Skating on the Other Side of the Ice

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Inspired by this thread over at Bishop Hill’s excellent blog, I thought I’d write about sea ice. Among the many catastrophic things claimed to be the result of “global warming”, declining sea ice is one of the most popular. We see scary graphics of this all the time, things that look like this:

FIgure 1. Terrifying computer projections showing that we may not have any Arctic sea ice before the end of this century. Clearly, the implication is that we should be very concerned … SOURCE

Now, what’s wrong with this picture?

The problem with the picture is that the earth has two poles. And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools.

Looking at just the Arctic sea ice is like looking at someone who is pouring water from one glass to another and back again. If we want to see how much water there is, it is useless to observe just one of the person’s hands. We need to look at both hands to see what is happening with the water.

Similarly, to see what is happening in the frozen parts of the ocean, we need to look at global sea ice. There are several records of the area of sea ice. One is the Reynolds Optimally Interpolated dataset (Reynolds OI V2). A second is the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) record. Finally, we have the Hadcrut Ice and Sea Surface Temperature dataset (HadISST1). All of them are available from that most marvellous resource, the KNMI data portal .

It turns out that the NSIDC and the HadISST1 records are nearly identical. The correlation between the two in the Arctic is 0.995 (1.0 is perfect agreement), and in the Antarctic it is 0.999. So in Fig. 2, I have not shown the NSIDC dataset, but you can imagine that there is a third record almost identical to the HadISST1 dataset. Here is what has happened to the global sea ice area from 1982 to the present:

FIgure 2. Global Sea Ice Area 1982-present. Data from satellite observations.

As you can see, while it is certainly true that the Arctic has been losing ice, the Antarctic has been gaining ice. And the total global sea ice has barely changed at all over the period of the record. It goes up a little, it goes down a little, it goes nowhere …

Why should the Antarctic warm when the Arctic cools? The short answer is that we don’t know, although it happens at both short and long time scales. A recent article in Science Magazine Online (subscription required) says:

Eddies and the Seesaw

A series of warm episodes, each lasting several thousand years, occurred in Antarctica between 90,000 and 30,000 years ago. These events correlated with rapid climate oscillations in the Arctic, with Antarctica warming while the Arctic was cooling or already cold. This bipolar seesaw is thought to have been driven by changes in the strength of the deep overturning circulation in the North Atlantic Ocean, but some have questioned how completely that process can account for the fine details of Antarctic warming events.

Keeling and Visbeck offer an explanation that builds upon earlier suggestions that include the effects of shallow-water processes as well as deep ones. They suggest that changes in the surface salinity gradient across the Antarctic Circumpolar Current were caused by the melting of icebergs discharged from the Arctic, which allowed increased heat transport to Antarctica by ocean eddies. This mechanism produces Antarctic warming of the magnitude observed in ice core records.

However, not everyone agrees that this is the full explanation. Henrik Svensmark adds another factor to what may be happening:

The cosmic-ray and cloud-forcing hypothesis therefore predicts that temperature changes in Antarctica should be opposite in sign to changes in temperature in the rest of the world. This is exactly what is observed, in a well-known phenomenon that some geophysicists have called the polar see-saw, but for which “the Antarctic climate anomaly” seems a better name (Svensmark 2007).

To account for evidence spanning many thousands of years from drilling sites in Antarctica and Greenland, which show many episodes of climate change going in opposite directions, ad hoc hypotheses on offer involve major reorganization of ocean currents. While they might be possible explanations for low-resolution climate records, with error-bars of centuries, they cannot begin to explain the rapid operation of the Antarctic climate anomaly from decade to decade as seen in the 20th century (figure 6). Cloud forcing is by far the most economical explanation of the anomaly on all timescales.

Regardless of why the polar see-saw is happening, it is a real phenomenon. Ignoring it by looking just at the Arctic leads to unwarranted conclusions about what is happening to sea ice on our most amazing planet. We have to look at both hands, we have to include the other side of the ice, to see the full situation. The real answer to what is happening to global sea ice is …

Nothing.

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Doug in Seattle
March 28, 2010 6:28 pm

My respect for Svensmark is deepened.

jack morrow
March 28, 2010 6:29 pm

Nothing. I like the way you put things.

March 28, 2010 6:37 pm

Willis: You wrote, “The problem with the picture is that the earth has two poles. And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools.”
Not necessarily. The Arctic and Antarctic can be warming or cooling in unison, which appears to be quite often:
http://i43.tinypic.com/a4wiu8.png
Data Land+Ocean Surface Temp 60N-90N:
ftp://eclipse.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/ersstv3b/pdo/aravg.mon.land_ocean.60N.90N.asc
Data Land+Ocean Surface Temp 90S-60S:
ftp://eclipse.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/ersstv3b/pdo/aravg.mon.land_ocean.90S.60S.asc

March 28, 2010 6:38 pm

One more half truth exposed…

Alexej Buergin
March 28, 2010 6:40 pm

At the moment, the ARCTIC ice area is, according to the Nansen center, practically average (1979-2006):
http://arctic-roos.org/observations/satellite-data/sea-ice/ice-area-and-extent-in-arctic

rbateman
March 28, 2010 6:40 pm

Nothing happening except for the alarming doomsday obsession campaigns and staged icecapades by the 3 daredevils.
I prefer to watch a good sci-fi movie for my entertainment.

Editor
March 28, 2010 6:44 pm

Arctic Sea Ice is turning into a great tool for converting global warming believers into skeptics. The Warmists have invested a lot of their credibility in the rapidly melting arctic sea ice meme, and the facts just don’t support it:
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.recent.arctic.png
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
http://arctic-roos.org/observations/satellite-data/sea-ice/ice-area-and-extent-in-arctic
Arctic Sea Ice Area and Extent is slightly below average and the Warmists are either awful forecasters, or liars…

AusieDan
March 28, 2010 6:46 pm

Hi Willis – good post.
It’s very good to see some real facts injected into what far too often is a very selective and misleading presentation of the data.
Svensmark’s theory is intriguing.
I particularly like the way it applies to short and long timescales.

March 28, 2010 6:48 pm

Bob Tisdale
Odd… GISS shows both to be warming since 2000 while your graph shows south to be cooling. They measure 64 – 90 instead of 60 to 90, but does that account for the difference?

Kazinksi
March 28, 2010 6:50 pm

I woinder why they picked 2007 to end the data series? I think we all know. And did the IPCC models attribute the 2007 ice loss to temperature or winds blowing the ice out of the straights? If the IPCC models are good enough to predict ice loss from wind patterns I’ll be seriously impressed. But we already know the answer to that too.

Skepshasa
March 28, 2010 6:55 pm

Beautiful ending. We must be very sensitive to the ever present hubris that people have about why the world acts the way it does. Some chose to say it’s ‘God’s Will’ and they have faith in this, while others place their attention on the modern day ‘scientific’ equivalent of the crisis of AGW.
Me? I just keep checking this time series and I laugh quietly to myself…
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_timeseries.png

Al Gored
March 28, 2010 6:59 pm

I’m surprised that someone from the IPCC gang hasn’t claimed that the satellite image of a snow covered British Isles (in another story here) isn’t an ice shelf that just broke away from Europe… with catastrophic consequences of course.
When will the watermelons get to capitalism-caused continental drift?
P.S. For another perspective on change in the Arctic, this is enlightening:
McGhee, R. 2001 [1996]. Ancient people of the Arctic. Canadian Museum of Civilization/UBC Press.
Including Chapter 6, ‘When the Climate Changes’
Short story: human history there was driven by climate change, and the Inuit expanded east across the Arctic during a warm period… I guess they must have been driving SUVs to have caused it.

Editor
March 28, 2010 7:00 pm

Willis Eschenbach (18:50:42) :
“And it is true enough of the time to keep the global sea ice quite constant …”
There is certainly variation month to month and year to year, but over the last 30 years global sea ice does appear to be reasonably stable;
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg
and it certainly isn’t declining rapidly.

March 28, 2010 7:03 pm

Willis: Even UAH MSU TLT anomaly data contradicts the myth that when “one pole warms, the other pole cools”:
http://i43.tinypic.com/34ijlao.png
Source:
http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt
I believe the myth was based solely on the trends for the TLT anomalies.

AusieDan
March 28, 2010 7:09 pm

Bob Tisdale – hi – re your reference:
http://i43.tinypic.com/a4wiu8.png
It looks to me that the two lines are mostly moving in opposite directions.
What is their correlation?
Have you tried to invert one and lay it on top of the other?
That could be a better fit.
They are certainly not mirror images of each other, but on average (by eye) seem to be offsetting each other most of the time.
Now even if I am completely wrong in the above, Willis’s main point still holds true.
To show the post 1960 Artic without also showing the Antarctic does give a decidely false impression.
It is the repeated habit of inapropriate data selection by proponents of AGW that is giving them such a bad name and is loosing them public support.

savethesharks
March 28, 2010 7:20 pm

Nice job, Willis.
On more weather forecasting, and less climate (though the two are related), here is a very interesting post which discusses the possible teleconnections between the teleconnections…in both hemispheres.
I have heard Joe Bastardi talk about this quite a bit. Brazil’s MetSul also birddogs the arms-legnth relationship between the Antarctic Oscillation and the Arctic Oscillation, for example.
At any rate….this is a good discussion to check out and spend a few moments on…
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/capitalweathergang/2010/03/local_weather_antarctica_conne.html
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

JustPassing
March 28, 2010 7:20 pm

OT
BEIJING, March 29 (Reuters) – A severe winter has left 4.5 million dead animals in stockyards across the Mongolian steppes, and many poor herders face the loss of all their property just before the important breeding season.
About a tenth of Mongolia’s livestock may have perished, as deep snows cut off access to grazing and fodder.
The Red Cross launched an emergency appeal for 1 million Swiss francs to assist Mongolian herders, after it estimated that 4.5 million livestock have died in the country since December.
http://uk.reuters.com/article/homepageCrisis/idUKSGE62R01N._CH_.2420

March 28, 2010 7:21 pm
John Egan
March 28, 2010 7:25 pm

The Earth has two poles –
But if summer ice at one of the poles – the North Pole – diminishes to the point of permanent loss of multiyear ice, then there is likely to be significant climate changes in the Northern Hemisphere and worldwide – regardless of whether or not that same amount of ice is increased in the southern polar region.
In other words –
A drop of 4 million additional sq km of sea ice in the Arctic in the summer (which I do not think is likely) will have profound impacts even if the Antarctic winter sea ice increases by the same amount.
I have been castigated at liberal websites for being a “denier” many times, but one must acknowledge that the Arctic sea ice drop in 2007 was dramatic. Arctic sea ice in 2009 was still well below 30-year norms – although it has recovered somewhat. Granted that there is only 30 years of satellite data – with much older anecdotal data. 2007 may have been an outlier event, but it behooves one to act with prudence.

savethesharks
March 28, 2010 7:29 pm

In that previous link I provided, he had the link to the study of the possible AAO / PNA connection in the wrong place.
It is here:
http://www.springerlink.com/content/6964137775814w77/
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

March 28, 2010 7:31 pm

This NASA Scientist was DEAD WRONG in September 2008 when he stated that the ice was NOT going to recover. He is quite alarmed, worried about the planets future, sad, worried about the whole world etc. This NASA video take the time to educate us mere mortal on why the summer sea ice is increasing in the summer hemisphere because warmer oceans are increasing evaporation>snow which feeds the antarctic ice field….blah blah blah…they are never wrong and have the answer for everything. Soon it will be called Arctic Ice Change.

Bill
March 28, 2010 7:41 pm

The earth is in an eccentric orbit around the sun, plus the sun shifts its position relative to the solar system center of gravity as it is pulled by the gas giants. If our planet hits the nadir during Northern Hemisphere summer wouldn’t you expect Arctic melting and Antarctic freezing? And vice versa?
Doesn’t Milankovitch cover part of this?
Wouldn’t you expect drastic imbalances and difficult to predict effects, since the Northern Hemisphere has significantly more land surface than the Southern Hemisphere?

Editor
March 28, 2010 7:52 pm

Bob Tisdale (18:37:43) :
How did you handle all the missing data in the Southern hemisphere dataset?

Doug in Seattle
March 28, 2010 7:56 pm

John Egan (19:25:04) :
Two words – wind & currents

Mike McMillan
March 28, 2010 7:58 pm

Another ad hoc theory –
North pole has polar bears. South pole has penguins.
or maybe –
North pole is sea surrounded by land. South pole is land surrounded by sea.
I can’t see the problem, what with the huge lack of temperature data points in both places, and the relatively small temperature variations to begin with.
The recent lack of ice in the north is largely a problem situation due to flushing the old ice out into the Atlantic.
Bottom line, so what, assuming you aren’t a seal forced to haul out on shore instead of the safety of ice.

Mike G
March 28, 2010 8:03 pm

Anthony,
We see a few comments wondering about GISS anomoly in the arctic compared to the lack of anomoly on the DMI actric temperature graphic linked on your page. But, I haven’t run across an answer to any of them. Seems like a comment on this would be a good post. Forgive me if I missed the answer in a comment somewhere.

Jim Cole
March 28, 2010 8:07 pm

The WARMERS claim we should be concerned about Arctic sea ice declines (conveniently ignoring Antarctic ice growth) because of alleged atmospheric temperature increases. Students of WUWT know that the instrumental temp record (HadCRU, NASA-GISS, and similar data compilations) is fraught with problems and unreliable, especially in the high latitudes.
But more to the point. Why should we think that air temp has ANY significant influence on melting of sea ice? One of the Caitlin fiasco discussions above links to a Univ Alaska-Fairbanks site that shows a temperature profile through Arctic sea ice. What it shows (real-time data) should be self-evident.
http://www.gi.alaska.edu/snowice/sea-lake-ice/Brw10/
The temperature probes show that sea ice is in contact with liquid sea water on the bottom at about -2C and in contact with air at about -20C on the top. In between, sea ice shows a linear gradient from bottom to top.
So, if sea ice is going to melt due to rising temperatures, will it melt first at the top (ambient temp -20C) or at the bottom (ambient temp -2C)?
Those of you who didn’t sleep through elementary physics or P-chem will know – ice will melt first/most at the bottom as a result of changes in sea-water temperature. Sea-water temperatures at both poles are primarily governed by ocean currents that transport warmer water to colder environments. That is, most polar ice loss is likely due to the transfer of heat that was added to the ocean SOMEWHERE ELSE and conveyed to the polar seas.
Air temp is (mostly well below freezing and) mostly irrelevant.

March 28, 2010 8:11 pm

Dear Mr. Tinsdale:
Although I think your work is quite fine, I must protest the USE OF AVERAGE TEMPERATURES as though they have ANY MEANING at all.
I will note: I’m on a CRUSADE ON THIS!
Consider the following situation – Air temp, 82 F. RH 63%, ENTHALPY of the air, 36 BTU/lbm of air.
Air temp 105 F, 10% RH (Typical AZ, where my Mother lives). ENTHALPY of the air, 30 BTU/lbm.
Which atmosphere is “hotter”? TEMPERATURES ARE MEANINGLESS without the knowledge of the local humidities. In point of fact, because WE DON’T KNOW THE HUMIDITY PROFILES in areas, the significance of “temperature changes” over ANY time period (decades, centuries, millenia) are MEANINGLESS.
The ONLY data we can work with involves systems were we HAVE complete RH and Temperatures, which…of course, are particularily few and far between.
Now with regard to using, “English Units”, sorry..I’m an old fuddy duddy.
Max

Editor
March 28, 2010 8:17 pm

John Egan (19:25:04) :
“one must acknowledge that the Arctic sea ice drop in 2007 was dramatic.”
Acknowledged, dramatic based on the 30 year satellite record we have on our 4,500,000,000 year old planet, but it appears that the decrease was primarily related to wind and currents versus a warming Arctic:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/22/the-guardian-sees-the-light-on-wind-driven-arctic-ice-loss/

Harold Ambler
March 28, 2010 8:27 pm

Bob, you write, regarding the Arctic and Antarctic seeming to warm and cool like a teeter-totter: “I believe the myth was based solely on the trends for the TLT anomalies.”
But Willis has quoted Svensmark in the piece above in re changes over thousands of years. I know that to some extent Svensmark relies on research by Dorthe Dahl-Jensen of the Niels Bohr Institute who compared borehole records from Greenland and Antarctica and wrote the following: “Antarctica has a tendency to warm up when Greenland is ‘cold’ and to cool off when Greenland is ‘warm.’ “

R. de Haan
March 28, 2010 8:33 pm

Between the UN IPCC and the real world lies a gigantic pile of very expensive propaganda based on flawed models, cherry picked and massaged data and a political enforced consensus that isn’t.
Thank you Willis.

March 28, 2010 8:33 pm

Has anyone seen this interesting paper?
How Fast is Arctic Sea Ice Declining?
http://homepage.ntlworld.com/jdrake/Questioning_Climate/userfiles/How_Fast_is_Arctic_Sea_Ice_Declining_v2.pdf
In it he suggests the possibility of satellite drift,that would create a steep decline in ice cover area.

JDN
March 28, 2010 8:53 pm

Someone over on Bishop Hill’s blog is arguing that your graph shows area, and that sea ice volume is what’s important. I’m assuming that volume shows something different. However, the antarctic ice volume is reportedly going up as well. So, maybe it’s about the same story as the sea ice area. Or maybe that doesn’t count in the sea ice volume?
I went looking for global sea ice volume but could only find the sea ice index. Could you add a link? What about polar ice volume or extent? That would make more sense due to the fact that most antarctic ice isn’t floating. Would your constant trend hold up using this definition of polar ice extent?

Phil.
March 28, 2010 8:55 pm

Kazinksi (18:50:18) :
I woinder why they picked 2007 to end the data series? I think we all know.

Yes we do, the graph is dated 23 Sept 2007!

pdcant
March 28, 2010 9:13 pm

Um, it’s kinda well known why one pole gets cooler while the other warms. It’s precession. The Earth isn’t a globe in a stand sitting on God’s desk. It’s a ball of molten star stuff with a thin cool shell. As the North Pole tips towards the Sun, the South Pole sees less direct sunlight. It happens every year as the seasons change, too, but precession is long term. A full cycle is ~24,000 years. In my lifetime, the tilt has changed almost 1°. Polaris is a little further away from true north. (It never was exactly north in my lifetime, but it was closer.)
The alarmists say they have precession coded into their computer models, but we aren’t allowed to check their “proprietary software.” It’s still GIGO to me…

March 28, 2010 9:24 pm

Bill (19:41:30) :
The earth is in an eccentric orbit around the sun, plus the sun shifts its position relative to the solar system center of gravity as it is pulled by the gas giants.
The latter does not affect distance between the Sun and the Earth. Look at it this way: The center of gravity between the Sun and the Earth also orbits the solar system center of gravity. And the location of the center of gravity [as a fraction of the whole distance] between the Sun and the Earth depends only on the ratio of the masses of the Sun and the Earth.

March 28, 2010 9:26 pm

Harold Ambler (20:27:22) :
But Willis has quoted Svensmark
Perhaps Svensmark works oppositely at the two poles 🙂
You know, when you don’t know how it works, anything is possible…

pat
March 28, 2010 9:35 pm

willis, is it really u saying:
“That’s why I see the fight against carbon as being totally and tragically misguided, not just because it is futile, but mainly because for the foreseeable future at least, carbon = development”
what “development” are u talking about:
this?
28 March: UK Times: Jonathan Leake and Chris Hastings : Wealthy landowners make millions in the wind rush
Among the biggest potential beneficiaries is the Duke of Roxburghe, whose planned 48-turbine scheme on his Scottish estate would generate an estimated £30m a year, shared with developers. About £17m of this would come from subsidies from consumers.
Others seeking to capitalise on the new wind rush include the Duke of Beaufort, Sir Reginald Sheffield, father of Samantha Cameron (wife of Tory leader, David Cameron), and Michael Ancram, the Tory grandee.
The growing interest in wind farms stems from the government’s subsidy system
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7078856.ece
or this?
29 March: Australian: Sid Maher: World cool on Rudd’s clean coal funding
AUSTRALIAN taxpayers are the only financial backers for Kevin Rudd’s $100 million-a-year global clean coal initiative, as world leaders have failed to match their resounding endorsement of the idea at the G8 meeting last July with a single dollar. …
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/world-cool-on-rudds-clean-coal-funding/story-e6frg6nf-1225846623758
u may not mind funding all this, but i can think of plenty of taxpayers who will fight relentlessly to stop the commodifying of CO2.

JinOH
March 28, 2010 9:53 pm

We are all doomed! Or not. Let me know what the weather will be like 2 weeks from now. Oh wait – weather isn’t climate. Cripes.

March 28, 2010 9:53 pm

pdcant (21:13:42) :
In my lifetime, the tilt has changed almost 1°.
You must be very old. The tilt changes about an 1/8 of a degree in a thousand years….

Steve Goddard
March 28, 2010 9:54 pm

I made a graph of UAH North Pole minus South Pole temperatures. They are steadily diverging at a rate of .49C/decade.
https://spreadsheets.google.com/oimg?key=0AnKz9p_7fMvBdHRkenhGVjlFanM2WHcxZXFhTGtZMlE&oid=2&v=1269838244765
If they were symmetrical, we would expect to see a slope of zero.

LightRain
March 28, 2010 9:59 pm

” Kazinksi (18:50:18) :
I woinder why they picked 2007 to end the data series? I think we all know.
Yes we do, the graph is dated 23 Sept 2007! ”
And what date was the report made? If later than the graph you know why they chose the graph they did.

Editor
March 28, 2010 10:02 pm

Now here’s a trend I am looking forward to seeing the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) try to continue:
December 7, 2002 – Arctic Sea Ice Shrinking, Greenland ice sheet melting, according to study
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20021207_seaice.html
8 December 2003 – Arctic Sea Ice Low, Second Year in a Row
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20031208_minimum.html
4 October 2004 – Arctic Sea Ice Decline Continues
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20041004_decline.html
18 March 2005 – Arctic Ice Decline in Summer and Winter
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20050318_arcdec.html
28 September 2005 – Sea Ice Decline Intensifies
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20050928_trendscontinue.html
5 April 2006 – Winter Sea Ice Fails to Recover, Down to Record Low
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20060404_winterrecovery.html
3 October 2006 – Arctic Sea Ice Shrinks as Temperatures Rise
http://nsidc.org/news/press/2006_seaiceminimum/20061003_pressrelease.html
4 April 2007 – Arctic Sea Ice Narrowly Misses Wintertime Record Low
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20070403_winterrecovery.html
1 October 2007 – Arctic Sea Ice Shatters All Previous Record Lows
http://nsidc.org/news/press/2007_seaiceminimum/20071001_pressrelease.html
April 7, 2008 – Arctic sea ice extent at maximum below average, thin
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/2008/040708.html
2 October 2008 – Arctic Sea Ice Down to Second-Lowest Extent; Likely Record-Low Volume
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20081002_seaice_pressrelease.html
March 30, 2009 – Annual maximum ice extent confirmed – This year’s maximum was the fifth lowest in the satellite record.
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/2009/033009.html
6 October 2009 – Arctic sea ice extent remains low; 2009 sees third-lowest mark
http://nsidc.org/news/press/20091005_minimumpr.html
I await NSIDC’s forthcoming 2010 maximum press release with bated breath, wondering how they will to try to spin this:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
into some form of catastrophic decline…

March 28, 2010 10:14 pm

Leif Svalgaard (21:24:11) :
The [Sun’s shifting its position relative to the solar system center of gravity] does not affect [the] distance between the Sun and the Earth.
The question is not if it affects the distance between the Sun and the Earth. Nobody made such an assertion (at least in this thread).
The question is: how it affects the characteristics of solar activity and, therefore, the climate on Earth?
There is no need to quote again some percentages allegedly showing how Earth’s temperature practically doesn’t depend on intensity of the Solar radiation. Earth is not a black body, and numbers calculated without taking into account hundreds of interdependent feedback mechanisms (most of which we still don’t understand or understand very poorly) are utterly meaningless.

jorgekafkazar
March 28, 2010 10:17 pm

Willis Eschenbach (21:08:04) : “…To me, prudent action means economic development. That’s how we protect ourselves against whatever the climate brings next, hot or cold, wet or dry. We build dikes. We heat or cool our houses. We put lightning rods on our buildings. We construct levees in New Orleans, and rebuild them when they fail. We install irrigation systems for our crops….”
And we stop building cities below sea level.

barry
March 28, 2010 10:34 pm

And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools.
I see no significant correlation for this assertion in the instrumental record.
During glacial changes, both hemispheres warm/cool, even though one hemisphere is receiving more/less insolation.
And the total global sea ice has barely changed at all over the period of the record. It goes up a little, it goes down a little, it goes nowhere …
Arctic sea ice has declined more than Antarctic sea ice has risen. The long-term trend of sea ice in both hemispheres combined is downward.
http://nsidc.org/sotc/images/arc_antarc_1979_2009.gif
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg
A linear plot should confirm this.
But they both have different dynamics, so I don’t know how they can be so simply compared in the first place. Pointing out Antarctic sea ice increase doesn’t say much about projections of Arctic sea ice or the observed decline in that region.

Bart
March 28, 2010 10:35 pm

nofreewind (19:31:45) :
“Soon it will be called Arctic Ice Change.”
LOL.

DeNihilist
March 28, 2010 10:35 pm

Hello Dr. Svalgaard. Have been reading this month’s Discover, and was intrigued by the article on ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays. Somehow these rays are supposed to be counter to Einstien’s theory of relativity. Yet they don’t really explain why. Would you be able to enlighten me on this?
Thanx.

CRS, Dr.P.H.
March 28, 2010 10:53 pm

Leif Svalgaard (21:26:28) :
Harold Ambler (20:27:22) :
But Willis has quoted Svensmark
Perhaps Svensmark works oppositely at the two poles 🙂
You know, when you don’t know how it works, anything is possible…

Thank you, Leif! Well-said!

kadaka
March 28, 2010 10:59 pm

From Willis Eschenbach (21:08:04) :
… it’s not like the world revolves around the Arctic ice area.
No, it rotates around the Earth’s axis, whose North Pole end is about the center of that area. Those two terms do get confused a lot…
*smirk* Sorry about that, Mr. Eschenbach.

Ibrahim
March 28, 2010 11:04 pm

It happened before :
http://www.archive.org/details/climatethrouchth033039mbp
CLIMATE
THROUGH THE AGES
A STUDY OF THE CLIMATIC FACTORS
AND THEIR VARIATIONS
By
C. E. P. BROOKS
I.S.O., D.Sc., F.R.Met.Soc.
ERNEST BENN LIMITED
LONDON
Since 1850 winter temperatures have tended to rise
over all the north temperate and Arctic regions and probably
in corresponding latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere.*
The change was slow and irregular at first, but became very
rapid after 1900. The rise in the mean temperature of the
three winter months, from 1851-1900 to 1901-1930, amounted
to 5 F. or more in Western and Central Europe. This
change was associated with a marked strengthening of the
atmospheric circulation and steady west-south-west winds in
Western Europe. There was little change of summer temperature.
Glaciers and ice-sheets receded very rapidly, and
after 1918 little or no drift ice reached the shores of Iceland.
The rise of winter temperature progressed from south to
north, and Central Europe may have passed the crest as early
as 1920 when the rise in the Arctic was in full swing. The
magnitude of the change in the Arctic is shown by the mean
winter temperatures of Spitsbergen, which rose by 16 F.
between 1911-1920 and 1931-1935. The edge of the main area
of Arctic ice also receded towards the pole by some hundreds
of miles. Since January 1940 the winter climate of Europe
has reverted abruptly to greater severity, but it is too soon
to say whether this is the beginning of another long period of
continental climate or only a temporary fluctuation.
and
http://www.archive.org/details/climategreatbri00willgoog
Climate of Great Britain: Or, Remarks on the Change it Has Undergone, Particularly Within The Last Fifty Years (1806)
By John Williams
“In the early periods of our history the isle of Ely was expressly denominated as the Isle of Vine by the Normans.” (The Isle of Ely is an historic region around the city of Ely now in Cambridgeshire, England but previously an island and a county in its own right).

K-Bob
March 28, 2010 11:06 pm

Any chance we could see this same graph with 2008 and 2009 data?
Where does the pre satelite data come from? I know the Cryosphere site shows a chart with pre satelite data that looks suspicious, given that the sea ice area stays extremely consistent for long period of time. Probably from tree rings, huh? Kind of a reverse hockey stick!

kadaka
March 28, 2010 11:08 pm

jorgekafkazar (22:17:19) :
And we stop building cities below sea level.

Prudent action would be to take the IPCC-projected sea level rise into account, just in case the worst-case warming occurs.
I hear the Himalayans will soon be ice free. Lovely views from up there.

Anu
March 28, 2010 11:19 pm

Willis Eschenbach (21:15:02) :

As far as I know, nobody has anything resembling a long-term dataset of sea ice volume. I’d be happy to look at one, but I’ve never seen one. I don’t even know how you’d get one … go skating on the other side of the ice and measure the thickness as you went? There’s only a few measurements that I know of, from nuclear submarines. Most scientists don’t have those, though …

The measurements of Earth’s climate keep getting better and better, but every new satellite or ocean buoy system starts a new dataset, so “long-term” is going to take awhile.
In the meantime, here is ICESat measurements of winter multi-year ice cover in the Arctic Ocean between 2004 and 2008, along with the corresponding downward trend in overall winter sea ice volume, and switch in dominant ice type from multi-year ice to first-year ice:
http://www.nasa.gov/images/content/365871main_earth3-20090707-full.jpg
Why is ice thickness important ?
http://blogs.cars.com/.a/6a00d83451b3c669e20120a7b77994970b-800wi
Thinner ice is more vulnerable to summer warming. As the thinnest ice melts, larger expanses of darker sea water are exposed. These absorb more sunlight than the ice and cause the water to heat up more quickly, thereby melting more ice.
Barber said the ice was now being melted both by rays from the sun as well as from below by the warmer water.
Scientists are also seeing more cyclones, which pick up force as they absorb heat from the warmer water. The cyclones help generate waves that break up ice sheets and also dump large amounts of snow, which has an insulating effect and prevents the ice sheets from thickening.
After a long search, Barber’s ice breaker finally found a 16-km (10-mile) wide floe of multiyear ice that was around 6 to 8 meters (20-26 feet) thick. But as the crew watched, the floe was hit by a series of waves, and disintegrated in five minutes.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE59S3LT20091029?sp=true
Unstable, “rotten” ice that looks to the satellites like stable, multiyear ice has been found by in situ visits to these “multiyear ice” regions:
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL041434.shtml


In September 2009 we observed a much different sea icescape in the Southern Beaufort Sea than anticipated, based on remotely sensed products. Radarsat derived ice charts predicted 7 to 9 tenths multi-year (MY) or thick first-year (FY) sea ice throughout most of the Southern Beaufort Sea in the deep water of the Canada Basin. In situ observations found heavily decayed, very small remnant MY and FY floes interspersed with new ice between floes, in melt ponds, thaw holes and growing over negative freeboard older ice. This icescape contained approximately 25% open water, predominantly distributed in between floes or in thaw holes connected to the ocean below. Although this rotten ice regime was quite different that the expected MY regime in terms of ice volume and strength, their near-surface physical properties were found to be sufficiently alike that their radiometric and scattering characteristics were almost identical.

I wouldn’t depend on the “seesaw” lasting much longer:
http://yankeesabroad.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/broken-seesaw1.jpg

AusieDan
March 28, 2010 11:31 pm

Bob Tisdale (18:37:43)
I have averaged the two data sets you provided for the north and south regions.
There is a rising trend in the average data of about 0.4 degrees per 100 years, which is very roughly comparable with the trend in the NCDC land and ocean monthly series from 1880.
As these are anomolies, I am not sure about the absolute temperatures, but I would expect that these would remain well below zero celsius and would not explain the almost 50% ice lost up north since 1960 as shown in chart 1.
From my recollection of other data, there has not been a significant net ice loss in recent years (vague statement) and that the very low northern figure was due to changing wind patters in 2007.
[Ice cover is not “my thing” so I don’t intend to follow this further].
I just end by repeating my earlier point, that reporting alarming changes in one part of a system while ignoring countervaling changes in another is not very helpful. That is why Willis was critising the original chart.
I was not having a go at you.

March 28, 2010 11:35 pm

K-Bob (23:06:21) :
Any chance we could see this same graph with 2008 and 2009 data?
Where does the pre satelite data come from? I know the Cryosphere site shows a chart with pre satelite data that looks suspicious, given that the sea ice area stays extremely consistent for long period of time. Probably from tree rings, huh? Kind of a reverse hockey stick!
Pics Gary Powers took? The USA and the USSR had a lot of planes in the air with good cameras on board for years before satellites went up with publicly known cameras.

Anu
March 28, 2010 11:42 pm

Just The Facts (22:02:26) :


I await NSIDC’s forthcoming 2010 maximum press release with bated breath, wondering how they will to try to spin this:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
into some form of catastrophic decline…

Might as well breath normally until October – that’s when they determine if a new record summer melt has occurred:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_year_timeseries.png
And you might as well get used to waiting – the Arctic probably won’t be ice free in the summer for another decade:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8047862.stm
At the same time, Peter Wadhams, head of the polar ocean physics group at the University of Cambridge has brought forward his estimate for the demise of summer sea-ice in the Arctic. He believes the ice, which has been a permanent feature for at least 100,000 years, is now so thin that almost all of it will disappear in about a decade.
He says it will become seasonal, forming only during the winter. He told the BBC: “By 2013, we will see a much smaller area in summertime than now; and certainly by about 2020, I can imagine that only one area will remain in summer.”
Although this bleak forecast is reinforced by the survey team’s data, Professor Wadham’s new assessment is based on analysis of nearly 40 years of sonar data gathered on Royal Navy submarines patrolling beneath the ice – the first, HMS Dreadnought, was in 1971.
Now Professor Wadhams, who has studied the Arctic for the past 40 years, says that there is “almost a breakdown” in the ice-cover.
Over most of the Arctic, there has been a massive decline in the amount of so-called multi-year ice – ice that is tough enough to withstand the summer warmth. Much of what is left of this ice accumulates in an area north of Greenland and Ellesmere Island in Canada, and may form what he calls “a last holdout, a kind of Alamo”.
Professor Wadhams said: “The change is happening so fast. It’s the result of this steady thinning over four decades that has brought it to a state where its summer melt is causing it to disappear.
“It’s like the Arctic is covered with an egg shell and the egg shell has been thinning to the point where it is now just cracking completely.”

AG
March 28, 2010 11:49 pm

It seems to me that this is another example of what is wrong with the climate debate. Probably the assumption that says the weather is chaotic but the climate is not is fundamentally flawed. Cloud formation, volcanic activity, ocean current oscillation, changes in water salinity and a number of other factors- we don’t even know about- influencing the climate are clearly not linear.
Maybe because of my ignorance, but I have always had a hard time understanding how come that the average of a finite number of chaotic processes somehow becomes not chaotic. Could somebody explain this to me?

Dave F
March 28, 2010 11:56 pm

@ Anu (23:19:11) :
Rotten ice. It could equally recover faster than open water, yes?

pat
March 29, 2010 12:01 am

There is another very simple measurement of sea ice: ocean rise on a selected, stable platform. While the trend over the last 12,000 years, with notable exceptions has been a rise, it is now measurably less than the previous century, leading one to believe the interior Antarctic/Alaska/Canada/ Greenland ice accumulation, should be examined closely. A 20% drop in the rate of water expansion may forebode a cooling period. Such periods are very uncomfortable, although likely temporary. BTW, the nest Ice age is but 3,000 years away. We should enjoy the remaining warmth.

Francisco
March 29, 2010 12:12 am

K-Bob (23:06:21) :
Where does the pre satelite data come from? I know the Cryosphere site shows a chart with pre satelite data that looks suspicious, given that the sea ice area stays extremely consistent for long period of time.
———–
I also wonder. One source where that data must NOT come from is reports like this from the 1920s:
“The Arctic Ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot […] Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone …” etc.
–Monthly Weather Review, November 1922 (quoted in the Washington Post on November 2, 1922)
http://tinyurl.com/57jz95
http://tinyurl.com/ylndh9j

NZ Willy
March 29, 2010 12:19 am

Arctic ice cap is showing toughness and fortitude on the charts. Desperate times for Phil Jones & Co. Deep in the bowels of CRU, a plot is hatched: get the government to re-assign 007 (James Bond) to hijack the Russian space lens and point it at the Arctic ice cap to hurry up the melting!

Carrick
March 29, 2010 12:21 am

barry:

I see no significant correlation for this assertion in the instrumental record.

It’s clearly there in the annual record. Of course that’s a no brainer (tilt in the Earth’s axis). I don’t think there is any evidence for it in multiyear fluctuations though.
They seem to synchronize at times, but that appears coincidental to me.

Duster
March 29, 2010 12:29 am

Leif Svalgaard (21:53:49) :
Actually, it would put him in his 70s. The pole moves 50.3 seconds of arc a year and a degree every 71.6 years. “Very old” is a relative thing.

maksimovich
March 29, 2010 12:40 am

barry (22:34:05)
But they both have different dynamics, so I don’t know how they can be so simply compared in the first place. Pointing out Antarctic sea ice increase doesn’t say much about projections of Arctic sea ice or the observed decline in that region.
Anti-persistence is a problematic problem for the proprietors of AGW models.eg Carvalho et al 2007.
Anti-persistence in the global temperature anomaly field
Abstract. In this study, low-frequency variations in temperature
anomaly are investigated by mapping temperature
anomaly records onto random walks. We show evidence that
global overturns in trends of temperature anomalies occur on
decadal time-scales as part of the natural variability of the climate
system. Paleoclimatic summer records in Europe and
New-Zealand provide further support for these findings as
they indicate that anti-persistence of temperature anomalies
on decadal time-scale have occurred in the last 226 yrs. Atmospheric
processes in the subtropics and mid-latitudes of
the SH and interactions with the Southern Oceans seem to
play an important role to moderate global variations of temperature
on decadal time-scales.

A significant constraint on the conjecture of a monotonic warming global signature.
Conclusions
The anti-persistence of the temperature field on inter-decadal
time scales is part of the decadal variability of the climate
system and this property has not been identified before. Processes
at time scales longer than that of ENSO are also
responsible for maintaining stationarity in the temperature
anomaly field. In addition, our results indicate the importance
of the Southern Oceans in regulating temperature fluctuation
regimes on long time-scales. The origin of interdecadal
fluctuations in the climate system is currently one
of the most challenging problems in climate dynamics

Murray Carpenter
March 29, 2010 12:44 am

O.T.
Question,
Is it fair to measure average Atmospheric CO2 levels at the site of a Volcano thats been active since 1984?

kwik
March 29, 2010 1:00 am

Willis, I see that the graph in the post comes from the Bjerknes Centre in Norway. They are 100% IPCC loyalists.
Mr. Drangedal from this centre has volountered as lead author for the next round. He is the one that was in the newspapers in Norway a couple of weeks ago, asking all cities in Norway to make crisis plans against flooding.
So dont expect a better IPCC.
The Bjerknes Centre is FEEDING on AGW-alarmism.
Thats what gives them bread on the table.

kadaka
March 29, 2010 1:03 am

Re: Anu (23:19:11)
You’re bringing up Barber’s “rotten ice” claim that was demolished here last year and has become a running gag?
Why? Did you catch it?

AusieDan
March 29, 2010 1:04 am

Willis – you said:
QUOTE
And all of that costs money. That’s why I see the fight against carbon as being totally and tragically misguided, not just because it is futile, but mainly because for the foreseeable future at least, carbon = development.
UNQUOTE
I agree completely.
I am horrified by the lack of understanding of economics by so many people (scientists, politicans and lay public).
So many do not realise that their weekly income depends on the economy, regardless of if they run their ouwn business, work for a company or have a position with the government, teacher, doctor, nurse etc.
Our economy is based on carbon.

March 29, 2010 1:38 am

Pat,
When willis is saying Carbon = Development, I am pretty certain he is saying that burning fossil fuels is, for the present, our best way to develop. In that I assume economic and technological development.

March 29, 2010 1:43 am

This’ll make you puke!
Pa. global warming researcher calls self ‘skeptic’
“I’m a skeptic. When I see a scientific claim being made, I want to see it subject to scrutiny and validation.”
Mann said there is firm grounding for some climate science assertions,…

[snip – lets leave Nazi’s out of the discussion – Anthony]
http://www.ldnews.com/news/ci_14774756

Stacey
March 29, 2010 1:58 am

With regard to sea ice volume,my recollection is that when it became obvious that the sea ice in the Arctic was back to ‘normal’, and it was observable, the alarmists had to come uo with something that was not so observable, the thickness of the ice. My suspicion with the NSID graph posted above is that the assummed decline in the sea ice extent is easy to hide, but the peak is not as there are fixed points where the waves are not lapping on th shores?
I thought there were six poles,true north,magnetic north and grid north?
At Max. If you don’t want to upset the barbarian celtic hordes in the uk, better to say you prefer imperial units instead of English units. Of course you may then upset the former Colonies, your call ;-/

March 29, 2010 2:11 am

BBC: Gulf Stream ‘is not slowing down’ So that bang goes the favourite retort of warmers when I mention the worst winter in 50 years (in Scotland)
The Gulf Stream does not appear to be slowing down, say US scientists who have used satellites to monitor tell-tale changes in the height of the sea.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8589512.stm

fred wisse
March 29, 2010 2:25 am

comment to mr jorgekafkazar
Certainly some dutchmen are putting a lot of confidence in the future climate by imagining more land taken from the sea below the sea-level . A whole industries existence is built upon the fact that the sea-level does not substantially rise or fall . Of course there exists as well a strong robust AGW-movement led by farmer Veerman , also a marxist-type of scientist typical for a lot of goverment paid university-staff , living a life far away from reality and not open for any criticism regarding their view-points . Luckily there are still a lot of sound thinking dutchmen with an enterprising attitude

March 29, 2010 2:40 am

Alexander Feht (22:14:50) :
Nobody made such an assertion (at least in this thread).
By bringing in the center of mass idea and using the word ‘nadir’ there you have the assertion [granted that it is clumsy and imprecise].
The question is: how it affects the characteristics of solar activity and, therefore, the climate on Earth?
1st, since the Sun is in free fall it does not not feel any forces and there is then no effect on solar activity. 2nd, the effect of solar activity on climate is so small that it has not yet been convincingly demonstrated.
DeNihilist (22:35:44) :
Somehow these rays are supposed to be counter to Einstien’s theory of relativity.
Discover Magazine sometimes makes claims that are less than accurate. I’m not aware of any phenomenon that runs counter to the theories of relativity.

Ryan
March 29, 2010 2:41 am

It is difficult to see why ocean currents should be to blame for this phenomena, given that ocean currents effectively start at the equator and then split into two separate streams according to north and south (unless of course you believe the thermohaline model for ocean circulation is fundamentally flawed and that ocean currents are primarily driven by tidal forces, as was the predominant theory up until Team AGW decided it was expedient to claim that the Gulf Stream was about to stop).
A solar source for the apparent synchronicity between the poles is much more likely, so a theory that predicts such a relationship as a result of a solar source is inherently more plausible

Brent Hargreaves
March 29, 2010 2:42 am

Al Gored (18:59:28) : You refer to ‘watermelons’.
I think this refers to vegetables which are green on the outside and red on the inside.
Bad metaphor. The vegetable is useful.

Sleepalot
March 29, 2010 2:57 am

How is it that almost all of the black line is below 0? Surely half of it should be above.

Sleepalot
March 29, 2010 3:00 am

Ah, it’s only a 10 year mean, but they’ve got 27 years of data.

March 29, 2010 3:17 am

Climatologists claim to have found Biblical plagues
Researchers studying global warming claim they have found proof of the biblical plagues which were first reported in the Bible and in the flick “The Ten Commandments”.
Climatologists discovered a dramatic shift in the climate in the area occurred towards the end of Rameses the Second’s reign.
After looking at stalagmites in Egyptian caves they have been able to rebuild a record of the weather patterns using traces of radioactive elements contained within the rock.

http://www.techeye.net/science/climatologists-claim-to-have-found-biblical-plagues
Comment:Isn’t it great to be back in the good old days, when any historian seeking a bit of evidence to fit their tin-pot theory of history would search out a useful bit of climate change and then adjust the events to fit the evidence, rather than pretty much vica versa as now!

Ron
March 29, 2010 3:24 am

The significance of snow and ice is their albedo effect and the related positive feedback mechanism. When it’s cold there is more snow and ice and more energy is reflected and its gets colder which leads to …. and of course vice versa. One metric which is relevant but not often reported is total sea-ice and snow. This shows a very minor declining trend (3% over 30 years).
http://www.climatedata.info/Impacts/Impacts/snow.html

rbateman
March 29, 2010 3:26 am

kadaka (23:08:35) :
And if some group computer-model projected that the Sun would fry the Earth through increased luminosity in 30 years, would you take thier ‘prudent action’ advice and propel the Earth out further in orbit?
There’s an app for that. It’s called Lucasfilm, and it’s intended to be for your entertainment, not the subject of your nightmares.

March 29, 2010 3:31 am

In a previous post someone pointed out that the 15% sea ice graphs are pretty worthless, which is true.
However, they also said at 30% i6t was currently declining, a trend which has dramatically reversed now it would appear:
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/icecover.uk.php

March 29, 2010 3:33 am

davidmhoffer (18:48:32) : You asked, “Odd… GISS shows both to be warming since 2000 while your graph shows south to be cooling.”
The two SST datasets, OI.v2 SST (used by GISS) and ERSST.v3b, both show the Southern Ocean to be cooling since Nov 1981, but the OI.v2 data shows a rise and decline since 2000 while the ERSST.v3b data does not:
http://i39.tinypic.com/jglki1.png
That leaves the LST data. The NCDC, for that dataset, uses a different method of infilling LST than GISS (which uses the 1200km smoothing). Refer to:
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/sst/papers/SEA.temps08.pdf
You asked, “They measure 64 – 90 instead of 60 to 90, but does that account for the difference?”
Nope. The datasets with less coverage have greater year-to-year variations, but the datasets mimic one another. Here’s a graph of the GISTEMP Antarctic LST+SST anomalies, 90S-60S versus 90S-64S:
http://i41.tinypic.com/ofcy9z.png
Here’s one for the Arctic (60N-90N versus 64N-90N):
http://i43.tinypic.com/2h3zfpg.png
And if you’re interested, here’s a comparison of the GISTEMP Arctic versus Antarctic LST+SST anomalies:
http://i40.tinypic.com/n4fhpw.png
It also contradicts the statements that one pole warms while the other cools.

SandyInDerby
March 29, 2010 3:40 am

The very latest from the BBC on the Gulf Stream
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8589512.stm

March 29, 2010 3:44 am

Anu (23:19:11) :
Ahh, we are back to the “its rotten ice” nonsense again.

March 29, 2010 3:44 am

Basil (19:52:28) : You asked, “How did you handle all the missing data in the Southern hemisphere dataset?”
I left them as blank cells in EXCEL. And the spans with no data were so long that I couldn’t use 13-month smoothing without having gaps, hence the 37-month filter.

March 29, 2010 3:45 am

“The problem with the picture is that the earth has two poles. And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools.”
Now add the established fact that the poles are the focus of large Birkeland Currents (which when current density increases cause the auroras to appear), and as part of an electric circuit, energy in balances energy out.
Most of us think of electricity as the stuff that flows through copper wires, and yes, its the electrons moving, but when we get to the plasma state, both charged particles move, positive ones in the opposite direction to the negative ones.
So in one sense, electrically, we get energy coming into the earth system, but as electric currents also move out the of the earth-system, then energy is bening taken out of the earth system.
And with these arcane comments I show that our understanding of the earth system is somewhat incomplete if we ignore the plasma factor.
The Team ignore it and hence limited by their post modernist application of Victorian gas-light era physics, search for the nearest target to blame for their scientific ignorance – humans.

Stephan
March 29, 2010 3:47 am

Where are Phil and Da Witty Pain LOL?

Stephan
March 29, 2010 3:51 am

At this rate I would surmise that NH ice may be on route to COMPLETE NORMALITY or even slightly ABOVE anomaly for the rest of year.
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/icecover.uk.php
If so it would be the physical end of AGW this year as this is a VERY IMPORTANT pillar for the Warmistas. How will they argue this one off?
Oh I know…. Antarctica will start to melt…LOL

Don B
March 29, 2010 3:54 am

The figure 6 in the Svensmark quote is here.
http://www.phys.uu.nl/~nvdelden/Svensmark.pdf

Stephan
March 29, 2010 3:59 am

Unfortunately for the AGW’ers the ACTUAL temperatures in NH ARE NOT RISING
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/meant80n.uk.php this explains the fact that ice is returning to normal (+winds and ocean current situation)

March 29, 2010 4:00 am

Willis Eschenbach (18:50:42) : Sorry, Willis. I read as far as the part that I quoted and stopped.
Your paragraph before Figure 2 reads, “It turns out that the NSIDC and the HadISST1 records are nearly identical,” but Figure 2 is a comparison of OI.v2 and HADISST Sea Ice data.
You replied, “Despite that, the ‘polar see-saw’ is a well recognized phenomenon, as shown by my quotes.”
Your references are discussing polar variability over millennia, while your graphs in Figures 1 and 2 represent data on century and decadal bases. Two different beasts. The data available over the period of the instrument temperature record contradicts the “polar see-saw”:
NCDC LST+SST:
http://i43.tinypic.com/a4wiu8.png
UAH MSU TLT:
http://i43.tinypic.com/34ijlao.png
GISTEMP:
http://i40.tinypic.com/n4fhpw.png

Don B
March 29, 2010 4:01 am

Here is a graph showing the long term cyclicality of Arctic ice, in one case going back to 1900–figure 2.16, pdf page 47.
http://alexeylyubushin.narod.ru/Climate_Changes_and_Fish_Productivity.pdf?

Frank Lansner
March 29, 2010 4:14 am

Willis Eshenbach, you write : “The problem with the picture is that the earth has two poles. And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools.”
I suppose the following might partly explain this:
Assuming Solar theory is correct, we have diffences in cloud variation as response to Solar variations.
Why different effect from clouds on temperastures for SH and NH?
– and thus opposite trends between Nh and SH?
Clouds has 3 big impacts on temperature:
1) Cooling: Low albedo
2) Warming: Effective insulation effect.
and..
3) Cooling: SNOW. Snow reaches the land surface and thus lowers albedo WITHOUT a big insulation effect.
its the SNOW that creates the different trends of warming cooling on the 2 hemispheres.
SH: The whole Antarctica is practically always snow-white. So not really any snow-effect here. This leaves only the TINY areas of New Zealand, Tasmania, Argentina etc. for the SNOW effect to affect temperatures on SH.
So on SH, the 2) WARMING insultating effect – is much bigger compared to the cooling effects 1) Cloud albedo and 3 ) Snow albedo.
So on SH, high kosmic rays intensity is not likely to induce that much cooling. (Perhaps the warming effect is bigger??)
On the countrary, on NH, We have a huge land area to make the cooling effect of 3) SNOW take effect. Therefore, the NH is much more likely to cool down during high kosmic ray intensity.
When you compare NH and SH trends you will see exactly the NH is much more chaning in trend than the more smoothly evolving SH temperature graphs.
AND: Even under effectful El Nino, as we have now, the effect in the Arctic is in fact low. The CLASH between low Solar activity that creates – 3) SNOW-COOLING in the north, and then the El Nino that warms the globe in general results in a warmer globe, but still growing ice in the Arctic.
nice 🙂

March 29, 2010 4:36 am

I might add the recently the solar wind stopped for a few days.
This happens when we are part of an alternating current electrical circuit.
Do the research folks, it’s all there just waiting for some of you to connect the dots together.

March 29, 2010 4:42 am

Harold Ambler (20:27:22) : There are different timespans being discussed in this post. The graphs and the portion I quoted appear in a discussion of century and decadal data, which is what I was addressing, while, as you note, the references are discussing data on millennial bases.

March 29, 2010 4:55 am

Louis Hissink (04:36:26) :
I might add the recently the solar wind stopped for a few days.
This happens when we are part of an alternating current electrical circuit.

The solar wind never stops.
And we are not part of an alternating electrical circuit. The Earth extracts a few percent of the energy in the solar wind, which in turn is about a millionth of the heat and light we get from the Sun. Any currents are generated locally as a result of the interactions. All of this does not provide enough energy to influence the climate in any significant way.

Tom in Florida
March 29, 2010 5:05 am

pdcant (21:13:42) : ” A full cycle is ~24,000 years. In my lifetime, the tilt has changed almost 1°.”
Duster (00:29:39) : “Actually, it would put him in his 70s. The pole moves 50.3 seconds of arc a year and a degree every 71.6 years. ”
I think you are confusing obliquity with precession. It is my understanding that the variation in the tilt of the Earth’s axis (obliquity) is between 22.1 and 24.5 degrees away from the orbital plane. The full cycle takes approx 40,000 years. That means a shift from 22.1 to 24.5 in 20,000 years, about 1 degree of shift every 8333 years or as Dr S said, 1/8 degree in about 1,000 years. So pdcant would indeed be “very old”. The obliquity is currently 23.5 degrees. Now, let’s go back 8333 years to the year 6323 BCE and we find that the obliquity was at max, 24.5 degrees, and the precession had the northern hemisphere summer solstice just past perihelion. Any wonder why Earth had just come out of glaciation?

Jimbo
March 29, 2010 5:18 am

BBC – 29 March 2010

“Gulf Stream ‘is not slowing down'”
“The Gulf Stream does not appear to be slowing down, say US scientists who have used satellites to monitor tell-tale changes in the height of the sea.
Confirming work by other scientists using different methodologies, they found dramatic short-term variability but no longer-term trend.
…..
The satellite record going back to 1993 did suggest a small increase in flow, although the researchers cannot be sure it is significant.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8589512.stm

Why won’t nature cooperate with AGW?

March 29, 2010 5:24 am

“Climategate” blow fragments corporate response to global warming
The survey, which was sponsored by the Carbon Trust, IBM, Hitachi and software company 1E, found that just over half of respondents believe the “jury is still out” on the urgent need to tackle climate change, while 32 per cent of companies polled said they do not yet have a coherent strategy in place to address energy use, an increase of seven percentage points on last year.
Moreover, just 12 per cent of businesses said they were introducing new green products to keep up with rivals, and seven out of 10 respondents said that carbon reduction policies are primarily driven by public relations issues.

http://www.businessgreen.com/business-green/news/2260372/climategate-blow-fragments
Oops is that another wheel I see falling off the global warming bandwagon!

Archonix
March 29, 2010 5:25 am

Louis Hissink (03:45:59) :
I’ve read a paper that was previously linked in comments expounding the idea you’re hinting at. It’s interesting and in some ways it seems intuitive, however I’m a little uncomfortable with the way that some of its proponents hold up everything as proof of the idea. I think concept is worth further study – if for no other reason than to demonstrate whether it would work.
I also think that it’s better to wait until the AGW paradigm has been demolished before bringing up the topic too often. It’s very easy for the AGW proponents to cherry-pick such things as “crackpot theories” that they can use to rubbish the entire concept of sceptical enquiry. After all they’re very good at cherry-picking.

March 29, 2010 5:26 am

Richard Holle (23:35:11) :
K-Bob (23:06:21) :
“Where does the pre satelite data come from?”

Pics Gary Powers took? The USA and the USSR had a lot of planes in the air with good cameras on board for years before satellites went up with publicly known cameras.
The photo shoots were strictly for military surveillance, and they were pretty much limited to land installations — easier to interpret using known sizes and distances.
The sea ice data was gathered by the US military during the entire course of the Cold War — no pun intended — and some of it still is. The Air Force and Army both deployed teams of weather-guessers onto the ice for months in order to gather both met data and ice coverage and average thickness. The Navy sent subs on ice-mapping missions using sonar.
The weather observations went to SAC for the bomber crews, the ice data was consolidated by The Organization That Doesn’t Exist™ and passed to the CINCs controlling the boomers. They were looking for both the conditions needed to form polynyas — open water (or water covered with thin ice) surrounded by sea ice and their frequency. The boomers needed to find a polynya and surface in order to launch their SLBMs.
In the interest of full disclosure, I still retain plausible deniability for what may or may not have been any participation or non-participation on the part of an individual who may or may not have borne a superficial resemblance to me.

tty
March 29, 2010 5:27 am

Anu (23:19:11) :
About that “rotten ice” spin. As anyone who lives in an area where there is a lot of ice can tell you, melting ice is *always* rotten, and always has been. That’s why you should be very careful going out on the ice in springtime, it can be quite unreliable even if it’s two feet thick.
However in contrast to wood or meat, ice doesn’t *stay* rotten if the weather gets colder. It refreezes and becomes as good as new.

Rob Vermeulen
March 29, 2010 5:40 am

Why not be honest and admit that the Arctic september average falls exactly within the predicted (decreasing) range? Why focus on the global and antarctic extent, despite the fact that scientists didn’t predict its decline?

Jack Simmons
March 29, 2010 5:52 am
West Houston
March 29, 2010 5:52 am

Quoting Kazinksi (18:50:18) :
“I wonder why they picked 2007 to end the data series? I think we all know. ”
Commenting:
Some may not know.
This is from the arctic sea ice widget on the right margin.
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
Note than 2007 (dark green line) is the low extreme of the minima since 2002.
Note also that minimum of 2009 is about one million square kilometers (i.e. ~25%) MORE than 2007.
Use this graph when you respond to statements like “If there’s no warming then how come the arctic is melting…?”

Pamela Gray
March 29, 2010 6:03 am

I think it is time to ask for the “computer model code” from these people, especially as a string relates to the process of freeze, melt, and transport. I have a hunch several of the folks here would find many calculation errors in how ice freezes and melts in the Arctic after controlling for wind and current. The temps needed to freeze salt water are more than low enough even if increased CO2 directly overhead might re-radiate the measly amount of infrared that gets to the ice. Ice melting in place, again controlling for wind, current, and increased re-radiation of infrared also takes a very, very long time. The only variables that change this to the drastic levels depicted by IPCC are currents and wind. Free the ice codes. Free the ice codes.

Editor
March 29, 2010 6:11 am

Anu (23:42:26) :
“Might as well breath normally until October – that’s when they determine if a new record summer melt has occurred”
There is just so long the Warmists can keep kicking the ball down the road and claiming that catastrophe lies just over the next hill. Will you please return here in October to celebrate a middling Arctic minimum with us?
“And you might as well get used to waiting – the Arctic probably won’t be ice free in the summer for another decade”
I am not sure if you know, but I am actually an accomplished amateur sea ice modeler. Leveraging a highly robust linear model of sea ice change and this data set:
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg
I have been able to predict that Global Sea Ice Area will remain average forever, and leveraging this data set:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
I have been able to predict that within 92.3 years Arctic Sea Extent will grow to cover the entire world… Sadly my forecasting model and predicitions are as robust as the one you cited…

Al Gore's Holy Hologram
March 29, 2010 6:15 am

My crystal ball and Jedi powers beat that and say all ice will melt in 5 years. We will burn and drown at the same time. Just check my hologram for evidence of my superpowers.

Alan D McIntire
March 29, 2010 6:19 am

You quoted Svensmark stating that Antarctic temperatures moved opposite to Arctic temperatures, but you didn’t state the WHY. I recall reading that Svensmark’s explanaton was the Albedo of Antarctica as opposed to the albedo of clouds. When the earth cools as a result of more clouds, the albedo of the Arctic INCREASES- the clouds reflect more than the Arctic ice. In contrast, the albedo of ANTARCTIC clouds is LESS than the Albedo of the relatively pristine Antarctic snow and ice.

Pamela Gray
March 29, 2010 6:23 am

By the way, the Arctic ice behavior has acted all year long as a somewhat disconnected group of micro-climate zones, each with its own unique set of parameters. So I will say again, as I have said many times before, you cannot lump the zones together and say something about ice area, extent, or volume, as if your statement or theory equally applies then to all areas.

Kate
March 29, 2010 6:34 am

Fresh on the heels of my concern for the corruption of democratic processes, James Lovelock says “It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while” in “the fight against climate change”.
“…I don’t think we’re yet evolved to the point where we’re clever enough to handle a complex a situation as climate change,” said Lovelock in his first in-depth interview since the theft of the UEA emails last November. “The inertia of humans is so huge that you can’t really do anything meaningful.”
One of the main obstructions to meaningful action is “modern democracy”, he added. “Even the best democracies agree that when a major war approaches, democracy must be put on hold for the time being. I have a feeling that climate change may be an issue as severe as a war. It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while….”
He also declares that “Humans are too stupid to prevent climate change” in the Guardian article:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/mar/29/james-lovelock-climate-change
Thank you so much for your opinion of everyone who isn’t you being “too stupid” (i.e. not agreeing with your every utterance), Prof., but I prefer to live my life with as much freedom as I can, and what you are proposing is a world-wide green dictatorship, or to put it more accurately, a prison run by so-called “environmentalists”. No thanks, and by the way, your Gaia theory is total rubbish, and as any six year-old would tell you.

Sean Peake
March 29, 2010 6:35 am

Willis, sorry about this but it seems U of Colorado disagrees with you:
http://www.colorado.edu/news/r/f595fae00e6b451d4016ab9a43a049f8.html

Vincent
March 29, 2010 6:36 am

Anu,
“He believes the ice, which has been a permanent feature for at least 100,000. . .”
So which ancient people had satellites 100,000 years ago? The Neandethals perhaps, or could it have been the Clovis people?

RockyRoad
March 29, 2010 6:39 am

Funny how nature has a way of making a fool out of…. umm… well… fools.

March 29, 2010 6:40 am

Re. Mike G (20:03:56) :
“Anthony,
We see a few comments wondering about GISS anomoly in the arctic compared to the lack of anomoly on the DMI actric temperature graphic linked on your page. But, I haven’t run across an answer to any of them. Seems like a comment on this would be a good post. Forgive me if I missed the answer in a comment somewhere.”
I second this. DMI uses K as opposed to C, but just quickly eyeballing I so not see more then two to four degrees at most of K warming, if that. Why is DMI so different then GISS?

Peter Miller
March 29, 2010 6:44 am

The Arctic Ocean is the least saline of all the oceans – usually about 12-15% less than the norm of around 3.5% (35,000ppm) salt content for the other oceans. The reasons for this are: i) the huge inflow of fresh water from gigantic rivers in Canada and Russia, and ii) the almost total surrounding of the Arctic Ocean by continental masses.
Fresh water freezes at higher temperatures than sea water, so the less saline the Arctic Ocean is – especially the top few tens of metres – the more likely it is to freeze. Fresh water is less dense than sea water and therefore has a tendency to lie on top.
On a local basis, Arctic Ocean salinity must be related to the amount of fresh water entering it from Canada and Russia. This, in turn, is dependent on: i) the amount of continental precipitation, and ii) the amount of water extracted by man for irrigation and industrial purposes.
A couple of useful references are given below.
The salinity of the Arctic Ocean – summer and winter:
http://www.amap.no/mapsgraphics/go/graphic/winter-and-summer-surface-water-salinity-in-the-arctic-ocean-and-adjacent-seas
http://www.amap.no/mapsgraphics/go/graphic/distribution-of-potential-temperature-salinity-and-density-across-the-arctic-ocean-and-the-greenland
If the difference in Arctic Ocean salinity was just a few per cent, it would probably not have a significant effect, but it can vary enormously and sometimes be up to 20% less in some of the upper surface areas, when compared with the rest of the planet’s oceans.
I cannot see how anyone can make any judgement on the reasons for changes in the extent etc of the Arctic ice cap, without first measuring and considering the effects of changing salinity levels, both at a local and a regional level.

Brent Hargreaves
March 29, 2010 6:56 am

SandyInDerby (03:40:29) : Thanks for the link to the BBC item on business-as-normal in the Gulf Stream.
We’re always ready to criticize alarmist news items. I think that the BBC and the scientists they are reporting on, deserve credit for such (what’s the opposite to ‘alarmist’?!) reports.

John Egan
March 29, 2010 7:06 am

Dear Mr. Eschenbach –
It seems to be the nature of the internet – whether at liberal or conservative websites – that ad hominem attack is the preferred method of discourse.
Your article looks at the combined total of polar sea ice without regard to differences at each pole. I point that out and you compare me to Aunt Hildegard’s tea cart.
You may say all you wish about tea carts, but your logical framing remains fundamentally flawed. One may combine the sea ice totals of both poles, but the climate implications are separate if there is dramatic, long-term change at one pole alone.
You see, I agree that there is no compelling evidence of Mark’s Serreze’s “death spiral” – but I also expect a rigorous structural analysis in any rebuttal.
Which your article lacks.

R. Gates
March 29, 2010 7:07 am

Wow, a generally great post until this part:
“The real answer to what is happening to global sea ice is …Nothing.”

JJB
March 29, 2010 7:31 am

Now is there a way to adjust the 2006-2007 Arctic Ice Extent a bit lower to make the current recovery seem more impressive? 😉

Lennart S Sweden
March 29, 2010 7:36 am

Re: Leif Svalgaard (Mar 29 04:55),

The solar wind never stops.

Leif, what happened 11-12 may 1999?
LinkText Here

Alexej Buergin
March 29, 2010 7:44 am

[snip – let’s leave Nazism out of the discussion]

Bruce Cobb
March 29, 2010 7:59 am

Mike Haseler (01:43:57) :
This’ll make you puke! … http://www.ldnews.com/news/ci_14774756
Barf. Gee, thanks.
Climate science “skeptic” Mann says “there is firm grounding for some climate science assertions, such as that humans are responsible for a rapid increase in carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, that global warming is shrinking polar ice sheets and Ice Age glaciers, and that the last half of the 20th century was warmer than any 50-year period in the last 1,000 years.”
He makes three assertions; the first is debatable, and alarmist in nature. Yes, we’ve certainly added some to the rise in atmospheric C02 levels. The second says polar ice sheets and “Ice Age glaciers” are shrinking. Yes, they did shrink, coming out of the LIA. We warmed up, how awful. The glaciers started receding at the end of the LIA, surprise, surprise. The snows of kilimanjaro have almost disappeared – oh, right, that’s because of deforestation, not C02. Oops. Well, the Himalayas, at least are disappearing rapidly, and will be gone by 2035, right? Oh, wait, the actual evidence shows that they are stable, and in many cases advancing. As far as the polar ice sheets melting, nope not much evidence of that either.
Finally, what does he bring out but his infamous hockey schtick! Talk about Mannufacturing your own “evidence”!
Yeah, Mann, you’re a skeptic. And Bigfoot exists, as well as the Loch Ness monster, and don’t get me started on UFO’s.

Jaye
March 29, 2010 8:01 am

Lennart,
From NASA:
the solar wind that blows constantly from the Sun [b]virtually[/b] disappeared — the most drastic and longest-lasting decrease ever observed.
Dropping to a [b]fraction of its normal density[/b] and to half its normal speed, the solar wind died down enough to allow physicists to observe particles flowing directly from the Sun’s corona to Earth.
“virtually disappeared” and a “fraction of its normal density” does not mean that it stopped…just lower than previously measured. The bare denial of your implications was in the very bit of evidence you used to make your assertion. Better luck next time when it comes to critical thinking.

Enneagram
March 29, 2010 8:02 am

If skating is the problem then, the next winter, the Catlin Expedition should skate along all the length of the Thames river.
Why are you so worried about what natures does or does not, seriously you should be worried about the catastrophic changes in most of the first world economies, it seems like you are walking looking at the sky while going straight to a precipice.
BTW God is merciful, if you wish an armageddon you will have several at the same time: Would you like it California´s big one, then, a few days after the New La Madrid caldera eruption, just to begin with the amusement?

John Peter
March 29, 2010 8:08 am

“Sean Peake (06:35:23) :
Willis, sorry about this but it seems U of Colorado disagrees with you:
http://www.colorado.edu/news/r/f595fae00e6b451d4016ab9a43a049f8.html
Wikipedia on entire Greenland ice sheet “2.85 million km³ of ice”
Colorado “A 2009 study published in GRL by Velicogna, who is a former CU-Boulder research scientist, showed that between April 2002 and February 2009, the Greenland ice sheet shed roughly 385 cubic miles of ice. The mass loss is equivalent to about 0.5 millimeters of global sea-level rise per year.” This is 1605 Km3 over 7 years or near enough 230 Km3/year. Divide that into 2.85 million Km3 and you get 12,391 years for Greenland’s ice to disappear at the current rate. By then we will probably be well into the next ice age.

Editor
March 29, 2010 8:09 am

Bob Tisdale (03:44:49) :
With that, I replicated your results, and then did a couple further transforms. First, I took the seasonal difference, and then I smoothed it with a high degree of smoothing, to see the very low frequency, long term, behavior. This is the result:
http://i42.tinypic.com/2lvb5ts.jpg
In viewing this, bear in mind, that since these are “differenced,” that when the lines are positive, that is warming, and when they are negative (below the zero line) that is cooling. I’m not sure this is strong support for Willis’ position, but there are certainly times where it has been the case that when one region was cooling, the other was warming:
~1904
~1920
through much of the 1950’s and 1960’s
since the mid 1990’s
However, since the 1960’s, the trend in the trend has been opposite in the two hemisphere’s — moving from less cooling to more warming in the North, and from less warming to more cooling in the South. That broadly supports what Willis is saying, I think.

Sean Peake
March 29, 2010 8:11 am

Peter Miller: There is no statistically significant amount of water being diverted from the Arctic Ocean basin for agricultural or industrial purposes in Canada. The three main rivers, the Mackenzie, the Back and the Coppermine, have no dams, no diversions and barely any inhabitants—the Mackenzie River proper is sparsely populated (perhaps 25,000 people along its 1,700 KM length), the 860 KM Coppermine has only one permanent settlement of 1200 people (at it’s mouth) and the 970 KM Back is uninhabited. I’ve paddled on all three.

March 29, 2010 8:18 am

Lennart S Sweden (07:36:09) :
Leif, what happened 11-12 may 1999?
Apart from being my birthday, not much.
Your link says that the solar wind “Dropped to a fraction of its normal density and to half its normal speed”, not that is stopped [usual hype]. The Earth encountered a small ‘bubble’ in the wind with very low density. Around the bubble things were quite normal. Interestingly, the magnetic field in the bubble was normal [even a bit higher than usual. You can see the evolution here: http://hirweb.nict.go.jp/sedoss/solact3/do?d=1999,5,5
Compare with recent:
http://hirweb.nict.go.jp/sedoss/solact3/do?d=2010,03,09
The density graph [green] should have an extra decade at the low end, so it doesn’t look like it has gone away.

A C Osborn
March 29, 2010 8:21 am

John Egan (07:06:37) :
Dear Mr. Eschenbach –
but I also expect a rigorous structural analysis in any rebuttal.
I did not see any rigorous structural analysis in your comments.
Just a few What Ifs.

John Egan
March 29, 2010 8:32 am

A.C. Osborn –
The fact remains, that the article in question contains a huge and serious assumption –
That the overall total of sea ice is a parameter that negates variation at either pole.
Not to mention that the author ends with the statement “Nothing.”
Such an argument is patently false.
Unfortunately, there are as many “true believers” on one side of the climate argument as the other. People like Lucia Liljegren are rare, indeed.
PS – If I recall, I wasn’t the person posting an article on a website.

roger
March 29, 2010 8:40 am

Vincent (06:36:41) :
Anu,
“He believes the ice, which has been a permanent feature for at least 100,000. . .”
So which ancient people had satellites 100,000 years ago? The Neandethals perhaps, or could it have been the Clovis people?
I think you will find that it was Piltdown man that first discovered the correlation and that CC/AGW adherents are his direct descendants.

Steve Keohane
March 29, 2010 8:42 am

Just for reference, here is that silly IPCC projection chart updated to 2010 with data from CT.
http://i40.tinypic.com/2nuud12.jpg
R. Gates (07:07:51) : Wow, a generally great post until this part:
“The real answer to what is happening to global sea ice is …Nothing.”

Seems like a good assessment to me.

March 29, 2010 8:44 am

Kate (06:34:54) :
Fresh on the heels of my concern for the corruption of democratic processes, James Lovelock says “It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while” in “the fight against climate change”.
One of the main obstructions to meaningful action is “modern democracy”, he added. “Even the best democracies agree that when a major war approaches, democracy must be put on hold for the time being. I have a feeling that climate change may be an issue as severe as a war. It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while….”

Exactly right — that’s why the US has always postponed its Presidential elections during wartime, right, *Mister* Lovelock?
Democracies don’t put democracy on hold during emergencies — dictatorships do.
I’m covering your six whenever you want to close for the kill, Kate. Go get ‘im!

Sean Peake
March 29, 2010 8:48 am

John Peter: I absolutely agree. I posted that link in the hope that Willis would take it apart, much like you did. Besides, I always thought that when glaciers and icecaps melted they retreated instead of galloping into the sea. I commented on the Accuweather GW blog where I found the stoory that the researchers behind the study were likely experiencing a Rocky Mountain High when they came to their conclusion. It is also interesting to see how someone (who could that be?) has tied-in GW into Post Glacial Rebound on Wikki—altho’ one person has added that a citation is needed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post-glacial_rebound)

crosspatch
March 29, 2010 8:59 am

Ok, this is related to an earlier post on late season ice extent. It now appears that the 30% (in addition to the 15% reported earlier on this blog) ice extent is increasing according to DMI. This is the first time I can recall the seasonal max 30% ice coverage occurring this late in the season, particularly after already having started declining for the year.

1DandyTroll
March 29, 2010 9:01 am

@John Egan
‘ but one must acknowledge that the Arctic sea ice drop in 2007 was dramatic. Arctic sea ice in 2009 was still well below 30-year norms – although it has recovered somewhat. Granted that there is only 30 years of satellite data – with much older anecdotal data. 2007 may have been an outlier event, but it behooves one to act with prudence.’
It was only dramatic because it was put into a fictional context with disastrous proportions. Put in a more rational and real context, it’s not that dramatic not even in the short period of 32 years of satellite measurements.
So it behooves one to act with reason and rationality, lest you scare yourself silly of every imagined “hideous” anomaly in a statistician’s graph. :p

Phil.
March 29, 2010 9:11 am

Pamela Gray (06:03:06) :
I think it is time to ask for the “computer model code” from these people, especially as a string relates to the process of freeze, melt, and transport. I have a hunch several of the folks here would find many calculation errors in how ice freezes and melts in the Arctic after controlling for wind and current.

So why haven’t these ‘folks’ done it already?

Enneagram
March 29, 2010 9:11 am

The problem with the picture is that the earth has two poles. And for reasons which are not well understood, when one pole warms, the other pole cools
The one above is SEA, the one below is a CONTINENT, and when the one above is in summertime (and Catlin expedition starts, and she polar bears are in estro season so attracting male polar bears) the one below is in wintertime.

March 29, 2010 9:20 am

AusieDan (19:09:14) : You asked, “What is their correlation?”
Correlation = 0.037, using the smoothed data, because there were gaps in the raw data.
You asked, “Have you tried to invert one and lay it on top of the other?”
It doesn’t help:
http://i39.tinypic.com/n1ui6s.png
You wrote, “Now even if I am completely wrong in the above, Willis’s main point still holds true.”
My comment was only about the “when one pole warms, the other pole cools” comment over shorter terms than millennia.

Milwaukee Bob
March 29, 2010 9:41 am

Marx Hugoson (20:11:12) :
As one old fuddy duddy said to another old fuddy duddy: DEAD ON!
There are numerous Earth environmental (including as you pointed out, atmospheric) conditions to which the human collective has little current data, if any at all, much less any accurate historical records thereof, that ARE directly relevant to any analysis of global weather in general or specifically to “temperature” globally, regionally, locally, Etc.
While all this makes for great politics, a great website (WUWT, Congrats onn 40 megs!) and great discussion – as in the case here about the relevance of (less than accurate?) historical air temperatures and their relation to total polar ice extent – the global average “temperature” is totally irrelevant. It’s meaningless to any given human on or off the planet because it’s NOT climate we have to deal with on a moment by moment basis, it’s weather and other land/water conditions. Even if some event occurs that effects weather globally (or even regionally), averaging it wont mean a damn thing to you or me!
(Bob & Willis, what DO they have to do with each other? Without knowing and taking into account the; total BTU (kinetic energy) content, density/pressure, flow (wind speed) and, as Max pointed out, moisture content of the atmosphere, over the/any selected period of time – how can we possibly ascribe any specific effect by that given volume of atmosphere on the solid form of H2O it was over?)

March 29, 2010 9:45 am

Basil: You replied, “However, since the 1960’s, the trend in the trend has been opposite in the two hemisphere’s — moving from less cooling to more warming in the North, and from less warming to more cooling in the South. That broadly supports what Willis is saying, I think.”
The actual trends since 1960 are both positive:
http://i39.tinypic.com/2ppjz0p.jpg

barry
March 29, 2010 9:51 am

Maksimovich,

The origin of interdecadal fluctuations in the climate system is currently one of the most challenging problems in climate dynamics
Fascinating paper. Thank you. I went looking for more like it in google scholar, but there doesn’t seem to be much material on the subject. Looks like this is a fairly new and uncertain hypothesis. If you know of any more on it, I’d be intrigued.
Regarding Arctic/Antarctic see-saw, as expressed in the top post, I found this in the paper cited.

Interestingly, areas with high RSL magnitude (positive and
negative) switch sign from 1948–1975 to 1976–2005 in a coherent and consistent way with maxima in Fig. 10a becoming minima in Fig. 10b and vice-versa. We observe a general tendency in the first period (Fig. 10a) for positive RSL values in the northern hemisphere and Antarctica (region 1) and
a general tendency for negative RSL values in oceans of the southern hemisphere (region 2).
According to this study, the NH and Antarctic temps (region 1) together flip in opposite direction to Southern Ocean temps (region 2) on decadal time scales, which somewhat corroborates my observation on a lack of see-saw between Arctic and Antarctic, wouldn’t you say?

Anu
March 29, 2010 10:14 am

Dave F (23:56:04) :
@ Anu (23:19:11) :
Rotten ice. It could equally recover faster than open water, yes?

Sure, entering the Arctic winter, rotten ice is probably much better for forming more ice than open water.
But entering the Arctic summer, rotten “multiyear ice” will be much more vulnerable to melting and disintegration by waves than healthy, thick multiyear ice.
Is this a new thing in recent decades ?
Barber spoke shortly after returning from an expedition that sought — and largely failed to find — a huge multiyear ice pack that should have been in the Beaufort Sea off the Canadian coastal town of Tuktoyaktuk.
Instead, his ice breaker found hundreds of miles of what he called “rotten ice” — 50-cm (20-inch) thin layers of fresh ice covering small chunks of older ice.
“I’ve never seen anything like this in my 30 years of working in the high Arctic … it was very dramatic,” he said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE59S3LT20091029?sp=true
http://www.nasa.gov/images/content/365869main_earth2-20090707-full.jpg
The expectation is that multiyear ice is best suited to survive the summer melt season – if it is “rotten”, it is much more prone to melting.
How much of that “thick” ice is really rotten and vulnerable ?
Although this rotten ice regime was quite different that the expected MY (multiyear) regime in terms of ice volume and strength, their near-surface physical properties were found to be sufficiently alike that their radiometric and scattering characteristics were almost identical.

gryposaurus
March 29, 2010 10:19 am

It depends on where in Antarctica you study.
In the west, the ice loss is significant and accelerating, while in the east, it is remaining stable (Chen 2009) or easier, land ice is decreasing, and despite the Southern Ocean warming, sea ice is increasing. *
*”Recent observations indicate that climate change over the high latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere is dominated by a strengthening of the circumpolar westerly flow that extends from the surface to the stratosphere. ” (Gillett 2003)
In the North, Greenland is accelerating at 30 Gigatonnes/yr2. In Antarctica the “mass loss increased from 104 Gt/yr in 2002–2006 to 246 Gt/yr in 2006–2009, i.e., an acceleration of −26 ± 14 Gt/yr2 in 2002–2009” (Velicogna 2009)
“A striking conclusion from these comparisons is that Arctic sea ice is declining faster than projected by the majority of the models (current ice conditions are more than 1 below multi-model mean extent). From 1953-2006, the observed September trend is -7.8 + 0.6 %/decade, compared to the
multi-model mean trend of -2.5 + 0.2%/decade. For 1979-2006, the numbers are -9.1 +1.5 % (observed) and -4.3 + 0.3% (modeled). Even larger differences are found for the last 10 years.” (Stroeve 2007)
http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v2/n12/full/ngeo694.html
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL040222.shtml
http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/302/5643/273
http://www.cosis.net/abstracts/EGU2007/01362/EGU2007-J-01362.pdf

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 10:21 am

I don’t see how this discussion negates concerns about Arctic ice.. Whatever is going on at the south pole is mainly irrelevant to the discussion of Arctic ice.

OceanTwo
March 29, 2010 10:24 am

Bill Tuttle (08:44:48) :
Kate (06:34:54) :
Fresh on the heels of my concern for the corruption of democratic processes, James Lovelock says “It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while” in “the fight against climate change”.
One of the main obstructions to meaningful action is “modern democracy”, he added. “Even the best democracies agree that when a major war approaches, democracy must be put on hold for the time being. I have a feeling that climate change may be an issue as severe as a war. It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while….”
Exactly right — that’s why the US has always postponed its Presidential elections during wartime, right, *Mister* Lovelock?
Democracies don’t put democracy on hold during emergencies — dictatorships do.
I’m covering your six whenever you want to close for the kill, Kate. Go get ‘im!

There’s a difference between a democracy and a democratic process. A democracy becomes more malevolent the larger the number of people affected by the decisions of a democracy. We are seeing this malevolence – the forcing of a democratic decision on a minority. Ironically, the mechanisms ans instruments involved [in a democratic process] do allow the appearance of a democratic decision to impose a minority will on the majority.
In this case, the emphasis on a ‘consensus’ – a ‘democratic’ majority? – exploiting the peoples belief that a democratic process is all that is needed. How many state that we ‘live in a democracy’? Are we sure this is actually a good thing?
The issue at hand, that a democracy can have the ability to put ‘on hold’ its own process, demonstrates that a democracy is a fragile thing and can be bent to the will of, as noted, a dictatorship.
Really, what this lunatic Lovelock is really doing is exposing the pseudo-democracy for what it is – a minority (trying) to convince the majority which way to swing (think). “Democracy isn’t working for us, so throw it out”.
Luckily for us, the US is not a democracy; the democratic principles are adhered to and realized in a Constitutional Republic. Any principle that must be put on hold under any condition is by definition, flawed, and must be revised.
(Sounds a bit OT, here, but Constitutional law is a pet project/hobby).

Justa Joe
March 29, 2010 10:28 am

Since the world often experiences floods, droughts, blizzards, heat waves, hurricanes, and you name it then following the warmists’ logic the world must be too hot. We can’t just assume the optimal temperature for the Earth is what we’ve been experiencing the last century. There’s tons of shoreline that we need to recover. We not only need to abate global warming we need to aggressively pursue global cooling.

kcom
March 29, 2010 10:34 am

“Terrifying computer projections showing that we may not have any Arctic sea ice before the end of this century.”
Can someone explain to me why this is, ipso facto, terrifying? Honestly.
Is it terrifying for a reason, or is it just because it’s different (and therefore terrifying to nervous nellies)? I guess I’m re-asking the question I’ve heard asked many times before – what is the perfect climate? What is the “right” temperature of the earth? What is the “right” amount of ice in the arctic? Why do these people think they have the answers to those questions?

Lennart S Sweden
March 29, 2010 10:34 am

Re: Jaye (Mar 29 08:01),
Jaye, your sneaky comment is unwarranted. I was just asking for the explanation to “The Day the Solar Wind Disappeared”
The citation “The solar wind never stops” was from Leifs comment.
Do you, Jaye, have an explanation to this unusual event? The event was realy remarkeble, three days with almost zero solarwind. That is worth asking the experts – do you agree or not?

A C Osborn
March 29, 2010 10:35 am

John Egan (08:32:20) : “That the overall total of sea ice is a parameter that negates variation at either pole.
Such an argument is patently false..”
That is again a very scientific response, Perhaps you would like to share with us your “Scientific Evidence” to show that it is patently false rather than just stating it.

AnonyMoose
March 29, 2010 10:46 am

So the alarmists who tout what is happening in the Arctic are cherry-picking. And there are only two cherries.

J. Bob
March 29, 2010 10:49 am

Is there anything out there that show the error bands of the sea ice area, extant and volume?
There are 7-8 digits of data values, but if I remember correctly, ice area alone has a error of 5-10%. Using that, there is a error of about 1 mill. sq. km., so these figures would need to be used with caution.

brad tittle
March 29, 2010 10:58 am

@Max — Thank you for slapping me with the Enthalpy reminder.
Yet another check box in the list of things I didn’t adequately amalgamate in my education.

Justa Joe
March 29, 2010 11:04 am

“Can someone explain to me why this is, ipso facto, terrifying? Honestly..” – kcom (10:34:01)
The alarmists have a ton of appropriately alarmist consequences if the Arctic were to melt. Including but not limited to Massive flooding of coastal regions, and altering for the worse (it’s always for the worse) of the ocean currents.

March 29, 2010 11:15 am

Lennart S Sweden (10:34:48) :
The event was really remarkable, three days with almost zero solar wind.
Well the ‘almost zero solar wind’ is much too strongly worded, and it is not all that unusual, here are other recent examples:
http://hirweb.nict.go.jp/sedoss/solact3/do?d=2009,11,21
http://hirweb.nict.go.jp/sedoss/solact3/do?d=2009,10,25
These are localized small bubbles and don’t really mean much. The solar wind comes from localized areas on the surface. If there is a restructuring of the coronal field at a given location, there flow from there can be temporarily choked off and a “bubble” of rarefied plasma results. Like you can have a moment of no wind [a lull] at a location on the surface of the Earth, without that meaning that atmospheric circulation has stopped.

Enneagram
March 29, 2010 11:20 am

gryposaurus (10:19:31) : Fortunately ice is not diasappearing as fast as jobs in the US.

conradg
March 29, 2010 11:36 am

Svalgaard: I’m not aware of any phenomenon that runs counter to the theories of relativity.
The cosmic ray anomaly mentioned has been debunked, but then there’s this:
http://news.softpedia.com/news/The-First-Test-That-Proves-General-Theory-of-Relativity-Wrong-20259.shtml
And also this, which is also still unconfirmed, but highly interesting:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126911.300-our-world-may-be-a-giant-hologram.html?full=true

Richard Sharpe
March 29, 2010 11:44 am

Justa Joe (11:04:20) said:

“Can someone explain to me why this is, ipso facto, terrifying? Honestly..” – kcom (10:34:01)
The alarmists have a ton of appropriately alarmist consequences if the Arctic were to melt. Including but not limited to Massive flooding of coastal regions, and altering for the worse (it’s always for the worse) of the ocean currents.

Truly, these alarmists must be stupid then, since Arctic sea ice is floating on the sea and thus its melting will have minimal impact on sea-levels, it would seem. However, should the ice on Greenland melt, there will be some impact, and, of course, the melting of all the Antarctic ice would have an impact.
I suspect that neither of these things will happen any time soon (say, next 1000 years, although my certainty gets lower the further out we go — we could get hit by a large meteor …).

Jaye
March 29, 2010 11:48 am

Lennart,
It was not a sneaky comment. If somebody says “x does not stop”, then somebody else replies with something that is meant to be a counter to “x does not stop” by saying that “x almost stopped”, then I have to wonder what sort of point they think they are making? There is an infinite distance between “stopped” and “almost stopped”, so imo your statement is infinitely silly.

Vincent
March 29, 2010 11:49 am

gryposaurus,
““A striking conclusion from these comparisons is that Arctic sea ice is declining faster than projected by the majority of the models (current ice conditions are more than 1 below multi-model mean extent). ”
Well of course it is. The models were designed to forecast ice loss due to anthropogenic global warming, whereas in fact, the current ice loss has been the result of unusual and unpredicted winds.

March 29, 2010 12:00 pm

conradg (11:36:30) :
http://news.softpedia.com/news/The-First-Test-That-Proves-General-Theory-of-Relativity-Wrong-20259.shtml
“If confirmed”, but it ain’t
And also this, which is also still unconfirmed, but highly interesting:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126911.300-our-world-may-be-a-giant-hologram.html?full=true

This one has more legs. But does not conflict with relativity.
Let’s put these things on ice, so not to irk Willis too much.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 12:02 pm

Willis,
If Arctic melt/freeze dates started coming further apart, it would likely stress wildlife which depends on the ice.

Vincent
March 29, 2010 12:10 pm

“If Arctic melt/freeze dates started coming further apart, it would likely stress wildlife which depends on the ice.”
Does wildlife depend on the ice, or has wildlife merely adapted to deal with the ice? And mayn’t they even thrive without it? Just askin’.

March 29, 2010 12:13 pm

http://climexp.knmi.nl/data/icrutem3_hadsst2_0-360E_70-90N_na.png
Look at the Arctic from some perspective and you see that except cyclical changes and maybe solar background, there is no “anthropogenic footprint”. The whole agenda is based on exaggerated trend the last 30 years and on falsifying previous climate history.

1DandyTroll
March 29, 2010 12:15 pm

@gryposaurus
‘It depends on where in Antarctica you study.’
I do not believe that it matter to which geographic area you localize yourself for you’re studying. It’s more a matter of statistical skills, or should it be a lack of perhaps?
You might have noticed that the actual base line used doesn’t really mean anything when it comes to ice. Just like with temperatures it’s an imagined reference point, but a bit more I say. One can state that the normal range has been between 15 and 25 square kilometers, but closer to 25, since 1980, and that’s with the supposed AGW effect, and the supposed normal GW effect, and of course the supposed recent cooling effect.
Some say that the ice isn’t back to it’s “normal” pre 80’s size, but nobody has been able to prove if that was the normal size, after all looking at a little less short sighted perspective, and with more proper use of statistics, global ice extent will not reach normal size until the next ice age.

gryposaurus
March 29, 2010 12:18 pm

Vincent,
“Well of course it is. The models were designed to forecast ice loss due to anthropogenic global warming, whereas in fact, the current ice loss has been the result of unusual and unpredicted winds.”
I’m not sure what you mean here. The only work I have seen done regarding ice and winds is in Antarctica (that particular study that you quoted was done in the Arctic) and this causes increased ice.
“Based on a new analysis of passive microwave satellite data, we demonstrate that the annual mean extent of Antarctic sea ice has increased at a statistically significant rate of 0.97% dec−1 since the late 1970s. The largest increase has been in autumn when there has been a dipole of significant positive and negative trends in the Ross and Amundsen‐Bellingshausen Seas respectively. The autumn increase in the Ross Sea sector is primarily a result of stronger cyclonic atmospheric flow over the Amundsen Sea. Model experiments suggest that the trend towards stronger cyclonic circulation is mainly a result of stratospheric ozone depletion, which has strengthened autumn wind speeds around the continent, deepening the Amundsen Sea Low through flow separation around the high coastal orography. However, statistics derived from a climate model control run suggest that the observed sea ice increase might still be within the range of natural climate variability.”
(Turner 2009)
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL037524.shtml
Do you have other information about winds causing ice loss in the Arctic? If so, I’d like to read it.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 12:19 pm

Vincent (12:10:32) :
Bears depend on the ice to hunt seals, which is their primary source of food.

paulo arruda
March 29, 2010 12:23 pm

The Antarctic peninsula is warming very much agree with AGW. But the Brazilian station in Antartica says something else:
http://antartica.cptec.inpe.br/~rantar/PDF/Queda_Temp_Ferraz.pdf
More details:
http://antartica.cptec.inpe.br/
Climatologia de Ferraz/Ferraz Climatology(.xls)
Read, very interesting

jack mosevich
March 29, 2010 12:29 pm

Regarding cosequences of ice free Arctic: The negative effects (they are always all neagtive of course) will be elimination of polar bears and other wildlife, lower Albedo resulting in more warming leading to accelarated Greenland Ice melt, and, well being lazy I quote from the NRDC:
“A warmer Arctic will also affect weather patterns and thus food production around the world. Wheat farming in Kansas, for example, would be profoundly affected by the loss of ice cover in the Arctic. According to a NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies computer model, Kansas would be 4 degrees warmer in the winter without Arctic ice, which normally creates cold air masses that frequently slide southward into the United States. Warmer winters are bad news for wheat farmers, who need freezing temperatures to grow winter wheat. And in summer, warmer days would rob Kansas soil of 10 percent of its moisture, drying out valuable cropland”
Read more at:
http://www.nrdc.org/globalWarming/qthinice.asp

Sean Peake
March 29, 2010 12:31 pm

Willis Eschenbach (10:59:55) :
Funny, you don’t sound all that sorry … in any case, you didn’t notice that they are talking about the Greenland Ice Sheet, and I’m talking about sea ice.
It was posted because I thought it odd that UofC declared that GW appears to be causing glaciers to slide into the ocean at the north and south poles and contributing to sea ice, a conclusion that appear to match what’s actually happening to global sea ice. Has there been a noticeable increase of bergs and growlers in Iceberg Alley? None that I’ve heard.

Enneagram
March 29, 2010 12:37 pm

What about this?:
And what if global warming melts the permafrost?
Yuri Averyanov, a member of the Russian Security Council Administration, declared this week in an interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta that climate change will pose a serious threat to Russia’s national security and that the melting permafrost could cause Russia “serious trouble” within ten to fifteen years.
The result of this, according to Averyanov, will be that thousands of kilometres of pipelines, railways and roads will be in danger, along with a great number of towns and villages. He predicts that in Yakutsk, Tiksi and Vorkuta up to a quarter of all homes could be rendered useless due to unstable conditions of the soil arising from the meltdown

http://english.pravda.ru/russia/politics/25-03-2010/112732-climate_russia-0

conradg
March 29, 2010 12:43 pm

Svalgaard: “If confirmed”, but it ain’t”
True, but three years of testing and review suggests a likelihood of it being confirmed by others.
“This one has more legs. But does not conflict with relativity.”
Actually, it does, in that GR is not compatible with the notion of space being a quantum phenomena. It suggests that GR is merely an approximation of something along the lines of quantum space theory.
And yeah, we should ice this to keep the mods happy, but I couldn’t resist.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 12:43 pm

jack mosevich (12:29:05) :
Worries about warmer winters in Kansas are looking pretty ridiculous.
http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/products/maps/acis/WaterTDeptUS.png

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 12:46 pm
stephan
March 29, 2010 12:52 pm

Keep and lock this posterity
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/icecover.uk.php
Nearly 100% certain that CT, Jaxa, Norsex, NSCDC will not show or adjust DOWN ASAP! (from many past experiences see here:
http://mikelm.blogspot.com/2007/09/left-image-was-downloaded-from.html

gryposaurus
March 29, 2010 12:55 pm

@1DandyTroll
“I do not believe that it matter to which geographic area you localize yourself for you’re studying. It’s more a matter of statistical skills, or should it be a lack of perhaps?”
Without an understanding of what’s happening in each target localized area where outcomes are differing, I’m not sure how to come to any meaningful conclusions with regard to causes.

paulo arruda
March 29, 2010 1:01 pm

Willis, Steve:
Read this: http://antartica.cptec.inpe.br/ ranta ~ / PDF / Queda_Temp_Ferraz.pdf

Phil.
March 29, 2010 1:02 pm

gryposaurus (12:18:14) :
Do you have other information about winds causing ice loss in the Arctic? If so, I’d like to read it.

Check out the area between Greenland and Svalbard (the Fram Strait)
You’ll see the sea ice fragmenting and being pushed out of the Fram, the cloud lanes indicating the wind (it’s been like this for some time, the trans polar drift out of the Fram has been strong lately.
http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/realtime/single.php?2010088/crefl1_143.A2010088122500-2010088123000.500m.jpg
Here’s the 6-day drift for the Arctic from a few days ago, you can also see why the Catlin group are having sucha tough time making headway!
http://i302.photobucket.com/albums/nn107/Sprintstar400/Drift20100317-20100323.jpg
The North water polynya is also open a symptom of a strong northerly wind pushing ice out of the Arctic. (bottom of image)
http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/realtime/single.php?T100881720

kadaka
March 29, 2010 1:06 pm

Re: rbateman (03:26:52)
Then we are in agreement it is utter nonsense.
“Prudent action” says if you’re considering building where the IPCC says sea level rise could be an issue, don’t build there anyway since it is already vulnerable to possible flooding and large waves!

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 1:07 pm

Steve Goddard (12:19:22) wrote: “Vincent (12:10:32) : Bears depend on the ice to hunt seals, which is their primary source of food.”
But its not nearly so simple as correlation as the AGW gang wants everyone to believe. Here’s something from long before they hijacked the polar bear as their poster child:
From: Polar Bears. Proceedings of the 2nd Working Meeting of Polar Bear Specialists… Feb. 1970. IUCN Publications New Series, Supp. Paper No. 29.
Vibe, C. The Polar Bear Situation in Greenland.
Excerpt: “Following the decline in the polar bear population in Greenland after 1920… the situation has again stabilized with an increase in the total catch…
This increase is not due to increased hunting activity…
[It] must be considered along with the present alteration of the whole climatical and ecological situation in the Arctic…
The ecological conditions of the Arctic have changed as a result of this alteration of the climate. Some high Arctic regions get colder winters and less open water in summer. The productivity of the sea decreases in the Arctic and increases in regions nearer the Atlantic. The ringed seal moves to the areas of higher productivity, and the polar bear follows the seal…”
It then explains, with historical and ecological detail, why warmer conditions are actually better for the polar bears in most of Greenland than colder conditions.

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 1:13 pm

“The Arctic ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consul Ifft, at Bergen, Norway. Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers, he declared, all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met with as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes. Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very warm. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared. Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while vast shoals of herring and smelts, which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds.”
Nov. 2, 1922, Washington Post: Arctic Ocean Getting Warm; Seals Vanish and Icebergs Melt.”

March 29, 2010 1:20 pm

jack mosevich (12:29:05) :
“According to a NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies computer model, Kansas would be 4 degrees warmer in the winter without Arctic ice, which normally creates cold air masses that frequently slide southward into the United States. Warmer winters are bad news for wheat farmers, who need freezing temperatures to grow winter wheat.”
Malarkey. Winter wheat is only called that because it’s more cold tolerant, but it sure isn’t *freezing* resistant — just ask any farmer.
Go ahead. I’ll wait…

March 29, 2010 1:33 pm

conradg (12:43:29) :
True, but three years of testing and review suggests a likelihood of it being confirmed by others.
Not review by others. Oneself is the easiest one to fool.
Actually, it does, in that GR is not compatible with the notion of space being a quantum phenomena.
That particular notion is not new. [about a century old] and does not prove GR wrong. Every theory has a ‘domain’ of applicability and quantum effects have not yet been incorporated into GR, but that does not make GR ‘wrong’ in its domain.
The conclusion of
http://relativity.livingreviews.org/Articles/lrr-2006-3/ reads
“We find that general relativity has held up under extensive experimental scrutiny. The question then arises, why bother to continue to test it? One reason is that gravity is a fundamental interaction of nature, and as such requires the most solid empirical underpinning we can provide. Another is that all attempts to quantize gravity and to unify it with the other forces suggest that the standard general relativity of Einstein is not likely to be the last word. Furthermore, the predictions of general relativity are fixed; the theory contains no adjustable constants so nothing can be changed. Thus every test of the theory is either a potentially deadly test or a possible probe for new physics. Although it is remarkable that this theory, born 90 years ago out of almost pure thought, has managed to survive every test, the possibility of finding a discrepancy will continue to drive experiments for years to come.”
Now, these things may seem far from ‘ice’ but cut to the very core of verification and rigor in science, so may be permitted on those grounds, but that should be it for now.

March 29, 2010 1:34 pm

Willis Eschenbach (10:52:51) :
That’s curious, because I didn’t think that I couldn’t be very sure that I hadn’t seen anyone that didn’t look like you who wasn’t in the area of the polynyas …
Then you’ll understand why I can neither confirm nor deny that your recollection to what may or may not be to the best of your ability due to other distractions or attractions may be either factual or erroneous, and besides, that picture was PhotoShopped.

Phil.
March 29, 2010 1:36 pm

Al Gored (13:13:30) :
Nov. 2, 1922, Washington Post: Arctic Ocean Getting Warm; Seals Vanish and Icebergs Melt.”

While at the same time the other end of the Arctic was frozen solid!
http://www.answers.com/topic/wrangel-island#British_and_American_Expeditions
“In 1921 Wrangel Island would become the stage for one of history’s tragedies when Stefansson sent five settlers (the Canadian Allan Crawford, three Americans: Fred Maurer, Lorne Knight and Milton Galle, and the Eskimo seamstress and cook Ada Blackjack) in a speculative attempt to claim the island for Canada[14]. The explorers were handpicked by Stefansson based upon their previous experience and academic credentials. Stefansson considered those with advanced knowledge in the fields of geography and science for this expedition. At the time, Stefansson claimed that his purpose was to head off a possible Japanese claim [15]. An attempt to relieve this group in 1922 was thwarted when the schooner Teddy Bear under Captain Joe Bernard became stuck in the ice [16]. In 1923, the sole survivor of the Wrangel Island expedition, Ada Blackjack, was rescued by a ship that left another party of 13 (American Charles Wells and 12 Inuit).”
“Carl Lomen from Nome had taken over the possessions of Stefansson and had acquired explicit support (“go and hold it”) from US Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes to claim the island for the United States, a goal which the Russian expedition got to hear during their trip. Due to unfavorable ice conditions the Herman, commanded by captain Louis Lane, could however not get any further then Herald, where the American flag was raised.”
“In 1926, a team of Soviet explorers, equipped with three years of supplies, landed on Wrangel Island. Clear waters that facilitated the 1926 landing were followed by years of continuous heavy ice surrounding the island. Attempts to reach the island by sea failed and it was feared that the team would not survive their fourth winter.[17]
In 1929, the icebreaker Fyodor Litke was chosen for a rescue operation. It sailed from Sevastopol, commanded by captain Konstantin Dublitsky. On July 4, it reached Vladivostok where all Black Sea sailors were replaced by local crew members. Ten days later Litke sailed north; it passed Bering Strait, and tried to pass De Long Strait and approach the island from south. On August 8 a scout plane reported impassable ice in the strait, and Litke turned north, heading to Herald Island. It failed to escape mounting ice; August 12 the captain shut down the engines to save coal and had to wait two weeks until the ice pressure eased. Making a few hundred meters a day, Litke reached the settlement August 28. On September 5, Litke turned back, taking all the ‘islanders’ to safety. This operation earned Litke the order of the Red Banner of Labour (January 20, 1930), as well as commemorative badges for the crew.”
REPLY: Phil, too funny. -A

Vincent
March 29, 2010 1:43 pm

gryposaurus,
You say “I’m not sure what you mean here. The only work I have seen done regarding ice and winds is in Antarctica ”
I was referring to a statement that NASA has put out regarding the extreme arctic sea ice loss in 2007, which they have attributed to the effect of unusual winds.

Vincent
March 29, 2010 2:03 pm

Steve Goddard,
“Bears depend on the ice to hunt seals, which is their primary source of food.”
When Willie Sutton was asked why he robbed banks, he replied “because that’s where the money is.” If you ask a seal why he goes all the way across the ice to feed, he will likely reply “because that’s where the sea is.”
You seem to have spectacularly missed the point. Humans are prone to making the fallacy of reasoning that everything is the way it is because that’s the way it has to be. This is related to “the best of all possible alternatives” myth. The fallacy of reasoning works like this. An observation of a status quo is made, for example of polar bears and seals and an inference drawn – polar bears go on the ice to hunt seals. The next stage of the reasoning is where the fallacy occurs – if the ice wasn’t there the bears couldn’t hunt the seals.
The fallacy is in the assumption that the ice is a necessary prerequisite for hunting seals. It never occurs to anyone drawing these conclusions that it is not the ice that is a necessary prerequisite for hunting seals – it is the presence of seals that is necessary. And the ice is not a necessary prerequisite for seals to hunt fish – it is access to the ocean. Therefore, when the ice disappears, the seals will hunt fish from the shores and that’s where the bears will be found. Simples.
It always amazes me that people can have such tunnel vision. But I suppose that is why only a tiny handfull of individuals have made truly revolutionary discoveries.

Anu
March 29, 2010 2:23 pm

kadaka (01:03:26) :
Re: Anu (23:19:11)
You’re bringing up Barber’s “rotten ice” claim that was demolished here last year and has become a running gag?
Why? Did you catch it?

—————
Thanks, I hadn’t been reading here last year, and missed that post:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/14/a-look-at-sea-ice-compared-to-this-date-in-2007/
I bet “rotten” was just Dr. Barber’s pet word for a condition well known to the satellite designers, but I won’t go and look into that now. I will note that the phrase “rotten ice” is used more and more on the NSIDC site, which was not the case last year when the above article was written:
It’s in the NSIDC glossary now:
http://nsidc.org/cgi-bin/words/word.pl?rotten%20ice
and used in other NSIDC webpages:
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/2010/010510.html
http://nsidc.org/data/docs/noaa/g02159_ponds/index.html
The concept doesn’t look so “demolished” now.
Maybe they called it “honeycombed ice” before – but I know “ground truth” expeditions to check on satellite data (such as the nuclear subs measuring the ice from below sea level) are always considered a good idea.
——–
Of course, even without the rotten ice problem, the satellites are measuring a big decrease in this “thick, multiyear” ice:
http://www.nasa.gov/mov/326195main_winter_seaicethickness30fps.mov
http://www.nasa.gov/images/content/326208main_seaicediscretecolorbar.jpg
If much of the thick, multiyear ice is actually honeycombed, then things are even worse, with respect to when we the reach ice-free summer Arctic ocean. If the “rotten ice” is just a local Beaufort Sea phenomena, perhaps that adds a few years to the deadline.
Just remember, Arctic sea ice melting in the summers is a 3D phenomena, not 2D.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 2:30 pm

Vincent (14:03:06) :
Polar Bears eat seals because there isn’t much else for them to eat. What do you suggest that a 3,000 pound mammal eat in a place where there are no trees and the growing season is only a few weeks long? Ladybugs?

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 2:40 pm

Anu,
Disappearance of multi-year ice is mostly a 2D phenomenon. It is due to wind blowing the ice horizontally more than ice melting vertically.

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 2:50 pm

Phil. (13:36:49) wrote:
Al Gored (13:13:30) :
Nov. 2, 1922, Washington Post: Arctic Ocean Getting Warm; Seals Vanish and Icebergs Melt.”
While at the same time the other end of the Arctic was frozen solid!
——————–
So I wonder which area the IPCC gang would have selected for their data?

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 2:54 pm

Steve Goddard – Sorry but no such thing as a 3000 pound polar bear. The biggest ones are around the Bering Strait but never get that huge. Some say up to 2000 pounds but hard to actually weigh one and that would be a true giant.
It also matter what time of year you weigh them, of course. They can go very long periods without eating anything and their weight fluctuates seasonally.

DeNihilist
March 29, 2010 3:20 pm

Willis, have you heard about this? They are reprocessing old Nimbus data from the 60’s. Hoping to extend their artic/anyartic snow/ice knowledge by about 50%.
http://nsidc.org/monthlyhighlights/january2010.html

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 3:45 pm

People have killed and weighed polar bears in excess of 2,200 pounds, but that really has no relevance to the discussion. Bears need to eat a lot to stay alive.

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 5:03 pm

Steve Goddard – News to me. What’s your source on that weight?
Sorry but I’m a nit picker for accuracy in the details.
And it is somewhat relevant. The bigger the bear the more it needs to eat. That’s why some areas grow larger bears than others, depending on the food supply.
Compare the ‘little’ grizzly bears on the dry east slopes of the Rockies with the huge brown bears (same species) along the Alaska Pacific coast.
Or compare the little polar bears of Hudson’s Bay – the most convenient AGW poster bears because they are on the extreme southern margins of polar bear habitat – with the relative giants around the Bering Strait.
In any case, 2,000 pound polar bears, or even 1500 pound ones, are like 8 foot tall people. Extreme exceptions.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 5:36 pm

The largest polar bear on record, reportedly weighing 1,002 kg (2,210 lb), was a male shot at Kotzebue Sound in northwestern Alaska in 1960.[36]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_bear

Richard M
March 29, 2010 5:42 pm

Bob Tisdale (04:00:19) :,
I suspect you are correct in that short time periods will not necessarily demonstrate the longer term see-saw activity. It’s sort of like comparing weather with climate.
The chaotic nature of anything associated with weather/climate will create a fractal shape to the trends. Just like a jagged coastline has straight-lines if you look only at a specific subset, the see-saw will disappear at times too.
As an answer to the question “Why should the Antarctic warm when the Arctic cools? “, I think longer term cycles must be invoked for the longer term and chaos for the shorter term.

david woolley
March 29, 2010 6:27 pm

I think there’s another ice record that has been overlooked — the US Coast Guard’s record of icebergs that drift out of the Baffin Sea into the Atlantic. it’s not an easy record to interpret, since it probably needs to use a three-year running average (the mean time for iceberg freedom.) It deals with real big ice — bergs — but that may have a merit all its own, since it is not dealing with brash. I don’t think it shows significant warming, which one would assume would mean a major breakout of bergs and bergy bits.

Anu
March 29, 2010 6:35 pm

Willis Eschenbach (01:41:04) :
For starters, the IceSat satellite is supposed to be the source of their data. But the IceSat satellite doesn’t cover any further north than the other satellites, about 82.5°N. And their lovely graphs show all the way to the pole … how do they do that? They don’t say …

——————–
Good point.
Where do they get the data for the hole at the top of the world ?
However, the hole is smaller than you think:
The orbit parameters for the ICESat satellite shows an inclination of 94°:
http://ilrs.gsfc.nasa.gov/satellite_missions/list_of_satellites/ices_general.html
This means the part of the Arctic not observable is 86°N to 90°N, less than the hole for the temperature satellites.
This map shows a latitude circle of 85°N, so you can visualize how small the 86°N circle would be:
http://clasticdetritus.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/arctic-svalbard-map.jpg
Still, it would take some digging to see how NASA filled in that hole – interpolation ? Nuclear sub data ?
Polar cyclones are semi-permanent features of the Arctic, which are stronger in winter and weaker in summer. How could there be “more cyclones”?
Frequency
Although cyclonic activity is most prevalent in the Eurasian Arctic with approximately 15 cyclones per winter, polar cyclones also occur in Greenland and the Canadian Arctic. Polar cyclones can occur at any time during the year. However, summer cyclones tend to be weaker than winter cyclones.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_cyclone
I imagine if the Arctic Ocean waters are getting a bit warmer in the summers, those weak cyclones could get stronger, with waves that destroy more of the honeycombed ice. The frequency of these cyclones could be greater – maybe 16 or 17 now, instead of 15. I just threw this out as a discussion point, related to the “rotten ice” concept. There is more at work than just melting from the sun’s rays.
Yet despite all of that, the ice area has increased every year since the 2007 low. Go figure …
Two years of “recovery” is not a big deal. But yes, that could explain some of the decrease in multiyear ice (in 2008). Since ICESat died last October, they won’t have full data for 2009, but I haven’t even seen the partial-year data yet. Maybe if I dug some more…
And Europes Cryosat-2 is scheduled for launch on April 8, so hopefully they will not take long to calibrate and start getting real data…
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8568285.stm
So are you saying we can’t trust the satellite results? If so, why are you showing them? Not clear what the point is here.
Just saying that the measured, thick “multiyear” ice might not be as stable as they had assumed. The satellites are measuring what they were designed to measure, but ground truth expeditions seem to show some unexpected ice structures. “Raw data” is just the beginning of understanding.
Yeah, it’s only lasted for hundreds of thousands of years …
Yes, I’ll miss it when it’s gone.
Anu, was there a decrease in the ice area and thickness in the Arctic? Yes. Has the sea ice area increased since 2007? Yes. Was there less multi-year ice 2004-2008? Yes, and it would be surprising if that were not the case.
The satellite-era 2D extent low of 2007 would not explain the thinning of the ice in 2005, 2006. An inexorably warming Arctic, would.
Now, remember that this was all big news in 2007. At that time, all the ice savants were predicting that because there was less multi-year ice in the Arctic, that in 2008 the ice melt would be much larger and the ice area would be smaller … didn’t work that way, though.
2008 had more ice extent, but it was still thinning. Short-term fluctuation weather patterns can affect ice growth in the winters, as other articles on wind patterns and narrow straits being open or ice-jammed have mentioned here. But ice thinning seems a real concern – too bad the data I’ve seen is only for 5 years. I’ll try to find results for 2009.
But none of that happened … instead, the Arctic ice area has increased. At present it is within one standard deviation of the 1979-2000 average, and is continuing to rise well past the date of the usual peak. Seems like the savants must have slipped a decimal point somewhere.
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
It seems to be hugging the 2 std dev line, up a bit towards 1 std dev. This summer melt will not be known until October. Yes, I know, watching the climate change is more boring than watching the grass grow…
Me, I suspect this is because of the shift in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO)
Yes, I’ve heard the PDO advanced as explaining a lot of the climate for the past 30 years. Looks like this decade will convince a lot of people one way or another. Myself included.

edwardt
March 29, 2010 7:49 pm

Looks like the NH and SH tend to diverge to me, at least for the entirety of this interglacial:
http://s852.photobucket.com/albums/ab89/etregembo/?action=view&current=Vostok_GISPS_AVG_DIV.jpg
LIA being very similar to the period ~5800yrs ago, and 11kyrs (though harder to see as we were climbing into the current interglacial.
Of course you can find periods where they don’t, but the majority of the time it looks to me that there is definitely an opposing relationship. There are certainly quite a few unexplained cycles as of yet.
Fascinating isn’t it.

edwardt
March 29, 2010 7:56 pm

The Inuit knowledge (would pretty much guarantee selectivity) is contained in the Polar Bear studies, known as “TEK/IQ”, Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (IQ) whatever that stands for.
Maybe it stands for, “yes, me tell what you want to hear for grant to study what you want to hear”.

edwardt
March 29, 2010 7:58 pm

Fun times…
C’mon AMO! SAVE US!!!!!!!! We need your negativity to reveal the truth to us all (skeptics and believers alike)!

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 8:05 pm

Willis – Right you mostly are.
To be perfectly clear, the catch is that their models of declining polar bear populations begin with the IPCC predictions of climate change. So the results are rather predictable.
And the only in Alaska, thanks to the EPA. That’s when I first noticed Sarah Palin. She called them bluff when she was governor and the state has taken the EPA to court to challenge that bogus ‘science.’
On the other hand, in Canada they were brave enough to stick closer to the evidence and did not raise their listed threat level when they reviewed them last year. Some Canadian scientists are True Believers but overall they are far more scientific than the EPA missionaries.
And yes they do invite the Inuit to the meetings in Canada, and they do pay attention to what they say.
So, they are officially doomed in Alaska but not in Canada.
Things are a little more complicated than you describe about denning and summers.
Its not ‘hibernation’ exactly but close enough.
Depending where they are, summers are their starvation season, and when they are least active. That’s the story in southern Hudson Bay.
Only the females MUST den, to have cubs or to shelter young ones. In some areas the male bears don’t. Depends on where they are/food availability.
As for ‘are they declining’? Well, we do know more than some would suggest. For one thing, which population? But overall, here’s the bottom line. In the 1960s the global population was estimated at only 5-10 thousand. That was an admitedly rough estimate but… then they severely restricted and regulated hunting. Now the population estimates are in the range you suggest. And simple common sense tells us that when you reduce hunting mortality the population will grow unless there is some other limiting factors – which, if there are any, are not significant.
These are not just recent population highs but historic and almost certainly prehistoric highs because the Inuit traditionally killed every polar bear they could – they were a direct threat, a threat to their stored food, and a source of meat, fat and furs – and so did the Euros who arrived later. Same story in Eurasia.
Those who imagine that early Inuit or any other of the similar people in Eurasia couldn’t readily kill them – the ‘pristine wilderness fairy tale’ – just don’t understand those people or their abilities, and of course they ignore their helpful dogs. And bears are easiest to kill in their dens.
You correctly noted that they survived prior warming periods. They weren’t optimum for them but they did survive. But for as long as humans have been in the Arctic, human predation on them has been the factor that mattered most. With their low reproductive rate they – like grizzly/brown bears (their close relatives) – just can’t withstand much hunting pressure. And in warmer periods, or when they had less food, their reproduction rates would be lower, as would their populations, and they could survive hunting pressure still less.
For a real shock read the historical journals of the Arctic and you will discover that they were very, very, very rare with local or regional (and explainable) exceptions.

Anu
March 29, 2010 8:14 pm

blackswhitewash.com (03:44:32) :
Anu (23:19:11) :
Ahh, we are back to the “its rotten ice” nonsense again.

——————
The argument last year seemed to be that only Dr. Barber seemed to use that phrase, “rotten ice”.
It seems like the term is now acknowledged by more organizations, for instance NASA’s JPL and UCAR:
http://media.thestar.topscms.com/acrobat/cc/e5/a80893c24759919867add7104bbe.pdf
Two structurally different ice formations that give the same readings to the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) sounds plausible to me – it only measures the height of the ice. A diode pumped Q-switched Nd:YAG laser operating in the near infrared (1064 nanometers) is used for the measurement of surface topgraphy – if rotten ice and solid multiyear ice can give the same returns, so be it.
http://icesat.gsfc.nasa.gov/glasinstrument.php
Perhaps one of the 309 comments to this thread:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/14/a-look-at-sea-ice-compared-to-this-date-in-2007/
show the “rotten ice” concept to be nonsense. I haven’t read them all yet.
The article itself does not do it – rotten ice says nothing about sea ice extent, it is a 3D ice volume problem. Other organizations now do use the phrase, but the argument should have been, not that only Dr. Barber uses that phrase, or that it “dupes” the satellites as to 2D extent, but that as a groundtruth check on the data, it was done only in the southern Beaufort Sea.
Absent more such “expeditions” to investigate the state of multiyear ice, the most they can say is that a very small percentage of multiyear ice seems to be “rotten”. The result is merely suggestive, frosting on the cake of evidence pointing to a march to ice free summers in the Arctic.
It’s the cake itself that is the main evidence – thick multiyear ice is disappearing, whether rotten or solid.
Of course, with the caveat that Willis pointed out – where is the data in the circle 86°N to 90°N coming from ? I haven’t looked into it enough yet.

Al Gored
March 29, 2010 8:14 pm

Steve Goddard – Thanks. That is one exceptionally large bear, predictably from the Bering Strait where they grow largest.
It must have had an exceptionally rich food source and been weighed at its seasonal peak. And it would be interesting to know the background on that bear and how they weighed it. I shall look into that.
Because a) its from wiki, and b) it only says “reportedly weighed.”
But in any case it is the equivalent of 8 foot tall human. Most polar bears in the Bering Strait area not remotely close to that size, and in the rest of the Arctic they are smaller.
However, with almost no hunting in Alaska now, there may be more getting huge there now… unless they are all starving because of The Warming of course (sarcasm).

Anu
March 29, 2010 8:38 pm

DeNihilist (15:20:46) :
Willis, have you heard about this? They are reprocessing old Nimbus data from the 60’s. Hoping to extend their artic/anyartic snow/ice knowledge by about 50%.
http://nsidc.org/monthlyhighlights/january2010.html

———–
Interesting.
They saw a disappearing window of opportunity to recover these data. Only one tape drive remained in the world that could read the Ampex two-inch media. Plus, the original Nimbus researchers were now in their late 70s and 80s, and contact with them would be critical to answering some of the necessary instrumentation questions.
Sounds like they got to it just in time.
Hope it yields some useful data.

Anu
March 29, 2010 9:07 pm

Stacey (01:58:19) :
With regard to sea ice volume,my recollection is that when it became obvious that the sea ice in the Arctic was back to ‘normal’, and it was observable, the alarmists had to come uo with something that was not so observable, the thickness of the ice.

———————–
I don’t think the timelines would support that hunch.
The Arctic sea ice extent was lowest in summer 2007, so by “back to normal” you probably mean 2008, 2009, and so far this year (all years more than 1 std dev below the 1979-2000 average, but still, more than 2007 most days).
ICESat was launched Jan 12, 2003. It was probably conceived, designed, built and tested starting in the early to mid 1990s.
Cryosat was a similar ESA satellite launched on Oct 8, 2005. There was a launch failure (it was launched in Russia using a modified ICBM), so it never attained orbit. Cryosat-2 is scheduled to launch next month – but the fact remains, Cryosat was conceived back in 1998.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ICESat
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CryoSat
NASA also uses airplanes to gather some data on ice thickness, as well as other satellites:

Scientists have been interested in ice thickness for many years before the “recovery” of 2D ice extent in the Arctic starting in 2008. If they found the ice getting thicker every year, they would publish that. Publish or perish.

John of Cloverdale WA
March 29, 2010 9:10 pm

Willis, would that human garbage include those in the “Explorer Team” on the Catlin Arctic Survey. Those bears must be getting hungry with those rising temperatures and all that swimming practice.

Sleepalot
March 29, 2010 9:13 pm

Steve Goddard (14:30:17)
“Polar Bears eat seals because there isn’t much else for them to eat.”
Logically then, pandas eat bamboo “because there isn’t much else for them to eat.”
Iana($expert anything). I suspect pandas took to eating bamboo because there
was lots of it around. That’s a law of nature: where a large food supply exists,
something will arise to exploit it.
Seals need land (to mate, give birth, nurse, sleep). If the mainland is quiet, they’ll
live there (eg. sea lions in Patagonia). If there’re predators on the mainland, they’ll
move to the islands. If predators swim out to the islands, they’ll move to the ice…

Sean Peake
March 29, 2010 9:42 pm

Steve Goddard (14:30:17) :
Vincent (14:03:06) :
“Polar Bears eat seals because there isn’t much else for them to eat. What do you suggest that a 3,000 pound mammal eat in a place where there are no trees and the growing season is only a few weeks long? Ladybugs?”
I can say, first-hand, that when we ran low on food during our canoe trip up the Labrador coast in 2001 we had to rely on ladybugs—boiled or split and dried over willow smoke fires. They are HUGE there and fortunately for the polar bears, the cool weather makes them slow fliers and thus are easy to catch. When we headed inland, however, we were able to sustain ourselves on Culex giganticus, the famed 15 lb. mosquitoes of the Ungava plateau. 🙂

Anu
March 29, 2010 10:06 pm

Steve Goddard (14:40:40) :
Anu,
Disappearance of multi-year ice is mostly a 2D phenomenon. It is due to wind blowing the ice horizontally more than ice melting vertically.

—————————–
That’s certainly one factor.
I also read about 2007 being unusual in that an ice “arch” (dam) did not form in the narrow Nares Strait, west of Greenland, the only time on record. This allowed ice to flow unobstructed through winter and spring.
The ice lost through Nares Strait was some of the thickest and oldest in the Arctic Ocean.
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100219164337.htm
It also looks like the multiyear ice recovered about 11% in March 2009 over March 2008, a figure I hadn’t seen before:
http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/seaice.html
The same page also shows that the 2D extent in March is only vaguely correlated with minimum 2D extent in September:
http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/figures/seaice2009fig2-sml.jpg
As I said before, this decade’s data will be crucial to how many people see climate change in the 21st century. If Arctic ice thickness and 2D extent grow back to 1979-2000 averages, if global temperatures go down 0.2 deg C, even with the sun cycle picking up, climate science will certainly look like they got it wrong. On the other hand, if the trends continue, and Arctic ice thickness continues to be measured thinning, if 2D extent gets less and less (with the expected annual variability), and global temperatures go up another 0.2 deg C or so, it will look like things are unfolding as predicted.
I expect the latter, but I’m hoping the data shows otherwise.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 10:59 pm

Anu,
Arctic ice is thickening over the last two years, not thinning – and is now above normal in extent as well.
http://arctic-roos.org/observations/satellite-data/sea-ice/observation_images/ssmi1_ice_area.png
Sleepalot (21:13:10) :
Sounds like you should volunteer for next year’s Catlin expedition.

Steve Goddard
March 29, 2010 11:10 pm

Willis,
You said some polar bears “live where there is no ice for most of the year.”
There aren’t any regions in the Arctic that are normally ice free for more than four months.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/
Note the temperature profile at 80N. Less than 90 days above freezing per year.
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/meant80n.uk.php

CodeTech
March 30, 2010 12:21 am

NRDC:
“A warmer Arctic will also affect weather patterns and thus food production around the world. Wheat farming in Kansas, for example, would be profoundly affected by the loss of ice cover in the Arctic. According to a NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies computer model, Kansas would be 4 degrees warmer in the winter without Arctic ice, which normally creates cold air masses that frequently slide southward into the United States. Warmer winters are bad news for wheat farmers, who need freezing temperatures to grow winter wheat.

Unintentionally, I’m sure, this probably ranks as one of the funniest things I’ve read here, certainly in a while.
I wonder if someone thinks “winter wheat” is like certain plants that require forest fires to crack open their seeds? Maybe this “winter wheat” grows pre-frosted, making it easier to create breakfast cereal?
I will say, however, that living in Calgary completely surrounded by wheat fields and cattle ranches, the very concept of cold weather being beneficial to ANY food crop is not just laughable, it’s mockable.
I get the logic behind warmer weather creating drier conditions, especially far away from the ocean like here… that makes perfect sense… however, the alleged “need” for cold for a crop? Not on this planet.

Vincent
March 30, 2010 1:11 am

Steve Goddard,
“Polar Bears eat seals because there isn’t much else for them to eat. What do you suggest that a 3,000 pound mammal eat in a place where there are no trees and the growing season is only a few weeks long? Ladybugs?”
Ok Steve, you it’s clear that you didn’t read my reply at all Or you started reading and stopped halfway through.
I’ll make it simple and just quote my concluding sentence: “Therefore, when the ice disappears, the seals will hunt fish from the shores and that’s where the bears will be found.”
Is that clear enough for you Steve? Seals will fish from the shores; bears will hunt the seals feeding from the shores.

March 30, 2010 5:32 am

To
Steve Goddard (22:59:43)-
Although I agree that the graphs show thickening
and more extensive arctic ice this year-
and I believe that
based upon my observations of certain temperature data that
there is a high probability that Ice is increasing in the arctic-
I still consider it highly probable
that some of the ice increases this year are in fact
due to previous years data winnowing and suppression and graph
manipulations by hottie fellow travelers with agendas and expectations
that the ice would in future decrease to match their graphs
(and to promote AGW) – and who were
deliberately underestimating and spuriously graphing their spurious
ice measurements–(years of lying)
and who now are under the microscope and are
reluctant to continue their statistical
farces(s).
So some of the gains could be simply because
this year’s graphs are slightly more accurate than previous years’.
But to me, this slight gain in ice in no way
validates any of these graphs.

Steve Goddard
March 30, 2010 5:44 am

Vincent (01:11:52) :
Read how polar bears actually hunt. Your belief system doesn’t change reality any more than Michael Mann’s does.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_bear

Hunting and diet
The long muzzle and neck of the polar bear help it to search in deep holes for seals, while powerful hindquarters enable it to drag massive prey.[49]
The polar bear is the most carnivorous member of the bear family, and most of its diet consists of ringed and bearded seals.[50] The Arctic is home to millions of seals, which become prey when they surface in holes in the ice in order to breathe, or when they haul out on the ice to rest.[49] Polar bears hunt primarily at the interface between ice, water, and air; they only rarely catch seals on land or in open water.[51]
The polar bear’s most common hunting method is called still-hunting:[52] The bear uses its excellent sense of smell to locate a seal breathing hole, and crouches nearby in silence for a seal to appear.[49] When the seal exhales, the bear smells its breath, reaches into the hole with a forepaw, and drags it out onto the ice.[49] The polar bear kills the seal by biting its head to crush its skull.[49] The polar bear also hunts by stalking seals resting on the ice: Upon spotting a seal, it walks to within 100 yd (91 m), and then crouches. If the seal does not notice, the bear creeps to within 30 to 40 feet (9.1 to 12 m) of the seal and then suddenly rushes forth to attack.[49] A third hunting method is to raid the birth lairs that female seals create in the snow.[52]

beng
March 30, 2010 7:05 am

If there was little ice, seals would have to birth/rest somewhere solid. They can’t birth or rest in the water. So obviously, they’d have to do so on shorelines. Polar bears would do what they always have — follow the seals.

Mike M
March 30, 2010 7:17 am

Wow! Don’t look now but it appears that the maximum Acrtic Sea Ice Extent thusfar recorded by JAXA http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/seaice/extent/AMSRE_Sea_Ice_Extent.png is about to surpass 2003 hitting an all time HIGH over the prior 8 years.
Coming soon to an AP headline near you in three, two, one…: “Polar bears facing starvation. ‘Climate change’ blamed for dwindling access to open water to hunt seals.”

Leon Brozyna
March 30, 2010 7:20 am

FWIW – yesterday’s figures from IARC-JAXA show Arctic ice extent at 14.363m km², just below the 14.375m km² peak reached March 8. Ice area is also holding steady. Come September it should be intersting to see how well this slow recovery has progressed, keeping in mind that between now and then there are sure to be fluctuations in extent that prove nothing.
Meanwhile, back up in the Arctic, a resupply plane (DC3) is grounded by bad weather; waiting to resupply the Ice Base where the thin ice crust (their words) has to be more than 3 feet thick in order to support the plane’s weight. Further north, the explorers continue their trek to the pole and are also getting ready to get resupplied. They’ll probably make it to the pole, with an appropriate message that (of course) “it’s worse than we thought!”

Steve Goddard
March 30, 2010 7:27 am

Willis,
The Hudson Bay is normally ice free for only three months a year. August through October.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/recent365.anom.region.13.html

Phil.
March 30, 2010 7:59 am

Anu (22:06:33) :
Steve Goddard (14:40:40) :
Anu,
Disappearance of multi-year ice is mostly a 2D phenomenon. It is due to wind blowing the ice horizontally more than ice melting vertically.
—————————–
That’s certainly one factor.
I also read about 2007 being unusual in that an ice “arch” (dam) did not form in the narrow Nares Strait, west of Greenland, the only time on record. This allowed ice to flow unobstructed through winter and spring.
The ice lost through Nares Strait was some of the thickest and oldest in the Arctic Ocean.
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100219164337.htm

And as I’ve pointed out before it’s open again this year:
http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/realtime/single.php?2010088/crefl1_143.A2010088190000-2010088190500.500m.jpg
If anything it’s more open than this time in 2007
It also looks like the multiyear ice recovered about 11% in March 2009 over March 2008, a figure I hadn’t seen before:
http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/seaice.html

That’s showing non-seasonal ice, i.e. includes 2nd yr ice.
The same page also shows that the 2D extent in March is only vaguely correlated with minimum 2D extent in September:
http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/figures/seaice2009fig2-sml.jpg

Indeed, the recent ‘lack of decline from max’ appears to be associated with a strong flow of fragmented ice out of the Fram and east of Svalbard, which doesn’t bode well for ice extent later in the year.

Phil.
March 30, 2010 8:06 am

Willis Eschenbach (21:15:59) :
Phil. (20:55:24)
Kazinksi (18:50:18) :
“”I woinder why they picked 2007 to end the data series? I think we all know.”
Yes we do, the graph is dated 23 Sept 2007!”
Well played, that’s exactly why I try not to speculate on motives.

Very wise, the first time I saw that figure was in Stroeve et al, 2007 and derivatives of it in a presentation by Maslowski from June 2008.

March 30, 2010 8:09 am

Anu,
you write:
“I imagine if the Arctic Ocean waters are getting a bit warmer in the summers, those weak cyclones could get stronger”.
Could you tell me what supplies energy to those extra-tropical cyclones?
Latent heat or something else?
When you find the answer, will you report to us all?
Thank you.

Steve Goddard
March 30, 2010 8:19 am

Phil.
A negative AO is typified by high pressure or clockwise circulation. The older ice is located north of Canada and Greenland and is circulating away from the Fram Strait.
http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/maps_daily_track-map.html
Summer extent will very likely increase again this year.

Richard Sharpe
March 30, 2010 8:26 am

Something seems to be up in the Arctic:
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
Or perhaps there is a problem with their algorithms …

geo
March 30, 2010 8:51 am

Just one more day of growth in the Arctic this year, baby. Give us one more day. . . actually, three more days would be neat (get the winter max into April). But I’ll take one more day of more than 12k increase.

Phil.
March 30, 2010 10:30 am

Steve Goddard (08:19:59) :
Phil.
A negative AO is typified by high pressure or clockwise circulation. The older ice is located north of Canada and Greenland and is circulating away from the Fram Strait.

You’ll find thie figure below more illuminating, the ice going out the Fram is 2yo and my also the my ice from the Beaufort and Canadian coastline is being swept into the strong transpolar flow towards the Fram. That coupled with the early opening of the North water referred to above leads me to be pessimistic about the my ice this year.
Summer extent will very likely increase again this year.
I don’t share your optimism, it’s setting up more like 2007 so far.
http://i302.photobucket.com/albums/nn107/Sprintstar400/Drift20100317-20100323.jpg

March 30, 2010 10:41 am

I’m optimistic: click

Steve Goddard
March 30, 2010 11:02 am

Phil,
Your map is interesting but only shows six day vectors. The actual 60 day drift map shows minimal movement from the Siberian side.
http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/maps_daily_track-map.html
And all of the 3+ year old ice is on the Canadian side and is moving away from the Fram Strait.

Anu
March 30, 2010 11:35 am

Steve Goddard (08:19:59) :
Summer extent will very likely increase again this year.
Richard Sharpe (08:26:17) :
Something seems to be up in the Arctic:
Or perhaps there is a problem with their algorithms …
geo (08:51:06) :
Just one more day of growth in the Arctic this year, baby. Give us one more day. . .

——————
This sounds a lot like sports fans rooting for their team.
There must be a good website for placing bets somewhere, better than Intrade…
I’d be willing to bet the September minimum ice extent falls between 2005 and 2007:
http://nsidc.org/images/arcticseaicenews/20091005_Figure2.png
This March stuff is like Spring Training, it won’t carry into the post-season. This recent ice will be the first to melt. With the start of the next sunspot cycle, the warming caused by ENSO, and the underlying warming trend, we’ll be seeing Arctic sea surface temperatures more like 2007 and 2008:
http://nsidc.org/images/arcticseaicenews/20091005_Figure4.png
melting the diminished thick ice:
http://nsidc.org/images/arcticseaicenews/20091005_Figure5.png
The East Siberian league is sure to take a pounding this season, anc Chukchi did not have a good off-season to prepare for Summer 2010:
http://nsidc.org/images/arcticseaicenews/20090908_Figure4.png
Probably not a championship season, but I expect a strong push for the Pennant.

bob
March 30, 2010 12:35 pm

Maybe the increase in sea ice extent is a bad thing, as if you would look at Cryosphere today and see where the ice area is increasing.
It is going up in the Greenland, Baffin, and Newfoundland seas.
Someone mentioned the Greenland Ice sheet loosing mass of 385 cubic miles in the last 7 years and that is enough to add some 100,000 square kilometers of sea ice to this polar region each year.
After all, all that ice on Greenland is going to keep some ice in the arctic ocean for quite a few years.

Phil.
March 30, 2010 12:41 pm

Steve Goddard (11:02:50) :
Phil,
Your map is interesting but only shows six day vectors. The actual 60 day drift map shows minimal movement from the Siberian side.
http://iabp.apl.washington.edu/maps_daily_track-map.html

That’s because there are no buoys there! You can go take a look at the last 60 days of vector plots if you like. It’s far from minimal movement, take a look at the ice concentration on the Siberian coast on CT, you’ll notice it’s dropping, wonder where it’s going?
And all of the 3+ year old ice is on the Canadian side and is moving away from the Fram Strait.
And as I said before it’s off into the Beaufort gyre, once there it’s only a matter of time before it’s in the Atlantic. As you’d expect from the strong drift this year the ice there is more broken up than last year. The circulation of the gyre was also clockwise in 2007.

Steve Goddard
March 30, 2010 12:47 pm

Willis,
The UIUC Hudson Bay link I provided you is a measurement, not a “guess.”
Here it is again.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/recent365.anom.region.13.html
Hudson Bay is ice free for three months a year.