A few tidbits to pass along at year’s end on one of our favorite topics:
In a story with a quite different headline and bent, Russ Schnell, director of Observatory and Global Network Operations for NOAA, says that climate change is cyclical and that “the planet’s vegetation, over millions of years, sucks in and spits out carbon dioxide.” Yeah, we knew that.
Here’s an AP article that says, “One hundred scientists from four countries are working on the Antarctic Geological Drilling Program, or ANDRILL, coordinated by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. They gather rock core from deep below the Antarctic sea floor, then analyze it. So far, the cores show a dynamic ice sheet that advanced and retreated more than 50 times over 5 million years. Some of the ice shelf’s disappearance was probably during times when the planet was 36 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius) to 37 degrees Fahrenheit (3 degrees Celsius) warmer than it is today.” (Emphasis ours) Yeah, we knew that, too.
In this article, MSNBC touts the popular headline about the big chunk of ice that broke off and was floating away, but this New Scientist blurb says, “The size of the world’s largest ice shelf has fluctuated wildly over the last 10 million years. Sediments extracted from the Ross Ice Shelf in the Antarctic show that it disappears and reappears in cycles.” Yup, knew that, too.
Finally, there’s this — also from the New Scientist — on our second favorite topic, global cooling. “In July 1971, Stephen Schneider, a young American climate researcher at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in New York, made headlines in The New York Times when he warned of a coming cooling that could ‘trigger an ice age’. Soon after, George Kulka, a respected climatologist from the Czech Academy of Sciences, warned on TV that ‘the ice age is due now any time.’ What prompted this panic? Three decades of evident, if mild, cooling had set the scene, but there was also genuine concern among climate scientists based on predictions of both natural and human-made climate change.” We also knew that.
We wish you a happy New Year which we hope is filled with healthy skepticism and sound science.