Maybe Not So Much Heat As Gas
The artic is melting, but the reason is (maybe) not what you think.
“These are the first pyroclastic deposits we’ve ever found in such deep water, at oppressive pressures that inhibit the formation of steam, and many people thought this was not possible,” said WHOI geophysicist Rob Reves-Sohn, lead author and chief scientist for the Arctic Gakkel Vents Expedition (AGAVE) of July 2007. “This means that a tremendous blast of CO2 was released into the water column during the explosive eruption.”
It’s certainly not the reason that Catherine Brahic at New Scientist hints at.
Despite its news value in the media, the North Pole being ice free is not in itself significant. To scientists, Serreze points out, “this is just another point on the globe”. What is worrying, though, is the fact that multi-year ice – the stuff that doesn’t melt in the summer – is not piling up as fast as Arctic ice generally is melting.On average each year about half of the first year ice, formed between September and March, melts during the following summer. In 2007, nearly all of it disappeared.
Moreover, an atmospheric phenomenon known as the Arctic oscillation kicked into its strong, “positive”, phase this winter. This is known to generate winds which push multi-year ice out of the Arctic along the east coast of Greenland.
My emphasis. In other words, warm air. In other words, despite her efforts to avoid the term, Global Warming.