Greenpeace, you stole my thunder! I had it all planned out. Father Christmas lives at the North Pole, the ice cap is melting: great idea for a blog post I thought. And then I get a video from Santa via Greenpeace complaining about the rising damp, and the sodden rug is pulled from under my feet.
So, I’m reduced to adding a little context and my own spin on the idea.
There are a few seemingly wildly different estimates as to when the Arctic will be ice-free and Santa will need to find somewhere else to live. The 2007 report from the IPCC put the year at 2070, whereas studies are now indicating it could be 20-30 years from now, and some are saying it could be around the time of the next UK general election. The rate of decrease of Arctic ice has been quicker than had been predicted, some due to the albedo effect, others due to soot.
This dramatic reduction in Arctic ice has led to the heavy rains and heatwaves we’ve seen in the northern hemisphere. But things are altogether more serious for Santa.
So, what are we going to say to those kids who have been brought up thinking Santa lives in the North Pole? We’d have to make a choice between telling them he’s not real, or saying he’s moved. Apparently the North Pole was his traditional hang-out from around the latter half of the 19th century. But he also had reindeer at that time, which can’t graze at the North Pole, so he moved to Finnish Lapland in 1925.
So, I guess we’ll just be saying he lives in Lapland. Not so bad after all.
Although I’m sure he’d be disappointed to see his old home melt away. “When I was a lad, all this used to be ice”, he’ll be saying.
Well, I have a message for you, Mr Claus. If you don’t want your old home to melt, I suggest 1) you stop buying masses of plastic rubbish for a load of spoiled kids, including my own, and 2) you share the secret of your faster-than-light travel so we can get around without the pollution – assuming all that glitter and the tinkling bells are low carbon.
I’ll leave you with Jim Carter looking scary in a basement.
PS – thank you for all the survey responses. Still time to let me know what you think. I’ll collate it all for a future post or two.