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That West Antarctic melting couldn’t be caused by volcanoes could it?

Posted By Joanne Nova On May 29, 2014 @ 3:13 pm In Global Warming,Media-matters | Comments Disabled

We’re all doomed:

West Antarctic ice sheet collapse ‘unstoppable’ [ABC]

Irreversible Changes Now Affect Antarctica and the World [Live-science]

‘Nothing can stop retreat’ of West Antarctic glaciers [BBC, By Jonathan Amos]

West Antarctic ice collapse ‘could drown Middle East and Asia crops’ [The Guardian, Suzanne Goldenberg]

Antarctica’s ice collapse threatens metres of sea level rise within decades  [The Ecologist]

Global warming: it’s a point of no return in West Antarctica. [The Guardian Eric Rignot]

“Last week saw a ‘holy shit’ moment in climate change science. A landmark report revealed that the collapse of a large part of Antarctica is now unstoppable”

What else is going on in West Antarctica? Oh. Look where those volcanoes are…

Guess which science correspondent mentioned the word “volcano”? None of the above. Did any of those responsible publicly funded climate scientists mentioned it in their press releases? (A gold star to anyone who can find one). Lucky Antarctic volcanoes are not hot.

Thanks especially to Janama, Jaypac, John, Sophocles and Tom. That is what comments are for!

Locations of volcanoes in Antarctica known to have been active since the peak of the last ice age (the Last Glacial Maximum)

Map Source: The Conversation.  See also: Subglacial volcanoes

See also The Volcanic Record of West Antarctica.

Despite the 95% certainty of doom, it’s not like we have all the data on heat sources in Antarctica either. Until  November last year we didn’t even know one particular volcano was smoldering under a kilometer of ice in West Antarctica.

Do volcanoes melt much ice? Could be…

“Eruptions at this site are unlikely to penetrate the 1.2 to 2-km-thick overlying ice, but would generate large volumes of melt water that could significantly affect ice stream flow.” Lough et al 2013

The fastest warming areas of Antarctica — the Peninsula and West Antarctica are part of the Pacific Rim of Fire. Not worth a mention in any “news” service? Not the right kind of propaganda…

Remember — if it’s broadcast on the ABC, BBC or CBC, the whole chain of one-sided-information is fully government funded. They have specialist science units trained not to ask hard questions.

Antarctic Doom in a nutshell:

  • The Cryosat study telling us melting was twice as fast as expected had only 3 whole years of data.
  • Longer studies (800 years) show that this has all happened before.
  • The same areas that are warming the fastest happen to be over areas of volcanic activity. (Compare the warming below to the volcano’s above).

Warming Trends in Antarctica NASA, Earth Observatory 1957 – 2006. In the same location as the volcanic chain above. Hm?

[NASA] This image, based on the analysis of weather station and satellite data, shows the continent-wide warming trend from 1957 through 2006. Dark red over West Antarctica reflects that the region warmed most per decade. Most of the rest of the continent is orange, indicating a smaller warming trend, or white, where no change was observed. The underlying land surface color is based on the Landsat Image Mosaic of Antarctica (LIMA) data set, while the topography is from a Radarsat-based digital elevation model. Sea ice extent in the Southern Ocean surrounding the continent is based on data from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E) collected on May 14, 2008 (late fall in the Southern Hemisphere).

Coming soon: Yale / UWA / UQ study looking at whether a carbon tax can reduce volcanic activity… ;-)

I see Anthony Watts pointed out this coincidence a long time ago.

 REFERENCE

Lough et al.  (2013) Seismic detection of an active subglacial magmatic complex in Marie Byrd Land, Antarctica, Nature,  PDF

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