Thongchai Thailand

DESPERATION LANGUAGE OF FEAROLOGY: DEATH SPIRAL

Posted on: October 15, 2020

Polar bears could disappear by 2100 due to melting ice, climate change,  study says
End of the planet' or Aladdin's cave? Climate change turns Arctic into  strategic, economic hotspot - pennlive.com
Climate Change Impact on Arctic Ecosystems – Climate Institute

THIS POST IS A CRITICAL REVIEW OF A GUARDIAN ARTICLE IN OCTOBER 2020 THAT THE ARCTIC IS IN A DEATH SPIRAL; LINK TO SOURCE: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2020/oct/13/arctic-ice-melting-climate-change-global-warming

Greenland Ice Sheet

WHAT THE GUARDIAN ARTICLE SAYS

with critical commentary inserted

  1. The Arctic is in a death spiral. How much longer will it exist? The region is unravelling faster than anyone could once have predicted. But there may still be time to act.
  2. At the end of July, 40% of the 4,000-year-old Milne Ice Shelf, located on the north-western edge of Ellesmere Island, calved into the sea. Canada’s last fully intact ice shelf was no more. On the other side of the island, the most northerly in Canada, the St Patrick’s Bay ice caps completely disappeared.
  3. Two weeks later, scientists concluded that the Greenland Ice Sheet may have already passed the point of no return. Annual snowfall is no longer enough to replenish the snow and ice loss during summer melting of the territory’s 234 glaciers.
  4. CLAIM: Last year, the ice sheet lost a record amount of ice, equivalent to 1 million metric tons every minute. RESPONSE: If the ice sheet is losing 1 million tonnes a minute every minute during the summer melt season June to September, it will lose 176 gigatons per year and at that rate, the whole of the Greenland Ice Sheet will be gone in the next 150,000 years while contributing about 0.5mm/year or 5cm per century to sea level rise. Is this a death spiral?
  5. CLAIM: The Arctic is unravelling. And it’s happening faster than anyone could have imagined just a few decades ago. RESPONSE: A few decades ago climate scientists were saying that global warming is devastating the Arctic and that the Arctic is screaming, as described in a related post: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/02/22/old-climate-fears-revisited/ There we find that (1) 1999, Sea ice in the Arctic Basin is shrinking by 14000 square miles per year because of global warming caused by human activity according to a new international study that used 46 years of data and climate models to tackle the specific question of whether the loss of Arctic ice is a natural variation or caused by global warming. The computer model says that the probability that these changes were caused by natural variation is 1% but when global warming was added to the model the ice melt was a perfect fit. Therefore the ice melt is caused by human activities that emit greenhouse gases. (2) 2004 Global warming has unleashed massive ecological changes that are already under way. These changes are ushering in a grim future including massive species extinctions, an elevation of sea levels by 3 feet, wholesale changes to the Arctic. (3) 2004: RAPID ARCTIC WARMING BRINGS SEA LEVEL RISE. Increasing greenhouse gases from human activities is causing the Arctic to warm twice as fast as the rest of the planet; in Alaska, western Canada, and eastern Russia winter temperatures have risen by 2C to 4C in the last 50 years; the Arctic will warm by 4C to 7C by 2100. A portion of Greenland’s ice sheet will melt; global sea levels will rise; global warming will intensify. Greenland contains enough melting ice to raise sea levels by 7 meters; Bangkok, Manila, Dhaka, Florida, Louisiana, and New Jersey are at risk of inundation; thawing permafrost and rising seas threaten Arctic coastal regions; climate change will accelerate and bring about profound ecological and social changes; the Arctic is experiencing the most rapid and severe climate change on earth and it’s going to get a lot worse; Arctic summer sea ice will decline by 50% to 100%; polar bears will be driven towards extinction; this report is an urgent SOS for the Arctic; forest fires and insect infestations will increase in frequency and intensity; changing vegetation and rising sea levels will shrink the tundra to its lowest level in 21000 years; vanishing breeding areas for birds and grazing areas for animals will cause extinctions of many species. (4) 2004 GLOBAL WARMING WILL LEAVE ARCTIC ICE FREE. The Arctic ice cap is shrinking at an unprecedented rate and will be gone by 2070. It has shrunk by 15%to 20% in the last 30 years. This process will accelerate with the Arctic warming twice as fast as the rest of the world due to a buildup of heat trapping greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. (5) 2007: THE ARCTIC IS SCREAMING. Climate science declares that the low sea ice extent in the Arctic is the leading indicator of climate change. We are told that the Arctic “is screaming”, that Arctic sea ice extent is the “canary in the coal mine”, and that Polar Bears and other creatures in the Arctic are dying off and facing imminent extinction. Scientists say that the melting sea ice has set up a positive feedback system that would cause the summer melts in subsequent years to be greater and greater until the Arctic becomes ice free in the summer of 2012. (6) 2007. Climate scientists say that the Arctic is on its way to becoming ice free in summer and that therefore the polar bear should be declared an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act and we must act quickly and decisively to cut emissions and turn the climate temperature knob down to where the Polar Bear can survive. (7) 2008: ARCTIC SEA ICE IN A DOWNWARD SPIRAL because of positive feedback. Fossil fuels are devastating the Arctic where the volume of sea ice fell to its lowest recorded level to date this year and that reduced ice coverage is causing a non-linear acceleration in the loss of polar ice because there is less ice to reflect sunlight. (8) 2008: THE ARCTIC WILL BE ICE FREE IN SUMMER IN 2008. The unusually low summer sea ice extent in the Arctic in 2007 caused the IPCC to take note and has revise its projection of an ice free Arctic. (9) 2009: Ban Ki-Moon says that he went to the Arctic Ocean and was horrified to see the remains of a glacier that just a few years ago was a majestic mass of ice and that had just collapsed – not slowly melted – just collapsed. He thereby became convinced that the only resolution for the “climate crisis” is a binding emission reduction agreement at the Copenhagen meeting in December 2009. (10) 2009: THE ARCTIC WILL BE ICE FREE IN SUMMER BY THE YEAR 2012. Climate scientists have studied the extreme summer melt of Arctic sea ice in 2007 and found that the summer melt of 2007 was a climate change event and that it implies that the Arctic will be ice free in the summer from 2012 onwards. This is a devastating effect on the planet and our use of fossil fuels is to blame.
  6. CLAIM: Northern Siberia and the Canadian Arctic are now warming three times faster than the rest of the world. In the past decade, Arctic temperatures have increased by nearly 1C. If greenhouse gas emissions stay on the same trajectory, we can expect the north to have warmed by 4C year-round by the middle of the century. RESPONSE: It is true that the Arctic is warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world because of certain atmospheric circulation patterns that transfers heat from the Tropics to the Arctic but the rate of warming is not uniform “year-round”. The warming rate is highest in spring (3.9C per century) and lowest in summer (1.4C per century). The winter months are in the middle at about (2.4C per century). These rates imply a mean annualized rate of (2.57C per century) – about twice the rate of the global mean warming rate of (1.3C per century). Details in a related post: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/06/22/global-warming-1979-2019/ . The middle of the century is 2050 – about 30 years away. At the warming rate of 2.6C per century the Arctic will have warmed by 0.8C at most by mid-century. The 4C forecast requires some clarification in this context.
  7. CLAIM: In the Arctic, the warm summer months melt away ice and the winter snowfall freezes it back. But as the climate warms, the Arctic loses more ice than it gains back. RESPONSE: Yes, sir! Agreed! This is the mechanism of gradual year by year ice loss in a warming climate.
  8. CLAIM: Arctic ice in August 1980: The Greenland Ice Sheet is no longer growing. Instead of gaining new ice every year, it begins to lose roughly 51 billion metric tons annually, discharged into the ocean as meltwater and icebergs. RESPONSE: Yes of course, in a warming climate Greenland will lose some ice on an annual basis and at 51 gigatons per year, that melt will contribute 0.142mm/year to sea level rise and if this loss persists for a few thousand years, the whole of the Greenland Ice Sheet will be gone in about 500,000 years unless the next glaciation cycle of the Quaternary Ice Age intervenes.
  9. CLAIM: August 2010: A chunk of ice four times the size of Manhattan breaks off the Petermann Glacier, causing the ice sheet to retreat 18 kilometers. With little snow falling during winter, Greenland’s ice cap is subjected to record melting which lasts 50 days longer than average. RESPONSE: Taking the height of the World Trade Center as the height, the volume of “the size of Manhattan” is 32.0463 cubic km and a chunk of ice that size weighs 32.0463 gigatons and one that is four times the size of Manhattan weighs 128 gigatons. If this exceptional Manhattan event happens every August, the melting of Greenland will contribute 0.357mm/year to sea level rise and the Greenland Ice sheet will be gone in about 200,000 years. The use of geographical references to denote ice volume is not a good way to communicate the amount of ice that is at issue.
  10. CLAIM: Even if we stop all greenhouse gas emissions tomorrow, Arctic sea ice will continue melting for decades. RESPONSE: The time span implied by decades is not a very long period in in the context of a century of ice melt dynamics and without an AGW climate change implication because of the internal climate variability issue: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/07/16/the-internal-variability-issue/
  11. CLAIM: There is no facet of Arctic life that remains untouched by the immensity of change here, except perhaps the eternal dance between light and darkness. The Arctic as we know it – a vast icy landscape where reindeer roam, polar bears feast, and waters teem with cod and seals – will soon be frozen only in memory. RESPONSE: There is in fact no facet of human life anywhere on earth that remains untouched by the immensity of the climate in shaping our lives. For example the Holocene – and specifically the Holocene Climate Optimum period – created human civilization and our social structure out of animal-like humans who lived isolated in caves: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2018/08/20/the-holocene-optimum-period-a-bibliography/ and it was the climate change of the Medieval Warm Period that took the Norsemen settle in Greenland: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/04/02/mwp/ and the Little Ice Age that killed those settlers and ended the Viking settlement of Greenland LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2018/07/19/liaclimatologybibliography/ Climate has an enormous impact on our lives and this impact is what drives the climate superstitions that have been with us all though human history and still is, as evidenced in this Guardian assessment of climate change: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2018/08/03/confirmationbias/
  12. CLAIM: A new Nature Climate Change study predicts that summer sea ice floating on the surface of the Arctic Ocean could disappear entirely by 2035. Until relatively recently, scientists didn’t think we would reach this point until 2050 at the earliest. Reinforcing this finding, last month Arctic sea ice reached its second-lowest extent in the , the 41-year satellite record. RESPONSE: As seen in ITEM#5 above, the “ICE-FREE-ARCTIC” being forecast here has a long and sordid history in climate science. This kind of obsession with fear mongering does not speak well of what is often advertised as “THE SCIENCE” that in and of itself should validate everything climate scientists say. LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/11/18/the-ice-free-arctic-obsession-of-agw/ .
  13. CLAIM; The latest models are basically showing that no matter what emissions scenario we follow, we’re going to lose summer sea ice cover before the middle of the century. says Julienne Stroeve, a senior research scientist at the US National Snow and Ice Data Center. “Even if we keep warming to less than 2C, it’s still enough to lose that summer sea ice in some years. RESPONSE: The strange and failed obsession of climate science with the ice free Arctic prediction continues unabated. It is odd to the point of bizarre. LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/11/18/the-ice-free-arctic-obsession-of-agw/
  14. CLAIM: At outposts in the Canadian Arctic, permafrost is thawing 70 years sooner than predicted. Roads are buckling. Houses are sinking. In Siberia, giant craters pockmark the tundra as temperatures soar, hitting 100F (38C) in the town of Verkhoyansk in July. RESPONSE: An odd falsehood that seems to have become institutionalized in climate science is that failed forecasts are celebrated as being even more right than previously thought if the data are scarier than the forecast. That the permafrost forecast was off by 70 years does not mean that it was even more right than previously thought. It means that the forecast was wrong. The biased interpretation of the error is evidence of a significant level of confirmation bias in climate science: LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/06/29/diffenbaugh-2017-extreme-weather-of-climate-change/ .
  15. CLAIM: The soaring heat leads to raging wildfires, now common in hotter and drier parts of the Arctic. In recent summers, infernos have torn across the tundra of Sweden, Alaska, and Russia, destroying native vegetation. RESPONSE: These are time and geography constrained climate events that have no interpretation in terms of anthropogenic global warming. LINK#1: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/07/19/agw-heat-wave-in-siberia/ LINK#2: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/07/13/siberian-heat-larming-climate-scientists/ LINK#3: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/07/16/the-internal-variability-issue/
  16. CLAIM: This hurts the millions of reindeer and caribou who eat mosses, lichens, and stubbly grasses. Disastrous rain-on-snow events have also increased in frequency, locking the ungulates’ preferred forage foods in ice; between 2013 and 2014, an estimated 61,000 animals died on Russia’s Yamal peninsula due to mass starvation during a rainy winter. Overall, the global population of reindeer and caribou has declined by 56% in the last 20 years. RESPONSE: Climate science has determined that that global warming is killing off the caribou because warming causes freezing rain in the calving season and that makes it hard for calving caribou to feed. The data presented show a population decline for the caribou. However, as shown in a related post, the decline in caribou population is not sustained leading to a very different interpretation of the same data. LINK: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/03/09/caribou/ .
  17. CLAIM: Such losses have devastated the indigenous people whose culture and livelihoods are interwoven with the plight of the reindeer and caribou. Inuit use all parts of the caribou: sinew for thread, hide for clothing, antlers for tools, and flesh for food. In Europe and Russia, the Sami people herd thousands of reindeer across the tundra. Warmer winters have forced many of them to change how they conduct their livelihoods, for example by providing supplemental feed for their reindeer. Yet some find opportunities in the crisis. Melting ice has made the region’s abundant mineral deposits and oil and gas reserves more accessible by ship. China is heavily investing in the increasingly ice-free Northern Sea Route over the top of Russia, which promises to cut shipping times between the Far East and Europe by 10 to 15 days. The Northwest Passage through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago could soon yield another shortcut. And in Greenland, vanishing ice is unearthing a wealth of uranium, zinc, gold, iron and rare earth elements. In 2019, Donald Trump claimed he was considering buying Greenland from Denmark. Never before has the Arctic enjoyed such political relevance. Tourism has boomed, at least until the Covid shutdown, with throngs of wealthy visitors drawn to this exotic frontier in hopes of capturing the perfect selfie under the aurora borealis. Between 2006 and 2016, the impact from winter tourism increased by over 600%. The city of Tromsø, Norway, dubbed the “Paris of the north”, welcomed just 36,000 tourists in the winter of 2008-09. By 2016, that number had soared to 194,000. Underlying such interest, however, is an unspoken sentiment: that this might be the last chance people have to experience the Arctic as it once was. RESPONSE: The Arctic is the home of the indigenous Inuit, a proud, tough, and highly talented race of survivors that have lived, survived, and prospered in the Arctic since the icy cold of the last glaciation, through the Younger Dryas cooling, through 8200, 6300, 4700, 2700, 1550 and 550YBP cold periods and the the extreme warming, ice melt, and sea level rise of the Holocene Climate Optimum, the Minoan warm period that destroyed the Late Bronze Age civilization, the Medieval warm period that brought the Norsemen to Greenland, and the Little Ice Age that killed off the Norsemen in Greenland. Through it all the Inuit have survived, thrived, grown, and prospered. And they are still here today surviving wonderfully as only they know how. It is an extreme form of racism for the European races to play the role of caretakers of these incredible Arctic people. They don’t need the Europeans to feel sorry for them or to take care of them and to help them to survive global warming. They certainly don’t need Europeans to meddle in Arctic affairs and to keep them from the economic bonanza off the Northwest Passage.
  18. CLAIM: Stopping climate change in the Arctic requires an enormous reduction in the emission of fossil fuels, and the world has made scant progress despite obvious urgency. Moreover, many greenhouse gases persist in our atmosphere for years. Even if we were to cease all emissions tomorrow, it would take decades for those gases to dissolve and for temperatures to stabilize (though some recent research suggests the span could be shorter). In the interim, more ice, permafrost, and animals would be lost. It’s got to be both a reduction in emissions and carbon capture at this point, explains Stroeve. “We need to take out what we’ve already put in there. Other strategies may help mitigate the damage to the ecosystem and its inhabitants. The Yupik village of Newtok in northern Alaska, where thawing permafrost has eroded the ground underfoot, will be relocated by 2023. Conservation groups are pushing for the establishment of several marine conservation areas throughout the High Arctic to protect struggling wildlife. In 2018, 10 parties signed an agreement that would prohibit commercial fishing in the high seas of the central Arctic Ocean for at least 16 years. And governments must weigh further regulations on new shipping and extractive activities in the region. The Arctic of the past is already gone. Following our current climate trajectory, it will be impossible to return to the conditions we saw just three decades ago. Yet many experts believe there’s still time to act, to preserve what once was, if the world comes together to prevent further harm and conserve what remains of this unique and fragile ecosystem. RESPONSE: That fossil fuel emissions change atmospheric composition and that climate action can be taken to reduce the rate of rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration and thereby to attenuate the rate of warming and sea level rise are at the foundation of climate science. Yet, no empirical evidence has been provided by climate science for these relationships and none is found in the data: LINK#1: https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/09/23/emission-reduction-atmospheric-co2/ LINK#2: https://tambonthongchai.com/2018/12/14/climateaction/ LINK#3: https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/02/20/csiroslr/

THE PROUD AND TOUGH NATIVE PEOPLES OF THE ARCTIC

Arctic Indigenous Peoples - Arctic Centre, University of Lapland
Arctic Native Peoples on the Edge - The Solutions Journal
Arctic People | National Snow and Ice Data Center
Inuit - Wikipedia

CLIMATE SCIENTIST EXPLAINS THE SCIENTIFIC MEANING OF “DEATH SPIRAL” IN THE SCIENCE OF CLIMATE SCIENCE.

2 Responses to "DESPERATION LANGUAGE OF FEAROLOGY: DEATH SPIRAL"

Excellent response, especially on all of the failed predictions of an ice-free Arctic.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: