Thursday, May 14, 2009

All of Antarctica--it isn't melting

A gentleman with whom I was debating on another forum said that I was cherry picking the Antarctican stations. That was the reason he gave for not paying attention to the lack of warming at the Scott-Amundsen South Pole station. I then showed him the Vostok station, the only other interior station. It too showed no warming. Again, it didn't have the effect I wanted. Thus I decided to post all the Antarctican stations available here

Now, I should point out, as I have below on this blog that the Antarctican Peninsula is warming, but that it is due to winds causing warm deep ocean waters to upwell melting some of the ice from below, not from above as CO2 would be expected to operate. It is from the Antarctican peninsula that all the fear-mongering stories emanate. So, I will first post the pictures from West Antarctica and then from East Antarctica. Only the ones in the East show any evidence of warming, but it isn't a whole lot--unless you read the Newspaper hysteria driven headlines. As you look at the pictures ask yourself if all this looks like it is warming significantly



No warming there. What about Vostock?



Going around East Antarctica clockwise Halley station.



No warming there. Novolazarevskaya?



Nope. Syowa?



Nope, its cooling. Mawson?




Nope, its cooling. Davis?



Nope

Mirny?




Not warming yet

Casey?





Nope, no warming

Nope. Dumont d'Urville station?



No.
How about Scott Base?




Ok we have been 3/4 around Antarctica and no warming. Only the Antarctican peninsula is warming and that is due to upwelling deep ocean waters melting the ice from below, not CO2 melting it from above.

The westerlies are the prevailing winds in the middle latitudes of Earth’s atmosphere, blowing from west to east between the highpressure areas of the subtropics and the low-pressure areas over the poles. They have strengthened and shifted poleward over the past 50 years, possibly in response to warming from rising concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2). Something similar appears to have happened 17,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age: Earth warmed, atmospheric CO2 increased, and the Southern Hemisphere westerlies seem to have shifted toward Antarctica (5, 6). Data reported by Anderson et al. on page 1443 of this issue suggest that the shift 17,000 years ago occurred before the warming and that it caused the CO2 increase. The CO2 that appeared in the atmosphere 17,000 years ago came from the oceans rather than from anthropogenic emissions. It was vented from the deep ocean up to the atmosphere in the vicinity of Antarctica. The southern westerlies are important in this context because they can alter the oceanic circulation in a way that vents CO2 from the ocean interior up to the atmosphere. The prevailing view has been that the westerlies shifted 17,000 years ago as part of a feedback: A small CO2 increase or small warming initiated a shift of the westerlies toward Antarctica; the shifted westerlies then caused more CO2 to be vented up to the atmosphere, which led to more warming, a greater poleward shift of the westerlies, more CO2, and still more warming (5). But Anderson et al. show that the westerlies did not shift in response to an initial CO2 increase; rather, they shifted early in the climate transition and were probably the main cause of the initial CO2 increase." J. R. Toggweiler, "Shifting Westerlies," Science, 323(2009, March 13, 2009, p. 1434

[cite="Wind Shifts May Stir CO2 from Antarctic Depths" Lamont-Doherty]
The faster the ocean turns over, the more deep water rises to the surface to release CO2," said lead author Robert Anderson, a geochemist at Lamont-Doherty. "It's this rate of overturning that regulates CO2 in the atmosphere." [B]In the last 40 years, the winds have shifted south much as they did 17,000 years ago, said Anderson. If they end up venting more CO2 into the air, manmade warming underway now could be intensified.[/B]
http://www.ldeo.columbia.edu/news-events/wind-shifts-may-stir-co2-antarctic-depths
[/cite]

source

So, lets now look at the stations in the peninsula where all the horror stories come from


Faraday



Yep a little bit

Bellinghausen?



Yep a little

Esperanza?



Yes a lot but this is the most northerly station

Orcadas?




Yep a lot.

Only 4 of the Antarctican stations show warming, yet the headlines in the papers and the scientific journals act as if next year you can buy a summer house in Antarctica.

2 comments:

  1. Couple things:

    1. What about the earlier discussion of 14-C signature of the CO2 in the atmosphere indicating a fossil fuel source for a large portion of the CO2?

    2. We discussed the 14-C signature of deep ocean carbon and even if the water brings up its oldest carbon based on the graph you posted it would be on the order of 2 half-lives which is quite easily differentiated from something that has been through several hundred half-lives. As you yourself point out, after 10 half-lives it becomes much more difficult to detect the 14-C. But not necessarily after only 2 half-lives. By that point the carbon reservoir is only depleted down to 25% (1/2^n). Modern mass specs should be able to differentiate that point.

    2. An article recently found that an analysis of Satellite data across Antarctica found:

    "Dr. Steig and Dr. Shindell presented the findings at a news conference on Wednesday. They found that from 1957 through 2006, temperatures across Antarctica rose an average of 0.2 degrees Fahrenheit per decade, comparable to the warming that has been measured globally." (Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/22/science/earth/22climate.html)

    Now surely this is not a big amount, until you realize this is in line with global temperature rise. To shift the temperature _globally_ by even a small amount is pretty important. (That's another reason why going by station to station and trying to draw overall conclusions about global averages doesn't always see the whole picture).

    3. No matter which came first 17,000 years ago; CO2 or temperature increase, it is a known fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. It absorbs in the infrared range. That's just part of the known physical chemistry of CO2. Regardless of the nature of the feedback loop if we are pumping a greenhouse gas into the atmosphere how can it do anything _but_ warm the globe?

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  2. The deepwater CO2 would not entirely be differentiable from fossil fuel CO2, but that is really not an issue. I will freely acknowledge that mankind is burning all sorts of fossil fuels which create CO2 and put them into the atmosphere. What I dispute, and you didn't remark on is that the temperature impact of CO2 which is evenly distributed in the atmosphere is having no impact on the temperature of East Antarctica, a place where it should have a lot of impact.

    To your second point. I will point you to criticisms of that Steig et al paper. You should read the critics always before accepting any piece of scientific work

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/2009/steigs-antarctica-part-three-creative-mathemagic/

    He has a picture there that shows that the satellited data doesn't match the station data at all. http://img14.imageshack.us/img14/8246/19802006fj3.jpg

    To your third point. Yes, CO2 is a greenhouse gas. No one is denying that. But CO2 is not the sole cause of temperature, and that is what the global warming people ignore. The earth's albedo has changed over the past 50 years in a direction that would account for much of the warming we see. The sun, in the last century was more active and emitted more heat than it has for the last 8000 years. That is another source of warming, ignored by the hysteriacs. Then there is the editing of the data in which half a degree of warmth is added to the present at the expense of the past--somewhere in one of my posts I have a discussion of Balley and Idso's paper where they merely subtracted the raw data from the edited data and guess what? It showed that editing alone heats the US by about half a degree. Editing is biased.

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