(DAILY EXPRESS) – Shortly before Christmas a team of climate scientists set out on an expedition to Antarctica aboard Russian ship MV Akademic Shokalskiy.
by Leo McKinstry
Led by Chris Turney, a professor at the University of New South Wales in Australia and an evangelist for the green agenda, this group was accompanied by a number of journalists including several from the BBC and the Left-wing Guardian newspaper, as well as an Australian senator from the Green Party.
The explicit aim of the voyage, whose original costs were estimated to be £900,000, was to research the supposed impact of climate change on the southern polar region, particularly the alleged threat to ice coverage. There was “an increasing body of evidence” that showed “melting and collapse from global warming”, proclaimed the Shokalskiy team prior to departure.
Such claims about the disappearing ice caps have long been a central tenet of the green faith. Typically eco-website Click Green reported in 2009 that marine plants were now flourishing in Antarctica “because of the recent and rapid melting of ice shelves and glaciers around the peninsula”. But this hysteria about the vanishing Antarctic ice turned out to be wrong. Professor Turney and his acolytes were lured into an embarrassing fiasco by their own neurotic creed. On Christmas Eve, little more than a fortnight after the start of its voyage, the Shokalskiy became wedged in thick ice. As the weather worsened so did the crisis on board.
The vessel had turned into a ship of fools. What made the debacle all the more humiliating was that this is now the height of summer in Antarctica, when ice coverage is meant to be at its most limited before the onset of winter. Faced by evidence that confounded their ideology the team were bewildered.
“Sea ice is disappearing due to climate change but here it is building up,” they said in one laughable statement. The expensive pantomime continued as two icebreakers were sent to rescue them. But the ice was so thick that neither vessel could do so. Indeed one ship became trapped as the area was gripped by even more bitter weather.
Eventually, with nerves fraying, winds howling and ice deepening, Turney’s band was rescued by helicopter, a move that can have done nothing for their burgeoning carbon footprint.
Idiocy had been compounded by hypocrisy. As the air rescue got under way expedition organisers tried to escape ignominy by claiming they had been proved right. In an absurd intellectual contortion they claimed the unseasonably wide spread of ice had actually been caused by their beloved notion of man-made climate change.
“The indications are that it is precisely climate warming that led the vessel into its awkward predicament,” they said. The ice that surrounded the Shokalskiy had broken off from the continent years earlier because of changing conditions, they claimed.
It’s a theory, up there with a flat earth and Ed Balls’ promise of economic growth. Yet this is the game the greens always play. They refuse to look at evidence objectively. Instead they try to manipulate data to suit their political outlook.
Brimming with superiority they label opponents “climate change deniers” but they are the ones truly living in denial, refusing to accept any evidence that does not match their agenda.
They are like members of a religious cult that regards nonbelievers as heretics. Manmade climate change is their explanation for every weather pattern from winter flooding to summer droughts, from snow to storms.
What they peddle is not science but propaganda yet with every passing year hard facts reveal the emptiness of their scaremongering. Contrary to their claims about global warming, for instance, temperatures on Earth have not risen for the past 17 years. Similarly if Professor Turney had paid more attention to polar data he might have spared himself some embarrassment.
In Antarctica the volume of ice is at its highest for 35 years, with sea ice coverage having extended by two million kilometres over this period.
“Arctic summers to be icefree by 2013,” was a declaration by the BBC, always supportive of the green cause. In truth the volume of ice measured this autumn in the Arctic is about 50 per cent higher than last year.
No doubt even after this comedic shambles the greens will carry on spouting the same nonsense. Although their credibility is in pieces they remain too wedded to it to dump it. That’s partly because environmental guilttripping fits their Left-wing, anti-capitalist outlook. Many greens also have a vested interest in the advancement of the green agenda, via consultancies or green technology like solar panels and wind turbines.
Professor Turney is involved in a company called Carbonscape which promotes green products. Politicians love greenery because it offers the chance to exert more control. In the name of saving the planet they crank up energy bills, impose regulations and raise taxes. Bullying masquerades as salvation. But after the ship of fools, mocking disdain is the only fitting response.