How does rising atmospheric CO2 affect marine organisms?

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Antarctic Sea Ice Extent: How Has It Changed Since 1979?

Paper Reviewed
Turner, J., Hosking, J.S., Bracegirdle, T.J., Marshall, G.J. andj Phillips, T. 2015. Recent changes in Antarctic Sea Ice. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A 373: 20140163.

In a world in which increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations are being blamed for what is claimed to be a spate of unprecedented global warming, we are told (by climate alarmists) that this warming is leading to the melting of vast amounts of polar ice, which in turn will lead to a subsequent significant sea level rise. And, therefore, it is only natural that some of the world's climate scientists would be measuring just how much of the sea ice surrounding Antarctica may have disappeared lately, and how well that loss could be "hindcast" by the most up-to-date state-of-the-art climate models.

Taking on this challenge, and working with sea ice data obtained from the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center, Turner et al. (2015) discovered that "total sea ice extent (SIE) across the Southern Ocean [which surrounds Antarctica] has increased since the late 1970s, with the annual mean increasing at a rate of 186 x 103 km2 per decade." And with not even the sign (positive or negative) of the observed change in SIE meshing with climate alarmist expectations, they next went on to see if the CMIP5 climate models could do any better in this regard, which one would surely hope they could.

However, the results of this exercise revealed, in Turner et al.'s words, that "most of the historical runs of the CMIP5 models had Southern Ocean sea ice decreasing in extent over 1979-2005," just like the world's climate alarmists had also been wrongly predicting. In fact, "the multi-model mean SIE had sea ice decreasing in every month of the year, with the largest percentage loss of about 12% per decade occurring in February."

Clearly, therefore, CMIP5 climate models would appear to be totally unsuited for predicting the future course of Earth's sea ice extent.

Posted 31 October 2015