Arctic Sea Ice Appears to Have Reached Maximum And Other Ice Observations

National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) – click to view

Image Credit: National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC)

By WUWT Regular “Just The Facts”

Per the image above, Arctic Sea Ice Extent made a late season run, but it appears to have reached its maximum for the year. “NSIDC calculates daily extent using a five-day average of the data.” The “method takes the average of the previous five days, so that readers will see fewer “wiggles” in the tail end of the data series. The value of the trailing mean lags the actual data values, so sea ice values will appear lower when ice extent is increasing, but will appear larger when ice is decreasing.” NSIDC

JAXA’s Sea Ice Extent, which “is updated at around 3:00(UTC) every day” JAXA, shows a significant downward turn;

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) – International Arctic Research Center (IARC) – Click the pic to view

DMI’s Mean Temperature above 80°N has been running well above average;

Danish Meteorological Institute – Click the pic to view

and there is a another cold air outbreak headed into North America;

NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory – Click the pic to view

thus it is unlikely that we will see significant additional Arctic Sea Ice growth this season. Part of the reason for the relatively low Arctic Sea Ice Maximum this year is that several cold air outbreaks have occurred this winter, allowing cold air to escape the Arctic, e.g.;

Robert Hart and Ryan Maue – Coolwx.com – Click the pic to view at source

resulting in second highest Great Lakes Sea Ice Coverage on record reaching 92.2% on March 6th, i.e.:

NOAA Great Lakes Surface Environment Analysis (GLSEA) – Click the pic to view full size image

NOAA Great Lakes Surface Environment Analysis (GLSEA) – Click the pic to view full size image

In the Southern Hemisphere, Sea Ice Area reached it’s 2nd highest Minimum on record on February 23rd, 2014, and somewhere in there lost its January rabbit ears;

Antarctic sea ice

National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) – Click the pic to view at source

resulting in a large area of Sea Ice now floating in the Southern Ocean:

Antarctic sea ice

National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) – Click the pic to view

Antarctic sea ice

Cryosphere Today – Arctic Climate Research at the University of Illinois – Click the pic to view

Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Area has now been above average for over 2 years and 4 months;

Cryosphere Today – Arctic Climate Research at the University of Illinois – Click the pic to view view

with the last negative anomaly recorded was on November 23rd, 2011, data here and graph below:

Cryosphere Today – Arctic Climate Research at the University of Illinois – Click the pic to view

Global Sea Ice Area has remained stubbornly average over the last year and a quarter;

Cryosphere Today – University of Illinois – Polar Research Group – Click the pic to view view

and Global Sea Ice Area Anomaly is currently just .083 Million sq km above the 1981 – 2010 average:

Cryosphere Today – University of Illinois – Polar Research Group – Click the pic to view full size image

For additional information please visit the WUWT Sea Ice Page, Northern Regional Sea Ice Page and Great Lakes Ice Page.

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80 Responses to Arctic Sea Ice Appears to Have Reached Maximum And Other Ice Observations

  1. John Eggert says:

    Just a curiosity, but a cursory examination of the various charts on sea ice extent in the arctic seem to show the maximum has been moving later in the year. Any ideas as to if this is a statistically valid statement and if so, why the peak is happening later?

  2. ren says:

    Comparison of the geomagnetic field and the position of the polar vortex.
    The observed magnetic field is highly asymmetrical.
    Lines of inclination are highly elliptical, with the North Magnetic Pole situated near one end of the ellipse.
    The strength of the magnetic field is no longer a maximum at the North Magnetic Pole. In fact, there are now two maxima, one over central Canada, the other over Siberia.
    Magnetic meridians do not converge radially on the North Magnetic Pole.
    http://www.geomag.nrcan.gc.ca/images/field/fnor.gif
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat_a_f/gif_files/gfs_z70_nh_f120.gif

  3. william says:

    Expect another round of gnashing of teeth as sea ice this summer dips to near record low levels. The fact that NH ice got to w/i .63 mill of the long term average was a miracle that happened mostly at the last minute. It had been trending at -1.2mill for most of the winter. That suggests that that the recent uptick ice is thin and wont last long.

  4. Angech says:

    Several points
    that big block of ice may appear to be floating freely but may in fact still be attached by ice to hyping to register on the satellite. It may week rejoin rather than floating off in the next few days.
    Secondly most of the ice formation and melting is by the cold water underneath not the surface air temperature as evidenced by the ice taking no notice of those temperature anomalies.
    While I would love to see another late rally it is unlikely but there may still be a slow move to the average for the 2000-2010 in the next 2 months as there is a lot of extra ice volume compared to recent years and the seasons seem to be 2-3 weeks late for melting and freezing recently

  5. John Eggert, the day of maximum is kind of spread out

    Year dMax Max
    1987 52 16.21724
    1996 52 15.42074
    1991 56 15.58803
    1998 56 16.02091
    1982 58 16.27475
    2008 58 15.30522
    1995 59 15.32238
    1979 60 16.56457
    1994 61 15.72226
    2009 61 15.16275
    2000 63 15.44482
    2001 63 15.66664
    2012 64 15.25102
    1980 65 16.25042
    1989 65 15.72295
    2011 66 14.67084
    2002 68 15.57345
    1986 69 16.11934
    2007 69 14.78963
    1988 70 16.24163
    2004 70 15.25548
    2006 70 14.73298
    1990 71 16.21077
    2005 71 14.94615
    1992 72 15.53258
    1993 72 16.00491
    1981 73 15.71365
    1983 73 16.33207
    2013 73 15.14275
    1985 76 16.11716
    1984 78 15.76157
    1997 79 15.63647
    2014 79 14.96031
    2003 80 15.58678
    1999 89 15.55755
    2010 90 15.28449

  6. Jeff says:

    Ice will be much thicker this year than years past. It was low for most of the year because ONE AREA of the arctic was warmer than usual (the north sea near Scandinavia). That area and that area alone has weak ice, but that area melts first anyway. The reason the ice began rapidly expanding recently is because the temperatures in the north sea have let up and the winds blew the ice in that direction.

    People need to stop looking at arctic ice formation as some sort of contagion. If one area is weak, it doesn’t mean that all areas are weak. Ice forms where water is cold enough to create ice. It’s that simple. If conditions are right the ice will form rapidly, if not not the ice won’t form. The ice does catch a cancer which then prevents it from growing. The ice is just frozen water.

    Look at the ice in the middle of the arctic and look at the ice near the Canadian coast and surrounding islands. That ice there is extremely thick. The Arctic Oscillation and the North Atlantic Oscillation are both in cold phases now, meaning that the warm gulf water is having difficulty penetrating and it is not warming that water. Ocean temperatures in that area is two degrees below normal. The north Atlantic is also below normal. When taken with the unusual thickness of MOST of the arctic ice, that suggests to me that the ice WON’T melt as easily (except for the area around Iceland and Scandinavia which has been warmer than normal all winter).

    I predict this will be a bad year for the alarmists as it appears that rapid ice recovery is now well on its way.

  7. Jeff says:

    The line should be “the ice DOESN’T catch a cancer which prevents it from growing.”

  8. MattN says:

    Max ice also appears to be later than normal this year. Just sayin’…

  9. Max™ says:

    Uh, the idea that we’ll see a record low sounds a little far fetched. Notice how little of the darkest purple shows up in the 2012 to 2013 extent maps vs the current maps.

    Solid regions of 1~2 meter thick ice across the entire pole don’t melt away too quickly from what I’ve seen watching the ice over the last few years.

  10. Alec aka daffy duck says:

    Extent was suppressed because of AO being negative most of the winter; thicker ice did well and is in a good position not to be blow out into the Atlantic
    http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticictnowcast.gif

    No one is going to be sailing through the Northwest Passage this year.
    here is march 25, 2013 for comparison
    http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticict/nowcast/ict2013032418_2013032500_035_arcticict.001.gif

  11. Kenny says:

    I wonder what all this will look like after the melt season. Is it possible for the AO to stay negative through the summer? I read somewhere that a very strong possitive AO drove a lot of ice out of the Arctic Ocean several years ago. Could we see a repeat?

  12. Jeff says:

    The thinner ice exists entirely on one side, along the north sea. The north sea was warmer than usual all winter. Relative to the whole arctic ice, it’s a small area in all. I’m not even a little worried about the ice this summer, it’ll likely expand beyond last year given all the other conditions. The northwest passage has MUCH MORE ice and the “sliver” of thick 5+ meter ice we see every winter in much wider than usual.

    I have no idea what “William” is talking about. I think it really comes from the Al Gore “An Inconvenient Truth” explanation of ice melt that confuses so many people. Gore’s explanation was completely wrong. Gore made it seem as if there would be some point of no return with the ice which was ridiculous. Ice is just frozen water. Think of it this way, if one keep an ice tray full of water out of the freezer it would never turn to ice. Yet, once you put it back into the freezer (assuming it worked normally) it would instantaneously turn to ice no matter how long it was kept in its water state.

    Why would arctic ice be any different? Once the conditions exist for water to freeze, you get ice. There are three main reasons why ice will expand: 1) The arctic ocean is below normal and is in its negative phase; 2) the North Atlantic now seems to be following suit and appears to be turning cold as well; 3) the area of arctic ice that is thickest is the area that melts last. The area of the arctic ice which is thinner (North Sea, which is what was keeping the ice from expanding outward all winter) is the area which melts first anyway.

    This summer minimum will have a larger ice extent than last summer.

  13. R. Shearer says:

    I predict that sometime in the next 200 years, the climate in Greenland will become more habitable as during the settlement by Vikings.

  14. Snow White says:

    Whoops – Wrong image for PIOMAS volume! Try this one instead:

    http://GreatWhiteCon.info/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/piomas-20140228.png

  15. rogerknights says:

    Anthony: Let’s have an minimum extent prediction thread!

  16. Caleb says:

    RE: Jeff says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:49 am

    I think you are right. A lot of the arctic is ice-free by the end of the summer every year. You are paying attention to the ice that matters, next September.

    One reason for the low extents of recent summers is that the PDO was warm, which has warmer than normal waters up in Bering Strait. Since it turned to a cold PDO, which has colder than average waters in Bering Strait, the ice has increased on that Pacific side of the Pole. If you look at the map of recent summers you’ll see the Chukchi Sea was basically ice-free, and that those ice-free waters extended north into areas covered by “Central Arctic” maps and graphs. We are talking well over a million km2 of water that was ice-free and now may have ice, next September. It would make a big difference to the extent graphs.

    On the Atlantic side there is much less ice. For example, in Barents Sea the ice failed to “recover” much at all this winter, and set a record for least ice-cover (since 1979.) However that will not matter much in September, because Barents Sea rarely has any ice at all in September.

    Having Barents Sea open all winter would have an obvious effect on the waters entering the Arctic Ocean via that route, The water is is less able to stratify into a colder,fresher “lens” on top, with slightly warmer and saltier water beneath, due to churning storms. Also lots of heat is lost when -30 Siberian air pours over the open waters. The question is: Was that cooling balanced by above-freezing North Atlantic air passing over those waters? The answer is unknown, but perhaps can be deduced by the way the edge of the ice retreats on the Atlantic side, and along the Siberian coast, this summer. My guess would be the water is colder. The Northeast Passage will be very open to the west, but I have my doubts about how open it will be towards the east, once you get past the Laptev Sea into the East Siberian Sea.

    The Northwest Passage looks like it will be a tough go, this summer, especially towards the east.

    I expect more ice this September. I don’t know why people call that a “recovery.” It seems more like a “debacle,” if you want a mild start to next winter.

  17. Leon Brozyna says:

    It has been a cold winter, starting with November and continuing through to March, with about 1\3 of the time the high temps in Buffalo were at or below average lows … I’m more than ready for this pattern to break.

  18. Gary Pearse says:

    Here in Ottawa, Canada, they sawed keys in late February in the Rideau R. ice to hasten break-up and prevent flooding but it all froze up solid again. They are out there doing it again and breaking the ice right now and it is thick and no easy chore. Its still pretty frosty and might start to freeze up again. We had -19C overnight the day before yesterday and it was -16C this morning at 7:00 – they claim ridiculously we were a fraction of a degree warmer than the record – the warmists in theweathernetwork.com are still fighting the good fight. Its hard to believe there is any melting in the Canadian Arctic 2000km north of here.

  19. FerdinandAkin says:

    william says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:15 am
    … It had been trending at -1.2mill for most of the winter. That suggests that that the recent uptick ice is thin and wont last long.

    william,
    I believe the term you are looking for is:
    Rotten ice
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/14/a-look-at-sea-ice-compared-to-this-date-in-2007/

  20. Ron C. says:

    Just for comparison MASIE showed day 73 as this year’s maximum. They include satellite imagery and operational data along with microwave sensor results, so the amount of ice extent is different. Usually the numbers are close at the annual maximums, but MASIE will show much more ice than the others in the summer.

    According to MASIE, this year’s NH max ice extent on day 73 (March 14) was 15,523,208 sq. km.

  21. Dudley Horscroft says:

    A couple of small quibbles:
    ren says: March 25, 2014 at 6:07 am
    “Magnetic meridians do not converge radially on the North Magnetic Pole.”

    I find it exceedingly difficult to think of them going around the pole. To my way of thinking, if you keep on following north as indicated by your magnetic compass you must end up at the pole. If you start on a different meridian, you still end up at the pole.

    Jeff says: March 25, 2014 at 7:17 am
    “Think of it this way, if one keep an ice tray full of water out of the freezer it would never turn to ice. Yet, once you put it back into the freezer (assuming it worked normally) it would instantaneously turn to ice no matter how long it was kept in its water state.”

    No way can you extract the energy from the water “instantaneously”. Quickly, if cold enough, slowly if not very cold. Even if your freezer is at absolute zero it will still take time for the heat to leak out.

  22. outtheback says:

    Looks like it that I have to put my plans to start farming in Greenland for another year on ice.
    Ever since profit Gore made his predictions I have been working on reclaiming the ancestral farm there.
    When oh when.

  23. Ron C. says:

    I can also observe that since the max on March 14, MASIE shows increases in ice extent in the Central Arctic and Barents Sea, offset by losses in Baffin-Gulf of St. Lawrence, Bering Sea and Baltic Sea.

  24. Richard M says:

    One of the main components of ice extent is the wind. For much of the winter the winds have been pushing ice towards land areas. This thickens the ice but also leads to lower winter time extents. The most recent extent increase was due to a change in the wind that pushed some of it towards ocean areas.

    The winds will also be a major factor in the summer minimum. Unless they start pushing ice out into the N. Atlantic we will likely see a higher minimum due to the overall increase in multi-year ice from last year as well as the increases in thickness over the past winter.

  25. Alec aka daffy duck says:

    “Kenny says: I wonder what all this will look like after the melt season. Is it possible for the AO to stay negative through the summer? I read somewhere that a very strong possitive AO drove a lot of ice out of the Arctic Ocean several years ago. Could we see a repeat?”

    THREE MONTH running mean through Feb 2014
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/month_ao_index.shtml

    Here is the Daily through the winter
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/ao_index.html

  26. John S. says:

    Great Lakes “Sea” Ice?

  27. Snow White says:

    RE: Caleb says:
    March 25, 2014 at 7:38 am

    Sea ice in the Arctic probably hasn’t reached maximum volume yet though. What do you make of this PIOMAS estimate from February 28th?

    http://GreatWhiteCon.info/2014/03/the-arctic-sea-ice-recovery-vanishes/#PIOMAS

    What relevance (if any) will that have regarding September’s minimum?

  28. Ron C. says:

    For comparison for previous years, MASIE shows these NH ice extent Maxes:

    2014 15.52 MsqKm March 14
    2013 15.64 Feb. 28
    2012 16.10 March 04
    2011 15.38 March 18
    2010 15.92 March 14
    2009 15.91 March 08
    2008 16.04 March 24
    2007 15.81 March 15

    I don’t see anything alarming here.

  29. ren says:

    In the south of the ice is increased the fastest from the side of Atlantic and from this side most decreases ozone in the stratosphere.
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat_a_f/gif_files/gfs_o3mr_10_sh_f00.gif

  30. kent Blaker says:

    Richard M. You have got it right about the effect the wind has on the sea ice area/extent numbers. Multi year sea ice is all about the wind.( Even the formation of sea ice is very dependent on the wind and the creation of White caps .) You never get 5 meter thick sea ice without the wind pushing it together. The numbers change more daily because of the wind than because of the temp.

  31. RACookPE1978 says:

    Today, March 25 on day-of-year = 85, both the Arctic sea ice extents and Antarctic sea ice extents are exposed to the sun for very close to the same number of minutes per day. (We are just past the spring equinox of 12 hours sunshine, 12 hours darkness.)

    Top of Atmosphere radiation levels are very close to the yearly average at 1368 w/m^2. In January, TOA radiation is at its yearly maximum at 1410 watts/m^2, but Antarctic sea ice extents is still retreating towards its yearly minimum in late February-early March. ( Now, Antarctic sea ice extents has passed its minimum and is expanding.)

    Total earth sea ice extents is meaningless and actually is very, very misleading!

    Today, the edge of the Antarctic sea ice extents is exposed to 348 watts/m^2 at noon on a clear day. Antartic sea ice extents is 5.73 Mkm^2, but total Antarctic ice area (continental ice, permanent ice shelves + sea ice extents) = 23.2 Mkm^2. The edge of the Antarctic sea ice is at latitude -65.4 – much closer to the equator than the edge of the Arctic sea ice extents.

    The Arctic sea ice extents today is at its yearly maximum of 15 Mkm^2, just higher than the 2012 maximum extents of 14.8 Mkm^2, and higher than the 2010, 2011 or 2013 levels also! At 15 Mkm^2 sea ice extents, the edge of the sea ice is at latitude 70.5 – further from the equator than the Antarctic sea ice. (This year, Arctic sea ice extents is right at the -2 standard deviations from the 1970-2000 means levels. Low, but within 2x std deviations. Unfortunately, high spring Arctic sea ice maximum tend to lead to low September minimums – which are the ONLY advertisement accepted by the CAGW religion. And nearly the only remaining evidence for CAGW.)

    Over the past 7 months, the Antarctic sea ice edge has been exposed to more radiation every day than the Arctic sea ice edge – The Antarctic sea ice edge receiving as much as 5x MORE radiation on every horizontal square kilometer than the edge of the Arctic sea ice. (Today, the Antarctic sea ice edge is radiated by 348 watts/m^2, the Arctic only 321 watts/m^2. By March 28, both will receive 340 watts/m^2. The Arctic will continue tilting towards the sun through the summer, but the TOA radiation levels will continue to decline to their yearly minimum of 1315 on July 5.

    By day-of-year 241, on 28 August, the Antarctic ice edge will once again be receiving more radiation on a clear day than the Arctic sea ice.

    Then by the fall equinox, when both are exposed to the same HOURS of sunlight, the Antarctic sea ice is RECEIVING 5 TIMES the sunlight that the Arctic sea ice receives. You CANNOT determine the next earth albedo by “measuring” total sea ice, just Arctic sea ice, NOR just Antarctic sea ice.

    You MUST calculate the energy received at each horizontal surface of the sea ice extents during each hour of the day, the albedo of the sea ice at that day-of-year (Yes Virginia, the arctic sea ice is much, mush “darker” in mid-summer than in fall, mid-winter, or spring!), the actual open ocean albedo and actual atmospheric absorption each hour of the day for that day-of-year, AND the solar elevation angle every hour of that day-of-year.

    Only then can you predict how much energy is absorbed by the sea ice and by the open ocean water, and how energy is reflected from the sea ice and from the open ocean water. All the while, every 24 hours, more energy is lost from the Arctic under today’s conditions of sea ice minimum when the sea ice is melted, than is gained when open ocean water is heated by the sunlight over 12 hours.

  32. Tom in Denver says:

    WIth the blocking this winter there has been a lot of cold air pouring across Hudson’s Bay. As a result the ice looks much thicker than normal. I predict that it will take a much longer time to melt the bay this spring/summer.

  33. william says:

    Having watched sea ice extent data every day this winter here at Watts Up it looked like sea ice extent was going to recover to at least within the std dev of the 1979-2000 monthly average. That recovery stalled. Probably as others pointed out it was a result of the “polar vortex” we experienced a few times here in Chicago. I will stand by my prediction that sea ice extent at the summer low will be similar to the last few years. It will remain substantially below the 1979-2000 monthly average. As a result, warmists will have their typical field day pointing to the lack of ice as proof of our impending golbal warming doom.

  34. MikeP says:

    Snow White … PIOMAS is a model that has a number of critics … I don’t think I’d use it rather than the CryoSat data …

  35. son of mulder says:

    Looks like 2 – 3 weeks later than usual. Should I be scared?

  36. Resourceguy says:

    I would expect a later turn in the peak in the presence of a declining PDO and now plunging AMO.

  37. Snow White says:

    MikeP – All models have a number of critics don’t they?!

    Unfortunately CryoSat doesn’t have a whole lot to say about the volume of sea ice in the Arctic just at the moment, unless you can provide a link to some data that I’m unaware of?

  38. jrlagoni says:

    Wonderful post and analysis, Anthony. Great overall info but wow, look at how we all tend to gravitate toward the ARCTIC sea ice extent. Just what the global warming alarmists probably want.

    And do you think the powers that be have fudged sensors or numbers or records over the years (ask Dr. Easterbrook about this, or better yet see his testimony to Congress on youtube). After closely following the Lake Michigan ice extent and mid-continent temperatures this winter, I REALLY feel for you folks trying to go on govt data concerning sea ice extents. I grew up on Lake Michigan and am an old geologist – it just seemed to me that numbers, records, publicity photos, and sensors experienced a lot of chicanery.

    The strong trend in Antarctic sea ice growth is intriguing. Maybe we should concentrate more on that. I used to hope for a degree or so of warming as I think that would be nicer temps to deal with in the northern hemisphere population and agricultural centers. But now I don’t – I hope for a Little Ice Age return because the ruination of science’s reputation is really pissing me off. Thank you to all who are major contributors here, but I would encourage us to be about the science and not a political position. Both the right and the left have obfuscated info throughout history – not one more than the other.

  39. Stephen Skinner says:

    Every time I have looked at the NRL Ice Thickness gif there is always ice flowing out of the Arctic via the Fram Strait:
    http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticict_nowcast_anim30d.gif
    It looks like significant volumes of ice are transported out via this strait continuously.

  40. Bruiser says:

    I am betting on another record year for Antarctic sea ice. The AWS at Dome A has already recorded a record low temperature of -92C and has dipped below -80C on several other occasions. The Australian bases at Casey and Davis have had above average mean maximums for Jan and Feb but are rapidly getting back to the average mean maximum for March. Meanwhile at Mawson, they had an above average Jan, average Feb and if the current trend continues, will set a new record low average maximum for March. The CAGW alarmists have a host of half plausible explanations for the record levels of sea ice (provided you don’t apply the same rationale to the Arctic) but for me the temperature has it.

  41. JBJ says:

    Gary Pearse says:
    March 25, 2014 at 7:46 am
    ” Its hard to believe there is any melting in the Canadian Arctic 2000km north of here.”

    - 31 degs Celsius in Iqaluit this morning :) No signs of melting here yet!

  42. joshuah says:

    By my reckoning the average Arctic maximum date has shifted by decade (starting with the 1980′s) from Mar 9 to Mar 4 to Mar 8 to Mar 13… So this decade is the latest but not by much.

    Meanwhile the Antarctic minimum, which occurs slightly before the Arctic maximum, has been remarkably stable and shifting ever so slightly earlier, with the 80′s-10′s averaging: Feb 26 / Feb 25 / Feb 24 / Feb 24.

    Hard to say if any of that is significant tho.

  43. John S. says: March 25, 2014 at 8:34 am

    Great Lakes “Sea” Ice?

    Good catch, corrected within the article. Thanks

  44. Caleb says:

    RE: Stephen Skinner says:
    March 25, 2014 at 1:44 pm
    “Every time I have looked at the NRL Ice Thickness gif there is always ice flowing out of the Arctic via the Fram Strait:
    http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticict_nowcast_anim30d.gif
    It looks like significant volumes of ice are transported out via this strait continuously.”

    No, it isn’t continuous. It is fairly regular, but there have been interruptions this winter. Also not as much ice came from the Pole via the Transpolar Drift, but came along the ice-edge north of Svakbard to the east.

    Keep paying attemtion and you’ll see what I mean. The ice seems to come through Fram Strait in bulges and pulses. There was a big one at the end of last week. Often it creates a sort of bulge “down-stream,” and the ice-extent will curve away from Greenland and be “above normal” (across the orange line) in the NSIDC map on the “Sea Ice Page.” This sort of “increased extent” is actually a loss to the Polar Total, in the long run, as it is heading south to melt. However if a lot heads south it can actually chill the waters of the North Atlantic. In 1817 so much ice flushed out that bergs were beaching in Ireland, and the chilled Atlantic may have contributed to the “Year Without a Summer.”

    The opposite occurred last summer. The flow through Fram Strait was reduced, as ice was pushed over towards Beaufort Gyre. The extent below Fram Strait was below normal even as sea-ice increased up at the Pole. It makes me wonder if that means the Atlantic waters were chilled less than normal last summer, which may have been part of the reason Barents Sea froze up less last winter.

    Recently a lot of ice has flushed out and traveled all the way through Denmark Strait to Cape Farewell at the bottom of Greenland. Also lots of ice has flushed south in Baffin Bay, and passed into the Atlantic off Newfoundland Island. (The top of Baffin Bay was ice-free at times in the depth of winter, so much ice was exported south.) I imagine the Atlantic has had a good chilling due to the addition of all this ice.

    The more you watch the ice the more you see about twenty things are going on at the same time. I don’t claim to understand it, but it is fun to witness, if you have the time.

  45. JBJ says:

    Caleb says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:24 pm
    “In 1817 so much ice flushed out that bergs were beaching in Ireland, and the chilled Atlantic may have contributed to the “Year Without a Summer.””

    Hi Caleb … this ice would have come from the Newfoundland side (i.e. come down with the Labrador Current)

  46. SIGINT EX says:

    LOL

    Yet another year, another example of the “Catastrophic Warmers” Catastrophic Failure. Surely His Majesty Ship Of The Realm That Floats The Mighty Seas Mark Serreze The Vietnam Vet Agent Orange Drinker of the NSIDC will commit suicide Oh Happy Day and leave this Earth for the more emotionally stable to comfort and those gifted with the ability of comprehension more that he being estranged at the level of the 8th Grade English Language.

    Ha ha Ha ha

  47. climateace says:

    SIGINT EX and numerous other posters, above

    Shakespeare had it right, IMHO. This blog post is Much Ado about Nothing much.

    You Skeptic Memers are all in such a hurry for your catastrophes! You want extinctions now! You want the Arctic to be ice-free now! You want the oceans to be acid now! You want coral reefs bleached now! You want every species that is extending its range or changing its phenology to be there already! You want the consequences to be terrible already! You want the air to be hot now!

    Why is it so?

    Warming, loss of global ice mass balance, changes to species ranges and the consequences, sea level rise, and chemistry changes to the ocean will take decades, centuries, millenia. No need for one-day-in-the year-annual or seasonal frenzies about anything, really.

    A year here or there is neither here nor there. A bit more sea ice here or there, or a bit less sea ice here or there in any given year is neither here nor there. Unless you are a Memer, of course.

    AGW is like the old saw, slowly, slowly catchee monkey. No need for you to hang on to your hats. It is going to be a slow ride. It is your grandchildren who are going to be in a position to make some real, hard judgements about our so-called risk management and one-off planet experimentation.

    This year’s sea ice minimum and maximum, what day in the calendar year it happens, how much sea ice volume there is on a given day, where it is thick, where thin, what the air temperature is on a given day, what the water temperature is on a given day, are all statistically meaningless, is it not so?

  48. climateace says: March 26, 2014 at 2:24 am

    Shakespeare had it right, IMHO. This blog post is Much Ado about Nothing much.

    I certainly agree about the “Nothing much” part, however “Much Ado” is in the eye of the beholder. It is the Warming Memers who told us that “Arctic is Caught in Rapid Melt ‘Death Spiral’”;
    http://ecowatch.com/2013/08/12/arctic-rapid-melt-death-spiral/

    that “Global Warming is Accelerating”
    http://www.nwf.org/Wildlife/Threats-to-Wildlife/Global-Warming/Global-Warming-is-Accelerating.aspx

    that “Global Warming Is Rapidly Accelerating”
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eric-zuesse/global-warming-is-rapidly_b_4499119.html

    and that “NASA scientists expect more rapid global warming in the very near future”:
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/NASA-scientists-expect-more-rapid-global-warming-in-the-very-near-future-part-2.html

    No need for one-day-in-the year-annual or seasonal frenzies about anything, really.

    Again, I agree, silly frenzies like these are unnecasary, i.e.: “Arctic sea ice at lowest level ever: Losses accelerating over last decade”;
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121003082526.htm

    Arctic sea ice shrinks to lowest ever level
    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/americas/2012/09/201292051955741907.html

    “2013′s Summer Arctic Sea Ice a Top 10 Low”;
    http://www.livescience.com/39833-2013-arctic-sea-ice-sixth-lowest.html

    This year’s sea ice minimum and maximum, what day in the calendar year it happens, how much sea ice volume there is on a given day, where it is thick, where thin, what the air temperature is on a given day, what the water temperature is on a given day, are all statistically meaningless, is it not so?

    Yes, Sea Ice change is primarily driven by wind and atmospheric oscillations;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/06/16/the-economist-provides-readers-with-erroneous-information-about-arctic-sea-ice/

    and Earth hasn’t warmed over the last 9 – 17 years depending on data set;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/01/25/when-did-global-warming-begin/

    thus all of the recent changes to sea ice are likely naturally occurring and nothing of concern.

  49. Caleb says:

    RE: JBJ says:
    March 25, 2014 at 9:01 pm
    Caleb says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:24 pm
    “In 1817 so much ice flushed out that bergs were beaching in Ireland, and the chilled Atlantic may have contributed to the “Year Without a Summer.””

    “Hi Caleb … this ice would have come from the Newfoundland side (i.e. come down with the Labrador Current)”

    Hi JBJ — You could be right, or it could have involved both sides of Greenland. We should get Dr. Tim Ball to comment. He was the one who put me on the trail of the huge post-Mount-Tamboro discharge of ice into the Atlantic. Apparently that volcano threw things out of balance, and rather than any sort of zonal flow around the Pole there was some sort of bizarre meridianal flow that had the Arctic Sea surprisingly ice-free,

    See more at: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/07/08/1815-1816-and-1817-a-polar-puzzle/

  50. Michael Jennings says:

    Hey climateace, you just got seriously OWNED. LOL

  51. Phil. says:

    Caleb says:
    March 26, 2014 at 6:34 am
    RE: JBJ says:
    March 25, 2014 at 9:01 pm
    Caleb says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:24 pm
    “In 1817 so much ice flushed out that bergs were beaching in Ireland, and the chilled Atlantic may have contributed to the “Year Without a Summer.””

    The “Year Without a Summer” was 1816 so whatever happened in 1817 could hardly be a cause!
    The Royal Navy sent a mission in 1818 to Spitzbergen to investigate reports that the ice between Greenland and Spitzbergen had gone. They found that the ice was normal and in fact got iced in on the west coast in June, that bay is currently ice free and has been all winter. It’s been possible to travel north of Spitzbergen without encountering sea ice this winter, even now at the maximum extent.
    http://lance-modis.eosdis.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/imagery/single.cgi?image=crefl1_143.A2014084144500-2014084145000.2km.jpg

  52. phlogiston says:

    Jeff says:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:49 am

    Look at the ice in the middle of the arctic and look at the ice near the Canadian coast and surrounding islands. That ice there is extremely thick. The Arctic Oscillation and the North Atlantic Oscillation are both in cold phases now, meaning that the warm gulf water is having difficulty penetrating and it is not warming that water. Ocean temperatures in that area is two degrees below normal. The north Atlantic is also below normal. When taken with the unusual thickness of MOST of the arctic ice, that suggests to me that the ice WON’T melt as easily (except for the area around Iceland and Scandinavia which has been warmer than normal all winter).

    I predict this will be a bad year for the alarmists as it appears that rapid ice recovery is now well on its way.

    You make an important point, data from Levitus on a strong correlation between AMO phase and Barents sea 100-150m depth temperatures make me suspect that the strength of the gulf stream warming flow to the Arctic could be the most important component of the AMO itself. So the AMO downslope can indeed to expected to bring Arctic ice recovery.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/10/08/new-paper-barents-sea-temperature-correlated-to-the-amo-as-much-as-4%c2%b0c/

  53. JBJ says:

    Hi Caleb … the currents would have been wrong for east Greenland ice to reach Ireland … here’s an article I found http://www.houghton.idv.hk/?p=190

  54. ES says:

    All the enthusiastic talk about shipping through the Arctic will remain mostly just that — talk — for the foreseeable future, says Transport Minister Lisa Raitt

    She bluntly offered a list of concerns — including from insurance companies who, she said, are the ones really calling the shots about what ships would be allowed to pass through the area.

    There are too many problems for now, including shallow passes and a lack of navigational markers, Raitt said. Any time savings offered by the shorter route would be negated if a ship got stuck, she added.

    Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/business/economy/Northwest+Passage+shipping+hopes+cooled+transport/9659329/story.html#ixzz2x5RPeeaM

  55. Snow White says:

    Re: Michael Jennings says:
    March 26, 2014 at 7:07 am

    [snip . . this is dull. Put some content into your contributions or you are just trolling . . mod]

  56. Snow White says:

    At the risk of repeating myself, here’s the latest dull content out of NSIDC:

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2014/03/Figure3-350×261.png

    Do you see the blue line heading for the bottom right?

  57. dbstealey says:

    Snow White,

    Global ice cover is right at it’s 30-year average [the red graph line]. That is because Antarctic ice cover has been steadily rising for many years.

    The basic debate is about global warming. If the planet was warming, then both poles would see declining ice. But as we see, that is simply not happening. That is because global warming has stopped. And not just recently: the planet stopped warming more than seventeen years ago.

    But by all means, continue with your ‘great white con’. Maybe you can fool a few realclimate folks.

  58. dbstealey says:

    SIGINT EX says:

    LOL. Yet another year, another example of the “Catastrophic Warmers” Catastrophic Failure.

    But ‘climateace’ objects to that fact being noted.

    Here’s how it is, ‘ace’:

    Planet Earth is decisively falsifying your global warming scare. It just isn’t happening. If the tables were turned and temperatures were rising fast, as was incessantly predicted by you and your ilk, then you would have bragging rights. The planet would be agreeing with you, and you know what? Scientific skeptics would accept what the planet was saying.

    That is the difference between skeprics and climate alarmists. Skeptics accept what reality tells them. But the alarmist crowd, being religious True Believers, will never accept reality. Instead, you cherry-pick the Arctic, and pretend the Antarctic doesn’t count — even though it has 10X the volume of ice that the Arctic has.

    I notice that you have once again moved the goal posts, this time to your grandchildren. How convenient, eh? Can’t falsify that, can we?

    Manmade global warming is your religion, and you cannot accept reality. You are as far from being scientific as a sixteenth century witch doctor in Africa. Your juju is supplied by anti-science blogs like SkS.

    Really, you would get some respect if you accepted what Planet Earth is clearly telling us: that global warming, like global cooling, is entirely natural. There is nothing unprecedented happening, and the only unusual thing we see is the exceptionally benign global climate over the past century and a half. Note that not one of your endless predictions of global catastrophe have come true. Not one. And all of your computer climate models have been flat wrong: not one of them predicted the 17+ year halt of global warming. They were all wrong.

    But like Chicken Little, you believe an acorn represents the sky. You simply cannot let go of your religion. Sad, really. Stand-up people admit it when they are proven wrong. Not you, though.

  59. climateace says:

    Willis did us all a favour a few strings ago by pointing out that much of the discussion about AGW is about Meming, or cultural transmission of fixed ideas, rather than about scientific discussion.

    In the latter, those discussing issues have open minds and are willing to change their minds when presented with new evidence or with compelling new interpretations of the evidence.

    Unfortunately, Willis only really looked at the Memers on one side, which was a bit unbalanced because it is fairly easy to pick dozens of Skeptic Memer posts in virtually any string in WUWT, including, ironically, in the string in which Willis was making his point.

    Memers who depart from the science look silly from a scientific perspective.

    It is good to see that such as Just the Facts – see above – agree with me completely that a single day cherry pick and single event frenzies are barely worth discussing from a scientific statistical point of view. Of course Just the Facts just looks at one side of the Memers, when, really, there are two lots of Memers who cluster around both sides of the concept of ‘Catastrophe Now!’

    I note that in recent WUWT blogs we have posts on a single Arctic winter maximum day, on the weight of a single species of animal, on the science used on another single species of animal, on a single storm and so on and so forth.

    While it may be useful to discuss the nitty gritty of a single species the key thing about AGW is that it will generate trends and it will generate patterns of consequences. Any single event, or discussion about any single day, or a discussion about any single species should, IMHO, be set in the context of these trends.

    AGW is like many a good meal… the cooking is done slowly.

  60. Snow White says:

    Dear dbstealey,

    According to the title this thread is about the Arctic. Here’s another dull blue Arctic sea ice extent trend line courtesy of the NSIDC:

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2000/02/Fig3_Jan2014_trend.png

    What do you suppose the one for March will reveal? Feel free to draw your own blue trend line on this dull graph of (estimated!) Arctic sea ice volume:

    http://GreatWhiteCon.info/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/piomas-20140228.png

    See what I meant in my (snipped) comment about all the long term trends heading towards the bottom right? Can you show me one that isn’t?

  61. climateace says: March 26, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    It is good to see that such as Just the Facts – see above – agree with me completely that a single day cherry pick and single event frenzies are barely worth discussing from a scientific statistical point of view. Of course Just the Facts just looks at one side of the Memers, when, really, there are two lots of Memers who cluster around both sides of the concept of ‘Catastrophe Now!’

    Can you provide examples of the ‘Catastrophe Now!’ Skeptical Memers you refer to, i.e. links to article similar to what I cited?

    I note that in recent WUWT blogs we have posts on a single Arctic winter maximum day, on the weight of a single species of animal, on the science used on another single species of animal, on a single storm and so on and so forth.

    “single Arctic winter maximum day”? The Arctic and Antarctic tend to have one maximum and one minimum per year, thus it seems reasonable to report on them, especially given the phoney ‘Catastrophe Now!’ death spiral meme.

    AGW is like many a good meal… the cooking is done slowly.

    No, the theory as put forth is that, “Global warming is the unusually rapid increase in Earth’s average surface temperature over the past century primarily due to the greenhouse gases released as people burn fossil fuels.”
    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/GlobalWarming/page2.php

    However, “The world added roughly 100 billion tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere between 2000 and 2010. That is about a quarter of all the CO₂ put there by humanity since 1750. And yet, as James Hansen, the head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, observes, ‘the five-year mean global temperature has been flat for a decade.’”
    http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21574461-climate-may-be-heating-up-less-response-greenhouse-gas-emissions

    If Earth is not warming as a result of the rapid increase to CO2, it indicates that Earth is not particularly sensitive to changes in CO2. As such, the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming narrative is falsified and there is no reason for us to be concerned about our CO2 emissions.

  62. RACookPE1978 says:

    Snow White says:
    March 26, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    At the risk of repeating myself, here’s the latest dull content out of NSIDC:

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2014/03/Figure3-350×261.png

    Do you see the blue line heading for the bottom right?

    At the risk of repeating myself, so what?

    The Antarctic sea ice that is reflecting energy back into space is many hundreds of kilometers closer to the equator than is the Arctic sea ice on every day of the year.

    That Antarctic sea ice is at its highest extents at the same times that the Arctic sea ice is at its minimum extents, and last October for example, just the “excess” Antarctic sea ice at latitude 60 south was larger than the ENTIRE area of Hudson Bay at latitude 60 north.
    At that same exact day-of-year, that “excess” Antarctic sea ice is irradiated by FIVE TIMES more solar radiation than the Arctic sea ice (on the same day of year) at its minimum extents.
    Within 10 years, if the ever-increasing Antarctic sea ice continues its steady expansion as it has since May 2010, it will block the sea routes around Cape Horn and the Magellan Straits.
    At today’s levels, at sea ice minimum between late August and early October, the Arctic Ocean LOSES more energy when the sea ice is removed than it gains from the received solar radiation. More sea ice loss in the Arctic, the more heat loss.

  63. phlogiston says:

    william on March 25, 2014 at 10:25 am

    Having watched sea ice extent data every day this winter here at Watts Up it looked like sea ice extent was going to recover to at least within the std dev of the 1979-2000 monthly average. That recovery stalled. Probably as others pointed out it was a result of the “polar vortex” we experienced a few times here in Chicago. I will stand by my prediction that sea ice extent at the summer low will be similar to the last few years. It will remain substantially below the k1979-2000 monthly average. As a result, warmists will have their typical field day pointing to the lack of ice as proof of our impending golbal warming doom.

    Temperature of air is only part of the story of Arctic ice and maybe a small part. The largest part is water temperature specifically warm water transport poleward from lower latitudes. Thus some recent summers have had very low summer ice minima despite quite low average summer air temperature.

    However as Jeff has posted above, there are signs that poleward heat transport in the gulf stream has been decreasing in the last year or two as part of the recently commenced fall of the AMO. Thus there could well be another strong Arctic September minimum regardless of what air temperature does.

    The low Arctic ice summer minima in recent years combined with low summer air temperatures there have caused a shed-load of heat to escape from the climate system as a whole (to space). This is part of the negative feedback associated with oscillating Arctic ice extent.

  64. phlogiston says:

    RACookPE1978 on March 26, 2014 at 5:28 pm

    Your point about Antarctic sea ice, latitude and albedo is important. It is understandable how Antarctic and Arctic ice may reciprocate due to heat piracy and the bipolar seesaw. However for ice to start increasing at both poles – that would be scary.

  65. dbstealey says:

    Snow White says:

    See what I meant in my (snipped) comment about all the long term trends heading towards the bottom right? Can you show me one that isn’t?

    Here is one that isn’t.

    And here.

    Here is another one.

    This will help you get your head out of your… clouds.

    You seem to believe NSIDC. Did you know they adjust inconvenient graphs?

    Here is another chart debunking your ice alarmism. Also, the Arctic is responding to our cooling planet.

    Finally, most of the Antarctic has been in a long-term cooling trend that has yet to change direction. Since the Antarctic contains 10x more ice than the Arctic, doesn’t it seem just foolish cherry-picking to be doing all your hand-waving over the Arctic?

    Wake up, Snow White. Your manmade global warming scare is being debunked by the only Authority that matters: Planet Earth.

  66. climateace says:

    JTF

    Thank you for your polite and considered reply.

    You ask me to provide links to articles. I was referring to dozens of posts on WUWT. I recall one in particular. A Skeptic Memer discussing extinction rates in a recent string asked rhetorically why there had not been thousands of extinctions already. I could have provided a scientific response but there was obviously no point because the comment was made by someone indulging in cultural transmission of a fixed idea and not in science.

    I recognise that some Skeptics are genuinely interested in the science just as thousands of climate scientists are also genuinely interested in the science. I welcome this.

    My general point: stands there are Memers active on both sides of the discussion.

    “‘I note that in recent WUWT blogs we have posts on a single Arctic winter maximum day, on the weight of a single species of animal, on the science used on another single species of animal, on a single storm and so on and so forth.

    “single Arctic winter maximum day”? The Arctic and Antarctic tend to have one maximum and one minimum per year, thus it seems reasonable to report on them, especially given the phoney ‘Catastrophe Now!’ death spiral meme.”

    I don’t have a difficulty with reporting a single day, local weather event, regional weather event or even national weather event, or a single species outcome. In fact I usually find the discussions very interesting. It is the weight given to them that is the point.

    Global, Arcitc or Antarctic Ice extent on a single day of the year has no statistical significance. Yet it has become Memer bait for both sides of the discussion. Weather in a single country has almost no particular significane on a global basis. Yet is has become Memer bait. The future of polar bears is an insignificant element of wholescale range and phenology changes. Yet the status of polar bears has become Memer bait.

    I agree with your comment on ‘Catastrophe Now!’ I think it righly belongs to the AGW Memer Club and not to scientists.

    I note your general comments on AGW and see that we will have to agree to differ on the science of AGW.

    This leaves the most interesting point of scientific contention between us: assuming, (solely for the sake of argument) that AGW is occurring and will continue to occur, how rapid is ‘rapid’? This is precisely the point I have been trying to make. Most of the pro- and anti- catastrophist Memers seem to have a bee in their bonnets about any catastrophes needing to be around the corner.

    IMHO this focus of the ‘AGW debate’ is mainly in the form of Memers on both sides hurling barbs, cherry-picked facts, personal insults and the like. It generates heat but no scientific light.

    One particular difficiulty may be that we culturally-attuned to events rather than to patterns and trends.

    Thus there is a tendency to define catastrophe as something that happens in a limited place, is dramatic, and occurs within a relatively short time scale.

    This tends to cause us to focus, for example, on a single extinction of a single species as if this is some sort of substitute for what is happening on a global scale to biodiversity. While interesting, it is not particularly significant. With respect to biodiversity, the trends and patterns that we need to focus on are range increases and phenology changes amongst thousands of species including weeds, feral pests, insect vectors of tropical diseases and numberless pathogens.

    A few decades, IMHO, is neither here nor there. A single storm or a single warm winter in a limited place or a single cold winter in a limited place, a single species that may or may not be increasing in population or range or weight are, similarly, the stuff of Memers on both sides.

    The answer to the important, rather than the insignificant, AGW questions lies not in odds and sods. It lies in trends, patterns, a global scale, and timelines of many decades and many centuries.

  67. According to the Daily AMSR2 sea ice maps, University of Bremen, Germany:
    Note that the maximum extent of Arctic sea ice was reached in 1979 and for the Antarctic in 2013.
    See http://www.iup.uni-bremen.de:8084/amsr2/extent_n_running_mean_amsr2_regular.png
    and http://www.iup.uni-bremen.de:8084/amsr2/extent_s_running_mean_amsr2_regular.png

  68. dbstealey says:

    climateace says:

    IMHO this focus of the ‘AGW debate’ is mainly in the form of Memers on both sides hurling barbs, cherry-picked facts, personal insults and the like. It generates heat but no scientific light.

    The ‘debate’ was about one thing, and one thing only: whether human CO2 emissions are causing climate catastrophe in the form of runaway global warming. That debate has been decisively won by scientific skeptics.

    Next, ‘ace’ says:

    …there is a tendency to define catastrophe as something that happens in a limited place, is dramatic, and occurs within a relatively short time scale.

    Well, that is pretty much the definition of a catastrophe. But now you are trying to move the goal posts once again, by saying that a “few decades, IMHO, is neither here nor there…. AGW… lies in trends, patterns, a global scale, and timelines of many decades and many centuries.”

    Ri-i-i-i-ght. So now that your climate catastrophe is nowhere to be seen, we must all change our outlook to “many centuries”??

    Wake up, ‘ace’. You lost the debate. You were flat wrong. Pushing your argument out to many centuries in the future shows how wrong you were.

    There is no scientific evidence proving that human emissions have any effect on global temperature. Thus, spending one more dollar to ‘mitigate’ the non-existent effects of [harmless, beneficial] CO2 is a dollar completely wasted.

    The most frustrating thing about this whole ‘debate’ is that the climate alarmist crowd knows that they have no scientific evidence to support their argument, but like religious believers everywhere, they dig in their emotion-based heels, and refuse to acknowledge scientific veracity. Your kind would be easy pickings for a 16th Century witch doctor.

  69. climateace says: March 26, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    I note your general comments on AGW and see that we will have to agree to differ on the science of AGW.

    But isn’t it a valuable goal to try determine if the science behind AGW is accurate? I have been looking for observational evidence of Co2 based AGW for many years, reviewing data from all available sources and I cannot find any convincing evidence to support the existence of CO2 driven AGW. I understand the underlying science and CO2 is clearly a greenhouse gas, however it appears as though Earth’s sensitivity to CO2 is less than projected by various models, possibly due to the logarithmic effect of CO2;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/05/08/the-effectiveness-of-co2-as-a-greenhouse-gas-becomes-ever-more-marginal-with-greater-concentration/

    that negative feedbacks are mitigating any CO2 based warming;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/30/lindzen-on-negative-climate-feedback/

    or otherwise.

    This leaves the most interesting point of scientific contention between us: assuming, (solely for the sake of argument) that AGW is occurring and will continue to occur, how rapid is ‘rapid’? This is precisely the point I have been trying to make. Most of the pro- and anti- catastrophist Memers seem to have a bee in their bonnets about any catastrophes needing to be around the corner.

    But rapidity is at the root of the scientific debate. Hypotheses are not proven by models, but by observations, and the observations currently show no significant change in the rate of warming after 1950, when the IPCC claims to be “95% certain that humans are the “dominant cause” of global warming”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24292615

    There is not only no observational evidence that “catastrophes needing to be around the corner”, but there is no observational evidence that CO2 based AGW will cause catastrophes at any point in the future.

    IMHO this focus of the ‘AGW debate’ is mainly in the form of Memers on both sides hurling barbs, cherry-picked facts, personal insults and the like. It generates heat but no scientific light.

    Totally agree there, this has turned into a PR debate versus a scientific debate for many.

    Thus there is a tendency to define catastrophe as something that happens in a limited place, is dramatic, and occurs within a relatively short time scale.

    But even defining “catastrophe” in the broadest terms possible, it still implies “a sudden and widespread disaster” or “Geology . a sudden, violent disturbance, especially of a part of the surface of the earth; cataclysm”;
    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/catastrophe

    and there is no observational evidence that CO2 based AGW will lead to such a “catastrophe”.

    A few decades, IMHO, is neither here nor there. A single storm or a single warm winter in a limited place or a single cold winter in a limited place, a single species that may or may not be increasing in population or range or weight are, similarly, the stuff of Memers on both sides.

    Yes, a few decades are negligible in the life of a 4.5 billion year old planet.

    The answer to the important, rather than the insignificant, AGW questions lies not in odds and sods. It lies in trends, patterns, a global scale, and timelines of many decades and many centuries.

    Agree, in this article;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/01/25/when-did-global-warming-begin/

    I looked back over the last 450,000 years and didn’t find any evidence of CO2 based AGW. Please read this article and let me know if you think I missed something.

  70. climateace says:

    JTF

    To sum up, we agree that the Memer focus on a single day event, a single weather event, a single species, a local weather event, a regional weather event or a national weather event belies what should be the scientific focus, which is patterns, trends, a global scale and decades and even centuries.

    I think we are also broadly on the same page with Memer’s attitudes to ‘catastrophes’ in the sense that the general concept of a catastrophy is that it is constrained in time, place and focus, whereas the AGW (should the latter happen) catastrophe will be global, and will take decades, centuries and millenia to exhibit. There may well be incidents of storms, hurricanes, cyclones, snow fall, snow cover, sea ice extent, ice mass balance in Greenland and Antarctica and the world’s tens of thousands of glaciers, storm surges, wildfires, rainfall, wind, cloudiness, and ocean chemistry that, taken as individual events, may well be statistically insignificant.

    The catastrophe will not be the parts but the sum of the parts. That will take some time to eventuate.

    It is interesting how different countries are approaching some of these issues, BTW. In response to concerns about AGW, the Netherlands began years ago to spread and raise their river levees, and to raise and thicken dykes. Houses in the Netherlands do not flood. In fact it is highly likely that no Dutch government would survive a large scale flooding event. OTOH, there are thousands of homes in low-lying parts of England, just across the ditch from the Netherlands, for which it is now impossible to get private sector flood insurance at all. The home owners are trying to get taxpayers to provide government insurance but I am not sure how that will go.

    They would no doubt be pleased that we have exempted them from being the AGW catastrophe: probably too soon to be AGW-related, too small an event, a single weather occurrence (although being repeated rather often), too localised and limited in duration.

    Those British homeowners who live in low lying areas which are increasingly subject to increased tidal reach and/or to changes in coastal geomorphology which are flooding some houses while dropping other houses over eroding cliff tops, might eventually come to the conclusion that rising sea-levels are not a good thing, of course.

    They might then have a personal interest in separating the Memers from the scientists.

    All we have to do is wait,

  71. Richard says:

    Hate to be a pessimist, but I think we will see another record low this summer. There was a lot of warmth in the Arctic this winter because the frigid air came down to the U.S.

  72. dbstealey says:

    ace says:

    The catastrophe will not be the parts but the sum of the parts. That will take some time to eventuate.

    I give up on ‘climateace’. His belief is religious, and total. He is clearly convinced that we are in the midst of a ‘catastrophe’, and he cherry-picks random natural variability to feed his Belief:

    …homeowners who live in low lying areas which are increasingly subject to increased tidal reach and/or to changes in coastal geomorphology which are flooding some houses while dropping other houses over eroding cliff tops, might eventually come to the conclusion that rising sea-levels are not a good thing…

    And so on. Skeptics cannot debate with emotion or religion. Debate must be rational. Ace would be fine, if he understood and accepted the climate Null Hypothesis, which has never been falsified. That hypothesis states that nothing currently being observed is unprecedented, or unusual. It has all happened before [when CO2 was low], and to a much greater degree.

    Therefore, how can the current, very benign global climate and temperature be a ‘catastrophe’? Only a religious True Believer in cAGW would make that preposterous claim.

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

    Richard says:

    “Hate to be a pessimist…”

    Nothing to be pessimistic about. Arctic ice cover is normal and natural. Earlier in the Holocene the Arctic was very likely ice-free. The ice comes and goes, and human activity has nothing to do with it. Just like human activity has nothing to do with Antarctic ice cover.

  73. dbstealey says:

    Also, here is more data for the wacky Snow White crowd.

    There is nothing unusual happening in the Arctic. The only unusual occurrence is in Snow White’s noggin.

  74. climateace says: March 26, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    whereas the AGW (should the latter happen) catastrophe will be global, and will take decades, centuries and millenia to exhibit.

    But this runs counter to the basic tenets of CO2 based AGW. If Earth is highly sensitive to CO2 the warming should be happening right now, as “The world added roughly 100 billion tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere between 2000 and 2010. That is about a quarter of all the CO₂ put there by humanity since 1750.” If Earth is not highly sensitive to CO2, then we will not expect AGW take decades, centuries and millenia to exhibit, rather we can safely catagorize CO2 as a minor climatic variable at current and foreseeable concentrations. As such we should focus our energy on understanding what really drives changes in Earth’s temperature, as this will allow us to best predict and adapt to future changes.

    It is interesting how different countries are approaching some of these issues, BTW. In response to concerns about AGW, the Netherlands began years ago to spread and raise their river levees, and to raise and thicken dykes. Houses in the Netherlands do not flood. In fact it is highly likely that no Dutch government would survive a large scale flooding event. OTOH, there are thousands of homes in low-lying parts of England, just across the ditch from the Netherlands, for which it is now impossible to get private sector flood insurance at all. The home owners are trying to get taxpayers to provide government insurance but I am not sure how that will go.

    Yes, preparation for naturally occurring severe weather events is a good idea, we should be expending more resources preparing for inevitable natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, droughts, tornadoes, volcanoes, etc.

    All we have to do is wait

    I figure a few more years at max. If Earth does not begin warming rapidly, then CO2 can be dismissed as a minor climatic variable at current and foreseeable concentrations and we can all move on.

  75. Snow White says:

    dbstealey – So your oracle in such matters is Steven Goddard’s ludicrously misnamed “Real Science”, rather than the NSIDC or NORSEX? Surely you jest?

    Paraphrasing his lurid headlines, “Arctic Sea Ice Extent WAS NOT Nearing Peak For The Past Decade” on March 16th, and there was no evidence for an “Arctic Ice Recovery” on March 7th.

    I repeat, if you can present any evidence to the contrary please do so. Show me the data, not largely irrelevant cherry picked images.

  76. Jimbo says:

    climateace …..
    “‘I note that in recent WUWT blogs we have posts on a single Arctic winter maximum day, on the weight of a single species of animal, on the science used on another single species of animal, on a single storm and so on and so forth.

    The first thing you need to note is that Warmists themselves are the ones who often pick on single events to provide positive proof of their assertions.

    Secondly a single storm is worth posting about bearing in mind that our host is a weatherman!!!! Come on now, WUWT is not owned by you or me. Think about it.

  77. dbstealey says:

    Snow White says:

    So your oracle in such matters is Steven Goddard’s ludicrously misnamed “Real Science”, rather than the NSIDC or NORSEX? Surely you jest?

    That is exactly the kind of response that we occasionally get here from someone who does not have any scientific evidence to support their position: total ad hominem bluster, with no redeeming scientific value. The bureaucrat links cited by Snow White show only natural climate variability, and nothing more.

    I have provided numerous links to legitimate charts and graphs that thoroughly debunk the catastrophic AGW nonsense. I can provide many more. Hundreds, in fact, from every point of view and from multiple sources. I have also shown how NSIDC ‘adjusts’ the climate record, to support it’s wild-eyed Arctic scare story.

    But as we see from Snow White’s religious-based Belief, none of it has the slightest impact. His/her mind is already made up, and closed tighter than a drumskin. No rational science is permitted entry, and any “facts” provided are carefully cherry-picked to support a conclusion that has already been decided upon.

  78. Snow White says:

    dbstealey – I’ve made no mention of “natural climate variability” or “catastrophic AGW nonsense”. That’s seem to be something you have already decided upon.

    I have asked you to provide a long term (lets say 30 years or more) graph for any measure of Arctic sea ice “quantity” showing anything other than a trend in the direction of the bottom right hand corner. You have so far failed to reveal one cherry, let alone “hundreds”.

    Q.E.D.?

    P.S. Inverting an axis doesn’t count!

  79. dbstealey says:

    Snow White needs to get up to speed on the Scientific Method: skeptics have nothing to prove.

    Rather, the onus is on the alarmist crowd to provide scientific evidence showing that their CO2/cAGW conjecture is true. They have failed miserably.

    But there is no scientific evidence supporting their belief in manmade global warming. None at all. Every last climate model has failed. They were all wrong.

    The alarmist crowd is fixated on Arctic ice, instead of on global ice cover. Why? Because that is their last forlorn hope; every other climate scare has been debunked. Well, it’s time to debunk the ‘disappearing Arctic ice’ scare, too:

    Global sea ice is at it’s 30-year average [the red graph – click in chart to embiggen]. We already know about the polar see-saw, in which the NH and SH poles balance each other out. That effect can be clearly seen in the global ice chart above.

    There is nothing either unusual or unprecedented happening. What we observe now has happened before, repeatedly, and to a much greater degree. Rational folks understand that. It is called the climate Null Hypothesis, and it has never been falsified. The Null Hypothesis is a corollary of the Scientific Method. So is the fact that the onus is on those who produce the catastrophic CO2/AGW conjecture, to suport their belief with scientific evidence.

    But there is no evidence proving that Arctic ice is in unprecedented decline. None at all. There is no evidence to prove that the current Arctic ice fluctuation is anything other than natural climate variability. Occam’s Razor says that natural variability is by far the most likely explanation.

    The Arctic ice scare is just the same as all the other climate scares. It is promoted by religious True Believers, who expect everyone to share in their Chicken Little panic.

    But that only works on those who are ruled by emotion, and fright is an emotion. Scientific skeptics, OTOH, are logical, and therefore they are unaffected by the silly ‘Arctic ice’ scare.

  80. Snow White says:

    dbstealey – So to summarise, you cannot muster a single chart to refute my assertion about Arctic sea ice decline, let alone “hundreds”.

    For your edification, and for that of the writer of the original article who for some strange reason neglected to include a graph showing the long term trend in Arctic sea ice maximum extent, here is one I prepared earlier:

    http://GreatWhiteCon.info/2014/03/watts-up-with-the-maximum-trend/#MaxExtent

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