Media Charged with Performing ‘Climate Porn’ on Arctic Ice Shipping Claims

The media is once again hyping “unprecedented” claims about the Arctic. The UK Independent paper went absolutely gaga in a silly front page headline about the Arctic which screamed: “A Triumph for Man, A Disaster for Mankind.” The September 12, 2009 article in the paper claimed: “Two ships are finishing the first commercial navigation of the fabled Northwest Passage. It is an epic moment — but also a vivid sign of climate change in the Arctic.”

The dissenting website Climate Resistance mocked the UK Independent article, calling it a “Tipping Point for the Climate Porn Industry.” “Headlines don’t get much more alarmist than this,” Climate Resistance wrote on September 13, 2009.

AP’s Seth Borenstein wrote on September 11, 2009 that the Arctic just saw for “the first time a Western shipping company successfully transit the Northeast Passage.” Borenstein reported “researchers said the ability to navigate the route showed climate change.” Borenstein and co-author Matt Moore quoted Mark Serreze, director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo. Claiming “The Arctic is becoming a blue ocean.” “We are seeing an expression of climate change here,” Serreze added.

Andrew Revkin of the New York Times touted the ships alleged feat as well. “For hundreds of years, mariners have dreamed of an Arctic shortcut that would allow them to speed trade between Asia and the West. Two German ships are poised to complete that transit for the first time, aided by the retreat of Arctic ice that scientists have linked to global warming,” Revkin and NYT co-author Andrew E. Kramer wrote on September 10, 2009.

So is this Arctic trek really the shocking and “unprecedented” feat that the media is claiming?

‘False spin’

The reaction has been swift to point out the sheer desperation of the media’s claims about this Arctic trek.

UN IPCC Atmospheric Scientist Richard Courtney rejected AP’s Seth Borenstein’s “spin.” Borenstein puts a false spin by reporting, ‘It’s certainly part of the overall decline of sea ice that we’ve been seeing.’ Well, No! It is not,” Courtney told Climate Depot.

“The [shipping] transits prove nothing concerning increase or decline of sea ice. In fact the transits have become possible because satellite observation of ice cover has become available in recent years. Indeed, the AP article itself reports: Niels Stolberg, the president of Beluga, which is based in the German city of Bremen, called it the