October 22nd, 2010
12:13 PM ET

NOAA: Arctic changes are affecting climate elsewhere

Changes such as a decrease in sea ice have consequences elsewhere, the report says.

The Arctic's warming trend is beginning to affect the climate farther south, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said this week in its annual Arctic Report Card.

"There is evidence that the effect of higher air temperatures in the lower Arctic atmosphere in fall is contributing to changes in the atmospheric circulation in both the Arctic and northern mid-latitudes," wrote the report's authors, a team of 69 international scientists.

Extreme cold and big snowfalls can be blamed on the Arctic changes, according to NOAA.

"Beyond affecting the humans and wildlife that call the area home, the Arctic's warmer temperatures and decreases in permafrost, snow cover, glaciers and sea ice also have wide-ranging consequences for the physical and biological systems in other parts of the world," NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco said.

Sea ice reaches its minimum in September every year. This year's September ice cover was the third-smallest recorded since microwave satellites started taking measurements in 1979, the authors wrote.

"The last four summers have experienced the four lowest minimums in the satellite record, and eight of the 10 lowest minimums have occurred during the last decade," the report card said.

The sea ice also appears to be much younger than two decades ago, as ice that survived from year to year has dwindled to a fraction of its former mass, the data showed.

Watch a NOAA video illustrating the changes

Greenland, the Arctic's great glacier-covered land mass, experienced record-setting high air temperatures, ice loss and glacier area loss, the report said.

"A combination of a warm and dry 2009-2010 winter and the very warm summer resulted in the highest melt rate since at least 1958 and an area and duration of ice sheet melting that was above any previous year on record since at least 1978," the authors wrote.

Furthermore, "a clear pattern of exceptional and record-setting warm air temperatures is evident at long-term meteorological stations around Greenland," they wrote.

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Filed under: Climate change • Earth • Environment • Science • Weather
soundoff (930 Responses)
  1. joseph williams

    what's important though, is that plants take up much more carbon dioxide in photosynthesis
    than they give off in respiration at night.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  2. poor poor sheep

    I thought when you sheep elected the messiah he was going to fix all of the lefts woes and worries? Oh wait this is another thing that is Bush’s fault, isn’t that the battle cry of the left? NOAA is a group of leftist liars on the govenment payroll like NPR.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      Having fun on your compound with all of your nut job buddies? Stockpiling weapons for the revolution, huh? Good times.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeT

      Oh yeah, I forgot that NOAA and NPR weren't getting any government funds during the Bush administration....

      October 22, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jim

    I'm a scientist too, but my area is biological, so I'm not an expert on climate change, but I do know a bit about how science is done. One fact is true, the earth has warmed up a bit over the last little while. And CO2 levels have risen. This is a correlation, not a causal relationship. There is also an excellent correlation between the number of TVs sold since 1950 and the rate of lung cancer, or the length of your big toe and how much money you make. Its true. But not selling TVs wont change the cancer rates, and the toe thing is because childrenm, who have small toes, dont work. One must be very careful drawing conclusions from correlations.
    On a recent trip to a museum, in the natural history section, I saw a display that charted average world temperatures over the last thousand years (they can tell by studying tree rings, and other things).It turns out we are in a very cool period right now. There have been several fluctuations in tempretaure, ups and downs that last dozens, or hundreds of years. The coldest period was the early 1700's (we are not much warmer than that now) and there were several periods where it was much warmer than today for prolonged periods. So to observe temperatures over the last few years and draw long term conclusions and cause/effect relations, is foolish, and bad science. Of course we need to study and do research, but what we need more is a plan as to how we are going to deal with the changes. It doesnt need to be the end of the world.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reality

      You found a tree that was a thousand years old? Bravo

      October 22, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeT

      There used to many more trees on the US West Coast over a thousand years old, but most were harvested.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_long-living_organisms

      October 22, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Here's a fact.

    Here is a fact: A study was once done on crime and ice cream. The sociologists found that that crime increased as consumption of ice cream increased. So, one could conclude is that we eliminated ice cream, we would eliminate crime. If you sell cookies this is a great selling point. Eat more cookies and you will not get robbed. Who isn't in favor of less crime, and all it takes is to not eat ice cream.
    The point: facts can be manipulated. Both sides have an agenda. Scientists get a paycheck from someone too.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeT

      Your argument is fallacious. Assuming the report found a link between ice cream consumption and crime, one would have to determine the causality. Greater ice cream availability might encourage crime, or greater crime might encourage people to eat more ice cream. Either notion seems unlikely without determining how these two observations are related– we have no notion of the scope of data collected or the context, so making any generalization and writing off the research is premature.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeT

      ....And of course, assuming that if bad science is or can be done in one area, sociology, imples that science cannot be trusted anywhere, including climatology is ludicrous.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chopswell

      And what do you tell the little Brownie Girl Scout who just had her G.S. Cookie money stolen from her? She may bash you over the head with a quart of Ben & Jerry's.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  5. joseph williams

    Thus, the net effect is that plants take in CO2.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Chopswell

    Just wondering...how come there aren't "LIKE" buttons on these comments–like on the others? There's about 20 comments I'd be liking! LOL

    October 22, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Credible

      The greenhouse effect is a natural phenomenon whereby heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere keep the Earth’s surface warm. Human activities, primarily burning fossil fuels and changing land cover patterns, are increasing the concentrations of some of these gases, amplifying the natural greenhouse effect.

      http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/Literacy/default.php

      According to the 2009 Global Climate Change Impacts in the US report, climate-related changes are already observed in the United States and its coastal waters, including increases in heavy downpours, longer heat waves, and rising temperature and sea level, rapidly retreating glaciers, thawing permafrost, lengthening growing seasons, lengthening ice-free seasons in the ocean and on lakes and rivers, earlier snowmelt, and alterations in river flows.
      •Human activities are leading to an enhancement of the greenhouse effect by the emission of greenhouse gases through fossil fuel combustion and deforestation. U.S. average temperature has risen more than 2ºF over the past 50 years
      •Global climate models clearly show the effect of human-induced changes on global temperatures
      •The 20 warmest years have all occurred since 1981, and the 10 warmest have all occurred in the past 12 years
      •Northern Hemisphere average annual snow cover has declined in recent decades. This pattern is consistent with warmer global temperatures.
      •Increasing heat content in the ocean is also consistent with sea level rise, which is occurring mostly as a result of thermal expansion of the ocean water as it warms
      •Precipitation has increased an average of about 5 percent over the past 50 years
      •The destructive energy of Atlantic hurricanes has increased in recent decades
      The intensity of these storms is likely to increase in this century

      October 22, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Columbus

      Oh please Credible, the earth has a proven history of cycling from warmer to colder climates, man made emissions have only been belching from smokestacks and tailpipes for a little over a hundred years and we'll run out of hydrocarbon fuels within the next hundred years. Can the earth recover? How much greenhouse gas do you think was released during the volcanic period, how long did it take to equalize and get absorbed into the biosphere, how long until global cooling brought on the ice age? Time is measured in thousands of years, although we have the "intelligence" to control our impact on the environment, we are just a minor point in the timeline of earth's history.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dragon

      the whole we are responsible for this and all that jazz is crap. Its a natural cycle of the earth to do this. Unless our telling me the first Ice Age was the dinosaurs fault in which case i want to know what they did to cause it. We are not helping out by burning fossil fuels but by no means are we the case nor is it preventable it will happen again end of story.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Noocrat

      At what point did ignorance become a defensible position?

      Yes climate change is a natural process. However, what is unnatural is the rate of change. Which is measurable now and for past climate changes via ice cores and through studying the layers of the earth. It's fact that the process is happening faster then expected.

      Comparatively, the amount of green house gases in the atmosphere are more than twice the level of what they have ever been in the history of the planet. Which, again, we can observe from ice cores which permanently trap a sampling of the atmosphere in air bubbles. So yes, we can work our way back through the planets history and see the impact we're making. We can even correlate changes in levels to changes in climate policy in the last few decades.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • jerry vlasaty

      how long will it be before we see the 22% of the US be overcme by water caused by the melting of the ice cap?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Techstuf

      Surely the NOAA knows, but is not saying, about the apparent earth/moon orbital changes!

      Net search the term – HUGE media blackout earth

      An ever increasing number of individuals the world over have been noticing the sun rise appreciably too far north in summer and south in winter. Also, on any clear night for the next week or so, one can also witness the lunar side of the changing equation.....as the moon has been playing rodeo all over the sky each month!

      October 22, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      I think it really is a moot point. Whether you believe global warming is happening or not, both camps should want to eliminate many sources of Carbon Dioxide that modern society uses. People who believe Global Warming is happening due to human development have enough of a reason to want change. People who aren't convinced should still want to switch to something better than oil since relying on oil to power the infrastructure makes those countries dependent on other countries that they don't want to rely on for their lifeblood. Also, coal, which powers more than 60% of the grid in America, has deleterious emissions which are also slightly radioactive, (before you think I am crazy, understand that coal has small amounts of Uranium in it, which are expelled from a coal plant and pumped up into the surrounding environment when the coal is burned). From a purely narcissistic standpoint humans need to get off coal and oil to help people live longer and healthier lives. I personally enjoy nature, I like to hunt, fish, go hiking, camping, mountain biking, and want to make sure that our planet's ecosystems will be similar to what we have now for future generations to enjoy. I also like TV, video games, electricity, and driving, not to mention being able to use a washer and dryer to clean my clothes. But I think if we killed the controversy over climate change and took a more self-centered look at the problem, we could see that, what is best for the human race on a whole, could end up being good for the planet. And what i mean is, deriving electricity from sources with limited pollution, like wind, solar-thermal, nuclear. Using battery powered cars in cities, (while recycling the metals used in those batteries), and letting trucks and people living in the country use bio-diesel. Using organic composites that don't rely on oil instead of steel and plastic for cars, using new bio-degradable plastics like the new sun chips bag that was discontinued because it was too loud (really just because it's more noisy we have to go back to using bags which ultimately end up in land fills and the ocean, affecting the environment instead of decomposing away just to keep the decibels down). We have solutions to maintain our standard of living and make living healthier for humanity and the planet, not to mention reduce consumption of foreign oil. We should be talking about that instead of getting caught up in controversy because when something becomes controversial and politicized, it is often relegated into the, "I can't do anything about it" category and then forgotten when the next big controversial thing comes along. Has anyone heard about the gulf coast oil spill that captivated the nation recently? Just a couple tid-bits here and there but it's now time to move on to something else. The next big thing is elections so that's all that is really covered in detail by the main news networks. Stop the controversy and start working together to fix the problems we all have and care about.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      Global warming. Two words that put people at each others throats.
      What is funny is that it's BEEN well known that the world is warming. We ARE still leaving the last ice age!
      Yes, I'm serious. The continents are still rebounding from the pressure of the ice age glaciers and the climate is still below the average temperature of what it used to be before the ice ages began.
      That said, as the world warms to the temperatures of what it was in prehistoric times, do we want to warm it even faster and make it even WARMER?
      Sounds like the recipe for disasters beyond number to me!
      So, should we cut greenhouse gas release? Yep! We'll release greenhouse gases when the next ice age starts.
      Reliance on oil is foolhardy in the extreme. Most of the oil producing nations are already at peak oil and falling or already past peak oil. We SHOULD have something in line BEFORE we run out, not after.
      But then, I've always been big on preparing and preventing, not reacting to one emergency after another because the problem was ignored until it became an emergency.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • AstronomyGuy

      @Techstuff – you're speaking nonsense. You said: "individuals the world over have been noticing the sun rise appreciably too far north in summer and south in winter." The truth is they have not. No such thing has happened. The clockwork of the solar system is both beautifully consistent and easily observed. It is not possible for any organization or nation to "hide" drastic changes occurring in the mechanics of the solar system, because anyone with two brain cells, a telescope, and a textbook or two can simply look up and measure for him/her self the incredible regularity and predictable nature of celestial mechanics.

      You also said, ".as the moon has been playing rodeo all over the sky each month". This is also completely wrong. The moon is precisely where it should be. Its orbit is also consistent, like everything governed by the consistent and predictable laws of gravity, and that orbit has been mapped with laser precision - literally, lasers and reflectors have been used for decades to precisely map the moon's orbit.

      It's true that our moon is very slowly moving away from the Earth, but this is happening so slowly that the Sun will have fried us long before the receding moon becomes a problem.

      October 22, 2010 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Smokingman

      Techstuf:Surely the NOAA knows, but is not saying, about the apparent earth/moon orbital changes!

      News flash: The moon is an illusion and the sun is only 14 miles from the earth, but the media and the governements are keeping it a secret from.... well from someone.... must be you..... get out the tin foil and hunker down....
      WOW

      October 22, 2010 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  7. DGL

    I don't think anyone can deny that the earth is changing, the question is that seems to cause disagreement is are we causing it? There is no doubt we could be kinder to our planet and most likely we are causing damage to it, however, the earth has also been in a state of change long before we came along. So to be so far sided to say the only explanation is man is causing it is like saying in this large universe we can be the only living organisms.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nick2

      There seems to be a lot of evidence that man is accelerating the climate change – causing it is a little presumptious.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      very true, but sadly, those that think we shouldnt do anything cause.. is wrong. Either we cause it, helped it, or whatever, does it really matter? The damage we caused, can be fixed, and to choose not to fix what we damage..well, we'll all end up paying for it. We know that one day, the earth shall end, but yet, what are we doing to keep that from happening? nothing it seems..

      October 22, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • BC in BA

      History of the debate of man-made global warming:
      "It could happen".........................................."No it can't"
      "It will happen"............................................."No it won't"
      "It IS happening"..........................................."No it's not"
      "The evevidence is now everywhere"........"Yeah, well it's not us"

      October 22, 2010 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • KK Denver

      It's mathematically implausible to think that dumping millions of cubic tons of CO2 into a closed system would not change it drastically!

      October 22, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • como1

      Read an article CNN/Tech that visual radiation from the sun for the past few decades has increased. Ultraviolet has diminished. The researchers stated that the visual radiation has a direct effect on raising the earth's temps. But no one wanted to take the step and say that visual radiation may be the major cause of so called global warming. So planet is in another warming trend. What is new? Earth has been much warmer, last week on Cable Discovery the prehistoric history of Manhattan Island, by 10 to 15 deg. F with the seas hundreds of feet higher. No people then, natural yes.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • J

      Within the last 100 or so years the average temperature has increased at a higher rate than normal. That time frame coincides with an increase in industrialization and pollution. It is very logical to think that man-made gases are causing this increase in temperature.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • jake

      Man isn't the only contributor to the damage but we are the number 1 cause and a perfect example is the amount of methane cows produce..we know that causes great amounts of damage but we as humans still breed and breed these animals so we can eat meat. And on top of that we are clearcutting the very thing that produces the air that is essential to life so we can let these disgusting animals graze. So having said that....man is the cause of the problems, but we can also be the solution...yeah right, sell that to the man, i'm sure he's in a buying mood. asta la vista earth.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stryder

      KK Denver – A closed system means nothing is added or taken away, so your argument is flawed. The CO2 was already in the system. It sounded good though.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      It's true that the Earth has experienced numerous examples of climate change in the past that couldn't be blamed on humans. It's just astonishing to see how rapidly things are changing now and I wonder how any reasonable person can look at what's happening and think it's all just a coincidence.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abbey

      "growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell" -The desert fox

      October 22, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robert

      So... does that mean we don't try to stop or diminish the gasses that we KNOW can bring about climate change?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • TimJohnson

      Credible,

      The "models" have proven to be wrong, repeatedly. "Models" are not reality. There was a time when people model natural disasters as consequence of the alleged immorality of their neighbors . . . hmm, looks like we are back to that with AGW.

      The ground station temperature data suffer from urbanization that engulf the ground stations themselves.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • ThinkRationally

      Stryder, the C part of this CO2 has been locked away deep underground in hydrocarbon compounds for millions of years. In that sense, it was not part of the ecosystem in all of those years, and actually this CO2 did not exist for that long period of time. We are currently breaking down those hydrocarbons (burning them) and pumping CO2 back into the system at a rate of gigatons per year in a process that would not otherwise be taking place. The “closed system” is the one that humans evolved in and are adapted to. I think the analogy stands.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Some Body

      @J

      Confusing coincidence and cause-effect is not logical.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • ThinkRationally

      @Some Body, your statement suggests that you believe this is just coincidence. Not considering the possibility (a strong possibility in this case) of a causal correlation is definitely not logical, and it is certainly foolhardy. It is not logical to sweep this issue away with the simple notion that it’s just a coincidence. We could make any number of problems go away if we think like that.

      October 22, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  8. CSD

    Shame the Tea Baggers are ready to party like its' 1773. I hear if they win, Chrissy O'Donnell has the answer to climate change – she's planning on sacrificing a goat in the town square.

    I hear Sarah Wailin Palin is a denier because, as she said "I was in in Alaska last week, and it was still cold".

    Man these dolts are embarrassments to intelligence.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mogdaork

      im sorry I fail to see the point to making this a partisan issue?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jay

      Well it wasn't our choice. If Republicans want to ignore findings that most agree show climate change occurring that is a fact. Do not criticize people for pointing out that your candidates don't understand the science behind it but insist that it is a myth. It is partisan because these candidates chose to make it so.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • David Vernon

      So are you CSD, so are you.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • alek

      Hahaha. Epic.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reality

      That's it.....just follow along with the arguements of the two party sytem. Instead of demanding all those crooks in Washington clean up their act. Why do we forget the important points during election instead of being focused on party seperation and the blaming game. Why not ask congress elect why they don't end a lifetime retirement for themselves or a seperate health care package? Ask? Demand.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • ThomasLG

      Maybe I'm missing something here, but "it's warmer at the north pole, so it's going to be colder farther sourh" just doesn't ring true. I agree that this is a partisan piece of propaganda. I don't dispute that it's warmer at the pole, or that the ice is at near-record lows (at least for the relatively small number of years we've been measuring it with any degree of accuracy). What makes anyone arrogant enough to think this isn't just part of another cycle that hasn't happend a buch of times before? HOW long have we been measuring? Thirty of the last 4 Billion years? There's an old saw in scientific circles that if you want to show a constant relationship, obtain one data point; if you want to show a linear relationship, obtain TWO data points. I don't think there's enough history yet for anyone to be making sweeping claims about ANY of the future. They can't get the 7-day forecast right, so how can they predict where the global climate is heading? Give me a break!

      October 22, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robt

      I think there is science involved in climate control but it does leave doubt about findings when they lie about what they have found, and that the key pieces they have cited was falsified and doctored to show a negative effect. I guess if I was Gore that would be OK, I like hard facts, and science has proven there has been periods of warming and cooling for the life of the planet. Have we caused the latest warming trend, I doubt it. Have we made the warming trend worse, that is still up in the air. You should really understand something before you put people down.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • jake

      woohoo teabagged infidels. palin, beck, odonnell, see no people, hear no people, talk to no people. i'd call these three monkeys but that wouldnt be fair to monkeys. and besides these three didnt evolve, they were created 6000 years ago. they look thier age.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robert

      Tell O'Donnel to sacrifice her Mama. No more animal killing.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • robert noonan

      @ CSD

      Thank you chicken(sh!t) little.

      rmn

      October 22, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
  9. h

    I always thought that water molecules could neither be made nor destroyed, only change forms. . .. right? So if the ice melts, more water is around to evaporate and rain down somewhere else. Isn't it that simple, or am I way off on this? I'm not educated in science, but I kind of remember that from my elementary school water packet.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Walt Robinson

      Right – so when ice melts from Greenland, there is more water in the oceans, and sea level rises.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Exciting times...

      Shhh... This is supposed to be a bad thing. When in fact... this could be the answer to more water to handle the water shortages because of populations rising.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Science is Fact

      All the global warming nutjobs always fall over themselves whenever they are asked to explain how the last ice age ended. Answer is, obviously, global warming (a natural process). Follow up question: How many SUVs were around when the last ice age started to conclude? Answer, obviously, is none. Al Gore's kool aid drinkers take note.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jay

      Or perhaps the ice will melt directly into the ocean water rendering it undrinkable, while simultaneously flooding coastal areas displacing millions and leading to unprecedented violence in undeveloped countries. Widen the scope of your analysis.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Harvard Glenn

      I question should not be if SUV's existed BUT the speed of the change. I hope your home and business isn't close to the ocean.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • phil

      I don't think you guys are remembering the elementary class that well... We are talking about FLOATING ICE, which doesn't change the water level when it melts. Or does your glass of ice water overflow when you leave it in the sun?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • george

      Nice, from elementary school? You are close but a little off. Not that it matters but molecules can change, elements cannot (except in the middle of start or nuclear explosions). The water cycle isn't as simplistic as you state but you are hinting at a nonlinear, choatic system which most all natural systems are. There is a water cylcle, a sun cycle, a carbon cycle and so on, ad infinitum. As you read these types of stories pay attention to ocean currents. Nothing else really matters. No mention of ocean currents, its hogwash. Most of climate change stories are hogwash anyway. Thanks for the chuckle, now go drink you chocolate milk and lay your head on the desk and take a nap.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • phil

      The ice that we worry about melting for sea level purposes is on Greenland and Antarctica, which is land based ice. And to the man who asked about SUVs, just because the earth has warmed in the past naturally does not mean that we aren't doing it unnaturally now. In fact it only shows that giant climate shifts are possible, and if we are not paying attention we might create the conditions for it to happen again.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike R

      h, you're an idiot.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      Hey "Science is Fact", my car stopped running awhile back because the battery went dead. So, obviously the reason it stopped this time *couldn't* be because I didn't put gas in it. After all – there can only be *one* cause for global warming – right? What a maroon!

      October 22, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeT

      "I always thought that water molecules could neither be made nor destroyed"
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrolysis

      Next argument?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Really?

      george – You just completely discredited yourself as having any scientific understanding because elements DO change over time. It's called radioactive Decay.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • re: Science is Fact

      To “Science is Fact” : Hey, how many forest fires were prevented thousands and thousands years ago? None. So over decades the buildup of Carbon monoxide raised the temp and caused ice age slowly. Today we have SUVs and other vehicles, factories etc that produce massive amounts of CO2 on daily basis. (for bible pushers : that’s forest fires times 1000). So yeah, we’re greatly accelerating global warming.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Real Jay

      Jay, Maybe you need to widen the scope of your analysis. Water that evaporates from the ocean and falls as rain inland does not contain salt as salt is left behind in the evaporation process. This is why the Dead Sea gets saltier every day. Just another example of cycles that have been going on long before we had cars and factories. Everything in life is cyclical. Didn't you ever watch the Lion King and learn about the circle of life. lmao

      October 22, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      @JoeT. I hope you know you just used wikipedia as a source. Wikipedia is NOT a scholarly source. I myself can change the words in it. Bad source. Think next time.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rapp

      Phil, we aren't talking only about floating water, I believe that the articel focused on Greenland a little, which is a very large island (should have learned that in elementary school). Antarctica, also a large island (again elementary school). Oh and the glaciers in alaska and russia, etc...

      October 22, 2010 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Exciting times...

    It's moments like these that evolution moves forward right? So why is everyone so scared? Because it'll change things? Of course it'll change things. Big deal. Animals have always gone extict with or without humans. Ice melted long before man got involved. What's funnier to me isn't that nobody dares question a scientist because you know, they don't EVER make mistakes or push for prophecies that don't happen... it's that they somehow think we're supposed to live "in harmony" or something. How can you claim there's no moral rights and wrongs... that there is no "plan" or "design"... and then tell us that if we don't stop what we're doing we're gonna ruin the plan? How do we KNOW that we won't survive? How do we know that this wouldn't bring about an even better evolutionary change? Why fight it? We're sitting on the precipice of a major shove towards evolutionairy change right? Enjoy the ride!

    October 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike R

      Right, and the real exciting thing is that hopefully humans are accelerating their own extinction, and the Earth is routing out a bad disease.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • KK Denver

      2+2 equals 4 and it will tomorrow. You're a cretin

      October 22, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      That's not how evolution works, smart guy. It doesn't 'move forward' because of environmental stress. The proper term is 'natural selection', whereby organisms that cannot adapt to the change dwindle and possibly become extinct – while those that can may thrive. So, why the hand-wringing? Because it means that it is *unknown* whether this will be something we can adapt to or not.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Incomplete summary of evolution

      Natural Selection is just one of many mechanisms of Evolution.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Learn some facts

      Organisms currently are going extinct at a rate 1000 times greater than in our planets history. You're an idiot.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good grief

      The problem is the possibility of US going extinct. Exciting, perhaps; good, not.

      October 22, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  11. FFFF

    Here we go..lets see Racism, Climate, Dems/Repubs, Muslims, and we haven't heard this in awhile Cliamte Change....Spinning the wheel of new ideas.....

    October 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Phyllis North

    I trust scientists more than people who post baseless comments on pages like this.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  13. BM

    We humans (with our human-centric arrogance) have had our chance ... It will be interesting what these changes does to us

    October 22, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Kate

    Hey, does it really matter if the global warming thing is true or false? Isn't air quality, water quality, and ground pollution enough to try and do better?

    October 22, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Djozar

    Too bad this post doesn't comment on the fact that the Antartic ice is growing. It's also convenient that they covered all their bases – if it's cold this winter, it's climate change; if it's warm, it's climate change.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ihaterepublicans

      I wonder just what you are trying to say? Artice ICE IS dwindling – plain and simple!

      It is natural for most people to need to see a bright side to this because it IS scary! Of course the earth is changing as it ALWAS has – but it is changing VERY rapidly now. Even if man is not responsible – do you like the smog and pollution?

      October 22, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Average Joe

      Actually NOAA said that the warming of the earth led to major snowstorms in the Middle Atlantic. That is what the link CNN used said. NOAA said nothing about colder temperatures. And then it said there was no snow in Western Canada as you may recall from the Olympics. Alot of snow in the Mid Atlantic during winter does not equal colder average earth temperatures. It shows an extreme that is actually the result of higher temperatures on average as higher temps means more energy for storms.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • vonStemwede

      Yes, beware those who set themselves up to win an argument in advance. They are quite simply liars.

      October 22, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Morgan

      Actually AverageJoe if you scroll down a bit, the NOAA does in fact talk about cold temperatures of "historic proportions". The fact that we are seeing extreme temperatures is why it is called "Climate Change" now and not "Global Warming".

      October 22, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
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