Claim: Antartica record high sea ice partially an artifact of an algorithm

From the European Geosciences Union

Tabular iceberg surrounded by sea ice in the Antarctic

Tabular iceberg surrounded by sea ice in the Antarctic (Credit: Eva Nowatzki, distributed via imaggeo.egu.eu)

New research suggests that Antarctic sea ice may not be expanding as fast as previously thought. A team of scientists say much of the increase measured for Southern Hemisphere sea ice could be due to a processing error in the satellite data. The findings are published today in The Cryosphere, a journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).

Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate. In contrast, satellite observations suggest that sea ice cover in the Antarctic is expanding – albeit at a moderate rate – and that sea ice extent has reached record highs in recent years. What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world has puzzled scientists since the trend was first spotted. Now, a team of researchers has suggested that much of the measured expansion may be due to an error, not previously documented, in the way satellite data was processed.

“This implies that the Antarctic sea ice trends reported in the IPCC’s AR4 and AR5 [the 2007 and 2013 assessment reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] can’t both be correct: our findings show that the data used in one of the reports contains a significant error. But we have not yet been able to identify which one contains the error,” says lead-author Ian Eisenman of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at University of California San Diego in the US.

Reflecting the scientific literature at the time, the AR4 reported that Antarctic sea ice cover remained more or less constant between 1979 and 2005. On the other hand, recent literature and the AR5 indicate that, between 1979 and 2012, Southern Hemisphere sea ice extent increased at a rate of about 16.5 thousand square kilometres per year. Scientists assumed the difference to be a result of adding several more years to the observational record.

“But when we looked at how the numbers reported for the trend had changed, and we looked at the time series of Antarctic sea ice extent, it didn’t look right,” says Eisenman, who set out to figure out what was wrong.

Scientists have used satellite data to measure sea ice cover for 35 years. But the data doesn’t come from a single instrument, orbiting on a single satellite throughout this period. Instead, researchers splice together observations from different instruments flown on a number of different satellites. They then use an algorithm – the most prevalent being the Bootstrap algorithm – and further processing to estimate sea ice cover from these data.

In the study published in The Cryosphere, Eisenman and collaborators compare two datasets for sea ice measurements. The most recent one, the source of AR5 conclusions, was generated using a version of Bootstrap updated in 2007, while the other, used in AR4 research, is the result of an older version of the algorithm.

The researchers found a difference between the two datasets related to a transition in satellite sensors in December 1991, and the way the data collected by the two instruments was calibrated. “It appears that one of the records did this calibration incorrectly, introducing a step-like change in December 1991 that was big enough to have a large influence on the long-term trend,” explains Eisenman.

Difference between sea ice cover in two datasets (Credit: Eisenman et al., The Cryosphere, 2014)

To measure sea ice cover, researchers splice together observations from different instruments flown on a number of different satellites. They then use an algorithm – the most prevalent being the Bootstrap algorithm – and further processing to estimate sea ice cover from these data. A new The Cryosphere study compares two datasets for sea ice measurements: one generated using a version of Bootstrap updated in 2007, and another that results from an older version of the algorithm. Subtracting the older dataset from the new one, shows a spurious jump in the satellite record in December 1991. The vertical dotted lines indicate transitions between satellite sensors, with the December 1991 change dominating the difference in ice cover in the two versions. (Click image for higher resolution.) Credit:Eisenman et al., The Cryosphere, 2014

“You’d think it would be easy to see which record has this spurious jump in December 1991, but there’s so much natural variability in the record – so much ‘noise’ from one month to the next – that it’s not readily apparent which record contains the jump. When we subtract one record from the other, though, we remove most of this noise, and the step-like change in December 1991 becomes very clear.”

With the exception of the longer time period covered by the most recent dataset, the two records were thought to be nearly identical. But, by comparing the datasets and calculating Antarctic sea ice extent for each of them, the team found that there was a stark difference between the two records, with the current one giving larger rates of sea ice expansion than the old one in any given period.

If the error is in the current dataset, the results could contribute to an unexpected resolution for the Antarctic sea ice cover enigma.

###

This research is presented in the paper ‘A spurious jump in the satellite record: has Antarctic sea ice expansion been overestimated?’ to appear in the EGU open access journal The Cryosphere on 22 July 2014.

The scientific article is available online, free of charge, from the publication date onwards, at http://www.the-cryosphere.net/recent_papers.html. *A pre-print copy of the paper is available for download at http://www.egu.eu/news/118/is-antarctic-sea-ice-cover-really-setting-record-highs/*.

The team is composed of Ian Eisenman (Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California at San Diego, USA), Walter Meier (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, USA) and Joel R. Norris (Scripps).

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223 thoughts on “Claim: Antartica record high sea ice partially an artifact of an algorithm

  1. Next, I expect that they will investigate the US land temperature reports from GISS and NCDC and discover that they are all an artifact….or not.

  2. Unfortunately for these researchers, there is no visible step in the Antarctic sea ice anomaly circa 1992. In fact, the graph is unusually flat during this period. On the other hand, starting around 2011, the graph shoots up at an uncharacteristically high rate. The error they describe cannot have produced this.

  3. “our findings show that the data used in one of the reports contains a significant error. But we have not yet been able to identify which one contains the error,” says lead-author Ian Eisenman

    Surely they are joking. “there must be an error somewhere but we couldn’t find it” now merits publication in a Science journal? Color me contemptuous…..

    Here’s a thought – perhaps increasing antarctic sea-ice is due to the fact that the planet isn’t warming. See – no error needed.

  4. So they’ve been reporting too much ice? Maybe the Arctic death spiral actually happened and you could now sail across an ice-free North Pole? I think I’ll let someone else go first and check before I try sailing it.

  5. This implies that the Antarctic sea ice trends reported in the IPCC’s AR4 and AR5 [the 2007 and 2013 assessment reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] can’t both be correct…

    But isn’t AR5 supposed to be an update of AR4?

  6. I’m confused. If the error in 1991 caused a negative bias to the anomaly, then shouldnt the overall trend from then on be negative? Shouldn’t we see an issue with the data in 1992 if the error was in 1991? But, we don’t see an increase until 1993.

  7. I thought the increase in Antarctic sea ice wasn’t very important anyway. Scientists said so, so it must be true. The important thing is that “we melted the Arctic.” We know that is true too, because a scientist said so.

  8. Wait! Wait!

    Maybe we all need to sit down and take a breath.

    A team of researchers have found what appears to be an error in the IPCC’s AR5 report!

    I’m gobsmacked!

  9. Maybe they should now look at the “jump” in sea levels when they went from tide gauges to satellite measurements without having a multiyear overlap to verify the conversion. They could also look at some of the NOAA and GIStemp adjustments that Steven Goddard thinks he has revealed. Come to think of it Hadcrut 3 to 4 as well. Amazing when nature will not comply with current CAGW beliefs somebody comes riding to assistance with the heat has gone to the Arctic/deep ocean (take your pick), the sea ice is not there after all. Wrong algorithm and on it goes. We have just had the pause is actually just a natural variation and the warming will soon continue again, but not natural (CO2 driven you understand).

  10. “A team of scientists say ..” Bill Nye, the science guy and Kermit the Frog are leading the team. The deflector shields must be up.

  11. Gee a possible programming error?

    Let me count the ways, oh hell ISTR a study (you know about them, correct?) that there is approximately 3 mistakes (of various kinds) per 100 LOC. This is one reason you keep getting millions of bytes of patched code all the time. I installed 66MB of such this morning.

    Who would have thought that them being scientists and all.

    /major sarc

  12. If observations do not agree with the models, then these observations must be wrong. Lets “harmonise” them to make them fit.

    Well folks that’s climate “science” for you!

  13. There is none of discontinuity, and certainly since 2011.’m Not surprised that the article is free.

  14. This really shows how incompetent they are. They can’t identify the cause of the difference between two algorithms because the data is too noisy? How about they actually look at the codes and understand what they are doing (especially the most common mistakes associated with integer maths)? It also suggests at the huge amount of data massaging going on…

  15. “The most recent one, the source of AR5 conclusions, was generated using a version of Bootstrap updated in 2007, while the other, used in AR4 research, is the result of an older version of the algorithm.”

    Notice how the date of the older version isn’t cited (although it may be buried in the supplementary material). If the previous version of Bootstrap was drawn up in the 1990’s then it could be argued that it was biasing low in its representation of sea ice due to CAGW political pressure. This could be achieved by biasing the parameters of the model. This would mean that the 2007 version of Bootstrap is the faithful representation and the old version was a victim of wishful thinking or political pressure to bias low. I’m not suggesting foul play but a subconscious urge to tow the line.

    The last paragraph here confirms such a biased view because they are clearly hoping it is the 2007 version that is wrong and that the sea ice trend is flat:

    “If the error is in the current dataset, the results could contribute to an unexpected resolution for the Antarctic sea ice cover enigma.”

  16. Sea ice will be a record in late September because the temperature drops of the ocean around Antarctica.

  17. “A team of scientists say much of the increase measured for Southern Hemisphere sea ice could be due to a processing error in the satellite data.”

    Interesting how there are only “processing errors” when cooling is indicated…

  18. Given the polar see-saw, it is a bit surprising that Antarctic ice is hitting a maximum while Arctic ice is increasing again. So the idea that the Antarctic measure is in error is at least a bit credible. But it is still disturbing that effort to find errors is still only being made when data goes against AGW.

  19. Mark says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:39 am
    ______________________________________

    Mark I think they haven’t a clue as to what the possible errors could be.

  20. Can’t we see this ice from satellites? Isn’t such a thing important enough to go down there and fly an observational sampling? You can see that the Antarctic ice has become very troubling to the committed. It was only a matter of time before they began to ‘correct’ it. Why do we have all these expensive Anarctic expeditions? If they can’t keep tabs on the ice, what in hell are they keeping tabs on???

  21. I think sceptics are going to need a big fund to keep tabs on these guys. We need to have independent flights with photo and gps around the sea ice, or at least a number of transepts. Maybe there is enough coverage of the Ship of Fools incident to compare observed with measured in that area to check up on the health of the instrumentation.

  22. David Rodgers – “I wonder what that stuff was that the ship of fools was stuck in last summer then?”
    Going by the SPIN of hyperventilating media;
    It was a large floating Salt flat. Resulting from evaporation of sea water, caused by extreme heat of GW.
    /sarc

  23. Remember that story about Prof. Chris Turney getting stuck in the ice? Never happened. Data processing error.

  24. Gary Pearse: “I think sceptics are going to need a big fund to keep tabs on these guys.”

    Quite the opposite. We need to CUT the funding of all the GW Climatologists.
    Wouldn’t hurt to reset/reboot NASA, and cut E.P.A. down to a staff the size WattsUpWithThat has.

  25. Ahh so Antarctica isn’t melting? Look chaps some fools argued that the increased extent was due to melting ice. So which is it? A slippery lot indeed.

  26. Can we assume that the sea ice the Australian expedition that got stuck in, in the Antarctic last January, was imaginary and just an artifact of a computer programme? If not we should keep our eyes on these people, I see more adjustments coming and they will not show ice growth. I am all for getting accurate data but adjustments so far are nearly always in one direction.

    Regards
    Keith Gordon

  27. Mike Jonas says:

    But it is still disturbing that effort to find errors is still only being made when data goes against AGW.

    I thought AGW was the null hypothesis… anything that supports the null hypothesis doesn’t need investigating.

  28. Another climate data error, another adjustment in the favorable direction. It is beyond curious that climate data adjustments never favor an “it’s not as bad as we thought” direction, isn’t it?

  29. Amazing this is being put forth a week before arctic ice extent is forecast to go above normal for the first time since 1996.

    Coincidence, I think not.

  30. Simple enough way to validate. Start a ship at a known GPS point 1 mile off Antarctic coast. Circumnavigate Antarctica until return to GPS starting point staying 1 mile distant from ice all the way around. Subtract distance from circumference to ice (1 mile). Calculate area from distance of calculated circumference.

  31. So let me get this straight.

    We’re talking about a single step of considerably less than 0.2 million sq km in 1991 (based on eyeballing the graph). That would make the 1979 – 2008 mean, at most, 0.1 million sq km higher.

    Current anomaly is more than 1 million sq km above the mean. . An order of magnitude larger than the discrepancy in the mean.

    And they claim that this step accounts for “much of the measured expansion ” and has “large influence on the long-term trend”?

    Pull the other one, it’s got bells on.

  32. David Johnson says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:56 am

    So they aren’t sure and they haven’t found where the alleged fault is. So what, pray tell, was the point of this paper???

    Others using the data or previous papers depending on the data can be aware that there may be a problem and adjust their research accordingly. Plus this way they get two publications on their CV’s: one announcing the error and one announcing the fix.

  33. Any talk about Antarctic Sea ice expansion and the year 2007 crops up.

    NOAA Reynolds Sea Surface Temperature anomalies (rel to 1971 to 2000)for 60 to 70 South from Jan 2000 to Jun 2014:-

    http://nomad1.ncep.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/pdisp_sst.sh?ctlfile=monoiv2.ctl&ptype=ts&var=ssta&level=1&op1=none&op2=none&month=jan&year=2000&fmonth=jun&fyear=2014&lat0=-70&lat1=-60&lon0=-180&lon1=180&plotsize=800×600&title=&dir=

    Circa 2007 there is an almost “step change” as the anomalies went into negative territory and apart from a couple of months have stayed there since. Latest value Jun 2014 = -0.29C.

    NOAA Reynolds says the waters down there are “cooler” than “normal” and have been for circa 7 years.

  34. This error is stupidly insignificant. Look at the vertical axis of their tell-tale graph. The “error” represents a shift in Antarctic ice extent of 0.2 million sq km. The increase in sea-ice extent as I write is 1 million sq km over the long term average, and it has in the recent past been as high as 2 million sq km. So at best, they’ve accounted for less than 20% of the increase, probably nearer 10%.
    It’s the implicit dishonesty of presenting this as an “explanation” of the high sea ice area that really dismays me. It’s not even slightly convincing, and everyone involved must have realised that. Gun… foot…

  35. Arctic sea ice loss can’t be due to an algorithm problem, so let’s not study that.

  36. But the excuse for the record expansion is that the modles predicted it.
    Watch the climate obsessed turn on a dime if it turns out there is less ice and claim that any reduction was predicted as well.

  37. The noise -even if the error is insignificant- will be enough for the MSM to play its prop role…

  38. It seems to me that the ‘step change’ – if there was one – affected both poles so that when Antarctic ice apparently grew, Arctic ice shrank. Perhaps the mysterious error affects both poles, albeit in an opposite sense. The authors’ not considering this possibility looks like confirmation bias favoring AGW-friendly hypotheses.

  39. The Antarctic extent seems to be rebounding from sudden decline in extent noted over the past few days.

    Also, the Arctic’s uptick, shows on other graphs. I recall in a thread a few months ago on prediction of the Sept minimum extent and the NOAA model predicting a positive anomaly for this, a brief exchange with Greg Goodman in which I surmised that the exceptional amount of +2m ice would likely give a positive anomaly and that late season with ~1m thick of this ice surviving to become two year old ice. Greg was offering a much more (unnecessarily I thought) complex model.

    http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm

    This uptick may well be marking the approach to the edge of the more durable ice of the winter’s +2m thickness. It will be interesting to see if this simple common sense model has merit. Of course all bets are off if we get another August Arctic cyclone, but I don’t believe the weather is right for this. Heck most of our July has been 22C instead of ~28-30. Interestingly we have passed the halfway point for the ~70 days of plus temperatures north of 80N and the whole summer there has been cooler than average. Yeah, we are going to have a positive September extent anomaly.

    http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/meant80n.uk.php

  40. Himalaya: a mess
    Amazon forrest drought: a mess
    Models: a mess
    Global temperatures: a mess
    Consensus: a mess
    OHC: a mess
    Sea ice: a mess
    Next?

  41. When the Antarctic science teams can drive and walk across the ice to Antarctica the Global Warming Industry will still be playing the same tune.

  42. “Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate.” No, it ain’t. Cryosphere Today – no change in about ten years. Keep chanting it doesn’t make it true.

  43. “if, could, may, possible, projected, implies, assumed…”
    What do such weasel- words of the press release add to the conversation?

  44. “C.M. Carmichael says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:07 am
    So much for settled science, they can’t even agree on the math.

    1. Talk to Roy Spencer about the difficulties in stitching together various sensors. UAH has
    gone through numerous versions as Spencer and Christy try to figure out the best
    set of ADJUSTMENTS to the raw sensor data. Sensors change. Platforms change,

    2. Talk to Leif about the difficulties of stitching together various sensors measuring TSI

    3. Talk to Leif about the difficulties of stitching together a resonable sunspot record from
    many different observers using different counting techniques, changes in counting
    methods and changing instruments.

    4. Talk to Anthony. His latest paper uses series where the raw data has been corrected for
    changes to instruments. .

    Sensors in space do not measure temperature. They dont measure ice extent or area.
    They measure brightness at the sensor at various frequencies. Those raw voltages are then
    processed by models to create estimated “data” which try to represent things like temperature
    of ice extent. The sensors change over time. The algorithms change.

    People do agree on the math. 2+2 = 4. But when it comes to turning a raw voltage at the sensor
    to a physical property… that’s more than simple math. It typically involves a physics model with
    many assumptions.

  45. Keep on the sunny side, always on the sunny side,
    Keep on the sunny side of life;
    You will feel no pain, as they drive you insane,
    If you keep on the sunny side of life.

    Sometimes you just have to laugh at this stuff

  46. Ohhh, the desperation of it all. They are going to be in full retreat in a few years when every indicator turns against them They will all be under the hood wondering why none of the machinery is working.

  47. But we’ve been given scientific explanations for why the Antarctic ice is increasing despite AGW. If it’s not actually increasing, that must mean that their explanations were.. no, I can’t say it ….

  48. “chris moffatt says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:23 am
    “our findings show that the data used in one of the reports contains a significant error. But we have not yet been able to identify which one contains the error,” says lead-author Ian Eisenman

    Surely they are joking. “there must be an error somewhere but we couldn’t find it” now merits publication in a Science journal? Color me contemptuous…..

    ##################################

    not uncommon for processing sensor data from a satellite.

    1. You dont have a ground truth ( the actual sea ice extent ) to compare each method to.
    2. The codes for generating an estimate of ice from the raw sensor data is very complex.
    go read a ATBD.

  49. This is an easy theory to test. Use the old algorithm to reprocess the records from 1978 to present. Then use the new algorithm over the same time period. There should be a constant offset between the two methods for the entire 35 years if the new method over-estimates ice extent. But that would mean they have to adjust older ice extent upward. Where have we seen that before;)

  50. Ed says: July 22, 2014 at 8:07 am
    But we’ve been given scientific explanations for why the Antarctic ice is increasing despite AGW.

    Come on, give those guys a break. At least now they get to say: “It’s not as bad as we thought”.

  51. Which proves yet again that there is no end to what these people don’t know about climate.

  52. chris moffatt says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:23 am
    “our findings show that the data used in one of the reports contains a significant error. But we have not yet been able to identify which one contains the error,” says lead-author Ian Eisenman

    Surely they are joking. “there must be an error somewhere but we couldn’t find it” now merits publication in a Science journal? Color me contemptuous…..

    a religious journal, all that is required is faith in AGW, embrace them, don’t be deceived by mere skeptics ;) /sarc

  53. My reading on this if its worth anything: Some of the AGW funders are beginning to ask questions, re the pause, re Australia scrapping the tax and closing down all “AGW climate research”, re the ice expansions. Basically the climate scientists are grasping at straws to keep their jobs, after all, they too have families etc ( I can’t blame them, but dishonesty will further make their holes bigger), That is the hole they are digging themselves into LOL. BTW you can bet your XXX that most of the loudest ones are coming from Australian “Climate scientists”.

  54. Cop: “You were accelerating past 80 in a 25 zone.”
    Me: “Officer, your data biases you to believe that I was accelerating past 80 while I don’t feel that I was. Since your data and my blind faith to the contrary cannot both be correct, yours must contain an error that you have not found yet. Therefore, my faith trumps your empirical data. Have a good day, sir.”
    ….
    ….
    ….
    Me: “…And that, your Honor, is how I found myself standing here in front of you.”
    ==============
    Why are they allowed to use a silly assinine excuse and I am not? Their logic is just as stupid as my above scenario!

  55. John Bills says:
    July 22, 2014 at 7:47 am

    Himalaya: a mess
    Amazon forrest drought: a mess
    Models: a mess
    Global temperatures: a mess
    Consensus: a mess
    OHC: a mess
    Sea ice: a mess
    Next?
    ————————————-
    Looks like we have a consensus.

  56. Quinx says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:10 am
    Funny how none of the *warming* is attributed to such problems.
    Oh yes they did! When the satellite based MSU & RSS showed next to [no] warming, they seized upon altitude degradation errors unaccounted for, as well as minor instrument errors. However, when these were corrected it made very little difference to the overall data! Remember, they are never wrong, especially when they are wrong!

  57. BTW its quite likely that the MOST vociferous AGW alarmists now, will become the most anti-AGW when they grow up in about 20 years.It happens regularly look at the ex Head of Greenpeace LOL

  58. The paper is leading propaganda all the way through, and at almost every turn of phrase, starting from the title itself. It rhetorically asks: “has Antarctic sea ice expansion been overestimated?,” as if to hint at the correct answer. So why didn’t they ask if the possibility of sea ice extent previously being underestimated? The whole paper is like this. The words seem to agonize over not knowing which version of the Bootstrap algorithm is correct, but their implication is always on the interpretation most favorable to “the cause.” Nowhere is an acknowledgement that the newer version carries the assumption of being an improved version of the earlier version. Even though the documentation for the model shift is poor, there should be no presumption that the earlier model was superior. Never did they explore the notion that both versions could be incorrect. Nowhere was a discussion of how we might employ physical observation and testing to validate the newer and ostensibly, better, more correct algorithm. They only looked at the data sets produced by the algorithms themselves. If the algorithm change creates a potentially deceptive step change, which might be either spuriously creating, or righteously correcting, the ice extent record, then why isn’t the algorithm and it’s changes the whole point of the paper?

    All that said, this closing paragraph captures the only thing you need to understand about this study, and it nicely summarizes the problems of climate science:

    “These results illustrate the need for thorough documentation and version control in observational data sets. Ideally all observational data sets, especially those used widely and included in IPCC assessment reports, would have sufficient documentation of algorithms and algorithm changes for previous and current versions of the data to be independently replicated from the raw sensor data. Such transparency is particularly essential for highly visible and at times controversial climate change parameters such as the sea ice cover.”

    Not only should the data sets have version control, but the algorithms that generate those data sets should be version controlled and thoroughly documented as well. I’ve long railed for these kinds of improvements to science in the internet era. I know this is a big issue for Steve McIntyre, too. Science, like real estate has three fundamental demands to insure best value. Replication, replication, replication.

  59. I wonder if there is a gif, like the one we have seen ad nauseum for the Arctic sea ice, for the growth and regrowth of the ice yearly, for the Antarctic?

  60. It seems to me that anytime algorithms are used or mentioned they always increase trends over time no matter what the data is be it, temperatures, sea ice, whatever:. Would rounding errors compounded daily do this over time within an algorithm?
    Could the problem simply be how computers are built? Just curious.

  61. I have used the Bootstrap algorithm. It does not estimate quantity but rather uncertainty. A good summary is available (behind a paywall) in a 1998 volume of IEEE Signal Processing Magazine. IEEE summarizes the algorithm as follows: “The bootstrap is an attractive tool for assessing the accuracy of estimators and testing hypothesis for parameters where conventional techniques are not valid, such as in small data-sample situations.”

    So when they say they use Bootstrap “to estimate sea ice cover from these data” it does not make sense to me. I does not instil confidence that the article is reliable.

  62. here is an idea,stop using algorithms and satellites to measure things that can be physically measured ,time and time again it is shown that the method does not work,with the added possibility of confirmation bias.

  63. Removing any step change in 1991 would do nothing to change the increasing trend in recent years. If the newer data were modified to a lower level by subtracting out some value, the same increasing trend would exist, but at a lower starting point. And the same question would remain – namely why is Antarctic sea ice increasing.

  64. The data is correct . What they don’t like is the data does not support their claims that Antarctic Sea Ice is not on the decline.

    Just more BS about changing the data if it does not agree with what you want.

  65. ” … It does not instill confidence that the article is reliable.”

    Anytime one sees a modern “paper” or article where the subject matter is climate “science” then one should assume that the paper is unreliable at best and duplicitous at worse. There will be the occasional exception (just like a comment once in a great while by Mosher is worth reading) but one bets on the paper being junk.

    Look friends, we are well past any pretense that honest science is going on. This blog, Goddard’s blog, JoNova’s blog, and a score of others have been chronicling the fall of any pretense of honestly for a long time now.

  66. The change shown in the graph is on the order of 0.1 x 10^6 km^2, whereas the actual values for sea ice area are on the order of 10 x 10^6. which explains why the error is invisible in the 1991 graphs. The current ice anomaly is over 1 x 10^6 so expect to see no change if they retroactively fix the error.
    I have no idea where they get the idea that the error caused “a step-like change in December 1991 that was big enough to have a large influence on the long-term trend” because there is no visible step-like change in 1991.

  67. https://weather.gc.ca/saisons/sea-snow_e.html

    This data clearly shows that the ocean waters adjacent to the Antarctic Sea Ice and for that matter much of the ocean waters south of 40 degrees South Latitude are BELOW normal.

    This data supports the extent of Antarctic Sea Ice.

    I suppose this data will also be considered to be wrong since it does not support AGW.

    I remember a research ship got stuck in Antarctic Sea Ice last year. Maybe that did not happen either.

  68. “bit chilly says:
    July 22, 2014 at 9:00 am
    here is an idea,stop using algorithms and satellites to measure things that can be physically measured ,time and time again it is shown that the method does not work,with the added possibility of confirmation bias.”

    try to use a ruler to measure the distance to the moon
    try to use a scale to weigh the sun

    We “measure” many things by in direct methods.
    For example, we might measure the speed of sound by measuring distance and time.
    And then we apply an algorithm to derive speed.

    Answer this. what can we measure directly?
    or try this.. does a thermometer measure temperature?

  69. “On July 1, Antarctic sea ice extent was at 16.16 million square kilometers (6.24 million square miles), or 1.37 million square kilometers (529,000 square miles) above the 1981 to 2010 average. More notably, sea ice extent on that date was 760,000 square kilometers (293,000 square miles) higher than the 2013 extent for the same day, and thus is on pace to possibly surpass the record high extent over the period of satellite observations that was recorded last September.”

    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

  70. “If”‘, “could” says it all.
    But It must be true the ‘ship-of-fools’ got stuck in ice didn’t they?
    Wait a second!
    Fodder feed for the MSM in the hope they will draw a definite conclusion without noticing its just speculation. More BS for the chickens.

  71. “So when they say they use Bootstrap “to estimate sea ice cover from these data” it does not make sense to me. I does not instil confidence that the article is reliable.”

    Thanks because you have not read the literature.

    read first, comment later.

    Start with the platform they are using.
    Then read the documents about the sensor
    Then read the ATBDs assocated with the data.
    Then read the software descriptions and the validation and calibration plans and reports.
    Then read the science papers
    Then download some data and look for yourself

    Then you are in a position to make intelligent comments.

    Do you think Anthony or steve mcintyre got to their level of understanding by reading blogs?

    Nope. they rolled up their sleeves. They put on their reading glasses. They dove in.

    Think of where the skeptical side would be if more people did what they did.

  72. This is one of the simplest and bulletproof measurements of all time, just a white pixel count in a satellite image. You can quickly do this in Photoshop. Just look at the various images of Antarctica to see how simple the coverage is compared to the rapidly dynamic Arctic, since the continent is surrounded by both wind and ocean currents that are steady in a circle around it rather than constantly in flux. The source images haven’t changed. The contract between sea and ice is striking. There is nearly no land. There isnt even any statistics required or considerstion of thickness at all in ice *extent*. This article is agenda laden, especially the laughable uncertainty of which algorithm is “wrong” that gives the whole paper the character of a preliminary blog post. Then an hour after being posted here, multiple commenters note how magnified the scale is compared to the profound claims being made. The whole field of climate “science” is setting themselves up for a big fall by doubling down on bias in a way that becomes dumbed down too, enough to trigger the BS detectors of many a layperson in a way that spells fraud. A child’s science project might be to calculate the sea ice extent from the satellite pictures by cutting out the paper outline of each fifty two weeks of each year and weighing them on a milligram balance. It only takes a rocket scientist to obtain the images. The rest is child’s play. The whole article uses a little glitch in *extent* to grab headlines with a soundbite wheras the real uncertainty is in much more important ice mass due to land changes happening too. Altimetry says the ice is rising enough to grab half of what Greenland is losing, but a crack team of nearly fifty authors claimed this was due to rock lifting the ice up as it actually was itself thinning, like some alien monster movie scenario.

  73. “Not only should the data sets have version control, but the algorithms that generate those data sets should be version controlled and thoroughly documented as well. I’ve long railed for these kinds of improvements to science in the internet era. I know this is a big issue for Steve McIntyre, too. Science, like real estate has three fundamental demands to insure best value. Replication, replication, replication.”

    Go look at the documentation that exists.

    you know. read.

  74. Steven Mosher says:

    July 22, 2014 at 8:04 am
    “C.M. Carmichael says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:07 am
    So much for settled science, they can’t even agree on the math.

    1. Talk to Roy Spencer about the difficulties in stitching together various sensors. UAH has
    gone through numerous versions as Spencer and Christy try to figure out the best
    set of ADJUSTMENTS to the raw sensor data. Sensors change. Platforms change,

    2. Talk to Leif about the difficulties of stitching together various sensors measuring TSI

    3. Talk to Leif about the difficulties of stitching together a resonable sunspot record from
    many different observers using different counting techniques, changes in counting
    methods and changing instruments.

    4. Talk to Anthony. His latest paper uses series where the raw data has been corrected for
    changes to instruments. .

    Sensors in space do not measure temperature. They dont measure ice extent or area.
    They measure brightness at the sensor at various frequencies. Those raw voltages are then
    processed by models to create estimated “data” which try to represent things like temperature
    of ice extent. The sensors change over time. The algorithms change.

    People do agree on the math. 2+2 = 4. But when it comes to turning a raw voltage at the sensor
    to a physical property… that’s more than simple math. It typically involves a physics model with
    many assumptions.

    IF THIS THE STATE OF CLIMATE SCIENCE THEN THEY DON’T HAVE THE SLIGHTEST AUTHORITY FOR DIRECTING PUBLIC POLICY. Basically, It’s CRAP.

  75. “This is an easy theory to test. Use the old algorithm to reprocess the records from 1978 to present. Then use the new algorithm over the same time period. ”

    go read the ATBD and the literature.

    then you will be in a position to suggest diagnostics.

  76. From the article above:

    Reflecting the scientific literature at the time, the AR4 reported that Antarctic sea ice cover remained more or less constant between 1979 and 2005. On the other hand, recent literature and the AR5 indicate that, between 1979 and 2012, Southern Hemisphere sea ice extent increased at a rate of about 16.5 thousand square kilometres per year. Scientists assumed the difference to be a result of adding several more years to the observational record.

    And, from
    Michael D says:
    July 22, 2014 at 9:22 am

    The change shown in the graph is on the order of 0.1 x 10^6 km^2, whereas the actual values for sea ice area are on the order of 10 x 10^6. which explains why the error is invisible in the 1991 graphs. The current ice anomaly is over 1 x 10^6 so expect to see no change if they retroactively fix the error.
    I have no idea where they get the idea that the error caused “a step-like change in December 1991 that was big enough to have a large influence on the long-term trend” because there is no visible step-like change in 1991.

    Small comment: The “blue zone difference” – it may not be “an error” at all! – varies slightly over a decade. The difference starts small (less than 0.05 negative, then increases to 0.12 negative, then reduces again back to about 0.05 negative. There is an abrupt change – as the “scientists” claim! – at 1991, then the “red zone difference” remains almost straight CONSTANT level at 0.065 from 1991 through today 2013 -when their data run stopped. .

    Thus, if we look at the past 22 years (2013 – 1991) we see NO CHANGE in this difference between the results of the two programs. Thus we do NOT need to change data for any period since 1991 when talking about Antarctic sea ice trends since 1991!

    These climate “:scientists” are so desperate to apply the near-linear increase in CO2 with time since 1959 to ANY and ALL “climate time streams measured since 1959 ” MUST use a linear average across the entire data set to begin their talking points.

    But that steady change in this data report did NOT occur. A single step change of very small amount may have happened in 1991.

    As Micheal D pointed out: The steady increase in Antarctic sea ice anomaly is now 1.0 million sq km’s – and was more than 2.0 Mkm^2 only a few days ago. Its steady INCREASE extends back to 2007 as a positive: Reducing that 2.0 positive anomaly to 1.9 Mkm^2 will NOT change the trend. Thus, “IF” a correction is needed, the current antarctic sea ice anomaly was more than 2.0 Mkm^2 a few weeks ago – much more than the “correction to the data itself” of 0.1 from negative to positive in 1991.

    But it is even worse than they think (for their “religious conviction” in their Cause.

    Today’s Antarctic sea ice increase has been a steady, near-linear increase since 2007. Regardless of any step change occurring in 1991-1992 data, a long-term, steady, near-linear INCREASE of Antarctic sea ice now approaching seven years in length is NOT going to change when they apply a correction to data in 1991. Their precious faith in CO2 cannot be explained by such a long increase in Antarctic sea ice – thus, they (1) ignore Antarctic sea ice, and (2) will attempt ANYTHING to reduce the reported extent and demean confidence in their own measurements of that extent!

    I don’t know these men and women by name – but I question their conclusion deeply: They have made up their minds, and will continue to promote their Faith regardless of the facts before their eyes. If they could permit themselves to be called “religious” they would be admirable in their Faith.

    But as self-promoting “objective scientists”, they are despicable.

  77. Chalk me up on the side that says it’s only ‘noise’, faulty models or bad Al-Gore-ithms when it doesn’t support their mantras.

  78. “does a thermometer measure temperature?”

    Yes. I simply define temperature to be the thing that a themometer measures. Q.E.D.

  79. Has anyone actually looked at the images, they must be the source data. If in doubt go back to first principles look at the images do some measurements then see how what you’ve done compares with what the algorithms say. Steve Mosher’s ruler could be a useful tool in this process;)

    As this is so important I’m sure this team will be able to get funding to confirm which algorithm, if any, gives the most accurate results. The images could be made freely available on the web for research purposes, the American public must have paid for them. There are a lot of talented honest people who are interested in the truth.

    All this assumes that the dog hasn’t eaten the original data.

  80. Reminds me of when they couldn’t find the hotspot in troposphere so they tried to create one using a computer model.

  81. steveta_uk says: July 22, 2014 at 9:55 am
    “does a thermometer measure temperature?”
    Yes. I simply define temperature to be the thing that a themometer measures. Q.E.D.

    Which is indeed the operational definition of temperature. But we all know that Mr. Mosher expresses temperature as the inverse of the rate of change of entropy with internal energy, with volume V and number of particles N held constant.

  82. chris moffatt says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:23 am

    …………………… Here’s a thought – perhaps increasing antarctic sea-ice is due to the fact that the planet isn’t warming. See – no error needed.

    Naa, where’s the funding in that?

  83. I quote: “Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate. In contrast, satellite observations suggest that sea ice cover in the Antarctic is expanding – albeit at a moderate rate – and that sea ice extent has reached record highs in recent years. What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world has puzzled scientists since the trend was first spotted.”

    There are two problems with the above quote. First is the fact that Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate not because the world is warming but because there was a reorganization of North Atlantic current system at the turn of the century. It started to carry warm Gulf Stream water into the Arctic Ocean and this is still going on. You can learn the facts about this in my 2011 paper [E&E 22(8):1069-1083]. Prior to that there was nothing in the Arctic except for 2000 years a slow, linear cooling. If you take away the warming effect of the Gulf Stream water carried north the Arctic would cool at the same rate as the Antarctic does now. This is clear from the fact that in mid-century the earlier flow pattern of North Atlantic currents returned for a thirty year period and this led to cooling at the rate of 0.2 degrees Celsius per decade. It is quite impossible for greenhouse warming which is alleged to be warming the world to switch from warming to cooling and back again on such a tight time schedule. Unfortunately those calling themselves Arctic researchers are simply ignorant of these facts since they have not bothered to read scientific literature about it in their own field. Secondly, they speak of a “warming world” that does not exist. There is no greenhouse warming now despite a steady increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide. And there has been none for the last 17 years. Just what do these guys want to tell us by talking of a “warming world” that does not exist? If they are trying to say that the Arrhenius greenhouse theory predicts that increase carbon dioxide in the atmosphere causes warming they are out of luck. For the last 17 years the Arrhenius theory has been doing that but nothing has happened. If a theory predicts warming and for 17 years nothing happens a scientist has no choice but to regard that theory as false and relegate it to the waste heap of history. There is a place for it near phlogiston, another theory of heat that failed. The only greenhouse theory that can explain the current pause in warming is the Miskolczi greenhouse theory (MGT). That is because it is able to handle the general case of multiple GHGs absorbing IR in the atmosphere. Arrhenius can handle only one – carbon dioxide – and is incomplete. MGT is the theorythat IPCC and its puppets have been trying to suppress since 2007 because they do not like its predictions. The time has come to admit that only MGT can describe the real world. According to MGT the GHGs in earth atmosphere that count are water vapor and carbon dioxide. There exists a common optimum absorption window in the IR that they jointly support. Its optical thickness in the IR is 1.87, calculated from first principles by Miskolczi. If you now add carbon dioxide to the atmosphere it will start to absorb in the IR, just as the Arrhenius theory tells us. But as soon as this happens, water vapor present will begin to diminish, rain out, and the original optical thickness of their absorption window is thereby restored. Absorption by the introduced carbon dioxide is still active of course but its warming effect is just balanced by the reduction of atmospheric water vapor that is happening simultaneously. This has been going on for the last 17 years and explains the absence of warming today. If rising carbon dioxide did not cause any warming for 17 years laws of nature tell us that it never has caused any warming at all. Any alleged greenhouse warming that happened before this time is nothing more than natural warming, misidentified by over-eager climate scientists anxious to prove that greenhouse effect is real. Total absence of the greenhouse effect also nullifies any claims that adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere will cause anthropogenic global warming or AGW. And with it, alarmist mitigation and emission control schemes become irrational irrelevances, a waste of public resources that must not be allowed to continue.

  84. “Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate.”

    Only if you’re a drama queen instead of a scientist. It has retreated over the 35-year period that satelites have been keeping track. Periods of melting arctic ice have been noted before though, in the last century. Nothing unusual is happening, let alone “dramatic”.

    “What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world has puzzled scientists since the trend was first spotted.”

    By “puzzled”, they really mean “worried” since Ice expanding goes against the whole warmist meme, and would tend to threaten the globaloney gravey train. Can’t have that.

    “Now, a team of researchers has suggested that much of the measured expansion may be due to an error, not previously documented, in the way satellite data was processed.”

    Whew! What a relief that must be. Gravey train safe for a little while longer.

  85. So who gets to check their model, that checked the other two models, that can’t tell which of the other two is wrong, but is sure that one of them is?

  86. The solution is they should send a research ship to sail around the edge of the Antarctic Sea Ice ,and take actual measurements of the extent of the sea ice and compare it to the current cryosphere sea ice data.
    If is data is so in question why can’t they do that?

    I am quite sure cryosphere data is correct.

  87. @Eliza:
    “But But… Arctic is NOT retreating.Its appears to be expanding again back to normal levels (since satellite records anyway).”

    Silly. The Arctic sea ice that disappeared was hiding in the Antarctic. It was not doing a very good job of hiding as it made it look like the Antarctic sea ice was increasing. So now, Antarctic sea ice is decreasing and Arctic sea ice is increasing. See how simple everything is? One just has to accept that sea ice can hide, and that sea ice can travel 12,000 miles from one pole to the other relatively easily, and quickly, I might add.

  88. Just a simple question for those that know. Satellites in ‘polar orbit’ measuring the sea ice cannot be geostationary so they orbit around both poles. So presumably the same algorithms are used for measuring sea ice at both poles. The result from these algorithms for the Antarctic is ‘suspect’ because it shows increasing ice, but the result from the same algorithms for the Arctic ice is correct because it shows decreasing ice? Do I have that right?

    That would be picking sufficient cherries to make a really big ‘Cherry Pie’ **

    ** See Cockney rhyming slang.

  89. Eliza beat me to it, Arctic Ice reduction is a favourite meme of the Planet Savers, except that the reduction appears to have stopped in 2007:

  90. So where does this leave all of the crappy theories to blame expanding ice on global warming?

    Was it not Trenberth who came up with the latest gem, something about warmer waters making it colder?

  91. Well sunshine hours is showing record Antarctic ice again…and solar 24 is down to nothing again. Note this will not affect us seriously until perhaps the start of cycle 25 as predicted

    http://www.solarham.net/

    B Illis: If Antarctica has reached Sandwich Island (which I doubt) I would be extremely worried. What is their latitude?

  92. i like the use of “Claim” in the headline Anthony – but i think it should be used with all research – even those you agree with – it’ll remind us that no one research paper is authoritive

  93. An even better picture of the health of Arctic Ice, makes you wonder what all the fuss was about:

  94. “One just has to accept that sea ice can hide, and that sea ice can travel 12,000 miles from one pole to the other relatively easily, and quickly, I might add.”

    I understand that the icemen have several of those Star Trek teleporter things and love to move ice around to confuse us. Silly jokers they are.

  95. Salvatore Del Prete says:
    July 22, 2014 at 10:29 am

    The solution is they should send a research ship to sail around the edge of the Antarctic Sea Ice ,and take actual measurements of the extent of the sea ice and compare it to the current cryosphere sea ice data.
    If is data is so in question why can’t they do that?

    I think insurance rates for Antarctic expeditions went up as a result of the Akademik Shokalskiy debacle. Modelling studies are much cheaper and no one has to miss out on their regular banana milkshakes.

  96. B Illis: South Sandwich islandsand Antarctic ice expansion
    54.2500° S, 36.7500° W thats way to north man or Mann! LOL

  97. My first thoughts were questions about motives: What prompted Eisenman to look into this? Why is the idea there could/maybe/might be something wrong “news”?

    Then I thought, it takes guts to stand up and point out something is wrong with the accepted/settled science. And the fact the initial speculation made it into the news is a good thing because it sets a tone.

    As long as his findings are made public, whatever is discovered/uncovered during Eisenman’s investigation will only benefit the climate science body of knowledge in the long run. Eisenman is skeptical of the data and I believe it’s a good thing.

  98. Unfortunately for these researchers, there is no visible step in the Antarctic sea ice anomaly circa 1992. In fact, the graph is unusually flat during this period. On the other hand, starting around 2011, the graph shoots up at an uncharacteristically high rate. The error they describe cannot have produced this.

    Good question that deserves a good answer.

    And we have the actual images, right? Why can’t we just use those to figure out what is going on here?

  99. I don’t care about the data, I just look at the pictures and compare to previous years. I am not smart enough to mess with datasets. Seems like there is a lot more extent down there this year than last year. What do I know….?

  100. Matt L. says: July 22, 2014 at 11:13 am
    “Then I thought, it takes guts to stand up and point out something is wrong with the accepted/settled science.”

    The problem being: Antarctica record high sea ice didn’t fit in with “accepted/settled science”.

    Matt L. says: July 22, 2014 at 11:13 am
    ” Eisenman is skeptical of the data and I believe it’s a good thing.”

    Absolutely, but doesn’t justify being biased.

  101. Um… the numbers matter… That blue / red graph shows a 0.1 shift in millions of km^2 of ice.

    The graph here (linked by Ren above): http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.anomaly.antarctic.png

    shows the present status to be +1.054 millions of km^2 anomaly. OK, subtract them…

    At most, it changes it to a 0.954+ anomaly. Now, given that it was about 2.1+ just 6 months or so ago, that makes it about a 2.0+ anomaly.

    In all cases there is still record sea ice now even if their speculation about 0.1 is correct.

    The “error” doesn’t explain a thing.

  102. Okay, in any case this is a shift of only ~200,000 km^2. That is chickenfeed, a mere 10% compared with the recent ice increase of 2,000,000 km^2.

    What I was interested in is why a million km^2 dropped off the charts in one weekend. Instead we are being treated to a smidgen of a step change in 1991, which is going to reduce the trend by ~70,000 km^2 per decade? What about the elephant in the room?

  103. All error corrections go in the warmists direction. Errors in the lukewarmers direction are conveniently ignored.

    I don’t like to say this, but there are dozens of examples to support and I can’t think of any that refute.

    Can anybody think of a case where models forecast too cool or that data was adjusted to make the trend cooler?

  104. Why can’t you just snap a picture and count the area that is white ? I’m serious. All we are looking for here is areal coverage.

  105. In contrast, satellite observations suggest that sea ice cover in the Antarctic is expanding – albeit at a moderate rate – and that sea ice extent has reached record highs in recent years. What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world has puzzled scientists since the trend was first spotted.

    Just maybe their problem is the algorithm error is in the temperature data claiming a ‘warming world’.

  106. We are missing the obvious, this is Climatology 101, as in good enough for government.
    If the measuring method is too precise and yields up data that undermines the intended policy.
    Destroy the measuring system.
    Environment Canada has been a world leader since 1991.
    Shame the meme of CAGW is so weak, that government has had to decimate almost all weather sensing systems.
    I am suspecting the launch destruction of past earth sensing satellites has been a boon to the longevity of the CAGW Gong Show.

  107. If the algorithm’s “problem” had lead to diminishment of Southern Ocean sea ice, it would have met global warmists biased expectations, and no further inquiry needed.

    As it is, mainstream Climate investigators are struggling mightily to explain the Sea Ice “growth”…. just more evidence of Climate Science in crisis.

  108. Arno Arrak summarizes a more comprehensive greenhouse theory in which water vapor loss asserts a negative feedback in a normal everyday way that avoids the Sky Dragon denial of any greenhouse effect itself based on paper napkin physics. This ought to be measurable directly though as actually decreasing vapor instead of the increase that climate models predict as a massive positive feedback. This may be oversimplified of a test if it is specific to certain layers or regions but without this support it just sounds like hand waving. I see Roy Spenser has been critical of this claim:

    “Again…if Aa does not EXACTLY balance Ed, then Miskolczi has found NOTHING that departs from the fundamental mechanism of the greenhouse effect.

    ADDENDUM…his additional finding of a relatively constant greenhouse effect from 60 years of radiosonde data (because humidity decreases have offset CO2 increases) is indeed tantalizing. But few people believe long-term trends in radiosonde humidities. His result depends upon the reality of unusually high humidities in the 1950s and 1960s. Without those, there is no cancellation between decreasing humidity and increasing CO2 as he claims.”

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/08/comments-on-miskolczi%E2%80%99s-2010-controversial-greenhouse-theory/

  109. I though Antarctic ice expansion was part of AGW (due to increased precipitation) Well OK they have changed their minds AGAIN LOL

  110. Bill Illis says:
    July 22, 2014 at 9:13 am
    The Anatarctic sea ice has extended right past the South Sandwich Islands. Real images tell the story. Yesterday’s Modis pics.

    As is normal between May and November.

  111. Phil, go to Bill’s link and flip between this year and last year (same day…it’s pretty cloud free in that area, both dates, at least around the largest island)…

  112. http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pmed.0020124

    One thing that you can be sure of is that research, scientists, governments and other similar organizations cannot be trusted most of the time.

    The goal/agenda as well as cognitive bias’s determine results/conclusions and statements.

    This has turned out to be the rule rather than the exception in recent decades.

    How does one know what to believe and what not to believe, especially if one is not an expert in the field?

    Usually people will believe whatever supports what they think they know and discard whatever contradicts it. This is why we have extreme polarization in climate science, even as new information pours in.

    The world is being run by white collar psychopaths that understand this. They use appealing propaganda and marketing schemes to capture as many people as possible.

    We see all the commercial ads on television and elsewhere. This is just an extension of that using a different realm and technique but the same principle to brainwash people to believe things.

  113. “Mary Brown says:
    July 22, 2014 at 11:45 am
    Why can’t you just snap a picture and count the area that is white ? I’m serious. All we are looking for here is areal coverage.”

    Because you will get pictures of clouds.

    There are several data sets.

    data from frequencies where you can look thrugh the clouds
    visible light datasets
    IR datasets

  114. Mary Brown says: “Why can’t you just snap a picture and count the area that is white ? I’m serious. All we are looking for here is areal coverage.”

    Nice idea in principle, but probably not so goo in practice.

    Your suggestion probably assumes a clean cut edge of the ice sheet which can be photographed at high altitude and mapped. We’d tot-up the ice sheet within the mapped line.

    But then, think about glaciers calving into the sea. They don’t have a nice clean cut edge, but a mass of icy “rubble” and slush. Same goes for large parts of the polar ice sheets. And possibly more so during summer retreat (although I’m not so sure on that one).

    Do we count the edge as the region of sea with vanishingly small ice floating around (e.g. <1% ice coverage)? Probably not, because we'd count vast swathes of open sea surface as ice – it just wouldn't be credible.

    Likewise, we wouldn't count the edge as the start of a region with totally solid ice (100% coverage), because we'd fail to count large regions of ice.

    There is no right or wrong answer. It needs a judgement call. Something like 15% ice coverage. This is probably regions of ice chunks surrounded by a slushy water-ice mixture at the edge of the ice sheet. But could be pockets of regions inside the main body of the ice sheet.

    Even then, it will not be easy to determine a line to be counted on one side, and excluded on the other. High altitude pictures will lose detail and this will introduce errors. A low altitude survey of the ice sheet would take time to complete, and this would cause errors too as the early observations would be out of date compared to the later.

    Not that I'm an expert – just thinking out loud on an interesting question.

  115. “evanmjones says:
    July 22, 2014 at 11:29 am
    Unfortunately for these researchers, there is no visible step in the Antarctic sea ice anomaly circa 1992. In fact, the graph is unusually flat during this period. On the other hand, starting around 2011, the graph shoots up at an uncharacteristically high rate. The error they describe cannot have produced this.

    Good question that deserves a good answer.

    And we have the actual images, right? Why can’t we just use those to figure out what is going on here?
    ###########################

    you have cloud free products but generally speaking when you work with a cloud free product you have to handle how to estimate with missing days ( when clouds are present)

    but that data product is out there.

    get to it

  116. Has the land/ice shelf mask changed over time? The Filchner/Ronne ice shelf is continually losing large bergs – does the algorithm they use to determine sea ice use a fixed ice shelf or does it track the changes to the extent of the ice shelf? Less ice shelf = more sea ice area (if the changes are tracked).

    In 1991.77 NSIDC shows sea ice north of South Georgia but the extent in 1991 was unexceptional and sea ice has not got that far north recently:

  117. ” Eisenman is skeptical of the data and I believe it’s a good thing.” – Matt L.
    Absolutely, but doesn’t justify being biased. – Johan

    Johan, you’re right, of course, although erasing bias is a tall order. Ambrose Bierce wrote:
    “Impartial – unable to perceive any promise of personal advantage from espousing either side of a controversy.”

    Politics distilled is simply how we relate to each other. We are all politicians. The world is not changed by impartial politicians. And that is why access, transparency and reason are fundamental to freedom.

    When things are done in secret labs, behind closed doors and info is doled out on a “need to know” basis is when I worry.

    (The troublemaker in me wishes the BBC would lead with a headline like:
    Climate science team skeptical, finds serious flaws in IPCC reported data)

  118. description

    http://nsidc.org/data/docs/daac/bootstrap/index.html

    “Under ideal winter situations when only thick ice and open water are present, ice concentration can be derived with Bootstrap technique at an accuracy of about five to 10 percent, based on standard deviations of emissivities as used in the formulation. Errors are higher in the seasonal ice region than in the central Arctic region because of higher standard deviations of consolidated ice in the 19 vs 37 GHz plots. This is partly because of spatial changes in surface temperature that are not as effectively accounted for by this set of data.

    Constantly changing emissivities of some surfaces present unresolved problems. For example, when leads open up during winter, the open water is exposed to the cold atmosphere and grease ice quickly forms at the surface. The surface then metamorphoses from grease ice, to nilas, to young ice and then to first-year ice with snow cover. During these transitions, the emissivity of the surface can change considerably from one stage to another (Grenfell and Comiso 1986). Since such changes in emissivity are not taken into account in ice concentration algorithms, the derived fractions of open water are therefore not strictly those of open water and may include some mixtures of grease ice and new ice. In spring and summer, the emissivity of thick ice also changes with time, especially over the perennial ice region in the Arctic. The slopes and offsets of the consolidated ice line AD in the scatter plots are adjusted to automatically take this into account during onset of spring in June; original values should be restored during winter freeze-up. Despite this adjustment, the error is still substantial and can be larger than 20 percent due to spatial variations in melt and affects of meltponding.

    Several field and aircraft experiments have been performed in both polar regions and in some of them the basic assumptions about ice types and interpretation of the cluster plots have been confirmed. However, validation of satellite ice concentration data using data from these experiments has not been easy. Field data are difficult to use because of limited coverage compared with the large footprint of the satellite sensors (about 30 X 30 km). While generally easier to interpret because of fine resolution and availability of ancillary measurements, aircraft data are useful but need to be validated by ground measurements.

    Another strategy has been to utilize high resolution satellite (or space shuttle) data for validation. While the use of high resolution data has its advantages, such strategies degenerate into comparative analysis because the other satellite data also need to be validated. For example, unambiguous discrimination of open water, grease ice, small pancakes, and gray nilas in both visible and microwave channels may be impossible even with high resolution sensors. Generally, however, the passive microwave data provide valuable information about large scale characteristics of the ice cover as well as locations of ice edges, polynyas, and extensive leads. It is, however, useful to note that some of the comparative studies yielded high correlation coefficients.”

    I love the snark on this thread from people who have never turnedd a page or lifted a finger to understand the complexities.

    You actually become a BETTER skeptic the more deeply you understand an area.

    ask Anthony
    ask Mcintyre
    ask Willis

    What do all three have in common.
    They read before they write.
    They get the data
    When they present arguments they have code and data

    • In so many areas of climate measurement, the noise is the same order of magnitude as the signal.

      I always think of that when I watch waves crash onto the beach and remember than we use “mm per century” for sea level changes.

      Great post Steven on the complexities of measurement.

  119. Just a wild, kinda out there ‘thought’ – but isn’t all this suggesting a big climb down from the ‘science is settled’ meme? In a ‘let down gently’ kinda way, piecemeal, with revelations of errors (in the algorithms/models/whatever) and such like, gradually over a period of time, but its an error which is in their favour! LOL? Ok, perhaps, I am being a little too conspiratorial but I do think that there will be a gradual climb down and change of emphasis somewhere in the not too distant future.
    They have tried various memes already e.g. (heat in the deep oceans, etc) but seemingly still NEED to press on with their agenda (if there really is one?) in order to continue their taxing regime? I don’t know – to be honest I have had enough of the crap AGW ”science” (the vast majority of which would NEVER have passed muster 30 years ago!), the crap political ‘bent’ to everything related to AGW, the loss of weight to real and important green agendas, the waste of resources, even in simple cash terms of AGW (think how many boreholes for clean water could have been drilled with that money?) etc – all in all – I am truly disgusted with the system, the governments and the climate scientists for not upholding the scientific method. oh poop – sorry – I went on a bit….. /rant off

  120. steveta_uk says:
    July 22, 2014 at 9:55 am
    “does a thermometer measure temperature?”

    Yes. I simply define temperature to be the thing that a themometer measures. Q.E.D.

    ###############################################3

    what ever you say humpty dumpty

    then I define that sea ice extent is whatever the data processing system says it it. QED

  121. Well, this does not appear to be a garbage study for PR purposes like Lovejoy’s or Lewandowsky’s.

    However, you know that they would not be doing the study if the data showed a decrease in ice extent.

  122. Steven Mosher says:
    July 22, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    Steve, matey – you are absolutely right ! – but perhaps you are missing the golden nugget in all this – which is that they should have proven the measurement and data analysis regime WELL before NOW!, (in this case, the alleged expanding ice mass) or else they look like a bunch of complete and utter twonks! Ergo, some boneheads produce a mish mash of algorithims for ice analysis, USE them for 30+ years – (PROMOTING them to the WHOLE world!) then someone turns round and notices they might have been wrong!?? FFS – who peer reviewed the original processes – a frigging blind drunk undergrad? – and let me guess the next move – we go back and ‘adjust’ the data for this and that, blah bloody blah!…….’cos that will make it all better, wont it? – sound familiar?

  123. ” Both records are monthly mean anomalies from the 1979–2004 mean seasonal cycle. T”

    Ice extent and area are produced as DAILY data since 1988. If they are looking for a glitch they should look at “unsmoothed” data. There is also the “NASA TEAM” algo , what does that say?

    Just saying that BOOTSTRAP is “most prevelent” means they are aware of other but are not looking at what they tell or, perhaps more likely, not reporting it.

    They also don’t report on how this affects Arctic sea ice data. That is a very curious omissions since the same satellites and algos are used for both.

    Isn’t such failure to report generally frowned upon and regarded as a form science frawd [ avoiding the F-word ;) ]

  124. The increase in Antarctic sea ice has been a thorn in the warmist side for quite while. It looks like yet more convienient revisionism to cast the data as being unreliable.

  125. http://nsidc.org/data/docs/daac/bootstrap/index.html

    The slopes and offsets of the consolidated ice line AD in the scatter plots are adjusted to automatically take this into account during onset of spring in June; original values should be restored during winter freeze-up. Despite this adjustment, the error is still substantial and can be larger than 20 percent due to spatial variations in melt and affects of meltponding.

    Several field and aircraft experiments have been performed in both polar regions and in some of them the basic assumptions about ice types and interpretation of the cluster plots have been confirmed

    OH furchrisakes , here we go again. Isn’t there anyone that knows that if you do linear regression on a scatter plot you get the wrong figgin answer?

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/on-inappropriate-use-of-ols/

  126. Gary Pearse says:
    July 22, 2014 at 6:46 am

    Can’t we see this ice from satellites? Isn’t such a thing important enough to go down there and fly an observational sampling? You can see that the Antarctic ice has become very troubling to the committed. It was only a matter of time before they began to ‘correct’ it. Why do we have all these expensive Anarctic expeditions? If they can’t keep tabs on the ice, what in hell are they keeping tabs on???

    SAY! Long-range drones could do this work. Their bases could be on nearby land (e.g., Tierre del Feugo (sp?) and islands south of New Zealand). Even if a few were lost, that cost would be bearable. Even if coverage weren’t 100%, they would be able to provide enough corrective feedback from their sample to enable the satellites’ observations to be interpreted correctly.

    Drones could also be used to get a better and fuller count of wildlife in polar regions. And spot emerging pingos as they happen. Climate science is awash in money. This wouldn’t take a high percentage of it.

  127. MikeUK says:
    July 22, 2014 at 10:48 am

    Eliza beat me to it, Arctic Ice reduction is a favourite meme of the Planet Savers, except that the reduction appears to have stopped in 2007:

    =====

    “Appears to” would being the operative word. In fact it’s pretty unclear from thier graph what is happening since 2007 because the annual variation is much larger and the “anomaly” method is pretty uninformative.

    That is why I did this study using an adaptive method to remove the annual variability. It becomes much clearer what is happening:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/on-identifying-inter-decadal-variation-in-nh-sea-ice/

    The decadal trend has dropped considerably but has not “stopped” since 2007.

    That article was featured on Judith Curry’s too.

    That pretty much kills off the idea of run-away loss in the Arctic. Once you’ve reached a “tipping point” you don’t slow down for a bit on the way down. It’s ever faster.

    This disproves the idea of run-away melting, once and for all

  128. Again send a research ship out there and let them sail around the edge of the Antarctic Sea Ice and record the extent of the Sea Ice. If we can fly to the moon surely we can send a research ship to measure the extent of Antarctic Sea Ice.

    I am quite sure it will agree with cryosphere today data. This would put an end to this latest nonsense.

    \

  129. Steven Mosher says: July 22, 2014 at 12:49 pm
    You actually become a BETTER skeptic the more deeply you understand an area.
    ask Anthony ask Mcintyre ask Willis
    What do all three have in common.
    They read before they write.
    They get the data
    When they present arguments they have code and data

    They also have something else in common. They write the actual blog articles.
    So that others can learn from them, argue with them, provide additional information, point out potential mistakes, share some of their own expert knowledge, etc.

  130. In this look at the duration of arctic and antarctic melting seasons, there is a notable ( though not unique ) deviation in the two:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=965

    Both were springing back from a very short melting periods in 1989. Artic, being more volatile responded fastest. this does not seem abnormal.

    I don’t know whether the Cryo Today data set I used for that uses Bootstrap since their documentation is virtually non existent and they ignore requests for explanations or doc.

    They prefer to focus of pretty pics and alarmism than science.

  131. “our findings show that the data used in one of the reports contains a significant error. But we have not yet been able to identify which one contains the error,” says lead-author Ian Eisenman
    ============
    GISS has the same problem. because two sensors give different readings, they assume only one of them is wrong, and adjust that one.

    earth to climate science. just because two sensors give different readings doesn’t mean one is right and the other is wrong. they can both be wrong, or both could be right. no instrument is exact, nor is the operator.

    for example. one sensor reads 11.0+-0.5, another sensor reads 12.0+-0.5. Both sensors are reading correctly and neither is wrong. another sensor reads 11.0+-0.5. GISS says this makes the 12.0+-0.5 sensor wrong, and adjust this to 11.0+-0.5 to match the other 2, but this adjustment itself is wrong. All three sensors were reading correctly and there was no reason to adjust, except to satisfy confirmation bias.

  132. If you look carefully, the trends for AR4 and AR5 agree within experimental error: 5,600 ± 9,200 km2/yr vs 16,500 ± 3,500 km2/yr. The longer record and the clear increase in sea ice since 2007 allowed the authors of AR5, but not AR4, to conclude that the increase in sea ice was significant. No discrepancy has been found. Even if a discrepancy had been found, trends don’t have to remain the same when it has been reassessed over a longer period of time.

    If you look at Figure 1B, both Version 1 and Version 2 of the algorithm a large positive trend in Antarctic Sea Ice: 16,500 ± 3,500 km2/yr for Version 2 and about 10,000 km2/yr for Version 1. Since the natural variability/noise in both records is similar, the confidence interval will be similar. Changing to Version 1 wouldn’t change the IPCC’s conclusion that there has been a significant increase in Antarctic Sea Ice. Version 1 does give a smaller trend, but it is still significant. However, the politicized scientists who wrote this paper conveniently forgot to mention this fact.

    Don’t we rely on the same sensors and algorithms to detect changes in Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice. Why didn’t these researchers look for breakpoint in the data for both locations?

  133. ” Frank says:
    July 22, 2014 at 2:31 pm

    Don’t we rely on the same sensors and algorithms to detect changes in Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice. Why didn’t these researchers look for breakpoint in the data for both locations?”

    Because only one region’s facts fit the theory…(and it ain’t the one that’s getting more ice).

  134. The Ship of Fools was not a one off outbreak of Antarctic insanity it seems, even the algorithms have caught the disease!

    Oh what a freaking joke these self important, self promoting people are. Pixie people in the back yard pracitising their pirouettes trying to impress the adults.

  135. Is it just a coincidence that this paper is released just as there is an uncharacteristic fall in the Antarctic sea ice anomaly?
    When will these people realise if you change the method of measurement then you are no longer doing a comparative test with previous results you have changed the conditions of the experiment.

  136. Mosher says I should read more. Well, I did read the whole paper. I also read section S1.3 of it’s supplemental information document, and I perused the rest of the supplemental info. I read the paper from which S1.3 takes many of it’s cues, “Enhanced Sea Ice Concentrations from Passive Microwave Data” by Josefino C. Comiso, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. This paper discusses the Bootstrap model referred to in the first paper. Keep in mind that I’m not criticizing the Bootstrap models per se, only the formality and record keeping of their provenances, the inadequate provenances of datasets they spawned, and that the study chose the latter over the former as the best way to study sea ice extent changes.

    I particularly remembered reading this passage from the first paper, which joins me to the authors, editors and peer reviewers in the crime of inadequate reading:

    “Although an update to the Bootstrap algorithm was documented on the NSDIC website (see Sect. S1.3 of Supplement) and we compare the data set before (Version 1) and
    after (Version 2) this update occurred, we cannot be certain that the two data sets we analyze contain only the differences discussed in the documented update for several reasons. First, there is some ambiguity in the Bootstrap data set version control. For example, we find that the “original” data set discussed in Comiso and Nishio (2008) coincides with our Version 2 data set, implying that the salient change in the data set preceded the analysis in Comiso and Nishio (2008), which is the paper typically cited for the version update. Further ambiguities in the documentation of the Bootstrap version update are discussed in Sect. S1.3 of the Supplement. Second, the Bootstrap algorithm uses brightness temperature measurements which are processed by Remote Sensing Systems, and the version has changed over time due to new temperature calibrations and corrections of small errors. However, this is unlikely to be the source of the jump in December 1991, because intercalibration across sensor changes… [snip]

    That seems pretty clear, and pretty unfortunate at the same time. Is there anything else you think I should read that would make this shit sandwich taste any better, Steve?

  137. Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate. In contrast, satellite observations suggest that sea ice cover in the Antarctic is expanding – albeit at a moderate rate –
    ====
    and together we have a record high…….and they expect someone to keep reading after saying that

    ..so what’s new
    All they are saying is that all the ‘science’ that’s been shoved down our throats for the past 30 years….
    …was wrong again

  138. ” tim says:
    July 22, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    When will these people realise if you change the method of measurement then you are no longer doing a comparative test with previous results you have changed the conditions of the experiment.”

    Never.

  139. re Arno Arrak says: (July 22, 2014 at 10:12 am). I’m interested in your comment, but it raises questions. You say that the warming effect of CO2 is balanced by the reduction of atmospheric water vapor. I would be grateful if you could explain this in a bit more detail. My understanding is that increasing temperature leads to increasing ocean evaporation and hence more atmospheric water vapour (Clausius-Clapeyron; ~6-7% per deg C), not less. So yes, it does rain more, but there is an increase in the whole hydrological cycle, including an increase in atmospheric water vapour, not a net reduction.

  140. This is too much like: “The data do not agree with our model so the data must be wrong.”

  141. Steven Mosher says:
    July 22, 2014 at 9:42 am
    “So when they say they use Bootstrap “to estimate sea ice cover from these data” it does not make sense to me. I does not instil confidence that the article is reliable.”

    Thanks because you have not read the literature.

    read first, comment later.

    Start with the platform they are using.
    Then read the documents about the sensor
    Then read the ATBDs assocated with the data.
    Then read the software descriptions and the validation and calibration plans and reports.
    Then read the science papers
    Then download some data and look for yourself

    Then you are in a position to make intelligent comments.

    Think of where the skeptical side would be if more people did what they did.

    I am confused, how come you are not required to understand how things work before you comment on them?

    http://www.populartechnology.net/2014/07/nasa-and-usgs-does-not-know-difference.html

    Why should anyone take advice from someone who does not know the elementary difference between Windows ME and Windows 2000? Yet feels compelled to post “tutorials” on their ignorance?

  142. Sounds like some of the $1bil/day spent on the whole AGW scam needs to be diverted to some serious “homogonization”.

  143. An article on Yahoo actually consulted with Comiso to get his view.

    “The apparent expansion is real and not due to an error in a previous data set uncovered by the Eisenman et al paper,” that scientist, NASA’s Josefino Comiso, wrote in a response to the new study that he sent to Live Science. “That error has already been corrected and the expansion being reported now has also been reported by other groups as well using different techniques.”

    Comiso agrees that a change in the Bootstrap algorithm introduced bias into the data. However, he contests the new findings, which are published today (July 22) in the journal The Cryosphere. The changes made in 2007 improved the algorithm and corrected problems, he told Live Science. The satellite data, updated using this correction, shows large increases in Antarctic sea ice, and other groups who have examined the data using different techniques have come up with similar findings, he said. In other words, Comiso believes that version two of the dataset, adjusted after 2007, is correct, reflecting a real increase in Antarctic ice, and that the error was in version one.

    “The sea ice extent showed basically no trend in the earlier period because the inter-annual changes in extent were more uniform and the errors were large,” Comiso said. In recent years, he said, the longer record and better quality control has yielded a more trustworthy dataset — and one that shows more extensive ice cover.

    “The trend in extent in the Antarctic sea ice has been shown to be positive in different publications,” he said. “It is even more positive now than ever, and the Eisenman et al paper is providing a misinformation instead of a resolution.”

  144. But the rest of the global ice data is correct and that stupid idiot didn’t get stuck in his ship at Christmas. Bloody lying pack of ideologue dogs. They are fiddling everywhere to spin AGW, as for those who say “why would they do that?” Two words

    Lois Lerner

    It is rotten to the core. I would only say this by way of explanation: In the past kids were inspired to become part of NASA for the excitement of Space Travel. Now all the recruits are ideologue’s who pray and pray that AGW is real . Have you ever noticed how these people instead of cheering for say the global temperature pause they seem rather disappointed by it ; they actually want AGW to be real and all the dire predictions as well. These people are insane.

  145. So the algorithm for assessing the Antarctic ice extent is wrong if we are to believe these pseudo scientists.
    Which then raises the subject of the veracity or all those innumerable algorithms used by the alarmist climate scientists.
    If the Antarctic ice algorithm is wrong then the Arctic ice algorithm will be wrong as will the Greenland ice cap algorithm
    Then we have the sea level algorithms with one of those algorithms programmed to add a spurious invented 0.3 mms per year to sea level rises [ which are now known despite past algorithm based claims to be all over the place ] to compensate for isostatic rebound in ocean basins.
    The sea surface temperature algorithms which still haven’t got it any where near right.
    The deep ocean ARGO based algorithms that calculate changes of a hundredth of a degree some 2000 or more metres down in the ocean deeps [ Yeh! Right ! ]
    Then there are the hurricane / typhoon / cyclone predicting algorithms,
    The failed useless algorithms for predicting the ENSO which a few months in advance they can’t predict if there will be an ENSO event.
    A couple of months out and they can’t predict if it will be an El Nino or a La Nina .
    A few weeks out and they can’t predict how strong it will be .
    A week out and they can’t predict when it will actually start.
    And when it does start they find they have got about every prediction wrong in any case.

    And then of course the algorithms upon which the entire claims for CAGW lay ,
    Those algorithms that daily adjust, infill, estimate, smear, zombie, homogenise, corrupt the national and global temperature data, both long gone 100 year old historical data and the current data to the point where nobody actually knows anymore if the claimed publicised temperatures have any relation with reality.
    Or whether those algorithm generated temperatures should be at all trusted in any way let alone using that algorithm corrupted temperature data to formulate policies that costs hundreds of billions of dollars to implement, that destroy entire industries, that raise energy prices to unaffordable levels for the low income earners and create dissension and destroy the societal trust in political and scientific processes.

    Climate alarmist science and it’s advocate scientists depend entirely on models and algorithms to shape and change the data to fit their dogma and promote their cause.
    The models are wrong without a doubt.
    And now when one algorithm that outlines a situation that doesn’t agree with the CAGW meme is slated as being wrong then every single algorithm so beloved of the CAGW believers must also be seriously classed as being wrong as well.

    But as said above, this after all is claimed to be a science called “climate science”

  146. I love the snark . . .

    snark – a very common characteristic of:
    Barack Obama
    Albert A. Gore, Jr.

    long list follows

    Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
    John F. Kerry

    ————
    Steven Mosher has provided very good comments here. Thanks.

  147. I’ve learnt over the years that scientific papers get published in climate science not because they have scientific value but because they apparently create useful talking points. So a paper gets published that suggests an error has been identified but it hasn’t been quantified yet nor are they sure how it should be resolved. Imagine a paper of this quality getting published in any other field. I can’t.

  148. Why is it that virtually every single climate indicator that has been in favor of skeptics ends up having bad sensors or some math issue?

  149. Richard M says:
    July 22, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    “The trend in extent in the Antarctic sea ice has been shown to be positive in different publications,” he said. “It is even more positive now than ever, and the Eisenman et al paper is providing a misinformation instead of a resolution.”
    ====
    Thanks Richard….I saw that too

    …10 mins out of the gate….and already shot down

  150. There is a dataset for Antarctica that goes even farther back to 1973. It is the orginal GSFC NasaTeam Bootstrap Algorithm.

    It is virtually identical in the overlap period of October 1978 to December 2002, to the current NSIDC Antarctica Sea Ice Extent bootstrap algorithm measure.

    Old 1973-2002 data here.

    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/pub/DATASETS/nsidc0192_seaice_trends_climo/total-ice-area-extent/esmr-smmr-ssmi-merged/

    One can compare this to the current NSIDC sea ice extent data (bootstrap algorithm) here.

    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/south/daily/data/

    So if we look at these two datasets back to 1973, one finds that they are virtually identical. No step-change is evident in 1991. [Note that the Antarctic sea ice extent was actually higher in the early 1970s than today].

    Now we can also zoom-in on the infamous 1991 period here. There is no step-change evident.

    Factual evidence that the claim in this paper is simply musing (with no basis in fact) and the paper should be withdrawn. Someone should send this comment to the authors.

  151. Come on, expeditions have been plying down to the Antarctic by sea for over a hundred years.

    Even Inspector Clouseau could work out from talking to craggy old Antarctic ship’s captains or looking at available voyage SITREP’s whether Antarctic sea ice is increasing or decreasing.

    For example just a cursory glance of the Voyage SITREPs of the Australian Antarctic Division’s Aurora Australis gives a comparison of conditions between Dec 1999 and Dec 2013 at similar latitudes:

    https://secure3.aad.gov.au/proms/public/schedules/display_sitrep.cfm?bvs_id=15576

    https://secure3.aad.gov.au/proms/public/schedules/display_sitrep.cfm?bvs_id=19305

    BTW that last voyage also contains details of how the ship was diverted to rescue of the Akademik Shokalskiy when Professor Chris Turney and his NSW Uni touring scientists got stuck in the ice at Commonwealth Bay a couple of days later.

    If the Antarctic sea ice has NOT been increasing then I expect the AAD’s ship’s schedules for the coming season will be much the same. But without closely checking all their planning I have a strong feeling they will be put back a little.

    Whatever, I will be watching with interest on how they get on this year and especially if the NSW Uni has some more entertaining reading for us of its adventure and survival trips to the Southern Ice.

  152. Antarctica sea ice is diminishing US intelligence suggests: “There is an almost certainty that Antarctica sea ice is also diminishing and our Antarctica allies have indicated pockets of melting sea ice with torch blowers” says a Climate State Department official under the cover of anonymity.
    Meanwhile satellites even with a slight correction do show rising Antarctica sea ice extent…
    Back to you Candy.

  153. Setting aside all the other inherent stupidity of this article, why should they be allowed to get away with this statement; “Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate.”?

    In the satellite records of arctic ice extent, it is plainly obvious that there was a decrease in ice extent from about 2000 to 2007, but that there has been no percievable decrease in ice extent from 2007 to present. 2014-2007 = 2007-2000; the arctic ice extent has been NOT shrinking for as long a period of time now as it WAS previously shrinking.

    The only rational description is that while the arctic sea ice has retreated in the past, it is not presently retreating. It remains to be seen what it will do in the future, but the statement that “Arctic sea ice IS retreating at a dramatic rate” can be considered as nothing other than an outright lie of the most blatant and obvious sort, in which case the entire article is unworthy of consideration.

  154. Pierre DM said “It seems to me that anytime algorithms are used or mentioned they always increase trends over time no matter what the data is be it, temperatures, sea ice, whatever:. Would rounding errors compounded daily do this over time within an algorithm?
    Could the problem simply be how computers are built? Just curious.”

    Yeah it does seem that way, one would think that if it were an honest mistake the error would be as likely to go one way as the other, but for the most part the heavy-duty math libraries used by these programs are extremely well tested. Computer Software Engineers are well aware of the precision and limitations of these libraries some have been in developement for 60 years, post-grads with a couple hours of Comp Sci are more likely a “Your Millage May Vary” situation.

  155. I’ll ask again… can anyone remember an example of either of the following…

    1) errors or adjustments favoring cooling (or skeptic position)

    2) model forecasts did not verify too warm

    As a stats geekess, I would expect model verification and errors and data adjustments to fall randomly in a bell curve around the mean. But instead, they always seem to be on the same side of the mean in an amazing skewness.

    Perhaps I’m missing something?

  156. Mosher writes “not uncommon for processing sensor data from a satellite. ”

    Yep but more generally its not uncommon when stitching together two datasets from different sets of measurements. For example there is a large jump in OHC at the time that Argo began measuring. However because that jump follows the party line, they dont take too much effort to reduce it.

  157. “Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate.”

    It isn’t.

    ” What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world”

    Which world is that? Not this one for the last seventeen years.

    “, a team of researchers has suggested that much of the measured expansion may be due to an error, not previously documented, in the way satellite data was processed.”

    No chance that an error has lead to the ideas that Arctic ice is retreating and the world is warming?

  158. For example there is a large jump in OHC at the time that Argo began measuring.
    ===============
    I believe if you check Argo itself is questionable. Initially the trend was in the “wrong” direction, so buoys were eliminated until the desired trend was obtained. Links were posted here on WUWT some months ago to confirm what happened. My impression was that the researcher responded to “peer pressure” – he was concerned with the reception he would get from his peers if his findings did not conform to expectations.

  159. John F. Hultquist says:
    July 22, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    “I love the snark . . . ”

    snark – a very common characteristic of:
    Barack Obama
    Albert A. Gore, Jr.

    long list follows

    Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
    John F. Kerry

    ————
    Steven Mosher has provided very good comments here. Thanks.
    =================================================
    I’ll second that! I learned quite a bit from the comments here, and Mosher’s were quite helpful in pointing me in a useful direction.
    Of course some comments can be frustrating, but patience Steve:), we are all learning from different starting points and at different rates, plus, separating the politics and the science isn’t always easy for us.

  160. “May”, “could”, etc. Article is simply conjecture with no science and not evidence of anything anywhere. Most obviously, if there were a significant error then the record of the data would show it clearly, “noise” or no “noise”.

    The only conclusion is that these warmists are looking for anything to cast doubt because the antarctic ice growth has embarrassed them so.

  161. Lets not get too complicated, the simple explanation to “why”, might be the carve up of the profit cake that caused such a fight between NASA (Hansen) and NOAA (Schmidt) as to which part of the organization would control the multi Billion/Trillion operation to geoengineer the World Climate to fix, a problem, these same “men of science” insisted was happening then. Well before enquiring minds applied sceptical reasoning to their theories and behaviour.

    Was that funding “cake” worth all that deceptive behaviour (the Hot Senate room adjustments, etc. etc. the hiding of data, biasing data) They say Hansen won the right to the program once authorised, but was it really worth it!! But you be the judge!

  162. Here Mosher condescendingly obfuscates in personally insulting fashion the simplicity of white Antarctic ice pixel area counting by dragging in rounding error level complexity of perforated Arctic dynamics, shamelessly implying that simple measurement of ice area is yet another complex affair for experts alone to be able to judge, as *if*! It’s white pixels in a picture, folks. Learning to simplify after considering complexity is what sets too notch scientists from careerist hacks who always wallow in minutia. The whole point of sea ice extent is to offer a basic unnuanced year to year trend determination in which nitpicks about gloss and dirt and thickness are ruled out since hide are ice mass considerations and those average out to still provide a good trend estimate of growth versus loss which is what matters most. Is Antarctica not growing in ice extent, as clearly as day? Does Mosher’s comment about glossy film ice change the fact that Antarctic ice extent is growing by even a percentage point? If so, in what direction? Does he even offer a clue? No, he merely tries to confuse one if the most simple issues in the debate: Antarctic ice is growing in two dimensional area, now being at a record high value. This puts great doubt on models that claim ice volume is rapidly falling, given that sea ice growth comes from ice expansion out of the mainland via plastic flow.

  163. iPhone impossibly small edit box typos:

    too notch > top notch
    hide are > those are
    one if > one of

    Yes, I’m saving up for a bigger pocket computer.

  164. ferdberple writes “Initially the trend was in the “wrong” direction, so buoys were eliminated until the desired trend was obtained.”

    Its true they eliminated “cold reading units” and I would hope they applied the same criteria to “warm reading units”. Josh Willis strikes me as an honest sort of guy. Either way, there wasn’t much trend left.

    But that’s trend after Argo. I’m actually talking about stitching the XBT and Argo data together. There is a massive jump in OHC at the join.

  165. The error is…the world is cooling and has been for a long time. What is it with there people?

  166. Antarctic ice melting faster than expected
    April 6, 2009
    UP TO one-third of all Antarctic sea ice is likely to melt by the end of the century, seriously contributing to dangerous sea level rises, updated [un]scientific modelling on global warming shows. The evidence will be presented to an international meeting of Antarctic and Arctic scientists in the US tonight, at which US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will speak.

    http://www.theage.com.au/environment/antarctic-ice-melting-faster-than-expected-20090405-9t9v.html.

    Antarctic ice spreading
    April 23, 2009
    It seems that global warming may actually be leading to an increase in sea ice in parts of the Antarctic. Scientists in the United Kingdom have produced a study which shows ice has grown by 100,000 square kilometres each decade in the past 30 years. And perversely the increase is being put down to the hole in the ozone layer.

    http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2008/s2550320.htm

    = = = = = = = = = =
    It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be reduced to twenty grammes a week.
    Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours?
    Yes, they swallowed it. Parsons swallowed it easily, with the stupidity of an animal. The eyeless creature at the other table swallowed it fanatically, passionately, with a furious desire to track down, denounce, and vaporize anyone who should suggest that last week the ration had been thirty grammes. Syme, too-in some more complex way, involving doublethink, Syme swallowed it. Was he, then, alone in the possession of a memory?

    http://msxnet.org/orwell/1984

    = = = = = = = = = =

  167. I quote: “… Arctic sea ice is retreating at a dramatic rate. In contrast, satellite observations suggest that sea ice cover in the Antarctic is expanding – albeit at a moderate rate – and that sea ice extent has reached record highs in recent years. What’s causing Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover to increase in a warming world has puzzled scientists since the trend was first spotted….”

    They would not be puzzled if they had bothered to read my 2011 article [E&E 22(8):1069-1083]. The ice at the two poles is regulated by two different mechanisms: while the Antarctic ice cover responds to the cold circumpolar atmospheric circulation in the Southern Ocean, Arctic warming is caused by ocean currents carrying warm Gulf Stream water into the Arctic Ocean. It started at the turn of the twentieth century, after 2000 years of slow, linear cooling. What happened is that there was a change in the pattern of North Atlantic currents that began to carry warm Gulf Stream water north. The original pattern of currents returned for thirty years in mid-century and was accompanied by cooling at the rate of 0.2 degrees Celsius per decade. Warming then returned about 1970 and has been active since then. There was no increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide at the turn of the century which rules out greenhouse warming as a cause of warming. Furthermore, It is quite impossible for greenhouse warming to suddenly change to cooling and then return to warming in thirty years’ time. From this it is clear that if it wasn’t for currents bringing Gulf Stream water into the Arctic both poles would now be cooling at the same rate. One more note: these guys refer to a “warming world” that does not exist. Someone ought to tell them that there is no greenhouse warming today and there has been none for the last 17 years. Their greenhouse theory is completely unable to explain this and belongs in the wastebasket of history.

  168. I was wondering what was going on with thr recent sea ice in Antarctica. As I correctly forecasted El Nino’s collapse on Jun 10th I know those GO people are going to be a bit disappointed in the coming months. Antarctic ice cap actually expanded during July not contracted significantly, when analyzing satellite. The pressure to change the record ice cap data this year must be amazing.

  169. Anybody still remember the failed expedition last December to Antarctica led by Australia’s Professor Chris Turney? Remember how they all got stranded in all that ice?

    I wonder what Chris Turney would have to say about this article?

  170. Mosher is piling the BS up so high in this thread as to be a clown about it:

    “Sensors in space do not measure temperature. They dont measure ice extent or area.
    They measure brightness at the sensor at various frequencies. Those raw voltages are then
    processed by models to create estimated “data” which try to represent things like temperature
    of ice extent. The sensors change over time. The algorithms change.

    People do agree on the math. 2+2 = 4. But when it comes to turning a raw voltage at the sensor
    to a physical property… that’s more than simple math. It typically involves a physics model with
    many assumptions.”

    Dude, it’s white pixels on a perfectly dark background ocean. There simply *is* no sensor dilemma to this measurement in the Antarctic. It’s a five minute Photoshop job with nearly no error. Unlike the Arctic, the Antarctic satellite image is so clear about what is sea ice and what is ocean that there is no ambiguity whatsoever, no sensor calibration involved. An iPhone sent into space would do fine and you could send twenty smart phones up there on a small satellite and randomly choose one each day and still get the exact same ice area from each one since the contrast of the ice against ocean is ideal. Any camera will give the same result at nearly any exposure even with shadow or highlight blowout. It’s just like counting the relative pixels of white on a chess board after taking a picture of it. The type and condition of a the sensor has near zero impact on the simple act of finding the area of ice because the contrast is to incredibly high. Your detector or whatever imaging camera you want to use could vary all over the place and it will return the exact same high contrast determination of where the damn ice is. This is so trivial that if you haven’t applied the laugh test to claims of complexity then you are a willing dupe. No wonder skeptics can’t expose the overall scam. All it takes is one spin doctor and the whole crowd is wooed as if ice area was like complex ground thermometer records or whole Earth thermal sensors. No, it’s not like those at *all*. There is only some variation in mass in the Arctic and that’s about mass, not extent.

    A smart phone camera *does* indeed measure white pixel area on a chess board, just using Photoshop on it to count pixels. There is no error here. You need distort the image of the chess board back to a square in fifteen seconds, then quick adjust the contrast in ten seconds, then select the highlights and do a pixel count in another fifteen seconds and you will always get 50% with a small error no matter what cell phone you use. With a team of programmers and rocket scientists with hundred million dollar equipment, you still get 50%, but more like 50.00% instead of just a couple percent variation. With either piece of equipment you never get more than a couple percent error.

    What has happened to people’s reality detector versus BS detector? It’s disgusting to see a spin doctor make mashed potatoes our of your minds, dear skeptics. This is exactly how climate alarm still carries on. A bit of obfuscation turns skeptics into intellectual pacifists. Is ocean going to be classified as ice, ever? Can literal rocket scientists not time filter out cloud cover? Will ice ever really be classified as ocean? It’s a binary determination that is a clear as any system could ever be to measure properly. There is no error, no time that dark ocean is classified as white ice, ever. It’s simply not optically possible unless you smash the damn camera.

  171. Well, there is one fix that always works. Those who control the present must rewrite history. The future is at stake. Just up the figures for antarctic ice in the past and we are back on track.

  172. I know the world’s ice is melting quickly. I have it from the highest authority, President Obama: “the planet will boil over” if we do not find “new ways of producing energy”.

  173. I contacted the primary author of the paper by email and he was kind enough to answer my question on the processing methodology and provide a non-paywalled link to his paper.

    To test the old and new algorithms they did process the entire data series with both algorithms separately and then compare them. The main difference was a step-like change in 1991 which corresponded with a satellite transition calibration. The new algorithm reports greater ice extent over-all compared to the old algorithm. They’re not sure which algorithm is more accurate. It’s possible.

  174. “The main difference was a step-like change in 1991 which corresponded with a satellite transition calibration. ”

    Others here have found no “step-like change in 1991″

    That’s a problem.

  175. So hockey sticks in Antarctic sea ice are not allowed but in temperatures they can be used to tax us to death?

  176. There is no ice in the Antarctic, and any ice you do see there is merely a figment of your imagination.

    Apologies to Mister Adams.

  177. “””””…..steveta_uk says:

    July 22, 2014 at 9:55 am

    “does a thermometer measure temperature?”

    Yes. I simply define temperature to be the thing that a themometer measures. Q.E.D…….””””””

    A thermometer DOES measure the Temperature (of the Thermometer).

    Most people are interested in measuring the Temperature of “something else.”

    That’s where the problem lies.

  178. george e. smith

    in an LIG thermometer the thing measured is length

    length of an expanding liquid.

  179. “Dude, it’s white pixels on a perfectly dark background ocean. There simply *is* no sensor dilemma to this measurement in the Antarctic. ”

    Those white pixels can be clouds bozo

    that is why the sensor is not visible light.

  180. “NikFromNYC says:
    July 22, 2014 at 7:59 pm
    Here Mosher condescendingly obfuscates in personally insulting fashion the simplicity of white Antarctic ice pixel area counting by dragging in rounding error level complexity of perforated Arctic dynamics, shamelessly implying that simple measurement of ice area is yet another complex affair for experts alone to be able to judge, as *if*! It’s white pixels in a picture, folks. Learning to simplify after considering complexity is what sets too notch scientists from careerist hacks who always wallow in minutia. ”

    white pixels can be

    1. clouds
    2. fog
    3. ice.

    That is why one doesnt simply use the visible light.

    This commenter sounds like Goddard who has made similar mistakes in the past

  181. NikFromNYC says:
    July 23, 2014 at 12:15 am
    Mosher is piling the BS up so high in this thread as to be a clown about it:

    “Sensors in space do not measure temperature. They dont measure ice extent or area.
    They measure brightness at the sensor at various frequencies. Those raw voltages are then
    processed by models to create estimated “data” which try to represent things like temperature
    of ice extent. The sensors change over time. The algorithms change.

    People do agree on the math. 2+2 = 4. But when it comes to turning a raw voltage at the sensor
    to a physical property… that’s more than simple math. It typically involves a physics model with
    many assumptions.”

    Dude, it’s white pixels on a perfectly dark background ocean. There simply *is* no sensor dilemma to this measurement in the Antarctic. It’s a five minute Photoshop job with nearly no error.

    It isn’t that simple because frequently the size of the ‘checkerboard’ squares are smaller than the pixel size of the camera. Depending on the satellite used the pixel square can be 25km^2 in area.

  182. ferdberple says:
    July 22, 2014 at 7:15 pm
    /////////////////

    Pleased to see this pointed out. It is important that people are aware that there are issues regarding ARGO.

    Whenever I commentn on ARGO, I usually try to throw in a line about this adjustment having been made.

    ARGO may be our only worthwhile data set on ocean temps (I myself am very familiar with ship’s data and I know from experience how flawed it is – not worth the paper that it is written on), but there are genuine issues over its tuning and calibration, and it has never been properly evaluated to see whether there is some inherent bias caused by the fact that the buoys are free floating and are swept and carried alonng currents which themselves are temperature dependent.

    Of course, one should never splice one data set onto another. That is a big no no, and that is why there appears to be a spike in OHC when ARGO ccame on stream.

  183. “Phil. says:
    July 23, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    It isn’t that simple because frequently the size of the ‘checkerboard’ squares are smaller than the pixel size of the camera. Depending on the satellite used the pixel square can be 25km^2 in area.”

    So, you are saying that the satellites Google gets the images for their maps deom have cameras that are many times better than what is supposed to be determining the amount of ice and thereby the fate of the world (at least economic)?

  184. … and meanwhile, another ‘ship of fools’ sets sail to attempt the North West passage. Apparently,

    It is only in recent years, with the retraction of Arctic summer sea-ice, that the route became passable without the need of icebreaker vessels.

    Which does not agree with my understanding. But why let facts get in the way for a good story, eh?

    http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-28247175

  185. NikFromNYC July 22, 2014 at 12:00 pm says: ” Arno Arrak summarizes a more comprehensive greenhouse theory in which water vapor loss asserts a negative feedback in a normal everyday way that avoids the Sky Dragon denial of any greenhouse effect itself based on paper napkin physics. This ought to be measurable directly though as actually decreasing vapor instead of the increase that climate models predict as a massive positive feedback.”

    You are quite right, NIck, and I am glad to see that someone is actually thinking about climate. It is measurable directly as you point out. Ken Gregory has a guest post on Anthony’s blog on March 6th 2013 entitled ” NASA satellite data shows a decline in water vapor.” His figure 5 shows that atmospheric relative humidity, measured at 300, 400, 500, 600 and 700 mb pressures, declined steadily throughout the period of 1948 to 2012. That sure is not the feedback you need to triple the Arrhenius warming that IPCC uses as they cook their predicted future temperatures. You can ignore Roy Spencer because the only thing that he really has is a complaint about the imprecision of early radiosonde measurements. The only way to check this is to divide the database into subsets based on different time periods and see if this has any influence on the observed flux. Miskolci did this in 2011 for the EGU meeting in Vienna. His results showed that when the database was subdivided into seven subsets the observed flux did not change. I used his results as figure 6 in my E&E paper.

    Mike Jonas July 22, 2014 at 3:11 pm says: ” My understanding is that increasing temperature leads to increasing ocean evaporation and hence more atmospheric water vapor (Clausius-Clapeyron; ~6-7% per deg C), not less. So yes, it does rain more, but there is an increase in the whole hydrological cycle, including an increase in atmospheric water vapor, not a net reduction.”

    Your first problem is the assumption that there is increasing temperature. There is none and global temperature has not changed for 17 years. There has been some jerky, stepwise warming indeed since the twentieth century began. The first warming was a thirty year stretch that started in 1910 and stopped in 1940. It must be classified as natural warming because of two key observations. First, there was no increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide when it started. Second, it stopped suddenly and was followed by WWII cooling. Both are quite impossible for greenhouse warming to execute. The second warming of the century was a step warming that started in 1999, raised global temperature by a third of a degree Celsius in only three years, and then stopped. Since then there has been no warming whatsoever. It is likely that its origin is related to the super El Nino of 1998 but research on it has not been done because the billions spent on climate research are all used up trying to prove that the non-existent greenhouse warming is real. This quest for the greenhouse effect started with Hansen 26 years ago and is still going strong. Up to now, no one, including Hansen, has actually observed the greenhouse effect in action. Attributions are abundant but they all depend on theory, not observation. Hansen said he observed the greenhouse effect but he cheated. He said there was a hundred year warming that proved the greenhouse effect was real. Turned out his hundred year warming included a thirty year stretch of non-greenhouse warming, something you can’t use if you are trying to prove the greenhouse effect. And now let us look at the increase of atmospheric water vapor that concerns you. I already covered that above in answering Nik. NASA observations show a decrease, not an increase of atmospheric water vapor since 1948. There are irregularities there but the trend has persisted for a good sixty five years. It just might have a long-term connection with other climate happenings going back to the Little Ice Age, but I simply don’t have the information I need to explain anything that old.

  186. mjc says:
    July 23, 2014 at 4:55 pm
    “Phil. says:
    July 23, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    It isn’t that simple because frequently the size of the ‘checkerboard’ squares are smaller than the pixel size of the camera. Depending on the satellite used the pixel square can be 25km^2 in area.”

    So, you are saying that the satellites Google gets the images for their maps deom have cameras that are many times better than what is supposed to be determining the amount of ice and thereby the fate of the world (at least economic)?

    Three points, firstly the paper is referring to a change in sensors in 1991, what resolution camera was Google using in 1991?
    Secondly, most of Google’s high resolution imagery is made from planes flying at about 1000′, not by satellites.
    Finally, the extent/area measures of sea ice are made using microwave sensors not visible cameras so have significantly different resolution. The wavelengths are about 3000 times longer.

  187. Phil…

    But using BOTH microwave and photos provides a sanity check each way…and that’s the point. It’s a pretty easy way to figure out which version of the data is ‘right’ (if there is actually anything wrong with either one…the difference could be within the margin of error of the equipment used…and yes I read the paper and didn’t see anything in that definitely would eliminate that as a possibility) and how much of a trend there is.

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