Friday, June 27, 2008

Is the North Pole Melting? Forgetaboutit!

By Alan Caruba

The latest story to get scientists emailing furiously among each other was the one in the Telegraph, a British newspaper, that all the ice around the North Pole would melt away this summer.

This story has surfaced before, most notably in The New York Times, and clearly journalists should not be allowed to grapple with the extraordinary notion that, in the SUMMER, the ice at the top of the world might actually melt a bit because the northern hemisphere gets—what’s the word---oh yes, WARMER!

These highly complex concepts such as "warm" in the summer and "cold" in the winter just completely overwhelm the ability of journalists to cope with any sign of climate change.

Seaman who have sailed the Arctic waters have known for a very long time that the sea ice breaks up in the summertime. It’s not even news. The recent discovery of huge undersea volcanoes is going to be big news one of these days when scientists learn more of their effect on ocean temperatures. Like those on the surface, they are scattered throughout the oceans and at the poles.

Mount Erebus has been an active volcano in the Antarctica, accounting for a semi-permanent hole in the ozone above it.

While my friends in the world of science spent the day discussing the story via email, it reminded me of all the people who keep telling us about global warming and how most have no science credentials at all.

Al Gore has a degree in government, not science, nor does England’s Prince Charles who likewise lacks a science degree. When you check out television personalities like Katie Couric, Scott Pelley, Matt Lauer, or Meredith Viera, you discover that none of them have degrees reflecting any branch of science.

Moving along, other leading advocates of global warming include Al Sharpton, Alicia Silverstone, Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ted Turner, and Robert Redford, all of whom were either college or high school dropouts.

People who are billed as scientists often majored in areas other than meteorology or climatology. There’s the infamous James Hansen of NASA who got the whole global warming ball rolling back in the 1980s with a warning we’d all be dead by now. He has since revised that prediction, but his degree is in physics and mathematics. Bill Nye “the science guy” has a degree in mechanical engineering!

The politicians who use global warming to look environmentally concerned and correct include John McCain. He has a Bachelor of Science degree, but managed to acquire it while graduating 894th out of 899 in his class. Newt Gingrich has no science degree whatever, but has a PhD in modern European history. Robert Kennedy, Jr., one of the greatest twits to have ever been born into that family, has a BA in government and a JD in law. No science degree.

The list of dropouts and graduates in fields other than science who run around bloviating about global warming is a very long one. They are ill-equipped to tell anyone about the complexities of the Earth’s climate because it is such a complex subject that even those who are recognized as experts have the good sense to be humble. Not one of them can tell you why clouds do what they do. Nobody knows.

So, rest easy. The North Pole is not melting. That’s good news for Santa Claus.

Disclosure: I graduated shortly after the end of the last ice age with a BA in communications, but have written extensively on science topics for decades. I am a longtime member of the National Association of Science Writers.


James said...

It would be nice if we looked at paleo-geology from time to time as well. Climate science is such a new science that is still learning its way, so it's not surprising that mistakes are made. Us geologists on the other hand, can tell you what the climate was like for the last 4.5 billion years (usually considered a pretty good predictor of how things work).

Alan Caruba said...

Geologists are always welcome at this blog!

TJP said...

Excellent column, Alan. I'm not a scientist either, but I'm capable of researching on-line and elsewhere for books, articles, commentary, etc. which clearly demonstrate the fallacy that is man-made global warming. So how come all these liberal lawmakers can't? All they ever seem to cite is Al Gore and the UN report.

Heard a great radio interview the other day. The guest was Joe Bastardi from He is a meteorologist and knows a thing or two about weather, even explaining about all the current midwest flooding--which he said was NOT global warming related. Maybe you could interview him for one of your future articles, Alan. Keep up the great work!

Alan Caruba said...

Thank you. It is my view that any intelligent person with an open mind and the willingness to do a little research on their own outside of the usual environmental organizations and their mindless propaganda will come to the same conclusion about global warming that you have.

As to Joe Bastardi, I have great respect for him, but that did not keep me from chiding him in a blog post not long ago regarding his prediction of how many hurricanes might occur this season. A member of the AccuWeather staff contacted me and I had to assure him that, while I respect Bastardi, such predictions are essentially meaningless. He actually agreed with me!

elmerbittlinger said...

attacking the manmade global warming hoax is best done by discrediting the greenhouse effect lie.
there is no laboratory demonstration of heat accumulation within a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, argon and water vapor due to the addition of carbon , nirogen or sulfur oxides.
such an experiment could be done very cheaply and no doubt has been attempted for it would furnish an indisputable hallmark which the alarmists would display.
there is no record of any such experiment being attempted.
there can be only one reason for this : ALL SUCH ATTEMPTS HAVE FAILED !

Alan Caruba said...

Could not have said it better myself, Elmer.

Pal444 said...

Professor Reid Bryson, sometimes referred to as the Grandfather of Global Climatology, passed away on June 6th less than month ago.

I am not a scientist only a believer in the pursuit of truth at any cost.

Thanks Dr. Bryson, you will be remembered by simple men & women such as me as a fearless and great man.

Mike Landfair said...

A new study released in the British Journal Naturereports on findings from "a team ...of scientists led by Robert Sohn of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, USA, finally got a first-ever glimpse of the ocean floor 4,000 meters beneath the Arctic pack ice, they were astonished.

What they saw was unmistakable evidence of explosive eruptions rather than the gradual secretion of lava bubbling up from Earth's mantle onto the ocean floor."

The ocean is spreading under the North Pole and that may be responsoble for the loss of ice not (gasp) global warming!

Carlos said...

we can ignore it an maybe it will go away? Doubtful. It doesnt take a degree in Science to notice the pictures taken in the 1950,1960's, an compared to photo's of the same area taken recently shows a very diminished polar region. Now hey, I may be the Village Idiot" on other things but hey, I could've sworn there was a heck-u-va lot more ice back then compared to now!

Plato said...

Maybe it should require a science degree. Looking at a few decades of data is practically worthless. Ever heard of a 100 year flood? A 500 year flood? A 1000 year flood? The climate is always trending in one direction or another based on the variability of a variety of conditions.

Had the planet not trended towards warming we would still be in an ice age. And let us not forget the medieval warm period that allowed farming in Greenland. That land is still under permafrost.

I am in favor of being good stewards of our land and resources. It is pure folly to believe we are somehow threatening this planet. It will continue to kill us in greater numbers because of our childish belief that we have somehow become wise with our technological advances.

I’m somewhat amazed that nobody is chanting that we need to stop volcanoes from erupting! The recent Chilean volcanic activity is estimated to cool the southern hemisphere for decades.

We are not as warm as we have been, nor or we as cold as we have been. The only thing that is constant is change. Well and stupid people coming up with creative ways to live in the path of a volcano/tornado/hurricane/flood/earthquake.