One-year-old ice in Beaufort Sea now a foot thinner than in 2009
In November, Rear Admiral David Titley, the Oceanographer of the Navy, testified that “the volume of ice as of last September has never been lower”¦in the last several thousand years.” Titley, who is also the Director of Navy’s Task Force Climate Change, said he has told the Chief of Naval Operations that “we expect to see four weeks of basically ice free conditions in the mid to late 2030s.”
Wieslaw Maslowski of the Naval Postgraduate School has “projected a (virtually) ice-free fall by 2016 (+/- 3 yrs).” Contrary to some reporting, that projection has been unchanged for years, though Maslowski is in the process of creating a more sophisticated model that he expects “will improve prediction of sea ice melt,” as he explained to me recently.
Until then, we have some new observational data of Canadian sea ice thickness and this remarkable figure of sea ice volume since 1979 from Neven’s Arctic Sea Ice Blog, based on data from the University of Washington’s Polar Science Center [click to enlarge]:
Arctic sea ice volume by month in cubic kilometers (with simple quadratic trend lines projecting to zero volume, details here). The bottom (red) line is September volume.
Compare this to Maslowski’s March 2010 PowerPoint: