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Arctic sea ice set to hit record low

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  • Arctic sea ice set to hit record low


    21 August 2012

    Arctic sea ice looks set to hit a record low by the end of the month, according to satellite data. Scientists at the US National Snow and Ice Data Center said data showed that the sea ice extent was tracking below the previous record low, set in 2007. Latest figures show that on 13 August ice extent was 483,000 sq km (186,000 sq miles) below the previous record low for the same date five years ago. The ice is expected to continue melting until mid- to late September. "A new daily record... would be likely by the end of August," the centre's lead scientist, Ted Scambos, told Reuters. "Chances are it will cross the previous record while we are still in ice retreat."

    Arctic sea ice extent on 19 August 2012 (orange line shows the 1979-2000 median)

    Responding to the latest update, Prof Seymour Laxon, professor of climate physics at University College London, said that he was not surprised that 2012 was set to deliver a record minimum. "We got very close to a record minimum last year," he told BBC News. Prof Laxon added that this year's projected record minimum could result in a change in projections of when the Arctic would be sea ice-free during summer months. "The previous [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] report (published in 2007) stated that the likely date for an ice-free Arctic in the summer - and definitions for this vary a bit - was 2100," he explained. "When we had the 2007 minimum, that date was brought forward to 2030-2040. "The fact that we look set to get another record ice minimum in such a short space of time means that the modellers may once again need to go and look at what their projections are telling them."
    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts."— Bertrand Russell

  • #2
    It's not happening, all in your imaginaion. Report plus graphs soon to follow.
    "Ask not what your country can do for you"

    Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

    you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.


    • #3
      A summer storm in the Arctic

      August 14, 2012

      Arctic sea ice extent during the first two weeks of August continued to track below 2007 record low daily ice extents. As of August 13, ice extent was already among the four lowest summer minimum extents in the satellite record, with about five weeks still remaining in the melt season. Sea ice extent dropped rapidly between August 4 and August 8. While this drop coincided with an intense storm over the central Arctic Ocean, it is unclear if the storm prompted the rapid ice loss. Overall, weather patterns in the Arctic Ocean through the summer of 2012 have been a mixed bag, with no consistent pattern.


      The Great Arctic Cyclone of 2012


      Low pressure systems over the Arctic Ocean tend to cause the ice to diverge or spread out and cover a larger area. These storms often bring cool conditions and even snowfall. In contrast, high pressure systems over the Arctic cause the sea ice to converge. Summers dominated by low pressure systems over the central Arctic Ocean tend to end up with greater ice extent than summers dominated by high pressure systems.

      However, the effects of an individual strong storm, like that observed in early August, can be complex. While much of the region influenced by the August cyclone experienced a sudden drop in temperature, areas influenced by winds from the south experienced a rise in temperature. Coincident with the storm, a large area of low concentration ice in the East Siberian Sea (concentrations typically below 50%) rapidly melted out. On three consecutive days (August 7, 8, and 9), sea ice extent dropped by nearly 200,000 square kilometers (77,220 square miles). This could be due to mechanical break up of the ice and increased melting by strong winds and wave action during the storm.[/B] However, it may be simply a coincidence of timing, given that the low concentration ice in the region was already poised to rapidly melt out.

      The sudden ~200,000 sq. km. drop was probably caused by the "summer storm in the Arctic."

      "As of August 13, ice extent was already among the four lowest summer minimum extents in the satellite record..."

      In the whole satellite record!!!

      What's 2012 minus 1979? 33 years. The whole satellite record is 33 years long.

      What's the shortest significant climate cycle over the last 10,000 years in the Arctic? About 62 years.

      How many 62-yr cycles can be observed in a 33-yr time series? About half of one cycle.

      How long has it been since the Arctic was about this warm? About 62 years.

      What's the most significant Holocene climate cycle in the Arctic? About 950-1113 years.

      What was the Arctic like 950-1113 years ago? About the same as it is now.

      Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.


      • #4
        It never ceases to amaze me just how often some humans refuse to acknowledge that climate cannot be judged without recognizing frequency over time.

        LOTS of time.

        Myenh, nothing new there, enh!

        People have sailed from the Pacific to the Atlantic & vice verse without the use of modern ice breakers several times over the last couple centuries.

        On the Plains of Hesitation lie the blackened bones of countless millions who, at the dawn of victory, sat down to rest-and resting... died. Adlai E. Stevenson

        ACG History Today



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