Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Rescue in the Antarctic

I continue to be amused by the situation of the "Global Warming" experts who were marooned by ice aboard a vessel in the Antarctic and have now been moved by a Chinese helicopter to an Australian Rescue ship.
Their aim had been to follow the route and repeat scientific investigations made by Douglas Mawson and his team between 1911 and 1914 to track how quickly the Antarctic's sea ice was disappearing.
Amongst those on board were reporters from the BBC, ABC and the Guardian along with Australian academic Chris Turney who apparently organised the whole thing.
One of the interesting things to emerge was that the expedition didn't include a meteorologist amongst its members, probably because such people deal with what is actually happening rather than what they would like to be happening. They had to seek weather advice by radio from Australian and US based forecasting organisations!
This whole rescue is going to cost a fortune (at least in my terms), helicopter operation doesn't come cheaply, nor do ice breakers and similar vessels. It seems that the Australian taxpayer is going to have to pick up the tab, I hope they are happy with the idea. If I was in charge, I'd have left them there until the ice melted or the ship sunk, forcing them to make their way to civilisation using sledges as Douglas Mawson and his team would have had to do a hundred years ago.
I suggest that before any more "cruises" like this are allowed to take place, the Australian Government should insist that they have adequate insurance; judging by what I am quoted for a fortnight's cruise in the Caribbean, that might bring these costly, but pointless activities to an end. An H&S risk assessment by an independent assessor also wouldn't come amiss!

Full details in "Watts Up With That" - Ship of Fools Rescued at Last
and Jo Nova's Blog - Rescue ship stuck too, climatologists asks skeptics Coleman & Watts for weather-info

The BBC and ABC now prefer to refer to the ship being on a cruise rather than an expedition and are toning down the whole affair as their reporters will not now be able to return triumphant with the news that the sea ice is melting fast.

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