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Neven, I found your reply #3 most interesting!!


Also, I think it fair to say that Daily Albedo in the High Arctic (Anomaly) is scaring me.

(I think I need another day off...)


Dahr Jamel participates in a number of videos that may be of interest to some of you. I leave you with just one link; these videos are readily available on Youtube. Thank you Neven for this very informative resource.

Robert S

It would be interesting to know how much the remaining ice is being melted from below. I'm seeing data indicating that a lot of ocean heat is coming in from the Pacific side...


According to these guys there seems to be a big cyclone coming in 4-5 days time, and such a short time frame makes for a reliable weather forecast.



DMI agrees with you, Robert S.



Could you please share your data with us?


Definitely some warm Pacific flow bringing additional energy for melting into the Arctic. Still a footrace with 2012 to the record September low IMO as we have the anniversary of GAC 2012 just a few weeks out.



The Slater 50 day forecast seems to have stopped heading downwards, yet the forecast for September 7 is for under 4 million... and it seems to have settled on that number for a few days heading neither up or down!


Favorable melt and export condition increase probability of 2019 eclipsing 2012 by the September low.



The Slater forecast has retreated it's expectations to 4.11 for September 11.

Robert S

The striking thing to me about the 2012-2019 comparison is the reduction in larger floes within the ice. 2012 had more open water in many areas, but within that open water were large relatively strong floes of multi-year ice. But 2012 and the following years have gradually reduced that component of the ice. Now even in areas with relatively continuous ice, it seems to be largely "rubble", except where recent releases of fast ice have occurred.


Robert S, what are you saying?

Doc Snow

Still waiting for JAXA to update, but the Bremen graph shows this year holding or even widening its lead over 2012.

People--even the NSIDC--have been talking about how there was a "small chance" of a new record this year, based on extrapolating from the current status using various historic trajectories. Most of them are insufficient to get to record territory, hence the 'small chance' idea.

But there's no reason to think that historic trajectories fully define what is possible in 2019, right? The trajectory this year could perfectly well turn out to *exceed* the 2012 'decline-from-this-date', after all.

Conversely, it may be that for reasons we don't fully grasp but can nevertheless lump together under Neven's heading of "melting momentum", some of those historic trajectories should have much smaller probabilities attached to them.

Not claiming to have any but a very cloudy crystal ball here, but FWIW, I'm regarding that 'small chance' as perhaps not being so small as people think.

Robert S

AJbT: There appears to have been a state change in ice conditions - significant (>10 km in longest axis) coherent floes are less frequent - the ice is more composed of broken bits, which give more edge and water openings between them - more opportunities for melt.




* The Abysmal Belmont Lake Effect (TABLE)

A new and improved acronym replacing TBLE... The Belmont Lake Effect.

AJbT... kindling indeed !!!
Robert S. ... the state change isn't quite complete but I do believe as you stated that it's getting quite close. Phase changes happen in an eye blink and while it might not be this year, who knows? The Arctic is full of surprises.


Robert S.,

It’s worse and even more complicated than just the simple aspect of having more exposed edges. The breakup into what amounts to icebergs stuck together now offers several new modes of attack.

The thinner sections between these is more prone to fracture and melt. This allows much easier breakup from tidal and wave action.

The thinner ice also allows light and heat to penetrate into the insulated ocean beneath the ice more easily.

There has been considerable discussion in the forum about the impacts of open ocean on heat radiation. That also then leads to increased evaporation, higher humidities and an increased propensity for cloud formation as the atmosphere attempts to cool through radiative losses. The increased moisture in the air strongly acts to blanket the outward IR flux limiting that somewhat.

The heat balance is extremely complex.

The thinner ice leads far more easily to rapid shattering of the sheet under any stress. That includes not just tidal and wave stress, but also wind stress and movement of the whole sheet itself as ocean currents and wind compete to turn, twist and move the sheet. All of these work together to stress the sheet, fracture it and disperse it.

That in turn leads to greater differential between ice area and ice extent, which may falsely suggest a lesser degree of loss of ice based on the 15% criteria. This differential will get worse as the sheet enters terminal decay.

All the while, the thinning of the ice makes the surface conditions ever more fragile.

The first year ice has a significant amount of salt incorporated into the ice. It is both more plastic and more prone to sudden melting. That adds yet an additional layer to the complexity.

And as wind, wave and ocean currents become more dominant, mixing with depth in the waters under and near the ice creates warmer more saline conditions that further increase ice melt and decrease ice formation. In a completely mixed condition, ice may not easily form.

Lastly, it has been amazing to watch this year as large multi year ice plates have broken off Greenland and Ellesmere, then encountered hard rock in the Nares Strait, or land on northern Greenland. When this happened, the crystalline nature of the multi year ice became quite apparent as the large sheets split from the contact point across the ice plates like a diamond cutter tapping a fracture plane in a diamond.


Doc Snow

Will this be the day for which the crashing extent back in 2012 overtakes this year's lead? Or will the recent incursion of heat into the Canadian Arctic be sufficient to create a 'surge' in melt that will keep 2019 ahead?

Inquiring minds...

Off to the Reanalyzer to see what light reanalysis modeling can shed on this question!

Andy Lee Robinson

PIOMAS: New record minimum for July. Looks like a new Sept minimum is within reach.

"#Arctic sea ice volume broke another record minimum for July with an average of 8,808 km³. That's less than *half* of what it was just 20 years ago."

Elisee Reclus

Listen to us. Read between the lines.

Have you noticed how we all seem to be anticipating the collapse of the Arctic ice with barely-disguised glee? No, I'm not being critical, I catch myself doing it all the time, too. We want to have the satisfaction of rubbing the denialists' nose into the truth, that they were wrong and we were right. We are all hoping for the final "Aha! I told you so!"

The world may be going straight to hell, but we got it right, and they have been exposed for the cynical opportunist frauds they really are. Its about the only comfort we can still derive from this tragedy.

No matter how this all turns out in the end, we have all been damaged profoundly by this.



You mistake terror and awe for schadenfreude and glee. Humans are not at all good at maintaining an ongoing state of terror. In time it morphs into a resigned version that is harder to read. In truth this is a trait we share with other primates. Chimpanzees in particular exhibit a gruesome “smile” that isn’t a smile at all, but to those unfamiliar with it is often mistaken for a smile.

I think you make the same mistake here.

We all of us are terrified and weary. Tragedy is unfolding before us. We are both powerless to stop it, and unable to look away, thinking, feeling, believing that there must be something we can do. And holding out vain hope that somehow, someway that the next terrible terrifying step off the cliff into the very edge of oblivion will be the one that will finally awakens our sleeping and ignorant brethren to the peril we all face, and which can only be ameliorated by massive concerted action by every human alive on earth - - all working together toward one goal with every ounce of effort, strength and wisdom that we have.

But then too, many of us are stark realists. We see that not only is that an unlikely outcome, but rather an outcome we can almost certainly reject. We are left then trying to figure out if there is anything at all that we can accomplish that has any meaning at all, or whether we are now just passive observers at the beginning of the end of the world as we’ve known it.

There is no happiness or glee in that. There is only tragedy and sadness at all that we are about to lose.


Andy Lee Robinson

Both good comments. Certainly gives me no pleasure to announce this information.
It does disappoint me that people aren't getting the message even though I tried to make it easy to digest.
Like deer in the headlights, with no idea of what's coming.

Doc Snow

Personally, I have some hope that people are starting to rouse from their climate slumber, and hope further that some more shocks--such as a new ASI low extent--will help keep that process going. In that sense, I'm 'cheering' for the record. On the other hand, I tremble a bit for the physical consequences--not fully knowable in advance, perhaps, but we have enough idea to know that they won't be good.

Stepping back to the larger issue, on the whole, I'd rather be wrong than right about climate. It would be a relief that would far outweigh the embarrassment of having proselytized for a mistake. But I don't see much chance of that as I look around these days.

So with all this hanging--and hanging--and hangin--over all our heads, please forgive me if I take a little distance and treat this as a horse race, sometimes. It doesn't mean I don't care.

Robert S

Personally I am virtually certain that we will see significant ecological and cultural impacts from GHG emissions, although we may be able to avoid the worst of them. There is a part of me that, regarding them as inevitable, wants to see them sooner rather than later, not only because it may stimulate people to avoid the worst, but also unfortunately because I'm scientifically curious about how it all will play out. While I'm already seeing significant ecological change locally, I wish I could see what the coming state will look like. Given how dire this may be for many people, I know that my curiosity is rather ghoulish, but the science is fascinating!

In the meantime, this year continues to demonstrate the old adage that there are many ways to arrive at the same end. Great Arctic Cyclone versus Great European Heatwave...


How great is this alleged, "European Heatwave"?


From the forum:

Robert S

AJbT: Great enough to cause some pretty intense melt in Greenland and the Arctic north of Greenland over the past few days...

Doc Snow

So, the 6th turned out to be the day, with 2012 edging past 2019, 5.49 to 5.51 million km2--effectively, neck and neck. The 2012 trajectory will be hard to match from here, but nothing's impossible. And the outlook calls for a pretty toasty Arctic, relatively speaking, over the next few days at least.



NSIDC still has 2019 (5.511 million square km) leading 2012 (5.632) for ice extent, though 2012 may overtake 2019 in the next few days. If it doesn’t, they are likely to stay together through the minimum.

The ice condition in the western and Siberian sectors is pure trash resulting in wider than usual variation in the assessment of both extent and area for each of the different groups assessing it.

I think we can all agree, the ice is in terrible condition. Despite that, this will not be the year of the great dive below one million square km.


Doc Snow

Thanks for that, and agreed. I think we've known for a while that this wouldn't be, as you say, "the year of the great dive."

It may still be the year of a new record, though, and certainly it demonstrates to anyone connected in the slightest to reality that there's been no "recovery"--though of course those unconnected to reality will continue to push that claim, possibly even *after* 'the great dive.'

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