PLEASE NOTE:


*

CCNet CLIMATE SCARES & CLIMATE CHANGE, 1 November 2001
------------------------------------------------------


"Global warming might be a popular worry but scientists on
Antarctica's coast this southern summer are recording some of the
thickest sea ice ever seen, the Antarctic Sun newspaper reported
Wednesday. New Zealand's Scott Base and the US McMurdo Sound on Ross Island
were blocked in by heavy sea ice, apparently the result of a vast
iceberg, the paper reported in its latest edition. "To my knowledge this is
the greatest summer sea ice extent that's ever been recorded in McMurdo
Sound," Michael Cameron said."
--AFP, 31 October 2001


"Environmental fears that the South Seas once idyllic atolls are
disappearing as global warming raises sea levels could soon be left high
and dry, according to new scientific evidence which appears to scotch the
myth of the sinking isles. Previously, spiralling concerns over the
forecast ecological disaster have prompted appeals for help from Pacific
political summits, fundraising efforts from Greenpeace and a media hunt for
early victims.
The atoll nation of Tuvalu earlier this year appealed to Australia
to grant citizenship to more of its people, saying their homes are
disappearing beneath the waves. But, says a scientist, the South Pacific
ocean has not risen in the last decade."
--AFP, 17 October 2001


"An Alaskan sweepstake has become a record of global warming. The
competition to predict when ice will melt reveals that, on average, the
thaw comes more than five days earlier now than it did 84 years ago...
The record includes a cooler spell in the middle of the century, and
reflects rapid recent warming. Since 1975, the date at which the clock stops
has advanced by about nine days."
--John Whitefield, Nature, 26 October 2001


"In fact, the whole paper rests on one of the oldest statistical
fiddles in the book. This is known as end date distortion, which is
polite scientific language for fraud by selection. This is one of
the prime ploys in the art of chartmanship. The authors state:
'We examined the entire record of ice breakup to look for
long-term trends in breakup. We compared the ice breakup
record from 1949-2000 with available climatic data for
Nenana and Fairbanks, Alaska (90 km away).'
By doing this they left out both 1946, which was an earlier than
average year, and 2001, which was a later than average year, let
alone the entire earlier record. The result of this selection is to create
an illusion of a significant trend where there is none. A typical
optimised isolated statistic quoted by Nature is "Since 1975, the date at
which the clock stops has advanced by about nine days". They could
equally have said "Since 1940 it has gone back by about eighteen
days". All in all it is merely a typical fabrication by the global
warming propagandists and certainly nothing to do with real science. The
omnipresence of such blatant and deliberate falsehood to prop up a theory of
purely political origin augers ill for the future of science. It is really
all rather depressing."
--Number Watch, November 2001


=========
(1) SCIENTISTS COMPLAIN OF UNUSUALLY THICK ICE IN ANTARTIC
    Space Daily, 31 October 2001

(2) BETTING ON WARMING: NATURE BACKS WRONG HORSE
    Nature Science Update, 26 October 2001

(3) SYNCHRONISED SPINNING
    Number Watch, November 2001

(4) THE NEANA ICE CLASSIC: BETTING ON WARMING
    John L. Daly

(5) THINNING ICE SHEETS....?
    Nature Science Update, 1 November 2001
 
(6) POLAR ICE CAP STUDIES REFUTE GLOBAL WARMING
    Environment and Climate News, October 2001

(7) SCIENTIST POURS COLD WATER ON "MYTH" OF SINKING PACIFIC ATOLLS
    Space Daily, 17 October 2001

(8) STUDYING HOW EARTH FROZE OVER
    Steve Koppes <s-koppes@uchicago.edu>

(9) NEW SPACECRAFT TO PRESERVE OUR PLANET AND ENVIRONMENT
    ESA Media Relations <ContactESA@esa.int>

(10) GLOBAL WARMING & SEA LEVELS
     CO2 Science Magazine, 31 October 2001

(11) THE MEDIEVAL WARM PERIOD IN WESTERN NORWAY
     CO2 Science Magazine, 31 October 2001

(12) POTENTIAL INACCURACIES IN TEMPERATURE TRENDS
     CO2 Science Magazine, 17 October 2001

(13) ICE CORE ANALYSIS AND CLIMATE CHANGE
     Michael Paine <mpaine@tpgi.com.au>


====================
(1) SCIENTISTS COMPLAIN OF UNUSUALLY THICK ICE IN ANTARTIC

>From Space Daily, 31 October 2001
http://www.spacedaily.com/news/011031003214.ltjv05p6.html
 
AUCKLAND (AFP) Oct 31, 2001

Global warming might be a popular worry but scientists on Antarctica's coast
this southern summer are recording some of the thickest sea ice ever seen,
the Antarctic Sun newspaper reported Wednesday.

New Zealand's Scott Base and the US McMurdo Sound on Ross Island were
blocked in by heavy sea ice, apparently the result of a vast iceberg, the
paper reported in its latest edition.

On the other side of the continent, an American research ship in Marguerite
Bay on the Antarctic Peninsula has just managed to free itself from
extensive ice fields.

Antarctic Sun, published by Raytheon Polar Services at McMurdo, said an
iceberg labelled B15 extended about 300 metres (1,000 feet) below sea-level,
blocking the current of water that usually circulates through McMurdo Sound.

When it first calved off the Ross Sea ice shelf in March last year, B15
measured around 11,000 square kilometres (4,400 square miles), the size of
Jamaica.

At the time it was believed it would drift out into the Southern Ocean and
break up, but instead the latest satellite photos Monday showed B15, and the
much smaller C16, were parked across McMurdo Sound.

"It's turned this whole area into a mill pond," Ted Dettmar, lead instructor
at Field Safety Training Program at McMurdo told the Sun.

In many years, winter storms blow out the sea ice, leaving open water in
July, Dettmar said.

By the time the US Coast Guard ice breakers arrive in December, the ice edge
is typically 24 to 32 kilometres (15 to 20 miles) away from McMurdo Station.

But this year people wintering at McMurdo Station did not see any open water
because of the ice, Dettmar said.

The sea ice was now three metres (nine feet) thick in front of McMurdo, and
three to 4.4 metres (10 to 14 feet) thick at the Williams Field ice runway,
west of Scott Base.

An ice breaker may have to cut through more than 113 kilometres (70 miles)
of ice to reach McMurdo.

Dettmar said the ice was flat, without pressure ridges and cracks.

It was also affecting penguins and seals which now have to travel further to
access the sea.

A science group studying Weddel seals has found less than 150 adults in the
study area, which extends from Scott Base to Cape Evans.

This is less than a third of the number seen by this time last year, said
seal scientist Michael Cameron.

"We've known that there's a relationship between ice extent and the number
of animals in the study area," Cameron said.

"To my knowledge this is the greatest summer sea ice extent that's ever been
recorded in McMurdo Sound," Cameron said.

"Everybody's guess is that it's due to this giant iceberg off of Cape Bird
blocking the swells that would normally break up any sea ice in the area."

Last year the sea ice near McMurdo was 40 percent thicker than usual, and
this year it's thicker still.

Meanwhile researchers aboard Nathaniel B. Palmer off the Antarctic Peninsula
also found heavy ice. They were held in it for several weeks, unable to
move.

"They're fine, they're safe, they're doing science," said Al Hickey, marine
superintendent for Raytheon Polar Services Company.

"They're just going to play a waiting game. The ship's in no jeopardy, the
people are in no jeopardy."

All rights reserved. 2000 Agence France-Presse

===========
(2) BETTING ON WARMING: NATURE BACKS WRONG HORSE - AGAIN

>From Nature Science Update, 26 October 2001
http://www.nature.com/nsu/011101/011101-2.html

Warm favourite: The smart money is on global warming.

JOHN WHITFIELD

An Alaskan sweepstake has become a record of global warming. The competition
to predict when ice will melt reveals that, on average, the thaw comes more
than five days earlier now than it did 84 years ago (1).

In the winter of 1917, railway engineers working in Nenana, Alaska whiled
away the long winter nights by erecting a wooden tripod on the frozen Tenana
River and placing bets on the exact moment in spring when it would fall
through the ice.

The Nenana Ice Classic, as it is now known, has taken place every year
since. It attracts entrants from around the world and the original $800
jackpot (about $11,000 in current terms) has grown to around $300,000. The
eight entrants who correctly predicted that this year the tripod would fall
at 1 pm on 8 May pocketed $38,500 each.

Raphael Sagarin, of Stanford University in California, happened upon this
unusual climate record while leafing through his Lonely Planet guidebook. "I
was doing research on tide pools in southeast Alaska when I read about this
competition," he says. "I thought it might be a good record of climate
change."

The Classic stands up to scientific scrutiny because it measures the same
thing every year with extreme precision. The contest ends when the tripod is
swept downriver and trips a wire that stops a clock. The amount of money
riding on the outcome also ensures accuracy.

The record includes a cooler spell in the middle of the century, and
reflects rapid recent warming. Since 1975, the date at which the clock stops
has advanced by about nine days.

"Ice melt is very strongly related to climate," says Tim Sparks of the
Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Monks Wood, Cambridgeshire, UK.
Measuring melting in this way is "perfectly legitimate", adds Sparks, a
champion of the contribution that amateur naturalists can make to climate
monitoring.

"It's just a piece of the whole puzzle," says Sagarin. Combined with
information from other biological or physical processes, such as leaf
budburst and lake-ice melting, "it shows that the timing of the natural
world is moving earlier".

Thaw point

The trend is not predictable enough to aid punters - this year the tripod
lasted well beyond the 1917 date of 30 April, for example. Sagarin himself
has not entered: "I wondered if I'd have an unfair advantage, but there's no
science to guessing in an individual year."

Two forces can bring about the tripod's downfall. The ice beneath it can
melt or floes swept down the river can break it up. From talking to local
witnesses, Sagarin concludes that the former has become more common. Now the
ice "just sort of rots away" beneath the tripod, he says. One person told
him that the ice contest is "a lot less exciting than it used to be".
  
References
Sagarin, R. & Micheli, F. Climate change in nontraditional datasets.
Science, 294, 811 (2001).

Nature News Service / Macmillan Magazines Ltd 2001
 
=============
(3) SYNCHRONISED SPINNING

>From Number Watch, November 2001
http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/2001%20November.htm

Number of the Month
November 2001
Synchronised spinning

With a new round of climate talks under way this month, all other activities
in the lying fields pale into insignificance. The world is awash with global
warming horror stories. A record warm October in Britain has been a boon to
fanatics and journalists seeking to exploit those who cannot distinguish
between climate and weather. While the sort of travesty noted in The
Observer last month is relatively expected from such a source, it is still
disappointing that a once great science journal, Nature,  descends to such
opportunistic nonsense. It is not the first time, however, as we noted in
April (see Against Nature). The unwonted triviality of the approach is
emphasised by the headline: The smart money is on global warming.

The story arises from a paper in Science entitled "Climate change in
non-traditional data sets" and concerns the Nenana Ice Classic. This is a
gambling device based upon the date and time of the ice melt on the Tenana
River. It has grown into a big event, with a jackpot of $300,000 a year.
Just the sort of trivial pursuit to keep the pot boiling among the tabloids
and the trendies, but in a formerly serious scientific journal?

One of the fascinating features of the global warming debate has been a
David and Goliath battle. David is a lone Tasmanian scholar, John Daly,
while Goliath is the might of the post-scientific establishment, which has
the whole Philistine army of the world media behind it. Amazingly, David is
winning the battle hands down, though the world will never know it because
of the rigorous censorship voluntarily imposed by the media.

Now it so happens that Daly found the Nenana story before Nature and had
already posted a typically thorough critique. It is worth noting the
conclusion to his careful analysis:

It is clear from the Nenana Ice Classic data that there has been a slight
trend toward earlier breakup dates, but nothing nearly as significant as
that claimed by the authors - and hardly justifying a paper about it in a
major journal.

The authors attribute recent earlier breakups to climatic warming, but it is
clear from Alaska Climate Research Center data that there has been little or
no warming to speak of over the full period, but that snowfall has increased
significantly, contrary to what the authors claim. The authors also make no
allowance for the possibility of urban warming of the river itself.

Their claims of correlations between river breakup dates and climatic
warming are based primarily on selecting only part of the available data,
significantly excluding the peak warm year of 1940. They also excluded the
data for 2001, a colder than average year, even though there was ample time
to include it.  Had it been included, it would have made a significant
difference to their comparative analysis.

But then, they might not have got it published in time for the COP7 climate
conference in Marrakech, Morocco, in early November. And it is that
political imperative which seems to have underpinned what was really very
sloppy science.

In fact, the whole paper rests on one of the oldest statistical fiddles in
the book. This is known as end date distortion, which is polite scientific
language for fraud by selection. This is one of the prime ploys in the art
of chartmanship. The authors state:

"We examined the entire record of ice breakup to look for long-term trends
in breakup. We compared the ice breakup record from 1949-2000 with available
climatic data for Nenana and Fairbanks, Alaska (90 km away)."

By doing this they left out both 1946, which was an earlier than average
year, and 2001, which was a later than average year, let alone the entire
earlier record. The result of this selection is to create an illusion of a
significant trend where there is none. A typical optimised isolated
statistic quoted by Nature is "Since 1975, the date at which the clock stops
has advanced by about nine days". They could equally have said "Since 1940
it has gone back by about eighteen days". All in all it is merely a typical
fabrication by the global warming propagandists and certainly nothing to do
with real science. The omnipresence of such blatant and deliberate falsehood
to prop up a theory of purely political origin augers ill for the future of
science. It is really all rather depressing.

============
(4) THE NEANA ICE CLASSIC: BETTING ON WARMING

by John L. Daly
http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm

A Critique of - "Climate Change in Non-traditional Data Sets", by Segarin
R., & Micheli, F., Science v.294, p.811, 26 Oct 2001 [1]

The above short paper appeared in Science, the title itself suggesting the
author's intent, that of demonstrating `climate change' (code for global
warming) in the data of the Nenana Ice Classic.

The `Nenana Ice Classic' (which was featured on this site early this year
[2] ) is a betting lottery which began at Nenana, Alaska, back in 1917 and
has been run annually ever since. In January each year the townspeople mount
a tripod out on the frozen Tanana River which runs through the town. The
tripod is secured firmly to the ice and a rope run from the tripod to a
clock mechanism at the shore. When the ice breaks up in late April or early
May, the tripod gives way, gets carried only a short distance, finally
tripping the clock.  The time is then recorded.

The lottery organisers take bets from people all over the world, the winner
being the person who can make the closest prediction of the actual date and
time of breakup. Because there is big money involved, there is strict
adherence to rules. This year (2001), the winner was a Japanese resident.

There is a continuous record of ice breakup going back to 1917 and this has
prompted some global warming proponents to examine the Nenana Ice Classic
record for indications of global warming, perhaps to find a `smoking gun'.

The Segarin & Micheli paper suggested two mechanisms which would determine
the timing of the ice breakup, namely `thermal effects' (in other words, the
ice melting beneath the tripod), and `dynamic effects' (the ice being
undercut and broken by mechanical forces from upstream).

While both these mechanisms would be climatic in origin (temperature in the
case of melting, precipitation in the case of dynamic breakup), the authors
did not explore the possibility that the city of Fairbanks upstream of the
tripod might be artificially warming the river as a result of runoff and
water usage in the city, all of which would end up in the Tanana River. The
effect of an urban warming of the river would be subtle, but could make a
significant thermal difference over time as Fairbanks expanded in
population.

The record of ice breakup is shown below
(http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm). The record for earliest breakup
(suggesting climate warmth) was on 20th April 1940 at 3.27 p.m. In 1998,
that record was almost matched, but fell short by just 1 hours, 20th April
1998 at 4.54 p.m.  The latest breakup occurred on 20th May 1964 at 11.41
p.m. during a cold period globally.

The total record from Nenana suggests either a slight warming during the
20th century (thus melting the ice) or an increase in precipitation (thus
breaking the ice dynamically). This may be climatic, driven by temperature
or precipitation, and could be caused in part by urban warming of the river
in Fairbanks. The authors cite Nenana residents observations that thermal
breakups have been more common than dynamic ones in recent years, although
they offer no actual data or record to confirm this.

At this point the authors' stated aim of demonstrating `climate change'
turned an interesting story into a statistical puzzle piece designed to make
more of the trend than in fact existed. They sought to compare the ice
breakup times and dates with air temperature and precipitation for the
region.

"We examined the entire record of ice breakup to look for long-term trends
in breakup. We compared the ice breakup record from 1949-2000 with available
climatic data for Nenana and Fairbanks, Alaska (90 km away)."

This was an extraordinary step to take, to use only part of the record for
statistical analysis, and to use a cold year (1949) as the start point. In
statistics, this is known as `end date distortion', where a long-term trend
can be profoundly affected by the choice of start and end dates,
particularly where those terminal dates are outside the mean. Significantly,
this decision meant that the record early breakup year, 1940, did not affect
the analysis. Also significant was their omission of the 2001 breakup date
(8th May), from the analysis, even though their paper was not published
until late October 2001. This left ample time to include it in such a
superficial statistical analysis which could be done on any PC, or even to
delay publication of the paper a month or so until the 2001 date was
included.

They did not state a reason for selecting 1949 as their start point, or for
omitting 2001, but it was implied that lack of air temperature data for
Nenana itself may have prompted them to do so.  However, the Nenana
temperature record had large breaks and so the authors mainly relied on data
for Fairbanks 56 miles away. Using Fairbanks climatic data leaves no excuses
for selecting 1949, as its data for both temperature, precipitation, and
snowfall, goes back further than 1917.

Fig.3 above (http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm) shows the effect of this
statistical selectivity, the red portion being the period of comparison,
which, in the absence of the earlier warm period, produced an upward trend.
The failure to include 2001 only magnified that trend. If the whole record
is taken, there is a slight trend to climatic warming (urban warming of the
river notwithstanding), but much less than would be suggested by using the
red portion of the chart.

The authors found that Fairbanks had warmed, and that this warmth correlated
with the trends in ice breakup dates. But they also pointed out -
"Heat-island effects due to urbanization and movement of the weather station
may affect the Fairbanks record."  For `may' read `do', because the
Fairbanks heat island is well documented [4].

Fig.4 (http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm) shows the temperature record for
Fairbanks and the university a few miles away.  The university is outside
the main urban heat island. Taken together, it is clear that there is an
insufficient trend to claim long-term warming. However, if only the
post-1949 part of the data is considered, then a warming trend would be
evident, due again to `end date distortion', not to any underlying climate
change.

Since the Nenana temperature record was too fragmented to mean anything,
with a big 15-year gap around 1980, the authors really had no excuse for
using 1949 as a start date for determining trends since the Fairbanks and
University record above covers the full period of ice breakup data.

Fig.5 (left) (http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm) is a chart for Minimum,
Maximum, and Mean temperatures at the University in Fairbanks, produced by
the Alaska Climate Research Center [3]. The authors claimed a correlation
between ice breakup dates and Min-Max temperature data, but again this only
results from `end-date distortion' since even the largely neutral trend for
the university shown here would become a warming trend if only the post-1949
data is considered.

Yet this paper was fully peer-reviewed and published in a major journal, the
evident statistical flaws escaping the notice of the reviewers or editors.
 
The authors also looked at precipitation and snowfall as a possible cause of
the slightly earlier breakup dates in recent decades, stating categorically
- "Trends for precipitation and snowfall were non-significant for both
cities."

Really?

That's not how the Alaska Climate Research Center sees it. Here is their
plot of snowfall during the 20th century at Fairbanks
(http://www.john-daly.com/nenana.htm).

As we can see, there has been a significant increase in total snowfall
during the 20th century, the inevitable effect of which would be greater
mechanical forces acting upon the river ice from upstream, causing it to
break earlier than would be the case with thermal melt alone.  But the
authors claim -

"Although the record does not reveal the mechanisms of breakup, long-time
Nenana residents observe that thermal breakups, where the ice under the
tripod "rots" away, have been more common than dynamic breakups in recent
years."

Apart from the fact that it must be difficult to tell from visual
observation alone whether river ice ice is being broken up through melt or
is breaking up under the strain of mechanical forces from upstream, the
authors appear to have been only listening to what they wanted to hear from
the residents. They do not even say how many residents they spoke to.  It
was a most unscientific approach to adopt in what was purportedly a
scientific study.  The above snowfall data strongly suggests that dynamic
breakup was at work, whatever the authors think a few residents might have
told them.

Conclusion

It is clear from the Nenana Ice Classic data that there has been a slight
trend toward earlier breakup dates, but nothing nearly as significant as
that claimed by the authors - and hardly justifying a paper about it in a
major journal.

The authors attribute recent earlier breakups to climatic warming, but it is
clear from Alaska Climate Research Center data that there has been little or
no warming to speak of over the full period, but that snowfall has increased
significantly, contrary to what the authors claim.  The authors also make no
allowance for the possibility of urban warming of the river itself.

===========
(5) THINNING ICE SHEETS....?

>From Nature Science Update, 1 November 2001
http://www.nature.com/nsu/011101/011101-13.html

Melt down: Half a century of thinning ice leaves Greenland's future looking
wet.

JOHN WHITFIELD

There is new evidence that the Greenland ice pack is in retreat. The finding
may be a foretaste of still more rapid melting, and in turn, rising sea
levels.

The ice sheet over northwest Greenland has thinned by 10-15 cm a year over
the past 40 years, two scientists calculate1. The trend indicates "a
significant long-term thinning", says one, Niels Reeh, of the Technical
University of Denmark.

The sheet is more than 3 km thick in some places. It is the world's
second-largest ice mass after Antarctica. Reeh and Stan Paterson, of
Paterson Geophysics in Heriot Bay, British Columbia, Canada, compared
historical and modern data. This revealed that thinning has been much more
pronounced in northwestern Greenland. In the east, there has been little
change.

The reason for the east-west difference is not yet clear. Climate changes
that occurred hundreds or even thousands of years ago may have altered the
physical properties of the ice sheet. Or, like southern Greenland, the
northern sheet may be sliding from east to west. Alternatively, the
difference may reflect more recent variations in snowfall and temperatures.

Paterson is convinced that the thinning is due to the Earth's recent
temperature rise: "I'd stick my neck out and say that it's an effect of
global warming." Taken with signs of shrinking sea ice over the North Pole
and melting at Greenland's coast, "it's just one more thread in the story",
he says.

"The general consensus is that the central part of the ice sheet is in
balance," cautions climate researcher Ellen Mosley-Thompson, of Ohio State
University in Columbus. "But if the thinning is real, and if it were to
continue for decades to centuries, that would translate into changes in the
ice sheet."

Others are less sure. "Up to today, there's been no convincing sign of
Greenland growing or shrinking overall," says Philippe Huybrechts of the
Free University of Brussels in Belgium. In fact, Greenland has bucked
climate trends, ending the twentieth century slightly cooler than it began,
he adds.

Whatever's happening now, "all climate models show Greenland warming over
the coming century", says Huybrechts. This will cause a rise in sea level of
several centimetres. "If the climate were to warm, Greenland will be in bad
shape, that's for sure," Huybrechts says.

Seeking long-term trends

Several decades of measurements are needed to understand ice sheets.
Short-term changes in temperature and snowfall can obscure underlying
trends. For the past ten years, satellites and planes have been taking
accurate measurements of the ice sheet's thickness. But there are few good
records from before 1990.
 
The researchers also drew on information gathered by the British North
Greenland Expedition of 1954-55. This joint project saw scientists -
including Paterson - and the British Navy journey 1,200 km across the top of
Greenland, measuring altitude at 300 points along the way.

"The only way in was on RAF flying boats to a lake that was only unfrozen in
August," recalls Paterson, who was also one of four men to cross Greenland.
"In those days it was still a bit of an adventure," he says.
 
References
Paterson, A.B. & Reeh, N. Thinning of the ice sheet in northwest Greenland
over the past forty years. Nature, 414, 60 - 62, (2001).
 
Nature News Service / Macmillan Magazines Ltd 2001

==============
(6) POLAR ICE CAP STUDIES REFUTE GLOBAL WARMING

>From Environment and Climate News, October 2001
http://www.heartland.org/environment/oct01/polar.htm

by James M. Taylor

A series of recent studies shows that the polar ice caps, which should be
shrinking if dire global warming theories are correct, are maintaining their
mass and in fact growing slightly. The studies suggest satellite temperature
readings, which indicate no global warming of the lower atmosphere, are more
reliable than surface temperature readings, taken by humans under varying
conditions, that had indicated a slow, gradual warming.

A study published in the December 3, 1999 issue of Science magazine,
authored by Ola Johannessen, Elena Shalena, and Martin Miles, reported
Arctic sea ice had declined by 14 percent from 1978 through 1998. In a
related story, columnist Richard Kerr pondered "Will the Arctic Ocean lose
all its ice?" The mainstream press ran with the story, giving dire warnings
that global warming was upon us.

However, CO2 Science Magazine later noted that in the Johannessen study,
"essentially all of the drop . . . occurs rather abruptly over a single
period of not more than three years (87/88-90/91) and possibly only one year
(89/90-90/91). Furthermore, it could be argued from their data that from
1990/91 onward, sea ice area in the Arctic may have actually increased."

More recent studies of the polar ice caps verify CO2 Science Magazine's
skepticism, and show the polar ice caps are holding their own and actually
growing slightly.

Antarctic sea ice edge expanding

A study published in the American Meteorological Society's Journal of
Climate (Yuan, X. and Martinson, D.G., "Antarctic sea ice extent variability
and its global connectivity," Volume 13: 1697-1717 (2000)) demonstrated the
Antarctic polar ice cap has been expanding. According to the study, 18 years
of satellite data indicate the mean Antarctic sea ice edge has expanded by
0.011 degrees of latitude toward the equator each year.

A later study, also published in Journal of Climate (Watkins, A.B. and
Simmonds, I., "Current trends in Antarctic sea ice: The 1990s impact on a
short climatology," Volume 13: 4441-4451 (2000)) reached a similar
conclusion. The study reported significant increases in Antarctic sea ice
between 1987 and 1996. The study further indicated the 1990s exhibited
increases in the length of the sea-ice season.

Arctic ice thickening, expanding

A study published in Geophysical Research Letters (Winsor, P., "Arctic sea
ice thickness remained constant during the 1990s," Volume 28: 1039-1041
(2001)) found the same to be true in the Arctic. The study concluded, "mean
ice thickness has remained on a near-constant level around the North Pole
from 1986-1997." Moreover, the study noted data from six different submarine
cruises under the Arctic sea ice showed little variability and a "slight
increasing trend" in the 1990s.

Just off the Arctic polar ice cap, ice coverage in Greenland was also shown
to be steady and likely increasing. A study in Journal of Geophysical
Research (Comiso, J.C., Wadhams, P., Pedersen, L.T. and Gersten, R.A.,
Volume 106: 9093-9116 (2001)) concluded that, annual variances
notwithstanding, the Odden ice tongue in Greenland exhibited no
statistically significant change from 1979 to 1998. Moreover, proxy
reconstruction of the ice tongue utilizing air temperature data indicated
the ice covers a greater area today than it did several decades ago.

Viewed as a whole, the new ice cap studies indicate no global warming has
occurred in recent decades, at least not in high latitudes. These findings
also offer an important insight into one of the more significant
controversies surrounding global warming theory.

Surface vs. satellite readings

Surface temperature readings taken by humans indicate the Earth has warmed
by approximately 1 degree Fahrenheit over the past 100 years. This warming
is certainly not much, but it is often cited as evidence that global warming
is occurring, even if it is merely in its initial stages.

However, precise satellite readings of the lower atmosphere (a region that
is supposed to immediately reflect any global warming) have shown no warming
since readings were begun more than 20 years ago.

"We have seen no sign of man-induced global warming at all. The computer
models used in U.N. studies say the first area to heat under the 'greenhouse
gas effect' should be the lower atmosphere, known as the troposphere. Highly
accurate, carefully checked satellite data have shown absolutely no
warming," explained Tom Randall of the National Center for Public Policy
Research.

Global warming skeptics have pointed out that most of the surface
temperature readings indicating a warming have been taken in underdeveloped
nations, where reliability and quality-control are questionable. In
developed nations such as the United States, by contrast, the readings tend
to show no warming. Moreover, skeptics note, surface temperature readings
are influenced by artificial warming associated with growing urbanization,
which creates artificial heat islands around temperature reading stations.

"While the greenhouse gases, especially CO2, have grown in the last 50
years, the correlation with a warming of the world's climate is weak and far
from being generally accepted by the scientific community," James L.
Johnston, a member of The Heartland Institute's Board of Directors, observed
in the August 4 Chicago Tribune.

Global warming proponents, on the other hand, now counter that warming,
despite prior consensus to the contrary, might occur in the lower atmosphere
only after a general warming of the Earth's surface.

Models shown to be inaccurate . . . again

The recent polar ice studies, which measured surface rather than atmospheric
temperature trends (and which were far removed from the effects of urban
heat islands and questionable third-world temperature readings), lend weight
to the argument that satellite readings, not surface monitoring stations,
are correct.

"In considering all of the above results, it is likely that the global
extent of sea ice is on the rise. Such observational evidence flies in the
face of model predictions of global warming that say climate will change
first and to the greatest extent in the Earth's polar regions," concludes
CO2 Science Magazine.

CO2 Science suggests that self-regulating mechanisms, such as clouds, enable
the Earth to keep a relatively steady climate despite the changes in CO2
concentration that have been a regular part of Earth's history.

Viewing the new data in conjunction with other studies that properly filter
out the imperfections of human-collected temperature readings, CO2 Science
concludes, "There has been no global warming for the past 75 years."

Copyright 2001, Environment and Climate News

=============
(7) SCIENTIST POURS COLD WATER ON "MYTH" OF SINKING PACIFIC ATOLLS

>From Space Daily, 17 October 2001
http://spacedaily.com/news/011017044518.15bjbvpp.html
 
AUCKLAND (AFP) Oct 17, 2001

Environmental fears that the South Seas once idyllic atolls are disappearing
as global warming raises sea levels could soon be left high and dry,
according to new scientific evidence which appears to scotch the myth of the
sinking isles.

Previously, spiralling concerns over the forecast ecological disaster have
prompted appeals for help from Pacific political summits, fundraising
efforts from Greenpeace and a media hunt for early victims.

The atoll nation of Tuvalu earlier this year appealed to Australia to grant
citizenship to more of its people, saying their homes are disappearing
beneath the waves.

But, says a scientist, the South Pacific ocean has not risen in the last
decade.

"The data does not support any sea-level rise at all," Wolfgang Scherer, the
director of Australia's National Tidal Facility at Flinder's University in
Adelaide told AFP.

The facility, funded by Australian aid, has over the last decade installed
tide gauges across the Pacific, including one at Tuvalus densley-populated
capital atoll, Funafuti.

Paani Laupepa of Tuvalu's Ministry of National Resources told Radio
Australia it is expecting to evacuate its population of 10,500 from its nine
tiny atolls within 50 years.

Australia and New Zealand have shown reluctance to take these "environmental
refugees" prompting anger from Tuvalu officials

"Given the situation in which Australia is producing a lot of pollution into
the atmosphere, the Australian government should take the necessary steps to
accommodate the people who are suffering from the effects of the pollution,"
Laupepa said.

"If you pollute, you should take responsibility for the actions that you are
causing."

But Scherer said data from Funafuti undermined Laupepa's argument.

"As at June 2001, based on the short-term sea level rise analyses ... for
the eight years of data return show a rate of 0.0 mm per year, i.e. no
change in average sea level over the period of record."

The facility found a major anomaly in 1998, an El Nino year, when sea levels
actually fell by 35 centimetres (14 inches).

The monitoring project will next year install satellite equipment which will
determine whether the atolls themselves, as distinct from the sea, rise and
fall.

"We just don't know and we really do not have a good understanding at this
time of what the regional longer term, sea level change is, or might be."

Scherer has an explanation for the willingness of Pacific politicians to
accept the notion that they are sinking.

"When you live there on a day to day basis and you do have water lapping at
your feet when you have storm surges coming through, it is not a very
comfortable experience," he said.

Records, both recent and pre-historic, show storm surges which bring the sea
across the land, destroying gardens.

"That is the over-riding psychology behind it," Scherer says, adding that
population pressures are aiding the political drive to move people to
Australia and New Zealand.

"Sea levels have been rising since the last ice age. There is no evidence,
over the last century that suggests there will be an acceleration..."

In 1999 British media declared they had found the first victims of global
warming: two uninhabited islands, Tebua Tarawa and Abanuea, in Kiribati.

The sand islets were in the vast Tarawa lagoon, the badly polluted and
severely over-crowded capital atoll.

What was not reported was that the Kiribati government, with mainly Japanese
aid, had linked all of the South Tarawa atolls by causeways.

"That causeway has dramatically changed the usual oceanographic happenings,
the flushing of the lagoons and such," Scherer said.

On the main islets of Tarawa every family has built their own version of a
sea wall.

"Those islands that have sunk were not populated at all and so nobody had
done anything and then the normal erosion effects, storm surge effects in
particular, take their toll. Once the erosion sets in, mother nature does
not bring the sand on shore."

All rights reserved. 2000 Agence France-Presse

=============
(8) STUDYING HOW EARTH FROZE OVER

>From Steve Koppes <s-koppes@uchicago.edu>

Oct. 30, 2001
For immediate release

Contacts: Steve Koppes
(773) 702-8366
s-koppes@uchicago.edu

Ray Pierrehumbert
(773) 702-8811
rtp1@midway.uchicago.edu

David Beazley
(773) 702-9111
beazley@cs.uchicago.edu

Python to help scientists attack advanced climate simulation problems

University of Chicago scientists have received a $3.6 million grant from the
National Science Foundation to develop software during the next five years
that will enable them to rapidly conduct advanced climate simulations.

"All the big questions are fair game to us, from why Mars was warm and wet
early in its history, to how the Earth could have completely frozen over 600
million years ago, to the role of water vapor in clouds in global warming,"
said Ray Pierrehumbert, Professor in Geophysical Sciences at Chicago.

The project aims to speed up the pace of climate simulation research by
making modern software design features more widely and freely available to
the research community. Climate researchers currently depend upon complex
and unwieldy computer programs that require months of work if they want to
adjust their models. But that could change with the adoption of an open
source (free on the Internet) programming language called Python, said David
Beazley, Assistant Professor in Computer Sciences at Chicago.

Working with Pierrehumbert and Beazley on the project are eight colleagues
at Chicago, Argonne National Laboratory, the Computation Institute, and the
University of Southern California. The
Computation Institute, a joint project of the University and Argonne, brings
the most advanced tools of computer science to bear on problems in the
sciences, the arts and the humanities.

Among Python's virtues is its flexibility for scientific applications, said
Beazley, the author of Python Essential Reference, which has been translated
into four languages. "You can hook it into specialized programs, like
climate modeling or molecular dynamics or anything you want to do," he said.

Beazley said using Python was a boon to the molecular dynamics simulations
he performed as a scientist working at Los Alamos National Laboratory. "We
were doing more simulations in a month than we had done in the previous
three years of the project combined," he said.

Python also permits scientists to easily test small parts of a simulation in
development.

"If you're trying to build a new system, you find out immediately if
something is going wrong and you can try out pieces interactively without
having to debug the whole system all at once,"
Pierrehumbert said.

Pierrehumbert and his colleagues plan to adapt Python to existing
simulations that combine the effects of the ocean and the atmosphere on
climate. Coupling the oceanic and atmospheric effects
is vital to advanced climate modeling, Pierrehumbert said. "There are
various phenomena that occur when you hook the atmosphere and the ocean
together that don't occur with each one individually," he said.

Pierrehumbert and his colleagues have used a coupled simulation to test the
"snowball Earth" hypothesis. The hypothesis stems from geologic evidence
indicating that the Earth once was
completely covered by ice.

"Those of us who do theory and simulation are having a hard time making the
snowball idea work," Pierrehumbert said. "When you couple the atmosphere to
the ocean and let the ocean transport a
little bit of warm ocean water-and warm can mean just one or two degrees
above freezing-from the tropics to the ice margin is extremely good at
keeping the ice from advancing into the equatorial
regions."

Another question that Pierrehumbert will try to answer with Python software
is how the climate of Mars could have been warm and wet early in its
history. Today Mars is cold and dry, but NASA space probes have produced
strong evidence of surface features that were produced long ago by flowing
water. Exactly what could account for the difference has become a
controversial matter.

Many climatologists, including Pierrehumbert, favor the theory that a dense
carbon dioxide atmosphere could have made Mars warmer in the distant past.
But in order to test the theory, they need simulations that include weather
patterns, which current models lack.

"Almost all the modeling so far has been very simple, with no weather in
it," Pierrehumbert said. "But almost all the interesting problems for early
Mars now require simulation that has weather in it."

Such research has implications for understanding Earth's own climate. "If
you study the climate of one planet, you can get into a rut and think that
because the climate behaves a certain way now, that it always has to behave
that way," Pierrehumbert said. Also, he said, "Other planets give you a test
of your basic physics in a wildly different set of circumstances."

Mars climatological research has helped to stimulate research on the role of
aerosols-suspended particles and dust-in global warming on Earth,
Pierrehumbert said. Dust is as important to the climate of Mars as water is
Earth's climate. But the distribution of dust particles and of tiny droplets
of sulfuric acid that results from the burning dirty coal also is a key but
poorly understood factor in global warming on Earth, Pierrehumbert said.
###

Steve Koppes
University of Chicago News Office
5801 South Ellis Ave. Room 200
Chicago, IL 60637-1473
773-702-8366
773-702-8324 (fax)

=============
(9) NEW SPACECRAFT TO PRESERVE OUR PLANET AND ENVIRONMENT

>From ESA Media Relations <ContactESA@esa.int>

Paris, 30 October 2001
Press Release
N 62-2001

New spacecraft to preserve our planet and the environment 

Three hundred leading scientists in the field of climate and environmental
research using Earth Observation satellites meet this week in Granada
(Spain) to push forward the European Space Agency's Living Planet programme
aimed at advancing our understanding of the interactions between
the atmosphere, the oceans, and the land, to enable mankind to understand
the Earth as an integrated system.

It all started in 1996, when the Earth Explorers missions were set on their
way, and it  continued in 1999, when the first two pioneering spacecraft
missions- currently under development- were selected; one addressing the
Earth's Gravity field and global ocean circulation (GOCE), the other
studying the global dynamic wind-field in the lower atmosphere (Aeolus-ADM).
And the story goes on today as, for the second cycle, ESA has again chosen
Granada as the venue for the important decision on which satellite missions
will fly next.

The Earth Explorers are the research driven component of ESA's Living Planet
programme seeking to advance the understanding of the different Earth system
processes, in developing our knowledge about the Earth, preserving our
planet and its environment and managing life on Earth in a more efficient
way. In the long term, the programme also contributes to applications such
as the management of the Earth's environment and its resources as well as
mitigation of natural and human-induced hazards.

The Earth Explorers consist of two mission types, the Core and the
Opportunity missions. Core missions are large research/demonstration
missions led by ESA. Opportunity missions are small research/demonstration
missions providing the means for a more rapid response to new ideas and
can either be led by ESA or by other organisations.

On 30 and 31 October in Granada,  the new suite of Explorer-Core Mission
candidates, proposed by Europe's leading scientific experts, will be
evaluated by peer review panels - building the base for a recommendation
that they later be launched into orbit. Five satellite missions have been
defined and proposed. Three of them, based on their scientific excellence,
will be recommended to go forward for feasibility studies. Two are planned
to be launched after a further selection process. The mission candidates
are:

ACECHEM (atmospheric Composition Explorer for CHEMistry and climate
interaction). A combination of spectrometers will investigate how
human-induced chemical alterations to the lower atmosphere (troposphere) and
upper atmosphere (stratosphere) may go on to cause climate change.

EarthCARE (Earth Clouds, Aerosol and Radiation Explorer). Instruments,
including radar, lidar, imager, radiometer, and spectrometer will peer
closely at the interaction between clouds, aerosol and radiation to better
understand their impact on climate. This is a joint European - Japanese
candidate mission.

SPECTRA (Surface Processes and Ecosystem Changes Through Response Analysis).
A high-performance imaging spectrometer and a thermal imager will study the
relationship between vegetation and climate change across the worlds entire
ecosystems.

WALES (Water vapour and Lidar Experiment in Space) A Lidar - a laser-based
device that works on the same principle as radar does - will map atmospheric
water vapour concentrations.

WATS (Water vapour and temperature in the Troposphere and Stratosphere) A
flotilla of small satellites will measure tropospheric and stratospheric
humidity and temperature by checking how GPS radio signals are bent by
passage through them.

These Earth Explorer missions all build on the experience gained with their
larger predecessors ERS-1 and  2, launched in 1991 and 1995 respectively,
which provided us with a wealth of data giving major insight into climate
processes particularly involving oceans and ice sheets. They
will also follow up Envisat, the largest and most comprehensive environment
and climate research satellite ever built, which is ready to be launched in
January 2002. The Core Explorers are very specific dedicated science
missions, much smaller than their predecessors, weighing not more than two
tons and keeping to an overall budget of maximum 400 Meuro, from start of
development until end of operations.

The recommendations of the peer review teams will be passed on to  ESA's
Earth Science Advisory Committee and to the Agency's Earth Observation
Programme Board later in November. After that, the candidate missions
retained will undergo full feasibility studies and finally ESA should start
building the satellites for two out of three missions studied.

More detailed information can be found on ESA's new Living Planet webpages
launched earlier in October: http://www.esa.int/livingplanet

For more information, please contact :
Dr Mike Rast
Earth Sciences Division
Tel.: +31.71.565.4465
Fax: +31.71.565.5675

=============
(10) GLOBAL WARMING & SEA LEVELS

>From CO2 Science Magazine, 31 October 2001
http://www.co2science.org/subject/s/summaries/sealevel.htm

Rising sea levels typically result from shrinking ice sheets. Hence, it is
only natural to begin our review of sea level with a consideration of ice
sheet dynamics; and since the top of the story should rightly start at the
top of the world, we'll begin in the Arctic with the Greenland Ice Sheet.

In a provocative report published in Science magazine, Krabill et al. (2000)
describe how they utilized data obtained from aircraft laser-altimeter
surveys over northern Greenland in 1994 and 1999, together with previously
reported data from southern Greenland, to evaluate the mass balance of the
Greenland Ice Sheet.  Above an elevation of 2,000 meters, where they had
good data, they determined the balance was, in a word, zero.  Below that
level, where they did not have good data, they made estimates derived from
interpolations based on calculations of a hypothetical thinning rate (yes,
those too are the words they used); and this approach did suggest a thinning
of the ice sheet.

As to what might have caused the hypothetical thinning, Krabill et al. had
no satisfactory explanation.  That it was likely not global warming,
however, was implied by their accurately reporting the fact that "Greenland
temperature records from 1900-95 show highest summer temperatures in the
1930s," and their equally-accurate admission that "the 1980s and early 1990s
were about half a degree cooler than the 96-year mean."

In a rational world, that would have been the end of the story.  In the
world in which we live, however, it was only the beginning.  The headline of
a major article in our local newspaper the next day literally screamed out
"Greenland's ice sheet is melting," while it's subtitle warned "Thaw
contributes to sea level rise."  Then came the first and, for us, concluding
sentence, for there was clearly no need to read more: "A warming climate is
melting more than 50 billion tons of water a year from the Greenland ice
sheet, adding to a 9-inch global rise in sea level over the last century and
increasing the risk of coastal flooding around the world."  And it was still
months to go before Halloween!  [For more on this amazing transformation of
estimated interpolations of hypothetical calculations into horrifying
virtual reality, see our Editorial of 26 July 2000.]

So what is the true story of the Greenland ice sheet?  It is possible the
great mass of ice could still shrink considerably; for Cuffey and Marshall
(2000) recently completed a study that suggests it was much smaller during
the last interglacial than has previously been thought.  Consequently, the
Greenland ice sheet could still contribute substantially to global sea level
rise.  There is, however, a silver lining in this conclusion; and that is,
according to Hvidberg (2000), that "high sea levels during the last
interglacial should not be interpreted as evidence for extensive melting of
the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, and so challenges the hypothesis that the West
Antarctic is particularly sensitive to climate change."

This new insight is most encouraging, for Hvidberg says it draws a "less
dramatic picture than the suggested collapse of the West Antarctic Ice
Sheet, with its accompanying rapid increase in sea level," especially since
Cuffey and Marshall's analysis suggests the widespread melting of the
Greenland ice sheet during the prior interglacial took place over the course
of a few millennia.  Hence, if there is to be further wastage of the polar
ice sheets - and that is a very big if - it would appear to be much more
likely to be slow than rapid, giving time for adaptation by both human
society and natural ecosystems to the increase in sea level that would
follow.

Further intelligence on the subject comes from a recent review of what has
been learned from many studies of the mass balances of both the Greenland
and Antarctic ice sheets.  With respect to the impact of past climate change
and the ice sheets' consequent dynamic histories, "we do not know," Reeh
(1999) says, "whether the ice sheets are currently in balance; neither do we
know if their volume or mass has increased or decreased during the last 100
years."  Furthermore, the author of the review continues, "new techniques
are not capable of directly yielding the long-term background trend of ice
sheet mass balance, unless applied over a period of many decades."  In a
nutshell, looking several decades into both the past and the future, we
don't know (1) what's happened, (2) what's happening or (3) what's going to
happen, with respect to Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet contributions to
global sea level.  But that hardly rates a newspaper story, does it?

In winding up our brief review of ice sheet dynamics at the bottom of the
world, we note that other scientists have reached very similar conclusions.
Oppenheimer (1998), for example, says "it is not possible to place high
confidence in any specific prediction about the future of the West Antarctic
Ice Sheet," noting that even the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
has concluded that "no trend has yet emerged."  Likewise, Wingham et al.
(1998) conclude that "a large century-scale imbalance for the Antarctic
interior is unlikely," and that it has been "only a modest source or sink of
sea-level mass this century."  The study of Anderson and Andrews (1999),
however, suggests "the current interglacial setting is characterized by a
more extensive ice margin and larger ice shelves than existed during the
last glacial minimum and that the modern West and East Antarctic ice sheets
have not yet shrunk to their minimum."  Nevertheless, Bindschadler (1998)
reports that "the ice front now appears to be nearly stable," although he
too suggests there is a potential for further shrinkage.

Interestingly, some of the newer climate models are beginning to come to the
same conclusions as those suggested by empirical observations of the two
polar regions of the planet.  Wild and Ohmura (2000), for example, studied
the mass balance of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets using the older
ECHAM3 GCM and the newer ECHAM4 GCM of the Max Planck Institute for
Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany.  Running both of the models at present-day
and doubled atmospheric CO2 concentrations, they found the older model
projected a sea level rise from polar ice sheet wastage under a doubling of
the air's CO2 content, while the newer (and hopefully improved) model
actually projected a sea level decline.

In addition to changes in ice sheet dynamics, what else could cause changes
in sea level?  At one end of the spectrum, Bratton (1999) notes that
submerged and sequestered methane hydrate loses fully 21% of its volume upon
dissociation, so that methane hydrate melting and subhydrate gas release
could potentially lead to a significant decline in global sea level that
"may offset some future sea-level rise associated with thermal expansion of
the oceans."  On the other hand, Bye (1998) calculates that seafloor
spreading may be directly responsible for a mean sea level rise of
approximately 1 mm per year, which is a very significant value considering
that observed rates of sea level rise over the past century are believed to
be between 1 and 2 mm per year.  Although adding to the sea level rise
predicted by climate alarmists, this finding is actually positive, in that
it suggests fully half to all of the sea level rise of the last hundred
years may be totally unrelated to anything climatic, which largely lets CO2
off the hook.

On another topic, we note that Smithers and Woodroffe (2001) recently
constructed a history of sea level behavior based on annual skeletal density
bands in a study of coral microatolls growing on reef flats of the Cocos
Islands, finding "there has been little net rise in sea level in the eastern
Indian Ocean during the 20th century."  By "little net rise," they mean an
increase of only 2.3 to 3.3 cm, which is much lower than the 10- to 24-cm
rise inferred for global sea level over this period from aggregate
tide-gauge records corrected for postglacial rebound.  However, Smithers and
Woodroffe's results are consistent with results obtained over the past
decade from TOPEX satellite altimetry for a 2 x 2 grid centered on Cocos,
suggesting that older assessments of historical sea level rise might
possibly be in error.

But how could that be?  Several possible answers are provided in a review of
a number of important factors that are not dealt with adequately in the
evaluation and interpretation of sea level trends.  There are, Diez (2000)
notes, generally no corrections or allowances made for short-term natural
processes such as ENSO, storm surges, tides and tsunamis, or for
anthropogenic-induced land subsidence caused by the removal of oil and
natural gas, or for the irregular placement of gauges and the influence of
dikes and other maritime structures.  As a result, the author of the review
concludes, "the consideration of all these sources of possible inaccuracies
in the gauge data system firmly undermines the principal support for the
present quantitative prediction of current and future sea level trends."
And, says Diez in a commentary that still has relevance, early analyses of
rising sea level trends that suffered from these deficiencies "created panic
that led to risky conclusions and reckless efforts to remedy the surmised
problems," an unfortunate situation that continues to plague us to this day.

In conclusion, it would appear that we really know very little about the
past and future state of global sea level within a time frame of several
decades on either side of the present, other than that any ongoing change,
if there is one, must be very minor to be so difficult to detect.  Correctly
viewed within this context, there is no substantial and adequately-confirmed
global sea level trend to even attribute to the ongoing rise in the air's
CO2 content, much less one that should engender fear.  Therefore, although
the imaginary ghouls and goblins of Halloween may be fun for kids, it's time
for climate alarmists to grow up and get real.  They do everyone a
disservice to cry foul when the climatic outlook is fair.

References
Anderson, J.B. and Andrews, J.T. 1999. Radiocarbon constraints on ice sheet
advance and retreat in the Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Geology 27: 179-182.

Bindschadler, R. 1998. Future of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.  Science 282:
428-429.

Bratton, J.F. 1999. Clathrate eustasy: Methane hydrate melting as a
mechanism for geologically rapid sea-level fall. Geology 27: 915-918.

Bye, J.A.T. 1998. Sea level change due to oscillations in seafloor spreading
rate.  Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors 109: 151-159.

Cuffey, K.M. and Marshall, S.J. 2000. Substantial contribution to sea-level
rise during the last interglacial from the Greenland ice sheet. Nature 404:
591-594.

Diez, J.J. 2000. A review of some concepts involved in the sea-level rise
problem.  Journal of Coastal Research 16: 1179-1184.

Hvidberg, C.S. 2000. When Greenland ice melts.  Nature 404: 551-552.

Krabill, W., Abdalati, W., Frederick, E., Manizade, S., Martin, C., Sonntag,
J., Swift, R., Thomas, R., Wright, W. and Yungel, J.  2000.  Greenland ice
sheet: High-elevation balance and peripheral thinning.  Science 289:
428-430.

Oppenheimer, M. 1998. Global warming and the stability of the West Antarctic
Ice Sheet.  Nature 393: 325-332.

Reeh, N.  1999. Mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet: Can modern
observation methods reduce the uncertainty? Geografiska Annaler 81A:
735-742.

Smithers, S.G. and Woodroffe, C.D.  2001.  Coral microatolls and 20th
century sea level in the eastern Indian Ocean.  Earth and Planetary Science
Letters 191: 173-184.

Wild, M. and Ohmura, A.  2000.  Change in mass balance of polar ice sheets
and sea level from high-resolution GCM simulations of greenhouse warming.
Annals of Glaciology 30: 197-203.

Wingham, D.J., Ridout, A.J., Scharroo, R., Arthern, R.J. and Shum, C.K.
1998.  Antarctic elevation change from 1992 to 1996.  Science 282: 456-458.

Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


=============
(11) THE MEDIEVAL WARM PERIOD IN WESTERN NORWAY

>From CO2 Science Magazine, 31 October 2001
http://www.co2science.org/journal/2001/v4n44c2.htm

Reference
Mikalsen, G., Sejrup, H.P. and Aarseth, I.  2001.  Late-Holocene changes in
ocean circulation and climate: foraminiferal and isotopic evidence from
Sulafjord, western Norway.  The Holocene 11: 437-446.

What was done
The authors conducted detailed analyses of benthonic foraminfera, stable
isotopes and other sedimentary material obtained from a core extracted from
a fjord in western Norway, deriving a relative temperature history of the
region that spanned the last 5500 years.

What was learned
Four cold periods characterized by 1.5-2C reductions in bottom-water
temperature were identified: 2150 to 1800 BC, 850 to 600 BC, 150 BC to AD
150, AD 500 to 600, and "a cooling that may correspond to the 'Little Ice
Age' (AD 1625)."  The authors note "there is a good correlation between the
cold periods and cold events recorded in other studies," which finding helps
to strengthen their conclusions.  Perhaps of even more importance, however,
was their identification of a warm period from AD 1330 to 1600 that "had the
highest bottom-water temperatures in Sulafjorden during the last 5000
years."

What it means
The authors' results clearly establish the reality and importance of the
Medieval Warm Period in the North Atlantic region.  Although certain climate
alarmists continue to claim this most recent high-temperature excursion was
not very striking, the data of this meticulous study strongly suggest it was
warmer during this specific time period than it was during any other
multi-century period of the last five millennia.
 
Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


===========
(12) POTENTIAL INACCURACIES IN TEMPERATURE TRENDS

>From CO2 Science Magazine, 17 October 2001
http://www.co2science.org/subject/p/summaries/potentialinaccuracy.htm

In our Editorial of 15 June 2000, we highlighted a number of sources of
potential error in surface air temperature measurements and their assemblage
into an aggregate history of global climate change. These problems included
(1) temporal changes in microclimate surrounding temperature measurement
sites, such as urbanization, which often go unrecognized or for which
insufficient adjustments are made, (2) long-term degradation of the shelters
housing the temperature-measuring equipment, such as the shelters' white
paint becoming less reflective and their louvers partially obstructed, (3)
changes in what is actually being measured, such as true daily maximum and
minimum temperatures or temperatures at specified times of day, (4) changes
in measurement devices and ways of accessing the data, such as changing from
having to open the shelter door to read the temperature, as was done in
earlier days, to not having to do so due to the automatic recording of the
data, as has become commonplace in more recent times, (5) general station
degradation and many station closures over time, (6) the changing and uneven
geographical representation of the surface temperature network, (7) poor
attention to careful acquisition of data in many parts of the world, and (8)
a number of problems associated with obtaining a correct and geographically
complete record of surface air temperature over the 70% of the globe that is
covered by oceans.

Based on our review of these problems, we concluded, as stated in the title
of our editorial, that "the global surface air temperature record must be
wrong."  More specifically, we began to suspect that the highly-hyped
"unprecedented" warming of the last two decades of the 20th century may have
never occurred. Other observations that support this conclusion include (1)
the satellite microwave-sounding-unit temperature record, which in the
absence of the massive 1998 El Nio heat pulse shows no warming whatsoever
from 1979 to the present, (2) the weather-balloon temperature record, which
for the same circumstances also shows no warming, (3) the surface- and
satellite-derived temperature records of earth's polar regions, which also
show no warming, and (4) the high-quality U.S. Historical Climatology
Network data base, which, not surprisingly, also shows no statistically
significant warming over this period.

In our Editorial of 1 July 2000, we continued to pursue this topic, looking
at tree-ring-based reconstructions of surface air temperature trends. In the
case of an exceptional multiple-tree-ring density-derived reconstruction,
which Briffa (2000) calls "the best overall indicator to date of long-term
temperature changes over the higher northern land areas," we again found no
sign of the supposedly unprecedented late-20th-century warming that forms
the basis of so much environmental angst, leading us to conclude, as we
stated in the editorial's title, that "there has been no global warming for
the past 70 years."

In our Editorial of 15 July 2000, we delved a little deeper into the subject
of climate reconstruction based on tree-ring data, noting that there are two
types of data that have been used for this purpose: (1) tree-ring width
measurements and (2) tree-ring density measurements.  Reconstructions based
on the first of these parameters often do show what is interpreted as an
accelerated warming over the latter part of the 20th century; but
reconstructions based on the second parameter do not. The reason for this
discrepancy resides in the fact that atmospheric CO2 enrichment
significantly enhances biomass production in trees (which results in
increased tree-ring widths) by about an order of magnitude more than it
enhances wood density. Consequently, the increase in the air's CO2 content
over the past century has dramatically increased tree-ring widths, while it
has only marginally increased tree-ring densities; and it is this
readily-observed CO2-induced increase in tree-ring widths that climate
revisionists have wrongly interpreted as being due to an increase in surface
air temperature.

We also broached this topic in our Editorial of 2 August 2000, where we
reviewed the work of Cowling and Sykes (1999), who independently concluded
that "a growing number of physiological and palaeoecological studies
indicate that plant-climate interactions are likely not the same through
time because of sensitivity to atmospheric CO2." This problem, along with
others identified by Darling et al. (2000), suggests that several
palaeoclimatic histories may well have to be revised; and the notorious
"hockey stick" temperature record of the 20th century stands like an eyesore
at the top of the list.

Two other papers we have reviewed in this section of our Subject Index
discuss problems associated with reconstructions of past temperature trends
based on temperature data obtained from boreholes (Correia and Safanda,
1999) and the significant urban heat island effect of even a small but
proximate growing human population (Changnon, 1999). In the first of these
studies, the authors identified a number of problems that resulted in
erroneous reconstructed temperature trends; while in the latter study,
Changnon detected an approximate 0.2C urban warming bias between 1901 and
1950 in two data sets that had previously been thought to be unaffected by
this phenomenon.  In commenting on this finding, he noted that "the IPCC
(1995) indicated that the global mean temperature increased 0.3C from 1890
to 1950," implying that a large portion of that temperature rise could well
have been due to the undetected influence of concurrently increasing
urban-generated heat.

When all is said and done - and what we have discussed here is but the tip
of the proverbial iceberg - it is difficult to have much confidence in the
IPCC-condoned global temperature history of the past century. There is a
very good chance that for the last 70 years of that period there was no net
warming at all. If there is anything "unprecedented" about this state of
affairs, it is that nearly the whole world has been having an anxiety attack
over next to nothing.  We can only hope that the climate alarmists' allotted
season of being able to "fool all of the people some of the time" will
shortly run its course and come to a happy ending, i.e. a reasoned return to
reality.

References

Briffa, K.R. 2000. Annual climate variability in the Holocene: Interpreting
the message of ancient trees. Quaternary Science Reviews 19: 87-105.

Changnon, S.A. 1999. A rare long record of deep soil temperatures defines
temporal temperature changes and an urban heat island. Climatic Change 42:
531-538.

Correia, A. and Safanda, J. 1999. Preliminary ground surface temperature
history in mainland Portugal reconstructed from borehole temperature logs.
Tectonophysics 306: 269-275.

Cowling, S.A. and Sykes, M.T. 1999. Physiological significance of low
atmospheric CO2 for plant-climate interactions. Quaternary Research 52:
237-242.

Darling, K.F., Wade, C.M., Stewart, I.A., Kroon, D., Dingle, R. and Leigh
Brown, A.J.  2000.  Molecular evidence for genetic mixing of Arctic and
Antarctic subpolar populations of planktonic foraminifers. Nature 405:
43-47.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. 1995. Climate Change 1995. The
Science of Climate Change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.
 
Copyright 2001. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 

==============
* LETTERS TO THE MODERATOR *
============================

(13) ICE CORE ANALYSIS AND CLIMATE CHANGE

>From Michael Paine <mpaine@tpgi.com.au>

Dear Benny,

See this BBC item: Antarctic cores reveal ice history
http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/sci/tech/newsid_1602000/1602874.stm
"the oceans went up and down by between 50 and  65 metres, as the main ice
sheet on the eastern side of the White Continent advanced and retreated in a
climate that was 3-4 degrees warmer than today." Consider this in
conjunction with this Scientific American item THE UNKNOWNS IN GLOBAL
WARMING RESEARCH DON'T HAVE TO BE SHOWSTOPPERS
http://www.sciam.com/2001/1001issue/1001scicit1.html
"researchers calculated a 90 percent chance that the planet will warm by 1.0
to 2.5 degrees C by the 2040s." That rings my alarm bells!

regards
Michael Paine

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