You may recall the IPCC’s fiasco over their exaggerated claims about Himalayan glaciers disappearing by 2035 due to global warming. It was such a foul-up that they had to release one of their rare Corrections (rare not because they are rarely needed but because they can so rarely be shamed into issuing one.) In other winter news from the wacky world of climate change, a new paper in Nature explains that Himalayan glaciers are shrinking not due to warming of the ice cap but to cooling. But never fear, that’s also due to due to warming. It would be.
For some reason the dopey authors of that paper include, as the opening of their abstract, that:
“Understanding the response of Himalayan glaciers to global warming is vital because of their role as a water source for the Asian subcontinent. However, great uncertainties still exist on the climate drivers of past and present glacier changes across scales.”
Great uncertainties? Great snakes! But fear not. We know what’s happening at a Platonic level if not at a factual or logical one. Thus “We show that a decrease in maximum air temperature and precipitation occurred during the last three decades at Pyramid in response to global warming.”
Right. A decrease in maximum temperature in response to global warming. (At the Pyramid station on Everest, not some place in Egypt.) And how, pray tell? Well:
“Reanalysis data suggest a broader occurrence of this effect in the glacierized areas of the Himalaya. We hypothesize that the counterintuitive cooling is caused by enhanced sensible heat exchange and the associated increase in glacier katabatic wind, which draws cool air downward from higher elevations.”
Gotta love “reanalysis data”. It beats the heck out of the observational kind if you have an ax to grind. And in case you’re not a cool person who uses katabatic in everyday conversation, you won’t be helped by “Katabatic winds arise from adiabatic warming due to air subsidence and cooling of the near-surface air by sensible heat exchange with the glacier surface.” But you might by “a wind that carries high-density air from a higher elevation down a slope under the force of gravity.”
The main point here is that they “hypothesize” that cooling is caused by warming, then create a computer model that says yes, it might happen, and call it a scientific discovery. And so “The proposed conceptual model reconciles the apparent discrepancy between the observed local cooling and the accelerated glacier mass loss in Himalaya.” Whew.
Or maybe not, because of their statement that “Himalayan glaciers have been losing mass consistently, with an acceleration in the last five decades, including at the iconic Mount Everest.” Consistently? For how long? Quite a while, apparently, if it has accelerated in the last five decades. But when did meaningful man-made warming kick in?
Not, surely, a century ago, or even half a century. So we’re looking at a natural warming and melting process, right? Right guys and gals? Huh? And if it accelerated in the last five decades it must mean around about oh say 1974 so even that phenomenon occurred before even James Hansen or Michael Mann says AGW became significant. So what you really proved is that today’s melting, while complicated, is pretty obviously the continuation of a long-term natural trend that magically became man-made at some point that doesn’t show up in the data sets but hovers over the metaphysics.