This is Matthew Opitz's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Matthew Opitz's activity
Matthew Opitz
Recent Activity
No way Beaufort has open water all winter this year. Not quite there yet. Kara Sea, on the other hand...
I want to ask everyone: even without the right winds for compacting ice, what are the chances that all of the ice except for the stronghold area outlined in black in the following image ends up melting in place by the end of the melting season? http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/arctic_SSMIS_nic2.png Also, if this came to pass, would this not amount to a new record for extent and area?
If we end up burning all the fossil fuels that our economic system is currently counting on being allowed to burn...we're screwed. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/global-warmings-terrifying-new-math-20120719 Maybe someone should do the following mathematical calculation: how much habitable land will we lose from sea level rise in the next century vs. how much habitable land will we gain from higher latitudes becoming warmer? Might as well get a head start on relocating New York City to Nunavut.
Ah, according to this: http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a533205.pdf The numbers for the CICE ice thickness product mentioned above are in meters. This brings me to another question: Would it be possible to create an algorithm that would integrate that CICE ice thickness data image, pixel by pixel, to determine overall ice volume? That would give us another daily ice volume measurement to compare against PIOMAS. And it would be a volume measurement where we could see exactly where the changes were occurring day-to-day.
I have some questions about the "CICE Ice thickness Arctic Now-cast" product from the Navy. 1. How accurate is it considered to be? 2. Are its numbers in feet or meters? Something I have noticed is that there is a lot less turquoise ice this time around. Last year at this time, the turquoise ice stretched all the way up close to the ice edge. This year, there's a lot of blue and purple ice, especially on the Russian side of the Arctic. July 14, 2011: http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticictn/nowcast/ictn2011071518_2011071400_035_arcticictn.001.gif July 14, 2012: http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticictn/nowcast/ictn2012071518_2012071400_035_arcticictn.001.gif
Oh man, huge swathes of the central ice pack suddenly look really bad. Chunks are all loose with water visible between them. What happened?! Also, that band of snow on the west side of Greenland looks like the snow you find on the side of the road 3 days after a snowfall. All grey and grimy-looking, with melt-ponds and melt-lakes everywhere. That can't be good....
And meanwhile, the CT SIA massacre continues. Anomaly now at -1.692 million sq km. Area at 8.410 million sq. km.
Commented Jun 15, 2012 on Fringe fries at Arctic Sea Ice
Nice data, Rob. Very telling trends. In other news, that blue fast-ice in the East Siberian Sea is starting to break up. http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/imagery/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r05c04.2012164.terra.250m
To get an idea of just what sort of bad shape the arctic ice is in this year, compare with 2007: http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=06&fd=09&fy=2007&sm=06&sd=09&sy=2012 Specifically, 2012 looks worse than 2007 in terms of: *Snow cover. 2007 is missing a lot of snow cover in northern Russia, northern Canada, and Labrador. *Ice in Kara Sea (bigtime!). *Ice in northern Barentsz Sea. *Ice in Beaufort Sea. *Ice in Baffin Bay. Ice levels in Hudson Bay, Laptev Sea are comparable between the two years. 2007 has 2012 beat slightly in Sea of Okhotsk and Bering Sea, but not really by much anymore. Overall, it does not look good. 2012's northern hemisphere albedo is significantly darker than 2007's at the crucial time of the year of peak sun hours.
The Kara sea ice is trash according to Lance-Modis, even while Cryosphere Today is counting that whole area as full of ice. A similar thing is going on in parts of Hudson Bay, it seems. In reality, the ice is even worse than the CT numbers let on just yet. This will become more apparent as those last little ice floes melt out of the Kara Sea, and all of the sudden that area gets subtracted from the total, sending 2012 racing ahead of the others. I voted <2.8 million km.
Ice in Hudson Bay is about to get murdered. Daytime highs one week from now, according to GFS: http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/scorch1.png Nighttime lows one week from now, according to GFS: http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/scorch2.png Usually Hudson Bay does not melt out until ~July 20 at earliest. I cannot see how the ice there will be able to hold up that long if such conditions referenced above hold steady (which it seems they will for the foreseeable future...the long range GFS is even nastier, scorching the Hudson Bay coast with highs in the 80s F).
I should also add, another bullet we dodged this summer that kept it from being a worst-case scenario was an anomalously warm May around Hudson Bay that kept this relatively low-latitude area of sea ice from melting out early and exposing that water to the June sun. For a while in mid-May, the long-range forecasts were hinting at 25C temps along the shores of Hudson Bay around the end of May/beginning of June. But instead what happens was a slight cold spell that kept the Hudson Bay ice around longer, keeping most of Hudson Bay from soaking up the intense June sun. If Hudson Bay had melted out earlier this spring, I wager that the entire Canadian Archipelago would already be toast by now. Even so, that ice is on its last legs. I likewise thing it will all melt in-situ before Sept. 1st.
The thing that strikes me about this summer is that the arctic air temperatures have not been particularly high. Most of the anomalously high temperatures have, oddly enough, been concentrated in the antarctic over the last few months, at least according to this analysis product that I've been religiously monitoring: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/map/images/fnl/sfctmpmer_01b.fnl.html Just imagine if that anomaly had been in the arctic this summer! If the sea ice can fall apart this badly from temperatures just a little bit above normal, imagine when a summer when the global anomaly gets concentrated in the arctic!
Just looked at the latest GFS run. Here's a frame from the very end of it, for June 4th: http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/hudsonbaymeltjun4.png First, note the 95+ (F) degree temperatures just south of Churchill, Canada being forecasted. Jesus Christ! Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, notice that the 35+ (F) degree isotherm has taken over all but the northernmost sliver of Hudson Bay by this frame. To me, this suggests that the GFS expects the ice to have retreated to at least that isotherm by June 4th, as the 35+ (F) degree isotherm is pretty stubborn in the face of ice when there is still ice there to cool the air down.
Commented May 20, 2011 on SIE 2011 update 6: unperturbed at Arctic Sea Ice
The GFS is forecasting 85+ degree (F) temperatures for much of the coast of Hudson Bay a week from now: http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/heat-wave.png My prediction is, we are about to see Hudson Bay's ice area take a nosedive. Unlike in any other previous recorded year, I predict that this year's Hudson Bay will be able to soak up the vast majority of the June sunlight that it will be receiving. FYI, to give you an idea of what this means, consider that on June 21st, the angle of incidence at the sun at noon in Churchill, Manitoba is ~35 degrees. This is about the same angle of incidence that Caracas, Venezuela receives on December 21st at noon. For the first time in recorded history, almost all of Hudson Bay will have open water being exposed to this angle of incidence throughout almost all of June. That's my prediction. I think it has tremendous implications for the subsequent melting of the Canadian Archipelago in July and the acceleration of the melting of the Greenland ice sheet this summer.
Commented May 16, 2011 on SIE 2011 update 6: unperturbed at Arctic Sea Ice
And it looks like next week the Hudson Bay area is going to be having some scorching hot temperatures, according to the GFS. http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/icemelt.png Usually it takes until July before Hudson Bay totally melts out, but I don't see how it can last the month of May at this pace. This is the north end of Hudson Bay: http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e326/Zeiter/icemelt2.png There's no way that sort of ice survives more than a week or two of 70-degree temps in the region.
What has been going on in the Bering Strait this past week? Has anybody else been noticing this? http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r06c03.2011061.terra It's as if the Bering Strait ice is on the verge of disintegrating. The Kara Sea is also not looking particularly healthy: http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r03c05.2011061.terra We're beginning to get a bit more ice growth on the north coast of Labrador: http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r02c01.2011061.terra But it is far from being remotely consolidated, and time is running out. It will not take long for this ice to melt away. The arctic ice is already at battle stations on three fronts, and the melt season shouldn't have even started yet.
Commented Mar 3, 2011 on Open Thread 6 at Arctic Sea Ice
Wow, those ice volume trends really are scary. The world is going to be shocked when some time this decade the Arctic Ocean completely melts away during the summer. It's going to feel like we are living on an alien planet, to look at the MODIS or cryosphere today imagery and see one vast ocean there. It's going to creep a lot of people out, and it may just be the thing to finally discredit the AGW-deniers and get people serious about AGW. Not to mention, we might witness totally different weather patterns setting up in the late fall due to delayed re-freezing and latent heat warming the arctic coasts. We might get a really weird situation where Pevek, Russia and Barrow, Alaska enjoy balmy ~0-degree Celsius temperatures well into November as latent heat from the open ocean and the arctic re-freezing maintain temperatures around freezing (in effect benefiting for the first time in human history from a maritime climate), while points from Yellowknife to Edmonton get left a continental climate that is colder, despite being farther south. We are already seeing how relatively balmy Greenland has been thanks partly to the ice on the western coast not making it down very far south. I predict, that, if you are into real estate, that the maritime arctic is where you might want to be looking these next ten years.
Matthew Opitz is now following The Typepad Team
Feb 10, 2011