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GoSouthYoungins

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Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« on: June 24, 2020, 05:03:50 AM »
It seems to me that if the permafrost is melting and fires stay dormant between summers, there is a high likelihood that soot lands on fast swaths of the arctic ice over the next few years, which would almost certainly tip the balance towards near turn doom.

https://phys.org/news/2020-05-scientists-zombie-arctic.html

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/06/04/have-siberian-fires-been-smouldering-underground-all-winter
« Last Edit: June 25, 2020, 08:47:15 PM by oren »
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Comradez

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2020, 10:05:03 PM »
There sure are tons of fires in Siberia on today's worldview. 

GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2020, 03:54:19 PM »
And it is very early in the season. The fires will burn for months. AND THEN, apparently many(/most?) will smolder the snowpack until next years thaw.

Rise and repeat annually and a good arctic doctor would be telling the icepack's family that it's time to say goodbye and get a will in good order. Patient icepack has 3 years to live.


It is funny to me that little tiny ice related details get HUGE amounts of attentions, but new big picture stuff that will likely totally upend current trends GETS PRACTICALLY IGNORED.
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oren

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2020, 04:37:32 PM »
No need for CAPS. You forget a lot of the soot on the ice gets buried under snow or is washed into the ocean when the ice melts.

GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2020, 06:52:43 PM »
No need for CAPS. You forget a lot of the soot on the ice gets buried under snow or is washed into the ocean when the ice melts.

WHEN THE ICE MELTS. I'm aware that once the ice melts, the soot does NOT hang out on surface to forevermore change the albedo.

Smoke over Laptev and ESS ice currently. Luckily this ice is about to melt anyways.


It would require some slightly adnormal weather, but soot settling in the middle of the CAB with weeks of July insolation remaining could be really really bad. It seems to me to be a coin toss.

But next year the coin will get tossed again. And the next year. Anyone have an explanation of why this wont just spiral, and fast?

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GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2020, 06:54:40 PM »
You forget a lot of the soot on the ice gets buried under snow or is washed into the ocean when the ice melts.

"OMFG, those ppl are shooting at us!" said the reasonable person.

"You forget, most bullets miss." said the unreasonable person.
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kassy

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Re: Zombie Fires
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2020, 07:46:57 PM »
And then they were both right. Probably best to focus on the science.

Also is there a difference between soot from zombie fires or from new fires?
Þetta minnismerki er til vitnis um að við vitum hvað er að gerast og hvað þarf að gera. Aðeins þú veist hvort við gerðum eitthvað.

oren

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2020, 08:48:18 PM »
Change the title of the thread to be more general and informative.

GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2020, 01:00:17 AM »
Being worried about bullets flying your way, is different than forgetting that most bullets miss.


There is no difference between "zombie fire" smoke/soot and "new fire" smoke/soot. You are missing the point. It is about the amount of fires.

Rather than starting the year with ZERO fires and building up to say 1000 fires; if you start with 500 fires you will build up to 1500. In theory you start the following year with 750 fires, and so on. A few years of that pattern and soon there are tens of thousands of fires burning the day the snow melts.

Plus, fires earlier in the season are much worse. The likelihood of soot settling on ice and sigficantly speeding up melt is much higher the sooner the fires are burning.
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oren

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2020, 08:55:19 AM »
So, is there a trend in Arctic wildfires? Are fires in Siberia indeed increasing in extent? Are they showing up earlier, thus increasing compared to the date? Some data would be helpful in assessing the risk. Saying it will increase from say 1000 to tens of thousands is concerning, but with no data to back this up the discussion is less effective.

GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2020, 05:07:47 PM »
Basic logic, oren.

If fires don't go out at the end of the year, it doesn't take a mathematician to figure out whats going to happen to the number of fires.

It takes too many images to post, but if you look on worldview the fires have never been so widespread this early.

By August this conversation will be moot and seem silly. The fires will be epic.
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pleun

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2020, 02:29:45 AM »
Sure looks worse than previous years. Mark Parrington from Cams is tweeting about this :

https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1276159861898838016?s=19


« Last Edit: June 28, 2020, 11:38:11 AM by pleun »

oren

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2020, 08:09:42 AM »
Extreme fires erupt in the Arctic Circle
https://mashable.com/article/arctic-fires-extreme-2020/

Quote
For the second straight year, an unusually large number of intense fires have ignited in the Arctic Circle, the polar region atop Earth.

It's now been anomalously warm in Siberia for nearly six months, and temperatures likely eclipsed triple digits in a Siberian town last weekend — setting a heat record for the Arctic Circle. This streak of warm and hot conditions has set the stage for blazes to torch the dried-out region. Last year, unprecedented fires burned in the Arctic Circle, and new data from Copernicus, the European Union's earth observation agency, show the number and intensity of fires is similar in 2020.

The robust blazes are problematic because burned forests and vegetation release copious amounts of heat-trapping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere (CO2, for example, is a primary ingredient in smoke), particularly when thick mats of decomposed, carbon-rich vegetation, called peat, ignite. Of the 18 years researchers have used satellites to closely monitor Arctic fires, 2019 and 2020 have emitted more CO2 into the atmosphere than the previous 16 years combined, said Thomas Smith, an assistant professor in environmental geography at the London School of Economics.

"The two years together is quite alarming," said Smith. "I don't use that word lightly."

Quote
As the Earth's climate continues to relentlessly warm, the recent fires could be a harbinger of substantially more burning in the Arctic Circle. Yet, the 18-year wildfire satellite record (started via NASA satellites in 2002) is still too short to conclude with certainty that these recent fire years are evidence that the fire regime in the Arctic Circle has dramatically changed. Still, there's growing evidence that change is afoot in forests and tundra atop the globe.

"With confidence, we can say that this does appear to be an increasing trend of fire," said Jessica McCarty, an Arctic fire researcher and assistant professor in the Department of Geography at Miami University. "There’s some shift occurring."

She emphasized that recent fire activity in the region "is an interesting finding," but it will take years of further observation to confirm if it's part of a big, sustained trend. Fire seasons are naturally cyclical, meaning there can be bigger fire years followed by less intense periods as the landscape recovers and vegetation regrows. Additionally, Siberia has been smothered by atypically warm temperatures for nearly six straight months. Some years will inevitably be cooler, which may mean less favorable conditions for flames.

There's a diversity of ecosystems burning in the Arctic right now, according to an analysis by Smith, including forested areas, shrublands, and tundra. Importantly, the ground in some of these burning areas is peat (though it's hard to precisely estimate how much), which means old, thick deposits of carbon are burning and releasing the potent greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane into the air.

Quote
An important takeaway from the last two extreme years of Arctic blazes isn't that there's bound to be such intense fire seasons each summer now, but that ever-warming environmental conditions allow for such atypical burning to be possible, or increasingly possible. "We don't expect these fires all the time," said McCarty. "But we know the landscape can burn."

During the spring, some of 2020's Arctic fires may have been zombie fires, or holdover fires, which survive underground during the winter and then reemerge the following year. But overall, some 85 to 95 percent of fires are ignited by humans, either intentionally or accidentally, explained McCarty. Yet lightning strikes often start the biggest Arctic fires, she said, and as the region incessantly warms and the air becomes more humid in the summer, this polar region could see more lightning.

"In the future, we expect more lightning strikes in the Arctic in a warmer climate — thus more potential for Arctic fires," said McCarty.

There will be more burning in the Arctic Circle this summer, as a stagnant, warm weather pattern continues to heat the region. And as with any heat wave today, particularly in the fast-changing Arctic, hot weather patterns are amplified by climate change. This means heat events today are warmer than they would have been without human-caused global warming.

Under these hot and dry conditions, Siberia is an expansive land that's primed to burn. "You’ve got so much dried-out material," said Smith. "It can burn, and burn, and burn."

GoSouthYoungins

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2020, 07:38:45 AM »
the fires are crazy. the end.
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ArcticMelt2

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The strongest fires in the Arctic Circle in June 2020
« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2020, 11:55:21 AM »
https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1278243686225190913

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The scale & intensity of #Siberia/#Arctic #wildfires in June 2020 has been greater than the 'unprecedented' activity of June 2019 in #Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service GFAS data based on MODIS obs https://confluence.ecmwf.int/display/CKB/CAMS%3A+Global+Fire+Assimilation+System+%28GFAS%29+data+documentation (total of 16 Mt C ≈ 59 Mt CO2) #ArcticFires





« Last Edit: July 01, 2020, 12:27:13 PM by ArcticMelt2 »

ArcticMelt2

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Records of the most northern fires of this summer
« Reply #15 on: July 01, 2020, 02:10:01 PM »
In just a week, this record changed three times...

First record

https://twitter.com/defis_eu/status/1276424986555801601
3:00 PM June 26 2020.·Twitter Web App

Quote
#EUSpace @CopernicusEU data are useful to monitor fire hotspots which are expanding to the north

Yesterday, #Sentinel2 detected what is believed to be the northernmost fire in recent years, within the #Arctic Circle, in the Republic of Sakha, #Siberia
Lat 72.7°N, Lon 118.1°E



Second record

12:12 AM June 28 2020.·Twitter Web App

Quote
Yesterday
@defis_eu shows the northern most fire in recent years, within the #Arctic Circle Old story!
Today 27 June @CopernicusEU #Sentinel2 detected another even further north (72.73N, 120.2E)!
Is this the #NewNormal? Extreme fires in the Arctic Circle?



Third record

https://twitter.com/annamaria_84/status/1278088111147319296

5:08 AM · July 1 2020·Twitter Web App

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For the third time in a week, the northernmost fire record has been broken Yesterday 30 June @CopernicusEU #Sentinel2 detected the new northernmost fire in the #Arctic Circle (at 72.9N, 119.77E! #Siberia)

« Last Edit: July 01, 2020, 02:18:42 PM by ArcticMelt2 »

ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2020, 02:12:40 PM »
An enlarged snapshot of the fires of the last third record


Niall Dollard

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #17 on: July 02, 2020, 12:13:25 AM »
Close up view on that most northern fire today 1st July from Sentinel

wdmn

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #18 on: July 02, 2020, 10:21:57 PM »
Siberian Fires Have Released a Record Amount of Carbon This Year

https://earther.gizmodo.com/siberian-fires-have-released-a-record-amount-of-carbon-1844245153

"The fact that fires are burning in the tundra is a huge cause for concern, because the area contains vast stores of carbon-rich landscapes that include peatlands and frozen (for now) soil known as permafrost. Fires have been known to overwinter in peatlands, smoldering underground only to explode in the spring and summer. At least some of the fires in Siberia have done that. The fires near permafrost could be even more worrying, though, which is saying a lot.

“The thawing of permafrost is increasing the potential fuel loading for fires,” Thomas Smith, a fire expert at the London School of Economics, told Earther in an email. “I have a new dataset from [the National Snow and Ice Data Center] that also confirms that many of these fires are burning on supposedly ‘continuous permafrost extent with high ground ice content.’

Given that this ground should be frozen or at least boggy all year round, it should not be available to burn! But it is burning, which implies that it has thawed out and has dried.”

The fires could set off a nasty feedback loop by releasing carbon that warms the planet, which in turns makes fires and thawing permafrost more likely. It’s one of the feedback loops that poses the greatest risk to the climate while permanently altering the northern landscape.

If you’re like me, it’s easy to look at what’s happening in Siberia right now and wonder if we’re passing a tipping point. If you’re a scientist, it’s easy to look at the situation and say we need more data. Smith told me it’s too early to tell, as did Jessica McCarty, a fire expert at Miami University, Ohio, who told Earther in an email that “tipping points are likely to be complex feedback loops.”"
« Last Edit: July 02, 2020, 11:19:21 PM by wdmn »

VeliAlbertKallio

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Re: The 2020 melting season
« Reply #19 on: July 03, 2020, 02:19:19 AM »
https://worldview.earthdata.nasa.gov/?v=-2564096,772096,3334144,4200448&p=arctic&z=1
Sea Ice is now smothered with lots of aerosol and black soot. How this does affect melting, one in the air cools, one falling on ice speeds melting. The ice loss is met with equally horrendous forest fires. There is lot of aerosols in air from forest fires (not from planes) lot of stuff ending over the Arctic Ocean.

.. The ice edge is retreating.... extremely quickly. Collapsing may be a better term. The ATL front is collapsing, but the more significant extent and area hammer may soon be all the FYI in the Beaufort and Chukchi which also looks like it is about to give out (or in 30-45 days rather). On satellite this huge area of FYI has now gone very grey and HYCOM indicates it is pretty thin, like a bit over a meter in general.

It must be noted that both Laptev and Kara have almost fully melted as of 7/1. An unprecedented situation. The moat has been crossed, the wall has been breached, the CAB is open for assault from two new directions at peak insolation under most GHG forcing in the modern era combined with a lack of airplane and aerosol-driven clouds relative to normal years.
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ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #20 on: July 04, 2020, 12:17:20 PM »
Smoke from Siberian fires reached the North Pole.

https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1278591899763388416

2:30 PM · July 2 2020.·Twitter Web App

Quote
A long smoke plume from #Siberia #wildfires was predicted to reach the North Pole in forecasts of aerosol optical depth & total column carbon monoxide initialized at 00z on 1 July 2020 from the #Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service



« Last Edit: July 04, 2020, 12:22:36 PM by ArcticMelt2 »

ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #21 on: July 04, 2020, 12:27:23 PM »
https://twitter.com/AntjeInness/status/1279018054106722304

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We see good agreement between total column CO fields from @CopernicusECMWF  #AtmosphereMonitoring Service @ECMWF  and #S5P #TROPOMI data that also show elevated CO over the polar regions on 2 July 2020.

6:44 PM · July 3 2020.·Twitter Web App


ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #22 on: July 04, 2020, 01:04:59 PM »
Smoke from Siberian fires reached the North Pole.

In addition, forecasts say that soot from this cloud has fallen completely in the Central Arctic.

https://atmosphere.copernicus.eu/charts/cams/aerosol-forecasts

ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #23 on: July 17, 2020, 08:58:53 PM »
https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1283791660284096513

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Mid-July view of #Siberia/#ArcticCircle #wildfires with #CopernicusAtmosphere Monitoring Service GFAS #opendata. Arctic daily total intensity > 2003-2018 mean & 1-15 July total estimated carbon emissions highest in 18 years of GFAS data (2004 due to Alaska fires) #ArcticFires






ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #24 on: July 22, 2020, 12:43:16 PM »
https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1285862322985213952

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Another big increase in #ArcticCircle daily total #wildfire radiative power on 21 July, well above 2019 max daily total, with July total estimated carbon emissions almost catching up to 2019. #CopernicusAtmosphere Monitoring Service GFAS data https://confluence.ecmwf.int/display/CKB/CAMS%3A+Global+Fire+Assimilation+System+%28GFAS%29+data+documentation #ArcticFires






ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #25 on: July 22, 2020, 12:46:27 PM »
https://twitter.com/m_parrington/status/1285635765783994370

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Estimated 1 Jan - 20 Jul total #ArcticCircle #wildfire carbon emissions for 2020 is highest of the 18 years of #CopernicusAtmosphere Monitoring Service GFAS data for same period with daily growth in 2019 & 2020 much earlier, 2nd week June, than 2018, 2017 & 2003-2019 mean




ArcticMelt2

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Re: Arctic wildfires and their effect on sea ice
« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2020, 12:49:44 PM »
https://twitter.com/DrTELS/status/1285514278527737858

Quote
New spatial analysis of wildfires across the Arctic in May/June 2020, and how they compare to the satellite record (2003-2020). What is burning? Are there peat fires? What about permafrost?