Posts Tagged ‘Chris Turney’

Chris Turney – lead Fool of the Ship of Fools – is selling tickets for a lecture at the Royal Institution

July 15, 2014

I don’t know who gets the proceeds from this lecture at the Royal Institution (Tickets: Standard £12, Concession £8, Associate £6, Free to Members, Faraday Members and Fellows) but one hopes that Chris Turney – he of the Ship of Fools – does not.

There is no little irony in the announcement that

“Chris Turney will present the initial findings of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition 2013-2014, and show how private funding brought the public and science together”.

Chris Turney made an utter fool of himself in the Antarctic, and yet the Royal Institution is  providing him with an opportunity to defend his idiocy on 17th July.

To make matters worse the Guardian, instead of bringing the chief fool on the Ship of Fools to bookwrites in its own inimitable, fawning style

 Professor Chris Turney from the University of New South Wales decided to follow in the footsteps of visionary geologist Douglas Mawson, who led one of the first scientific expeditions to the region 100 years ago. Turney and his team of geologists, biologists and geographers retraced Mawson’s steps, repeating the original expedition’s measurements as well as conducting new studies and surveys. …… 

Chairing proceedings is the Guardian’s former science correspondent, Alok Jha, who was also part of the expedition

Alok Jha’s reporting for the Guardian was particularly inane.

Why the Royal Institution is promoting this charlatan and his commercial interests is beyond me.

He helped set up a carbon refining company called Carbonscape which has developed technology to fix carbon from the atmosphere and make a host of green bi-products, helping reduce greenhouse gas levels.

Related: Turney’s tourists: the heroes who weren’t

 

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Turney’s tourists return

January 22, 2014

UPDATE!

Climate Audit points out:

The Sydney Morning Herald account adds the remarkable claim that Turney took more passengers into the field even after the evacuation notice had been issued:

A passenger standing near Professor Turney overheard the voyage leader, Greg Mortimer, telling him over the radio to bring passengers back to the ship so it can leave. But minutes later, Professor Turney drove six more passengers into the field. The overloaded vehicle had no space to collect returning passengers.

=============================================

Turney and his tourists from the Ship of Fools have returned.

The BBC covers the return.

But there are still unanswered questions as to who will pay for the expensive international rescue mission. The Aurora Australis had to suspend a resupply mission to Australia’s permanent base in the Antarctic, Casey Station, to take part in the rescue.

The Sydney Morning Herald has a long and – for them – unusually questioning article about the fiasco.

The inside story of how a polar expedition went terribly wrong, leaving dozens of tourists and scientists trapped in the ice.

This account has been reconstructed from interviews with members of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition 2013/14, most of whom wished to remain anonymous, who witnessed events or overheard conversations, and the report the voyage leader, Greg Mortimer, submitted to IAATO.

Mortimer declined to comment on his report.

The Shokalskiy’s captain, Igor Kielev, did not respond to Fairfax Media’s emails.

Chris Turney and Chris Fogwill, the expedition leaders, also declined to comment on specific questions regarding events on December 23.

Nicky Phillips and Colin Cosier travelled on board the Aurora Australis as part of the Australian Antarctic Division’s media fellowship program.

Amazingly, Chris Turney gets an award for “contributing to the understanding natural phenomena”. I suppose it’s a case of rewarding the Fool Who Rushed In!!

JoNova:

The Australian Academy of Science has announced it’s 2014 Academy awards to “celebrate scientific excellence.”

To show how excellent, their excellence is, the Frederick White Prize for scientific achievements contributing to the understanding of natural phenomena goes to Professor Chris Turney, University of New South Wales.

Turney faces the wrath of the Global Warming Inquisition

January 16, 2014

The fallout from the Ship of Fools continues and the Global Warming Establishment is turning on Chris Turney and his tourists.

Last week National Geographic distanced themselves from the Ship of Fools. Now even Nature is turning. They first published an article by Turney defending his jaunt into the Antarctic. But they quickly realised that supporting Turney was untenable. Now, not just one but two articles in Nature (here and here): 

Turney's tourists

Turney’s tourists

Turney again

Turney again

The Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) has added its voice to the growing criticism of a stricken private polar expedition by challenging claims that it approved the research element of the trip.

On page 291 of this issue, Nick Gales, chief scientist of the AAD, which is based in Kingston, Tasmania, responds to an earlier Nature column by expedition head Chris Turney of the University of New South Wales (see Nature 505, 133; 2014). Turney’s Australasian Antarctic Expedition aimed to retrace the steps of explorer Douglas Mawson, who led an outing a century ago. But members of Turney’s expedition had to be rescued from their ship, the MV Akademik Shokalskiy, after it became trapped in ice at Christmas, adding fuel to a debate about the merits of such privately funded trips. 

Gales challenges Turney’s implicit suggestion that the AAD had approved the expedition’s science plan. The AAD did not formally review the research strategy, Gales notes, but had issued the permits required for Turney’s group to visit the region in which it got stuck. “It’s an important distinction for us,” says Gales. He adds that the expedition’s rescue has delayed several projects in Australia’s national Antarctic programme that have been many years in the planning. ……

There can be few things worse for a scientist than being accused that “science was not well served” by his efforts!! And that too by his own faction.

Climate Audit has a good account of the follies of the Ship of Fools.

I get the impression that Turney is going to face the full rigour of the Global Warming Inquisition. He may not be burnt at the stake but he may be thrown under a bus or two!

Climate – the second derivative

January 14, 2014

Change changes.

We take global temperature (which exists nowhere and is merely a numerical construct) as climate. When global temperature is not constant we call it climate change. When “climate change” starts to change (as now from warming to cooling) we are into the second derivative. The turbulence at the time of the change of climate change we call “extreme events”.

Changing climate change

Changing climate change

These articles do not say very much new but they are quite extraordinary in that they are carried by the Sydney Morning Herald and Real Clear Politics, who have been staunch supporters of global warming orthodoxy.

The Ship of Fools in the Antarctic seems to have been a “tipping point” – not for climate or for climate change or for the change in climate change – but maybe for bringing some reality back into how climate is reported. (Incidentally, the Akademik Shokalskiy managed to get free of the ice and reached New Zealand but Turney’s tourists who were so dramatically rescued are still stuck at Casey station in the Antarctic and are not due back home for another 10 days!!!!!)

Sydney Morning HeraldGame finally up for carboncrats

It was promoted as the voyage to study the melting of ice sheets in the South Pole as well as to retrace Douglas Mawson’s perilous expedition a century ago. Yet the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, led by UNSW climatologist Chris Turney, has become a comedy goldmine. …..

Real Clear PoliticsShip of Fools in the Antarctic

In the mega-bestseller of the 15th century, “Das Narrenschiff,” Swiss lawyer Sebastian Brant satirized the pretensions, delusions and follies of his day through descriptions of passengers on a ship bound for “Narragonia.” Brant’s depiction of humanity as a ship of fools sailing without rudder or compass captured the imagination, inspiring a painting by Hieronymous Bosch, a song by the Grateful Dead.

So when the research ship Akademik Shokalskiy got stuck in the ice about 40 miles from Antarctica, some who knew the purpose of its voyage dubbed it the “Ship of Fools.” ……

Real Clear PoliticsFreezing Is the New Warming

This is looking like another bad year for global warming.

The year began with the news that an Australian “climate researcher” leading a tourist expedition to Antarctica got his ship trapped in the sea ice. Which is embarrassing, because the purpose of his expedition was to study the melting of sea ice supposedly caused by 20th-century global warming. The current expedition was meant to retrace the route Douglas Mawson took in 1912—but they were stopped 70 kilometers short of where Mawson landed. So they needed to have an icebreaker ship sent to rescue them. Then the icebreaker got caught in the ice, and someone had to rescue the rescuers. You can’t make this stuff up. …… 

The New York Times and Der Spiegel have started backing away from the orthodoxy towards reality – but very slowly. The Guardian, Washington Post and the BBC are among those who are still stuck in a fantasy world.

Turney’s tourists: the heroes who weren’t

January 9, 2014

Turney’s tourists on his Ship of Fools are severely taken to task by David Roberts in the National Geographic. They see themselves as heroes. But they were just a bunch of spoilt dilettantes who were out on a frivolous lark of no scientific significance. Douglas Mawson will be spinning in his grave.

The members of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition 2013-2014 (AAE)—who intended to re-create a very small part of Sir Douglas Mawson‘s original monumental expedition of 1911-14—seemed strangely blasé—even giddily upbeat—during their ten days stranded in the ice. 

They recorded a New Year’s Eve sing-along for YouTube and chatted about yoga classes and knot-tying lessons to while away the time.

On their Spirit of Mawson expedition blog, one passenger signed off on December 28: “It’s Saturday and it’s bar-time (bar opens at 6 pm), so I am going to leave it here.”

They even seemed to relish their crisis. The BBC quoted Tracy Rogers, the team’s marine ecologist, as saying, “It’s fantastic—I love it when the ice wins and we don’t. It reminds you that as humans, we don’t control everything … We’ve got several penguins watching us, thinking ‘What the hell are you doing stuck in our ice?’ The sky is a beautiful grey—it looks like it wants to have a bit of a snow. It’s the perfect Christmas, really.”

For many seasoned adventurers, the team’s attitude was hard to swallow. It seemed to betoken a new kind of entitlement, in which folks who get into serious trouble take it for granted that other people will risk their lives to save them. ….

Perversely, for the general public, the hapless passengers seemed to emerge as the heroes of the story, even though they did nothing but twiddle their thumbs and wait for the Chinese icebreaker Xue Long to come to their rescue, which ended by trapping the much bigger vessel in the ice. The U.S. sent another icebreaker, the U.S. Polar Star, to rescueXue Long and Shokalskiy, but that mission was recently called off when the ships were able to break free from the ice. …..

…… The whole expedition, these experts implied, amounted to a “frivolous” lark that added almost nothing to our knowledge of the southern continent. …

The real heroes of the story were the 101 members of the Xue Long, the 22 crew members of the Shokalskiy who stayed with their ship, the crew of the Polar Star, and that of the Australian ship Aurora Australis that powered south to receive the airlifted refugees.

“It seems unlikely that the dilettantes who signed up for AAE 2013-14 would soon fork over the funds to pay for their perilous and expensive rescue. They’re still too busy congratulating themselves.

The Akademik Shokalskiy and the Xue Long got free of the ice 5 days after Turney’s tourists abandoned ship. Why the tourists needed to be rescued is still a mystery. Presumably the booze had run out.

Akademik Shokalskiy and Xue Long break free from Antarctic ice

January 7, 2014

Four days after Turney’s tourists abandoned ship, the Akademik Shokalskiy and Chinese icebreaker Xue Long have broken free from the ice they were trapped in.

BBC:The Russian research ship Akademik Shokalskiy and Chinese icebreaker Xue Long have broken free from Antarctic ice where they had been stranded for several days.

The Russian ship’s captain said a crack had appeared in the ice after a change in wind direction. The Akademik Shokalskiy got stuck on 25 December. It has a Russian crew of 22. On Thursday, the Xue Long’s helicopter ferried 52 passengers from the stranded Russian ship to an Australian vessel. The Xue Long then became stuck itself on Friday.

“We’re going slowly and zig-zagging, we’ve already moved more than 20 [nautical] miles,” Captain Igor Kiselyov of the Russian ship told Itar-Tass news agency. “It’s tough going so far, a lot of mist, visibility is no more than 500 metres,” he said. He confirmed that the Chinese ship was also moving and that Akademik Shokalskiy was just north of it. “It may catch up with us – in that case, we’ll follow in its wake. But if not, we’ll get out together, independently,” he said.

All’s well that end well but Turney’s preceding comedy of errors will not be soon forgotten.

It looks like the services of the US icebreaker Polar Star will not be required.

Was all the ballyhoo from the heroic expeditioners truly necessary?

Nature/Turney defend the Ship of Fools and their Antarctic pleasure cruise

January 7, 2014

Chris Turney, his global warming pilgrims (called scientists), his pet journalists and his tourists are due to reach Tasmania on 22nd January after being “rescued” (from what?) after their chartered ship Akademik Shokalskiy (ice-strengthened but no icebreaker) was trapped in the Antarctic ice on December 24th.

Nature (much to their discredit) have hurriedly published a defence by Chris Turney of his tourist trip on his Ship of Fools.  It amazes me that Nature would – so quickly – publish such an obviously self-serving and narcissistic article. Almost as if they had a higher agenda of defending the larger global warming community so grievously opened up to ridicule by Turney and his tourists.

“It was no pleasure cruise” he whines (though he seems to have taken his family along for this jaunt). He claims the ship was an icebreaker – which it was not – and that the event could not have been anticipated  – which it could. He claims to have advanced the frontiers of science – which is mere hyperbole. He even tries to take credit for rekindling public interest! 

“… the value of our expedition must be judged by the quality of the research it always intended to produce, and the remarkable rekindling of public interest in science and exploration that has come with it”.

But his attempt to salvage something from his PR disaster does not go down well judging by some of the comments that his self-serving “defence” elicits:

Roger Corbett 2014-01-07 04:46 AM

How does a couple of hours shoveling snow to get inside Mawson’s Huts reported at the time by Professor Turney http://www.abc.net.au/science/photos/2013/11/26/3897110.htm become “important conservation work” a few days later? When he is trying to boost the scientific credentials of a tourism exercise. When you are in a hole, stop digging. These little exaggerations add up to make it hard to believe the bigger things. “Never before has a science expedition reached out live to so many people from such a remote location”….er, “one small step for a man…” It’s a definite pattern in the accounts coming from the AAE-2 people. Reading as much as I can, I conclude that the tourism activities delayed return to the ship, despite increasing concern from the ship’s Master. The claims that the weather closed in so suddenly and unexpectedly by Professor Turney are exaggerated (like so many things he says and writes), either to deliberately deflect from his responsibilities as tour leader, or because ego doesn’t allow him to admit it even to himself.

Charles Rotter 2014-01-07 12:41 AM

…  I have been following the writings of the various blogs documenting this trip, and as far as I can tell, the only scientific discovery/conclusion/finding you have documented so far is that, if the food source for a population of penguins becomes much harder to reach due to added physical obstacles, then that penguin population will probably reduce in number. I am in awe at this insight.

Richard Tol 2014-01-06 04:09 PM

The way it turned out, this was indeed no pleasure cruise. At the same time, Chris Turney has yet to answer questions about the research purpose of this expedition. The Spirit of Mawson website is vague and many of the aims listed there cannot be achieved by a single, short trip. The successes listed above are from the first leg of the trip, rather than from the now-infamous second leg. If the second leg aimed to launch Argo floats, why did it sail on? And why were there so many people on board? There were 18 PhD students on the expedition. Only 6 have a research connection with Antarctica (the other 12 studying the North Atlantic, Australia’s coastal waters, brain injury, Iceland, New Zealand’s North Island, urban climates, pedagogy, the Equatorial Undercurrent, pharmaceuticals, time series statistics, microbiology, and Siberia), but only one of those has an obvious reason to visit Mawson’s Huts and even she would have collected more data in the same time had she flown there. Forgive me for asking, what research purposes were served by this expedition? Was this really the best way to spend the available funds?

Consequences of Turney’s Antarctic junket are not yet over

January 5, 2014

The Xuelong is thought to have 111 crew on board while the Akademik Shokalskiy has 22. They are both currently trapped in the ice and the US icebreaker Polar Star is on its way from Sydney to render assistance if necessary. It will take the Polar Star about 7 days to reach the vicinity of the trapped vessels.

Cnut commanding the waves

Cnut commanding the waves

The consequences of Chris Turney’s narcissistic self-image of himself as an explorer in the Mawson mould and his irresponsible, publicity-seeking, junket into the Antarctic are not yet over. His proclamation that the ice should have melted away is reminiscent of King Cnut. Or perhaps like Cnut trying to demonstrate his limitations he was trying to demonstrate the fallibility of climate models which predict the loss of polar ice (and models such as that by his colleague Sherwood). It would be a travesty if the cost of diverting the 4 icebreakers (Chinese, French, Australian and now US) from their normal missions is not charged to Turney, the Climate Change Research Centre of the University of New South Wales and his media sponsors.

Xinhua reports:

BEIJING, Jan. 4 (Xinhua) — China has set up a leading team to rescue its icebreaker Xuelong, or Snow Dragon, which has been trapped by heavy floes since it rescued passengers on a Russian vessel stranded in Antarctica on Thursday.

The State Oceanic Administration (SOA) announced on Saturday the team will map out rescue plans and make “all-out efforts” to coordinate rescue operations, despite there is no immediate danger to personnel aboard Xuelong, which has abundant fuel and food supplies. …. 

Xueying 12, a helicopter on board Xuelong, on Thursday successfully evacuated all the 52 passengers aboard the Russian vessel MV Akademik Shokalskiy that has been stranded since Christmas Eve to the Australian icebreaker Aurora Australis.

However, after the rescue, Xuelong’s own movement was blocked by fields of floating ice.

Currently, Xuelong is located at 66.65 degrees south latitude and 144.42 degrees east longitude. It is surrounded by floes up to four meters thick and is about 21 km away from unfrozen waters, according to the SOA.

Qu Tanzhou, director of the State Oceanic Administration’s Chinese Arctic and Antarctic Administration, said the planned expedition by Xuelong is inevitably affected and changes are expected to be made to the vessel’s mission after it gets out of trouble.

“If the ship is stranded for a very long time, which is very rare indeed, then we’ll have to evacuate the people onboard and leave the vessel there,” he said.

AMSA Press Release:

6.30am AEDT Sunday 05 January 2014

US Coast Guard ice breaker to assist ships beset in ice in Antarctica

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC Australia) has requested the US Coast Guard’s Polar Star icebreaker to assist the vessels MV Akademik Shokalskiy and Xue Long which are beset by ice in Commonwealth Bay.
The US Coast Guard has accepted this request and will make Polar Star available to assist.
The Polar Star has been en route to Antarctica since 3 December, 2013 – weeks prior to the MV
Akademik Shokalskiy being beset by ice in Commonwealth Bay. The intended mission of the Polar Star is to clear a navigable shipping channel in McMurdo Sound to the National Science Foundation’s Scientific Research Station. Resupply ships use the channel to bring food, fuel and other goods to the station. The Polar Star will go on to undertake its mission once the search and rescue incident is resolved.
RCC Australia identified the Polar Star as a vessel capable of assisting the beset vessels following MV Akademik Shokalskiy being beset by ice overnight on 24 December, 2013. RCC Australia has been in discussion with the US Coast Guard this week to ascertain if the Polar Star was able to assist once it reaches Antarctica.
The request for the Polar Star to assist the beset vessels was made by RCC Australia to the US Coast Guard on 3 January, 2014. The US Coast Guard officially accepted this request and released the Polar Star to RCC Australia for search and rescue tasking at 8.30am on 4 January, 2014.
The Polar Star will leave Sydney today after taking on supplies prior to its voyage to Antarctica.
It is anticipated it will take approximately seven (7) days for the Polar Star to reach Commonwealth Bay, dependent on weather and ice conditions.
At 122 metres, the Polar Star is one of the largest ships in the US Coast Guard fleet. It has a range of 16,000 nautical miles at 18 knots. The Polar Star has a crew of 140 people.
The Polar Star is able to continuously break ice up to 1.8 metres (6ft) while travelling at three (3) knots and can break ice over six (21ft) metres thick.
RCC Australia will be in regular contact with the relevant US Coast Guard RCC at Alameda, California, and the Captain of the Polar Star during its journey to Antarctica.

Why was it necessary to rescue the Antarctic wimps’ expedition if the crew can remain aboard?

January 2, 2014

A Ship of Fools and Wimps. And they claim to be invoking the Spirit of Mawson!

The global warmists and their hangers-on have all been rescued from their ship trapped in the Antarctic ice. But the crew remains on board and are prepared to wait it out until the ice lets them go.

Why then did they have to be rescued with the enormous expenditure and diversion of resources that entailed? 

Their travails – if any – pale in comparison to what Mawson encountered 100 years ago.  For these fools to invoke the Spirit of Mawson is a travesty. They were in no danger. Their expedition to prove that the Eastern Antarctic ice was melting has ended up as a fiasco.

What were they being rescued from – except failure and boredomNamby-pamby and spoilt brats and wimps come to mind.

The Australian writes:

Stuck on a ship of (cold) fools

YOU have to feel a touch of sympathy for the global warming scientists, journalists and other hangers-on aboard the Russian ship stuck in impenetrable ice in Antarctica, the mission they so confidently embarked on to establish solid evidence of melting ice caps resulting from climate change embarrassingly abandoned because the ice is, in fact, so impossibly thick.

The aim of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, led by Chris Turney of the University of NSW, was to prove the East Antarctic ice sheet is melting. Its website spoke alarmingly of “an increasing body of evidence” showing “melting and collapse from ocean warming”. Instead, rescue ships and a helicopter, all belching substantial carbon emissions, have had to be mobilised to pluck those aboard the icebreaker MV Akademik Schokalskiy from their plight, stuck in what appears to be, ironically, record amounts of ice for this time of year.

In that lies a hard lesson for those who persistently exaggerate the impact of global warming. We believe in man-made climate change and are no less concerned than others about it. But the cause of sensible policy is ill-served by exaggeration; there is a need for recognition of the science, which shows there are variations in how climate is changing and what the impact is, or will be.

Professor Turney’s expedition was supposed to repeat scientific investigations made by Douglas Mawson a century ago and to compare then and now. Not unreasonably, it has been pointed out Mawson’s ship was never icebound. Sea ice has been steadily increasing, despite the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s gloomy forecasts. Had the expedition found the slightest evidence to confirm its expectation of melting ice caps and thin ice, a major new scare about the plight of the planet would have followed. As they are transferred to sanctuary aboard the icebreaker Aurora Australis, Professor Turney and his fellow evacuees must accept the embarrassing failure of their mission shows how uncertain the science of climate change really is. They cannot reasonably do otherwise.

But what was the danger requiring them to be rescued? And why are their lives more valuable than those of the crew of the Akademik Shokalskiy?

Chris Turney comes out of this as the Chief Fool and Lead Wimp.The journalists will no doubt wish to treated as brave reporters returning from the war front. The Climate Change Research Centre of the University of New South Wales would seem to have more money than sense.

Updates on the Antarctic global warming pilgrimage

January 1, 2014

Chris Turney and his warmists thought the globe was sweltering,
To the Antarctic they sailed to prove that the poles were melting,
But to their great surprise,
They got stuck in the ice,
But they had a festive time on board and got on with their drinking.

UPDATE 2: A Chinese helicopter arrived close to the vessel, bringing in a crew to assess the landing situation. The aircraft is expected to return within the hour to begin ferrying the first passengers out to another vessel.

The Chinese helicopter has arrived @ the Shokalskiy. It’s 100% we’re off! A huge thanks to all. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_13rQBXKa0A …

Update 1: Thursday, 2nd January

The Guardian: The latest rescue mission for scientists, tourists and journalists on a ship trapped in ice off Antarctica has again been postponed.

two-stage rescue had been planned for Thursday with a helicopter rescuing 52 of the passengers on Akademik Shokalskiy and taking them to the Chinese ship Xue Long before transferring them to another ship, Aurora Australis, on a barge in a 36-hour window of decent weather.

However, sea ice has prevented the barge from the Aurora Australis, where the passengers would ultimately be transferred, being able to get close to Xue Long.

The helicopter component of the rescue was to consist of seven 45-minute round trips to collect 12 passengers at a time and then their equipment and luggage.

AMSA Release: The Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s (AMSA) Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC Australia) has been advised this morning that sea ice conditions in the area are likely to delay today’s planned rescue of passengers from the MV Akademik Shokalskiy. AMSA understands that current sea ice conditions prevent the barge from Aurora Australis from reaching the Chinese vessel Xue Long (Snow Dragon) and a rescue may not be possible today. 

The Xue Long’s helicopter is unable to land on the Aurora Australis due to load rating restrictions. It is not safe to land the helicopter next to Aurora Australis at this time. The preferred and safest option at this stage is to ultimately transfer the passengers onto Aurora Australis. …. 

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These “climate scientists” and hangers-on set out to demonstrate that the poles were melting.

Instead they have been stuck in the Antarctic ice for eight days now. Today the helicopter rescue of the climate scientists and their tame journalists who want to abandon ship was aborted because of bad weather. Their denials that the purpose was to demonstrate global warming sound very hollow:

It is also a bit rich now for expedition organisers to say they did not have climate change in mind when the trip was conceived. Promotional material says the expedition’s aim was to “discover and communicate the changes taking place in this remote and pristine environment”.

Outlining the science case, the expedition says: “Three years’ worth of observations gleaned by Mawson and his men provide a unique dataset against which we can compare the changes seen today. “Policy documents highlight numerous science questions that need to be urgently addressed across the region. And yet, despite of a century of research, major questions remain about whether the changes seen today are exceptional.”

The expedition notes say the East Antarctic Ice Sheet contains enough fresh water to raise the world’s sea level by about 52m.

The US icebreaker Polar Star (which can plow through ice 6m thick) could reach the trapped ship in about 8 days but as Anthony Watts points out the forecast winds could allow the ship to get free also in about 8 days.

As Real Science puts it

Only A Complete Moron Would Attempt To Take A Ship To The Coast Of Antarctica Under These Conditions.

They do not seem to be in any immediate danger – these scientists on their Ship of Fools.They seem to have celebrated Christmas and the New Year with great gusto and spirit! And their alcohol consumption is – of course – only to keep the cold out.


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