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Messages - Paddy

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551
Walking the walk / Re: Cycling
« on: June 26, 2016, 10:08:18 PM »
I keep meaning to get back to cycling. For the next two months I have a bus commute that's so easy that the alternative just isn't that tempting, but from August I'm planning to work it in again once I switch workplaces.

552
Voted 3.75 to 4.00. Even with the slowdown this far into June, 2016 still has the lowest extent, volume, etc yet (even if not by very much). So even without melt conditions as dramatic as 2012 from here on out, this year could still be expected to finish pretty low.

553
Moving up a bucket, to 3.25 - 3.5.

554
Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: June 11, 2016, 02:16:36 PM »
If we continue losing extent at the average rate of the last 10 days (23.67k/day), we'll no longer be lowest on record  in 6 days, and we'll be above 2012 in 8.

That's a pretty big "If" though. See, for instance, how much extent decline has been at odds with the faster rate of area decline, which suggests some mixture of melt ponding and/or ice spreading out. Both of which would lead to greater melting ahead.

555
Quote
Out of about 1.2 billion vehicles globally.

Still, it's a start.

556
I know I'm tempted to go up a bin...

557
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016 melting season
« on: June 06, 2016, 08:34:57 AM »
'Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University predicts we could see ‘an area of less than one million square kilometres for September of this year'

I hope he's wrong, I fear he may be right.

He's been overly pessimistic before. Most other experts are more conservative in their estimates.

558
Arctic sea ice / Re: Home brew AMSR2 extent & area calculation
« on: June 05, 2016, 12:23:40 PM »
Looking at the sea ice concentration off about half the coast of Russia, should we expect extent there to drop soon as well?

http://www.iup.uni-bremen.de:8084/amsr2/arctic_AMSR2_nic.png

559
Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: June 05, 2016, 02:49:40 AM »
Laptev, ESS, CAA and CAB do not start moving much until July.

I've been wondering whether the high temperatures across the arctic and early melt elsewhere running up to this point might lead to an early start in one or more of these areas in 2016.  People have been flagging up the raised ground temperatures and deterioration of ice around the Lena river mouth in the Laptev region, but I'm also particularly thinking about the CAB and ESS, with their proximity to Beaufort and Chukchi (which have shown early melting this year).

560
Going for 3.0 to 3.25, based on a similar view of 2012's exceptionalism to Neven, modified by 2 considerations: the the ice likely being weaker after a very warm winter, and albedo on land and sea being very low as we enter peak insolation.

But really, anything from 2 million square km to 4.5 million square km wouldn't surprise me that much. There's a lot of time left between now and September.

561
Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: June 04, 2016, 04:06:38 PM »
I think a better way to put it would be to say that between slow extent drop over the last few days, and 2012's June ice collapse, 2016 is now "only" a 1 week plateau ahead of 2012 levels.  (Not that I'd predict that it will plateau, or even continue with the current slow extent drop, however).

562
Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: Northern hemisphere snow cover
« on: June 02, 2016, 05:35:52 AM »
Thank you! That tells me that April 2016 had a record low level of snow cover in the northern hemisphere (http://climate.rutgers.edu/snowcover/table_rankings.php?ui_set=1); will check back in a day or two for the May figure.

563
Greenland and Arctic Circle / Northern hemisphere snow cover
« on: June 02, 2016, 05:03:26 AM »
Which sources are best used to track northern hemisphere snow cover?

564
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2016 sea ice area and extent data
« on: May 26, 2016, 08:54:50 PM »
I am no expert, but surely what will make the difference is what happens in the central Arctic Basin? Most other areas can be expected either to become ice free, as they have in most recent years, or to hold onto a little bit of tough multi-year / calved ice. But it's in the CAB that 2012 was different
.. and what I'm wondering is what happens if we see an early start to the melt there?

565
Will be very interesting to see how long 2016 stays ahead of the curve on albedo. Forecasts would seem to suggest it won't stop soon.

566
Arctic sea ice / Re: IJIS
« on: May 25, 2016, 12:09:39 PM »
Casual prediction: looks like we may well go below 10.5 million before the end of May. Lots of insolation potential there.

567
Policy and solutions / Re: Meat and greenhouse gases
« on: April 05, 2016, 05:53:15 PM »
We have some pretty big trends towards a rise in consumption to reverse as regards meat: http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/3_foodconsumption/en/index4.html

At an individual level, we can do a fair bit by consuming less meat (and less dairy too). But at a population level, how do we effect  a change?  Cutting subsidies for beef and similarproduction may be one way...  but we'd be be up against some powerful lobbies in this battle.

568
Policy and solutions / Re: Bikes, bikes, bikes and more...bikes
« on: April 05, 2016, 12:01:58 PM »
Can anyone find any global bicycle production data more recent than 2007? It would be interesting to know which way this graph is heading now.: https://people.hofstra.edu/geotrans/eng/ch3en/conc3en/prodbicycles.html

569
Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: March 13, 2016, 09:59:18 AM »
I wonder when cheap solar may reach the point that electricity becomes cheaper in the day than at night?

570
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2016 melting season
« on: March 12, 2016, 02:07:14 PM »
It's far too early to predict, of course, but what are the chances all of this fragility may lead to new records being set at both maximum (area, if not extent) and minimum this year?

571
Consequences / Re: GW Migration / Climate Refugees
« on: November 15, 2015, 04:30:37 PM »
Bangladesh is only part (albeit a large part) of the regional problem.  Vietnam, Thailand, and Myanmar also face trouble ahead due to a large proportion of their population living in areas that would be below sea level.

I also have to wonder if the problem in the region will be exacerbated by the extensive hydroelectric dams in China, which among other things (a) prevent the normal silt deposition that contributes to coastal land levels in river deltas both domestic and foreign (including all the above countries and India), and (b) increase the vulnerability of land in estuaries to saltwater encroachment.

572
Consequences / Re: What most worries you and why?
« on: November 15, 2015, 01:54:04 PM »
I'm most worried about food, and how it'll be hit by water shortages, land shortages, and other changes.  Groundwater all over the world is running low, glacial water is running out, patterns of rainfall are changing, and patterns of water flow are changing too on the back of dams and deforestation.  Meanwhile, farming already claims almost half of the world's land, with the other half mostly not being suitable for cultivation.

If we continue losing fertile land to soil degradation, depleted water supplies, pollution and rising sea levels, and continue having growing demand from an expanding population, there's going to be a shortage ahead.  And all the gains we've made in addressing world hunger could easily be reversed.

Food prices themselves have been kept low so far on the back of big expensive subsidies (costing something like $100 billion worldwide, much of it spent to support less-than-efficient but popular / culturally iconic modes of agriculture).  This is probably not sustainable long-term.

573
Walking the walk / Re: 2016 sustainability goals
« on: October 03, 2015, 01:20:31 PM »
I plan to reduce my meat consumption and cycle more.

574
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2015 sea ice area and extent data
« on: October 01, 2015, 10:12:22 AM »
We'll probably get stats soon from NSIDC on their September monthly minimum... from eyeballing the data, Sept 2015 extent looks practically identical to Sept 2011 extent, which means it has to come in close proximity to the 2011 figure of 4.63. Unless I'm missing something?

575
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2015/2016 Re-Freeze Season
« on: September 04, 2015, 03:34:12 PM »
Lots of speculation here, but surely we should look at how refreezing went in previous El Niño years?

I'm going to take this back.  Looking at it, the last really big El Nino was in 1998-1999, when the starting conditions were so different (in terms of the amount of ice present etc.) that it's just not comparable.

Going to be an interesting year.

576
Consequences / Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« on: September 04, 2015, 09:48:16 AM »
It surprises me sometimes that with the world's population growing by about 70 or 80 million people a year for the last 40 years, the depletion of groundwater, fish stock decline, and soil erosion, climate change-related events and the move of consumers to more meat-heavy diets, that world food prices have generally stayed as low as they have.

Sooner or later it seems likely we'll hit a tipping point, however :S

577
Consequences / Re: Wildfires
« on: September 03, 2015, 06:41:02 PM »
Wildfires have now burned a massive 8 million acres across the U.S.

Plus over 11 million acres (4.5 million hectares) burned in Canada this year so far.  And a busy year for wildfires in Russia, too, although I can't find an estimate on the total there.  I wouldn't be surprised if this year set a new northern hemisphere record.

578
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2015/2016 Re-Freeze Season
« on: September 03, 2015, 10:39:34 AM »
Lots of speculation here, but surely we should look at how refreezing went in previous El Niño years?

579
Policy and solutions / Re: Bicycles
« on: August 31, 2015, 04:36:25 AM »
Good point regarding millennials. There's certainly been a drop in the proportion of young people learning to drive here in the UK (http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/14392512/big-drop-in-number-of-young-people-choosing-to-drive) and from what I've seen, many people who do learn to drive stop as soon as they pass their test, because of the costs of insurance etc, becoming functionally non-drivers.

580
Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: Greenland 2015 Melt Season
« on: August 23, 2015, 11:46:02 PM »
Looks like we're almost at the end of the melt season now:



Comparing to previous years... seems like we've been in similar territory to 2011, or slightly surpassing it, rather than the recent "rebound" years of 2013-14, or the peak melt year of 2012. 

581
Antarctica / Re: Is Antarctic sea ice really expanding?
« on: August 15, 2015, 01:27:37 PM »
Casual speculation: the normal maximum is in a little under 40 days and would be about 15 million, right?  (Based on eyeballing the Cryosphere graph).  Which means that if the antarctic ice area stays flat at about 14 million for the next 30 or 40 days (big if), we could end up with a negative anomaly of about 1 million.  Potentially larger if it starts dropping earlier than usual.

But then, I've no idea what it's likely to do next, or if there's anything to stop the Antarctic ice area going back up as fast as it went down.

EDIT: Meanwhile, it looks like the global sea ice anomaly is down to nearly -2 million sq km already:


582
Policy and solutions / Bicycles
« on: August 12, 2015, 12:58:51 PM »
So, bicycle production worldwide has climbed rapidly over the last four decades, from a little over 20 million in 1970 to 130 million in 2007.

Not sure how usage compares, but this seems like a good thing (TM) in climate and health terms.  On the other hand, however, cycle use has dropped sharply in some key areas, particularly China.

583
Consequences / Re: Population: Public Enemy No. 1
« on: August 12, 2015, 09:16:21 AM »
There are still reasons for hope.  For instance, the Millennium Development Goals left out anything that might reasonably contribute to population control besides female education.  Their successors, the Sustainable Development Goals, are rather longer and more comprehensive, and as presented in the current Agenda, include the following:

Quote
This Agenda is a win for women and girls. ... The goals and targets require every country to take measures to ... eliminate violence against women ... ensure that everyone has access to ... sexual and reproductive health care services and the fulfilment of their reproductive rights. It will ensure that the 225 million women who want to, but cannot, access modern contraception will be able to finally make decisions about their families, their bodies and their futures.  It will help end early and forced marriage, which currently sees 15 million girls married before their 18th birthdays every year.

In principle, more access to contraception, less violence against women, and fewer early marriages should all contribute to people having fewer children over their lifetime (and having those that they have later).  Which should help further slow down population growth. 

Also, globally, we aren't that far off replacement level fertility... if you look at the worldwideNet Reproduction Rate (mortality adjusted number of daughters per woman), we're currently at 1.1.  All we need is to reduce that to 1.0 for long term sustainability. 

(Looking at Total Fertility Rate, which is the number of children per woman in a lifetime w/o mortality adjustment, gives the impression of being further from replacement level fertility, since it's currently at 2.5, compared to a replacement level of 2.05; however, one big thing that TFR overlooks is the greater number of boys being born than girls in China, India and elsewhere; and the number of girls born will ultimately drive how many women there are to have kids in the next generation).

EDIT: The latest UN population predictions have just had a brief but decent write up in the World Bank's blog, incidentally.

584
A late vote for 4.5 to 4.75.  Something in the vicinity of 2011's result looks pretty reasonable.  This is the same as my July prediction, and one bin lower than my June prediction.

EDIT: It's curious how "something in the vicinity of 2011" comes out at the upper end of the distribution for this poll, but the middle of the distribution for the Cryosphere poll.  Any ideas why?

585
A late vote for something in the vicinity of 2011's area, so 2.75 -> 3 million sq km.  On current trends, and with the ice as spread out and thus vulnerable to melting as it is, I think it's going that way.

586
Antarctica / Re: Is Antarctic sea ice really expanding?
« on: August 09, 2015, 01:37:21 PM »
The August 5th publication of Arctic Sea Ice News has a bit of discussion about the slowdown up to that date, incidentally.  They don't make any explicit forecasts about future trends, but note the final statement in bold:

Quote
Relatively warm conditions prevailed for much of the month in the two regions of ice edge retreat, the northern Weddell Sea and northwestern Ross Sea, with average air temperatures at the 925 hPa level (3,000 feet above sea level) at approximately 4 degrees Celsius (7 degrees Fahrenheit) above average. However, sea surface temperatures just north of the ice edge were 0.5 to 1 degree Celsius (1 to 2 degrees Fahrenheit) cooler than average, raising the potential for rapid ice growth through the remainder of the winter season.


587
Antarctica / Re: Is Antarctic sea ice really expanding?
« on: August 09, 2015, 12:46:56 PM »
Indeed, it's only been a month or so with the extent curve (and area curve) flattening off.  Let's not get ahead of ourselves here. 

Especially as the global sea ice area has only registered a brief blip below the average line so far, which is nothing unprecedented:


588
Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: Greenland 2015 Melt Season
« on: July 29, 2015, 11:51:24 PM »
Greenland melt seems to be dropping a bit:



Meanwhile, the accumulated mass balance over the year so far has already dropped below that in the average year, but is well behind that in 2012:


589
Arctic background / Re: Arctic Wildfires
« on: July 24, 2015, 12:28:26 PM »
And now the emergency preparedness level in Canada is down to 3 out of 5.  Weekly hectares burned are down to average levels.

590
Drat, I managed to copy completely the wrong article URL.  Apologies for said accidental linkage to a Murdoch publication.

I actually meant to link to this article from the Moscow Times.

One of the relevant sections:

Quote
Although the NSR has been hyped up by the Russian government, it has not yet become the commercial success envisioned in 2013, when Russia created a special administrative entity, the Northern Sea Route Authority, to manage commercial shipping applications for passage.



Last year, only 41 ships passed through the NSR, with the vast majority of them registered as Russian vessels. This was a sharp downturn from 2013, when 71 vessels made the trip, and even then the majority of ships were Russian.



EDIT: One odd thing about the numbers presented in that article is that they seem to be contradicted by the official transit stats, which show 53 transits being made using the route in 2014 (and 71 in 2013).  This may be explained by confusion over some ships making the journey more than once, but that applied to the total transit stats for both years.

591
Apparently, uptake of the Northern Sea Route has been slower than anticipated recently, due to the drop in oil prices and high insurance costs for what's seen as a dangerous route.  Russia is upgrading their coastguard in the area, however, which may bring these costs down and make it more competitive.

592
Arctic background / Re: Arctic Wildfires
« on: July 21, 2015, 11:06:07 AM »
Things may be getting better in Canada - their national preparedness level has dropped from five (extreme) to four (moderate -> extreme). The national preparedness in the USA is currently at 2 out of 5, meanwhile.

So far, there have been fires across the space of 5.9 million hectares* across N America this fire season (3.7 million in Canada and 2.2 million in the USA). 

* This area equates to 59 thousand square km, 14 million acres, 23 thousand square miles, West Virginia (nearest US approximation) or Croatia (nearest European approximation).

593
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2015 melting season
« on: July 20, 2015, 06:15:09 PM »
Personally, I'm not ruling anything out.

http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=07&fd=17&fy=2015&sm=07&sd=17&sy=2012

Surely there's something amiss with that current image???

 Even 2012 had some 100% cover in the central basin on the 17th???

Notice the change over only 4 days.  Seems unlikely to me.
http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=07&fd=17&fy=2015&sm=07&sd=13&sy=2015

Seems unlikely to me too, especially since it's very much at odds with the concentration maps that Slow Wing posted about earlier.

Hamburg has updated and we can now do the 'July 19' sea ice area & concentration comparison by years on the excellent display set up by Neven:

https://sites.google.com/site/arcticseaicegraphs/concentration-maps/sic0719


On this comparison, 2015 is looking way ahead of both 2013 and 2014 and somewhat closer to most or all of the preceding years within 2007-12.

594
Glaciers / Re: Alaska Glaciers
« on: July 18, 2015, 02:59:34 PM »
Thank you for that analysis!

I suppose the take home message is that Alaska is still a pretty small chunk of the total likely contribution compared to the big boys of Greenland and Antarctica...

595
Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: Greenland 2015 Melt Season
« on: July 18, 2015, 09:33:19 AM »
New monthly nsidc report released on 17th July. Apparently albedo's at a record low http://nsidc.org/greenland-today/

596
Glaciers / Re: Alaska Glaciers
« on: July 16, 2015, 11:28:40 PM »
Out of curiosity, how many gigatons of ice do Alaska's glaciers contain?

597
Arctic background / Re: Arctic Wildfires
« on: July 14, 2015, 12:19:13 PM »
Yeah, I've only ever been quoting them to two s.f.

598
Arctic background / Re: Arctic Wildfires
« on: July 14, 2015, 11:39:56 AM »
Hi Wili, welcome to the thread.  Good article there.

Between the North American wildfires and the Siberian ones back in spring, I'm left wondering how near we are to another northern hemisphere record on overall area burned. 

599
Nearly 5 million hectares have burned across Canada and the USA now (2.9 million and 1.9 million respectively).

600
Science / Re: Predicted reduction in solar activity
« on: July 13, 2015, 12:01:52 AM »
Thanks!  I like the concatenated twitter feed from that discussion.

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