Paul Driessen

co-authored by scientist Willie Soon

First American Ann Bancroft and Norwegian Liv Arnesen trekked off across the Arctic in the dead of the 2007 winter, “to raise awareness about global warming,” by showcasing the wide expanses of open water they were certain they would encounter. Instead, icy blasts drove temperatures inside their tent to -58 F, while outside the nighttime air plunged to -103 F.

Open water is rare at those temperatures, the intrepid explorers discovered. Facing frostbite, amputated toes and even death, the two were airlifted out 18 miles into their 530-mile expedition.

Next winter it was British swimmer and ecologist Lewis Gordon Pugh, who planned to breast-stroke across open Arctic seas. Same story. Then fellow Brit Pen Hadow gave it a go, but it was another no-go.

This year Aussie Tom Smitheringale set off to demonstrate “the effect that global warming is having on the polar ice caps.” He was rescued and flown out, after coming “very close to the grave,” he confessed.

Hopefully, all these rescue helicopters were solar-powered. Even hardened climate disaster deniers wouldn’t want these brave (if misguided) adventurers to be relegated to choppers fueled by hated hydrocarbons. They may be guilty of believing their own alarmist press releases – and the likes of Al Gore, James Hansen, the IPCC and Michael Mann, father of broken hockey sticks and Mann-made global warming. But missing digits or ideological impurity is a high price to pay.

Nonetheless, it’s easy to envision them dreaming of stoking up the boiler from the wreck of the “Alice May” over yonder on Lake Lebarge and chattering in their sleep: “Since I left Plumtree down in Tennessee, it’s the first time I’ve been warm.”

The explorers tried to put the best spin on their failures. “One of the things we see with global warming is unpredictability,” Bancroft-Arnesen expedition coordinator Anne Atwood said helpfully. “But please know global warming is real, and with it can come extreme unpredictable changes in temperature,” added Arnesen.

“Global warming can mean colder. It can mean wetter. It can mean drier. That’s what we’re talking about,” Greenpeace activist Stephen Guilbeault chimed in.

Who was it that defined insanity as hitting your thumb repeatedly with a hammer, expecting it won’t hurt the next time? And who’s paying for all these rescue operations? Mostly the same taxpayers who are also paying for the junk science that insists the entire ice cap will melt away by 2014.


Paul Driessen

Paul Driessen is senior policy adviser for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT), which is sponsoring the All Pain No Gain petition against global-warming hype. He also is a senior policy adviser to the Congress of Racial Equality and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green Power - Black Death.

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