Earth ChangesS


Historic Variation in Arctic Ice

Preface Part 1; Arctic Ice through the Ages- The Age of Scientific exploration

Artic historic image
© NOAAImage ID: libr0454, Treasures of the NOAA Library Collection

Northwest Passage Attempt 1821
© unknownNorthwest Passage Attempt 1821

There are many great books about heroic polar explorers, and numerous technical papers by arctic researchers-often rather dry. Few papers with a narrative on the scientific exploration of the arctic during the 19th Century seem to exist as a half way house, accesible to laymen and experts alike, so it is hoped this article may fill a gap.

It was always intended to exist electronically, so links to the relevant information source have been made, rather than citing a printed reference. Whilst generally the narrative can be followed without needing to click on the link, many are interesting in their own right and are often well worth a diversion, (but don't forget to come back.)

Few external 'official 'instrumental records exist for this period-or are sporadic in area or time scale- so observations made at the time and place are important to our understanding as to what happened to arctic ice and temperatures in this era. This article has two converging themes; the search for the North West passage and the scientific explorations of the region by a former whaler.

This is somewhat longer than most blog articles, in fact-in truth- it is a a bit of an epic. So close the curtains, turn off the mobile, feed the dog, grab a drink, and order in the pizza for about an hour. Then sit back as the story begins in 1817 when the Royal Society used the enormous resources at their disposal to investigate the claim that ;


Interesting times at the "North Pole"

There is a webcam at the "North Pole" (at least it starts out very near there) that reports via satellite data uplink at regular intervals. They also have a weather station with a once weekly data plot. Note it is still below zero centigrade there.
North Pole temp graph Apr Jun 2009

Latest data (updated approximately weekly)

Readers should note that the station really isn't at the north pole anymore due to significant ice drift.

WUWT reader GlennB called attention to the webcam images today. A couple of weeks ago (5/31/09) it looked like this. You can see the weather station in the distance.
North Pole Weather Station

Now it looks like this:
North Pole Weather Station

It appears either a snow drift and/or pressure ridge has blocked the view of the weather station.


Scientists: Obama document is 'scare' tactic

The forecast from a new report by the Obama administration on global warming warns North Carolina's beaches could be swallowed up by the sea, New England's long winters could last two weeks and Chicago? Watch out for deadly heat waves.

But scientists who have evaluated the warnings and forecasts says it is a "scare" report that has little relation to reality.

"This is not a work of science but an embarrassing episode for the authors and NOAA," said meteorologist Joe D'Aleo, the former chairman of the American Meteorological Society's Committee on Weather Analysis and Forecasting.

The scientist, who publishes the IceCap.US report, said the report "starts out day one being wrong on many of its claims. ... They gave the administration the cover to push the unwise cap-and-tax agenda."


'Bycatch' Whaling A Growing Threat To Coastal Whales

© Agence France-PresseJapan and South Korea are the only countries that allow the commercial sale of products killed as "incidental bycatch." The sheer number of whales represented by whale-meat products on the market suggests that both countries have an inordinate amount of bycatch.
Scientists are warning that a new form of unregulated whaling has emerged along the coastlines of Japan and South Korea, where the commercial sale of whales killed as fisheries "bycatch" is threatening coastal stocks of minke whales and other protected species.

Scott Baker, associate director of the Marine Mammal Institute at Oregon State University, says DNA analysis of whale-meat products sold in Japanese markets suggests that the number of whales actually killed through this "bycatch whaling" may be equal to that killed through Japan's scientific whaling program - about 150 annually from each source.

Baker, a cetacean expert, and Vimoksalehi Lukoscheck of the University of California-Irvine presented their findings at the recent scientific meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in Portugal. Their study found that nearly 46 percent of the minke whale products they examined in Japanese markets originated from a coastal population, which has distinct genetic characteristics, and is protected by international agreements. It will be published in a forthcoming issue of the journal Animal Conservation.


The Climate Change Climate Change : Skeptics Numbers Increasing Everywhere

Steve Fielding recently asked the Obama administration to reassure him on the science of man-made global warming. When the administration proved unhelpful, Mr. Fielding decided to vote against climate-change legislation.

If you haven't heard of this politician, it's because he's a member of the Australian Senate. As the U.S. House of Representatives prepares to pass a climate-change bill, the Australian Parliament is preparing to kill its own country's carbon-emissions scheme. Why? A growing number of Australian politicians, scientists and citizens once again doubt the science of human-caused global warming.
Steve Fielding
© Associated PressSteve Fielding
Among the many reasons President Barack Obama and the Democratic majority are so intent on quickly jamming a cap-and-trade system through Congress is because the global warming tide is again shifting. It turns out Al Gore and the United Nations (with an assist from the media), did a little too vociferous a job smearing anyone who disagreed with them as "deniers." The backlash has brought the scientific debate roaring back to life in Australia, Europe, Japan and even, if less reported, the U.S.

In April, the Polish Academy of Sciences published a document challenging man-made global warming. In the Czech Republic, where President Vaclav Klaus remains a leading skeptic, today only 11% of the population believes humans play a role. In France, President Nicolas Sarkozy wants to tap Claude Allegre to lead the country's new ministry of industry and innovation. Twenty years ago Mr. Allegre was among the first to trill about man-made global warming, but the geochemist has since recanted. New Zealand last year elected a new government, which immediately suspended the country's weeks-old cap-and-trade program.

The number of skeptics, far from shrinking, is swelling. Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe now counts more than 700 scientists who disagree with the U.N. -- 13 times the number who authored the U.N.'s 2007 climate summary for policymakers. Joanne Simpson, the world's first woman to receive a Ph.D. in meteorology, expressed relief upon her retirement last year that she was finally free to speak "frankly" of her nonbelief. Dr. Kiminori Itoh, a Japanese environmental physical chemist who contributed to a U.N. climate report, dubs man-made warming "the worst scientific scandal in history." Norway's Ivar Giaever, Nobel Prize winner for physics, decries it as the "new religion." A group of 54 noted physicists, led by Princeton's Will Happer, is demanding the American Physical Society revise its position that the science is settled. (Both Nature and Science magazines have refused to run the physicists' open letter.)


Propaganda: Met Office predict likelihood of climate change on your doorstep

UK Flood
© Press AssociationClimate change models will make it possible to work out the likelihood of drought, heat waves and flooding

The most detailed set of climate change projections ever produced will show the risks of sea level rise, droughts and floods in Britain over the next 80 years to within 16 miles of your front door.

The set of predictions from the Met Office will forecast temperature, rainfall, sea level rise and even sunshine up until 2099.

It is the most comprehensive climate change forecast to be produced anywhere in the world, showing details of how each area will be affected down to a 25km (16 mile) square grid.

Comment: The most comprehensive forecast anywhere in the world

Except the MET Office cannot get current forecasts that are actually only months into the future correct.

More hot air from UK Meteorology Office
Mittens in Britain but the heat is coming
UK Met Office Summer Forecast: Drowning Again?
Rainfall In Britain Worst In 200 Years

At some point the question must be asked:

Is all this hype and lying about global warming on purpose?
And Why?

Local authorities, the Environment Agency, primary health care trusts, insurance companies and property developers are all eagerly awaiting the content to be revealed to the House of Commons by Hilary Benn, the Environment Secretary, this week.

It is expected the results will not only affect larger building projects and flood defences but property prices and insurance claims for people living near the coast or on flood plains. It will also inform health authorities planning for heat waves or new infectious diseases and farmers deciding which crops to plant in the future.

Comment: How will the governments and mass media control the insurrection when the lie of global warming is revealed by reality?

What psychological weapon will they unleash next? Pandemic? War?

Cloud Lightning

Eight dead as storm sweeps Philippines

© Agence France-PresseA motorcycle plows through flood water on street in the financial district of Manila on June 23, 2009 which has suffered from heavy rains amid the approach of a new tropical storm. The storm, which is due to hit the central islands has left hundreds of passengers stranded at ports in the central Philippines as the coast guard ordered ships ashore to escape rough waves.
At least eight people were killed while 12 others remained missing after tropical storm Nangka swept through the central and northern Philippines, officials said on Thursday.

The dead and missing were mostly fishermen whose boats were damaged at sea or who were washed away by floods.

The storm also forced more than 44,000 people to flee their homes due to rising waters, the civil defence office said, with at least five reported injured.

Nangka brought heavy rains, strong winds, hailstorms and even a tornado to various parts of the country, causing floods, landslides, power outages and forcing the Coast Guard to suspend sea travel in the affected areas.


More than 100 reported dead in Indian heatwave

© Agence France-PresseA young Indian child plays under a water pipe in New Delhi. The unrelenting heat is persisting in the Indian capital as temperatures reached 41 degrees Celsius with weathermen forecasting a severe heatwave across the plains of northern India.
An acute heatwave roasting much of India has claimed at least 100 lives, with more deaths feared because the annual monsoon rains have yet to come, officials said Thursday.

In the eastern state of Orissa, at least 58 people have died due to sunstroke since April, disaster management official Durgesh Nandini Sahoo told AFP in the state capital Bhubaneswar.

Local newspapers have reported at least 12 deaths in the impoverished northern state of Bihar, and 17 deaths in neighbouring Jharkhand state.

Cloud Lightning

Stormy weather leaves 1,200 homeless in Cape Town

© Unknown
Storms, driving rain and gale force winds have battered Cape Town, leaving some 1,200 people homeless after flooding in shanty towns, South African disaster management officials said Thursday.

"We had heavy downpours and in our informal settlements we had about 600 dwellings that have been affected, leaving about 1,200 people seeking temporary shelter," disaster management spokeswoman Charlotte Powell told AFP.

Two consecutive cold fronts accompanied by storms have also affected power lines around the city, while massive swells led to two barges being wrecked out at sea.

The Cape Times newspaper reported swells peaking at 17 metres (56 feet) on Wednesday.

Twenty-five film students were stranded on Dassen Island just off the coast, while 29 hikers had to be evacuated off the popular Otter's Trail.


Coelancanth Island has New Tiny Bat

Coelacanth Bat
© Manuel Ruedi/Muséum de GenèveMiniopterus aelleni
Scientists have identified a new species of bat weighing just five grams in the Comoros island archipelago off eastern Africa, the Natural History Museum in Geneva said on June 24, 2009. The Comoros islands are famed in cryptozoological history as the first known recognized rediscovered home of the 65 million-year-old survival, the Coelacanths.

The new mammal has been named Miniopterus aelleni in honor of the late Villy Aellen, a former head of the Geneva museum and a major bat specialist. Miniopterus (long winged bat) is a genus of vesper bats and the only genus of subfamily Miniopterinae.