Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/1/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Marshall Connolly talks about global wamring and the alleged new images of north polar melting.

Last week, a series of images went viral showing a supposed lake at the North Pole. Even for admitted global warming believers like myself, the images did not resonate well with me. We have since learned that the images are not from the North Pole and they're part of a normal phenomenon.

This is not what it seems to be.

This is not what it seems to be.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/1/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Green

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


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Jamie Morison, a polar scientist at the University of Washington's Applied Physics Laboratory, the images are not what the alarmists think say they should be. "This doesn't look particularly extreme," she commented.

It isn't. According to the scientists at UW, the shallow ponds of water are normal for the region at the height of the polar summer. They tend to form in August and even into September when temperatures there are at their highest.

Social media went nuts after this image went viral.

Social media went nuts after this image went viral.


It's still quite cold in that region, and the ponds soon freeze back over.

Another of the viral images which set off alarms.

Another of the viral images which set off alarms.


Many people do not realize that the ice cap at the North Pole moves a little bit each day, and this constant movement means that equipment placed by researchers at the North Pole will eventually be moved away as the year progresses.

What the images show is a fish-eye distortion of a pond that is about two feet deep and a hundred feet wide. The images were captured by the North Polar Observatory, which streams images of the polar region around the world in real time. The region photographed is in the Arctic, but isn't at the North Pole at all.

Not the North Pole.

Not the North Pole.


Ridges seen in the distance look like mountains, but are actually parts of the ice shelf pushed together.

Scientists say that last year was the most alarming year for ice melt, with ice levels receding farther than at any time since satellite-based records were kept since 1979. This year looks like it will also come very close to historic lows.

Despite this, the ponds are a normal feature and are not a sign that the planet is warming out of control.

A research team tries to navigate the ice ponds of the arctic, which are common during the short arc

A research team tries to navigate the ice ponds of the arctic, which are common during the short arctic summer.


Climatologists say these ponds form across the region all the time.

As a personal believer in global warming who has interviewed several people in the field, including a number of scientists, I find images such as these disconcerting because they come off as alarmist and misleading. They derail legitimate discussions of global warming with viral sensationalism.

After interviewing skeptics and believers alike, one thing is clear. Nobody knows with any great degree of certainty exactly what is happening or why. It is generally agreed that global warming is occurring as part of an overall macro-trend. It is also widely thought that humans are at least contributing to the phenomenon, but this conclusion is much more divisive.

In the United States, global warming is a very divisive issue, and skepticism is closely related to conservatism. Alarmism is closely related to the left. This is unfortunate because political bias interferes with discovery of the truth as both sides strive for their own agendas, and neither is interested in truth.

Meanwhile, the rest of the world sees global warming as a significant issue. Even the Vatican has issued statements on the problem via the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.

Part of the problem in discerning the truth of the matter is that existing models simply cannot take into account all the variables that influence climate. Such models cannot make accurate predictions, at best they can only make generalizations.

It's glaringly obvious when we watch weather predictions on the news, then despair as despite decades of modern weather prediction, the weather turns out a bit different than forecast the day before.

This doesn't mean the science is all bunk, it just means the entire field is laden with complexity so great it is easy to cast doubt and aspersions on even the best science and dissent is guaranteed.

However I believe it is immoral for us to release mass quantities of pollutants into the atmosphere where they can cause harm to the climate and thereby people. Yet, living in Southern California, what do I do about it? Although I prefer to walk places, I still drive to work, especially in the summer heat.

In truth, it isn't fair for me to demand massive changes in lifestyle for millions of others when I myself don't do much about the problem. To be fair, I do conserve energy and I recycle, but I'm still an American and a consumer and I am certain my carbon footprint is larger than it should be.

What should we do remains a major question confronting us. I believe adaptation is the best short-term strategy. I hope that over the long term, we can develop better models and improve our understanding of climate and whether or not we can do anything to clean up the planet.

In the meantime, I'm not taking the rap for viral images of a melting North Pole, and neither should you.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Green

You'll never believe what these scientists found in space! Watch

Image of An artists rendering of the 300 light year long gas bubble that encloses our solar system.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A study published last month appears to suggest that our entire solar system is enclosed within a giant gas bubble. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The entire bubble is about 300 light years long (roughly 1,764,000,000,000,000 miles) and its walls are made of gas ... continue reading


UNITED NATIONS: Global warming could be irreversible Watch

Image of Ocean acidification, which comes from the added carbon absorbed by oceans, will also harm marine life, the report says.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

International experts say that for most intents and purposes, it's too late - global warming is real and could very well be irreversible. A draft of a new international science report released by the United Nations outlines the options that mankind has left. ... continue reading


Satellite confirms fears, ice sheets are melting fast Watch

Image of An artist's impression of Cryosat 2. The ESA mission has confirmed that massive ice sheets are melting fast.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The European environmental satellite Cryosat 2, has independently confirmed what scientists have been saying for some time - the ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland are melting. The blame for this melting is laid squarely on global warming and correlates with global ... continue reading


Safe, sane ways to get rid of pests - without poison Watch

Image of First off, the adage of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Those who keep pets face a special challenge: with pet food being readily available at all times, many homes with pets sometimes attracts mice and rats as well. These unwanted "pets," or more correctly pests, are usually done away with poisons - that frequently ... continue reading


NEANDERTHALS LIVED WITH MODERN MAN: Researchers say there is new evidence they interbred Watch

Image of It was a given scientific belief that Neanderthals were inferior in intelligence to modern humans, which led to their demise. New evidence has proven that they cooperated with each other, took care of the sick and elderly, carried out elaborate burial rituals and used symbolic language and art to express ideas.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It was previously believed that Neanderthals vanished instantaneously and didn't interact what would later become known as Modern Man. However, new evidence shows the wider population overlapped with present-day humans across Europe for up to 5,400 years before ... continue reading


ICE CAPS MELTING: Antarctica, Greenland losing ice mass rapidly Watch

Image of This data was the first to use information from the European Space Agency's CryoSat platform. The satellite was launched in 2010 with a sophisticated radar instrument specifically designed to measure the shape of the polar ice sheets.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

At times, it appears that the entire world will be submerged underwater in the space of a few years. Greenland is losing about 375 cubic kilometers of ice annually. Coupled with the discharges coming from Antarctica, Earth's two big ice sheets are now dumping ... continue reading


DISCOVERY SUGGESTS LIFE ON OTHER PLANETS: Ecosystems found in Arctic lakes surprises researchers Watch

Image of It came as a most welcome surprise, as scientists were not on a life-hunting expeditions. The indirect sampling process later raised questions about those results.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Arctic regions of our Earth, where there is very little marine or animal life seem at first incapable of sustaining organisms. However - recent discoveries at both Lake Vostok and Lake Whillans have uncovered healthy ecosystems of microbial life. According ... continue reading


Glacial retreat may halt Chinese dam projects Watch

Image of Tibetan glaciers supply hundreds of millions of people with water, and feed into rivers that run through China, India and much of Southeast Asia.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Tibetan plateau has become warmer over the past 50 years than at any stage in the last millennia, a Chinese newspaper reported. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This report, published by the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, ... continue reading


Humans are doing WHAT? Watch

Image of A glacier in the Alps, one of the largest in the world.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new study released on August 14 reports that man-made greenhouse gas emissions are the dominant cause of glacial melting in the Alps and Andes mountains. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The study, published in the journal Science, reveals that human emissions ... continue reading


NEW SPECIES: 'Graveyard' reveals 47 skeletons of new species of pterosaur Watch

Image of What separates the latest find from others of their species is that the pterosaur Caiuajara dobruskii had a large bony crest on the top of its head that changed from being small when it was young, to large and steep in adults.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A colony of previously unknown flying reptiles that lived around a desert lake in Brazil around 100 million years ago have been uncovered by scientists. The fossilized remains of at least 47 pterosaurs with wingspans ranging from two to eight feet, were ... continue reading


All Green News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 2:1-5
1 Now when I came to you, brothers, I did not come ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102
97 How I love your Law! I ponder it all day ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:16-30
16 He came to Nazara, where he had been brought up, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2014 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter