Climate sense from Christopher Booker
BBC viewers were treated last week to the bizarre spectacle of Mr Ban Ki-moon standing on an Arctic ice-floe making a series of statements so laughable that it was hard to believe such a man can be Secretary-General of the UN. Thanks to global warming, he claimed, "100 billion tons" of polar ice are melting each year, so that within 30 years the Arctic could be "ice-free". This was supported by a WWF claim that the ice is melting so fast that, by 2100, sea-levels could rise by 1.2 metres (four feet), which would lead to "floods affecting a quarter of the world".
Everything about this oft-repeated item was propaganda of the silliest kind. Standing 700 miles from the Pole, as near as the stubbornly present ice would allow his ship to go, Mr Ban seemed unaware that, although some 10 million square kilometres (3.8 million square miles) of sea-ice melts each summer, each September the Arctic starts to freeze again. And the extent of the ice now is 500,000 sq km (190,000 sq m) greater than it was this time last year – which was, in turn, 500,000 sq km more than in September 2007, the lowest point recently recorded (see the Cryosphere Today website). By April, after months of darkness, it will be back up to 14 million sq km (5.4 million sq m) or more.
Mr Ban seems equally unaware that, even if all that sea-ice were to melt, this would no more raise sea-levels than a cube of ice melting in a gin and tonic increases the volume of liquid in the glass. If he is relying for his "100 billion tons" on land ice melting in Antarctica and Greenland, he should note that much of their ice sheets are growing rather than shrinking. His "100 billion tons" is fantasy.
According to Government figures, however, we in Britain are already committed to spending, under the Climate Change Act, £18 billion every year between now and 2050 on this nonsense – daft light bulbs (see below), electricity blackouts and all. In other words, we are only beginning to see some of the nastier consequences of this crazy make-believe, based on nothing more substantial than the kind of gibberish we got last week from Mr "Light Bulb" Ban and the BBC.
Read it here.