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Why's There More Ice at the South Pole?

By Jack Kelly

You've probably heard the permanent ice cap in the Arctic has receded considerably, because the people who are worried about global warming talk about it all the time.

You may not know ice in Antarctica is growing. This is an awkward topic for global warming alarmists, because if global warming were, er, global, this shouldn't be happening.

So how could ice be melting at the north pole while it's building up at the south?

"Recent massive volcanoes have risen from the ocean floor deep under the Arctic ice cap, spewing plumes of fragmented magma into the sea," Agence France Presse reported June 25.

"The eruptions, as big as the one that buried Pompei -- took place in 1999 along the Gakkel Ridge, an underwater mountain chain snaking (1,100 miles) from the northern tip of Greenland to Siberia," the AFP dispatch said.

A team of scientists led by Robert Sohn of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachussetts have gotten a look at the ocean floor 13,000 feet beneath the Arctic pack ice.

"What they saw was unmistakable evidence of explosive eruptions rather than the gradual secretion of lava bubbling up from the earth's mantle," AFP reported.

Magma is molten rock. Most magmas have temperatures ranging from 700 degrees Celsius to 1,300 degrees Celsius. That's hot enough to melt ice.

According to the data gathered by scientists in the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, noted the Web logger "Sweetness & Light," the precipitous decline in the ice pack began in 1999, when the eruptions occurred. If this is a coincidence, it's a remarkable one.

But it's a coincidence that went unremarked upon in the AFP story. There is a tendency in contemporary journalism to attribute any adverse development in nature to anthropogenic global warming, no matter how strained the connection, and to downplay other, more plausible explanations for the phenomena.

Numberwatch, a British Web site, has a list of more than 600 things that journalists have linked to global warming, including the cold wave in India this February; the migration of cockroaches in Australia; an attack of killer jellyfish off the coast of Northern Ireland; staff shortages at brothels in Bulgaria; a snowstorm in Baghdad in January, and
increased cougar attacks in Canada.

CBS and MSNBC posted on their Web sites June 17 a story linking global warming to earthquakes.

"New research compiled by Australian scientist Dr. Tom Chalko shows that global seismic activity on earth is now five times more energetic than it was 20 years ago," the story said.

"The research proves that destructive ability of earthquakes on Earth increases alarmingly fast and that this trend is set to continue, unless the problem of 'global warming' is comprehensively and urgently addressed."

If the Earth warms too much, it could explode, "Dr." Chalko said.

Mr. Chalko has never studied the earth sciences. But he practices meditation, telepathy and astral travel, his Web site says.

Steve McIntyre of Climate Audit is the the man who proved the "hockey stick" graph of global warming was a fraud. This is what Mr. McIntyre found when he visited the Web site of the U.S. Geological Survey:

"Earthquakes of magnitudes 7.0 or greater have remained fairly constant throughout this century, and, according to our records, have actually seemed to decrease in recent years," the U.S.G.S. said.

The average number of major earthquakes in the 20th Century was 18 per year, the U.S.G.S. said. "Our records show that 1992, and 1995-1997 were the only years that we have reached or exceeded the long term average of earthquakes since 1971."

"Dr." Chalko is a crackpot spreading nonsense. But CBS and MSNBC didn't check either his claims or his bona fides before rewriting his press release and reporting it as "news." As Newsweek's Evan Thomas famously said of his magazine's rush to condemn the Duke lacrosse players falsely accused of rape, "the narrative was right, but the facts were wrong."

The warmest year on record was 1998 -- nearly ten years ago. Global temperatures have been declining for the last four years. Last winter was the coldest in decades in most of the world.

But those are mere facts. For global warming alarmists, only the narrative matters.

Copyright 2008, Journal Press Syndicate

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