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Messages - gerontocrat

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Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 29, 2017, 12:23:25 PM »
Archaeologists, when they are on a dig, say one needs three bricks before one can say for definite one has found a wall. When I look at the collapse in antarctic sea ice over the last 2 1/2 years, I think I only see one brick, as variability of extent is so high in the satellite record.

Perhaps one needs another two years of consistently extremely low sea ice extent before asking if  natural variation is being supplemented by AGW having penetrated the wall of Antarctic's isolation.

Meanwhile, did the extremely low sea ice this year allow significant impacts on any of the ice shelves ?

Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 28, 2017, 03:49:30 PM »
This is 663,237 km2 (circa 17 %) less than the previous lowest figure for this date in 2006,

A)  17% BELOW the prior record is A BUNCH.

B)  Do you know what the % drop is from LAST YEAR at this time?  I assume slightly more than 17%....but would be curious to know if you have that figure....thanks.

I knew I should have double-checked. The 37 % drop is compared with 2016. (The drop compared with the 1980s (the decade with the lowest extent) is a mere 29 percent). The drop compared with 27 March 2015 is 44 percent. The change in the last two years has been lunatic. Mais pourquoi ?

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: March 28, 2017, 03:03:20 PM »
The Russian Federation has invested heavily to increase its ice-breaker fleet to over 40, including a new nuclear-powered monster. They are also investing heavily in new and improved shore-based infrastructure and facilities. They are not doing this to improve their climate science base. It is all about exploiting and controlling the northern sea route for shipping and to exploit a variety of mineral resources (not just oil and gas).  It is partly driven by the realisation that they have failed to broaden their economy beyond oil and gas.

This is a long-term plan, and has nothing to do with the Trump presidency whatsoever. Successive presidencies have taken their eye off the ball when it comes to the Arctic.

If Russia was able to control the outcome of the Presidential election then this is a sorry judgement on the current state of the Great Experiment started when the 13 sisters told us English to get lost.

Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 28, 2017, 02:35:02 PM »
Jaxa measurement of extent 27th March 2017 is 3,329,871 km2. This is 663,237 km2 (circa 17 %) less than the previous lowest figure for this date in 2006, and 37% below the average for this date in the 1980s. Antarctic sea ice extent has now been at or below previous record minimums for around 5 months. Current refreezing rates are below the average.

Anyone out there got ideas on what has changed since the record maximum in 2014 and whether one can speculate on a possible long-term sea change in the Antarctic ?

Arctic Background / Re: Barneo 2017
« on: March 24, 2017, 07:42:39 PM »
So what do I know? reports today that base camp is successfully established. And that the ice is in good nick.

Consequences / Re: Hansen et al paper: 3+ meters SLR by 2100
« on: March 23, 2017, 07:01:11 PM »
In H.G.Well's "War of The Worlds" in the end it was the microbes wot did the biz on  the Martians. Ironic ?

Arctic sea ice / Re: 2017 sea ice area and extent data
« on: March 23, 2017, 04:44:15 PM »
...... showing just how much more sunlight-absorbing open water there now is during those months with high solar insolation. A few days with less ice-covered water won't change much, obviously, but when that extra sea surface is exposed to the summer sun for months on end, the cumulative effect becomes part of a powerful feedback loop.

There is nearly 2 million sq km more open water as of now compared with the 1980's. Being at the fringes of the ice-cap meaningful insolation is already happening on that water. I wonder what is the accumulated  additional heat still in long-term storage in the ocean due to increased insolation caused by reduction in sea-ice area  spatially distributed over the Arctic year by year since 1979.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016/2017 freezing season
« on: March 23, 2017, 12:59:10 PM »
This thread is the freezing season thread. So what is still freezing and where? Over on the melting season thread all is doom and gloom as evidence piles up for a humungous melting season. Are there any contra-indications anywhere ? (Perhaps PIOMAS sea ice volume update in early April will provide some relief).

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: March 23, 2017, 12:41:13 PM »
Jaxa sea-ice drift graph shows considerable sea-ice drift south out of Baffin Bay. Significant? indicates probable massive ESE movement of ice into open water Monday Tuesday Wednesday next week. This observer is not finding anything to indicate any reason for melting to slow down yet.

Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 23, 2017, 12:24:22 PM »
The re-freezing of Antarctica continues to impress by its slow pace. The current (March 22 Jaxa) measurement of extent of 3,038,106 sq km is now 1.3 million km2 less than the 1980s average (1980s being the lowest decade). This is an increased difference of 0.4 million compared with 20 days ago (the 2017 minimum).
As DavidR pointed out, SST anomalies as far north as 60 S currently point to this continuing (caveat: all other things being equal). So on a risk analysis approach given the available data, I can see no reason for this year's maximum not to be very low (even though the variability from year to year in Antarctica is extreme, meaning all predictions have a low probability of accuracy ?).

But, given the accumulated expertise gathered within ASIF, what do I know ?

Arctic Background / Re: Barneo 2017
« on: March 22, 2017, 08:09:14 PM »
Man in search of big thick stable lump of winter ice sheet doomed to disappointment ?

Consequences / Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« on: March 21, 2017, 04:31:09 PM »
In 1979-80 Malawi suffered a false early rains followed by a drought and then very poor rains. This was my introduction to rural development in Africa. The subsistence farmers (= nearly all farmers) had to plant a second time. It is the African equivalent of the false spring that has hit so much of eastern USA this year (and in 2012?). With a disastrous maize crop it meant by 1980-81 we had food riots until the next season's maize crop was distributed.

This happens from time to time. Farmers accept that there are good years and bad years but two or three bad years in a row can wipe them out. With a greatly increased population, especially through urbanisation, often significant soil erosion, and over-use of scarce water resources there is far less spare capacity in the food system in vulnerable parts of the world.

The question is whether unpredictability in the weather systems will continue to increase, thus threatening
food production in especially marginal parts of the world. You can see where I am going with this. It is hard not to believe that climate change will continue to significantly impact food production reliability in the world, with increased risk of societal collapse.
The world is becoming increasingly reliant for basic foodstuffs on the North American grain crops and rice production in countries like Thailand who currently can produce large surpluses. The recent disasters for soft fruit farmers in the USA and the problems for California agriculture during the recent drought would, you have thought, concentrated minds in Washington and led to increased budgets for agricultural extension staff and programmes.

It seems the opposite is happening. The world needs USA agriculture. It may have to look elsewhere.
But as Marie Antoinette did NOT say "Let them eat cake". (poor harvests and the indifference of the aristocracy to famine were a major contribution to the French Revolution).

And as Forrest Gump said "and that's all I'm going to say about that".

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: March 21, 2017, 03:45:14 PM »

Is there an IJIS anonymous to get over the addiction to Arctic Sea Ice melt?

No - you are doomed. It has been 20+ years for me and even the frontal lobotomy and electric shock treatment has had zilch effect.

And just to make matters worse, while JAXA says no change in the last two days, MASIE says nearly 200,000 km2 gone in the last two days.

Happy equinox.

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: March 21, 2017, 11:53:32 AM »
I read an article years ago suggesting that the North Slope of Alaska could in theory become shallow ocean due to sea level rise combined with permafrost melting. Up to 200,000 km2 ?

Sorry but the article is lost in  cyberspace.

Science / Re: Validation of GCM Models
« on: March 21, 2017, 11:25:07 AM »
Perhaps this thread should be renamed: "If Decision Makers Don't Care to Take Effective Action, Why Should Scientists Work to Refine Their Imperfect GCM Models?"

To bear witness. To leave a record.

As Neven pointed out, the ASIF is doing a good job of documenting the decline of the Arctic Sea Ice for the good of posterity.

Yes, and the need has never been greater with the prospect of climate science being cut off at the knees in the USA. But I am veering in the direction of policy, actions, solutions and can feel a moderator hovering over the delete button. So je suis fini.

Science / Re: Validation of GCM Models
« on: March 20, 2017, 10:28:01 PM »
Perhaps this thread should be renamed: "If Decision Makers Don't Care to Take Effective Action, Why Should Scientists Work to Refine Their Imperfect GCM Models?"

To bear witness. To leave a record.

Science / Re: Carbon emissions, totals, trends, etc
« on: March 20, 2017, 10:26:13 PM »
By the way:
Earth Null School has removed the extra 32 ppm of sc CO2 from their model and the numbers showing now are actual and they are still not good, some places are as high as 440 ppm plus in Asia, Europe, and Putin Land.

NY city is at about 428 ppm, Atlanta about 425 ppm, and the rest of the U.S. between 420 and 428 ppm. This thing with checking levels at Mauna Loa which is 11,150 ft or about 3400 m above sea level and putting that out as a standard of where we are at is a bunch of crap.
That Keeling guy set it up there as he reckoned the readings would not be affected by local condtions - e.g. trucks and autos, steelworks, coal-powered electricity power stations et al. Smart move. It is the source of 50+ years of unpolluted data. Does it reflect conditions in NY or the coal regions of NE China ? No. Is it still the best measure of additional CO2 in the atmosphere ? Yes.

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: March 20, 2017, 07:15:29 PM »
For anyone interested:

At the time of writing, this thread has had 1,096,023 views.

What makes you think anyone is remotely interested Jim?   ;)

twitch, twitch
Interested doesn't come close.

I will be in acute distress until Jaxa returns. It is bad enough to have to wait a whole month for the PIOMAS updates. My shrink still tells me "get over it, you've gotta let it go" when I start drooling about the demise of Cryosphere Today.

The rest / Re: Arctic Café
« on: March 19, 2017, 03:46:14 PM »
Those of you, like me, who think your days of getting up into the high latitudes may be over, or who have never been where it really is cold, might find this novel pretty damn good.

It is Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow or Smilla's Sense of Snow (Danish: Frøken Smillas fornemmelse for sne). A 1992 novel by Danish author Peter Høeg. It was translated into English by Tiina Nunnally (credited as "F. David" in the British edition).

Read all about it at:-'s_Feeling_for_Snow

The author knows his subject.

Arctic Background / Re: Baltic Images
« on: March 19, 2017, 03:34:25 PM »
A few years ago, due to vagaries of wind and weather, a little inlet in the Baltic got clogged up with loads of ice. It refused to melt. This prompted one of our most dedicated deniers, Mr. Christopher Booker, to write in the Daily Telegraph how this one month delay proved beyond a doubt that Global Warming was utter and complete nonsense. That the sea ice in the rest of the Arctic was melting before our eyes was, of course, of no moment.

So do not be surprised if your image showing a bit of ice left in the harbour is used for a surprising purpose. But more images please - I did some contracts for Swedish Aid many years ago and remember...

Arctic sea ice / Re: Poll: 2017 PIOMAS Maximum Monthly Figure
« on: March 19, 2017, 11:35:48 AM »
Gerontocrat, you can modify your own comments. It's a feature for idiots, which I initially installed for myself. But it seems everyone makes use of it now.  ;)
I will learn as it is a necessity for me since I am breaking my own rule - think and  check before pressing send.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Poll: 2017 PIOMAS Maximum Monthly Figure
« on: March 19, 2017, 10:13:15 AM »
I am an idiot. Remove the 000 from my prediction - Sunday morning and brain in standby mode.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Poll: 2017 PIOMAS Maximum Monthly Figure
« on: March 19, 2017, 10:08:25 AM »
20,173,000 km3 and April average only a tiny tiny bit more than March average. (Got the exact answer by reading Nostradamus).

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: March 19, 2017, 09:59:05 AM »
One could say melting is 12 days ahead of 2016. Which also means a little bit of the Arctic is getting a little bit more insolation this year. As Tesco says "every little helps" ?

Causation. It is a mugs' game to separate individual causations in an interdependent circular system. I am sure that this recent paper used the most rigorous methodologies. But when the answer is "42" because the question was wrong ? (Pace Douglas Adams).

I picked up from another thread on ASIF a graph on the  CIMP6 timeline for preparation of forcings, realisation of experiments and analysis.

Basically, collection of data and design preparation is finished by year end ? Analysis to be completed by December 2019. The politicos will consider it in 2022. Always too little, too late ?

The stately progress of the collected conventional wisdom of the world.

Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 18, 2017, 01:41:45 PM »
Hullo Georged,

The only data I have is Jaxa's .CSV files on daily measures of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice extent. They are easily downloaded - I use Jaxa's version 1 as I find it easier to use for the very simple things I do (environmental arithmetic as opposed to real maths). The address is

So I simply observe that Antarctic sea ice has been several standard deviations below the average in the satellite record  for some time. Methinks I was taught by my statistics tutor that the greater that deviation then the less likely it is that the observations were random chance. Which is why I still think keeping an eye on what's going on down south is of value.

But what were the causes of such massive variations from the "norm" ?
And what has been the effect on sea ice shelves exposed to open ocean in a way they have not been for a good many years?

And isn't it strange that we find that we know least about that which we find we need to know most? (Antarctica, the Oceans)

Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 17, 2017, 10:05:20 AM »
A small observation:-
On March 16 2017 jaxa measurement says antarctic sea ice 1/3 rd less than on March 16 2017. Difference currently increasing every day.

Consequences / Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« on: March 16, 2017, 06:52:22 PM »
Good bye, good luck and thanks for the fish....

With acknowledgements to Douglas Adams. The answer is 42,  but the question was wrong.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Poll: 2017 PIOMAS Maximum Monthly Figure
« on: March 16, 2017, 06:44:09 PM »
We won't have long to wait to see.

Past results are not an indication of future performance.  Especially after this last winter.

That is the question.
Are we seeing a sea-change or an anomaly ?

Arctic sea ice / Re: The Slow Transition
« on: March 16, 2017, 06:41:19 PM »
Is not the question - whither the slow transition ? To continue, to accelerate, or a sudden collapse ?
I am content to wait and see, though I am betting on acceleration.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: March 16, 2017, 11:48:20 AM »
Methinks Trump must have been taking lessons from the UK government on how to shaft the most vulnerable. Being on the verge of three score years and ten and mentally fragile the future does not look bright.

The paper seems to say that they took out the change to atmospheric circulation to see the change in sea ice caused by AGW alone. But did they run the model again taking out AGW to see the change in sea ice when only change in atmospheric circulation is included ?

And if they did, did adding the reduced effect from each model run = the total observed change in sea ice?
I doubt it - in all the models on any subject I have made there is a multiplier effect. It is also surely dangerous to assume cause and effect in a uni-directional manner. Models usually use iteration which implies changes in parameters cause changes in other parameters which in turn..

However, I will not be surprised if Jim Hunt is writing about climate-gate-3 after this weekend's Breitbart News and Daily Mail.

Consequences / Re: Population: Public Enemy No. 1
« on: March 16, 2017, 11:19:59 AM »
From deep Africa, where population growth is exponential, given that women marry at very young age and give birth to very many children:
"Having lots of children is the norm because they bring wealth (“they come with two hands to work but only one mouth to feed”). So why have four when you could have seven?"

According to the article, women don't want to use contraceptives, even when they are readily available, because they like to have many children.

The article illustrates why population growth is sure to continue for many decades to come.
This article is so depressing. Such a poor country with such a high birth rate and such a culture. Totally hopeless.The only questions remaining are when will Niger collapse, and in what manner (Widespread famine? Civil war? Attacking neighbouring countries? A fundamentalist revolution? All of the above?)

I don't know of any woman that wants to have many many kids. It does awful thinks to their body. It is usually due to religion or version (husbands).

And there are still pro-life evangelical and catholic missionaries in Africa still preaching that contraception is a sin against God to a deeply religious people.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Stupid Questions :o
« on: March 15, 2017, 05:49:40 PM »
The projections by Hansen on global temperatures are non-linear. Does this suggest that the impacts of temp change are / will be non-linear ?

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: March 15, 2017, 05:44:28 PM » says conditions favourable for export for next 4 to 6 days.

Never a dull monent.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: March 15, 2017, 11:04:56 AM »
Here is a link to "a letter to my daughter".

The writer says - not climate deniers, earth devourers.

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: March 14, 2017, 10:45:54 PM »
Don't get too excited about current reductions to oil and gas. Boom-bust is what the industry does.

 It just needs a shock to get prices up again. E.g. Libya goes even more pear-shaped, Niger Delta goes bad again, US  / Iran start sabre-rattling again,  unrest in Saudi Arabia etc etc etc.

Or world has another financial shock and hullo $ 25 a barrel.

But it is true to say that there is a hell of a lot of easily retrievable oil and gas around if the world economy and politics remain reasonably stable.

Thanks for the citations. From

i see that 2/3 of generation worldwide is from fossil fuels. From

i see that we get a kilo of CO2 per kilowatt hour from coal


i see that a typical electric car eats about 1/3 KwH/mile. So an electric car emits about (1/3)*(2/3)*1 = 0.22 kilo CO2 per mile, neglecting transmission and charging loss


i see that an average gasoline powered car emits 0.41 kilo CO2 per mile.

EVs dont look so bad ...


I read somewhere awhile back that half of an auto's carbon footprint over its lifetime was in its production. Can't think it would be any lower for an EV. Personally owned vehicles for travel has to be dramatically curtailed across the board.

How right you are. Trouble is, our economic system depends on increasing demand and autos are an important component. The auto industry has to sell more or bankruptcy looms, banks go bust, unemployment soars. 6Hence Obama bailing out GM and others.

If average auto life increased by just one year - crash.

Consequences / Re: Places becoming less livable
« on: March 14, 2017, 10:46:54 AM » new article bringing together several causes and consequences. Well worth a read.

"Electric cars and trucks predominantly powered by coal and natural gas."

A citation in support of this claim would be nice.

Most electricity is still generated from gas oil and coal. Obviously as renewables hopefully replace fossil fuels then most will become some. Countries e.g. China are pushing EVs in urban areas in response to relieving air pollution.

Mind you you are right - to fix mankinds problems requires reduction in energy demand.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: March 13, 2017, 06:32:18 PM »
I just want to remind everyone to check their microwaves for spy's....:

 :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o

Merely a diversion - she is really a Klingon. It is hairdryers -  invading your brain for god knows what.

Consequences / Re: Places becoming less livable
« on: March 13, 2017, 05:55:33 PM »
Really Good article from bloomberg news on Alaska:-

Not good news for the humans in Alaska, but perhaps it is for non-human life forms.

Policy and solutions / Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« on: March 13, 2017, 05:24:38 PM »
Now if only I could figure out how to motivate decision makers to move beyond greed, materialism and objectification and into working on how to create an environment in which to develop the full human potential; we might start to make progress towards a more sustainable situation.

You need to get a discussion going on how much one person should own. How much is enough? 20 million? 50 million? 100 million? Once there is a limit on how much one person can own, greed won't disappear, but you will have put a brake on its system-altering properties. This is the only way the system can be changed.

Once enough people are convinced that this is the solution to make all other solutions possible, it can be accomplished policy-wise. I don't know how exactly, and I'm not saying it will be easy.

But at some point the rich have to stop getting richer. It's better for them too. Not many people can handle being rich.

I haven't got a clue as where to put this post. So I thought to leave it with you as the article is about how academia has been taken over by the fossil fuel companies whose agenda is to preserve and increase the riches they have. The title of the article is:-

"The fossil fuel industry's invisible colonization of academia: Corporate capture of academic research by the fossil fuel industry is an elephant in the room and a threat to tackling climate change."

The link is

The content indicates the extent of the spiritual corruption of Harvard, Stanford, MIT and University of Texas. I find it quite scary.



Antarctica / Re: Sea Ice Extent around Antarctica
« on: March 13, 2017, 02:53:31 PM »
Refreezing somewhat slower than last year. Jaxa extent measurement now over 1 million km2 less than 2016. SST anomalies still high north of antarctic circle but air temps below average. Early days but worth watching refreezing season.

Arctic Background / Re: Arctic Maps
« on: March 11, 2017, 01:22:26 PM »
maps, more maps, I want more Arctic maps... (I'm writing for the thread, not my insatiable appetite.)
Here is a map of the Western Arctic region displayed ...

You could try contacting the Royal Geographical Society in London( ). they've got heaven knows what in their archives.

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: March 11, 2017, 12:12:35 PM »
US Shale producers reckon that even at 40 bucks a barrel some fields, including the huge Perminan basin, are profitable. Shell has got rid of some of its tar sands assets. Can't see any future for Alberta's oil indistry.

Ps : Bloomberg says US Coal production increasing by 15 percent this year (but no net increase in jobs as production in fields highly automated while other mines continue to close).

Looks increasingly like only chance of real reduction in world CO2 emissions is China's promises to reduce coal use and ramp up renewables.

Consequences / Re: Effects of Climate Change on the biosphere
« on: March 11, 2017, 11:14:32 AM »


A few years back there was a very early bloom in the apple orchards here about, followed by a snap freeze that destroyed the crop.
Hope no huge swings occur this year.


5 a.m. 11 march Washington DC TEMPERATURE   -3  degrees C.
Staying cold at least until Thursday (min -7 C)

Unseasonably cold over NE USA for several days.
No info on effect on fruit crops and pollinating insects.

Climate change now = wild swings ?
Lamar Smith will get his snowball ?

Consequences / Re: Ocean Temps
« on: March 11, 2017, 10:59:26 AM »
This is how I look at AGW.

 One can look at an el nino as the oceans burping out some of the excess stored heat which can then radiate out into space. A la nina can then be seen as accelerating heating of the biosphere - cool SSTs mean greater heat transfer from the atmosphere into longterm storage in the oceans. i.e. warming of the atmosphere is largely a side-effect of ocean heating.

Loss of sea ice exaggerates the effect on Arctic atmospheric temperatures, leadiing to positive feedback being even more heat captured by the oceans.

This new report on ocean heating is fairly disastrous. I guess we have to wait for the climate modellers to plug the data in.

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