14th April - Today's News: Arctic Ice Cap Shrinking

On Devon Island, in the Canadian Arctic, we currently have the 2nd largest ice cap in the northern hemisphere (after Greenland). But for how long? We've been monitoring it for nearly 50 years and it seem this massive arctic ice cap is shrinking, study shows; rate accelerating since 1985. Is this just a short term blip? If anything, over centennial timescales we would expect it to be growing relative to the mid Holocene due to slight changes since then in Earth's orbit, reducing summer insolation.

Meanwhile in the southern hemisphere, Peruvian glacier split triggers deadly tsunami. However, as with any particular extreme weather event, there is no reason to think this specific event was caused by global warming - large parts of glaciers do break away for other reasons.

It was thought that Iceland's volcanic eruption winding down - misleadingly so it seems, since this morning we hear that new Iceland eruption causes glacial flooding. The new vent has opened under the ice cap. This could be much more serious than the previous fissure eruption. Hopefully we'll have more details on what is happening tomorrow.

Another big earthquake in China leaves hundreds dead and thousands injured

Forget CERN, it seems that there are giant natural particle accelerators above thunderclouds No Higg's Bosuns discovered there as yet though!

And the latest on the Clovis Comet theory suggests no evidence to support it: Clovis mammoth hunters: out with a bang or a whimper?
"Something happened 13,000 years ago that we do not understand," said Haynes. "What we can say, though, is that all of the evidence put forth in support of the impact scenario can be sufficiently explained by earthly causes such as climate change, overhunting or a combination of both."
Trouble is, all the research seems to be along the lines of proving there was or their wasn't an impact. Maybe there was, but it wasn't responsible for everything that some attribute to it and all the other proposed explanations also happened and it was only the coincidence of them all occurring around the same time that caused the unprecedented extinct event? (and I do like the idea that an impact breached the ice dam that caused Lake Agassiz to flow into the Arctic, triggering the Younger Dryas and a rapid change in climate which, decimated human's preferred prey and forced those who didn't die out as a consequence to head further south, develop different tools and hunt other species, with a knock on effect down the line ....)

Finally, it's time to get your coats out again as forecasters say more snow is on the way - though, oddly, the Daily Mail omit to mention this was actually forecast last Thursday
A hint that later next weekend we may see the high pressure start to move out into the Atlantic to allow a colder northerly airflow down over the country - which may also bring some spring snow, especially for the Highlands.
Though even a week later there's some doubt over the timing and extent southwards that the colder air will get. As least the Mail didn't copy other tabloids by repeating the nonsense about PWS predicting last summer's "washout" (what washout? Only July was wet) - though PWS did forecast last August would see the highest temperatures ever recorded in England. Just as they are predicting for this summer. And I daresay next summer and next and .........

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