Friday, 27 April 2012

In Memoriam – the Arctic melt

When propagandist no longer go on and on about an issue, or the issue morphs seamlessly into something else then there’s always a reason. 

The issue has gone sour in some way.

But rather than allow these discarded issues drop, we need to keep them alive because of what they continue to tell us about the propagandists who dumped them.

Arctic sea ice is one such issue. About five or six years ago, Arctic sea ice was in retreat and we were all going to die once this vital resource disappeared from our lives. The climate crew have nailed it very firmly to catastrophic warming caused by CO2, but now the Arctic ice retreat seems to have either paused or stopped altogether. 

But instead of rejoicing that we aren’t going to die horrible heat deaths, the propaganda just morphs into something else. It’s almost comical, but not quite, because it’s really too serious to be seriously comical.

One response to the Arctic game is to ignore it as just another thread of dumped propaganda, another case where natural processes didn’t play ball. But issues such as the Arctic are worth niggling away at because firm predictions were made about the Arctic and CO2.

I don’t know what the Arctic will do next, but those who are paying attention will have noticed that an ice-free Arctic is now due some time this century. The catastrophe has been kicked into touch. If the melt continues it will be taken up again – if it doesn’t, it will stay on the back burner as a future threat.

Science isn’t supposed to be like this though, is it?


Macheath said...

I wonder whether future generations will study the fluctuating predictions of the 20th and 21st centuries in search of patterns.

Although the 'imminent ice-age' chaps from the 1970s seem to have gone into hiding, subsequent pundits have adopted a more fluid stance in case of just this eventuality.

I can't help feeling, though, that it's rather like fleas hypothesising about the evolution of the canine species.

James Higham said...

Nice article from Briggs on this recently. Doing a post and shall bring your post in. Theory is the root of all evil.

A K Haart said...

Mac - I'm sure future generations will study it if circumstances are still favourable and it isn't still going on.

James - I'll keep an eye out for it.