Friday, March 02, 2007

Global Warming and Antarctica, does that argument hold water?

A radio talk show host was questioning global warming by saying that Antarctica's ice is getting thicker as we speak. It was on a Dori Monson show over KIRO in Seattle.

That's no argument against the existence of global warming. It just might mean that precipitation is increasing in parts of Antarctica. Much of that continent is considered desert anyway. An increase in precipitation would mean thickening of the ice. When the normal cold temps, toward the center of Antarctica go below -112 F., the ice could still be thickening, even if the center of Antarctica gets a bit warmer.

A bit warmer, like say -106 F.

Increased precipitation would still be snow at -106 F. It's still "warming." -106 F. is warmer than -112 F., but it's still ice.

If the ice thickens, maybe it will "hold water" and prevent some of the rising ocean levels.

Get it, "hold water." Still, that argument doesn't hold water as a dispute of global warming.

Global warming could just mean a slight rise of a few degrees in much of the world. Just that little bit is still enough to melt many of the mid latitude glaciers that we depend on, such as here in the Pacific Northwest where much of our hydroelectric power comes from glacier fed stream flows. Also slight changes in global climate can wreak havoc on those colored bands that I used to see in world maps at my grade school. Colored bands for different climates like, "Mediterranean," "West Coast Marine," "Steppe Breadbasket," "Continental Moist," "Taiga Forest," "Tundra" and so forth.

The positions of these bands have been fairly reliable in our the past. A foundation for much of the global economy.

If those color bands start moving around, it could be at least a "bad stock market day."

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