the three-decade cooling that caused so much panic in the ‘70s. Oh, the humanity.  Have I mentioned the recent discovery of undersea volcanoes near the northern ice melt? Coincidence.

Read the rest of this piece at Human Events.

Christopher C. Horner is the author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming and Environmentalism.

  • Dan Pangburn

    The assertion that replacing ice with water at the poles will cause warming because water is dark ignores that the sun is low on the horizon at the poles and sunlight is reflected off the water as glint. At high latitudes there is more glint off water than reflection from ice so the net result from ice loss is cooling.

  • Alan Thibault

    Thank you!

  • Rob N. Hood

    Perhaps, but I’m not a scientist, are you? What happens if that water becomes warmer due to the extra sunlight? Even slight variations in water temperatures are known to have effects on climate.

    One clue is that global warming has caused the jet stream to shift north. That has brought, and will continue to bring, more tropical storms to the nation’s north, and may push around the jet stream in other ways as well.

    Global warming has left its clearest fingerprint on heat waves. Since the record scorcher of 1998, the average annual temperatures in the United States in six of the past 10 years have been among the hottest 10 percent on record. Climatologists predict that days so hot they now arrive only once every 20 years will, by midcentury, hit the continental United States once every three years. Scientists also discern a greenhouse fingerprint in downpours, which in the continental United States have increased 20 percent over the past century. In a warmer world, air holds more water vapor, so when cloud conditions are right for that vapor to form droplets, more precipitation falls. Man-made climate change is also causing more droughts on top of those that occur naturally: attribution studies trace droughts such as that gripping the Southwest to higher sea-surface temperatures, especially in the Pacific. Those can fluctuate naturally, as they did when they caused the severe droughts of the 1930s and 1950s. But they are also rising due to global warming, causing a complicated cascade of changes in air circulation that shuts down rainfall.

    Hurricanes have become more powerful due to global warming. For every rise of 1 degree Celsius (most of it man-made) in surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic, rainfall from a tropical storm increases 6 to 18 percent and wind speeds of the strongest hurricanes increase by up to 8 percent. As the new report acknowledged, “the strongest storms are becoming even stronger.” Atmospheric conditions that bring severe thunderstorms (with hail two inches across and wind gusts of at least 70 miles an hour) and tornadoes with a force of F2 or greater have been on the rise since the 1970s, occurring about 8 percent more often every decade. Get used to it, and don’t blame Mother Nature.

  • That’s great, it starts with an earthquake, birds and snakes,
    an aeroplane – Lenny Bruce is not afraid.
    Eye of a hurricane, listen to yourself churn,
    world serves its own needs, dummy serve your own needs.
    Feed it off an aux speak, grunt, no, strength,
    The ladder starts to clatter with fear fight down height.
    Wire in a fire, representing seven games, a government for hire and a combat site.
    Left of west and coming in a hurry with the furies breathing down your neck.
    Team by team reporters baffled, trumped, tethered cropped.
    Look at that low playing!
    Fine, then.
    Uh oh, overflow, population, common food, but it’ll do.
    Save yourself, serve yourself. World serves its own needs, listen to your heart bleed dummy with the rapture and the revered and the right – right.
    You vitriolic, patriotic, slam, fight, bright light, feeling pretty psyched.

    It’s the end of the world as we know it.
    It’s the end of the world as we know it.
    It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine.

  • Neil F.

    Dan: You do rock!!!!!
    Wrong N’ Hoodwinked’s rant almost made as much sense as that. I love how he cuts and pastes articles and tries to pass them off as his own thoughts.

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