Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Ice, Ice, Maybe

The president says that global warming will make the Arctic Ocean ice free. So explain to me again why we need any icebreakers let alone more of them?

President Obama calls for more icebreakers:

On Tuesday, the president called for the United States to buy or build more Coast Guard icebreaking vessels in the Arctic, which has emerged as a growing region for commerce, tourism, and industry. The Arctic is believed to hold up to 25 percent of the world's untapped oil and gas supplies.

Icebreakers – for those in warmer climes – are hulking ships which sail into the big sheets of ice that cover the ocean in the Arctic, breaking up the frozen mass to open lanes of travel for other vessels.

I'm no expert, but if, as global warmers say, the planet is warming enough to make the Arctic Ocean an ice-free sea, why do we need more icebreakers? Or any icebreakers at all?

UPDATE: Thankfully, we've deployed an alternate ice-defeating system until we can build new icebreakers:

In climate bid, Obama stares down melting Alaska glacier

President Barack Obama stared down a melting glacier in Alaska on Tuesday in a dramatic use of his presidential pulpit to sound the alarm on climate change.

Remember, presidential laser-beam eyes are only a temporary measure. Build those icebreakers now before it is too late to cope with the scourge of melting Arctic sea ice!

UPDATE: As an aside, that particular glacier that was stared down has been retreating since 1815.

UPDATE: On the other hand, this is actually new:

Five Chinese Navy ships are sailing in international waters in the Bering Sea off Alaska, the Pentagon said on Wednesday, in an apparent first for China's military that came as U.S. President Barack Obama toured the U.S. state.

Perhaps we should save the power of eye beams in case the Chinese try to build islands in international waters in the Bering Sea.

After all, China might not be content to be a "near Arctic state" for long.