Cryosphere Today Makes Changes – Improves product, drops Gore comment

In the thread where we have examined the visual discrepancies in sea ice report that concerned a number of people, William Chapman of the University of Illinois Champaign/Urbana joined in the discussion today. Mr. Chapman is the man responsible for maintaining the popular Cryosphere Today website, which shows sea ice extent data and visuals for both the Arctic and Antarctic. I asked him a some questions about the website and he graciously responded within the hour.

I asked about the new color scheme and map that had been recently implemented:

Q: What prompted the color scheme change in recent days?

A: I added three new color schemes about 40 days ago (July 11; is that ‘recent’?). I was hoping for more detail in the images “from the satellite perspective” in the images shown on the main page. The AMSR-E data provide more spatial resolution so I switched data sources and color schemes for those home page images. IMPORTANT: The data used for all other timeseries and comparison graphics have stayed the same (SSMI) obviously, to avoid any issues with data inhomogeneity in time. The AMSR-E data source is only used for the high resolution Northern Hemisphere graphics on the main page. I hope to convert the Southern Hemisphere as well over the next month. The AMSR-E is a relatively new platform, so maybe after it has been around for 10-15 years or so, and has a proven track-record, we can switch the timeseries and other data over entirely to that platform. I have included links to the old SSMI images on the main page for those who prefer them or want to compare current conditions to historic conditions (prior to the AMSR-E launch).

The new maps are graphically better, in my opinion, than the older presentation.

But the real surprise came when I asked him about a comment from Al Gore that had been prominently displayed on the Cryosphere today web page for several months. I’ve seen several comments about this appearing to illustrate a potential bias at CT. It went like this:

You’ve heard Al Gore say “The Earth has a fever”? It may also have major tooth decay.

Here is how Mr. Chapman responded:

Q: Why do you have a quote from a politician (Al Gore) on a web page presenting science? This is a question many people have raised.

A: [ I ] didn’t realize it was a concern for many people. All references to Al Gore have been removed.

Kudos to Mr. Chapman for his willingness to consider the issue, and for acting quickly when it was pointed out.  You can read the original comment here

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107 thoughts on “Cryosphere Today Makes Changes – Improves product, drops Gore comment

  1. I’m noticing that reasonable and firm engagement of the various agencies/people that provide information to the public (the media outlets excepted) is beginning to generate responses that move them back to neutral reporting of information. And today I even saw an article that included a statements that a single event (a large crack in the Petermann glacier in Greenland) does not necessarily relate to global warming. Keep up the good work, Anthony.

  2. It seems the skeptical scientists are finally coming out of the closet… 😉 It’s about time the AGW warmers feet are held to the fire.

  3. Nice spin, but here are the facts:
    The original article calculated that the Arctic sea ice extent had increased over 30% from the sea ice extent from last year’s blowout melt record. In fact, the increase at August 11 was around 10-14%. The author Steven Goddard has since published corrections both on the original article site, and here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/08/15/arctic-ice-extent-discrepancy-nsidc-versus-cryosphere-today/
    Mr. Goddard is trying to link his mistaken calculation to incorrect image data on Cryosphere Today, but CT’s Mr. Chapman asserts the key mistake is Mr. Goddard’s attempt to measure ice extent from a two dimensional display image, and incorrect projection corrections.
    This is the most important result; the information presented here was inaccurate, and the conclusions drawn from the information were unjustified.
    The Arctic sea ice area (better measure than ice extent) could still match last year’s record melt, and if not, come in at a close second. As Mr. Chapman said, “the Earth may have a serious case of tooth decay” when we look at Arctic ice.

  4. Arctic sea ice on Cryosphere today looks like the foot print from a duck! Webbed and whatnot.
    Hmm. Me thinks melting is over with…

  5. Paul K,
    Only this has happened before, in the 20s & 30s. it appears to be part of a cycle, not an ‘unprecedented event’ as it is being portrayed by many pro-AGW bloggers (Littlejohn v Monkton debate).

  6. I still don’t like how this is presented.
    The real measure of the melt is the volume, not the surface area.

  7. Bill Marsh… We don’t have satellite records, or submarine observations from the 20s and 30s, but the best records of Arctic ice levels are likely the submarine records that the US Navy has from over the last 50 years or so.
    It really bothers me, that one of the most aggressive forecasts for ice melt, comes from Dr. Maslowski from the US Naval Postgraduate School. I know many of the skeptics perhaps don’t trust government organizations like the US military, but as a scientists, shouldn’t we look at who has the best data? And in terms of ice levels, water temperatures, and ocean currents, the US Navy has the best data.
    Here is a link to Dr. Maslowski’s views:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7139797.stm
    Incidentally, the original submarine surveys of Arctic ice showed numerous ridges of ice that extended 20-30 meters into the ocean: these ridges have essentially disappeared, and the vast majority (about 90%) of the Arctic is currently covered by first year ice, typically only a meter thick.
    Can I ask why you don’t accept the US Navy records? Do you have a bias against US military records?

  8. Austin, I agree, the volume of ice is the most important factor. Thus the disappearance of the multiyear ice, is critical, and the data clearly show the disappearance of thick ice across the Arctic.

  9. Without knowing thickness (volume) we really can’t put much on area or extent. Austin is right, the amount of ice is the key issue. Wind and ocean currents can disperse ice far and wide or confine it. How much of “it” is a better indicator.

  10. Paul K-
    This is the most important result of your post: 2008 will clearly not match 2007’s low extent, and your conclusions drawn from the information are unjustified.
    We have Arctic ice extent records since 1979, people. To assume that the Earth has “tooth decay” because of current low Arctic ice extent is a little bit ridiculous and unfounded.

  11. Jared, if you read my post, I said the ice AREA could match the 2007 minimum area (about 3.0 million square kilometers), and although unlikely, it might (current sea ice area is about 3.6-3.7 million and it is still dropping about 0.1 million every couple of days).
    I have agreed with other posters, that area is better than extent, in terms of ice measurement, but the best measure is the actual volume (area X ice thickness). I pointed out that the US Navy has ice depth information going back 50 years, and clearly the ice thickness across the Arctic has been decimated, with the huge reduction of the thicker multifyear ice, and the desappearance of the underwater ice ridges.
    So we have the minimum area setting new records, multiplied by the clearly thinner ice levels = record setting low ice volumes.

  12. What would be wrong with putting the ‘new and improved data processing on page two’. To change the presentation now seems a little suspect, especially for those who don’t know or care what the changes were. The changeover to new data processing must be highlighted so the uninitiated does not get taken in by the changes and draw unwarranted conclusions — It’s the least that should be acceptable, highlighting the changes.
    I defer to Prof Bob Carter for the wrap-up of climate science. His lecture series(four part) youtube videos give some of the clearest presentation of where we are with climate science and what it means. It’s not like scientists aren’t trying, it is what it is, but we don’t have reliable, accurate data over a long enough period of time to conclude anything. Forget those computer models, they produce what the modelers want them to produce.
    To base trillions of dollars on this level of science is just pure folly. It’s like saying ‘pay more in taxes and government will pretend to control the weather’. Who would fall for that hoax.

  13. I just realized that some commenters may not know how sea ice is measured. A quick summary might be helpful. Sea ice extent is the area of the ocean that has at least 15% ice in each of the grid cells (25×25 km2). The ice area is the actual area of the Arctic ocean covered by ice, accounting for the open water between the ice floes.
    Last year at this time, the area had almost bottomed at about 3 million km2… and the ice extent was about 4.5 million, so the average ice concentration was about 66%. The remaining ice was pushed together by currents and wind, so the extent dropped to about 4.2 million, with an area just below 3 for an average ice concentration of 71-72% at the end of the melt season.
    This year we have a current ice extent of about 5.5 million with an ice area of about 3.7 million, so the average ice concentration is about 66%. But this year the ice area is continuing to fall. Since so much of the ice at the fringes this year is first year ice, instead of multiyear ice, it is more difficult to know how much the thinner ice has rotted out this year, and forecast the final ice area. So we really don’t know yet, where we might end up, but the next couple of weeks will tell the story.
    In any case, this year’s melt does not represent any kind of real recovery, contrary to statements made here and elsewhere, since last winter. The winter was unusually cold, and ice extent expanded rapidly, so the starting ice level was much higher in 2008 than 2007, and yet we are within spitting distance of last year’s record low ice area. The amount of ice area that melted off this year, is as large, if not larger, than last year.
    Hopefully we get a cold winter, and get some kind of meaningful recovery, but if we get a normal winter, and the same kind of melt next year as we saw in 07 and 08, then a new low record will be set.
    I hope, for mankind’s sake, and the sake of our planet, that the skeptics are right, and the Arctic ice quickly mends this winter and next year. Our future depends on the skeptics being right, and my analysis indicates they don’t have such a good record at being correct.

  14. Paul K: I normally avoid discussions along these lines, but your statements on the original thread prompted me to change personal policy. You wrote of Al Gore’s being “active in advancing scientific efforts for over 30 years. Why isn’t his view on scientific developments appropriate, especially in view of his Nobel prize?”
    Al Gore did not win a Nobel Prize for the purported science contained within his movies or his speeches. His monocular view of climate change has little basis in science; it is, however, ripe with contrived environmental alarmism.
    While in office, Al Gore’s activism had not been focused on “advancing scientific efforts,” but on advancing agenda-driven policy. As Vice President, he fired William Happer, director of energy research at the U.S. Department of Energy. Why? Because the testimony Happer gave before the House Energy and Water Development Subcommittee on Appropriations disagreed with Gore’s environmentally fueled view of ozone depletion and of climate change. Happer was quoted then, “I was told that science was not going to intrude on policy.”
    Since leaving office, Al Gore’s activism has not been focused on “advancing scientific efforts;” his focus has been on increasing Al Gore’s net worth.

  15. Fellow readers: there have been a lot of posts about the sea ice recovering this year, on this site. Check this post out:
    http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/02/03/arctic-sea-ice-back-to-its-previous-level-bears-safe-film-at-11/
    That post was safely written last winter, but now that ice is gone, and the bears are in trouble. How about a headline for this story?
    http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/multiple-polar-bears-discovered-swimming/story.aspx?guid=%7B9D938E1B-7204-4D4E-8ACF-9EC53B685635%7D&dist=hppr.
    Quote from story:
    Professor Richard Steiner of the University of Alaska’s Marine Advisory Program said, “While these bears are swimming around in an ice-free coastal Arctic Ocean, the only thing the State of Alaska is doing is suing the federal government trying to overturn the listing of polar bears. The bottom line here is that polar bears need sea ice, sea ice is decaying, and the bears are in very serious trouble. For any people who are still non-believers in global warming and the impacts it is having in the Arctic, this should answer their doubts once and for all.”

  16. The ice starts freezing back in 3-4 weeks like it always has.
    On September 21, twenty-four hours of darkness sets in and it starts to get really cold in the Arctic Circle. The average annual temperature at the North Pole is -24.5C.
    All this scare-mongering about a little ice melting for a few weeks in the summer is rather ridiculous. There will always be ice at the North Pole for 11 months of the year and it has always melted for a month or two in the summer.
    Thanks to the tilted spherical planet we live on, there has always been six months of darkness at the North Pole during the entire 4.45 billion year history of the planet (or at least since the event which created the moon and tilted the planet occurred).
    It has always been very cold in the Arctic during the winter and it is likely there has always been ice there in the winter. And this has always been followed by lots of melting in the 24 hours of sunshine which happens in the summer every year for the entire 4.45 billion years the Earth has been here.
    Global warming will not make the world flat, it will stay as tilted sphere and the ice will freeze back for another 11 months, just like it always has. None of the warmers have ever taken a geology or a geography class.

  17. Paul K,
    We don’t have satellite records, or submarine observations from the 20s and 30s, but the best records of Arctic ice levels are likely the submarine records that the US Navy has from over the last 50 years
    But there are many earlier mariners/ explorers records of attempts to navigate the Arctic. Who knows what the real extent of Arctic ice was at that time? Just because we now have better, ie submarine and satellite, measurements doesn’t mean that before these were available the ice extent was always stable.
    In fact the earlier records seem to indicate that there were considerable changes over time, its just that we, today like those at the time, are unable to determine how great those changes were.

  18. Paul K,
    I’ll try to explain this to you one more time……
    Bill Chapman’s comments about map distortion are completely accurate, and the same thing I have been saying. Pixels at lower latitudes are underrepresented in that projection. Thus, lower latitude pixels need to be adjusted upwards.
    Because of this, 2008 which has more pixels at lower latitudes than 2007, gets adjusted upwards more. Adjustment increases the discrepancy – making the problem worse. There is something more serious wrong with the maps from August, 2007. I sent Anthony an image from August 15, 2007 earlier showing the large discrepancy between NSIDC and UIUC, and hopefully he can post it here?
    I have been working with Dr. Meier at NSIDC on resolving the source of the error. He of course is interested in making sure that Arctic information is consistent. Dr. Meier also told me that NSIDC teaches their students pixel counting as a way to estimate Arctic ice.

  19. Bill Illis, could I ask some questions on your statements?
    You wrote: “All this scare-mongering about a little ice melting for a few weeks in the summer is rather ridiculous. There will always be ice at the North Pole for 11 months of the year and it has always melted for a month or two in the summer.”
    Which years has the ice “melted at the North Pole for a month or two in the summer” ? I would to check the ice records for those years.
    You wrote: “Global warming will not make the world flat, it will stay as tilted sphere and the ice will freeze back for another 11 months, just like it always has. None of the warmers have ever taken a geology or a geography class.”
    The best known report on AGW is the IPCC report. You say none of the scientists who authored the IPCC report, “have ever taken a geology or geography class”. What is your basis for this statement? Could you give me a dozen names of these uneducated scientists?
    I eagerly await your answers.

  20. For the arctic domino theory of AGW models it is not the sea ice volume which counts, it is the surface. Albedo change happens when you change the ice coverage area. It may matter whether the ice is thin or very thin. Only if the polar sea becomes ice free quickly in early summer, significant albedo change may occur (domino stone number 1).
    Only then this may be sufficient to warm up the permafrost areas in adjacent northern Sibiria, Canada and Alaska. And to possibly free further greenhouse gases such as methane in great numbers. And by that to warm further (domino stone number 2) so that the Greenland glacier starts to melt significantly which should raise the sea level by meters (domino stone number 3).
    If however run-off from the Sibirian rivers increases due to warming, salinity in the polar sea may drop and freezing may occur at higher temperatures, a negative feedback. Sibirian rivers seemed to have had a 10 % increase in run-off during the last, warm decades.
    Incidentally, Hudson bay has had ice coverage long into the summer, probably because of the sweeter water there.
    Are such feedbacks all included in Dr. Maslowski’s models?
    Surely, the ice was thicker in the Nineteen-sixties. Remember, at that time we had predictions of a new ice age coming soon.
    Now 30-40 years of warming have occured. Whether this happened by 2/3 due to AGW and by 1/3 due to strong solar cycles – this is the official IPCC statement – or whether it happened by somewhat more of solar cycle effects and somewhat less of AGW, that is the big question under debate.
    There are indications of global cooling for the last two or so years and a plateau before. Solar cycle 23 has not been too strong in its waning years, whenever they may end, so a lower bound for the solar impact would be to assume a -1/3 contribution from the sun. AGW should have increased even more, mainly because of the dramatic increase of the Chinese coal consumption from less than 1 bn tons to now 3 bn tons in the last ten years.
    This still should lead to net warming of 1/3 of the previous values or more., but not to cooling.
    Finally think of the thermal expansion of the oceans which caused the sea level to raise by 3 cm- hard data. Temperature increases are observed down to 1000 m and more. From the distribution of the temperature rises – hard data – you can calculate the additional heat stored. It is ten times the additional heat which is stored in the atmosphere. This is a big buffer when cooling starts. So you wonder a bit why this buffer and the increased AGW have not prevented cooling at all.
    In conclusion you may think that this somewhat more of solar contribution is 1/3 or even bigger. Then a 2/3 or bigger total solar contribution to the previous warming may also easily explain why the oceans have been warmed in such big depths. Sun light pentrates down to 100 Meter, while the infrared light of the AGW effect penetrates only 1 Millimeter.

  21. Paul K, you may avoid making vague claims and simply show us where to find the “best records” of Artic sea ice thickness.
    The processing of these “best records” (by yet another model) has been made by Rothrock et Al 1999 in GRL and I’m not impressed: data end in 1997 and only one comparison is made between 2 periods: 1958-73 compared to 1993-1997 on… 29 (!) locations.
    And Rothrock, whose claim that the Arctic’s thickness has decreased 40% has been circulated worlwide by AGWers, has been contradicted by Winsor* who found that there was no decrease of ice thickness in the 90s or Holloway** who found much smaller decrease or even no decrease if you shift the comparison periods by just 1 year ! (cherrypicking ?).
    So please Paul K, be specific and show us these “best data” and tell us what “best” is compared to.
    AFAIK, there is no consensus on the usability of those data to determine thickness and trends in thickness and depending on the model to interpolate them, results vary wildly.
    * Winsor, P., 2001. Arctic sea ice thickness remained constant during the 1990s, Geophysical Research Letters, 28, 1039–1041.
    **Holloway, G., and T. Sou, 2002. Has Arctic Sea Ice Rapidly Thinned? Journal of Climate, 15, 1691–1701.

  22. Paul K,
    I do not see in any of your posts where you attribute the ice melt to AGW. I understand your point that one should not be using the lesser ice melt this year as any kind of a sign of global cooling. I am just curious about your position on AGW and GW. Are you a proponent of natural cycles or is it all our fault?

  23. Dave Andrews wrote: “In fact the earlier records seem to indicate that there were considerable changes over time, its just that we, today like those at the time, are unable to determine how great those changes were.”
    This was in reference to an earlier poster who wrote that the 20s and 30s saw similar ice melts in the Arctic.
    The problem is that very stable long term ice structures are melting off and disappearing. The underwater ice ridges have mostly disappeared. Most troubling is the loss of the extremely stable ice shelves in the Canadian Arctic archipelago. The Ward ice shelf has been around for close to 4000 years, and it is breaking up. In fact, these ice shelves have lost 90% of their ice in the last century, according to this article.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080415205350.htm
    The amount of Arctic ice is falling, and in geologic timeframes, very quickly.

  24. Paul,
    Assuming that the ice was melted in place, and not pushed around as NASA has posted, would you please post the Heat required to melt the ice in 2007 vs 2008?
    I would hazard that 2008 is a much lower number than 2007 given the nature of the ice in each case since 2007 saw a commensurate areal coverage of much thicker and older ice removed than 2008’s first year ice.

  25. Hey, thanks Werner Weber for mentioning albedo. I’m sitting here quietly reading saying to myself where did all the albedo guys go. All last year, all I heard was albedo this, and albedo that. I mean, at least talk about it, so I know why it doesn’t matter any more.
    Here’s another thing I’m wondering about. At the beginning of the season I distinctly remember experts gathering together to tell us this year was most likely going to all, or mostly melt, because there was so much thin ice. It didn’t. So now I’m wondering about thin ice. How much does it really matter. I imagine there was thin ice before in the history of the ice pack when ice was at a minimal phase. Somehow it grew back. Now it’s thin again. There seems to be an implication from the volume-is-all-that-matters guys next years melt will take this year’s thin ice away. Do we really know that? Won’t thin ice get thicker? If we continue to have years like this won’t it just get thicker, and thicker, slowly but surely year after year?
    Also there was that big chunk of ice that disappeared in the storm of early August. What if next year we don’t have one of those?

  26. Most troubling is the loss of the extremely stable ice shelves in the Canadian Arctic archipelago. The Ward ice shelf has been around for close to 4000 years, and it is breaking up. In fact, these ice shelves have lost 90% of their ice in the last century, according to this article.

    Which means it WASN’T there before 4000 years ago. So why is it an emergency now when it wasn’t then? Saying that ice volume has decreased in the last 50 or 100 years is really meaningless. We need to speak of geologic time scales, not human generational time scales.

  27. The real measure of the melt is the volume, not the surface area.
    Yes, volume does “count”, but area is far more important because that is what determines albedo.

  28. The real measure of the melt is the volume, not the surface area.
    Yes, volume does “count”, but area is far more important because that is what determines albedo.
    The combination of strong +PDO and +AMO will naturally result in warmer temperatures and less ice in the Arctic. The AMO went positive in 1995, and what do you know, Arctic ice has been decreasing since then. However, the PDO has recently gone negative and the AMO is expected follow suit at some point…
    Also, the Arctic Oscillation went warm in 1989. NASA says it may be reversing to cool now, and that’s 20 years earlier than expected.
    We must also not forget the “dirty snow” factor. Depending on who you are listening to from 20% to 90% of the Arctic melt is due to that. And the problem will continue for the next three or so decades, at which point China and India will be affluent enough to give a good goddamn about their air quality (same as the west did, and for the same reasons).
    At that point, the dirty snow issue will start disappearing and the Arctic ice will revert to normal. But don’t expect that until the particulates stop their darkening and melting act.

  29. Paul K,
    I’m not sure what you mean by me “not accepting US Navy records” when none were offered in the post I responded to.
    Navy records like this? http://www.athropolis.com/news/submarines.htm (Us and British subs surfacing at the North Pole, or the three Navy subs that surfaced in an ice free North Pole in 1987 http://thepartisanpatriot.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5606, or in 1959 (USS Skate).
    Nov. 2, 1922 edition of The Washington Post reads: “Arctic Ocean Getting Warm; Seals Vanish and Icebergs Melt.” article from 1922. I think Anthony has a copy of the article posted here in the past. It makes the claim that the scientists feared that the Arctic (all of it) would soon be ice free and that the Northwest Passage would be open year round.
    Sounds to me like this is a cyclic thing and that ice thickness in the Arctic waxes and wanes based on natural cycles.

  30. Meh. Going around rooting out marginally funny Al Gore quotes (when so many are so very less than funny) from websites strikes me as perilously close to the stormtrooper tactics of the other side. Really, don’t go there. Better to ask for an “equal time” kind of quote than suggest even a whiff of censorship.

  31. The Australian seems to be gradually taking a more skeptical view
    Today Jennifer Mahorasy “Case of the warm and fuzzy” Inquirer page 25 totally debunks models and IPCC with real data.

  32. On Arctic ice melt, there appears to be a few plausible theories, two of which have been mentioned numerous times.
    1) Unusual wind patterns and oceanic currents
    2) soot
    However, a third less discussed mechanism is simply……the sun.
    http://www.arm.gov/science/research/pdf/R00143.pdf
    Yet, the arm waiving on increasing CO2 levels continues. Recently Hansen spoke as if it was a foregone conclusion that increased levels of CO2 are the main cause for the recent melt.

  33. You think Jennifer Mahorasy is the one to ‘totally debunk’ the IPCC? Has she got anything new to say, or is she still just lifting graphs from Roy Spencer’s site (Loehle 2007, for example – if you think that’s debunking then, well, hmm…)?
    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/
    Yawn.

  34. Paul K (13:52:04)
    ‘That post was safely written last winter, but now that ice is gone, and the bears are in trouble. How about a headline for this story?’
    Here is a head line for you
    Federal Polar Bear Research Critically Flawed, Argue Forecasting Experts in INFORMS Journal
    “These studies are meant to inform the US Fish and Wildlife Service about listing the polar bear as endangered. After careful examination, my co-authors and I were unable to find any references to works providing evidence that the forecasting methods used in the reports had been previously validated. In essence, they give no scientific basis for deciding one way or the other about the polar bear.”
    http://www.informs.org/article.php?id=1383

  35. A bit OT, but this article also attributes the sun to European warming.
    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2008/2008GL034228.shtml
    Abstract
    The rapid temperature increase of 1°C over mainland Europe since 1980 is considerably larger than the temperature rise expected from anthropogenic greenhouse gas increases. Here we present aerosol optical depth measurements from six specific locations and surface irradiance measurements from a large number of radiation sites in Northern Germany and Switzerland. The measurements show a decline in aerosol concentration of up to 60%, which have led to a statistically significant increase of solar irradiance under cloud-free skies since the 1980s. The measurements confirm solar brightening and show that the direct aerosol effect had an approximately five times larger impact on climate forcing than the indirect aerosol and other cloud effects. The overall aerosol and cloud induced surface climate forcing is ∼+1 W m−2 dec−1 and has most probably strongly contributed to the recent rapid warming in Europe.

  36. The comment geo made about censorship points out the glaring difference between skeptical sites like this, and alarmist sites like RealClimate, Tamino, Eli Rabett, etc.
    This site allows contrary points of view — whereas the alarmist sites promptly delete inconvenient comments by those who don’t toe their AGW/climate catastrophe line. And since RealClimate is run by Gavin Schmidt on the taxpayer’s dime, I don’t think I’m out of line by calling it censorship [if I’m wrong about this, let’s have an independent audit of Mr. Schmidt].
    Personally, I enjoy having an alarmist foil to debate. Sometimes the alarmists can make a valid point, and it alters my view a little. But most often, they allow me to think about, and formulate my responses to their opinions so when those opinions crop up again, I’m prepared to refute them. When they’re false, of course. Which is much more often than not.
    There is a reason the alarmist sites do not permit inconvenient facts to be posted: the AGW/climate catastrophe hypothesis has been repeatedly falsified, and refusing to allow that information to be disseminated is their only hope of remaining credible for the time being. But as we are seeing, facts have a way of being disseminated.
    So please, Paul K, continue debating. It keeps us AGW/climate catastrophe skeptics on our toes.
    Several good points were made by others following your last post, beginning with Austin’s @ 15:30:45 [posted only 53 seconds after your last comment]. Please don’t hide out. I would be interested in reading your response to the points subsequent posters raised in response to your original comments.

  37. [snip–does not add to conversation and is nothing more than a personal attack~charles the moderator]…and watch the planet get cooler….

  38. Pixel counting: isn’t it a well-developed set of algorithms to transform a flat map projection like the these polar pictures into an equal area projection (stretching the pixels across many pixels as needed). I haven’t touched an ESRI product in awhile but I would think this would be trivial if you had a few geographic reference points defined on the photo. Am I missing something here?

  39. “[snip–does not add to conversation and is nothing more than a personal attack~charles the moderator]…”
    Wow Charles, pretty harsh dontcha think? I gotta say I’m not real appreciative of your moderating style.
    Paul, here’s some ice data for you to chill out with: http://img156.imageshack.us/img156/636/seaiceextentez1.jpg
    Reply: You are the first person to complain about my style rather than apologize for your post. So considering how tight a rope I have to walk, my percentage is pretty good. You may be upset because you are in the skeptic camp and this is regarded by many as a skeptic blog, but as a moderator I try and take as even a hand as I can, a poster’s point of view is irrelevant. Personal attacks, no matter how cute, or how appropriate you feel it was, are prohibited.~charles the moderator

  40. OK, so Paul K would have us believe that the ice melt is disasterous as almost as bad as 2007. But… wait a sec. I read that 2007 was an unmitigated and unprecedented disaster because it was melting thick multi-year ice and the ’08 ice cover would soon be ice free because it’s only first year ice.
    And yet… 2008’s egshell thin ice layer hasn’t melted as much as in ’07 *despite* being eggshell thin, which says, really, that the conditions that cause the melt of ’07 weren’t anywhere near as strong for ’08. Assuming of course that the claim of multi-year ice has even the slightest actual meaning (lots of stuff sounds like it makes sense but either doesn’t when you look at it closely or was specious nonsense and supposition to start with.)
    So much for the ’08 prediction of being worse than ’07. In my book ’08 has made a stunning comeback. Go eggshell, go!

  41. while some talk about sea ice area and others sea ice volumn, what doesn’t get talked about is the water underneath.
    Sea ice slows down the cooling of the water underneath it and the thicker it is the less cooling the sea water underneath it is subjected to. Open sea water cools much faster than ice covered sea water.
    The polar waters would seem to be the major source of oceanic cooling but all we ever hear about is how open sea water contributes to global warming when it would appear that sea ice contributes much more to warming than open water.
    Open water absorbs more energy than sea icecovered water for 2 to 3 months of the year. The rest of the 9-10 months it radiates more energy than the sea ice covered water. The thinner the ice the more energy is radiated spaceward for most of the year. It would seem that the loss of ice cover in 2007 caused a lot of sea water cooling. The loss in 2008 will cause the arctic seas to lose even more energy.
    When talking about the cooling effect of the polar seas we need to look not just at the thickness of the ice and it’s temperature, we need to include the vast volumn of water and it’s temperature.

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  44. Modeling is intended to be GIGO, but it should not be abused. In Canada, we have a healthy polar bear population that has just gone on a Protected Species list; what is that about? This is clear proof the NGOs and EPA do not understand science. Two polar bear populations on Baffin are decreasing in number, but this is a region of the arctic that is cooling not warming. Polars are stable or increasing! Polar bears are a variety of brown bear and probably will do very well when and if it warms, but not in competition with brownies simply because of their colour. The species, however, has survived numerous ice ages before this, their KODAK moment, arrived. Camouflage as brownies will get them through.
    However, it is certainly not about the bears. This is about abstract computer modeling being falsely elevated to the level of science and then presented as if it were science. Modeling produces objective computer generated conclusions based upon input assumptions and processing. In order for models to be approximately predictive, the assumptions must be realistic and work backward as well as forward. In most complex cases, modeling is GIGO. GIGO is their real value; eliminating hypothetical possibilities.
    Politics operates on GIGO propaganda – secondary causation not on first principles. Science or first principles do not affect government decisions in democracies. When a politically correct model gives the politicians an advantage to manipulate politically correct voters in an election year, democracy becomes irrelevant.
    Bear protection is all about a mass movement that intends to destroy global prosperity by crowd control in the brave new world. NIMBY is the unintentional foremost philosophy of the enemies of our prosperity but by putting bears on an endangered list when they are not endangered is ‘new speak’, mind-control, and secondary reasoning all wrapped up in one, and it intrusive into someone else’s (Nunavut’s) back yard to boot. Science should not be secondary to modeling under any serious circumstances because there is too great a likelihood of missed assumptions and empty logic rendering the conclusion dead wrong.
    As asked above, are you ignoring the Antarctic in your focus on sea ice variation?

  45. Anthony, it’s nice that the folks at CT pay attention to you. I guess they’ll be reading this thread, so I’ll report here one nit about their site I reported to them earlier this year that they ignored. I guess that makes this an off-topic post, sorry.
    At http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/ when I click on the Arctic map on the gray that is the Canadian Archipelago, I’m taken to a bogus link. The problem is in one of the HTML area commands – both the alt (Hudson Bay) and href (http) parameters are wrong. The fix may be to delete that line, there is another one that looks like it would cover the archipelago just fine.

  46. MattN (19:52:05) :
    “Wow Charles, pretty harsh dontcha think? I gotta say I’m not real appreciative of your moderating style.”
    That’s okay – I suspect one reason this blog has so many readers is because of the just-tight-enough rein of the moderators.
    Then again, my posts haven’t been edited, but I generally try to add to the discussion, research what I have to say (not this time), and avoid ad hominem attacks.
    Nice graph, though.

  47. Fran Manns, Toronto (20:36:08) :

    …Polar bears are a variety of brown bear and probably will do very well when and if it warms, but not in competition with brownies simply because of their colour. The species, however, has survived numerous ice ages before this, their KODAK moment, arrived. Camouflage as brownies will get them through.

    Numerous ice ages – that’s what I thought, but was very surprised to learn they evolved in the last 200,000 years, just a couple ice ages. Teeth have changed quite a bit in just the last 10,000. They’ve also survived the Medieval, Roman, and other warm periods without EPA protection.
    See http://www.polarbearsinternational.org/bear-facts/polar-bear-evolution/
    That they’ve changed so much recently suggests that they can likely evolve rapidly now and may be one of the most adaptable mammals faced with climate change of any direction.

  48. “I hope, for mankind’s sake, and the sake of our planet, that the skeptics are right, and the Arctic ice quickly mends this winter and next year. Our future depends on the skeptics being right…”
    That seems to be a rather alarmist statement. I do not quite see how the Fate of Mankind depends on Arctic sea ice extent (or volume). I do know that the fate of polar bears does not. Today the polar bear population is 3 times what it was in 1965-1973. If there has been a decline in Arctic sea ice over that period, it either did not effect polar bears or it benefited them, since there are so many more of them today.
    Polar bears are wide-ranging animals. It has not been demonstrated that distinct subpopulations even exist, because the animals travel exceedingly great distances to forage and breed. Loss of edge ice is no impediment to such vagabond creatures. They simply go with the floe.
    [Note to Anthony: how many points did I score with “go with the floe”? Please use standard Olympic judging guidelines.]

  49. “DR (18:19:14) :
    A bit OT, but this article also attributes the sun to European warming.
    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2008/2008GL034228.shtml
    I hope it actually attributes European warming to the sun rather than the other way around, but that is by-the-by.
    Idiot non-scientist from London here with a question (which I will pose after a few observations).
    I thought we were meant to be worried about “global” warming.
    The chilly bit at the top might be melting a bit more than it has in some other years, the chilly bit at the bottom might be getting a bit chillier than it has been in some other years and small children in England are very confused about the whole concept of summer because it has been so cold and wet (OK, lets be fair, we had two hot days in mid July).
    As I understand it, the planet is meant to be on the cusp of catastrophe. A few more years of driving my car and using a butane-fuelled lighter for my ciggies will result in irreversible warming of the whole planet resulting in universal misery.
    I think I understand the concept: every molecule of CO2 in the atmosphere is a little mirror which reflects heat back to the ground which bounces it back to the mirror which reflects it back to the ground and so on. The more little mirrors there are the more hotness thingies are reflected to the ground and back again. That much is perfectly logical. The crucial question is whether the concept is correct or just a natty theory.
    There is only one way to test any theory and that is to see whether what actually happens is in accordance with the theory. If it is, the theory might be correct (but it might not because the correlation might be coincidental). If it is not, the theory is definitely incorrect.
    My question is in three parts and it is this: (i) is melting in the chilly bit at the top consistent with the theory, (ii) is extra chilliness in the chilly bit at the bottom consistent with the theory and (iii) is what is happening between the top and the bottom consistent with the theory?
    It seems to the ignoramus that is me, that looking at (i) alone tells us absolutely nothing.
    But then I’m no scientist, I don’t even know why a cricket ball swings more in humid conditions than in dry air … oh, hang on, nor do scientists.
    I have raised the cricket ball issue before and I did so for a reason. Science can only explain what it can explain. A phenomenon which is witnessed but which cannot be explained by science does not disappear, it is still there. The answer a scientist gives always depends on the question he is asked to answer.
    Asked the question: “does a cricket ball swing more in humid air than in dry air?” all known tests and principles will deliver a clear negative answer. There you have it, science has proved that a cricket does not swing more when it is humid. But that answer is false, it is false because in fact a cricket ball does swing more when it is humid and it is wrong because he was asked the wrong question.
    Asked the question: “why does a cricket ball swing more in humid air than in dry air?” the answer is “we cannot explain it”. The same tests are administered and the same principles are applied, by asking the right question we get a radically different answer.
    I suggest that the proper starting point is not the CO2 mirror theory but reality. What is actually happening? Is the planet actually warming? Not just a bit at the top, a bit at the bottom or a bit somewhere in the middle, but the planet as a whole, is it actually warming? If it is, we then need to ask whether the CO2 mirror theory is the explanation. If it is not we can abandon that theory and spend our time usefully, perhaps playing cricket.
    One reason why I find this site so interesting is that it concentrates on examining the evidence rather than poncing about with the theory.
    Have a nice weekend everyone.

  50. We have about 30 years of satellite data, another 30 years or so of spotty submarine records, and another 75 to 100 years of logs from ships that managed to get into Arctic WATERS. And on this paucity of information, about an environment that is at least 10,000 years old, we are trying to say this or that is not a natural state.
    Satellites give us pretty good systematic information on Arctic ice area. Submarines give us spotty information on ice area and thickness. They just happen to make readings on various transects, not a basin-wide systematic survey. Ships logs and explorers’ stories tell us little about anything outside the immediate area of observation, Everything prior to the satellite data is, effectively, spotty at best and anecdotal at worst.
    What hard evidence do we have that the Arctic Ocean has been continuously covered in ice 10 or 15 metres (or more) thick, for thousands of years? A very few samples collected in a generally haphazard fashion over about 0.5% of the age of an ecosystem.

  51. Paul K,
    There are times that your posts facilitate useful reflection and often your posts contain reliable information. Yet, I often do not agree with your conclusion. One such case is your statement: “Our future depends on the skeptics being right, and my analysis indicates they don’t have such a good record at being correct.” This claim fascinates me because it was the abject failure of the “AGW camp” to be correct that turned me from being an acceptor of the AGW argument to being a Skeptic. To be sure, skeptics have a little advantage in the debate because as skeptics, they do not have to be right in their own theory; they just need to show that the other side is or could be wrong. Also, either side could point to ridiculous claims of the opponent’s fringe to discredit the other side’s accuracy. Therefore, in discussing accuracy, I try to stick to what I perceive as mainstream views in both sides. Just to list a few things that the AGW has gotten wrong: the hockey stick, which year was the hottest in the United States, increasing hurricane intensity, droughts, Pacific islands being erased by increasing sea levels, forecasts of increasing temperatures from twenty years ago, (earlier) models that forecasted higher Antarctica temperatures. Just a few things that skeptics have gotten right: global average temperature decreasing upon the flip of the PDO, increasing tornado activity upon the arrival of a strong La Nina, ability of Arctic ice to rebound over the winter, and the list goes on. There are a few items which it is unclear as to which side has a better handle – such as the question of whether atmospheric temperature trends display the fingerprint of AGW. But here is one item regarding accuracy on which I am willing to wager many thousands of dollars: whether the Arctic will be ice-free by 2013. Would you like to take that wager? (If we set 2030 as the year, we may need to put the wagers in trusts for grandchildren.  )

  52. Arctic sea ice currently appears to be the last straw the AGW community chose to catch.
    La nina has gone and global cooling didn’t. PDO’s have switched, sunspots refuse to appear, the modeled hotspot in the tropical troposphere is still undiscoverable.
    At the same time, a sceptic view is gaining ground within the scientific community, and unscientifc, not peer-reviewed data manipulation by AGW individuals and institutions is becoming increasingly citizised.
    The Arctic sea ice is currently the last major anomaly that has the potential to frighten average people, and the possible flattening or reversal of the trend in 2008 – despite the huge amount of thin ice herited from 2007 suggests, that this may be a tipping point for the AGW agenda.
    If arctic sea ice recovers, the AGW agenda is dead.

  53. Manfred (04:11:03) :
    Unfortunately, it’s not looking good right now. 2008 is no better than third lowest extent and falling. It will probably be the second lowest on record passing 2005 fairly soon unless the loss slows significantly. I don’t think it will equal 2007 but will still provide fodder for the alarmists since it will not be significantly higher in extent.

  54. AGWers like Paul K pretend to be horrified by melting arctic ice and concerned about polar bears, when in fact those are simply desperately-needed icons. The faux shock and horror they display is actually at seeing their failing AGW religion going down in flames. It’s amusing to watch, actually.

  55. An Enquirer,
    I would like to get in on that sea ice action too. There is no way we have an ice-free arctic by 2013. i would even bet that the sea ice extent, or area, in 2013 exceeds the same measure of 2007. Maybe Anthony would hold the money. No one, skeptic or otherwise, doubts his integrity. He can keep the interest. Like Anthony doesn’t have enough to do otherwise. Payoff day is Christmas 2013.
    Easy money, that’s why there will be no takers. Sunspots or no sunspots.

  56. “The problem is that very stable long term ice structures are melting off and disappearing. The underwater ice ridges have mostly disappeared.”
    Long term to what? A decade? Four decades? A century? And what does this have to do with AGW? Ocean currents are driven by differences in salinity and differences in insolation between the poles and the equator. Unless you can prove that GHGs somehow overcome variations in incoming solar radidation, this entire issue is a strawman.
    Pride goeth before the fall. If the AGW Alarmists are anything, they are pridefull; they can never admit they’re wrong. Or worse yet, they can never admit that they simply do not know. No one knows with any degree of precision what the Artic ice caps looked like 80 years ago. But if they admit that, their entire Armegeddon Scenario goes up in flames.

  57. I’d ask Mr. Chapman if he thought it wouldn’t be a big deal if a prominent site displaying scientific data of considerable current concern had a quote by say, GW Bush, Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh, etc (and a supporting comment in it by the site owners).

  58. I would put in 300.00 if book makers were alarmists and the odds favored AGW. You can indeed fool enough people into placing a bet. Problem is that book makers are notorious for following their own nose. The odds would not bring us a windfall. But then again, savings accounts are only pegged at 3% or below, so it would still be a very safe place to invest.

  59. “But then again, savings accounts are only pegged at 3% or below, so it would still be a very safe place to invest.” Pam the Red (head)
    I think the official inflation rate is over 5% now so one would loose at least 2% a year in a savings account. me thinky, something stinky.

  60. Hey Paul,
    I’m not a scientist, but I do enjoy reading things on this global warming and climate change debate. A couple days ago, I downloaded the raw data on sea ice area, and I found that the max has been pretty close to the max for the past few years, and the min has been pretty close to the min the past few years. I have checked the rate of melt over the past couple of days, and I don’t see an unusually large rate of melt. I honestly don’t see this planet going to hell in a hand-basket.
    The data is in a pretty user friendly download on this website:
    http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
    One last think – I’ll betcha a couple of beers that it is cold up there this winter, and there will be lots of ice; AND, if you were standing on one of those chunks of ice in January, you’d be freezing your butt off and would not and could not without the aid of instrumentation be able to determine if that particular day was a couple degrees warmer than last year or last century. In reality, right now, we really don’t know if it matters or not.

  61. You think Jennifer Mahorasy is the one to ‘totally debunk’ the IPCC? Has she got anything new to say, or is she still just lifting graphs from Roy Spencer’s site (Loehle 2007, for example – if you think that’s debunking then, well, hmm…)?
    The gold speck Marohassy has from Spencer is the AquaSat data. That call the entire concept of positive feedback into severe question.
    The IPCC prediction was for positive feedback from increased ambient water vapor and high-altitude cloud cover. Instead, the data shows an increase of low-level cloud cover resulting in increased albedo and negative feedback. The rest of the atmosphere has seen some dessication.
    If true, this completely blows the positive feedback argument. The direct effects from CO2 are real but much, much smaller. AGW depends completely on the strength of the feedback loops.
    When this is taken in tandem with ocean cooling at all depths, as demonstrated by the Argobots, AGW theory is shaken to its foundations.
    If this data proves false, then all bets are off. But if it’s true, then AGW is simply not a happening thing.

  62. Open sea water cools much faster than ice covered sea water.
    Mmm. But wouldn’t it also heat faster? Isn’t increased albedo from ice melt a critical domino in the CO2 positive feedback equation?

  63. It would seem that the loss of ice cover in 2007 caused a lot of sea water cooling.
    If that (and what you say above) is so, then wouldn’t loss of sea ice provide a negative rather than positive feedback?
    Interesting . . .

  64. Note to Anthony: how many points did I score with “go with the floe”?
    (When I made the same bad pun last year I rated a distinct “ugh”.)

  65. Kookie story No. 56823459
    !! People eating Oreo cookies causes global warming !!

    It’s very important to unscrew them so as to increase cookie albedo.
    And don’t even THINK about using dark hair color!
    (And, “Stay on the sidewalks. you’re wearing down the earth.”)

  66. Manfred and Bruce : Super writings.
    Take a look at the ice north of Baffin Island.
    http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=08&fd=21&fy=2008&sm=08&sd=23&sy=2008
    Even though we have meltings on the Russian side, the freezing has begun quite early on the Canadian side?
    There was 2 boats trying to pass the NW passage, right now they most certainly cant!! Does anyone know where they are?
    An then his fellow who wanted to row to the north pole in the end of August. I think he needs a newclear powered torpedo submarine to accomplish that.
    In the last ten days the Frost ove the North pole have increased the 100% ice area very much:
    http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=08&fd=13&fy=2008&sm=08&sd=23&sy=2008
    thats proberbly why the Cryosphere anomaly curve has flatened for 2008.

  67. Evan: Today especially agree with you.
    surface of ice: it is a problem of entropy.
    volume of ice: it is a problem of enthalpy.

  68. “All references to Al Gore have been removed.”
    Is it my computer or my understanding of the words, “have been,” that is at fault? When I look at the home page of “Cryosphere Today” today, it includes: “You’ve heard Al Gore comment that the ‘Earth has a fever’? It may also have major tooth decay.”

  69. “All references to Al Gore have been removed.”
    If he had his fingers crossed behind his back when he said that, it doesn’t count.
    Those are the rules.

  70. May 18, 1987, Three nuclear subs surface at the North Pole, which is surprisingly ice-free. But for some reason, we cannot see the satellite image of that day on the “compare side by side” portion of Cryosphere Today. Does anyone here know why? Looking forward to comments. This might even be a post. I know I am one of the more paranoid ones here, I hope this isn’t history being rewritten.
    Here is the picture a little down the page:
    http://www.john-daly.com/polar/arctic.htm
    Here is the side by side:
    http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=05&fd=18&fy=1987&sm=08&sd=22&sy=2008
    I already tried nearby dates… there are no nearby dates available for viewing.
    Thanks,
    Mike Bryant

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  72. Frank Lansner (13:24:59) :
    ” There was[were] 2 boats trying to pass the NW passage, right now they most certainly can[‘]t!! Does anyone know where they are?”
    The Berrimilla made it through. Their blog requires some reading between the lines, but offers a perspective one just can’t get from CryoSphere.
    http://awberrimilla.blogspot.com/
    They aren’t out of the woods bergs yet, so it’s still interesting reading.
    ” An[d] then his fellow who wanted to row to the north pole in the end of August. I think he needs a n[u]clear powered torpedo submarine to accomplish that.”
    Not much is getting posted, see http://polardefenseproject.org/blog/

  73. If one might interject with a historical reference: SSN-578 Skate surfaced at the very wet looking North Pole 17th March 1959. Please check the 5th photograph down. The 14th photograph will show two submarines surfaced at the North Pole (USS Skate and USS Seadragon). This would tend to indicate that an ice free North Pole is nothing new or to be concerned about.

  74. Thankyou Ric Werne, yes take this quote from their blog:
    “I have gotten many calls from different adventures wanting to make the NW crossing or the Bering Strait crossing. For most I strongly advise them to stay away.”
    Another thing is, when looking at the ice development around north Baffin Island, if they just got through the 1-2 days it was possible, they have been extreeeemly lucky!
    But you say they are not through yet? Where are they?
    K.R. Frank

  75. FatBigot: “Asked the question: “does a cricket ball swing more in humid air than in dry air?” all known tests and principles will deliver a clear negative answer.”
    How about this known principle – dry air is heavier than moist air. Could that help explain it?
    Ah, I thought so. I’m just beginning to get over a severe bout of flu, else I’d explain why this is.
    (Hint: Search basic Gas Laws that have been around centuries.)

  76. An then his fellow who wanted to row to the north pole in the end of August. I think he needs a newclear powered torpedo submarine to accomplish that.
    Lewis Pugh is scheduled to depart Wed., the 27th. His last entry in the expedition journal, dated Aug. 8th and titled “Time or Distance” concerns the physical and mental challenge of the undertaking. He’ll be starting from the island of Svalbard, just north of Norway, about 1200 km from the NP, and he’s figuring it will take about 2 weeks, assuming he makes it all the way.
    I’m wondering if he may be reconsidering, which would be the wise thing to do.

  77. Frank L/ Denmark (22:59:24) :
    “But you say they are not through yet? Where are they?”
    I said they made it through the NW passage, but they were in an area with icebergs. (And Orcas, and polar bears swimming after them.) Icebergs you can sail around, sea ice you get stuck in.
    From their latest position, they’re between Hudson’s Bay and the Baffin Sea or whatever the water between Newfoundland and Greenland is.

  78. The Gore comment is still there.
    REPLY: No it’s gone, you have a cache issue with your browser of some sorts I think.

  79. Oh, well. I cleared my “cache” by deleting temporary files, just as the instructions for IE7 say; and I clicked to “refresh”; but this is still there:
    You’ve heard Al Gore comment that the “Earth has a fever”? It may also have major tooth decay. The 40Mb animation at the le ft shows the dramatic loss of multiyear sea ice over the past year. Multiyear sea ice is old er and generally thicker ice – sea ice that has survived at least one melt season (shown in brighter white).
    Maybe I should just wait for it to melt away.
    Reply: Hold down the Shift key and click refresh~charles the moderator

  80. Tried “shift” plus “refresh” and tried Microsoft’s “control” plus “f5”. I can see it downloading multiple files as it refreshes everything — but Al Gore is still there. Thanks for the tip — I had never heard of either the shift or the control keys being used to force a refresh that is supposed to bypass the cache. I’m sure the Al Gore bit will melt away eventually, since it has for you and others.

  81. “You’re not the only one trying to get Al Gore to melt away.”
    Unless Al has lost weight, then his and 65% of the American people’s bodies (including mine) are betting on cooler weather.

  82. Thanks, Nevin, for those graphics. I opened a new window for both sea ice graphs in the page to compare them, and noticed that one curved down at a sharper angle than the other, during the same time period.
    Someone is obviously diddling with the graphs.
    Oh, and: YAY! Post #100!
    REPLY: I looked at both of these in detail today, thinking the same thing, and after magnifying them, decided they were showing the same thing, but looked different due to scale and line smoothing differences. – Anthony

  83. Mr. Watts, I visit your site and ClimateAudit regularly because unlike some ‘sceptics/deniers’ (such as Fred Singer, Christopher Monckton or Tim Ball) I think you are honest in your endeavours to criticize mainstream thinking concerning the AGW-theory.
    Therefore I’d like to know what you make of the apparently declining trend in Arctic ice cover. I’m not implying that it’s proof that AGW is taking place, but it is slightly disconcerting IMO.

  84. Micajah (13:58:21) :

    Tried “shift” plus “refresh” and tried Microsoft’s “control” plus “f5″. I can see it downloading multiple files as it refreshes everything — but Al Gore is still there.

    Bummer. He leaves me alone now. You might be dealing with a caching issue on an intermediate system that is returning stale data from its cache.
    You might try adding a “?” to the end of the URL. That generally has no impact on reading a page, but systems along the way will see a different URL or that it’s a form submission to the server and let it through.
    I.e. try http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/?

  85. Micajah (20:44:16) :
    “Whatever it was, the Al Gore bit was finally gone when I checked Cryosphere Today this morning.”
    Oops – he made it on TV tonight at the Obamafest.
    Our local TV station’s reporter made a slip of the tongue and referred to him as “former president Al Gore.” Sigh.

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  87. We have only 30 years hard data for events that are influenced by cycles that are up to 120,000 years long. So we are low on the data front. But we do have navel logs from the US navy, going back 200 years (?) and logs from the Royal Navy going back even further. They are accurate though do not have much coverage. We do know that Roald Amundsen sailed the NW passage in 1903 and reported no ice. We also know that the Medieval Warm Period, when temperatures were higher than todays, there must have been less summer ice than today. None of the previous low ice levels caused any climatic tipping point. The fact that polar bears are still in healthy numbers shows that low ice conditions are no bar to their survival.

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