Sea ice again

Just a quick note prompted by the comments: we’ve slipped below 2008 and are heading below 2006. A long way short of 2007 at the moment. Still all to play for.

[Update: as PH points out, 2009 is now not exciting at all, having rejoined “the pack”, albeit at the bottom edge. 2007 still looks very much like an outlier. Meanwhile, the July ARCUS report is out. Nothing very exciting there I think. I notice that they still persist in nonsense like “All estimates are well below the 1979-2007 September climatological mean value of 6.7 million square kilometers” – this is nonsense not because it is wrong, but because it is the bleedin’ obvious. No-one believes a return to the long-term average is going to happen. The correct “null hypothesis” is a return to the 1979-2007 (or 6) *trend* -W]

22 thoughts on “Sea ice again”

  1. I still think we’re going to repeat 2008 (or maybe not quite that low) but it’s definitely all to play for, all in the weather. 2007 is less than a week ahead, and there’s a whole lot of frappuccino in the central arctic ocean. Have you seen this?


  2. We slipped below 2008 on 5th July and 2006 yesterday. Only 2007 to beat now, and if the current 7 day trend holds this will happen within 4 weeks, well before the minimum.

    Cheers, Alastair.


  3. Also a reminder, my guess was “closer to 2008 than to 2007 or 2005”. I make that to be 4.67 million km^2 (+/- 0.2 km^2). That’s lower than the two guesses above, but likely will also turn out too high.


  4. Hi, again, Rebecca, I’m so glad to read not only this blog entry, but the article in Slate. I was appalled when this gene patenting began with .


  5. Interesting to note that 2009 and 2005 are back to tied:

    8 4 2009 6772188
    8 4 2005 6776719

    Almost tied, if you prefer, but I doubt if the measurement of sea ice extent is accurate to more than three decimal places.


  6. Nobody can predict what the ice will do any better than they can predict the wind and currents more than a week or so out – can’t be done. Unless I am mistaken, the sea ice is largely driven by wind and currents, as this is not a solid icecube from which to relate temp and cloud cover to ice melting. >15% ice cover per unit area is considered solid!

    Please review this daily update of the last 8 years

    Additonally, please review the arctic temps for the last 50 years or so

    Oh, can someone please direct me to the sattelite records for the last 100 years or so? I am really anxious to see the sea ice extent and view how the arctic ice never melted at all in the summer as the AGW affecionados would have us believe. What? no satellite record? Well, I guess I will just take everyones word for it that the arctic ice was fine until 1979 and a 20 year average is gospel.


  7. #13 John,

    Your first link is the same one we’ve been looking at to compare 2009 to previous years. Right now, 2009 looks to be tracking 2005, which will make my guess (and, yes, it was a guess) too low.

    The second link appears to show that recent winters were significantly warmer than average, while summers vary much less from the average, at least in that particular data set.

    AFAIK, that’s perfectly in accord with AGW. So I’m not clear what point you were trying to make with that link.


  8. The post of August 14, 2009 4:26pm is either a linkspammer or a bot. The URL behind the signature was on Google’s list of sites dangerous to click (virus/trojan installers) in the past.

    [Should be gone now. Dunno if WP can be setup to reject such -W]


  9. There’s a difference worth noting this year that may not show up in the extent/area/percentage:

    Hat tips to to H.E. Taylor:

    Who led me to:

    Which features:

    “In the central part of the passage where the northern and southern routes merge amid narrowings around Prince of Wales Island, the CIS has observed “greater than normal concentrations of thicker, multi-year ice. This is the result of an increased flow of older ice from the Beaufort Sea into the Canadian Arctic archipelago last year.”

    The result, the agency said, is that ice conditions “are delaying any potential navigability of the Northwest Passage this year. This is opposite to what Environment Canada observed in the last week of July in 2007 and 2008.”

    While Canada’s trans-Arctic sea route remains clogged with ice, the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center is predicting another near-record meltdown by the end of this year’s summer thaw….”


  10. hmmm — a bit different output:

    Anyone seen a chart that splits out first-year vs. multi-year ice in the same way?

    If you look at their page they have a slideshow comparing first- and multi-year ice from 2001-2008 that gave me pause.
    Caption is:

    “The above animation shows the ice extent in the middle of February for the period 2000-2008. Grey areas indicate the extent of the relative thin winter ice, and white area indicate the extent of the thicker multi year ice. The animation is based on QuikSCAT satellite data.”

    The loss in multi-year ice really stands out in that presentation.


  11. Yes, that second link is what I was thinking of; have you seen that information on an annual chart — like the ones we see for each year’s total, but showing how much 1-year ice there is year over year; how much 2-year ice there is year over year?

    Just thinking, what’s really stunning is the loss of old ice.

    But the amount of fog and dazzle just keeps going up, e.g.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s