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Good News! 99.989% of the Antarctic Ice Sheet Didn’t Melt!

Guest lampooning by David Middleton

99.989% rounds up to 100%.  This is fantastic news… Unless you’re a Warmunist.  Fortunately for Warmunists, Science News tailors their headlines to your preferences…


Antarctica has lost about 3 trillion metric tons of ice since 1992

Ice loss is accelerating and that’s helped raise the global sea level by about 8 millimeters


Antarctica is losing ice at an increasingly rapid pace. In just the last five years, the frozen continent has shed ice nearly three times faster on average than it did over the previous 20 years.

An international team of scientists has combined data from two dozen satellite surveys in the most comprehensive assessment of Antarctica’s ice sheet mass yet. The conclusion: The frozen continent lost an estimated 2,720 billion metric tons of ice from 1992 to 2017, and most of that loss occurred in recent years, particularly in West Antarctica. Before 2012, the continent shed ice at a rate of 76 billion tons each year on average, but from 2012 to 2017, the rate increased to 219 billion tons annually.

Combined, all that water raised the global sea level by an average of 7.6 millimeters, the researchers report in the June 14 Nature. About two-fifths of that rise occurred in the last five years, an increase in severity that is helping scientists understand how the ice sheet is responding to climate change.

“When we place that against the [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s] sea level projections, prior to this Antarctica was tracking the low end of sea-level-rise projections,” says study coauthor Andrew Shepherd, an earth scientist at the University of Leeds in England. “Now it’s tracking the upper end.”


Science Snooze

Is context a violation of the Warmunist Manifesto?

Area (km2) Volume (km3)  Mass (Gt) Significance of 3 trillion metric tons
East Antarctica   10,153,170 75%     26,039,200 86%   23,870,135 0.013%
West Antarctica    1,918,170 14%       3,262,000 11%    2,990,275 0.100%
Antarctic Peninsula       446,690 3%         227,100 1%       208,183 1.441%
Ross Ice Shelf       536,070 4%         229,600 1%       210,474 1.425%
Ronne-Filchner ice shelves       532,200 4%         351,900 1%       322,587 0.930%
Antarctic ice sheet   13,586,400 100%     30,109,800 100%   27,601,654 0.011%

Ice sheet areas and volumes are from USGS Professional Paper 1386–A–2: State of the Earth’s Cryosphere at the Beginning of the 21st Century: Glaciers, Global Snow Cover, Floating Ice, and Permafrost and Periglacial Environments.

I obtained the mass by multiplying the volume by 0.9167.

The total mass of the Antarctic Ice Sheet is about 27,601,654 BILLION metric tons… 27,602 TRILLION metric tons… 3 is 0.011% of 27,602.  Zero-point-zero-one-one percent is indistinguishable from Mr. Blutarski’s grade point average…


Even if all of the melting was from the only place in Antarctica that’s actually losing ice (only slightly sarcastic), the Antarctic Peninsula, it would only be 1.441%… Leaving 98.559% of the ice on the Antarctic Peninsula un-melted, along with 100% of the ice on the other 99% of the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

I thought about putting together some sort of clever graphics for this like I did with Greenland, but I couldn’t figure out how to put something so small (the ice loss) and something so big (the Antarctic Ice Sheet) in the same image at the same scale and still be able to see the ice loss.  I think Dean Wormer suffices.

But, but, but… What about the 8 millimeters of sea level rise?





Note: Wherever I use variations of the word “melt,” please read “ice mass loss”… Or I’ll smash another guitar.