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Anthonywobrien

Around 2040 all of the winter sea ice will have gone, so ice to melt through spring and summer. So an upwards spike around then will not be at all surprising.

For all that we like smoothing trends, nature does seem to go for the steps. Although I do totally agree with the point you make.

R. Gates

Anthony,

I agree on the steps, and you can see those on many different time frames, even in the charts above. That being said, by these broadest measures, the trends are clearly upward for energy accumulation in the Earth system, or downward in the case of sea ice.

Also, It will very interesting to see if an ice free winter Arctic does develop by 2040. The models are not showing it for many centuries, but the models have been so wrong about so much related to sea ice and the Arctic. If it happens that soon, an entirely new Pliocene-like era will indeed come about very rapidly.

DumbSci

The last two graphs are redundant, and leave you vulnerable to diversions about Antarctic sea ice.

The first paragraph of my response to Schmitt and Happer's WSJ opinion piece refers to global land ice and global sea ice for this reason.

Also, I shared code for these graphs. The second graph shows that even if we strap on the climate contrarians’ self-imposed blinders and stare myopically at only the surface temperatures, there still hasn't been a statistically significant change in the rate of surface warming.

R. Gates

DumbSci,

You make a good point, but of course sea ice volume and extent are such very different metrics as all the denizens here of course know. As for those who want to argue points about Antarctic sea ice, I would welcome such discussion in as much as it would at least get the discussion off the incessant prattling on about the troposphere-- it's energy content is puny compared to the oceans.

Llosmith57

Looks like we will have to trim the bottom and raise the ceiling of the CO2 chart. I would not be surprised if we started seeing an increasing rate of increase from co2 released from permafrost melting in the next decade or two. The volume of release from the oceans is the real unknown. I still believe we will see an ice free month in the arctic by 2017 followed by ice free summers starting in 2030.

DumbSci

Sure, but they're two very different metrics of the same phenomenon. If you're going to include a fourth graph, how about the declining land ice in Greenland and Antarctica?

Trading one type of incessant prattling for another seems like a dubious improvement. Skipping to global sea ice extent will at least "prebunk" the standard prattling about Antarctic sea ice.

Steve Bloom

Heads up:

Dear Friend of "Your Climate Change",

As part of our continuing efforts to inform global citizens of the dangers of anthropogenic climate change, I would like to bring to your attention two video talks by eminent scientists:

(1) Dr. James Hansen, Retired Director of NASA/Goddard Institute of Space Studies
Title: "Itenerant Farming to White House Arrests: A Scientist's View of the Climate Crisis"
Date: May21, 2013, 2pm Pacific Daylight Time
Dr. Hansen's bio: http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/

(2) Dr. Waleed Abdalati, Professor of Geography, U of Colorado and previously represented NASA as its Chief Scientist
Title: Dramatic Changes in Polar Ice: Are We Talking Sleeping Giants?
Date: May 22, 2013, 2pm Pacific Daylight Time
Dr. Abdalati's bio: http://geography.colorado.edu/people/faculty_member/abdalati_waleed

Both presentations can be viewed at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nex-virtual-workshop (official site) as well as the Your Climate Change web portal at
https://www.yourclimatechange.org (click on "Live Event" on the main page). Web audience will be able to interact with the speakers using the "social stream" feature as well as leave comments.

Please share this email with your colleagues, friends, family and other social contacts, and encourage them to support our effort at building a grass-roots campaign to protect our Earth from harmful effects of climate change by signing the petition at https://www.yourclimatechange.org .

Respectfully,

Prof. Ranga Myneni
https://www.yourclimatechange.org

Jim Williams

I'm still of the opinion that it is the CO2 levels from the 1800s that matter now and that current CO2 levels don't have any short-term meaning.

Kevin McKinney

"I'm still of the opinion that it is the CO2 levels from the 1800s that matter now and that current CO2 levels don't have any short-term meaning."

Jim, you may wish to consider this exchange from Realclimate.

Boa05att

You might have all seen this before as it's from Dec 2010, but I've only just come across it and so thought I'd share:


The Last Arctic Sea Ice Refuge?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDKVXKDoq_I&NR=1&feature=endscreen

WTDeniers

Good post Neven - very much about isolating the "signal from the noise".

This part: "And since the troposphere can be fickle and far more subject to short-term noise from natural variability, it makes the most sense to look at the parts of the system such as the oceans and cryosphere that have greater thermal inertia and are hardest to change from short-term noise."

Very well put.


LRC

@Anthony, Gates:
You talk about nature going in steps. Could it not be more correct in that it appears to be steps.
I think that nature has thresholds. It will take a certain amount of CO2 say and can 'hide' it up to a point, then once that point is reached certain events will occur that will then renormalize new reality. It than can 'hide it until the new threshold is reached, and on we go. The situation that I see happening now is that we are pumping so much stuff (CO2, petrochemicals of all varieties) at the same time terraforming the land, eg asphalt, so fast that we could be actually leaping those thresholds and therefore the earths normal warning systems are being overwhelmed.
Looking at it this way we could end up not looking at nice steps but vertical cliffs. We saw that with the Arctic ice. IMHO which is very uneducated, you could end up seeing that with the Greenland Ice sheets and the Antarctic Ice sheets. The compounding problems will be drought and floods.

Neven

WTDeniers, thanks, but it was R. Gates who wrote this guest blog post.

Donald

Just published -- a podcast of This American Life that deals with climate change. This is significant because of the influence that these podcasts have in the US.

#495: Hot In My Backyard
http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/495/hot-in-my-backyard

Jim Williams

Kevin McKinney: "Jim, you may wish to consider this exchange from Realclimate."

Seems to me that the forcing has tended to end up in relatively short term (~100yr) ocean sinks (such as the Sargasso Sea) which effectively regurgitate their heat somewhat later. That is to say, we are experiencing the effects of rather small forcings from the 1800s now, and you ain't seen nothing yet. I see no evidence that the models have gotten timelines even slightly correct, though they might be doing somewhat better about long-term effects. I'm expecting the observed climate to change in what are viewed as large and sudden step changes as various catastrophe surfaces are crossed while the system seeks a new meta-stable quasi-equilibrium.

Jim Williams

P.S. An obvious example of a catastrophe surface is when the Arctic Sea Ice runs out before the end of Summer. Before the event we have the remaining sea ice acting as a buffer. After the event the buffer is removed. Topologically, this is a catastrophe, as the system has functionally changed.

A-Team

Jim, I don't see any topology operative here. Perhaps refrain from citing Thom's catastrophe theory unless you have a Ph.D in geometric topology and 10 years of related research experience -- otherwise you have not and cannot read the papers.

Higher dimensionality of the classification makes it utterly inapplicable to the physical sciences as far as anybody knows -- proposed applications to predicting prison riots and when dogs will bark are simply preposterous. New Age buzzwords are not appropriate in a scientific blog.

Metastable states across many fields of science are commonly described by potential wells. The potential could be gravitational, covalent bond strength, gibbs free energy of protein denaturation, etc etc etc. Because of Occam's Razor, nothing more is warranted.

The figure below shows three wells labelled A, B, and C. If the system is originally in Well A and natural variation is only enough to bounce it around withing the region indicated by the arrows, the system is stuck in its well (here called an equable climate).

Should Arctic sea ice in conjunction with unusual but natural variation weather push the system 'over the top', it could come to rest in the next metastable state, Well B.

Metastable states B and C need not exist. According to the precautionary principle, we should not invoke them without basis in regards to northern hemisphere weather subsequent to the coming loss of summer Arctic sea ice. It is quite feasible for the system simply to tank, as it would here after leaving Well C.

 photo metaStable3_zpsa557de3c.png

Kevin McKinney

Jim, if you don't wish to consider same, that's your choice, I guess. But--intending neither disrespect nor offense--I prefer Gavin Schmidt's opinion to yours, for multiple reasons too off-topic to expound upon here.

Sam

A-Team,

That is a tad harsh. Thom's work is dense, but the ideas are actually quite simple. It is more of a challenge to find real world cases where the bifurcation folds are evident and where the natural noise of the systems doesn't obscure that.

To date, there doesn't appear to be evidence of a step-wise change and hysteresis, or multi-state transition indicative of a fold space.

Still, it is quite appropriate to be watching for such things, and it is very reasonable to suspect that at some point in the climate transition that the system will cross thresholds that do not easily, linearly or directly reverse. If that happens, we may well see a fold transition that may (just may) indicate some higher order space topological analogy that can be represented by Thom's catastrophe theory.

Unfortunately, we will never live long enough to explore that space. With transitions that take millenia to unfold, it is beyond our ability to ever test.

Still, once the ice is gone and the arctic ocean further warms, we should expect the methane clathrates to break releasing vast stores of methane to the atmosphere. This has already begun.

Simultaneously, the warming of the arctic has already started collapse of the tundra releasing both the methane and organic carbon stored there. At >1,600 GT C, the warming potential of that is awesome. And the collapse of the tundra, rather than being a linear thawing effect, is showing several state transition sorts of behavior (both in collapse, and with fire, plant and tree growth, albedo change, physical collapse, and more). It is difficult to envision that being model-able as a linear reversible response function.

Thom's theory offers more promise (at least in the shape of the transition), but again - with no historical data to build the equations and no testability it is hard to see how that provides us much guidance - other than to be on the watch for 'tipping points', 'state transitions' (akin to phase changes for physical substances), and hysteretic effects.

Even then, the many different oscillatory changes combined with the natural stochastic variability of the system make it difficult to sort out.

Sam

R. Gates

A-Team,

As usual, you are a fountain of highly educational stuff.

Question: What about the speed at which CO2 (and methane and N2O) have been accumulating? Does the speed of change as one approaches potential tipping points matter? It just seems to me that even comparing the current period as we are around 400 ppm CO2 with other periods such as the Pliocene might need to take into account the overwhelming of natural feedback processes. Given that anthropogenic GH gas emissions are akin to a carbon volcano going off, and as such, volcanoes rapidly overwhelm all feedback systems such that the local ecosystem collapses rapidly. Now, granted in the case of a volcano we've come to learn that the ecosystem can repair itself rather rapidly, but this only happens AFTER the volcano stops erupting.

I suspect (and this is just my gut hunch) that the speed at which we are approaching an ice free summer Arctic (and then an ice free winter Arctic) is very rare event in the history of the planet, and this speed of change would figure greatly into whatever kind of "stability" would or would not exist on the other side of an ice-free Arctic. As long as the human carbon volcano keeps erupting, no stability will be found.

DumbSci

According to Honisch et al. 2012, our CO2 emissions rate is at least ten times faster than that preceding the end-Permian extinction.

So I suspect that the rate at which we're adding CO2 to the atmosphere is quite literally unprecedented.

Steve Bloom

Our problem is that while we know such things have occurred in the past, most prominently the PETM, not enough is known about them to model the peak states, let alone characterize the transitions very well. And we're pushing the system harder than was the case at any time in the past.

But FWIW, one thing we can be sure of is that tanking (aka a very fast, large-scale climate excursion) will lead to another metastable state, albeit with a very bumpy ride on the way to it, and that eventually, when it's finally left alone, climate will revert to cyclical glacial conditions. Long after that (10-20 my IIRC) the Atlantic will start to close again and tectonic processes will start warming things up again.

"To date, there doesn't appear to be evidence of a step-wise change and hysteresis, or multi-state transition indicative of a fold space."

I think I would argue that the new Ballantyne et al. paper is evidence for the former, anyway (unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean). The Arctic sea ice will go fast, the Arctic Ocean and surrounding continental margins will warm quickly, various feedbacks will kick in (more), and our descendants if any will probably be wishing the process had stopped at a Pliocene-like state. OTOH, a metastable (on a human time scale) Eocene-like climate state might be salubrious enough for the survivors, depending on how badly the biota gets hit.

Steve Bloom

"As long as the human carbon volcano keeps erupting, no stability will be found."

Although once all the ice has has gone and the deep oceans have warmed, effects of increasing atmospheric carbon will become much smoother. The Eocene was the warmest extended climate interval in the Phanerozoic and included some serious hyperthermals, but since most of the nasty feedbacks we face didn't exist the only major change seems to have been the added few degrees of warming. Consequently none of these were significant extinction events. Even the PETM, which started off the Eocene but differed from the later hyperthermals for reasons that aren't entirely clear (probably somewhat differnt causes and initial conditions), classifies as an extinction event only for the deep oceans (due to acidification).

That said, as Jim Hansen keeps pointing out, if we really do burn all the carbon much worse things are possible. I think that's unlikely not because we wouldn't try but because the climatic effects will start killing us off in large numbers before things go that far. But then I've always been an optimist. :/

Steve Bloom

"So I suspect that the rate at which we're adding CO2 to the atmosphere is quite literally unprecedented."

To maybe better highlight the point I just made, not only is this the case but we're doing it starting from a glacial climate state. That's trouble with a capital T.

Steve Bloom

The sspam filter hatess me, it does, Preciouss.

[ :-) It really does, Steve. I wonder what you have done to someone at TypePad to deserve this...]

R. Gates

Steve Bloom said:

"The Arctic sea ice will go fast, the Arctic Ocean and surrounding continental margins will warm quickly, various feedbacks will kick in (more), and our descendants if any will probably be wishing the process had stopped at a Pliocene-like state."

____

This kind of talk does not make you very fun at parties I take it? Seriously though, how can this view and the view as held by the denialists still coexist? How long until one of them melts away like the Arctic sea ice?

dominik lenné

IMHO the speed of the forcing increase matters of course, but it can have accelerating as well as decelerating aspects. The latter understood as lagging behind of the temperature field relative to co2 levels.

I would not use the potential wall image of above for a basically dissipative system as the earth temperature field and - energy flows. To me it seems more like an electronic circuit with some transistor collectors linked to the base of others and back.

In Europe, denialism - at least OPEN denialism - is not much of a problem. Instead it's plain and simple ignoring. If you follow the news, all that really seems to count is economic growth!!! It's a kind of hidden denialism. It's a "Yes I know but leave me alone for god's sake!" attitude.

Aaron Lewis

The climate is a non-linear feedback system. Ed Deming and others have used industrial control systems to show that non-linear feedback systems do tend to fail catastrophically when they drift or are forced out of control. A good example of such a catastrophic surface is a railroad car filled with liquid phosphorus that derails and ruptures. No statistical model of that car developed while the car sat empty on a rail siding for 6 weeks tells you how that car is going to behave when it is in a train wreck. And, that model from the rail siding does not tell you what other kinds of chemical products in other rail cars of that train are going to be ignited by the burning rail car of phosphorus. And, that statistical model of that car, does not tell you about a bit of corrosion on a train signal wire in the Utah desert.

However, it is possible to statistically estimate the corrosion, the train cargo mix, and to take precautions. These are the kind of risk assessments that industry does when a failure rate of 1 in a million is catastrophic. This approach requires a systems view.

The question is what is the state of the climate system now, compared to some time in the past when it was known to be in equilibrium? It turns out that we can treat the climate like a legacy industrial system.

The last time we know the system was in equilibrium was 1880-1910, but we do not have good data for that period so we use 1930 to 1960. September Arctic sea ice extent is a good proxy for albedo, an important negative feed back loop, so we take the standard deviation of September Arctic sea ice in the period 1930 to 1960 and see how many SDs we are currently above the September Arctic sea ice in the period 1930 to 1960.

We take the total ocean heat content as a proxy for the state of the climate and calculate the standard deviation for the period 1930 -1960. Then we check to see how many SD we are currently above the mean for the period 1930-1960.

Then, we look at Deming’s rules of thumb for systems in/out of control and we see, that if our climate was a rail car full of phosphorus, it just did a double back gainer into the Motiva oil refinery. Yes, that is a 1-in-a-million event. At Bechtel, we said such things do not happen. Now, I know that such events do happen, and I am able to witness interesting times.

The three important charts are: one showing total greenhouse gas content of the atmosphere (units unimportant), a chart of Arctic sea ice with units of standard deviation from a baseline period, and chart of total heat content of the climate system with units of standard deviation from a baseline period. Then, you need a bit of industrial engineering to see what they mean.

Sam

Steve,

"I think I would argue that the new Ballantyne et al. paper is evidence for the former, anyway (unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean). The Arctic sea ice will go fast, the Arctic Ocean and surrounding continental margins will warm quickly, various feedbacks will kick in (more), and our descendants if any will probably be wishing the process had stopped at a Pliocene-like state."

I haven't read the full paper since its behind a paywall. From the charts, graphs and figures, it appears to support a severe change to a new condition. And that should be expected once the ice is gone.

Arguably that will be a step change, both because the ice dynamics are gone, and because the ocean is less shielded from warming leading to changes in conditions that foster warming and breaking of the clathrates (essentially lowering the depth at which the clathrates remain stable well below their current depth).

And yes, that is the sort of thing I expect to see. However, I suspected the non-linear nature of the system would have shown some sort of state change before now.

The areas that do seem to fit that are as Chris noted, the movement of the cold pole to Greenland in the summer, dragging the circulating lows orbiting it and the jet stream with it, and then also changing the frequency and dynamics of the Rossby waves. There may be others.

Even then, these have, so far, not seemed to be severe enough changes to clearly call out that a state change has occurred. The obvious exceptions to that are the loss of summers in England and Scandinavia, and Hurricane Sandy being pulled ashore by the lows. So far that is a one off though, so we will have to wait a bit longer to see if this is a new pattern.

One other amazing thing.... The Ballantyne paper appears to show vastly warmer winter conditions over Ellesmere. If that occurs early in the transition, that would appear to argue opposite to the recent suggestions that there may be a long tale on the summer ice as ice is maintained along the near shore of Ellesmere and Greenland.

Watching the time lapse of the collapse of the ice, and having watched all of the old ice pull off the land this winter and spring, I suspect that is just wishful thinking.

We may yet see the very sudden disappearance of the last remnant ice this year or next. But that will only be a year or two from the time I expected it to be gone and I find that hard to call a state change in and of itself, though the conditions after will be.

I suspect too that we are seeing increases in ice extent over what might otherwise be expected precisely because the ice is shattering and dispersing. This results in an artificial increase in area that I suspect may be very transient.

Sam

Sam

Two quotes come to mind...

The first is from the TV series Firefly when Book replies to Mal:
"We're very close to true stupidity here."

The second from the movie Contact I have to paraphrase as I don't seem to be able to find it at the moment. As Ellie is in the Alien designed pod about to dropped into the maw of a wormhole, the whole apparatus is engulfed in a magnetic storm. Mission control asks whether he should terminate and hears from his technical lead:

We're close, Steve. We're very close.

dominik lenné

Looking at the PIOMAS volume anomaly curve, one sees three distinct downward peaks in the last 3 springs/summers. The last 3 years, the volume development over the year was definitely and consistently different from the mean.
This could be another indication of a new state of the weather system, although those are at most semi-stable.
The coming summer will corroborate - or weaken - the assumption of a new weather state. My personal guess is 0.6 probability for a corroboration.

Steve Bloom

Sam, IMO the paleo data tells us we must be undergoing a state change since 400 ppm CO2 is too high for Pleistocene-like climate conditions to continue. The various observed atmospheric circulation changes, the key to which is actually expansion of the tropics rather than the jet stream shift, are direct proof of this. The big question, as you observe, is about the speed of the process. I think that while we certainly will see abrupt effects as the process continues, the basic change is on a scale of decades due to the relaxation time of the climate system (not that it will actually be able to relax as long as we keep adding GHGs). Even in the case of the Arctic sea ice, while I believe it's possible that it will disappear year-round (or mostly so) fairly quickly, even with open water for most of the summer it will still take decades for the Arctic Ocean to heat up enough to keep substantial winter ice from forming. It's also possible that the presence of the GIS (however long it lasts) will retard the process somewhat.

We live in interesting times.

Hans Gunnstaddar

posted by Dominik Lenne from five posts up:

"In Europe, denialism - at least OPEN denialism - is not much of a problem. Instead it's plain and simple ignoring. If you follow the news, all that really seems to count is economic growth!!! It's a kind of hidden denialism. It's a "Yes I know but leave me alone for god's sake!" attitude."

My other passionate foray into blog message boards is on the topic of peak oil. Without going into a diatribe about that dynamic, let's just say 'economic growth' comes up a lot. It's as if the system, or if you prefer Empire knows no other gear but full bore, pedal to the metal, myopically and desperately seeking 'growth', in spite of obvious climate feedbacks building in from burning fossil fuels and sharply dropping EROEI (energy returned on energy invested) as the bottom of the barrel gets scraped such as tar sands, fracking, deep offshore, etc.

There seems to be no willingness to entertain any other paradigm. So off we go to quantitative ease and arctic drilling for oil to desperately keep at least the promise of economic growth going, while the climate obviously trends towards another state.

NeilT

Neven, personally I feel your CO2 chart is way too short for this discussion.

If we look at the historical record for the post industrial CO2 contribution by Homo Sapiens Sapiens, we see that in the first decade of the 21st century we emitted more CO2 than we did in the first CENTURY of the post industrial record.

From Overlay

In fact the increase was almost as much as in the three previous decades.

Now if I recall my reading correctly, the majority of the heat sequestered by CO2 is absorbed by the sea. This heat energy takes 30 years to return to the atmosphere. So, Basically, in the last 2 decades we've been seeing the impact of heat energy sequestered in the sea from the CO2 rises between 1960 and 1980, which is, in fact almost twice as large as that emitted in the following two decades.

So, by 2030, regardless of the impact in the Arctic by the accumulation of CO2, we move to a new state never seen before in the CO2 historical record. Where the heat energy of 7GT of CO2 per decade comes back to impact the environment.

If this does not cause a step change, I don't know what will. There is likely to be a short hiatus between 2010 and 2030, then all hell should start to break loose. Because the accumulated CO2 is bad enough but we will be facing the direct impact of all that CO2, plus the direct impact of the loss of Arctic sea ice, plus the impact of ocean sequestered warming. A perfect storm of circumstances if there ever was one.

What other impacts from methane clathrates, weather circulation changes, desalination due to ice shelf runoff and many others, are, to my mind, just the icing on the cake.

Sam

As yet another example of the differences we are beginning to see, despite suggestions that ice might hang around on the shores of Ellesmere, what we are seeing instead is that the ice is now separating from the shore even before the melt has gotten seriously underway.

Compare the view in Worldview for 2013 with 2012.

http://earthdata.nasa.gov/labs/worldview/?map=-2101863.229015,-56128,-4711.229016,1262784&products=baselayers,MODIS_Terra_CorrectedReflectance_TrueColor~overlays,arctic_coastlines&time=2013-05-20&switch=arctic

http://earthdata.nasa.gov/labs/worldview/?map=-2101863.229015,-56128,-4711.229016,1262784&products=baselayers,MODIS_Terra_CorrectedReflectance_TrueColor~overlays,arctic_coastlines&time=2012-05-20&switch=arctic

Sam

Kevin McKinney

NeilT, you are confusing me here--your chart is not only longer, it's a different quantity--emissions, as you say, not concentrations.

What's confusing about that is that you say "the impact of heat energy sequestered in the sea from the CO2 rises between 1960 and 1980, which is, in fact almost twice as large as that emitted in the following two decades," which seems to mean that you think that there is a proportionality between heat 'sequestered' and CO2 rises.

But I suspect you know that's not true: CO2 forcing is a function of the change in concentration, which is something like:

(Initial concentration + 1/2 human emissions) / Initial concentration

(One half of emissions, since roughly that much CO2 emitted ends up in the atmosphere.)

So it would seem to me that Neven's chart would be the right quantity, and if we grant your lag (which I'm a bit suspicious of, but let that go) then we'd want to extend Mauna Loa backward via ice core measurements--as John Cook does in this SkS post, for example:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/The-CO2-Temperature-correlation-over-the-20th-Century.html

Or am I missing some critical point here?

Fufufunknknk

Looking at the sea ice chart, this seems to be about the part of the ride where we put our hands in the air and see how long we can keep from screaming.

R. Gates

NeilT,

I think the point in focusing on charts from the 1980-2012 timeframe is that for that data period we have charts that have reliable data that show a constant warming with no let up, i.e., there had been no pause in the accumulation of energy in the Earth system, and those who focus on the fickle and relatively low thermal inertia and storage of the troposphere either do so out of ignorance or some other less noble intent.

Boa05att

Time for a fire side chat with Prof. David Wasdell?

Part 1: Arctic Feedback Dynamics
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjZaFjXfLec

Part 2: Implications & Consequences
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUBZi3t4ZTo

Shared Humanity

Hans Gunnstaddar

It's as if the system, or if you prefer Empire knows no other gear but full bore, pedal to the metal, myopically and desperately seeking 'growth', in spite of obvious climate feedbacks building in from burning fossil fuels and sharply dropping EROEI (energy returned on energy invested) as the bottom of the barrel gets scraped such as tar sands, fracking, deep offshore, etc.

Capitalism is a growth system and all growth systems grow exponentially. Look at the trends of any meaningful measurement of human civilization.....population growth, fossil fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and you will find the same exponential trends. Not only is capitalism a growth system but it is the nature of any system to seek its perpetuation. This is not due to some evil cabal in charge but is caused by the actions of everyone within the system. Each of us, operating within the logic of the system, contributes to its perpetuation.

When you have a growth system (capitalism), constrained by a finite resource (earth), there are only two possible outcomes. The system either arrives at a dynamic equilibrium or the system collapses. The system will always seek ways to avoid collapse and continue growing. Technological innovation is quite handy in this regard. One great example is the green revolution in the 1960's and 1970's. It dramatically increased agricultural output, fueling an explosion in human population.

Unfortunately, delaying system collapse can have only one possible result. The system collapse will be even more horrific. Examples of biological system collapse have been studied and are well understood. A predator population, introduced to a new environment, confronts a seemingly endless prey. The predator population expands exponentially until the prey population suddenly collapses, followed by a collapse of the predator population.

This is the conversation humanity needs to be having.

Shared Humanity

If you want to understand "system behavior" a great read is "Thinking in Systems" by Donella H. Meadows. She came out of MIT where systems thinking emerged as they studied computer systems. Once understood, this systems approach was applied to other systems with dramatic developments in understanding their behavior. Donella also authored "Limits to Growth".

Glacierchange.wordpress.com

Nice image of lead off Banks Island in Beaufort Sea

Al Rodger

My choice of "four charts that matter"?

While atmospheric CO2 is only about half the present anthropogenic forcings, the comment always is that its relative influence will increase with time. Also GHGs appearing through feedback mechanisms (eg melting permafrost)is said will be mostly CO2. So the first chart appears a quite defensible choice.

The second, OHC, would perhaps be better if it didn't cut off at 2,000m, but otherwise OHC is the vast majority of the global warming mechanism.

The largest warming mechanism after the oceans is now Greenland & Antarctic ice loss which, if combined with the PIOMAS anomaly, would be running at some 1,500 cu km per year or more. I think I would vote for a combined PIOMAS/GRACE-Greenland-Antarctic chart as no 3.

I'm not entirely sure about September SIE. While some measure of the destruction of the Northern cryosphere would be good, I am also drawn to the good old Global Surface Temperature Anomaly. It is, after all, a measure of the climate we surface-dwelling humans call home.
And when placed below CO2, OHC & ice loss charts, any thought that there is some natural oscillation (as this DocMartyn presents) becomes a trifle risible. And the three preceding charts would surely make plain there is no 'pause'.
Indeed, if there is some natural mechanism at work as the hapless DocMartyn would have us believe, it would need to be powered by a lot of energy from somewhere if its going to switch on and off and wobble global average temperatures by 0.2ºC. These days, hiding such a mechanism would take some doing given it would certainly require much more energy than is used annually to melt Arctic Sea Ice. 6+ZJ pa for a decade - thats a lot of energy.

David Goldstein

Have folks seen this study finding a lower climate sensitivity - about 2 C median range as opposed to 3 C - put out a couple days ago? The gist seems to be that previous modeling underestimated the role of the oceans in absorbing heat. Now, if this is accurate and we do indeed see the 'hiatus' in surface warming extend for a couple decades...this seems to me to be BIG, big trouble. As R. Gates pointed out, the troposphere contains a relatively small percentage of stored energy, BUT, this is the only thing most people experience or care about. Is it not the case then that the above described scenario would be one most likely to 1) aid and abet the continued denial and ignoring of effective climate action 2) result in a more 'vertical', 'violent' and non-linear disruptive chain of events when the warming does 'surface'? Am I missing something here?- it sure feels like a recipe conceived 'under a bad moon'.

R. Gates

David,

You make some excellent points, and just to amplify a bit:

This undo focus on the troposphere which can be seen even in the definition of climate sensitivity is indeed myopic, and short-sighted as well. The ocean heat content increase has been at least as damaging and most likely more so to the Arctic sea ice extent and global cryosphere than the tropospheric warming. The warmer ocean water has been advected to the Arctic and has been both "eating away" at the ice from the bottom as well as being released into the Arctic troposphere, adding to top melt. The absolute failure of the climate models to accurately model this advective process and the resultant very rapidly declining Arctic sea ice shows how myopoic the undue focus on the troposphere has been. The oceans will be calling the shots for the climate--and always have-- period, and it's being seen first and foremost in the Arctic and of course the global cryosphere. The oceans are the "dog" and atmosphere just rides along as a noisy tail (which can wag a lot even when the dog is steady).

My whole point in writing this post was to shift the focus and conversation from the tail back to the big ocean dog that contains the vast majority of the energy of the system and will dictate where the troposphere will head.

Shared Humanity

R. Gates

With the mass of the oceans far larger than the troposphere, is it possible that this transfer of heat to the oceans could dampen the warming of the troposphere indefinitely?

What would be the effect on global climate if this were the case?

R. Gates

Shared,

"Indefinitely" is a long time! The oceans can buffer a lot of energy and a lot of CO2, but there simply is no free lunch when you put as much GH gases in the atmosphere as humans have over such a short time frame. Somewhere the piper will be paid. The cryosphere is paying the price right now, as the earliest canary in the coal mine to fade away, but eventually the ocean warmth and acidity will alter the ability of the oceans to support life. The PETM extinction event is a good guide here. We have simply got to turn off the human carbon volcano as quickly as possible if we want to slow down the current species extinction rate and the eventual rather grim prospect a warm an largely lifeless ocean.

David Goldstein

R. Gates et. al. - I am a climate writer for the Huffington Post. I am NOT a scientist- my only science course at Stanford was 'Earthquakes and Man' that I took because that's what all the football players took! - but, I share this article I wrote about a month ago about the situation of the oceans and heat uptake. Please give it a read- I hope I did okay by the science! : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/davidgoldstein/the-first-level-of-disrup_b_2975223.html

R. Gates

David,

I actually read that article...very well done, and certainly you make accurate enough points about the oceans to be on target with the larger truth. This last line from your post:

"Meanwhile... we wait."

Is true, for a bit longer, though I think, with the looming ice-free summer Arctic coming in the next few years, the days of waiting will be shorter. I know of many "lukewarmers" who have actuall fallen into the trap of listening to those calling for a recovery of the Arctic sea-ice, not fully understanding the true death-spiral the Arctic sea ice is in. The inertia toward that is just too strong now.

Once we have our first ice-free summer Arctic, certainly well before 2030, and I think before 2020, many "lukewamers" will move strongly to the warmist side of things and realize that it is later, and worse than they thought.

Again, nice job on getting that message out in your article.

Shared Humanity

R Gates.....I understand the implications and am terrified of what we are doing. I'm simply concerned that this dampening on troposphere warming could feed the opponents of global warming impacts.

If we arrive at some worse (but not immediately horrible) state that lasts for a long time (my use of indefinitely was meant to suggest a time frame in which humans live, say a generation)we better be prepared to explain to a disbelieving public that it is worse than it seems.

Shared Humanity

My worry is this. It comes from the above mentioned book on "systems".

Growth systems with significant delays in their feedback loops are virtually guaranteed to collapse. By the time we become fully aware of the crisis, it is too late.

I've seen this being discussed on this blog. Are we already past the point of being able to pull back? I don't believe there is a consensus here on that issue. I'd hate for us to eventually arrive at this consensus because any further delay will increase the likelihood the consensus will be "yes".

dominik lenné

Read a headline in Süddeutsche Zeitung saying, that EU wants to make energy cheaper for the industry. This is what I said: no outright denial but straightforward ignorance.
(http://www.sueddeutsche.de/wirtschaft/wende-in-der-klimapolitik-eu-will-energiepreise-druecken-1.1676778)

Bosbas

"Growth systems with significant delays in their feedback loops are virtually guaranteed to collapse."
Help me understand this better - how can it be determined whether the feedback loops are slow; compared to what?

Anu

I'm a fan of all four of your graphs - well chosen. Especially the 2000m ocean data, rather than 700m.

The 2012 September NSIDC graph is here:
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2000/09/Figure3.png

Sorry if someone else above has pointed this out, didn't have time to read all the comments...

That last data point is dramatic.

Remko Kampen

"New Age buzzwords are not appropriate in a scientific blog." - said A-Team re catastrophe and bifurcation theory, to my utter astonishment. There is nothing postmodern to this hard mathematical concept and what is more: it is totally applicable to what is going on in the Arctic. Sea-ice models have failed or are failing precisely because they neglect this phenomenon.
Consider a well B exactly below well A.
To me Jim's comment looks entirely valid.

In all truth, though, I feel I might be missing your point entirely here.

NeilT

Kevin, R. Gates

My point was fairly simple if couched in more complicated terms. Also I didn't see the Skeptical science graph, but the one I posted does as well even if it is not exactly the same. You could, if you wanted, divide by 7.76k to get ppm.

The point I wanted to make is that we are running two cycles here. Heat sequestration in the oceans and CO2 emissions which increase the heat sequestration by CO2 retention of Insolation.

The point is not the absolute value. It is the growing value and that we are only just beginning to feel the impact of the very rapid rise in CO2 emissions in the 60's and 70's as most of that energy was sequestrated in the sea and is only returning now.

But our emissions have continued to rise. The energy being sequestered continues to rise, the rise in CO2 concentration in the atmosphere ramped up sharply in 2000 and continues on that path, mainly, but not solely, due to human output.

So if we are trying to map a breakdown to of the arctic, due to CO2 heat sequestration, we must factor in the 30 year cycle of ocean heat sequestration and release.

This I have learned by extensive reading on the topic. I'm not capable of understanding the math, but I am capable of understanding the interlocking nature of the systems.

Neven makes a point that CO2 continues to rise, Global heat content of the Oceans continues to rise, ice extent and volume continues to fall.

The point I was making is that Neven's charts do not allow for the CO2 impact at the time of the heat which is being released from the Oceans now. i.e. the 30 year cycle.

Nor does it allow for the difference between the fist 100 years of carbon emissions, which drove the 1C temp raise in the 20th century and the emissions in the following 70 years which are significantly higher.

If you put all that together, we are already in a state of rapid and catastrophic change and it is only going to get worse. So there is no reason why we should not see a complete failure of Arctic ice and a move to a totally new "steady state" simply from the emissions already in the environment, but 90% of the heat locked in the Oceans for 30 years.

Chart's aside, that is only logic to me.

Perhaps it does not pass the scientific litmus test or perhaps I'm approaching it at too simplistic an angle.

Jim Williams

Remko Kampen: "Consider a well B exactly below well A."

Precisely. A simple cusp catastrophe. Certainly, the potential function may be more complex, but the simple notion of falling off the edge of the minimum surface at one point to land at another location on the minimum surface holds true in all catastrophes.

In fact, all weather and climate can bee seen as sequences of sets of catastrophes. When a breeze comes up and then suddenly fades mathematically it can be described as a catastrophe where the minimum surface of pressure potential at that point folds and the wind falls from one surface to another; which we perceive as a sudden change in wind speed and/or direction.

There are physical events we can easily point to and qualitatively say are going be be seeds for large complex foldings of the equipotential surfaces and which will tend to generate large catastrophe regions in the minimum potential surface. One such event is when the Arctic Sea Ice completely melts out in Summer. The climatic system before the event of summer melt-out is functionally different than it will be after the event. Sudden change is to be expected, and the surprise would be if there was none.

David A. Hubbard

As I see it we can either deny climate change and do nothing and the world will end as we know it or we can choose to accept the fact that humans have changes our environment and do something about it. If we do something and climate change is not "real" we all benefit. If we do something and climate change is real we may be able to save ourselves. Better to take action even if it is not needed than do nothing and die a slow death. What harm could we do if we tried improving our environment? Best case scenario, the world will be a better place to live if we take action. Worst case, things will only get worse and the Earth will not be able to sustain life as we know it. My preference is to err on the side of caution. But that may require confronting reality and spending money, and who wants to do that?

Harold lee

R. Gates
"the discussion off the incessant prattling on about the troposphere--"
Graph 1 is of CO2 levels in the atmosphere [including the troposphere] which your article and and subsequent comments suggest is not meaningful in any in connection to temperature. This only seems to be a problem since the air temperatures stopped rising.
If a graph is to be important it should link directly to the other measurements. The CO2 graph is sawtooth and regular upwards and I fail to see any of this correlate with ocean heat, piomass or arctic or antarctic sea ice extent.
Graph 4 is of piomass but is not a real measurement in any way. It is only a computer model and may only have started in 2003. In other words the graph from 1980 to 2003 is only a retrofitted model. It probably [should match the average arctic sea ice anomaly as it is derived from that].
Picking the month of September for your 4th graph is a bit disingenuous as there are 11 other monthly graphs you could have used or a straight anomalies graph you could have used.
Ocean Heat measurement is another cold topic and again does not have any consistency of technique over the 1980 onwards period.
There has been a noticeable loss of ice in the last 2 decades but the question of whether it is natural variability or CO2 will not be answered while we are alive.
My graph is the Arctic Sea ice extent 30% or greater (DMI)which is a cross between extent and volume, similar to last year but a lot of signs that it will not fall in the next 3 years. cheers

Kevin McKinney

Thanks for clarifying, Neil. I think I get your point.

I'm not sure you get mine, though. Let me expand a bit. Let me quote you for context, following with my thoughts, FWIW:

"...the Skeptical science graph, but the one I posted does as well even if it is not exactly the same. You could, if you wanted, divide by 7.76k to get ppm."

I'd disagree. The SkS (or a similar one) is better because it displays the actual quantity of interest--atmospheric concentration, which is what does the radiative forcing. Emissions (though important, since that's what we (notionally) control) aren't that great a proxy, especially since forcing follows a power law. Moreover, the emissions curve has a lot more 'noise,' which I think undesirable for a couple of reasons.

"The point is not the absolute value. It is the growing value.."

Well, I'd contend that at least *half* the point is indeed the absolute value. As I said above, that's what the radiative forcing depends upon. The growth is important, too, of course, but you must consider it relative to the concentration 'baseline.' Remember, climate sensitivity is defined in terms of degrees per doubling of CO2.

Finally, I was going to leave this issue alone, but I'd really like to understand better what you are saying. You write:

"...we are only just beginning to feel the impact of the very rapid rise in CO2 emissions in the 60's and 70's as most of that energy was sequestrated in the sea and is only returning now."

In this and other passages you seem to imply a model of heat fluxes in which 'greenhouse energy' is 90% 'sequestered' in the ocean for 30 years and then 'emerges'--in the prospective case, to our terrible detriment. But that doesn't quite match what I understand, and I'd be interested to learn more about the topic. So please feel free to expand--and any links you've got to the reading you've done on this would be especially welcome.

For the record--and as a reference to my admittedly sketchy grounding in this part of the climate puzzle--what I (currently) think about this is more in line with (yet) another SkS post:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climate-Change-The-40-Year-Delay-Between-Cause-and-Effect.html

This post sources to a Hansen paper:

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/308/5727/1431.abstract

To sum up what I 'model' from such sources:

1) Oceanic thermal inertia means a characteristic delay in the full realization of warming from any given forcing.

2) Under current conditions, the additional expected warming is about .6 C.

Point #1 is basically similar to "Transient Climate Sensitivity," which is defined on a 20-year span. ("Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity" is determined in models, where "fully equilibrating ocean temperatures requires integrations of thousands of model years.")

See:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_sensitivity#Equilibrium_and_transient_climate_sensitivity

So in my mental 'model', there is no marked 'return' of energy to the atmosphere after any fixed span; rather there is a leveling-out, or slowing down of warming after some (not very-well determined) time. (Or rather, there would be, if we stopped emitting in the meantime--rather a stark counterfactual, I'm afraid.)

That would mean that we now may be at a place where we've finally seen most of the direct warming from 60s-era emissions. Now you may think that that makes me a bit of a lukewarmer, relative to your expectation. But if you look at the SkS chart, you'll note that the emissions growth accelerates from the 60s on.

That doesn't mean accelerated warming, IIRC--because of the power law involved, the acceleration works out (roughly) to a continued expectation of more-or-less linear 'long-term' warming--plus/minus 'noise,' of course.

And equally 'of course', that disregards non-linear systems effects such as Aaron Lewis and Jim Williams have been warning us about, and some of which you mention as well. There are IMO (at least!) hints in today's Arctic that some of those metaphorical chickens are starting to come home to roost.

Anu
Two quotes come to mind... The first is from the TV series Firefly when Book replies to Mal: "We're very close to true stupidity here."
Posted by: Sam | May 21, 2013 at 01:40

The Shepherd would be disappointed in Humanity's progress to date.

I'm hoping that this potential climate catastrophe doesn't spiral out of control this century, leading to people one day echoing this classic movie quote:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsx2vdn7gpY

Shared Humanity

Bosbas

"Growth systems with significant delays in their feedback loops are virtually guaranteed to collapse."

Help me understand this better - how can it be determined whether the feedback loops are slow; compared to what?

First, everything can be viewed as a system. All systems have inputs, outputs, feedback loops, controls etc.

I have a third floor apartment in a large old apartment building. I get up in the morning to take a shower. I turn the hot and cold water on and step in. If it is too cold, I adjust the cold down. Unfortunately the temperature of the water changes very slowly after I turn the cold down and I have scalded myself several times.

The "warming" feedback loop for increases in CO2 are very delayed. Because of this, we run the risk of scalding ourselves and the rest of the planet.

Kevin McKinney

"There has been a noticeable loss of ice in the last 2 decades but the question of whether it is natural variability or CO2 will not be answered while we are alive."

Sure it has. You just don't accept the answer.

Kevin O'Neill

Harold lee, you betray your ignorance or prejudice by several statements:

"Graph 4 is of piomass (sic) but is not a real measurement in any way. It is only a computer model and may only have started in 2003."

PIOMAS is an abbreviation that stands for Pan-Arctic Ice-Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System. Perhaps you don't know what 'assimilation' means. Or perhaps you've never read the initial paper that describes PIOMAS. In either case, this "only a model" is constrained by actual observations and has been tested against submarine tracks, buoy data, and satellite measurements. Your attempt to denigrate PIOMAS says much about you and little about the efficacy of PIOMAS.

As for, "Picking the month of September for your 4th graph is a bit disingenuous as there are 11 other monthly graphs you could have used or a straight anomalies graph you could have used. " Why is this disingenuous? Just as northern lakes freeze over every winter, few believe the arctic will be ice-free year round. Since winter and the disappearance of the sun will fill the arctic with sea ice, the full effect of warming can only be seen at the fall minimum. But you know this already - so the only one being disingenuous is you.

"My graph is the Arctic Sea ice extent 30% or greater (DMI)which is a cross between extent and volume..." How is DMI 30% a cross between extent and volume? It's an extent graph and says no more about volume than any other 2-D measurement. Have you any data that shows a correlation between DMI 30% and actual volume measurements? No, of course not. You're just making s**t up. And doing a poor job of it.

I won't even bother commenting on your Ocean Heat content sentence because it's nothing more than handwaving.

Bob Bingham

The chart that worries me to most is the sea ice. It worries me because it could represent a tipping point and change the weather in the Northern hemisphere within ten years. If the ice extent drops to one million square kilometres we may as well call it ice free. We are already seeing big changes to the weather and the dramatic ice melt is only a few years old. We don't need to wait forty years for the CO2 lag the heat and the weather from the ice loss are within months.
The other one, that is not shown is NASA's sea level rise for the last two years. Ten mm a year and not slowing.

jdallen_wa

Harold Lee ( and others of like ilk )

I have both a caution and requests...

1) Do your homework.

2) Show your work.

3) Expect it to be examined closely, and weaknesses criticized.

There are a lot of really smart people posting here, who have been studying the arctic for decadeS ( deliberate cap ). I think ( as demonstrated ) they have little patience vague dismissals of careful research, and similarly vague assertions regarding observations.

Remko Kampen

“In fact, all weather and climate can bee seen as sequences of sets of catastrophes.”, Posted by: Jim Williams | May 22, 2013 at 13:20

Yes!! For weather or Arctic sea-ice, say. But no for climate, which is not weather but an average of parameters over space-time. Though I’ve lived in this misunderstanding for like 20 yrs (until beginning of this century).

R. Gates

Bob Bingham,

While I agree that sea level rise could be added as a fifth chart to these four and global continental ice mass loss as a sixth, I do think you need to be careful about drawing conclusions about long-term trends from a few years of data (i.e. the 10 mm sea level rise). This was clearly a rebound from the big dip in sea level experienced a few years prior. The GRACE satellite data clearly showed exactly where this water went when the sea level declined such as the floods in Australia, and now the return of that water back to the ocean can also be tracked. But again, overall, sea level is a good chart to add, but be careful about conflating short-term wobbles with long-term trend.

Harold lee

Kevin O'Neill thank you for your comments. My prejudice stands, apologies for that.

PIOMAS is an abbreviation that stands for Pan-Arctic Ice-Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System.
Thank you, I do know what modeling means, it's a model and model outputs are never measurements, only guestiments. The model is only 10 years old in real time [?] and post predicts ice thickness for the previous 30 years from data which was different to that used from 2003 with Grace satellite incorporation and was different to that after 2007 when the satellite failed and they used a proxy [model] algorithm for the input to the model[?]

"Since winter and the disappearance of the sun will fill the arctic with sea ice, the full effect of warming can only be seen at the fall minimum."
Please,
warming [from the sun] occurs every day of the year, summer and winter.Hence the full effect of warming should be seen every day of the year. The degree of warming should be seen at every point of the chart. That is why a chart showing the anomaly for each month for the year is the fair, honest and open way to discuss if warming is occurring year round.
[such charts, by the way, our host may have posted one in the past, show that sea ice extent is down in all months, but probably not much in winter].
"My graph is the Arctic Sea ice extent 30% or greater (DMI)which is a cross between extent and volume...".
I said I liked this graph, just as Mr Gates has chosen his four as one of the most salient in terms of understanding what is really happening.
By extent I meant the traditional sea ice extent graph which is a 15% graph. By volume I meant the piomass estimate. The 30% graph shows a thicker concentration of ice. More concentration means more volume of ice in the measured sea extent [not data, just physics]. So the DMI 30% graph is a de facto cross between extent and volume.
Unless you think that ice is 2 dimensional.

Remko Kampen

"... warming [from the sun] occurs every day of the year, summer and winter." (Harold Lee).

Or, to be precise, warming (from the sun) occurs every time of day, day and night.
At least that's what I'm reading here. Correct me please.

Kevin O'Neill

Harold - Your comments on PIOMAS are confusing to say the least. PIOMAS assimilates real world measurements. It is constrained by these measurements. I asked if you even knew what 'assimilate' means - apparently not. PIOMAS has been verified against data going back to the 1990s (submarine track data). PIOMAS has been show to agree with submarine data, buoy data and satellite data. You add nothing to the discussion except to say, 'It's only a model." And? Do you believe saying this is somehow derogatory or end-of-argument? The Global Climate Models that were able to predict hurricane Sandy's course 8 days in advance were only models. Any model - whether used in engineering, astronomy, medicine, climatology, etc - has to be judged on whether its results can be verified or trusted. PIOMAS has already met this criteria multiple times against a variety of different measurement systems. It's not *only* a model, it's a *very good* model. BTW, I haven't a clue why you brought up GRACE - since it has nothing to do with PIOMAS.

"warming [from the sun] occurs every day of the year, summer and winter.Hence the full effect of warming should be seen every day of the year. If you sincerely believe this, then you need to do learn a lot before bothering to even hold an opinion. Solar insolation varies in polar regions from almost nothing to as much as you'll find anywhere on earth. On the June solstice 36% more solar radiation reaches the top of the atmosphere over the course of the day at the North Pole than at the Equator. Yet in the six months from the September equinox to March equinox the North Pole receives no sunlight. So your idea that warming should be seen on every day is not just wrong, it's completely nonsensical.

*ANY* extent measurement is a 2-D measurement and as such can tell you nothing about volume. Volume is dependent upon knowing a third dimension. It doesn't matter which extent chart you like or what concentration it uses - none of them are a "cross" between extent and volume. That you can believe so - and continue to believe so even after the error is pointed out is ..... probably a sign that you believe opinions can substitute for facts. Sorry, you're entitled to your own opinion - but not your own facts.

Rob Dekker

Harold said :

This only seems to be a problem since the air temperatures stopped rising.

Sorry Harold, before you declare a 'problem' kindly back up your statement with evidence.
And no cherry-picking in the noise please.
As Kevin says, you are entitled to your opinion, but not your own facts.

Neven

Okay, Harold lee is blocked, first one so far, if memory doesn't deceive me.

I can't have this blog poisoned, just like elsewhere, by the misinformed nonsense of folks who have already made their minds up that Arctic sea ice loss is natural and/or nothing to worry about.

To consistently misspell PIOMAS and maintain that the 30% threshold of the DMI extent graph means it's a cross between extent and volume, is just a bit too much. We need our energy for the coming melting season, not boring discussions with the unconvinceable.

Sorry, Harold lee, have fun back at the best Sceince Blog in the Universe. I'm sure they will keep you 100% up-to-date with regards to Arctic sea ice, just like every melting season.

Boa05att


NASA's Waleed Abdalati's talk from the other night

Dramatic Changes in Polar Ice
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GveM2ygxOLg

(Here's a similar talk he gave a few years ago which some might also be interested in:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esE8WwX_qIg)

NeilT

@ Kevin McKinney

Yes I get your point about ppm in actual terms. Real increase in the volume of CO2 in the atmosphere, especially due to the fact that CO2 absorption by the Oceans seems to be dropping, giving an increased ppm value for the same, or less, emissions.

I just felt the chart was too short to show the real impact with delayed oceanic thermal inertia.

Thanks for the input. I was referring to some long running discussions a while ago on RealClimate where people significantly smarter than I am referred to the 30 year ocean/atmosphere climate cycles. I logged the fact that it happens and the fact that the 90% of the energy sequestered by CO2 goes into the sea.

What I think they are talking about, mainly, is the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. which I had to go and research. It is a 30 year cycle which overlays the El/La Nina cycles making them stronger or weaker. At least that is how I understand it.

Looking at the SKS article on the thermal inertia of the oceans, it bundles that 0.6C sequestered heat into on batch and gives no estimate as to how it will come back out again. As we know the oceans give up heat in cycles and they have intervals.

If we just take the PDO as an instance, then we have a 30 year cycle for the ocean which receives the largest amount of Solar energy each year.

If we then overlay 30 year ocean cycles with 30 year carbon release cycles, and look at the overall CO2 emissions chart, ppm or otherwise..... The Arctic is in a shooting gallery with only one possible result. Very rapid and comprehensive decline of Arctic ice.

That's the point I was trying to make. Something which appears to be missing in general charting of the overall situation. I believe it is not often incorporated into a holistic approach to climate impacts because of the chaotic and variable rate at which the energy is released.

I don't believe that you can take it all together and say "This decade we will see this impact". But overall, the impact is there and the forcings get worse decade on decade.

Thanks for the discussion on it, it's helped me to focus my mind on what I was seeing at an overall level, rather than at a fine level of detail.

Kevin McKinney

"Thanks for the discussion on it, it's helped me to focus my mind on what I was seeing at an overall level, rather than at a fine level of detail."

Likewise, Neil!

R. Gates

NeilT said:

" The Arctic is in a shooting gallery with only one possible result. Very rapid and comprehensive decline of Arctic ice."

-----
Yep, all advective roads lead to Rome.

NeilT

The only time I really don't like speed.....

Themm Nunnov

comment deleted...

[Please, take it to the best Sceince Blog in the Universe. This is the Arctic Sea Ice Blog. N.]

Themm Nunnov

"Please, take it to the best Sceince Blog in the Universe."

Why?

Aren't known, observable and measured "facts" welcome here?

[Of course they're not. We're CAGW alarmists, right? We just fantasize about Arctic sea ice disappearing. Give my best to Jo Nova. I'm sure she will tell you all the ins and outs of Arctic sea ice. N.]

Neven

Okay, unfortunately I had to ban/block the second fake skeptic who already knows everything there is to know wrt AGW and Arctic sea ice loss.

The discussion he wants can be had anywhere on the internet, and has been had for a couple of million times. But as of yet hasn't prevented the demise (so far) of Arctic sea ice. And I don't have the time or energy for it, as I'm too busy with watching the ice and life in general.

I would appreciate it if my fellow CAGW alarmists would give me the chance to deal with this stuff and refrain from feeding/replying. Unless the fake skeptic talks about Arctic sea ice. Sensibly and with a willingness to learn.

Because together we do know a lot here.

Kevin McKinney

"Okay, unfortunately I had to ban/block the second fake skeptic..."

Thanks, Neven.

It's a sign of success, in a way--ASIB can't be ignored any longer, apparently. There will probably be more to follow, and there will also be a meme which complains about the 'close-minded harsh moderation policies' here.

It's worth it, though, IMO--there's enough information to process as is, without this becoming another De-Re-De-Re-De-bunk Central. (If you know what I mean by that unlovely neologism.)

Note to self: DNFTT.

Neven
It's a sign of success, in a way--ASIB can't be ignored any longer, apparently.

Hmmm, I don't know about this. I think the success can be measured by how much fake skeptics try to ignore Arctic sea ice (and by extension this blog), as though Arctic sea ice isn't a part of this planet, as if Arctic sea ice could disappear completely, but AGW still be a communist hoax. This, of course, will completely destroy their credibility, for all but the most rabid, free market fundamentalist, old, white males.

So the less fake skeptics the ASIB attracts (and it gets plenty of views as it is, without the controversy), the better a sign it is.

Kevin McKinney

Mmm, maybe. Or maybe it's a bit of both--ignoring the issue on news sites, occasional forays into Neven's Den to jump-start faltering faith?

Well, we'll see what happens. It is, of course, possible that this outbreak of the Faux is just normal 'Unnatural Variability'. ;-)

Artful Dodger

Neven/Kevin wrote:

"Okay, unfortunately I had to ban/block the second fake skeptic..."

Uh, no. It's the same denier with a new, fake Facebook account. Unfortunately for him, FB doesn't allow fake accounts.

Doh! Burned by AGW again... B|

Cheers,
Lodger

Neven
Uh, no. It's the same denier with a new, fake Facebook account.

I half suspected that, given the style. Good, so I've only blocked one fake skeptic so far. Not a bad score after three years.

jdallen_wa

I'd encourage everyone to take Neven's request to heart. Whatever we feel about intransigent ignorance, it does neither us, nor our cause, any good to excoriate it here.

More light, less heat. Respond to foolishness with fact; leave it to Neven and such other admins as are around to excise the trolls.

Kevin McKinney

Ah--still an outlier, then.

Peter Ellis

Test1

[Released 1 hour later, N.]

Pjie2

OK, that's bizarre. When I'm signed in, I can see your comment, but when I'm not signed it it only shows my my test text, and not your comment.

Trying posting with a different login.

Peter Ellis

OK, so posting with my Google account got put in the spam bin, but the Twitter account went through straight away. Now trying the Google account with a different browser...

[I had to release this one (sorry for the delay, my mom called). Do you think there's a difference between the way you log in?]

Pjie2

Last test - Twitter account on other browser.

Pjie2

OK, the Google account is blocked and the Twitter one isn't, regardless of what browser I use. Your parenthetical comment "Released 1 hour later, N." sometimes appears and sometimes doesn't. Possibly different backend servers have different cached versions of the comment before/after editing?

[I have to release it first, and then edit it. I once edited a spam comment, but when I released it, it didn't appear. N.]

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