### Global Warming - Has this person ever had a science class

NASA survey measures Arctic snow levels
MSNBC - Reuters, March 21, 2006

This is an article summarizing an interview with NASA's ice expert - Thorsten Markus.

However, this paragraph is unbelievable

While the temperature of water under polar sea ice must be more than 32 degrees Fahrenheit (zero degrees Celsius), the air can be dozens of degrees colder.
Sorry, I just had to comment on this. I actually don't know if this is a simple mistake or complete ignorance, but the paragraph is not in quotes ... so I hope the "ice expert" did not say it.

In fact, if the water was more than 32 degrees Fahrenheit, it would melt the ice.

Most people know that distilled water freezes at about 32 degrees Fahrenheit (zero degrees Celsius) ... but apparently some people don't know that adding salt to the water lowers the freezing point. (That's why you need salt to make ice cream.)

Fahrenheit temperature scale contains a translation of Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit's 1724 article explaining his method of determining zero and 96 degrees. This article explicitly states that zero degrees is defined by placing a thermometer in a mixture of ice, water, and sea salt. (I presume a saturated solution ... but it does not say.) It goes on to say that 32 degrees is a mixture of ice, water, and no salt! (96 degrees is body temperature.)

Now, it is possible that the water under the ice is fresh (in which case the Reuters article would still be wrong), but I really doubt it. There must be SOME salt. In that case, the water temperature can easily go below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

Either way, basic science says that if the water temperature is above 32 degrees Fahrenheit, then there should be no ice. (Well, it will take a while for it to melt ... but it will melt.)

I also have a problem with this statement

The temperature under a layer of snow rarely falls below freezing
If that was true, house foundations would not have to be placed below the freeze zone in all states where it normally snows.

If obvious mistakes like these don't convince you to question everything in the popular press, I don't know what will.

In all fairness, the reporter probably had it right and the editor modified the report to fit the column.

What I think it should have said is

Over the ocean, the ice under a thick layer of snow rarely grows at the water-ice interface because that temperature is too warm. In other words, sea ice grows by adding snow to the top and not by freezing the sea at the bottom.
This article also does not say if more snow is good or bad. This way, it does not matter which is found, the scientist can claim that the result is do to Global Warming and that bad things will happen.

Author: Robert Clemenzi