Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Arctic Ice Extent: 2015 Struggles For First Place - 3

Fig. 1 Arctic Sea Ice Extent (Aug. 10)
As shown in Fig. 1, it looks as though this year will not be the record year.

It started off as the lowest year, but lost momentum in early June, then looked like it would make a comeback in late July and early August.

I have been tracking the 2015 events in this series (Arctic Ice Extent: 2015 Struggles For First Place, 2),

The full information is available at the NSIDC.

The thing to watch is probably whether or not 2016 starts off as the lowest extent early one like this year did.

That could be a trend ... melting from the other side rather than the end of summer side.

We shall see.

I will continue to update the two graphs below each day, until the extent begins to grow again in mid September.

NASA says 2015 is the 4th lowest extent, without extenuating circumstances, like, for instance, year 2012 had, which is currently in first place:
"This year is the fourth lowest, and yet we haven't seen any major weather event or persistent weather pattern in the Arctic this summer that helped push the extent lower, as often happens," Walt Meier, a sea ice scientist with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, said in a statement. "It was a bit warmer in some areas than last year, but it was cooler in other places, too." Since 1996, the sea ice decline has accelerated, and Meier said the ice cover is becoming less and less resilient: "The sea ice cap, which used to be a solid sheet of ice, now is fragmented into smaller floes that are more exposed to warm ocean water. In the past, Arctic sea ice was like a fortress. The ocean could only attack it from the sides. Now it's like the invaders have tunneled in from underneath and the ice pack melts from within."
(The Week). To me that means we should focus closely on 2016 events there next summer.

FINAL UPDATE: (click on a graph to enlarge)

As of (Sep. 13)

As of (Sep. 15)

The previous post in this series is here.

Significance of methane feedback loops in the Arctic:


  1. This could drop in a hurry with all the Siberia and CA fires, the heat waves in Europe and the Pacific being warmer than ever. Here's some pix via seemorerocks:


    Wednesday, 12 August 2015
    Cameras recording ice melt at North Pole
    The melting ice at Greenland

    The older ice is melting and pulling away from Canada and Greenland. The land that the ice has been up against has been anchoring much of the Arctic ice in place.


    1. There was a wee downward move on Aug. 11 (according to the update) ...

      But that 2012 drop is daunting.

      Second place may be in the cards.

    2. Tom,

      "This could drop in a hurry with all the Siberia and CA fires, the heat waves in Europe and the Pacific being warmer than ever."

      The air is not going to pull it through, it takes warm ocean water.

      The fires do impact on albedo when the winds are in that direction, but that is a surface / air dynamic (soot on the ice absorbs more sunlight to warm it up).

      If the air is warm that enhances the effect.

      The Pacific "Blob" area of warm water does flow through the Bering to the Chukchi, over to the Beufort, and also up over the top, then across to the Fram (west) and Baffin (east) sides of Greenland (The Question Is: How Much Acceleration Is Involved In SLR? - 4).

      The warm water part of the equation is working to have an impact this year.

      The polar vortex did not cooperate as much this year as in 2012, and El Nino may have mucked it up in that sense too.

      Once the polar vortex and weak jet streams conspire to cast more cold air out, down to move southern latitudes, and let more warm air in along with the warm water, in more volume and for a longer time, the 2012 record will fall.

      I don't expect it this year.

  2. Dredd, exactly - I'm looking at not only the albedo change via soot, but also the warm Pacific delivering tropical warmth to the Arctic because of the aberrations in the jet stream and standard currents, and the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge that's parked itself off CA and grown for the past few years now, not to mention the Arctic storms with wind-whipped waves that also help to demolish the ice.


    Wrecked Pacific Storm Track Now Runs From Equator to Arctic Ocean


  3. Just like this ice the empire will melt soon, muhahaha, get your stuff together quickly, Mister Trump, Buffet, Koch and who the hell else. I wonder, when will they start to panic^^