By Steven Goddard
Break out the Speedos and Bikinis. Springtime has finally arrived in the Arctic!
Temperatures have risen about 15C, and are now averaging a balmy -15C (5F) north of latitude 80N – with sunshine 24 hours a day. Under those conditions, you can get frostbite and a tan at the same time.
But despite the balmy weather, NORSEX ice area continues to run above the 1979-2006 mean – as it has for the entire month of April.
Since the melt season started, the Arctic has lost about one million km2 of sea ice. Below is a composite graph showing all of the popular (NSIDC, JAXA, NORSEX, DMI) extent measurements, superimposed on the NSIDC mean and two standard deviation region. The thin blue line is NSIDC extent from 2009. Note that all measurements have been nudging up against the mean line – for the entire month of April.
Disclaimer: All maps below are taken from NSIDC maps, and modified by the “breathtakingly ignorant” writers at WUWT.
During the last three weeks ice has melted mainly at lower latitudes, as seen below in red. Areas in green have actually increased in extent, due to drift. Ice is probably still getting thicker in much of the Arctic, because temperatures remain well below freezing.
The map below shows changes over the past week.
And the map below shows changes since the same date in 2007. Green indicates ice growth.
The next map shows current areas of deficient ice (relative to the median) in red, and excess ice in green. The total amount of excess minus deficient ice is close to zero. In other words – Arctic ice extent is normal.
The Arctic Oscillation remains negative, so circulation is clockwise – as seen below in the buoy drift map. This pattern is keeping older, thicker ice from the Canadian side inside the Arctic Basin, and bodes well for another summer of increased ice thickness and extent – relative to the record melt of 2007.
People counting on bad news from the Arctic to keep their agenda alive are staring at a long, (rhetorically) cold summer……. The good news is that they can keep raising the red flags about Montana glaciers, if the Arctic refuses to melt.
It has now been over 41 years since the New York Times headlined “Expert Says Arctic Ocean Will Soon Be an Open Sea.” triggering the Arctic Death Spiral. After 41 years of dangerous and increasing melt, ice area is again above normal.
My failure to understand this is surely a sign of “breathtaking ignorance.” But don’t call me Shirley.