Sea Ice News Volume 4 number 4 – The Maslowski Countdown to an ‘ice-free Arctic’ begins

A grand experiment is being conducted in the Arctic this year that may not only falsify a prediction made in 2007, but may also further distance a connection between Arctic air temperature and sea ice decline.

You may have noticed the countdown widget at the top of the right sidebar. I’ve been waiting for this event all summer, and now that we are just over a month away from the Autumnal Equinox at September 22, at 20:44 UTC., (4:44PM EDT) signifying the end of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, this seemed like a good time to start the countdown. If there is still significant ice (1 million square kilometers or more as defined by Zwally, see below) in place then, we can consider that this claim by Maslowski in 2007 to be falsified:

2013_ice_coundown

Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7139797.stm

What is most interesting though, is that Arctic temperatures seem to be in early decline, ahead of schedule by about 30 days compared to last year’s record melt:

2013-2012_DMI_temp_compare

Figure 1A: Overlay of temperature plots for 2012 and 2013 from the Danish Meteorological Institute.

Note that in Figure 1A, for 2013 the temperature has fallen below that which is needed to freeze seawater (approximately -1.8°C according to Peter Wadhams) at 271°K (-2.15°C). It is also approximmately 30 days ahead of the date that the temperature fell to the same value last year, and so far, the current situation with early colder temperature seems to be unique in the DMI temperature record back to 1958. However, it is worth noting that DMI has a caveat not to take the actual temperatures too literally.

…since the model is gridded in a regular 0.5 degree grid, the mean temperature values are strongly biased towards the temperature in the most northern part of the Arctic! Therefore, do NOT use this measure as an actual physical mean temperature of the arctic. The ‘plus 80 North mean temperature’graphs can be used for comparing one year to an other.

As if on cue for that caveat, shortly after I prepared figure 1A, DMI updated their plot to show a bit of a rebound:

80NmeanT_8-18-2013

Figure 1B DMI plot for today.

But there are other indications, for example this plot from NOAA ESRL, showing air temperatures well below freezing in the region:

Figure 2: Surface air temperatures in C Source: NOAA ESRL – Click the pic to view at sourceAnd, extent this year is ahead of extent for this time last year and within the standard deviation range (grey shading):

Figure 3: Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) – Centre for Ocean and Ice – Click the pic to view at source

After a new record low in Arctic sea ice extent in 2012, the phrase “Nature abhors a vaccum” comes to mind as indicators suggest this melt season may end earlier than usual. The earliest that a turn in Arctic melt season was recorded in the satellite record was on September 2nd, 1987. With 14 days to go, will we see an earlier turn?

If we do, it might suggest (as many believe) that sea ice melt is directly tied to air temperature and the effects of increased CO2 on air temperature via the polar amplification we are often told about where the Arctic is the fastest warming place in the world.

Figure 4: The map above shows global temperature anomalies for 2000 to 2009. It does not depict absolute temperature, but rather how much warmer or colder a region is compared to the norm for that region from 1951 to 1980. Global temperatures from 2000–2009 were on average about 0.6°C higher than they were from 1951–1980. The Arctic, however, was about 2°C warmer. Based on GISS surface temperature analysis data including ship and buoy data from the Hadley Centre.

Image Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_amplification

If the melt continues, and turns around the normal time, which is usually +/- 5 days of the Autumnal Equinox on September 22nd, then we can assume other forcings are dominant this year, such as ocean currents and cycles like the AMO, winds, and ocean temperature below the sea ice. There’s also the unanswered question of the effects of black carbon soot.

If in spite of the early drop in temperatures, the Arctic sea ice extent ice drops below 1 million square kilometers, as NASA’s Jay Zwally famously predicted (with an assist from AP’s Seth Borenstein): “…the Arctic Ocean could be nearly ice-free at the end of summer by 2012″ then most certainly all bets are off.

But if we see an early turn, it will falsify Maslowski’s and Zwally’s forecasts. Also, if the melt marches on despite the colder temperatures, it will force a reconsideration of what is really driving Arctic melt patterns.

Interestingly, the final ARCUS sea ice forecast has been published on August 16th,and the ranges of predictions are quite broad, spanning 2.2 million square kilometers from the most optimistic NOAA’s Msadek et al. at 5.8 msq/km to the perennially gloomy “Neven” whose Artic Sea Ice blog poll predicts 3.6 msq/km.

See http://www.arcus.org/search/seaiceoutlook/2013/august

They write:

The Sea Ice Outlook organizers decided, with input from contributors and readers, to skip an August report this year in favor of a more thorough post-season report.

However, we provided this webpage to post and share individual contributors¹ August outlooks; the individual outlooks are below.

Since ARCUS didn’t plot them, I’ve plotted all the participant forecasts below.

2013_ARCUS_final_forecast

Figure 5: plot of September Arctic Sea Ice Extent Mean forecasts submitted to ARCUS in August 2013.

Interestingly, I discovered that Robert Grumbine has participated in two forecasts (Wu and Wang) as a co-author, each with a different prediction, so that seems rather odd to me.

WUWT’s value is based on a weighted calculation of the top five vote getters in our poll here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/11/sea-ice-news-volume-4-3-2013-sea-ice-forecast-contest/

The most popular value picked by WUWT readers was 5.0 msq/km 8.9% (94 votes), though it wasn’t a runaway vote, hence I opted for a weighted average of the top 5 vote getters.

Most importantly, none of the ARCUS forecasts participants suggested an ice-free Arctic, which is bad news for Maslowski’s prediction.

No matter what happens, we live in interesting times.

As always the WUWT Sea Ice reference page has interesting plots of data at a glance: http://wattsupwiththat.com/reference-pages/sea-ice-page/

UPDATE: Commenter “jimbo” adds in comments -

Here is a compilation of ice-free Arctic Ocean / North Pole predictions / projections from scientists for the past, present and future.

Xinhua News Agency – 1 March 2008
“If Norway’s average temperature this year equals that in 2007, the ice cap in the Arctic will all melt away, which is highly possible judging from current conditions,” Orheim said.
[Dr. Olav Orheim - Norwegian International Polar Year Secretariat]
__________________

Canada.com – 16 November 2007
“According to these models, there will be no sea ice left in the summer in the Arctic Ocean somewhere between 2010 and 2015.

“And it’s probably going to happen even faster than that,” said Fortier,””
[Professor Louis Fortier - Université Laval, Director ArcticNet]
__________________

National Geographic – 12 December 2007
“NASA climate scientist Jay Zwally said: “At this rate, the Arctic Ocean could be nearly ice-free at the end of summer by 2012, much faster than previous predictions.” ”

[Dr. Jay Zwally - NASA]
__________________

BBC – 12 December 2007
Our projection of 2013 for the removal of ice in summer is not accounting for the last two minima, in 2005 and 2007,”…….”So given that fact, you can argue that may be our projection of 2013 is already too conservative.”

[Professor Wieslaw Maslowski]
__________________

Independent – 27 June 2008
Exclusive: Scientists warn that there may be no ice at North Pole this summer
“…..It is quite likely that the North Pole will be exposed this summer – it’s not happened before,” Professor Wadhams said.”
[Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
__________________

Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences
Vol. 40: 625-654 – May 2012
The Future of Arctic Sea Ice
“…..one can project that at this rate it would take only 9 more years or until 2016 ± 3 years to reach a nearly ice-free Arctic Ocean in summer. Regardless of high uncertainty associated with such an estimate, it does provide a lower bound of the time range for projections of seasonal sea ice cover…..”
[Professor Wieslaw Maslowski]
__________________

Yale Environment360 – 30 August 2012
“If this rate of melting [in 2012] is sustained in 2013, we are staring down the barrel and looking at a summer Arctic which is potentially free of sea ice within this decade,”
[Dr. Mark Drinkwater]
__________________

Guardian – 17 September 2012
This collapse, I predicted would occur in 2015-16 at which time the summer Arctic (August to September) would become ice-free. The final collapse towards that state is now happening and will probably be complete by those dates“.
[Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
__________________

Sierra Club – March 23, 2013
“For the record—I do not think that any sea ice will survive this summer. An event unprecedented in human history is today, this very moment, transpiring in the Arctic Ocean….”
[Paul Beckwith - PhD student paleoclimatology and climatology - part-time professor]
__________________

Financial Times Magazine – 2 August 2013
“It could even be this year or next year but not later than 2015 there won’t be any ice in the Arctic in the summer,”
[Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
__________________

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283 Responses to Sea Ice News Volume 4 number 4 – The Maslowski Countdown to an ‘ice-free Arctic’ begins

  1. Latitude says:

    winds coming out of the south…Canada….will change shortly

    Arctic is the smallest ocean…..1 million sq km is the size of Egypt…that’s significant!

    …and who in their right mind decided floating ice was an indication of anything other than wind??

  2. SandyInLimousin says:

    Re BBC article leading this posting

    I asked Jonathon Amos about this earlier in the year as it seemed unlikely that the prediction would come to pass.

    Thank you for your mail and interest in my story. The comparison between what is happening in the Arctic and the Antarctic is, on the face of it, a very interesting one. But I spend a lot of time talking to the scientists who study the cryosphere in depth, at both ends of the globe, and have my head in the literature. And I can assure you the analysis is a pretty uniform one. The Arctic and the Antarctic are behaving exactly as you would expect in response to forcing, with the former experiencing much more rapid warming with the consequent implications for its marine ice cover. This can be explained by the different geography in the two regions. If these scientists express any surprise to me it is that the changes in the north are happening far faster than they expected. The US NSIDC has a good explainer on why sea ice in the Arctic behaves differently to sea ice in the Antarctic. http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/seaice/characteristics/difference.html As regards the very latest Arctic sea ice figures, first please bear in mind the topic of my article was about ICE VOLUME, not the daily reports that concern ICE AREA/EXTENT. The distinction is very important. I urge you to go and read the story again. Strong regrowth is entirely what you would expect in the Arctic in response to very thin ice or a lot of open water. This negative feedback is the result of some very simple physics. So from a very deep September-low to a March-high, you are going to make a lot of new ice, very fast. But even if you look at the latest NSIDC daily bulletin (see “daily image update” at http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/), this AREA/EXTENT is still tracking below the long-term mean. And again, this says nothing about VOLUME trends. Cryosat is the only means we have currently of measuring this.

  3. Eric Worrall says:

    How will the eco-zealots explain a rebounding arctic? Perhaps all the ice is due to ocean acidification?

    Its going to be an interesting month :-)

  4. milodonharlani says:

    Arctic sea ice is the last refuge of CACCA scoundrels still hoping against hope to practice their con using actual data. Prince Albert has asked, “If it’s not CO2, what is causing the Arctic sea ice to melt?”, echoing his fellow travelers who refuse to try to find better explanations for observations. Rather, they prefer to change the data rather than the models when the GCMs fail so miserably.

    If, as is likely, Arctic sea ice expands in coming years, following the already well-established Antarctic trend, CACCA won’t have an observational leg upon which to stand. It’s the water, not the carbon dioxide.

    As you know, “May you live in interesting times” is just one of the three subtle, allegedly ancient Chinese curses. The other two, in order of increasing severity, are supposed to be, “May you come to the attention of those in authority” & “May your wishes be granted”, or words to that effect.

  5. markstoval says:

    I was happily surprised to see my guess (4.8) was the WUWT entry. We should win this year. :-)

    And all this ice guessing is fun, but what does floating ice at the north pole have to do with anything really? If it all melts, so what? I mean really; would there not be ice created during the winter?

    As I understand it, we are setting records on total ice if we include the south pole. Does the south pole not count any? And even if it does not, what is all the fuss over ice?

  6. Bob Grise says:

    Speaking to the ten points of doubt about global warming – specifically the urban heat island, I think its effects are way underestimated. In my case, I live on the edge of a Minnesota city of 100,000 population. Often at 10 pm at night, the temperature in the middle of the city is a full 8 degrees warmer than it is is on either side of the city , just a couple miles out of town and away from the bricks and blacktop. FYI, our rural airport shows no increase in temperature comparing the most recent 25 years to the 25 years starting in 1900, (obviously not an airport in 1900). In fact it was 2 tenths of a degree colder in the most recent 25 years. WHERE IS THE PROBLEM!!!!???!!! Ain’t one. John late Daly found the same – rural weather stations see no warming.

  7. Kasuha says:

    I’d suggest using median of all votes in the arctic poll next time, i.e. the value for which half of voters went at or above and half went at or below, I believe it’s statistically more correct than the currently used method.

  8. Nick Stokes says:

    “If there is still significant ice (1 million square kilometers or more as defined by Zwally, see below) in place then, we can consider that this claim by Maslowski in 2007 to be falsified:”

    Well, Maslowski did update his forecast. As the BBC report of that says,
    “The original prediction, made in 2007, gained Wieslaw Maslowski’s team a deal of criticism from some of their peers.”

    REPLY: Right, moving of the goalposts, a typical tactic. Now it’s a vague “end of the decade” while others are saying 2030, 2040, 2050, etc. The point here is that none of these self proclaimed expert prognosticators has a clue. – Anthony

  9. byz says:

    What has been will be again,
    what has been done will be done again;
    there is nothing new under the sun.
    Ecclesiastes 1:9

    It may not apply to mankind but as to nature ;)

    as to mankind

    For the wisdom of this world is foolishness

    Never has a truer word been spoken.

    Things that I learn’t as a young computer programmer and went out of fashion (only 30 years ago) are suddenly being rediscovered as if they are some sort of revelation yet the giants of computing that I was taught by knew all these things. Modern fashions lose the wisdom of previous generations and replace it with recent views (rather than testing them first).

    We live in an age of fools where learning is disregarded, Marshall McLuhan warned that this would happen :(

  10. Latitude says:

    Sandy, thanks
    But that doesn’t seem to be where Jonathon’s head is………”and have my head in the literature”

  11. John M says:

    SandyInLimousin

    I’m not sure exactly what you asked him, but it might be worth asking him again. His article indicated the ice should be gone, period.

    It doesn’t matter whether we’re talking area extent or volume.

  12. John M says:

    “Well, Maslowski did update his forecast.”

    I guess he got himself a Hansen…er…Mulligan.

  13. “The Arctic and the Antarctic are behaving exactly as you would expect in response to forcing”

    Uh uh.

    Paul Homewood: “this work not only debunks some of the fanciful arguments of warmists, it also suggests that temperatures in Antarctica have been falling since satellites started to monitor sea ice levels in 1979.”

    http://sunshinehours.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/antarctic-sea-ice-increases-when-it-gets-colder/

  14. Jeff Alberts says:

    OMG! THE NEXT GLACIATION HAS BEGUN! WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!

    Too alarmist? Sorry. Maybe the Warmists will see that and realize how silly they sound.

    You know, I kinda wish all the Arctic sea ice would go ahead and melt, and when there’s no concurrent catastrophe, we can all watch the “scientists” “predicting” this nonsense grasp at even more straws. Watching these little blips is pretty silly.

  15. Curious George says:

    That’s what happens when you deviate from “Play It Safe” guidelines: Predict for year 2100 or later. Of course, Prof. Maslowski may be safely retired now…

  16. u.k.(us) says:

    I love it when Anthony pulls out all the stops :)
    Not that He does.

  17. CodeTech says:

    Normal people look at climate and weather charts and see cycles.

    People with some sort of mental issues, or an agenda, look at short term trends and see straight lines they can extend to their “worst possible case”.

    The entire concept of an “ice free arctic” is, historically and logically, ridiculous. And even if ice extent were to be very low at the minima, it makes absolutely NO DIFFERENCE… unless you have some sort of mental issues. Or an agenda. Or a serious lack of knowledge about how heat is transferred around the planet.

    Of course, starting accurate records at a time when ice extent was at a historic high makes everything seem so much worse… It’s not a contest, and we have NO INTEREST in seeing a repeat of the cold experienced in the 70s any time soon.

  18. TerryMN says:

    The uptick may be the water giving up a bunch of heat/energy to the atmosphere before re-freezing. This is early – but there’s generally a pretty good uptick in air temp before re-freezing sets in in earnest. That said it could also be a warm air mass pushing across the pole too. Interesting (to me) that the temps have stayed below (sometimes touching at) average since the beginning of May. Cold summer above 80 degrees lat.

  19. omnologos says:

    I predict the Arctic will be ice-free at some point in the next billion years.

    There I go. Didn’t realize how easy it was to become a Professor nowadays.

  20. Nick Stokes says:

    Now it’s a vague “end of the decade” while others are saying 2030, 2040, 2050, etc. The point here is that none of these self proclaimed expert prognosticators has a clue.

    Seems to me you’re simultaneously criticising them for being vague and for being “self proclaimed expert prognosticators”. I think they are just saying they are not in a position to expertly prognosticate. Here’s what Walt Meier said:
    “”[Maslowski's] is quite a good model, one thing it has is really high resolution, it can capture details that are lost in global climate models,” he said.

    “But 2019 is only eight years away; there’s been modelling showing that [likely dates are around] 2040/50, and I’d still lean towards that.

    “I’d be very surprised if it’s 2013 – I wouldn’t be totally surprised if it’s 2019.””

    Doesn’t sound like a claim to prognostication.

    REPLY: Ah Racehorse Stokes, defender of the indefensible, purveyor of FUD. Nobody knows, nobody has a good handle on it, and even with the “good models” that purport to prognosticate what Earth’s complex systems will do, they are still reduced to guessing. 2012 2013? 2019? 2030?

    “We may well see an ice-free Arctic Ocean in summer within our lifetimes. The scientists agree that this could occur by 2030. Serreze concluded, “The implications for global climate, as well as Arctic animals and people, are disturbing.”

    http://nsidc.org/news/press/2007_seaiceminimum/20071001_pressrelease.html

    Wake me up when something one of these guys predicts comes true. Not one of these alarming media tailored claims of disappearance of Arctic sea ice has come true yet. – Anthony

  21. ConfusedPhoton says:

    From Jonathan Amos’ article –

    “Real World
    Using supercomputers to crunch through possible future outcomes has become a standard part of climate science in recent years.”
    Real World? What a BBC muppet!

  22. Jeff Alberts says:

    “Doesn’t sound like a claim to prognostication.”

    It also sounds like Maslowski’s model isn’t good at all.

  23. Bill Illis says:

    NSIDC’s September average will be 5.27 million sq kms if it continues to follow their average change over the period (which it more-or-less has for the last 40 days and given the cooler-than-normal temps in the Arctic, one wouldn’t expect it to be much lower than that). 26 days to the average minimum.

  24. Latitude says:

    and I predict somewhere around 2178…….I would be very surprised if it’s 2013 – I wouldn’t be totally surprised if it happened last week

    In other words….I don’t have a friggin clue

  25. milodonharlani says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    Re: NSIDC prediction.

    Arctic sea ice IMO is just as likely to be more extensive & thicker than now in 2040-50 than effectively gone in summer, the PDO turning cool as it is.

    Climatic forecasts like that are worse than worthless GIGO, at best busy work for underemployed bureaucrats & at worst purposeful participation in perpetrating tyranny. In any case, the tax money-grubbing modelers will be long retired if not dead by then.

  26. clipe says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    Well, Maslowski did update his forecast. As the BBC report of that says,
    “The original prediction, made in 2007, gained Wieslaw Maslowski’s team a deal of criticism from some of their peers.”

    From your link.

    “We can run a fully coupled model for the past and present and see what our model will predict for the future in terms of the sea ice and the Arctic climate.”

    “And one of the projections it comes out with is that the summer melt could lead to ice-free Arctic seas by 2016 – “plus or minus three years”.

    As a lowly taxpayer I wish you and yours would cut the crap.

  27. milodonharlani says:

    omnologos says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    I predict that the surface of the earth will be almost water-free in a billion years, so we should start colonizing the asteroid belt now, which endeavor will also come in handy four billion years after that, when the sun goes red giant.

  28. David Ball says:

    “Not one of these alarming media tailored claims of disappearance of Arctic sea ice has come true yet.” – Anthony

    But it HAS. Long before anthropogenic Co2.

  29. clipe says:

    Remove the leading ” from my previous post.

    Corrected.

    And one of the projections it comes out with is that the summer melt could lead to ice-free Arctic seas by 2016 – “plus or minus three years”.

  30. Bill Jamison says:

    It seems to me the arctic ocean will lose a lot of heat now with temperature dropping and so much open ocean – especially compared to last year when the temperature drop was much longer and less dramatic.

  31. PaulH says:

    But they used crunching supercomputers! What could possibly go wrong?
    (/snark)

  32. Gail Combs says:

    Nick Stokes says: @ August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    “Well, Maslowski did update his forecast. “
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    That is not the point.

    We are being told we HAVE to pay more taxes and forego cheap carbon based fuel sources to “SAVE the PLANET” from “CATASTROPHIC WARMING”

    We were told in 2000

    Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past

    According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”.

    “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

    And then not only do we have record snows but Some 7,800 people die [in the UK] during winter because they can’t afford to heat their homes properly

    2009 India ‘arrogant’ to deny global warming link to melting glaciers:
    IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri accuses Indian environment ministry of ‘arrogance’ for its report claiming there is no evidence that climate change has shrunk Himalayan glaciers

    …Two years ago, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN agency which evaluates the risk from global warming, warned the glaciers were receding faster than in any other part of the world and could “disappear altogether by 2035 if not sooner”.

    Instead we get:

    Feb 2011 Record snowfall in HP revives 2,000 glaciers
    Almora’s G B Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development’s senior scientist J C Kuniyal said apart from reviving the glaciers, this year’s record snowfall would also boost the crop cycle. “It is difficult to understand the environment. As we start talking about the dry winters, record snowfall leaves stunned everyone,” he said.

    … Lahaul-Spiti has received more than 175-cm snow in first 16 days of February, breaking the earlier record of 148-cm for the month in 1998.

    What the heck is it going to take? A mile high glacier sitting on Chicago? Or will you still be claiming CO2 is causing ‘Global Warming” How many more people have to DIE before you give up the nonsense?

    If you think I am angry you are correct. It ceased to be a scientific argument after the first person died from these asinine policies.

  33. Jimbo says:

    What a coincidence! I was just finishing my Arctic ice free compilation. Here is a compilation of ice-free Arctic Ocean / North Pole predictions / projections from scientists for the past, present and future.

    Xinhua News Agency – 1 March 2008
    “If Norway’s average temperature this year equals that in 2007, the ice cap in the Arctic will all melt away, which is highly possible judging from current conditions,” Orheim said.
    [Dr. Olav Orheim - Norwegian International Polar Year Secretariat]
    __________________

    Canada.com – 16 November 2007
    “According to these models, there will be no sea ice left in the summer in the Arctic Ocean somewhere between 2010 and 2015.

    “And it’s probably going to happen even faster than that,” said Fortier,””
    [Professor Louis Fortier - Université Laval, Director ArcticNet]
    __________________

    National Geographic – 12 December 2007
    “NASA climate scientist Jay Zwally said: “At this rate, the Arctic Ocean could be nearly ice-free at the end of summer by 2012, much faster than previous predictions.” ”

    [Dr. Jay Zwally - NASA]
    __________________

    BBC – 12 December 2007
    Our projection of 2013 for the removal of ice in summer is not accounting for the last two minima, in 2005 and 2007,”…….”So given that fact, you can argue that may be our projection of 2013 is already too conservative.”

    [Professor Wieslaw Maslowski]
    __________________

    Independent – 27 June 2008
    Exclusive: Scientists warn that there may be no ice at North Pole this summer
    “…..It is quite likely that the North Pole will be exposed this summer – it’s not happened before,” Professor Wadhams said.”
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
    __________________

    Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences
    Vol. 40: 625-654 – May 2012
    The Future of Arctic Sea Ice
    “…..one can project that at this rate it would take only 9 more years or until 2016 ± 3 years to reach a nearly ice-free Arctic Ocean in summer. Regardless of high uncertainty associated with such an estimate, it does provide a lower bound of the time range for projections of seasonal sea ice cover…..”
    [Professor Wieslaw Maslowski]
    __________________

    Yale Environment360 – 30 August 2012
    “If this rate of melting [in 2012] is sustained in 2013, we are staring down the barrel and looking at a summer Arctic which is potentially free of sea ice within this decade,”
    [Dr. Mark Drinkwater]
    __________________

    Guardian – 17 September 2012
    This collapse, I predicted would occur in 2015-16 at which time the summer Arctic (August to September) would become ice-free. The final collapse towards that state is now happening and will probably be complete by those dates“.
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
    __________________

    Sierra Club – March 23, 2013
    “For the record—I do not think that any sea ice will survive this summer. An event unprecedented in human history is today, this very moment, transpiring in the Arctic Ocean….”
    [Paul Beckwith - PhD student paleoclimatology and climatology - part-time professor]
    __________________

    Financial Times Magazine – 2 August 2013
    “It could even be this year or next year but not later than 2015 there won’t be any ice in the Arctic in the summer,”
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]
    __________________

  34. u.k.(us) says:

    clipe says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:25 pm
    Remove the leading ” from my previous post.

    Corrected.

    And one of the projections it comes out with is that the summer melt could lead to ice-free Arctic seas by 2016 – “plus or minus three years”.
    =====================
    The projections created this mess, now “we” need to walk it back.
    It will be interesting to watch.

  35. cynical_scientist says:

    Off topic – there seem to be a lot of news articles about the upcoming IPCC report right now. All of them are selling the consistent meme that “scientists are more certain than ever”. Where is all this rubbish coming from? Who thought up this spin? Why is this even news? The IPCC report was leaked a long time ago. So who fired the starting pistol on this obvious media campaign and why choose to do it now?

  36. Latitude says:

    Well, Maslowski did update his forecast…..

    Nick, has it occured to you that if the Arctic did ever melt out, the size of Egypt…
    …there have been so many predictions that one of them will probably be right

  37. Jimbo says:

    There’s also the unanswered question of the effects of black carbon soot.

    On that issue here is a bit of research – one from the past and the rest from recent times.

    Abstract
    Dr. James Hansen et. al. – 2003

    Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos
    …..Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The “efficacy” of this forcing is ~2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO2 in altering global surface air temperature.
    http://www.pnas.org/content/101/2/423.short
    _______________________

    Abstract
    Maria Sand et. al. – 30 July 2013
    Arctic surface temperature change to emissions of black carbon within Arctic or midlatitudes
    ….. We find that BC emitted within the Arctic has an almost five times larger Arctic surface temperature response (per unit of emitted mass) compared to emissions at midlatitudes. Especially during winter, BC emitted in North-Eurasia is transported into the high Arctic at low altitudes. A large fraction of the surface temperature response from BC is due to increased absorption when BC is deposited on snow and sea ice with associated feedbacks…….
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jgrd.50613/abstract
    _______________________

    Abstract
    Tica Novakov et. al. – April 2013
    ……….The Black Carbon Story: Early History and New Perspectives
    BC heats the air, darkens the snow and ice surfaces and could contribute to the melting of Arctic ice, snowpacks, and glaciers……In this article, we trace the historical developments over about three decades that changed the view of the role of BC in the environment, from a pollutant of marginal importance to one of the main climate change agents….
    doi:10.1007/s13280-013-0392-8
    _______________________

    Abstract
    Mei, Linlu et. al. – April 2013
    …Due to the special meteorological condition mentioned above, we can conclude that Eurasian is the main contributor of the Arctic pollutants and the strong transport into the Arctic from Eurasia during winter caused by the high pressure of the climatologically persistent Siberian high pressure region (Barrie, 1986)….
    adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2013EGUGA..15.7222M
    _______________________

    Lhermitte, Stef et. al. – EGU General Assembly 2013
    Changes in surface properties of the Greenland ice sheet (2000-2012)
    …Classification of the Greenland ice sheet surface into snow/ice with varying i) grain size, ii) melt water content and iii) impurity concentrations (soot, dust, cryoconite) shows the spatio-temporal patterns of surface properties that affect the albedo feedback…….This results in strong broadband albedo reductions that increase solar energy absorption (0.4 W/m2/yr) and again promote enhanced melt water production. Moreover, recent changes show ice exposure at higher elevations and increases in snow grain size on the interior of the ice sheet….
    adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2013EGUGA..1510756L

  38. Rud Istvan says:

    The best part of this post is the reference archive, so we can watch the goal posts move year by year. The next best part is watching Arctic amplification in reverse (it does work both ways, right?)

  39. Jimbo says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    “If there is still significant ice (1 million square kilometers or more as defined by Zwally, see below) in place then, we can consider that this claim by Maslowski in 2007 to be falsified:”

    Well, Maslowski did update his forecast………..

    Of course he did. He also said “you can argue that may be our projection of 2013 is already too conservative.” Then he updates. What confidence should I have on his update Nick? Maslowski is a climate clown who thinks no one is looking. I am looking and recording their fairy tales.

  40. DirkH says:

    cynical_scientist says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:46 pm
    “Off topic – there seem to be a lot of news articles about the upcoming IPCC report right now. All of them are selling the consistent meme that “scientists are more certain than ever”. Where is all this rubbish coming from? Who thought up this spin? Why is this even news? The IPCC report was leaked a long time ago. So who fired the starting pistol on this obvious media campaign and why choose to do it now?”

    a) The CFR / Bilderberger / Socialist (**) Billionaire Foundation complex. Because they OWN the media. (Ford foundation gave Wapo some grants for Outstanding Journalism to give them a lifeline until Socialist Billionaire Bezos bought them outright.) (*)
    b) They have to start the campaign at SOME point.

    (*) Why are all these billionaires socialists? Simple: Slamming the door shut behind them. After you’ve made your fortune you’d like to prevent competition by forcing socialism with the inherent prevention of capital accumulation on everybody else, keeping them a captive market / slaves.

    (**) for Americans, read “liberal” ; it’s the same thing.

  41. Mark XR says:

    “In the end, it will just melt away quite suddenly. It might not be as early as 2013 but it will be soon, much earlier than 2040.” — Professor Wadhams

    Context matters.

  42. RoHa says:

    Good. It’s about time we got rid of all that ice. It’s just a nuisance, clogging up the sea.

  43. James of the West says:

    Whilst I agree that making predictions for ice free arctic timing is silly we should not completely discount the trend in declining arctic ice will eventually lead to an ice free summer in the region at some point – unless the trend reverses is simple interpretation of the trend. What causes the ice loss? That is the interesting thing – and is the main point of this article. If we have colder air mass and ice loss increases then we have direct evidence that wind and ocean are greater contributors. It looks like we will have a colder air mass and increased minimum ice, so we cant easily say that air temp is not the major contributor…we know that wind and ocean temps play a big part but it is a dynamic system.

  44. Jimbo says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:03 pm………..
    Seems to me you’re simultaneously criticising them for being vague and for being “self proclaimed expert prognosticators”…………..

    They predict everything and are never wrong. When will YOU admit they are crap? Your feeble attempts at defending these con artists is a joke. Have a break, have a Kit Kat.

  45. a jones says:

    As I have observed here before whenever there was some excitement about this ‘The ice will do what the ice will do ans there’s no doing anything about it.’ . With apologies to T S Eliot.

    I also said please not to wake me up until something really exciting happens such as the discovery of Santa’s grotto or the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow by the North pole.

    So if you will exciuse me I am going back to bed, I need my beauty sleep.

    Kindest Regards

  46. Caleb says:

    I was glad you caught the DMI graph uptick in time to include the second graph. However note that, even with the uptick, temperatures are still well below freezing and still below normal. Even if temperatures rise all the way up to normal, it still will be below freezing from now on. Most any melting from now on comes from the sea water below the ice, as the sun is getting too low and the air too cold.

    I’m wondering if any fellow ice-melt-watchers know anything about the temperature of that first layer of water under the ice, (down to the “pycnocline.”) Is it at all colder this year? Several people have wondered if last year’s storm melted so much ice with its churning that the top layer of seawater was significantly cooled, leading to this summer’s cooler temperatures and (perhaps) a more rapid refreezing of ice.

    The “North Pole Camera” shows a little thawing, after a solid week of temperatures below the freezing point of salt water. The lower black check on the snow-stake in the foreground has reappeared, after being hidden for a while by a drift of snow. However no melt-water is in sight.

    http://sunriseswansong.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/the-big-chill-sea-ice-version/

  47. Jimbo says:

    Mark XR says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    “In the end, it will just melt away quite suddenly. It might not be as early as 2013 but it will be soon, much earlier than 2040.” — Professor Wadhams

    Context matters.

    Context does matter. Now open your eyes and read.

    Guardian – 17 September 2012
    This collapse, I predicted would occur in 2015-16 at which time the summer Arctic (August to September) would become ice-free. The final collapse towards that state is now happening and will probably be complete by those dates“.
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]

    Financial Times Magazine – 2 August 2013
    “It could even be this year or next year but not later than 2015 there won’t be any ice in the Arctic in the summer,”
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]

    What is your take-home message now? He has sold you several different stories my friend.

  48. Nick Stokes says:

    Jimbo says: August 18, 2013 at 3:57 pm
    ” What confidence should I have on his update Nick?”

    Probably about as much as Walt Meier. Or even:
    ‘”I’m not trying to be alarmist and not trying to say ‘we know the future because we have a crystal ball’,” said Dr Maslowski.”

    The thing is, they are trying to work it out, and say what they currently know. There’s no certainty and no unanimity.

  49. milodonharlani says:

    James of the West says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    The Arctic Ocean has probably been effectively ice free for more summers in the Holocene than not, or at least a lot of them. For the past 3300 years or so, the long-term trend has been toward a cooler earth, but within that secular trend there have been warmer & cooler cycles. Arctic sea ice now is about where it was at the last PDO phase transition. It may well be entering its cool phase already. Passages along the North American & Eurasian Arctic coasts were open in the 1930s & the 2000s. Back in the Holocene Climatic Optimum, they were probably open during both phases.

    The trend of decreasing ice since c. 1980 should reverse soon, if it hasn’t already started. CO2 has little to nothing to do with these cycles.

  50. milodonharlani says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    If they feel no certainty, why do they keep making such ludicrous predictions?

  51. Jimbo says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    Jimbo says: August 18, 2013 at 3:57 pm
    ” What confidence should I have on his update Nick?”

    Probably about as much as Walt Meier. Or even:
    ‘”I’m not trying to be alarmist and not trying to say ‘we know the future because we have a crystal ball’,” said Dr Maslowski.”

    The thing is, they are trying to work it out, and say what they currently know. There’s no certainty and no unanimity.

    Since you say that “There’s no certainty and no unanimity” then tell them to stop making predictions. As for “no unanimity” I want to ask: Where is the consensus? Nick, give it up. These fools are doomed by their own words. Read and understand why they should NOT make predictions, especially about the future.

    Monday 20 March 2000
    Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past…..
    …According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”.

    “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said….
    http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/snowfalls-are-now-just-a-thing-of-the-past-724017.html

    FAIL!

  52. Nick Stokes says:

    Jimbo says: August 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm
    “Context does matter. Now open your eyes and read.”

    Here’s some more context from your FT report:

    But Wadhams is even angrier about another line in that last IPCC report suggesting it could take until the latter part of this century before Arctic summer sea ice disappears almost entirely. The sea ice that covers much of the North Pole always melts a little in summer and then refreezes as winter sets in. Last summer, however, it shrank to its lowest point in more than 30 years, a much more dramatic decline than predicted. Wadhams thinks it more likely that its summer sea ice will vanish as soon as 2015.

    “It could even be this year or next year but not later than 2015 there won’t be any ice in the Arctic in the summer,” he said, pulling out a battered laptop to show a diagram explaining his calculations, which he calls “the Arctic death spiral”.

    This prediction is frequently described as too extreme by other climate scientists writing for the IPCC.

    There are a lot of different views. And Wadhams is an outlier. The IPCC is much more conservative.

  53. William Astley says:

    It is interesting that there appears to be a trend change in Arctic sea ice and there has been a trend change in sea ice in the Antarctic sea ice. There are been two sigma record sea ice in the Antarctic. The Antarctic record sea ice is throughout the year which indicates colder temperatures for all months.

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.anomaly.antarctic.png
    http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/S_stddev_timeseries.png

  54. intrepid_wanders says:

    This is too funny. Last year, I noted that Stroeve and Meier (NSIDC) with their statistical modeling were about 0.1 Million Square Kilometers (Msk) of Ice lower than WUWT heuristic guessing (4.6 vs. 4.7Msk). So, I was curious how much lower July 2013 statistics would be. Guess what? They are now 5.07Msk.
    https://www.google.com/url?q=http://www.arcus.org/files/search/sea-ice-outlook/2013/07/pdf/pan-arctic/meier_et_al_nsidc.pdf&sa=U&ei=X1cRUtDAIa3sigKM4IGgCg&ved=0CBMQFjAF&client=internal-uds-cse&usg=AFQjCNFMiEeWCGKFeEsqnmsBbcG8I__8lQ

    Apparently, their models can go in the other direction and what is more, they must have thrown out 2012 cyclonic ice loss as a non-climate issue.

  55. milodonharlani says:

    William Astley says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    SH winters are definitely getting colder.

    Chile is suffering from a cold snap right now.

  56. Bill Illis says:

    Ellesmere Island, Northern Greenland already covered in snow. Orange is ice or snow in this false color image. No ice export through the Nares Strait between Greenland and Ellesmere for the second year in a row. Today’s image.

    http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/imagery/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r03c03.2013230.terra.367

  57. Jerry Haney says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    If they were honest, you included, none of these half baked forecasts and/or predictions should have been published after their first one was falsified. There is no room in science for dishonesty. Your dishonesty is dangerous to people who pay the taxes as well as poor people trying to keep warm or cool.

  58. Jimbo says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    Jimbo says: August 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm
    “Context does matter. Now open your eyes and read.”

    Here’s some more context from your FT report:………There are a lot of different views. And Wadhams is an outlier. The IPCC is much more conservative.

    And your point is? Look, I have made my point about Mr. Wadhams and I am aware of the IPCC’s official forecasts. I will repeat, your attempts at defence are feeble. Try your arguments with someone else, they have failed with me. Will you tell these clowns to stop making predictions or not? “There’s no certainty and no unanimity.” Keep your own words in mind Nick.

  59. milodonharlani says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    1) Arctic sea ice reached a satellite-era low in 2012 because of a weather event, the August cyclone. The 30-year decline may have bottomed out, but even if it hasn’t, no worries.

    2) There is no reason to think that the Arctic will be almost entirely ice free in summers in the latter part of this century, but

    3) If it did, that would not be a bad thing. The polar bears would survive, as they did the Arctic Ocean ice-free summers that were usual 5000 to 8000 years ago. Russian ballistic missile boomers would have no place to hide during the summer.

    4) If burning fossil fuels could be shown to keep the next glaciation at bay, that alone would be reason enough to keep digging, pumping & keeping the big wheels turning.

  60. Gail COmbs says:

    cynical_scientist says: @ August 18, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    ….. Where is all this rubbish coming from? Who thought up this spin? Why is this even news? The IPCC report was leaked a long time ago. So who fired the starting pistol on this obvious media campaign and why choose to do it now?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    WAG, The Arctic Summer seems over, the Arctic Ice could be “recovering” back to close to ‘normal’. The Weather has been rather cool so they want the coverage on the IPCC report NOW because the Arctic sea ice gain becomes solidified. (pun intended) And they will really look like fools if they wait much longer.

  61. Brad says:

    Here is Paul Beckwith’s Sierra Club blogpost on why sea ice will disappear this year. It would be hilarious if it werent so sad. He titles the post “Adult Discussion Please” – really, he titled it that.

    http://www.sierraclub.ca/en/AdultDiscussionPlease

    Why Arctic sea ice will vanish in 2013
    Submitted by Paul Beckwith on Mon, 2013-06-10 23:18

    By Paul Beckwith

    On March 23, 2013, I made the following prediction:

    “For the record—I do not think that any sea ice will survive this summer. An event unprecedented in human history is today, this very moment, transpiring in the Arctic Ocean.

    The cracks in the sea ice that I reported in my Sierra blog and elsewhere have spread. Worse news is at this very moment the entire sea ice sheet (or about 99 percent of it) covering the Arctic Ocean is on the move (clockwise), and the thin, weakened icecap has literally begun to tear apart.

    This is abrupt climate change in real-time.

    Humans have benefited greatly from a stable climate for the last 11,000 years (roughly 400 human generations). Not anymore. We now face an angry climate — one that we have poked in the eye with our fossil fuel stick — and have to deal with the consequences.

    We must set aside our differences and prepare for what we can no longer avoid: massive disruption to our civilization.”

    Serious stuff: Adult discussion time…

    My prediction above was based on understanding of the inter-related Artic/climatic system obtained through in-depth research conducted as part of my Ph.D. studies on abrupt climate change, and through my academic work as part-time professor in climatology/meteorology at the University of Ottawa.

    In March, when I made the prediction, NASA had just released a video of extensive sea ice cracking (at the time of year when the ice should’ve been at its strongest). Since then, I have become even more confident about my prediction of total Arctic sea ice destruction in 2013. The increased likelihood of this event arises from recent developments observed in U.S. Navy satellite data (which measure sea ice thickness alongside ice speed and drift direction from May 14th to June 10th). I generated an ANIMATION to help illustrate the significance of the new data.

    In previous years, when cyclones (low pressure storm systems) moved over sea ice, there was little noticeable effect. However, last August (2012) — like a giant blender — a massive cyclone invaded the Arctic Ocean basin and smashed around sea ice for roughly 8 days. In the end, a staggering 0.8 million square kilometres of sea ice was lost (a roughly 20% reduction from the year before). By mid-September the icecap was at a record low volume (best illustrated in this YouTube video titled “Arctic sea ice minimum volumes 1979-2012”).

    Within the last few weeks, cyclonic activity has returned and once again caused substantial thinning and weakening of the sea ice near the North Pole. Ice near the center of cyclonic activity, recently 2 to 2.5 metres thick (light blue in my animation), has thinned to roughly 1.25 metres (dark blue in my animation). This in less than 2 weeks: unprecedented so early in the melt season. More significantly, in the last few days a gaping “hole” has appeared in the much thicker ice just north of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Ice that was recently 3.5 to 4 metres thick (yellow in my animation) is now less than 2 metres thick in the hole.

    The hole is likely due to a combination of divergence of the ice away from the rotating cyclone center, and the upwelling (churning up) of warm, salty sea water below. The most rapid melting and ice deterioration is occurring below the surface (where the cold surface air temperature can’t slow melting).

    The magnitude of the most recent cyclonic activity is not unusual, although the persistence is. What is also new in the equation is the ability of these common cyclones to degrade the ice, and do so very early in the melt season. Also new is the substantial increase in amplitude, frequency and duration of cyclonic activity in the Arctic Ocean basin. The thinning ice cover not only breaks up easier now (even by relatively small and weak cyclones), more open water leads to an increase in melting and storm intensity.

    It’s for all these reasons I find it extremely difficult to comprehend how any sea ice will be left after this year’s summer ‘melt season’. If you want to watch the car-crash in real-time just occasionally Google “Arctic sea ice graphs” and you can find satellite imagery and daily updates from experts and climatologists (like me) around the world.
    Throw out the old model folks…

    I acknowledge that my sea ice-collapse timeframe is considered ‘out-there’ when compared to mainstream climate models (predicting sea ice will remain until 2050’ish), but I’m not alone in challenging the old playbook. For example, the Pan-Arctic Ice Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS) volume trends suggest 2015 or 2016 will be the first year of a sea ice-free Arctic.

    I am just looking at the “big-picture” using all available data while considering feedbacks that have been incorrectly considered (or unidentified) and in the context of abrupt changes that are CLEARLY documented in climate paleorecords.

    I really hope I’m wrong folks but I just don’t see it any other way. Time will tell…but, in any event, we need to have that ‘adult discussion’ ASAP. As you can see around you the times they are a-changin’ and, as I wrote in my last blog, oil profits won’t protect you from Climate 2.0.

    Paul Beckwith is a Ph.D. student with the laboratory for paleoclimatology and climatology, department of geography, University of Ottawa.

  62. Gail Combs says:

    DirkH says: @ August 18, 2013 at 3:57 pm
    nice synopsis.

  63. ShrNfr says:

    The lack of ice melt in the arctic and the “goalpost” moving is reminding me too much of the escathological Millerite movement around 1850. Sell it all and move up to the mountain. Nuts, got the date wrong, refigure it, nuts got that one wrong, rinse, repeat. Little is new under the sun save new fools who do not remember what happened to the fools that went before them.

  64. David Riser says:

    Well someone took the silly arctic will be free of ice seriously. There are 4 young men up in the northwest passage getting hammered trying to row through the pass in a single season. I hope nothing bad happens to them, they are true adventurers, they probably should have waited for a bit better year but o-well. Awesome photography, yall should check it out.

    http://mainstreamlastfirst.com/

  65. Jimbo says:

    Over the next couple of weeks you will read crap about an ice free Arctic being unprecedented or not happened for a million years or so. Here is the counter evidence.

    Abstract
    We therefore conclude that for a priod in the Early Holocene, probably for a millenium or more, the Arctic Ocean was free of sea ice at least for shorter periods in the summer. This may serve as an analogue to the predicted “greenhouse situation” expected to appear within our century.
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2007AGUFMPP11A0203F

    Abstract
    Arctic sea ice cover was strongly reduced during most of the early Holocene and there appear to have been periods of ice free summers in the central Arctic Ocean. This has important consequences for our understanding of the recent trend of declining sea ice, and calls for further research on causal links between Arctic climate and sea ice.
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277379110003185

    Abstract
    Calcareous nannofossils from approximately the past 7000 yr of the Holocene and from oxygen isotope stage 5 are present at 39 analyzed sites in the central Arctic Ocean. This indicates partly ice-free conditions during at least some summers. The depth of Holocene sediments in the Nansen basin is about 20 cm, or more where influenced by turbidites.
    http://geology.geoscienceworld.org/content/21/3/227.abstract

    Abstract
    ….Nevertheless, episodes of considerably reduced sea ice or even seasonally ice-free conditions occurred during warmer periods linked to orbital variations. The last low-ice event related to orbital forcing (high insolation) was in the early Holocene,…
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2010.02.010

    Abstract
    A 10,000-Year Record of Arctic Ocean Sea-Ice Variability—View from the Beach
    We present a sea-ice record from northern Greenland covering the past 10,000 years. Multiyear sea ice reached a minimum between ~8500 and 6000 years ago, when the limit of year-round sea ice at the coast of Greenland was located ~1000 kilometers to the north of its present position. The subsequent increase in multiyear sea ice culminated during the past 2500 years and is linked to an increase in ice export from the western Arctic and higher variability of ice-drift routes
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/333/6043/747.abstract

  66. Caleb says:

    RE: Gail Combs says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    Amen, sister.

  67. Gail Combs says:

    David Riser says: @ August 18, 2013 at 5:04 pm
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Sounds like polar bear bait trying to earn a Darwin Award by beating the last one.

    If they are lucky they will hook up with a Russian Ice Breaker.

  68. justsomeguy31167 says:

    The Darwin Award winners should be hitting 100% ice soon according NSIDC. I also note they have been in partial ice for awhile and never posted a picture of it. Who is wrong? The satellites or the rowers?

    ” David Riser says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    Well someone took the silly arctic will be free of ice seriously. There are 4 young men up in the northwest passage getting hammered trying to row through the pass in a single season. I hope nothing bad happens to them, they are true adventurers, they probably should have waited for a bit better year but o-well. Awesome photography, yall should check it out.

    http://mainstreamlastfirst.com/?

  69. justsomeguy31167 says:

    OOPS! Looks like the rowers cheated. They put is south and east of the ice pack and are rowing east, away from the ice. It is most certainly not a Northwest passage trip if I understnad the map.

    The ice could still catch them though.

  70. JimS says:

    From what I have read, the Arctic Ocean must have been almost completely ice free during the peak of the Medieval Warming period:
    http://www.c3headlines.com/2012/08/natures-medieval-warming-melts-arctic-northwest-passage-sea-ice-but-modern-warming-does-not.html
    So, I doubt there is any precedent here even if the Arctic becomes ice free. But then, the Medieval Warming period didn’t exist according Mann’s Hockey Stick, so what do we know, eh?

  71. justsomeguy31167 says:

    More predictions!

    Al Gore told the UN ice free arctic by 2014!

    http://www.psu.com/forums/showthread.php/218115-Al-Gore-Polar-Ice-Caps-will-melt-in-5-7-years (date – 2009)

    “New computer modeling suggests the Arctic Ocean may be nearly ice-free in the summertime as early as 2014, Al Gore said Monday at the U.N. climate conference. This new projection, following several years of dramatic retreat by polar sea ice, suggests that the ice cap may nearly vanish in the summer much sooner than the year 2030, as was forecast by a U.S. government agency eight months ago.”

    Al predicted terrible things in 2010. He also “knows” that the Gulf Stream creates STEAM over Europe. Yes, it is 212 degrees Fahrenheit somewhere in the North Atlantic. Who knew?

  72. Gary Pearse says:

    ” Jimbo says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    There’s also the unanswered question of the effects of black carbon soot.”

    Soot works only if the ice is declining. If its going to snow for a long stretch in a cooling arctic, the soot is snugly buried under white.

  73. Steve from Rockwood says:

    You obviously don’t understand. He was using super-computers. Do I have to repeat myself? Super-computers!

  74. Gary Pearse says:

    I think this list of failures should now be sent back to the news organizations that put this stuff out there. There is a bit of a swing in the mass media away from CAGW and many are likely to print it. Can we also get a package to every congressman and senator to ensure that they are aware of this stuff. This Wadhams guy from Cambridge should get a little of the Mannian treatment. Have they got a student newspaper at Cambridge?

  75. The important point is that their predictions are wrong because their assumed causes are wrong.

    Then they simply ignore inconvenient data. For example, in recent years we have seen record Arctic sea ice formation in the winter measured by extent. The exact opposite of what greenhouse warming predicts. It predicts decreasing summer ice minimum, primarily because of reduced winter ice formation.

    These professors should slink away in shame at their unscientific hucksterism.

  76. Jimbo says:

    Just take a close read of this piece of deception.

    Independent – 27 June 2008
    Exclusive: Scientists warn that there may be no ice at North Pole this summer
    “…..It is quite likely that the North Pole will be exposed this summer – it’s not happened before,” Professor Wadhams said.”
    [Professor Peter Wadhams - Cambridge University]

    I am not a climate scientist. I am not an Arctic specialist. I am a detector of BS. See my previous comment. Mr. Wadhams is a disgrace to the disgraceful art of Calamastrology.

  77. Bruce Cobb says:

    Don’t forget Al Gore’s 2008 prediction that the “entire north polar ice cap will be gone in 5 years”. I guess he thought Greenland’s ice sheet would be gone as well.

  78. milodonharlani says:

    Gary Pearse says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    A certain viscount might chose this opportune moment to pay a visit to his alma mater.

  79. Doug says:

    “For the record—I do not think that any sea ice will survive this summer. An event unprecedented in human history is today, this very moment, transpiring in the Arctic Ocean….”
    [Paul Beckwith - PhD student paleoclimatology and climatology - part-time professor]

    This guy Beckwith is a real piece of work. Here’s the ultimate collection of doomsday scenarios, cherry picked weather stats, and all round well presented horror:

    http://www.cmos.ca/Ottawa/SpeakersSlides/PaulBeckwith_19Jan2012.pdf

    Fortunately, the louder they scream, the more reality bites.

  80. Jimbo says:

    Gary Pearse says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    ” Jimbo says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    There’s also the unanswered question of the effects of black carbon soot.”

    Soot works only if the ice is declining. If its going to snow for a long stretch in a cooling arctic, the soot is snugly buried under white.

    You are correct. And if it does not “snow for a long stretch” then it affects.

  81. John Blake says:

    “Never predict anything, especially about the future” (Yogi).

  82. John F. Hultquist says:

    David Riser says:

    Yes we know about these gents. Even now they are trying to decide whom among the “expert prognosticators” to sue first.

  83. milodonharlani says:

    IMO “soot” is preferable to “black carbon soot”, which seems redundant, in as much as soot is a powdery form of amorphous carbon, possibly containing PAH contaminants, & is also black.

  84. Steve Oregon says:

    Nike Stokes,
    They may as well be forecasting the future numbers of grains of sands on all the beaches of the world.

    Just as they would be with global sand extent their sea ice extent forecasts are never accurate, they haven’t a clue what to correct and offer nothing but wild speculation for pondering.

    So what’s your point in persisting with the perpetual yabuts?

  85. Ian W says:

    Gail Combs says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    Nick Stokes says: @ August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    “Well, Maslowski did update his forecast. “
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    That is not the point.

    We are being told we HAVE to pay more taxes and forego cheap carbon based fuel sources to “SAVE the PLANET” from “CATASTROPHIC WARMING”

    {{{snip}}}

    And then not only do we have record snows but Some 7,800 people die [in the UK] during winter because they can’t afford to heat their homes properly

    What the heck is it going to take? A mile high glacier sitting on Chicago? Or will you still be claiming CO2 is causing ‘Global Warming” How many more people have to DIE before you give up the nonsense?

    If you think I am angry you are correct. It ceased to be a scientific argument after the first person died from these asinine policies.

    Gail,
    Nick like other warmists see this as an academic argument where he can make ‘nice’ distinctions in semantics and catch his ‘opponents’ out in their logic. He does not realize that as a result of the support for the failed AGW hypothesis people have died – as you state, in UK in March 2013 alone 5000 people died of cold in energy poverty. Nick does not care about this, if he can win the academic argument. People like him are being used by politicians with axes to grind, money to make and power to grab – who also do not care at all about their countrymen dying. (Not a single word has been said in the UK House of Commons about the death rates from cold – because the MPs do not care). This problem is only going to get worse. EPA acting on Obama’s Executive Order are closing down huge numbers of electricity generation plants, far more than even they expected are shutting down. This is guaranteed to lead to ‘prices necessarily sky rocketing’ (TM Obama) and people dying in energy poverty in the USA as they have done and will continue to in the UK. I guarantee that not one Democrat congressman or senator nor one warmist will consider people dying of cold to be a problem – nor will it be published in the main stream media. The ‘Common Purpose’ ™ is far too important to worry about old and poor people dying – they have a low QALYS score anyway.

    And of course as FOIA pointed out in his climategate emails. A child is dying every 5 seconds from lack of food – while climate ‘scientists’ get fat on grants and politicians use ‘green energy’ projects to siphon huge funds to family, friends and supporters.

    To quote you if you think I am angry you are correct. It ceased to be a scientific argument after the first person died from these asinine policies.

  86. James says:

    What was the median of the WUWT guesses? From a statistics point of view, I think the median is probably the best statistic to submit as the guess. It likely will not matter since you control outliers pretty well by limiting the choices. However, I still think a science blog should not introduce an such ad-hoc method (average of the top five choices by votes? why 5? why a method so potentially biased by outliers?)

    Anyway, I do have fun submitting a guess and watching the ice. Thanks for running the blog.

    James

  87. Nathan Schmidt says:

    Jimbo,
    You may want to add David Barber to your list. A bit of web searching reveals several prognostications including “I’d say 2020, plus or minus five years” (2012), “We can expect a seasonally ice free arctic early in this century” (2010) and “[2015], according to David Barber of the University of Manitoba, will be the year when all of the region’s sea ice will be gone for the first time” (2008).
    An honorable mention (though not related to the *total* loss of sea ice) must also go to David Phillips, Environment Canada Senior Climatologist, who stated in 2010 that “I would bet my pension that the Arctic ice will be the lowest ever this summer… The ice doesn’t have a chance”. He missed by about 600,000 square kilometres; I’m not sure if anybody took up his wager.

  88. Ian W says:

    justsomeguy31167 says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    The Darwin Award winners should be hitting 100% ice soon according NSIDC. I also note they have been in partial ice for awhile and never posted a picture of it. Who is wrong? The satellites or the rowers?

    ” David Riser says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    Well someone took the silly arctic will be free of ice seriously. There are 4 young men up in the northwest passage getting hammered trying to row through the pass in a single season. I hope nothing bad happens to them, they are true adventurers, they probably should have waited for a bit better year but o-well. Awesome photography, yall should check it out.

    http://mainstreamlastfirst.com/?

    They decided to go of their own volitiion to make money from books and/or films. I hope nothing happens to the Canadian SAR crews that will have to rescue them at Canadian tax payers’ expense.

  89. Chad Wozniak says:

    Yes, the goal posts keep on movin’. In 2030, as the advancing ice encroaches on New York and Chicago and Denver the BloodyMesses of this world will still be crying wolf/AGW.

    After all, if you have everything bassackwards, i.e., up is down, it’s perfectly reasonable to blame glaciation on global warming. /sarc

  90. Most black carbon in the Arctic is deposited embedded in snow. So, until the melt starts, it has no (albedo) effect. Once surface melt commences, it accumulates on the surface of the ice progressively decreasing albedo and causing accelerated melt. Once the freeze starts again, a layer of black carbon becomes embedded in the ice ready to cause accelerated melt the next summer. This continues until the ice melts out completely and new ice without embedded black carbon forms.

    This is what we have seen over the last 15 years with black carbon originating from Russia pre-2000 and a few years after. We have now reached the point where there is little sea ice left with high levels of embedded black carbon, and summer sea ice minimum extent increases, as I predicted earlier this year.

  91. Richard M says:

    The sea ice in the Arctic has been weakened over the last decade. This makes it more prone to large swings based on the winds. That means just about anything is possible over the next few years. I’ve predicted the last two years correctly simply watching the AMO and winds. Natural variation is still king.

    However, there’s a high probability the AMO will start down soon and the PDO will continue dropping. There will be less warm water to melt the ice. In addition, the overall global temperature should keep dropping slowly. The small warming from CO2 ( about .05C/decade) will not be able to compensate for the ENSO/PDO/AMO cooling of 3 times that amount. Hence we should see around a .3C drop in global temperatures by 2040. This is assuming the low activity sun has no impact. If it does …. Brrrrrrr.

    I’m pretty confident we will be burning a lot less fossil fuel at that time. Too many technologies out there being researched.

  92. u.k.(us) says:

    Philip Bradley says:

    August 18, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    “Most black carbon in the Arctic is deposited embedded in snow. So, until the melt starts, it has no (albedo) effect. Once surface melt commences, it accumulates on the surface of the ice progressively decreasing albedo and causing accelerated melt.”
    ====================
    She ain’t showed you nothing yet.
    It is all in reserve,

  93. Resourceguy says:

    Just to remind readers of the money grubber aspect of dire predictions of global warming, you may have noticed Bill Clinton beating the global warming drum this year. Now we know why. It is now public knowledge that the Clinton Foundation has been mismanaged recently and this probably presented the need for Bill to go work the crowds for new money to patch the crisis. Naturally, he picked global warming to raise funds from speaking fees and fundraising efforts.

  94. jorgekafkazar says:

    From the Jonathon Amos response to SandyInLimousin, re http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7139797.stm, above: “…As regards the very latest Arctic sea ice figures, first please bear in mind the topic of my article was about ICE VOLUME, not the daily reports that concern ICE AREA/EXTENT. The distinction is very important. I urge you to go and read the story again.”

    I read the “story” again. Amos’s response, above, is another “story.” His article has the word EXTENT on his very first figure, right at the top. Just below that figure, ice cover is mentioned in units of million sq km. That is EXTENT. Three other estimates in terms of sq km are listed in the body of the article.

    NO measures of volume (such as cubic kms) appear in the “story” at all. The word “VOLUME,” itself, doesn’t occur until halfway down the page, and only once. Then another occurrence of EXTENT falls in the NSIDC discussion, about 3/4 of the way to the end. The word EXTENT is used three times, VOLUME just the once.

    If the distinction between EXTENT and VOLUME were “very important,” wouldn’t Amos have made it crystal clear? Draw your own conclusions about Amos’s veracity.

  95. James Allison says:

    Nick Stokes – During the last 20 years the climate experts you support have been making highly publicised predictions of impending catastrophe based on AGW. However these predictions of doom and gloom have simply failed to happen and the general public have largely moved on and are no longer listening. Your climate experts have cried wolf too often. Within the next few years the agencies funding science will follow suit and the CAGW/Climate change/climate disruption/climate weirdness – or whatever its called next (Climate Change Madness?) will end.

  96. Theo Goodwin says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 3:03 pm
    ‘ “Now it’s a vague “end of the decade” while others are saying 2030, 2040, 2050, etc. The point here is that none of these self proclaimed expert prognosticators has a clue.” ‘

    Let me make a related point. The beauty of having one’s theory falsified is that you have made contact with reality and have learned something new about where you are with your theory and with reality. Nota bene: you have learned something about the world that is not found in your theory or model. How liberating that can be. The big bonus is that you have identified a defective part of your theory and you can begin the work of replacing it with some new hypothesis.

    No Alarmist has ever experienced the joy of falsification. No alarmist has ever learned something about the world that is not in their theory or model. None ever will. They hold their theories and models so tightly to their chests that they cannot take a peek and remind themselves of what is there. All they can do is bluff.

  97. Mark Albright says:

    At Eureka on Ellesmere Island at 80 N latitude the temperature dropped below freezing on 13 August and has remained below freezing since then. The temperature reached a high this month of 47 F back on 6 August. The max/min temperatures since then in degrees F:

    6 Aug 47 36
    7 Aug 37 29
    8 Aug 42 31
    9 Aug 41 36
    10 Aug 45 34
    11 Aug 44 31
    12 Aug 36 31
    13 Aug 36 29
    14 Aug 32 28
    15 Aug 31 25
    16 Aug 30 24
    17 Aug 29 24

  98. Alex Heyworth says:

    “In the end, it will just melt away quite suddenly.” — Professor Wadhams

    [snip - unnecessary - Anthony].

  99. Theo Goodwin says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    “The thing is, they are trying to work it out, and say what they currently know. There’s no certainty and no unanimity.”

    And no scientific method. Not even a scrap of it. None of these people even use the word ‘hypothesis’ any longer.

  100. Latitude says:

    No one would even be having this conversation in the first place….
    …if the wind hadn’t blown the ice out

    It’s a 1/2 degree…..that’s it

  101. arthur4563 says:

    I have a hard time seeing the relevance about worries about Arctic summer sea ice levels.
    The original issues, I believe, was about polar bear survival. But those fears have proven
    baseless, and polar bear populations are affected by more than just sea ice. Nor would sea levels be much affected, since this is sea ice. Besides, we can measure sea levels directly.
    Anyone have a good reason why this should be of concern?

  102. Other_Andy says:

    @jorgekafkazar

    I would call Jonathon Amos disingenuous.
    That is polite-talk for a liar.
    Not surprised looking at his fellow travelers.

  103. Warren says:

    “Maslowski … used data sets from 1979 to 2004 to constrain their future projections.”

    …and that is, somehow, NOT cherry-picking?

  104. milodonharlani says:

    arthur4563 says:
    August 18, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Albedo. It’s not a good reason, but it is one given. Lack of summer sea ice is supposed to be a positive feedback to alleged CO2-induced, but in fact it makes little difference. At the angles of incidence in the Arctic, seawater is almost as reflective as ice. I think. Not that it matters, since the difference of a million square kilometers for a month or so isn’t important.

  105. Mickey Reno says:

    Nick Stokes says: Maslowski did update his forecast.

    Give me a dollar on the under, Nick.

  106. barry says:

    An ice-free summer has failed to materialize for the most extreme predictions (posited as maybes), so now we will have to see if the mid-range predictions will do better. (posited as more likely). Meanwhile, the trend is still down, and still much greater than AR4 projections. July 2013 closely tracked the linear decline for that month (NSIDC extent data from 1979 to 2012). Way too premature to be talking about “recovery”, as opposed to the normal year-to-year variance superimposed on the long-term downward trend.

    (Big thumbs up for the preview button. Thanks)

  107. barry says:

    During the last 20 years the climate experts you support have been making highly publicised predictions of impending catastrophe based on AGW.

    “Impending catastrophe”

    What is the time constraint on “impending”, and what are the catastrophes? Are you implying a handful of years or decades? And could you supply some cites for the timeline of predicted catastrophes so I can put it in context on a post that is focussed on one season of one year?

  108. Theo Goodwin says:

    ShrNfr says:
    August 18, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Look up millenarianism. It is a main source of what we have suffered from for twenty years or so. It seems that a change of millenium focuses many minds on apocalypse. Alarmists are typical millenarians.

  109. arthur4563 says:

    milodonharlani says: reduced albedo

    I’ve seen that before and dismissed it as a valid reason.

  110. arthur4563 says:

    It’s really quite impossible to defend these failed predictions – they were offered , not as hypotheses, or possibilities, but as certainties. That’s why the predictors are viewed as so
    stupid – it’s not their predictions, per se, but the fact that they put them forward as inevitable.
    Of all people, you’d think weather folks would know better.

  111. milodonharlani says:

    arthur4563 says:
    August 18, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    I don’t buy albedo, either. But it’s a lame excuse to replace polar bear extinction.

  112. Gail Combs says:

    arthur4563 says:
    August 18, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    I have a hard time seeing the relevance about worries about Arctic summer sea ice levels…. Anyone have a good reason why this should be of concern?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Because Al Gore has been so very worried about it and the Polar Bears.

  113. u.k.(us) says:

    James says:

    August 18, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    “Anyway, I do have fun submitting a guess and watching the ice. Thanks for running the blog”
    =============
    If it weren’t for this blog, would your comment be heard ?
    I’ll stop now, before I say something I might regret.

  114. leon0112 says:

    Nick – I am actually sympathetic to the fact that your friends are changing their tune to reflect data. This is a good thing. I assume they now realize that “the science is NOT settled.”

    Please go back to them and tell them that they should append “the science is NOT settled” to the beginning of each article they publish. Maybe if they do that then the IPCC, the media and the politicians will realize, the science is NOT settled.

    Further, to prove their good faith, they should attack the term “climate denier” used by many to describe anyone who does not believe the science is settled. This term is offensive and vile. As an incentive, you should point out to them that moving the goal posts shows they do not believe the science is settled and someone might apply the ad hominem attack to them.

  115. BarryW says:

    In looking at the JAXA graph I noticed something about this this time of the year. Basically, if the ice extent for a given year is above another years extent for this time of the year, it’s minimum is above that of the year with the lesser extent (2005/9 are the exceptions). So the bottom four in order are 2012, 2007,2011, and 2008 for example and their extents at this time are in the same order. If this pattern holds then I would guess we should see a minimum for 2013 between or just above that of 2010 or 2008. So possibly 4600000 or thereabouts?

    Y min mid Aug
    3 6032031 6640313
    4 5784688 6611250
    6 5781719 6339219
    5 5315156 6100156
    9 5249844 6160625
    8 4707813 5909688
    11 4526875 5548906
    7 4254531 5241406
    12 3489063 4939688

    13 5867813

  116. Layne Blanchard says:

    I predict that it will be completely unimportant if any summer incurs an ice minimum extent below 1M KMS

  117. Paul Westhaver says:

    The Oricle of Delphi did a better job at predicting the future than these so-called “scientists”.
    I am still insulating my house. You see the sun is cooling, and will yield min output about 2021-2022.

    The resurgence of Arctic Ice may influence the Canadian Government to suspend the 25 Billion dollar arctic patrol vessel program, which was necessary for Canada to assert sovereignty over the NW Passage and the Arctic Ocean.

    The ice commeth.

  118. Txomin says:

    Quick, Mr. Obama, tweet it.

  119. William McClenney says:

    Nick Stokes:

    I am truly curious. Do any of your models incorporate the present age of the Holocene?

  120. Steve B says:

    I think N. Stokes will be keeping his eye on the elections on the 7th. He may not have a job after this date.

  121. Box of Rocks says:

    So how is that detla t thing just working out any way?

    Any one care to comment on how much ADDITIONAL heat is being rejected into space because of the lower air temps as compared to normal?

  122. Frank K. says:

    The utter failure of Maslowski’s prediction is obviously due to the well known and verified “Gore Effect”…

    From the BBC article:
    “Former US Vice President Al Gore cited Professor Maslowski’s analysis on Monday in his acceptance speech at the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony in Oslo.”

  123. Theo Goodwin said @ August 18, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    The beauty of having one’s theory falsified is that you have made contact with reality and have learned something new about where you are with your theory and with reality. Nota bene: you have learned something about the world that is not found in your theory or model. How liberating that can be. The big bonus is that you have identified a defective part of your theory and you can begin the work of replacing it with some new hypothesis.

    No Alarmist has ever experienced the joy of falsification. No alarmist has ever learned something about the world that is not in their theory or model. None ever will. They hold their theories and models so tightly to their chests that they cannot take a peek and remind themselves of what is there. All they can do is bluff.

    That was rather well put…

  124. milodonharlani says:

    Paul Westhaver says:
    August 18, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    The ice cometh.
    ———————

    The Mann goeth.

  125. John West says:

    You are all missing the obvious. There is no ice in the arctic. Any and all reports to the contrary are obviously fabrications from the well funded and organized denial machine.

    /sarc

  126. Donald K. Chilo says:

    This comments/reply section sure has a large share of idiots who know next to nothing and seem to care less. Is it really a status symbol to be ignorant and show it!

    The consensus is the Arctic will become ice free within the next decade. It is a huge big deal. It has not happened in 3 million years. To those that think it isn’t, stick around and watch how super extreme the weather can become. This year, weather patterns favored the ice in the middle of summer when the melting should have been maximized. The highest Arctic has had a great deal of heavy cloud cover which really saved the ice. The next few summers, the ice may not be lucky.

    REPLY: Despite the fact that you are rude and condescending to everyone else on this thread, I’ve allowed this comment. How do you know it hasn’t happened in 3 million years? Show the proof of that. Can you explain what happened in the Arctic in 1922 with the observed loss then?
    – Anthony

  127. dbstealey says:

    Donald K. Chilo,

    Anthony is right. Here is a peer reviewed paper indicating that the Arctic was ice-free during the current Holocene, between 6,000 – 7,000 years ago.

    You should stop wasting your time wherever you are getting your misinformation. This site has the correct info. You should also be aware that nothing either unusual or unprecedented is happening in the Arctic, or anywhere else. What we observe now has all happened before, and to much greater extremes.

  128. RACookPE1978 says:

    Donald K. Chilo says:
    August 18, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    This comments/reply section sure has a large share of idiots who know next to nothing and seem to care less. Is it really a status symbol to be ignorant and show it!

    The consensus is the Arctic will become ice free within the next decade. It is a huge big deal. It has not happened in 3 million years. To those that think it isn’t, stick around and watch how super extreme the weather can become.

    OK. I’ll bite. Out of 128 comments, just one (you claim) has got it right, and is therefore correct about worrying about this year’s arctic sea ice extents.

    Now, please tell me exactly what the “problem” is with a decline in arctic sea ice, and what the result will be if it continues to decline for several more years.

    After all, you (the CAGW community as a fund-raising whole!) is worried almost to death about it, so there must be a reason for that concern.

    numbers only please! No hand-waving or drama. Just numbers of what you think the result will be if sea ice continues to decline. (Record low temperatures in the southeast US today, yesterday, this month by the way.

  129. Other_Andy says:

    @Donald K. Chilo

    We’ve had scientists telling us in 1817, 1922, 1947, 1957 and 1969 that the Arctic would be gone .
    (For example: “…the Arctic pack ice is thinning and that the ocean at the North Pole may become an open sea within a decade or two” – New York Times, February 20th, 1969).

    Nothing unusual what is happening in the Arctic at the moment.
    Even the IPCC (In 1990) had satellite data which showed that Arctic was much lower in 1974.
    http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/far/wg_I/ipcc_far_wg_I_full_report.pdf

    As for the Arctic not been ice free in 3 million years.
    What……?
    You have no idea have you?
    Consensus?
    Are you seriously suggesting science should be based on consensus?

  130. Hoser says:

    How do you calculate a 30 year average from 1979 to 2000?

  131. Greg M says:

    Maybe, just maybe, the computer models are wrong.

    Shouldn’t there be some requirement for demonstrating that a model actually has predictive value before it becomes the source of alarmist claims in the media?

  132. Manfred says:

    dbstealey says:
    August 18, 2013 at 10:09 pm
    Donald K. Chilo,

    Anthony is right. Here is a peer reviewed paper indicating that the Arctic was ice-free during the current Holocene, between 6,000 – 7,000 years ago.
    ————————–

    You do not need to go that far back. Additionally, the Insolation (incoming solar radiation) then was much higher at high latitudes, so that comparison is biased.

    But the Medieval Warm Period also had obviously less or no ice as well, And here, current climate is biased towards less ice due to black soot.

    So, it would be just back to normal after the outlier of the little ice age.

    http://investorvillage.com/smbd.asp?mb=11227&mn=8369&pt=msg&mid=12317983

  133. brad says:

    I think we need a CAGW predictions page. One section for Al Gore one for NIDC and other scientists.

  134. Hoser said @ August 18, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    How do you calculate a 30 year average from 1979 to 2000?

    Easy peasy :-) You just add on another 9 years of data from 2001-9. I seem to recall this being done in a paper published ~2000 but I cannot recall which one. IIRC M Mann was one of the co-authors.

  135. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    What strikes me is the similarity between these “scientific” Arctic prognosticators and current Viagra commercials.

    They know their science, confident in their predictions. “This is the age of knowing how to get things done.”

    Then came the commercial with the overheating classic Camaro. Guy pulls into service station, then buys a large bottle of chilled water, which he pours into the radiator.

    That got noticed. You don’t have to be much of a mechanic to know you never pour cold water into a hot engine block, the thermal shock can crack the block. Plus, I will add, he had to have taken the cap off a hot radiator, also a big no-no.

    And yet, two years after the glaring error, that commercial still shows up in the rotation.

    Latest Viagra commercial has a guy trying to start a campfire on a beach. His fancy all-weather lighter breaks.

    So he heads to the toolbox, and amid the hardened steel tools, he picks out a cheap pocket knife with brass pieces on the ends (bolsters). He carefully strikes the brass on the butt of the knife against a rock, to get the sparks to ignite some tinder. (With the campfire subsequently flaring up like the propane was turned on…)

    Except brass tools are used when you don’t want sparking. That’s been known for, oh, centuries. And bolster brass ain’t that hard, most likely the rock scratched it, no sparks. The hardened steel tools would have been much better choices.

    Confident Arctic sea ice “experts”, Viagra commercials, both about “knowing how to get things done.” Both doing it WRONG.

    Does demonstrate one thing well. Get yourself “puffed up” and confident you know what you’re doing, you might not be thinking as clearly as you think.

    Also shows a lot of people really don’t care about the details, as long as it looks good on TV.

  136. Greg M said @ August 18, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    Shouldn’t there be some requirement for demonstrating that a model actually has predictive value before it becomes the source of alarmist claims in the media?

    If the model has predictive value, then it’s not alarmist and it would be foolish to ignore such. The models that interest the media are either not worth paying attention, or are depicted on page 3 ;-)

  137. Grant says:

    Nick Stokes on August 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm
    “If there is still significant ice (1 million square kilometers or more as defined by Zwally, see below) in place then, we can consider that this claim by Maslowski in 2007 to be falsified:”

    Well, Maslowski did update his forecast. As the BBC report of that says,
    “The original prediction, made in 2007, gained Wieslaw Maslowski’s team a deal of criticism from some of their peers.”

    We’ll be sure to attach as much credence to this prediction as his last.

  138. barry says:

    “How do you calculate a 30 year average…?”

    One way is to take the mean extent for each day of the year over 30 years and plot a curve from those values. Can’t recall if that’s how NSIDC do it.

  139. this AREA/EXTENT is still tracking below the long-term mean. And again, this says nothing about VOLUME trends. Cryosat is the only means we have currently of measuring this.

    If you REALLY want to understand this subject, track down the history of the ice cover BEFORE 1979. The satellite record goes all the way back to 1961, via recently unclassified images. You might be surprised at what you find. And yes I have helped to compile some of this data….

  140. barry says:

    Shouldn’t there be some requirement for demonstrating that a model actually has predictive value before it becomes the source of alarmist claims in the media?

    To put things in context, the quotes cited in the top article refer to the soonest possible estimates (they often say ‘maybe’, or ‘possibly’ or ‘could be’) for an ice-free Arctic. One cite only refers to the North Pole area, not the whole cap. The AR4 models have singificantly underestimated ice loss, and their best estimate was ice-free Arctic in summers by the end of the century. The leaked AR5 report estimates ice-free summers during the second half of the 20th century.

    You could be forgiven for thinking that ice-free summers by this year is the best estimate that modelers gave, but it’s not. If you track back on most of the cites in the top article, most give the best estimates no sooner than about 2030. Sooner estimates were the outliers. But that’s what the press sensationalises, which becomes fodder for both sides of the debate.

  141. barry says:

    Typo – “The leaked AR5 report estimates ice-free summers during the second half of the 21st century.”

  142. Réaumur says:

    Cryosat is the only means we have currently of measuring this.

    I’ve looked at the Cryosat website http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Observing_the_Earth/CryoSat and can’t find graphs of arctic ice volume change – could someone say where they are?

    If you REALLY want to understand this subject, track down the history of the ice cover BEFORE 1979.

    I’d like to see that too – any guidance where to look?

  143. Patrick says:

    “Réaumur says:

    August 19, 2013 at 12:08 am”

    I would be interested in seeing those too. In the meantime, I found this;

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/05/02/cache-of-historical-arctic-sea-ice-maps-discovered/

  144. mogamboguru says:

    FYI –

    one week ago, the sea in front of this webcam situated in the middle of the west coast of Greenland http://www.hotel-arctic.gl/index.php?pageid=25 was completely free of ice, except for some small ice floes, which were calved by the glacier in that Fjord.

    But now look at this: http://www.hotel-arctic.gl/om_hotel_arctic/webcam/

    You can literally WATCH the sea surface freezing between the ice-floes.

    It seems to be really cold up there.

    Cheers!

  145. ralfellis says:

    Any explanations as to why it is colder than average at the pole this year?

    Less cloud cover?
    Greater albedo?
    Less warming winds?

    Explaining this year’s significantly cooler season might explain a great deal about Arctic climate.

    .

  146. ralfellis says:

    Just as some trivia for you…

    The name ‘Arctic’ comes from the Greek arktos, meaning ‘bear’.

    And no, this does not refer to the Poly Bear, this is the Great Bear in the heavens above – Ursa Major. Ursa Major is the northern constellation, and so the north became the Arctic. So there has always been a bear in the Arctic…. ;-)

    .

  147. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:

    Just so that we can really rub it in to the BBC’s Jonathan Amos, why doesn’t WUWT supply the daily Arctic ice VOLUME:
    http://psc.apl.washington.edu/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/schweiger/ice_volume/BPIOMASIceVolumeAnomalyCurrentV2_CY.png?%3C?php%20echo%20time%28%29?
    It is just so gratifying (maybe even approaching sexual ecstasy) when one gets the opportunity to show someone who ‘think’ they know what they’re talking about that, in fact, they are talking out of their rear end. That pleasure is all the more heightened when it is a BBC journalist (and if you’ve ever met one you’ll understand why).

  148. Jimbo says:

    Here is David Barber of rotten ice fame.

    June 20, 2008
    “We’re actually projecting this year that the North Pole may be free of ice for the first time [in history],” David Barber, of the University of Manitoba, told National Geographic News aboard the C.C.G.S. Amundsen, a Canadian research icebreaker.
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2008/06/080620-north-pole.html

  149. Jimbo says:

    Look at the IPCC graph on the following page. See 1974.
    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2013/07/31/arctic-ice-growth-since-1971/

    See also the Arctic situation in the 20s and 30s.
    http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2013/07/08/wuwt-attacks-wtd-i-learn-the-only-thing-to-fear-from-the-sceptics-is-your-own-fear/#comment-43622

    Is it mostly just part of a cycle? Would reduced soot in the Arctic have an effect? Can natural climate cycles dominate man made ‘warming’ in the Arctic? Could we see a recovery? I don’t know but we live in interesting times.

  150. richard verney says:

    Ian W says:
    August 18, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    “…(Not a single word has been said in the UK House of Commons about the death rates from cold – because the MPs do not care…”
    ///////////////////////////////

    I have made this point many times. It also applies to the BBC. It tells you volumes about the society that we live in. Something we should be ashamed about.

    If there is a multiple car crash on a motorway, or a train crash, or similar involving just 3 or more deaths, it frequently makes the news. Enquiries are set up in the case of rail deaths etc. where the number of deaths involved are quite modest.

    Just think how much money is spent on improving road safety which at most will save less than a 100 lives, probably no more than a handful a year.

    Recently, there have been many reports about failings in the National Health Service and the effect of these failings on death rates in hospitals. This has run to hundred or a few hundred in a couple of hospitals and in the worse offending one perhaps up to about 1000. Quite rightly there has at long last been some publicity regarding this scandal, but for a long time it was covered up, there not being the political will to address, or MSM’s desire to attack what it considers to be a sacred institution that can do not wrong since it is run and staffed by angels.

    AND YET, nothing is said or done about thousands of people (some estimates run to tens of thousands) dying prematurely needlessly as a consequence of the UK’s energy policy. Not a wisper. There is no political will to address this issue since it is the result of failings in their energy policy, and coupled with the paltry value of the state pension (which is by far the lowest in developed Europe). It is also not helped by poor old and damp housing stock, much of which should have been knocked down 50 years ago.

    The MSM do not wish to raise this point since to do so, would seriously dent their sacred cow, namely AGW. If people were truly informed that one significant effect of the UK response to AGW was that each year tens of thousands of people are dying prematurely in the cold because of fuel poverty and this was only to get worose since energy prices will double within short period of time because of subsidies, high cost of energy from renewables etc., then there would be huge public backlash. This would almost certainly turn the majority of public opinion against AGW/Climate Change, and certainly against UK policy response; which is a futile guesture not resulting in either a significant reduction in CO2 emissions that UK factually emits, nor in reducing global temperatures, and only results in inefficient and unreliable expensive energy production which few can afford and which will lead inevitable to energy rationing (either forcefully via smart meters, energy brown outs etc, or voluntarily since people will be unable to afford to buy as much energy as they would wish to do so, and will therefore self ration how much they use).

    Now I do not like making predictions about the future, but if the recent trend of cold winters continues (since 2000, CET suggests that these past 13 years, winter temps have fallen by almost 1.5degC and the Met Office and Government give the impression of being in denial of this fact, and are locked into a global pause in temperature rise, as opposed to considering local trends dirrectly experienced by the UK), I would suggest that sometime before 2020, and quite possibly within the next 5 years, it will become apparent how UK energy policy has failed, how exposed the UK is to unreliable and/or expensive energy and the human toll this is taking. I expect to see this edifice crumble quite quickly as more and more stories emerge in MSM regarding the winter mortality dats and increasing numbers of old and vulnerable people dying prematurely in fuel poverty.

    Of course, that is only a prediction, or should i say projection based on short term trends of a non linear chaotic climate system, and like any prediction about the future, it should be taken with a large pinch of salt; the weather will do what the weather will do, and time will tell.

  151. Increased albedo plays a role. If earlier in the summer you get reduced surface melt then more snow remains on the ice, and snow has a significantly higher albedo than sea ice. Plus, as I explained earlier, one year sea ice has much less embedded black carbon than older multi-year ice and therefore has a higher albedo when exposed.

    http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/seaice/processes/albedo.html

    Rather than an Arctic sea ice ‘death spiral’. Older dirty ice has been replaced by new clean ice and this through increased albedo causes cooling, driving increased ice extent and over multiple years increased ice volume.

  152. richard verney says:

    Dennis Ray Wingo says:
    August 18, 2013 at 11:25 pm
    ////////////////////////////////

    I have before seen people claim that there is sat evidence of less ice cover taken in the 60s and early 70s, but I have never seen those photographs. If you have a link to some of the images taken in the 60s and 70s, that would be very useful.

    Of course we know from the US nuclear submarine trips in the late 50s, that ice was thinner and probably less extensive back in the late 50s tahn it is today. There are some photographs of these subs surfacing in the far north in August.

    As far as an ice free Arctic is concerned, is it not almost certainly the case that there would have been many ice free summers during the MWP. Some dispute to what extent the MWP was global, but we know as fact (from Viking settlements and farming in the area and trees which are presently engulfed under glaciers but were growing in Viking times) that Greenland was many degrees warmer than it is today. This suggest that the Arctic area would almost certainly have been warmer and therefore likely ice free in summer.

    Personally, I cannot see what there is to fear about the Arctic being ice free in summer. This does not result in global sea level rise, and being ice free acts as a negative feed back allowing more heat from the ocean to escape to space. The ice acts like a lid on a sauspan and hinders heat loss from the Arctic ocaen. So if the Earth is over heating (something I do not personally subscribe to), this is a negative feedback which will help restore matters and will act against a runaway scenario.

    One always hears about Albedo, but this effect is minimal. The incident of sunlight in the Arctic, even in summer is low, and low incident sunlight is largely reflected by water such that there is relatively little difference in Albedo between ice and open water given the low incidence at which sun light is impacting in this region. Obviously, when out of the summer season, the ice returns and during the late Autum to early Spring there is either no sunlight, or daylight hours are short, and to the extent that there is sunlight the angle of incident is extremely low.

    I would not be surprised if upon a proper analysis and evaluation, the positive feedback of reduced or even no ice in summer (ie., the Albedo change) is less than the negative feedback of greater heat loss from the ocean itself (due to the cap being taken off enabling the ocean to dissipate heat to space).

  153. ed mister jones says:

    “Paul Beckwith is a Ph.D. student with the laboratory for paleoclimatology and climatology, department of geography, University of Ottawa.”

    Is that how they describe “Quacks” in this Era of Political Correctness?

  154. richard verney says:

    The Pompous Git says: August 18, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    Greg M said @ August 18, 2013 at 10:28 pm Shouldn’t there be some requirement for demonstrating that a model actually has predictive value before it becomes the source of alarmist claims in the media?

    If the model has predictive value, then it’s not alarmist and it would be foolish to ignore such….”
    ////////////////////////////////////////

    Surely the point that Greg was making is that to date, no model has been shown to have predictive value.

    That is why each and every model gives different results to the others, and why no model to date has managed to predict reality, whether this be temperature, or rainfall, or extreme weather events, or Arctic ice extent etc. etc..

  155. ed mister jones says:

    richard verney says:
    August 19, 2013 at 1:43 am . . . . .

    As further illustration of your point: consider how many children die each year in vehicular accidents, or from malnutrition, or from neglect – compared to mass shootings in the Schoolhouse. . . . . . .

  156. One always hears about Albedo, but this effect is minimal. The incident of sunlight in the Arctic, even in summer is low, and low incident sunlight is largely reflected by water such that there is relatively little difference in Albedo between ice and open water given the low incidence at which sun light is impacting in this region.

    The key difference is the albedo difference between snow covered ice, ice with low levels of black carbon, and ice with high levels of black carbon.

    The albedo difference between ocean and sea ice is important around summer solstice when the sea ice is far enough south that the sun’s angle of incidence is well above the angle of incidence where sea ice albedo is approximately the same as ocean surface.

    But hey, this is climate science, and if you average enough stuff together, you will get a result more or less like you want.

    Otherwise, at NH solstice, north of the Arctic Circle receives more solar radiation than anywhere on Earth including the tropics. Thus albedo differences are more important in the Arctic than anywhere else on Earth. Excepting the Antarctic around SH summer solstice.

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/EnergyBalance/page3.php

  157. richard verney said @ August 19, 2013 at 2:17 am

    Surely the point that Greg was making is that to date, no model has been shown to have predictive value.

    And my point is that a model with predictive value will not be alarmist. That the models so far have fallen short is not a good reason to suppose that all future models will fall short. Heck, even a paramecium is capable of learning!

  158. Kristian says:

    Meanwhile down in the Antarctic,

    Can someone explain this to me? What happened to the sea ice data from NSIDC (which is more or less the ‘official’ statistic, isn’t it?) during the 4-year period 2009-13?

    http://i1172.photobucket.com/albums/r565/Keyell/SHseaicearea_zps2d2302d2.png
    http://i1172.photobucket.com/albums/r565/Keyell/SHseaicearea2_zps2218b17a.png

    Seems to me the mean sea ice area of the southern hemisphere has grown a lot more since 2006/07 than NSIDC is willing to give it credit for …

  159. cedarhill says:

    There’s an old expression the technical elves of Wall Street borrowed from science that everything returns to it’s mean. When it returns is the difference between millionaires and the rest of us. A shame climate folks have yet to stumble onto this.

  160. Caleb says:

    The Pompous Git says:
    August 18, 2013 at 9:18 pm
    Theo Goodwin said @ August 18, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    “The beauty of having one’s theory falsified is that you have made contact with reality and have learned something new …
    …..They hold their theories and models so tightly to their chests that they cannot take a peek and remind themselves of what is there. All they can do is bluff.”

    “That was rather well put…”

    I second the motion.

  161. Caleb says:

    RE: richard verney says:
    August 19, 2013 at 2:06 am:

    Good points, especially about the Vikings in Greenland, who I’ve been looking at since I was just a boy. It is a pet peeve of mine that so much good research by good men has been snooted simply to promote the false idea it was not warm when it in fact was much warmer, a thousand years ago.

    A lot has to be ignored to promote the illusion that the ice was always thick and only recently became thin. Such illusionists take advantage of the fact we only recently have satellite views. However even using the satellite views from back in the early 1980′s it can be seen that it is quite common to have a large area of the Arctic Sea over towards the Bering Strait melt in the summer.

    It is common for the Alarmists who have been deluded by the illusionists to have the misconception that the ice was 40 feet thick all over the Arctic Sea back then. It is helpful to have a summer map, (or both summer and winter maps,) from a year like 1981 handy. The deluded are often astonished to see how much open water (and “baby ice”) there was back then.

    Our knowledge of the arctic is still in its infancy. Even as we speak there are people bobbing about up there, freezing in the summer, gathering data about a wide variety of subjects we know next to nothing about. Even with those buoys there are places in the central arctic that are hard to get to, and are largely buoy-free.

    http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/DAILYMAPS/dailymap.jpg

    It is politics that poisons the subject of arctic sea-ice, and leads to the nonsense promoted by illusionists. Ironically, it is politics that is funding a lot of the scientists up there. When the illusion pops like a bubble, I suppose a lot of the funding will vanish, but at least we will have a heaps of new and interesting data by then.

    It is hard not to be cynical about the current situation, however in the end Truth will prevail, because it is true.

  162. phlogiston says:

    Its important to remember this extremely important recent post by Jim Steele . He explains clearly that there is a legacy of warm subsurface water in the Arctic leftover from warm phases of both the AMO and the PDO intruding warm water into the north polar region. Air temperatures appear to be trending downwards in the last few years and are strikingly cold this year according to DMI.

    (BTW – does anyone have a link to averaged DMI arctic temperatures over whole seasons or years, over the last decade or two??)

    To quote from Jim steele:

    Arctic vs Antarctic sea ice

    1) Sea ice melts deep inside the Arctic Circle during the coldest of winters because warm water from the Atlantic and the Pacific intrude and melt the ice from below. During the past two decades scientists have observed an increase in the volume of warm water penetrating deep inside the Arctic Circle, which then preconditioned the polar ice cap for a greater loss of summer ice.3,8 Changes in the North Atlantic/Arctic Oscillation affect how much heated water is driven into the Arctic, which then causes the widespread melt seen in the Barents Sea and adjoining Kara Sea. Similarly the warm phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation drives more warm water through the Bering Strait into the Chukchi Sea.2,5,8

    It is also striking that oscillation between winter maximum and summer minimum Arctic ice has shot up in magnitude since 2007. This is understandable as a conflict between air and water – legacy warm subsurface water and cooling Arctic air. Eventually the lower summer ice extent will vent off the legacy heat and the ice will recover fully.

  163. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Regarding Arctic sea ice before 1979 (aka start of satellite record),

    NSIDC did a cute little article back in 2011, Arctic sea ice before satellites.

    By combining their records with those of UK Hadley Centre, they made an anomaly extent graph that goes from Jan 1953 to Sep 2010. Caption: Sea ice charts of the Arctic Ocean show that ice extent has declined since at least the 1950s. Credit: NSIDC and the UK Hadley Center

    http://nsidc.org/icelights/files/2010/11/mean_anomaly_1953-2010.png

    Being a mere layman, I see the smoothed line is peaking around 1968-9 so I would say the decline was from the late 1960′s, about when the Pacific Decadal Oscillation went positive, not the 1950′s.

    Interestingly, the Y-axis is in bizarre units of ‘Standard Deviations from 1968-1996 Mean’. Without the underlying data, we do not know how alarmed we should be. Since about 1979 there was a drop of about 2 Std Dev’s. Is that a change of 2/10 10⁶km², or 20?

    To ballpark it, we’ll check out the NSIDC extent records:
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/

    Choose directory “north”, then “daily”, “data”, and finally look at “NH_seaice_extent_climatology_1981-2010.csv”.

    There we see for the 1981-2010 climatology, the standard deviations, for all 366 days of the year, hang out around 0.5 10⁶km².

    If the 1968-1996 standard deviations are similar, then, to me, it don’t look all that bad.

    There is something else that looks very important in that graph. By my eyes, it is showing there was as much a drop from 1969 to 1979, as there was from 1979 to 2009.

    So over a mere ten years, the extent dropped as much as it did over thirty years.

    I would like to know why, after all the warnings about the dangerous rate of Arctic sea ice loss during the satellite age, they have not made special notice of The Ice Being Lost THREE TIMES As Fast in the decade before. How do they explain the slow down in ice loss?

  164. Jimbo says:

    richard verney says:
    August 19, 2013 at 2:06 am
    ………………that Greenland was many degrees warmer than it is today. This suggest that the Arctic area would almost certainly have been warmer and therefore likely ice free in summer.

    It wasn’t just Greenland. Now, have you seen any of the following over the last 16 years? The Arctic might have been is some terrible shape.

    Medieval Climatic Optimum
    Michael E Mann – University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA

    It is evident that Europe experienced, on the whole, relatively mild climate conditions during the earliest centuries of the second millennium (i.e., the early Medieval period). Agriculture was possible at higher latitudes (and higher elevations in the mountains) than is currently possible in many regions, and there are numerous anecdotal reports of especially bountiful harvests (e.g., documented yields of grain) throughout Europe during this interval of time. Grapes were grown in England several hundred kilometers north of their current limits of growth, and subtropical flora such as fig trees and olive trees grew in regions of Europe (northern Italy and parts of Germany) well north of their current range. Geological evidence indicates that mountain glaciers throughout Europe retreated substantially at this time, relative to the glacial advances of later centuries (Grove and Switsur, 1994). A host of historical documentary proxy information such as records of frost dates, freezing of water bodies, duration of snowcover, and phenological evidence (e.g., the dates of flowering of plants) indicates that severe winters were less frequent and less extreme at times during the period from about 900 – 1300 AD in central Europe……………………

    Some of the most dramatic evidence for Medieval warmth has been argued to come from Iceland and Greenland (see Ogilvie, 1991). In Greenland, the Norse settlers, arriving around AD 1000, maintained a settlement, raising dairy cattle and sheep……
    http://www.meteo.psu.edu/holocene/public_html/shared/articles/medclimopt.pdf

  165. Eliza says:

    Even if hell freezes over N Stokes will not admit.. he gets paid to push this crap typical second rate Australian Scientist who hopefully will be removed with the new government

  166. AndyG55 says:

    The Pompous Git says:
    “And my point is that a model with predictive value will not be alarmist.”

    I know some engineers in the water area who have been playing with the climate models for about 7 years to see what “might” happen to rainfall patterns.. Apparently about half the models predict an increase in rainfall, and half predict a decrease.

    The mean of all the models is apparently very close to actuality. :-)

  167. lurker, passing through laughing says:

    Not a single AGW doom prediction that I am aware of has come true.
    Those of who have been skeptical (the so-called flat earthers) have been proven right every time we have challenged the AGW hype industry.
    Think on this: Not one AGW prediction of doom has come true. Not one AGW demanded policy has succeeded. Not one AGW climate treaty has done anything of any significance at all.

  168. Steven Hill from Ky (the welfare state) says:

    Report to the disintegration chambers, man is destroying the planet……..LOL Too much ice caused by too little CO2. Blame it on Barack Husain Obama, known terrorist of coal producers all over the world.

  169. Gail Combs says:

    Donald K. Chilo says: @ August 18, 2013 at 9:35 pm
    I suggest you look at North Hemisphere Summer Energy the Leading Indicator which has been DECLINING in the sesond half of the Holocene as we approach a possible glacial inception.

    Or read these peer-reviewed papers:

    Temperature and precipitation history of the Arctic 2010
    Miller et al
    Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and Department of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado, USA et al

    …. Solar energy reached a summer maximum (9% higher than at present) ~11 ka ago and has been decreasing since then, primarily in response to the precession of the equinoxes. The extra energy elevated early Holocene summer temperatures throughout the Arctic 1-3°C above 20th century averages, enough to completely melt many small glaciers throughout the Arctic, although the Greenland Ice Sheet was only slightly smaller than at present. Early Holocene summer sea ice limits were substantially smaller than their 20th century average, and the flow of Atlantic water into the Arctic Ocean was substantially greater. As summer solar energy decreased in the second half of the Holocene, glaciers re-established or advanced, sea ice expanded

    A more recent paper looking at glaciers in Norway.

    A new approach for reconstructing glacier variability based on lake sediments recording input from more than one glacier January 2012
    Kristian Vasskoga Øyvind Paaschec, Atle Nesjea, John F. Boyled, H.J.B. Birks

    …. A multi-proxy numerical analysis demonstrates that it is possible to distinguish a glacier component in the ~ 8000-yr-long record, based on distinct changes in grain size, geochemistry, and magnetic composition…. This signal is …independently tested through a mineral magnetic provenance analysis of catchment samples. Minimum glacier input is indicated between 6700–5700 cal yr BP, probably reflecting a situation when most glaciers in the catchment had melted away, whereas the highest glacier activity is observed around 600 and 200 cal yr BP. During the local Neoglacial interval (~ 4200 cal yr BP until present), five individual periods of significantly reduced glacier extent are identified at ~ 3400, 3000–2700, 2100–2000, 1700–1500, and ~ 900 cal yr BP….

    The authors of BOTH papers simply state that most glaciers likely didn’t exist 6,000 years ago, but the highest period of the glacial activity has been in the past 600 years. This is hardly surprising with ~9% less solar energy.

    If you are in love with computer models here is a computer model

    Transient simulation of the last glacial inception. Part II: sensitivity and feedback analysis

    Abstract
    The sensitivity of the last glacial-inception (around 115 kyr BP, 115,000 years before present) to different feedback mechanisms has been analysed by using the Earth system model of intermediate complexity CLIMBER-2…..We performed a set of transient experiments starting at the middle of the Eemiam interglacial and ran the model for 26,000 years with time-dependent orbital forcing and observed changes in atmospheric CO2 concentration (CO2 forcing). The role of vegetation and ocean feedback, CO2 forcing, mineral dust, thermohaline circulation and orbital insolation were closely investigated. In our model, glacial inception, as a bifurcation in the climate system, appears in nearly all sensitivity runs including a run with constant atmospheric CO2 concentration of 280 ppmv, a typical interglacial value, and simulations with prescribed present-day sea-surface temperatures or vegetation cover—although the rate of the growth of ice-sheets growth is smaller than in the case of the fully interactive model. Only if we run the fully interactive model with constant present-day insolation and apply present-day CO2 forcing does no glacial inception appear at all. This implies that, within our model, the orbital forcing alone is sufficient to trigger the interglacial–glacial transition, while vegetation, ocean and atmospheric CO2 concentration only provide additional, although important, positive feedbacks. In addition, we found that possible reorganisations of the thermohaline circulation influence the distribution of inland ice.

    Are you SURE you want to get rid of all that ‘extra’ CO2?

    Lesson from the past: present insolation minimum holds potential for glacial inception (2007)
    …Because the intensities of the 397 ka BP and present insolation minima are very similar, we conclude that under natural boundary conditions the present insolation minimum holds the potential to terminate the Holocene interglacial. Our findings support the Ruddiman hypothesis [Ruddiman, W., 2003. The Anthropogenic Greenhouse Era began thousands of years ago. Climate Change 61, 261–293], which proposes that early anthropogenic greenhouse gas emission prevented the inception of a glacial that would otherwise already have started….

    Here is a more recent paper from last fall.

    Can we predict the duration of an interglacial? 2012
    P. C. Tzedakis, E.W. Wolff, L. C. Skinner, V. Brovkin, D. A. Hodell, J. F. McManus, and D. Raynaud

    Comparison [of the Holocene] with MIS 19c, a close astronomical analogue characterized by an equally weak summer insolation minimum (474Wm−2) and a smaller overall decrease from maximum summer solstice insolation values, suggests that glacial inception is possible despite the subdued insolation forcing, if CO2 concentrations were 240±5 ppmv (Tzedakis et al., 2012)

    And another paper from last year

    Holocene temperature history at the western Greenland Ice Sheet margin reconstructed from lake sediments – Axford et al. (2012)
    ….As summer insolation declined through the late Holocene, summer temperatures cooled and the local ice sheet margin expanded. Gradual, insolation-driven millennial-scale temperature trends in the study area were punctuated by several abrupt climate changes, including a major transient event recorded in all five lakes between 4.3 and 3.2 ka, which overlaps in timing with abrupt climate changes previously documented around the North Atlantic region and farther afield at ∼4.2 ka…..

    In other words warming events to not preclude a descent into another Ice Age. If you want to be ALARMIST you have your facts backwards.

  170. matthu says:

    “Not one AGW climate treaty has done anything of any significance at all.”

    True – if one is prepared to ignore the hundreds of billions of dollars that have been wasted in the process, the jobs that have disappeared, the increase in fuel poverty etc. etc.

  171. M Courtney says:

    barry says August 18, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    “Impending catastrophe”
    What is the time constraint on “impending”, and what are the catastrophes? Are you implying a handful of years or decades? And could you supply some cites for the timeline of predicted catastrophes so I can put it in context on a post that is focussed on one season of one year?

    Good question.
    The answer is found via the precautionary principle. If the catastrophe is predicted before the lifetime of new infrastructure expires then we have to adopt the precautionary polices now.

    Therefore the impending catastrophe has a date. We are abandoning coal fired power plants (in the UK) now for emissions reasons.
    In the UK the replacement wind-turbines have a lifespan of about twenty years.

    Therefore, the predicted climate catastrophe is by 2033 at the latest. Remember, the rest of the world is still emitting CO2 regardless and the UK emissions are negligible so that is the predicted timeline.

    Do you believe that?
    Personally, I think we may be making a slight mistake.

  172. Gail Combs says:

    Dennis Ray Wingo says: @ August 18, 2013 at 11:25 pm
    ….If you REALLY want to understand this subject, track down the history of the ice cover BEFORE 1979. The satellite record goes all the way back to 1961, via recently unclassified images. You might be surprised at what you find. And yes I have helped to compile some of this data….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>.
    So how about an article for WUWT?

  173. Bruce Cobb says:

    The Alarmists’ stance on Arctic sea ice has always been as amusing as it was fatally flawed. It has been a key symbol, along with the polar bear, and equally a symptom of (supposedly) what is happening with climate as well as harbinger of dire things to come. We were to witness an “Arctic Death Spiral”, with positive feedbacks like decreased albedo and melting permafrost. This was to be tragic in and of itself, causing loss of habitat for Polar Bears for instance, as well as creating an additional positive feedback for the NH. Skeptics knew all along that all of this was based on Warmist fantasy and wishful thinking. Arctic sea ice has always waxed and waned, just as glaciers have.
    As with global temperatures having stalled these past 16 or 17 years, arctic sea ice is following suit, stabilizing, and even rebounding somewhat. It is with great satisfaction that we now watch their final hope, their symbol of climate doom collapsing. Long may they endure the much-deserved jeering.

  174. bit chilly says:

    donald k chilo.i will give you the same bet i have to others,including john mason of skeptical science. i will bet my house against your house that the arctic sea ice summer extent does not drop below 1 million square kilometres.its about time some people started putting some major conviction behind this so called cAGW consensus.i will offer the same bet to anyone,mann,trenberth,the whole lot of them.
    they are absolutely full of sh**.continual lies and half truths based on absolutely no hard facts.gail combs declares she is angry.personally i am incandescent with rage,having been lied to for so long,taking the word of the people that are supposed to know better.accepting these people are basing their warnings on sound science for years,only to find out they are a bunch of charlatans.
    no big deal in itself,but when it becomes fraud,and is used to extort money from hard hit taxpayers all over the world,and is wasting money on a grand scale lining the pockets of the already wealthy it is no longer a joke.
    i really think i would end up in jail if i ever met any of these idiots in person.
    by the way anthony,i wouldnt be so nice towards “neven” in your comment,looking at the disparaging remarks on his blog towards this site,and the fact he does not allow links to this or other sites that do not promote the cAGW meme.

  175. Louis Hooffstetter says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    “Seems to me you’re simultaneously criticizing them for being vague and for being “self proclaimed expert prognosticators”. I think they are just saying they are not in a position to expertly prognosticate.”

    Nick: Of course climastrologists aren’t in a position to expertly prognosticate. They never have been and never will be, but that never stops them does it? This is just another example of typical climastrologist behavior (and a ‘teachable’ moment):

    Predictable Climastrologist Behavior:
    Step 1: Make outrageous claims based solely on model results (no empirical data whatsoever).
    Step 2: Ignore empirical data as long as possible as your model projections drift further and further from reality.
    Step 3: When reality forces you to acknowledge it, “update” your model projections (backpedal) such that they are even more vague and ambiguous. Push testable projections out past the end of your lifetime.

    This is despicable behavior from “researchers” who don’t deserve to be called scientists! Why? Because they refuse to follow the scientific method. Every one of these “Climastrologists” deserves to get his/her nose soundly rubbed in their own BS at every possible opportunity. Stop apologizing for these charlatans! They’re giving you and every other real scientist a bad name. Go Anthony!

  176. Robert of Ottawa says:

    Jimbo, you have assembled veritable egg-on-face role call there.

  177. M Courtney says:

    Eliza, I disagree.
    I also disagree with Nick Stokes but I don’t see him as insincere.
    He politely argues his point and should be respected for that.

    OK, Professor Wadhams’ and Maslowski’s predictions are debunked but Nick Stokes is right to say that not even every alarmist believed those guys were right.

    Nick Stokes deserves to be disputed not derided.

  178. RockyRoad says:

    A good way to defuse an argument and cut the legs off Warmistas is to use their own words. For example,

    Nick Stokes says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    The thing is, they are trying to work it out, and say what they currently know. There’s no certainty and no unanimity.

    (Bold mine.) So I looked up the word “certainty” and came up with several definitions.

    The first is this:

    cer·tain·ty/ˈsɜrtnti/ Show Spelled [sur-tn-tee] Show IPA 2
    noun, plural cer·tain·ties.
    1. the state of being certain.
    2. something certain; an assured fact.

    So I take no “assured fact”, to mean no facts at all (are there any facts that aren’t assured?–if so, I submit they aren’t “facts”).

    Synonyms
    1. certitude, assurance, confidence.

    Or based on the synonyms listed, “no certainty” mean no assurance or no confidence.

    The next definition, from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, was this:

    Certainty
    First published Sat Feb 2, 2008
    Like knowledge, certainty is an epistemic property of beliefs.

    So “no certainty” from an epistemological standpoint, means no belief in what’s being stated!

    So Nick, by your own words, you’ve admitted (depending on your definition) that you either have no facts or no belief–or both.

    Why are we discussing a pure fantasy about which you have no facts and no belief?? Why are you wasting our time? Have you nothing better to do?

    There’s no need to even discuss your “no unanimity” phrase–it would simply be redundant.

  179. Ian W says:

    lurker, passing through laughing says:
    August 19, 2013 at 4:48 am

    Not a single AGW doom prediction that I am aware of has come true.
    Those of who have been skeptical (the so-called flat earthers) have been proven right every time we have challenged the AGW hype industry.
    Think on this: Not one AGW prediction of doom has come true. Not one AGW demanded policy has succeeded. Not one AGW climate treaty has done anything of any significance at all.

    Unfortunately, one AGW demanded policy has succeeded, that is the reduction in the availability of cheap energy. Resulting in deindustrialization of the countries whose politicians are following the AGW mantra and condemning the third world to continuing poverty. Following the Common Purpose, any new energy source is immediately demonized and protested against, while reversion to costly, environmentally damaging and inefficient energy production is praised. The EPA in the US, the Department of Energy and ‘Climate Change’ in the UK, and the Australian government are all in the process of increasing energy poverty in their respective countries. it would appear that Frau Merkel may have seen the light in Germany but that may be due to some 600.000 German families going off grid as their electricity supply is completely unaffordable.

    The Common Purpose is to achieve complete shut down of all cheap energy sources before the population at large and useful idiots understand that it is not getting warmer. But by then as is already the case in UK, it will be too late to recover and create new power generation from scratch. The concurrence of the dates of mass ‘fossil’ fueled power station shut downs with forecast date of impending cold mean that it the next few years will be unpleasant for most and deadly for many. This will be seen as success by AGW proponents.

  180. michael hart says:

    Yale Environment360 – 30 August 2012
    “If this rate of melting [in 2012] is sustained in 2013, we are staring down the barrel and looking at a summer Arctic which is potentially free of sea ice within this decade,”
    [Dr. Mark Drinkwater]

    Well. I guess if there is no ice then we’ll just have to, well, drink water.

    Can’t believe I’m the first one to comment on that.

  181. Gail Combs says:

    richard verney says: @ August 19, 2013 at 1:43 am
    >>>>>>>>>>>>.
    What it say is the Mass Media is nothing but a propaganda tool of people in public offices or their backers who are more interested in lining their pockets and the heck with the rest of society. They could care less if they completely ruin entire countries as long as they get theirs.

    Makes me spiting ANGRY! What is worse is no matter which political party you vote for they are ALL greedy S.O.B’s and there is little different between them.

    In the USA, Ron Paul refused his Congressional pension and now 10 GOP [ Republican]lawmakers forgo their Pa. [ Pennsylvania] pension So it looks like the GOP has FINALLY noticed people are pretty fed-up.

    A new Rasmussen Reports national survey finds that 10% of Likely U.S. Voters now rate Congress’s performance as good or excellent. That’s up from seven percent (7%) at the beginning of July and the first time Congress’ positives have reached double digits this year. Still, two-thirds (66%) of voters give Congress poor marks.

    (I like Rasmussen because they are up front about what the survey questions actually are.)

  182. michael hart says:

    Seriously though,

    “we are staring down the barrel and looking at a summer Arctic which is potentially free of sea ice”

    Who would that inconvenience (polar bears are doing fine). Do farmers “look down the barrel” at melting ice every year before their crops start to grow?

    Was Vivaldi “staring down the barrel” when he composed that most joyful piece of music ‘Spring (The Four Seasons)’?

  183. barry says:

    Bruce,

    As with global temperatures having stalled these past 16 or 17 years, arctic sea ice is following suit, stabilizing, and even rebounding somewhat.

    Arctic sea Ice loss over the past 16-17 years has been greater than the previous 16 years since satellites have been giving us data. Arctic sea ice has not been following the curve of the slow-down in global temperatures. Even this year is pretty much tracking the declining linear trend so far, but even if it winds up being above the trend, one year does not a rebound make. When we’ve had three or four September minimums above the 2005 September minimum, then we might be looking at something like a rebound. It won’t take as much annual data as with surface temperatures to be statistically significant, because the variance with sea ice monthly anomalies is not quite as erratic, but you’d want to wait until at least the end of this decade to make that call.

    But if you’re talking about short-term (weather) fluctuations, well, sure, Arctic sea-ice “rebounds” every winter!

    If, as seems likely, this year’s September minimum is not particularly low, then we will not see the “rapid rate of recovery” that has been discussed in the last few years when sea ice grew back after very low minimums. I will be curious to see if those who argued that rapid regrowth after very low minimums indicates a meaningful “rebound” will then apply the argument equally – that a slower rate of regrowth is indicative of ice not rebounding well. ;-)

  184. Gail Combs says:

    Caleb says: @ August 19, 2013 at 3:55 am
    .
    …..It is hard not to be cynical about the current situation, however in the end Truth will prevail, because it is true.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Unless of course the Luddites manage to dump Western Civilization back into another Dark Age by removing cheap energy and we are too busy living short brutal lives to worry about little things like science.

  185. Caleb says:

    I actually like to watch clouds, study weather maps, and view the world through the “North Pole Camera” to get away from it all. It spoils all the pleasure if you have to root for a particular political viewpoint, while doing so.

    Not that I don’t root. When my garden is parched, I root for rain. When it resembles a swamp, I root for drought. When it is hot I wish it were not and when it is not I wish it were hot.

    I suppose in the eyes of some this makes me a political hypocrite and politically incorrect, but I just shrug and suppose those folk are seeing the world through warped glasses.

    There used to be a joke, “Everyone complains about the weather but no one does anything about it.” Apparently some Alarmists didn’t get the joke, and decided to do something about the weather.

    I ordinarily don’t mind if people hold prayer meetings or dance rain dances to control the rain clouds, but as soon as they step into my garden and start telling me what I can plant and how much of a tax I must pay for planting, in order to control the rain clouds, they are stepping over a line. A 240-year-old flag flaps in the wind, and it states, “Don’t Tread On Me.”

    After a good, healthy, political rave, I need to get away from it all, and go to watch the ice melt via the North Pole Camera. It has been a slow melt this year, and halted a couple weeks ago, but finally it has resumed. It amuses me that the resumption has such huge political consequences. After all, it is just ice melting. However, in the world of rain-dancing Alarmists, it may be a case of too-little-too-late.

    Like a wave up onto a beach even as the tide goes out, a final flood of “mild” air has rushed up to the pole from Scandinavia. However it has already created a sort of undertow, as sub-zero-Celsius air sneaks in underneath it along the Siberian Coast, sub-minus-five-Celsius pours south over the northernmost Canadian Islands, and a “homegrown” pool of sub-minus-five-Celsius air appears at the edge of the ice pack over towards Bering Strait.

    http://sunriseswansong.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/the-big-chill-sea-ice-version/

  186. Annie says:

    Supercomputers….GIGO superfast.

  187. Bruce Cobb says:

    barry says:
    August 19, 2013 at 6:06 am
    Barry, if you need to twist people’s words and put up straw men in order to argue against them, chances are your “argument” fails.

  188. Sasha says:

    Greenpeace Leader Admits Arctic Ice Exaggeration
    August 19, 2009
    The outgoing leader of Greenpeace has admitted his organization’s recent claim that the Arctic Ice will disappear by 2030 was “a mistake.”
    Greenpeace made the claim in a July 15 press release entitled “Urgent Action Needed As Arctic Ice Melts,” which said there will be an ice-free Arctic by 2030 because of global warming.
    Under close questioning by BBC reporter Stephen Sackur on the “Hardtalk” program, Gerd Leipold, the retiring leader of Greenpeace, said the claim was wrong.
    “I don’t think it will be melting by 2030. … That may have been a mistake,” he said.
    Greenpeace Leader Admits Arctic Ice Exaggeration

    Sackur said the claim was inaccurate on two fronts, pointing out that the Arctic ice is a mass of 1.6 million square kilometers with a thickness of 3 km in the middle, and that it had survived much warmer periods in history than the present.
    And get this …
    The BBC reporter accused Leipold and Greenpeace of releasing “misleading information” and using “exaggeration and alarmism.”
    Ha! Pot, kettle, black.
    Leipold’s admission that Greenpeace issued misleading information is a major embarrassment to the organization, which often has been accused of alarmism but has always insisted that it applies full scientific rigor in its global-warming pronouncements. (Though, they are strangely reluctant to publish the data.)
    Although he admitted Greenpeace had released inaccurate but alarming information, Leipold defended the organization’s practice of “emotionalizing issues” in order to bring the public around to its way of thinking and alter public opinion.
    Leipold said later in the BBC interview that there is an urgent need for the suppression of economic growth in the United States and around the world. He said annual growth rates of 3% to 8% cannot continue without serious consequences for the climate.
    “We will definitely have to move to a different concept of growth. … The lifestyle of the rich in the world is not a sustainable model,” Leipold said. “If you take the lifestyle, its cost on the environment, and you multiply it with the billions of people and an increasing world population, you come up with numbers which are truly scary.”
    This contrasts sharply with the grim future for the Bering predicted by Greenpeace. Thirteen years ago in 1999, when they had this to say:
    “The first regions to be affected will be ice-dependent seas near but outside the Arctic Ocean proper, including the Bering Sea … These areas are currently covered in seasonal winter ice, which could vanish altogether with continued warming.
    Walruses, which travel long distances on floating sea ice that allows them to feed over a wide area may be particularly vulnerable …
    Many species of seal are ice-dependent, including the spotted seal, which in the Bering Sea breeds exclusively at the ice edge in spring; the harp seal, which lives at the ice edge all year; the ringed seal, which give birth to and nurse their pups on sea ice; the ribbon seal and the bearded seal.
    Polar bears would be threatened by any decline in ringed seal populations, their main food source.”
    Strangely, this prediction has been deleted from their archive. It used to be found here http://archive.greenpeace.org/climate/arctic99/reports/seaice3.html
    But you can still watch the full BBC interview with Leipold (or should that be Liepold?) here:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/hardtalk/8184392.stm
    So there you have it. All the “Ice free Arctic” stories are hogwash. They are nothing to do with the Arctic being ice free at all, and everything to do with another completely unrelated agenda.

    The ice at the North Pole is mobile, it moves in response to oceanic and atmospheric conditions. In 2010, for example, there was an unusual Arctic dipole anomaly that resulted in the negation of the normal Arctic Oscillation and instigated opposing cyclonic conditions that caused widespread dissipation of the ice-mass.

    Because of this mobility, even the multiyear ice isn’t that old. There are different electromagnetic properties between new and multiyear ice and this enables remote sensing satellites to track both types of ice. I don’t think anyone could say just how old the oldest piece of ice is but a figure of 10 years seems a reasonable average age.

    At the precise point of the North Pole, the oldest piece of ice has to be less than 71 months old as the North Pole itself was ice free in July 2007. Also bear in mind that there isn’t actually a precise point for the magnetic north pole as it constantly moves. Each day it goes on an 80km journey, roughly in a loop but never quite returning to the same point it started from, hence there is a 40km drift each year and thus it’s necessary to allow for magnetic declination when taking accurate compass or cartographic readings.

    The Arctic was last free of ice more than 700,000 years ago. There is nothing in any scientific research, reconstruction or paleoclimatic evidence to suggest the Arctic has been completely ice free at any point in this time. It was probably ice free some 4 million years ago, it may be more recent than that. It was almost certainly ice free between 15 and 25 million years ago, the same time at which the Antarctic was comparatively ice free and it was last completely ice free about 50-55 million years ago.

    Typically, the flat parts of the Arctic ice are just a few feet thick with multi-year ice being up to about 9 feet. New ice is 1 to 3 feet thick but can often be just a few inches. Where the ice buckles and ridges form it can be up to 15 feet thick.

    Unlike Antarctica and Greenland, the Arctic ice isn’t land-based. This means it forms as a thin frozen layer of sea-water and is eroded from both above and below. It’s this vulnerability that allows for rapid melting of the ice in summer and refreezing in winter. In the past the maximum winter sea-ice extent was about 15 million km², in recent years this has receded to about 14 million km². During the summer months the ice rapidly melts, it used to retreat to about 11 million km² but in recent years it has been down to about 6 million km².

    At it’s annual peak, the Arctic ice expands to cover an area the same size as Antarctica and forms a frozen mass between Canada, Greenland and Russia.

    We’re very close to the time of year when minimum sea-ice extent is reached, (usually in about 11 days time) and at the moment there’s just under 5.9 million km² of ice in the Arctic. This recent decline in ice extent has opened up new shipping routes enabling vessels to sail around the north of Canada and the north of Russia.

    In Greenland the ice cap has a maximum depth of 3,207 metres (10,519 feet) and the oldest ice here is about 100,000 years old. That’s not to say there was no ice 100,000 years ago. The Greenlandic ice is effectively one giant glacier, slowly creeping towards the surrounding seas and oceans.

    As the snow falls it compresses under the effects of gravity and beneath overlying snow deposits, compressed enough it becomes ice and starts it’s long journey to the sea. There’s a constant cycle of ice calving into the sea and being replaced by new formations of ice.

    The same thing happens in Antarctica but being much larger and generally at a lesser incline than Greenland, the ice takes a lot longer to flow to the sea. The oldest ice here is about 1 million years old, the oldest so far extracted from cores is 850,000 years old. The maximum thickness of Antarctic ice is 4,776 metres (15,670 feet).

  189. wayne says:

    Real World

    “Using supercomputers, paid by taxpayers hard earned dollars, to crunch through possible future outcomes has become a standard grand game played by climate scientists in recent years spear-headed by the University of Colorado in the United States.”

    (now that’s more accurate BBC)

  190. phlogiston says:

    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    August 19, 2013 at 4:22 am

    Regarding Arctic sea ice before 1979 (aka start of satellite record),
    …..
    There is something else that looks very important in that graph. By my eyes, it is showing there was as much a drop from 1969 to 1979, as there was from 1979 to 2009.

    So over a mere ten years, the extent dropped as much as it did over thirty years.

    I would like to know why, after all the warnings about the dangerous rate of Arctic sea ice loss during the satellite age, they have not made special notice of The Ice Being Lost THREE TIMES As Fast in the decade before. How do they explain the slow down in ice loss?

    Interesting and curious observation. A gap in the AGW hymn-sheet, everything is supposed to be accelerating catastrophically “worse than we thought”.

    (“Than we thought” is not saying much for some of these folks.)

  191. beng says:

    What I’d like to know is what is where is the research on the “new” open Arctic waters (like the Chukchi Sea)? Is there phytoplankton growth? Are whales migrating into & feeding in those recently opened areas? Are researchers purposely ignoring these aspects so as not to detect “good” effects?

  192. barry says:

    Bruce, how did I twist your words? I quoted you, replied to the point and made another, which I attributed to other people. It’s way too premature to say Arctic sea ice is “rebounding” or “stabilising” less than a year after the lowest minimum extent and thrity four years of decreasing sea ice. We’d need a few more years worth of growing ice to say the trend has changed with any degree of confidence.

  193. barry says:

    beng,

    http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=phytoplankton+ice+loss+chukchi+sea

    Always worth checking google scholar if you’re curious about what is being studied.

  194. Kevin K. says:

    I would like to speak with Dr. Viner about children not knowing what snow is. My two year old knows and the first one he knew was a record 8.5″ snowfall in OCTOBER. Our area averages a trace of snow in October. I also had him out in the snow on March 26, just a few days before Easter. My kid will see snow in May before he would forget what snow is.

    We don’t hear much about the arctic not melting this year but we are hearing plenty about a “heat wave” this week that may push the eastern US megalopolis UHI areas into the low 90s. Oh no! (Normal high is in the mid to upper 80s).

    Everyone may want to prepare themselves for the alarmist spin next March if there is a shallow minimum melt this September: “winter Arctic refreeze smallest since 2006″…there isn’t as much to refreeze if it didn’t melt in the first place!

  195. Caleb says:

    RE: Sasha says:
    August 19, 2013 at 7:23 am

    A very interesting comment, especially the part about the discomfiture of Greenpeace, however I’ll debate you on this statement:

    “The Arctic was last free of ice more than 700,000 years ago. There is nothing in any scientific research, reconstruction or paleoclimatic evidence to suggest the Arctic has been completely ice free at any point in this time….”

    I feel I’ve seen plenty of evidence to the contrary, including pictures in geologist’s studies showing beaches formed by ice-free waves on arctic shores. I’m sure other’s will point out other evidence, but one thing that fascinates me is the phenomenon of cross-polar-flow, which gives us our cruelest and most bitter blasts of arctic air, even as far south as here in New Hampshire.

    During the long arctic night air gets colder due to radiating away heat into the starry sky. The longer the air sits up there the colder it gets, however usually it is nudged out as a high pressure area. If it moves south it reaches sunlight and starts to warm and moderate, however if it moves the other way, from the Siberian arctic over the pole to Canada (or vice versa) it has far longer to radiate away heat, and can get colder than cold. That is how temperatures can plunge to the extreme levels of fifty to eighty below zero.

    However, if the Arctic Sea is unfrozen, rather than that air getting colder it gets warmer as it crosses, (at least at the start of winter, until “baby ice” forms.) A warmer, ice-free Arctic Ocean would create a new source of maritime air.

    I think this was the case when the Vikings settled Greenland and raised over 2000 cows and over 100,000 sheep and goats. Why? Because, during a cold winter here in New Hampshire one of the biggest battles is making sure my goats get enough water. It always freezes and you have to bash through the ice in buckets (or buy electronic gadgets to keep the water thawed.) The sheer amount of ice-bashing involved, to allow 100,000 sheep and goats to drink, would dull the toughest Viking’s ax and leave him exhausted. Therefore winters must have been considerably warmer, and the only way for it to be that much warmer would be to have an utterly transformed north wind, from a relatively ice-free Arctic ocean.

    I rest my case.

  196. RACookPE1978 says:

    Well, so much for Sereze’s much-hyped “arctic sea ice death spiral” of massive media attention and spin!

    Today, sea ice area (not “sea ice extents” for you fans of the Sea Ice Page graphs) is higher than 2012 (not surprising – that’s what we’re laughing about in this thread), but it is also high than 2011 (on this date.)

    Today’s 2013 sea ice area is also higher than 2010, 2009, 2008, or 2007 were on this date. That’s 6 year’s of “first year thinner ice” that have been re-frozen over and over again.

    Granted, I cannot use this year as a claim for anything but “the death spiral is disproven” but ….One thing at a time.

  197. taxed says:

    l see the air temps in Greenland are well below average.
    lf this lasts into the winter then l will dread the winter to come if a blocking high decides to sit over southern Greenland/lceland. This will draw this cold air down across the UK and Europe and could set us up for a other winter like1962/63.

  198. R. de Haan says:

    Endless recycling of old and debunked claims ABOUT THE ARCTIC MELT DOWN.
    No chance the Arctic will “just melt away”.
    This is just empty talk from certified morons and useful idiots like Professor Peter Wadhams and his colleagues.

    “The Maslowski Countdown to an ‘ice-free Arctic’ begins” provides a great header to make the subject look more interesting but the reality is that we are watching a Soap Box Derby where the competing car has squire wheels.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soap_Box_Derby

    It’s incredibly boring

    We will win the countdown and the whole argumentation takes off again when the subject is recycled for the onehundredandsixtysix’th time.

    Maybe we should look for the switch that stops the money flow that enables this laughable circus and ignore the BS (Bad Science) produced by a bunch of traitors.

  199. barry says:

    Sasha and Caleb,

    We know for sure that at least in the distant past, the Arctic was ice-free. Fossils from the age of the dinosaurs, 65 million years ago, indicate a temperate climate with ferns and other lush vegetation.

    Based on the paleoclimate record from ice and ocean cores, the last warm period in the Arctic peaked about 8,000 years ago, during the so-called Holocene Thermal Maximum. Some studies suggest that as recent as 5,500 years ago, the Arctic had less summertime sea ice than today. However, it is not clear that the Arctic was completely free of summertime sea ice during this time.

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/faq/#summer_ice

  200. barry says:

    (Forgot to add)

    The next earliest era when the Arctic was quite possibly free of summertime ice was 125,000 years ago, during the height of the last major interglacial period, known as the Eemian. Temperatures in the Arctic were higher than now and sea level was also 4 to 6 meters (13 to 20 feet) higher than it is today because the Greenland and Antarctic ice
    sheets had partly melted.

  201. Gail Combs says:

    Caleb says: @ August 19, 2013 at 9:28 am

    …..I think this was the case when the Vikings settled Greenland and raised over 2000 cows and over 100,000 sheep and goats. Why? Because, during a cold winter here in New Hampshire one of the biggest battles is making sure my goats get enough water. It always freezes and you have to bash through the ice in buckets (or buy electronic gadgets to keep the water thawed.) The sheer amount of ice-bashing involved, to allow 100,000 sheep and goats to drink, would dull the toughest Viking’s ax and leave him exhausted. Therefore winters must have been considerably warmer, and the only way for it to be that much warmer would be to have an utterly transformed north wind, from a relatively ice-free Arctic ocean.

    I rest my case.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    That brings back really bad memories of fighting the ice in water buckets.

    We used the yoke from a canoe and buckets to bring hot water to the animals when living near NH/MA border. Hubby, slipped and fell on the trip down the hill and almost froze to death. (Fall stunned him, luckily I was watching.) That was what convinced him to agree to moving south.

    The urbanites with their visions of Unicorns and Bambi have no idea of how brutal nature really is. Unfortunately 79% of the US population lives in ‘Urban’ areas and their only contact with nature is mowed lawns, landscaped trees and bushes, squirrels, birds and the occasional bunny wabbit.

  202. richard verney says:

    Philip Bradley says:
    August 19, 2013 at 3:05 am
    ///////////////////////
    Philip

    1. you misunderstand the point I make. Id not doubt that there is some positive feedback change resulting from a change in albedo (ie., less ice) but there is also a negative feedback response (ie., greater ocean cooling since the ice cap which acts like a sauspan lid is gone). I am observing that one usually only hears about the positive forcing and not also the corresponding negative feedback.

    2. I have postulated that if there is in fact any additional warming resulting from the albedo change this is effectively cancelled out by the additional cooling which results from the ocean being able to dissipate its heat more efficiently due to loss of the ice cap.

    3. The Tropical/equatorial ocean is the key to this planet’s climate. It is the energy in this portion of the globe that is important. The Arctic is a bit player by comparison.

    4. I may have mis-read the NASA diagram, but is not the correct position to consider how much energy is going into the region 23.5degS through to 23.5degN and compare this with how much energy is going into 60degN?

    5. Further to 4 above, the amount of energy going into 60N never at any time during the year exceeds that going into the equator, nor that going into 23.5deg N. For 3 months of the year (May to August) it marginally exceeds the amount of energy going into 23.5degS. However, when one takes the amount of energy going into the area of the globe bounded by the tropics (23.5N to 23.5S) this area at all times receives considerably more energy than the Arctic does at any time of the year.

  203. James at 48 says:

    Unless the curve does something drastically different than most years we are not going to see a low of 1M let alone 2M or really even 3M. Seems to be tracking 2009.

  204. milodonharlani says:

    If low extent is greater than 5.39 million sq. km. in 2009, then 2013 will be highest year since 2006 (5.92 M sq km), according to Meier’s data.

    http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/sotc/sea_ice.html

  205. dbstealey says:

    barry says:

    “Arctic sea Ice loss over the past 16-17 years…”

    I suggest keeping your hands in your pockets in order to avoid that incessant hand-waving.

    This is simply natural climate variability in action, and it is counteracted by even greater Antarctic ice gain.

    Much empirical evidence has been posted here showing that the current Arctic ice cover is entirely normal. But you insist on pointing to the natural Arctic ice fluctuation as something to be worried about.

    I suppose that is to be expected, since every other alarmist prediction has gone down in flames. Arctic ice is all you have left. What are you going to do when that prediction is proven to be nonsense? Invent a new scare?

  206. hunter says:

    Sevreal posters have pointed out that the assertion, “Not one AGW proposal, policy measure, or treaty has done anything of significance” is incorrect.
    I agree. The corrected assertion should be “Not one AGW proposal, policy measure, or treaty has done anything to ‘help’ anyone except those who have received money to implement the proposals, enforce the policy measures, or negotiate the treaties”.

  207. richardscourtney says:

    hunter:

    re your post at August 19, 2013 at 11:43 am.

    Seconded!

    Richard

  208. Donald K. Chilo says:

    We will see how this turns out. Exactly when it happens, nobody knows for sure but the ice has reached a critical point in the past few years where it is much thinner and is vulnerable to total break-up in the summer over the next decade given the present trend. The Arctic has gotten warmer for whatever reason. An ice-free Arctic has been extremely rare over the past few million years. Based on the complex solar and orbital cycles we should actually see cooling in the Arctic now, so what is troubling atmospheric scientists like myself is why are we seeing the opposite. The evidence is overwhelming that the Arctic has been on a warming trend. The question now, is why? Less ice in the Arctic does change the weather patterns.This author has observed much more looping and blocking patterns resulting in more unusual extreme weather as the polar vortex has been displaced further south. Maybe more heat flux through much less ice destabilizes the polar vortex over the ocean allowing the cold core low to favor the northern parts of the continents. This in turn, shifts the weather patterns far removed from the Arctic in a ripple effect to create more chaotic weather patterns. This manifests itself in anomalous weather events that are almost always extreme weather events of great intensity. These are usually very destructive and bad for humanity no matter what the cause, Little or no Arctic ice is a problem now, and into the future that deserves further investigation.

    If there is a better explanation based on scientific evidence,the dialog is welcome, otherwise refrain from personal political tantrums on this post as it does NOTHING to further the investigation of this phenomenon.

  209. Stephen Wilde says:

    Donald K. Chilo said:

    “Less ice in the Arctic does change the weather patterns.This author has observed much more looping and blocking patterns resulting in more unusual extreme weather”

    From about 1980 to 2000 the reducing Arctic was accompanied by less looping and blocking.

    From 2000 to date Arctic ice continued to decrease but more looping and blocking began.

    Around 2000 solar activity levels changed.

    There are now signs of Arctic ice stabilisation and possibly recovery.

  210. JJ says:

    Donald K. Chilo says:

    Based on the complex solar and orbital cycles we should actually see cooling in the Arctic now, so what is troubling atmospheric scientists like myself is why are we seeing the opposite. The evidence is overwhelming that the Arctic has been on a warming trend. The question now, is why?

    Do “atmospheric scientists” such as yourself actually have an expectation that “complex orbital and solar cycles” that have periodicity measured in tens of thousands of years are going to cause the far more complex terrestrial climate system to demonstrate monotonic matching behavior over timescales of a few decades? Really?

    If there is a better explanation …

    Your “just so” story is not an explanation. It is an assertion. An assertion of causes and effects, neither of which is demonstrated.

  211. milodonharlani says:

    Donald K. Chilo says:
    August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    There have been thousands of summers with Arctic sea ice extent much lower than today, just in the past 10,000 years.

    A warmer planet, including a warmer Arctic, is good for life here in general & humans in particular.

    Air temperature, whether driven by man-made CO2 or not, is not the main forcing on sea ice extent. Water conditions, storms, solar radiation & orbital mechanics are. A warmer Arctic should be less stormy, not more.

    As you’re no doubt aware, Arctic sea ice thickness fell in the ’80s & early ’90s compared to the ’70s, then stabilized, if not grew thereafter. Similar fluctuations were observed by subs in the ’50s & ’60s. Antarctic sea ice is not only growing in maximum extent but thickening. The East Antarctic Ice Sheet, reservoir of most of the ice on earth, quit shrinking 3000 years ago, as measured by the radioactivity of soil exposed at its margin.

    Arctic sea ice extent varies primarily with the PDO & AMO, only discovered since 1997. If air temperature were the main driver of sea ice, then the Antarctic would also be losing ice.

    CACCA is utterly anti-scientific garbage. In any case, less sea ice is not a bad thing, although the good times of a more navigable north are probably fading again.

  212. richardscourtney says:

    Donald K. Chilo:

    In your post at August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/18/sea-ice-news-volume-4-number-4-the-maslowski-countdown-to-an-ice-free-arctic-begins/#comment-1394712

    Maybe more heat flux through much less ice destabilizes the polar vortex over the ocean allowing the cold core low to favor the northern parts of the continents. This in turn, shifts the weather patterns far removed from the Arctic in a ripple effect to create more chaotic weather patterns. This manifests itself in anomalous weather events that are almost always extreme weather events of great intensity. These are usually very destructive and bad for humanity no matter what the cause, Little or no Arctic ice is a problem now, and into the future that deserves further investigation.

    “Maybe” it does, and “maybe” it doesn’t.

    Do you have any scientific evidence to support your conjecture which is – at present – unfounded scaremongering?

    Richard

  213. Auto says:

    Well, it’s worse than we thought.
    [Yes, some can still think!]

    I’ve consulted my settee – a sort of settle – and checked it’s well made.

    I therefore conclude that the Settle is scienced.

    Mod – do I need to add the [SARC - and how!] tag?

  214. milodonharlani says:

    Donald K. Chilo says:
    August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    We will see how this turns out. Exactly when it happens, nobody knows for sure but the ice has reached a critical point in the past few years where it is much thinner and is vulnerable to total break-up in the summer over the next decade given the present trend. The Arctic has gotten warmer for whatever reason. An ice-free Arctic has been extremely rare over the past few million years.
    —————————

    Actual scientific observations say otherwise:

    02 August 2011
    Large variations in Arctic sea ice
    Climate

    For the last 10,000 years, summer sea ice in the Arctic Ocean has been far from constant. For several thousand years, there was much less sea ice in the Arctic Ocean – probably less than half of current amounts. This is indicated by new findings by The Centre for Geogenetics at the University of Copenhagen. The results of the study will be published in the journal Science.

    http://news.ku.dk/all_news/2011/2010.8/arctic_sea_ice/

  215. Auto says:

    Ohhh, and the Ice-free Arctic Ocean.
    I’ve consulted the one of our three cats. who – named Trinidad – is obviously an Arctic specialist.
    She figures about 2120 [AD (or CE) - not a time PDT] then – the Arctic may become ice-free.
    Or may not.
    Goes with the territory. And cats do territory.

    I now have a problem: if Trinny [Trinidad, though lovely, is too formal for a sweet kitten-cat] gets a Cambridge professorship, she’ll get the income [otherwise it'd be species-ism].
    But I don’t think she gets a personal tax-free allowance . . . .

    I must look into the details of a Phony ['Tony'] B.Liar foundation.
    I’m sure paying tax is optional for a cat.

  216. The other Phil says:

    A lot of interesting points in the comments, but this (from Ian W) is not one of them He does not realize that as a result of the support for the failed AGW hypothesis people have died – as you state, in UK in March 2013 alone 5000 people died of cold in energy poverty. Nick does not care about this, if he can win the academic argument.
    No evidence was provided to demonstrate that Nick does not care about the deaths of others.

  217. Gail Combs says:

    Donald K. Chilo says:
    August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    We will see how this turns out. Exactly when it happens, nobody knows for sure but the ice has reached a critical point in the past few years where it is much thinner and is vulnerable to total break-up in the summer over the next decade given the present trend. The Arctic has gotten warmer for whatever reason. An ice-free Arctic has been extremely rare over the past few million years….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    OH what absolute BUPKUS go read my post HERE.

    The temperature has DECLINE not just this summer but by 1-3°C overall in the second half of the Holocene and glaciers on average have been growing at an accelerating rate over the last 600 to 800 years. That is not hand waving that is direct quotes from papers where they got off their duffs and MEASURED stuff.

  218. Caleb says:

    More buoys to watch, and nearly all show below freezing cold, and that the ice is not thinning much, and in some cases has thickened: http://imb.crrel.usace.army.mil/newdata.htm

    RE: Gail Combs says:
    August 19, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Ouch, but I guess it knocked some sense in his head. Many come to picturesque New Hampshire, charmed and enchanted by the scenery, but not all that many stay. Winters can be brutal, especially because the thaws turn all to slush which then freezes to rock hard and treacherously slippery ice. As you and your husband know.

    But at least you know about how hard it is to water livestock during a cold winter. I think you are right about needing to go outside and see the brutal side of nature. Some “authorities” on the Greenland Vikings like to sit in warm armchairs and pontificate about how they “failed to adapt.” What rubbish! They adapted for over four hundred years, and their final adaptation may well have been to move on to some other place.

  219. Steven Hill from Ky (the welfare state) says:

    It’s the sun by stupid is as stupid does. ;-)

  220. Gail Combs says:

    Caleb says:
    August 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm
    …. Winters can be brutal, especially because the thaws turn all to slush which then freezes to rock hard and treacherously slippery ice….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Oh, lord did you have to remind me of mud season and NH roads in the spring? At least the north sands/salts the roads. I grew up in northern New York in the 50′s before they did so and where you never saw the black top from October till March. That is the reason I bought chains when I moved to NC. We get snow occasionally and it becomes a real free for all. (And for those who wonder I have moved about 40 times and I never want to see a packing box again)

    Global warming sounds a lot better then the frozen north. Why else do retirees head south?

  221. Donald K. Chilo says:

    This certainly is quite the topic. Many people have varied opinions. We will have to wait and maybe see how this really plays out. In graduate school, back in the late 80s, I believed we had no control over climate and Arctic ice loss predictions, along with Global warming were myths, but now I am not so sure of that conclusion either. The more I’ve learned, the less I know for sure. I feel there is something going on and it may not be real good for future generations. This is why I am concerned and believe it does need more study. What we do now, sends a message into a future that we will not see.

  222. RobertInAz says:

    Last winter, I was continually fascinated by the Svalbard hot spot. The temperature anomaly was bright all winter. This summer we learn [there] are active volcanoes in the area. Apparently not expected. Has anyone done even the roughest calculation how much heat those volcanoes might have dumped into the Arctic? Might that explain the unexpectedly rapid sea ice decline? Might a recovery be, in part, tied to that activity dieing down?

  223. SAMURAI says:

    The Arctic just started gaining new ice in some areas from August 19 around 170 degrees West area.

    If you watch DMI’s interactive satellite data and toggle the switch between 8/18 and 8/19, one can clearly see the new ice starting to form.

    The ice extent north of Iceland is still losing a small amount of ice, but with the abnormally cold Arctic temps, it seems almost certain that the Arctic will start gaining ice much earlier than in past years

    DMI’s Arctic temperatures suddenly spiked up a 1.5 C over the last couple days, but if it returns to -2C by the end of this week, we should start seeing a net gain by the end of next week.

  224. SAMURAI says:

    OOPS… Here is the DMI interactive link:

    http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/satellite/index.uk.php

  225. barry says:

    dbstealy

    barry says:

    “Arctic sea Ice loss over the past 16-17 years…”

    This is simply natural climate variability in action, and it is counteracted by even greater Antarctic ice gain.

    You’ve posted April values for both hemispheres. Why April?

    September is the usual month for minimum Arctic ice, and March is usually the maximum for Antarctic. These are better choices for loss and gain comparisons.

    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Sep/N_09_plot.png
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Mar/S_03_plot.png

    Arctic sea ice loss is 14% per decade for minimum extent, Antarctic sea ice gain is 3.9% for March maximum. Arctic sea ice loss is 3 times greater than Antarctic gain. This is reflected in the global trend (annual sea ice area), which has declined over the last 34 years (CT data).

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

    [Y]ou insist on pointing to the natural Arctic ice fluctuation as something to be worried about.

    All my comments here have been about the data. Let’s play the ball, not the man.

  226. Caleb says:

    RE: SAMURAI,

    That is a cool link. (pun) It will be very valuable over the next three weeks.

    Interesting bits of Danish appear from time to time, as I play with the frame-forward and frame-backward buttons, but that just makes it all the more interesting.

    Thank you.

  227. Caleb says:

    RE: barry says:
    August 19, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    Arctic sea-ice loss maximum occurs at 80 degrees latitude, whilst Antarctic sea-ice gain maximum gain occurs at 60 degrees latitude.

    Think there might be a wee bit of difference in Albedo?

    Arctic sea-ice loss maximum occurs when the sun is low and sinking below the horizon. Antarctic sea-ice gain maximum occurs when the sun is high and getting higher.

    Think there might be a wee bit of difference in Albedo?

    Seeing your comparison in a different light? (pun)

    Hint: Apples and Oranges.

  228. barry says:

    Caleb, when you introduce albedo into the discussion between dbstealy and I, in which we disagree on relative gain/loss of sea ice in the two hemispheres, you aren’t even comparing fruit anymore. Apples and cucumbers.

    If you could explicitly respond to what we were talking about I would then be inclined to focus on your area of interest. But not until then. Conversations get nowhere if points are abandoned when someone chimes in with a different topic.

  229. David says:

    Barry saysw…”Arctic sea ice loss is 14% per decade for minimum extent, Antarctic sea ice gain is 3.9% for March maximum. Arctic sea ice loss is 3 times greater than Antarctic gain. This is reflected in the global trend (annual sea ice area), which has declined over the last 34 years (CT data).”

    Percentages can certainly be misleading. A 4 percent gain in Antarctic maximum equalls how many sq K? A 14 percent loss of arctic minimum equalls how many sq K?

  230. Ed, 'Mr' Jones says:

    QUESTION: At what point would it not be impolite to point out to Beckwith that, based on the Data and his predictions, he appears not to know very much about Arctic Climate and has been talking out of his Ass?

    I don’t want to ‘Jump the Gun’.

  231. barry says:

    David, Arctic and Antarctic sea ice data is available here.

    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/

    Over the satellite record Antarctic sea ice maximum has gained about 630,000 sq/km while Arctic sea ice minimum has declined by about 3,060,000 sq/km (extent values). By that metric, Arctic sea ice has declined nearly 5 times as much as Antarctic has gained. I prefer the more conservative percentage estimates.

    But don’t take my word for it. Run a linear regression with the data (to avoid emphasising interannual variability over the long-term trend) and see for yourself.

    Annual Antarctic maxima (March)
    Annual Arctic minima (September)

    Or you can look at annual sea ice (area) for both hemispheres, where the linear trend in global decline is about 2,000,000 sq/km over the satellite record. This is for total sea ice (daily records), not just maximum and minimum months.

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/timeseries.anom.1979-2008

  232. barry says:

    Dang, all this time I’ve been referring to March as Antarctic maximum when it is the minimum. Hangover from a different conversation elsewhere. I’ll clean that up now and apoligise for the confusion.

    Antarctic maximum is the same month (usually) as Arctic minimum – September. So the values for Antarctic maximum gain over the satellite period are:

    Total increase over satellite period determined by linear regression.

    500,000 sq/km

    Total increase in terms of percentage (extent):

    3.15%

    As these increases are a bit less than I mistakenly reported, it reinforces, rather than undermines the notion that Antarctic summertime gain is somehow equivalent to Arctic summertime loss.

  233. Nick Stokes says:

    barry says: August 19, 2013 at 6:04 pm
    dbstealy
    “You’ve posted April values for both hemispheres. Why April?”

    Yes, it’s a cherry pick. Each hemisphere trend is greatest in months near the minimum. Here are trends for each month of the year in %/decade. Feb-May, SH slightly outweighs NH. Otherwise…

               N       S
    Jan    -3.210   2.586
    Feb   -2.911  3.682
    Mar    -2.512  3.969
    Apr    -2.347  2.671
    May    -2.238  2.245
    Jun    -3.577  1.389
    Jul    -7.119  1.001
    Aug  -10.178  0.608
    Sep  -13.013  0.878
    Oct    -7.058  0.925
    Nov    -4.747  0.575
    Dec    -3.457  1.841

  234. Caleb said @ August 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Some “authorities” on the Greenland Vikings like to sit in warm armchairs and pontificate about how they “failed to adapt.” What rubbish! They adapted for over four hundred years, and their final adaptation may well have been to move on to some other place.

    Somehow I don’t think the archaeologists who managed to find all of 4 fishbones in Greenland Viking middens and many thousands in Inuit middens were armchair theorists. While it’s a certainty that many moved, we don’t know where to. It’s also a certainty that there would have been considerable pressure to leave wherever they were living before they came to sunny Greenland! Maybe they moved to America and were assimilated by the Amerindians.

    Sad to say, the Viking Greenlanders’ final adaptation was to die out as evidenced by their remains still frozen in the icy ground. Their stature declined over the few centuries of occupation and the last few were definitely malnourished. This was due not only to dietary preference and a deteriorating climate, but also the cessation of the walrus ivory trade once the African elephant ivory trade resumed. Interesting paper on midden analyses here:

    http://www.archeurope.com/_texts/00035.pdf

  235. dbstealey says:

    barry,

    Enough with the alarmist spin. Global ice cover is just about at its average for the entire satellite record. Actually, it’s slightly higher than average [the lower red line].

    Nothing either unusual or unprecedented is happening. All you are observing is natural climate variability. So stop it, please. You’re just scaring yourself. The rest of us know better.

  236. Patrick says:

    No need to worry about ice melt affecting sea levels, Australia’s big wet in 2010/2011 reversed it.

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/how-australias-big-wet-befuddled-scientists-20130820-2s8k5.html

  237. dbstealey says:

    When comparing the increase/decline charts, keep in mind that the Antarctic has about ten times more ice than the Arctic:

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.arctic.png
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.antarctic.png

    I really don’t see why the alarmist cult is so fixated on polar ice. It proves nothing except that there is natural variability at work. It has zero to do with the “carbon” scare.

    I suppose it gives the wild-eyed climate alarmists something to do. But it really has nothing to do with AGW. They lost that debate long ago. Now they’re only arguing to protect their precious egos. Sad. Admitting they have a problem is the first step on the road to recovery…

  238. dbstealey said @ August 20, 2013 at 12:54 am

    I really don’t see why the alarmist cult is so fixated on polar ice. It proves nothing except that there is natural variability at work. It has zero to do with the “carbon” scare.

    It’s historic; ever hear of polar amplification? It’s why they fixate on the Arctic — it kinda sorta follows the narrative. The Antarctic of course has been misbehaving from the get go by not warming at all. I recall one climastrologist, Chick Keller, telling John Daley that this was because of the “unusual weather” in the Antarctic.

    The Git can remember when “natural” meant “free from affectation” and a bloke could announce that he was gay without attracting unwanted stares from other blokes [sigh].

  239. Gail Combs says:

    The Pompous Git says: @ August 20, 2013 at 1:12 am

    ….The Git can remember when “natural” meant “free from affectation” and a bloke could announce that he was gay without attracting unwanted stares from other blokes [sigh].
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Yes and when the thoroughbred was a horse (a cross between an English mare and Arab stud so not even a purebred) and chemicals were everything except vacuum.

    I really hate the sloppyness in language much of it to do with Political Correctness. As if changing the name of something changes the thing. Must be part of the philosophical base from Hegel Thus, Hegel accepted as real only that which existed in the mind. Objective phenomena and events were of no consequence; only the conceptions of them possessed by human minds were real. Ideas, not objects, were the stuff of which the universe was made. The universe and all events therein existed and took place only in the mind, and any change was a change in ideas.

    Sure makes following the scientific method a wee bit difficult.

  240. richardscourtney says:

    Donald K. Chilo:

    I and several others responded to your post at August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/18/sea-ice-news-volume-4-number-4-the-maslowski-countdown-to-an-ice-free-arctic-begins/#comment-1394712

    My response at August 19, 2013 at 1:27 pm
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/18/sea-ice-news-volume-4-number-4-the-maslowski-countdown-to-an-ice-free-arctic-begins/#comment-1394777
    asked

    Do you have any scientific evidence to support your conjecture which is – at present – unfounded scaremongering?

    Your reply at August 19, 2013 at 4:59 pm
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/18/sea-ice-news-volume-4-number-4-the-maslowski-countdown-to-an-ice-free-arctic-begins/#comment-1394972
    says
    1.
    You have no scientific evidence to support your unfounded scaremongering.
    2.
    Your scaremongering is based on your “not being sure”.
    3.
    You claim the unfounded scare merits additional research.
    4.
    But your reply does not say – as your earlier post at August 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm did – that you are making a living from that research.

    Perhaps you would be more cogent in your appeal for funds if you were to explain your science instead of trying to scaremonger? Or do you think your science is so poor that – of itself – it does not merit funding?

    Richard

  241. Stephen Richards says:

    If there is still significant ice (1 million square kilometers or more as defined by Zwally, see below) in place then, we can consider that this claim by Maslowski in 2007 to be falsified:

    But there is no punishment for being wrong. No removal of government funding; No fine for being obviously stupid. They can say whatever they like, and they do, and suffer no penalty. That’s the crux of the matter.

  242. Caleb says:

    RE: The Pompous Git says:
    August 20, 2013 at 12:17 am

    Thanks for the link. You can have no idea how I relish such studies. It is like tossing meat to a hungry alligator.

    At some point a computer crash disappeared all my links to studies of Vikings, so I hold a lot of things in my skull that I need to re-verify.

    One interesting bit of trivia is that the graveyards of Viking Greenland contain two men for every one woman. This is not what you would expect from a culture where men sailed and could be lost at sea. However it is what you would expect if the culture was more than just an isolated outpost of farmers, and had many traders passed through.

    Another bit a of trivia involves the names of Viking trading vessels, “knarr.” They evolved over the years, and though we have no examples of such craft, I think it is significant that two ships had the distinction of being called a “Greenland-knarr” and also, (most evocative,) a “Vinland-knarr.” (Why would they name a ship Vinland-knarr if they never traded with Vinland?)

    Trade with Europe petered out due to expanding sea-ice, and also due to what boils down to power politics and greed on the part of Kings, Churches, and the Hanseatic League. No Greenland trader in his right mind would want to head east to trade, but that does not mean they wouldn’t want to head west. Considering how secretive traders could be, (and reluctant to pay tithes and taxes,) such trade could have existed without it being noted down in the king’s or church’s records.

    This is all wild surmising on my part, but there are a lot of things that don’t add up regarding that Greenland colony. It is largely a 400-year blank. I could go on, but I’ll return your kindness by sharing this link to a paper about a farm that a glacial stream in Greenland exposed. (Beyond doubt it was a miserable place to farm, after the first hundred years, which make trading a more logical reason for the people persisting there for another three hundred years.) http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/obj/s4/f2/dsk2/ftp04/mq22551.pdf

    Sorry for drifting so far off topic, however I never would have developed an interest in arctic sea ice if it wasn’t for my fascination for an amazing people.

  243. barry says:

    dbstealey,

    On any given day the total cover is below or above average, as you can see in the CT graph you posted. The long-term trend for global sea ice is about -2,000,000 sq/km. No spin, just statistics (linear regression).

    http://i1006.photobucket.com/albums/af185/barryschwarz/globaseaicetrend_zpsbd51f195.png

    Blue line is the trend up to 2000 and extended, and the red line is the smooth for the whole period.

    But do check for yourself. Here’s the the link to all the global data (area, daily).

    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/timeseries.anom.1979-2008

    I’d be curious to know if you got different results from mine.

  244. Rod Everson says:

    Maybe someone can explain something to me. The high temps in the Arctic summer recorded by DMI are always exceptionally consistent year to year. I’ve always thought that was because all the ice floating around kept the air temps from rising at the surface above a certain number (much like you’d expect to find a very low temp directly above the ice water in a tall glass, I think.)

    So, if I’m correct in that thinking, the DMI measure isn’t really telling much about the actual temps in the Arctic, since the ice constrains surface temps once they go above freezing. On the other hand, during the rest of the year, temps vary widely from the average and are probably a better reflection of the true state of Arctic temps.

    Put another way, when actual temps are well below freezing, they’re reflected accurately in the DMI, but if actual summer temps hit, say 10 deg C., the ice would constrain the temp reflected in the graph. (Over all years, you almost never see a temp even 3 to 4 deg C above the maximum summer average, for example, so clearly there’s a constraining influence from the ice when it comes to taking the DMI surface temp.)

    Now, if all the ice did melt some year, I would expect the DMI summer temp to become unconstrained and to finally shoot higher day by day from the long term summer average. Am I being clear what I’m saying, and would it be correct to think that?

    However, this year’s DMI graph, which never has temps even hitting the average, would imply that the actual situation in the Arctic was much colder this summer, or else, on the warm days, the DMI would have recorded the constrained average temp (or close to it.) Make sense? Just curious…

  245. Gail Combs says:

    Caleb says: @ August 20, 2013 at 6:27 am
    ….Another bit a of trivia involves the names of Viking trading vessels, “knarr.” They evolved over the years, and though we have no examples of such craft, I think it is significant that two ships had the distinction of being called a “Greenland-knarr” and also, (most evocative,) a “Vinland-knarr.” (Why would they name a ship Vinland-knarr if they never traded with Vinland?) …..
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Of course they traded/raided Vinland. All you have to do is look at a MAP and check out the distances. They certainly made it to Ellesmere Island.

    You can add this to your collection Notes on Norse Finds from the East Coast of Ellesmere Island, N.W.T.

    ….Artifacts of Norse origin have been located in several other High Arctic locations. Holtved (1944)found several Norse items, including a piece of woolen cloth and chain mail, Ruin Island, directly east of the Bache Peninsula region.

    In 1977, on the west coast of Ellesmere Island, Sutherland (n.d.) located a section of a small folding balance, and several bronze fragments have been found in Thule culture winter house ruins on Bathurst, Devon (McGhee, 1976) and Cornwallis Islands (McGhee, n.d.). In addition to these finds, Knuth (1952) identified an oak section on an urniuq frame in northeast Greenland, which later dated to 730 & 100 B.P. (K. 1449 uncorrected). A radiocarbon date (K. 1489, 680 k 100 B.P.) on the woolen cloth from Ruin Island (Knuth, pers. comm.) is remarkably close to the 704) k 50 B.P. date on the woolen cloth from Skraeling Island (Fig. 9).

    The obvious question is whether the Norse finds arrived on east coast of the Ellesmere Island as a result of 1) direct trade between the resident Inuit and Norse explorers, or 2) trade between Inuit groups along the west coast of Greenland and across Smith Sound. Based on the present evidence it seems possible that both events took place, although more supportive evidence must be obtained in order to confirm the first contention.

    One important element of the current research is a study of radiocarbon assessments processed on different materials within individual house structures.

    This work, under the direction of W. Blake Jr. of the Geological Survey of Canada, is providing us with a greater appreciation of the potential errors in age determination caused by the use of various datable materials. A better understanding of these factors is an essential ingredient in a discussion of the history of the Norse finds. Only a careful comparison between the C-14 determinations of the Norse items and the associated dwelling features will make it possible to determine a more exact time frame for this possible contact period. The age determinations of woolen cloth and oak pieces only indicate an approximate time of the initial shearing of wool and the cutting of an oak tree somewhere, poss’ ly far removed in time from the appearance of these items in the Smith

    …..Norse exploration and trading voyages along coast of west Greenland are the known to have taken place at ‘least as far north as 72″ latitude. Undoubtedly further investigation will extend the northern range of Norse voyagers, perhaps as far as the Smith Sound/Kane Basin region

    ADDENDUM
    The 1980 field season in the Bache Peninsula region produced additional items of probable Norse origin ificluding: boat rivets, small woven woolen bag,iron spike and knife blade, many iron pieces and a copper end blade.

    More on the Bache Peninsula finds The Greenland Vikings: Selected quotes from- The Last Viking: West by Northwest, by John N. Harris, M.A.(CMNS). (A bit more speculative but backed up with finds)

    ….It is no accident that the largest assemblage of boatroofed house foundations in the high north is concentrated around polynyas. Most are in the Smith Sound region, the remainder being adjacent to polynyas as far south and west as Devon, Little Cornwallis, Bathurst, and Somerset islands.

    One striking exception exists near the mouth of the Kuuk River on the west coast of Victoria Island. Slightly over one hundred feet long, this low-walled structure discovered by Dr. Robert McGhee, head of the scientific section of the Archaeological Survey of Canada, stands alone on a desolate stretch of stony beach. Of the right dimensions to have supported two vessels overturned end to end, it may have been built by farfarers seeking an unclaimed polynya or forced far to the west by adverse ice conditions. On the other hand, McGhee has pointed out that the Kuuk River leads to a glacial deposit of native copper known to have been exploited by the Inuit, which could have been a source of copper for valuta seekers too….

  246. Gail Combs says:

    Rod Everson says: @ August 20, 2013 at 7:18 am

    ….. Am I being clear what I’m saying, and would it be correct to think that?

    However, this year’s DMI graph, which never has temps even hitting the average, would imply that the actual situation in the Arctic was much colder this summer, or else, on the warm days, the DMI would have recorded the constrained average temp (or close to it.) Make sense? Just curious…
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Yes you are clear in what you are saying.

    When living near the Great lakes I noticed ‘The Lake Effect’ Rochester NY had much milder climate (and less snow) compared to the village I lived in that was quite a bit south. Ten degrees F colder and all that warm moist air blowing off the lakes turns to snow and dumped on us. link

    What you are probably seeing is a combination of the effect of the Ice and of the water temperature. I do not know what the SST in the Arctic Sea was this summer, but what the DMI graph seems to be indicating is either more ice or lower SST or both. The sea would influence the air temperature rather than the other way around.

  247. Pamela Gray says:

    Sea ice should not be statistically forced into a linear trend. It leads to spurious spending of tax dollars. Instead, an overlapping running mean should be used to interpret trends (IE Oct/Nov/Dec, Nov/Dec/Jan, Dec/Jan/Mar, etc). This average can then be used to compare year to year changes for each 3-month data point using a smoothed average or even simple line graph. Linear trend on weather pattern variations is a nutty statistic.

  248. Caleb says:

    RE: Gail Combs says:
    August 20, 2013 at 7:27 am

    Thanks. That’s one I remember. Chain mail is an odd thing to find up there. I also remember one of those gutsy field workers, laboring amidst swarms of mosquitoes at a 700-year-old “non-European” site, came across a single strand of thread. Because it contained wool, it was a wonderful trampoline for speculation.

    Of course such scientists have amazing self-control, and don’t allow imagination to run riot while writing a paper, but buy them a beer after the paper is done, and you can hear some amazing possibilities.

    However I am hijacking this thread. It is my turn to practice some self-control.

  249. barry says:

    Rod Everson,

    Yes, you have it pretty much right. DMI measure surface temps North from 80N, so the perennial sea ice in that area keeps the near-surface air temperature close to freezing. If the sea ice melts out further North of 80, you shouls see the DMI temps get warmer during summer. (Explained to me by one of the researchers there)

  250. barry says:

    That’s right, Pamela. A quadratic fit to Arctic September sea ice is a better fit than linear, for example.

  251. Rod Everson says:

    Thanks barry. So, what would that researcher say is implied by the failure of DMI temps to get even to the constrained average? That’s the main reason I raised the issue.

    What I’m getting at is that if temps taken at somewhat higher altitudes in the summer average, just as an example, 10 deg C but the DMI surface temps are constrained by the presence of the ice, and now the DMI temps can’t even make the average during most of the summer, could that imply a much larger discrepancy between this year’s actual higher-altitude temps and those of past years?

    Put another way, could the drop this year be far larger than the one to three deg C implied by looking just at the DMI chart?

    This is hard to put clearly, so I’ll also try this example also: Say the average annual temps 100 feet above the Arctic range from +6 deg C to +15 deg C. That is, 1987 might have averaged +6 deg C, and 1988 might have averaged +15 deg C, etc. In all years, no matter the average 100 feet above the surface, DMI surface temps (constrained by the presence of ice) reach a max of about 2 deg C. (275 deg K). In my example, this happens whether the higher altitude average temp is 6 or 15 deg C. The ice constrains the DMI temp to about 275 deg K.

    But this year they never reached the normal average. Does this imply that we never got even into the normal 6-15 deg C range at all? See what I mean? (Remember, I’m making up the numbers here, just to illustrate the concept.) So, again, is the drop this year at the somewhat higher altitudes far larger than just the 2-3 degrees implied by the DMI chart?

  252. milodonharlani says:

    Current Arctic sea ice extent for 2013 has crossed over 2008 & is gaining on the 2009 line. A minimum Arctic sea ice extent higher than 2009 this year means the highest low since 2006, & also possibly higher than 2005:

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

    http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/sotc/sea_ice.html

  253. barry says:

    So, again, is the drop this year at the somewhat higher altitudes far larger than just the 2-3 degrees implied by the DMI chart?

    Unfortunately we don’t have data for that altitude so far North. Satellite lower troposphere data has a ‘hole’ North of 82N. But there’s no reason to expect temperatures at higher altitudes to effect surface temperatures near the ice (the other way around, I would expect). it is the ice that is responsible for the near-0 temps. The slight differences year to year that give warmer or cooler temps than zero would more likely to be a result of winds transporting heat (or cool) to the far North Arctic.

    NSIDC has posted recently that lower Arctic temps usually accompany a low pressure system which has been observed for the past two months over the North Pole. there has also been a fe storms that have brought cloudiness to the North Pole. The sun isn’t getting much reach this year.

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/2013/08/

    Neven’s sea ice blog is full of weather data and the like for the Arctic. The latest post covers recdent weather conditions.

    http://neven1.typepad.com/blog/2013/08/asi-2013-update-7-cold-and-cloudy.html

  254. dbstealey says:

    The Pompous Git and Gail Combs,

    Thanks both for your interesting comments. It’s true that the Antarctic has been misbehaving. Very often of late the planet has not been doing what was expected of it.

    Where is that runaway global warming, anyway?

  255. Rod Everson says:

    “barry says:
    August 20, 2013 at 9:25 am
    Unfortunately we don’t have data for that altitude so far North. ”

    What I’m saying is that I think the DMI chart for this year implies that if we did have such temperature data, it would show significantly lower temps for this year’s summer months than in nearly all previous years. It seems to me that the chart tells us that, assuming that there isn’t a glitch in the model or the instruments this year. It says nothing of the magnitude of the difference; only that it’s likely to be significantly greater (at higher altitudes) than the 1-2 degree drop below normal temps on the DMI chart at sea surface.

  256. RACookPE1978 says:

    Barry:

    Do you have a globe on your desk? It will prevent much future confusion about Antarctic and arctic sea ice areas and extents. The globe will also show you information that may prevent you from making such a mistake as to compare areas of Antarctic sea ice with Arctic ice, and with the even worse error of trying to compare “percentage of Antarctic sea (a gain)” vs (percentage of total Arctic sea ice (an admitted loss).

    You fear the loss of Arctic sea ice in the summer – I don’t know why, but you (and in general, your attitude and Dr Chilo-Mann-Sereze-Hansen-Briffa-etc-etc-etc) are repeated endlessly in their political presentations to the public. But, this year, I will agree that Arctic sea ice loss is the only remaining scare-factor left in the CAGW arsenal. All other predictions, statements, and extrapolations have been shooting duds (droughts, floods, sea rise, sea acidification, tornadoes, hurricanes, air temperatures, ocean temperatures, etc), only Arctic sea ice loss continues to decline on an year-to-year basis.

    We have said this before, but it must be repeated: The Arctic sea ice is bounded by land, and covers the north pole down to a latitude which corresponds to the area of the sea ice, given an earth radius of 6371 km. The minimum Arctic sea ice area was down to 3,500,000 km2 in 2012. The Antarctic Sea Ice SURROUNDS the Antarctic continent and the Antarctic ice shelves. It’s maximum is 19,000,000 km2, surrounding an ice shelve total of 1,5000 Kkm2 and a ice-covered land area of 14,000 Kkm2.

    So let us take your “most extreme” case; your most frightening case to a CAGW theist: What if we lose 50% of the Arctic Sea Ice in 2012. In other words, let us pretend we lost 1,000,000 km2 of sea ice in mid-September, 2012 by suddenly dropping from 2,000,000 km2 to 1,000,000 km2 of sea ice. You pick the scenario – it doesn’t matter. That 1,000 Kkm2 of sea ice was gone last year, and you are tasked to find out how extra solar energy is going to be absorbed by the exposed Arctic Ocean. Hansen, Mann, Sereze, Briffa all fear this arctic death spiral, so, to them, it must be a real threat.

    But it is worse than you think: Later, to show how wrong you are, we will expand 1,000,000 of Antarctic sea ice, and see how frightening THAT really is. But that actual occurrence, that real fearful calculation of real sea ice expansion, will be later. Let’s see just how trivial a “pretend” loss of 50% of last year’s Arctic sea ice actually might be.

    At 1,000,000 sq km’s, (1,000 Kkm2 for convenience) this is essentially everything between 85 north latitude and the Pole. (My real calc’s all to the appropriate number of decimal places, but that detail is not appropriate for a short lesson.) In mid-September at the equinox, when sea ice actually will be at this “pretend” emergency minimum, when sea ice has the ONLY chance of the year to be “zero” – and ONLY if ALL of this sea ice were to melt out for some reason, the sun never rises more than 5 degrees above the horizon. Between 85 north latitude and the pole, the sun is less than 4 degrees above the horizon for 20 hours of the day, and is below the horizon for 12 hours of the day. The weighted average of this 1,000 Kkm2 of sea ice is 87.3 north latitude. At the equinox in September, the projected area of this 1,000,000 km2 of sea ice is only 44 square kilometers. That’s it. That’s all: 44 sq km of sea ice is available to the sun’s rays on the equinox.

    Now, earlier in the year, the sun IS higher in the sky. Earlier in the year, the polar sun IS shining for 24 hours of the day. But NEITHER happens where the Arctic sea ice “edge” is earlier in the year. When the polar sun is high in the sky, when the polar sun can be exposed to sea ice 24 hours of the day, the Arctic sea ice “edge” is way south off of the coast of Alaska, between the Bering Straits, Chukchi Sea, Iceland, and Siberia at 70 north latitude!

    2,000,000 km2 of Arctic sea ice corresponds to a cap between 83 north latitude and the pole. The sun in mid-September is now – at most, at noon, for one hour – 7 degrees above the horizon. At 2:00 pm, at 83 north latitude, when the temperature is at its highest for the day, the sun is only 6.48 degrees above the horizon, straining to get through an air mass of 8.3 (on a rare clear day). The total projected area into the sun’s rays of the 1,000,000 km2 of sea ice between 83 north latitude and 85 north latitude is …. (wait for it!) …. 122 sq km.

    3,000 Kkm2 of Arctic sea ice corresponds to a cap between 81 north latitude. At noon in mid-September, the sun is now rising higher – It is up to 9 degrees above the horizon. But your nightmare scenario has already melted that area – we are looking at the difference in energy absorbed when the sea ice drops from 2,000 Kkm2 to 1,000 Kkm2, right?

    So, we have suddenly “lost” 1,000,000 sq km of Arctic Sea Ice one night, but have only exposed 122 square kilometers of “new” ocean surface to the sun’s rays. And this assumes one of those rare clear days in September in the Arctic! (6 out of 7 days in July, August, and September it will be cloudy, and most of this “potential” solar energy is reflected by high and low clouds.)

    But it is worse than that.

  257. RACookPE1978 says:

    Barry: Let’s continue from the above, since WordPress has a size limit on messages.


    Remember that 8.269 “air mass” I so casually mentioned the sun’s rays need to penetrate to get down to the Arctic Ocean surface so they can be absorbed and heat the Arctic Ocean to start that “death spiral” you so greatly fear?

    “Conventional” climatology defines “air mass” as the ratio of an ideal atmosphere that the sun’s rays must penetrate to get down to a surface at a given latitude, compared to what those rays must penetrate at the equator. So, at 83 north latitude, your your nominal 1362 watt6s/meter^2 solar flux (hence just “watts”) at the top of the atmosphere must go through 8.269 atmospheres to reach those 122 sq kilometers of newly exposed Arctic sea surface.

    (To spare you some minor worries, you and I will not need to correct that top-of-atmosphere “solar constant” for the usual “day-of-year” correction of 3.3 percent. Both the spring and fall equinoxes fall very close to the “zero” points of the correction factor, so we will be able to simply use the “annual” value. Don’t try this when you look at the polar north at mid-summer! Then – in mid-June, the “solar constant” is 3.3 percent lower, nor at the mid-winter months in the Antarctic “summer” when the solar constant is 3.3 percent higher than your simplified September value. )

    Equations vary slightly depending on who you read, but measured values of radiation received in the Arctic show that
    Energy Absorbed (on a flat surface) = Global Radiation (hitting that surface) x (1 – surface albedo)
    Global Radiation (hitting a flat surface = Direct Radiation + Diffuse Radiation
    Direct Radiation (on a flat surface) = (Radiation TOA) x (0.85 (exp (air mass)) x (cos (latitude))
    Diffuse Radiation = a % (varies by solar elevation angle and atmosphere turbidity) x Direct Radiation

    So, figuring out how much direct radiation might be received on a flat surface at a given latitude after it penetrates those 8.3 Arctic atmospheres seems to be the key to your problem. (Remember, I already know it (the loss of Arctic Sea Ice) is not my problem, so it must be a CAGW problem since the CAGW Team are incessantly and increasingly worried about it, right?) Fortunately, we have already identified much of that messy cos(latitude) factor: that was how we figured out that only 122 sq km’s are exposed to the sun’s rays on a clear day out of 1,000,000 km’s of former sea ice.

    Well, to end the suspense,
    1362 watts/m^2 x 0.85 exp(8.269) x (cos 83) = 1362 x 0.26 x 0.121 = 355 watts/m^2 available direct solar energy x 0.121 = 43.6 watts/m^2. At those 43.6 watts arrive at only 6.48 degrees solar elevation angle.

    You will see a LOT of disagreement in the various papers about how much diffuse solar energy may be present in addition to this 355 watts direct energy. Please let me know exactly what ratio of diffuse to direct energy you want to use, and we will go look at what happens to that diffuse energy. Please don’t forget it, but you need to tell me who you believe is most correct.

  258. RACookPE1978 says:

    Now, this 43.6 watts/m^2 used to hit the Arctic sea ice yesterday – and was reflected!, but today – in your imaged problem – it will hit the newly exposed Arctic Ocean – and will be absorbed by “dark ocean waters”. So, identifying the difference in albedo between (bright) sea ice and (dark) open ocean seems to be the next step in your education (er, problem-solving process), right?

    Well, Ward Connelley’s Wikipedia, Al Gore – and most CAGW publicity kits! – claim “sea ice reflects 90% of the sun’s rays”, and “the ocean absorbs 90% of the sun’s rays.” (Most often, you will see people use 0.06 albedo for ocean water, which is almost right, but ONLY for diffuse radiation. For direct radiation at high solar elevation angles (or low solar zenith angles – a value often seen) 0.045 is actually more accurate at 70-90 degrees elevation angle )

    For the Arctic in September for direct radiation? Not even close by a factor of 10! Those claims are even further from the measured numbers in the Arctic when the sun is less than 10 degrees above the horizon in mid-September. Now, I have not personally been sitting in the Arctic measuring albedos of the summer sea ice, nor have I been on those ocean platforms and exposed Arctic sea ice leads when other researchers actually have spent months measuring albedos of open ocean seas – with waves, wind, and atmospheric turbidities all included! – so I will simply use their published, available on-line, neatly peer-reviewed existing measurements.

    At 3 knots wind speed, at 6 degrees solar elevation angle, Pegau and Paulson (2001) report an open ocean albedo of right at 0.38. Jin (2004, cited 71 times) reporting the measurements taken from the COVE platform, measured open ocean albedos as well, but they only went down to 10 degrees solar elevation. (Extrapolating to 6.5 degrees, their graphs predict only a 0.28 albedo for the open ocean at modest wind speeds.) Davies (1969) measuring energy reflected from Lake Ontario waves at low angles, reports higher albedos though at 6.5 solar elevation angle and clear skies: 0.55 at 10 degrees, 0.52 at 8 degrees, 0.44 at 9 degrees, 0.52 at 4 degrees. Payne (1972, cited by more than 471 times by the CAGW community) measured open ocean albedos from a Chesapeake Bay platform, plots measured clear sky albedos at 0.43 at 7 degrees, 0.38 at 9 degrees, and predicts 0.53 albedo at 4 degrees. (Clearly, there is some scatter at low angles!)

    Let’s use 0.38 open ocean albedo measured under clear skies with waves factored at 3-4 m/s wind speed at a solar elevation angle of 6.5 degrees, unless you can show otherwise with some other measurements.

    Hmmmn. Of those 43.6 watts/m^2 that hit those 78 sq km’s of newly exposed Arctic open ocean waters, only 27 watts/m^2 will be absorbed into the water. The rest, 16.5 watts, will be reflected off of the water surface and return to the open skies.

    But your much-feared imaged Arctic sea ice death spiral is even worse than that.

    We have shown that 27 “extra” watts seem to be absorbed into the afternoon in all of those sq km’s of newly-exposed ocean water at 14:00 in the afternoon of your “disaster”, right? This, after we “lost” 1,000,000 sq km’s of Arctic sea ice the night before, right?

    But, surely you must recall, those 1,000,000 sq km’s of sea ice were also exposed to the sun’s direct radiation yesterday. So, we must subtract whatever energy was absorbed into the (non-melted) sea ice yesterday from those “newly absorbed” 27 watts (into the ocean) added today, right?

    Well, one day (24 hours earlier in the solar year) will change the sun’s exposure at 2:00 in the afternoon, but I will be nice, and assume that one day’s difference won’t change the air mass and solar elevation angle at 2:00 o’clock very much. (Remind me not to do this on my “real” hour-by-hour energy change calculations, please.)

    So, what is the average measured albedo of melting sea ice in late summer in the high Arctic? Well, the most recent data are from Judith Curry’s measurements for the SHEBA project in 1998, and the most complete are what the University of Washington Applied Physics Laboratory translated from 41 years of data measured at 31 Russian ice stations drifting through the high Arctic between 1950 through 1991. Let’s go with the Russians’ 41 years of measured Arctic sea ice albedo for August-September, which – by the way – agrees with Curry anyway. If the sea ice is present, but before it melts completely, the “dirty” sea ice albedo in August-September is 0.71.
    So, yesterday, when those 43.5 watts/m^2 hit the sea ice, 12.6 watts/m^2 were absorbed by the sea ice surface, and 30 watts/m^2 were reflected. The difference in absorbed energy when you melt sea ice at 83 north?
    27 – 12.6, or 14.4 watts/m^2.

    Sounds like a big difference, right? But wait – it’s even worse than you think!
    See, those 14.4 watts/m^2 get absorbed by the Arctic Ocean -this is true! – but that is not the only change that takes place when you remove 1,000,000 sq km’s of sea ice.

    See, it IS even worse than you think!

    Remember those 1,000,000 sq km’s of sea ice that suddenly disappeared in your original problem statement?

    Well, they are still exposed – all 1,000,000 sq km’s.

    And every one of those newly exposed kilometers ARE now losing EXTRA heat to the Arctic environment by evaporation (about 113 watts/m^2) and by increased convection into the Arctic wind (open water is better than solid sea ice), and by increased long wave radiation into the 24 hours of Arctic “sky” (the open water at 2-4 degrees C (radiating at 275^4 K) loses more energy in that pesky T^4 Stefan-Boltzman equation than does the upper sea ice surface at -14 C (radiating into the same sky, but losing heat at 259^4 K). The emissivities of open water and of sea ice are just about the same.

    Oops. 50% of the Arctic Sea Ice disappeared overnight.

    And the Arctic is losing more energy than it did before.

  259. Phil. says:

    Bill Illis says:
    August 18, 2013 at 4:48 pm
    Ellesmere Island, Northern Greenland already covered in snow. Orange is ice or snow in this false color image. No ice export through the Nares Strait between Greenland and Ellesmere for the second year in a row. Today’s image.

    Afraid not Bill, check out recent MODIS images, it’s clear that there is export through the Nares Strait.

  260. RACookPE1978 says:

    Phil. says:
    August 20, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    Phil: Thank you for your earlier correction to a previous calculation: You are right: I had mis-used “incidence angle” as being synonymous with “elevation angle”. More properly, since optical physics has chosen to describe that as the angle between a surface perpendicular to the reflecting surface, not the reflecting surface itself. In mechanical design, the opposite is inferred: a glancing blow or force is often described by its incidence angle (up from the surface or point of impact).

  261. phlogiston says:

    The latest uptick in DMI temperature from prematurely subzero temps, could be a latent heat release from an onset of freezing.

  262. James at 48 says:

    To believe the thickness map, thickness in a number of areas doubled overnight. I seriously doubt that. I no longer trust the thickness map. It probably never got as low as claimed.

  263. RACookPE1978 says:

    Unless somebody wants to go all the way from Ellesmere Island south to Victoria Island, the Northwest Passage is already closed up this year though all of the most direct “shortcut” straits ….

    On the other hand, if current trends continue, the passage around Cape Horn or through the Straits of Magellan will be blocked by Antarctic Sea Ice within 9 years. 8<)

  264. barry says:

    RACookPE1978,

    You fear the loss of Arctic sea ice in the summer – I don’t know why, but you (and in general, your attitude

    You’re projecting. I haven’t discussed albedo, I do not “fear” Arctic sea ice loss. All I’ve done is report data and statistics for sea ice extent. Nothing else. (Could you quote me where I’ve displayed “attitude”?)

    I don’t have an emotional attitude about the future of global warming. I only care about facts.

    Arctic sea ice is declining in all months. Albedo changes will have an effect throughout the polar summer. There are many complex factors, including potential increased cloudiness off-setting albedo changes from ice loss. The impact may indeed be small. I’d be more inclined to research and discuss if the conversation was neutral, with no assumptions about the participants. Too much extraneous data.

  265. RACookPE1978 says:

    James at 48 says:
    August 20, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    To believe the thickness map, thickness in a number of areas doubled overnight. I seriously doubt that. I no longer trust the thickness map. It probably never got as low as claimed.

    It (the thickness) “might” have done that: The winds and ice drift directions are from the pole right towards the “thick” areas, where the winds have trapped the ice against the north coast of the many Canadian offshore islands. Blocked from going south through the narrow straits between the islands, the wind could have piled up ice offshore.

  266. RACookPE1978 says:

    barry says:
    August 20, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    You’re projecting. I haven’t discussed albedo, I do not “fear” Arctic sea ice loss. All I’ve done is report data and statistics for sea ice extent. Nothing else. … I only care about facts.

    Arctic sea ice is declining in all months. Albedo changes will have an effect throughout the polar summer. … The impact may indeed be small. I’d be more inclined to research and discuss if the conversation was neutral, with no assumptions about the participants. Too much extraneous data.

    I may be projecting, but remember, I am addressing many people’s attitude, fears, and concerns as I “talk” with them as well as you in this forum. Which tone do you want me to match when we discuss your “facts” and (most likely) your errors and assumptions and approximations and simplifications? If you prefer, we could agree to “talk past” each other … But I don’t recommend it. 8<)

    Simplification is not warranted. Worse, simplification, any more simplification than that I have already used above, is dead wrong and leads only to wrong "answers".

    You must address "albedo", just like solar radiation, on an hour-by-hour basis, at each specific latitude where the sea ice is or is not present. The albedo of sea ice and open ocean (under different sky conditions and different wind conditions) ARE NOT a constants over any period of time, nor over any given day-of-year because of the change in solar elevation angle every hour of every day.

    The decline in Arctic sea ice does occur in all months: I am pointing out the increased cooling that is calculated if you assume 50% of the Arctic sea ice is lost from its lowest point. after all, when else will it matter? At what time of year and at what latitude do you wish to assume how many sq km's of sea ice are replaced by open ocean?

    Why are you ignoring the much more important increased ice area around the Antarctic continent? Your "facts" show that increase is much more important than ANY equal decrease in the Arctic. But only if you know all of the facts, and don't ignore embarrassing ones that contradict your prejudged conclusions.

    Any to attempt to "average:" the 14,000,000 Arctic into a single "simple" condition is not my error, but yours. Further, it is only by such gross simplifications that the propaganda of catastrophic Arctic sea ice loss can be successful.

  267. milodonharlani says:

    RACookPE1978 says:
    August 20, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    The LIA lingered into the late 19th century in the SH.

    In “The Little Ice Age” Brian Fagan states that during the 1870s “Antarctic ice extended much farther north than in Captain Cook’s time a century earlier…Sailing ships traversing the Roaring Forties from Australia to Cape Horn regularly sighted enormous tabular icebergs, with some seen as far north as the mouth of the River Plate, just 35 degrees South latitude.”

  268. RACookPE1978 says:

    Shhhhh. Don’t encourage them! Stay! Sit! Lie down! Rollover! Bad berg! Bad!

    I want them there south icebergs to stay stuck right where they is now!

  269. barry says:

    RACookPE1978,

    Why are you ignoring the much more important increased ice area around the Antarctic continent?

    I’ve been discussing Antarctic and global sea ice, as well as Arctic.

    (for example – here, here and here)

    Your “facts” show that increase is much more important than ANY equal decrease in the Arctic.

    I don’t think this is self-evident. The rate of change (both hemispheres) is different for each month, and the greatest changes do not occur during the solstice months (June/December). Antarcitc sea ice lies at lower latitudes than Arctic, in general, where there is more sunlight for longer during the year. OTOH, sea ice decline has been greater in the Arctic than Antarctic increase for the period each pole receives sunlight. A full assessment would incoroporate these factors, and changes in cloudinesss, considering high and low-level clouds would also need to be included. I haven’t done much research on this.

    your prejudged conclusions

    don’t actually exist. But it seems you have some prejudged conclusions about what I think. I’ve only spoken about what I know (extent/area data and trends), and assume nothing about global albedo changes from changing global sea ice.

    Something I wonder about is the argument that exposed ocean waters means more heat escapes from the sea, providing a negative feedback to warming (in the Arctic, so the argument goes). If this is true, then I wonder if increased sea ice in the Antarctic has the opposite efect.

    Data on extent and area is simple. If you have cites for studies on relative albedo changes, I would be interested. I’ve just started trawling google scholar myself.

  270. Caleb says:

    Some years the ice flushes right out through Fram Strait, but this is not one of those years. The “North Pole Camera” has now crossed 84 degrees north latitude four times.

    http://sunriseswansong.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/the-big-chill-sea-ice-version/

  271. Caleb says:

    (Four times, if you include them bringing the buoy up there in April.)

  272. James at 48 says:

    RE: RACookPE1978 says: August 20, 2013 at 6:14 pm
    =============================================

    I was referring to the Eastern part of the basin, over by Russia.

  273. James at 48 says:

    So in addition to some Eastern Basin thicknesses appearing to double over night, there is now this. A few days ago, some of the US satellite extent maps suddenly depicted a huge hole off the coast of Russia, up north of Moscow. Literally overnight, that supposed 0% concentration area went to 40%. Really? Call me a skeptic.

  274. Gail Combs says:

    James at 48,
    DMI has a 30 day loop here: http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/satellite/index.uk.php (Click loop)

    It is interesting because it looks like the ice is starting to increase but that does not show on the graph: http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/charctic-interactive-sea-ice-graph/

    And since albedo was a subject of conversation this shows the change in Greenland Albedo for 2000 vs 2012
    http://nsidc.org/greenland-today/files/2000/06/Figure6-350×327.png

    From here: http://nsidc.org/greenland-today/

    The caption reads:

    Figure 6. These color maps show average summer (June, July, and August) albedo for Greenland in 2000 and 2012. Albedo dropped by as much as 0.3 in some areas. The color scale ranges from caramine red (albedo of 1.0) to purple (albedo of 0.0); in the graphics above, the approximate observed range is 0.85 to 0.05. Coastal area albedos are typically below 0.15 (e.g. the western coastal area), and fresh dry powder snow is >0.90 (southeastern ice sheet in the 2000 image). Data are derived from NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites using the Moderate Resolution Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensors.

  275. barry says:

    Gail, I clicked on ’30 days ago’ to get the longest loop, and it shows the sea ice declining over the month. I didn’t see much evidence of increase in the last few days, but it’s hard to tell with the sea ice ‘tongues’ in the narrower channels inland. I think it will turn out that August melt rate was about average. September minimum is probably going to end up being the 6th or 7th lowest on the record, and will probably make the long-term trend less steep for the first time in nearly a decade.

  276. dbstealey says:

    barry,

    What’s the big deal with these natural Arctic ice fluctuations? There is solid evidence that they happen regularly, going back to times when there were essentially zero human CO2 emissions.

    Isn’t it about time you just admitted that your last and final scare — Arctic ice — is a natural occurrence? Or are you such a True Believer that you need something to blame people for?

  277. Caleb says:

    RE: James at 48 says:
    August 21, 2013 at 10:04 am

    It is actually good to be skeptical about those satellite maps. The guys who devised them are more humble than you’d imagine, and are skeptical themselves about certain shortcomings their devises have. However they deserve a lot of credit, for, despite all the shortcomings, the devises are far better than what we had before, which was basically zero.

    Men like Hansen and Mann are not the slightest bit humble, and have stained science in general, and scientists they’ve worked with in particular, through actions which seemingly placed their self-esteem above Truth. Seemingly they would rather fudge data than appear to have judged wrongly. However just because they seemingly put their own egos ahead of data, facts, truth and science is not proof their associates are the same.

    I urge you not to paint with too broad a brush. Before you judge their associates as being the same, test them out.

    I have found that it is often possible, if you have the time to click here and click there on the satellite sites and arctic-ice sites, to come across actual places you can send emails to. Furthermore, when I send questions, I am not threatened with a lawsuit for daring to question some egotistical idiot, but rather have the pleasure of receiving a polite response.

    It turns out some of these guys (and gals) are thrilled to be asked questions. Most of the time they work in relative obscurity, dealing with dull columns of data and worrying about stuff most don’t worry about, (such as the “drift” of a satellite,) and their friends are worried they are such geeks and don’t care about important stuff, like the start of the football season. They are more than glad to meet a person who is also interested in geeky stuff, and if you ask questions they answer them as best they can.

    Or at least that is my experience. Furthermore, I feel such people are well aware we are facing a mystery and stand on a frontier. They are willing to admit the shortcomings of satellite data (and other data) because they are so excited we have data we didn’t have before. They exude an enthusiasm that is infectious, and that is completely different from the feeling you get from Hansen and Mann.

    In conclusion, yes, our data has flaws. For various reasons spots in the Arctic Sea may go, in the satellite view, from no ice to 40% ice in five minutes. But don’t let that make you bitter.

  278. Mervyn says:

    Why would anyone believe these models? These models are just junk science. Actually… forget the science … they’re just junk!

  279. richard verney says:

    RACookPE1978 says:
    August 20, 2013 at 1:43 pm
    ///////////////////////////////

    Very good to read your detailed comment.

    I made a similar point (but without the detail) at (richard verney says) August 19, 2013 at 2:06 am and (richard verney says) August 19, 2013 at 10:28 am above.

    I think that people when discussing Arctic ice loss often overlook the fact that in the Arctic, the incidence of sunlight is low so much is reflected off from the open water and thereby does not go to warm the Arctic ocean and to the extent that the change in Albedo results in an increase in the absorption of energy, this is more than offset by the ability of the open ocean to dissipate its heat to space; the ice cap having previously acted as a lid on a sauspan, and as it melts the lid comes off allowing much energy from the now open ocean to be lost to space thereby acting as a negative feedback and helping to restore the energy budget towards its central position.

    These are basic points, and if these basic points are not understood or not taken into account then there can be no prospect of getting a proper handle on what effect melting Arctic ice may have on the energy budget of planet Earth.

    I consider that the adverse effects of the loss of Arctic ice are overplayed, and I do not consider that we need be concerned about an ice free Arctic in summer.

  280. Bloke down the pub says:

    Anthony, shouldn’t your countdown widget have started counting in days by now?

    REPLY: Yes, but it has a mind of its own and I have no control over it. IIRC it has to get within about 3 weeks to start counting days – Anthony

  281. barry says:

    the ice cap having previously acted as a lid on a sauspan, and as it melts the lid comes off allowing much energy from the now open ocean to be lost to space thereby acting as a negative feedback and helping to restore the energy budget towards its central position.

    But it doesn’t radiate straight to space, it passes through the atmosphere, heating it on the way through.

    I think that people when discussing Arctic ice loss often overlook the fact that in the Arctic, the incidence of sunlight is low so much is reflected off from the open water and thereby does not go to warm the Arctic ocean and to the extent that the change in Albedo results in an increase in the absorption of energy, this is more than offset by the ability of the open ocean to dissipate its heat to space

    AFAIK, no one has cited any studies or done the claculations themselves to verify this opinion. If exposed Arctic waters “more than offset” albedo changes, why is the Arctic one of the fastest warming places on Earth – 3 times faster than the global average over the satellite period? Doesn’t appear to be much off-setting occuring.

    http://www.nsstc.uah.edu/public/msu/t2lt/uahncdc_lt_5.6.txt

    (decadal trends for global and North Pole at the bottom of the page – UAH data)

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