Friday, January 3, 2014

Global warming loons rescued from 'The Ship of Fools'

All are saved! From CBS:
A long-awaited rescue of passengers from a Russian research ship trapped in Antarctic ice for more than a week finally went ahead Thursday morning, with a helicopter safely ferrying all 52 researchers and tourists to a nearby vessel, expedition leaders said.
From Ed Morrissey:
The nine-day crisis unfolded a bit like a Monty Python sketch. A Chinese ship attempted to rescue the MV Akademik Shokalskiy, only to get stopped by the ice as well. A third ship arrived, but could not reach the stranded researchers, either. The rescuers finally used a helicopter when researchers were able to build a crude heliport on the ice that surrounded them, but a barge brought in to move them outside the ice couldn’t reach the Chinese vessel intended for their transport — so the helicopter landed on another ice floe near an Australian ship that arrived. 
Oddly, the CNN reports seem to be missing something fairly important to understand the reason why the researchers were out in the Antarctic in the first place... 
At least the word “climate” appears once in their web report, although not as an explanation. It doesn’t appear at all in the CBS report. The Associated Press report similarly avoids this key data point. Scott Johnson called this expedition the “ship of fools,” and perhaps that can be applied to these reports on the denouement, too.

I hope the helicopters were solar-powered.

I'll be laughing about this for years.  


  1. Egnor,

    You need to learn the difference in meaning between the words 'weather' and 'climate'.

    The Russian research vessel 'Shokalskiy' was trapped by pack ice blown northwards by strong southerly winds - weather, not climate. The ship was reinforced for sea ice conditions but was not an icebreaker.

    I've been to both the Arctic and the Antarctic as a passenger of Russian research vessels (ones built in 1988, also in Finland), designed for polar conditions, with reinforced hulls, but not rated as icebreakers.

    The Russians, owing to a lack of foreign currency, are keen to charter their ships for tourism during the Summer months, using them for research at other times.

    The captain of the ship has sole responsibility for where the ship goes. If the ship ventured into pack ice, with no retreat route available, then it's the captain's fault. Not even the 'Aurora', an icebreaker, was willing to enter the pack ice.

    Pack ice regularly traps ships. When I was in the Arctic, the Russian captain decided not to go as far north as the itinerary 'promised'. Two cruise ships were entrapped by pack ice blown southwards by the strong northerly winds. And ships can often be trapped for weeks until the ice melts or is blown elsewhere opening up an escape route.

    I don't know if I'll do another Arctic or Antarctic cruise. It's expensive (I paid $12000 for 12 days), cold and uncomfortable. The penguin colonies in the Antarctic stink to high heaven. And the Richard Attenborough documentary series 'the Frozen Planet' has film so good, it looks as though you're there.

  2. "Oddly, the CNN reports seem to be missing something fairly important to understand the reason why the researchers were out in the Antarctic in the first place... "

    Why repeat something first reported when the ship got stuck for the benefit of inattentive readers such as Morrissey and yourself.

    ""The expedition to gauge the effects of climate change on the region began November 27. ""Led by the climate scientist Chris Turney of the University of New South Wales, the ship has been sailing through the Southern Ocean, repeating and extending many of Mawson's wildlife and weather observations in order to build a picture of how this part of the world has changed in the past 100 years.""...according to Chris Turney, a professor of climate change at the University of New South Wales, Australia, writing on the expedition blog..."

    But I agree the fact that nearly one hundred souls were lost is utterly hilarious.

    1. Anonymous,

      'But I agree the fact that nearly one hundred souls were lost is utterly hilarious'.

      I doubt that anyone's lives were at risk. The worst possible thing that could have happened was that the ship's hull could have been crushed, as happened to Shackleton's ship. None of his men were lost. They just sailed their lifeboats to an Antarctic island with a whaling station when the sea ice broke up the next Summer.

      I don't think that the hull of a modern ship would be capable of being crushed under the conditions prevailing.

  3. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyJanuary 3, 2014 at 7:17 AM

    barkmad: "The captain of the ship has sole responsibility for where the ship goes."

    You're right. You can blame the captain. By law, he's ultimately responsible. That's a very convenient way to avoid the natural and obvious inference about fault.

    But barkmad, despite the fact that you may have bought passage on a ship, you obviously have never chartered a vessel. If you charter a car, you tell the driver where to go. If you charter a plane, you tell the pilot where to go. If you charter a ship, you tell the captain where to go. That's how it works, my little bolshevik.

    But back to Turney, the "passenger" on this tub, what, really, can you expect from a guy who tried to patent charcoal? I'd like to see him try and enforce that patent (assuming New Zealand was desperate enough to give him one) in international court.

    Scott Johnson's "ship of fools" is a genteel literary allusion for polite company. But "boatload of slack-jawed greentards" would be more accurate.

    1. Senile old fart,

      The passenger on a plane or a ship cannot direct the captain where to go. Unless he's a hijacker.

      I don't know whether Turney holds the patent. The patent though would be for the process of making the biochar, not the biochar itself.

    2. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyJanuary 3, 2014 at 7:38 AM

      Speaking of senile, blankmind, Turney was not a "passenger". He chartered the tub for an "expedition", and was the "expedition leader". What a toady you are.

      By the way, the "process" he "patented" is the same "process" that has been used in making charcoal for millennia: heat. He'd be laughed out of court.

    3. Senile old fart,

      I've been on two cruises to the Arctic and the Antarctic on Russian research vessels. Each cruise had an 'expedition leader' responsible for the other guides (and there are a lot of guides on such cruises to do talks, operate the zodiacs, carry a rifle in case of polar bears during land excursions in the Arctic).

      The expedition leader had no decision making power regarding where the ship went. An itinerary was published, but the cruise hardly ever went to the advertised visiting sites.

      The ship's captain had all the power, deciding that certain locations were not feasible, and substituting other locations favoured by the weather conditions.

      And then the expedition leader explained the changed itinerary to the passengers.

      If you charter a plane, I doubt you'll be able to direct the pilot to land at an airfield affected by a snow storm, regardless of how much you've paid.

      And anyway, a patent for a process is justifiable. You can patent a new process even if there are other processes in use producing the same product, in this case biochar.

    4. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyJanuary 3, 2014 at 11:46 AM

      barkmad, it wasn't a "cruise". A tourist cruise is not a charter. You've never chartered anything in your life beyond, perhaps, a taxicab to the airport. That much is obvious.

      And read the "patent application" for yourself.

    5. Senile old fart,

      A tourist cruise is a charter. The organisers charter the ship from the owners, in this case the Russian government.

    6. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyJanuary 3, 2014 at 4:31 PM

      buttfull, a tourist cruise is a cruise for tourists, arranged by other people and for pleasure and sightseeing. This was not a tourist cruise.

      [W]e intend to lead a privately-funded voyage of discovery to the Antarctic during the Austral summer of 2013-2014.
      Taking a team of 36 women and men south, the new Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) aims to discover just how much change has taken place in this very special part of our planet.

      Doktah Turnip's own words, moron. It's a pity you have such pathetic research skills. Google is designed to be usable by morons, but it appears they set the bar too high for you.

      Retracing the route of the original AAE a century ago, [Team Turnip] members will repeat the same measurements made on Mawson’s expedition and aim to fulfil the one failed objective: to reach the South Magnetic Pole.

      If Turnip was to go forward "Retracing the [original] route" to the South magnetic pole, the captain can't just substitute "other locations favoured by the weather conditions". The "Expedition Leader" can't assemble the tourists and say "We'll need to skip the Magnificent Expanse of Cold Water today and go view the Big Hunk of Ice because the the Captain doesn't like the cut of the jib on those clouds. But we're still on for Roasted Krill and Iceberg Cocktails in the Engine Room at 6." You do know what "retrace" and "route" mean, I assume? Or are they like "compression", simply patterns of letters you attempt to redefine defending your blind, simple-minded ideological biases?

      As I said, you have never chartered anything, my little bolshevik, so you have no idea what the big boys do. And you were never part of a team on one of your ridiculous tourist cruises, unless they needed you for ballast. Or shark chum. You were greentard deadweight with money draped over it.

      $A12,000 to go look at some ice on a random walk defined by a cash-poor vodka-sucking sailor on a rented Russian tub? You're a smart cookie, buttfull. Sharp eye for a deal. As you admit yourself, the pictures you can look at online are better.

      But hey, for a mere $US250,000 I have a solar panel company you might want to buy. You can route the money to me through the Nigerian Finance Minister.

      Let me know.

    7. Senile old fart,

      I read the patent application. They're attempting to patent the process of making biochar - using an industrial sized microwave - not biochar itself.

      The patent might survive, because there's no other company interested in it. If it turns out to be effective, then other companies are entitled to break the patent if they desire, and run the risk of being sued.

      Companies often attempt to protect their patents on ideas you and I might consider not able to be patented. Such as Apple suing Samsung.

    8. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyJanuary 3, 2014 at 4:42 PM

      buttfull: "The patent might survive, because there's no other company interested in it."


      No shit, Sherlock.

    9. Senile old fart,

      I've just seen your longer comment. You still have shit for brains. I justed noted that I wouldn't do another Antarctic cruise. However, the one I did was fantastic. Well worth the money. I did do the Arctic cruise after the Antarctic cruise, after all.

      The Russian research ships are small, with 100 passengers at most. Passengers are allowed on the bridge, provided they don't get in the way of the crew.

      The expedition leader often discussed the itinerary for the next day with the captain in front of passengers. Weather conditions determine what is or isn't feasible.

      It's impossible to retrace Mawson's expedition, because Mawson didn't actually know where he was going in the first place. His first choice was taken by Scott. He was aiming to put three parties ashore, but weather conditions and sea ice made landing impossible over much of the coast.

      Re-enacting Mawson's expedition would have been achieved by going somewhere else other than where Mawson actually reached.

      The trip was thwarted by the weather - strong southerlies blowing pack ice around the ship which was frozen solid by the extremely cold winds (katabatic winds?).

      The captain of a ship has the final say as to where the ship does or does not go. It applied in Mawson's day. It still applies today. Mawson wasn't able to get his captain to go where the captain feared he'd be unable to retreat from.

      It's safer today than in Mawson's day, but there's still a risk.

    10. And Mawson purchased the ship and hired his captain, and couldn't order his captain where to go. He was just a passenger.

      Turney chartered the ship, with its crew and captain. The crew is responsible to the captain, and the captain responsible to the owners, in this case the Russian government. He had even less power than Mawson.

      I read the expedition's aims. They have 'junket' written all over them. The journal 'Science' often has advertisements for expeditions to various exotic areas, with lecturers accompanying the trips to give a veneer of education. The Australian Medical Association a few years ago had an Antarctic cruise/conference with the theme of 'polar medicine' (the number of Australian doctors requiring expertise in polar medicine - and this conference wouldn't provide it - could be counted on the fingers of one hand). It was obviously a rort to get a tax deductible holiday.

  4. Yawn. It's 14 degrees Fahrenheit in Princeton today. Therefore global warming is a hoax. (This is your pathetic attempt at logic.)

    We are waiting with a baited breath for your post about notable creationists who were avid eugenicists. Enlighten us, Dr. Egnor.


    1. Hoo:

      [We are waiting with a baited breath for your post about notable creationists who were avid eugenicists. Enlighten us, Dr. Egnor.]

      I wrote it over a week ago, and submitted it to ENV. They post stuff according to their own schedule, over which I have no control nor influence.

      They have 4 of my posts now. When a post of mine goes up on ENV, I put it up here asap, for comments.

    2. We return to our regular programming.


  5. IPCC will not invite this Canadian climatologist to their global trotting parties paid by us, taxpayers. He has been a thorn in their side for a long time.

    Dr.Tim Ball

    1. Eugen,

      Dr Tim Ball isn't a climatologist. He's a geographer. He's also a serial liar, claiming amongst other things that he was the first Canadian to be awarded a PhD in climatology (there were previous Canadians with climatology PhD.s and his PhD was in historical geography, not climatology). And that he was professor of climatology at Winnepeg University. He wasn't. He was professor of geography from 1988 to 1996.

      He's not a thorn in the side. He's just a hired gun for such bodies as the Heartland Institute.

  6. I’ll see your boat stuck in the ice and raise you 6000 dead people in the Philippines killed by what was likely the most powerful storm ever recorded, and fueled by abnormally warm Pacific waters.


    1. KW:

      The "most powerful storm ever recorded" happened after 18 years of global temperature stasis, which is substantial evidence against global warming as the cause of powerful storms.

    2. Leaving aside for a moment that you’re a clinging to a misleading talking point, what exactly would it take to convince you to change your position? When the 1998 record is broken what then?


    3. Egnor,

      The global warming 'pause' was because the heat which normally flows from the oceans into the atmosphere was retained in the oceans.

      The oceans heat the atmosphere, not vice versa. The oceans make up 70% of the Earth's surface and have the lowest albedo (reflectiveness) - 0.10 - so the oceans absorb more heat than land or snow.

      The reduced transfer of heat from the oceans to the atmosphere results in warmer oceans. Hence more powerful hurricanes. The atmospheric temperature has little to do with hurricanes. The atmosphere contains very little energy compared to that contained in the oceans.

      Understand? Perhaps not, you're clueless about climate just as you are clueless about a lot of things.

    4. [what exactly would it take to convince you to change your position?]

      1) Scientists who behave ethically.
      2) Open-source data and complete transparency
      3) Prompt and full compliance with FOIA requests
      4) A practical distinction between analysis and advocacy on the part of scientists.
      5) Accurate predictions by climate models
      6) Honest discussion of inaccurate predictions

      The Science Apocalypse Industry has been so thoroughly discredited (Malthus, eugenics, population explosion, DDT hoax, heterosexual AIDS, global cooling, global warming, climate change ...) that I automatically assume that Science Apocalyptics are lying or deluded, just as I automatically assume that Religious Apocalyptics are deluded or lying.

      There's not an ounce of difference between you and the nut on the street corner with the sign "The World is Ending", except you're better funded-- by us.

    5. bach:

      "The global warming 'pause' was because..."

      Post-hoc excuses for why your predictions sucked are amusing, but not science.

      If the matter is so straightforward, you needed to have included it in your bullshit models.

      You AGW loons are a joke.

    6. Egnor,

      Remind me again about ID's prediction that 'junk' DNA doesn't exist - it's all functional. When challenged, you changed your tune, and noted it was a 'postdiction'.

      I claim a 'postdiction' in this case too. If you cherry pick the data set and begin with a warm year in 1998 due to an abnormally strong El Niño (resulting in heat being dumped into the atmosphere) and finish with a moderate La Niña year in 2012, which has the opposite effect, with more heat being retained in the oceans and resulting in a cooler atmosphere, then you're going to get the false impression of a 'pause'.

      Warmer oceans, stronger hurricanes.

      ENSO (el Nino Southern Oscillation) events are unpredictable. They're less predictable than predictions concerning your apologies for your more blatant errors of fact. They just happen.

    7. Oops, the last sentence should have read (your apologies for your more blatant errors of fact) 'they just DON'T happen'.

    8. Egnor:
      1) Scientists who behave ethically.
      2) Open-source data and complete transparency
      3) Prompt and full compliance with FOIA requests
      4) A practical distinction between analysis and advocacy on the part of scientists.
      5) Accurate predictions by climate models
      6) Honest discussion of inaccurate predictions

      Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Project has all of its raw data posted online. The scientists behind it include Judith Curry (whom Egnor considers kosher).

      This list of demands is a joke. Egnor is a stupid liar.


    9. According to NASA, 2010 was the warmest year, but of course climate deniers have a vested interest in clinging to the cherry-picked data that allows them to claim 1998. The data below shows both the annual mean and 5 year mean variance in deg. C from a 1951-80 average baseline. This is tabulated because Climate change deniers have yet to demonstrate the ability to read graphs.

      As you can see, there were three subsequent years warmer than 1998, and one tie. Don’t worry you can still claim that the earth has been cooling since 2010.


    10. Do you have anything coherent to say on the subject of BEST? It surely satisfies your majesty's demands number 1, 2, and 4, which also automatically obviates the need for 3.

      Can't figure out whether you more stupidity than malice.


    11. KW:

      Your "warmest year" crap is meaningless. It hasn't shit to do with the actual science. 1936 was one of the warmest years recorded-- that does not mean it was caused by AGW.

      The AGW claim is that rising levels of man-made CO2 are causing global warming. The scientific evidence necessary to demonstrate that would include:

      1) Evidence of warming

      2) Evidence of warming not explained by natural variation and non-CO2 causes.

      3) Evidence of warming predicted by models and not explained by natural variation and non-CO2 causes.

      #1 is now discredited. There has been no warming for 18 years.
      #2 if there had been warming, it would still not be evidence for AGW.
      #3 AGW models would have to predict accurately the correlation between human CO2 emissions, atmospheric CO2, and global warming-- something they have absolutely failed to do.

      In fact, CO2 levels in the atmosphere have increased substantially, without warming. Post-hoc excuses as to why AGW models failed to predict this negative result are worthless science, except as evidence for the incompetence/mendacity of AGW scientists.

      The concurrence of rising CO2 and stable temperature is powerful evidence against AGW, as any honest scientist would admit.

    12. Hoo:

      Do you accept Richard Muller's conclusions about the dishonesty of climate scientists?

    13. Egnor: #1 is now discredited. There has been no warming for 18 years.

      Actual temperature records 1996-2014:
      GISTEMP: trend = +0.104 °C/decade, σ = 0.055 °C/decade.
      NOAA: trend = +0.082 °C/decade, σ = 0.053 °C/decade.
      HADCRUT4: trend = +0.089 °C/decade, σ = 0.055 °C/decade.

      No warming in 18 years? I don't think so.


    14. What about Muller's own conclusions regarding the warming? Aren't you aware of them? Wasn't Judith Curry part of his team?


    15. Hoo:

      The validity of the BEST data and conclusions is still open to debate, obviously, but I find it remarkable that you would cite BEST. BEST was started as an effort to circumvent incompetent and dishonest climate science. Are you admitting that the predicate for BEST, as emphatically stated by Richard Muller, is true?

    16. So here is what Muller thinks about global warming (from the same interview):

      Look – global warming is real and it’s caused by humans.

      How about that, Mr. Smartpants?


    17. It's amazing that Egnor begins every time by denying the reality of the global warming. After some badgering he admits that the warming is occurring and then switches to denying that it is manmade. Works every time, like a charm.


    18. Global warming doesn't just include the lower atmosphere. It also includes the oceans, the cryosphere (ice and snow) and the ground.

      The oceans are warming. The cryosphere is melting. Global warming is happening.

    19. [The oceans are warming. The cryosphere is melting. Global warming is happening.]

      That's scary. I'll give you complete control of human life. Please save us.

  7. This is all a repeat of the thread from 26th September, 2013 'Warming pause is actually 22 years', in which Egnor idiotically parrots Steve Goddard's moronic assertion that the 'pause' is actually 22 years.

    Because the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 masked the El Niño years from then, causing cooler global temperatures.

    So if you manually adjust the global temperatures by making it a bit warmer for the next few years, the graph is flat for 22 years.

    The only trouble is that if you admit that the eruption of Mount Pinatubo is masking the warmer El Niño years, then you have to also adjust for the strong El Niño year in 1998 and manually adjust temperatures down, the moderate La Niña year of 2012, and adjust temperatures up, and the rapid industrialisation of China and India since 2000, with the burning of 'dirty' coal - resulting in an effect similar to a volcanic eruption - and adjust temperatures up again.

    And the 'pause' disappears.