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Messages - Seumas

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Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: July 12, 2017, 01:08:43 PM »
My guess is that Larsen C ice shelf will have a major calving event in the next 5 +/- 3 years.

Technically correct, but right at the bottom end. Clearly you're too conservative with your predictions!  ;)

Project Midas has the full report:

Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: May 18, 2017, 04:47:32 PM »
An update from Project Midas as Larsen C begins to react to the rift:

Arctic sea ice / Re: "Smart" and "Stupid" Questions - Feel Free To Ask
« on: April 25, 2017, 11:37:34 AM »
including the tuning of air to air missiles to the CO2 emission spectrum

Well, yes, but so is a CO2 meter and they are somewhat easier to acquire.  ;)

Policy and solutions / Re: James Hansen loves nuclear power
« on: April 20, 2017, 03:33:36 PM »
The seek to connect to Iceland and Norway via high voltage interconnects. Based on their current path, there are going to be times that they import a lot of energy. They used to have 100% redundancy..

Will you please stop this ignorant crap about Scotland? We have gone from importing coal to run Longannet, to having the capability to import hydroelectric from Norway. I have no idea what bizarre mental contortions you're going through to make that sound like a bad thing.

When exactly are you predicting this doom and gloom for Scottish energy production will start? Because otherwise you're just spouting denier bollocks about how renewables can't *possibly* work, in direct contradiction to the reality of their use.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: April 12, 2017, 03:36:21 PM »

With the difference that in the 2000's there was 100% redundancy in Scotland power generation and now there will be need for imports during the winters...
Really? Because the last reports I read suggested we'd dropped our usage and *increased* our exports. Do you have figures showing this?

Not that importing energy is such a terrible thing. We used to import a fair chunk of coal for Longannet power station before it was closed.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: April 11, 2017, 10:26:48 AM »
Real world engineering shows that reducing CO2 emissions gets harder with more deployment of renewables due to the intermittency factor.

Germany has increased solar and wind generation capacity from 35GW in 2009 to 85GW in 2016 but German annual CO2 emissions have remained unchanged at about 900 million tonnes.

Meanwhile, here in Scotland, 2014 GHG emissions were 45% lower than in 1990 and in 2015 we had 59% of electricity from renewables (the 2016 figures aren't released yet, but will probably be well north of 60%).

The current target is 100% by 2020, which we might well miss, but I don't think it'll be by much. If we don't get there at all I'll concede that over, say 90%, is difficult :)

Arctic sea ice / Re: "Smart" and "Stupid" Questions - Feel Free To Ask
« on: February 10, 2017, 09:53:24 PM »
You must not have bothered to read what I wrote.  Go away.

I think I'll assume you're posting drunk and will make more sense tomorrow. Have a good evening.

Arctic sea ice / Re: "Smart" and "Stupid" Questions - Feel Free To Ask
« on: February 10, 2017, 09:19:10 PM »
No....I do not accept that.
Then I'm afraid the problem is simply that you don't understand percentages. I suggest you look at the Khan Academy videos which explain how percentages work.

Actually....percent is basically meaningless to begin with unless you are talking about dice odds.
It's really not. It means "per hundred". An increase of 1% means you multiply the figure you are talking about by 1.01 because you are increasing it by one part in a hundred. That's it. There is literally no-one here confused about what the percentage increase refers to, except you.

Arctic sea ice / Re: "Smart" and "Stupid" Questions - Feel Free To Ask
« on: February 10, 2017, 07:28:13 PM »
101 strides is merely one stride more than 100 strides -- it is no percents more.
You haven't put a smiley in there, so I can't tell if you're joking or genuinely confused.

If the standard Stride is 10 cm, then 100 Strides is 1000 cm and 101 Strides is 1010 cm, which is 1% greater.

If the standard Stride is 20 miles, then 100 Strides is 2000 miles and 101 Strides is 2020 miles, which is 1% greater.

Arctic sea ice / Re: "Smart" and "Stupid" Questions - Feel Free To Ask
« on: February 10, 2017, 06:26:38 PM »
I don't get it, and if this is true then I need a very careful explanation of the units of measurement and physics such that a 1 degree K (or C) equals ONE PERCENT.
Ah, right, I think I see what you don't get.

It doesn't make any difference how large a unit Kelvin is. Let's imagine I create a new absolute temperature scale. We can call it Seulcius! And 1S == 2°C (== 2K).

Now, the difference between freezing and boiling water is 50S. But I can still say, "101S is 1% more energy than 100S". Which, in Kelvin, is like saying, "202K is 1% more energy than 200K".

There is in fact an absolute scale that uses Farenheit spaced units, called the Rankine scale. And 101R is 1% more energy than 100R.

If that hasn't made it clear, think of it as distance. If you have a standard length Stride, then 101 Strides is 1% more than 100 Strides, whether the Stride is 10cm or 20 miles.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016/2017 freezing season
« on: February 10, 2017, 05:57:19 PM »
is this really true?  I'm having a bit of trouble believing that the distance between freezing and boiling in pure water at standard pressure has any relationship to the percentage change in energy at arbitrary temperatures.

What ktnonine said is correct, but it has nothing to do with the freezing/boiling temperature of water. Converted to Celsius, he just said "-172.15°C is 1% more energy than -173.15°C". It's a bit neater in Kelvin  ;)

The only bit that's incorrect is that it should be 101K, not 101°K, as Kelvin is an absolute scale and therefore not in degrees (c.f. degrees in an angle vs radians)

Arctic sea ice / Re: DMI 80N+ graph, large increase at start of year 2000
« on: February 07, 2017, 04:15:12 PM »
As with most things in life, it's only obvious when you already know it :)

Arctic sea ice / Re: DMI 80N+ graph, large increase at start of year 2000
« on: February 07, 2017, 03:20:51 PM »
Can you explain what column 3 and 4 represent?

The third column is the temperature. The fourth is "daily mean temperatures for the period from 1958 to 2002" (from the website).

In other words, the third column is the red line on the graph, and the fourth is the green line.

Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: February 07, 2017, 02:01:07 PM »
The MIDAS folk have posted another update: a FAQ on the rift:

Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: January 20, 2017, 10:41:19 AM »
That's actually another update from the Project Midas team:

They send them out as press releases, so you'll see them in several places. But any time you spot that map with Wales as the size comparison, that's them  :D

EDIT: Though, oddly, there's always more detail in the BBC report than on their own blog. I guess the reporter gets more out of them!

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: January 09, 2017, 09:01:59 AM »
I wondered if the square was meant to be a smily. or  :P or something like that to indicate joke

It's not a square, it's the "Thinking Face" Emoji:

If it's not showing properly for you, it's because you don't have a proper font that does Unicode right :)

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016/2017 freezing season
« on: December 24, 2016, 11:59:49 AM »

Only the storm Barbara. This was measured off the coast of Norway

Off the coast of Norway?! Actually just north-west of me, off the Outer Hebrides (Scotland).

Roughly where the marker is in the attached image:

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: December 01, 2016, 02:17:00 PM »
You can't embed a PDF. Try it as a .png or a .jpg instead.

Consequences / Re: Trump to eliminate climate change research.
« on: November 30, 2016, 04:40:28 PM »
So NASA can study the greenhouse effect on Venus, or on Mars, or even the anti-greenhouse effect on Titan. But they better not look at Earth! Uh uh, no peeking!

Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: August 31, 2016, 03:03:24 PM »;postID=7264693089164824936;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=7;src=link

These links won't work for anyone other than you. Proper blogger links don't look like that - it should be quite readable. Try going to View Blog, then click the Post you want to actually link to. That should give you a proper link that looks something like

Hope this helps!

Arctic sea ice / Re: The Central Arctic Basin
« on: July 21, 2016, 03:33:49 PM »
I believe, Seumas, that the image you labeled "cab-2016-07-21" is actually from 2016-7-20 (although I'm sure you copied it today).
Yes, it probably is. I just grabbed the latest. Perhaps I should have named the file 'latest' and let the time of my post indicate when that was.

For such a graph, I wasn't really concerned about the exact day, more the general shape.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The Central Arctic Basin
« on: July 21, 2016, 10:38:41 AM »
Yes, still ahead.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016 melting season
« on: July 18, 2016, 11:57:57 AM »

Z stands for Zulu hour, the military way to say UTC or the same as the old GMT for practical purposes

Actually, the Z stands for "Zero" and is the offset from UTC.

If I wanted to write the time on my computer, I could write it as 10:52+0100 because it's 10:52 in British Summer Time, which is UTC+1. If I was getting time from my server, it would be 09:52:+0000 because it's on UTC. You could also write this as 09:52Z because the offset from UTC is Zero.

In the NATO phonetic alphabet, the name for Z is Zulu, so this time is referred to as Zulu time, but the Zulu stands for Z (not vice-versa) and the Z stands for Zero.

A bit of a digression, I admit, but maybe someone will find it interesting.

Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: July 12, 2016, 12:05:52 PM »
Update on this, following the rift up to Feb 2016:


The Larsen C Ice Shelf is the most northerly of the remaining major Antarctic Peninsula ice shelves and is vulnerable to changes in both to ocean and atmospheric forcing. It is the largest ice shelf in the region and its loss would lead to a significant drawdown of ice from the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet. There have been observations of widespread thinning, melt ponding in the northern inlets, and, in the northern part, a speed-up in ice flow, all processes which have been linked to former ice shelf collapses. Previous studies have also highlighted the vulnerability of Larsen C Ice Shelf to specific potential changes in its geometry including a retreat from the Bawden and Gipps Ice Rise. In a change from the usual pattern, a northwards-propagating rift from Gipps Ice Rise has recently advanced towards the center of the ice shelf. It is now more than halfway towards calving a large section of the ice shelf and continues to widen. We followed the rift propagation on MODIS and Landsat imagery and,during the austral winter 2015, on Sentinel-1A radar data. Due to the very cloudy weather conditions during the austral Summer 2015 / 2016 the Sentinel data became an essential part of the monitoring. By calculating differential interferograms it was possible to clearly identify the active tip of the rift, which was not always obvious on the Landsat images. Further, surface velocities were derived from recent Sentinel-1A acquisitions by means of offset intensity tracking. In order to investigate a possible speed-up of the ice shelf we extended the study area to the north including Bawden ice rise.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016 melting season
« on: June 07, 2016, 06:39:08 PM »
There are about 500 posts describing why it has stalled if you want to go back and read any of the past few pages....
When someone has already admitted they don't understand the previous explanations, suggesting they go back and read them again is obnoxious and foolish.

I'd far sooner have honest newbie questions than this kind of snarky crap.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: December 18, 2015, 04:40:22 PM »
But when I prepared the spreadsheet and power point jaw kind of "hit the floor".  The ratio of new record highs to new record lows in Russia is MUCH GREATER than that of the US.;postID=8771945001454361017;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=11;src=postname

I'm afraid that link doesn't work for me. It looks like it's a link that will only work for you logged in. Could you try creating the link from another browser that isn't logged in?

That's a good question. Is it like ice shelves, where we'll end up with Jakobshavn-A and Jakobshavn-B ? Or maybe Jakobshavn North and Jakobshavn East.

Is there a set naming scheme for when this happens?

Consequences / Re: 2015 El Niño?
« on: August 23, 2015, 05:52:49 AM »
If I haven't miscounted, that's one week with the SOI below -20 now.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Arctic Image of the Day
« on: August 18, 2015, 03:42:32 PM »
The ice off the north-east coast of Greenland is giving up (click to animate):

Clear skies give a pretty picture on Worldview today:

Arctic sea ice / Re: Records and oddities
« on: July 31, 2015, 06:54:19 PM »
Nightvid Cole: I've been out of touch with this stuff for a while. What's the prediction for the final pack this year then?

Arctic background / Re: Importance of waves in the Arctic
« on: July 05, 2015, 11:00:22 AM »
Not exactly contemporary science, but it sprang to my mind on reading this thread. Back in the 18th century, they didn't know about the North polar ice cap.

In James Boswell's "THE JOURNAL OF A TOUR TO THE HEBRIDES WITH SAMUEL JOHNSON", which occurred in 1773, he writes:

"Talking of Phipps's voyage to the North Pole, Dr Johnson observed, that it 'was conjectured that our former navigators have kept too near land, and so have found the sea frozen far north, because the land hinders the free motion of the tide; but, in the wide ocean, where the waves tumble at their full convenience, it is imagined that the frost does not take effect'."

So you're in good company supposing that waves might have an effect!

Antarctica / Re: Rift in Larsen C
« on: March 12, 2015, 11:26:57 PM »
Ah, thanks AbruptSLR. I do read more than I post (or understand ;) ) but I somehow missed those.

What do you reckon to timeline for the rift to cause a major calfing? I understand that people can be reluctant to speculate, but are we talking 5 years, 15 years, 150 years?

Oh, and since I rarely post, I'd like to thank you for all your posts on various topics. I enjoy reading them even though I don't post on the threads myself (and I'm sure there are many like myself).

Antarctica / Rift in Larsen C
« on: March 12, 2015, 10:28:58 PM »
Hi folks,

Thoughts on the developing rift in the Larsen C ice shelf? There's a paper at:

They don't say when it's likely to calf based on the current rate. Any speculation?

The forum / Re: SSL certificate
« on: March 19, 2013, 10:08:45 PM »
Ah, of course, I forgot the old IE's problem with https and host-header.

You considered just putting the whole thing onto an Amazon EC2 instance? Should be cheap enough and you could maybe get folk to contribute a bit. I'm sure a few people would be willing to spare a few notes...

Anyway, good luck with the sso stuff. I think it'll probably work out easier than you think :)

The forum / SSL certificate
« on: March 19, 2013, 07:59:45 PM »
Hi Neven,

Can I buy you an SSL certificate, so you don't have this warning all the time? GoDaddy has them on sale at £3.99 per year. I could buy a 5 year one and worry about it expiring later.

I'd probably need to authenticate the domain, so you'd need to be able to change something on the root of the site or DNS entry.  Would that be OK?

Cheers, Seumas

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