NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

ARCTIC ICE MELT SCIENCE IS SLUSHY

February 25, 2005

Distinguished scientists dispute claims that the Arctic climate is undergoing catastrophic climate change, according to the Heartland Institute.

In fact, in a letter to Senator John McCain, who has repeatedly proposed Kyoto-type legislation, eleven scientists presented several truths about Arctic warming:

  • Since 1940, data from Greenland coastal stations indicates a cooling trend, with the summer average temperature at the Greenland ice sheet cooling about 2.2 degrees Celsius per decade since measurements began in 1987.
  • Based on analysis of ice corings of the Penny Ice Cap on Baffin Island, recent warming trends are not unusual when considering the variation over climate conditions in the past.
  • A study of sea core sediment from the last 10,000 years indicates that the western Arctic Ocean was much warmer in the recent past than it is today.

Furthermore, an analysis of the Arctic between 1951 and 1990 shows strong variations in climate from year to year, there were no identifiable indications of a greenhouse effect. The Arctic has long exhibited patterns of change not easily reproduced by climate models.

In other words, policy should be based on sound science, not sensational claims, says the Institute.

Source: R. Tim Patterson, et al., "Scientists Dispute Sensational Claims of Arctic Ice Melt," January 1, 2005, Heartland Institute.

 

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