Environment Forum

Arctic expedition reaches the ice

    U.S. and Russian scientists exploring the Arctic ocean finally reached ice on Monday, about 435 miles (700 km) northwest of Barrow, Alaska.

    On a year when the Arctic sea ice has receded in the summer to its third-smallest on record, researchers on the RUSALCA expedition got the opportunity to study the water, sea life and the ocean floor at a location where there is rarely open water.

    The mission’s science chief, Terry Whitledge, said it he did not expect explore such a northerly location without an icebreaker. 

    The team took core samples from the seabed, more than 600 metres (1,968 feet) down from the surface.

    “We think that is our biggest scientific gain,” Whitledge, of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, said by satellite phone from the bridge of the research vessel Professor Khromov.

Tasty find for Russian researchers in Alaska

You have to be creative when you’re a Russian scientist, bad weather is preventing your research ship from picking you up for your expedition and you’ve got time to kill in Nome, Alaska.

Such was the case for a group waiting to begin a joint mission with U.S. researchers in the Bering Sea in late August.

But a side trip into the rolling, lichen-covered hills around Nome, the one-time gold rush town on the Alaskan coast, proved to be more than worth their while for the prize they stumbled upon — mushrooms.

Taiwan typhoon responses to get help from outer space

Slow-moving Morakot stormed into Taiwan’s typhoon hall of infamy this past week, rescue teams complained, largely because clouds hovered in the hardest hit areas even after the killer storm had passed.

The clouds blocked any aerial views of mountain villages in southern Taiwan where hundreds of people are presumed dead from landslides.

Disaster officials on this western Pacific island, a veteran of raging late summer typhoons, couldn’t even confirm the biggest landslide, which buried a village that was home to more than 1,000 people, until a day after it had happened.

Wall Street Journal of Atmospheric Sciences

Stuart Gaffin is a climate researcher at Columbia University and a regular contributor with his blog “Exhausted Earth”. Thomson Reuters is not responsible for the content – the views are the author’s alone.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) editorial page occupies a uniquely obnoxious place in commentary on global warming. Over the many years that I have read with trepidation what they write, I have yet to see accurate presentation of the science issues.

They have fed their readers so much misinformation and confusion one can only conclude they consider complete fabrication fair play in the discussion.