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Aaron Lewis

Regarding Ian Eisenman,
Non linear feedback systems almost always have tipping points. See the early work of Ed Demming on industrial statistics. This has been very well validated by computer models of industrial systems.

The problem with Arctic ice is estimating what "abrupt" means. On the other hand, once the ice has tipped (gone out of control in Demming's terminology) it is not going back.

A PDF of Eisenman's paper is at http://eisenman.ucsd.edu/papers/Wagner-Eisenman-2015b.pdf

I think his problem is that his noise function needs to simulate noise from El Nino and PDO cycles.


The most amazing now event is of course the Beaufort Gyre persistent Anticyclone, perhaps going on 10 weeks, I lost count, picked up lots of data though, just like 2008 its been sunny every day except for one or two near huge cyclone encroachment. I deal with this now event and its future course :


Yvan Dutil

Dr. Rösel should go either to croudfunding (Experiment like ) or croudsourcing (Zooniverse like). Her research project is well suites for this type of approach.


Definitely, Yvan. The last word about this hasn't been said yet.

By the way, tomorrow a great workshop starts with a huge amount of interesting presentations: Polar Prediction Workshop.

The presentations are going to be streamed and the stream will be available here.

Things start tomorrow at 9:00am EDT, which is 15:00 o'clock CET, I believe.

I hope to catch some of those presentations. Nice follow-up to the stuff I saw at EGU.


Love your work Neven. I've been enjoying it, and the comments, for a while now. Be sure to let me know when Dr. Rösel has the crowdfunding going - seriously, I created an account just to say this...


Well, Eisenman's model is getting it's big ENSO kick. I would not be surprised if this El Niño is a tipping point for the northern hemisphere's climate but I don't think we have a good enough systems model to make a good prediction. To model what's happening you need to go from the deep ocean where deepwater forms to the 10mb level of the stratosphere where upward propagating waves trigger sudden stratospheric warmings. It's all linked together in non-linear ways I have trouble visualizing. And I'm just talking about what has been happening this year.

Wayne, according to the GFS the big high is going to slam the Canadian Arctic in the next 2 weeks. The big melt is going to get worse as above freezing temperatures and offshore winds hit some of the thickest ice in the Arctic.

This is going to be a year to remember.


Hi D,

Is like living in the desert except the sand is frozen water, never ending blue skies, worse than 2008. Surface temperatures are more than 7 C above average, soon to be 12 C above. This is not good for Greenland. Sea ice is colder than this progression in surface temperatures, it lags behind, being a heat sink during the day and a big mirage maker during the midnight sun. There is some fog, but it is fleeting, the air is too dry by a few percentage points, just enough to make the fog vanish.


Undoubtly due to global warming and an over heated winter in Canada & Alaska:

The 80.000 inhabitants of Fort McMurray [province of Alberta - Canada] had to be evacuated .

Rob Dekker

Please remember that Fort McMurray is the capital of the environmentally so destructive Canadian Tar Sand Industry.

Somehow I find it ironic, that the capital of Tar Sands is being destroyed by wild fires spurred by global warming...

Sort of like Nature strikes back, sort of thing....

Colorado Bob

Rob Dekker

And Houston, the "Energy Capital of the World" with a foot of rain just the week before.

Fort McMurray, Alberta
Almanac for Yesterday
Actual Average * Record
High 89 °F 52 °F 77 °F (2006)
Low 45 °F 28 °F 17 °F (2002)


Artful Dodger

Regarding Fort McMurray wildfires:

88,000 people have been displaced. Many have no homes to return to. 1,600 homes and other structures have been destroyed as of Noon Thursday (local time).

BMO (one of the largest Charter Banks in Canada) initial estimate of Insurance claims is $9 Billion.

This represents over 35 years worth of civic development up in smoke.

Ironically, oil production facilities North of Fort McMurray were unaffected by the fires. It's just the people that lost everything.

No doubt Workers will be bussed in from refugee centres in the South when oil production resumes.

Gaze upon the stark face of global corporatism: privitize profit and publicize (climate) risk.

Okay, now we should "Feel the Bern". But Investment Bankers and the 1% howl incessently about their "stranded assests".




Thanks for advocating for observation-based melt pond research, Neven. We really need that early-warning system. I like Yvan Dutil's suggestion of crowdfunding, but am not sure there's sufficient interest outside this and other like-minded communities. Maybe the wealthy homeowners of Miami Beach and Mumbai will kick in?

Rob Dekker

In my past projections of Arctic Sea Ice for September, I used snow cover data from Rutgers, and most importantly, NSIDC data for ice-extent and ice-area.

Now with the F17 trouble, NSIDC is not issuing any area and extent numbers, which make accurate projections, much harder to do.
In fact, without area and extent numbers that have a long term calibration history, predictions are baseless.

So I have a request :
Does anyone know where I can get my hands on any (AMSR2 or other) data of ice extent and area (or concentration) that has an as long as possible history ?

Something that could replace NSIDC's area and extent data ?

Rob Dekker

And since Dr. Slater has been working on similar projections using ice concentration as a predictor from Sept. minima, does anyone know if Dr. Slater is still doing his projection work this year, given the F17 satellite issues ?

Artful Dodger

Hi Rob,

The AMSR/2

Artful Dodger

[pardon the interruption] The AMSR/2 raw data is multi-GB per day, and is not easily accessible w/o complex processing. I suggest that you discuss your research objectives with Wipneus, who already has a plastic straw sipping from the fire hose of data. ;^)

Regarding F17 data, NSIDC put out this Press Release 2 days ago:

Due to the compromised data integrity with the DMSP F17 vertically polarized 37 GHz channel (37V) of the Special Sensor Microwave Imager and Sounder (SSMIS), which is a primary channel used for sea ice development, NSIDC is halting production of the Near-Real-Time DMSP SSMIS Daily Polar Gridded Sea Ice Concentrations F17 data and switching over to the F18 satellite, starting with 1 April 2016 data. However, NSIDC is still working on the calibration of the F18 data so temporarily the F18 data will be uncalibrated and using F17 tie points.


Rob Dekker

Neven, on your graph page, you list this wonderful (daily) northern hemisphere snow cover graph from star.nesdis.noaa.gov.
However, do you know if they present that NH snowcover data in a tabular form somewhere ?
Somehow, I only seem to be able to get some graphs, but no numerical data on snow cover.

Rob Dekker

Thanks Lodger,
Yes, I'd love to connect with Wipneus, regarding AMSR2 concentration data.

Regarding NSIDC and the F17 issues, thanks for the update. I hope they can re-calibrate to F18 well before the 2016 melting season gets on its way. It's going to be an epic melting season, and NSIDC's data is desperately needed to provide some calibrated historical perspective, to say the least....


Sorry, Rob, don't know!

I'm going to be off for a week, but will probably/hopefully be able to connect to the Internet (and post the PIOMAS update).

Rob Dekker

Some good news : NSIDC resumed their ice-extent reporting graph using F18 data:

with the following notes :

NSIDC has obtained data from the DMSP F-18 satellite and is in the process of intercalibrating the F-18 data with F-17 data. Intercalibration addresses differences between the series of sensors, in order to provide a long-term, consistent sea ice record. While this work continues, we are displaying the uncalibrated F-18 data in the daily extent image. The daily time series graph shows F-17 data through March 31, and F-18 data from April 1 forward. Initial evaluation of the uncalibrated F-18 data indicates reasonable agreement with F-17, but the data should be considered provisional and quantitative comparisons with other data should not be done at this time.

Because these are provisional data, the Sea Ice Index has not been updated and continues to display only F-17 data through March 31. We expect to make the F-18 data available in Charctic soon.

Looks like they are getting back on track !

Rob Dekker

Regarding Dr. Slater's projections, his 2015 projection page here :

The 2015 Melt Season is over; come back in 2016!

It's 2016 now.

And since Dr. Slater was spot-on with his 2015 projection (4.55+/-0.35 million square kilometers)
we are REALLY interest in his 2016 projections...

Rob Dekker

Dr. Slater updated his site with the following note :

Due to SSMI sensor issues this forecast is suspened until data streams resume

Which confirms what we already suspected : That Dr. Slater's method (just like many other ice projector methods, including my own) relies on the NSIDC data which is currently hampered by the F-17 trouble.

NSIDC is working hard to resolve that issue (by switching to F-18) and we are looking forward to a resumption of Dr. Slater's insightful projection method once that transition is complete.

Rob Dekker

Andrew Slater's site is up and running (hat tip to EgalSust and MikeAinOz at the forum).


The projections are impressive and scary :
For starters, Dr. Slater projects 7.42 M km^2 by July 15. This is while 2012 at that date was at about 8 M km^2. So he projects that 2016 NOT show any significant 'stall' and will maintain its lead over 2012 (by some 600 k km^2) at least until halfway July.

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