Ship of Fools

Ship of Fools II hampered by…ice

Remember the Ship of Fools? The idiotic scientists who travelled to the Antarctic to show the world how the ice has melted catastrophically, only to be trapped in ice that wasn’t supposed to be there. They had to be rescued in the end,

There is now another Ship of Fools, this time trying to circumnavigate the Arctic to show us how much the ice has melted…except they’re trapped in ice…and getting close to having to be rescued themselves.

An Arctic expedition designed to raise awareness of the perils of man-made climate change is being frustrated by unexpectedly large quantities of?ice.

The Polar Ocean Challenge, whose aim is to circumnavigate the Arctic in a sailing boat while the summer ice-melt allows, is being led by veteran explorer David Hempleman-Adams.?He justifies the expedition thus:

Permanent irreversible change in the sea ice landscape of the Arctic seems inevitable. This will / is already having global economic political, social and environmental implications. A significant change in my lifetime.?see this possibility?to circumnavigate the Arctic as?one I wanted to take despite the risks associated with it in order to increase the worlds attention on the effects of Arctic climate change. There may be a possibility still to curb this progressive warming and melting in the Arctic. But even if this is not possible the next most important thing is to at the very least?highlight the need to??Navigate the Future of the Arctic responsibly?.

I see this possibility?to circumnavigate the Arctic as?one I wanted to take despite the risks associated with it in order to increase the worlds attention on the effects of Arctic climate change. There may be a possibility still to curb this progressive warming and melting in the Arctic. But even if this is not possible the next most important thing is to at the very least?highlight the need to??Navigate the Future of the Arctic responsibly?.

Well, yes, of course, David. That?s just the kind of eco-friendly blah which will have landed your expedition sponsorship from a City of London finance firm. But what if, as the real world evidence increasingly suggests, your prognostications of climate doom are flat out wrong? ? Read more »

Ship of Fools tour leader ignored request from ship captain

Chris Turney has been thrown under the metaphorical bus by two journalists who were on the tour of the melting ice that wasn’t.

It appears that he ignored requests from the ship’s captain to recover all those off the ship asap and instead toke another 6 on a tiki tour of the ice which then led them to being trapped.

At about 10am, after the Captain had struggled to park the ship in the fast ice, three Argos were loaded into the water and towed to the ice edge with an inflatable boat, a Zodiac. But one Argo, with caterpillar tracks instead of wheels, was flooded during the tow. The group lost an hour and a half as staff retrieved the drowned vehicle, which was now useless. They were left with two quad bikes, which could ferry one driver and one passenger, and two Argos, which could carry five or six people.

Mortimer?s report said: ?We discussed the impact of losing 1.5hrs in dealing with the 3 Argo and felt that we had a sufficient time window to complete the operation.

?Decision taken that pax [passengers] would move quickly to Hodgeman Islands and either return immediately or return on next rotation of transport ie approximately 45 minutes later.? he wrote?

At 12.30pm the first rotation of passengers set off for the Hodgeman Islands?

Each driver and staff member had a VHF radio. Both Turney and Fogwill carried satellite phones.? Read more »

Ship of Fools project asked to remove DoC endorsement

The Taxpayers Union has got themselves another scalp. This time it is the Ship of Fools project led by warmist Chris Turney.

It seems that their claim of support from the Department of Conservation was…well…a lie. Further, they have been asked to remove the logo of DoC from their website.

shipoffools-doc Read more »

Turney claims too much ice, caused by warming, is killing penguins

Professor Chris Turney the expedition leader of the Ship of Fools just can’t stop digging.

He is now claiming that too much ice (caused by global warming) is forcing penguins to starve and die.

The article he links to claims this:

In normal years the Adelie penguins that nest at Cape Denison can feed in the open waters of Commonwealth Bay, but now they must walk over 60 km across the ice in order to find food. This giant iceberg has set up a natural experiment that tests the resilience of Adelie penguins to major iceberg calving and stranding events that we expect to become more common with climate change.

Hang on a minute…weren’t we told a few years back that lack of sea ice was killing penguins?? Read more »

Another government agency backs away from the Ship of Fools

Yesterday we blogged about the Department of Conservation backing away from their “supporter” status as revealed by the Taxpayers Union.

Commenters pointed out however that on the AAE Spirit of Mawson website the claims of official sanction by the Department of Conservation at odds with their now public position:


It seems either Chris Turney and his project are lying or the Department of Conservation is lying. Either way it isn’t a good look.

But things aren’t getting any better either. Anthony Watts has revealed that another government agency is distancing themselves from Turney’s Ship of Fools expedition.

Australian Antarctic Division head Tony Fleming says they?ll make efforts to recover the cost of #spiritofmawson?rescue

From radio 666 ABC in Canberra, Australia, full audio follows.

Tony Fleming, director of the Australian Antarctic Division tells Louise Maher the AAD wasn?t linked to the Australasian Antarctic Expedition despite an implication by the expedition head that he had an ?official stamp of approval?.

The expedition was brought to a halt when its ship became trapped in ice, stranding the 52 tourists and scientists on board.

A Chinese ice-breaker which went to its rescue of the Russian ship also became stuck in the ice. The ship?s passengers were airlifted to an Australian ice breaker Aurora Australis ? which is due to reach Hobart in about a fortnight.

Tony Fleming says the AAD will make efforts to recover the cost of the rescue which set back their own missions.

Listen to the audio:

It would certainly appear that Chris Turney is being extremely economical with the truth. If he has misled people in this manner what else has he misled people over?

As Jordan Williams from the Taxpayers union says:

So what’s going on? Are the Australian scientists or DoC fibbing? Or it is a case of the right hand of DoC not being aware of the left is up to? Is it just a coincidence that the Australian?equivalent?of the Ministry for the?Environment was mistakenly included as a ‘supporter’ with our own DoC?

Wait and see? Or demand more answers…maybe there is taxpayer cash propping up the Ship of Fools after all.

From my perspective it looks like Turney may well be fibbing.

Has Chris Turney lied about his support by institutions?

Chris Turney and his now infamous Ship of Fools are looking more and more foolish as evidence mounts as to the real purpose and backing of their little trip of fancy to the ‘ice-free’ waters of the Antarctic.

When this debacle unfolded people started rummaging through their website. One page, that of their supporters, raised alarm bells.

It appears that taxpayers funds may have been used to promote this little warmist holiday camp on ice.

The Taxpayers Union followed up by contacting the New Zealand organisations listed and found some pleasant news…for taxpayers…and not so pleasant news for Chris Turney.

Following the?well publicised?case of global warming scientists being stuck in record pack ice in Antarctica (ironically the?expedition?was intended to study the dwindling sea ice) and the efforts to rescue them, the?Taxpayers’ Union?began enquiries late last year?to find out precisely how much taxpayers’ money the NZ?Government?”supporters” listed on the?exhibition’s?website?had contributed.

It appears that thankfully New Zealand taxpayers’ haven’t forked out the huge amounts feared. In fact, it appears that the?Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) is claiming at least one ‘supporter’ it doesn’t?have…

The?expedition’s?website?lists expedition supporters the Department of Conservation,?Landcare Research, and?the University of Waikato.

Despite asking the?AAE leader (via email?and his very active?twitter account), and the media contacts at the?University?of New South Wales, no one would tell us how much kiwi taxpayers had contributed via the three agencies.

On 1 January we lodged Official Information?Act requests with DoC, Landcare and the University of Waikato.

To DoC’s credit it responded by 8 January, stating that DoC were not participants in the expedition and therefore the information (i.e. what financial and non-financial support was given) does not exist. ? Read more »

Mark Steyn on the Ship of Fools

Mark Steyn comments on the hapless Ship of Fools in his latest column.

Yes, yes, just to get the obligatory ?of courses? out of the way up front: of course ?weather? is not the same as ?climate?; and of course the thickest iciest ice on record could well be evidence of ?global warming?, just as 40-and-sunny and a 35-below blizzard and 12 degrees and partly cloudy with occasional showers are all apparently manifestations of ?climate change?; and of course the global warm-mongers are entirely sincere in their belief that the massive carbon footprint of their rescue operation can be offset by the planting of wall-to-wall trees the length and breadth of Australia, Britain, America and continental Europe.

But still: you?d have to have a heart as cold and unmovable as Commonwealth Bay ice not to be howling with laughter at the exquisite symbolic perfection of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition ?stuck in our own experiment?, as they put it. I confess I was hoping it might all drag on a bit longer and the cultists of the ecopalypse would find themselves drawing straws as to which of their number would be first on the roasting spit. On Douglas Mawson?s original voyage, he and his surviving comrade wound up having to eat their dogs. I?m not sure there were any on this expedition, so they?d probably have to make do with the?Guardian?reporters. Forced to wait a year to be rescued, Sir Douglas later recalled, ?Several of my toes commenced to blacken and fester near the tips.? Now there?s a man who?s serious about reducing his footprint.

But alas, eating one?s shipmates and watching one?s extremities drop off one by one is not a part of today?s high-end eco-doom tourism. Instead, the ice-locked warmists uploaded chipper selfies to YouTube, as well as a self-composed New Year singalong of such hearty un-self-awareness that it enraged even such party-line climate alarmists as Andrew Revkin, the plonkingly earnest enviro-blogger of the?New York Times. A mere six weeks ago, pumping out the usual boosterism, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported that, had Captain Scott picked his team as carefully as Professor Chris Turney, he would have survived. Sadly, we?ll never know ? although I?ll bet Captain Oates would have been doing his ?I am going out. I may be some time? line about eight bars into that New Year number. ? Read more »

Oh so it wasn’t global warming melting the ice after all

While Chris Turney and his Ship of Fools was watching up close just how much ice there really is in Antarctica in the few moment they looked up from the prediction charts that said it wasn’t there, they were also telling us that the ice was melting because of global warming.

Except it wasn’t and isn’t.

Scientists at the British Antarctic Survey say that the melting of the Pine Island Glacier ice shelf in Antarctica has suddenly slowed right down in the last few years, confirming earlier research which suggested that the shelf’s melt does not result from human-driven global warming.

The Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica and its associated sea ice shelf is closely watched: this is because unlike most of the sea ice around the austral continent, its melt rate has seemed to be accelerating quickly since scientists first began seriously studying it in the 1990s.

Many researchers had suggested that this was due to human-driven global warming, which appeared to be taking place rapidly at that time (though it has since?gone on hold for 15 years or so, a circumstance which science is still assimilating).? Read more »

Ice veteran slams Ship of Fools

The Ship of Fools expedition is getting slammed worldwide…except here in new Zealand where we mustn’t mention that they were climate scientists investigating the effects of global warming.

Meanwhile anger from around the world is growing.

An experienced polar explorer has accused climate scientists who hired a ship now trapped in Antarctic ice of endangering passengers and crew ? by carrying out the expedition ?on the cheap?.

Dozens of scientists, journalists and tourists were evacuated by helicopter from the stricken Russian vessel Akademik Shokalskiy on Thursday after it became stuck on Christmas Eve.

The ship was being used by the expedition to follow the route taken by Australian explorer Douglas Mawson in 1912. ? Read more »

Abbott’s government taking the long handle to ratbag green taliban

I’m liking how Abbott’s government are dealing to the green taliban ratbags…like the ones just released from jail in Russia.

It seems that Greenpeace’s PR machinations aren’t washing with the Libs and they are set to bill one of the ratbags for the cost of his representation.

A threat to impose a fee for consular support after Australian activist Colin Russell was detained in Russia has opened the prospect of broader charges for government support of thousands of Australians who find themselves in trouble overseas.

On Friday foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop said the activities of the Australian government on behalf of Mr Russell had cost tens of thousands of dollars, and she would look very closely at recovering the costs.

“Of course cost recovery can be an important part of providing consular support,” she said.

In News Ltd papers on Saturday Ms Bishop was reported to have outlined a review of fees for cost recovery of consular activities for Australians in trouble overseas, and the circumstances in which those fees could be levied.