Henny Penny Climate Fear Mongers Count on General Public’sLack of Critical Thinking

Henny Penny aka Climate Change Fear Mongers use whopper alarmist threats of “Vast Costs of Arctic Change”, http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v499/n7459/pdf/499401a.pdf

Image from one of the North Pole Environmental Observatory webcams, taken on Thursday, July 25.
Credit: NSF’s North Pole Environmental Observatory.

The Lake at the North Pole, How Bad Is It? by  Andrew Freedman;     http://www.climatecentral.org/news/melting-at-north-pole-how-bad-is-it-16294 Published: July 26th, 2013 , Last Updated: July 26th, 2013

The pictures are dramatic — a camera at the North Pole Environmental Observatory, sitting in the middle of what appears to be either a lake or open ocean, at the height of the summer sea ice melt season. Set against the backdrop of the precipitous decline in sea ice cover in recent decades due in large part to global warming, this would seem to be yet another alarming sign of Arctic climate change.

Annotated map showing the location of the North Pole and the location of the buoys with the webcams.
Credit: NSF’s North Pole Environmental Observatory.

[…]These images have attracted media attention, such as this AtlanticWire post and this Daily Mail story, both of which portray the images as potential signs of an intensifying Arctic meltdown. But before concluding that Arctic climate change has entered an even more ominous phase, it’s important to examine the context behind these images. First, the cameras in question, which are attached to instruments that scientists have deposited on the sea ice at the start of each spring since 2002, may have “North Pole” in their name, but they are no longer located at the North Pole. In fact, as this map below shows, they have drifted well south of the North Pole, since they sit atop sea ice floes that move along with ocean currents. Currently, the waterlogged camera is near the prime meridian, at 85 degrees north latitude.[…] (Notice that these records of observations are extremely recent, so any comparisons within them are in no way fit to be compared with the Record of Arctic sea ice cover before satellite observations in 1979)  […]Arctic sea ice cover has been rapidly shrinking and thinning since the start of satellite observations in 1979. Last year, sea ice extent and volume plunged to a record low. When the melt season finally ended in late September, the Arctic Ocean managed to hold onto less than half of the average sea ice extent seen during the 1979-to-2000 period. The past six years have had the six smallest sea ice extents since 1979, indicating that the ice has not recovered from the previous record low in 2007. Researchers attribute this to the loss of thicker multiyear ice, which has been replaced by thinner ice that forms in the fall and melts in the spring and summer. Serreze said the thinness of the ice cover has made it much more susceptible to weather patterns that promote ice transport and melting. So far this summer, sea ice extent has tracked above that of 2012, with a slow rate of ice melt in June followed by much more rapid melting during the first three weeks of July after weather patterns became more favorable for melting, Serreze said. “I would be extremely surprised if we were not” well below average come September, Serreze said, but the prospect of setting another record low “depends on the vagaries of the weather, and we just can’t predict that.”[…]

Without critical thinking we are malleable to every emotional appeal to whomever wishes to control us. In the past century mankind has been subjected to the concerted efforts of those who would rob us of our critical thinking abilities to get us to behave in certain ways, to buy certain things, and to change human value systems for the ends of the manipulators.  The “Henny Penny Sky Is Falling” schitck is a favourite change catalyst. Sigmund Freud’s nephew 1920s_Edward_BernaysEdward Louis Bernays (November 22, 1891-March 9, 1995) written up in his obituary as “the father of public relations”,  well understood critical thinking vs emotional reactive thinking. (century_self_lead The subject of anthropocentric (man) caused climate change is one we’re all familiar with from warring sides. Much much much critical thinking needs to be done……….a good place to start would be; http://www.climatedepot.com/ Here’s an example of one so called journalistic effort that needs careful discernment follows with my layman’s comments included in green in parentheses.) Scientists warn on Arctic ‘economic time bomb’     http://www.cnbc.com/id/100912062

(Opening paragraph full of opinion and fearful possibilities) The rapidly melting Arctic (a highly debated theory, with extreme disagreement among scientific community)  is an “economic time bomb” (Henny Penny-be afraid-phrase) likely (a speculation) to cost the world at least (indicating they don’t know but may be larger) $60 trillion (a very large unsubstantiated estimate), say researchers (anonymous authoritative figures you should respect) who have started to calculate (they haven’t calculated it yet, but they are working on it) the financial consequences of one of the world’s fastest changing climates (Is it? says who? and just how many changing climates are they referring to?). (opinion, unproven speculation, etc. highlighted in green below) A record decline in Arctic sea ice has been widely seen as economically beneficial until now, as it opens up more shipping and drilling in a region thought to contain 30 percent of the world’s undiscovered gas and 13 percent of its undiscovered oil. However, the Arctic’s pivotal role in regulating the oceans and climate means that as it melts it is likely to cause climatic changes that will damage crops, flood properties and wreck infrastructure around the world, according to research by academics at the UK’s University of Cambridge and Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Netherlands. This is likely to end up creating costs that will outstrip any benefits by three or more orders of magnitude, said Chris Hope of Cambridge’s Judge Business School. “People are calculating possible economic benefits in the billions of dollars and we’re talking about possible costs and damage and extra impacts in the order of tens of trillions of dollars,” he said. The Arctic has been warming at least twice as fast as the rest of the world for many years and the area of its sea ice, which melts and refreezes after every summer, has been declining by an amount almost equal to the size of the UK each year since 2001. Last year, the summer ice shrank to its lowest point since satellite observations started in 1979 (extremely short amount of time), raising concerns about the impact on the climate. The effect the European researchers have focused on is the way warmer Arctic waters are expected to hasten thawing of the permafrost beneath the East Siberian Sea off northern Russia that is believed to contain vast deposits of methane. This is a greenhouse gas some 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide, though it does not last as long in the atmosphere. There is much debate about how long it might take to release these methane deposits, and what impact it would eventually have. But some scientists say there is already evidence of large plumes of methane escaping and others fear this could happen fast enough to accelerate global warming and eventually speed up other changes such as the melting of the Greenland ice sheet, which contains enough frozen water to push up global sea levels by 7 meters. That is why the group felt it was important to assess the possible economic impact of such changes, said Peter Wadhams, a professor of ocean physics at Cambridge who believes the Arctic sea ice could completely vanish in summers as early as 2015. UK climate scientists say oceans hold key as global warming slows Met Office weathers storm of criticism Energy chiefs warn on EU oil sands measures “We’re looking at a possibly catastrophic effect on the global climate that has been a consequence of this extremely fast sea ice retreat,” he said. The researchers assessed the impact of higher methane emissions with a newer version of the economic model used in the UK government’s 2006 Stern Review on the economics of climate change, which concluded the benefits of curbing global warming early far outweigh the potential costs of not acting. Depending on how much methane was emitted, they calculated its potential cost was likely to be $60 trillion, with 80 percent of the damage occurring in developing countries least able to curb the impact of more floods, droughts and storms. “It’s not just important for polar bears (the emotional polar bear extinction argument , on which there is ample proof that they are increasing in population instead of becoming more endangered), it’s important for societies and global economies,” said Professor Gail Whiteman of Erasmus, adding her group’s research underlined the need for world leaders to start thinking about what she described as an economic time bomb.  from  http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v499/n7459/pdf/499401a.pdf

Critical thinking, yes, that is what we need, yet we are surrounded by people who are bound by vested interests for whom our critical thinking is a road block to their ends of profit making and control.  My opinion is that we desperately need to teach more people to be critical thinkers. That elementary statement should be a “no-brainer”.



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