Weight Loss

Antarctic mass variation

It speaks for itself really. The data is from NASA (and measured using gravity data, which is rather cool). I found it on Deep Sea News. And that rate of weight loss equates to 24 cubic miles of ice per year. There’s a lot more detail in the original NASA posting, and there’s more on the situation regarding the Pine Island Glacier at New Scientist.

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20 Responses to Weight Loss

  1. We can expect geological response to that radical weight off the shoulders. And we can expect further “adjustments” in the form of earthquakes and volcanoes.

    Just like we carefully say that no one weather event can be linked directly to global warming (or not) — No one geological event can be linked to this mass variation – or maybe they can.

    http://www.climatedebatedaily.org/2009/10/seismic-activity-linked-to-global-warming.html

    • Cheryl says:

      I’m sure that the change in ice mass will result in seismic activity. But I’m not sure how serious it will be, or even that we have any means of predicting how serious it will be. Also seismic activity is something that happens naturally anyway. It is not something we should be looking to prevent. I’m far more concerned about the potential 25cm rise in sea level. It might now seem like much, but it potentially disastrous for many island nations and countries such as Bangladesh.

  2. JP_Fife says:

    Dear or dear oh dear. Will you believe anything? You didn’t invest money with Madoff did you? If you look around the Internet you’ll find more than enough to suggest the whole thing (Man Made Global Warming) is suspect. You can start with wattsupwiththat.com, joannenova.com.au and The Air Vent (http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/).

    All sorts of organisations, including NASA, are manipulating data for political ends.

    Of course, if you’re a True Believer you wont be interested in opposing views and might just delete my comment.

    • Cheryl says:

      I won’t delete comments that disagree with me, especially where a scientific debate is concerned. I am, however, likely to disemvowel comments from people who think that they can prove their point by insulting those they disagree with.

  3. I dunno, a good dust-up is a great way to start the new day.

    JP above is spouting denialist lines that now amount to scientific sabotage. Hiding anti science, pro-carbon propaganda behind politics is now unethical pandering to an eco suicide.

    Cheryl, if you let idiots like that onto your comments, then they deserve all the retribution we can deliver. It is treason to reject such dangers. I intend to call them out. Name, blame and shame.

    • Cheryl says:

      Really, you don’t need to waste any time shaming him. He’s doing that perfectly well for himself.

      But I will disemvowel you if you insult me again. Frankly you are no better than he is.

      • My deepest apologies to you. I accept your wisdom.

        Sometimes I feel the stakes are so high, the time so late, that I can no longer tolerate what I see as informational terrorism.

        Many thanks to you for hosting this roasting… and I really do not want to be condemned to be no better than he.

        • Cheryl says:

          Look upon it as a political challenge. Your task is to convince populations and governments of the reality of climate change. If you go round yelling “treason” at anyone who doesn’t do what you want, how far are you going to get? On the other hand, it you debate the issue calmly and politely I think you have a far better chance of success, especially if the opposition is just yelling insults.

          And really the thing that matters here is success. I will do you, and the planet, no good to have the satisfaction of yelling back at denialists if that means other people stop listening your message.

          • And yes Cheryl, I admire your call for calm and civil discussion. And I hope for that too… And with a normal world, I would get to work educating and debating and studying to enable that wonderful world.

            But the timeline forbids that. I have lived 60 years now. But looking 60 years into the future are very grim. Promised and modeled and described as 5 to 10 degrees warmer – on average. Sea level by then to be 1 or 2 feet higher. I invite you to suspect that the urgency is greater than you allow now.

            The predictions are alarming and anxiety producing, but that does not mean they are incorrect. And the climate warming described for the year 2100 are only set for that date as a convenient bench mark. Change and warming is to continue well past that point.

            The future will be colossally different that we had expected. Worse than we thought. What kind of logic are you looking for?

          • Cheryl says:

            Ah, run out of column space again.

            You don’t need to tell me that the situation could be urgent. Indeed, it is entirely likely that it is already to late. Climate systems are much harder to maneuver than supertankers. It can take decades to turn them around.

            Because of that, I’m not going to waste my time arguing with someone whose reaction to any evidence he doesn’t like is to claim that it is fabricated.

            As to what will work, I really don’t know. It is pretty clear that neither the general public nor politicians have any real will to act, and no amount of yelling will change that. I suspect that we may have to concentrate on how we deal with the disasters when they arrive. That at least should focus people’s minds a bit.

    • It is treason to reject such dangers.

      No it is not. Human-caused climate-change denialism may be foolish, misguided, selfish, pig-headed, and self-destructive, but it’s not treasonous. “Treason” is a very specific crime, and I do not like to see people tossing it around so freely.

      • I’ll stand by treason. Treason to the species. ExxonMobil spends millions on campaigns to discredit climate science – even employing the same PR firms that successfully delayed tobacco control – with “we are not really sure that tobacco causes cancer” It is promoting a lie that is going to kill people. First it was: “we are not sure that it really is warming” then to “Not sure that CO2 causes global warming”, to now “we are not sure that humans are the cause”. Exxon is saying – if we are not the cause, how can we be the solution. I can see the business case for that.

        And I am afraid that logical argumentation means very little in global warming. Otherwise we would have acted long ago.

        Most marketing people know that it is very easy to control people if you control their imagination. “Women are taught now that feminism destroys their individuality; blacks are taught that racism is over; workers are taught that American patriotism is undermined by unions. Everyone is taught that they have a realistic chance of becoming wealthy. Everyone is taught that crime is everywhere, and that only the police keep terrorists from killing all their children.” And we are taught that global warming is natural and humans cannot influence it. Treason.

        We forget the tremendous labor involved in creating demand for carbon fuel and carbon supported production. “Demand outstrips supply, demand outstrips the ability to pay, demand outstrips the future. Demand sells. Demand pays big salaries. Demand is the culture industry, the entertainment industry, the communications industry, the business of our supposedly sacred newspapers.” We do not take logical actions.

  4. Gail says:

    I think there is a place for shouting, and it has certainly been used to effect in the past. As I recall, there was a lot of shouting about the Vietnam war until the US finally withdrew, defeated. The polarizing, anti-intellectual divide from that era still influences ideology and the politics of climate change today.

    Rarely does revolutionary change occur in the annals of human civilization without some disruption to the norms of polite discourse. And given the entrenched corporate interests and their resistance to any challenge to their hegemony of energy, and the growth paradigm leading to obscene profits, any significant switch to renewable energy will constitute nothing less than a revolution.

    • Cheryl says:

      Shouting at the government can be very effective, because they want to get elected again next time around. Shouting at individual citizens tends to be less effective and generally only leads to them shouting back, or worse.

  5. JP_Fife says:

    Cheryl, I personally don’t see why you took umbrage from my previous comment; perhaps the first three sentences, perhaps the last sentence. I wont offer an apology.

    You’ll be glad to know that today I’ve stopped following your blog and wont be back again. Nothing personal (well, a bit, but I had intended to prune the blogs I follow anyway), I stopped following about ten or so blogs that I don’t read regularly.

    Oh, and because I question you you automatically label me a denialist?

    I said ‘…you’ll find more than enough to suggest the whole thing (Man Made Global Warming) is suspect’.

    Suggest.

    Suspect.

    This brings accusations of insult and treason along with a nice label closely linked to Antisemitism. Personally I’m still undecided about Global Warming but I definitely don’t like the company it keeps.

    • I personally don’t see why you took umbrage from my previous comment…

      Possibly because you were patronizing and insulting?

      I certainly would have taken umbrage at being addressed that way.

    • Cheryl says:

      I called you a denialist because you dismissed evidence on the basis that you claimed it was made up. That’s not evidence, that’s denial.

      As for your leaving, I’m pretty sure that you never followed this blog in the first place. You just came here to troll because I happened to talk about global warming. Now, with no evidence whatsoever, because I don’t agree with you, you try to accuse me of Antisemitism. Guess what, you’ve just been banned.

  6. Gosh Cheryl – please keep happening to talk about Global warming It is quintessential futurism — the intersection of fiction and science with models and predictions based on science, it can extend deeply into speculative fiction.

    I like it that you bring it up every so often. I want to see more.

    The changes to come are now predictable, the outcomes are not – or there is a better way of saying that the view into the future is not well described, only it will be radically unlike what we had thought.

    • Cheryl says:

      I don’t think I will. Talking about it in a public space just attacks trolls, which will put other people off the discussion. I’m stick to talking to people personally instead. I think it will be more effective.

      But if you want science fiction with climate change theme, my Finnish friend, Risoto Isomäki, has written a fine novel about the very issue we were discussion here. It is available in English as a graphic novel. See here for more.