Santa Claus was worried that his home would soon disappear (it won't, it's safe in Walmart for the time being) and decided to look for information on Arctic sea ice. After all, the best thing you can do when fearing something, is try to understand it.
Santa read and thought and read some more for a couple of days, and concluded that one of the best sources of information on the current and near future state of Arctic sea ice was provided by a computer model named PIOMAS that was developed and continuously improved by the good people of the Polar Science Center at the University of Washington.
But this was not all. Santa also saw that many amateurs, or citizen scientists, took PIOMAS data and did all kinds of things with it to visualise the sea ice loss or come up with theories to explain and predict sea ice behaviour. Opening PIOMAS' box led Santa to all kinds of goodies and wonderful presents.
Take for instance blogger Chris Reynolds. Chris is using PIOMAS gridded data that he breaks down into regions (like the ones Cryosphere Today uses, see image on the right) to get an idea of how sea ice thickness has progressed in all parts of the Arctic, not just as a whole.
To quote from one his latest blog posts on Dosbat:
So within the Arctic the transition to a seasonally sea ice free state has already occurred in the peripheral seas. This means that the peripheral seas of the Arctic Ocean are now behaving more like the peripheral seas of the PIOMAS domain (first three graphics) than in previous decades. However as this year shows, and possibly as result of the volume pulse of this year, also next year, this seasonally sea ice free state is not yet wholly entrenched. But what of the Central Arctic region? In order for the whole Arctic Ocean to transition to a seasonally sea ice free state the central Arctic must show similar behaviour to the peripheral seas.