As Arctic sea ice shrinks faster than 2007, NSIDC director Serreze says, “I think it’s quite possible we could “break another record this year.”

Watts and Goddard seem in denial: “We are still about six weeks away from anything interesting happening in the Arctic.”

The big climate news up north is the Arctic double stunner:  Sea ice extent (area) is now below 2007 levels, while the even more important metric of ice volume hit a record low for March (according to the Polar Science Center).

Data from both the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) show Arctic sea ice extent shrinking below the level of 2007 at a rapid pace:


Canada’s Globe and Mail headlines their story, “Arctic sea ice heading for new record low,”

The latest satellite information shows ice coverage is equal to what it was in 2007, the lowest year on record, and is declining faster than it did that year.

“Could we break another record this year? I think it’s quite possible,” said Mark Serreze of the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo.

“We are going to lose the summer sea-ice cover. We can’t go back.”

… Dr. Serreze said winds, cloud cover or other weather conditions could slow the melt, but he points out that the decline is likely to speed up even more in June and July.

And “one of Canada’s top sea-ice experts suggests things might even be worse than Dr. Serreze thinks” (see New study by Barber et al. supports finding that “the amount of [multi-year] sea ice in the northern hemisphere was the lowest on record in 2009″³).

His data could be underestimating the collapse of summer ice cover, said David Barber of the University of Manitoba. Researchers can’t learn anything from satellite data about the state or thickness of the ice.

“What we think is thick multiyear ice late in the summer is in fact not,” he said. “It’s heavily decayed first-year ice. When that stuff starts to reform in the fall, we think it’s multiyear ice, but it’s not.”

Arctic explorers and scientific expeditions are finding more open water and untrustworthy ice ever, Prof. Barber said.

He pointed out the Arctic continued to lose multiyear ice even in 2008 and 2009, when total ice coverage rebounded somewhat.

True multiyear ice – the thick, hard stuff that stops ships – now comprises about 18 per cent of the Arctic ice pack. In 1981, when Prof. Barber first went north, that figure was 90 per cent.

“This is all just part of a trajectory moving toward a seasonally ice-free Arctic,” he said. “That’s happening more quickly than we thought it would happen.”

The article notes:

In April, the centre published data showing that sea ice had almost recovered to the 20-year average. That ignited a flurry of interest on climate change  skeptic blogs.

But the most widely read of those blogs, WattsUpWithThat, seems oblivious to what’s happening, even though it keeps issuing regular “news” updates for its readers!  In Sunday’s, “WUWT Arctic Sea Ice News #6,” Watts posted a piece by Steve Goddard that opens:

The Arctic is still running well below freezing, and as a result there just isn’t much happening….


Yet just a month ago, Goddard saw fit to “inform” his readers that:

Arctic ice extent is normal….

The Arctic Oscillation remains negative, so circulation is clockwise – as seen below in the buoy drift map. This pattern is keeping older, thicker ice from the Canadian side inside the Arctic Basin, and bodes well for another summer of increased ice thickness and extent – relative to the record melt of 2007….

People counting on bad news from the Arctic to keep their agenda alive are staring at a long, (rhetorically) cold summer”¦”¦. The good news is that they can keep raising the red flags about Montana glaciers, if the Arctic refuses to melt.

So it’s okay to disinform readers with the “news” about how sea ice thickness had supposedly rebounded, when in fact March 2009 had seen record low volume.

But when the reality sets in — the supposed multi-year ice was in fact very thin and melted away rapidly — well, dear WUWT readers, it’s time to move on, there’s nothing to see here.

Related Posts:


45 Responses to As Arctic sea ice shrinks faster than 2007, NSIDC director Serreze says, “I think it’s quite possible we could “break another record this year.”

  1. From the notorious Watts and Goddard dictionary:

    in·ter·est·ing [in-ter-uh-sting, -truh-sting, -tuh-res-ting]

    1. record setting or something never seen before: We are still about six weeks away from anything interesting happening in the Arctic.

    Scott A. Mandia, Professor of Physical Sciences
    Selden, NY
    My Global Warming Blog

  2. Mark Shapiro says:

    I’d love to be wrong, but I still expect record low sea ice extent, area, and volume this September, plus open Northwest and Northeast passages.

    And look for wide open, blue water all around the North Pole within a few years.

    We can’t decarbonize too fast.

  3. mike roddy says:

    What a surprise: Anthony Watts got it wrong. I visited his site for a while, and kept getting confused by the graphs, until I realized that he must have posted them upside down.

    The real scandal is that nobody from Hollywood ever made a movie or even a TV special about the Weather Stations Project, with WUWT fans scurrying around the country taking photos of badly placed thermometers, proving a government plot. With a little imagination, including clips of earnest admirers, this could have been a laugh riot.

    Watts is just a marionette propped up for the suckers, anyway. The real damage by the oil companies comes from buying huge ads in the New York Times, and working closely with companies like Viacom and Newscorp to make sure everyone is “on message”. When they need an expert, they trot out Lindzen or Christy, but they’ve been looking a little stressed lately, since their claims are starting to look ridiculous. Maybe they should stick to Beck and O’Reilly. If you’re going to lie like hell, it’s better to use experts.

  4. Steve Bloom says:

    IMHO the scenario to worry about is that air temps around the Arctic Ocean will be able to spike in the absence of ice, following which the permafrost melt will take off in a big way. Any such spike will be relatively brief since the largely ice-free period probably won’t be able to get longer than a few months, and that not immediately, but even so we don’t really know how much of a push the permafrost needs to begin large-scale melting. If that happens, the associated GHG emissions (methane, CO2 and nitrous oxide) could be sufficient to push the planet into a Pliocene-like climate state (2-3C warmer overall, 25+ meter sea level rise, a reorganization of the ocean circulation, etc., etc.) or worse.

  5. GFW says:

    I’m a lousy prognosticator, but I’m expecting open Northwest and Northeast passages too.

    That’s pretty funny, Goddard: “The Arctic is still running well below freezing”

    Translation: “The average air temperature north of the 85th parallel is below zero Celsius.” No mention of whether the salt water currents flowing under the ice are warmer than the ice, or warmer than the melting point of that ice (which is lower than zero Celsius because it’s not pure fresh water ice).

  6. GFW says:

    A bigger howler – Goddard: “Melt is proceeding very slowly”

    It’s likely to set a record for greatest melt in a May during the satellite era! I guess that’s “for large values of slowly”.

  7. Dan B says:

    Six weeks away from something “interesting” / never before seen would be approximately the Fourth of July (or Bastille Day).

    Does that mean we could have a majority of the Artic Ocean ice free from Mid-July to October 1? That would be approximately 10 weeks, plenty of time with days an average of 17 hours (23 in July, 11 by October) to raise the temperature of the Arctic Ocean higher than it’s been in tens of thousands, or millions, of years.

    The warming would influence land warming 1500 miles from the edge of the ocean – most of the world’s permafrost.

    It appears very worrying especially since there doesn’t seem to be much research and less modeling of what impacts this would have and to what degree.

    It seems like we’re entering a new era, like it or not.

  8. villabolo says:

    With reference to Steve Bloom concerning accelerating permafrost melt, I would also throw in faster metabolism for the microorganisms.

  9. Marcus says:

    While the table is certainly set for (unfortunate) record-setting Arctic melt this summer… it is still important to note the caveat that historically, early season melt is not necessarily a good predictor for maximum sea-ice retreat.

    (perhaps one could do better with early season volume, rather than extent, and predicting average September extent and/or volume, rather than maximum loss, because volume is maybe less noisy than extent, and because a single point is always less noisy than a month average)

  10. Mark S says:

    Great post and long overdue Joe. The stuff Watts is publishing over at his site is ridiculous. I thought you would chime in when one of the guest posters declared that sea ice volume was irrelevant and that ‘the next thing the warmists will focus on is cracks per mile’ (paraphrased). Unreal.

  11. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    Steve –
    ” . . .we don’t really know how much of a push the permafrost needs to begin large-scale melting. If that happens, the associated GHG emissions (methane, CO2 and nitrous oxide) could be sufficient to push the planet into a Pliocene-like climate state. . . .”

    The situation appears rather more urgent than you describe, since the issue seems not to be whether the permafrost may get a sufficient push, but when it will do so. This outcome is predictable, as I understand it, due to the timelag on GHGs’ warming impacts of around 35 years.

    This factor means that the warming now accelerating the feedbacks is off about 330 ppmv in the mid ’70s, and over the next 35 years they’ll get the warming off our rising annual GHG outputs up to the present 390 ppmv, (which is roughly a doubling of anthro-CO2 concentration since ’75).

    – If this view is mistaken, it would be quite a relief if some kind person would post a link to any paper explaining why. –

    The reactions to that warming in 2045 of Artic ice both afloat and on Greenland, of the permafrost, and of the methyl hydrates, cannot be predicted in detail, but their interaction as feedbacks imply a massive additional source of warming. At the point where their influence wholly offsets the remaining carbon sinks, any chance of mitigation by ending GHG outputs would be long over, as we could no longer benefit from the sinks’ minor capacity to reduce airborne CO2 ppmv for the feedbacks’ control.

    This aspect of GW I discussed with a senior diplomat in ’94, at which point it was plainly news to him. Since then, knowledge of the threat has spread to many sectors, but mostly only in hazy and unquantified form. This means that it has been effectively ignored by decision makers, for all it is plainly the most perilous aspect of our predicament.

    Yet in the decline of the sea ice we have a readily measurable albido loss occurring whose potency could, and should, be transposed into a metric comprehensible by politicians and diplomats – CO2e would appear the best option for this given its worldwide adoption as the basis of negotiations.

    So I’m wondering if you, or anyone else reading this, may know of any ongoing work on the issue, or of any skilled person who might be interested in developing the necessary data.

    I don’t think it would be overstating the case to say that presenting decision makers with a readily understood scientific quantification of the trend of Arctic albido loss, as just one of several major active feedbacks, may be of crucial value in advancing the agreement of commensurate international action.



  12. Bill Waterhouse says:

    Marcus #9 – the downward trend this year is much lower than the past 8 years; see

    If we reach a new ice area low this summer it should provide powerful and pretty undeniable visual (from satellite photographs) evidence of warming that only the most ignorant ideologues or professional deniers can ignore. That may our last, best chance of getting Congressional approval of a climate change/green energy bill – perhaps by the lame duck Congress in Nov or Dec. If the deniers can still stop action after a new record low ice level then it’s probably game over for any restraint on carbon emissions.

  13. mike roddy says:

    Lewis Cleverdon,

    Nice post.

    I recommend Dr. John Harte of UC Berkeley, who has done extensive experimental work on feedbacks in the Rocky Mountains. Harte is also quite familiar with the mathematics of albedo and Arctic feedbacks.

    John has been speaking publicly about this for years, and is turning out to have been way ahead of his time.

    I can make an introduction if you like- please send me an email at

  14. MapleLeaf says:

    Hi all,

    I’d caution about making predictions right now, because a lot can change in the next month or so. For example, in 2005 for example the ice extent at this time of the year was about the same as now (AMSRE data), but the September minimum ended up being quite a bit higher than has been observed in recent years. Then again, we have lost a lot of ice volume since 2005…..

    Form a post that I made at Deltoid and based on a post made today at WFUWT. I edited it to include Watts b/c dhogaza kindly reminded me that Watts co-authored the post with Goddard.

    “From his post at WUWT, Goddard is [and Watts are] predicting the Arctic to be ice free by 2065. So Goddard is [and watts are] not only conceding that the Arctic will soon be ice free in September, he is [they are] also implicitly agreeing that the IPCC predictions for the timing of min. ice extent were too conservative.

    Goddard also makes predictions for other months of the year which is pointless and irrelevant. Not sure which data he used to generate the trend lines, which he then incorrectly simply extrapolated outwards in time. If that is not bad enough he is assuming that the Arctic sea ice decline will respond linearly with time. The gist of his post seems to be that “no worries, it is not that bad, and besides, it is not something that we baby boomers have to worry about, we’ll just defer the consequences and costs to future generations”.

    Goddard took a sound beating at Deltoid trying to defend Taylor fudging the N. Hemisphere snow extent numbers. When faced with the facts Goddard insulted everyone and left in a tizzy. Quite entertaining and revealing. WUWT and Heartland pseudo science fails again.

  15. MapleLeaf says:

    Corrigendum to my post, which is in moderation. The year I was citing was 2004, not 2005. The latter was of course a new record low at the time. Anyhow, hopefully this post makes sense when my other post comes through.

  16. sod says:

    the Goddard pieces on sea ice don t make any sense what so ever. he does not know what he is talking about, and he still does not understand what an “anomaly” is.

    “NOAA almost always shows the South Pole hot for some reason. “

    (the video above this sentence displays a text saying “SHTempAnomalies”.)

    Anthony Watts is allowing blog posts written by the most uneducated and clueless people that he can find on the web. this doesn t matter a lot, because the crowed reading his blog know even less..

  17. Jack says:

    I love this one from WUWT…

    “The next few weeks will be slow news” posted on 9th May in Arctic Sea Ice News #4

    yeah I bet- considering that global temperatures have been breaking records all year, ocean levels have now clearly crept up and are breaking records again after all the fuss WUWT made last year about stable levels, Arctic ice coverage and volume near record lows, all while the sun has recently gone through an unusually low 11 year cycle… yeap it’s certainly a slow news few weeks for WUWT “sshhh nothing to see here folks move”

    wait! Lord Monckton has won a global warming debate … well! call me a skeptic I’m sold!

  18. sod says:

    I love this one from WUWT…

    yes, the fraud is becoming all too obvious.

    you can have a lot of fun, by looking over the latest sea ice news, noticing how they switch datasets. by popular demand, they always chose whatever dataset shows the least warming/shrinking.

  19. FredT34 says:

    “in·ter·est·ing” for them probably means “Hey, see, ‘scientists’ can’t agree on their data, some of them show a faster slope than others, and they’ve tricked their graphs again, *so* this just doesn’t happen” : see “The four major ice extent indices continue to diverge.”

    What a loosy “article”… title is “Arctic Sea Ice news”, and he writes half of it about Antarctica.

    Does Goddard know the difference between extent and area ?

    I also noted this: shows no more melting days above 0°C in 2007 than in 2006, 2008 or 2009.

    They’re probably trying to launch some web-space occupation strategy, against the NSIDC monthly updates and SEARCH next papers. This will give some food to the trolls who’ll go repeating “nothing happens in the arctic” this summer. Such a preparation is perhaps a good proxy for this future melt… They probably wouldn’t start these regular news if they didn’t worry about the damage to come to “their reality”.

  20. Phil Clarke says:

    “wait! Lord Monckton has won a global warming debate … well! call me a skeptic I’m sold!”

    The motion – at the Oxford union – was that economic growth is a higher priority that fighting climate change. It was passed 55/45 %. It would have been frankly amazing if the future politial class had voted any other way – the true surprise is that the majority was so slim …

  21. sod says:

    The motion – at the Oxford union – was that economic growth is a higher priority that fighting climate change. It was passed 55/45 %. It would have been frankly amazing if the future politial class had voted any other way – the true surprise is that the majority was so slim …

    all too true. you will barely find a single topic on WuWt, that is giving some completely false spin to a story.

  22. NeilT says:

    Whilst Extent, Area and Volume are significant indicators of the catastrophe being enacted in the Arctic right now, I find that there is another indicator which is all but ignored.

    Location. The Ice which is breaking up and melting right now comes closer and closer to the core of the Arctic every year. Looking at the may 21st map from 1980 to 2004, then 2005 to 2010, one thing is abundantly clear. The centre of the Arctic is beginning to break up and heat is bleeding into the centre of the Ocean each year without having to be fully open water.

    If that isn’t a wakeup call, I don’t know what is.

    However it’s wise to breath a word of caution. This has happened before. We are at the 2006 levels right now and in 2006 the ice grew in June and july before melting back again in August and September.

    However, it we look at the long term ticker on Cryosphere today, we see that 2006 started with a low from 2005. 2010 has started from a much higher position which denotes significantly faster melt than in 2006.

    Time will tell, but if we see significant melt and much open water this year by September, the it will prove true a prediciton I made back in 2006.

    Time will tell. I just wish the Uni Bremem site didn’t keep going down every day.

  23. Leland Palmer says:

    Oh, another 6 weeks that the readers of WUWT can commute to work in their SUVs with a clear conscience.

    This is of course good for the oil corporations.

    It’s such a coincidence that WUWT keeps pumping out the anti-AGW propaganda, at the same time as ExxonMobil and Koch are financing an information laundering network.

    No proven financial ties have been shown between WUWT and ExxonMobil or Koch, though, so far as I know. If anyone has more information on how Watts is financing his website, please post it.

    Of course, with anonymous overseas numbered accounts, “speaking fees”, profits from ghost written books, and so on, perhaps no provable financial ties are necessary to compensate a paid propagandist.

  24. John McCormick says:

    Lewis at #12, you said,

    I don’t think it would be overstating the case to say that presenting decision makers with a readily understood scientific quantification of the trend of Arctic albido loss, as just one of several major active feed backs, may be of crucial value in advancing the agreement of commensurate international action.

    The critical value we should be searching is the impact of Arctic albido loss on the planet’s weather systems: Indian monsoon, convective wind patterns from the Gulf to Bismark, anomalies in Midwest temp and precip during the late summer months; surface temperature increase on West Greenland. Give the international actors a taste of what is to come south of the Arctic ice cap and maybe some brave heart will take notice and take action.

    Measuring the extent and volume of the Arctic ice cap is a curiosity. What that black body of ocean water is doing to the rest of the world is what we do not know and that is the real story. Records are made to be broken. Albido loss is the cause. Drought in Aimes, IA and Mumbai is the effect.

    John McCormick

  25. Jack says:

    “If anyone has more information on how Watts is financing his website, please post it.”

    Traffic and advertising on his website…

    Personally I think Anthony Watts knows he has taped into a need – there are a lot of people out there that either work for or have a vested financial interest in the oil/gas/coal industry, these people hear all these stories about global warming and they know it’s bad for them, they feel their livelihood is threatened and they’re angry, they feel they need to do something, even if it’s just venting at a website. You read some of those comments on WUWT – people don’t feel so strongly about such issues unless they feel it’s important to them on a deeper financial level. Besides, they give themselves away… with comments like “I need to get back to work and find some oil” …

    No amount of reason will convince them as they have a vested interest, however they will be slowly marginalized as more and more evidence mounts

  26. llewelly says:

    A new record low in arctic sea ice extent is not likely in any given year. But it is very likely to happen sometime in the next 5 years. But all this focus on “record lows” is a red herring. To follow it so closely is to play into the hands of the deniers; there will never be much confidence that any particular year will have a record low, and there will usually be a “recovery” after each low. What matters is the trend.

  27. NeilT says:

    I prefer this trend. You don’t need some massaged line, you can just See it.

  28. Aaron Lewis says:

    And, if remote sensing fibbed about the Arctic Sea ice, then it may also have fibbed about Antarctic sea ice. I tend to look at the temperature of the water vapor above the ice as an indicator of the real condition of the ice. See for example:

    I think that there is a lot of ice that is not as cold and solid as “conventional wisdom” wishes.

  29. Doug Bostrom says:

    Goddard and his and his witless, oblivious accusations of fraud are what ignited my outrage over this idiotic situation and subsequent interest in the actual topic of climate change. I don’t know whether to curse or thank him.

    Several years ago (2007, natch) Goddard wrote a series of pieces about Arctic ice for the online IT rag “The Register.” Not only did their choice of publishing his rubbish permanently degrade my estimation of “El Reg”, making me question every subsequent article I’ve read there, but it lead me into an exchange of direct correspondence with Goddard as well as some fairly bitter exchanges at Real Climate.

    My conclusion from private exchanges w/Goddard is that he actually believe what he writes. It astonishes and impresses me that our mental equipment is capable of such tight compartmentalization that we are able to simultaneously maintain and practice so many useful skills and abilities while we also harbor encysted, richly detailed hallucinations about other matters. Astounding, really.

  30. John McCormick says:

    NeilT at #27

    Thanks for the link to that graph.

    I used the control key while hitting the + key and enlarged it to a condition I could read it.

    Lets, over the next few decades, follow that graph to the x axis and look out the window to see what the weather is.

    John McCormick

  31. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    John McCormick at #24

    “The critical value we should be searching is the impact of Arctic albido loss on the planet’s weather systems . . . . What that black body of ocean water is doing to the rest of the world is what we do not know and that is the real story.”

    I’d readily agree that intensive research into the regional climatic impacts of albido loss is urgently needed, and, to the extent that causal relationships can be identified with significant confidence, despite the massive noise of the diverse phenomena of current destabilization within the chaotic climate system, that research will be a real help in energizing affected governments.

    Yet I’d still suggest that this is a second order priority, given the timescale required for observations to generate significant confidence in conclusions, as well as the fact that it explores specific regional impacts, and thus it is individual governments that are potentially energized.

    By contrast, putting the trend of albido loss into the metric of CO2e/yr output will provide an immediate, clear and globally relevant signal of the feedback threat to decision makers at all levels, as well as to the general public. Moreover, with albido loss being demonstrably just one of the major interactive feedbacks now active, it will help transform the global climate policy debate from the grossly deficient chorus:
    – How best to curtail emissions ? –
    to the innovative and essential enquiry:
    – How best to control the feedbacks ?

    It is perhaps the strongest critique of the scientific community’s capacity in communicating their findings that this very basic (low-cost) bit of translation work with a first order priority appears to be still lacking, two decades after the founding of the IPCC.



  32. pete best says:

    It looks like summer arctic sea ice could be doomed but what about the winter sea ice? Will it form later and melt earier each decade that passes now and of course be thinner to? The feedbakc in the Arctic gong from a 90% relfector to a 80% absorber is the interesting part as it all about how much energy the arctic oceans gets to abosrb.

  33. John McCormick says:

    Lewis, thanks for your comment.

    I want to reiterate the importance of that second priority in light of the fact it is too late to cap the well of permafrost and tundra emissions of CH4 and CO2.

    We know there is a lot of heat in the pipeline regardless of the world pulling the energy plug and shutting down. If we are already measuring positive feedback from those sources (infinitesimal measurements granted, but enough to scare the observers) then we are certain it will only get much worse on the Siberian Plateau and elsewhere on the Arctic rim. Lets just admit it….it is too late to prevent that eventual blowout.

    However, spending the time and money to project the effect of albido loss on global weather (and particularly Indian Monsoon and US Midwest) would tell us how precarious is the world’s grain basket and how important it is to manage every last drop of the Ogallalah Aquifer as if our and our childrens’ lives depended upon it.

    I am not being argumentative. I want to look past record-keeping and Polar Bears to the fate of America’s agricultural base in the Midwest.

    For seven years I have tried to get this point across to the AMS and anyone who would listen, I have discovered how futile it is to post a warning on any aspect of climate change that is easier to ignore because we don’t want to know….it would be that frightening.

    Maybe India will do the research because there appears to be a connection between their monsoon season and Arctic black ocean. Hello NOAA…are you listening?

    John McCormick

  34. Bob Wallace says:

    Pete – you might eyeball this graph.

    Look at the lower left frame (click to enlarge). It looks to me like the post-September refreeze is displaced to the right/later in the year. Of course that’s not a lot of data on which to base a firm statement.

    And I doubt that anyone would argue that thinner ice is going to melt slower than thick.

  35. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    John at #33 –

    my thanks for your insightful response.

    I share your frustration at the lack of competence of the scientific establishment both to properly address the ‘chaotic-system’ of climate and its abuse, and to properly communicate their findings to governments and to the general public.

    The constant understating of the problem for research applications, alongside a tendency to self censorship in publishing, has left us many years behind where we ought to be by now.

    To be fair this seems to me a matter of the prevailing scientific ideology of reductionism as much as anything, with the successor mindset of a ‘whole systems’ approach not yet having ousted the incumbents. (40 years and counting).
    After so gross a generalization, I must immediately acknowledge the very many fine tenured scientists who’ve advanced the latter approach for many decades past.

    I’d well agree that the region-specific research you seek to advance will be critical for practical local policy-design, as well as for energizing governments at the UNFCCC.

    If you’ve not already done so, how about putting your concerns to Holden as a ‘summary plus discussion & conclusions’, with a cc list to all relevant Uni academics and water-user stakeholder groups across the Ogalala Aquifer. Perhaps you might just find that people reading other peoples’ mail may spark interest in a joint endeavour to turn significant research capacity onto the issue ?



  36. ToddInNorway says:

    Lewis at #35, I agree with you on the weakness of the current scientific process philosophy as applied to AGW. The fact that the National Academy of Science is just now coming forward with their official position says it all. This is 10 years too late, and they still do not express the desperate urgency of the situation. Will they now spend 5 years to reproduce all the existing results on mitigation and go all-out to support low-carbon technologies?

  37. John McCormick says:

    Lewis at #35

    Thanks for the response and the nudge.

    Yes, I am tired of venting my frustration about the lack of attention being paid to the impact of Arctic ice melt back on the climate of North America and global climate as well. You pointed me in the right direction and I am going to follow your suggestion.

    Multi-year research of that nature will require Congressional authorization and appropriations and that begins with the FY 1012 budget and that document is a product of agencies (NOAA et al) making their case to OMB for approval and funding in the budget document. Lots of steps but that is how things get done in this NEW cost-cutting Congress and Administration. Anyone out there willing to contribute names and ideas, please respond. I will provide my email if that helps folks in the Administration needing cover;

    It is a long road but this research is paramount as far as US Midwest agriculture future is concerned. The melt back is not about breaking records. It is all about impacts.

    John McCormick


  38. John McCormick says:

    Lewis at #35

    Thank you for the nudge. I am going to follow your suggestion. Stay tuned.

    John McCormick

  39. Doug Bostrom says:

    ToddInNorway says: May 26, 2010 at 2:50 am

    Will [NAS} now spend 5 years to reproduce all the existing results on mitigation and go all-out to support low-carbon technologies?

    That depends on what NAS and more particularly in the case of the recent report the NRC are -asked- to do. NRC does act spontaneously, it actually cannot do so.

    Just a point of order, not a criticism of you, Todd.

  40. Doug Bostrom says:


    Correction: “NRC does not act spontaneously, it actually cannot do so.”

  41. NeilT says:

    John, #30, I use IE, all I have to do is click on the graph and it resizes to something I can use. Of course you can’t get it all on the screen. However if you pull it all the way to the left and then drag it quickly to the right it’s quite dramatic.

    The bane of my life is people who say “hey we’ve had a cold winter so AGW is a lie”. They never look past the point that the summer areas of the world were at a high OR that areas of the Arctic were at their warmest.

    For a decade and a half I’ve been likening CO2 GW to pushing a rock up a hill. When you get to the top there is a slight pause as you hit flat ground then it goes back down pushed by 9.81mss of push. For the last 5 years I’ve been asking just How we recognise when we hit a feedback event. Not after the fact, but during it. Because this is critical to convincing everyone.

    It is clear that the past 25 years have been responding to warming. So much so that anyone under 30 years old thinks this is normal. Those of us who lived in the previous 25 years (25 to 50 years ago), recognise that the current winter we have just had was not Extreme, just pretty bad. Those who have spent their whole lives without a severe negative Arctic Oscilation think it is categoric evidence that AGW is rubbish.

    When I discuss this with Denialists I have become quite agressive with their tricks or lassitude. I tell them that their attitude will probably cost up to 2 billion in lives. Which makes them an accessory to mass murder.

    We passed the 2006 ice extent low yesterday.

  42. Leif says:

    BY my, early morning west coast, calculation we are about 2 million sq. km below the 1972 – 2008 average. That is roughly the area of Mexico less ice coverage than the average for this time of the year and apparently growing.

  43. NeilT says:

    A better way of putting it is that since satellite records began only 2005,6,7,8 and 2009 have exceeded this years melt in ANY monty, including the August/September Low.

    It seems to be slowing now, but if it doesn’t stop and retrench, then we will have exceeded the melt of all years except 2006-2009 by the end of June.

    Which would be extremely good news for shutting up AGW deniers and extrememly bad news for the planet.

    [JR: Sadly, nothing shuts up the disinformers.]

  44. vergentbill says:

    The spark that lights the furnace:

    We have lost 15,000 km^3 of arctic sea ice volume over the last 30 years. We have lost an equal volume of alpine glaciers. This means Earth is endothermic by a tera-watt, add in sea surface temperature rise, about two terawatts. But when the arctic is ice free it will be absorbing 7 terawatts more than when ice covered, 24/7. The permafrost will then melt dumping methane and CO2 into the atmosphere; more terawatts. Climate will change faster than we can react…..

  45. Leif says:

    “JR: Sadly, nothing shuts up the disinformers.”

    As the numbers keep coming in, Joe, this season just might make them swallow their gum. At least choke on it a bit. They do seam to be immune to facts.