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By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/17/2013 (9 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Current models too simplistic for precise predictions.

Scientists from Germany, Netherlands, and the UK, have published a paper stating there is no scientific consensus that sea levels are rising. The paper was published in the journal Nature Geoscience.

Will these predictions come true?

Will these predictions come true?

Article Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/17/2013 (9 months ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: global warming, climate change, ice caps, temprature, pollution, scientists, consensus


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The scientists write that, "The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have been reported to be losing mass at accelerating rates ... However, at present there is no scientific consensus on whether these reported accelerations result from variability inherent to the ice-sheet-climate system, or reflect long-term changes ..."

In plain English, they agree that the ice sheets are melting but that they can't agree why or if the ice loss is permanent. They also say they cannot agree if sea levels are rising as a result.

The ice caps are melting, so where is the water going?

The ice caps are melting, so where is the water going?


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change itself admitted that "no long-term acceleration of sea level has been identified using 20th-century data alone." However, the agency predicts at least a foot of sea level rise over the next century. What gives?

We're accustomed to public debate between ordinary citizens and policy makers on the validity of global warming claims, but not in the mainstream scientific community. To see dissent in that community, and from a group of scientists, not just one or two, demands increased scrutiny of sea-level rise claims.

Sea level matters. Entire nations are threatened by rising seas and some island nations are expected to be entirely underwater within the next century.

Despite the disagreement that seal level rise is actually occurring, there is considerable anecdotal evidence to suggest it is happening.

From salt water percolating into freshwater springs on Pacific atolls, to ever-higher sea walls in the Caribbean, and the closing of locks on the North Sea to prevent river flooding, there seems to be ample evidence that seas are rising.

Pacific islanders are feeling the reality of sea level change.

Pacific islanders are feeling the reality of sea level change.


The most obvious question has to do with the ice caps. After all, the ice caps are melting, so where does that water go? Is it going into the atmosphere instead? Is it refreezing somewhere else? The deserts are greening, suggesting that in some places they are getting more water.

These phenomenon could offset any sea-level rise from melt water.

It should also be considered that global climate temperatures appear to have reached a plateau over the past decade, or more accurately, the planet is warming much less rapidly than previously anticipated.

If you're confused, don't worry. So are the scientists. When it comes to global warming, the gauges and models predict one thing, but we're observing another. The interrelationships between solar energy, air pollution, air temperatures, water, and ice are so complex that current models are still relatively simplistic.

Desert greening in Inner Mongolia. Is this where the water is going?

Desert greening in Inner Mongolia. Is this where the water is going?


However, there does remain consensus that the gradual temperature trend is upwards and that humans are responsible. The question remains just how serious the problem really is, and what measures we should take, if any, based on what is still a simplistic understanding of a very complex issue.

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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
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