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Werther
Stiftsche uiterwaard, Varik, Gelderland, The Netherlands
High School for gardening and landscaping, public and private designer and constructor
Interests: Geography, history, arts, philosophy, nature (especially birdwatching)
Recent Activity
The first video press conference I could find illuminates the work done last summer abord the Polarstern near NE Greenland/Fram Strait. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arA98s5nj5I At app. 13:00 min it gets interesting as Dr Antje Boetius explains the scientific findings. The part 18-20:00 presents some great footage of the underside of the floes. Enjoy!
.... C11A-0341Effects of the Sea Ice Floe Size Distribution on Polar Ocean Properties and Air-Sea Exchange Christopher Horvat and Eli Tziperman, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, United States Hi Steve, Good luck and have a great time! I started to sort through the monday sessions and this contribution above caught my interest. It seems to relate to the quality of the ice-pack, to what I've been checking on MODIS for some years now. If mean floe size is diminishing, I'd be very interested in the feedback that has on short term volume and extent numbers. I wonder if it could have had an influence on '13 and '14 low summer melt. Best, Werther
That's right, Wayne. Not boring at all. Drop for the day about 33K, which is extreme that late in the season. Only 2005 had such decline for the day (-50K). Interesting, sea ice declines while peripheral lands start to get a first snow cover. NW passage is almost blown open, sea ice in the East Siberian Sea is reduced to scattered floes and ice-milk.
Toggle Commented Sep 14, 2014 on New NASA videos at Arctic Sea Ice
Morning, Neven, Your summary is pretty right. It's just that your interpretation 'the ice...thickened some more' could be better imaged as 'didn't thin as much as other post '07 years'. We'll have to wait and see whether next winter will indeed induce good thickening. A priori, I'm skeptical that that thickening will be enough to produce much sustained volume growth.
Toggle Commented Sep 11, 2014 on PIOMAS September 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Hi Jay, I just read your post. I think your observations are interesting. That sort of pattern captured my attention too. But on the suggestion of 'geo-engineering'... I see the pattern(s) more in the sphere of 'teleconnections', natural responses to the growing heat imbalance. Why would the Californian economy be sacrificed imminently for an attempt that could, at best, provide uncertain results?
Toggle Commented Sep 10, 2014 on PIOMAS September 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Through the last few years, I acquired the notion that it’s not much use to focus solely on the ‘run for the yearly sea ice minimum’. My interest lies in the broad picture of change, climate-wise and ecological. I haven’t done much homework, so haven’t been posting much through July-September. Nevertheless, I’ve been following the Forum threads on ENSO, home brew extent and area. Of course I let my eyes wander over the daily Lance Modis pics. The same goes for OSDPD SST. Etcetera. It is very interesting to learn how the ice pack seems to hold on, based on the parameters extent, area, volume. Because it is encircled by unusual high SST’s on the Northern Hemisphere. It’s the Barentsz Sea and, to lesser extent, Kara Sea, that remain a tad colder than the climatology. I’ll try to express why that feature may have played an important role in keeping the parameters ‘comfortingly high’ (at least, no disaster yet). But first, against the Barentsz/Kara ‘cold’, stands the ‘Bering heat’. I can’t remember seeing that Sea that warm through the last decade. The ‘run for the yearly minimum’ may well be not as important compared to the gradual, year-round accretion of heat and, corresponding, the degradation of ‘winter power’. Of course, the Bering Sea cannot be held representative for the Arctic Ocean. But, an effect even stronger than last winter, there will probably not be much ice out there in the coming months. Will that be noticeable in the peripheral Arctic Seas? I’m not sure how strong the warming in their waters is. Nevertheless, there’s a good chance winter will again prove to be not the best season possible for the ice (relatively of course; ice will form). What role did the Barentsz/Kara sector play this melt season? The main atmospheric feature over the North Atlantic has been high pressure. Both on 1000 and 500 Mb. Attached to the Greenland Ridge, it effectively blocked the ‘Fram train’. Wind steering over Frantsa Yosefa has also been dominated by a persistent Low near Severnaya Zemlya. It kept the Barentsz cold. It held extent high in Victoria Strait. There was the usual fragmentation in the whole sector Pole/Svalbard/Fr.Yosefa. But relatively little melt. And much more extent than we were used to all past decade. The whole atmospheric pattern didn’t support compression into the North Atlantic sector and strong melt when ice would even have had a chance to pass into the Greenland and Barentsz Seas. Though the Alaskan and Kolyma coasts were warm enough, winds usually blew clockwise, not penetrating deep into the Central Arctic Basin. In that config, the ‘Laptev Bite’ was the only interesting feature this summer, where winds did transport warmth from the South. As a detail, late this season Foxe Basin and, though to lesser extent, Gulf of Boothia are nearly icefree. These details, the Bering Sea, the SST’s, the possible ENSO driven ocean-atmosphere coupling next season, all combine to stay alert. Even in winter.
Toggle Commented Sep 10, 2014 on PIOMAS September 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks, Wayne, I'm sure a lot of us have been watching this scene for weeks. I think it is the first time the scene seems to reveal that what started as a meltpool over a FYI regrowth between last years splinters, now is in contact with the underlying ocean.
Toggle Commented Aug 11, 2014 on ASI 2014 update 7: late momentum at Arctic Sea Ice
I agree, NeilT. Coincidentally, I just commented this on the 'Melt Season' thread on the Forum: "Eyeballing, it looks to me there's not much left of what I've been calling 'mesh-pattern' ice..."
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2014 on ASI 2014 update 7: late momentum at Arctic Sea Ice
Having been distracted for a while, my activities on the topic were limited to lurking. Because I haven’t done any work on the data, there’s no reason to fill the blog with brouhaha. Others have been doing a great job on some of the subjects that have occupied me through the last couple of years. Nevertheless, what I’ve seen keeps amazing me, like last season. It looks like the state of the sea ice is in a quite stable regime since ’07, that year, ’10 and ’12 showing the low limit of the ice parameters, ’08, ’09, ’13 and probably ’14 the upper one. It amazes me, because I had expected no regime at all. A sort of chaotic break-down, a decade long, ending in FI Dr. Wadhams’ forecast of a first ice-free minimum around 2016 +/- two years. I’ve been wrong before. I expected the NW-European rivers to enter a period of yearly dangerous flooding after the near-disasters on the lower Rhine in ’95 and ’98. It didn’t shape up like that. Even though sometimes not that far away river basins were hit by nasty flooding, some more than once during the last ten years. Maybe we should just count our luck. The biosphere may be a tad more resilient and balanced than I and other alarmed people had assumed. But I hope the time given doesn’t lure humanity into a sense that there’s no need for urgency to mitigate and adapt. BTW thanks Neven. I posted without having read nor having looked around. I'll pick up...
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2014 on ASI 2014 update 7: late momentum at Arctic Sea Ice
Day 186 brought a good bright day over an important part of the CAB. The part North of CAA and Greenland that 'holds' te mesh-pack. The good view stretched North of Svalbard into the Frantsa Yosefa region. There was a band of good visibility right through to the Laptev Bite. And The Beaufort Sea was well in view. So what? Well, the 'mesh-pack' looks replaced, almost fitting tile r04c03 (N CAA) but pretty sliced up by broad leads. The Lincoln Sea ice is melting; it's all blue. The Beaufort is heavily melting. Melt ponds are visible almost everywhere (grey shades)and the fragmented floes in the Siberian side of the CAB are slowly making place for more 'holes'. From a quality point of view, this season is on track for considerable damage.
Toggle Commented Jul 6, 2014 on ASI 2014 update 4: high times at Arctic Sea Ice
Following the reading of the ‘melt season’-thread at the Forum, I’d like to make a short post here. An attempt to summarize. On the metrics SIA/SIE I was wrong last year. But even then, Sep ’13, I didn’t feel like my ‘credibility’ was torn. It doesn’t really matter to me anyway. The (partly masochistic) joy is in witnessing the ride, whatever it may bring. Anyway, I still think that the trend since 2006 is always down, with steps (especially ’10 and ’12). There’s no metric on ice quality. So my standpoint about last year cannot be made hard. Although I voted for an SIE/SIA minimum between ’13 and ’12, based on quality the sea ice could go almost anywhere. Busy interpreting the differences in CAD, on a regional basis, my first impression on the whole state is that the safe ‘mesh-pattern’ MYI swath against the CA is now just over 1.1 Mkm2. Down again. The rest is awfully volatile. In comparison to 2012, hold in the mind that the structural losses were immense. Both winters after that had bad ‘winter-power’(13-14 the worst), not much was ‘repaired’ through these freeze periods. Last summer, although anomalously cold, didn’t ‘repair’ anything, it was just a delay. So June 2014 the status quo is pretty much where it was left September 2012 from a quality standpoint. With three months of summer to go. In an ever toastier environment….
Jim, Chris, yes, that is an enormous dip on CT-SIA. I have no time to check this thoroughly in CAD. Anyway, from what I did pick up on MODIS, the steep drop does make some sense. In a mere two days the area with melt ponds and extensive snow melt has 'exploded', FI over Hudson Bay and - Strait, Foxe Basin, Baffin Bay. But gaining traction in the Beaufort, Chukchi and on the East Siberian landfast ice, too. On top of that, even the Central Arctic Basin shows incredible lead-extension. The Frantsa Yosefa region is splintering up just like last year. Some effects of cloud moisture cannot be ruled out, like the melt-pond-fooling. But it is exciting to watch. Even the Nares-cork seems to be under pression...
Iceman, hi, Why would the sea ice in the Beaufort Sea be less conducive to melt pond formation now? As far as I know, the big intrusion of MYI into there was during winter '12-'13. Still, by 17 June last year the whole stretch Banks-Taymir was coverd by blue- and greyish hues indicating extensive melt pond formation. Given the flow last winter, I don't expect much more MYI to have gathered up there. For the prognosis, sure, as June is summer, large swaths of the Arctic Basin regularly get melt temperatures. Expect the whole same stretch to get ´blue´ next week. I can´t see more than Rosel´s abstract, but that lead suits my own expectations. If a weather pattern producing compaction and insolation would have lasted for two weeks in July/August last year, it would have produced what most of us expected. Finally, I managed to do a basic CAD supported count on temp anomaly for May ´12, ´13 and ´14. The correlation (NCEP-NCAR): +1.6dC/+0.1dC/+1.0dC. Starting from there, I see a lot of support for SIE/SIA minimum getting close to a second place this year.
Some last muses... So there it is. I’m starting to look for ice quality difference (as I have lots of MODIS material saved from June-Sep ’10-’13). There’s no objective measure on that approach. Even last summer it was my own personal impression that this quality did steadily become worse. Even though the numerical approaches looked like ‘rebound’. I haven’t disputed that, because it is like arguing on different views. Whatever this years outcome may be. The buffering capacity of all biospheric systems on the planet is collapsing. The already built-up ‘bank-account’ and the relentless GHG-output growth will have rapid consequences. Modelling can be done until the bucket is kicked. Zooming in on just counting pixels too. It’s easy to miss the big picture like that. I think FI Wadham's view on first ice-free minimum is still relevant.
On melt ponds, I never had the impression that May would show the first important growth of these. Ususally they form during June, remember FI the timing visible on the Polar cams. Where the first signs show is usually Bering (ice already gone now), Mackenzie Gulf, Amundsen Gulf, the fastice against N Siberia. In my opinion, melt ponding is a significant starter of the process in the Arctic Basin and its adjacent parts of Beaufort, Chukchi and East Sib Seas, about 5 Mkm2. For the whole rest, getting ‘grey and blue’ is just a stage in the seasonal swing to open ocean. On the relevant part, melt ponding will start around third week of June, when conditions are right. It corresponds with the ‘June cliff’ in volume during the period ’07-’12 (cf. Chris Reynolds).
Thanks, Neven! I have a couple of 'nuances', mainly on temps/DMI and the relevance of melt ponds. This is on temps: DMI +80dN mean temps don’t tell the whole story. During May, on average the sea ice is spread out over the whole Arctic Ocean. DMI temp is relevant for app. 3.3 Mkm2 ice cover in the essential part of the CAB. The part which was thought to have at least not lost more of its supposed remaining coherence last summer. For the vast part of the Arctic Ocean, some 10 Mkm2, DMI mean temp doesn’t say anything. The lot of it will melt out anyway. As, in my opinion, ‘winter power’ hasn’t been conducive for ice growth in the whole peripheral circle Beaufort Sea-Laptev Sea, there is not much chance for even a 2013-like summer to let ice remain like it did in the Beaufort and East Sib Sea last year. When NCEP/NCAR is analyzed for the Arctic Ocean proper over May, there’s not that much difference with the ’12 mean temps. The difference with ’13 is large. And ’14 was lots warmer than ’07. Charts/maps would be great here, but that’s better on the thread.
Hi Chris, Thanks for the analysis. I think you set up a good reference-line for the deploying season. As I suspected based on 'winter power', the Bering side doesn't look good. You illustrated that. It will be 'fun' to see how and if a developing ENSO event might affect the sea ice.
Toggle Commented May 13, 2014 on PIOMAS May 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Whatever PIOMAS and volume may hold, I'm a bit surprised after going over MODIS tonight. Especially the r05c04 tile 'New Siberian Islands'. Near Wrangel the ice is breaking up extensively. The polynia near the Novosibirsk Islands is even larger than the same in June '13. Though there are no melt ponds in vue yet, the severe cracking over most of the tile area does seem to indicate a quality that is weeks ahead/worse than last year...
Toggle Commented May 12, 2014 on PIOMAS May 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Colorado, hi, For those interested, Austfonna Jokull is on Nordaustlandet, the remote NE island of Svalbard.
Toggle Commented May 9, 2014 on PIOMAS May 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks for the resumé, Neven. I’d like to weigh in on PIOMAS April ’14 too with some NCEP/NCAR comparisons, but find trouble with my system/programs. So let me just say I’m a bit surprised to see the ‘flat’ line on volume. Especially the ‘second bump’ near the end of the month, whereas the lines for ’12 and ’13 started moving down. I see not much on the 1000Mb temperature reanalysis that could easily correspond with these differences. Bottom line is the explanation on the PIOMAS site about uncertainty margins. The same goes for the temp differences,nothing obvious. So a couple of hundred km3’s are probably not worth much attention when this season gets further down the line. BTW read Bernice’s blog post (I think 7/5) on Expedition Hope, a vivid description of the actual state of the MYI North of Ellesmere!
Toggle Commented May 9, 2014 on PIOMAS May 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks, Neven, Wish you and your family a good and happy move into that fine home.May it also provide a place for you to, sometimes, catch up when you need it.That catch lies beyond the tasks, as ínfinity lies beyond things (free after Spinoza...).
Toggle Commented Apr 29, 2014 on Getting ready at Arctic Sea Ice
There it is... as expected.... Jisao PDO index has updated for March: 2014** 0.30 0.38 0.97 Source: http://jisao.washington.edu/pdo/PDO.latest
Toggle Commented Apr 11, 2014 on PIOMAS April 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Nine months ago Rob Painting posted on Skeptical Science about ocean heat coming back to haunt us. He couldn’t have foreseen the timing, which seems to be right now. But after about 15 years in a dominant negative mode, PDO did change face. Soon the March index will show whether the trend parallels the one from the beginning of 1997. The re-emergence of El Nino will reveal consequences of fifteen years of inaction on mitigation, a period by some ludicrously seen as a ‘stop’ of global warming. As Painting made clear in his SkS post, during the recent -PDO years, the ocean has been storing the ‘unbalanced’ heat in its deeper layers. Since the last moderate ENSO-event ’09-’10 the troposphere has progressively become disturbed. This coincides with strengthened forcing through greenhouse gases and gradual cease of the ‘rubber-band effect’ that lags/delays the climatic response. The diminishing temperature difference between the Poles and the Tropics could be traced in height gain on the 500hPa level over the Arctic. This not only had an effect, as described by FI Dr. Francis, on the behaviour of the Polar Jet stream. Other influences could be identified FI in the constant SSW attacks on the Polar Vortex past winter. ‘Loaded', slow moving Rossby waves through the mid troposphere, a West Pacific warm pool spawning monster cyclones like Haiyan. All these signs preluded the powerful Kelvin Wave now propagating through the Pacific. The coupled ocean-atmosphere system is out of balance and leads to more weather anomalies. That will also mark the ENSO-event that is now in progress. As I supposed last year on the character of the ’13 sea ice melt season: ‘action could well shift to the mid-latitudes’. Now it gets to the Tropics. What do I expect? A fascinating, though frightening series of events related to El Nino, an extended Arctic melt season, normal in the sense that it might not lead to a new minimum in SIE/SIA and volume this year. Above all, a year that may violently surpass the ‘weird’ weather years experienced since 2010. With consequences that may present ’15 as a new record setting melt year for the Arctic sea ice and the Greenland Icesheet. I find not much solace in climate predictions based on historical data and known processes. The 'old' rules are progressively becoming irrelevant. The comfortable discussions on climate sensitivity will be challenged by reality. Paintings’ stored heat is coming to haunt us, sooner and stronger than may have been foreseen.
Toggle Commented Apr 10, 2014 on PIOMAS April 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
Well Jim, that pic shows that, if AWI would fly the area with their 'e-bird' again, it would reveal almost the same map as in March '12. Not surprising, the temp record on Ostrov Kotelnyj and in Tiksi also hint on less 'winterpower'. While all winter was a tad less cold than last year, the 'heatwave' during March was remarkable. Even noticeable on remote Kotelnyj.
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2014 on PIOMAS April 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice
George, FOOW, what you wrote 15:31 made perfect sense to me. Remember the AWI-map on ice thickness in the Laptev March 2012? It would be nice to have a corresponding recent map. But this situation was a result of winter ’11-’12, which produced a mean temp anomaly of just under +3 dC in that region. Last year the anomaly stuck around zero over there. But this winter, it is close to ’11-’12 again, just about +2 dC. If my musings on ‘winterpower’ have any relevance at all, it should be no wonder to see a rapid breakdown in the Laptev. Oh, the red was >+50cm thickness.
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2014 on PIOMAS April 2014 at Arctic Sea Ice