Antarctic sea ice set a new record in October 2007, as photographs distributed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed penguins and other cold-weather creatures able to stand farther north on Southern Hemisphere sea ice than has ever been recorded.
The news of expanding Antarctic sea ice stole headlines from global warming alarmists who asserted Arctic sea ice had reached its lowest extent since 1979.
NASA scientists revealed in an October 4 study that the contracting of Arctic sea ice was due to localized wind patterns. According to a news release accompanying the study, “the rapid decline in winter perennial ice the past two years was caused by unusual winds,” NASA reported.
“Unusual atmospheric conditions set up wind patterns that compressed the sea ice, loaded it into the Transpolar Drift Stream and then sped its flow out of the Arctic,” NASA scientist Son Nghiem confirmed in the news release.
The record Antarctic sea ice and the revelation that recently shrinking Arctic sea ice is unrelated to global warming should have deflated sensationalist media reports, but global warming mania proved difficult to stop.
An October 2 Reuters article typified the alarmist and inaccurate nature of media coverage. “Arctic sea ice declined this year to the lowest levels registered since satellite assessments started in the 1970s, extending a trend fueled by human-caused global warming,” Reuters asserted on October 2.
James M. Taylor ([email protected]) is a senior fellow of The Heartland Institute and managing editor of Environment & Climate News.