'Remarkable year': What's behind the record low sea ice in Antarctica?

Above is the heading on an article by Peter Hannam appearing in the Sydney Morning Herald on Nov. 27. I dealt with it  on Nov. 29th., using logic alone.

But Tony Heller has now attacked it using 20th century climate history, which is his specialty. He shows that the principal area of recent sea-ice loss is a polynya (big hole) in the ice of the Weddel sea. He then goes on to show that a very similar hole in the same place also occurred in 1976, when it was attributed to global cooling





So which is it?  Does a polynya prove global warming or global cooling?  Neither, of course.  It is just one of the natural phenomena that we do not understand -- though a guess that it is due to an underwater volcano would probably not be far off.  There is a lot of underwater vulcanism at both poles.

Tony also has fun with another claim in the Peter Hannam article that reported ice loss in the Northern hemisphere too.  In commenting on that ice loss, Peter said:  "With less ice to reflect the sun's radiation to space, more heat is absorbed by the oceans, added to the warming".

Tony's reply to that was crushing on two grounds: "If Peter actually knew anything about the earth, he would know that the sun doesn’t shine in the Arctic in November – and open water in the Arctic Ocean in November allows heat to escape to the much colder air."


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