Friday Funny – Svalbard Revisited

Guest essay by David Archibald

A visit to the weather station at the airport is the highlight of any trip to Svalbard. Of course that weather station has been the subject of attention on WUWT here.

Above: The Svalbard weather station at the airport

Figure 1 below shows the closest point the public can now get to the Svalbard weather station, the gate at the airport:

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Figure 1: David Archibald, Professor Ole Humlum and Professor Jan-Erik Solheim at the closest point the public can get to the Svalbard Airport weather station which is 140 metres southeast of this point.

Professor Humlum was able to provide details of the siting problems particular to Arctic airport weather stations. For example, at one stage one of the airlines had a flight that got into Svalbard from Tromso on the Norwegian mainland in the late afternoon and then returned to Tromso at 5.00 am the following morning. To keep the aircraft warm overnight, the crew would leave the auxiliary power unit (APU) running. If the wind was blowing from the northwest, this would affect the temperature recorded by the weather station. This was an armed meteorological expedition as shown in Figure 2 following:

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Figure 2: Professor Humlum carrying the expedition’s Remington rifle

Why an armed expedition? The island of Svalbard is infested with “warmers” (/sarc – the rifle actually for polar bears) . Note that the rifle wasn’t left in the vehicle. Poor visibility from falling snow meant that one may not be aware of a threat until you are directly upon it.

Figure 3 following shows a warmer nesting site encountered by the expedition:

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Figure 3: Permafrost carbon dioxide injection project on Svalbard

This facility was founded on the peculiar notion that carbon dioxide could be stored under the permafrost layer. All the signage is in English no doubt because the Norwegian authorities are too embarrassed to have this inane project signposted in Norwegian. There is no source of carbon dioxide on Svalbard and any injected at the site would have to be transported from one thousand kilometres south on the Norwegian mainland.

As well as being an armed expedition, this was a sustainable expedition with provisioning including local produce of seal meat, whale meat and reindeer. Why go to Svalbard in the first place? It is quite apparent now that ground zero in climate change is not the coral reefs of the Maldives, the delta mouth islands of Bangladesh or anywhere else tropical and third world. It is here, hard up against the Arctic Circle. In fact Svalbard is going to get polar amplification really bad, as shown by Figure 4:

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Figure 4: Projected average summer, annual and winter temperatures for Svalbard over Solar Cycle 24 (from Solheim, Stordahl and Humlum, 2011, Solar activity and Svalbard temperatures)

As Figure 4 shows, the average winter temperature over Solar Cycle 24 will be 6.0ºC colder than that over Solar Cycle 23. The economic effects of climate change have already been felt on the Norwegian mainland. Figure 5 shows Norwegian wheat imports and Norway’s domestic attempts are growing wheat:

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Figure 5: Norwegian wheat imports and domestic production 1960 – 2012

What is apparent from Figure 5 is that domestic wheat production started replacing imports of the grain from the mid-1970s. From 2007, imports doubled as humid weather at harvest causing fungal infections of the crop and precluded most of it from being used for human consumption. Thus the end of the Modern Warm Period is sharply defined by Norwegian wheat statistics. Norway’s weather is driven by the sea temperature to its west, which also peaked in 2006 as shown by Figure 6:

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Figure 6: Ocean heat in the Atlantic Ocean (0-60 West, 30-65 North) from Climate4you.com

Figure 6 shows that the fall in temperature of the Atlantic Ocean to the west of Norway from the peak in 2006 has been just as fast as the rise from 1990. When will the cooling stop and at what level?

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117 thoughts on “Friday Funny – Svalbard Revisited

  1. Pretty dramatic drop from 1967 to 1973. What caused that and what caused the subsequent plateau and increase?

  2. Bear note to self:
    Note gun still in sheath, will take at least 10 seconds for Goretex covered meat snack to shed mittens, unshoulder rifle, unzip cover on rifle and remove same, and finally chamber,,,chomp chomp, growl, disembowel, , my goodness, I can’t eat all three of these in one sitting.

  3. Maybe the “missing heat” isn’t in the oceans? it’s in the stupid that hasn’t burned yet?

    Or maybe they’re transporting the CO2 (the magic molecule) there so the ice they said would melt but hasn’t might start to?

  4. yeah…according to Dr Otto Pettersson (successor to Arrhenius as professor)…quoted by Rachel Carson…in ‘The Living Sea’…the coal shipping season from the west Spitzbergen (Svalbard) ports went up from three months to seven months in 1919…quite dramatic decline in sea ice in the area…this was well before any significant anthropogenic rise in CO2 levels…there are also anecdotal accounts of low sea ice area in the twenties. (i have a picture of the cover of a publication from those days…but dont know how to show it here)…anyway this agrees well with your temperature graph…which has a sharp rise in 1919.

  5. “From 2007, imports doubled as humid weather at harvest causing fungal infections of the crop and precluded most of it from being used for human consumption. ”
    I think I saw a documentry once that suggested just such a fungus was responsible for the Witches of Salem episode. Some kind of hallucinigen in the fungus made the entire community become irrational and paranoid.

  6. Seriously David, some self-awareness is called for. The idiocy of your use of total wheat production in Norway as a proxy for climate was recently called out multiple times by multiple commenters in this thread.

    I would consider meditation. 20 minutes a day should do it.

  7. Jeez is right about the wisdom of including the wheat production graph. Willis Eschenbach, Keith DeHavelle, charles the moderator, and others pointed this out in the post on 10/5/2013. Wheat production can rise or fall for a variety of reasons; climate being only one of many possibilities. If you look at wheat yield (production per unit area), there is no correlation to any warming or cooling trends.

    http://www.factfish.com/statistic-country/norway/wheat,%20yield

    Also, it is not obvious from Figure 4 that average winter temperatures will be -6.0C for Solar Cycle 24 compared to Solar Cycle 23. A legend and/or annotations on the graph would go a long way to clarifying this. But the graph of North Atlantic ocean temperatures is nice. It actually does illustrate the points you’re attempting to make.

  8. David

    “There is no source of carbon dioxide on Svalbard”

    Didn’t you visit the coal power plant on Svalbard?

  9. It will be interesting to see how the Arctic region cools in response to the most rapid decline in solar activity in 8000 years. 6C colder in Svalbard in the winter, burr.

    Early indications of cooling will be more blue in the ocean regions. (Check)

    In advance of the cooling there will be a change in cosmic ray flux striking the earth. (Check)

    http://cosmicrays.oulu.fi/webform/query.cgi?startday=02&startmonth=09&startyear=1975&starttime=00%3A00&endday=16&endmonth=10&endyear=2013&endtime=00%3A00&resolution=1440&picture=on

    http://arxiv.org/abs/1112.3256

    Solar activity and Svalbard temperatures

  10. jeez :” The idiocy of your use of total wheat production in Norway as a proxy for climate was recently called out multiple times by multiple commenters in this thread.”

    Yes, this initial mistake was arguably innocent, repeating it makes it deliberate.
    The fact that both domestic and imports spiked in 2007 shows other factors that weather dominate this record.

    I’m no more interested in propagandist BS from the denial side than from the AGW side. Everyone shouting BS at each other from opppsing sides is why climate “debate” is just about finished. No one is interested the science at all at this stage.

    I’m noting an increase is this kind of content here at WUWT , which is a shame.

  11. I like David Archibald’s articles. They lack that muddy, obfuscated, narcissistic verbiage characteristic of the articles by modern “scientists” defending their turf and proving to their bosses that they deserve their salary.

    Not to mention amateurs of Al Gore’s BB-gun caliber. The Wall Street Journal recently published Gore’s article (no doubt, with editor’s tongue in cheek). There is not a single reference to any factual data in the whole article, promising riches to those who would invest in CO2 cap-and-trade scam. But the main feature of this article is that it is virtually unintelligible. It is so poorly written using such an ambiguous, viscous, indefinite language, that it feels as if it was written by some UN committee whose excretions are destined for the nearest garbage bin as soon as they are produced.

  12. From the Humlum paper:
    “Arctic temperature increase since 1980, until now is also expressed by the Svalbard record, although with an apparent delay of 5-­‐10 years.”

    “The correlation is always negative and has a maximum absolute value between 10 and 13 years lag.”

    Also Arctic Oscillation leads global CO2 by several years. Peak correlation was different lag during late 20th c. warming than it is during “plateau”.

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=259

    Rather than seeing the increase variability in the Arctic as some mysterious “polar amplification” perhaps we should conclude that it is the polar regions that are where “climate change” begins and atmospheric circulation then affects temperate latitudes.

  13. David,

    Friday funny, indeed.

    1. You’re exaggerating the siting problem. Warm air from an airplane or the local buildings surely has a totally insignificant impact on a thermometer many metres away in a windy place like this. The problem with the Svalbard airport record is the homogenisation. The record only goes back to 1975, and the rest has been reconstructed from other sites in Svalbard. About half of it from Longyearbyen, but even Longyearbyen has a different microclimate (the airport is exposed to Isfjorden which is often open even in winter, whereas Longyearbyen is exposed to the frequent eastern winds in the winter bringing cold air coming through the valley from the interior). Humlum has a private record from Longyearbyen very close to the old observing site providing some insight to the homogenisation problem. The overlap in official observations is only two years, but Humlum has 10+ years.

    2. The CO2 well is a technology experiment. And their dream is to inject the CO2 produced by the local power plant CO2 neutral. The energy is made from local coal. Incredibly expensive, of course.

    3. The temperature on Svalbard and the Arctic in general is mostly governed by a ~70y cycle which totally dwarfes the longer term 20th century warming. We’re likely heading for a slow 40y cooling period in the Arctic again, but not quite for the reasons that you suggest. I’m not saying that there is no link to the solar activity, but it’s weak compared to the cycle, just as the global warming signal. We don’t know a great deal about this cycle, though. It seems to be real, but it doesn’t seem clear to me whether the amplitude is constant.

    4. Wheat import/production in Norway as a temperature proxy is ridiculous. If you were looking at wheat yield, then you could get a kind of connection to the weather, but still it would not be a good temperature proxy. And why a proxy anyway, when we have excellent temperature records for that period?

  14. To clarify CO2 comment, that is rate of change of CO2 correlating with AO. There is an underlying increase in d/dt(CO2) which, like temperature, has also ‘plateaued’.

    The variation is about +/-1 on an average base of 1.5 ie a very significant proportion.

    Then we need to look at how CO2 varies with SST.

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=233

    SST correlates with zero lag, the correlation being better pre-2000 than during “plateau”.

    Thus SST seems to dominate earlier part and AO is dominant during temp hiatus.

    The three are clearly intimately related , as one would expect from fundamental physical laws, Henry, Fick etc.

    Current assumptions about human emissions are deliberately naive. With that degree of correlation on the inter-annual scale it is unreasonable to suggest that there is not a longer term causation between AO , SST and CO2.

    The Humlum paper is more evidence of the polar origin of much of the change.

  15. Steinar

    “And why a proxy anyway, when we have excellent temperature records for that period?”

    Right

    And how could a 0.5 C drop after 2005 not affect wheat production in Norway, with its marginal conditions for wheat?

  16. Perhaps this is why so many opaque foreign companies are spending billions buying up Australian farmland.

    http://www.smh.com.au/national/bitter-harvest-aussie-families-warn-of-foreign-giants-buying-up-the-farm-20130924-2uca4.html

    Funny thing to do, given the scientific consensus that climate change will shortly render Australian farmland into worthless desert. Almost like someone, somewhere is worried that the world is cooling, and is prepared to bet billions of dollars on their opinion.

  17. Greg says: November 1, 2013 at 11:52 pm No one is interested the science at all at this stage.
    ———————————————————
    I am certain lots of folks here ARE interested in the science – just as soon as we get some. OK, only slightly sarcastic. How about they add just 4 NEW equivalent temperature stations N, S, E, W of the airport away from asphalt, & other human constructs and test exactly how accurate the existing station is by running simultaneous measurements ? THAT would be real science, yielding variance data useful in generating comparative observations and some measure of error. But NO…..blinders on, pls

  18. lgl,
    “And how could a 0.5 C drop after 2005 not affect wheat production in Norway, with its marginal conditions for wheat?”

    If you decide to import rather than to import, production will of course be affected, so how do you know that a reduction was not a decision? Even if David used yield, production depends not only on temperature, but also a lot on precipitation, not too little and not too much and also preferrably at the right time.

  19. And how could a 0.5 C drop after 2005 not affect wheat production in Norway, with its marginal conditions for wheat?

    The choice to allocate acreage, (hetareage?) to specific crops is governed by economics, food fashions, energy and fertilizer costs, transportation costs, futures speculation, stuff I don’t know, and the weather/climate. Grain production in Norway is a combination of Wheat, Oats, Rye, and I think Millet. To try and use total production of just one of these grains, and not even production per hectare, as a proxy for just one variable out of all of the above, is beyond stupid.

    This was all discussed on the other thread. A drop in wheat in a given year is often just a choice to grow something else.
    Here are some links for you.
    Production per acre

    Background about grain production in Norway.

    Archibald consistently brings down the quality of WUWT and it is a bad thing.

    It is bad for the credibility of this site.
    It is bad for the credibility of the skeptic community.
    It is bad for the loss of trust it creates with those on the fence.
    It is bad for the loss of influence that the lack of credibility creates.

  20. RE: Steve R says:
    November 1, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    The program you remember likely was about ergot fungi in grain, and the bad reaction, called “ergotism,” that eating such grain causes. Because it messes up both circulation and nerves, it can cause poor people who eat bad flour to hallucinate, twitch, convulse, and get gangrene in their hands and feet. Some suggest it explains the odd phenomenon of “St Vitus Dance” in medieval societies, though there is a lot of debate about such a connection.

  21. Greg Goodman says:
    November 2, 2013 at 12:38 am

    Current assumptions about human emissions are deliberately naive.

    Human emissions are about twice the observed increase in the atmosphere and twice the year-by-year variability in CO2 rate of change. Thus it is far from naive to expect that humans are responsible for the observed increase and that nature (especially ocean temperatures) is responsible for the variability in increase rate (or more accurate: the variability in sink rate):

  22. The airport weather station topic is a constant sore spot for me. The weather instruments at airports have specific aeronautic purposes. In general they are unsuitable for climate research data(low hanging rotten fruit). If ‘climate science’ ever matures into a serious study I would imagine precise widely dispersed suitable instruments will be deployed and data archiving practices will be developed.

  23. @Mike Wryley says:
    November 1, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    “Bear note to self:
    Note gun still in sheath, will take at least 10 seconds for Goretex covered meat snack to shed mittens, unshoulder rifle, unzip cover on rifle and remove same, and finally chamber,,,chomp chomp, growl, disembowel, , my goodness, I can’t eat all three of these in one sitting.”

    LOL! Beat me to it. I’d have a revolver chambered in .454 Casull tucked in somewhere with quick access. The rifle is best… but that’s only if you spot the bear before the bear spots you.

  24. ” Thus it is far from naive to expect that humans are responsible for the observed increase ”

    If you implicitly mean ALL the increase, it is naive. There is a clear dependency on temperature and atmospheric pressure, This will affect the sink rate as is clearly demonstrated in 1998 in your graph.

  25. RE: Rob de Vos says:
    November 2, 2013 at 2:24 am

    That is an interesting link about temperatures at Svalbard.

    I am fairly certain the primary reason the harbors in western Svalbard were open in the late 1940′s and again more recently has to do with the warm AMO.

    Purely as an interested layman I’ve been fascinated by Arctic Sea ice, and its yearly melt and regrowth, for years. One thing that is obvious is the huge change in air temperature that comes about as soon as open water becomes ice-covered water. While I am sure on some occasions it is only a thin surface-layer of air that is warmed or chilled, the warming-effect of water and cooling-effect of ice is quite obvious, if you go to Anthony’s “Sea Ice Page” and compare maps of “ice extent” with maps of “2 meter air temperature.”

    Right now you can see this quite clearly off the northwest coast of Svalbard, where the isotherms usually show the open water’s air at minus five while the ice-pack’s air is around minus twenty.

    I also notice this during late September and early October along the coast of Siberia, when, for a while, the sea has not yet frozen, but the tundra can be blanketed by early snow and, because the days swiftly get so short and the sun is so low, the tundra starts generating subzero cold as the sea water generates above zero air. For a short while the “sea breeze” off the Arctic Ocean is a (relatively) “warm” wind, but as soon as the sea freezes over that stops.

    My layman’s conclusion is that coastal reporting stations in the arctic tend to record very local conditions and their record is highly dependent on whether sea ice is at the coast or not. I imagine they also can vary a lot if a pattern swings from a long period of on-shore winds to a period of off-shore winds. It seems unwise to “homogenize” such temperatures, and to use them to determine the temperature of areas that experience neither sea-breezes nor land-breezes.

  26. Mike Wryley already pointed out that the rifle was not shown as available for immediate use. That’s bad in fog, not a problem otherwise, as the bears are more likely to be spotted at distance. The great whites are stalkers and like to sneak up on their prey than to charge from afar. Native Arctic hunters report that the Polar Bears are a lot like men in their response to being shot. If in the fight already, they are difficult to take down, but if shot from a distance or when they are not expecting a fight, they will enter into a state of shock when shot and cease fighting until they die. I watched a film once with an Eskimo talking about hunting with rimfire .22 rifles and sometimes, they would bring their “really powerful” .250-3000 cal. rifle, which seems awfully light against a half ton of claws and teeth.

    Perhaps David Archibald could tell the rifle enthusiasts here on WUWT the caliber and model of that Remington carried by the expedition.

  27. Ferdi, the corollary of recognising the effect of temp on sink rate is that without human emissions there would also be out gassing. (Unless you also assume that SST is eternally constant without human life on earth.) The equilibrium atm CO2 level would be higher and oceans would out-gas to meet this level. What this relationship is has never been properly worked out. It is usually ignored entirely or assumed to be negligible.

    Projecting from de-glaciation is not a valid either and that’s about as close anyone ever got to assessing what’s happening now.

  28. “WebHubTelescope” had a fairly good attempt a couple of years ago on his ‘Oil conundrum’ but made a mistake in the maths. That should be followed up.

  29. RE: jeez says:
    November 2, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Please don’t take offence. Some of us enjoy David Archibald’s contributions.

    Don’t worry about imperfections lowering the quality of Anthony’s site. One wonderful thing about this site is that, if you make a mistake, you can rest assured it will be pointed out.

    Furthermore, I think we should be glad when people go out doors, and do the field work of checking up on the siting of thermometers. Personally, I don’t get out of town much, especially to Svalbard, so I can’t check that thermometer myself. Can you?

  30. Weather stations at airports are designed to give you information for flight movements and out of the airports . They were never intended to provide proof for a wider area , that as come about because you might as well us them because they exist . As such the ‘problems ‘ with their sitting never used to matter before the need for ‘settled science’ in this most unsettled of areas , weather prediction.

  31. H.R. says:
    November 2, 2013 at 2:53 am

    @Mike Wryley says:
    November 1, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    “Bear note to self:
    Note gun still in sheath, will take at least 10 seconds for Goretex covered meat snack to shed mittens, unshoulder rifle, unzip cover on rifle and remove same, and finally chamber,,,chomp chomp, growl, disembowel, , my goodness, I can’t eat all three of these in one sitting.”

    LOL! Beat me to it. I’d have a revolver chambered in .454 Casull tucked in somewhere with quick access. The rifle is best… but that’s only if you spot the bear before the bear spots you.
    ____________________
    Old Alaska hands are used to dealing with the Brown bears (Kodiaks and Grizzlies,) which unlike their White cousins, often require the most powerful of rifles to bring down with a margin of safety. Alaskans’ advice for using large caliber pistols against the Browns is to be sure and file off the front sight… it makes it easier on you when the bear shoves it up- well, you know.

    H.R. and Mike both make good points… that rifle isn’t going to help unless it’s ready and someone is willing and able to use it. Archibald obviously didn’t get et.

  32. “When will the cooling stop and at what level?”

    Next glacial maximum? That would be my guess here at the half-precession cycle old Holocene.

  33. Fig 6 If the summer temp change is 0.8°/100 yrs and the winter temp change is -0.1°/100 yrs and the annual temp change is +1.4°/100 yrs, what do spring and fall look like? Certainly >>1.4°/100 yrs or is something else going on here?

  34. RE: Alan Robertson says:
    November 2, 2013 at 3:12 am

    I’ve read the same thing: Polar bears are stealth hunters, and by the time you see the bear it is darn close and perhaps too late. However the one advantage humans have is that we don’t flop around on ice like seals and, while we can’t outrun a bear, we are rather nimble and can change direction faster than a bear can (providing we have good traction on our boots.) There is a great film somewhere of a man, not all that young or athletic, frustrating a bear by running around and around his jeep, first one way and then the other.

    I think the scientists who work out on the ice deserve a bit of respect. The greatest danger most of us face is a heavy rush-hour. Few of us face the prospect of being eaten, in our daily life.

    In the following link there are a couple of neat header pictures, regarding the placement of buoys and the “North Pole Camera.” One shows a mother bear with two cubs sniffing a buoy. Another shows two scientists dragging a sled holding a buoy, guarded by a third man who has a rifle and whose sole purpose for being there is to watch for bears.

    There is also a fourth man. He is the lifeguard, wearing a heavy, arctic-wet-suit. His sole purpose is to pluck scientists from the sub-zero salt water, if they fall in.

    At my age, I prefer watching from afar. Anyway, here’s the link:

    http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/

  35. Caleb says:
    November 2, 2013 at 3:48 am

    I think the scientists who work out on the ice deserve a bit of respect. The greatest danger most of us face is a heavy rush-hour. Few of us face the prospect of being eaten, in our daily life.

    In the following link there are a couple of neat header pictures, regarding the placement of buoys and the “North Pole Camera.” One shows a mother bear with two cubs sniffing a buoy. Another shows two scientists dragging a sled holding a buoy, guarded by a third man who has a rifle and whose sole purpose for being there is to watch for bears.

    There is also a fourth man. He is the lifeguard, wearing a heavy, arctic-wet-suit. His sole purpose is to pluck scientists from the sub-zero salt water, if they fall in.

    At my age, I prefer watching from afar. Anyway, here’s the link:

    http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/

    ________________________
    How very interesting, thanks for the link. I wonder about the lifeguard’s real usefulness, he may be there for moral support, above all. Unless that sled is carrying gear to quickly add a lot of heat to a freezing body, then a slip into that cold water could prove fatal.

  36. Ironically, it looks like they are planning to revive the old “risk to food supplies” saw: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/02/science/earth/science-panel-warns-of-risks-to-food-supply-from-climate-change.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20131102&_r=0
    Due to “manmade climate change”, they are predicting up to 2% reduction per decade in food supplies. Of course, this is from a leaked draft of a report not due to be released until March, so they have time yet to consider how dumb their claims really are.

  37. Caleb says:November 2, 2013 at 2:32 am
    I remember it as St. Augustine’s Fire, a book, describing rye ergot and its effects on Medieval villages. It has lysergic acid, and was used by Hoffman for the first LSD synthesis.

  38. RE: Steve Keohane says:
    November 2, 2013 at 4:30 am

    That would explain the hallucinations. Poor peasants. They likely didn’t know what hit them. And they likely had a choice between using moldy flour, or starving.

  39. Steinar
    “how do you know that a reduction was not a decision?”
    jeez
    “A drop in wheat in a given year is often just a choice to grow something else.”

    Yes it is a decision/choise. When the farmers find frozen ground in april they know wheat is not the thing that year.

  40. Greg

    “So you are saying there is no correlation between 1972 and 2000 between SST and dCO2 ?”

    No, I’m saying d/dt(CO2) does not correlate with AO (like your graph confirms, 1993 to 2007 is not enough). d/dt(CO2) correlates with ENSO (except after large volcanic eruptions perhaps).

  41. Steinar says:
    …their dream is to inject the CO2 produced by the local power plant (making it) CO2 neutral. The energy is made from local coal. Incredibly expensive, of course.

    Coal swamps in the Arctic Circle. Now that’s climate change!

  42. Several good comments about the value of the cased firearm for “bear management” (ie, none). All bears are stalkers if the terrain dictates it (in fact, most all predatory omnivores are stalkers at some point in the hunt). People regularly underestimate the ability of big ol’ bears to be short term sprinters. If the bear is within 20 yards and you haven’t seen him (entirely possible), your odds are very slim of getting a loaded gun shouldered and on him accurately in a feeding charge. In fog, you’d be lucky to even be able to get a swat at him with the cased gun. And the idea of being able to run circles around the bear “because you are more agile” is laughable. Sure, stick a big object between you and the bear, andf the bear will play for a bit, then decide the energy cost is not worth it and go off to try something else, or just back a few dozen yards away and wait for you. You can be within feet of a bear and not know it. Trying to run circles around the bear would be short and ugly. Paw and claw meet leg, dinner is served.
    Calibre is not as important as shot placement at a distance – that’s why the Inuit can do well out on the ice and tundra with small caliber (high velocity).
    The cased gun, I suspect, has more to do with either local ordinances or “not getting my gun wet” is more important than defence.
    The purpose of a large calibre handgun in bear defence is to put yourself out of misery quickly, rather than the bear… /not really sarc.

  43. Greg Goodman says:
    November 2, 2013 at 3:14 am

    Ferdi, the corollary of recognising the effect of temp on sink rate is that without human emissions there would also be out gassing. The equilibrium atm CO2 level would be higher and oceans would out-gas to meet this level.

    Agreed, but as the Vostok (and recently Dome C) data show over the past 420 (800) kyears, the new equilibrium will shift with not more than 8 ppmv/K temperature difference.
    The increase in pCO2 in the oceans according to Henry’s law is near-linear (an error of 2% over 1 K) for about 16 microatm/K. That gives an increase of outgassing and a decrease in uptake. A similar increase of pCO2 in the atmosphere will bring that again in equilibrium. That the real equilibrium is lower, probably is a matter of vegetation which sink rate in general increases with temperature.

    Thus of the 100 ppmv increase in the atmosphere since about 1850 (70 ppmv since Mauna Loa started), maximum 16 ppmv (Henry’s law) or 8 ppmv (Vostok) is from the 1 K temperature increase since the LIA…

  44. Regarding the sheathed rifle, I think you’d be surprised at how fast that can become operational given sufficient motivation. Can’t say I know how fast bears can run on a straightaway, but they aren’t great at cornering.

  45. Nice job.

    You had lots of equipment, but where was the (more than 4x) zoom lens on the camera?

    That Stevenson screen seems to be listing to the port side. WUWT?

  46. The Stevenson screen seems to be ideally suited to give the micro-climate for the runway, which is good and necessary for the pilots to do their calculations, but to give the climate apart from the runway there must be another screen somewhere. No? We may have a problem here.

  47. I went back and had another closer look at the “Remington” picture. The cased firearm is not the big deal it first seems. There is 100yds+ visibility on what appears to be flat terrain. Bears are “warm white” in colour (and usually a bit dirty), so they do stand out somewhat on flat terrain in cool light. The case is an end flap design with a single buckle, not a zipper. If its a freezing fog, you want the gun cased unless you need it. Frozen actions and magazines are not what you want in a Hail Mary situation. Change the buckle to, or add velcro to the flap, and leave the buckle undone and your kit is good to go. Personally, I’d carry it butt up over my shooting shoulder for faster access but that’s a personal choice.

  48. As Figure 4 shows, the average winter temperature over Solar Cycle 24 will be 6.0ºC colder than that over Solar Cycle 23.

    Please, Fig 4 shows nothing of the sort, if anything it shows a rising trend, the authors have added their guess onto the graph which is 6ºC colder than the present average, that’s all.

    In fact when I went to that paper the graph looks different and the extra points aren’t there! How about an actual link to the paper/figure because something’s not right!

  49. Sure, stick a big object between you and the bear, andf the bear will play for a bit,

    That’s why you should avoid graduate field work where being “slow afoot and a bit fleshy” is a requirement.

    (I thought the purpose of an lined gun case was to deal with condensation freezing on the mechanism due to moving in and out of heated structures. More adsorption then insulation.)

  50. Coming out of heated structure not a problem, going in, problem. A case keeps moist warmer inside air off a cold gun, for a while at least. Outside, if the fog is not an ice fog and temp is below freezing, then you have the possibility of fog freezing on the cold metal parts of the gun. Case keeps the fog moisture away from the cold gun.

  51. A) The OHC graph is interesting.
    B) The Svalgard weather station (like so many airport weather stations, including the one at Raleigh-Durham airport near where I live) is poorly sited. Airports in general are probably not the best places to locate a weather station used in the evaluation of GAST, however much they need them right next to the runways for direct, practical purposes, although one can sometimes find a place on airport properties that isn’t too bad.
    C) The rest of the article is pretty pointless.
    D) Re: the discussion, it is most unlikely that 2007 was “the turning point”, if in fact something has “turned”. There is some reason to think that the climate “turned” with the ENSO event at the end of the 20th century in the sense that it continued into the negative phase of a longstanding, small, climate oscillation with a period of somewhere between 50 and 70 years, but that oscillation is around an even longer term gentle warming trend. Perhaps the numerology of curve fitting without a well-defined causal mechanism has short-run predictive power, but in the long run it almost certainly doesn’t as this oscillation is not obvious or apparent in the longer term records, just as the warming trend of the last 160+ years isn’t obvious or apparent in the longer term records.

    Try to understand that just as “warmists” cannot predict, hindcast, or even explain in heuristic terms the large scale climate variability of the last N>500 years (for pretty much any value of N), neither can “deniers”. Asserting that a turning point has or hasn’t occurred, making assertions about what the climate will or won’t do on the basis of an empirically unproven and weakly supported argument, are not useful contributions to the general climate debate. Rather let the data speak for itself as it emerges. There are many ups and downs even in the OHC graph above. We can’t explain any of them in anything like precise detail given past data and any sort of physical argument, so we cannot meaningfully predict the future course of this graph. Perhaps it will keep coming down. Perhaps not.

    rgb

  52. @Paul Coppin says:
    November 2, 2013 at 5:43 am

    “[...] The purpose of a large calibre handgun in bear defence is to put yourself out of misery quickly, rather than the bear… /not really sarc.”
    ===========================================
    Perhaps you missed what I wrote: “The rifle is best… but that’s only if you spot the bear before the bear spots you.”

    The large caliber handgun is second choice when it’s too late to get the rifle. Just be sure you’re not wearing mittens in either case ;o)

    Since jeez pointed out early on in this thread that the wheat import/production argument has been long dead, buried, and the last shovel of earth packed down firmly, you might want to check this out.

    http://kho.unis.no/doc/Polar_bears_Svalbard.pdf

  53. “Professor Humlum was able to provide details of the siting problems particular to Arctic airport weather stations. …….. To keep the aircraft warm overnight, the crew would leave the auxiliary power unit (APU) running. If the wind was blowing from the northwest, this would affect the temperature recorded by the weather station.”
    Evidence? Data? An APU on the type of planes that visit Svalbard are up on the end of the fuselage. This puts them at least twice as high as this weather station, or any weather station, and it is absolutely unlikely that the hot air coming out of these APUs can avoid being dispersed and can be made to cross the many meters of the apron and then come down to hit the weather station! That is absurd to think this is possible. I am repeating what others have said, but there is no problem with the siting of this weather station, as it has to be accurate for the purpose of aircraft performance calculations. It is NOT sited there to collect global climate data.

    Out of interest I found this:

    http://www.instanes.no/?q=node/31

    Svalbard airport runway. Performance during a climate warming scenario.

    “ABSTRACT: Svalbard airport runway (N78°14’, E15°30’) is constructed on continuous permafrost near the main settlement in the Svalbard archipelago, Longyearbyen. Since its completion in 1975, the runway has experienced pavement unevenness mainly caused by thaw subsidence (and consequent frost heave) of the ice-rich soil layers in the embankment. A major reconstruction of the runway was carried out in 1989, including insulation of the most affected areas. However, the reconstruction has only been partly successful and the runway is subjected to constant re-pavement with high maintenance costs. A new reconstruction is planned for 2005/2006 to improve the runway. The arctic region is expected to experience a mean annual temperature increase of between +4 °C to +7 °C during the next century and this may have a substantial impact for structures on permafrost. In order to evaluate the thermal performance of the runway under a climate change scenario, a final element model has been used to evaluate the thermal changes in the ground due to climate change.”

    It appears quite obvious from this article that the runway tarmac has caused the underlying permafrost to melt and yet seems to completely miss that point and return to the main AGW meme about climate change causing perma frost to melt.

  54. Paul Coppin says:
    November 2, 2013 at 5:43 am

    “Calibre is not as important as shot placement at a distance – that’s why the Inuit can do well out on the ice and tundra with small caliber (high velocity).”
    _______________________________
    Hey Paul. That’s great commentary about guns and bears.
    “… shot placement at distance…” No lie. Shot placement is always key, but if that bear’s close enough to get to you before his system shuts down… I’d personally prefer a rifle with a little thicker bullet- like a .338 Winchester- or bigger. The Inuit are likely tuned in enough that they won’t let a bear get too close before they act.

  55. There is no source of carbon dioxide on Svalbard

    Not true, there is a coal-fired powerplant at Longyearbyen. Of course it is only coal-fired in order to create a market for the last coal-mine in the area.

    The idiocy of your use of total wheat production in Norway as a proxy for climate was recently called out multiple times by multiple commenters in this thread.

    Actually it isn’t. Southern Norway is at the very edge of the area where wheat can be grown. It was hardly grown at all before “the Modern Warm Period” c. 1975 AD, and even a very slight climatic deterioration will put a stop to it.

  56. Paul Coppin says:

    “All bears are stalkers if the terrain dictates it”

    Not polar bears. Actually they hardly hunt at all during the summer season, though they will opportunistically take any food that presents itself and is easy to catch (e. g. garbage cans). If they did hunt on land Svalbard wouldn’t have those peculiar, slow “dachshund reindeer”. Also they are utterly unafraid of humans and will usually approach quite openly. Stalking isn’t really that easy in the very open landscape in Svalbard in any case (no vegetation taller than a centimetre or two, and very little cover of any kind).
    Actually You carry a rifle on Svalbard mostly in order to be able to scare off Polar Bears by the bang, As a matter of fact if You use it to kill a bear you had better be able to prove that you had taken all reasonable precautions, and was directly threatened by an attacking bear, or You will be in big trouble with the authorities. If You are a Tourist Guide you might have Your license revoked, since you are not supposed to get yourself into a situation where you have to use the gun.

    All the above is based on field experience in Svalbard.

  57. @Alan I’m not disagreeing. In talking about the Inuit, we’re apples and oranges a bit. The Inuit use what they have, and get good with it, because they need to to survive. Financially well off Inuit hunters have nice guns too :) There’s no question the closer the bear on a charge the heavier the shock transfer you need to buy you time.
    @H.R. Not disagreeing with you either (well maybe a little bit:) A large calibre handgun is rarely considered an adequate second choice with big bears in a close encounter, but absent a rifle and the time to use it, it’s better than a stick :). After the rifle, then your best second option may be to put distance between you and the bear – up a tree, up a ridge, behind some heavy trees, then bring out the hand cannon. Of course on open tundra, you have fewer options, and given the accuracy of handguns, especially in an adrenalin rush, doesn’t make them an especially comfortable option. Beyond that, there really are only a few handguns up the task – the Casull being one. But it, and similar handarms are big heavy guns to carry around. Certainly, leave the 9mm and .45ACPs at home. With them, all you’ll do is give the bear a reason to finish what he started. :) I guess we should work back to the topic…:)

  58. th Hey Paul. That’s great commentary about guns and bears.
    “… shot placement at distance…” No lie. Shot placement is always key, but if that bear’s close enough to get to you before his system shuts down… I’d personally prefer a rifle with a little thicker bullet- like a .338 Winchester- or bigger. The Inuit are likely tuned in enough that they won’t let a bear get too close before they act.

    There’s a lovely description in Jim Corbett’s books about hunting man-eating tigers in colonial India of an instance where he was armed with a comparatively light hunting rifle (but still, a real hunting rifle) and by chance found himself directly in the path of the tiger he was hunting as it came, unawares, up a hillside. He positioned himself in prone position and shot the tiger just under an eye as its head emerged over the rim of the ridge in front of him at point blank range. He then sat, frozen, while the tiger proceeded to roar and tear up every bit of the shrubbery around him for some twenty minutes without quite finding him (in plain sight). Corbett found bloody tiger brains and a piece of skull — his bullet passed directly through the tiger’s brain.

    Some months later, he finally managed to shoot this particular animal (with a heavier rifle) and discovered that the tiger’s skull was actually healing. A more perfect placement than a point-blank head shot is difficult to imagine, but large animals often have a startling vitality and can sometimes live and move for minutes and run for hundreds of meters after being shot in the heart even with a large caliber bullet. I’ve shot deer perfectly through the heart with a 12 gauge deer slug (some 2-3 times the mass of a typical 30-06 bullet, diameter approximately 3/4 inch) — at comparatively close range, only to watch the deer I just shot run for a quarter mile over a minute before dropping. Large bears — and a polar bear or grizzly bear are very large bears — could close the distance to you and tear you apart three times over before dropping, even if shot through the heart. There are numerous stories out there of people who were treed by grizzly bears and armed with a .45 caliber handgun who shot the bear repeatedly at point blank range as the bear climbed the tree after them to try to tear them apart.

    So sure, you can go polar bear hunting with a .22 rifle, and if you are a near-perfect shot, cool under fire, and manage to put enough bullets through the bear’s brain (or just get lucky shooting it elsewhere) you might even survive. Personally, I’d rather go skydiving, bungy-jumping, free-swimming with great white sharks, or work as a crash test dummy — your chances of survival would likely be higher (although you might well SCARE OFF a bear by firing the rifle NEAR the bear and not actually hurting it). If I were to hunt a polar bear, a 30-06 with a 220 grain soft-nosed bullet would be the SMALLEST gun I would consider and I’d take great comfort in using e.g. a 375 H&H magnum:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.375_Holland_%26_Holland_Magnum

    with a nice, big 300 grain silvertip bullet. This is a rifle that one could actually use for elephant or rhino hunting (NOT as a first choice, still too light) but as the article says:

    “African game guides, professional hunters, and dangerous game cullers have repeatedly voted the .375 H&H as their clear preference for an all-round caliber if they could only have one rifle. A similar preference has been expressed by Alaskan game guides for brown bear and polar bear country.”

    With a 375, there is a pretty good chance of putting down a charging bear with one shot. You probably won’t have time for a second one. And it won’t do you the slightest bit of good to carry your rifle with you into the field in its case, BTW — it would need to be loaded, shell in the chamber (on safety) and handy enough to be able to bring it to bear (so to speak) within the 10 or 20 seconds you are likely to have if the bear decides you are prey or a threat when you walk up on it unawares. What you do about mittens vs gloves, freezing fingers sticking to subzero triggers, brittleness, I have no idea. My idea of a good time isn’t to shoot bears (or do anything else) under seriously cold, snowy conditions.

    rgb

  59. @tty You’ve misinterpreted the quote (and I could have elaborated more). I referred to bears as “predatory omnivores”, because that’s what they are. Bears are not obligate carnivores. It doesn’t mean that stalking is the only way they feed; it simply means that stalking is a technique in their feeding arsenal they will use if they need to and the situation demands it. Being omnivores, they have many feeding alternatives. Because you don’t see it in Svalbard is not relevant in regard to the capability of the bear. It’s also a learned behavior. If there is no particular local need, you’ll rarely see it, and your local bears may not be very good at it. Doesn’t mean they can’t or won’t do it.
    Your comments about bear shooting are exactly what was expected. Gun management these days is much more about politics than utility, unfortunately.

  60. @rgb “My idea of a good time isn’t to shoot bears (or do anything else) under seriously cold, snowy conditions”
    __________________________
    The upside is that it’s very much easier to skid the carcass off the terrain on ice and snow then to drag it through the weeds… :) That and the rum toddies post-hunt are particularly nice after a cold day…
    .

  61. tty says:
    November 2, 2013 at 8:23 am
    “There is no source of carbon dioxide on Svalbard”
    Not true, there is a coal-fired powerplant at Longyearbyen. Of course it is only coal-fired in order to create a market for the last coal-mine in the area.

    Don’t forget the cars, boats, snowmobiles and aircraft as sources too!

  62. Paul Coppin says: ovember 2, 2013 at 8:45 am

    @Alan I’m not disagreeing. In talking about the Inuit, we’re apples and oranges a bit.
    _______________________________
    i don’t see any disagreement at all. Further comment on pistols and bears…
    There is a bear hunter/guide (forget where) who advises that those attacked by bears wait until the last instant to shoot the bear. He’s killed quite a number of big Browns with a pistol and teaches the following: An attacking bear will often advance within a few feet and then standing, will start snuffling/sniffing the air with their mouths open to positively I.D. what ‘s for dinner. At that moment, he advises that the hunter with pistol, fire through the roof of the mouth and up into the brain pan. The article showed (his) several bear skulls with a bullet hole through the roof of the mouth. Might make a good last stand method…
    Ps A properly loaded .45 Colt will shoot through a mule deer at 100 yards from end- to- end, or clear through a horse- stout bear medicine, but only as backup.

    @tty
    Tundra would not afford much chance for a sneak attack if you pay attention, but Polar bears aren’t stalkers? Really? I’m glad none of them displayed their known human- stalking behavior while you were there… I suppose out in the open like that, they’ll just walk right up to you. I don’t have any personal experience with the bears and only know what I read.

  63. rgbatduke says:
    November 2, 2013 at 8:58 am

    “If I were to hunt a polar bear, a 30-06 with a 220 grain soft-nosed bullet would be the SMALLEST gun I would consider…”
    __________
    I keep some ’06 ammo loaded with 200 gr Accubonds @2750 fps just in case of bear outbreaks, here in OKC. If it gets real bad, I’ll have my buddy bring over his .458 Lott.

  64. Steinar Midtskogen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 12:24 am

    David,

    Friday funny, indeed.

    1. You’re exaggerating the siting problem. Warm air from an airplane or the local buildings surely has a totally insignificant impact on a thermometer many metres away in a windy place like this.

    APU exhaust

    APU exhaust

    I’ve worked at YYZ for over three decades and have learned how far APU exhaust can be felt downwind.

  65. clipe says:
    November 2, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Steinar Midtskogen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 12:24 am

    David,

    Friday funny, indeed.

    1. You’re exaggerating the siting problem. Warm air from an airplane or the local buildings surely has a totally insignificant impact on a thermometer many metres away in a windy place like this

    APU exhaust

    APU exhaust

    I’ve worked at YYZ for over three decades and have learned how far APU exhaust can be felt downwind.

  66. @ Steve R – “Some kind of hallucinigen in the fungus made the entire community become irrational and paranoid.”
    Maybe that can explain why Obama got a Peace Prize?

  67. Yup. No one, ever, has managed to use a pistol against a charging bear.

    http://www.fieldandstream.com/photos/gallery/survival/animal-attacks/2009/08/charging-grizzly-killed-alaska

    Any attempt to do so is utmost foolishness and pure “Mall Ninja’ness”.

    Do I want to attempt it with a handgun? No. Would I rather have a handgun then a rifle? That depends on the rifle, the caliber and how it (the rifle) is carried.

    File the front sight off so the “Bear can stick it…” Well it takes all kinds I guess and as my Daddy used to say “Different strokes for different folks” I guess. But if you are into that sort of thing…. Well just go ahead and confess. “You’re not really here for the hunting, are you?”

  68. Stephen Skinner says:
    “It appears quite obvious from this article that the runway tarmac has caused the underlying permafrost to melt and yet seems to completely miss that point and return to the main AGW meme about climate change causing perma frost to melt.”

    The underlying permafrost melts every year, tarmac or not, but only the very top layer. If you accept that AGW will increase the temperature by 7C and having it stay there, the annual temperature will rise above 0C and the permafrost will melt all the way down eventually, so that’s at least consistent reasoning.

    clipe says:
    “I’ve worked at YYZ for over three decades and have learned how far APU exhaust can be felt downwind.”
    We’re speaking og 100m here or more. And this is a cold place. The hot air will quickly rise. Any effects will be several order of magnitudes less than instrument error.

    I’ve lost count how many times I’ve been to Svalbard airport, in different seasons, and I’m very sure that this exhaust is a non-existing problem. Could the tarmac influence the readings? Much more likely, but even that is not really a problem. Consider that temperatures vary a lot here. Monthly means departing from the normal by more than 10C are not unheard of, and natural 30y climate variations make up several degrees as well, so tiny errors do not change the big picture. But different microclimates change temperatures by several degrees as well, so homogenisation in order to get pre 1975 data is the real challenge.

  69. “You’re exaggerating the siting problem. Warm air from an airplane or the local buildings surely has a totally insignificant impact on a thermometer many metres away in a windy place like this.”

    From CASAA Advisory Circular AC 91-365

    “The engine efflux of modern jet aircraft when taxiing can have a speed of
    up to 65 knots and a temperature of approximately 520°C at a distance
    of 30 metres from the jet pipe.”

  70. Steinar Midtskogen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 11:50 am

    “I’ve lost count how many times I’ve been to Svalbard airport, in different seasons…”
    __________________________
    What, no bear stories?

  71. tty says:
    “The engine efflux of modern jet aircraft when taxiing can have a speed of
    up to 65 knots and a temperature of approximately 520°C at a distance
    of 30 metres from the jet pipe.”

    I’m pretty sure that this is not how they keep the airplanes warm while parked overnight…

    Alan Robertson says:
    “What, no bear stories?”

    Actually, I’ve never seen one. I found tracks of one on Bjørnøya once. And after the incident heard a report of a sighting in Hornsund at a time I was there. That’s my closest encounters. That I know of. I’ve many times, having left the lighths of Longyearbyen behind in moonless December darkness going alone, been thinking how useless the rifle I’m carrying is, since I wouldn’t spot a bear in that darkness before I trip over it, and even less hear it through the squeeking noise of my footsteps or skis on the cold, windswept snowpack.

    There. That’s all my bear stories.

  72. To add to the drop in Norway’s grain harvest and its partial attribution to climate cooling, there are now reports in the MSM including the BBC about a significant global wine shortage. Even the AGW-leaning BBC attributes part of this shortage to poor weather, in particular frosts at inappropriate times. Serious and economically significant frost damage to grapes and many other fruits are reported in Europe, South America and Australia.

  73. Steinar Midtskogen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    “…That’s my closest encounters. That I know of. I’ve many times, having left the lighths of Longyearbyen behind in moonless December darkness going alone, been thinking how useless the rifle I’m carrying is, since I wouldn’t spot a bear in that darkness before I trip over it, and even less hear it through the squeeking noise of my footsteps or skis on the cold, windswept snowpack.

    There. That’s all my bear stories.”
    __________________________
    Dandy bear stories at that, thanks.
    Just think- opportunities to practice your nimbleness.

  74. If you run Google Earth on Svalbard Airport, and look at the aircraft traffic management capability of the airport, proximity of taxiways and apron parking, there is no way the site can’t be affected. One apron taxiway is within 100m +/- of the screen( the one in the picture above), and worse, the screen is at an end where aircraft would enter the runway then do a 180 for take off. The hangar apron is directly upwind of one end of the runway, and directly upwind of the screen.

  75. rgbatduke says:
    November 2, 2013 at 8:58 am
    “. . . a 30-06 with a 220 grain soft-nosed bullet . . .

    From slightly above and 50 yards away using the combination mentioned I shot a “button” buck (so not very large white tail) through the heart. He just ran off. He managed about 100 yards.

    So, I very much agree with this being the smallest (or even too small) combo if what you are shooting at thinks you are on the menu.

    ————————-

    Steinar Midtskogen at 12:24 am

    Thanks. Information much appreciated.

  76. John F. Hultquist says:
    November 2, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    rgbatduke says:
    November 2, 2013 at 8:58 am
    “. . . a 30-06 with a 220 grain soft-nosed bullet . . .

    From slightly above and 50 yards away using the combination mentioned I shot a “button” buck (so not very large white tail) through the heart. He just ran off. He managed about 100 yards.

    So, I very much agree with this being the smallest (or even too small) combo if what you are shooting at thinks you are on the menu.
    ____________________________________
    Strangely enough, bigger is not always better and a 220gr bullet at ’06 velocities is the wrong choice for whitetails. Those bullets are designed with very heavy jackets for deep penetration and that’s what they do. For deer at ’06 velocities, lighter (in weight and construction,125- 165 gr) bullets moving several hundred feet per second faster are better. They perform differently than the heavyweights, offering rapid bullet expansion and loss of kinetic energy on target, for the greatest stopping power. The slow speed of the 220 gr bullet punches a nice clean hole, but most of its kinetic energy is wasted, lost out the other side of the target. Even with a well- placed heart shot, the deer’s system must shut down, which can take 10 seconds or more, giving them a chance to run a long distance. On the other hand, bear ammo needs to be able to penetrate deeply into the vitals, through heavy bone and muscle mass.
    I have several .30-06 rifles as it’s my favorite flavor, but against bears, would prefer a .338 Win., which is generally acknowledged as more appropriate for Grizzly and the big Browns. The Norwegian gov’t. recommends a .308 Win, or .30-06 as a minimum appropriate caliber for Polar Bears.
    Thanks to H.R. for this link:

    http://kho.unis.no/doc/Polar_bears_Svalbard.pdf

  77. Gosh, I never knew the fellows that comment here are such scaredy cats. Sounds to me like, down deep, you’d rather not venture out onto the ice with anything smaller than a bazooka.

    Compare yourself to a Viking up in Greenland back in the year 1250. They stood around five foot four, and the gun hadn’t been invented yet. Somehow they managed to send back a fair number of polar bear pelts to the king of Norway, each year. And besides taking on bears that weigh up to 1500 pounds, without a gun, they took on walruses that weigh up to 3700 pounds, for the ivory in their tusks.

    Now don’t you guys feel ashamed? But it gets worse. When I myself meet bears I don’t shoot bullets or arrows. I just shoot them a dirty look.

    Don’t doubt me. It took me forty-five years of studying under tough, old, Yankee, masters-of-the-dirty-look to learn the high art, however ever since I became a master myself in the year 2000, I have taken to shooting my dirty look at teams that oppose Boston and New England teams.

    Have you noticed how, ever since that year, New England has gone from an area that almost never won championships to an area that wins an unfair number? This is entirely due to the power of my dirty look, and science cannot find any other reason.

    If you also, Grasshopper, would like to possess this power please come to New Hampshire, and I will teach you. Of course, you will have to start humble and clean my stables and stuff like that, but in the end you will be able to stride across the arctic ice without a bazooka.

    /sarc and Friday-funny.

  78. @Ted I don’t think anybody here is saying bear haven’t been taken down with a handgun (and I’ve tried to keep the defense perspective, not a handgun hunting perspective, which is a different thing). What we have been saying is that a handgun as a defensive weapon against bear is not an optimal choice. Your point about the type of rifle is certainly valid. The example you provided from Field and Stream is questionable evidence at best however. That bear. while big, was acknowledged as sickly, “400 lb underweight”, and starving. Motive, but diminished opportunity… While the bear very likely had the intention of dinner, he was not in the best fighting trim. The guy who shot it knows he was lucky. For a whole bunch of reasons, that day could have turned out very differently. Had the bear been in better trim with more fat on, had the shooter not hit the bear as well on his second shot, it very likely would have had a different outcome.

  79. Hey Caleb, The Vikings did that on smell alone – surrounded the bear and asphyxiated it. Today, Old Spice is great, but it works better on some women than bear.

  80. Paul Coppin says:
    November 2, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    Hey Caleb, The Vikings did that on smell alone – surrounded the bear and asphyxiated it. Today, Old Spice is great, but it works better on some women than bear.
    _____________________________
    While we don’t have Polar bears around here, the ones we do have are vulnerable to us fearsome hunters grinnin’ them to death. Studies have shown we have a more pleasant day with a grin rather than a scowl and the bears, being potentiated (sciencey) to dirty looks, get so confused with the grinnin’ that they just plain old- fashioned fall over, totally grinned into submission and give up the ghost.

  81. On a more sober note, two people, man and a women, were attacked earlier today by a polar bear in Churchill Manitoba. Being described as presently in “stable condition”…

  82. Speaking of Svalbard (which few of these commenters are doing), I’ve noticed that the resurgent sub-zero Arctic is positively hurling cold air masses at Svalbard, but repulsed so far by the warm North Atlantic current. Still, the cold attack seems almost purposeful. I wonder sometimes about the “strong” Gaia hypothesis — that it really is alive in some way. Back in the 1950′s Fred Hoyle published a science fiction story “The Black Cloud” about an interstellar cloud which came to our Solar System and blocked out the Sun. Earth was doomed until some scientists figured out that the cloud was alive — (“is bastard in cloud”, by a visiting Soviet) — and communicated with it, so it kindly opened a pathway for the Sun’s rays to reach the Earth again. Maybe we too can communicate with Gaia and get it to funnel some cryogenically cold gales onto Gore’s and Mann’s homes & offices.

  83. Alan Robertson says:
    November 2, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    I agree entirely with your ammo discussion, although maybe I did not know that 50 years ago. I do remember my dad thought I should have a 270.

    Caleb at 3:57
    “Gosh, I never knew the fellows that comment here are such scaredy cats.

    I’m now carrying a camera with a VR (vibration reduction) lens. I use a photo of a black bear (the Cinnamon type) when posting on some sites. (Jo Nova’s is one such.) I didn’t think a “dirty look” would help so I just took pictures.

  84. John F. Hultquist says:
    November 2, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    __________________
    (I intended to add… ) It doesn’t always matter, because even with perfect shot placement and an optimal caliber, they can still “run like a deer”. That’s the very thing that makes dangerous game, so dangerous. That’s also why it’s so important to learn how to grin ‘em.

  85. I have a friend that has spent a good deal of time in grizzly country out of doors in Alaska. He carries a shot gun with five shells. First is a blank, next one buckshot and the last three slugs. They set up colored barrels at some distance around their camp. The bears, apparently can’t resist them and they serve as early warning.

  86. omg, the gun still in the sheat. The rifle should be half-loaded and hang uncovered over the bag i.e. if the view is bad due to weather. Lucky that they didn’t meet a bear.

  87. FWTW, I just did a frequency analysis on the daily data from Svalbard lufthavn since 1975 and there is a very small peak at 7days.

    It is well buried in the noise and far from being “statistically significant” amid the weather ‘noise’ but there is a tiny bump.

    I figured that if there was a traffic based signal it would likely have a weekly component. (Probably a drop in activity at w/e).

  88. lgl says:

    Greg
    “So you are saying there is no correlation between 1972 and 2000 between SST and dCO2 ?”

    No, I’m saying d/dt(CO2) does not correlate with AO (like your graph confirms, 1993 to 2007 is not enough). d/dt(CO2) correlates with ENSO (except after large volcanic eruptions perhaps).

    ===

    Why is 1993 to 2007 ” not enough”.

    “d/dt(CO2) correlates with ENSO”. Where, show me? Does it correlate better that AO ? I doubt it, but it would be interesting to see.

    Don’t just make bland assertions and assume we all believe you because you called lgl.

  89. RE: Barry Cullen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 3:45 am
    “Fig 6 If the summer temp change is 0.8°/100 yrs and the winter temp change is -0.1°/100 yrs and the annual temp change is +1.4°/100 yrs, what do spring and fall look like? Certainly >>1.4°/100 yrs or is something else going on here?”
    ————-
    Spring shows +3.7C/ 100 yrs and fall +1.2 C/ 100 yr. Link to the paper below.
    We used the normal definition of spring as MAM, but Mach and April are really winter months at Svalbard. The fjord at Longyearbyen may freeze as lata as April. Some year it does not freeze at all, and then the “spring” temperature becomes higher.
    ——————
    RE: Phil. says:
    November 2, 2013 at 7:00 am
    “As Figure 4 shows, the average winter temperature over Solar Cycle 24 will be 6.0ºC colder than that over Solar Cycle 23.
    Please, Fig 4 shows nothing of the sort, if anything it shows a rising trend, the authors have added their guess onto the graph which is 6ºC colder than the present average, that’s all.
    In fact when I went to that paper the graph looks different and the extra points aren’t there! How about an actual link to the paper/figure because something’s not right!”

    —–
    The paper can be downloaded here:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/nso7w8tz3nkrya2/111129Svalbard%20solflekk%20temperatur.pdf

    The figure shown by David (above) is correct. If you read the paper you will see that we found autocorrelations in the residuals for the spring, summer and fall temperatures. We could therefore make a forecast on the 95% level ONLY for the winter and year temperatures. The extra points (diamonds with bars) are forecasts with a 95% confidence interval.

    Grain production in Norway:

    A message from the Norwegian Agricultural Authority (www.slf.dep.no) can be translated to the following:

    “The Norwegian grain production (in 2013) will be only 913 000 ton, the lowest since 1976…..in addition to reduced areas, the wet and cold spring in 2013 damaged large areas, which could not be seeded.”

  90. Ferdinand Engelbeen says:
    November 2, 2013 at 5:43 am
    [....]
    Thus of the 100 ppmv increase in the atmosphere since about 1850 (70 ppmv since Mauna Loa started),[....]

    There has been no such “100ppmv increase in the atmosphere since about 1850,” but there may have been nearly a 100ppmv decrease, depending on how the measurements and time periods are determined. The Mauna Loa measurements are garbage for a variety of reasons, including the improper smoothing of the data just to mention one reason.

  91. D. Patterson says:
    November 3, 2013 at 8:03 am

    The Mauna Loa measurements are garbage for a variety of reasons, including the improper smoothing of the data just to mention one reason.

    One can only hope that one day the temperature measurements are as rigorously calibrated and controlled as the CO2 measurements are. See:

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/about/co2_measurements.html

    And the raw data (calculated hourly averages from the instrument voltage measurements) still are available at:
    ftp://ftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/ccg/co2/in-situ/
    if you want to perform your own “proper” smoothing, which BTW doesn’t give a difference in average or trend over a year of more than 0.1 ppmv:

    Before 1960, we have the Law Dome ice cores over the past 150 years with a resolution of a decade and an overlap of 20 years with the South Pole data:

    and

  92. D. Patterson says:
    November 3, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    If you believe that CO2 did migrate through cracks in the ice from inside the ice at 180-280 ppmv towards the outside where one can find 380 and more ppmv CO2, then you may believe the late Jaworowski’s findings. I don’t, therefore I do take all what he said with a grain of salt:

    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/jaworowski.html

    And historical data are as accurate as the local variability shows: a high variability means a lot of local sources/sinks at work, thus completely unsuitable to show what the “background” data in the rest of the atmosphere were. Historical data taken over the oceans and coastal with wind from the sea show also today less variability and were around the ice core data. See the reflection of years of discussion with the late Ernst Beck:

    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/beck_data.html

    One must be skeptical about any scientific claim, until proven and reproduced. The Mauna Loa data are reproduced by 10 (NOAA) baseline stations from near the North Pole (Alert, Canada) to the South Pole. And 70 other stations maintained by other organisations and countries. This is rock solid science.

    Rejecting the data only because you don’t like them makes your other claims equally unbelievable.

  93. Dr. Solheim,

    “The Norwegian grain production (in 2013) will be only 913 000 ton, the lowest since 1976…..in addition to reduced areas, the wet and cold spring in 2013 damaged large areas, which could not be seeded.”

    You are attempting to defend criticism of using the wheat production statistic by citing total grain production, as almost every single critic of the wheat production statistic has recommended. You may even have a valid correlation using total grain production. Yes, bad weather does reduce yields.

  94. Dr. Solheim,

    You included in a comment above, “The Norwegian grain production (in 2013) will be only 913 000 ton, the lowest since 1976…..in addition to reduced areas, the wet and cold spring in 2013 damaged large areas, which could not be seeded.”

    Thank you for adding that bit of information. The graph alone does not convey that information.

    I take ‘in addition to reduced areas’ to mean that there are – probably economic – reasons for less areas of wheat planted, but that what wheat was planted did indeed suffer reduced yields from cold and wet weather. It’s still unclear from the graph presented why the numbers are what they are.
    Thanks again for the additional information.

    A-a-a-a-a-n-d on the minor topic in this post with which we’ve been having great fun…

    … it just occurred to me that, although we in the U.S. are fortunate to have the “Right to Bear Arms,” Svalbardians are equally fortunate that Norway has no “Right to Arm Bears.” Things could get ugly if the bears start advocating for it.

    (I’ll get me hat and coat. I was just leaving.)

  95. Ferdinand Engelbeen says:
    November 3, 2013 at 1:28 pm
    D. Patterson says:
    November 3, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    It is rather ironic how you wrote:

    Rejecting the data only because you don’t like them makes your other claims equally unbelievable.

    It appears you are doing precisely what you have accused me of doing. Take this business about the reliability of the CO2 in glacial ice measurements as one example.

    If you believe that CO2 did migrate through cracks in the ice from inside the ice at 180-280 ppmv towards the outside where one can find 380 and more ppmv CO2, then you may believe the late Jaworowski’s findings. I don’t, therefore I do take all what he said with a grain of salt:
    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/jaworowski.html

    We’ve had this disagreement many times before. Every time I bring up the evidence of the exobiology experiments conducted on the Antarctic ice cores, which found rather quick biological contamination of the interior of the ice cores, you have always resorted to denying the validity of the evidence with invalid arguments that amount to little more than what you choose to believe in disregard to the experimental results. You appear to refuse to acknowledge that biological organisms are demonstrated to rapidly invade the ice, and their ability to invade the ice confers upon them the capability of altering the gas concentrations in the ice where they have invaded. This is just one of a multitude of problems with the reliability of the carbon dioxide measurements in the glacial ice which have not been researched at all or have not been properly resolved. Another is the failure of the papers you rely upon to take any recognition whatsoever of the PBL differences where the ice was formed with respect to carbon dioxide sources, sinks, entrainment, and plumes over millennial time scales in the Antarctic and its peculiar meteorological characteristics.

    And historical data are as accurate as the local variability shows: a high variability means a lot of local sources/sinks at work, thus completely unsuitable to show what the “background” data in the rest of the atmosphere were.

    As Dr. Tim Ball and his sources have observed and demonstrated in their own scientific publications and U.S. Senate testimony, the carbon dioxide data has been deliberately corrupted. Corrupted data can hardly be reasonably described as “accurate” regardless of how it is to be dressed up as “background” data or any other kind of data. As Bischoff and others have demonstrated in their own research, upper air sampling demonstrates >50ppmv variations in carbon dioxide concentrations. The Mauna Loa and related observations have had their data massaged in ways that do not conform to proper methodologies according to Dr. Tim Ball and his sources.

    Historical data taken over the oceans and coastal with wind from the sea show also today less variability and were around the ice core data. See the reflection of years of discussion with the late Ernst Beck:
    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/beck_data.html

    Such presumptions of certainty betray the falseness of the whole enterprise, when you consider the way we keep finding natural influences that were not accounted for when these certainties were propounded in the first place. Nothing like finding volcanoes underneath the ice shelves to upset wrong assumptions about significant carbon dioxide influences on the carbon dioxide concentrations in the glacial ice.

    One must be skeptical about any scientific claim, until proven and reproduced. The Mauna Loa data are reproduced by 10 (NOAA) baseline stations from near the North Pole (Alert, Canada) to the South Pole. And 70 other stations maintained by other organisations and countries. This is rock solid science.

    All of which amounts to big claims that repeatedly fail to stand up to close scrutiny. Take for one example the question of how anyone is supposed to reasonably accept your proposition that the “Mauna Loa data are reproduced by 10 (NOAA) baseline stations from near the North Pole (Alert, Canada) to the South Pole”, when we can see full well these other stations are not located in the Central Pacific Ocean atop an outgassing volcano at several thousand feet of altitude? Is there not any student or master of science who can see the experiment does not reproduce the initial conditions of the experiment? Really? Reproduction of results is much easier when the data is managed or cherry picked to produce a desired result using questionable data selection and adjustments and defended by plausible deniability. Unfortunately, using GIGO methodology and plausible deniability does not meet the standards for independent reproduction of experimental results.

    Rejecting the data only because you don’t like them makes your other claims equally unbelievable.

    Since the conclusions and analysis were those of Dr. Tim Ball and his sources, you can hardly describe them as my claims. On the contrary, it is up to you to demonstrate how it is possible for your “belief” in such data can meet or exceed the requirements for completeness, accuracy, and applicability for the hypothesis you are arguing, and you have failed to do so. There are more holes in the claims of carbon dioxide measurements than a piece of Swiss cheese, and more and more problems keep turning up as more and more natural influences upon the carbon dioxide concentrations keep turning up year after year.

  96. H.R. says:
    November 3, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    A-a-a-a-a-n-d on the minor topic in this post with which we’ve been having great fun…

    … it just occurred to me that, although we in the U.S. are fortunate to have the “Right to Bear Arms,” Svalbardians are equally fortunate that Norway has no “Right to Arm Bears.” Things could get ugly if the bears start advocating for it.
    _____________________________
    We have a clear winner! You get the thread Gold Star next to your name.

  97. The fellow carrying the cased rifle reminds me of a Red Skelton poem from many years ago:
    Algy saw the Bear.
    The Bear saw Algy.
    The Bear was bulgy.
    The bulge was Algy!

    MtK

  98. D. Patterson says:
    November 3, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Maybe we have been there in the past, but my memory isn’t that good anymore.

    About ice cores: if the ice cores show measurements between 180-280 ppmv and the atmosphere is at 380-400 ppmv between the moment of drilling and the moment of measurement, then there was and is no migration from low levels to high levels. Jaworowski said it does. Jaworowski said that there is no difference between the age of the ice and the average age of the exclosed air. That simply is impossible (except for remelt layers). For me Jaworowski is exit. Let him rest in peace, together with his ideas.

    Contamination of ice with dust and bacteria happens. In general IF there is contamination and IF there is sufficient foodstuf, more CO2 will be released. But the CO2 levels are too low, according to some skeptics. Some extremophylic bacteria may survive hundredthousands of years at -40°C, but not more than that, by repairing damage on their DNA by using CO2 as carbon source and nitrogen compounds as energy source. If we take all of the N2O levels as all been used to remove CO2 as building block, that gives a CO2 “depletion” of less than 1 ppmv over 140 kyr… See item K at:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/101/13/4631.full.pdf

    Biological life is a matter of temperature and availability of nutritritients. Both lack in Antarctic ice cores. Coastal cores with less cold temperatures and more dust deposits show the same CO2 values as the inland cores for the same average gas age. It would be extremely difficult for bacteria to give the same result in ice cores with largely different conditions.

    As Dr. Tim Ball and his sources have observed and demonstrated in their own scientific publications and U.S. Senate testimony, the carbon dioxide data has been deliberately corrupted.

    I don’t know where Dr Tim Ball has found the 600 ppmv measured at Mauna Loa. Most of the variability is at +4 ppmv when the wind blows downslope from the volcanic vents and -4 ppmv when the wind is upslope in the afternoon. It doesn’t make one damn difference if you include or exclude these outliers for the average or the trend. As said before, all raw data, hourly averages + their standard deviation are available on line at ftp://ftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/ccg/co2/in-situ/mlo/ and that since since 1974. Before 1974 the CO2 levels were calculated by hand, from long analog paper data logs. Thus I would like to see the source of the “600 ppmv” and the high variability of CO2 in the upper air (a reference to the right page would be nice). You are insulting hundreds of people working at a lot of institutes and countries by saying that they corrupt their data without a shred of evidence.

    Nothing like finding volcanoes underneath the ice
    The nearest volcano from the South Pole is over 1000 km away. The winds in general blow away from the South Pole. If there were ice cores taken near the volcano, that might have influenced the local measurements for the duration of the eruption and a few decades later, but that would be noticed as peaks, not seen in other ice cores.

    when we can see full well these other stations are not located in the Central Pacific Ocean atop an outgassing volcano at several thousand feet of altitude?

    Some kind of illogical thinking here: If one finds the same CO2 levels (within a few ppmv averaged over a year), despite volcanoes, altitude, latitude, temperature, rain, pressure,… then all these other variables are of not the slightest influence on the measurements. Thus the CO2 levels worldwide are within very thight limits. The only exception is on land near huge sources and sinks. That is where most of the historical data were taken and therefore these have not the slightest value for estimates of the past CO2 levels (as good as stomata data give similar problems over centuries of land management).

    Reproduction of results is much easier when the data is managed or cherry picked to produce a desired result using questionable data selection and adjustments

    Again, you are insulting people who’s only aim is to produce the best “background” CO2 data available. If you have any proof that their method gives different results than simply using all available data including the outliers, only then you may be right.

    On the contrary, it is up to you to demonstrate how it is possible for your “belief” in such data can meet or exceed the requirements for completeness, accuracy, and applicability for the hypothesis you are arguing, and you have failed to do so.

    I have read the arguments of both sides and found the arguments of the late Ernst Beck too light and of the late Jaworowski outright wrong, even the opposite of what he claimed. If Dr Tim Ball still want to use their arguments, then he makes the rest of his argumentation as unbelievable as these from his sources.
    And as I am a real skeptic (that is: to both sides), I have asked for a few days of the MLO instrument voltage readings to see if their calculation of the hourly average CO2 level is performing as they claim. If you want, you may repeat that, simply ask for the data to Dr. Pieter Tans of NOAA. Or have a look at one hour of measurements:

    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/mlo_raw_v_2006_11_17_18.xls

  99. During WW2, the Svalbard islands and the surrounding seas were the theatre of some really fierce fighting between the Allies and the Nazis, with commando raids to destroy the coal mines (occupied by the Nazis following the fall of the Norwegian government in the summer of 1940), and the struggle of Allied convoys en route toward Murmansk to bring supplies to the Soviet Union.
    So, digging in military and historical records, one should be able to found some detailed data on weather during almost 5 years of war, during a period (1940 – 45) affected by some “transition” between the ’30s warm period ant the post-WW2 cooling….
    Not to mention the following 45 years of the Cold War, with a lot of weather stations installed near NATO and PoW military bases in the Arctic….
    Just my 2 cents…

  100. Wait. They were provisioned with seal meat? I do hope it wasn’t Canadian seal meat. That would be un-European.

  101. I had an opportunity to visit Spitsbergen (Svalbard), Norway this summer. Our ship stopped at both Longyearbyen and Ny Alesund. I could not get to the weather station at the airport outside Longyearbyen (note main article), but I was able to see the weather station in Ny Alesund. The Longyearbyen airport is located 3.5 km NW of the city on an open ridge. The Stevenson screen in Ny Alesund was bordered on three sides by a gravel road. The Post Office was on the north side. The screen was in an open field with only a few other instruments near by. I was unable to find anyone who knew anything about the weather station during the short stay in Ny Alesund. I have pictures of the station from several different directions if anyone would like copies in jpeg format [bshemingway at gmail.com]. Ny Alesund is located on the south coast of Kongsfjorden, west of the Krone Glacier. It is mainly a research station located at 78d 55m N 11d 56m E (d=degrees, m=minutes). There are only a few people who live in Ny Alesund year-round. The main source of man-made heat that could impact the station is from steam that is transported from the local power plant by one foot in diameter pipes to the buildings in the town. None of these pipes is close to the weather station.

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