Greenland Ice Melt, Measured By NASA Satellites

Greenland Ice Melt, Measured By NASA Satellites, Reaches Unprecedented Level.

This article describes a sudden melting of ice on Greenland that has been seen by satellites and confirmed by several agencies including NASA.

Another event that has shocked scientists was the recent calving (i.e. separation from a glacier) of an iceberg more than twice the size of Manhattan island from Greenland’s Petermann glacier.

What do these events mean, if anything? The article notes

Goddard glaciologist Lora Koenig said that similar melting events occur about every 150 years, and this event is consistent with that schedule, citing the previous 1889 melt…. Wagner explained that in recent years, studies have observed thinning sea ice and “dramatic” overall changes. He was clear, “We don’t want to lose sight of the fact that Greenland is losing a tremendous amount of ice overall.”

The idea of global warming (or climate change, which is more accurate) has been controversial from its inception. At this point there have been clear changes in the climate of certain parts of the globe, tending towards extremes of hot, cold, flooding, drought, and storms of all types.

The real controversy concerns the role of human beings in these changes. Are we causing them, or are these changes merely the normal variations in climate that have occurred on our planet for thousands of years? I remember the scandal called “Climategate” from 2009 in which emails were leaked from the Climate Research Unit in the UK. These emails mentioned a “trick” that was done to make the data appear favorable to man-made global warming.

Even if the climate changes are natural, it is possible that human activities are contributing to them. Unfortunately, science is not the cut-and-dried process that it sometimes appears to be. Data can be cooked, statistics can be faked, and scientists as human beings can simply make mistakes. Only time will tell.

 

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