As I understand it, their explanation involves imagining that Global Warming is melting Antarctic ice that is made of fresh water. Because there is so much melting going on down there the ocean is less salty. Because it is less salty, it freezes more readily.
This idea may sound intelligent to the uninitiated, however to those who have bothered study sea-ice even a little, it is not a very thought-out idea. In fact I would call it pablum for blithering idiots, but that would be rude.
While lurking about seeking data I chanced upon a website which has got to be the absolute antithesis of a pro-global-warming website. I found it delightful, for rather than seizing upon signs our world is warmer it seizes upon any scrap of evidence we are on the verge of the next ice age. It is named, appropriately, “Ice Age Now.”
I chanced upon the site because they talked about the record-setting antarctic sea ice here: http://iceagenow.info/2014/09/record-antarctic-sea-ice-size-contiguous-united-states/
I submitted this somewhat long-winded comment to them, which likely deserved to be here, as a post of my own:
I find it interesting to watch how this amazing increase in Antarctic sea-ice can be attributed to “warming.”
I suppose that, if you deeply believe in the idea of Global Warming, the creative side is activated. You are like a schoolboy making excuses for undone homework. It has nothing to do with science or truth; and everything to do with avoiding the punishment of being “kept after” by a teacher, when your soul longs to be outside in the springtime. In other words, it is bull. (I myself was very good at bull, as a schoolboy, so I recognize it in adults who never grew up.)
Their illogical thought-process seems conclude that the increase in sea-ice must be due to warming, and in the desperate effort to create a scenario where warming creates ice they hit upon the idea that there must be more fresh water, (which freezes at a higher temperature), and that the fresh water must have come from melting.
The problem is that the continent of Antarctica is too cold. Even in the warmest part of summer there is very little melting. There are no rivers pouring off the edge of the ice into the sea. In terms of rivers, I only know of a single stream on a desert-dry, ice-free area of the continent, and I think it is less than ten miles long, and sinks into the sand without ever reaching the sea. And that is during the warmest time of year, while the ice we now see being formed has been formed during the coldest time of year.
So the imagined increase in fresh water cannot be due to melting on the continent itself.
I have to give them credit for the next idea. (I give schoolboys credit for their most ingenious excuses for undone homework, as well.)
They decided the fresh water must come from the sea-ice itself, and the melting was occurring on the underside of the ice, due to the up-welling of warmer water.
This is unlikely, as temperatures are so low during their winter that the sea-ice is growing thicker, not thinner, but even if you humor them, their ideas fail.
There actually are up-wellings of warmer water. As the wind comes screaming off the continent at extremely low temperatures it pushes both the ice and surface water away from shore, and because that water must be replaced, the replacement comes from deeper down, where the water is a little warmer. This water nearly instantly freezes, but the new ice is also pushed away from shore. (You need to understand the winds can be over 100 mph at times.) Amazingly there are areas of open water along the shores of Antarctica, called “polynyas”, even when temperatures are minus fifty and the wind-chill is ridiculous.
The thing to remember is that this open water is not caused by warmth, but by cold. The colder the air gets, the more it sinks, and the more it sinks the faster the winds come screaming down from the highlands to the sea. The colder it gets the stronger the wind is, the more the ice is pushed away from land, and the more warm water up-wells.
It may seem counter-intuitive, but if there was really warming occurring on Antarctica then there would be less open water. The winds would be less, less ice would be pushed off-shore, and there would be less up-welling of slightly warmer water. The polynyas would be smaller.
However you must ignore that, to understand their excuse, which is that the slightly warmer up-welled water travels under the sea-ice, melting it as it goes, and then, at the outer edge, the fresher water emerges and, because it is fresher, freezes more readily, resulting in more sea-ice than usual.
This idea has some serious problems. The main problem is that we are talking about sea-ice. We are not talking about those amazing Antarctic ice-burgs that are hundred of feet thick. We are talking sea-ice, which must be grown from scratch, and which at first is only a few inches thick. Then it is a foot thick. Then it is two feet thick. And so on. So where is the melting occurring?
How can any fresh water be created? In actual fact the water gets more salty, because brine is extruded from the ice as it freezes. (This brine can be so cold it forms a sort of icicle as it dribbles down through fresher water, and there is amazing film of such icicles reaching the bottom, and freezing passing starfish in their tracks.)
What is really fun to watch is, as these illogical excuses are concocted, the excuse-maker will often try to go all technical, apparently hoping to back you off by talking of up-welling and down-welling, assuming you are uneducated about such matters. (The old baffle-them-with-bullsh-t ploy.)
If you have neither the time nor patience to bring up the points I have just made, it is jarring to their illogic if you simply bring up what was stated back in 2007.
(An amazing number of Alarmists have only recently begun paying attention. They have no idea what was said in 2007.)
Back then the Antarctic ice had been decreasing a little, after the hugely warm El Nino of 1998, and we were assured it was “settled science” that Antarctic ice would continue to decrease.
This decrease was very important to the big picture of Global Warming. We were told there was a magic word, “albedo.” Basically the idea was that white ice reflected warm sunlight, while dark, open water absorbed warm sunlight, and therefore less ice would make for warmer oceans, further sea-ice melt, and a dangerously warmer world. We were assured that it was an established fact that the sea-ice was melting away.
Instead we are seeing “settled science” become unsettled. Rather than more dark, open water, there is less. For crying out loud! There are more than a million more square kilometers of white, sunlight-reflecting ice this year than at the same time last year! Surely that should lead to a colder world. It surely must derange all the carefully modeled results based on “albedo equations.”
I have the strange sense that using the word “albedo” will soon become politically incorrect.