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Greenland Episode Exposes Repeated Exaggeration of Weather Events

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
Yulong Snow Mountain Glacier and Environmental Observation Research Station via AP

In the past two months, the news media was filled with pictures and articles about the melting of the Greenland ice sheet. Unfortunately, to their dismay, the sensationalists’ dream of a Greenland melt was halted when the ice levels jumped back up to record highs.


This is just one of the countless incidences in which climate doomsayers have hijacked weather phenomena and used them to push their climate doomsday theories.

Greenland is a massive island covered mostly in ice. Many consider it a good indicator of the global warming trend due to its proximity to the Arctic and its being the only permanent ice sheet outside Antarctica.

Doomsayers and the news media exaggerate even the slightest decline in Greenland’s ice mass. They quickly seize the opportunity and claim that the melting of ice sheets is a direct result of human-induced global warming.

During the past two months, above average ice loss in Greenland provided the right opportunity for the alarmists.

“Greenland’s ‘unusual’ melting sea ice captured in stunning image,” read the BBC headlines on June 18, and I had more than 3 notifications to the article on the same day from Google. “Greenland’s summer melts have started early, and they’re very bad this year,” said another headline on Livescience.

This week, the Press Trust of India released an elaborate news article which claimed a 100 percent ice-free Greenland by the year 3000, if the greenhouse gas emissions are not reduced. CNN quoted a scientist saying “all signs seem to be pointing to a large melt season.”


Much to the disappointment of the alarmist mainstream media, Greenland’s ice mass did a U-turn this past week and gained a massive amount of ice.

The current ice extent is among the highest ever measured (for June 25). The ice surface mass by the fourth week of June was found to be among the highest in 39 years, shooting well above the 1981–2010 mean.

The sudden gain in ice mass may not last longer. However, it does expose the alarmist predictions about historic melting and contradicts their claims that Greenland ice is on a rapid decline. 

This is not the first instance where the alarmists are caught hijacking weather phenomena to promote the climate apocalypse.

In 2007, Al Gore made the famous claim that the Arctic summers would be completely ice-free by the early 2010s. But neither did the Arctic become ice-free nor was there any drastic decline in the ice mass. Arctic ice volume is currently at one of its highest levels in the last 11,700 years.

The only major ice mass other than the Arctic and Greenland is found in Antarctica. But Antarctica has largely remained outside the interests of alarmists because of its massive gain in ice mass during the past few decades.


In fact, the story of the Antarctic ice mass gain flies in the face of alarmist doomsday claims, and they’ve tried their best to conceal the news from the mainstream media.

Any well-trained climatologist or student of logic would know that such a conclusion about global warming based on a short-term change in ice mass does not accurately represent the overall trend.

The Greenland story of June, 2019, will be one more addition to the illustrious list of exaggerations made by alarmists in order to achieve climate fear among the public.

Vijay Jayaraj (M.Sc., Environmental Science, University of East Anglia, England), Research Associate for Developing Countries for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, lives in Bangalore, India.

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