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Jon Torrance
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Phil, I'm not a specialist in this area either - few of us here are. If I were, maybe I would have thought of the possibility that that was the MASIE data you were presenting not the usual SIE data (which I don't think is available on a daily basis anywhere - you had me wondering whether you'd found a non-NSIDC data source and had simply typed NSIDC out of habit). In any case, I really had no idea where you were getting that data from nor what it was exactly and couldn't believe you were just making up numbers so I had to ask. My apologies if that, or more likely mostly my pique over your not actually double checking the CT area data when challenged on that but merely linking to it came off as patronizing. That said, and against my possibly better judgement, I have a problem with your writing "However, I resent being patronized simply because my comment "doesn't fit"." when no one in this comment thread used the phrase "doesn't fit" until you did. If you want to paraphrase what someone said, say so. If you use quotation marks, use them to enclose an actual quotation.
Toggle Commented Mar 31, 2011 on First forecasts at Arctic Sea Ice
Phil, Abandoning hints, the CT data you just linked to shows the maximum extent for March as 13,144 k not 13,102 k (the value for the next day) and, while some NSIDC services may be down, their last news post dated March 23rd, in which they say the likely maximum extent for the year reached on March 7 was 14.64 million square kilometer not 15,110,022, is still accessible online. Obviously, it doesn't take a genius to imagine how you made the mistake with the CT area data, though you would do well to actually look at the data carefully the next time someone tells you they think you've made a mistake, but I really have no idea what the "NSIDC daily SIE numbers" you're presenting are. They certainly aren't the numbers underlying the chart at so please do clarify where you got them and what they're supposed to represent, after the NSIDC finishes their data center work if you can't do it before then. Thanks.
Toggle Commented Mar 31, 2011 on First forecasts at Arctic Sea Ice
Phil, Your numbers don't seem quite to match what I see at the NSIDC and CT web sites. Some clarification and/or correction might be in order.
Toggle Commented Mar 30, 2011 on First forecasts at Arctic Sea Ice
Scylla and Charybdis were on opposite sides of a narrow strait, with the challenge being to thread the extremely narrow safe path between them. Disappearing arctic sea ice and the potentially meltable methane clathrates at depth are, so to speak, on the same side of the strait, so the metaphor rather breaks down there since avoiding their dangers isn't a question of staying at the sweet spot between them but of giving them both as wide a berth as we can manage. In any case, the methane clathrates may not have made it to the big time in terms of wide public awareness of the danger of reaching a tipping point where they melt and keep greenhouse gas concentrations rising despite anything we do but there are plenty of scientists sounding the alarm. It received a fair number of pages in Hansen's '"Storms of my Grandchildren", for instance.
Toggle Commented Mar 10, 2011 on Open Thread 7: time to dehibernate at Arctic Sea Ice
William, "The Beafort sea data is interesting, but how much does this region contribute to ice coverage at the minimum?" I can't tell you how much it contributes but it clearly does contribute by melting, thereby mopping up a lot of heat energy that might otherwise end up in the Arctic Basin and melt the ice there instead. Metaphorically, ice in the Beaufort Sea throws itself on a grenade each year in order to let its buddy, Arctic Basin ice, sustain a mere flesh wound. It's puzzling to me and I suspect to most of us reading here that you resist the idea that this mechanism is a significant factor in the survival of ice in the Arctic Basin.
Toggle Commented Feb 18, 2011 on Open Thread 6 at Arctic Sea Ice
Adding to Gas Glo's work, if I use Bfraser's data to calculate average ice thickness in the Arctic Basin in September, I get: Year Area Volume Thickness(m) 2007 3041980 6344702 2.085714567 2008 3637152 5566048 1.530331424 2009 3811160 4909465 1.288181289 2010 3827012 3922587 1.024973792 The best fit linear trendline Excel gives for that data set has an annual rate of decrease in thickness of 34 centimeters per year.
Toggle Commented Feb 18, 2011 on Open Thread 6 at Arctic Sea Ice
William, Your response appears to confirm my initial impression that you don't actually know what the ice area in the Arctic Basin according to Cryosphere Today was on May 31, 2007. As far as I can tell, they don't make that data available more than 365 days into the past in either numeric form or in charts so that's understandable. However, using their "Compare Daily Sea Ice" tool, it doesn't look to me as through the ice area at the end of May 2007 met the criterion you're proposing for a new minimum this year being likely (or, if it did, then it appears a number of other recent years did as well). Which is fine - I think just about everyone agrees 2007 had an exceptional summer. In fact, you said so yourself: "2007 had unusual wind patterns and a severe late season melt. These conditions caused 2007 to fall below 2010 even though 2010 was below 2007 at the end of June. Perhaps you could get both a 2010 like melt in June and early July and 2007 conditions for late July and August which would result in a new minimum record, but that would be relying on unusual weather patterns post May to create the event rather than weak ice conditions at the end of May." My basic point is that you don't appear to have verified and certainly haven't demonstrated to us here that the 2007 record minimum didn't result entirely from "unusual weather patterns post May to create the event rather than weak ice conditions at the end of May". If you want us to lend any credence to your theory, please go dig up data showing that there's a significant correlation between CT ice area for the Arctic Basin on May 31 and the size of the annual extent minimum.
Toggle Commented Feb 17, 2011 on Open Thread 5 at Arctic Sea Ice
William, Regarding "If ice area does not fall significantly below 4,000,000 km2 by the end of May, it is unlikely that a new minimum will occur." could you indulge me by specifying exactly how much below 4,000,000 km2 you have in mind with "significantly"? While you're at it, please also tell us what numerical probability you consider the word "unlikely" to imply. Cheers.
Toggle Commented Feb 15, 2011 on Open Thread 5 at Arctic Sea Ice
It's one advantage of Intrade so far offering only a contract on whether 2011 will set a new record minimum or not - since I've been betting against it at the, to me, surprising odds on offer (sure, I think it could set a new record next year but I also think whoever it was bought at a price implying they thought the odds of that were better then 75% is, in fact, overly alarmist) I'll either make money or we'll get a new record minimum - a silver lining for me whichever bad thing happens.
Toggle Commented Jan 8, 2011 on Open Thread 3 at Arctic Sea Ice
Sadly, no, not yet. This is only the water level so far, not information on how high the ice surface is above the water.
Toggle Commented Dec 20, 2010 on Open Thread 2 at Arctic Sea Ice
I assume others are also less obsessive about looking at extent figures than during the melt season but, in case it's of interest, I just thought to check on them and as of yesterday 2010 is the lowest for that date in the JAXA extent record once again. BTW, I'm signing in from Google now because there's no button to click on if I select Facebook from the menu on the Typepad sign in page. Does anyone know why that is? Not really a problem unless I decide I really need the picture beside my posts but perhaps it's more of an inconvenience for others.
Toggle Commented Dec 9, 2010 on Open Thread 2 at Arctic Sea Ice
Gas Glo, I'm interested and frankly a little bit amazed that, updating things a bit, someone out there think the odds of a new record low in JAXA extent next year are higher than 75% - so far the contract has traded at 50 and at 25.
Toggle Commented Dec 8, 2010 on Open Thread 2 at Arctic Sea Ice
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