Greenland’s Ice Melt, aka NASA drinks the Kool-Aid

On July 24, 2012, NASA ran this visual and accompanying story:

Satellites See Unprecedented Greenland Ice Sheet Surface Melt

The text was not too subtle:

Satellites See Unprecedented Greenland Ice Sheet Surface Melt

And NASA tears into several paragraphs of how extensive this event is.  As if that were not clear enough, they later refer to the event on their Facebook page as “the record surface ice melt”.

Tucked away in it all was this little bit at the end of the first article:

“Ice cores from Summit show that melting events of this type occur about once every 150 years on average. With the last one happening in 1889, this event is right on time,” says Lora Koenig, a Goddard glaciologist and a member of the research team analyzing the satellite data.

OK, which is it?  A “record” or something repetitive?  Maybe this post explains it a lot more clearly:

The President’s Budget will also increase NASA’s funding, accelerating work — constrained for years due to the budget demands of Constellation — on climate science, green aviation, science education, and other priorities.

Remember when Obama slashed space flight and funded climate research?  Apparently NASA does very well.

Sea water on Enceladus?

Enceladus has always been my #1 favoritist place to look for life.  It’s not all that far away, and it seems to have a rather active geology.

Now, we get this:

Data from Cassini’s cosmic dust analyzer show the grains expelled from fissures, known as tiger stripes, are relatively small and predominantly low in salt far away from the moon. But closer to the moon’s surface, Cassini found that relatively large grains rich with sodium and potassium dominate the plumes. The salt-rich particles have an “ocean-like” composition and indicate that most, if not all, of the expelled ice and water vapor comes from the evaporation of liquid salt water.

That little moon just keeps getting cooler and cooler all the time.  Wonder when Virgin Galactic will start taking vacation trips there?

Underwater Volcanos don’t melt ice

That is a typical underwater volcano.  I love to watch them.  Something eerie looking, kinda alien.  So, I finally found a story that gives me the opportunity to show a video of one.  Here’s today’s story:

Volcanoes Erupt Beneath Arctic Ice

New evidence deep beneath the Arctic ice suggests a series of underwater volcanoes have erupted in violent explosions in the past decade.

Hidden 2.5 miles (4,000 meters) beneath the Arctic surface, the volcanoes are up to a mile (2,000 meters) in diameter and a few hundred yards tall. They formed along the Gakkel Ridge, a lengthy crack in the ocean crust where two rocky plates are spreading apart, pulling new melted rock to the surface……

Which, I read with special interest since CNN ran a poll about the story of the polar ice caps melting entirely this summer.  There has been quite a bit of media interest and speculation as to why the polar ice caps are melting.  Now, we had been through this scenario before.  Everything was melting in Greenland, and it was all man’s fault.  Until, that is, they figured out there was a large volcano underneath Greenland heating everything up.  Once they figured that out, Greenland hasn’t been mentioned since in the global warming debate and the polar ice caps immediately started melting.  Not one person thought to see if the same thing was happening at the North Pole as it was in Greenland.  Well, now that they have found that the same thing IS happening at the North Pole, this is what they figured out:

“We don’t believe the volcanoes had much effect on the overlying ice,” Reeves-Sohn told LiveScience, “but they seem to have had a major impact on the overlying water column.”

Now, I’m inclined to believe they don’t want to believe it has any effect on the overlying ice.  My limited science background does tell me that heat rises.  And, it also tells me volcanoes are very hot.  Now, granted these volcanoes are under a lot of water, that heat still has to go somewhere.   It just bugs me that although “scientists” are more than willing to research the connection of gases moving from continental US and photosynthesizing over the Arctic, thereby trapping the sun’s rays closer to earth and slightly warming the atmosphere by less than five degrees and thereby causing all of the ice at the North Pole to melt, they are unwilling apparently to explore the concept that a volcano releasing lava at 1,250 degrees directly below the ice would melt it.

Maybe it’s just me, but I would hope anyone reading these articles will scratch their heads as well.

My bet, in the not too distant future, someone is going to hypothesize that the extreme heat of those underwater volcanoes is contributing to the melting ice directly above them.