Hey, kids—did you realize it’s the tenth anniversary of Al Gore’s Academy Award and Nobel Prize winning movie, An Inconvenient Truth? Michael Bastasch of the Daily Caller has gone back and checked on some of Gore’s near-term predictions and found—spoiler alert!—that lots of them look pretty silly now:
One of the first glaring claims Gore makes is about Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa. He claims Africa’s tallest peak will be snow-free “within the decade.” Gore shows slides of Kilimanjaro’s peak in the 1970s versus today to conclude the snow is disappearing.
Well, it’s been a decade and, yes, there’s still snow on Kilimanjaro year-round. It doesn’t take a scientist to figure this out. One can just look at recent photos posted on the travel website TripAdvisor.com.
In 2014, ecologists actually monitoring Kilimanjaro’s snowpack found it was not even close to being gone. It may have shrunk a little, but ecologists were confident it would be around for the foreseeable future.
“There are ongoing several studies, but preliminary findings show that the ice is nowhere near melting,” Imani Kikoti, an ecologist at Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, told eturbonews.com.
Actually that one was easy to knock back at the time, since there’s good data showing the slow retreat of Kilimanjaro’s snow going back well into the 19th century, before Ford and GM built their first SUVs.
Bastasch goes through several more Gore howlers, but I’ll just add one of my own from recent studies. Gore made much of Greenland’s ice sheet melting so rapidly you’d think the continent was a grilled cheese sandwich in a pizza oven. Science magazine reports this week that the interior of Greenland’s enormous ice mass appears to be . . . completely stable. Here’s the University of Illinois’s press release about it yesterday:
Scientists studying data from the top of the Greenland ice sheet have discovered that during winter in the center of the world’s largest island, temperature inversions and other low-level atmospheric phenomena effectively isolate the ice surface from the atmosphere — recycling water vapor and halting the loss or gain of ice. A team of climate scientists made the surprising discovery from three years of data collected at Summit Camp, an arid, glaciated landscape 10,500 feet above sea level in the middle of the Greenland ice sheet.
“This is a place, unlike the rest of the ice sheet, where ice is accumulating,” says Max Berkelhammer, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Berkelhammer is first author on the study, reported in Science Advances, an open-access online publication of the journal Science.
For fans of classic films, here’s my 46-minute rebuttal of Gore’s movie, though it is way out of date now, since it was done before climategate, before the duration of the temperature pause became evident, and before the numerous recent studies concluding that most of the UN IPCC computer models overestimate climate sensitivity.
And here’s the seven-minute update I did one year later—complete with a Bruce Jenner reference!