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Seke Rob

Wonder how much extra heat our blog room is emitting. This is causing thinning of me own top-cover too.

Smiley losing all his hair

Piotr Djaków

Unfortunetaly you showed not updated graph ;)


Piotr, I thought there was something wrong. Thanks for letting me know! Fixing as we speak.

Lord Soth

As Meatloaf would say, two out of three ain't bad.


cause, I don't think we are going to get extent.

Seke Rob

As I like to babble about Global too, here a chart I do not copy / paste too often [causes me program to crash due excessive data points, couple of million). In the other thread was mentioning running averages for area, [This Chart] showing what CT displays in that long ribbon for the Arctic and this long ribbon for global. Hard to see any trend in there. Obviously, Antarctica has barely a trend (green), just hovering around the baseline, but when plotting the Arctic on top (blue), it's clear that the 2 are on a different track. The white line, for 12 month moving (365 days really), is now touchline 10.8K over the 2007 global 'low' record. I'll put some drachmoes on it, that before November, there will be a new bottom line hitting the news.

BTW, the light blue area is 2 sigma. I'll start preparing me inflatable when the white line drops outisde.

Neven, tonight's dish is calamares... the finger long sized :D

Seke Rob

Very interesting, someone in the 'Aint True-sphere" threw a list of Arctic anomalies at me which included the story on Norwegians going to Svalbard, and it being extrapolated to "if there were supertankers then, they'd have circumnavigated the Arctic without Icebreakers... hardly any ice below the 81N") Found a paper that actually debunks that story. When looking at yesterday's CT http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/NEWIMAGES/arctic.seaice.color.000.png it did strike me that Svalbard is now truly freer than free from the pack. Loads of dark purple, but look at that blue... incredible.

The alternate rendering at CT for Sep.5, 2007+2011, side by side, gives good fodder for comparing. http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=09&fd=05&fy=2007&sm=09&sd=05&sy=2011 . Reds and yellow galore on the right side.

Neven, tonight's dish is calamares... the finger long sized :D

I'll bring the Tzatziki!


RE: Comments from Seke Rob

When I get someone from the Ostrich clan banging on about the Arctic loss (which simultaneously isn't happening, is recovering and is due to natural cycles) being balanced by gains in the Antarctic, I like to show them a 3-part graphic based on CT's Global Sea Ice Area chart.

The first part runs from 1979-89, and anyone can see this spends most of the time above the X-axis , i.e. the zero anomaly line. The second part runs 1990-2000, and again, most people are prepared to admit that it is now just about even-Steven as regards time above/below the axis.

The kicker is then showing 2001-onwards, where even the most bigoted viewer is hard pushed to admit anything other than the truth. Showing the 3 sections spliced together is then pure entertainment.

For greater detail (if, say, somebody tries to argue the case for a seasonal pattern) I then use NSIDC's BIST tool to compare the hemispheres on a month-by-month basis.

Also on the Global front, there was another mini record set a few days ago. (I posted this on an earlier thread, but I can't remember which one - sorry for repeating myself.)

The first instance of a day with a combined anomaly greater than 2 million sq km was 2006, and we have had 80 so far.

The count runs as follows...

2006 4
2007 24
2008 21
2010 6
2011 25

Out of the 55 that happened pre 2011, 39 (71%) happened mid September or later, so I would expect to see 2011's total of > 2 million sq km anomalies increase further.


Seke Rob wrote..."Found a paper that actually debunks that story"

Rob, I'm writing a piece for the local magazine debunking a whole plate-load of garbage - including the old "Arctic Ice was as low then as now" canard.

Any link to extra ammunition is always welcome - although I think I'm already well into the overkill zone.

Thanks Bill F


Thanks, Bill. That's interesting.

Lucia (The Blackboard)

The trend lines are so close that the difference cannot be eyeballed on the graph
That's why I made a zoomed in graph:

(I hope that shows. If not here's the link to a larger one.)



Thanks, Lucia.

I'm curious to see if CT SIA will go even further down tomorrow, or if we're going to see an uptick.

Lucia (The Blackboard)

I would never try to indicate what will happen tomorrow, but if I were forced to bet, I'd bet this years minimum is reached.

On the graph, I indicate the level we expect if CT experiences the average loss from this day forward. It's 2.829.

I haven't done anything more to see whether other features describing ice conditions ( like current area, extent, volume ) suggest we would tend to get greater than average or lesser than average area losses. (It would be quick to do-- but I haven't done it.)

For extent the data describing general ice conditions suggests we'll get greater than average extent losses. I suppose if I run this for area, I'd likely get a similar result, but I don't actually know.

Oh-- and I should note: even when discussing extent, none of the regressors I look at for anything include predictors about upcoming weather. (Cloudiness, storminess, wind direction, speed etc. are all missing from the regression. Any effects those have appears as "noise" in my regression.

Also, the regressors don't include information that is not available as numbers. So, for example, to the extent that another reporting agency shows higher or lower values, I would suppose that information would be useful to include when guessing whether CT area is going to drop or rise. But quite a bit of interesting data are not available as numbers-- or not available over a long enough period--so I don't include those.)


Well, it is increasingly looking like the weather has some more in store for us and the Arctic sea ice. But we'll have to see if it's enough to pull SIA even further down.

Chris Biscan

The 12z GFS without a doubt, unequivocally, completely, utterly, and like a freight train will smash the Area record.

this is no surprise, the models have been showing this now for 3-4 days.

Except they continue to boil because a block gets set up and the cold air on the Western Side of the N.H. gets pushed into Southern Canada.

-2 to -10C 850s get pumped into central and southern Canada..slowly migrating East as a HP builds in NW Canada and sits there for 10 days migrating.

an SLP moves from the Bearing to the NP over 7 days while another one forms behind it..

the flow will be vigorous. 20-25Kt winds will be widespread coming out of Canda/Alaska pushing through the NW territories by day 5 slamming 2-10C 850s into the arctic.

The entire Beaufort is under 10-14C positive temp anomalies at 850mb for 5 days. the western half of the NW passage area the same as this migrates east.

the Russian side has the cold but its not very old. only -4 to -8C 850s wont do anything for the ice as 8-14C 850 positives are in the Barrents/laptev.


I wont post them all go there and animate it..

then do it for these temps as well:


the only cold air is right over the NP which wont do much but stop bottom melt and help concentrations there...might not even seal the cracks by the 20th.


this solution is even 80% right through day 8.

from a weather standpoint.

anything from a 2,600,000-2,800,000km2 area min is possible.

and the extent will drop below 4,000,000km2 on NSIDC and Bremen. Bremen might drop down to 3,800,000km2.

Jaxa will break 2007 and settle around 4,000,000km2

I am not predicting this..but this would be bad on an epic scale at this point.


Chris : Did U ever think of becoming a sport presenter?

Seke Rob

Re: BilltheillFrog | September 08, 2011 at 18:56

Bill, here's the link, rather recent in pdf:


Asked the guy to give me the link to his list and came back to sputter he had not, received in mail [received from an academic, he wrote, did not push to ask what academic]. Claimed he'd checked a few dates... not hard enough of course, so took him on the supertanker item he'd proudly highlighted. Another also likes the Greenland viking stories, comes back every few months. Shared with him that Eric the Red was chased off from "Iceland" went west, drifted south and when getting to that southern tip observed in astound: "Greennnnn.... laaaaand" and so Greenland entered into the anals as 'why else is it called Greenland' in broad-stroke. Just post a head shaking smiley, palms up.

For me, it pays to read allot and use tools as Zotero to build an in-browser library/references set to whip out.



The version I heard why it is called Greenland, Eric the Red had to convince his crew that they were going to some kind of Paradise, so it was called Greenland before they arrived, the same story goes about Wineland ( North America today), that was even better because the bars were open 24 hrs a day, remember , U needed to be convincing with them Vikings in a language they understood!!!

Lucia (The Blackboard)

Opps! I'd bet this years minimum is reached. should read "has not been reached". I anticipate things will go down a little more.


The history of the viking also gives answers to the fact that the area north of Norway was a unwelcome place, probably because of ice, but there is nothing in Sagas or history that proves the went up there, and the Vikings were not afraid anything but I believe the Polar Seas at that time (700 - 1100) were toooooo exciting even for the Vikings!

Kevin McKinney

Hey, it could be worse--we could be hearing about the 13th-century (?) Chinese super-junks transiting the NWP again.

Daniel Bailey

@ Kevin

    "Chinese super-junks transiting the NWP again"
Twice was enough...

Chris Reynolds

In Wang et al 2009 they examine the correlation between new records in sea ice and the Arctic Dipole (AD).

The years 1995, 1999, 2002, 2005, 2007 are all new record lows, either in extent or area, see here. Each of those years has a positive AD index, all except 2002 have an index over 0.6 .

Now it's possible that there have been AD patterns 'lurking' in the weather of 2011. Patterns that only come out under empirical orthogonal analysis. But unless I've not been noticing 2011 doesn't seem to have been a particularly strong +ve AD year.

Which makes this finding that 2011 is a record year odd.

We really need an AD index, like the AO/NAO/PNA type indices that NOAA provide.

Bob Wallace

As volume drops we need less 'unusual' events to drive a new record. We're doing it this year apparently without a strong positive AD.

Keep this up and in a couple more years we'll post newer records even in a cool year.

I'd like to see some images from 88 to 90 North. The stuff that the Healy has been posting from up to 88 has shown some marginal ice. I'd like to know if the ice is rotten all the way through or if we've still got a solid core to go.

Kevin O'Neill

Chris R. says:
We really need an AD index, like the AO/NAO/PNA type indices that NOAA provide.

Yes, we do need an arctic dipole index.

Chris, since I last visited your blog I have opened up the PIOMAS volume data. I even updated it thru day 243. I haven't done much other than totals, averages, and stdevs - but is there much of a correlation between volume loss and the AD? 1993,98,08,09,10, and 2011 have the largest volume losses - I only see one of those years on your list. Though 2007, 1999 and 1995 would be next in line and they are on the list.


Seke Rob - thanks for the link.

Regarding Arctic fantasies from the Ostrich tribe, I think the best one (but there are many candidates) I have heard concerned the North West Passage.

One of these so-called sceptics decided to harangue me down the pub a few months ago with the interesting claim that the NWP had first been navigated in the 15th Century by the English explorer/adventurer Martin Frobisher.

In return, I pointed out that this would be extremely interesting news to at least four entirely disparate groups of people.

The first surprised group would of course be the entire population of Norway (and possibly all of the Scandinavian peoples) who would have learned at primary school about Roald Amundsen's epic 1903-06 journey of discovery in the Gjoa.

The second group would contain everyone interested in Polar exploration.

The third group would be those historians and/or biographers with an interest in the times of Queen Elisabeth I. Certainly some of these people would be aware than Frobisher had made three attempts at the NWP, and did manage to get a Bay named after him. (Even more famously, he had a character - Buck Frobisher, played by Leslie Nielsen - named after him in the series Due South.)

However, the group of people most astonished by the claim that Frobisher traversed the NWP in the 15th Century has got to be the Theoretical Physicists. Why? Well, as he wasn't even born until the 16th Century (sometime about 1535 - there is some debate about the exact date) he must have had one hell of a ship in order to navigate the NWP during the previous Century.

For people who like to style themselves as sceptics (or skeptics) little inconvenient tasks such as bothering to apply any sort of sanity filter just seems to be too much trouble.


Ah yes, the famous super-junks...

China had quite the advanced trade fleet, better ships and healthier sailors than what the Spanish and Portuguese could offer a century later. I think they had trade posts up to today's Mosambique. But before they could go around the Cape of Good Hope, the Emperor died, and his successor decided that the world outside of China shouldn't matter, and ordered the fleet to come home.

What an idiot!


and ordered the fleet to come home

Through the Northwest Passage or through the Northern Sea Route (or both)?

Steve Bloom

Right over the Pole! They drilled holes in the bottom so the rowers could use skates instead. :)

Kevin O'Neill

Right over the Pole! They drilled holes in the bottom so the rowers could use skates instead. :)

Now that sounds like material for a Monty Python movie/sketch ....

Steve Bloom

It's OK, Kevin, but does it rise to the heights occupied by Across the Andes by Frog?

Oh, almost forgot to mention, when the Chinese encountered snow-covered ice they were able to switch to skis operated by each rower manipulating a pair of poles through the holes. This was the first known instance of the Arctic Dipole.

(I'm trying to regain my sense of humor in the aftermath of yet another George Will "global cooling" column.)

Kevin O'Neill

(I'm trying to regain my sense of humor in the aftermath of yet another George Will "global cooling" column.)

My condolences. Recovery time after a George Will exposure can be lengthy. I assume then that the Chinese also suffered from the earliest known cases of bipolar disorder - the inability to remember that the Arctic is mainly sea ice and the Antarctic land ice?

r w Langford

If you want to understand deniers and skeptics a quick read of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of crowds by Charles Mackay or The Demon Haunted world by Carl Sagan. Both give all the evidence needed to understand why people believe what they do. It still doesn't explain politicians though.

Artful Dodger

Hi folks,

Here is a factoid for those who may be so inclined to think that -1,946 km² is not much of a new SIA record.

Adelaide, Australia:
Population: (2010) 1.2 Million
Area: 1826.9 km²

Cheers ;^)

Bob Wallace

Politicians are easy to explain.

If you want to get elected in order to work on your agenda, you figure out a story that will appeal to enough people to get you elected.

And once in office you follow your agenda as much as you think you can without getting caught violating the story you told.

Remko Kampen

The margin of the new record is so small that denialists will hail it as 'the total recovery of Arctic sea ice'.

H Barnard


But that's because their approach to such things as facts is somewhat along these lines:



I'm curious to see if CT SIA will go even further down tomorrow, or if we're going to see an uptick.

Uptick of approximately 37K: 2.9451361


Up and down the rollercoaster. We are living interesting times!

Seke Rob

Sea ice low, and that what lies around the Arctic influencing: There was actually on Greenland/Northern Territories half a million sqkm of fresh snow cover in last few weeks, not anomalous though, but it's there. Just did a seasonal snow for the summer, the one Rutgers is not doing [anymore], no response to email, so flanged one up from their data. Set a new [marginal]record too by having 3.614 million sqkm left in this June-August quarter. [See Chart] Going from 7 million sqkm land cover or so in snow to 3.5 is quite impacting to the coastal ice I'd venture to think. See this page for other seasonal snow charts by Rutgers. The question I keep repeating [to those of the Ain't True department]: If it's UHIs and airport tarmacs distorting the thermometer readings, why is that additional winter snow not lasting?

Global CT dropped 122K, and again nearly matching the 2010 low. [See Chart] 'Just' 872K sqkm less than same day in 2007.

Kevin McKinney

Hilarious, H Barnard.

I thought you might be going here:


Not as funny, but still 'a propos.'

"Going from 7 million sqkm land cover or so in snow to 3.5 is quite impacting. . ."

No doubt. I was highlighting some of the volume milestones earlier, referring to L. Hamilton's estimable bar graph of same. 4.3K km3 now--the highest minimum was also the first, back in 1979.

How many of us could guess the value without looking it up?

16.9K, friends and neighbors.

Down 75% in one human generation. "Highly impacting," too, I rather think, especially as the trend goes forward. Too bad we still don't know how, in any detail.

"Let's just push the red button and see what happens!"


Remko Kampen

H Barnard, well, if I ever saw a reality show :)

Chris Reynolds

Kevin O'Neill,

Lacking a timeseries of the AD I've not had a chance to look at a PIOMAS volume/AD correlation. One of the things that puzzles me about the recent spring crashes in volume is that there doesn't seem to be a specific common weather pattern: see the comments here. However I agree that the PIOMAS losses don't seem to have much a correlation with what I know of the AD's behaviour.

Using Wang 2009's list - comments on PIOMAS volume:

1995 - massive (-3.5M km^3) loss from January to June.
1999 - Loss in July/August - unremarkable.
2002 - Flat-line (roughly).
2005 - Again a flat-line.
2007 - Dip through the summer after massive (-2M km^3) and rapid loss in July, then suggestion of a recovery into 2008

So I agree Wang's list doesn't have much relationship to volume. However the minimum is in a sense a snap-shot, being the outcome of preconditioning from the season and weather in the run up to minimum. Wang et al find that winter-spring AD doesn't have much of an impact, just AD in the summer. So perhaps looking to the list of record extent is the wrong thing to examine. I suspect that the impact of the AD will have a more immediate impact on volume anomalies than just on a season-by-season basis, one that may come out in a daily analysis. Which brings us back to needing an AD index.

Remko Kampen,

Dragonfly Records! - you have a good taste in music! :)


Elsewhere Chris brought up the hot spots off NE greenland http://polar.ncep.noaa.gov/sst/ophi/color_anomaly_NPS_ophi0.png which appear to be situated over the area the arctic basin sea floor river drains to the south. I'm guessing that the warm layer is being 'sucked down the plughole' it seems to reappear remixed to the south. How saline are those two areas, how extensive is that[sub surface] layer of warm water, where does that water flow from are any isotopic tests done anywhere that could identify it?
I'm guessing that somehow it's coming round the top of greenland.


Achtung/Important info from Bremen Uni:


Regards espen

Remko Kampen

D 20:02, http://www.whoi.edu/denmarkstrait/r-v-knorr
A team including some Dutch people, http://www.knmi.nl/cms/content/100393/oceaanexpeditie_tussen_ijsland_en_groenland , put some instruments that could make relevant measurements. Results only in next year when they collect the buoys.

Chris R 19:35, thanks :) Also at some point in life I wanted to become an Entomologist, dragonfly is one of my favourite species. Hugest lean & mean airpower in the animal kingdom :)

Seke Rob

In that respect, the Polarstern last month did fish out a set of measurement data packs from the Arctic that had been down there for 2 years. Pretty awesome that the power-packs lasted that long in that near freezing cold water.

Seke Rob

Not done yet, the shrink, with a 17K reduction. CT Arctic data below from 6th through 8th brings the YTD average anomaly to -1,228 million square km for first 251 days of 2011, compared to a 2007 YTD of -1,158.

6-Sep-2011 249 2011,6823 -1,8160963 2,9174929 4,7335892
7-Sep-2011 250 2011,6849 -1,7806035 2,9451361 4,7257395
8-Sep-2011 251 2011,6876 -1,7921722 2,9283357 4,7205076

(decimal comma)

CT Global anomaly increased by 89K to -2,141 million km square. On 12 months rolling just 7.7K over the minimum 12 month record set in 2007. And for 8th, the globe was 985K down on 2007.

Seke Rob

Part 2 (Could not figure out why post continued to go to black hole:

Here all years for the 8th since 2005:

2005 (Anom: +0.057) The What's Going On? Year
2006 (Anom: +0.143) The This Does NOT Look Right? Year
2007 (Anom: -1.156) The Sign On The Wall Year
2008 (Anom: -1.968) The Eyes Wide Shut Year
2009 (Anom: -0.962) The Lullaby Baby Recovery Year
2010 (Anom: -1.672) The It's A Travesty, Record Heat Year
2011 (Anom: -2.141) The What Record Is Not Broken Year


CT is now 2.905

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