PhotoIt’s not often that a scientific research paper generates the kind of media attention and scientific community buzz that resulted from a recent study on the apparent inevitability of substantial Antarctic glacial melting.


The early May research headed by lead author Eric Rignot of NASA called attention to melting now under way in Antarctica that CBS News anchor Scott Pelley reported “cannot be stopped.”

“Scientists say the situation is almost certainly unstoppable,” NBC News Anchor Brian Mitchell reported.

Rignot cautioned that the research indicates “we’ve passed the point of no return … It’s just a matter of time before these glaciers disappear to the sea.” While he indicated that the full melt, at the current pace, might not occur for two centuries, he pointed too to evidence suggesting the likelihood of an accelerating pace.

“There’s probably nothing that can be done to stop this,” Rignot said.

“This is really happening,” lead NASA lead polar ice researcher Tom Wagner said. “This weak underbelly of Antarctica is in fact starting to float out into the sea, and there’s not a lot to hold it back.”

A “This is Not Cool” video on the report by independent videographer Peter Sinclair is the first to be posted under the new Yale Climate Connections name, formerly The Yale Forum on Climate Change & The Media. The official transition to that newly named site is to get underway over the next few weeks, initially with a largely cosmetic rebranding, then to be followed by a substantial overhaul and a more multi-media emphasis aimed at better reaching the general public.

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