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Nightvid Cole

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2150 on: July 12, 2014, 06:07:55 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2151 on: July 12, 2014, 06:31:30 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?
Volcanic eruptions, even large ones, tend to have fairly short-lived effects -- on the order of a few years. Episodes of large scale volcanism that have had long-term climatic effects developed, like most things geologic, over thousands of years. That's a blink of the eye geologically, but doesn't come close to matching the rate of AGW.

TerryM

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2152 on: July 12, 2014, 06:35:45 PM »
Bob W
I wouldn't put too much faith in the "West of Ellesmere" region. In 2012 lots of old MYI moved into the CAA and melted in situ, probably because of heat built up on the barren rock islands.
While the CAA is very shallow and little ice actually exited the maze it did simply disappear.
Nares was plugged last year with PII2012 & this year is just now opening due to the "stopper' of thick MYI that jammed in place. Nares is shallow enough to allow grounding of very thick glacial chunks but MYI never comes close to this thickness. IIRC PII2012 was about twice the thickness of the Cheops pyramid when it got stuck.
Nares is usually credited with ~1/10th the ice advection of Fram, but this must vary hugely from year to year. The ice that is advected is otherwise destined to back up against Ellesmere & eventually to return to the gyre for another round the pole excursion.
To break the record I think we need Nares and Vilkitsky Straits open early & lots of heat in the CAA.
Terry

crandles

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2153 on: July 12, 2014, 06:47:54 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Tambora

Quote
The surface temperature anomalies during the summer of 1816, 1817 and 1818 were −0.51 °C (−0.92 °F), −0.44 °C (−0.79 °F) and −0.29 °C (−0.52 °F), respectively.[24]

VEI7 so an order of magnitude more explosive than VEI6 eruptions.

Again how do you assess 0.5C in one year (probably much worse in latitude band most affected) then gradually declining over next 2 or 3 years versus 0.8C over last 100 years and set to continue to increase?

DungeonMaster

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2154 on: July 12, 2014, 07:33:34 PM »
Hi All,

I have the feeling that the ice East of Greenland is in a very bad shape, with huge areas of water appearing on the "shores" - and that this could end up in a huge, free, unbound piece of ice, just ready to drift South and melt...

Can you frequent and attentive observers confirm or infirm ?

TIA,

Fred
This forum helps me to feel less uncomfortable about "doing something" about the melting Arctic and the warming world.

lifeblack

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2155 on: July 12, 2014, 07:40:36 PM »
Well, I think comparing the rate of climate change between volcanic eruptions and AGW is like comparing apples and oranges.  One is a perturbation that quickly returns to the mean, and the other will last for thousands or tens of thousands of years.

JMP

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2156 on: July 12, 2014, 08:00:41 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?

Or, the results of a huge asteroid impact... perhaps.   

But, that in no way diminishes the severity of man-made climate change (not to imply anyone is saying that). What we humans have set in motion is nonetheless unprecedented and wrong.  The idea that you can take millions (billions?) of years of sequestered carbon and pump that into the air without consequence is in my opinion nuts.  And, we've likely only seen the least little tip of the iceberg so far.  I think we're at a stage where, on one hand you can't overdramatize the issue and on the other, when the weather is nice...  it can be... difficult to be heard.  And that makes both discussion important and maintaining context important.  Accuracy too. Perhaps there’s a heightened awareness especially with so much money behind disinformation searching for any opportunity to discredit etc. 

Of course it's difficult to know what's going to happen this year (for me anyway). The graph lines for extent track closely during the last part of July and the ice may be more or less rotten that previous years.  But surely the idea of a sort-of-rebound happening, in no way negates the over-all direction of where the sea ice is eventually headed...  and that idea can be embraced.  And, likewise the idea of wild swings between ice free at maximum melt one year followed by some substantial re-cover through the next, does not negate or indicate less of a problem than we can already see exists or may have projected to happen.  The impact of the additional greenhouse gasses will likely play out one way or another with equally disastrous consequences no matter exactly how they do play out.   And... we  may yet see a new record low in 2015 even if this year is up.

« Last Edit: July 12, 2014, 08:06:31 PM by JMP »

Nick_Naylor

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2157 on: July 12, 2014, 08:21:36 PM »
It's hard to know whether to hope for a dramatic melt this year to help focus the public's attention vs. hoping for a few more 'rebound' years.

This year does seem to present an important opportunity for a change in the stuck political jet stream, what with the new policies limiting CO2 from power plants, the September UN Summit, and the still-to-be announced decision on Keystone.

Given that plus the fact that potential 2016 candidates are running out of time to nail down their talking points on climate change before kicking off their runs . . . probably something dramatic this year would be GOOD for mankind. Within limits of course.

greatdying2

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2158 on: July 12, 2014, 08:55:56 PM »
Again how do you assess 0.5C in one year (probably much worse in latitude band most affected) then gradually declining over next 2 or 3 years versus 0.8C over last 100 years and set to continue to increase?

I suppose that depends on one's focus. In the case of the paper I cited above, they review how climate change may well become fast enough to cause mass extinction. This would not normally be the case for localized change since affected areas could be repopulated from non-affected areas (although there could be extinction of any endemic species if their entire habitat were affected). With rapid global change, many species may not be able to relocate fast enough to survive. Could this even lead to ecosystem collapse?

Extinction rate seems to me a useful (and appropriately horrifying) measure of the severity of extreme climate change. Especially if the change may be about to become more rapid than any time since the last mass extinction event (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cretaceous–Paleogene_boundary).


Quote
Fig. 4 The velocity of climate change.
(Top) The climate change velocity in the CMIP5 RCP8.5 ensemble, calculated by identifying the closest location (to each grid point) with a future annual temperature that is similar to the baseline annual temperature. (Bottom) The climate change velocity [from (117)], calculated by using the present temperature gradient at each location and the trend in temperature projected by the CMIP3 ensemble in the SRES A1B scenario. The two panels use different color scales. Further details are provided in the supplementary materials.
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/341/6145/486.figures-only
« Last Edit: July 12, 2014, 09:04:56 PM by greatdying2 »
The Permian–Triassic extinction event, a.k.a. the Great Dying, occurred about 250 million years ago and is the most severe known extinction event. Up to 96% of all marine species and 70% of terrestrial vertebrate species became extinct; it is also the only known mass extinction of insects.

greatdying2

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2159 on: July 12, 2014, 09:03:00 PM »
And that makes both discussion important and maintaining context important.  Accuracy too. Perhaps there’s a heightened awareness especially with so much money behind disinformation searching for any opportunity to discredit etc. 
I hear you. But OTOH, isn't this is exactly what the deniers want, to limit discussion of the most serious potential consequences of taking no action?
The Permian–Triassic extinction event, a.k.a. the Great Dying, occurred about 250 million years ago and is the most severe known extinction event. Up to 96% of all marine species and 70% of terrestrial vertebrate species became extinct; it is also the only known mass extinction of insects.

JMP

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2160 on: July 12, 2014, 09:16:55 PM »
It's hard to know whether to hope for a dramatic melt this year to help focus the public's attention vs. hoping for a few more 'rebound' years.

This year does seem to present an important opportunity for a change in the stuck political jet stream, what with the new policies limiting CO2 from power plants, the September UN Summit, and the still-to-be announced decision on Keystone.

Given that plus the fact that potential 2016 candidates are running out of time to nail down their talking points on climate change before kicking off their runs . . . probably something dramatic this year would be GOOD for mankind. Within limits of course.

Well said. 

I agree, unfortunately what may be best doesn't increase the likelihood of getting our needs met in that respect.  While I think it is getting better and public perception is slowly changing, will humans ever be able to collectively prioritize against their individual short term interests - enough to make a difference - until some unprecedented, terrible, disaster happens that seems to obviously prove AGW?    Someone please point to where that has happened in the past so that I may rest easy tonight.  :-\   

JMP

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2161 on: July 12, 2014, 09:29:59 PM »
And that makes both discussion important and maintaining context important.  Accuracy too. Perhaps there’s a heightened awareness especially with so much money behind disinformation searching for any opportunity to discredit etc. 
I hear you. But OTOH, isn't this is exactly what the deniers want, to limit discussion of the most serious potential consequences of taking no action?

Loathe to presume what "they" think exactly but mostly my perception is that they lack real evidence and that being able to point to something and claim "Science" said something that didn't happen is their argument to disprove "Science".   But I am not saying limit discussion - just the opposite.   The more inclusive we are of the possibilities of real "natural" variation (too many quotation marks but it's no longer just natural)  - the wider the target the easier it is to hit it. 

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2162 on: July 12, 2014, 09:43:28 PM »
Well said. 

I agree, unfortunately what may be best doesn't increase the likelihood of getting our needs met in that respect.  While I think it is getting better and public perception is slowly changing, will humans ever be able to collectively prioritize against their individual short term interests - enough to make a difference - until some unprecedented, terrible, disaster happens that seems to obviously prove AGW?    Someone please point to where that has happened in the past so that I may rest easy tonight.  :-\   
The response to CFCs destroying the ozone was pretty universal and pretty fast. But that was a situation where you could say "this has to stop or everyone is going to die, and pretty soon." And even then there were detractors claiming that it would cost jobs and ruin the economy, etc. There were also quite a few environmental regulations in the US during the late 60s through the 70s that stopped a lot of dumping of toxic crud in the water and landfills. And again there were detractors claiming the same things.

What's astonishing, though, is that despite the obvious success of those measures (and a very clear picture of what the world would be like without them), there are people claiming that we don't need any new regulations and should get rid of the old ones.

Oh, and lead. Getting lead out of gasoline and many other products was a significant environmental achievement that's had a global impact.

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2163 on: July 12, 2014, 09:49:30 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?

Or, the results of a huge asteroid impact... perhaps.   
It's a pretty grim state of affairs when the only climate change we can point to that was faster than the current one was when a giant asteroid slammed into the planet and annihilated most of the living things in existence.

greatdying2

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2164 on: July 12, 2014, 10:05:11 PM »
Someone please point to where that has happened in the past so that I may rest easy tonight.  :-\   
This certainly won't help you rest easy, but it is well worth watching and maybe long enough to send you to sleep:
The Permian–Triassic extinction event, a.k.a. the Great Dying, occurred about 250 million years ago and is the most severe known extinction event. Up to 96% of all marine species and 70% of terrestrial vertebrate species became extinct; it is also the only known mass extinction of insects.

Bob Wallace

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2165 on: July 12, 2014, 10:15:29 PM »
Quote
While I think it is getting better and public perception is slowly changing, will humans ever be able to collectively prioritize against their individual short term interests - enough to make a difference - until some unprecedented, terrible, disaster happens that seems to obviously prove AGW?

I think we've got a decent chance.  But my experience is that some people don't wish to go off topic to solutions in the ice threads, which makes sense to me.

If you like we could open a thread in the Policies and Solutions sections and I'll lay out my take on how we save our collective butts from the worst without the need for "universal action".

Neven

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2166 on: July 12, 2014, 10:53:10 PM »
If you like we could open a thread in the Policies and Solutions sections and I'll lay out my take on how we save our collective butts from the worst without the need for "universal action".

Yes, please. This thread is for discussing the 2014 melting season only. There are other segments on the forum for broader discussions wrt AGW, consequences, etc, etc.

Sorry, I would've said this sooner, but I was too busy with building in the past two days.

Looking at the ECMWF forecast, I expect a slowdown of sorts, especially for IJIS SIE, as CT SIA is already about to go highest on my graph for the 2005-2014 period. This melting season needs really good melting weather conditions if it wants to come even close to 2007/2011.
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Michael Hauber

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2167 on: July 13, 2014, 06:02:51 AM »
I think 2014 is still very competitive with 2007 and 2011, if you look at extent, whereas for CT area 2014 is turning into a bit of a dead duck.  This season looks like being an interesting test case for the importance of early surface melt, melt ponds etc.  Although one possible explanation for the situation is that surface conditions are nice and cool, and the water for some reason is unusually warm so that the ice melts from the edges anyway.  If that's the case expect a finish like 2008 which was dead in the water vs 2007 at this stage but mounted a surprising challenge on 2007 that fell just short at the end.  Or maybe the high area low extent is just the power of compaction.

On extent, we are now steadily leaving 2010 behind and current weather seems to be best summed up as average.  There is no sign of a significant change to low pressure domination which slowed down 2010 in early July, and 2011 in mid July.  The losses in fringe regions is slowing down and 2014 is staying competitive on the key central regions.  Central Arctic and East Siberian have started and are close to 2013 and 2012, but its very early days yet.  Laptev remains massively ahead of any other year with the Laptev bite as close or closer to the pole than at minimum in every other year except 2007 (no Laptev bite at all in 2012).  Beaufort continues to melt steadily, but cannot catch up to 2012.  Chukchi was leading 2012 but has slowed down a little to let 2012 catch up.
Climate change:  Prepare for the worst, hope for the best, expect the middle.

seattlerocks

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2168 on: July 13, 2014, 09:56:52 AM »
Yeah! Shouldn't all this open water matter as much as melt ponds? It used to be the number 1 of suspects in arctic feedback with its hyper-low albedo, trapping heat, then bottom and lateral melting and all that. Add a couple of storns in late July that pump water to surface and break the ice.
Warm water seems to be flowing from Pacific. Then there's the bite.
Hehe we'll see. Very interesting season again!

seattlerocks

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2169 on: July 13, 2014, 10:05:29 AM »
BTW thx Bob and Neven for bringing this back to topic.

Atomant

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2170 on: July 13, 2014, 11:08:59 AM »
Tundra fires ranging every year creating huge plumes of smoke that drift for thousands of miles within the arctic. Smoke that, given that atmospheric height is lower towards the poles, won't need much of a fight to reach high levels of the atmosphere. Could we compare this smoke cover to big volcanic eruptions colling effect? and if so, could said smoke have a negative feedback effect by reflecting some of the sunlight back? looking at DMI's ASI extent for the last few years, the melt does seem to 'stall' round about now when the big fires are on. I understand that ice extent depends on compaction  as well so it could be just a coincidence but, in any case  these smoke clouds are  putting the Aerosols-into-the-Stratosphere Geo-engineering idea into practice.

GeoffBeacon

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2171 on: July 13, 2014, 01:10:29 PM »
Atomant. Black carbon from wildfires is a strong positive feedback.

Quote
Black carbon is a short-lived greenhouse pollutant that also promotes snow and ice melting and decreased rainfall; it has an estimated global warming potential close to 5000.

Quote
We present an estimate of the black carbon and organic carbon emissions from wildfires in Mexico from 2000 to 2012 using selected emission factors from the literature and activity data from local agencies. The results show average emissions of 5955 Mg/yr for black carbon and 62 085 Mg/yr for organic carbon. Black carbon emissions are estimated to be 14 888 Gg CO  equivalent (CO2 eq) per year on average.

From Black carbon and organic carbon emissions from wildfires in Mexico
https://www.academia.edu/6725508/Black_carbon_and_organic_carbon_emissions_from_wildfires_in_Mexico

Also of interest...
Attribution of climate forcing to economic sectors. Unger et. al.

Quote
http://www.pnas.org/content/107/8/3382
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Nightvid Cole

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2172 on: July 13, 2014, 03:08:29 PM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?
Volcanic eruptions, even large ones, tend to have fairly short-lived effects -- on the order of a few years. Episodes of large scale volcanism that have had long-term climatic effects developed, like most things geologic, over thousands of years. That's a blink of the eye geologically, but doesn't come close to matching the rate of AGW.

I'm not so sure:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toba_catastrophe_theory

Does this not qualify as a climate change faster than the current one?

ChrisReynolds

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2173 on: July 13, 2014, 03:40:50 PM »
More information for people, my mid July Status post is published.
http://dosbat.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/mid-july-status.html

Anomalies (difference from average) sea ice compactness for 1 July to 11 July 1979 to 2014.


Laptev remains at record low extent, the open water there is unusually large.

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2174 on: July 13, 2014, 05:56:14 PM »
I agree with Neven about SIE.

Not sure about area.  While a reverse dipole is on the table.

Very warm conditions are expected to rip right off the abnormally warm NATL over the central basin/Russian side with a large HP and long fetch of flow which is definitely going to slow extent.

But combined with the first real torching then general warmth over the CA area will probably keep dropping.

We also can't forget how 2013 went into the freezer the last part of June and went 11 days with a 20K gain in area.

A reverse dipole is a lot warmer than a PV anomaly.
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greatdying2

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2175 on: July 14, 2014, 01:10:18 AM »

Fair enough. Globally at least, man-made climate change is set to become faster than at any time since a comet wiped out the dinosaurs.


I'm no expert on paleoclimate, but what about volcanic eruptions?
Volcanic eruptions, even large ones, tend to have fairly short-lived effects -- on the order of a few years. Episodes of large scale volcanism that have had long-term climatic effects developed, like most things geologic, over thousands of years. That's a blink of the eye geologically, but doesn't come close to matching the rate of AGW.

I'm not so sure:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toba_catastrophe_theory

Does this not qualify as a climate change faster than the current one?
Whoa, that's a good one! But we shouldn't discuss it here, I guess (see above)...
The Permian–Triassic extinction event, a.k.a. the Great Dying, occurred about 250 million years ago and is the most severe known extinction event. Up to 96% of all marine species and 70% of terrestrial vertebrate species became extinct; it is also the only known mass extinction of insects.

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2176 on: July 14, 2014, 02:16:49 AM »
These fires in Canada are completely out of control. All that smoke and soot is now drifting out over the Archipelago.

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2177 on: July 14, 2014, 02:20:16 AM »
The Nares Strait went kerblammo.

Frivolousz21

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2178 on: July 14, 2014, 10:31:28 AM »
Jaxa dropped -50K.

Gonna fall way behind the lowest years I think now with the weather in place that is very unfavorable for continued large losses.


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Atomant

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2179 on: July 14, 2014, 10:31:41 AM »
These fires in Canada are completely out of control. All that smoke and soot is now drifting out over the Archipelago.

The fires prompted my post above regarding feedbacks as I'm certain these fires match big volcanic eruptions.

GeoffBeacon

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2180 on: July 14, 2014, 11:08:59 AM »
Atomant.

So you don't accept that wildfire smoke causes warming (see above) and volcanoes cause cooling?

Any references?
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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2181 on: July 14, 2014, 12:51:26 PM »
With fires raging in the Northwest Territories....it is going to be interesting to see what happens over the next 6 weeks.

So far....the winds have been almost due south....which has kept a lot of the soot out of the Arctic and the Canadian Archipelago.  But if the winds change to westerly.....that could be a game changer with 6 weeks of strong melt season ahead.

We'll see.....
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Atomant

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2182 on: July 14, 2014, 01:24:39 PM »
Atomant.

So you don't accept that wildfire smoke causes warming (see above) and volcanoes cause cooling?

Any references?

Couldn't tell you if the Tundra fires smoke is having a warming and/or cooling effect within the Arctic. Krakatoa cooled global surface temperatures and so did Pinatubo -http://www.sciencemag.org/content/296/5568/727.abstract- cloud cover can do both, cool and warm but these massive Tundra fires so close to the NP blanketing the area with smoke/soot apepar to coincide with the sea ice melt slowdown seen in July/August for the last 5 years or so.


Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2183 on: July 14, 2014, 04:55:03 PM »
Couldn't tell you if the Tundra fires smoke is having a warming and/or cooling effect within the Arctic. Krakatoa cooled global surface temperatures and so did Pinatubo -http://www.sciencemag.org/content/296/5568/727.abstract- cloud cover can do both, cool and warm but these massive Tundra fires so close to the NP blanketing the area with smoke/soot apepar to coincide with the sea ice melt slowdown seen in July/August for the last 5 years or so.
I think both can happen. In the very short term, the particulates in the atmosphere can reduce the insolation. Somewhat longer term, the particulates drift into the lower atmosphere and to the ground where they can increase albedo (especially of light colored areas like snow and ice), resulting in regional warming/melting. Longer term, the carbon emitted goes to increasing the overall carbon load of the atmosphere, contributing to global warming.

I doubt this has much to do with the short-term slowing seen in some years. I think that's just a result of the early melt proceeding so rapidly that it takes out the easy targets -- Hudson and Baffin Bays, the western Kara, etc. -- and there is then a slowdown while the melt gathers steam (no pun intended) in the central areas.

Again, volcanoes have been linked pretty definitively to short term cooling on the order of a few years -- though they also spew a fair amount of carbon, so they have longer-term warming effects. The link of that one volcano to the 1000 year cooling is very tenuous and speculative. It's conceivable that that the planet was poised for a cooling period and the volcano acted as something of a trigger, but it would be difficult to explain how the volcano itself had cooling effects hundreds of years after it stopped erupting (unless, of course, it continued erupting for more or less the whole period, which is a different story).

Bob Wallace

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2184 on: July 14, 2014, 06:41:02 PM »
Quote
In the very short term, the particulates in the atmosphere can reduce the insolation.

I believe they also absorb heat and pass that heat onto the air around them.  With their very low albedo not much of the incoming energy should be reflected back out of the atmosphere.

Less insolation at ground level would be expected.

ChrisReynolds

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2185 on: July 14, 2014, 06:51:48 PM »
Quote
In the very short term, the particulates in the atmosphere can reduce the insolation.

I believe they also absorb heat and pass that heat onto the air around them.  With their very low albedo not much of the incoming energy should be reflected back out of the atmosphere.

Less insolation at ground level would be expected.

But if the particulates in the air are stopping insolation at ground level that means they're warming the atmosphere, which means more downwelling longwave. Given that the ice albedo at visible light wavelengths is high, but at infra red is low, any increase in downwelling longwave might be significant, despite the seeming importance of a reduction of insolation.

At this time of year insolation may win over downwelling longwave, but it's conceivable that reduced insolation due to smoke isn't such a strong factor.

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2186 on: July 14, 2014, 07:03:14 PM »
The 12z GFS would be amazing for the ice over the next 7 days on the Pacific side.

 

There is no doubt it will fall well below 2013 extent wise during that time if it comes out that way.
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Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2187 on: July 14, 2014, 07:21:19 PM »
Quote
In the very short term, the particulates in the atmosphere can reduce the insolation.

I believe they also absorb heat and pass that heat onto the air around them.  With their very low albedo not much of the incoming energy should be reflected back out of the atmosphere.

Less insolation at ground level would be expected.

But if the particulates in the air are stopping insolation at ground level that means they're warming the atmosphere, which means more downwelling longwave. Given that the ice albedo at visible light wavelengths is high, but at infra red is low, any increase in downwelling longwave might be significant, despite the seeming importance of a reduction of insolation.

At this time of year insolation may win over downwelling longwave, but it's conceivable that reduced insolation due to smoke isn't such a strong factor.
It likely matters where in the atmosphere the particulates are. In the lower atmosphere, I think they would increase warming more or less like they were lying on the surface. In the upper atmosphere, they block insolation and likely reradiate more efficiently outward (kind of a reverse greenhouse effect -- blankets work both ways, after all), leading to a net cooling.

jdallen

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2188 on: July 14, 2014, 08:00:49 PM »
Atomant.

So you don't accept that wildfire smoke causes warming (see above) and volcanoes cause cooling?

Any references?

Couldn't tell you if the Tundra fires smoke is having a warming and/or cooling effect within the Arctic. Krakatoa cooled global surface temperatures and so did Pinatubo -http://www.sciencemag.org/content/296/5568/727.abstract- cloud cover can do both, cool and warm but these massive Tundra fires so close to the NP blanketing the area with smoke/soot apepar to coincide with the sea ice melt slowdown seen in July/August for the last 5 years or so.

You need to keep in mind the differences in atmospheric chemistry and volume.  The most significant persistent cooling agents from volcanism are sulfur aerosols. The wildfires are not producing those in any significant way, nor injecting material directly into the upper atmosphere.

Regarding volcanic particulates, those comparatively are non persistent, and in the case of VEI 6 and higher, exceed the particulate load of the fires by multiple orders of magnitude.

Soot is a potential concern, as it will be mid atmosphere, and provide nucleation for rain or snow which then can bring it to the surface.  More heat transfer, modest decrease in albedo, which in the "old" arctic would not be significant.  However with much less buffering available, under current conditions I think represents a greater threat to the ice.
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Laurent

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2189 on: July 14, 2014, 08:17:36 PM »
The winds contribute globaly to the clock wise movement of the ice, throws it toward Barentz sea and Beaufort.
The Fram export is stoped.
Melting is very active in Beaufort...I wonder how long will it last...?
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« Last Edit: July 14, 2014, 08:57:38 PM by Laurent »

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2190 on: July 15, 2014, 12:20:01 AM »
According to http://weather.gc.ca/forecast/canada/index_e.html?id=nu  most of the ice in the Canadian Archipelago will be toasted pretty hard in the coming week. 
I thereupon suggest the Amundsen route to be more or less open till the first week of August...

Also I expect the ice North of Svalbard to move North pretty fast till then, due to the good weather currently and the general heating of the Northern Atlantic ready to dig into the now rotten ice!
The season is by far over yet ;).
My fancy for ice & glaciers started in 1995:-).

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2191 on: July 15, 2014, 12:54:00 AM »
According to http://weather.gc.ca/forecast/canada/index_e.html?id=nu  most of the ice in the Canadian Archipelago will be toasted pretty hard in the coming week. 
I thereupon suggest the Amundsen route to be more or less open till the first week of August...

Also I expect the ice North of Svalbard to move North pretty fast till then, due to the good weather currently and the general heating of the Northern Atlantic ready to dig into the now rotten ice!
The season is by far over yet ;).
You mean open by August perhaps?  I tend to agree, as not only are temperatures consistently reaching the low teens, it looks like there will be rain across the region all week   :o . We could see conditions causing 5-10 CM of top melt a day  or more.  As far as ice preservation is concerned, very much in the "not helpful" category.

Bonus thought:

There is almost as much land surface across the CAA as there is seaway.  That means more heat capture of runoff at 5-10C cascading into all those little fiords and then into the passage. Just to make your day even better.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 12:59:47 AM by jdallen »
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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2192 on: July 15, 2014, 01:58:16 AM »
I'm really unsure of what to make of this melting season.  On one hand, it looks to be off to an impressive start, on the other, I keep hearing that the ice is doing relatively 'okay' because the weather has not been that extreme.  That said, the ice does look rather beat up despite the minimal number of melt ponds.  Looking at the graphs it does look safe to say that this year will probably finish above 2007, or be somewhat close.  I thought this year would have melted out a lot more though.  Who knows the condition of the ice at the moment, but I'm struggling to wrap my head around the current state of the ice and where the season will go from here on out.
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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2193 on: July 15, 2014, 02:31:42 AM »
Quote
I'm really unsure of what to make of this melting season.

Year-to-year differences in ice melt are almost meaningless IMHO.  Like looking at the stock market day-by-day or week-by-week as opposed to looking month-by-month or year-by-year.  There is too much natural variability in a NUMBER of different factors to try and sort it out in real time.

The long term TREND (over several years.....and decades) is deeply etched in recent history.....and the cause of it is widely known....and continues (too much CO2 and methane....and the associated positive feedback effects).

The Arctic could "fall apart" and lose some serious ice with one descent sized storm ANY YEAR NOW.  It's just a matter of time....and not much of that.  The ice weakens and continues to be susceptible....  The CO2 isn't going anywhere soon....and the positive feedback effects continue to escalate.

Tick....tick....tick....tick.....tick....

 
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deep octopus

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2194 on: July 15, 2014, 03:14:05 AM »
Still... The behavior of these two recent years indicates that the trend towards the first virtually ice-free Arctic summer is perhaps, mercifully, drawing out a bit longer than was suspected during the apparently nightmarish eve of the melting season in early 2013. As it was for amateurs as myself. The 2012 melt season, as with 2007, did horrendous damage to the ice that won't simply bounce back in the same manner as it could decades ago. At least with the serious dive in multiyear ice, it seemed that a year with such a high percentage of first year ice as in early 2013 would be the set up to disaster. On the long-term scale, 2013 could be objectively seen as a bad year for ice, but was not to be the black swan year. Nor will 2014. And maybe not 2015 either. This is a gradual process. In any given year, the energy will shift towards melting the high latitudes. In another, it will go into the oceans; or warm the continents, and then whereas ice may appear to be doing "better" in a given year, the rest of the world swelters and observes extreme weather events. It's probably not too likely, yet, that every facet of climate change will manifest in every corner of the globe in a single year. I think 2012 was about as close to that point as I've ever observed in my lifetime, quite honestly. Hottest year on record for the United States, highest record melt of the GIS, and lowest ice extent in the Arctic. The year was nuts inside and out. But the longer picture is coming together, bit by bit...

As to whether the first ice-free summer even constitutes an irreversible tipping point from the physics standpoint isn't so obvious. A prolonged period of conditions unfavorable for ice retention will make a difference when the sun goes down. This seems to be when we approach a tipping point that is irreversible. (Non-surprisingly, but personally, I believe this will depend on human behavior in the years leading up to an ice-free summer, and how that trajectory works out will determine the permanence of our damage. But I'm not optimistic there will be change fast enough...)

A paper by Tim Lenton in 2012, "Arctic Climate Tipping Points", says as much.

Quote
The year that the North Pole becomes seasonally ice-free will likely be seen as a ‘tipping point’ by non-experts. Whilst politically important, several authors argue it is unlikely that such a transition involves an irreversible bifurcation (Eisenman and Wettlaufer 2009; Tietsche et al. 2011).

Summer sea-ice cover can recover quickly in models when the climate cools into the following winter, because thin ice grows more rapidly (Notz 2009), and with diminished icecover, excess heat is more rapidly transferred to the atmosphere and radiated to space (Tietsche et al. 2011)
(both are negative feedbacks). However, if cloud cover increases after summer sea-ice loss, then this could act as an insulating blanket in autumn–winter restricting sea-ice recovery (positive feedback) and potentially creating multiple stable states (Abbot et al. 2011).

Though some form of a tipping point is already possibly in play, the likes of which we've seen in serious melt years. It harkens to the loss of multiyear ice very dramatically altering the character of the sea ice going into the next year.

Quote
More fundamentally, a ‘tipping point’ need not involve an irreversible bifurcation (Lenton
et al. 2008). Some models show that as the ice cap gets thinner, it becomes prone to larger fluctuations in area, which can be triggered by relatively small changes in forcing (Holland et al. 2006). This could represent ‘tipping point’ behaviour, even if the changes are readily reversible. Certainly such large ice loss events can have significant impacts, as was seen in 2007.

I expect 2014 to be a "bad year" for ice, in that it will sit in a ranking consistent with the long-term trends of man-made global warming. It's entirely conceivable it will finish with more ice preserved than 2013. Or a suddenly fast-melting August, as it happened in 2008, could suddenly align 2014 very close to 2007. Don't know yet. I am not looking forward to a moment of bifurcation, and I do think it will happen in my lifetime.

As for this year, Nares looks to be opening up. That will be interesting to watch as we enter the last half of July.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 05:21:07 AM by deep octopus »

Bruce

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2195 on: July 15, 2014, 06:19:45 AM »
Quote
[deep octopus]
I'm reminded of an article I read some years back that said that by such and such a year, Mexico City would be the most populated urban area in the world. The article also said that by the same year Mexico City would be so polluted as to be uninhabitable. Obviously both things couldn't be simultaneously true; one factor was a positive feedback on the other, while the other was a negative feedback on the first. It would be very difficult to model that system because you would be extrapolating into unknown territory.

Climate models involve a lot of assumptions. One can justify those assumptions when working with historical data, and when modeling within those parameters one can be reasonably certain that one's results are in the ballpark. But the climate is an extremely complicated system, and when modeling something -- like an ice free arctic -- that has never happened in recorded history, it is very hard to know which factors will dominate and which will turn out to be less relevant. In science, experiment is the usual way to narrow the possibilities and refine the models. With the earth's climate, we don't have that luxury. So nobody really knows what will happen. But experience would suggest that introducing large random perturbations into functioning, well-regulated systems rarely makes them better. But, hey, maybe it'll be lollipops and puppies.

As for this year vs. other years, I agree that it doesn't matter too much if this year or that has somewhat more ice, since the trend is unmistakably down. But I also don't think a year or two of relatively more ice pushes the ultimate melting any further into the future. The reality is that 2007 and 2012 were both unexpected and stunning in the extent to which they broke the previous records. The next time we get stunned like that, its going to take the ice to nearly zero. And that doesn't require the trendline to drop any lower than it is.

deep octopus

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2196 on: July 15, 2014, 07:01:25 AM »
Bruce, no disagreement with your points really. The unknowns invite more room for danger than not, at least in climate systems. I foresee bifurcation of the Arctic not long after the first ice free summer. I suppose I am just wondering aloud whether this happens more along the lines of the 2030s as is, I think, one common position in the science community, or what the bars of uncertainty are for timescales. Had these last two years been more aggressive to melt, I'd say the 2020s. Maybe it's just quibbling this far into the crisis, but it is one hold out I've been thinking of recently. A small window just a tad wider. You're right though, that even now it's hard to fish out what feedbacks will dominate. This has been a source of academic struggle since 2007, and again in 2012. No lollipops, just heartache awaits though.

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« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 09:28:50 AM by jdallen »
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Laurent

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Re: The 2014 Melting Season
« Reply #2198 on: July 15, 2014, 09:08:30 AM »
To me there is absolutely no way the trend is reversible for the ice melting totally in summer, even for the next step, ice melting in winter i am not sure, if the inertia is 50 years then certainly not.
We watch a litlle bit too much the surface of the Arctic and the weather, my guess is there is something going on with the movement of the Atlantic (and pacific) that could give us a better clue of why the melting seems to stop. I think the Atlantic is taking over the Fram strait (try) and because that is lessen the export the quantity of melting seems to stop. It may be also the reason of the global Artic gyre, the intrusion of the Atlantic compress the non salty layer beneath the ice creating a cushion that increase that natural movement.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 09:25:04 AM by Laurent »