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Jenny E. Ross
Leveraging the power of photography combined with science to communicate about climate change in the Arctic and beyond.
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Paul said: "There is room for some very interesting informed speculation. I view this event as a breakthrough event, showing the 2012 GAC was not a existing system statistical anomaly, but a new event signifying fundamental changes in the Arctic, and by extension, an effect on the NH mid-latitude weather systems." This is precisely what I have been thinking, but I don't even remotely have the expertise to do the necessary rigorous analysis. Paul, I'll eagerly await more from you (and perhaps others) about this. Cheers, Jenny
Toggle Commented Aug 19, 2016 on 2016 Arctic cyclone, update 2 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks to Colorado Bob for posting the link to Andrew Freeman's article about walruses, and reminding everyone there are immediate, significant consequences that are resulting from the major loss of sea ice that's occurring. It's a good article that covers many important issues. But, with Neven's indulgence for an additional OT comment, I do want to point out one thing: The phrase "scarce amounts of food on land" is not correct. There is NO food on land for those walruses (except, of course, for calves that are still nursing). Walruses feed on the seafloor, primarily on clams and other invertebrates. Thousands of walruses forced ashore in one small location may exhaust all available food in that area of the ocean. Then they will be obliged to swim increasingly long distances to find food in other areas and return to land for resting (since there is no sea ice they can use to rest in the vicinity of more distant feeding areas). They risk expending more calories than they're able to consume. (And, as the article explains, there is also serious risk of some walruses, especially calves and juveniles, being trampled, crushed and suffocated if the herd is disturbed on land.) The whole situation is particularly problematic for females with calves they must nurse often. Do they remain ashore to nurse their young, or do they swim away in search of food, possibly needing to travel farther than their offspring are able? All of the problems are attributable to a lack of sea ice.
Toggle Commented Aug 29, 2015 on Arm's race (and a storm) at Arctic Sea Ice
Navegante said: "...a very strong but short-lived cyclone (such as the GAC of 2012)." My understanding is that GAC 2012 was actually remarkably long-lived. Simmonds & Rudeva ("The Great Arctic cyclone of 2012" in GRL, 2012) stated that the nearly 13-day duration of GAC 2012 was "very atypical of Arctic storms, particularly in August." They conclude: "Using our multiple-index approach (based on cyclone properties and longevity) we conclude that AS12 was the most extreme August Arctic cyclone (out of a population of 1618). When all Arctic cyclones were considered (which included the more vigorous winter systems) AS12 ranked in position 13 out of a compilation of 19625 storms."
Toggle Commented Aug 4, 2015 on PIOMAS August 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks, John. Apologies for OT, Neven.
Toggle Commented Aug 3, 2015 on ASI 2015 update 5: late momentum at Arctic Sea Ice
"Overall California saw very high precipitation levels in the period of 1904-1916, so something definitely had gotten stuck." Apologies for the OT question, but: John C., since you seem to be very knowledgeable about this, can you recommend any scientific references regarding high precipitation levels in California, and the western U.S. more generally, during the first half of the 20th century? The issue is important for a major long-term documentary project I'm working on. Thanks! Jenny
Toggle Commented Jul 31, 2015 on ASI 2015 update 5: late momentum at Arctic Sea Ice
"WTF is 'off the record' meant to mean? In business as with the press nothing is off the record." In the world of ethical, responsible, true journalism the phrase has a real and important and inflexible meaning. It means "thou shalt not publish or publicly disclose this ever." If a source or interviewee says, "this is off the record," everything said subsequently is subject to the rule until s/he says otherwise, or the journalist asks,"Are we back on the record?" and the source says,"Yes." Real journalism is VERY different from business in that regard. Unfortunately, these days there are a lot of people pretending to be journalists who are nothing of the kind. Just because someone puts one word in front of another and manages to get some outlet to put it in print or online does not mean that person is a journalist. Moral of the story: know in whom you are confiding, and be sure they are bound by true journalistic standards before saying anything you don't want to see in print.
FYI all, there's a new study just out that is of interest and concern regarding the impact of stored heat from the summer melt season on Arctic sea ice growth in winter: From the Abstract: "It is shown that the release of solar heat stored following summer 2007 was sufficient to have reduced sea-ice thickness at the end of the 2008 growth season by about 25%."
Toggle Commented Jul 18, 2015 on PIOMAS July 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks, Jim and Colorado Bob. Blaine, I really appreciate the detailed information you provided. Robert S, I certainly do have dates, but I only have rough locations (e.g., north of Svalbard at about 83 degrees north). To obtain precise locations at this point, I'd have to pester a lot of scientists and ask them to go back and check expedition logs, because I wasn't recording exact coordinates myself. But now that I know the information might be useful, I'll try to retain it in the future.
Toggle Commented Jul 14, 2015 on PIOMAS July 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks very much, Tenney. Greatly appreciated!
Toggle Commented Jul 12, 2015 on PIOMAS July 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
I'm wondering whether rotten ice is somehow accounted for in determinations of sea ice thickness and volume. For those of you who haven't seen rotten ice first-hand, you might be interested in taking a look at these photos I obtained in the central Arctic Ocean in 2012. (Again, for the uninitiated, when ice is "rotten" it may look to be in decent or even good condition on the surface, but underneath it is riddled with holes and rapidly deteriorating.) What is not clear to me and I'd like to understand is this: How do the various non-modeling methods of evaluating sea ice thickness (and therefore volume) deal with the disintegrating nature of rotten ice? I've been told that the EM-Bird and EM-31 typically get fooled and tend to interpret it as solid ice. I'm unsure about other instruments and methods.
Toggle Commented Jul 12, 2015 on PIOMAS July 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Sorry to disappoint the alien advocates and Santa devotees, but my guess is definitely polar bear. At this distance, and with low resolution, polar bear footprints would look similar to a human's (or an alien wearing human shoes, or Santa for that matter), especially in slush that doesn't retain details. And a polar bear would not just wander around aimlessly. It would walk in an efficient path to the objects that looked and smelled most interesting. Like a human, it would carefully walk between objects. As soon as it determined there was nothing of importance (most importantly, something to eat), it would continue on its way.
Toggle Commented Jul 11, 2015 on ASI 2015 update 4: massive heat at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks very much, Neven and Jim! Greatly appreciated!
Toggle Commented Feb 25, 2015 on Shock news! at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks very much, Jim! It would be fine for you to add a photo, but I don't know how to provide one to you via this site. You can grab one from tweets I've sent in the past few days to publicize the article on my Twitter feed -- @LifeOnThinIce. Or please email me directly. Cheers, Jenny
Toggle Commented Feb 12, 2015 on PIOMAS February 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Hi everyone, FYI, here's a recent magazine feature article about Arctic sea ice that I wrote and photographed. (It was published in October, but I've just received a PDF I can distribute.) Cheers, Jenny
Toggle Commented Feb 10, 2015 on PIOMAS February 2015 at Arctic Sea Ice
Regarding the isolated collection of small, fragile, wispy floes remaining in the Beaufort: From an ecological standpoint one can only hope that they don't melt out completely. If there are polar bears onboard that ice, they are very likely to drown if the floes disappear. That ice is almost certainly too far from land and too far from other ice for even the strongest adult bears to be able to swim to either location. Cubs would unquestionably be doomed.
NSIDC has a note on the ASI News & Analysis page that might explain the apparent down-turn in extent: "Daily images: Missing data Partial satellite data may have been received, causing data to be missing from the daily map image (gray areas, left image), resulting in errors in the graph (right)."
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2013 on PIOMAS October 2013, take two at Arctic Sea Ice
Sorry, Erimaassa -- I was so focused on the numbers that I didn't notice the date you put at the beginning!
Toggle Commented Aug 11, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
Erimaasa, Did you use the August 9 or August 10 AMSR2 map for calculating your numbers?
Toggle Commented Aug 11, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
Thank you Erimaassa! Very interesting. Cheers! Jenny
Toggle Commented Aug 11, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks for your thoughts, Allen. I'm actually starting to think that overall it might be best if I don't offer any sort of a prediction right now for this year's minimum at all -- and instead just stick with a discussion of overall ice-loss significance, and leave out specific numbers except for 2012. That will be fine, unless we do end up setting a new record in 2013 (at which point it will seem weird to readers that I'm discussing 2012 instead of 2013, sigh...) All that being said, if anyone does have an idea regarding what the extent and/or area number(s) would end up being if one counts only the Uni-Bremen darkest purple on the latest SSMIS concentration map, I'd love to know. Looks like it's at least possible that's where we'll end up eventually this year.
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
In many ways, NuinZeeland, no it doesn't really matter whether there will be a new record this year or not. Sadly, anyone who follows the condition of the ice knows we are going to lose it eventually, at least in the summer. But I'm in the middle of writing a short magazine article about the ice at the moment (by the way, it will be followed by a much longer article later), and unfortunately my deadline is before the minimum will be reached but the article will be published after the minimum is reached. Puts me in a bit of a bind trying to figure out what to say. I've been following this blog since the outset (lurking and sucking it all up like a sponge), and have gotten an invaluable education, but I still can't do the calculations that many of you seem to be able to do blind-folded with your hands tied behind your backs! Hence, my question.
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
Jenny E. Ross is now following Neven
Aug 10, 2013
Hello everyone, Apologies if this isn't the right thread for this question. If all ice on the Uni Bremen SSMIS concentration map that is not the darkest purple were to melt out by mid-September, what would the approximate extent and area numbers be? Would we set new records or not? Thanks! Jenny
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2013 on Third storm at Arctic Sea Ice
Jenny E. Ross is now following The Typepad Team
Aug 10, 2013