NOAA Expert: Lake Superior may have ice in June

lice-00[1]Submitted by Eric Worrall

George Leshkevich, a NOAA expert on Great Lakes ice, suggested in an interview that he wouldn’t be surprised if there was ice on Lake Superior in June.

While satellite images show more ice broken up and in smaller floes, there’s “a lot still on the lake,” Leshkevich said.

He said ice on the lake this year compares to 1979 in terms of coverage, with about 67 percent iced over on the comparable date of April 23.

He’s still running the numbers, but 2014 looks like “there’s going to be even more” lingering ice than in 1979. “This year is maybe a record-breaking year.”

The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming, has been causing significant difficulties for local shipping.

h/t IceAgeNow – http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/content/will-lake-superior-still-have-ice-june

See more data on the WUWT Great Lakes Ice Page

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70 Responses to NOAA Expert: Lake Superior may have ice in June

  1. ConfusedPhoton says:

    “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming”

    Do these people actually realise how stupid they sound?

  2. jones says:

    Oh please when will “they” just stop this insanity of AGW/CAGW/CC etcetc?

    Concentrate on real environmental issues.

    When?

  3. JimS says:

    Darn that global warming for making ice stay longer on the Great Lakes. It’s worse than we thought.

  4. dmacleo says:

    The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming,

    excellent snark :)

  5. Brad says:

    So what would happen if we kept all ice breakers tied up at the piers and let Mother Nature take her own course on reducing the ice?
    Are we not making things worse (sarc) by breaking it up and accelerating the melt?
    We would also save all that nasty CO2 being pumped out by the ships…:)

  6. V.P. says:

    Global freezing. If the Potomac River, neare the White House, has Ice in May will they call it Global Warming?

  7. Latitude says:

    This from the article is also noteworthy….

    “The surface temperature of the water, once on a warming trend, hasn’t risen in the past two years.”

  8. pokerguy says:

    “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming”
    Do these people actually realise how stupid they sound?
    ***
    Think about it for a second. The climate is a complex mechanism. Warmth in one area can certainly cause cold in another, and the reverse. Don’t believe me? Think about the effects of an el nino, which while warming of the globe over all, certainly causes cooler weather in parts of the world.

    The problem isn’t the notion itself, but the ad hoc nature of it.

  9. John says:

    How about we put people on those ice flows and use flame thrower guns to melt the ice? Oh, wait, no! those flame throwers might add to global warming because the fuel they burn causes global warming which leads to summer ice flows on the lakes!

  10. Village Idiot says:

    Undercurrents of the NIMBY syndrome from the Villagers here. In My Back Yard its cold. Must be the same worldwide.

  11. Brad says:

    “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming, has been causing significant difficulties for local shipping.”
    This statement is not in the article, seems to have been a comment by Anthony?

    To follow my previous comment, doesn’t the AGW crowd think that idle steel plants are a good thing? Maybe they should start calling for a ban on ice breaking activities, world wide? (sarc)
    But wait, they don’t really want increased ice pack so….nice catch-22.

  12. Paul Jackson says:

    On local news (Detriot) the other night they were showing video of what the Youppers were calling an Ice-tsunami, the has driven lake Superior ice further ashore than anybody remembers. Of course the Ice on land should melt faster than floating ice, but it’s pretty dramatic seeing ice over a foot thick in May piled up on someones tool shed!

  13. glaxx zontar says:

    Co2 seems very selective in choosing to warm up some areas of the planet, could easily be mistaken for natural variation imo.

  14. Jimbo says:

    From Steve Goddard.

    3 May 2014
    “Coldest January-April In US History”
    https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2014/05/03/coldest-january-april-in-us-history/

  15. Pat says:

    Well all models show that global warming anticipated record ice levels in Antarctica and the Great Lakes. Right?
    Climate models are being reconstructed faster than temperature data fabrication.

  16. Jimbo says:

    So much for early Springs in the US.

    It looks like Spring snow extent has been recovering in North America in recent years. Here is a graph without 2014 it think. The trend has been heading down since 1967.
    http://climate.rutgers.edu/snowcover/chart_seasonal.php?ui_set=namgnld&ui_season=2

  17. copernicus34 says:

    #blowtorch

  18. Jimbo says:

    Lake Superior and the ‘ice Tsunami’ – 2 days ago.

  19. u.k.(us) says:

    John says:

    May 3, 2014 at 9:34 am

    How about we put people on those ice flows and use flame thrower guns to melt the ice? Oh, wait, no! those flame throwers might add to global warming because the fuel they burn causes global warming which leads to summer ice flows on the lakes!
    ===================
    As a land surveyor in the greater Chicagoland area, where some of the reference points are chiseled into the sidewalks fronting the properties, the use of a butane torch to melt the snow/ice doesn’t work as well as one might think.
    The ice turns to water that then just absorbs the heat from the torch (or something).

  20. faboutlaws says:

    Over at Steve Goddard’s site is an article about an Austrian rapper dissing AGW. His song is pretty good. It should be cross posted here.

  21. Jimbo says:

    I like this bit.

    Will Lake Superior still have ice in June?
    The scientist knows full well of the struggles ships have faced on Lake Superior. He was on board the Mackinaw in late March when it met 42 inches of ice in Whitefish Bay, the door to the Soo Locks. Ice damaged ships and cutters.

    “It’s a hard year,” he said. “It’s been brutal.”
    http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/content/will-lake-superior-still-have-ice-june

    Not so long ago they were telling us about the hotting up of the Great Lakes. They promised us giant fish soup.

    Recently Lake Superior hits highest April level in 16 years!
    http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/content/lake-superior-hits-highest-april-level-16-years-1

  22. Bob Diaz says:

    I get the feeling that if we enter into another ice age, we’ll still be hearing about “Global Warming” is at fault.

  23. Anthony Watts says:

    @faboutlaws WUWT is a rap free zone. Not just no, but hell no.

  24. Nice spring weather – and pretty normal. 10 inches of snow in the mountains here last night, another 10 or more expected. Three more weeks of skiing in Banff. I am soooo worried about “Climate Change” . No really. Look at Calgary, Alberta this morning: http://tinypic.com/r/2rf4fug/8
    Oh, wait. This is normal. Well, off to wax my skis. 😄

  25. Dave says:

    Paul Jackson, the correct name is “Yoopers”!

    I grew up near the eastern end of Lake Superior and remember standing on the shore on June 1st, 1975. There were piles ice on the beach about 8-10 feet high .

  26. C.M. Carmichael says:

    Intelligent talk and no rap, sounds like a great radio station idea Anthony.

  27. Caleb says:

    “….No doubt caused by Global Warming…”

    I think it was Eric Warrell who said that, and forgot to add the “/sarc” tag. If it had been a true believer, or a person afraid of losing their job, they would substituted the words “might”, “could”, “perhaps”, “maybe”, and “modeled”, for the word “undoubtedly.”

    Think of it as deadpan humor. Those of you who can remember the comedian Pat Paulson can imagine him saying, “….No doubt caused by Global Warming…” with his expressionless face and flat, emotionless voice, and the audience cracking up.

  28. Jimbo says:

    A cool summer and autumn is predicted in the Great Lakes.

    USA Today
    …..The remaining levels of ice cover are amazing, said Jia Wang, an ice climatologist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration‘s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor.

    This prolonged winter will affect summer temperatures. This summer will be cold, and then a cooler fall,” he said.

    In addition to wreaking havoc on the Great Lakes shipping industry and impacting fish and other aquatic species, the miles of ice cover serve as a vast, white reflector.

    All that sunlight that would normally heat up the water is just bouncing back up into space,” said Jay Austin, an associate professor at the University of Minnesota-Duluth’s Large Lakes Observatory, who agrees with Wang about the ice cover’s impacts on this summer, but disagrees about its potential impacts on weather beyond that……
    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/04/30/great-lakes-ice-cover-slow-to-melt/8540695/

  29. mkelly says:

    Here in the eastern end of the UP the small lakes still have ice on them. Clear Lake near Kinross, Michigan had ice on it yesterday when I drove by.

  30. TimB says:

    Well, it was warm somewhere.

  31. dmacleo says:

    “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming”

    Do these people actually realise how stupid they sound?

    you do realize its the author of THIS posting that put that there right?

  32. Rob Dawg says:

    Any indications how this will effect the UP’s coconut and banana harvests this season?

  33. vukcevic says:

    In contrast to the USA, the last 12 months, while mostly above the 20 year average, have seen return of stability to the CET daily maximum / minimum temperatures
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/CET-dMm.htm

  34. Brian H says:

    Do these people actually realise realize how stupid they sound?

    Do you?

  35. DougByMany says:

    http://www.greatlakesmapping.org/great_lake_stressors/5/decreased-winter-ice-cover

    Evidence to date and future projections suggest climate change will bring reductions in the extent and duration of winter ice cover, and Lakes Erie and Superior may show the greatest changes.

    Hmmm… Evidence
    http://iceweb1.cis.ec.gc.ca/Prod20/page3.xhtml
    Still 2500% above normal.
    h/t Steve Goddard

  36. R. de Haan says:

    In the mean time in Argentina: cars rescued in heavy snow:
    http://iceagenow.info/2014/05/cars-rescued-heavy-snow-argentina/

  37. ntesdorf says:

    “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming”

    Any more of that Global Warming and the Great Lakes will be covered in ice all year round!

  38. richard says:

    pipes still frozen in Winnipeg.

    http://www.cjob.com/2014/04/29/34026/

  39. Pretty soon fresh water will be melting at 50°C (after adjustments).

  40. clipe says:

    Village Idiot says:
    May 3, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Undercurrents of the NIMBY syndrome from the Villagers here. In My Back Yard its cold. Must be the same worldwide

    Analogy failure Idiot.

    NIMBY = Not In My Backyard.

  41. Dave says:

    mkelly says:
    May 3, 2014 at 10:52 am
    Here in the eastern end of the UP the small lakes still have ice on them. Clear Lake near Kinross, Michigan had ice on it yesterday when I drove by.

    mkelly,
    I grew up in Dafter and used to swim at Clear Lake!

  42. Dave says:

    The USCG Icebreaker Mackinaw sailed the Great Lakes for 60 years and could break through the thickest ice, It was 290 feet long, 74 feet wide, and had a draft of 19.5 feet. About eight years ago, it was replaced with the “New Mackinaw”, which is 240 feet long, 58.5 feet wide, and has a draft of 16 feet.

    The New Mac is a poor substitute for the original. It could not clear ice by itself and needed assistance from other ice breakers. The Canadian Icebreaker Pierre Radisson did the heavy lifting this year.

    Rhetorical question: Do you think the Coast Guard replaced the original Mackinaw with a lesser vessel because the didn’t expect to ever see heavy ice conditions again… due, of course, to global warming?

  43. Ed Mertin says:

    Going from one extreme (devastating ice storm 2009) to abnormally heavy snow and floods the following year to horrific multi-state tornadoes 2011, think Joplin) to (tree killing drought/hot 2012) to horrific tornadoes again (El Reno, Moore) to (super cold this year) to another round of horrific multi-state tornadoes has just about made life somewhat miserable on/ around the Ozarks plateau.

  44. Scott says:

    On some Lake Superior south shore vertical sandstone bluffs (I’m thinking of some east of Munising, Michigan) ice sometimes lingers well into June on the bluffs, because ice that collected on these bluffs is shaded from the sun and kept cool by the lake. Frugal Yooper fishermen have been known to fill their fishing coolers with this ice to save a few bucks.

  45. pat says:

    send this link to the AG of West Virginia:

    3 May: WOWK TV: Linda Harris: Morrisey urges EPA to delay carbon dioxide regulations for existing power plants
    Attorney General Patrick Morrisey wants the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to delay imposing stringent carbon dioxide emission regulations on existing power plants until it “resolves substantial problems with the proposed regulations for new power plants.”
    In a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, Morrisey said the regulations for existing power plants should be postponed because they are based on flawed rules targeting new power plants. The EPA’s first attempt at creating new source performance standards — or NSPS — had to be withdrawn after the comment process revealed numerous defects. The current version also suffers from multiple, well-documented problems he said, and has been heavily criticized by job-creators and bipartisan leaders across the nation…
    “Driven by the ideology that ‘big government knows best,’ the EPA seems intent on pushing these job-killing regulations regardless of the real concerns voiced by our citizens, job-creators, and elected leaders from both parties.”
    Morrisey urged McCarthy and other EPA officials to travel to West Virginia and hear firsthand from people who will be directly impacted by the proposed regulations.
    “If permitted to become law, these regulations will have serious consequences for anyone who pays an electric bill and will have a negative impact on the economies of West Virginia and other coal-producing states,” Morrisey said..
    .Morrisey also outlined concerns with the current proposed regulations for new power plants, pointing out that the proposal relies heavily on government-funded projects employing carbon capture and storage, or CCS, “even though the EPA cannot identify even one coal-burning power plant currently using CCS on a commercial scale.” The letter states that this reliance is a violation of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, a law that expressly forbids the EPA from setting performance standards based on technology that is funded by government subsidies…
    http://www.wowktv.com/story/25415027/morrisey-urges-epa-to-delay-carbon-dioxide-regulations-for-existing-power-plants

  46. Eric Worrall says:

    The comment “The unusually high level of ice cover on the Great Lakes, no doubt caused by global warming, has been causing significant difficulties for local shipping.” is my comment.

    Leshkevich has not to my knowledge attributed the current ice cover on the Great Lakes to climate change.

    I am sorry this was not clear from the content of the post.

    I made the comment, because as we all know, every vaguely unusual weather event is our fault – such events are caused by global warming climate change global climate disruption Climate weirding. I did not intend my comment to be interpreted as something I claimed Leshkevich said.

  47. John F. Hultquist says:

    A MODIS regional map is at the link below. Click on a lake to view the large image. Read the directions.
    Lake Superior recently has had a lot of cloud cover but maybe Sunday’s will be less.

    http://coastwatch.glerl.noaa.gov/webdata/cwops/html/modis/region_map.html

  48. North of 43 and south of 44 says:

    Rob Dawg says:
    May 3, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Any indications how this will effect the UP’s coconut and banana harvests this season?

    ———————————————————————————————————-

    Can’t say about those particular harvests, however the flamingos won’t be back this year.

  49. No, global warming is not the cause for ice lasting his long on the lake.. Its caused by , lack of sun spots .. proven in the past , like the year with out a summer, states that the sun was quite in the year before and after the year without a summer. Stating lack of sun spots from the sun. Thats real science people .

  50. pat says:

    23 April: NYT: Carl Zimmer: Springing Forward, and Its Consequences
    This is a busy time of year for Richard B. Primack, a biologist at Boston University. He and his colleagues survey the plants growing around Concord, Mass., recording the first day they send up flowers and leaves.
    ***Compared to the last five springs, things are pretty slow right now around Concord, in large part because of the relatively cold winter and chilly March.
    ***But Dr. Primack wouldn’t call this a late spring. “It’s just much later compared to our recent memories of spring,” he said.
    Dr. Primack knows this thanks to Henry David Thoreau…
    Eventually, the beneficial impacts of the changing seasons may screech to a halt. That’s because global warming is expected to bring drought to many parts of the world. Extra carbon dioxide may no longer save plants enough water to continue growing.
    “If things really get warm and toasty, then I can see the benefit that carbon dioxide brings may be overcome,” said Dr. Morgan.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/24/science/springing-forward-and-its-consequences.html?_r=0

  51. pat says:

    WSJ Market Watch: 9 HOURs ago Live Blog 2014 Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting: live
    Andrew Ross Sorkin asks Buffett about climate change.
    “You have investments in things like renewable energy and electric cars but BNSF carries lots of coal. What happens in the future?”
    #BRK2014: Buffett: “I don’t think in making an investment decision in Berkshire – or any company – climate change should be a factor.”
    Munger answers: There is plainly global warming, but people who know exactly what is going to happen are talking through their hats. Climate changes are a real issue, but no one really knows how to quantify the impact. We’re going to need a lot more electricity made from the sun. Berkshire is positioned well with investments in renewable generation and transmission lines…
    http://stream.marketwatch.com/story/markets/SS-4-4/

  52. pat says:

    so far, NYT not including the CC comments of Buffett & Munger at the AGM:

    3 May: NYT: Berkshire Hathaway’s 2014 Shareholder Meeting
    By MICHAEL J. DE LA MERCED:
    12.36 P.M. Factoring in Climate Change: Mr. Sorkin asks about climate change and whether Berkshire will meaningfully move away from fuel sources like coal, which are used in the company’s energy plants and are hauled by its railroads.
    Mr. Buffett says it is a given that Berkshire will expand its use of alternative fuels, but until state power regulators require the company to stop using coal in its power plants, for example, it will use fossil fuels as well.
    Mr. Munger, known for being more conservative than Mr. Buffett counterpart, is a bit more dismissive about climate change and says some people tend to overestimate the kind of effect it can have.
    Still, both agree that Berkshire will eventually step further away from fossil fuel. Just not any time soon.
    http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/05/03/live-blog-berkshire-hathaways-2014-shareholder-meeting/

    SMH Australia has the quotes, but doesn’t indicate Buffett said the first & Munger the second “agnostic” quote – see WSJ Marketwatch link posted above:

    4 May: SMH: Jonathan Shapiro: Warren Buffett disappointed with offshore success
    Buffett and Munger on climate change
    “I don’t think in making a decision on Berkshire and other companies that climate change should be a factor in the decision making.
    “A lot of people are over-claiming that they know the impact. We are agnostic. It’s not there isn’t global warming because there is, but those that say they know its impact are talking out of their hats.”…
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/world-business/warren-buffett-disappointed-with-offshore-success-20140504-37pqq.html

  53. pat says:

    re Berkshire Hathaway AGM: should have made clear that andrew ross sorkin is a NYT writer, but he hasn’t put up an article on the AGM as yet.

  54. bushbunny says:

    Does anyone know what the Gulf Stream is doing? That will definitely cool North America if it slows or is diverted, but in UK they are saying they have a pleasantly wet but warm spring, for them, which would be very cold in Australia. My old barometer tells me it is warming a bit today from yesterday. But the inside temps are 10 C (without heating).

  55. policycritic says:

    My relatives in Calgary Alberta Canada told me Friday night that it was snowing and miserable. May 1! Unbelievable.

  56. Streetcred says:

    May 3, 2014 at 5:24 pm | Eric Worrall says:
    ——–

    Aussie-dry sarcasm, Eric … they’ll get used to it ;)

  57. policycritic says:

    bushbunny says:
    May 3, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    Go here: http://earth.nullschool.net. Use your cursor to move the globe to the part you want to see. Then click on earth lower left. Chose 250 in the Height category; that’s the Jet Stream. Click earth to restore image.

  58. jon spencer says:

    If there is ice in June, it will not be anything new. At Isle Royale National Park, there has been ice in the rocky area on the north side of Scoville Point on the Fourth of July in years past. This (the Palisades) area does not get that much sun and is next to the colder lake water. Actual ice on the lake would be unusual though.

  59. Alan Robertson says:

    Village Idiot says:
    May 3, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Undercurrents of the NIMBY syndrome from the Villagers here. In My Back Yard its cold. Must be the same worldwide.
    __________________________
    Perhaps you could address the current positive global sea ice anomaly of over 900,000 Km2… that’s a good sized back yard for you.

  60. Alan Robertson says:

    Michael D Smith says:
    May 3, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    In June 1876, 27 steamers were stuck in ice in Duluth harbor. http://zenithcity.com/zenith-city-history-archives/duluth-architecture/george-b-mary-sargent-house/
    _________________________
    Thanks for the interesting link, which fosters some questions: How many effective steam- powered icebreakers were in use in Duluth harbor in 1876, which was in the time period considered to be “The Little Ice Age”? How may ships would have been stuck in Duluth Harbor in the past 10 yrs. if those same icebreakers were currently all that were available?

  61. herkimer says:

    bushbunny
    “Does anyone know what the Gulf Stream is doing?”
    I don’t know about the Gulf Stream but, AMO or ATLANTIC MULTIDECADAL OSCILATION has been negative for 3 months now , confirming a cooling NORTH ATLANTIC ocean SST. If it continues, then there will be cooler weather ahead for EASTERN NORTH AMERICA and WESTERN EUROPE.To-date the impact has been felt mostly in eastern North America.

  62. herkimer says:

    I don’t know if anyone else noticed but PDO has gone positive and AMO has gone negative for 3 months now, exactly opposite of what they were last year. . If this pattern continues for the next 12 months , we can expect a possible repeat of 1895-1915 or 1975-1995 type of weather pattern with a possible El NINO in the middle . This means more drought for the South west[ also PACIFIC NORTH WEST, MAINE , UPPER PLAINS states,and parts of SOUTHEAST states] unless the El Nino brings some rain when part of the jet stream splits in two as it sometime does and the lower or southern branch comes over the south west bringing more rain with it to the southern part of United States

  63. empire sentry says:

    Guess he must be new at his job and hasn’t looked at any previous years or perhaps he is new to the region….ice on Superior throughout the entire year is normal.

    Here is NOAA Lake Superior Ice coverage records. All years show some ice.

    Some years like from 88 through 94 show no melting.

    http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/ice/imgs/sup.jpg

    The Canadian ice records indicate mush different records, but so it goes…

    To those of us who live on the Great Lakes, these kind of statements are laughable. Its like saying “OMG, its Spring and its raining!! We are all going to die”

  64. mjmsprt40 says:

    Lake Superior is the coldest of the Great Lakes so ice may be expected on this lake longer than the others because of that reason alone.

    About the statement that the reason for the ice is undoubtedly because of global warming: I am really beginning to believe that we could have glaciers in Miami, Florida in July and some of those “scientists” will figure out a way to blame man-made global warming for causing it. I really wonder if they even have a clue what they’re talking about.

  65. Chad Wozniak says:

    Now, now, the “climate scientists” at the White House just got through saying January 2014 was the warmest on record. Shame on you skeptics for being skeptical of that! Where do you get off showing all those pictures of ice and snow in May? Couldn’t happen – snow and ice are things of the past! Must have photoshopped them! /sarc

  66. E.M.Smith says:

    But it is a warm and rotten ice…
    /sarc

  67. bushbunny says:

    The North West Passage is a good indicator too. Why it is under territorial dispute right now.
    Any ships going through it, are supposed to contact the Canadian government for permission.

  68. TonyG says:

    Bob Diaz says:
    I get the feeling that if we enter into another ice age, we’ll still be hearing about “Global Warming” is at fault.

    I’ve seen programs on NGC that are already saying that global warming could cause another ice age. They’re already covering their bases on that.

  69. Ric Werme says:

    empire sentry says:
    May 4, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Guess he must be new at his job and hasn’t looked at any previous years or perhaps he is new to the region….ice on Superior throughout the entire year is normal.

    Here is NOAA Lake Superior Ice coverage records. All years show some ice.

    Some years like from 88 through 94 show no melting.

    http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/ice/imgs/sup.jpg

    The image you link to is titled “Annual Maximum Ice Cover” – it does not support your claim of ice throughout the entire year.

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