Evidence that stratospheric circulation changes drive ocean changes, and thus climate changes

From the University of Utah and the “science is not settled” department comes this interesting bit of research.

Stratosphere targets deep sea to shape climate

North Atlantic ‘Achilles heel’ lets upper atmosphere affect the abyss

The simplified artist’s conception shows how changes in polar vortex winds high in the stratosphere can influence the North Atlantic to cause changes in the global conveyor belt of ocean circulation. Credit: Thomas Reichler, University of Utah.

SALT LAKE CITY, Sept. 23, 2012 – A University of Utah study suggests something amazing: Periodic changes in winds 15 to 30 miles high in the stratosphere influence the seas by striking a vulnerable “Achilles heel” in the North Atlantic and changing mile-deep ocean circulation patterns, which in turn affect Earth’s climate.

“We found evidence that what happens in the stratosphere matters for the ocean circulation and therefore for climate,” says Thomas Reichler, senior author of the study published online Sunday, Sept. 23 in the journal Nature Geoscience.

Scientists already knew that events in the stratosphere, 6 miles to 30 miles above Earth, affect what happens below in the troposphere, the part of the atmosphere from Earth’s surface up to 6 miles or about 32,800 feet. Weather occurs in the troposphere.

Researchers also knew that global circulation patterns in the oceans – patterns caused mostly by variations in water temperature and saltiness – affect global climate.

“It is not new that the stratosphere impacts the troposphere,” says Reichler, an associate professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Utah. “It also is not new that the troposphere impacts the ocean. But now we actually demonstrated an entire link between the stratosphere, the troposphere and the ocean.”

Funded by the University of Utah, Reichler conducted the study with University of Utah atmospheric sciences doctoral student Junsu Kim, and with atmospheric scientist Elisa Manzini and oceanographer Jürgen Kröger, both with the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany.

Stratospheric Winds and Sea Circulation Show Similar Rhythms

Reichler and colleagues used weather observations and 4,000 years worth of supercomputer simulations of weather to show a surprising association between decade-scale, periodic changes in stratospheric wind patterns known as the polar vortex, and similar rhythmic changes in deep-sea circulation patterns. The changes are:

— “Stratospheric sudden warming” events occur when temperatures rise and 80-mph “polar vortex” winds encircling the Artic suddenly weaken or even change direction. These winds extend from 15 miles elevation in the stratosphere up beyond the top of the stratosphere at 30 miles. The changes last for up to 60 days, allowing time for their effects to propagate down through the atmosphere to the ocean.

— Changes in the speed of the Atlantic circulation pattern – known as Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation – that influences the world’s oceans because it acts like a conveyor belt moving water around the planet.

Sometimes, both events happen several years in a row in one decade, and then none occur in the next decade. So incorporating this decade-scale effect of the stratosphere on the sea into supercomputer climate simulations or “models” is important in forecasting decade-to-decade climate changes that are distinct from global warming, Reichler says.

“If we as humans modify the stratosphere, it may – through the chain of events we demonstrate in this study – also impact the ocean circulation,” he says. “Good examples of how we modify the stratosphere are the ozone hole and also fossil-fuel burning that adds carbon dioxide to the stratosphere. These changes to the stratosphere can alter the ocean, and any change to the ocean is extremely important to global climate.”

A Vulnerable Soft Spot in the North Atlantic

“The North Atlantic is particularly important for global ocean circulation, and therefore for climate worldwide,” Reichler says. “In a region south of Greenland, which is called the downwelling region, water can get cold and salty enough – and thus dense enough – so the water starts sinking.”

It is Earth’s most important region of seawater downwelling, he adds. That sinking of cold, salty water “drives the three-dimensional oceanic conveyor belt circulation. What happens in the Atlantic also affects the other oceans.”

Reichler continues: “This area where downwelling occurs is quite susceptible to cooling or warming from the troposphere. If the water is close to becoming heavy enough to sink, then even small additional amounts of heating or cooling from the atmosphere may be imported to the ocean and either trigger downwelling events or delay them.”

Because of that sensitivity, Reichler calls the sea south of Greenland “the Achilles heel of the North Atlantic.”

From Stratosphere to the Sea

In winter, the stratospheric Arctic polar vortex whirls counterclockwise around the North Pole, with the strongest, 80-mph winds at about 60 degrees north latitude. They are stronger than jet stream winds, which are less than 70 mph in the troposphere below. But every two years on average, the stratospheric air suddenly is disrupted and the vortex gets warmer and weaker, and sometimes even shifts direction to clockwise.

“These are catastrophic rearrangements of circulation in the stratosphere,” and the weaker or reversed polar vortex persists up to two months, Reichler says. “Breakdown of the polar vortex can affect circulation in the troposphere all the way down to the surface.”

Reichler’s study ventured into new territory by asking if changes in stratospheric polar vortex winds impart heat or cold to the sea, and how that affects the sea.

It already was known that that these stratospheric wind changes affect the North Atlantic Oscillation – a pattern of low atmospheric pressure centered over Greenland and high pressure over the Azores to the south. The pattern can reverse or oscillate.

Because the oscillating pressure patterns are located above the ocean downwelling area near Greenland, the question is whether that pattern affects the downwelling and, in turn, the global oceanic circulation conveyor belt.

The study’s computer simulations show a decadal on-off pattern of correlated changes in the polar vortex, atmospheric pressure oscillations over the North Atlantic and changes in sea circulation more than one mile beneath the waves. Observations are consistent with the pattern revealed in computer simulations.

Observations and Simulations of the Stratosphere-to-Sea Link

In the 1980s and 2000s, a series of stratospheric sudden warming events weakened polar vortex winds. During the 1990s, the polar vortex remained strong.

Reichler and colleagues used published worldwide ocean observations from a dozen research groups to reconstruct behavior of the conveyor belt ocean circulation during the same 30-year period.

“The weakening and strengthening of the stratospheric circulation seems to correspond with changes in ocean circulation in the North Atlantic,” Reichler says.

To reduce uncertainties about the observations, the researchers used computers to simulate 4,000 years worth of atmosphere and ocean circulation.

“The computer model showed that when we have a series of these polar vortex changes, the ocean circulation is susceptible to those stratospheric events,” Reichler says.

To further verify the findings, the researchers combined 18 atmosphere and ocean models into one big simulation, and “we see very similar outcomes.”

The study suggests there is “a significant stratospheric impact on the ocean,” the researchers write. “Recurring stratospheric vortex events create long-lived perturbations at the ocean surface, which penetrate into the deeper ocean and trigger multidecadal variability in its circulation. This leads to the remarkable fact that signals that emanate from the stratosphere cross the entire atmosphere-ocean system.”

###

UPDATE: Although not listed in the official press release from the University of Utah here, I’ve located the title of the paper and abstract, reproduced below from Nature Geoscience

A stratospheric connection to Atlantic climate variability

Nature Geoscience (2012) doi:10.1038/ngeo1586

The stratosphere is connected to tropospheric weather and climate. In particular, extreme stratospheric circulation events are known to exert a dynamical feedback on the troposphere1. However, it is unclear whether the state of the stratosphere also affects the ocean and its circulation. A co-variability of decadal stratospheric flow variations and conditions in the North Atlantic Ocean has been suggested, but such findings are based on short simulations with only one climate model2. Here we assess ocean reanalysis data and find that, over the previous 30 years, the stratosphere and the Atlantic thermohaline circulation experienced low-frequency variations that were similar to each other. Using climate models, we demonstrate that this similarity is consistent with the hypothesis that variations in the sequence of stratospheric circulation anomalies, combined with the persistence of individual anomalies, significantly affect the North Atlantic Ocean. Our analyses identify a previously unknown source for decadal climate variability and suggest that simulations of deep layers of the atmosphere and the ocean are needed for realistic predictions of climate.

Spatial pattern of surface impact from the stratosphere.

Shown are composite anomalies averaged from day 0 to 60 following the strong vortex events of Fig. 2. Sea-level pressure anomalies are contoured at ±0.5, ±1, ±2, ±3, ±4 hPa; red and blue lines indicate positive and negative values, respectively.

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Kurt in Switzerland

Looks interesting, but…
“To reduce uncertainties about the observations, the researchers used computers to simulate 4,000 years worth of atmosphere and ocean circulation.”
I would think that more physical measurements, not more computer simulations, would be the basis for reducing uncertainties. But hey, I’m just an engineer.
But overall, it sounds heretical, or ho hum; no direct support for AGW here. Move on, please.
If the study had finished with a sentence suggesting that added GHG were a catalyst for these sudden stratospheric wind events, then this might gain some traction in mainstream climate science.
Kurt in Switzerland

keith at hastings uk

Very interesting, tho’ I note the care taken to disassociate from any possble undermining of global warming meme, and the reliance on models to prove the connection.

While agreeing with the general premise, there is some outstanding questions.
1. The study does not show any reasonable link between the vortex and affect on the Atlantic current?
2. The vortex can be influenced by low solar output, particularly UV which influences ozone distribution that can favor planetary waves traveling to the arctic vortex. Did they miss this bit?

Grey Lensman

Sorry, not impressed at all.Intuition or gut feeling, they have this totally reversed. By priming the models, they force the result they see. Again no physical observations, just models. added to which radiation warms the ocean not relatively slightly warmer air. The experts can nail.

Ed Zuiderwijk

Looks to me as complete nonsense. The bulk of the incoming heat is absorbed by the oceans, not the stratosphere. The mass in the stratosphere is tiny compared to the water masses of the currents redistribution the heat over the planet.
It’s like saying that you can heat a pan of water more efficiently by heating the air above it than by heating it’s bottom.

“The study’s computer simulations show a decadal on-off pattern of correlated changes in the polar vortex, atmospheric pressure oscillations over the North Atlantic and changes in sea circulation more than one mile beneath the waves”
Or vice versa?

Sounds like the new study has cause and effect backwards.
Schimanke et al (2011) found that it was the North Atlantic that caused the multidecadal variations in Stratospheric sudden warming events:
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2011/2010GL045756.shtml

Models again.
How do they determine that it is the Stratosphere that drives the oceans, not vice versa?
“Seems to correspond with” doesn’t sound very convincing.

Alan the Brit

Q: By what mechanism does CO2 cause the change in atmosphere & therefore what is the forcing factor used in the puter model?
Q: Hasn’t the conveyor belt theory already been thrown into chaos by not behaving as predicted, in a previous post either here or at Climate Realist?
I think the general findings seem reasonable, but why have they been linked to good old fashioned AGW & CO2?

mwhite

“Good examples of how we modify the stratosphere are the ozone hole”
Do we????????

AndyG55

So.. there “might” be a correlation….
.
and as we all know, in climate science, this implies absolute “causation”,
even if it might be the wrong way around.

Also refer to the draft of Garfinkel et al (2012), which discusses ENSO’s influence on Stratospheric Sudden Warming events:
http://www.columbia.edu/~lmp/paps/garfinkel+etal-JGR-2012-inpress.pdf
This is yet another way that La Niña is not the opposite of El Niño. While Stratospheric Sudden Warming events were not discussed in my new book, they could be added to a list differing impacts of La Niña and El Niño.

Stephen Wilde

It is an attempt to support AGW theory by getting around the ‘problem’ that the oceans control air temperatures and that CO2 warming of the air has little or no effect on the temperature of the ocean bulk.Their earlier ocean skin theory seems not to be sustainable.
Instead they suggest that somehow the stratosphere affects ocean temperatures by another route.
In that, they are getting close to my earlier propositions whereby changes in the temperature of the stratosphere (especially involving the polar vortices) can alter tropospheric climate zone positioning and thereby change global cloudiness and albedo to alter solar input to the oceans which would then affect ocean temperatures and circulation.
As usual it is then back to the issue of causation.
I propose that solar variations in the mix of wavelengths and particles (not TSI) naturally alter the ozone balance differentially at different heights to alter the vertical temperature profle of the atmosphere and thus the air ciculation patterns in the troposphere.
That is the main influence on cloudiness and albedo changes.
I have accepted that more CO2 in the air would have a similar effect on the air circulation but miniscule as compared to the solar effect combined with internal ocean cycles.
At least they have now figured out that a warmer stratosphere weakens the polar vortices and makes the jets more meridional.
Interestingly AGW theory previously said that human CO2 emissions were cooling the stratosphere thereby intensifying the polar vortices and leading to more zonal jets.
Now that the jets are more meridional despite still increasing CO2 they are here suggesting that somehow humans are warming the stratosphere over the poles.
They can’t have it both ways.
I think the truth is that an active sun cools the stratosphere naturally causing more intense polar vortices which contract and pull the jets and climate zones poleard allowing more solar energy into the oceans.
That extra solar energy into the oceans skews ENSO in favour of warmer El Ninos and that is what affects ocean circulations.
The opposite when the sun is quiet.

Mike McMillan

Teleconnection.

ROM

Could somebody please tell me why the immense Great Southern Ocean and the South Pacific Oceans and all of the Southern Hemisphere apparently has no influence on the global climate nor it seems has any connection with the global atmosphere and climate?
The one eyed concentration by most Northern Hemisphere based so called climate researchers on Northern Hemisphere phenomena and then claiming that those same Northern Hemisphere phenomena are the cause of all the changes in the Earth’s climate are a striking example of scientific ignorance and stupidity when the immense mass and heat content of the Great Southern Ocean and the Southern Pacific Ocean are looked at even by a layman.
The heat energy content of the global atmosphere is matched by the heart energy in the top 3.2 metres of the world’s oceans.
From this figure alone it would seem that the Oceans, most of which global Oceans are concentrated in the Southern Hemisphere and what happens via the medium of the Oceans are the true influences and controllers of the global climate.
Take one of those globes of the world on it’s stand.
Place the globe stand high enough so that the bottom of the globe is a little above eye level and Antarctica is pointing directly at you.
Rotate the globe until you have the entire Southern Pacific Ocean and the large part of the Southern Ocean facing directly at you.
Step back a couple of paces and take a look.
When the globe is rotated to the right position you will see Antarctica and New Zealand in their entirety and these will be the only complete land large masses you will see.
You will also see just the edge bit of eastern Australia and the west coast of South America and that’s it for major land masses in that sector of the planet.
And what you see is almost totally ignored by narrow tunnel visioned northern hemisphere based climate researchers who seem incapable of even considering that there may be other very major influences in other remote parts at world at work on the global climate other than those that that exist just outside of their own back door.

Andyj

Isn’t the mind an amazing place to have an adventure.

Jakehig

This looks backasswards to me. Given the huge disparity in heat capacities and the very small surface-area-to-volume ratio, it seems highly improbable that a small change in air temp could have much effect on the massive water column.
Maybe I should try running a bath of cold water and letting the warm room air heat it up for me??!!

A C Osborn

They have the tail wagging the dog as usual, do they have no common sense?

aladin02

is known what happpend to Jo Nova’s account ?

Bob Tisdale says:
It seems everything is about your book theses days.

AndyG55

@ Alan the Brit

I think the general findings seem reasonable, but why have they been linked to good old fashioned AGW & CO2?”
Because its from the Potsdam Institute. !!

Leo G

Since when has a correlation between two processes implied that one is the cause?

polarwind

Geoff Sharp:
“The vortex can be influenced by low solar output, particularly UV which influences ozone distribution that can favor planetary waves traveling to the arctic vortex. Did they miss this bit?”
Yes, – elsewhere, I have argued for several years now that the North Atlantic is a very important key area to the seasonal weather of the northern mid-latitude land masses – winter cold and summer warmth: and now explained probably, by the mechanism of the Hadley Cell, seemingly affected and re-orientating and connected to ozone distribution influenced by the changing UV output of the sun and whether the direction of the jet stream as it approaches Europe, is mostly from the south west or north west, (being essentially NW when the sun is inactive and SW when the sun is active).
The jet stream NW vector results in a tendency for earlier snow cover in autumn and later snow melt in spring in northern Eurasia, with resultant regional cooling.
My question is whether there is any/much agreement that the new research about ocean current, climate changes and stratospheric circulation changes, could indeed correlate and connect with the UV/ozone distribution research and “favor planetary waves travelling to the arctic vortex”, and which would perhaps be the reason for the multi-decadal but not exclusive variations between northern hemispheric meridional/zonal circulation patterns?
Put another way, the Azores high at times of low sun activity, stands as a big rock just to the south of the polar vortex jet stream and causes ripples by way of planetary waves that have influences to northern hemisphere weather that are not just regionally European.

As one who spent two years investigating all available data relating to the north Atlantic and managed to reproduce the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, more accurately then Gray and Mann I can with a degree of confidence claim that they got this upside down.
Events that happen well below the ocean surface are one of the two key elements that change the North Hemisphere temperature. The other is the sun of course, but not the TSI, there is not much of it up there for 6 months of the year.
This is not a model of the past, but actual data from the past of the variables I just mentioned:
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm
What about the Mann claim?
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/AMO-recon.htm

Sceptical lefty

Some more research is probably warranted and it would be interesting to see if there was any comparable phenomenon at the South Pole. However, I’d be leaving the supercomputer at home and looking for empirical evidence.
Also, I think I can detect a faint smell of dinosaur farts.

What should immediately jump out from this, to any competent scientist, is that the “climate changes” discussed here are not global (of course) but regional. The Earth will shed its heat to space, via radiation, just as fast, no matter the details of circulation over the sphere. But consensus climate science does not even begin to know how the atmosphere is heated (it is by direct absorption of incident solar radiation, not by heat from the warmed surface). And it is not a matter of a “slightly warmer” atmosphere warming the ocean either (at least not on Earth); atmosphere and surface are independently warmed by incident solar radiation, and the vertical temperature lapse rate allows excess heat from the surface to slide right through the atmosphere vertically — while driving the winds laterally — without further warming it globally. My Venus/Earth temperatures comparison directly suggests that regional, and global, circulation — whether from uneven surface heating or “stratospheric events” (does the name invest them with physical reality, or real effect?) — only controls the weather; it doesn’t control the global mean temperature. But the times are not right for scientists to seriously contemplate a revolution in their fundamental thinking, I know. Dogma — also known as “settled science” — is king for now. But that means everyone (including me) has a lot to learn, but particularly those miseducated in consensus climate and atmospheric science. We are only at the beginning… as always.

The study’s computer simulations show a decadal on-off pattern of correlated changes in the polar vortex, atmospheric pressure oscillations over the North Atlantic and changes in sea circulation more than one mile beneath the waves.
Mass of the atmosphere’s column 1 cm2 cross-section is ~ 1kg
Mass of the oceans water column 1 cm2 cross-section and 1 mile deep is about 125 kg.
Thermal energy ratio contained in the two columns is in range of thousands.
Energy, energy and energy is what is required to move the ocean.
There is a tiny tail wagging a large dog.
Oh yes and
“If we as humans modify the stratosphere, it may – through the chain of events we demonstrate in this study – also impact the ocean circulation,” he says. “Good examples of how we modify the stratosphere are the ozone hole and also fossil-fuel burning that adds carbon dioxide to the stratosphere. These changes to the stratosphere can alter the ocean, and any change to the ocean is extremely important to global climate.”

Silver Ralph

.
Let me get this straight. By increasing levels of a trace-gas, present only in parts per million (CO2), we can redirect the polar vortex….
However, the Sun, which chucks out gazillions of charged particles that all converge on the polar regions, has no effect on the polar vortex at all. Believe that, and you will believe anything.
A better research project, would to be to study any possible links between the solar cycle and the polar vortex cycle.
.

Paul Vaughan

To reduce uncertainties about the observations, the researchers used computers to simulate 4,000 years worth of atmosphere and ocean circulation.”
“[…] the researchers combined 18 atmosphere and ocean models into one big simulation […]”

Just have a model gang-bang to MAKE UP simulated offspring that “reduce uncertainties”?
“[…] simulations show a decadal on-off pattern […] penetrate into the deeper ocean and trigger multidecadal variability […]”
The evidence indicates strong coupling of the following:
Make-up, models, decadence.

Silver Ralph

vukcevic says: September 24, 2012 at 4:02 am
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm
——————————————————–
Ah, the master strikes again — the master of the wiggly graphs with no explanations and no idea whatsoever as to what is going on. Do you have a pet spider who creates these graphs for you, or is there any scientific logic behind them?
.

First, it was the down-welling IR causing global warming. Now it is changes in stratosphere (caused by CO2), which changes ocean circulation, which causes warming. At the end, the warming was not global but caused by us altering the sweet spot in the North Atlantic.
The mechanism is interesting and possible, but the outcome of the study is pure BULL[snip . . site policy . . mod].

The link between stratospheric circuation and ocean changes is an interesting one. It is fairly clear the AMO can explain a lot of climate variability.
http://www.climatedata.info/Discussions/Discussions/opinions.php?id=5505161221680733484
What is not clear is whether it is a pulse, an index of some other driver, or a heart, actually driving climate.

James

It’s almost as if they added CO2 and Ozone to the paper afterwards.

Elizabeth

“Stratospheric”
[Fixed, thanks. — mod.]

Paul Coppin

Looks like another degree thesis… Don’t know if it is, but I would like to see thesis research being outed as such in both press releases and published papers. I have a much lower level of confidence in new thesis work than that from etablished researchers in the field, and that’s not saying much at all.
One seemingly overlooked benefit to modeling, is it may lead to consideration of previously unconsidered mechanisms by virtue of the output generated, but thats not to say the output gnerated is even close to reality….

John Doe

researchers put the cart before the horse
the tail doesn’t wag the dog

Steve Keohane

I would suspect the same underlying cause for a shift in atmosphere and ocean, or the former may drive the later. Like temperature, how does the atmosphere drive the ocean with three orders of magnitude difference in mass, when both are no more than an oil slick on a puddle compared to the mass of the planet that they rest on.

Now all we need to 4000 years of observational data to confirm that their 4000 years of modeled data are sound.

I don’t trust climate science anymore and it’s not my job to read every new piece of utter crap they call science, I’ve read enough, The whole field is a laughing stock around the world, the involvement of government funding for favorable data may be despicable, but to base environmental and energy policy on it and therefor milk the human population like cows is a scandal. When did humans become a just bunch of farm animals to politicians and those elitist types.

Silver Ralph says:
September 24, 2012 at 4:45 am
vukcevic says: September 24, 2012 at 4:02 am
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm
——————————————————–
Ah, the master strikes again — the master of the wiggly graphs with no explanations and no idea whatsoever as to what is going on. Do you have a pet spider who creates these graphs for you, or is there any scientific logic behind them?

Hi Ho Silver
Very generous of you to call me a master of anything; funny that in a distant past an august institution did attach the ‘magister scientiae’ to my otherwise unpronounceable name.
You shouldn’t disparage work of the nature’s tiny wizard of weave, by comparing its amazing constructions to the esoteric scribbles of a mere mortal.
Actually the ‘wiggly graphs’ shows graphically what you were attempting to convey verbally in your earlier post (September 24, 2012 at 4:41 am)

Paul Vaughan

@Stephen Wilde (September 24, 2012 at 2:32 am)
I’ve seen no empirical evidence that solar modulation of terrestrial spatiotemporal pattern gives a 1:1 mapping to global total cloud. Perhaps explore a more diverse set of cloud metrics if clouds are your interest.

Just want to inform that Jo Nova is up again on a temporary site (use normal URL and you’ll be redirected). She says a full transfer of the usual site (with all posts and comments) is underway.
I have never heard of skeptics doing technical attacks on warmist sites. But the reverse seems to happen over and over again.
That’s how much they care about a free debate.
Sad.
–Ahrvid

Geoff Sharp says: “It seems everything is about your book theses days.”
My book is about ENSO, and just about every weather phenomena is impacted by ENSO and by the long-term effects of ENSO on sea surface temperatures. Here’s the post that introduces the book:
http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2012/09/03/everything-you-every-wanted-to-know-about-el-nino-and-la-nina-2/
Buy a copy and you’ll understand why it’s so important:
http://transactions.digitaldeliveryapp.com/products/6574/purchase
BTW, thanks for the excuse to include a link on this thread.
Regards

Robbie

“Using climate models, we demonstrate that this similarity is consistent with the hypothesis that variations in the sequence of stratospheric circulation anomalies, combined with the persistence of individual anomalies, significantly affect the North Atlantic Ocean.”
From the abstract.

Power Engineer

You can’t say enough about the influence of ocean currents on climate….and how the warm currents melt the polar ice which increases absorption of sunlight 12 times which increases melting of ice which increases absorption of sunlight which increases melting which increases absorption of sunlight…..(positive feedback loop) The fact that any polar ice is returning at all is a statement that the warmists are wrong. That polar ice is exceeding averages shows they are very wrong. I’m surprised that I haven’t seen anyone make this point.
It is this issue which demonstrated to me how biased the science and media are. As I started seriously looking into the climate issue, I saw a BBC Newscast in Jan-Feb 2005 in which they spent 5 minutes describing the above positive feedback loop. “Finally” I said to myself, “somebody is being honest and not saying it is due to CO2”. But the BBC concluded the newscast by concluding that we therefore need to step up our efforts to curb CO2 to save the arctic.
The BBC report was apparently based on the Cambride Arctic report of Nov 2004 which was similarly biased.
For years the EDF had arctic reports on their website which if anybody read them said that Arctic warming was due to currents and positive feedback not due to CO2.
It is important to dispell the arctic lies as melting of the ice is one area where warming is visible and make good TV press. Unfortunately the skeptics haven’t done this.

JamesD

For those dissing the model, I’d say this is a good example for where the model is useful, but in a different way. The real problem with the paper is that they immediately state that CAGW can cause this and lead (to what else?) catastrophe. First the model is important because we can see relationships. This then leads to OBSERVATION. Do we see it in the real world? Then we can look at hypothesis, and test them. It seems from the timing that the sun is the obvious suspect. CO2 is steadily increasing, yet these scientists see a decadal oscillation. Either it is a natural oscillation (perhaps ENSO), or it’s the sun.

JA

More BS.
Well then, what causes what? If the stratosphere heats up, well then, what causes that?
What about the affects of cosmic rays on cloud formation? How does that enter into all of this?
Oh, that’s right; if you don’t know or you cannot model it, you simply ignore it.
Makes sense to me.
The ONLY other “science” that relies on computer simulations and statistical analyses to “prove” this or that is, ………drum roll please…………..ECONOMICS.
Both these pseudo-religious fields use computer models that, A PRIORI must assume that certain variables (known, or unknown, or more perhaps, they know these variable are there, but they simply do not know if/how/why they affect the analyses , so they simply ignore them) are irrelevant to the study, and voila, you get your answers.
Any field of study in which controlled experiments are not possible, is not a science; it is a game of political football.

Caleb

RE: “Geoff Sharp says:
September 24, 2012 at 3:39 am
Bob Tisdale says:
It seems everything is about your book theses days.”
It might seem that way, but it saves Bob a lot of time if people read his book, rather than him over and over having to spend an hour writing a synopsis of his careful observations. Anyway, even when he spends an hour writing a comment here, it still is merely a synopsis, and likely will leave out some detail, and people who scutinize comments on this site tend to be sharp, and to pounce if you leave out a detail. So then he has to counter the comment.
People who can’t spend the time to read his book likely won’t have the time to read his longer comments, anyway.
Anyway, give the guy a break.
,

beng

Interesting that I noticed a gigantic upper-air swirl over east Canada just the last couple days — the N American polar vortex. Pretty far south for only late Sept. Hope not to see that in mid Jan!

Caleb

It really does seem like a case of “the tail wagging the dog,” however I know some forecasters keep an eye out for those Stratospheric Warming Events, and are forewarned of possible arctic outbreaks when they see them occur. The first guy I saw do this was Elliot Abrams over at Accuweather, a number of years ago. Not that it is a sure thing. I got fooled last winter, because there was a Stratospheric Warming Event, and I assumed all the extremely frigid air pent up in Alaska would break out and charge south, but not very much broke free, and it sort of “bled south” rather than “charging.”
It is probably one of those “what-came-first,-chicken-or-egg” situations where the ocean effects the atmosphere as the atmosphere effects the ocean. Your powers of observation have to be highly tuned to catch onto which influence is “ruling,” at any given moment.
As unlikely as it sounds, the very thin air miles up does “seem” to effect the weather and currents down below. However it may only be a indicator, rather than what is actually changing the jet stream and storm tracks and ocean currents.
It is very fascinating stuff, and well worth observing. It is even useful, if it gives you a week or two warning of an impending arctic outbreak. Think of the money you save, if your pipes don’t freeze, because you got a job that you were procrastinating from finishing done, all because some forecaster went nuts about some cold wave ten days in the future.