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Himalayan glacier-tastrophe rumour melts away

Thermageddon postponed... again

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The geologists fight back

Indian scientists had already expressed their disquiet with exaggerated claims about glaciers. Drawing on 50 years of observation by the Indian Geological Survey and satellite images, the Indian Ministry of Environment and Forests published a report with some startling observations.

Some glaciers had not budged - others had advanced. The report concluded:

"It is premature to make a statement that glaciers in the Himalayas are retreating abnormally because of the global warming. A glacier is affected by a range of physical features and a complex interplay of climatic factors. It is therefore unlikely that the snout movement of any glacier can be claimed to be a result of periodic climate variation until many centuries of observations become available. While glacier movements are primarily due to climate and snowfall, snout movements appear to be peculiar to each particular glacier".

You can download it here (pdf, 3.8MB). You can find another from the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology here (pdf, 369kb).

(The IPCC Fourth Report also stated that "The receding and thinning of Himalayan glaciers can be attributed primarily to the global warming due to increase in anthropogenic emission of greenhouse gases," in the way that the disappearance of children's teeth can be attributed primarily to the Tooth Fairy. The IPCC leaves no room for alternative explanations. The IPCC once promised to publish 'minority reports' on areas where scientists disagreed, but this promise was never fulfilled.)

One consequence is that independent nations are finding that they cannot rely on the IPCC's "science". This is the conclusion India and China have come to; they're joining forces to monitor the glaciers on both sides of the Himalayas.

Last week the New Scientist - the original outlet for this dodgy, unsubstantiated claim - made an early bid for the Best Use of Stable Door as a percussive instrument, 2010 Awards:

"We are entitled to an explanation, before rumour and doubt compound the damage to the image of climate science already inflicted by the leaked 'climategate' emails."

Boom, boom. ®

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