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Scientists Cut Greenland Ice Loss Estimate By Half

samzenpus posted about 4 years ago | from the not-so-bad-after-all dept.

Earth 414

bonch writes "A new study on Greenland's and West Antarctica's rate of ice loss halves the estimate of ice loss. Published in the journal Nature Geoscience, the study takes into account a rebounding of the Earth's crust called glacial isostatic adjustment, a continuing rise of the crust after being smashed under the weight of the Ice Age. 'We have concluded that the Greenland and West Antarctica ice caps are melting at approximately half the speed originally predicted,' said researcher Bert Vermeeersen."

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Ololololo (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518328)

These are some trolling scientists all right. How can they dare question the confirmed facts of AGW?

Re:Ololololo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518606)

Yes, that's some climatic revisionism right there. Next they will say climate holocaust will never happen or something.

Re:Ololololo (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518982)

Nah, it will not happen overnight. We'll have a series of cases of revisionism instead.

Until, at last, when the ice age comes, someone at CRU will pick that last remaining "Time" issue with the global winter predictions, which are soooo out of fashion today, and wave it as proof.

That they were right all along.

Scientists, burn the whole bunch.

First Greenland Trout! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518330)

I am a fish!

Yeah right (-1, Flamebait)

dimethylxanthine (946092) | about 4 years ago | (#33518332)

Tell them what they want to hear John!

Re:Yeah right (3, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | about 4 years ago | (#33518580)

So this must be fake, but if they'd instead said it's accelerating faster, it would be true - right? Because that's what you want to hear.

Re:Yeah right (4, Insightful)

PhilHibbs (4537) | about 4 years ago | (#33518894)

Nothing would please me more than to find out that, in fact, we aren't screwing up the planet after all and that future generations will be able to enjoy a stable climate and SUVs. Really, I hope that everything turns out just great. However, it still doesn't look like it, I think we will face some very tough times. I don't know whether this new data is correct or not, just like I don't know whether the old data was correct or not. But 164 gigatonnes of glacial ice melt per year still sounds like a lot to me, even if it is less than 362 gigatonnes, so I'm not going to become complacent just because it isn't quite as bad as we thought - note that the word "bad" is still in the situation.

Also, all this means is that Greenland and West Antarctica are contributing less than 1/4 of the annual rise in sea levels rather than accounting for more than half. I guess we have to keep looking to find where the rest of the rise is coming from. None of this evidence contradicts the rise in sea levels, which is going to displace millions of people.

Why I no longer believe in global warming (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519116)

I no longer believe you, when you say that you would be "pleased" to hear that global warming isn't that big of a deal. If that were true, why are such stories buried and alarmist stories repeated even if based on incorrect data?

About 10 years ago, I also believed in global warming, however I stopped doing so. How is such a thing possible?
1. Climate Change
I had my first doubts about global warming, when they introduced the term climate change“ which the added claim that climate change“ may not just cause warming in some regions, but may actually cause cooling in others. So all of the sudden climate change“ may cause everything: Hot, cold, stormy, dry, wet, etc.
2. The first decade of the 21st century
If the “hockeystick” were correct, we should have experienced a record-breaking hot climate in every year or at least most years between 2000 and 2010, but that just didn't happen. Some people say that 2009 was the hottest year on the record and hotter than 1998, but even if that's true it does not really support the supposed runaway warming-scenario - at all. Now when from the 10 years following 1998 9 have been cooler and one has been warmer, that may show that the climate may be a little warmer than usual (after all 1998 has been the warmest on the record and 2009 may have broken that record), but it points more to a relatively steady climate that may be little bit too hot, but not at all to some runaway climate shift.
3. Alarmism
What also disturbs me a lot is the alarmism. The warm periods, no matter when we talk about humans (medieval warm period, little ice age, etc.) or life in general were always the better periods (where “better” means of course that more life can be sustained by the earth)
So the horror-scenarios don't make that much sense and are blown way out of proportion.
4. The “experts” opinion
It is always said that the “scientific consensus” is clear about global warming. Well, science is not a popularity contest and is also not democratic. The “scientific consensus” also said that therapy and short prison sentences would reduce crime, but crime rates in the US quadrupled in the 1960s. The “scientific consensus” said that big government will reduce poverty, yet the higher the taxes are and the more incentives is given to the poor to have large families, the more poverty there is. And of course the “experts” also worried about “global cooling” in the 1970s.
The experts have a pretty bad track record, especially when it comes to politically sensitive things.
5. Socialism
Socialism has always been marketed as rule by the scientists and experts. Everybody shall lose their “bourgeous” human rights like right to property and freedom of association (freedom of association is racist anyway, right?) and submit to “expert rule” because the experts know it all and know it better than us rednecks. Well, not only have the “experts” been very often wrong, the centralized rule from above by the experts has proven to be a bigger disaster than any global warming scenario. (Yes, you read that correctly.)
Russia has always been a traditional food exporter and was turned into country where millions starve by the “experts”. And famine and widespread starvation has been the hallmark of socialism almost everywhere it has been tried: China, Cambodia, many african countries, etc.
The “experts” seem to be able to turn a fertile country into a desert not only much faster than global warming, but also repeatedly and in the real word (not just in a computer simulation). Warming may force a change of crops and maybe even a reduction in yield (that's a big “may” - far more likely is that it increases yields because warmer was usually better in the past) but there is no land on earth that cannot be utterly ruined by the advice of an “expert”.
When the “experts” want to create a word-wide police-state to reduce our “carbon footprint”, I would consider that a much worse threat than any allegedly caused by global warming.
The most efficient and easy way to reduce carbon output would be to raise taxes on fuel. That would also be compatible to our evil bourgeous human rights and would even make sense from an peak-oil perspective. If other taxes were reduced by the same amount (not going to happen) I would actually be for that tax.
But no. This is probably too “simplistic” for the experts, they would rather introduce thousands of complicated laws to micromanage the economy with numerous taxes (of course with exceptions and exceptions from exceptions) regulations (of course with exceptions and exceptions from exceptions) and subsidies (of course with exceptions and exceptions from exceptions).
Well, I guess I'd rather deal with global warming instead. At least global warming is not going to put me in jail or ruin me for not following some arcane law hidden in the avalanche of laws the governments put out.
6. Conspiracy!
What is also widespread is the claim that everybody who doesn't believe in global warming is a “conspiracy nut”, in other words, that he is believing in a giant conspiracy and is a paranoid freak in general.
Of course it is not a conspiracy. When the “experts” recommended to give criminals light sentences in the hope that “if we are nice to them, they will be nice to us”, it was not a conspiracy which caused them to say that. When they recommended to make us saver by taking guns away from innocent citizens, that was not a conspiracy. (In Switzerland almost every adult male has an military assault rifle at home - shouldn't they drown in blood?)
It was just the fashionable thing to say, just like it was fashionable to worry about cooling in the 1970s and about global warming now.
Now some people might ask what I mean by “fashion” - well for example the Nobel Peace Prize is a pretty good indicator for what is currently en vogue in the chattering-classes.
Of course the government will support any fashion that will lead to more government power. It is not really important if you want “more teachers”, “more criminologists” or “more carbon footprint accountants” as long as those will cause more money to flow through the government apparatus, the government will be for it, results be damned. (For example all western nations spend more money on education decade after decade but the test scores get worse and worse. The “experts” recommend to spend even more money on schools to solve the problem. Maybe, just maybe, even more money will not solve the problem. But I disgress...)
7. Constant ad hominem attacks
And of course the biggest reason to suspect global warming are the constant ad hominem attacks on every critic. If there is so much evidence, why would it be necessary to call dissidents “stupid”, “morons” and “conspiracy nuts”?
In my experience this points to growing doubts in the pro-climate-change fraction, because if you really believe in it, you would not need constant ad hominem attacks and would talk about facts instead.
And it also was not always that way. Before Al Gore made his famous movie in which he is shown traveling around the world to combat global warming (one wonders what the “carbon footprint” of Al Gore is...), the whole discussion was more fact-based and calm than today. Al's Nobel Peace Prize seems to be to climate-change supporters a license to slander and insult all dissidents as much as they want. The big men have spoken and who may doubt their unlimited wisdom except some stupid rednecks?
Well, given the expert's track record, I'd rather believe the redneck...
8. Lies
Oh, and of course the lies. When Al Gore shows a poor little ice bear no longer finding any ice he did that with the knowledge that the ice bear population is on a record high. When the British global warming institute gets it email-server hacked and revealed that they would rather destroy their raw data than release it to the public it really speaks for itself.
Yes I know that many of them think that they are lying for the “good cause”, and you may call me old-fashioned, but I am having a really hard time to ignore all this and still believe them. It's just like the insults: It would not be necessary if they really had hard data that supported their claims.
9. Missing predictions and polls
The climate-change claims and predictions are like the predictions from a book about Nostradamus: So far in the future that no immediate falsification is possible. Yes I do know the difference between weather and climate, but I still don't understand the reason why they cannot predict the average temperature next year.
The common analogy is the pot with boiling water: It is said that the climate (overall temperature of the water) is predictable, while the weather (shape and form of the water-vapor bubbles) is not. OK, but when I can predict the “climate” or overall temperature of the pot in 30 minutes I can also predict it for the next minute or next 10 seconds.
Therefore if the computer models are able to predict the climate in 100 years, they should be able to predict the climate of the next year.
So what would a real scientist do? A real scientist would take his computer model, calculate the data and predict next year's temperature that a predefined list of weather stations are going to measure, averaged over the year and over all weather stations.
This way we would get an idea how good the model actually is and we would get it soon and not in 100 years.
But what do they do instead? They make polls in the “scientific community” about the “scientific consensus”.
How come that no polls are done in physics about string theory? How come that no polls are done in astronomy about black hole evaporation? Because polls are irrelevant and worthless in science. The fact that the climate-change crowd is doing polls at all is reason enough to suspect that they don't really understand the scientific process.
In other words they are politicians, not scientists.

10. Peak Oil
All catastrophic scenarios assume that oil use will continue to rise exponentially. Meanwhile, in the real world, oil consumption has been pretty flat in the last decade. Because of the economic crisis oil consumption has decreased and it is pretty likely that we never reach the consumption of the pre-crisis years again, i.e. that we already had Peak Oil.
Peak Oil does not mean that we “run out of oil”, it just means that we have declining supply of it.
A computer model about CO2 output that does not take Peak Oil into account is worthless and can be discarded out of hand without going into any further details.

-----
To sum up, while I don't think some small man-made warming is out of the question, I have stopped believing in the big alarmist scenarios, especially in the runaway warming that “can no longer be stopped if we don't act now”. So while I think it is plausible that man-made CO2 has contributed to the hot years 1998 and 2009, it is much more likely that it cools again as the CO2 output declines because of Peak Oil than some “runaway warming” effect.
But the climate change proponents have maneuvered themselves into a pretty big problem: After all, they have repeatedly and on record said that we will have warming, even with reduced CO2 output. In other words we should have warming no matter what we do. They have talked themselves into a corner without escape. They cannot say “because of the economic crisis global warming was averted”, they said that we now feel the effects of past decades and there will be many more decades of warming to come, regardless of CO2 output.
So when the big warming does not come (a warm year or two does not make a sea-rising, drought-inducing desertification catastrophe) the scientific consensus Nobel Prize winning experts will have to have a lot of explaining to do.

Re:Why I no longer believe in global warming (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519234)

Let me classify your statements with regards to the science (not the politics or the economics) of global warming:

1. Irrelevant.
2. Wrong.
3. Irrelevant and unsubstantiated.
4. Irrelevant and wrong.
5. Frankly embarrassing.
6. Irrelevant.
7. Boo hoo. Irrelevant.
8. Irrelevant.
9. Wrong.
10. Wrong.

To sum up, you are wrong.

Re:Yeah right (3, Insightful)

DarenN (411219) | about 4 years ago | (#33519124)

1.1mm per year being the best available globally measured data? Outliers being 2mm? Worst case scenario being 4mm? That WILL displace people,eventually. 4mm per year means that in just under a century, sea levels will have risen a foot. This is the worst case scenario - it's more likely to be 150-200 years based on existing data (it's actually hard to measure exactly - between isostatic rebound, tidal variation, building, etc)

That's not going to chase anyone out of their homes. Flooding is more likely from heavy rainfall or really stupid building decisions such as building below the water level (New Orleans) or building on flood plains (everywhere else) than from sea level increases. Even the melting of ice causing sea level rises isn't a problem (work out 500Gt versus the amount of ice on Greenland alone), reduced salinity affecting currents is more likely to be a problem.

Re:Yeah right (2, Funny)

e70838 (976799) | about 4 years ago | (#33519032)

Their estimation is still better than a Microsoft progression bar.

Re:Yeah right (3, Funny)

kainosnous (1753770) | about 4 years ago | (#33519210)

...and much like the MS progress bar, the whole system will crash long before the bar reaches completion.

Global warming? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518338)

Quick! Change the name!

CLIMATE CHANGE!

Yeaaah! Then we'll be able to claim we're right, even when we're wrong! woo!

Great news! (3, Insightful)

Arancaytar (966377) | about 4 years ago | (#33518368)

This estimate change means climate change has once again been proven wrong! Right? Right?

(Hint: No.)

Re:Great news! (5, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | about 4 years ago | (#33518406)

This estimate change means climate change has once again been proven wrong! Right? Right?

(Hint: No.)

No, it's just a change in one of the thousands of indicators. However that's only for the people who actually care for the science of climate change.

For the rest, this estimate will prove just about anything between the third coming of the messiah and the imminent destruction of the Earth by magnetic core spin reversal.

Re:Great news! (4, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 4 years ago | (#33518722)

For the rest, this estimate will prove just about anything between the third coming of the messiah and the imminent destruction of the Earth by magnetic core spin reversal.

Hey now! Some of us just believe one or the other, that this is a sign of Jesus' return, or that the Earth's magnetic core is going to stop. It's only a lunatic fringe of our organizations that believe ice loss means Jesus is coming to stop the Earth's magnetic core!

Re:Great news! (4, Insightful)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | about 4 years ago | (#33518824)

Actually it just means that once again the new prediction for sea level rise falls outside of the 95% confidence interval reported in the IPCC reports. Again. Imagine the chances. They've made 3 predictions, all with 95% confidence intervals, and the new prediction falls out of all 3 of them (just like their next prediction fell outside the 95% range for their previous prediction, both for sea level rise and temperature, so actually we should square the 5%). So if their chances are accurately calculated, that they're this wrong should happen once in 10y * 1 / ( 5% * 5% * 5% ) = 80 000 years.

I'm not a global warming denialist, mind you ... this obviously means that for the next 80 000 years the IPCC will not make a single wrong prediction !

Actually this is really smart of those scientists. You see, once every 80 000 years they will make 3 sequential predictions, each wrong. It's like, really smart of them to do it right away, then they can be right for the next few dozen millenia ! Brilliant !

Re:Great news! (4, Insightful)

ShakaUVM (157947) | about 4 years ago | (#33519090)

>>They've made 3 predictions, all with 95% confidence intervals, and the new prediction falls out of all 3 of them

That's why I especially like one prediction they did (in AR4, I think) that included no change in the predicted models for 10 years out within the error bars (which was something like +0C to +4C).

So even if there's no climate change, it verifies climate change.
But if there's +5C change, then, by golly, global warming has been falsified! The results didn't match prediction.

In all seriousness, though, I think there's a real paradox in what we consider falsification and verification in science if the above two statements are both true.

Re:Great news! (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | about 4 years ago | (#33519044)

"No, it's just a change in one of the thousands of indicators...."

After reading up on post-glacial rebound, it appears the conclusion that the ice is melting half as fast is completely backwards.

So, lets assume that a 1000m thick glacier melted down to 500m over the last 50 years, judging by elevation readings on the surface of the glacier. But now we add a rise of 250m of the underlying rock due to post-glacial rebound over that same 50 year period. That means the glacier actually thinned by 75%, not the 50% that was originally thought--this theory would indicate an INCREASE in melting, not a decrease.

Did I miss something, or is this just more climate policy/propoganda/nonsense?

Re:Great news! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519104)

yes, you missed something: the details of glacial/crust rebound.
They explained that all movement isn't just moving up - some is sideways, some is down.
what is happening is that N. America is rebounding up for the last 20,00 years and this
has actually pulled Greenland over/down.

Re:Great news! - typical FUD (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519054)

See this is typical climate change stuff..

It says "thousands of indicators" and people think "oh no!" but there are not thousands of indicators at all... It's pretty much all made up, speculation and FUD.

Re:Great news! - typical FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519080)

OMG I'm so citing you in my next paper to Nature.

Re:Great news! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519266)

What about the people that suggested the 'accepted truths' were extremely alarmist and that using such hyperbole to get a point across would be incredibly damaging to future efforts at swaying hearts and minds towards making things better?

Do we get an apology for being called deniers?

Re:Great news! (1)

captainpanic (1173915) | about 4 years ago | (#33518444)

We all know from measurements that the north pole (and Greenland) was warmer than average - we know that from direct measurements.
We all know that the ice is still melting (but slower than we thought).

So, I conclude that all our books regarding heat transfer must be wrong ;-)

Re:Great news! (4, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33518642)

"We all know that the ice is still melting (but slower than we thought)."

Given we know the rate of ocean rise with a high level of certainty. The interesting thing about this estimate is that it has flow on effects to other estimates, such that the amount of ocean rise due to thermal expansion could be higher than previously thought which could mean that the oceans thermal inertia is not as slow as we thought.

Re:Great news! (2, Insightful)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | about 4 years ago | (#33518858)

Since when do we know that ? Sure we know what we see on a few coastlines (quite a few, granted). We do not, however, have anywhere near accurate 3d heatmaps of the ocean, so we have no clue at all what is causing the variations, since to say the least, the ocean is an interesting place when it comes to temperature variations (and not just temperature variations, there's acidity, salinity, and a dozen other things that all influence eachother).

Re:Great news! (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33519088)

Estimates for total sea level rise are from both tidal gauges and sattelites, the largest error bars for these mesurements I can find are +/-0.7mm/yr

There are two major components that contribute to the observed rise, thermal exapansion and melting ice. If the estimate for the molten ice component goes down then given the estimated rise in sea level has not changed the estimate for the thermal expansion component must go up, no?

I don't see why you need 3D thermal heat maps to calculate a simple percentage of the total rise in levels? Nor do I see why regional variations of temprature and chemistry need to be understood to measure a global average?

Re:Great news! (3, Interesting)

Psychotria (953670) | about 4 years ago | (#33518892)

The amount of ice is dependant on altitude. I am sure that the climatologists know this, but just because the rate of melt at sea level is increasing doesn't mean that the amount of melt at moderate or high altitude is as well. If the average global temperature increased then the average air pressure would decrease meaning that snow and ice at higher altitudes would increase (due to the freezing point of water being dependant on air pressure). Therefore there will be an increase in snow/ice as you move up in altitude. So, the rate of melt might even remain constant.

Re:Great news! (2, Informative)

Psychotria (953670) | about 4 years ago | (#33518908)

Correction: the average pressure would increase

Re:Great news! (5, Informative)

elbow_spur (749878) | about 4 years ago | (#33518934)

> We all know that the ice is still melting (but slower than we thought).
This year we are going to see a new record low for arctic sea ice --- surpassing even the dramatic 2007 decline.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.arctic.png [uiuc.edu]
What's really startling is that this year, both the NE and the NW passages are completely open. This animation tells the story
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/CT/animate.arctic.color.0.html [uiuc.edu]
Typically, shipping through the NE passage relies on Russian icebreakers. Judging by the satellite photos, at this point the icebreakers aren't needed
Source: cryosphere today http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/ [uiuc.edu]

Re:Great news! (not) (2, Informative)

aggles (775392) | about 4 years ago | (#33519254)

>This year we are going to see a new record low for arctic sea ice --- surpassing even the dramatic 2007 decline. http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.arctic.png [uiuc.edu]

Another source, the Arctic News, differs with your conclusion. See link here: http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png [nsidc.org] and the main site at http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/ [nsidc.org]

It is still bad. This year will be the runner-up, not the new record low for arctic sea ice. Perhaps, as before, the moisture in the arctic air will swirl down and result in a good snow year for the northeast US ski areas.

Re:Great news! (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 years ago | (#33518582)

No, but the ocean will rise slower than thought.
At least unless there's another currently neglected factor to offset this.

Re:Great news! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518636)

Nope, but the good news is the science is settled on anthropogenic climate change!
Just like it was settled when their claim was twice as large as it is now!
Just like it will be settled when tomorrow they claim that actually the planet is dying at 1% of the rate they first thought!
Just like it will be settled next week when they find that oops, the planet isn't really dying at all, this is a natural warming cycle just like has been happening for millions of years (but the planet is only 4000 years old, right AGW alarmists? ;) ), sorry about all that money you wasted on falsified climate reports that even alarmists don't believe anymore.

Re:Great news! (4, Insightful)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 years ago | (#33518672)

Just like it will be settled when tomorrow they claim that actually the planet is dying at 1% of the rate they first thought!

No one claims the planet is dying. It may become quite uncomfortable for humans, though.

Re:Great news! (5, Insightful)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | about 4 years ago | (#33518890)

No one claims the planet is dying. It may become quite uncomfortable for humans, though.

Actually, since the average temperature of the earth is 15 degrees celcius, and the optimum for humans (and animal life in general) is 21 degrees celcius, it will be more comfortable. Also, if history of civilization, specifically the period immediately preceding the little ice age, is considered, there will be a LOT more arable and livable land accessible to humans (Greenland, Siberia, Canada*, for one) with a 6 degree rise in temperature.

Even if, yes, a rise like this will mean moving a number of large cities. Also, the change will have winners and losers (generally the winners will be more northern or more southern, and the losers more situated around the equator, but that's at best a very inaccurate rule of thumb).

* yes, global warming will mean Canada will become a livable place, even when you're more than 10 km from the US border.

Also, we may not understand exactly what effect was responsible for creating the sahara, it appears to have been a global cooling. Perhaps (we don't know) global warming will reverse this.

Re:Great news! (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 4 years ago | (#33518978)

Actually, since the average temperature of the earth is 15 degrees celcius, and the optimum for humans (and animal life in general) is 21 degrees celcius, it will be more comfortable. Also, if history of civilization, specifically the period immediately preceding the little ice age, is considered, there will be a LOT more arable and livable land accessible to humans (Greenland, Siberia, Canada*, for one) with a 6 degree rise in temperature.

You're forgetting that a lot of currently arable land becomes swamp in this context. Remember, if the ice melts the conveyor stops, then the jet stream stops (it's powered by the conveyor which is powered by the thermal differential of ice to ocean) and then we have localized weather. That means some areas get craploads of rain, and some areas get almost none. Areas that are desert become soupy. Areas that are farmland become swamp. Areas that are now scrub become eligible to become farmland once it's cleared. Areas that are now forest begin dying because the trees are no longer in the zone in which they thrive.

This is not going to be a party if it lasts long.

Re:Great news! (3, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 4 years ago | (#33519050)

Actually, since the average temperature of the earth is 15 degrees celcius, and the optimum for humans (and animal life in general) is 21 degrees celcius, it will be more comfortable.

You're talking about the average temperature on earth, not the average temperature on land, where people can live.

Though you may be considering moving to a floating city off of Antarctica, in which case I'll agree with anything you say as long as it keeps you from beating your saucepan with a wooden spoon every goddamn time any news story about climate shows up.

Re:Great news! (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 years ago | (#33519178)

Also, we may not understand exactly what effect was responsible for creating the sahara, it appears to have been a global cooling.

From what I've heard, the effect that created the Sahara was a change of global weather patterns caused by the rise of the Himalaya. Which wasn't caused by global cooling, but by plate tectonics.

Re:Great news! (1)

thomasw_lrd (1203850) | about 4 years ago | (#33519106)

But of course climate change is still real. Unless of course you start adding in all the other falsified data, and start changing the models to account for all the new data that has been published in the last year and a half.

Not really! (3, Insightful)

sd4f (1891894) | about 4 years ago | (#33518408)

I think it just means that in reality, science hasn't got all the right answers, all of the time, and science should be treated, as it was always intended, with a grain of salt.

Re:Not really! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518466)

It means that science is not to be confused with religion and changes in estimates of anything should be studied and understood and not used as a pretext to dismiss science itself as unreliable. If you prefer 'stability' over the truth then you either need religion or counselling. Or both.

Re:Not really! (5, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 4 years ago | (#33518768)

science should be treated, as it was always intended, with a grain of salt.

Are we talking "grain of salt" as in "not taking it so seriously" or "understanding that some changes to scientific theory and predictions are bound to occur."

Not taking science seriously, such as thinking maybe the law of gravity won't really apply this time so you can jump off that building, or not really caring whether or not global warming is occurring is dangerous and fairly illogical. Understanding that scientific theories often change with new facts, but that those changes don't mean the whole thing is bunk, that's good.

Re:Not really! (1)

EdZ (755139) | about 4 years ago | (#33518820)

More that the phrase "scientific consensus" is a load of balls, science doesn't work that way. There is no 'consensus', just an as-yet-undisproven theory that most accurately explains the current observations and makes testable predictions. That most scientists will accept that this theory as 'correct' [tufts.edu] is a byproduct of the theory being accurate, not the other way round. Questioning whether a theory is correct (i.e. attempting to find observations that do not correlate with the theory's predictions) is the very way science advances, and not 'denying the consensus' or somesuch sillyness. That there are people who blindly ignore evidence in their attempt to smear a theory with inconvenient predictions muddies the waters, and results in our current state where anyone who so much as questions any data or theory on anthropogenic climate change is an "anti-science global warming denier", and the slightest correction to data is "proof of the gubernment conspiracy", with BOTH of these being a detriment to actual climate science.

Re:Not really! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518902)

science should be treated, as it was always intended, with a grain of salt.

Are we talking "grain of salt" as in "not taking it so seriously" or "understanding that some changes to scientific theory and predictions are bound to occur."

Not taking science seriously, such as thinking maybe the law of gravity won't really apply this time so you can jump off that building, or not really caring whether or not global warming is occurring is dangerous and fairly illogical. Understanding that scientific theories often change with new facts, but that those changes don't mean the whole thing is bunk, that's good.

No, he probably means skepticism.

As in, don't label skeptics as "deniers" because they don't bow down to the received wisdom of the day.

Re:Not really! (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 4 years ago | (#33519100)

Are we talking "grain of salt" as in "not taking it so seriously" or "understanding that some changes to scientific theory and predictions are bound to occur."

No, we're talking "letting climate scientists do their work without turning every single datapoint into a cudgel with which to pound lumps on your political enemy.

Especially if your expertise in climate science consists of learning to compile a Linux kernel.

Have you noticed that nearly everyone with a lick of sense has learned to completely stay away from commenting on Slashdot climate stories? (and yes, I know I don't have a lick of sense. My mom used to tell me that on a daily basis.)

Re:Not really! (1)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about 4 years ago | (#33519220)

Seriously folks!

One minute you're talking about

a grain of salt

and next minute you're talking about

pound lumps

This Mish-mash of units-of-measurements rivals the days when NASA was bombarding Mars (as it happens, unexpectedly).

in b4 1000 replies (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518414)

Yay AGW threads!

Scientists (2, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 4 years ago | (#33518422)

Scientists are wrong again, just like they were about magnets.

Re:Scientists (2, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | about 4 years ago | (#33518452)

Scientists are wrong again, just like they were about magnets.

Just as wrong as they were about every single thing except those they've not yet been proven wrong about.

The method's kind of based on being provable wrong so, everything's going as planned. Nothing to see here unless you know how to interpret the new data.

i.e.: The news are, on themselves, useless but as a heads up for the result that will come shortly.

Re:Scientists (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518968)

... and Phlogiston.
Don't forget Phlogiston!

W00t! (1)

rHBa (976986) | about 4 years ago | (#33519020)

So we're NOT all going to die? To celebrate I'm going out back to burn that pile of old tyres :-)

Happy, happy, joy, joy...

Re:Scientists (2, Insightful)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about 4 years ago | (#33519228)

Scientists are always wrong.

That is, until one of them gets it right.

This proves global warming! (0, Troll)

TheNarrator (200498) | about 4 years ago | (#33518430)

The ice caps are increasing. That's because the gulf stream current is slowing down because of global warming!! If the ice caps were melting that would also prove global warming too. When are you going to face up to the facts global warming deniers! Can't you see! Falsifiability is for republicans and oil executives.

Re:This proves global warming! (1)

zarzu (1581721) | about 4 years ago | (#33518552)

actually falsifiability as a criterion of demarcation is for people stuck in the first half of the 20th century. philosophy of science has progressed after popper, you know.

Re:This proves global warming! (1)

trickyD1ck (1313117) | about 4 years ago | (#33518726)

These days the criterion for a scientific theory is whether it makes one feel good.

Re:This proves global warming! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518586)

global warming, i can buy that, theres been ups and down in temperature numerous times in history. Most "deniers" simply raise questions regarding the supposed cause(s) of this one.

Re:This proves global warming! (2, Insightful)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 years ago | (#33518588)

The ice caps are increasing.

No. They are just decreasing less fast than previously thought.

Re:This proves global warming! (3, Insightful)

Moridineas (213502) | about 4 years ago | (#33518658)

It's not even so black and white as you seem to think. Some are increasing, some are decreasing. On the net? Good question, and one I don't know. It seems from recent advances (eg this article) there is still disagreement amongst scientists.

Re:This proves global warming! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519098)

Some ice sheets are increasing in area but I think the consensus is that all the major ice sheets are losing mass. This includes Arctic sea ice and the Antarctic, Greenland, and Alaskan ice sheets. This new study may have an impact on how fast the rate of melting has been increasing, but it doesn't look like it shows they are not melting.

Re:This proves global warming! (4, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33518750)

"The ice caps are increasing."

That particular hypothisis has been falsified to death, it now requires a blind faith in the hypothisis afterlife to believe it.

What "republicans and oil executives" need to falsify is this - Snowfall above 3000 meters in greenland is increasing as predicted by climate models. This has nothing to do with the gulf stream (which is not significantly slowing down), it's due to increased water vapour which in turn is due to a positive feedback from global warming. Overall the extra snowfall at high altitudes does not make up for the extra loss at low altitudes, the extra snowfall may even speed up the loss of glaciers by making them top heavy.

Rain, too (4, Interesting)

overshoot (39700) | about 4 years ago | (#33519180)

Snowfall above 3000 meters in greenland is increasing as predicted by climate models. This has nothing to do with the gulf stream (which is not significantly slowing down), it's due to increased water vapour which in turn is due to a positive feedback from global warming. Overall the extra snowfall at high altitudes does not make up for the extra loss at low altitudes, the extra snowfall may even speed up the loss of glaciers by making them top heavy.

And: the increased precipitation, snow and rain, is further diluting the surface salinity in the North Atlantic. When it gets low enough, the Gulf Stream stops its current pattern of flowing north evaporating as it goes until it's salty enough to dive to the bottom and return deep. Much change occurs worldwide, but most immediately Europe gets colder and dryer.

That's going to be very hard to ignore, and IMHO will most likely be the turning point in public and policy-making consciousness of climate change. The question is, when?

Science at work folks (5, Insightful)

BlueParrot (965239) | about 4 years ago | (#33518512)

Some bright researchers managed to refine a previous model and come up with better and more accurate predictions. You may want to note how, contrary to some "skeptics" beliefs this wasn't suppressed or refused publication or any other such shenanigans. In the word of a famous person "When I'm proven wrong I change my opinion, what do you do ?".

Re:Science at work folks (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518632)

Yeah, man, really true words. Like that would have happened without the scandals that shook the field and removed a lot of the clout of the "redefine peer-review" gang.

Re:Science at work folks (0, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33518688)

Some bright researchers managed to refine a previous model and come up with better and more accurate predictions. You may want to note how, contrary to some "skeptics" beliefs this wasn't suppressed or refused publication or any other such shenanigans.

It is now a known fact that at least one journal (Climate Research), when publishing papers that the "top dog" climate scientists didn't like, then faced retribution from those same "top dogs" who conspired to then boycott said publication (to not publish in it, or even cite any publications in it) to manipulate its editorial staff. This came to light less than a year ago when communications between those "top dogs", which were lifted from the University of East Anglia's servers, contained emails documenting their conspiracy against this publication.

It should come as no surprise that more dissenting papers are being published now than were before, as those conspiring "top dogs" have lost much of their influence.

Re:Science at work folks (3, Informative)

jcupitt65 (68879) | about 4 years ago | (#33518772)

It is now a known fact [snip] emails documenting their conspiracy against this publication.

They've been cleared of this allegation. [wikipedia.org] From the linked wiki article:

The panel found that they did not subvert the peer review process to censor criticism as alleged, and that the key data needed to reproduce their findings was freely available to any "competent" researcher.

Re:Science at work folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518798)

It seems from your quote, the panel's opinion is they did not succeed, not that they didn't try.

So, they're failures in more ways than one.

Re:Science at work folks (0, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33518870)

There is no doubt that they conspired to manipulate the journal Climate Research. Its right there in the emails in plain cant-be-taken-out-of-context English. What you are citing is that they were cleared of wrong-doing by the very university (UEA = University of East Anglia) that was hacked to attain these emails and plays host the the CRU.

I realize that the many acronym's are confusing and that you thought the UEA was most-likely independent of the CRU.. but its not.

Re:Science at work folks (5, Interesting)

Vintermann (400722) | about 4 years ago | (#33518810)

It is now a known fact that at least one journal (Climate Research), when publishing papers that the "top dog" climate scientists didn't like, then faced retribution from those same "top dogs" who conspired to then boycott said publication (to not publish in it, or even cite any publications in it) to manipulate its editorial staff.

That says very little unless you also say why they did it. If they suddenly started arguing for UFO abductions in the editorials, for instance, I think we all would agree that wanting to distance yourself from them would be a reasonable thing to do.

You imply, without stating outright, that the paper CR published that climate scientists didn't like was perfectly honest, good science. It was not [wikipedia.org] . The reaction wasn't some secret scheme to manipulate the staff as you suggest, it was a highly public boycott campaign. Contributors were leaving it in droves. Even the climate scientist Hans von Storch, up to that time a darling of the climate denial movement for his bitter feud with Michael Mann, resigned in protest from his position as the board's chief editor because of that paper.

Re:Science at work folks (-1, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33518940)

That says very little unless you also say why they did it.

Does it actually matter why? There was an organized conspiracy against a scientific journal that was intended to manipulate its editorial board, with financial harm used as the weapon.

The message the scientists sent to the journals was very clear.. "we have the power to hurt you".. its one thing if they conspired not to cite the paper they disagreed with.. its another to conspire to not cite any paper published by the journal if it prints even one that they disagree with.

Re:Science at work folks (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519056)

Well, the journal itself doesn't have a divine right to publish papers from the top researchers. If the editorial board make extremely poor decisions, why should scientists feel obliged to publish there? Why should the scientists be associated with half-baked drivel such as the paper in question?

Re:Science at work folks (2, Informative)

Vintermann (400722) | about 4 years ago | (#33519066)

Does it actually matter why? There was an organized conspiracy against a scientific journal that was intended to manipulate its editorial board, with financial harm used as the weapon.

Did you read what I wrote at all?

Conspiracies by definition are secret. This was a broad and highly public boycott campaign of a journal that had published a paper that should never have passed peer review (according to most of the people who did peer review for that journal!).

Re:Science at work folks (-1, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33519164)

Conspiracies by definition are secret.

1. a planning and acting together secretly, esp. for an unlawful or harmful purpose, such as murder or treason
2. the plan agreed on; plot
3. the group taking part in such a plan
4. a combining or working together: the conspiracy of events

Only one of these requires secrecy.

I realize that an active defender of these scientists behavior doesnt like the word being used, but you cannot deny that it is being used correctly and does apply to these scientists.

I question your motives. Can I presume that you have a strong opinion about the veracity of the AGW theory? Me, not so much either way. I do however have a strong opinion about the corruption of the peer review process that permeates more than this field (its much worse in the Pharmaceutical journals) and simply will not tolerate or give-a-pass to conspiracies that interfere with what is supposed to be a forthright process.

The fact that the Journal published some shit at the behest of one of its opinionated editors is of less concern. If the choice is between Opinionated Editors and Manipulated Editors, I choose opinionated.

Re:Science at work folks (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519074)

No.

There is no such thing as a PUBLIC conspiracy.

A publicly know boycott is obviously not a conspiracy.

Boycotting journals for publishing crappy papers is exactly the right thing to do. That is how scientists guard the quality of journals. There is no other way (that I know of).

Re:Science at work folks (4, Informative)

Eunuchswear (210685) | about 4 years ago | (#33518864)

It is now a known fact that at least one journal (Climate Research), when publishing papers that the "top dog" climate scientists didn't like, then faced retribution from those same "top dogs" who conspired to then boycott said publication (to not publish in it, or even cite any publications in it) to manipulate its editorial staff.

What crap. Been reading Cato.org much recently? http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=11022 [cato.org]

Try http://climateprogress.org/2010/01/05/cato-institute-patrick-michaels-falsehood-stolen-emails-climategate-michael-mann-peer-review/ [climateprogress.org] and follow the links, notably to the statement of the Editor-in-chief of "Climate Research", here: http://coast.gkss.de/staff/storch/CR-problem/cr.2003.htm [coast.gkss.de]

"Climate Research" was indeed manipulated, but but the "skeptics", not the "warmists". One editor slipped in some crap papers (which have since been comprehensively demolished). When the other editors complained and requested that an editorial explaining what happened be printed the "skeptic" refused, so the other editors resigned.

Re:Science at work folks (-1, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33518960)

What crap. Been reading Cato.org much recently? http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=11022 [cato.org]

Never read anything there before, and apparently you didnt either since the article you are linking to is anything but recent: A version of this article appeared in the DC Examiner on December 2, 2009.

Re:Science at work folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518718)

"When I'm proven wrong I change my opinion, what do you do?".

Cry conspiracy! And if you prove me wrong again, that's part of the conspiracy too. I can't lose! Beat that, science.

Re:Science at work folks (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | about 4 years ago | (#33518882)

That's why there is a culture clash when they have to work with politicians. By changing opinions, scientists increase their credibility, by doing he same, politicians lose it. Expect fights.

Re:Science at work folks (3, Insightful)

ShakaUVM (157947) | about 4 years ago | (#33519062)

Some bright researchers managed to refine a previous model and come up with better and more accurate predictions. You may want to note how, contrary to some "skeptics" beliefs this wasn't suppressed or refused publication or any other such shenanigans. In the word of a famous person "When I'm proven wrong I change my opinion, what do you do ?".

An honest skeptic would look at the Greenland melt data and say that there wasn't enough evidence. An honest Al Gore would have looked at the Greenland melt and put large error bars around his predictions. Dishonest people on either side refuse any results that disagree with their presumptions.

I recall watching CSPAN and seeing climatologists talking about how the Greenland melt rate would be 10 times greater than we'd expected, because of the wet pancake effect or something. I'm not an AGW skeptic, though I *am* critical of idiots like that, that claim more evidence than there is. He's up there scaring senators, and... he's wrong. (Or probably is - the Greenland melt is an active area of research.) I'm also critical of people like Sarah Palin who think that human beings can't possibly, ever, affect the climate.

Unfortunately, it seems most people are dishonest dogmatists for one side or another.

Re:Science at work folks (1, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 4 years ago | (#33519208)

Ya that is something that really bothers me about the climate change argument. Seems like a large about of people aren't arguing it as a science, they are arguing it as a religion. What I mean is you are demanded to believe all of it, everything, including all the policy recommendations, without question. If you don't, you are shouted down as being an idiot, uneducated, a denialist, and all sorts of things.

Well, that isn't science. Science isn't about unquestioning acceptance of dogma, especially when you are talking things far beyond the theory itself (like what must be done as a result of the theory). That makes me really question the motives of the people pushing it. I don't necessarily mean the people doing the research, but the people pushing it on the Internet and so on. It seems to me that they probably aren't the educated, enlightened people they want to pretend but rather people who have grabbed on to a belief, for whatever reason, and now demand everyone think like them.

Re:Science at work folks (3, Insightful)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 4 years ago | (#33519230)

An honest Al Gore would have

And an honest commentator would have put (WARNING: POLITICIAN!) behind the name.

Re:Science at work folks (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about 4 years ago | (#33519134)

All very well and good. It's how things are supposed to work in science. I'm delighted that the models are being refined.

Of course, one might also note that shrill histrionics, cries of impending certain doom, and politically motivated proto-religious hyperbole aren't necessarily "science at work".

West Antarctica (1)

josgeluk (842109) | about 4 years ago | (#33518522)

How can there be a "West Antarctica"?

Re:West Antarctica (2, Informative)

hldn (1085833) | about 4 years ago | (#33518720)

same as there is a western hemisphere. it's arbitrary.

Re:West Antarctica (0, Redundant)

MichaelSmith (789609) | about 4 years ago | (#33518906)

What would you call the western side of Antarctica?

Re:West Antarctica (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 4 years ago | (#33519084)

What would you call the western side of Antarctica?

Down there, West = East.

West is towards the setting sun, and when its doing that whole "setting" thing down there, it revolves many times around the entire 360 degrees of horizon. East is towards the rising sun, and when its doing that whole "rising" thing down there, it also revolves many times around the entire 360 degrees of horizon.

So I guess I would call the west side of Antarctica the end result of a disastrously rapid continental drift that somehow managed to not kill me.

Re:West Antarctica (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33519148)

Down there, West = East.

Does not the Prime Meridian extend all the way to the South Pole?

Re:West Antarctica (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519128)

North Antarctica?

In other words... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518532)

"After ten years of study, we have determined that our prediction of the end of the world within five years may have underestimated the time remaining..."

Typo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518536)

I assume you mean Bert Vermeersen (http://www.beta-ambassadeursnetwerk.nl/?pid=26&paspoort=135)?

I would have thought it was worse (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | about 4 years ago | (#33518554)

TFA says Greenland is subsiding due to mass moving to North America. I was thinking that due to the melting, the crust would be rising and thus hiding the apparent ice loss.

Very interesting...

I don't get the logic behind this (1)

Athrac (931987) | about 4 years ago | (#33518594)

If they previously didn't consider the rising of the crust, but now they are considering it, then my logic says that the estimates for melting rate should have increased. Ok, it says in TFA that in some places the ground is actually subsiding, but it seems weird that this would happen in more places than rising of the ground.

ppr crisis/evacuation mode raised by exponents (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518608)

all the speculation/lying in the universe does not effect the real time assessments/outcomes. see you on the other side of it?

meanwhile (still hard to believe WE allow all this crap for even 1 day/hour longer); the corepirate nazi illuminati is always hunting that patch of red on almost everyones' neck. if they cannot find yours (greed, fear ego etc...) then you can go starve. that's their (slippery/slimy) 'platform' now. see also: (we came from monkeys but 'they' didn't), &/or; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antisocial_personality_disorder

never a better time to consult with/trust in our creators. the lights are coming up rapidly all over now. see you there?

greed, fear & ego (in any order) are unprecedented evile's primary weapons. those, along with deception & coercion, helps most of us remain (unwittingly?) dependent on its' life0cidal hired goons' agenda. most of our dwindling resources are being squandered on the 'wars', & continuation of the billionerrors stock markup FraUD/pyramid schemes. nobody ever mentions the real long term costs of those debacles in both life & any notion of prosperity for us, or our children. not to mention the abuse of the consciences of those of us who still have one, & the terminal damage to our atmosphere (see also: manufactured 'weather', hot etc...). see you on the other side of it? the lights are coming up all over now. the fairytail is winding down now. let your conscience be your guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. we now have some choices. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on your brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

"The current rate of extinction is around 10 to 100 times the usual background level, and has been elevated above the background level since the Pleistocene. The current extinction rate is more rapid than in any other extinction event in earth history, and 50% of species could be extinct by the end of this century. While the role of humans is unclear in the longer-term extinction pattern, it is clear that factors such as deforestation, habitat destruction, hunting, the introduction of non-native species, pollution and climate change have reduced biodiversity profoundly.' (wiki)

"I think the bottom line is, what kind of a world do you want to leave for your children," Andrew Smith, a professor in the Arizona State University School of Life Sciences, said in a telephone interview. "How impoverished we would be if we lost 25 percent of the world's mammals," said Smith, one of more than 100 co-authors of the report. "Within our lifetime hundreds of species could be lost as a result of our own actions, a frightening sign of what is happening to the ecosystems where they live," added Julia Marton-Lefevre, IUCN director general. "We must now set clear targets for the future to reverse this trend to ensure that our enduring legacy is not to wipe out many of our closest relatives."--

"The wealth of the universe is for me. Every thing is explicable and practical for me .... I am defeated all the time; yet to victory I am born." --emerson

no need to confuse 'religion' with being a spiritual being. our soul purpose here is to care for one another. failing that, we're simply passing through (excess baggage) being distracted/consumed by the guaranteed to fail illusionary trappings of man'kind'. & recently (about 10,000 years ago) it was determined that hoarding & excess by a few, resulted in negative consequences for all.

consult with/trust in your creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." )one does not need to agree whois in charge to grasp the notion that there may be some assistance available to us(

boeing, boeing, gone.

Global warming is sooo late 20th century... (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 4 years ago | (#33518692)

It is time for the global cooling crowd to make a comeback and breathe some fresh air into the stale old climate debate.

Re:Global warming is sooo late 20th century... (1)

arndawg (1468629) | about 4 years ago | (#33518970)

Yeah if this debate could cool off, maybe the world would be a chiller place.

So I guess there is no Noodly One (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33519168)

It is time for the global cooling crowd to make a comeback

Pastafarianism holds that global warming is kept in check by the cooling effect of pirates. Yet the mass piracy perpetrated through the original Napster and its progeny (Gnutella, Kazaa, eDonkey, BitTorrent, etc.) has failed to halt global warming.

Study Proudly.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33518748)

sponsored by B.P.

Missing the point... (1)

petaflop (682818) | about 4 years ago | (#33518762)

OK, so people are trying to argue that this paper supports one view or another in a trivial manner. I don't think it's that simple.

I can't even being to interpret what this means without a lot more reading. I'm not even sure I know all the questions that need to be asked. But here's a couple which occur to me immediately...

1. This is a new method of measuring ice loss, and from what I can tell is rather hard to interpret given the interacting phenomena. There are long established methods which are far simpler - most obviously measuring the speed of ice flow. Does this new paper bring ice loss estimates into line with estimates from traditional methods, or does it contradict the estimates from traditional methods?

2. Even ignoring that question, ice loss contributes to sea level rise, which is also being observed. If less sea level rise can be attributed to ice loss, does that therefore mean that more must be attributed to thermal expansion, thus increasing estimates the rate at which the earth is absorbing and storing energy? (I think the answer to this one is that the ice-loss contribution is minimal and so the change is also minimal, but it needs checking.)

Re:Missing the point... (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | about 4 years ago | (#33518916)

1. speed of ice flows give you the mount of ice that leaves the system. You also need to register the amount that enters it. It is expected to see ice flows in Groenland, the question it to know if the ice is renewed through snow/rain.

2. How do you measure sea levels ? It is also a very hard matter when you want to reach a centimeter or millimeter precision. Shores erode, oceanic beds move tectonically. Satellites can measure the distance between the gravitation center of Earth and the sea's surface but it ignores if a rise is caused by a rise of the crust or a rise of the water. What most people are interested in is the measure of "lands lost to the sea" but the multiplicity of factors makes it hard to use such a measure to infer the ice losses of Groenland and Antarctica.

Linux is for fags (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33519036)

I fucked your mom.

Conveyor (2, Insightful)

overshoot (39700) | about 4 years ago | (#33519114)

Looks like I can reset my clock on the anticipated shutdown of the Atlantic Conveyor.

Less fresh water in the North Atlantic means the thermohaline convection effect will be keeping Europe warm and wet for a while longer. In the short term, that's good. In another sense, though, I suspect it's not so good: it's going to take something dramatic to move climate change out of the "we'll worry about that when we don't have anything more important" category.

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