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March 13, 2005

Growing Glacier Defies Global Warming

Hat tip to Bergbikr for flagging an interesting CNSNews report on a giant glacier south of New Zealand that apparently hasn't heard Al Gore give a speech on the climate since the 1970s, when he was claiming that draconian regulations were needed because of global cooling.

The glacier is so big that it has a name: the Franz Josef Glacier. Three years ago it was regarded as a "global warming casualty" because it seemed to be shrinking. Now it has been learned that it is actually advancing at a rate of three meters per day — fast enough to make me glad I don't live in the area.

The 11-kilometer-long glacier is steeper than most, and is therefore "very, very sensitive to climate change" according to Mark Mellsop, manager of the Franz Josef Glacier Guides company.

The advance of Franz Josef is bad news for Greenpeace, who had been using it as a poster glacier for global warming. But the whole idea of using the ebb and flow of glaciers as proof of global warming is absurd, according to Prof. Chris de Freitas of the School of Geography and Environmental Science at Auckland University.

"Glaciers advance and retreat not only because of temperature but also because of precipitation," says de Freitas. "It's an indicator of regional climate variability, and to link it to global climate change is absurd."

Also absurd is the claim that warming found on a small part of the Antarctic Peninsula supports global warming theory, especially since the vast majority of the Antarctic continent is actually cooling.

De Freitas derides the "naive or simple understanding of events" that causes the politically motivated to find evidence of global warming where there is none:

If you stand back, the evidence suggests that we don't have catastrophic change on our hands. If anything, the evidence over the last 10 or 15 years suggests that the global climate system isn't as sensitive as some of us first thought to changes in greenhouse gases.

Confirming that "the whole global warming issue has become very political," de Freitas laments that "even among scientists, there are people protecting their position ... or their funding, or their ideology" in order to support predetermined conclusions. He observes that the practice of claiming a consensus and then marginalizing anyone who disagrees with it is not consistent with the principles of good science.

But it's not only certain scientists who put ideology ahead of rational investigation where global warming is concerned: "It's everyone involved in the impacts, the policy people, the economists, there are whole bureaucracies .... It's a whole industry, you can't kill it off."

According to de Freitas, even if global warming is real (which is dubious), the Kyoto Protocol — much beloved by envirokooks and others who wish the worst upon the American economy — would accomplish little: "The net effect of Kyoto on global atmospheric concentrations is too small to have an effect."

Of course, three of the top four greenhouse gas emitters — China, India and Brazil — would not even be restricted by the protocol, the real purpose of which seems to be to cripple the US economy, which might explain why the Senate voted 95-0 not to ratify the protocol even before a petulant Gore (Vice President at the time) was callous, irresponsible and downright wacky enough to sign it. Needless to say, a crippled US economy would have a dire effect on the world economy for which it serves as the engine, probably causing mass starvation.


Gore attempts to hold back the growing glacier that is making a mockery of his Chicken Little rhetoric, via The Museum of Left Wing Lunacy.

Posted by Van Helsing at March 13, 2005 11:23 AM


Great post, Van Helsing (and a great lead, Bergbikr!) A striking example of how Liberals (e.g., envirokooks) only see the facts they wish to, in order to advance their Liberal schemes and ultimately inflict their brand of socialism on us all.

Posted by: The MaryHunter at March 13, 2005 2:10 PM

Track down James P. Hogan's 'Kicking the Sacred Cow.' Has a whole section devoted to the enviro-scare industry and how to debunk it.

Just remember in the 1970s they were predicting due to all the industrial activity the Earth was about to hit a global cooling spell. Then they changed it to global warming scare.

Scare people, stamped them into submitting to draconian measures to save them, and then one is in power controlling billions of lives. That is the nutzoids true agenda.

Posted by: Anna at March 13, 2005 7:32 PM

The MaryHunter and Anna both make excellent points. Global warming, global cooling, what's the difference? The idea is to generate hysteria that can be used to acquire more control. There's a reason why folks like Gore are called watermelons: green on the outside, red on the inside.

Posted by: Van Helsing at March 13, 2005 8:59 PM

Another note on Greenhouse Gases and the EU driven Kyoto Treaty scam was provided me by a technical colleague who recently told me the following; At a recent conference, a UN Commissioner said that two-thirds of the coal fired power plants projected for 2030 will be new and mostly built in China and India which are exempt from the greenhouse gas limitations of the Kyoto Treaty.

Posted by: Bergbikr at March 14, 2005 1:41 PM

And then, Europe wants to sell fancy weapons to China too?. What is going ON?! These crazy communist lover and US-Hater liberals in our world, they have no brains.

Posted by: Pomalom at March 14, 2005 2:56 PM

what a well researched article (not):

1. franz josef glacier is in new zealand, not south of it.

2. its not particularly big, 35 km2

3. it is advancing, but not at 3 m/day. its probably advanced 50 m in the last year. i live nearby and am not particularly worried. the author is confused and thinks that the rate of movement of the glacier is the same as its rate of advance, but of course, advance is a balance between movement and melt.

4. the glacier has retreated a maximum of 3 km since 1894 due to a warming of 1 deg C. during this time the el nino southern oscillation has bought cooler and wetter conditions to the south west of new zealand which cause short term readvances, like the one that we are seeing at the moment.

i dont have any particular agenda, but if we are going to debate global warming, lets stick to the facts

Posted by: rata at June 23, 2005 1:32 AM