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Anorak | Chasing Ice baptises climate chance sceptics to the new religion

Chasing Ice baptises climate chance sceptics to the new religion

by | 17th, December 2012

CAN Climate Change sceptics – those who seek for evidence that global warming is man made and happening – be converted? Will a new film called Chasing Ice baptise?

Chasing Ice director Jeff Orlowski wants his film to make a difference:

[P]eople are really starting to understand that climate change is a reality. That is what I hope Chasing Ice can do. James has captured undeniable visual evidence of climate change. And when people see the film, they get it. We’ve had hundreds of people come up to us after screenings and tell us that they used to be skeptical of climate change, but now they understand it. One woman [seen in the video above] told us how she spent years arguing with her friends that climate change was not real, to the point of not allowing climate-change believers to visit her house. But after seeing Chasing Ice, she knew she had to make amends.

The trailer:

James Balog took footage of Alaska’s Columbia glacier between May 2007 and September 2011. He says:

[T]he science community is really interesting because they have a huge amount of knowledge. You canot believe what the specialists in these various fields know. You go to these science meetings and you sit there in rooms like this and you listen to presentations. They know a thousand times more information about amazing world-changing events than ever gets out into the public awareness. So the challenge is to be able to kind of filter it. To take all of that information, run it through some kind of funnel, and way down at the bottom of that funnel be able to turn it into something that we can make new stories and good pictures out of.

That’s the real problem. And part of that problem is to make the story of what they’re doing simple. And you spend a lot of time to work with them to squeeze down a lot of complexity into something that’s a really clear, straightforward narrative thread that’s still accurate to the intentions that they have. That was the real creative challenge to get all of that right, and this film has been vetted by many many scientists over and over again to tweak the nuances and get everything just right.

Anthony Watts wonders:

..In the video, Balog shows what glaciers do normally: calve to the sea, no surprise there. And yes, there was some reduction in the terminus between May 2007 and September 2011. But is it really honest to show the glacier time-lapse with different endpoints (May versus September) when you know those endpoints have seasonal differences?

And, more importantly, is a four-year period statistically valid for comparison of anything climate related?

If any of us used four years worth of data to make a point about climate, our warmer friends would have a veritable cow… I am in fact going to show more than four years worth of Alaskan glacier data…here’s a map from USGS that James Balog will never, ever, show in his videos or photo essays, because it blows his argument (and meal ticket) right out of the water: 

The source of that map is the USGS Monthly Newsletter for July 2001, seen here.

 Note that the majority of the glacier retreat occurred well before CO2 was said to be a problem, when CO2 was at the “safe” level below 350 parts per million as espoused by weepy Bill McKibben and Dr. James Hansen of NASA GISS.

Balog may be an “expert photographer” but he’s a pretty shoddy historian. Maybe instead of “chasing ice” he should chase historical facts, it might help him be a skeptic again.

Do you believe?



Posted: 17th, December 2012 | In: Reviews Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink