Sea Ice News #32 – Southern Comfort

I’ve been remiss at posting regular entries of this feature, and there hasn’t been much happening on the way to peak Arctic Ice this year. The action seems mostly down south, and there’s a lot of news from NSIDC that you haven’t heard about.

Per the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC), the Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly for November was a record high for their data set:

Source: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Nov/S_11_plot.png

November’s record high Antarctic Sea Ice Area of 16.90 Million Sq Km, exceeded the prior record of 16.76 Million Sq Km (Set in November 2005), by 140,000 Square Kilometers. See here:

ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Nov/S_11_area.txt

Oddly, they have a plot for extent, and a data file for area, but no plot for area or data for extent. I meant to say: Oddly, they have a plot for extent, and a data file for area, but no plot for area or data file for extent. They do have both data included in the file named “area.txt”. Seems backwards, doesn’t it?

The NSIDC plot certainly shows a lot of growth in November around the periphery of the sea ice pack in November:

Source: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Nov/S_11_trnd.png

I find it interesting that the (NSIDC) National Snow & Ice Data Center doesn’t find it newsworthy to mention this record high Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in their December 6th press release:

They certainly could have included this information, since their FTP folder had NH data posted three days prior to the December 6th press release:

And the SH data also, with the same time stamp:
But this comes as no surprise considering that they glossed over the other record highs that occurred this year in,

June:

Source: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Jun/S_06_plot.png
Data: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Jun/S_06_area.txt

July:

Source: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Jul/S_07_plot.png
Data: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Jul/S_07_area.txt

August:

Source: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Aug/S_08_plot.png
Data: ftp://sidads.colorado.edu//DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Aug/S_08_area.txt

It is apparent that Antarctic Sea Ice Extent is currently maintaining above average;

But, with such good news, I wonder why NSIDC and others aren’t providing more information to the public on this interesting phenomenon. I know these new record highs aren’t as interesting or as likely to generate news stories as “death spiral watch”, but perhaps in their next press NSIDC release they will at least recognize the Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice for the simple fact that it has hit record highs?

We are constantly told that NSIDC is all about the science, and we are just “breathtakingly ignorant” (to quote NSIDC’s Dr. Mark Serreze), so I’m sure this press release reporting on only one half of the planet’s icecap’s is just an oversight on their part. I’m sure NSIDC will want to show that their mission truly is “global” and talk about the gains in Antarctica when they write up their year end review which will be seen by hundreds of journalists.

They seem to have interest in the minuscule (compared to the whole continent) Antarctic Peninsula ice loss, but not so much the main continent gains.

Antarctica is by far the largest mass of ice on Earth, containing approximately 90% of the world’s supply. By contrast, the Arctic and glaciers make up the remainder, yet they get all the facetime.

The fact that Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica is trending up and has been regularly hitting record highs in 2010 should give any rational person a moment’s pause. It might even provide the basis for some healthy skepticism of the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Narrative.

Oh, and for the few worrywarts who frequent here, who will howl mercilessly that I didn’t show the Arctic Sea Ice trend, here’s your North and South trends together:

 

Cryosphere Today – extent 15% or greater – click to enlarge

 

Cryosphere Today – Antarctic Sea Ice anomaly – click to enlarge

Of course all the graphs and imagery that I didn’t cover here is available 24/7/365 on the WUWT sea ice page, which I recommend you visit.

h/t to WUWT reader “Just the facts” for pointing out the ftp data which has remained buried and out of view of NSIDC’s main public relations page.

November's record high Sea Ice Extent of 16.90 Million Sq Km, exceeded the prior record of 16.76 Million Sq Km (Set in November 2005), by 140,000 Square Kilometers:
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140 Responses to Sea Ice News #32 – Southern Comfort

  1. Mike Bryant says:

    Lies of omission are still lies. We can’t trust our Government agencies to tell the complete story. Thanks for being a legitimate source of truth.

  2. TheSkyIsFalling says:

    Easy to miss. No doubt an honest mistake, Ha!

  3. Roger Carr says:

    Surprised to hear of the extra ice down south. I thought it had all blown up here in the wind coming through Melbourne right now.

  4. Brad says:

    The selection of data and the screaming about global warming on the front page of Cryosphere Today is also inappropriate. Please post again on how ocean levels are not rising, the BBC did a whole series on the effects of a 3mm rise, e,g, they lied.

  5. Anything is possible says:

    No way to blame this on CO2 or CAGW – yet.

    Don’t worry though Anthony, I’m sure their top people are working on it.

  6. Greg Holmes says:

    Truly amazing, here in the UK our much loved BBC seems to have developed myopia on all things regarding climate unless the story is “on message”. This is a great loss to us Brits, as we were once known for being non partisan in our reporting and trusted around the globe, how things are changing.

  7. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:

    Does anyone know how to smooth out this red line – so that I can see deviation from average?
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg

  8. Luis Dias says:

    The expansion of sea ice on the southern hemisphere is consistent with AGW. Since there is a sea all around Antarctica, if these areas warm just a little, there will be more evaporation, thus more clouds, thus more rain. This rain will fall on Antarctica, and it won’t be in liquid shape. It will be snow, of course. This snow will pile up and extend itself towards the sea.

    So, in simplistic terms, more warming should contribute to more sea ice extent in Antarctica. The same does not happen in the Artic because it is surrounded by continents, mostly.

    The fact that this is not “distributed” to the media is meaningless to what basic reason tells us about the physical facts. But it does inform us that media is not “unbiased”, and is concerned that the general public will not understand this issue and be confused, thus creating problems for the AGW narrative. You are right in this respect.

    You can also say, physically speaking, that this increase of ice is “good news” in the sense that it creates a sligth negative feedback. But I believe such feedback to be irrelevant, numerically speaking, I’ve not confirmed this. It can even be irrelevant for the northern hemisphere – we can have two different hemispheres developing rather differently in the next century.

  9. Shevva says:

    My dad has the same problem at the bar as warmists with news like this, selected hearing.

  10. Djozar says:

    Citizen Kane’s new war is AGW.

  11. David B says:

    16.90 Million Sq Km

    Living in Melbourne, I had always thought having a very large (now I know the size) ice block just across the water from me would influence the weather.

  12. R T Barker says:

    I recall reading something to the effect that the Antarctic sea ice increase was only a regional phenomenon and therefore not part of the “global” trend and that is why it is being ignored.

  13. Mark H says:

    Questions:

    1. Does anyone know how much new ice accumulates on continental Antarctic each year?

    2. How much does the depth of the ice increase each year?

    3. How much water (in litres) is removed from the atmosphere and locked up as ice each year?

    4. If you add the Artic and Antarctic sea ice anomaly graphs together to give a global sea graph what trend is then apparent?

    5. What does the global graph look like if you include the new ice from question 3?

    I know question 5 has issues due to comparing area with volume but I’m sure you could just include the areas (sq km) of Antarctica that have increased ice depth.

  14. INGSOC says:

    This is one part of the “summer of lies” we are about to enter in a few months. They figure enough time has passed since the CRU scandal, and can now continue pushing the green realignment. One must understand that they have already spent the new tax money they expected to raise through the AGW farce. The disinformation will be heavy and thick.

  15. Ed Fix says:

    I assume you’ve notified Walt Meier about this post, and hopefully he’ll reply. He’s an alarmist, but at least he’s a thoughtful, non-rabid, non-insulting alarmist. I’d love to see his side of the reporting bias issue.

  16. Jim says:

    Hide the incline!

  17. Mike Davis says:

    They can not justify their funding if they show a growth in polar ice at either pole so we can expect silence from them except for low periods. Expect to here how much ice disappeared around the West Antarctica peninsula because that is a sure sign of a major global warming trend!

  18. Pamela Gray says:

    A thinking person would hypothesize that some kind of /oceanic/wind/atmospheric system brings about these trends, for example, that there may be a correlation between higher ice area/extent with positive AAO, than with negative. Right now both are positive. So here is a quick set of references that explains the connection here.

    Information here about the AAO:

    http://www.jisao.washington.edu/data/aao/

    Information here about AAO data:
    http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/aao/aao.shtml

    And information here about the connection to sea ice:
    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/SeaIce/page4.php

  19. tarpon says:

    Isn’t this just an aww crap, where we going to hide all this stuff?

    It’s hard enough to scam people about global warming when it’s so damn cold and snow is everywhere. And now you want them to put out correct data, and then write stories about how cold it is, and how much ice there is? What, you have a dream?

    The people know, this is the winter that the world figures out it was all a lie.

    And as we approach the ice age, this suddenly becomes ‘not funny’ at all.

  20. wws says:

    1000 years of history undone – Britain has once again become a foolish and petty place, of very little consequence to the rest of the world.

  21. lapogus says:

    November’s record high Antarctic Sea Ice Area of 16.90 Million Sq Km, exceeded the prior record of 16.76 Million Sq Km (Set in November 2005), by 140,000 Square Kilometers.

    Surely the exceeded figure should be 2350 Manhattans? [Manhattan land area = 59.5 sq. km]

    Or 538 August 2010 Petermann Glacier calf ice islands? ;)

  22. Don B says:

    Greg Holmes @ 4:21 am: Montford and Newbery made a submission to a BBC inquiry dated 25 October, 2010, in which they detailed the development of BBC’s bias concerning global warming.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/11/16/montford-and-newberys-submission-to-the-bbcs-science-coverage-review/

  23. amicus curiae says:

    another damn cold summer night in aus!
    I have Buzzed this one up , it deserves to be seen and noted:-)
    our ABC is still determined to ignore all evidence to the contrary re warming.
    sheesh, no cure for stupid I guess?

  24. monroe says:

    90% of the ice mass in the southern pole!? That’s a great thing to know.

  25. Just The Facts says:

    4 monthly record highs in Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in the last 6 months certainly seems noteworthy, I’d be interested to hear from Walt or Julianne of the NSIDC as to why this has gone unreported. Was this an oversight or has this information been intentionally excluded from the NSIDC’s press releases?

    The National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) is publicly funded by NASA, NOAA and NSF;
    http://nsidc.org/about/sponsors.html

    they have a responsibility to provide the public with the information that we pay them to collect. Excluding information on record highs in the Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly from their press releases, while reporting with bated breath that, “November 2010 had the second-lowest ice extent for the month since the beginning of satellite records.” seems at minimum sloppy, and may be indicative of an intentional effort to mislead the public…

  26. James Sexton says:

    We should be nice to the NSIDC. I remember being shocked to find out there was an entire other hemisphere, too!………..When I was about 5 years old. What’s more interesting in the “ice watch”, in regards to albedo, Antarctic ice is much more important than Arctic.

  27. DesertYote says:

    It seems to have gone past everyone’s notice, but NASAs new Chief Scientist is Waleed “The Ice is Melting” Abdalati, a CAGW propagandist specializing in distorted research regarding Polar Ice and Glaciers. He hails from the University of Colorado, Boulder, which gives an indication of his politics.

  28. MTC says:

    Not wishing to troll, but isn’t the typical response that sea (water) temperatures are still getting warmer around the antarctic, which tells a tale of incipient iceocalypse. What’s the data on that?

  29. MalcolmR says:

    For the Melbournites out there…

    How is the weather looking for Boxing Day? What we really need at the MCG is a hemispheric reversal and some good dreary English seamer’s delight weather. We had enough of the catastrophically hot Mitch in Perth!

    Malcolm (not an Aussie…)

  30. slow to follow says:

    Greg Holmes December 21, 2010 at 4:21 am re:BBC

    I agree – I used to respect the BBC. Maybe I was naive. Re: climate change I now regard them as a joke at best and complicit at worst. They clearly don’t mind rocking the boat on some issues (Panorama and FIFA for example) yet “global warming/climate change/climate disruption” and the associated shenanigans of climategate and the inquiries it spawned, gets a free pass.

    They should put some people of the calibre of Andrew Jennings and Clare Sambrook on the issue and see what they turn up.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2010/11_november/29/panorama.shtml

    http://www.private-eye.co.uk/paul_foot.php?detail=7

  31. Juraj V. says:

    The very moment when Arctic will grow and Antarctic ice will decline, the Antarctic will suddenly matter. At the end, Arctic ice just flows on the sea and Antarctic contains, well, 90% of the world ice.

  32. noaaprogrammer says:

    Does the seemingly inverse relationship between the north and south poles’ ice extent have anything to do with the current celestial mechanics of which hemisphere is tilted toward the sun during the apsides of Earth’s orbit? -i.e. where are we positioned in the Milankovitch cycle?

  33. Magnus says:

    Seems that the Antarctic is not getting on the AGW-trend bandwaggon. Never go against the trend if you want attention. That is my PR-agent advise to the whole Antarctic region. Get with the program or GTFO!

  34. Smokey says:

    Luis Dias says:

    “The expansion of sea ice on the southern hemisphere is consistent with AGW.”

    Didn’t you get the memo, Luis? Everything is consistent with AGW. Just ask any fool.

    All kidding aside, your post is hopelessly inept. But if you remove the “A” from every reference to AGW, then you will be on the right track.

    Yes, the planet has been warming since the LIA. But since that was before the rise in CO2 or the invention of SUVs, CO2 can’t be the cause of the warming, can it?

    Well, maybe a fraction of one percent of the warming, but that’s no reason for the red-faced, spittle flecked, wild-eyed arm waving of the alarmist contingent, who are becoming increasingly irrelevant due to their cognitive dissonance regarding the baseless “carbon” scare.

  35. H.R. says:

    Luis Dias says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am
    “The expansion of sea ice on the southern hemisphere is consistent with AGW. [...]“

    So I guess you could walk across the ice to Antarctica during the Roman Optimum, even though those higher temperatures weren’t caused by, the ‘A’ in AGW? Maybe we’ll find an ‘Otzi the Ice Man’ in Antarctica one of these days.

  36. Jon P says:

    Anthony,

    I think Grant Foster has an obsession with you http://tamino.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/its-the-trend-stupid-2/#more-3237.

    Please avoid the possibility of being at the same physical location with Tamino I fear he grows more mad each day. Whatever his problem, it is neither normal nor healthy.

    REPLY: Yeah he’s quite WUWT OCD sometimes. But I can see how he might get confused about what I wrote about the NCDC data files, when I read it again this morning, I made it clear what I meant. The oddity is that they have one data file the has both area and extent in it, but is labeled area. That’s what I get for writing stuff at midnight. The amazing thing about these people is that on one hand they demand perfection here, while on the other hand, hide their own imperfections and outright delete comments pointing them out.

    The Ian Joliffe affair for Grant was a good example, Root units was another.

    I get quite the laugh from this one from him.

    – Anthony

  37. Owen says:

    I think the magnitudes of the changes in the arctic and antarctic (see figures posted by Anthony) might explain why NSIDC isn’t saying too much about the antarctic. Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice.

    What’d going on with the arctic sea ice in the past few days – dropping on its way up to the winter freeze? Both NSIDC and JAXA show this effect. Is it loose, slushy ice coalescing? Satellite malfunction?

  38. Crispin in Ulaanbaatar says:

    @Luis:

    “But I believe such feedback to be irrelevant, numerically speaking, I’ve not confirmed this.”

    There are a few unconfirmed things in your post, Luis. Snow cannot create sea ice hundreds of km from shore by pushing out. It is frozen because it is colder, not warmer. The AGW arguments have become bizarre. Cold is caused by warming. Ice is caused by heat. These claims are against basic, even neolithic physics! The 15 degree below normal temperatures in Europe are not caused by heat. neither is sea ice.

  39. Smokey says:

    Jon P,

    You’re right about the obsession. Tamino is a blog stalker. He has less than one-seventh the number of comments on the same subject at this point, so he’s probably becoming unhinged due to his lame traffic. It’s tough being a third rate wannabe.

    And looking at his graphs with the knowledge that the Antarctic contains 90% of the planet’s ice puts them in perspective. There is nothing worth getting alarmed about.

    Not that it really matters. The fact that Antarctic ice is growing shows the foolishness of believing that CO2 could be the cause of the entirely natural Arctic ice cycle.

  40. slow to follow says:

    Re: Luis Dias says December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am

    Do you have any numbers to back your opinion up? How much has the ocean around Antarctica warmed? What is the spatial and temporal evolution of this warming? How much extra moisture will have “evaporated” due to your proposed temperature rise? How much extra volume will this occupy as snow instead of liquid? How much of this snow will have settled on land/Antarctica? What time constant is involved in the transport of snow from Antarctica into sea ice? What effect does the temp. increase that you propose for the ocean have on the persistence of floating sea ice? How does this effect compare to the seasonal persistence of sea ice? How do you explain the spatial distribuition of sea ice trends in the second figure of the post? Thank you.

  41. Dan Kirk-Davidoff says:

    Models of the climate response to CO2 show much larger temperature increases in the Arctic than in the Antarctic. This is for a simple reason: there is very strong upwelling of cold water all around Antarctica. So that area’s temperatures will lag the global trend for a long time, until the ocean’s deep water warms up over a few centuries. You can see this in Fig. 6 of the IPCC AR4 summary for policy makers. There’s no such analogous upwelling in the Arctic, so temperatures there are predicted to warm rapidly. This is borne out in the observations: temperature have increased substantially over the Arctic, but temperatures around Antarctica show patches of warming and cooling. The small trend in sea ice over the Antarctic hasn’t been explained- it’s been accompanied by a positive trend in the Southern Annular Mode index (http://www.nerc-bas.ac.uk/icd/gjma/sam.html ), but its not clear what’s been driving this (one idea was ozone depletion, but a recent modeling study found such a connection unlikely: Sigmond and Fyfe, GRL, 2010). It is possible that the trend in the SAM is in fact linked to the response to CO2 forcing, but if so, it’s not something that’s been captured consistently by the models.
    In short: climate models predict strong warming and strong reductions in sea ice extent in the Arctic Ocean, and a much weaker warming and a weaker reduction in sea ice in the Antarctic. The observed response is consistent with predictions in the Arctic, and with natural variability, also consistent in the Antarctic.

  42. Alan Millar says:

    Luis Dias says: December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am

    “The expansion of sea ice on the southern hemisphere is consistent with AGW.”

    Ahh…… another warmist apologist making it up after the event!

    The only predictions these people make that ever match reality are only ever past posted ones.

    So Mr Crystal Ball what do you have to say about what the IPCC (the font of all bollocks) said about Antarctic ice.

    This is what the IPCC said about Antarctic sea ice in 2001.

    “16.2.4.2. Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean
    Antarctic sea ice is not confined by land margins but is open to the Southern Ocean. Sea-ice extent contracts and expands on an annual cycle in a roughly concentric zone around Antarctica. The ultimate extent is controlled by a balance of air temperature, leads, wind direction, upper ocean structure, and pycnocline depth. Some of these parameters are controlled in the atmosphere by the relative position of the subpolar trough with respect to the sea ice. In the ocean, variations in the Antarctic Circumpolar Current are important. The extent and thickness of Antarctic sea ice are sensitive to the depth and thermal properties of overlying snow, about which relatively little is known.

    A reduction in Antarctic sea ice volume of about 25-45% is predicted for a doubling of CO2, with sea ice retreating fairly evenly around the continent (Gordon and O’Farrell, 1997). This CSIRO model assumes a 1% yr-1 compounding increase of CO2, corresponding to global warming of 2.1°C. Using a similar but modified model that has a higher albedo feedback and predicted global warming of 2.8°C, Wu et al. (1999) calculate a reduction in mean sea-ice extent of nearly two degrees of latitude, corresponding to 45% of sea-ice volume. These estimates do not represent the equilibrium state, and sea ice can be expected to shrink further, even if GHGs are stabilized.”

    Here is what was said by the IPCC in 2007…………

    ” Highlights from the IPCC Working Group I Summary for Policymakers of “Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis”

    “What can we expect to happen?”…………..“Sea ice is projected to shrink in both the Arctic and Antarctic.”

    You see Luis, you cannot wipe all these dire predictions from the public record.

    So as a true believer please explain what is going on in this ‘settled’ science. Do you accept now that the IPCC were indeed were talking bollocks after all, or is it you, or both?

    Alan

  43. slow to follow says:

    Re: Owen says December 21, 2010 at 9:10 am

    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ”

    Please can you give us the numbers to support this statement? Thank you.

  44. Fred from Canuckistan says:

    Luis Dias is 100% correct because everything and anything can and will and was and might and should be consistent with the AGW theory. Because it has to be because it is right to be.

    It is a very inclusive and adaptable theory, very malleable and has a morphing ability that reaches new heights of scientific achievement.

    Go Luis go . . you are on the right track.

  45. Phil. says:

    I’ve been remiss at posting regular entries of this feature, and there hasn’t been much happening on the way to peak Arctic Ice this year.

    Really, I guess you missed the publication of the first Cryosat data?
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12025283

    Not to mention the very strong transpolar drift at present, ~60km/day.
    Current arctic sea ice at the ‘record low’ for the time of year according to JAXA and uni bremen.

    Instead you focus on changes in the Antarctic which don’t rise above the level of noise!
    I find it interesting that the (NSIDC) National Snow & Ice Data Center doesn’t find it newsworthy to mention this record high Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in their December 6th press release:
    That ‘record’ you mentioned has been wiped out already, as you showed with the current anomaly plot it’s negative! As in the last three years the Antarctic sea ice has followed the average curve very closely during the melt season, there’s really nothing interesting happening there.
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.antarctic.png

    REPLY: Phil. Unlike some blogs like icecap and climate depot, which have multi-columns, I have a single one. So while you might think “Really, I guess you missed the publication of the first Cryosat data?” The reality is far more linear. I tend to post a new story about every 3-5 hours (depending on que and my own availability) because that is the best format for this blog.

    As you’ll note in tips and notes, that has been mentioned several times, and I’m well aware of it. It’s in the que, along with some other posts. coming up. I”d really like to see you start blaming NYT and other newspapers for not covering stories that we think are important, I’m sure in the interest of fairness, you’ll jump right on that, won’t you?. I note climateprogress.org hasn’t carried it either. Will you be posting a comment there (assuming he allows it) blaming Joe like you have me? Go ahead, make my day.

    – Anthony

  46. Jeff Mitchell says:

    We should sing about melting ice caps like Tiny Tim:

    This is from the late sixties, when they were worrying about another ice age. The song is much better on his “God Bless Tiny Tim” album which features an Irving Berlin song on another track. With regard to this video, the poster had the comment “I can only imagine what the kids were thinking.” Which I think is about right.

  47. P. Solar says:

    Antony, if you are going to critisise NSIDC for not showing the whole story, it looks a bit silly if you then don’t show the whole story.

    After hooting about the “good news” in Antarctica you fail to draw attention to the fact that the record SH growth is only about 1/20 of the Arctic loss. Often in the past you have shown the global plot which puts things in perspective. It’s on your sea ice page but you don’t put it here.

    global sea ice

    What I see is, over the last ten years, a global decline of about 1 million sq km. Less good.

    No axe to grind about what that means , just trying to be objective.

    The good news would seem to be a net increase since the 2007 low when it was hovering around -1.5 m .

    Perhaps it would make more sense to berate them for not pointing that out than ignoring a SH growth that is so small. It would be less easy for them to justify.

    regards.

    REPLY: I could put every graph and image from the sea ice page in a post, and someone would complain about some aspect or comparison I didn’t do. At least get my name and the spelling of “criticize” right if you want to criticize.There, see how easy it is to nitpick? ;-) – Anthony

  48. Luis Dias says:

    Smokey,

    «Didn’t you get the memo, Luis? Everything is consistent with AGW. Just ask any fool.

    All kidding aside, your post is hopelessly inept. But if you remove the “A” from every reference to AGW, then you will be on the right track.»

    It is logically consistent even with the A clued in. And the joke about “everything” being consistent with AGW is well taken and supported, but in all seriousness it is not true. For instance, the recent paper by O’Donnell showing that Antarctica isn’t warming up in a satistically significant way is slightly inconsistent with AGW. I say slightly because they still show Antarctica warming up…

    «Yes, the planet has been warming since the LIA. But since that was before the rise in CO2 or the invention of SUVs, CO2 can’t be the cause of the warming, can it?»

    This is a separate issue. I did not say that this was “evidence” of AGW, I said it was “consistent”. Surely you do understand the difference.

    HR,
    «So I guess you could walk across the ice to Antarctica during the Roman Optimum, even though those higher temperatures weren’t caused by, the ‘A’ in AGW? Maybe we’ll find an ‘Otzi the Ice Man’ in Antarctica one of these days.»

    ar ar ar.

  49. Phil says:

    “…hasn’t been much happening on the way to peak Arctic Ice this year”.
    I believe you, but the charts say there has been a reversal in the Arctic over the last couple days. I don’t believe there really is melting at these temps, but that’s what the charts say. I’m assuming data glitch, can someone in the know confirm?

  50. jakers says:

    And more interesting is the current state of Antarctica sea ice
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/NEWIMAGES/antarctic.seaice.color.000.png

  51. P. Solar says:

    Re: Owen says December 21, 2010 at 9:10 am

    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ”

    There is no real data for this supposed loss. It is billed as being based on satellite images but that is only half the story. It is calculated by some rather crude and uncalibrated computer simulations of mantle rebound, ie. speculation not data, not science.

    I refuse to give any credence to such speculation. Model output is NOT DATA.

  52. Rod Everson says:

    Can someone clear this up for me? The Antarctica extent (from the graph) has been running a full 2 SD’s above the average for some time now, but the reported anomaly is always very, very close to zero. I thought the anomaly was the daily deviation from the daily average. Why isn’t it a lot larger? Two significantly different data sets? Different extent measures (15 vs 30?) Extent on one, area on the other? What’s going on?

    The current cryosphere anomaly is only .072 mm km2, whereas the graph looks like extent is running over 1mm above the long term average day after day.

  53. P. Solar says:

    Dan Kirk-Davidoff says:
    >>
    You can see this in Fig. 6 of the IPCC AR4 summary for policy makers. There’s no such analogous upwelling in the Arctic, so temperatures there are predicted to warm rapidly. This is borne out in the observations: temperature have increased substantially over the Arctic
    >>

    Where do you see this data Dan?

    Met office, Hadley take care not to show Arctic temperatures … because there aren’t any. GISS “interpolate” (ie extrapolate) from lower lattitudes where the temperatures are already fictive SST generated largely from averaging LAND temperatures out over the sea and calling it SST.

    with that kind of methodology you can paint the Arctic any colour you like.

    If you are aware of a source of real data , please post a link.

  54. Luis Dias says:

    Allan Millar, I stand corrected. I did try to find IPCC statements about sea ice but could only find this page, http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/tar/wg2/index.php?idp=599, which only hints to the increase of snow, talks about its importance in creating sea ice and not much else. I’m glad that this prediction is being falsified, it is good news.

    REPLY: Good on you to admit your error, Luis. – Anthony

  55. Jon P says:

    P. Solar,

    Perhaps you missed this part of the post “Of course all the graphs and imagery that I didn’t cover here is available 24/7/365 on the WUWT sea ice page, which I recommend you visit.”

    Are you looking silly?

  56. James Allison says:

    Luis Dias says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am
    I see – so the increased precipitation fails as snow on the warmer water then turns into ice.

  57. P. Solar says:

    Phil :
    >>
    “…hasn’t been much happening on the way to peak Arctic Ice this year”.
    I believe you, but the charts say there has been a reversal in the Arctic over the last couple days. I don’t believe there really is melting at these temps, but that’s what the charts say. I’m assuming data glitch, can someone in the know confirm?
    >>
    Don’t forget this is not actual ice , it’s the area with >15% ice cover. Some wind compacting or extending the ice flows can make the same amount of ice bigger or smaller.

    The 2007 minimum that freacked a lot of people was largely due wind.

    If wind compacts ice the ice extent can be smaller . If it speads areas that are already close to 15% they drop below the cutoff and the total gets smaller.

    Don’t waste time looking at day to day changes.

  58. evanmjones says:

    Why is Cryosphere Today showing a negative anomaly for Antarctic ice when NSIDC is showing a clearly positive anomaly?

    Either someone has their wires crossed or I am missing something.

  59. Phil. says:

    Mods, you appear to have lost my post on this thread.

    REPLY: Phil. You know full well the spam filter is automatic, and certain word or phrase combinations trigger on it. Certain links or excessive links do also. So don’t blame people for a program doing what it was designed to do. Your post is in the Spam filter, not the trashbin, which would require a manual effort. Almost everyone who comments on this blog, no matter what side they are on, gets one or more there eventually. Now if you ask nicely about it, I can retrieve it for you. Naw on second thought, you’ll just complain about that, so I’ve retrieved it.

    – Anthony

  60. P. Solar says:

    MTC:
    >>
    Not wishing to troll, but isn’t the typical response that sea (water) temperatures are still getting warmer around the antarctic, which tells a tale of incipient iceocalypse. What’s the data on that?
    >>

    That’s no troll, it’s a fair question and it probably is the “typical response” in some quarters.

    Which sea temperatures are you refering to? Please bear in mind, as I posted above, GISS SST is not “sea” but air temps and is not measured anywhere near where they indicate the temperature to be occuring.

  61. Phil. says:

    evanmjones says:
    December 21, 2010 at 10:27 am
    Why is Cryosphere Today showing a negative anomaly for Antarctic ice when NSIDC is showing a clearly positive anomaly?

    Either someone has their wires crossed or I am missing something.

    Different imager, different statistic (area vs extent) and different baseline.
    For what it’s worth CT (area) and Uni Bremen (extent) both show the data following their respective averages rather closely.

  62. Colin from Mission B.C. says:

    Luis Dias says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am

    The expansion of sea ice on the southern hemisphere is consistent with AGW. Since there is a sea all around Antarctica, if these areas warm just a little, there will be more evaporation, thus more clouds, thus more rain. This rain will fall on Antarctica, and it won’t be in liquid shape. It will be snow, of course. This snow will pile up and extend itself towards the sea.

    =========

    Oh, please. What’s the best estimate of last century’s warming? As Lord Monckton might phrase it, “nought point seven degrees.” So, how much does an increase of nought point seven degrees in global AVERAGE atmospheric temperature increase the icy waters of the Antarctic?

    Here’s a hint. Fill your bathtub with water. Then, turn on your hair dryer (you cannot point the hair dryer at the bath though, that would be cheating). See how much the water warms.

    This assumes nought point seven is even remotely accurate, which itself is a dubious proposition (see surfacesations.org).

  63. jakers says:

    evanmjones says:
    December 21, 2010 at 10:27 am
    Why is Cryosphere Today showing a negative anomaly for Antarctic ice when NSIDC is showing a clearly positive anomaly?
    Either someone has their wires crossed or I am missing something.

    Area vs. Extent — see big holes: http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/NEWIMAGES/antarctic.seaice.color.000.png

  64. Owen says:

    slow to follow says:
    December 21, 2010 at 9:29 am
    Re: Owen says December 21, 2010 at 9:10 am
    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ” Please can you give us the numbers to support this statement? Thank you.

    slow to follow: please see following NASA site: http://climate.nasa.gov/news/index.cfm?FuseAction=ShowNews&NewsID=242

    References to key papers on the melting of antarctic land ice are provided at this site. GRACE measurements indicate an accelerating net loss of land ice.

  65. Douglas DC says:

    Just looke at Solarcyle24.com -Mr. Sun’s taking a nap-again…

  66. Douglas DC says:

    “Solarcycle-“Dang it! Ah hates Trifocals….

  67. Jeff T says:

    Here are the trends in sea ice extent in % decade. (From least squares fits of the log of extent vs. time). The decline in the Arctic is substantially faster than the growth in the Antarctic and the uncertainties for the Arctic are equivalent to or smaller than uncertainties for the Antarctic. Since the change in the Arctic is so much faster and more certain, it deserves more attention. The changes in the Antarctic during its summer months (Dec-Mar) are not statistically significant at the 95% (2 standard deviation) level.

    Arctic Antarctic
    Jan -3.23+-0.33 Jul 0.94+-0.345
    Feb -2.9+-0.34 Aug 0.59+-0.27
    Mar -2.67+-0.34 Sep 0.76+-0.34
    Apr -2.64+-0.38 Oct 0.84+-0.32
    May -2.44+-0.45 Nov 0.64+-0.35
    Jun -3.59+-0.35 Dec 1.1+-1.13
    Jul -6.70+-0.74 Jan 1.92+-2.25
    Aug -9.7043+-1.18 Feb 2.68+-2.12
    Sep -13.10+-1.70 Mar 3.72+-2.08
    Oct -6.65+-1.03 Apr 2.96+-1.48
    Nov -4.86+-0.54 May 2.37+-0.95
    Dec -3.39+-0.32 Jun 1.42+-0.60

  68. Ralph says:

    A quick thought experiment. What will radiate out more energy from the earth…

    a. An atmosphere where the heat is smoothed out across all latitudes.
    b. An atmosphere where all the heat is concentrated in the equatorial regions, and the poles are much cooler

    Any ideas?

    .

  69. Jeff T says:

    @evanmjones and Rod Everson,
    Cryosphere Today shows ice area; NSIDC shows ice extent. Since they are different quantities, they don’t always agree precisely; but they show long-term similar trends.

  70. R. Gates says:

    Comparing the N. Hemisphere and S. Hemisphere graphs we see that the N. Hemisphere is showing a lot more decline than the S. Hemisphere is showing an incline, and even more telling is the fact that the N. Hemisphere has not had a positive anomaly since 2004, whereas the S. Hemisphere had a negative anomaly only in the past few months. The lack of any positive sea ice anomaly for the N. Hemisphere in six years is a signficant event, though of course AGW skeptics will easily dismiss it. But the time for dismissing events is soon coming to an end. In the next few years we will see whether the AGW skeptics are right, and some combination of solar/ocean/etc. cycle sends global temps back down, or if the the last 30+ years in Arctic Sea ice decline is not just a natural fluctuation, but instead, the downward trend continues until we reach a seasonally ice free Arctic later this century as predicted by the GCM’s.

    One side note: The current record setting moisture hitting California this week is exactly consistent with the acceleration of the hydrological cycle expected with higher amounts of CO2, and exactly the way the planet has responded to higher elevations of CO2 for millions of years. No proof of anything of course, but consistent with both theory and millions of years of earth history. How much energy does it take to move all that moisture from the Pacific to California? If it is “record setting” moisture now hitting California, then somewhere there was “record setting” energy to transport it…

  71. David L says:

    If the north pole loses the same amount of ice that the south pole gains, is it still global warming?

  72. DesertYote says:

    Jeff T says:
    December 21, 2010 at 10:58 am

    “Since the change in the Arctic is so much faster and more certain, it deserves more attention.”
    ###

    BS. There have been too many examples of insignificant observations being trumped wide and far by you AWG propagandist, when those observations support the narrative, to justify you being able to claim insignificance for an excuse to disregard the observation when it is contra-narrative.

  73. 1DandyTroll says:

    Here’s an honest question for once: Would the Arctic, southern Greenland, having “tons of” snow and ice if we in most of the rest of the Northern Hemisphere didn’t get everything? Again.

    Or would there be no difference in those parts?

    I mean if so, the envirofanhippies wouldn’t be happy anyways and would probably be linking thicker arctic ice and more snow cover above 80° to global warming just like the probable thinning ice of antarctica. Just like they try and do now with more snow and ice south of the 80°.

  74. DesertYote says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 11:13 am

    One side note: The current record setting moisture hitting California this week is exactly consistent with the acceleration of the hydrological cycle expected with higher amounts of CO2, and exactly the way the planet has responded to higher elevations of CO2 for millions of years. No proof of anything of course, but consistent with both theory and millions of years of earth history. How much energy does it take to move all that moisture from the Pacific to California? If it is “record setting” moisture now hitting California, then somewhere there was “record setting” energy to transport it…
    ###

    “Record Setting Moister” hardly …

    Sorry but the rest of your arguments are lame. You might want to try them on someone else. The earths global climate cam be summed up as “Warm and Wet” or “Cold and Dry”. Atmospheric CO2 always *follows* temperature.

  75. beesaman says:

    A couple of questions for those who specialise in this sort of thing.
    Does Arctic ice growth around Greenland at this time of year depend more on sea temps or air temps?
    If air temperatures have a greater effect on ice growth then how much have the North Atlantic Jet Stream variations impacted on ice growth this year?

    http://www.stormsurfing.com/cgi/display_alt.cgi?a=natla_250

    I ask this as it would seem that looking at the jet streams recently that the winds have been blowing at times from the North East coast of America towards Greenland rather than flowing across the Atlantic towards the UK. Probably why we’ve had more Arctic air and less of the usual Atlantic weather patterns this year so far. Just pondering!

  76. vukcevic says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 11:13 am
    Comparing the N. Hemisphere and S. Hemisphere graphs we see that the N. Hemisphere is showing a lot more decline than the S. Hemisphere..

    I have rather unorthodox approach to these events. Ice is formed in the winter months, when air temperature and precipitations are controlled by polar vortex.
    Ice is melted in the summer months mainly by insolation which is constant from year to year. So ice extent (area and depth) has to be a winter factor. Polar vortex in the arctic often is split up, and this appear to affect not only stratosphere but troposphere too. In contrast Antarctica vortex is pretty constant, only one case of sudden stratospheric warming SSW was recorded since 1950 (in 2002, science is puzzled by the event, but there is a simple explanation for it).
    Polar vortex is frequently (but not all the time) under the influence of the geomagnetic field, I suspect it depends on the extent of ionisation.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MF-PV.htm
    For the Arctic temperature and its magnetic field see:
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NFC1.htm
    I have not as yet done full analysis of the Antarctica, one more job to do.

  77. slow to follow says:

    Re: Owen says December 21, 2010 at 10:54 am

    Thanks for the reference but I couldn’t find the numbers comparing the GRACE modelled land ice loss with sea ice gain?

    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ”

  78. R. Gates says:

    vukcevic says:

    “Ice is melted in the summer months mainly by insolation which is constant from year to year. So ice extent (area and depth) has to be a winter factor.”
    ___________
    Much ice is melted from the bottom, as the greater mass of ice is in the water, so water temperatures determine melting as much has how much actual insolation occurs. So in addition to insolation (which varies depending on Arctic cloud cover), warm water inflows from both the Atlantic and Pacific cause melting. In short, sea Ice extent is determined by many factors throughout the year, all of them related to energy, (including of course wind, which is of a form of energy) thus, the total energy inflows (sun, warm or cold currents, wind, etc.) and energy distribution throughout the year determine sea ice area, extent, and total volume.

  79. JPeden says:

    I find it interesting that the (NSIDC) National Snow & Ice Data Center doesn’t find it newsworthy to mention this record high Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in their December 6th press release….

    Yes, it certainly sounds like this record should qualify as a pretty significant “climate disruption”, yes? But whatever, hopefully the AP will clear this up quickly! We Cave Dwellers really do want to know what narrative to parrot before we gather again to watch the shadows!

  80. Dan Kirk-Davidoff says:

    P. Solar requests Arctic temperature data:

    http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/atmosphere.html

    Yes, these are based on land stations surrounding the Arctic, but due to the big reductions in summer time sea ice, it’s pretty obvious that any retrieval of average arctic SST would show a substantial warming over time. The point is: there’s a reason we haven’t paid much attention to the small trend in Antarctic Sea Ice. It’s because there was no prediction of a large reduction in Antarctic Sea Ice with increasing CO2. On the other hand, there was a prediction of reduced Arctic Sea Ice, and this has, in fact, occurred.

    Dan

  81. Juraj V. says:

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    R. Gates
    One side note: The current record setting moisture hitting California this week is exactly consistent with the acceleration of the hydrological cycle expected with higher amounts of CO2, and exactly the way the planet has responded to higher elevations of CO2 for millions of years.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Unfortunately, the Pacific as a whole is pretty bellow the normal now. Your theory is junk.
    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.gif

  82. Juraj V. says:

    ++++++++++++++++++
    Owen says:
    References to key papers on the melting of antarctic land ice are provided at this site. GRACE measurements indicate an accelerating net loss of land ice.
    ++++++++++++++++++
    Uh there might by a problem with GRACE.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/10/20/antarctic_ice_loss_overestimated/

  83. Tony Hansen says:

    Jeff T says:
    December 21, 2010 at 11:08 am
    @evanmjones and Rod Everson,
    Cryosphere Today shows ice area; NSIDC shows ice extent. Since they are different quantities, they don’t always agree precisely; but they show long-term similar trends.

    Are you sure? The caption with the CT graph says….

    Cryosphere Today – extent 15% or greater – click to enlarge

  84. Retired Engineer says:

    As much of the Antarctic ice sheet extends well past the land mass, sooner or later it will break off. Then it will be Big News, and proof of the urgent need to raise taxes and ban SUV’s. Until then? Nothing to see, move along.

  85. Mooloo says:

    Re: Owen says December 21, 2010 at 9:10 am

    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ”

    Nett loss of ice. Possibly. If the measurements and modelling are correct. If.

    However, the one thing we can be sure of is that it is not melting. The middle of Antarctica is well below zero all the time. Unless you can explain how ice melts at less than zero, it has to be some other mechanism.

    I’ve seen it attributed to “sublimation”, but the vapour pressure of water at those temperatures is miniscule. I would put my money on the whole thing being a misunderstanding, and that ice is not being lost.

  86. Bob_FJ says:

    Re; complaints of bias on the BBC: Here in Oz, our ABC has a weekly radio programme entitled, would you believe; “The Science Show“. I’m not sure if I should inflict this on you, but check-out this Dorothy Dix interview. (Click: ShowTranscript and View Comments)
    http://www.abc.net.au/rn/scienceshow/stories/2010/3065125.htm

    Among other things, it predicts a 75% demise of sea-ice dependent penguins in Antarctica by 2037. Changes in ocean currents and temperatures, loss of ocean CO2 sink, and naughty acidification, are just part of the plethora of doom.

    Of course there was bland acceptance of all the claims, not even a “but why is” sea ice trending up for some time**. There is also a 7-author paper referenced, which makes me feel ill as a professional engineer. First polar bears, now penguins?

    ** Footnote; the presenter, Robyn Williams is aware of that point, following my Email enquiry to him

    Dan Kirk-Davidoff Please note the above

  87. Bob_FJ says:

    SORRY, I mean in;
    ** Footnote; the presenter, Robyn Williams is aware of that point, following my Email enquiry to him

    That he confirmed he had known of it for a long time.

  88. Alan Millar says:

    Dan Kirk-Davidoff says: December 21, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    “The point is: there’s a reason we haven’t paid much attention to the small trend in Antarctic Sea Ice. It’s because there was no prediction of a large reduction in Antarctic Sea Ice with increasing CO2. On the other hand, there was a prediction of reduced Arctic Sea Ice, and this has, in fact, occurred.”

    Are you not keeping up?

    No prediction? What do you call this then and what is your explanation for it in view of the observed reality of Antarctic sea ice trend?

    Just so that we can tie you down a bit, what is is your prediction for future Antarctic sea ice extent, with timelines, in the face of increasing atmospheric CO2? Also what processes are involved if you ever predict a reversel of the current trend?

    Alan

  89. stepham says:

    just flew BA sydmey the ice is beyond 70 degrees south. The cold here in Brisbane is extraordinary time to start arresting some people (just joking)

  90. Alan Millar says:

    Re previous comment to Dan Kirk-Davidoff I should have course have appended the following quotes from the IPCC.

    This is what the IPCC said about Antarctic sea ice in 2001.

    “16.2.4.2. Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean
    Antarctic sea ice is not confined by land margins but is open to the Southern Ocean. Sea-ice extent contracts and expands on an annual cycle in a roughly concentric zone around Antarctica. The ultimate extent is controlled by a balance of air temperature, leads, wind direction, upper ocean structure, and pycnocline depth. Some of these parameters are controlled in the atmosphere by the relative position of the subpolar trough with respect to the sea ice. In the ocean, variations in the Antarctic Circumpolar Current are important. The extent and thickness of Antarctic sea ice are sensitive to the depth and thermal properties of overlying snow, about which relatively little is known.

    A reduction in Antarctic sea ice volume of about 25-45% is predicted for a doubling of CO2, with sea ice retreating fairly evenly around the continent (Gordon and O’Farrell, 1997). This CSIRO model assumes a 1% yr-1 compounding increase of CO2, corresponding to global warming of 2.1°C. Using a similar but modified model that has a higher albedo feedback and predicted global warming of 2.8°C, Wu et al. (1999) calculate a reduction in mean sea-ice extent of nearly two degrees of latitude, corresponding to 45% of sea-ice volume. These estimates do not represent the equilibrium state, and sea ice can be expected to shrink further, even if GHGs are stabilized.”

    Here is what was said by the IPCC in 2007…………

    ” Highlights from the IPCC Working Group I Summary for Policymakers of “Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis”

    “What can we expect to happen?”…………..“Sea ice is projected to shrink in both the Arctic and Antarctic.”

    Alan

  91. Rod Everson says:

    Tony, I was going to make the same comment about the Cryosphere Today graph. Note though that the Southern Hemisphere graph omits that comment, though it appears identical in virtually all other respects. I’m still curious about this. And even if it is area, if the extent is running 2 standard deviations above average, wouldn’t area tend to follow that? This discrepancy has existed for several months now, I think.

    For that matter, I’ve always assumed that the Global Sea Ice Anomaly chart was a summation of the two charts shown above in this post for the Northern and Southern hemispheres. But if one chart is extent and the other area, they’re summing apples and oranges, so why not get some consistency and chart the same variable on all three charts? Still confused…..

  92. vukcevic says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 12:35 pm
    Much ice is melted from the bottom, as the greater mass of ice is in the water, so water temperatures determine melting as much has how much actual insolation occurs.

    Not so. Inflow of water from Pacific is only 1Sv to 9Sv from Atlantic. Both Atlantic and Pacific warm waters as more saline are at some dept where temperature does not change with seasons, but it may on longer time scale.
    http://www.whoi.edu/cms/images/oceanus/2006/1/map_18930.gif
    Note vertical distribution of cold and warm currents from Bering to Fram straits.
    Areas where warm water surfaces are Labrador and Irminger seas, usually at the Greenland’s southern tip, warm currents looses its energy and is mixed with cold currents creating Labrador Sea current; this tightly governs the strength of the Subpolar gyre’s circulation, which is the engine of the heat transport across the North Atlantic Ocean..
    Effect is also visible on SST on
    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.gif
    This has mainly winter effect (as dome of worm tropospheric air pushes into stratosphere) causing a ripples in the Rossby (planetary wave), and occasionally break up of the Arctic vortex (SSW) which can affect only precipitation and surface temperatures, and only in the winter months when the ice is forming and not melting, and insolation is low or nonexistent.
    So conclusion is the Arctic ice extent (depth and area), assuming constant insolation (as Dr.S. tells us to be so) from year to year is to the greatest degree a winter factor.

  93. John F. Hultquist says:

    Luis Dias says: and other follow-on comments:
    This rain will fall on Antarctica, and it won’t be in liquid shape. It will be snow, of course. This snow will pile up and extend itself towards the sea.

    There is glacial ice and sea ice and somewhere the two do meet. However, I did not note in the post any attempt to show that the increasing extent of sea ice was a result of the glacial ice pushing into the ocean. I wonder, then, if the sea ice extent is growing because the local heat loss of the water is sufficiently great to make the phase change, or whether the glacial ice is pushing into the sea at an alarming rate?

    Sorry for being so “breathtakingly ignorant” !

  94. peterhodges says:

    noaaprogrammer says:
    December 21, 2010 at 8:44 am

    Does the seemingly inverse relationship between the north and south poles’ ice extent have anything to do with the current celestial mechanics of which hemisphere is tilted toward the sun during the apsides of Earth’s orbit? -i.e. where are we positioned in the Milankovitch cycle?

    southern summer insolation is on the rise, while northern winter insolation is going down.

    our current interglacial may not have that much longer

  95. slow to follow says:

    Re: Mooloo says December 21, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    Yes, I also find it hard to understand where it is going but Owen has claimed:

    “Plus, we have the net melting of land ice in antartica which is far greater than any gains in sea ice. ”

    So there must be some data out there which compares these two quantities, measured or modelled, and concludes one is “far greater” than the other. In order to evaluate this I’m asking Owen (or anyone else) for the numbers and sources he based his claim on. He might be right but without the numbers we’ll never know.

  96. R. Gates says:

    Juraj V. says:
    December 21, 2010 at 1:00 pm
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    R. Gates
    One side note: The current record setting moisture hitting California this week is exactly consistent with the acceleration of the hydrological cycle expected with higher amounts of CO2, and exactly the way the planet has responded to higher elevations of CO2 for millions of years.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Unfortunately, the Pacific as a whole is pretty bellow the normal now. Your theory is junk.
    ______
    First, it isn’t my theory, and second, yes, there is an La Nina along the equatorial and south Pacific regions, but there is also a big mass of very warm water in the Western Pacific north of the equator. Some say this is “residual” warmth from the last El Nino, but it really doesn’t matter as it represents energy and is a potential source of all the moisture now falling in CA. You really ought to read up a bit more on CO2 and the carbon/hydrological cycle before calling this theory “junk” because it is far more solid than you seem to give it credit.

  97. MikeA says:

    I can see a lot of confusion here between sea-ice area and extent. Looking at Cryosphere Today, the area appears to be about normal for the southern hemisphere. However the NSIDC graph indicates more ice extent, that means the ice is more spread out than normal. I also think I’ve seen another graph showing greater area somewhere. Now southern sea ice is not constrained by land and is largely perennial, so I reckon it would spread out depending on the currents, wind and weather. That said, why are these currents, wind and weather happening? I have no idea.

  98. 2kevin says:

    I’m curious to see what things will look like in 3 months.

    Whether we like it or not, total ice is down, only if slightly. You know what happens when you give the AGW crowd a few square kilometers right?

  99. E.M.Smith says:

    R. Gates says:
    One side note: The current record setting moisture hitting California this week is exactly consistent with the acceleration of the hydrological cycle expected with higher amounts of CO2, and exactly the way the planet has responded to higher elevations of CO2 for millions of years. No proof of anything of course, but consistent with both theory and millions of years of earth history. How much energy does it take to move all that moisture from the Pacific to California? If it is “record setting” moisture now hitting California, then somewhere there was “record setting” energy to transport it…

    I see that R. Gates is indulging in their fantasy world again. Nice model of what you fantasize happens. Unfortunately, it is not in keeping with the facts.

    The Western USA has an interesting behaviour. When it gets colder, it gets wetter. When it gets hotter, it gets dryer. Just backwards from your theory.

    (Why? I suspect it’s because we have cold water off our coast. To squeeze rain out of what drifts ashore takes MORE cold, not less…)

    At any rate, we don’t have to guess nor model. We’ve got a very long and very nice set of records (of various sorts) that all say when it gets COLDER California and the rest of the west get WETTER.

    So frankly, R. Gates, you can take your hypotheticals and theoreticals and go stuff ‘em. They are simply wrong. And we have the existence proof to show it.

    From:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/wet-cold-and-hot-dry-cycles/

    Meanwhile, back at the first link / paper:

    Moving to the east coast of the United States, Willard et al. (2003) “examine[d] the late Holocene (2300 yr BP to present) record of Chesapeake Bay and the adjacent terrestrial ecosystem in its watershed through the study of fossil dinoflagellate cysts and pollen from sediment cores.” They report that “several dry periods ranging from decades to centuries in duration are evident in Chesapeake Bay records.” The first of these periods of lower-than-average precipitation, which spanned the period 200 BC-AD 300, occurred during the Roman Warm Period. The next such period (~AD 800-1200) “corresponds to the ‘Medieval Warm Period’, which has been documented as drier than average by tree-ring (Stahle and Cleaveland, 1994) and pollen (Willard et al., 2001) records from the southeastern USA.” In addition, they note that “mid-Atlantic dry periods generally correspond to central and southwestern USA ‘megadroughts’, described by Woodhouse and Overpeck (1998). Hence, it would appear that the intervening Dark Ages Cold Period was a time of relatively greater wetness throughout much of the United States.

    and

    was found by Campbell (2002), who analyzed the grain sizes of sediment cores obtained from Pine Lake, Alberta, Canada to provide a high-resolution record of climate variability for this part of North America over the past 4000 years. Periods of both increasing and decreasing grain size (moisture availability) were noted throughout the 4000-year record at decadal, centennial and millennial time scales. The most prominent of the major dry periods once again occurred during the Roman Warm Period (abut 900-100 BC) and Medieval Warm Period (about AD 700 to 1300), while the major wet periods occurred during the Dark Ages Cold Period (about 100 BC to AD 700) and Little Ice Age (about AD 1500 to 1900).

    In conclusion, throughout many parts of the United States and some of Canada, it would appear that the Dark Ages Cold Period was a time of both relative coolness and wetness, much like the Little Ice Age was in this part of the world.

    So you can continue making up complete fantasies, or you can go look at the record of drowned trees in California, the megadrought records of the Midwest, or even just the historical lake levels, that rise in cold times and drop in hot times.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/06/salt-lake-utah-cycle-barometer/

    and even, if you like, you can see how as we’ve been cooling dramatically (even my Tomatoes are smart enough to know that, having had poor yield due to the cold weather the last 2 years) the rainfall has INCREASED in the cold of the West.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/cooling-and-wet-utah/

    You can even watch it happen in near real time. In this link, we can watch the HISTORIC DROUGHT conditions in Arizona get a quenching along with a drench of the Southwest:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/streamflow-in-the-west/

    Of course, you can always try to convince all of us shivining in the cold wet and snow that it’s just “a warm snow”…

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/19/snow-of-epic-proportions/

    Oh, btw, NASA has recently found that the UV changes at a different pace from the TSI, so maybe TSI doesn’t tell the whole story. Causes unexpected changes in the stratospheric temperatures too. Some more unsettling science to digest:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/sorce-says-sun-did-it/

    But somehow I think you will be way to lazy to do that homework. To look at the facts. To read the history. To do the work. Much more simplistic to just spout the party line and make up fantasies.

    Now, if you’ll pardon me, I’ve got to get back to reality. There is another band of cold dark rain headed my way and I’ve got to get the gutters cleaned out before all the ‘added warmth’ freezes my arse off…

  100. E.M.Smith says:

    R. Gates says:
    First, it isn’t my theory,

    OK, so where are you getting this Cra… stuff from? It’s clearly bogus. Give us your source so we can go straighten them out. Who are you parroting?.

    and second, yes, there is an La Nina along the equatorial and south Pacific regions, but there is also a big mass of very warm water in the Western Pacific north of the equator. Some say this is “residual” warmth from the last El Nino, but it really doesn’t matter as it represents energy and is a potential source of all the moisture now falling in CA.

    O. M. G. Can you really have that little clue about how the weather works out here on the West Coast? We look NORTH WEST into the NORTH EAST part of the Pacific to know what’s coming our way. It is that DARK BLUE -2 C SST anomaly spot in this graph from 20 Dec (as I type, but will change daily):

    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.gif

    There is no way on God’s Earth that there is added heat in the stuff falling on top of me as I sit here in the cold rain.

    Also that “big mass” of “hot water” is rapidly getting itself made fridgid. It got blown over that way by the trade winds that blow away from California. That hot water might help Japan have a cyclone or two, but can do nothing for us on this coast.

    You really ought to read up a bit more on CO2 and the carbon/hydrological cycle before calling this theory “junk”

    I have. It is.

    It is absolute unmitigated and mindless JUNK. Period, full stop.

    You can start by learning which way the wind blows.
    Follow by which way the water moves.

    For bonus points you can learn that on rare occasions we’ll get some storms that come in from the south as a hurricane crosses Mexico and does a “hook” up into the L.A. Basin. That’s about as close as you can get to ‘warm’ driving storms in California. Yeah, it will make L.A. wet then. Doesn’t do a thing for the rest of the state.

    So even then, you need to look EAST of California to find any warmth (that Gulf of Mexico on the other side of Mexico) for the source of any hot water warming California rains.

    Oh, BTW, it’s that dark blue with purple spots on the SST map. -2 C to -4 C anomaly.

    Good luck with that “warmer water” theory of yours some anonymous mouthpiece.

    To coin a phrase: “Western Pacific? my Arsetic Oscillation… ”

    because it is far more solid than you seem to give it credit.

    “Gullible” doesn’t even come close. I’m going to self snip at this point.

    On the Antarctic Ice Loss topic, from the link above about GRACE having issues:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/10/20/antarctic_ice_loss_overestimated/

    Postglacial rebound is important, as NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites estimate ice loss by measuring regional gravitational forces as they fly overhead. Both ice loss and bedrock rebound contribute to GRACE grav-scan readings, and according to the WAGN measurements, rebound figures used to estimate ice loss have now been shown to be wrong.
    [...]
    The WAGN boffins say they are sure that recent figures for ice loss calculated from GRACE readings have been overestimated, but they are not yet sure by how much.

    So we don’t really know after all. But whatever we thought we knew, was wrong, and overestimated the “ice loss”.

    Owen says:
    slow to follow: please see following NASA site: http://climate.nasa.gov/news/index.cfm?FuseAction=ShowNews&NewsID=242

    References to key papers on the melting of antarctic land ice are provided at this site. GRACE measurements indicate an accelerating net loss of land ice.

    And I say: Owen, please see above about GRACE being a bit, er, ah, um, “wrong” and overestimating ice loss…

  101. R. Gates says:

    vukcevic says:
    December 21, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    “So conclusion is the Arctic ice extent (depth and area), assuming constant insolation (as Dr.S. tells us to be so) from year to year is to the greatest degree a winter factor.”
    ______

    I hate to disagree with you on this, but the data simply doesn’t support your conclusion. In looking at the following chart, from 1900, you’ll see that the greatest precentage declines in the arctic on a seasonalized basis are summer, followed by fall, then spring, and finally winter. Winter shows the least effect in extent decline on a percentage seasonal basis.

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seasonal.extent.1900-2007.jpg

    Late in the summer when solar insolation is decreasing rapidly once more, the air temperature often falls to near freezing across the Arctic but the water is warmer and so the ice will continue to melt from the bottom and sides in the water. The continued residual heat from the water will prevent ice freezing up as fast in the fall, and thus, fall has shown the second greatest percentage declines in arctic sea ice extent. More open WATER, lasting longer into the fall and with more stored heat is a key dynamic in Arctic sea ice decline.

  102. R. Gates says:

    E.M.Smith says:
    December 21, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    “O. M. G. Can you really have that little clue about how the weather works out here on the West Coast? We look NORTH WEST into the NORTH EAST part of the Pacific to know what’s coming our way. ”

    ____
    Undoubtedly CA often does get its weather from the NW pacific, but not in the case of these past few storms. They are right from the Central Pacific near Hawaii and before that, from the Western Pacific where there is a large pool of warmer than normal water. It’s commonly called the “Pineapple Express”, (really part of the MJO Osciallation) and you can trace that band of “express” clouds right to Hawaii in this satellite image:

    http://tiny.cc/pa3xu

    Sorry E.M., but you are the one who is greatly mistaken in this case. You don’t get this kind of moisture hitting CA from storms born in the Northern Pacific– there simply isn’t enough energy (i.e. heat) in the water or atmosphere to support carrying that kind of moisture…you need to head south several thousand miles closer to the equator to get that kind of energy…closer to where “pineapples” grow…

    If you want to learn more about the MJO Oscillation (so you can speak more knowledgably in the future) you might want to start here:

    http://www.almanac.com/content/teleconnections-and-oscillations

  103. E.M.Smith says:

    R. Gates says:

    Undoubtedly CA often does get its weather from the NW pacific, but not in the case of these past few storms. They are right from the Central Pacific near Hawaii

    Nice try at a dodge, but in case you didn’t notice, the Central Pacific is NOT in that “warm pool” you referenced. It’s at -0.5 C on that SST map that you clearly ignored.

    Here, try again: http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.gif

    Your “cloud band” then passes over that -2 C before it whacks into Baja Calfornia. That’s in Mexico. California is the bit above it. You can tell by the water that separates Baja from California… Southern California is getting some of it. Northern California is the part being clobbered by those clouds from further north. If you look further North and West (into the North East Pacific near the Gulf of Alaska) you will see other storms lining up. We’re expecting a sequence of storms in coming days, and those are they.

    Look on the weather map here:

    http://www.accuweather.com/maps-surface.asp

    And you will see the fronts stacked up going out to sea, NORTH and East.

    It’s commonly called the “Pineapple Express”, (really part of the MJO Osciallation) and you can trace that band of “express” clouds right to Hawaii in this satellite image:

    And as that wind comes in, it gets a ‘belly’ in it (that droop in the middle) that pulls the lows down from Alaska into the rest of the state. San Diego may be getting a Pineapple Express, but San Franciso is getting a Cold Alaskan.

    Sorry Charley, this is NO Pineapple Express in North Cal. They are warm rain, this is not. I’ve lived here over 35 years in the same place. I’ve been through a Pineapple Express or two. This aint it. And your MJO Oscillation is a WATER movement, not a storm nor wind direction change. But you get a point for trying.

    BTW, Accuweather has the origin of the southern part as being:

    The plume of moisture that had origins around the Dateline to the southwest of Hawaii (there even has been a tropical storm out in that area) has fed this deluge from day one.

    Southwest is in the tail of that cold spike, not in your warm pool. So even the So.Cal / Mexico Pineapple Express part is coming out of cold source water, not the North West warm pool.

    So even that So. Cal / Mexico part is not working for your model.

    http://tiny.cc/pa3xu

    Sorry E.M., but you are the one who is greatly mistaken in this case. You don’t get this kind of moisture hitting CA from storms born in the Northern Pacific

    Clearly you’ve never lived here (or if you have, don’t get out much). Tell you what, go watch the stormy episodes of “Dangerous Catch” (or whatever it’s called) in the Gulf of Alaska. Then tell me those storms don’t have enough energy.

    A Pineapple Express tends to be a fairly gentle storm. Long, persistent, lots of rain. But it is slow and warm and, well, pleasant, in an overly wet kind of way. The ones from Alaska are angry storms. Harsh. Windy. Cold. Sometimes with buckets of cold cold rain. We’re getting them on that chain of fronts coming from Alaska…

    This map shows the nice chain of lows running toward me…

    http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/sfc/90fwbg.gif

    It’s the far colder “sink” in the center of the continent that is powering this beast. The “cold end” of the heat engine is colder.

  104. Roger Knights says:

    It might even provide the basis for some healthy skepticism of the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Narrative.

    How about referring to it hereafter as:
    Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alarmism
    And:
    The CACA Cult?

  105. Roger Knights says:

    Shevva says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:13 am

    My dad has the same problem at the bar as warmists with news like this, selected hearing.

    “The ears have walls.”

  106. E.M.Smith says:

    Ooh, sometimes you find some cool stuff…

    Here’s a ‘wave map’ of the Pacific ocean showing wave height and direction (From Alutians to San Franciso):

    http://www.oceanweather.com/data/NPAC-Eastern/WAVE000.GIF

    It’s just a cool thing to find…

  107. Roger Carr says:

    Luis Dias says: (December 21, 2010 at 5:06 am) So, in simplistic terms, more warming should contribute…

    simplistic = characterized by extreme and often misleading simplicity
    simple = elementary: easy and not involved or complicated

  108. E.M.Smith says:

    Probably not the best wind map available, but it’s good enough. If you look on this one:

    http://www.opc.ncep.noaa.gov/UA/OPC_PAC.gif

    You can see the wind barbs showing the air blowing from the North East Pacific and running into that front from Hawaii when they turn and head ashore, about where I am… The “wind barb” has the wind going from the end with the “feathers” on it toward the round dot end.

    This one:

    http://www.opc.ncep.noaa.gov/UA/USA_West.gif

    Shows where the stationary front runs ashore about the Mexico border as I’m typing. Below that point is getting the Hawaiian air. Above it a ways gets the North Pacific air. Where the two meet, at the front, gets a mix. As it ploughs into the Coast Range mountains and then the Sierra Nevada Mountains, things become more turbulent.

    And these guys have a neat animated loop, but you have to click on the “wind” tab as I’ve not figured out how to save a copy or link directly to the animation. It shows the winds coming out of Alaska and landing on me…

    http://www.stormsurf.com/

    Though by about 27 December we start to get a little wind moving back north along the coast. (Though, by then, I expect this batch of rain will be done).

  109. savethesharks says:

    R Gates it is not the “MJO Oscillation”. Redundant.

    The MJO is what it is called.

    It is a 40-day wave that creeps across the globe in the tropical regions determining large-scale patterns of atmospheric upward motion.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madden–Julian_oscillation

    Also…the pineapple express aka the active subtropical jet….is shown on the plume of moisture fire-hosing its way into the Cali /Mex border.

    http://www.intelliweather.net/imagery/intelliweather/sat_goes10fd_580x580_img.htm

    It may have had some “some” influence on the precip feed coming into Cali over the last week, but there is no way it was pure because there would have never EVER been such magnanimous snow totals (even for Sierra standards).

    The negative PNA allowed for a flatter ridge over the intermountain west, while wisps of Arctic air from the extreme cold that is building over Alaska, helped contribute to enough cold air advection (even if only marginally), for the Sierra (and parts of the southern Cascades) to get dumped on.

    They would not have racked up nearly such incredible snow totals if it was a pure subtropical feed of air.

    Meanwhile, in Alaska, he forecast high for Fairbanks on Thursday, just two days into the NH winter, is a balmy -30 F.

    By evidence of all the cold air “popcorn” convection over the Pacific west of the USA and Canada, that alone should give you a clue of the large scale cold air mass present.

    Finally, I leave you with the ODOT webcam of US 26 around Mt. Hood, at 4000 feet.

    There is DEEP snowcover, and Pacific Polar air in place, as has been for days:

    http://www.tripcheck.com/Pages/CCview.asp?Num=1&cam1=624

    The Pineapple Express, this is not!

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  110. AusieDan says:

    EM Smith
    Here in Australia, it’s also dry when it’s hot and wet when it’s cold.
    Right now, it’s both (relatively) cold and (quite) wet (floods everywhere).
    We’ve even had some snow on the mountains.
    WUWT you may ask?
    Well, it is supposed to be summertime here in the south.

    I hasten to say however, that while snow in summer is very unusual, it is not strange or unpreceedented.

    We’ve had this type of climate (strike that out) weather (that’s better) before.
    It comes every 60 or so years with the change of the cycle from hot to cold.

    It just looks exceptional to those too young to have had much experience with climate, but have been let loose to run the ship without due supervision.

  111. tokyoboy says:

    In a field where no control experiment is possible, and worse, where only a tiny fraction of driving factors is known, a “researcher” can say anything, anytime, anywhere, and to any audience.

  112. R. Gates says:

    To E.M. Smith, savethesharks, et. al.

    The current heavy precip event in CA is pretty much a classic MJO event. This moisture did not come from the Arctic or the NE Pacific, but is a sub-tropical event, with its origins clearly in the warmer waters of the of the sub-tropical Pacific Ocean. MJO events are more common in La Nina years than El Nino years, with the last big MJO event being during the strong La Nina of 2008. For a nice summary of the MJO, I would recommend:

    http://wwa.colorado.edu/IWCS/archive/IWCS_2008_May_focus.pdf

    Of course this sub-tropical moisture will turn to snow at higher elevations of the mountains of CA. It’s winter!

  113. E.M.Smith says:

    I’ve put up an archival set of all the images and weather maps from the above discussion along with links to the live ones at:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/california-weather-now/
    just to save a lot of clicking and so that anyone reading this tomorrow can see what the images were now…

  114. Pamela Gray says:

    The winter sea ice conditions in the Arctic and Antarctic are far more controlled by natural drivers than at any other time of the year. Both poles have atmospheric oscillations. Learn how they work, and apply reasoned hypotheses. You will discover much. I linked to very good discussions in a previous comment above. Looks like many folks here need to read up.

    Gates, your indirect assumption as to the origin of the Western Pacific warm pool is interesting. Please tell me more.

  115. R. Gates says:

    E.M.,

    Thanks for that handy link, but everyone should be aware that though the subtropical jet is NOW (as of Tuesday evening, Dec. 21) over Baja, it was this subtropical jet that was the main source of the first batch of moisture that brought all the rain and snow to CA over this previous weekend when it (the subtropical jet) was directly over southern CA.

  116. AndyW says:

    I think the Arctic is far more interesting than the Antarctic at the moment, the Antarctic is average for the time of year on most graphs and the NSIDC graph is heading towards it now, meanwhile the Arctic is well below the average, mainly due to low ice in Hudson bay probably caused by warm anomalies linked to the AO at the moment.

    Perhaps NSIDC posts up more about the Arctic because most of their readers are closer to it and they find it more interesting? They certainly don’t seem to flip between the two depending on which is low or high at any point to force a message, well as far as I can tell.

    Andy

  117. savethesharks says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 9:32 pm
    E.M.,

    Thanks for that handy link, but everyone should be aware that though the subtropical jet is NOW (as of Tuesday evening, Dec. 21) over Baja, it was this subtropical jet that was the main source of the first batch of moisture that brought all the rain and snow to CA over this previous weekend when it (the subtropical jet) was directly over southern CA.

    ====================

    R you borrow and steal terms you never knew before and then make them your own.

    Recalls the “AGW models” we used to incessantly hear from you until you finally understood they were called “GCMs” maybe called Global Climate Models (but more likely called “General Circulation Models”).

    Sort of like the MJO “Oscillation” which you have also been heretofore corrected.

    In any event you as the good chameleon you are this is the first time in history you are referring to this thing as the “subtropical jet.”

    Haha I am (and have been for a long time) on to your game.

    What you don’t understand is that a deep subtropical flow AT ALL LAYERS OF THE ATMOSPHERE would produce a green Christmas at Government Camp.

    And it won’t be green. Maybe slushy with snow up at Timberline, but not green.

    A pineapple express this ain’t.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  118. Chris Noble says:

    I find it interesting that the (NSIDC) National Snow & Ice Data Center doesn’t find it newsworthy to mention this record high Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in their December 6th press release:

    The monthly update is titled “Arctic Sea Ice News”. Why are you surprised that it does not mention what is happening in the Antarctic?

  119. savethesharks says:

    Sorry I steered the vehicle across an icy snow-road and contributed to this thread’s derailing.

    Meanwhile back to the southern comfort of above normal SH Sea Ice….

    Interesting show I saw tonight on NOVA which featured Arctic dinosaurs (they mentioned some Antarctic ones too) .

    One quote (and this was from public television, folks) mentioned how the warm period 230 million years ago was even warmer than the one 70 million years ago and accordingly “an explosion of life and diversity almost never known occurred on the planet.”

    Wow….such scary, horrible global warming.

    Why the hell indeed, should we fear that global sea ice is just a hair below normal???

    We shouldn’t. We should wish that there was less.

    Fear the cold, and not the warm.

    On the other hand…with good hydrocarbon and nuclear energy supplies [f*** song-bird destroying wind-farms!], I think the cold makes us stronger and selective as a species…so I am torn.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  120. barry says:

    I find it interesting that the (NSIDC) National Snow & Ice Data Center doesn’t find it newsworthy to mention this record high Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent Anomaly in their December 6th press release

    You link to their page on Arctic sea ice.

    It’s not hard to understand why more effort is devoted to a web page on Arctic sea ice. Firstly, the are is surrounded by land – a lot of people live in or near the Arctic circle. The region is an important shipping area. Antarctic sea ice is far from inhabited areas and doesn’t interfere with shipping lanes. There is much more public interest – setting aside the climate change issue – in the Arctic.

    Also, Northern Hemispheric sea ice trends are much more dramatic than Southern Hemisphere, which has changed little over the satellite period. In this regard also, record extent anomalies in the Southern Hemisphere don’t impact.

    The small growth in Antarctic sea ice over the last 30 years is not significant. For climate controversarians, short-term increases in sea ice there have been predicted in the scientific literature – so it makes no impact on the great climate change debate (except as an uninvestigated, hot button talking point).

    Antarctic sea ice doesn’t affect many people’s lives, not like it does in the Northern Hemisphere (fishing, freight etc). It’s reasonable for NSIDC to cover that area in more detail publicly. Antarctic sea ice only excites climate ‘skeptics’ with an axe to grind.

    REPLY: Yeah sure, that’s why NSIDC sends Dr. Ted Scambo down there on a special mission to study ice. They called for volunteers at the last staff meeting and said “who wants to do a mission nobody gives a rats ass about”?

    That “doesn’t affect people’s lives” meme is why some folks are getting freaked out about the WA, and the ice shelves, and writing stories like this one, ignoring the fact that the rest of the continent is growing in ice volume. That one area losing ice on the peninsula is crawling with scientists, because ” Antarctic sea ice only excites climate ‘skeptics’ with an axe to grind.”

    Yeah, sure, that’s the ticket. Heh. What a lost before you wrote it argument. – Anthony

  121. Michael Schaefer says:

    Arctic decline, Antarctic growth, whatever: It’s frigging cold and snowy over here in Germany – resembling Russia more than central Europe, actually.

    Once I have been a believer in AGW, too. But as soon as I stopped believing and started checking the facts and connecting the dots myself, AGW vanished like a ghost at dawn.

    Welcome to a cold, new world.

  122. barry says:

    That “doesn’t affect people’s lives” meme is why some folks are getting freaked out about the WA, and the ice shelves, and writing stories like this one, ignoring the fact that the rest of the continent is growing in ice volume.

    None of those topics are sea ice topics. You elided my quote, which was specifically about sea ice.

    The fact is, Antarctic sea ice has no direct impact on people’s lives and livelihoods. There are no indigenous human populations in the Antarctic, no consequences for shipping, no impact on weather patterns for even the nearest populated regions (Tasmania, Southern South America) – none of the day-to-day stuff that people living in or near the Arctic are affected by as Arctic sea-ice changes, seasonally and over the long-term.

    Of course, the Antarctic holds ecological and climate interest. Antarctic sea ice has changed little over the last 30 years. The trend is up, but insignificant, as are monthly anomalies (November increase of 0.6% per decade is smaller than the uncertainty). Record high anomalies on this subject only energize climate skeptics who are more interested in a talking point than a sober examination of the issue. Increased Antarctic sea-ice in the short-term has been predicted in the literature. Recent record anomalies on the high side don’t make much of a story except to the small number of people bent on pouncing on every scrap they believe fortifies their position.

    IOW, you’re making a mountain out of a molehill.

    REPLY: Well then if it’s so insignificant, why even have NSIDC report on it on their website, or send experts there? The argument is that NSDIC should report on significant events, for both poles, and these were significant in the record, wishing them away won’t make them any less of a record. And, the issue is truly global, not unipolar. You can’t have it both ways, sorry but you lose the argument. – Anthony

  123. vukcevic says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:50 pm
    ………………
    Graph you refer to confirms the point I made. Less ice created in the winter (and it is not only the area but depth of the ice has to be taken into account), ice free area will increase not linearly but exponentially.
    Further matter you should know is that proportion of ice reaching Denmark Strait last summer was created some 10 years ago in the Beaufort Sea, or 3-4 years ago in Kara and Laptev seas.
    Direct Winter / Summer ice area comparison is not a liner function and also above mention time shift has to be taken into account. I have no numbers to show these proportions, but the fundamentals of the above are well known.

  124. barry says:

    REPLY: Well then if it’s so insignificant, why even have NSIDC report on it on their website, or send experts there?

    You keep conflating ideas. There is plenty of scientific interest in the Antarctic. In terms of what directly affects the public (like the part of the US that is in or connected to the Arctic – it’s the US National Snow and Ice Data Center after all), the Antarctic is a long way from home. It’s also less studied than the Arctic – it’s the most remote continent on Earth and it’s harder to supply teams there.

    In terms of climate, Antarctic sea ice shows no significant trend. Other parts of the Antarctic, like the peninsula, which lies beyond the polar winds that keep the region somewhat thermally isolated from the rest of the planet, are showing more significant trends, and these are commented on.

    The focus on the North is is not a political decision. It’s geography, and in terms of sea ice, the fact that there is a remarkable trend there, unlike in the South.

    NSIDC explain:

    Why don’t I hear much about Antarctic sea ice?

    NSIDC scientists do monitor sea ice in the Antarctic, and sea ice in the Antarctic is of interest to scientists worldwide. While many have published peer-reviewed journal articles on the topic, it has received less attention than the Arctic. There are several reasons for this.

    Unlike Arctic sea ice, Antarctic sea ice disappears almost completely during the summer, and has since scientists have studied it. Earth’s climate system over thousands of years has been “in tune” with this annual summertime disappearance of Antarctic sea ice. However, satellite records and pre-satellite records indicate that the Arctic has not been free of summertime sea ice for at least 5,500 years and possibly for 125,000 years. So Earth’s climate system and ecosystems, as they exist today, did not develop in conjunction with an ice-free Arctic. Such an ice-free Arctic summer environment would be a change unprecedented in modern human history and could have ramifications for climate around the world.

    They go on:

    Is wintertime Antarctic sea ice increasing or decreasing?

    Wintertime Antarctic sea ice is increasing at a small rate and with substantial natural year-to-year variability in the time series. While Antarctic sea ice reached a near-record-high annual minimum in March 2008, this does not indicate a significant long-term trend. To borrow an analogy from sports, one high day, month, or even year of sea ice is no more significant than one early-season win would be in predicting whether the hometown team will win the Super Bowl ten seasons from now.

    Antarctic summer trend is smaller than the uncertainty – ie, there is no statistical significance for the apparent upward trend – slope=4.0 (+/-4.6)% per decade. Even if the trend were significant, it would have little to no impact in real terms.

    The only ‘impact’ this issue has is with climate sceptics who seem to believe the lack of focus on Southern sea ice is a deliberate omission for propagandic purposes. If the purpose was political NSIDC would have reported on the record-breaking summertime low in March 2006. But they didn’t. ‘Warmist’ events for that topic (sea ice) are as unremarkable as the other. In a near trendless scenario, record anomalies are about weather, not climate. And the weather in the Antarctic holds no public interest because it affects no one (except the intrepid researchers that go there).

    Significant trends that indicate something about climate there, like the peninsula, are a different story.

    REPLY: Well you have your opinion, I have mine. But here’s where you really lose the argument:

    “There is plenty of scientific interest in the Antarctic.”

    And, NSIDC is a scientific organization, reporting their scientific views to the public, often as a news story generator. Serrezze for example is a veritable quote mine. I’m not conflating anything, they simply don’t wish to talk about it when they give briefings because it doesn’t fit their narrative. If it is so insignificant, then what’s the harm? The harm is that people ask questions, and the typical question from the layman is: If global warming is truly “global” why is Antarctica gaining ice, while the Arctic is losing ice. NSIDC really doesn’t want to deal with the question.

    And this statement:

    While Antarctic sea ice reached a near-record-high annual minimum in March 2008, this does not indicate a significant long-term trend.

    Is utter BS. They make similar observations (saying there is a significant long-term trend) about the Arctic using the same satellite data set.

    Yet people like you think they are being unbiased in their presentation. I don’t think they are unbiased at all, I think they are involved in salesmanship. Otherwise we would NOT hear things like “death spiral” quotes from the director.

    Really, all this word bluster because I suggest NSIDC should report both poles in the year end report? You aren’t convincing anyone, and it pleases me greatly that you and many others are having a cow about it. – Anthony

  125. savethesharks says:

    O/T again but to answer R Gates’ attempted commandeer of this thread earlier about the pineapple express….let’s see what Joe Bastardi has to say. From his blog earlier today:

    “As it is, THIS IS NOT of the same genre of last year. There is NO PINEAPPLE express, unless someone is growing pineapples midway between the Aleutians and Hawaii. Amazing how that is being said. The reason for this is that lower thickness air ( colder in the deep means) has been helped out by the cold PDO and there has been plenty of warmth over the southwest.”

    “The natural clash of that jet aimed at that warm air produces heavy precip. I did not think it would get this far south, but just like the east better get while the getting is good with the chance of the major storm, much of the rest of the winter and into the spring should be dry in so cal.”

    “Its just that this la nina, and I suspect its because it is being driven by a large scale climatic event.. the PDO turning old, is making its point. For those that want to argue global warming, I will tell you the same thing I told people in Europe 2 Novembers ago when it was raining so much.. wet means colder.”

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  126. Alistiar Ahs says:

    “I wonder why NSIDC and others aren’t providing more information to the public on this interesting phenomenon.”

    Your final two plots answer this question rather neatly, in that there are two obvious differences between the two timeseries that make NH ice a bit more interesting than SH ice.

    The first difference is that there is a clearly identifiable [downward] trend in the NH ice, to the extent that it looks as though it has been almost six years since there was a positive anomaly in NH sea ice. By contrast there is only a slight suggestion of an upward trend in SH sea.

    The second difference is that the variability in the SH sea ice is much greater than in the NH sea ice. I think this makes record anomalies in sea ice a bit more likely from a purely statistical point of view, where there is no trend.

    This second difference is mostly due to the nature of the sea ice at the two poles. The Arctic sea ice is mainly in the Arctic Ocean itself, surrounded by land, whereas the Antarctic sea ice is further towards the equator, surrounding the Antarctic continent and consequently being moved about by winds a lot at the edge. This probably helps to explain the greater variability in Antarctic sea ice, and also possibly explains the curious little kink in Arctic seaice extent, which has dipped slightly in recent days [but if anyone knows more about that I'd be interested to hear it].

  127. Pamela Gray says:

    To continue this discussion of atmospheric oscillation affects on polar ice, here is a good 2002 article on the AO and its affects on Arctic ice. Nary a word about CO2.

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0442%282002%29015%3C2648%3AROSITT%3E2.0.CO%3B2

  128. Rod Everson says:

    I’m going to try one more time, then I’ll forget about it….

    The Cryosphere graphs of N and S Hemisphere both have exactly the same layout, only the Arctic one has “15% extent” in the description. The Antarctica one has neither extent nor area indicated, so it’s very easy to assume that it, too, is extent, especially when they’re paired together, as above and on the Sea Ice Page. (By paired, I mean they show up in the same order in the presentations.)

    Also, on the Total Global Sea Ice graph, also by Cryosphere, the global anomaly has looked to me like it has tracked very closely to what you would get from summing the two graphs and this has been true for several months now. (It’s hard to tell exactly because for some odd reason there’s no link to the data on any of these graphs, links that would remove all of this confusion, incidentally.)

    Anthony, doesn’t a graph for extent for the S. Hemisphere exist? If it does, wouldn’t it be more consistent to use that instead of the current one, which people in here are saying is for area? And Cryosphere, why all the obfuscation? Label the damned graphs better and provide links to the data and all this would be unnecessary.

    But perhaps then we’d learn that the negative anomaly in Antarctica is fictitious, especially with NSIDC’s measurement of extent running better than 2 SD’s above the 1979-2000 average for months now? But then Cryosphere is using a 1979-2008 mean, so maybe that’s the answer? Hard to tell without a link to the data.

  129. Pamela Gray says:

    Given the links provided regarding the AAO and the AO influence on sea ice gain and loss, I can deduce that these atmospheric oscillations (which have great amounts of energy in them) appear to be the driver of sea ice behavior in its growth, movement, and loss at both poles. Without longer term data on these atmospheric indices, it is difficult to tell whether or not each has a medium term and longer term oscillation, as well as short term noisy trends.

    I propose that it is probable that they both have all three kinds of trends and are quite able to bury in noise the fraction of an influence global changes in CO2 has. I also propose that to reduce the short term noise, it would be helpful to statistically apply a 3 month overlapping running average to the data, similar to that done to ENSO data in determining El Nino and La Nina events and conditions.

  130. Travis says:

    I’m guessing NSIDC didn’t make a big deal about Antarctic ice extent because the ice area (last column in their source data) shows November only had the 8th highest extent. That does not point to the Antarctic being colder than normal or having significantly more ice than normal…again, the sea ice area was only 8th highest…rather, it implies that the wind was spreading out the thin ice more than normal. If you look at CT’s daily map of sea ice area, that’s essentially what you see: large swaths of widely spread low concentration ice.

    NSIDC source data:
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Nov/S_11_area.txt

    CT map of Antarctic sea ice area:
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/NEWIMAGES/antarctic.seaice.color.000.png

  131. Jeff T says:

    @Tony Hansen
    “Are you sure? The caption with the CT graph says….
    Cryosphere Today – extent 15% or greater – click to enlarge”

    I think the caption on the WUWT ice page is incorrect.
    Compare these two plots and you’ll see that the Cryoshpere Today anomaly plot is area, not extent.
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.arctic.png
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.anomaly.arctic.png

  132. Jeff T says:

    @barry
    “Antarctic summer trend is smaller than the uncertainty ”

    and @Anthony
    “Is utter BS. They make similar observations (saying there is a significant long-term trend) about the Arctic using the same satellite data set.”

    barry is right. See my earlier comment, which gives trends and uncertainties (for each month) for both poles. The data are from
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/
    In the Antarctic summer, the Antarctic trends are less than twice their standard deviations. Therefore, the trends are not statistically significant at the 95% level. Over much of the year (including summer) the Arctic trends are six to ten times their standards deviations. Thus, they are definitely statistically significant. The satellites are indeed the same, but the data tell different stories for the two poles.

    REPLY: Well I disagree, my point has been about reporting (or lack thereof) of record highs. Record highs are trumpeted far and wide for temperature, rainfall, etc. They are also trumpeted far and wide (usually starting at NSIDC) about Sea Ice. These records sometimes aren’t “statistically significant”; in many cases new records are reported for high/low temperature in the media when they exceed a by single degree, hardly statistically significant, but they are often used to underscore talking points. NSIDC uses record lows to underscore their talking points. My point that record highs should be discussed, on both poles, by an organization that covers both poles, is just as valid.

    The real problem with sea ice is that nobody really knows what the true “standard deviation” for the Arctic (or Antarctic) extent is, since we have only a mere pittance of data, 30 years worth, since late 1979. The standard deviation computed for such a short data set may very well turn out to be statistically insignificant in the long terms scheme of things. – Anthony

  133. barry says:

    [NSIDC] – “While Antarctic sea ice reached a near-record-high annual minimum in March 2008, this does not indicate a significant long-term trend.”

    [Anthony] – Is utter BS. They make similar observations (saying there is a significant long-term trend) about the Arctic using the same satellite data set.

    You’re quite wrong. This is a statistical point. The error bars are wider than the anomaly. The trend is smaller than the margin of error. This is true for November and March (summertime) extents. The current value for November, which you posted, is 0.6 (+/-0.7%) per decade. This means that there is potentially no trend (or that the trend is 1.3% per decade). This is why they – correctly – describe the trend as insignificant. Both statistically and literally, it is.

    This is different for the Arctic, where the summertime trend is 11.5 (+/-2.9)% per decade. In this case, the trend is 4 times greater than the margin of error. There is no doubting the trend, and it is highly significant, both statistically and literally.

    they simply don’t wish to talk about it when they give briefings because it doesn’t fit their narrative. If it is so insignificant, then what’s the harm?

    Because the briefing would be, “Sea ice in the Antarctic shows a statistically insignificant positive trend. We’re not sure that summertime sea ice has grown over the last 30 years, but it is more likely than not that it has. The Antarctic is relatively thermally isolated from the rest of the globe, and changes there are slow and not well-tracked. However, short-term predictions indicate that some sea ice growth may occur, with depleted ozone potentially playing a role, while the projection for the long-term is a decrease in sea ice cover. Unlike the Arctic, if the summertime ice disappears completely, this will have no impact on the region or the globe, except, perhaps as confirmation of the long-term projections – summertime sea ice in the Antarctic almost completely melts away in any case, so the change would not be profound. November sea ice was a record high, but again, the margin of error means the value is statistically insignificant. We can’t say much with confidence about observed SH sea ice trends.”

    Not much happening, and that which is, is uncertain, and no impact on weather/climate. Why should that make a press release?

    it pleases me greatly that you and many others are having a cow about it

    Ha ha ha. I’m not that attached to the outcome of an argument at the bottom of a thread. How many people make it this far anyway? I think you’re running (counter) propaganda, and it is a semi-idle pastime to respond to it.

    I think you’re ‘having a cow’ over a non-event. Your paradigm is that positive Antarctic sea ice trends mean something WRT global warming. It’s the tired old argument that if one part of the world exhibits non-warming behaviour, this injures AGW theory, as if anyone ever posited that global warming means not just the average, but every single location on the globe as well. The premise is wrong, but even if we run with it, let’s look at ‘truly global’ sea ice.

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg

    The NH/SH combined trend is…. negative.

    You’ll notice that NSIDC don’t report the global average, either, in their monthly/annual press releases. As it’s a nice, warmist result against the skeptical memes on Antarctic sea ice, they’re pretty poor salesmen, don’t you think?

    REPLY: Well Dr. Meier just went on record about more openness and engaging skeptics concerns over at EE, so we’ll see if they think the issue worth mentioning. My issue with lack of reporting new records still stands. – Anthony

  134. Pamela Gray says:

    Tried putting this over on the Tips page but no Leave a Reply available. For the past few days I have been noticing “necklaces” on the cyrosphere images of Arctic Ice. The one there today looks like two antenni coming out of the top of a smashed beetle’s head.

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/

  135. E.M.Smith says:

    R. Gates says:
    Thanks for that handy link,

    You are most welcome. I’ve updated it today with “live images” so folks can see the “before” and the “after”.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/california-weather-now/

    Of particular interest is the way the low off the N. California coast has made a nice cold front running down toward LA and busting up the stationary front that was on the Mexican border. You can also see the large cloud mass that was off the N. Cal coast and is now moved inland and is sitting on top of my head. All of it moving from the Gulf of Alaska down and left into California. That’s how it works out here.

    brought all the rain and snow to CA over this previous weekend when it (the subtropical jet) was directly over southern CA.

    Oh, I get it. You’re one of those folks who think California ends at Pasadena! Now it all makes sense. The 3/4 of the state north of there with the bits that are covered in snow just don’t matter because it doesn’t exist in that world view. The Hollywood Centric “If it’s not in LA then it isn’t REAL” folks.

    Ok….

    One Small Problem: We get snow from cold fronts. Not warm fronts. Warm fronts deliver snow melting rains as high as 8000 feet. We’ve got a load of snow. Work it out.

    BTW, all the folks in frozen and snowy [ Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, ...] aren’t in L.A. either and they kind of care about those Cold Alaskan’s we’re getting…

    And, like I said, good luck with that “hot water driving it” thesis as the whole pacific rapidly is approaching a ‘below normal” anomaly.

    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.gif

    Back On Antarctic Ice

    OK, the reason they won’t talk about the Antarctic Ice is because it’s an inconvenient frozen meat locker. It only gets talked about when the ice shelves are calving. We’ve lost what, 400% of the ice shelf? And it’s still there…

    These folks:

    http://trs-new.jpl.nasa.gov/dspace/bitstream/2014/10195/1/02-2280.pdf

    say it’s due to the dynamics of the ice itself as it develops rifts.

    Calfing events along a given section of the ice front occur dedades apart, making it difficult to obtain sufficient observations to statistically separate the natural variability of a stable ice shelf from any longer term trend.
    [...]
    …analysis of these data suggests that the rifts open at a steady rate, largely in response to the stresses present in the ice shelf.

    And this fine old paper from the “New Little Ice Age” scare era has the proper multiple thousand year perspective:

    http://iahs.info/redbooks/a086/086040.pdf

    Is the Antarctic ice sheet growing thicker?
    BY
    JOHN HOLLIN
    Department of Geological and Geophysical Sciences,
    Princeton University, New Jersey, U.S.A.

    ABSTRACT

    The Antarctic ice sheet has existed for several million years, it has fluctuated but never disappeared, and the last major retreat of its margin ended several thousand years ago. The evidence is discussed for and against a subsequent growth of the ice sheet centre, on a time scale of thousands of years. The evidence includes ice- and sand-wedges, cavernous weathering and lichens, all to the ice edge; possibly advancing glaciers flowing from the ice sheet into the McMurdo Oasis; positive mass budgets for the ice sheet and for individual drainage basins; a possible sea-level fall over the last 4000 yr (that the Netherlands and Gulf Coast show a sea-level rise may be because they are sinking now as part of collapsing “peripheral bulges” stretching further than usually imagined, though not as far as the Equator as has been suggested), though part of this fall may be due to a post-Hypsithermal cooling; the aseismicity of Antarctica; temperature profiles in the ice sheet; strain networks on the ice surface; deep coring studies; ice position surveys; and gravity data. The most likely causes for a growth of the ice sheet would be a post-18,000 BP accumulation increase over Antarctica, or else a build-up in one or more basins towards a mechanical surge.

    I find it interesting that they clearly recognized a warmer past when the ice margin was retreating fast, but had since stopped. They also note that we had a bit “POP” in warming out of the Ice Age Glacial and into the Interglacial, but that it’s been a bit of a slow (very very slow) downhill cooling since then….

    OK, I know it’s only been a few years since the Chicken Little Warmers (CLW?) news makers were busy shoving the ice shelf breakup into our faces… and the ‘decadal’ time scales says we likely need a few more years to get them fully back, BUT:

    Anthony? Is it maybe time for an article showing the change of the ice shelves since that major “catastrophe”? Have they stabilized? Added mass? Is it worth pointing out any kind of cyclical pattern with, oh, I don’t know, a 30 year period with shelf break up and non-breakup intervals plotted?

    I’ve found it to be VERY handy to look at the “negative space” of what someone says or does. The “what’s missing in this picture”. And right now what’s missing is any talk about ice loss and ice shelf loss in Antarctica. That implies to me that it’s a productive spot for a “Dig Here!” sign…

  136. Pamela Gray says:

    The Wilkins’ Ice Watch at http://www.esa.int/esaEO/SEMYBBSTGOF_index_0.html is currently disabled for maintenance.

  137. R. Gates says:

    vukcevic says:
    December 22, 2010 at 3:35 am
    R. Gates says:
    December 21, 2010 at 5:50 pm
    ………………
    Graph you refer to confirms the point I made. Less ice created in the winter (and it is not only the area but depth of the ice has to be taken into account), ice free area will increase not linearly but exponentially.
    Further matter you should know is that proportion of ice reaching Denmark Strait last summer was created some 10 years ago in the Beaufort Sea
    _____
    I would seriously doubt there is any 10 year old ice from the Beaufort Sea reaching the Denmark Strait. The existence of such old multi-year ice would surprise me. I’m not saying it is impossible, but I would love to see the data on this. Also, I guess I’m just not getting your point about the winter and sea ice growth. Are are talking about the actual period from Dec. 21 to March. 21 (Calendar winter)? The fastest rate of growth for sea ice actually occurs during the fall from Sept. 21 to Dec. 21. But perhaps I just missed your point entirely (most likely).

  138. E.M.Smith says:

    OMG that Tiny Tim song is such a hoot and a half!

    This site (that has an embed of it) says it’s from the 1968 album (just about the time we turned to a New Ice Age Scare) so given the lead time to write, create, and publish I’m thinkin’ TT was getting the idea in about 1962? So was there an “Ice Caps Melting” scare in the ’40s and ’50s? I think we need a historical search…

    http://althouse.blogspot.com/2009/11/ice-caps-are-melting-oh-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho.html

    This insane song appears on Tim’s 1968 album “God Bless Tiny Tim,” so all that ice caps melting business has nothing to do with our present-day angst over polar bears and obeisance to the Great God Gore. Unless Tim started it all. Who are those kids anyway? And why did adults subject the youngsters to this trippy apocalyptic weirdness? Perhaps little Al is there, absorbing the crazed wisdom of Tiny. Mysteries! Wow. It’s so far out!

    But it does raise the interesting question: Has AlGore listened to Tiny Tim when he was a child? Was there a subtile influence upon him? Has he secretly wanted to be a fish?… ;-)

    As funny as that song is, it does raise the interesting technical point that there was some kind of cyclical paranoia cycle here, with an “Ice Caps Melting” meme turning into “New Little Ice Age” then back to “Ice Caps Melting”. The presumption would be that the next 30 years of the cycle will see “New New Little Ice Age” return…

    Is there a PDO driver to our culture? That could take a while to sort out…

  139. vukcevic says:

    R. Gates says:
    December 22, 2010 at 1:50 pm
    …………….
    Ice melt in the early autumn is usually due to rain (low insulation), which month or two later turns into snow and ice built up. Surface ice growth on the Siberian banks, where there is huge inflow of fresh water, occurs later in the year, when the water surface temperatures drops below -2C.
    Ice is on the move for the greater part of the year due to (Arctic Ocean is Bering to Fram strait) currents.
    There are number of papers with reference to the time ice takes to reach either Fram or Denmark straits. Here are two:
    On the average, it takes ice more than 6 years to drift from the Beaufort Sea to the Fram Strait and one year from the North Pole. During high AO years, ice drift from the Beaufort Sea to the Fram Strait takes more than a year longer, but ice travels faster from the North Pole to the Fram Strait. This condition leads to increased divergence of sea ice, which in turn promotes increased production of more thin sea-ice over the Eurasia Basin.
    http://www.greenice.org/Publications/JEODI%20wkshop%20paper.pdf

    Transpolar Drift Stream collects ice from the Eurasian shelves and transports it across the Pole and towards the Fram Strait within about three years.
    http://web.gfi.uib.no/publikasjoner/pdf/Kvingedal.pdf

    There is more to the Arctic ice understanding than just annual or seasonal surface coverage graphs.

  140. Phil. says:

    vukcevic says:
    December 22, 2010 at 2:44 pm
    Ice is on the move for the greater part of the year due to (Arctic Ocean is Bering to Fram strait) currents.
    There are number of papers with reference to the time ice takes to reach either Fram or Denmark straits. Here are two:
    On the average, it takes ice more than 6 years to drift from the Beaufort Sea to the Fram Strait and one year from the North Pole.

    Recent events have made this obselete, over the last few years it has only taken about 6 months to drift from the pole to the Fram (see NPole webcam progress and Russian research bases). This year’s MY ice melted in situ in the Chukchi sea without ever entering the Trans Polar drift.

    During high AO years, ice drift from the Beaufort Sea to the Fram Strait takes more than a year longer, but ice travels faster from the North Pole to the Fram Strait. This condition leads to increased divergence of sea ice, which in turn promotes increased production of more thin sea-ice over the Eurasia Basin.
    http://www.greenice.org/Publications/JEODI%20wkshop%20paper.pdf

    Transpolar Drift Stream collects ice from the Eurasian shelves and transports it across the Pole and towards the Fram Strait within about three years.
    http://web.gfi.uib.no/publikasjoner/pdf/Kvingedal.pdf

    Recently the ice from the Eurasian shelves has also been melting in situ. The thinner ice is now drifting faster and fragmenting more, the ice bridge at the entrance to the Nares strait either doesn’t form now or opens much earlier.

    There is more to the Arctic ice understanding than just annual or seasonal surface coverage graphs.

    Yes and it’s changing as we watch it!

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