Email of the day (1)
Comment of the Day

September 12 2013

Commentary by David Fuller

Email of the day (1)

On sea ice
"The extent of sea ice does not have much bearing on sea levels because the water in the ice is still in the water, so to speak. It's the old iceberg thing - only a small part is above the waterline. So if the Arctic melts completely, the water level would rise, but not by as much as you might think. Glacial ice, or land ice, is a different story altogether because when it melts the entire melt eventually ends up in the ocean. Claims that the Antarctic is "disappearing faster" imply that the land ice is either melting or breaking off and falling into the ocean at an increasingly faster rate than it is being replaced.

"On the topic of sea ice, there is a useful website, called The Cryosphere Today, which publishes some interesting charts about sea ice.

"There are 3 particularly interesting charts that show the extent of sea ice and the sea ice anomaly in the Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere and Globally.

"Although the situation in the Northern Hemisphere (the one we usually hear about) is of concern, with sea ice trending down over the last 30 years, the situation in the Southern Hemisphere looks quite the opposite, with sea ice quite clearly trending up over the last 30 years.

"I have trouble reconciling claims that the Antarctic is "disappearing faster", or disappearing at all, when the Southern Hemisphere sea ice has been increasing gradually for over 3 decades! Go figure!

"The Global chart is the most interesting because the above trends cancel each other out to some extent. Interestingly, even though the Global chart shows periods of deterioration in sea ice, particularly between say 2005 and 2012, the data for 2013 (which only shows the penultimate sea ice peak for 2013 so far) looks pretty much like any other year back in the 1980s, when we were more concerned about Global Cooling. But you won't read about that!"

David Fuller's view Thank you for this informed email which I am certain most subscribers will also appreciate. Your assessment of the Southern Hemisphere, backed by The Cryosphere Today site, is consistent with some earlier comments sent to Fullermoney and also with The Browning Newsletter which I am also very pleased to receive and post.

Your assessment also addresses the contradiction which I mentioned in response to the "UN Leak" reported by Bloomberg on Friday 6th September.

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