Grave News about Glaciers – they are disappearing

For many years exact observations have been taken of the movements of glaciers in the Alps.  The results of last year’s records have just been published, and show that all the glaciers in the Rhone district of Switzerland are in retreat, some of them to an extent which may almost be described as alarming.

The famous glaciers of the Rhone have shrunk several thousand feet in the last 20 years; considerably more than 100ft a year.

Except over a small area, it is generally understood, the glaciers of the world are retreating to the mountains. The glacier on Mount Sermiento in South America, which descended to the sea when Darwin found it in 1836, is now separated from the shore by a vigorous growth of timber.

The Jakobshavn glacier in Greenland has retreated four miles since 1850, and the East glacier in Spitzbergen is more than a mile away from its original terminal moraine. In Scandinavia the snowline is further up the mountains, and the glaciers have withdrawn 3,000ft. from the lowlands in a century. The Araphoe glacier in the Rocky Mountains has been melting at a rapid rate for several years. In view of these facts we should not be too sceptical when old men assure us that winters nowadays are not to be compared with the winters of their boyhood.

HOWEVER these reports are not about today’s “climate emergency”, but come from the days when man-made CO2 emissions were barely 5% of today’s level and the glaciers started to recede before 1840 when man-made CO2 emissions were less than 0.5%.  See original reports below from 1902-1911.

There is no doubt that the climate has warmed since the end of the Little Ice Age which ended around the early 1800s.  (New York Harbour, the Baltic Sea & most of the rivers in Europe used to freeze over. Winters were bitterly cold and prolonged, reducing the growing season by several weeks. [Not a good time to live] nb Bruegel paintings c1600).  London held numerous frost fairs on the Thames between 1608-1814 when the ice was up to a foot thick. Solid ice was reported extending for miles off the coasts of the southern North Sea (England, France and the Low Countries), causing severe problems for shipping and preventing the use of many harbours. Near Manchester, the ground was frozen to 27 inches (69 cm), in Somerset, to more than 4 feet (1.2 m).

North Atlantic sediments accumulated since the end of the last ice age, nearly 12,000 years ago, show regular increases in the amount of coarse sediment grains deposited from icebergs melting in the now open ocean, indicating a series of 1–2 °C warming events recurring every 1,500 years or so with cooler spells in between. The most recent cooling event was the Little Ice Age. Prior to that there was the very well documented Medieval Warm Period.

Look at this map of Glacier Bay in Alaska. [The melting of glaciers elsewhere in the world follow a similar pattern to that shown here.] See if you can spot when natural melting was replaced by man-made melting? Clue: The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says that humans have caused global warming since about 1950.

Then decide for yourself if it is all your fault or are you being dragged into a modern day hysteria reminiscent of the Catholic Inquisitions whereby Copernicus was found to be “foolish and absurd in philosophy” and Galileo was forced to recant and even so ended his days under house arrest?  Similar to today, many scientists were fearful of questioning the official orthodoxy.


Glacier Bay, Alaska, showing positions of glacier terminus since 1780


Glaciers melting since c 1820


Jakobshavn Glacier, Greenland


Newcastle Morning Herald  04.10.1902


The Tribune, Scranton, Pennsylvania, 27.07.1903


The Braidwood Dispatch, NSW,  28.09.1910


The Catholic Press 18.05.1911


A Warmer World.

SOME great world change is taking place on the Antarctic Continent. Its glaciers are shrinking.

Commander L.A. Bernacchi, who visited the South Polar land 30 years ago, says that the Great Ice Barrier which fronts the continent with a wall of ice for 250 miles has receded at least 30 miles since it was first seen and surveyed. Sir James Ross, who went out on the earliest Antarctic expedition of the nineteenth century [1839-43], and those who followed him, left clear descriptions of this tremendous ice frontage and its position. It was a cliff 150ft. high and 1000ft. thick. But now it appears to be continuing its century-long process of shrinking; and that process may have been going on for centuries. It might imply, unless it is offset by some increase of ice in another less explored part of the Antarctic, that the climate of the South Pole is changing and becoming warmer.

The shrinkage of the Alpine glaciers of Europe is a well-known and carefully measured fact. Professor Buchanan, of Edinburgh, drew attention to it twenty years ago, and showed from old and accurate drawings of the Lower Orindelwald, the Rhone, and the Morteratcch glaciers that they were retreating rapidly. This led to the continuous measurement of the Swiss glaciers as well as examination of other glaciers of the Northern Hemisphere, in Greenland, Alaska, and elsewhere. From these measurements many geologists concluded that the northern part of the globe was still recovering from the last of its Ice Ages, of which the more southerly of its glaciers in Europe were a relic. If all the glaciers of the Southern Hemisphere as well as those of the Northern are shrinking, the geologists would have a new problem to examine. It would be whether, instead of areas of cold and ice having shifted on the earth, the whole globe is growing warmer. Even if that could be shown the change might prove to be temporary.

The Queenslander, Brisbane 21.07.1932


Giant Of Geology/Glaciology, Prof. Christian Schlüchter, Refutes CO2 …
Feature Interview Throws Climate Science Into Disarray  –  (see his presentation below)

By P Gosselin  9. June 2014

This post is about an interview by the online Swiss Der Bund with Swiss geology giant Christian Schlüchter titled: “Our society is fundamentally dishonest“. In it he criticizes climate science for its extreme tunnel vision and political contamination.

Geologist Sebastain Lüning sent me an e-mail where he writes: “This is probably the best interview from a geologist on climate change that I have read for a long while. My highest respect for Prof. Schlüchter.” Fritz Vahrenholt calls it “impressive”.

(Hat-tip: Bernd Felsche and Wolfgang Neumann at Facebook.)

His discovery of 4000-year old chunks of wood at the edge of glaciers in Switzerland in the 1990s unintentionally thrust the distinguished geologist into the lion’s den of climate science. Today the retired professor and author of more than 250 papers speaks up in an interview.

Almost glacier-free Alps 2000 years ago

Early in the interview Schlüchter reminds us that during Roman times in the Alps “the forest line was much higher than it is today; there were hardly any glaciers. Nowhere in the detailed travel accounts from Roman times are glaciers mentioned.” He criticizes today’s climate scientists for focusing on a time period that is “indeed much too short“.

In the interview, Schlüchter recounts how he in the 1990s found a large chunk of wood near the leading edge of a glacier. The chunk of wood, he describes, looked as if it had been dragged across a cheese shredder. It was clear to Schlüchter that the specimen had to be very old. Indeed laboratory analysis revealed that it was 4000 years old. Next they found multiple wood fragments with the same age, all serving to fill in a major piece of the paleo-puzzle. His conclusion: Today where one finds the Lower Aare-Glacier in the Bernese Alps, it used to be “a wide landscape with a wildly flowing river“. It was warmer back then.

Until the 1990s, scientists thought that the Alps glaciers had been more or less consistently intact and only began retreating after the end of the Little Ice Age. Schlüchter’s findings showed that glacial retreats of the past also had been profound.

This threw climate science into chaos and it remains unreconciled today.

Ice-free 5800 of the last 10,000 years

But not all scientists were thrilled or fascinated by Schlüchter’s impressive discoveries. He quickly found himself the target of scorn. Swiss climate scientist Heinz Wanner was reluctant to concede Schlüchter’s findings. Schlüchter tells Der Bund:

I wasn’t supposed to find that chunk of wood because I didn’t belong to the close-knit circle of Holocene and climate researchers. My findings thus caught many experts off guard: Now an ‘amateur’ had found something that the Holocene and climate experts should have found.”

Schlüchter tells of other works, which also have proven to be a thorn to mainstream climate science, involving the Rhone glacier.

His studies and analyses of oxygen isotopes unequivocally reveal that indeed “the rock surface had been ice-free 5800 of the last 10,000 years”.

Distinct solar imprint on climate

What’s more worrisome, Schlüchter’s findings show that cold periods can strike very rapidly. Near the edge of Mont Miné Glacier his team found huge tree trunks and discovered that they all had died in just a single year. The scientists were stunned.

The year of death could be determined to be exactly 8195 years before present. The oxygen isotopes in the Greenland ice show there was a marked cooling around 8200.”

That finding, Schlüchter states, confirmed that the sun is the main driver in climate change.

Today’s “rapid” changes are nothing new

In the interview he casts doubt on the UN projection that the Alps will be almost glacier-free by 2100, reminding us that “the system is extremely dynamic and doesn’t function linearly” and that “extreme, sudden changes have clearly been seen in the past“. History’s record is unequivocal on this.

Schlüchter also doesn’t view today’s climate warming as anything unusual, and poses a number of unanswered questions:

Why did the glaciers retreat in the middle of the 19th century, although the large CO2 increase in the atmosphere came later? Why did the earth ‘tip’ in such a short time into a warming phase? Why did glaciers again advance in 1880s, 1920s and 1980s? […] Sooner or later climate science will have to answer the question why the retreat of the glacier at the end of the Little Ice Age around 1850 was so rapid.”

On science: “Our society is fundamentally dishonest”

CO2 fails to answer many open questions. Already we get the sense that hockey stick climate claims are turning out to be rather sorrowful and unimaginative wives’ tales. He summarizes on the refusal to acknowledge the reality of our past: “Our society is fundamentally dishonest“.

“Helping hands for politicians”

In Der Bund interview Schlüchter describes a meeting in England that turned him off completely. The meeting, to which he was “accidentally” invited, was led by “someone of the East Anglia Climate Center who had come under fire in the wake of the ‘Climategate’ e-mails”:

The leader of the meeting spoke like some kind of Father. He was seated at a table in front of the those gathered and he took messages. He commented on them either benevolently or dismissively. Lastly it was about tips on research funding proposals and where to submit them best. For me it was impressive to see how the leader of the meeting collected and selected information. For me it also gets down to the credibility of science. […] Today many natural scientists are helping hands of politicians, and no longer scientists who occupy themselves with new knowledge and data. And that worries me.”

Schlüchter adds that the reputation of science among young researchers is becoming more damaged the more it surrenders to politics. He indirectly blasts IPCC chief scientist Thomas Stocker:

Inventing the devil was one of man’s greatest inventions ever achieved. You can make a lot of money when you paint him on the wall.”

Northern hemisphere still gripped in ice age mode

Schlüchter also says that the northern hemisphere is still in the ice age mode and that the glaciers during the Roman times were at least 300 to 500 meters higher than today. “The mean temperature was one and half degree Celsius above that of 2005. The current development is nothing new in terms of the earth’s history.”

At the end of the interview Schlüchter says that solar activity is what is sitting at the end of the lever of change, with tectonics and volcanoes chiming in.

Christian Schlüchter is Professor emeritus for Quaternary Geology and Paleoclimatology at the University of Bern in Switzerland. He has authored/co-authored over 250 papers.

The above article is reproduced from:

Watch Prof. Schlüchter below:


19th century glacier retreat in the Alps preceded the emergence of industrial black carbon deposition on high-alpine glaciers

Michael Sigl1,2, Nerilie J. Abram3, Jacopo Gabrieli4, Theo M. Jenk1,2, Dimitri Osmont1,2,5,and Margit Schwikowski1,2,5

  • 1Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry, Paul Scherrer Institut, 5232 Villigen, Switzerland
  • 2Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
  • 3Research School of Earth Sciences and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science, Australian National University, Canberra 2601 ACT, Australia
  • 4Institute for the Dynamics of the Environmental Sciences, National Research Council (IDPA-CNR), 30172 Venice, Italy
  • 5Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland

Full paper here:




More on this topic here:  Which of these floods on the Danube River was caused by man-made CO2 ?  You decide!