Sunday, December 30, 2007

A year of extremes, except...

The AP's science writer has just published an ominously scary piece about 2007 being a year of records. Indeed it was. For example, he mentioned the all time record high of 105 degrees in Portland, Tennessee (it was awfully hot and dusty here in Memphis, too); he talked about the fires in Calefornyeea and the lake-parching drought in the southeast; and he rang the warning bell about the record melting of the Greenland and Arctic ice caps.

But for some reason he failed to mention the record cold winter experienced in part of the southern Hemisphere. As Spock would say, fascinating. And for some reason he didn't bother to tell anyone about how the Antarctic ice cap and it's surrounding sea ice expanded in 2007. Weird. And for some reason this AP science writer failed to mention the positive reversal of the Arctic Current, once thought to be a harbinger of doom.

These are called feedback mechanisms. For instance, he could have explained that any increase in snow pack over Antarctica has the potential to offset melting in Greenland (melting sea ice does not affect sea level) but apparently such things don't fit the script, which goes like this:
Get used to it, scientists said. As man-made climate change continues, the world will experience more extreme weather, bursts of heat, torrential rain and prolonged drought, they said.
Everything but cold extremes, of course. Simply put, their refusal to even acknowledge a cold side to the extremes or any natural feedbacks suggests an agenda at work and is part of the primary reason many conservatives have trouble with the whole darn thing.

No comments: