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Messages - oren

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Policy and solutions / Re: Electric cars
« on: November 24, 2020, 05:56:37 PM »
Plug-in hybrids are fake electric cars, built for lab tests and tax breaks, not real driving.
I have come to this conclusion a while ago. And the buyers know this, I believe many of them don't even bother to plug the car to an outlet. The scam is the tax break, they just buy a high-end SUV for a discount.

Antarctica / Re: Pine Island Glacier (PIG) Calving and Discussion
« on: November 24, 2020, 05:27:00 PM »
I think this is the video in question.

Consequences / Re: COVID-19
« on: November 24, 2020, 04:42:35 AM »
I get the feeling herd immunity was not achieved in NYC, despite insistent claims. Daily deaths are still very low, but I won't be surprised when they start climbing.

Antarctica / Re: Antarctic Icebergs
« on: November 24, 2020, 02:11:49 AM »
Hi APMartie2, to do that you need to save the image to your device and then upload it as attachment to your post.
Thanks to your link, here's an even better Worlview output, an animation of the past month (made using the video camera icon on WV, optimized on EZgif to reduce size). Click to animate.

Consequences / Re: Weird Weather and anecdotal stories about climate change
« on: November 23, 2020, 07:41:44 AM »
Kirr don't worry, nothing wrong with your site, it opens perfectly. Thanks for sharing, and welcome.

Arctic sea ice / Re: 365 day average extent poll
« on: November 22, 2020, 12:12:47 PM »
2019 underperforms for the next 10 days, so it will be tough.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2020/2021 freezing season
« on: November 21, 2020, 08:24:49 AM »
The CAB is clawing its way again to FJL. Meanwhile in the southern Kara a massive retreat. Did that ice actually melt or was it squeezed in somehow?

The rest / Re: Good music
« on: November 21, 2020, 07:27:19 AM »
Triples: Kool & the Gang by Kool & the Gang, on their album Kool & the Gang (1970).

Consequences / Re: COVID-19
« on: November 21, 2020, 06:56:40 AM »
Thanks for sharing, longwalks. I hope you clear the virus soon.

Consequences / Re: COVID-19
« on: November 21, 2020, 12:20:26 AM »
Looking at Gero's chart above, and considering hospitalizations, ICU and deaths all lag cases by one to several weeks, it would appear that these dark weeks ahead are already baked in and inescapable.

I will add one more observation. After the crack is seen widening significantly, even though it's not yet completed across the glacier, the calving comes along very soon, within days or a few weeks at most. So I am guessing we are nearing the end.

The rest / Re: Astronomical news
« on: November 20, 2020, 09:07:21 PM »
Nice idea, to solve a problem that is becoming bigger.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 20, 2020, 03:12:52 PM »
The argument is getting ahead of itself. The main question is what to do incrementally now, and the answer is obvious. Add solar and/or wind, depending on your country's specific characteristics, until they start being curtailed seriously because of overbuild. Complement them with existing nuclear and hydro where possible, and with existing fossil fuel plants, preferably as dispatchable as possible. Build the grid where it's needed, e.g. transmission lines from desert areas or sea platforms to urban centers.
That's it, so simple, no need to argue.
When the solar and wind enter serious curtailment, or before that if possible, start adding large grid batteries of a few hours worth of energy, to bridge the gap between day and night and between wind highs and lows. This process will keep reducing the total GHG emissions.
All the rest is quite far into the future. There's at least 5 or even 10 years where adding renewables as fast as possible is the correct first step, with batteries as the second step.

Permafrost / Re: Permafrost general science thread
« on: November 20, 2020, 10:08:27 AM »
I wonder what the proportion of lakes in Yamal is between "shallow thermokarst lakes" and "deep mature lakes".

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 20, 2020, 01:43:26 AM »
As far as the climate is concerned, in order to limit the rise in global temperature below 2°C, which is the objective of the Paris agreement, global greenhouse gas emissions must be divided by 3 by 2050, i.e. a decrease of about 4% per year (starting today) over the next 30 years. And you want to do this with wind turbines, photovoltaic panels and electric batteries? You know that your program is going to require you to burn a lot of coal and oil to try to make these tools, that you will cause serious pollution to extract and transform the necessary metals, and you won't be able to do it. I'm going to watch you do it and carefully note the progress you will make every year, I remind you of the challenge: minus 4% per year from now on, GO!
A. I actually think this should be done over 20 years instead of 30. We do not have that much time and environment left. But note I am not saying this will be done, just that it can be done. Political and social reasons (and human stupidity) probably mean that it will not be done.
B. Humanity's industrial machine keeps on humming, to make LCD screens and Barbie dolls and what have you. I'd rather the same machine make solar panels and wind turbines and batteries instead. Redirecting of resources, same costs and pollutions.
C. As electricity in general becomes cleaner, the marginal GHG cost of further production of renewable generation components (and other products of energy, including screens and dolls) will drop. The right thing to do is to transform first the grids of industrial nations chiefly involved in making these components, especially China, so that any increase in industrial output due to demand for such components will be served by cleaner energy.
D. Maintenance of the system and replacement of components after initial completion will use clean energy.
E. As the grid becomes cleaner, humanity should also undertake the conversion of transportation, mining and industrial processes that are directly powered by fossil fuels to be powered by electricity instead.
F. Of course, humanity should reduce consumption to enable a faster transition and reduce the burden on the carrying capacity of the planet. Humanity should also reduce reproduction, at least temporarily. I doubt it will do either of these measures though, for political and social reasons (and human stupidity).

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 19, 2020, 06:39:54 PM »
I am happy with planning for 99% emission-free, rather than 100%, which makes the problem much easier to solve. It's the 80/20 rule but extended to 99/1. Fossil fuel backup, using gas (or even coal) plants that already exist and will need to be kept in readiness after they are no longer used daily, will solve the one, two or even three week gap. And since winds and clouds are predictable several days in advance, readiness needs not be on a hot-swap basis. On a total production scale I am quite certain this can be kept to a 1% total contribution, using grid-tied batteries for daily cycling and smoothing of solar and wind, and using the current capabilities of hydro and pumped-up storage and nuclear where it already exists. Add some dispatchable loads such as EV charging and some industrial uses, and the problem can be solved. Just need to get off our collective asses and start doing it, increment by increment, and stop dragging our feet.
The last 1% will go away at some point, but it would be much less urgent.

Arctic sea ice / Re: MOSAiC news
« on: November 19, 2020, 03:05:52 PM »
Looking at the SMOS animation (thanks A-Team) it appears 2019 had thinner ice than the previous years, so the trend is already two years back to back. I have no doubt the poor 2019 volume  growth contributed to what happened in 2020. At the end of the 2019/20 winter the Laptev volume (black line) was at an all time low, long before the Siberian heat wave and the GAAC.
Of course, the extremely late refreeze and delayed thickening doesn't necessarily mean the trend will continue, but it's certainly stacking the odds.

Click to enlarge.

The rest / Re: Good music
« on: November 19, 2020, 06:44:54 AM »
A different kind of triple play - a well known song sharing its name with both the band and the album.

Bad Company - Bad company (from Bad Company, 1974)

I would like to hear your comments to what you see?
I cannot elaborate as much as Tor, but, it seems to me the tributaries on the right play a role in determining the calving position by exerting pressure on the ice shelf, and I also wonder why then and now the last holdout is the middle left of the glacier. I also note the longitudinal channels (on the left) play a small role in the outline of the breakup.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 19, 2020, 05:08:08 AM »
100% renewable electricity at no extra cost, a piece of cake?

And here we're only talking about the production of electricity, not the overall consumption of energy in France.
It's all in the assumptions, a very biased article, pro-nuclear, anti-renewables.
Modern wind and solar have higher capacity factors than 20% and 14% respectively, which is what he assumes based on existing average factors (from 2016). Of course, for nuclear he uses 75% while current average is 69%, without any reasoning at all.
The requirement for 100% solar or 100% wind (their combination is an afterthought) is very harsh, change it to 99% solar and wind with fossil fuel backup and you get a very different result, with nearly the same emissions.
Imports are not allowed at all, thus missing out on the residual differential of winds and clouds between countries even when weather is correlated, and on the variability and availability of hydro within countries.
Existing hydro (20% of installed capacity) cannot be used at all, artificially upping the needs for solar or wind renewables.
Focus on pumped-up hydro as the main storage solution. Batteries are an afterthought. Costs per kw are 5000-6000 Euros, much more than batteries, and the charge-discharge efficiency is 70%, much less than batteries. OTOH assumes battery manufacturing would eat up 20%-30% of the total stored lifetime energy.
Assumes lifetime of nuclear is rather long while that of wind and solar and of batteries is rather short, compared with reasonable assumptions.
Grid must be upgraded to support max (overbuilt) capacity, in essence assuming solar and wind cannot be curtailed at source.
Assumes for every dollar into renewables, another dollar into grid/power lines. IMHO much too much.
Assumes crazy assumptions about storage sizing, rather than calculating via charge-discharge simulation the actual storage required.
"Proves" the crazy resulting cost for renewables by looking at the German system, built when renewables cost way above their current cost.
Assumes nuclear does not need any backup from other sources, "as a proxy for the existing system", in effect allowing nuclear the benefit of the 20% hydro and the fossil fuel backup for free. Ignores the need to overbuild nuclear in order to meet peak loads, having required that from renewables. Ignores the need to build new nuclear, assumes cost is only "reconstruction" of existing facilities, although existing nuclear is not enough to support the whole grid. Assumes very cheap cost for dismantling. Ignores need to deal with radioactive waste. Assumes operating costs for nuclear are as low as renewables. Assumes nuclear is dispatchable and has no uncontrolled changes in output due to sudden maintenance needs or bad weather such as too-warm rivers (not to mention potential accidents). Assumes France is a good proxy for other countries, that do not have the existing nuclear installed base.
And I didn't even get to the end to find all the biased assumptions, couldn't stomach to read more of this.

If this is what you read, no wonder these are your conclusions.

Policy and solutions / Re: Aviation
« on: November 19, 2020, 04:02:40 AM »
You might be surprised to know that many million-milers are not super-rich, not even rich. Like this stringed-instrument guy I know, he used to be a player in an orchestra but that living is dead, and now he is privately trading violins and such, flying all over the globe to show, to buy and to sell, barely making ends meet in the process. A very weird life and very harmful for the planet, but certainly not rich.
There are also many people who fly for their job in marketing, sales or engineering, making a transatlantic return flight every two or four weeks. Certainly richer than the average human, but most are not considered rich in their own countries, and definitely not super-rich. I am familiar with more than a few of such people. Most if not all hate flying. Again, a ruinous lifestyle but one driven by making a living.
The main issue here is globalization, and the too-cheap cost of flights that does not take into account the environmental cost. If transatlantic or regional flights cost 4 times as much, you would not be seeing many of these flights, as it would not be economical to continue making a living this way. Then only the super-rich would be flying, and the above complaint would be more accurate.
What could actually make a big dent is Covid, that has taught all to do remote meetings and to find them acceptable, in fact much more productive unless an actual non-software product is to be demonstrated or transferred during the meeting.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (November mid-monthly update)
« on: November 18, 2020, 01:14:03 PM »
Thanks a lot Wipneus for your important work with PIOMAS data.
A few charts showing that 2020 is unfortunately still leading in the important places, though it lags the total behind 2016 mainly thanks to a 140k surplus in the Greenland Sea.
CAB and Pacific side rates of growth seems to be following in parallel to the slower years, such as 2016. In the Siberian side the rate of growth has been following the faster years, though on a very delayed curve. Hopefully by the next update 2020 will be firmly above 2016.

Click to enlarge.

Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: What's new in Greenland?
« on: November 17, 2020, 11:04:02 PM »
They found that Jakobshavn Isbrae lost more than 1.5 trillion tonnes of ice between 1880-2012, while Kangerlussuaq and Helheim lost 1.4 trillion and 31 billion tonnes from 1900–2012, respectively.
I find weird that these are the three largest glaciers in Greenland. Petermann? Zachariae? Humboldt? What criteria?
Also the numbers are weird. Did Helheim lose 50 times less than JH and Kangerlussuaq?
But I need to read the whole thing.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 17, 2020, 10:53:06 PM »
Converting some of the demand to dispatchable could also make the problem smaller. Dead cloudy days should mean unnecessary demand gets pushed back. Wait with laundry. Don't charge your e car or your home battery. If electricity price is jacked up during dead times and reduced during clear windy days, individuals and firms will find their own way to shift their patterns.
Governments should also offer free or discounted home insulation projects, to reduce heating demand during those dead times.

The rest / Re: SpaceX
« on: November 16, 2020, 10:27:25 PM »
Tor's father woke him in 1962, not yesterday, unless I am completely mistaken in my reading comprehension.

Consequences / Re: Weird Weather and anecdotal stories about climate change
« on: November 16, 2020, 10:11:43 PM »
Thanks BFTV, very clear writeup that helped me understand some things I should have known a long time ago.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2020/2021 freezing season
« on: November 16, 2020, 09:36:23 PM »
Hudson Bay sea ice area according to AMSR2. Progressing rapidly perhaps, but not quite as rapidly as other years.

Working from home meant that many people were saving on everyday costs such as travel, lunch, clothes and cleaning, as well as possibly spending less on socializing. However, the report also said it meant remote workers were "contributing less to the infrastructure of the economy whilst still receiving its benefits."

Templeman said remote workers should pay a levy post-pandemic "in order to smooth the transition process for those who have suddenly been displaced" by the coronavirus crisis.
I shudder at this. For years it was believed that teleworking will reduce unnecessary travel, and with it traffic jams and more importantly, GHG emissions and other pollutants. Now that by some "magic" event many people have finally switched to teleworking, the government is trying to tax them out of it.
In addition, since governments pay heavily for "unprofitable" traffic infrastructure, they actually save a lot if many are working from home permanently. So the rationale for this new tax is very poor too.

The rest / Re: Archaeology/Paleontology news
« on: November 16, 2020, 10:12:40 AM »
The only problem is that the time of Biblical King David himself has not been determined and verified, while the main bible books were written three hundred years later, with a strong agenda behind them. So the article's title is misleading. (It comes from the source, the IAA, which is to blame).

Consequences / Re: COVID-19
« on: November 16, 2020, 04:30:35 AM »
Thanks for sharing dnem.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2020/2021 freezing season
« on: November 16, 2020, 03:21:50 AM »
So, a quick visit to Worldview can help answer the question.
Sample Worldview link
Choose Add Layers - Sea Ice - SSMI - Sea Ice Concentration. Now you can see sea ice extent all the way to 1978, and even better you can click the video camera icon to make an animation of up to 40 frames, with 1 year increments showing you the same date every year. Download the result, and upload to for some optimization, resizing and setting desired delays between frames.
And the answer: It seems 2012 was worse.

Click to animate.

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: November 16, 2020, 02:55:07 AM »
A study
permafrost and non-permafrost environments in Siberia with different biogeochemical conditions in river valleys, thermokarst lakes, wetlands, and lowlands.
These findings do not support the "methane bomb" concept.
As far as my understanding goes, the methane bomb refers to methane emissions from marine sources, mainly the ESAS.

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: November 16, 2020, 02:51:29 AM »
Welcome ArgonneForest.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2020/2021 freezing season
« on: November 16, 2020, 02:36:35 AM »
Wipneus comes to the rescue with his pair of useful charts, multi-product Arctic Basin area and extent.

Arctic sea ice / Re: MOSAiC news
« on: November 16, 2020, 02:15:43 AM »
The CAATEX project
Cross posting an article about this project and the recent retrieval, easily readable in google translate.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 15, 2020, 08:24:49 AM »
Thanks for the above posts interstitial, putting things in perspective. I am aware of this but patience sometimes runs thin.

Thank you Espen for this series of long term animations.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: November 14, 2020, 10:23:05 PM »
In order to use all these solutions, humanity must first replace all electricity from fossil sources with renewable production by solar, wind and geothermal. It's nice that the technology is there but until energy is sustainable all these solutions will just be theoretical. So Gero's chart has a very long way to go.

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: November 14, 2020, 10:16:22 PM »
Gandul has finally been put on moderation.
To all, please hang tight in there. The environment and our future is more important than a few trolls and disgruntled posters. Put on ignore whoever makes you want to quit. Report to moderator whatever bugs you. Yes it works, and moderators do act. And use a stoic approach as a final defense.

Permafrost / Re: Northern Hemisphere Winter 2020-2021 Snowcover / Misc Obs
« on: November 14, 2020, 08:52:11 PM »
Record NA snowfall is certainly welcome to be discussed here.

Permafrost / Re: Northern Hemisphere Winter 2020-2021 Snowcover / Misc Obs
« on: November 14, 2020, 08:50:58 PM »
Folks, reglaciation is to be discussed only in the designated thread. If anyone has trouble finding it I can post a link later. If anyone wants to explore the science or lack thereof, feel free to do so over there.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2020/2021 freezing season
« on: November 14, 2020, 08:44:34 PM »
And yet bbr, according to AMSR2 Hudson Bay has barely reached 100k km2, more than two weeks after 2015 and 2018 and almost the latest in the AMSR2 record. So I think you are basing your predictions on something that is not accurate.

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: November 14, 2020, 08:37:42 PM »
In general I tend to agree Steve. I think hard lines should be drawn, and ad hom (and name calling) attacks should be edited out, however that is time consuming for moderators and is often late unless the member in question is in moderation. In my section I do try to do that as much as I can. OTOH, stoicism ia a good trait so as not to take personally silly insults on an Internet forum, even one I care so much about as this one.

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: November 14, 2020, 12:30:36 AM »
Gandul - feel free to call me silly names as long as you don't disrupt the forum I am tasked with moderating (the Cryosphere section). The tragedy is that I consider you intelligent and have Liked quite a few of your posts over the last year. However your anger and belligerence have been growing and you are losing the ability to contribute usefully on a public forum, lashing out at other posters and making repeated defensive posts.
The forum is about the science, not about your ego. If you can't control it, the moderators will do it for you, an unhappy task but one that must be done.

Welcome, Tfitz.

Antarctica / Re: Larsen D
« on: November 13, 2020, 04:52:45 PM »
Thank you paolo.

Antarctica / Re: Larsen D
« on: November 13, 2020, 09:39:14 AM »
For the sake of less knowledgeable readers, whom I represent quite well, here is the short text from Wikipedia about Larsen D, and a map of the locations of the various Larsen ice shelves.
I would greatly appreciate if anyone can match the animation location relative to the map, or if anyone can post an overview image showing the regions surrounding the calving area.

The Larsen D Ice Shelf is between Smith Peninsula in the south and Gipps Ice Rise. It is considered to be generally stable. Over roughly the past fifty years it has advanced (expanded) whereas comparable George VI, Bach, Stange, and Larsen C ice shelves have retreated (to a much greater net extent). The most recent survey of Larsen D measured it at 22,600 km2. There is fast ice along the entire front. This makes it difficult to interpret the ice front because the semi-permanent sea ice varies in thickness and may be nearly indistinguishable from shelf ice.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (November)
« on: November 13, 2020, 02:40:21 AM »
       FWIW, my own opinion about 2007 is to agree with you from a different basis.  It seems to me that the loss of multi-year ice in 2007 either reflected or helped initiate systemic changes in the ASI system.  Various posts in the forum have described how, even though 2012 gets most of the attention since it holds the records, that when looked at from different points of view, 2007 was the Big Year.  I have no hope of remembering in which thread, but (I think it was) Oren or BFTV who put up a post this summer listing losses from September to September which showed that when viewed from that time frame, 2007 outdistanced every other year for losses.  So that's a second (but also not statistically validated) observation to lend weight to your proposition. 
Indeed, here is an expanded version of that post which is found upthread. As my PIOMAS Excel is built around Wipneus data, the following only looks at daily data since 2000.
For each year, I look at the volume gain over the preceding autumn and winter, starting at day 266 of the previous year (~Sep 23rd) and ending at day 121 of that year (~May 1st). Then I look at the volume loss over that year's spring and summer, until day 266. The four worst years in each column are bolded. The results are quite interesting.
Indeed, 2007 is the winner for total net loss. However, its main claim to fame should be the low winter gain. Its summer loss was high for its time but nothing much compared to later years. Looking at the data in chart form clearly shows that something was different after 2007, much higher losses and much higher gains as a larger part of the Arctic participated in the seasonal cycle. In my next post I will look at the various regions, and attempt to find out where the missing 2007 winter volume was located.
In general, high net losses typically occur in years that had a low winter gain compared to their surrounding neighbors, marked in the chart. Also marked is 2017, the year the Arctic dodged a cannonball despite poor winter gain, by having the lowest summer loss since 2004.
In addition, most top years for high summer losses were also top years for high early summer losses.

Click to enlarge images.

The politics / Re: The Alt Right
« on: November 12, 2020, 10:42:41 PM »
How much further down this road will the Right Wing go?
I fear "all the way" is the answer.

The politics / Re: Biden’s Presidency
« on: November 12, 2020, 10:39:10 PM »
It could well happen but I doubt a public campaign would stop such cutthroat plans.

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