NYT Claims Antarctica May Be Undergoing ‘Unstoppable Disintegration’

Mt. Balfour, Antarctica. NASA

The New York Times is out with a three-part series on how scientists are racing “against time” to better understand Antarctica’s “unstoppable disintegration” due to man-made global warming.

Antarctica “may have entered the early stages of an unstoppable disintegration,” writes NYT reporter Justin Gillis. NYT sent a team to the South Pole with a group of researchers studying the Ross Ice Shelf, which is larger than California.

Gillis paints a dismal picture of global warming’s impacts on the South Pole: “A rapid disintegration of Antarctica might, in the worst case, cause the sea to rise so fast that tens of millions of coastal refugees would have to flee inland, potentially straining societies to the breaking point.”

Scientists worry about some instability in Antarctica’s western ice sheet, and many have sounded the alarm of an imminent collapse of that portion of the South Pole.

“Climate scientists used to regard that scenario as fit only for Hollywood disaster scripts. But these days, they cannot rule it out with any great confidence,” Gillis wrote.

The Ross Ice Shelf is mostly below sea level, meaning it’s vulnerable to ocean warming. Though Gillis admits in his piece the ice shelf “seems stable now,” adding that “computer forecasts suggest that it might be vulnerable to rapid collapse in the next few decades.”

In fact, eight paragraphs in Gillis admits there’s a “frustrating lack of information” when it comes to Antarctic ice sheets. Ten paragraphs into the story, Gillis writes that the computer forecasts he mentioned earlier “were described as crude even by the researchers who created them.”

Those computer forecasts suggest human greenhouse gas emissions could cause “parts of Antarctica could break up rapidly, causing the ocean to rise six feet or more by the end of this century,” Gillis wrote.

“We could be decades too fast, or decades too slow,” Robert DeConto, a scientist at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, told NYT. “There are still some really big question marks about the trajectory of future climate around Antarctica.”

Indeed, there are “big question marks” about Antarctica’s future regarding global warming.

There are few signs of global warming in the South Pole. For example, climate models predicted sea ice in the region would shrink as the Earth warmed, but, instead, sea ice expanded to record levels in 2014.

A 2015 study by NASA found Antarctica’s ice sheet increased in mass from 1992 to 2008. The study found ice gains in Eastern Antarctica more than offset ice loss from melting glaciers in the west, the controversial NASA study found.

Months later, British Antarctic Survey scientists found a “pause” in warming on the Antarctic Peninsula due to a recovering ozone hole and shifting wind patterns.

“The ozone hole contributed to a warming of the Antarctic Peninsula, but has given a small cooling around the rest of the Antarctic,” said John Turner, a variability climatologist with the British Antarctic Survey.

That’s not all.

Recent evidence suggests Antarctic Peninsula has actually undergone a cooling trend since the late 1990s. Scientists found the region “has shifted from a warming trend of 0.32 °C/decade during 1979–1997 to a cooling trend of − 0.47 °C/decade during 1999–2014.”

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Comments (7)

  • Avatar

    Spurwing Plover

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    So how many people still do realy read the New York Slimes(All the Sludge that fir to Print)its nothing but a east coast version of PRAVDA like the horns ofa steer a point here a point there and a lot of bull in between

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Sonnyhill

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    May….might….could….potentially….suggest….big question marks. Get back to us when you know something.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    G

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    If it were not for all the proposed socialist political reforms to “cure” climate change, would NYT even bother to run such a story?…

    What if the proposed “cures” involved increased free market involvement and liberty for third world and other oppressed countries? Would NYT have any interest at all?…

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Chris

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    Justin Gillis wouldn’t recognize evidence against CAGW if it smacked him in the face. He sees tragedy in every shift in the breeze; every thunderstorm, every calving glacier.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Spurwing Plover

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    Many of those Useful Idiots who took part in the Useful Idiots Climate Marches think socialism will save the earth and some even worshiped Gaia during their rediculous little celebrations

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Amber

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    OMG you mean it is going to warm up from -minus 46 to -minus 43 ? If Antarctica was habitable without the risk of going popsicle in 5 minutes think of all those eco green benefits . Plants and trees growing. Al Gore , Mini Al ,and Susuki could even have waterfront properties . What’s not to like other than those volcanos going off every once in a while but even the great climate capers should be able to figure a way for tax payers to control those volcanos too . After all they believe the earths temperature can be set to some none climate changing number using a trace gas .
    Did anyone complain when the site of the NYT was under a mile of ice ? Kind of selective eco fear mongering but hey that’s modern tabloid opinion .
    The NYT has consumed millions of trees for a 15 minute product .

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Amber

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    The NYT is like a 44 year old quarterback trying to hang on to glory days . The USA has gone full Tribal hence language like “there is no debate ” . Fighting a belief system
    with facts doesn’t carry much weight although if scientists (the used sacrificial lambs) actually pushed back more then the rent seekers would be exposed for the con men they are .
    Do any of the one sided liberal media seriously think they will be around when the fighting they incite begins ? No chance . Game over for shareholders and employees .

    Reply

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