back to article New science upsets calculations on sea level rise, climate change

A new analysis of data from dedicated satellites shows that one of the main factors predicted to drive rising sea levels in future has been seriously overestimated, with major implications for climate talks currently underway in Doha. The new methods involve filtering out noise from the data produced by the Gravity Recovery …

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  1. The BigYin

    If this is true...

    ...GOOD! Maybe we still have time to yank ourselves out of this mess. Or are we 5 billion people too late?

    1. Aaron Em

      Re: If this is true...

      Hold up there, Dr. Malthus! If this be true, it adds much weight to the already hefty question of whether there's even a mess from which to yank.

      1. The BigYin

        Re: If this is true...

        By "yank ourselves out of this mess" I don't mean "waste billions on useless wind tech" that our government seems to think is the answer, or "scrap all nuclear, claim to the green and import dirty power from Eastern Europe" like the Germans. I mean, actually yank ourselves out of this mess.

        We can't go on over fishing, slashing and burning etc. Even if it isn't causing GW, there is a hard-limit because there simply isn't any more "stuff". Pumping toxins into rivers can't continue for the same reason.

        I'm not a raging greenie in a hemp shirt, but I don't shit where I sleep either.

        And, of course, that's if this is true and if it means AGW isn't as bad as thought. Big ifs.

        1. Aaron Em

          Re: If this is true...

          And what fate do you have in mind for the sundry billions of inconvenient humans standing between you and your pastoral fantasy? Inquiring minds want to know!

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: If this is true...

              Aaron and Symon, what's your point?

              Are you saying that population levels are not an issue, that they will not become an issue or just that you think it something best left unquestioned? (Or none of these). Please elucidate.

              1. Aaron Em

                Re: If this is true...

                Can't speak for Symon, but what I'm saying is that "population levels [being] a problem" is a bloodless cipher for there being many billions of human beings whom one finds inconvenient to have cluttering up the place. People being people, and the urge to procreate being what it is, your range of potential "solutions" to this "problem" lies roughly between Sanger's voluntary eugenics, which has not worked out as intended in actual practice, and Hitler's idea of forcibly sterilizing and/or murdering en masse those deemed undesirable, which while having the virtue of directness does lack a great deal in certain other areas which most will tend to regard as rather crucial.

                What I'm wondering is which solution is being espoused by this particular commenter. Given that he seems not to scruple at regarding as inconvenient billions of living humans, who progressivism tells us have no less right to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" as any others, I'm just curious to know what other enormities he's willing to encompass in the cause of turning our common planet into what sounds more or less like a gigantic wilderness preserve.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: If this is true...

                  Aaron:

                  OK, that clears things up a bit for me. Thank you.

                  Whilst I agree that it is a rather delicate issue to address and that history does indeed demonstrate that eugenics and holocaust are (obviously) not an answer, my intuition tells me, assuming there is no global pandemic or series thereof, that global population is destined to become a problem from humanitarian, political, economical, sociological and environmental perspectives, amongst others.

                  The one thing I have noted elsewhere (and quite frequently) however is that debate centred around global population often leads to some fool shouting 'racism', which was one reason for my question. But you seem more level-minded!

                  The immediate problem, as I see it, is not that we need to find a solution to a rapidly expanding population but rather that we, as a people, acknowledge that is a discussion that may need to be had. If we can't even do that, then we may just as well bury our heads in the sand.

                  1. Aaron Em

                    Re: If this is true...

                    You seem to be confusing your intuition with your received wisdom, but that's beside the point. Me, I'm with Symon; rather than having a "discussion" to decide which humans are in the way and how best to lop them off (and who does the discussing and the deciding, by the way?), I'm much more inclined to bank on someone having a brilliant idea. Looking at history, that seems to be a fairly safe bet.

                    Even if it's not -- and to answer Big Yin's point, expressed as it is in a rather forced dichotomy which I'll overlook for the sake of argument -- I'd still prefer a natural Malthusian catastrophe to its artificial alternative, whose implementation implies a feat of social engineering far beyond any existing precedent -- which, given the existing precedents, would be quite an accomplishment.

                    One quick additional point: "education" here is a thin cipher for the promotion of contraception, or the Sanger plan. Like I said before, that hasn't at all worked out in the way its proponents expected; specifically, it turns out that the people who make the most use of contraception are exactly those whom a eugenicist would most want to reproduce, i.e., the best and the brightest. I'm not sure what is being proposed here to change that, nor am I sure where the benefit lies in a negative eugenics program which draws its participants from the cohorts whose propagation a positive eugenics program would most want to promote.

                    (And a note for the terminologically impoverished: "positive eugenics" means encouraging those with traits deemed beneficial to reproduce at a higher rate, while "negative eugenics" means discouraging those with traits deemed undesirable from same.)

                    1. Philip Lewis
                      Pint

                      Re: If this is true...

                      Aaron, damned glad to see you back here. I have missed your style of late.

                    2. James Micallef Silver badge

                      Re: If this is true...

                      @Aaron Em " it turns out that the people who make the most use of contraception are... the best and the brightest"

                      No, it's the best educated and more affluent - in a typical western society this group is mostly correlated with "the best and the brightest", but I doubt that globally this is the case. There must be hundreds of kids inIndia, Africa, China etc with very high IQs and the potential to make important discoveries if only they weren't living hand-to-mouth and with no possibility of an education.

                      Of course for the western world you're right and it IS a concern

                  2. This post has been deleted by its author

                  3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                    Boffin

                    Re: If this is true...

                    "The immediate problem, as I see it, is not that we need to find a solution to a rapidly expanding population but rather that we"

                    You might start by verifying that there is an accelerating global population.

                    IIRC that's not what is happening in the G7 countries for a start. You might then go on to places like Japan, Singapore and China (obviously a special case) and see what has happened there with rising living standards.

              2. This post has been deleted by its author

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: If this is true...

                  "@ AC I can't speak for Aaron, but I'm saying that a Malthusian Catastrophe won't happen. Every time that people have predicted that such an event will occur, someone like Norman 'I saved a billion lives' Borlaug comes along with a Green Revolution to save the day. When nitrogen fertiliser was running out, here's Fritz Haber to the rescue. When fossil fuels run out, fission or maybe fusion will sort that out."

                  I appreciate the logic in play. But for me personally, well, I feel it's rather a big gamble to take. I'm not a gambler, but in the absence of any solution (assuming there can ever be one), it's a gamble we may be forced to have to take.

                  But either way, surely education (as James above has stated) is a big factor. Also, one which goes without saying is the Catholic Church and it's stance in contraception. I mean, we all live on this planet and we all therefore have a responsibility. Individuals, countries and religious institutions alike.

                2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                  Unhappy

                  Re: If this is true...

                  "I read an interesting theory the other day, in which it was suggested that technology growth goes hand in hand with population growth. "

                  It depends on the infrastructure.

                  10 billion educated literate and well fed people could explode across the solar system. 8 billion starving illiterates whose governments have washed their hands of them won't.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: If this is true...

                    "10 billion educated literate and well fed people could explode across the solar system".

                    Er, how? Even the hugely optimistic SF writers of the Golden Age (1950s-1960s) such as Asimov, Clarke, and Heinlein never suggested that could happen. Rather, they envisaged a tiny handful of brave, smart, and slightly demented people establishing a toehold in space and eventually giving rise to what was virtually a new (and different) human race. Meanwhile, the untold billions left on Earth languished in various forms of dystopia - or, in some scenarios, wiped each other out leaving the planet a pretty radioactive marble.

                    Until you discover the formula for matter transmission or antigravity, good luck lifting 10 billion people (educated or otherwise) out of Earth's gravity well. If they are well fed, of course, it will be even harder.

                    1. James Micallef Silver badge
                      Happy

                      Re: If this is true...

                      "If they are well fed, of course, it will be even harder."

                      +1 for this

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              @Symon 16:07

              The Green Revolution isn't all that green. We're depleting aquifers faster than they get replenished, all those chemicals that supposedly make our lives better have negative effects on the environment - destroying benificial microbes in the soil, the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico from all the fertilizer runoff, for example. In other words, were shitting where we sleep. As for the wagers, I'm sure there are causes other than environmental pressures responsible for commodity prices.

              Is it better to reduce population pressure now or to keep applying band-aids to our food production system while allowing people to make even more copies of themselves until we have another several billion people on the planet when the wheels come off the whole system?

          2. James Micallef Silver badge
            Unhappy

            Re: If this is true...

            "And what fate do you have in mind for the sundry billions of inconvenient humans standing between you and your pastoral fantasy?"

            Tough one. Number 1 is educating women in poor countries - this is the single most important factor for increased affluence and lower birthrates. But it IS a bit of a catch-22, the way to reduce overpopulation is to have richer people, the way to have richer people is to use more energy, and that will create more pollution.

            But in the end, if we do not solve the conundrum, there is one sad but inevitable scenario of what happens when population continues to increase and enough resources are not available - and that's that the sundry billions of humans will slaughter each other for control of the resources. It's tragic, but thousands of years of human history have repeated that same pattern so often that it's practically inevitable. Yeah, I'm with Malthus on this one

            1. Richard 126

              Re: If this is true...

              They are already slaughtering each other for control of resources and have been for a long time.

              America & Britain murder their way through the Middle East to steal oil, maybe started in the 1950s with the overthrow and murder of the democratically elected leader in Iran just so that BP could keep control of the oil.

              Israel murders their way through Palestine partly to fulfil their imagined religious destiny but mostly to steal water because the Palestinians have it and they don't.

              A side effect of these wars is to reduce population. Britain, America maybe Israel have dumped thousands of tons of Depleted Uranium throughout the Middle East during their wars, which leads to massive rises in birth defects, cancers, death, disability and will keep right on killing for the next 10,000 years at least. Seems our "civilized" western nations are already doing something to get rid of what they perceive to be surplus and inferior populations.

              1. David Pollard

                Re: If this is true... Depleted Uranium

                The idea that DU is causing birth defects is almost certainly a conspiracy/scare story from Chris Busby, and nothing more. In Fallujah, where the grim account begins, it's most unlikely that DU was ever used. Very poor water supplies, atrocious sanitation, toxic rubble and the destruction of nearby chemical factories are a much more likely cause of the illnesses that have been reported.

                http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/toxic-legacy-of-us-assault-on-fallujah-worse-than-hiroshima-2034065.html

                Start with this outrageous article in the Independent and follow the leads...

            2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
              Unhappy

              Re: If this is true...

              " Number 1 is educating women in poor countries - this is the single most important factor for increased affluence and lower birthrates. "

              I think you'll find the women in such countries get it pretty well. It's the men who are the problem.

              1. James Micallef Silver badge

                Re: If this is true...

                "I think you'll find the women in such countries get it pretty well. It's the men who are the problem"

                Yes you're right, the men also need to get with the program. I can't remember where I saw the study, but it showed that female education was the single biggest predictor of growth. I guess the reason is that in many 'backward' countries, men are already allowed to go to school, and women kept at home. Once women start being educated the stop knuckling under and taking their 'subservient' status for granted.

                Women being educated and empowered is one of the biggest fears of the entrenched (male) powers in the muslim world, which is why for example the Taliban in Pakistan are shooting 13-year old schoolgirls who call them out on their many failings

          3. The BigYin

            Re: If this is true...

            "And what fate do you have in mind for the sundry billions of inconvenient humans standing between you and your pastoral fantasy? Inquiring minds want to know!"

            The basic option is from two choices

            1) We voluntarily reduce our population (or the demands of our population); or

            2) Nature will reduce the population for us.

            Option 1 does not mean forced sterilisation or any crap like that, it means education.

            Option 2 is either going to be disease, war, famine or some combination of all three.

            Pike your choice.

          4. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @Aaron Em 15:39

            Open season on people every leap year?

          5. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: If this is true...

            "And what fate do you have in mind for the sundry billions of inconvenient humans standing between you and your pastoral fantasy? Inquiring minds want to know!"

            The only way we can possibly adjust our population to the carrying capacity of the planet is to reduce birth rates below death rates for an extended period. Eventually, the global population would get down to a reasonable 1-3 billion, which might be viable in the long term.

            The alternative is not necessarily a dramatic Goetterdaemmerung; there are many scenarios, but one obvious common factor is that the longer population goes on growing, the worse things will get before they get better. If they get better.

            This is not the place to try to inform or persuade people who thoughtlessly reject the proposition that you cannot have perpetual growth on a finite planet. The facts, figures, and logic are out there for you to read if you choose. The Limits to Growth back in 1972 was on the right track, and the recent updates to it reflect developments since then - mostly bad. Actually, even the much-maligned Malthus was right too. Any population that goes on growing long enough will eventually run out of one or more critical resources. The fact that there have been many false alarms does not mean that the fundamental proposition was wrong.

            Indeed, I have a feeling that we are already in the position of Wile E. Coyote after he runs off the cliff. We're still smiling, still confident, still fat, dumb and happy. But I am increasingly doubtful whether the human race can truly be dubbed intelligent. After all, can you call a species intelligent that cannot avoid bringing about its own extinction, even after it has been warned and shown exactly how it will happen?

      2. James Micallef Silver badge
        Flame

        Re: If this is true...

        Erm... the best that could be said is that the melt is not ACCELERATING as fast as it possibly could. if the estimate accuracy is +/- 6.2 million tonnes and the new estimate is that teh melt is ACCELERATING by 8 million tonnes, that means that within the margin of error, the melt could be accelerating at between 14 million tonnes/year and 2 million tonnes / year. How the f*** can you approximate that to zero acceleration just because one end of the error bar is close to (but does not even reach) zero??

        Bottom line - Earth is still warming, Greenland icecap is still melting at an accelerated rate, the only plus is that the melting is not accelerating as much as we previously thought (Hurrah, the ship isn't sinking as fast as we thought it was!!). Of course this means models need to be tweaked and results revised, but it does not change the fundamentals.

        1. Mike Richards Silver badge

          Re: If this is true...

          If anyone wants it, the draft paper is here:

          http://www.princeton.edu/geosciences/people/simons/pdf/PNAS-2012.pdf

        2. Gerald Wilhite

          Re: If this is true...

          Two bits of poorly reported knowledge you should consider:

          1. NO INCREASE IN RATES OF HISTORIC SEA LEVEL RISE --- Despite the AGW driven propaganda that you read in the MSM, there has been no increase in the historic rate of sea level increase --- 8" per century, during a century with significant increase of atmospheric CO2. NOAA officially admits this in a just released report. Toward the end of the report you will find this sentence: "The lowest sea level change scenario (8 inch rise) is based on historic rates of observed sea level change. See: " http://www.cpo.noaa.gov/reports/sealevel/

          2. NO GLOBAL WARMING FOR 16 YEARS --- Despite the AGW driven pre-COP18 propaganda that you read in the MSM, there has been no global warming for the past 16 years. Statistically, that is a long enough period to signal a climate change to climate scientists. It was the UK MET Office, the keeper of the gold stand temperature data bases, that shocked everyone with the recent report confirming the 16 year lack of global warming. For an excellent article with many links to original data and studies, see: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2217286/Global-warming-stopped-16-years-ago-reveals-Met-Office-report-quietly-released--chart-prove-it.html#ixzz29E78OR9H

          3. THE AGW HYPOTHESIS HAS BEEN FALSIFIED -- Any way you cut it, the UK MET report on flatlined global warming throws the CO2-driven AGW hypothesis in the scientific trash can. CO2 has gone up significantly during the past 16 years yet global temperatures have flat-lined. That is a direct contradiction of the primary prediction of the hypothesis. You can make up your own mind as to why this has not been more widely reported in the MSM.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If this is true...

        There hasnt been any doubt about the 'mess' for a least a decade now...the world is undoubtedly warming due to human activity and there is overwhelming evidence for this, and zero climate scientists doubt this anymore...

    2. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: If this is true...

      Or are we 5 billion people too late?

      Or... do we need another 20 billion?

      Before people reach for the troll button - consider this:

      1 - Every generation before ours has felt that the population was too high, and that the generation before theirs was ideal. Not just some generations - EVERY generation.

      2 - Every generation before ours has had a better life than the generation before it. Not just some generations - EVERY generation.

      3 - Every generation before ours has had more resources available to it than the generation before it. Not just some generations - EVERY generation.

      These are not controversial statements - they are generally accepted, and if you think about them for a moment you will realise that they MUST be true. It's just that humans, particularly activist ones, ignore these facts so comprehensively that they might as well not exist. Humanity has NEVER been held back by a shortage of resources, in spite of using limited raw materials in ever-increasing quantities.

      How can this be? Let us look at an example. Around 1750 there was a scare concerning oak trees - we were using them to build ships so fast that they were going to run out - simple calculations suggested that Britain would not be able to run a navy by 1850. And yet by 1900 Britain had the biggest navy in the world. ?

      What had happened was that, as oak trees got short, people worked out that you could make ships from steel - and these ships were much better than ones made from oak. It turned out that the resources we were depending on were not just oak trees - they were oak trees, a whole set of things we hadn't discovered yet, and human ingenuity. There were fixed limits to the oak trees, possibly unknown limits to the things we hadn't discovered yet, and, as far as I know, no limits to human ingenuity.

      What I have just described is a simple version of Julian Simon's Cornucopia theory. It has the merit that it has been proven right time and time again throughout recorded history. So long as we have people and ideas human life will constantly get better. Try to cut down on these and we will mark time, or get worse.

      Of course, this may be the first time in history when the doom mongers are right. They have been on a losing streak for some 3000 years - they must be right sometime? But I'm still betting on Julian Simon...

      1. Van

        Re: Every generation

        Not the Tasmanian aborigines who survived the last melt 10,000 years ago, were cut off from the mainland but were wiped out by your ilk less than 200 years ago. The Aussie aborigines don't have it better either. Even if we're not harming the planet, at least half of us will end up with mental illness, the more cramped, nosier, restless environment we make for ourselves.

        Having a better life isn't just replacing Oak trees with steel

        1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: Every generation

          ..The Aussie aborigines don't have it better either. Even if we're not harming the planet, at least half of us will end up with mental illness, the more cramped, nosier, restless environment we make for ourselves.

          Ask one whether they would rather be living with modern conveniences, or still having to walk everywhere and live off grubs. And then ask yourself whether you would rather have a mental illness nowadays, or in 1500, when they still burned witches. Or 1700, when they put you in Bedlam and poked you with a stick. Or 1900, when they hosed you down with cold water... You get the idea?

          ..Having a better life isn't just replacing Oak trees with steel..

          No one said that that was the total definition. That was why I used the magic words: "Let us look at an example.". Perhaps you could favour us with an example. I won't hold my breath...

        2. Philip Lewis
          FAIL

          Re: Every generation

          The Tasmanian aboriginals were arguably, no longer viable as a population long before the colonial power arrived on the island, if nothing else by virtue of lack genetic diversity (ca. 2000 individuals). Their apparently highly dysfunctional social order more or less guaranteed a mass exodus of the remaining females to the arms of eagerly awaiting freed convicts and other settlers who themselves were looking for appropriate partners who were very, very thin on the ground at the time. Birth rate decline amongst the indigenous along with susceptibility to western diseases and a penchant for robbing the sugar and flour larders of the settlers pretty much sealed their fate.

          Lyndall Ryan was wrong, and almost anything you might think you know about the Australian Aborginal history, and the Tasmanian Aboriginal population in general, post colonialisation is almost certainly wrong.

          You clearly have no idea how big the planet is either. Humans CHOOSE to live close together because it affords us, via our social systems, advantages that the more primitive societal models do not. This, despite having to deal with the attendant, often very fatal, crowd diseases that cannot flourish without, well, crowds. In any case, the earth is provably not crowded and it unlikely to be so any time soon. The question of whether humans are overextending the ability of the earth's resources to support our species is a different question.

          I now return you to your regular programming in progress ...

      2. James Micallef Silver badge

        Re: If this is true...

        @Dodgy Geezer - Just because it has been so in the past does not mean it will be so in the future.

        You seem to be assuming some historical constant increase in abundance, which is not correct. Human outcomes in health, education, agricultural production, scientific advancement etc were fairly flat for hundreds of years. The generation-upon-generation improvements you mention only started with the industrial revolution and were mostly driven by the availability of cheap energy. Of course it's possible that a tech breakthrough could allow us to continue with abundant free energy but there is no reason to assume this will be so.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: If this is true...

          @James Micallef: Why not? We currently have a climate debate which hinders cheap energy but we have plenty oil, coal, gas to keep going for some time. Add nuclear and reprocessing capabilities and we have even longer. Add research to improve these technologies which increases the productivity of these sources and we have even longer.

          Then we move into improvements territory. Such as new sources of energy. Given time and removing the current gov manipulation to sell duff technology it could become viable to use solar or maybe even windfarms if the technology can be made to work. There are attempts to make new types of reactor and with the long time we have it is possible other options could come about.

          And that is the technology and research today.

  2. s0beit
    Coat

    Well, it's not going to stop the alarmism either way.

  3. Richard Wharram
    Alert

    Let the flaming commence!

    I prefer crisps to popcorn by the way.

  4. Longrod_von_Hugendong
    Thumb Up

    Time to...

    Fire up the V8!!!

  5. NomNomNom

    "Put another way, in that scenario we would be looking at 5cm of sea level rise from Greenland by the year 2130"

    So what has caused the 5cm of sea level rise observed over the last 15 years?

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    Thermal expansion of the oceans (yes the Earth has warmed over the last 15 years) can only explain about half of it (http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/stericcomp_2000m.png)

    Sea level rise, ocean heat content and ice sheet mass loss are a linked equation.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Current average annual sea level rise is about 1.7mm/year.

      The average annual rise for the last 20,000 years is 4mm/year.

      1. Eguro
        Thumb Up

        Data

        I like your data - it comforts me.

        However I would like to have some sort of source with it.

        I'll even say please!

        Please!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Data

          The 1.7mm per year is from the IPCC TAR WG1

          I mistyped the 4mm per year for the last 20,000 years, it should have 6mm per year and I got that from wiki.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Data

            "I mistyped the 4mm per year for the last 20,000 years, it should have 6mm per year and I got that from wiki."

            Hey, no biggie when compared to the 'Himalayan glaciers could melt away by 2035' error made by the IPCC.

      2. NomNomNom

        "Current average annual sea level rise is about 1.7mm/year. The average annual rise for the last 20,000 years is 4mm/year."

        That is just misleading. The impression you give is that sea level rise today is slower than over the rest of human civilization, when the opposite is true.

        There was no reason to go back as far as 20,000 years other than it gave you a higher figure because it exploits the post-glacial sea level rise that ended before human civilization, so is actually irrelevant.

        http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1d/Post-Glacial_Sea_Level.png

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: NomNomNom

          Whether you like it or not the sea level has been rising for the last 20,000 years. Sometimes it has been faster than today and sometimes it has been slower, but every single graph I have ever seen has a continuous rise since the last ice age. Today's level of about 1.7mm is neither extraordinary nor outside of the bounds of natural variation.

          1. Philip Lewis
            Stop

            Re: NomNomNom

            Several hundred years of accurate tidal charts concur. However getting your hands on that data is no longer as simple as it was. There are a number of recorded cases of this data being withheld for AGW based political reasons, because it is not "on message".

          2. NomNomNom

            Re: NomNomNom

            "Whether you like it or not the sea level has been rising for the last 20,000 years. Sometimes it has been faster than today and sometimes it has been slower, but every single graph I have ever seen has a continuous rise since the last ice age."

            This graph doesn't. It shows the rise largely happened before human civilization. Since then the rise has been on average 0.4mm/year.

            http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1d/Post-Glacial_Sea_Level.png

            "Today's level of about 1.7mm is neither extraordinary nor outside of the bounds of natural variation."

            Satellite measurements show sea level rise is now about 3mm/year not 1.7

            http://www.aviso.oceanobs.com/en/news/ocean-indicators/mean-sea-level/

            The noise in the paleo data precludes being able to make the statement you do that it is not extraordinary nor outside the bounds of natural variation.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: NomNomNom

              > This graph doesn't.

              If the graph is showing a 0.4mm rise the it is showing a rise so my statement that every graph I have seen shows sea level rising is confirmed by your graph.

              > Satellite measurements show sea level rise is now about 3mm/year not 1.7

              Satellites are showing 100% more than what what people on the ground are measuring. However the satellites have a problem called TRF (Terrestrial Reference Frame) in that they do not have an accurate enough reference for the measurements. This is why the errors bars are greater than the 3mm per year.

              NASA have a new project called GRASP (Geodetic Reference Antenna in Space) which they hope will provide an accurate reference point.

              > The noise in the paleo data precludes being able to make the statement you do that it is not extraordinary nor outside the bounds of natural variation.

              You have that the wrong way around. The noise precludes you being able to say it is extraordinary.

              1. NomNomNom

                Re: NomNomNom

                "Satellites are showing 100% more than what what people on the ground are measuring."

                No they are not. Church and White 2011 found 2.8mm ±0.8mm/year since 1993 from tide gauges. CU reports 3.1mm +- 0.4mm/year since 1993 from satellites (http://sealevel.colorado.edu/). There is no inconsistency.

                "You have that the wrong way around. The noise precludes you being able to say it is extraordinary."

                It works both ways. The paleo data isn't accurate enough to either claim the current rise is extraordinary or that it's within past natural variation.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: NomNomNom

                  Try Collilieux, X., and G. Wöppelmann, Global sea-level rise Advisory and its relation to the terrestrial reference frame, J. Geod. 85:9–22 2011.

                  After adjusting for the impact of TRF on the global mean sea-level rise they come up with a rise ranging from 1.2 to 1.6mm per year.

                  Church and White came up with 1.5mm per year over the 130 years. They get their higher 1993- estimate because of a spike in sea level rise up to 2003. It has since been decreasing (or rather decelerating) since then.

                  A paper just accepted by Geophysical Research Letters identifies a 60 year oscillation in tidal gauges that may account for some of the increase (and subsequent decrease) in sea level rise. This 60 year oscillation ties in with other multidecadal cycles including ocean circulation, precipitation, temperature and atmospheric pressure.

                  > It works both ways.

                  No it doesn't. Noisy data makes it more difficult to claim something is extraordinary. In science it is the extraordinary claim that has to be proven, everything else is assumed to be the null hypothesis (natural variation).

      3. nathan Mc Woodbrook

        say that to the people of the republic of Palau

        have you noticed that more and more people living on small island in the pacific are making moves to bigger islands.. not for economic reasons but because the seas levels are way higher than what they use to be 50 years ago!!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Nom: But how much of the other ~25mm is written down to AGW? Obviously it cannot be 100%. Got any links for numbers here?

    3. Fibbles
      Black Helicopters

      Sea level rise can be easily explained by all of those deep sea bases the Illuminati have been building. There they stay, controlling the Earth's climate through HAARP. Waiting for the day when all societies on the surface have cast off their technology in fear of the coming warming apocalypse and have regressed to hunter-gatherers. Then will be the time that the Illuminati emerge from the depths and instigate their New World Order.

      ... What's that 'dukka dukka' sound I hear overhead?

  6. amanfromearth

    > Doha delegates take note

    Something tells me they aren't reading this venerable organ.

  7. Scott Broukell
    Coat

    Is it only me

    or does anybody else feel the irony of sea level / glacier melt stories washing up at the feet of science journalism with such regularity.

    <Mines the one with the tide tables in the pocket.>

  8. Gordon 10 Silver badge
    Stop

    Is it me or is this a statistics fail by Lewis?

    "The rate of loss of ice from Greenland is estimated at 199.72 plus-or-minus 6.28 gigatonnes per year. So the possible acceleration of losses is only barely larger than the margin of error in the readings: it's very difficult to tell the supposed loss curve from a straight line."

    Think Lewis is confusing the margin of error on a data point and trying to apply that to a curve. Regardless of the accuracy of any one point over a period of time a trend will appear that will eventually lie outside the bounds of error of any 1 data point - the margin of error is not cumulative afaik. (there is a relationship but its not that simple)

    May be wrong on this - its been a long time since I was taught Stats.

    1. Cuddles Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Is it me or is this a statistics fail by Lewis?

      Exactly the point I was going to make. The 8Gt/yr increase has been occurring over a period of 8 years (that this study looked at). That means the total increase was at least 64Gt, quite a lot larger than the 6Gt error on each point and easily enough to see a clear trend.

  9. petur
    Meh

    Meanwhile, in the other camp...

    Funny to see this article, right after reading one stating the rise is underestimated and will actually be worse:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/28/environment-sea-idUSL5E8MRAA520121128

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Meanwhile, in the other camp...

      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/11/28/mythbusting-rahmstorf-and-foster/

    2. Identity
      Holmes

      Re: Meanwhile, in the other camp...

      Yea, verily! Under the even-handed journalism of el Reg [where? I can't find it], we will find every bit of data calling climate change into question, even if it has to be twisted into shape, and none of the many studies (including the one cited above) that show empirically what is happening before our eyes. On this score, O Reg, if we want truth or even unbiased inquiry, we must look elsewhere.

  10. firefoxx

    Tiny correction

    "[..] the Arctic ice cap floats on the sea and so cannot contribute directly to sea level rise by melting"

    Basically true but with a caveat. The standard experiment is melting ice cubes in a glass of water - after the cubes have melted, the water level remains the same. BUT there is a difference in density between salt water and fresh water, so the melting of freshwater floating ice casues a *tiny* increase in sea level. Or so I'm told. And that's if it all melts, which of course it probably won't :-)

    Thank god for ClimateGate and Mr. FOIA. We are much better informed about the internal goings-on now. Encrypted emails and files still to be released so it's not over yet.

    1. NomNomNom

      Re: Tiny correction

      Yes having read the private emails of scientists we now know it's not a hoax. The scientists really do believe climate change is a threat given the evidence. It's not just something they say in public but also what they talk about behind closed doors.

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Tiny correction

        "Yes having read the private emails of scientists we now know it's not a hoax."

        Hoax. No. FUBAR of epic proportions in data management yes (as documented in the harryreadme file).

        Take a bunch of data sets which are not aligned with each other.

        Run through sequence of badly coded programs (unrecorded sequence, setting and weather the program replaced some of the data with data hard coded in the program) plot on a graph, have it peer reviewed by some friends, get it published and hold a press conference.

        BTW I actually think there is a serious AGW threat to the world but the travesty of the scientific method seen in the development process means I'm b***ered if this information proves a damm thing.

        It is not mandatory that you always show your working but it is that you can if asked. If you can't that's what we lay people call "making some s**t up."

        1. NomNomNom

          Re: Tiny correction

          "Hoax. No. FUBAR of epic proportions in data management yes (as documented in the harryreadme file)."

          A dataset of no importance which was messy and they handed off to some lad to update to a new version. Truely irrelevant.

      2. Philip Lewis
        Headmaster

        Re: Tiny correction

        I don't give a fuck what they believe. I want to know what they can prove. I want to see a falsifiable theory to support their assertions. Belief is for religions, and you are free to hold yours. Science is a different game, and the "climate science" fraternity are not very good at it.

        1. Leslie Graham

          Re: Tiny correction

          Such idiotic rants merely reveal your ignorance of the scientific method.

          Science deals in the balance of probability not 'proof'.

          It is now 99.99% probable that human emesions of GHG are causing the temperature to rise. It can never be 'proved' any more than evolution can be 'proved'.

          If you - or anyone else for that matter - had a scintilla of evidence that suggested it isn't then you would show it.

          But you can't. Because there are no peer-reviewed studies published in the last decade that show any such thing.

          There is another theory I've heard about. "Heat melts ice".

          I can't 'prove it' of course. No-one can. It;s 'just a theory' like any other.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Tiny correction

            > It is now 99.99% probable that human emesions of GHG are causing the temperature to rise.

            Your source please.

            Even the IPCC only put it at 66% probable that about half the temperature rise is due to human activity. That is **all** human activity such as land use changes, not just GHG emissions.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Tiny correction

            "Science deals in the balance of probability not 'proof'.

            "It is now 99.99% probable that human emesions of GHG are causing the temperature to rise".

            Can you prove that?

    2. hugo tyson
      Coat

      Re: Tiny correction

      But isn't the density difference due to one has salt in it, the other doesn't, and salt in solution doesn't add anything to the space taken up. So when fresh and salt mix, it all cancels out. Even if the fresh was originally added as ice?

      Could be there is a small increase in volume of liquid as you add more salt, but it's nothing like as large as proportional to the mass of salt because the dissolved salt "fits in the gaps" somehow. That's what ISTR as the point of an experiment when ah were a lad.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OMG

    OMG! This is a disaster.

    What excuse will we have for putting up taxes now?

  12. Panicnow
    FAIL

    EDITOR, please take Mr Lewis off, it is seriously damaging the Register's cred!

    Believe in Facts not models!!!

    The latest research, published on Wednesday in Environmental Research Letters, found global sea-levels rising at a rate of 3.2mm a year, compared to the best estimates by the IPCC of 2mm a year, or 60% faster.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Stop

      Re: EDITOR, please take Mr Lewis off, it is seriously damaging the Register's cred!

      Re title:

      Tosh! Lewis brings contrary argument to the table. Scientific theories or models gain more traction by surviving such contrary argument and debate. If there is any scientific paper or debate presenting evidence to the contrary then it has a place within the discussion. Whether you or I may like it or (dis)agree with it is wholly irrelevant.

      In my personal opinion any individual or group who holds a seemingly pathological fear of debate and scientific questioning (whether fact or model based projection) only serves to demonstrate qualities that have no place in rational science.

      Just because it does not fit with personal agenda or general scientific consensus is no justification for stifling debate.

      1. TheOtherHobbes

        Re: EDITOR, please take Mr Lewis off, it is seriously damaging the Register's cred!

        "Tosh! Lewis brings contrary argument to the table."

        No he doesn't - he regularly selectively misreports, misrepresents, or distorts the science - as in this piece of nonsense where he's distorting the conclusions and (let's be generous) misunderstanding what the paper actually says.

        There's no problem with fact-based debate. But using The Reg as a pulpit for faked-up bias pieces that misrepresent reality is dishonest and disreputable.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: EDITOR, please take Mr Lewis off, it is seriously damaging the Register's cred!

          'contrary argument' was intended to be used in a very literal sense. As in 'contrary' meaning diametrically opposed and 'argument' meaning opposition or contention. Irrespective of cherry-picking, misrepresentation or distortion, his articles meet that definition.

          "But using The Reg as a pulpit for faked-up bias pieces that misrepresent reality is dishonest and disreputable."

          Personally I'd rather see debate on his opinion, however misplaced, misrepresented or dishonest it may or may not be as opposed to pulling such articles simply because they may be 'wrong' or ill-conceived. If we don't like it, we don't have to read it or comment on it.

          Maybe it's just me, but I really don't see that as a problem especially when viewed in the context of the bias and factual distortion often shown within the forums.

        2. Fibbles

          Re: EDITOR, please take Mr Lewis off, it is seriously damaging the Register's cred!

          "There's no problem with fact-based debate. But using The Reg as a pulpit for faked-up bias pieces that misrepresent reality is dishonest and disreputable."

          As far as I know Lewis is the editor of The Reg. He posts these articles because the comments section usually runs to several pages. Creating a controversial article is a guaranteed way to increase page-views and therefore revenue, especially if people are returning multiple times to reply to comments. If the majority of people here really want to see an end to these articles all they have to do is stop reading them.

  13. Katie Saucey
    Coat

    But I like like tinkering with models..

    If nothing else, the code link in this piece has inspired me to dust off my matlab skills. And about your facts, at least only influential character had this to say, “Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true.” (Homer). Give me the weekend and I'll publish you some new facts, no prob.

  14. Robert Grant Silver badge

    Howabout this

    Regardless of Green data/lobbying/money/genuine concern, etc etc, we should just stop using fossil fuels as much as possible because:

    1) Decoupling engines from fuel using electricity is just an engineering win for loose coupling. Making electric vehicles work will be a huge step forward because then we can generate the power how we like, etc etc.

    2) Buying oil from hideous regimes who use the vast monies we send them (and blind eyes we turn them) to commit atrocities is a bad thing. Stop making them rich.

    3) I'm a bit over fossil fuels. I want engines that have a blue nimbus, hum futuristically and, preferably, allow me to fly.

    Who's with me?

    1. James Micallef Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Howabout this

      Agreed. And there are a few other issues such as particulate matter pollution.

      Nevertheless we should recognise that the " as much as possible " part is not ALL that much considering current and projected patterns of energy use, demographics etc. Basically however fast non-fossil energy production is expanding, the aggregate demand is rising at least as fast

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Let's try that without weasel words:

    "the ... acceleration of losses is ... larger than the margin of error in the readings. In other words the ... acceleration in ice losses ... may not really be happening at all."

    Why are presumably intelligent people still giving this maroon column inches?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Why are presumably intelligent people still giving this maroon column inches?"

      Simple. Because they want maroons like you and me posting here.

  16. WraithTDK
    Trollface

    Quick! Quick! Someone make a Powerpoint Presentation!

    "A Considerably More Convenient Truth."

  17. This post has been deleted by its author

  18. steward
    Mushroom

    I think they need to get out of the ivory tower...

    Take US 206 south to I-295 south, take that over to I-195 East, then take NJ State Hwy 138 over to NJ State Hwy 35, take a turn into Belmar, NJ, and view the scenic destruction.

    Then they can come up with an explanation for it that fits reality into their theories.

  19. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    So the ice loss, although not accelerating *is* a fact then? There is a steady, non-accelerating rate of ice loss over Greenland's surface?

    So Global Warming is, in fact , a fact.

    Interesting. So the argument can become not "global warming exists" but "global warming is not as fast as we thought it might be (yet)".

    Good to know.

    1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Bah!

      So the ice loss, although not accelerating *is* a fact then? There is a steady, non-accelerating rate of ice loss over Greenland's surface? So Global Warming is, in fact , a fact.

      How do you make the jump from 'ice loss over Greenland's surface' to 'Global Warming is a fact'? Inquiring minds want to know...

      1. RICHTO
        Mushroom

        Re: Bah!

        Because if there hadnt been warming, it wouldnt have been melting faster to loose ice....

    2. skerns0301

      Re: Bah!

      At the dawn of the Middle Ages we find Vikings living in Greeland, farming to live. About 1400 it got so cold they all died. It is still too cold to live by farming in Greenland--but what has been termed the "Little Ice Age" has been retreating since the mid 1800's--and you are about to say "Because of all that carbon dioxide given off by the Industrial Revolution"--but remember it still isn't warm enough to farm in Greenland--and also know that the Earth herself is a huge producer of carbon dioxide--of all the carbon dioxide produced every year, that that comes from humans is less than 3%. Were we to do our utmost to limit our carbon dioxide production maybe, just maybe, we could cut back 10%--I doubt it--but the point is that would be 10% of "Less than 3%"--it couldn't even be measured. Now a real eye opener. Water vapor is ten times as powerful a greenhouse gas as carbon dioxide-but because there is so much more of it, it exerts 640 times the affect on what ever global warming may be happening as carbon dioxide--have you ever even heard a talking head mention water vapor as a contributer to global warming??--Oh yes, and what about the fact that our space probes show that warming is occuring on both Mars and Jupiter--do you suppose that, just maybe, the Sun might be the source we are looking for?

      Stan

      1. NomNomNom

        Re: Bah!

        "but remember it still isn't warm enough to farm in Greenland"

        This guy probably disagrees

        http://www.spiegel.de/fotostrecke/photo-gallery-greenland-s-agricultural-boom-fotostrecke-15903-2.html

        1. NomNomNom

          Re: Bah!

          See if you post a photo of a farmer in Greenland farming potatoes in response to a false claim that it isn't warm enough to farm in greenland today you get downvoted by climate deniers. Because blatent direct evidence that contradicts what they want to believe must be rejected.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Bah!

            > See if you post a photo of a farmer in Greenland farming potatoes

            The humble potato, originally from the Andes (a fairly cold place). There are over 4000 different types selectively bred to grow just about anywhere in the world. It is amazing what modern agricultural techniques and breeding can do.

            It is a pity the Vikings never had access to such things otherwise they might have lasted longer.

      2. RICHTO
        Mushroom

        Re: Bah! Bollox!

        What utter FUD.

        When gases are ranked by their direct contribution to the greenhouse effect, the most important are: Water vapor: 36 – 72%, Carbon dioxide: 9 – 26%, Methane: 4 – 9%, Ozone: 3 – 7% - So 640 times is utter codswallop.

        Anthropogenic CO2 comes from fossil fuel combustion, changes in land use (e.g., forest clearing), and cement manufacture. Houghton and Hackler have estimated land-use changes from 1850-2000, so it is convenient to use 1850 as our starting point for the following discussion. Atmospheric CO2 concentrations had not changed appreciably over the preceding 850 years (IPCC; The Scientific Basis) so it may be safely assumed that they would not have changed appreciably in the 150 years from 1850 to 2000 in the absence of human intervention.

        In the following calculations, we will express atmospheric concentrations of CO2 in units of parts per million by volume (ppmv). Each ppmv represents 2.13 X1015 grams, or 2.13 petagrams of carbon (PgC) in the atmosphere. According to Houghton and Hackler, land-use changes from 1850-2000 resulted in a net transfer of 154 PgC to the atmosphere. During that same period, 282 PgC were released by combustion of fossil fuels, and 5.5 additional PgC were released to the atmosphere from cement manufacture. This adds up to 154 + 282 + 5.5 = 441.5 PgC, of which 282/444.1 = 64% is due to fossil-fuel combustion.

        Atmospheric CO2 concentrations rose from 288 ppmv in 1850 to 369.5 ppmv in 2000, for an increase of 81.5 ppmv, or 174 PgC. In other words, about 40% (174/441.5) of the additional carbon has remained in the atmosphere, while the remaining 60% has been transferred to the oceans and terrestrial biosphere.

        The ~ 369.5 ppmv of carbon in the atmosphere, in the form of CO2, translates into 787 PgC, of which 174 PgC has been added since 1850. From the second paragraph above, we see that 64% of that 174 PgC, or 111 PgC, can be attributed to fossil-fuel combustion. This represents about 14% (111/787) of the carbon in the atmosphere in the form of CO2.

        i.e. what might seem as relatively small changes caused by man do make a significant difference in the long term.

    3. John Hughes

      Re: Bah!

      "So the ice loss, although not accelerating *is* a fact then? There is a steady, non-accelerating rate of ice loss over Greenland's surface?"

      You've mis-read the Lewis's article in the way he hoped you would.

      Lewis reports the paper as claiming the annual acceleration is 8 billion tons plus or minus 6.28 gigatonnes.

      I.e. the annual accelaration is between 1.72 and 14.28 billion tons per year.

      This is lower than other estimates, but not zero.

  20. chagrinfalls1979
    Alert

    Overpop thread

    May be a little late to the discussion but I'll throw my hat in. I truly believe overpopulation can be tied back to one often overlooked apsect of modern culture. As our society has advanced, we have incrementally withdrawn from natural evolutionary process. Medical advances have kept those alive that would have otherwise perished due to flawed genetics or invasive contagions. Those folks with flawed genetics are now free to continue procreating and possibly spreading hereditary borne issues such as autoimmune, heart disease, and other known problems. I'm not advocating withdrawl of all modern advances in medicine and letting populations "fend for themselves", but I believe that the feedback loop is now in place and should be considered when tackling the how and why of overpopulation.

    The fix becomes an emotional decision because we as a higher thinking being have attachment to those around us. We don't want poor Johnny with Cystic Fibrosis to die because that's socially unacceptable. However, for the eventual mass balance equation of resource consumption and population volume the reintroduction of evolutionary forces may have to come into play as our human population sky rockets towards 10 billion...

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Meh

      Re: Overpop thread

      "Those folks with flawed genetics are now free to continue procreating and possibly spreading hereditary borne issues such as autoimmune, heart disease, and other known problems."

      Fine words and very practical.

      Perhaps we should start with Stephen Hawking. He's had a fortune in medical care and what's he ever done for society or our understanding of the universe or...

      Oh wait..

      In a world where you societies survival was solely based on physical ability you might have a point.

      The city state of Sparta went out of business a few millenia ago.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Overpop thread

        re Sparta. I think it was all that black gruel they ate

      2. chagrinfalls1979

        Re: Overpop thread

        Outliers...heard of them?

        To offer one situation contrary to the overwhelming number of instances I have mentioned is not giving the debate due diligence.

        I'm not suggesting that we eradicate those with weaker genetics. I am just offering the thought that our evolving society may be its own enemy. It is up to our scientific community to provide the forward thinking to stay ahead of the coming crisis.

  21. skerns0301

    What the writer either leaves out or doesn't know is that most of the land beneath Greenland's ice cap has been depressed below sealeval--and as ice has about 110% the volume of the same amount of liquid water, were Greenland's ice cap (or Antartica's for that matter--Anatartica is also mostly depressed below sea leval) to melt the volume formerly occupied by ice would then be ocupied by water--10% less volume--and sea level would actually fall.--you can't just take "The volume of Greenland's ices cap", convert it to water and add it to the ocean we alread have.

    Stan

  22. Battsman
    Devil

    Interesting coincidence

    http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/11/28/15512957-sea-level-rose-60-percent-faster-than-un-projections-study-finds?lite

    Interesting coincidence that on the same day that Lewise posts one of his typical articles, I see a seemingly contradictory article on a different website.

    Lewis's article basically says - there is no problem with ice melt in Greenland because we used interpretive math to remove assumed noise fromm the satelite measurement.

    The NBC article - measurements of sea level vs. previous UN predictions (labeled as alarmist) show that the (alarmist) predictions were in error - which would be all well and good for Lewis, except they were in error to the low side of reality.

    I'm sure that Lewis will no doubt soon report a science paper that takes one aspect of the sea level data measurement for a small tidal marsh in lower, western Namibia and interpret that the world wide reported rises in sea level are inaccurated due to collusional boffins.

  23. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Happy

    There is a reason why the Editor will not be reiging in LP any time soon.

    He is the editor.

    You ought to check who works there.

    1. asdf
      Trollface

      Re: There is a reason why the Editor will not be reiging in LP any time soon.

      In fact El Reg exists as a blog for LP and AO to show their expertise in climate science and for AO to defend and expand copyright laws. The other IT articles are just filler.

  24. Leslie Graham

    Antarcitc ice cap is NOT "growing".

    The Antarctic ice cap is not growing as stated in the article.

    It is losing mass at an accelerating rate.

    It's true that over the last decade the annual maximum extent of temporary Antarctic SEA ice has increased by 1% due to changes in wind patterns and decreases in salinity due to increased rain and snowfall but the land ice is melting.

    Please don't confuse the two in future as it undermines the credibility of the sceptic argument.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge
      Linux

      Re: Antarcitc ice cap is NOT "growing".

      "The Antarctic ice cap is not growing as stated in the article"

      Truth is we don't really know. Sea ice is a little easier to measure. Take pictures, count pixels of stuff that looks like ice. Compare to previous images, publish ice extent. Land ice is a bit trickier as that's a volumetric measurement, which is where GRACE comes in. Assumptions about Antarctic and Greenland ice mass balances are made using data from instruments which attempt to determine mass by gravity mapping. Which is new and complex, hence the years of debate around trying to get GRACE calibrated so the results can be understood and data then applied to theories like ice mass changes. Over the last 5 years the biggest changes in land ice cover have been down to different interpretations of GRACE data, not cAGW.

      1. energonic

        Re: Antarcitc ice cap is NOT "growing".

        So this is science 'in progress', as it always is. Public debate about inconclusive science is easy to come by - Higgs boson, Dark Matter, Black Holes, etc. - but it doesn't add much, if anything, to knowledge. Better to put that 'spleen energy' towards real study (I don't mean cherry picking) - if you're serious.

      2. Grego

        Re: Antarcitc ice cap is NOT "growing".

        There are other measurements besides GRACE.

        See for example:

        http://www.sciencefriday.com/blogs/11/29/2012/the-ice-chasers.html

  25. JeffyPooh
    Pint

    CBC: "Greenland glacier melting 5 times faster than in 1990s"

    "Groundbreaking study 'clearest evidence yet of polar ice sheet losses' and rising sea levels"

    "...The study shows Greenland's ice sheets are melting at a rate five times faster than they were in 1990s. In contrast, Antarctica is more or less stable..."

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/11/29/pol-ice-sheets-melting-greenland.html

  26. The Lord's Little Helper

    Soon all will take note to the sounds and rumbling of Volcanoes and Earthquakes Around Earth that are Waking Up at a Alarming Rate. Just as they did in 1883 from Krakatoa.

    Read well and study on your own after you have read this.

    This is not a game or joke our Sun gives off a Solar Wind all day year round if you live in the State of Alaska you see it in the sky above what a sight it is going through our Earth’s Magnet Polls of the North and the South, North Poll. It’s called the Northern Lights or the Aurora Borealis.

    The day will come when you will be able to see it all over Earth as in the year 1859 Solar Flare, It was the largest in 500 years. Two Astronomer’s Hodgson and Carrington told the World that the Solar Flare made a Geomagnetic Storm reach Earth in hours not days. Back then it gave new meaning to Reach For The Skies from Telegraph Operators. For hours sparks flew from the key board. Even after the Batteries were disconnected. Nov 3 and 4, 2003 had a X40+ Class Solar Flare.

    Our Sun’s UV Rays will get stronger as each passing day goes by, read and i will tell you why.

    The Great big forest have be stripped from most of the Earth for Greed of Money by the Wicked. The trees are our Main Source of Oxygen on this Plant.

    The Forest Trees scrubs the Pollution out of the air and makes Oxygen from the rain and dirt that it grows in.

    The Forest Trees do more than just make Oxygen they stop Soil Erosion, just Look at the 1930 Dust Bowl. Greed by our Government taxes led farmers to clear cut all their Forest and farm all the land they were being Tax on. They had to farm it to pay for the Taxes. Why leave the Trees when food crop makes Money. This Did not Help the Depression that effected most all Worldwide. This coming year 2013 more than 100 million will suffer from Malnutrition lack of food and Dehydration lack of water. Many will not make it and die!

    Soon many will run out of Safe Drinking Water from pollution going into the worlds water supply.

    In the United States of America alone more than 45 Million Americans Received Food Stamps and that number is going up every day every year for more than 3 years in a row now.

    The Pollution and CO2 Carbon Dioxide go into the Tree Bark as a shield from most bugs so they do not eat the tree.

    Less Forest less Oxygen this is why the moon. That has no Oxygen is very cold on the side with out Sun Light, And hot as ever on the side with Sun Light. Way too cold and too hot to live there. You would need at least 10 times the Energy we use on Earth to even live there and life on the Moon would be very short.

    With no blank of Oxygen to lessen or reduce the Sun’s UV Rays and Solar Wind they are deadly there on our Moon. Every Mt. Climber and Aircraft Pilot knows the higher you go the thinner the Oxygen and colder it gets.

    Just spend a night on a Mt. top above 13,000 feet with no Sun Light and you will see or should i say feel the cold stinging any of your exposed skin. If you are new to Mt. Climbing stay below 10,000Ft. The Astronauts and the Cosmonauts and Fighter Pilots that i have been with for years know this very well, and the Radiation Hazards to humans at High Altitudes.

    Soon the Sun’s Solar Wind and UV rays will be way to strong for most to go out in the Sun Light for even a short time. The Geomagnetic Storm to come and the Bad Weather Storms well you have not seen nothing yet and the Sea Level is Rising the Oceans. Many Millions have been affected by Floods in China and Pakistan just last year. In 2005 Over a Thousand dead in New Orleans flood, and the list going on. The sounds and rumbling of Volcanoes and Earthquakes Around Earth are Waking Up at a Alarming rate.

    And there shall be famines, and pestilences, and Earthquakes, in divers places such as was not from the beginning of the Creation.

    The last 30 years On Earth we have broke all High Temp Records and the temp it is still going up. All the Worlds Ice Glacier are melting at an Accelerating Rate. The Glaciers and Polar Ice Caps store more water than all the Fresh Water Lakes on Earth. Many of them are drying up or water levels are going down past the lowest point every recorded.

    The Bad Weather Storms now are Babies compared to what is to come.

    They will get even bigger and worse less Oxygen the more UV Rays to the Earth and more Water molecules will evaporate and go up into the Earth’s Atmosphere. Less Oxygen the colder without sun light and hotter with it.

    The Sky full of more water vapor molecules, more snow in the winter and more Flash Floods in the Summer. All earth will see way more fires and the Deserts are growing larger.

    If every living person on Earth were to Plant A Tree Today we might have a chance.

    The Earth’s Atmosphere Blanket surrounding it protects life on Earth as Our Lord and GOD will all that seek Him.

    Then it is written when the tree is full it is harvest time. All the Earth will someday burn away.

    This is all Foretold in the Bible Read it

    and may our Lord Bless all that do so.

    The Lord’s Little Helper

    Paul Felix Schott

    1. RICHTO
      Mushroom

      Green algae and cyanobacteria in marine environments provide about 70% of the free oxygen produced on Earth and the rest is produced by terrestrial plants including trees....

      You may be interested to know that global warming, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters are a actually a direct effect of the shrinking numbers of Pirates since the 1800s. As it is written in The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

      Praise be to his Noodlyness, Holy Flying Spaghetti Monster and the real father of Jesus ($1 million on offer if you can prove that he isn't! http://boingboing.net/2005/08/19/boing-boings-250000.html)

  27. nathan Mc Woodbrook

    says this to the republic of Palau!!!

    seas rise level is a known fact..yes a known fact..

    why on earth the the small nations of the pacifics..and republics are seeking ways to get their people relocated elsewhere?

    Why did these people had an audience at the UN, requesting help to built proper sea defences?

    why does the American government did not finance the bguiltding of the sea defences at palau when They are.. Yes they are responsible for it by constructing their runways during 2nd world war..sea level are rising..

    This is a fact a real fact not a fiction.. And no I will not be intimidated by some corporations and media thatwant us to believe that everything is "OK"

  28. nathan Mc Woodbrook
    Meh

    ask to the people from the republic of Palau what They think of your so called findings!!

    I am disgusted by the level of obstruction by the media regarding the fact that sea levels are rising and that small nations who don't have the finances to face this problem head on and are forced to emigrate out of their islands which by the way have been their home for a 1000 year, yes a thousand years!!, when the technology is there(not that far in Australia) to help them overcome their difficulties regarding sea level rises.. I would like to know who is behind this major cover up..

    Instead of talking about what Britney spear had for breakfast, the media should turn their head in the right direction.. who financed these so called calculation..

    and by the way no need to be a nerd at computing to know that a program installed on a computer will always give the wanted result...

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New Science Confirms Calculations on Sea Level Rise

    Here is NASA along with the European Space Agency using GRACE data to prove ice sheets are melting faster.

    http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/Grace/news/grace20121129.html

    Why is the Register, ostensibly a website dedicated to technology, post articles exclusively hostile to this particular field of science? From a position in the scientific field this stance would seem almost random on its merits, why not instead flatly reject the science of another field, such as physics?

    Of course the answer is obvious, the climate skeptics aren't speaking from a place of scientific inquiry. Denying climate change is purely political, no other field with such a large scientific consensus is so flatly rejected.

    Besides, who will unmask and defeat all of those communists disguised as climate scientists they keep talking about? The global conspiracy must be exposed (Ha).

    1. nathan Mc Woodbrook

      Re: communism and capitalism are the same

      here is a fair comment that you did put.. but how ever communism does not exist and it is a standard question to ask.. did it really exist anyway.. as the power is kept by the same elite worldwide.. even for so called members of this economic dictatorship can be ousted when not needed anymore Gaddafi be an example..

      so nope... the science and scientists will say whatever they are paid to say or research upon

      the ice cap is shrinking, the north passage between Canada and Greenland is now open 10 months of the year.

  30. A_Canuck
    Devil

    Author needs to check his head

    Sea level rise is far from the only thing that we need to worry about w.r.t. climate change. It could massively affect our food chain and ability to feed ourselves. It already seems to be happening - tea growers in India are noticing different yields of tea leaves than in decades past, and other crops are also being affected.

    I'm far from being an environmentalist but to paraphrase another poster "I don't crap where I sleep". We're essentially experimenting in the only habitat that we have. If you were put into the Biosphere 2 lab to live for a year inside of an enclosed glass habitat with no ability to exchange air with the outside, would you run a car in there for hours a day? Not likely if you had an ounce of sense. That's pretty much what humanity is doing right now - spewing tonnes of CO2 (and other greenhouse gases such as methane) into the atmosphere every hour of every day with no idea of whether natural processes have the ability to cope.

  31. nathan Mc Woodbrook
    Go

    so little is said outsideof scientific circles

    who is telling the truth?

    not the one people want to hear but the truth about global warming, the greenhouse effect and the sea rising

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