Archive for the ‘sea ice’ Category

The ocean carbon cycle [credit: IAEA]


Nature’s carbon cycle works even better than was believed. The researchers say ‘it can be assumed that the global influence of this mechanism as a carbon sink is actually much greater’.
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Every year, the cross-shelf transport of carbon-rich particles from the Barents and Kara Seas could bind up to 3.6 million metric tons of CO2 in the Arctic deep sea for millennia, says Science Daily.

In this region alone, a previously unknown transport route uses the biological carbon pump and ocean currents to absorb atmospheric CO2 on the scale of Iceland’s total annual emissions, as researchers from the Alfred Wegener Institute and partner institutes report in the current issue of the journal Nature Geoscience.

Compared to other oceans, the biological productivity of the central Arctic Ocean is limited, since sunlight is often in short supply — either due to the Polar Night or to sea-ice cover — and the available nutrient sources are scarce.

Consequently, microalgae (phytoplankton) in the upper water layers have access to less energy than their counterparts in other waters.

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Cumulus clouds over the Atlantic Ocean [image credit: Tiago Fioreze @ Wikipedia]


The article says iodine’s ‘catalytic role in particle formation enhances its effects in the atmosphere wherever it goes, whether that role is eliminating protective ozone molecules or increasing cloud cover.’ But it’s not clear why this claim would be correct: ‘As sea ice melts in the Arctic, more iodine can enter the atmosphere, increase cloud cover and enhance warming effects on the region.’ Effects of cloud cover differ between high and low cloud, for example.
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An international team led by CU Boulder researchers has cracked the chemical code driving the formation of iodine particles in the atmosphere, revealing how the element contributes to increased cloud cover and depletes molecules in the Earth’s protective ozone layer, says Phys.org.

The research, conducted at the world’s largest particle physics laboratory, the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), was published today in the journal Nature Chemistry.

It’s the first time that any experiment in the world has demonstrated the mechanism for how the gas-phase form of iodine—known as iodic acid—forms, and suggests it has an significant role in atmospheric particle formation.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]


One less wild proposal for climate obsessives to bother their heads with. Arctic summer sea ice levels clearly stabilised in recent years anyway.
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Researchers have rebuffed a wild idea to use tiny, hollow glass beads to halt sea ice loss, finding that a coating of microspheres would actually accelerate ice melt instead of slowing it, says ScienceAlert.

In 2018, a study proposed spraying layers of glass powder, in the form of hollow glass spheres about the thickness of a human hair, over Arctic sea ice to brighten its surface.

This, the study authors said, would enhance the amount of sunlight reflected in a part of the world that is seeing some of the worst effects of climate change, lowering the surface temperature and giving sea ice a chance to recover.

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Science cop-out expected for COP27 

Posted: October 14, 2022 by oldbrew in climate, COP27, sea ice, Temperature
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Arctic ocean near Barrow, Alaska [image credit: Beth Ipsen/Associated Press]


Another climate worrier fest, another year of the non-existent Arctic summer sea ice ‘death spiral’. How long can this charade go on?
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COP27 is almost upon us, says Net Zero Watch.

That means it’s the time of year when we take stock of the changes we see taking place in the Earth’s climate, when we begin to think aboout placing the weather events of 2022 into the context of decadal trends.

This review, however, might leave some delegates heading to Egypt for the 27th UN climate summit a little confused.

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2022 Arctic Ice Abounds at Average Daily Minimum

Posted: September 19, 2022 by oldbrew in climate, data, sea ice
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But alarmists still insist the poles are warming several times faster than the global average. Data says no.

Science Matters

The annual competition between ice and water in the Arctic ocean has reached the maximum for water, which typically occurs mid September.  After that, diminishing energy from the slowly setting sun allows oceanic cooling causing ice to regenerate. Those interested in the dynamics of Arctic sea ice can read numerous posts here.  This post provides a look at mid September from 2007 to yesterday as a context for understanding this year’s annual minimum.

The image above shows Arctic ice extents on day 260 (lowest annual daily extent on average) from 2007 to 2022 yesterday.  Obviously, the regions vary as locations for ice, discussed in more detail later on. The animation shows the ice deficits in years 2007, 2012, 2016 and 2020, as well as surplus years like 2010, 2014 and the last two years, 2021-2022.

Note that for climate purposes the annual minimum is measured by the September monthly average…

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Icebergs in the North Atlantic [image credit:
maritime-executive.com]


Perhaps, but there’s plenty of ‘suggesting’ that something might possibly occur here. Plus of course the usual remarks about supposed human involvement in Earth’s climate. ‘An increased export of Arctic sea-ice into the subpolar North Atlantic’ is proposed as a driver of destabilisation (see study).
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Scientists have used centuries-old clam shells to see how the North Atlantic climate system reached a “tipping point” before the Little Ice Age, says Phys.org.

The Little Ice Age —a period of regional cooling, especially in the North Atlantic—lasted several centuries, ending in about 1850.

A long-standing theory suggests initial cooling in this period was sustained by “sea-ice to ocean feedbacks”—sea ice expanded and this slowed ocean currents which in turn reduced the flow of warm water from the south.

The new study, by the University of Exeter, used the shells of quahog clams—which can live for several hundred years—to understand how the ocean has evolved and responded to external changes over recent centuries.

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Sea ice optional? [image credit: BBC]


Sir David King’s plan from last year, now revived: Send in the clouds. The general idea: ‘creating white cloud cover that will come over the Arctic Sea during the three months of the polar summer. They hope this would reflect sunlight away so that the growth of ice over the Arctic sea during the previous winter is retained through the summer.’ Sir David: “And if we could just repeat that every year for the coming 20 or 30 years, then we might manage to create the ice cover that is needed to protect the Arctic Sea.” And then he woke up?
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The heatwaves will kick in even if countries stick to their current climate targets, but refreezing the Arctic could curb dangerous changes, former chief scientific advisor Sir David King says.
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The record-breaking heatwave that scorched swathes of Europe in recent months will become an “average” summer as soon as 2035, even if countries stick to their current climate targets, new research suggests.

The Met Office’s Hadley Centre has forecast an average summer in central Europe will be more than 4°C hotter by 2100 than it was before humans started burning fossil fuels at scale, reports Sky News.

Researchers said they are confident in their analysis because they found a “very satisfactory” alignment between recorded average temperatures since 1850 and the figures that were predicted by computer models.

The Climate Crisis Advisory Group (CCAG), which commissioned the research, called the data an “urgent reminder” of the need for countries to go “well beyond” their climate plans, known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs), which together aim to limit global warming to ideally 1.5°C.

The analysis shows that “even if countries meet their commitments to reduce emissions they have made so far, the situation is still set to get worse, with weather in Europe predicted to become even more extreme than seen this summer,” said former government chief scientific advisor and CCAG chair Sir David King.

Almost two-thirds of Europe and much of England is currently enduring a drought that is hitting food and power production, driven in part by hot weather. The extreme heat in July broke records in England, Scotland and France.

“This data doesn’t fully account for the instability of the Arctic, which we now know is a global tipping point that could have major cascading consequences for the entire planet,” Sir David warned.

He said it was “abundantly clear” that countries need to not only meet their NDCs, but consider increasing them.
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The CCAG argues mitigative action must include three things: reducing emissions, removing existing emissions in vast quantities and repairing “broken parts of the climate system, starting with the Arctic”.

It reiterated its calls from last year to refreeze the Arctic, which is warming much faster than the rest of the world, exacerbating other extreme weather events around the globe.

“It is only through the mitigative measures of Reduce, Remove and Repair, pursued with equal vigour and urgency, that we can hope to move away from the path to disaster we’re currently set on and achieve a manageable future for humanity,” Sir David added.

Full report here.

Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]


The authors propose that sea-ice formation is the key factor and not biology. In their paper, we read: ‘Results: Carbon dioxide is very strongly correlated with sea ice dynamics, with the carbon dioxide rate at Mauna Loa lagging sea ice extent rate by 7 months.’ However, drawing conclusions from correlations can go wrong. The authors conclude: ‘If sea ice does not drive the net flux of these gases, it is a highly precise proxy for whatever does. Potential mechanisms should be investigated urgently.’
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Could we be wrong about the annual cycle of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere? – asks Net Zero Watch.

That’s the suggestion by a pair of distinguished Oxford zoologists Clive Hambler and Peter Henderson who have just published a paper that could change our understanding about one of the key observations of this greenhouse gas.

They propose that sea-ice formation is the key factor and not biology.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]


Hardly surprising, given the endless overestimates of global warming by climate models. They found that ‘Melt ponds covered 21% of the observed area during the summer, while the two models indicated 41% and 51%’.
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New research shows two widely used computer models that predict summer melt pond formation on sea ice greatly overestimate their extent, a key finding as scientists work to make accurate projections about Arctic climate change, says Phys.org.

The finding comes from measurements made during a year-long expedition aboard the research vessel Polarstern.

For the Multidisciplinary Drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate expedition, or MOSAiC, the ship was allowed to freeze into place in the Arctic and drift with the ice pack from September 2019 to October 2020.

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Credit: British Antarctic Survey


Much ado about sea ice in recent times, but usually in terms of promoting climate alarm. On closer inspection East Antarctica (2/3rds of the continent) tells a somewhat different story.
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Some ice shelves in the eastern Antarctic have grown in the last 20 years despite global warming, a study suggests.

Researchers say that sea ice, pushed against the ice shelves by a change in regional wind patterns, may have helped to protect the ice shelves from losses, reports Yahoo News.

Ice shelves are floating sections of ice attached to land-based ice sheets and they help guard against the uncontrolled release of inland ice into the ocean.

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Antarctic sea ice [image credit: BBC]


The obvious conclusion would be that the climate models are wrong, due to application of incorrect climate theory. As usual, researchers cast around desperately for other alternatives, only to find natural variation preventing warming from being global.
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Antarctic sea-ice has expanded over the period of continuous satellite monitoring, which seemingly contradicts ongoing global warming resulting from increasing concentrations of greenhouse gasses, says Phys.org.

In a study, published in Nature Climate Change, an international team of scientists from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and South Korea shows that a multi-decadal swing of the tropical sea surface temperatures and its ability to change the atmospheric circulation across large distances is in large part responsible for the observed sea-ice expansion since the late 1970s.

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Mid April Arctic Ice Above Average

Posted: April 14, 2022 by oldbrew in sea ice
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Looks normal enough. What was that desperate climate emergency again?

Science Matters

Drift ice in Okhotsk Sea at sunrise.

Previous posts showed 2022 Arctic Ice broke the 15M km2 ceiling in February, staying above that level the first week of March, then followed by typical melting in March. As the chart below shows, mid March the overall ice extent was ~400k km2 below the 16 year average, before returning to the mean day 89 and tracking the average since then.

Note the much higher ice extents in 2022 compared to 2021 or 2007.  The green lines show that the above normal ice this year is despite low extents in Sea of Okhotsk.  The averages in dark green (excluding Okhotsk) are below 2022 in light green (excluding Okhotsk) by nearly 200k km2.  IOW everywhere in the Arctic except Okhotsk ice extents are well above average.  Remember also that Okhotsk basin is outside the Arctic circle, has no Polar bears, and is among the…

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Sea ice optional [image credit: BBC]


Not an indicator of supposedly dire global warming this season then? Groans from climate obsessives perhaps. Nothingburgers all round.
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Arctic sea ice appeared to have hit its annual maximum extent on Feb. 25 after growing through the fall and winter, says NASA (via Phys.org).

This year’s wintertime extent is the 10th-lowest in the satellite record maintained by the National Snow and Ice Data Center, one of NASA’s Distributed Active Archive Centers.

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The Endurance


After the search vessel nearly suffered the same fate, what was one of the world’s greatest undiscovered shipwrecks is identified on the Antarctic seafloor.
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Scientists have found and filmed one of the greatest ever undiscovered shipwrecks 107 years after it sank, reports BBC News.

The Endurance, the lost vessel of Antarctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, was found at the weekend at the bottom of the Weddell Sea.

The ship was crushed by sea-ice and sank in 1915, forcing Shackleton and his men to make an astonishing escape on foot and in small boats.

Video of the remains show Endurance to be in remarkable condition.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]


Funny how climate science is so insistent on its dogma without knowing enough about aerosol effects, or cloud cover effects for that matter. Talk of ‘better understanding climate change’ is fine, but all we hear in the media is that the debate is over and it’s all cut and dried as far as alarmists are concerned?
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Scientists at EPFL and the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) have studied the chemical composition and origin—whether natural or anthropogenic—of aerosols in a region spanning from Russia to Canada, says Phys.org.

Their findings provide unique insights for helping researchers better understand climate change in the Arctic and design effective pollution-mitigation measures.

The work was made possible thanks to the joint effort of scientists from three continents.

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Antarctic sea ice [image credit: BBC]


There’s a pattern here. How often do these gung-ho sea trips to polar regions by climate botherers — sorry, researchers — run into sea ice trouble, usually sooner rather than later?
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When Ernest Shackleton’s ship, Endurance, became trapped in Antarctic sea ice in 1915, the crew had no choice but to drift helplessly for nine months before their ship finally sank, says The Telegraph (via MSN News).

The expedition to find the Endurance’s wreck came close to the same fate late on Sunday.

But where Shackleton’s men could rely only on patience, the Agulhas II has 16,000 horsepower of propulsion, movable ballast, and a container full of aviation fuel.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: cbc.ca]


One finding was that snow cover variability was more ‘extreme’ than expected, pointing to the need for further research as well as improvements to climate models. Whether the recent Arctic weather/climate history is a reliable guide to future conditions remains to be seen.
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Hundreds of international researchers are currently analyzing observations from the one-year MOSAiC expedition, during which hundreds of environmental parameters were recorded with unprecedented accuracy and frequency over a full annual cycle in the Central Arctic Ocean, says Phys.org.

They have now published three overview articles on the MOSAiC atmosphere, snow and sea ice, and ocean programs in the journal Elementa, highlighting the importance of examining all components of the climate system together.

These results present the first complete picture of the climate processes in the central Arctic which is warming more than two times as fast as the rest of the planet—processes which affect weather and climate worldwide.

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Opposite sea ice trends? [Credits: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Joy Ng]


Climate modellers need yet more and bigger computers to stand a chance of eradicating faulty sea ice projections in the polar regions, apparently. Meanwhile, they believe there must be some ‘delay’ in their long-predicted but not (yet?) happening Antarctic sea ice decline. Quote: “Our study supports the hypothesis that climate models and projections of the Antarctic sea ice will be far more reliable as soon as they are capable of realistically simulating a high-resolution ocean, complete with eddies”.
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Despite global warming and the sea-ice loss in the Arctic, the Antarctic sea-ice extent has remained largely unchanged since 1979, says Eurekalert.

However, existing climate model-based simulations indicate significant sea-ice loss, contrary to actual observations.

As experts from the Alfred Wegener Institute have now shown, the ocean may weaken warming around Antarctica and delay sea-ice retreat.

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Antarctica


The article says ‘The satellite measurements start in 1979’, but the USGS Landsat satellite project has been ‘imaging the Earth since 1972’. The researchers say in the abstract of their paper: ‘In stark contrast to the Arctic, there have been statistically significant positive trends in total Antarctic sea ice extent since 1979. However, the short and highly variable nature of observed Antarctic sea ice extent limits the ability to fully understand the historical context of these recent changes.’ The UK Met Office reported in October 2021: ‘Antarctic sea ice reached a maximum extent (to date) of 18.75 million sq km on 1st September 2021 (Figure 7), which is very close to the 1981-2010 average maximum extent of 18.70 million sq km.’
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A study led by Ohio University researchers shows that the increase of sea ice surrounding Antarctica since 1979 is a unique feature of Antarctic climate since 1905—an observation that paints a dramatic first-ever picture for weather and climate implications on the world’s southernmost continent, says Phys.org.

Dr. Ryan Fogt’s study, published today in Nature Climate Change, is the first to detail sea ice extent surrounding the entire continent though all four seasons over the last century.

Weather, especially winds and temperatures, contribute to sea ice changes. Fogt is professor of Geography in OHIO’s College of Arts and Sciences.

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Fram Strait is the only deep passage between the Arctic and World Oceans [credit: Bdushaw @ Wikipedia]


Twenty six ‘COP’s and much of the world still claims to believe in, and frames its energy and various other policies according to, flawed climate models? If ‘rapid’ Arctic warming was already happening 120 years ago at an early stage of industrialisation what was, or were, the cause(s)?
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The Arctic Ocean has been getting warmer since the beginning of the 20th century – decades earlier than records suggest – due to warmer water flowing into the delicate polar ecosystem from the Atlantic Ocean.

An international group of researchers reconstructed the recent history of ocean warming at the gateway to the Arctic Ocean in a region called the Fram Strait, between Greenland and Svalbard, says SciTech Daily.

Using the chemical signatures found in marine microorganisms, the researchers found that the Arctic Ocean began warming rapidly at the beginning of the last century as warmer and saltier waters flowed in from the Atlantic – a phenomenon called Atlantification – and that this change likely preceded the warming documented by modern instrumental measurements.

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