Global warming causes Antarctic ice? claim Dutch scientists, according to Red Orbit 1 April 2013, New Scientist 2 April 2013 and Nature Geoscience doi:10.1038/ngeo1767. Although the sea ice around the North Pole has been decreasing over the last few decades, down under, the sea ice around Antarctica has been growing, and scientists have had difficulty fitting this into a story of relentless global warming melting the polar ice caps. Richard Bintanja and colleagues at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute now claim that the growing ice is actually being caused by global warming. They claim the sea ice growth is the result of increased cold water from melting glaciers flowing into the ocean and forming an insulating layer that prevents southern ice being melted by warm ocean currents. Because this water is less dense than the sea water it stays closer to the surface and also freezes more quickly in Autumn and Winter, so warm northern weather produce more southern ice.

However other scientists are critical of this theory. Paul Holland, an oceanographer with the British Antarctic Survey in Cambridge, UK, commented: “The mechanism could be completely true, but this study does not demonstrate that increased melting has made a significant contribution to the increase in sea-ice cover”. Holland and Ron Kwok, a climate researcher at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, recently carried out a study of Antarctic ice using satellite data for Antarctic sea-ice motion from 1992 to 2010. Their study showed sea-ice expansion was caused by regional patterns in the wind. (Nature Geoscience doi:10.1038/ngeo1627)

New Scientist, Red Orbit

Editorial Comment: We could cheaply say – what a farce to claim that global warming makes us colder down under, yet the debate between these two groups of scientists over one aspect of climate change is another reminder that climate science is far from settled, even though the taxes based on using climate predictions as an excuse are costing us all, and achieving nothing.

We are sure that the changes in Antarctic ice will turn out to be a complex mixture of factors, and when more research is carried out we predict that changes in polar ice will show to be the results of many processes such as winds, clouds and ocean currents – all processes that man cannot control, no matter how much you try to stop breathing out CO2. Politicians and environmentalists who claim “the science is settled” should back off, and humble themselves before the Creator God for whom “lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds do his bidding”. (Psalm 148:8). (Ref. Southern Ocean, Antarctica, sea-ice)


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