Half of the polar ice cap is missing: Arctic sea ice hits a new record low

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:53 PM GMT on September 06, 2012

Share this Blog
55
+

Extraordinary melting of sea ice in the Arctic this summer has shattered the all-time low sea ice extent record set in September 2007, and sea ice continues to decline far below what has ever been observed. The new sea ice record was set on August 26, a full three weeks before the usual end of the melting season, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Every major scientific institution that tracks Arctic sea ice agrees that new records for low ice area, extent, and volume have been set. These organizations include the University of Washington Polar Science Center (a new record for low ice volume), the Nansen Environmental & Remote Sensing Center in Norway, and the University of Illinois Cryosphere Today. A comprehensive collection of sea ice graphs shows the full story. Satellite records of sea ice extent date back to 1979, though a 2011 study by Kinnard et al. shows that the Arctic hasn't seen a melt like this for at least 1,450 years (see a more detailed article on this over at skepticalscience.com.) The latest September 5, 2012 extent of 3.5 million square kilometers is approximately a 50% reduction in the area of Arctic covered by sea ice, compared to the average from 1979 - 2000. The ice continues to melt, and has not reached the low for this year yet.


Figure 1. A sunny, slushy day at the North Pole on September 1, 2012. Webcam image courtesy of the North Pole Environmental Observatory.


Figure 2. Sea ice extent on September 5, 2012, showed that half of the polar ice cap was missing, compared to the average from 1979 - 2000. Image credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Why the Arctic sea ice is important
Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system. The polar ice caps help to regulate global temperature by reflecting sunlight back into space. White snow and ice at the poles reflects sunlight, but dark ocean absorbs it. Replacing bright sea ice with dark ocean is a recipe for more and faster global warming. The Autumn air temperature over the Arctic has increased by 4 - 6°F in the past decade, and we could already be seeing the impacts of this warming in the mid-latitudes, by an increase in extreme weather events. Another non-trivial impact of the absence of sea ice is increased melting in Greenland. We already saw an unprecedented melting event in Greenland this year, and as warming continues, the likelihood of these events increase.


Figure 3. August set a new record for lowest Arctic sea ice extent. Image credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.



Figure 4. Arctic sea ice death spiral as plotted by Jim Pettit using data from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

Huge storm pummels Alaska
A massive low pressure system with a central pressure of 970 mb swept through Alaska on Tuesday, generating hurricane-force wind gusts near Anchorage, Alaska that knocked out power to 55,000 homes. Mighty Alaskan storms like this are common in winter, but rare in summer and early fall. The National Weather Service in Anchorage said in their Wednesday forecast discussion that the forecast wind speeds from this storm were incredibly strong for this time of year--four to six standard anomalies above normal. A four-standard anomaly event occurs once every 43 years, and a five-standard anomaly event is a 1-in-4800 year event. However, a meteorologist I heard from who lives in the Anchorage area characterized the wind damage that actually occurred as a 1-in-10 year event. A few maximum wind gusts recorded on Tuesday during the storm:

McHugh Creek (Turnagain Arm)... ... ..88 mph
Paradise Valley (Potter Marsh)... ... 75 mph
Upper Hillside (1400 ft)... ... ... ... 70 mph
Anchorage port... ... ... ... ... ... ... .63 mph

The storm has weakened to a central pressure of 988 mb today, and is located just north of Alaska. The storm is predicted to bring strong winds of 25 - 35 mph and large waves to the edge of the record-thin and record-small Arctic ice cap, and may add to the unprecedented decline in Arctic sea ice being observed this summer.


Figure 5. An unusually strong storm formed off the coast of Alaska on August 5 and tracked into the center of the Arctic Ocean, where it slowly dissipated over the next several days. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA's Aqua satellite captured this natural-color mosaic image on Aug. 6, 2012. The center of the storm at that date was located in the middle of the Arctic Ocean. Image credit: NASA.

Arctic storms may be increasing due to climate change
This week's Alaskan storm is the second unusually strong low pressure system to affect the Arctic in the past month. On August 4 - 8, a mighty storm with a central pressure of 963 mb raged through the Arctic, bringing strong winds that helped scatter and break up Arctic sea ice. According to a detailed post at NASA Earth Observatory, that storm was in the top 3 percent for strongest storms ever recorded north of 70 degrees latitude. A study of long-term Arctic cyclone trends authored by a team led by John Walsh and Xiangdong Zhang of the University of Alaska Fairbanks found that number and intensity of Arctic cyclones has increased during the second half of the twentieth century, particularly during the summer. Dr. Zhang explained that climate change has caused sea ice to retreat markedly in recent decades and has also warmed Arctic Ocean temperatures. Such changes may be providing more energy and moisture to support cyclone development and persistence. The strong storms of this week and a month ago would have had far less impact on the ice just a decade ago, when the sea ice was much thicker and more extensive.

A sea ice decline double-whammy
The monster Arctic storms like we've seen this year have sped up the rate of sea ice loss, but increased water temperatures and air temperatures due to human-caused global warming are the dominant reasons for the record melting of the Arctic sea ice. A July 2012 study by Day et al. found that the most influential of the possible natural influences on sea ice loss was the Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation (AMO). The AMO has two phases, negative (cold) and positive (warm), which impact Arctic sea ice. The negative phase tends to create sea surface temperatures in the far north Atlantic that are colder than average. In this study, the AMO only accounted for 5% - 31% of the observed September sea ice decline since 1979. The scientists concluded that given the lack of evidence that natural forces were controlling sea ice fluctuations, the majority of sea ice decline we've seen during the 1953 - 2010 period was due to human causes.

Joe Romm has a more in-depth look at the new Arctic sea ice record and what it means for the future over at climateprogess.org.

Angela Fritz and Jeff Masters

Turbulence (katy99780)
Beautiful orographic formations over the mountains on a windy evening.
Turbulence

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 484 - 434

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24Blog Index

Quoting FatPenguin:


Yes. With 50% ice loss, you can take it to the bank that we're not going back to a climate modern humans are familiar with.

For those wrapping politics into the discussion of global warming, you've got serious issues. IT'S A SCIENCE DISCUSSION. If you can't separate the discussion, don't bother talking about it.

How would you feel if you were having brain surgery and someone walked into the ER and tried to bring politics into the doctors' discussion about the procedure?


You cannot separate politics from the discussion of AGW, since governments are the driving force behind launching initiatives that they believe will reduce AGW. Using your example, politics will indeed play a role in how that brain surgeon does his or her job. 2700 pages of politics makes up the Health Care Plan, and it will be interpreted by politicians and enforced by unelected bureaucrats. They may not be in the ER with you, but their actions will have a profound effect on your health care.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
483. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting flibinite:


Thanks for the reply, Angela, but I'm sorry, as I haven't a clue what you're trying to clarify here, as it had nothing to do with what I was attempting to say.


I'm sorry, we must have been on different pages it seems.

I will follow up with this: no one study ever definitively states that something is absolutely caused by humans. In the study referenced above, they estimated that 70-95% of the warming was "likely" human-caused. The best that scientists can do is continue to study the issue and publish their results. Together, the results start to solidify the point. In science, we're never 100% sure about anything, but we get pretty darn close. It's about probabilities and risk assessment, and responding to a perceived risk. That's where we're at in the science of climate change. The research is out there, now the public and government need to respond to it.
Quoting KoritheMan:


I said it yesterday and I'll say it again: if the Earth continues to warm (which it will -- even if we move to alternative energy sources, it will take the atmosphere decades at the very least in order to equalize), hurricane season will be a thing of the past for the USA. The theory posits that the south will become warmer and drier on average, which of course implies a ridge. Due to natural teleconnecting patterns, an amplified trough will be found downstream of that. In this case, across the east coast. You know these recurves we've been having? Get used to them.

I'd be willing to wager $20 on this, in fact.
That will be the end of this blog--except for GW talk!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
156 hrs.



Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
Quoting Dakster:
The trillion dollar question is, have we reached the tipping point in climate change? (whether man made or not)


since we have only recorded weather over the last 100-75 years no one can answer that. look at the way the climate change has affected earth since the beginning. climate change is part of the earth, its called homeostasis.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting unknowncomic:
If the weather changes affect the normal strength and fequency of the troughs in September and October, that could be a problem tropical wise.


I said it yesterday and I'll say it again: if the Earth continues to warm (which it will -- even if we move to alternative energy sources, it will take the atmosphere decades at the very least in order to equalize), hurricane season will be a thing of the past for the USA. The theory posits that the south will become warmer and drier on average, which of course implies a ridge. Due to natural teleconnecting patterns, an amplified trough will be found downstream of that. In this case, across the east coast. You know these recurves we've been having? Get used to them.

I'd be willing to wager $20 on this, in fact.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting LurkyMcLurkerson:


And last I'll say -- I do actually have to do stuff -- is that I actually do cautiously support nuclear as a piece of getting anywhere with emissions. My main problem is the waste storage, not nearly so much as the direct danger in modern reactor designs.

But I think that yet again, getting that to be politically feasible here would be a tough, tough sell. And, truth be told, after Fukushima, I think there are good reasons to be cautious with safety in extreme conditions. But it certainly isn't a nonstarter for me, anyway.


I wonder how many nuclear plants it would take to supply all the U.S.A.'s daily electricity requirements?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


Unfortunately I need an account to read the second one, but I'm always interested in reading the Australian perspective on climate change. They seem to have just as much pushback in the denial community as anywhere else, but the impact of global warming on Australia has been incredible.


Here is the second one.

Nuclear power the way forward: climate scientist
BY: MICHAEL OWEN From: The Australian June 05, 2012


ONE of the country's leading climate scientists believes it is inevitable Australia will need to turn to nuclear power by 2020 to seriously cut carbon emissions.

Barry Brook, the director of climate science at the University of Adelaide's Environment Institute, said the country would have no choice but to embrace nuclear power to meet sustainable energy needs and would focus on next-generation nuclear technology that provided safety, waste and cost benefits.

"Coal, oil, and natural gas are the main cause of recent global warming, and these fossil fuels must be completely replaced with clean sustainable energy sources in the coming decades if serious climate change impacts are to be avoided," Professor Brook said yesterday.

He said an attractive sustainable nuclear technology for Australia was the Integral Fast Reactor.

"Although the scientific community has known about the benefits of IFR-type designs for many years, there are currently none in commercial operation because the energy utilities are typically too risk averse to 'bet on' new technologies. This is a wasted opportunity for Australia and for the rest of the world," he said.

"Integral Fast Reactors are much more efficient at extracting energy from uranium, can use existing nuclear waste for fuel, produce far smaller volumes of waste that does not require long-term geological isolation, and can be operated at low cost and high reliability.

"They are also inherently safer than past nuclear reactors due to passive systems based on the laws of physics."

Professor Brook said that by 2025 the first contracts would be issued for small nuclear reactors built on outback mining sites and by 2030 small amounts of nuclear-generated power will start to flow into the national electricity grid.

By 2050 larger nuclear power plants will be located at a dozen energy parks and in various remote areas, and by 2100 Australia will have 100 gigawatts of installed nuclear power, he predicted.

But the South Australian government, which is pushing for BHP Billiton to mine the world's largest uranium deposit at an expanded Olympic Dam operation in the state's far north, yesterday rejected a nuclear future.

Premier Jay Weatherill said wind, solar and geo-thermal power generation was better than the "risks and controversies" of nuclear power.

"Leaving aside broader objections, there is a practical financial objection that means nuclear power for South Australia is unlikely to be viable," Mr Weatherill said.

"The best advice I have is that it's not a feasible financial proposition."

Mr Weatherill said what other states did regarding nuclear power was a matter for them.

Greens MP Mark Parnell pointed to Japan's Fukushima nuclear disaster as evidence of a "dangerous technology".

"Nuclear power is too expensive, too dangerous and too slow," he said.

"Some 60 years into the nuclear age, we still have no way to safely dispose of radioactive waste."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Some1Has2BtheRookie:


A history of solar panels at the White House


Putting this perspective, the White House expects to generate about 19,700 kilowatt hours of electricity per year from the solar panels installed in 2010. I'm going to assume a structure the size of the White House needs about 40 tons of cooling to be effective, although this estimate may be on the low side. Still assuming 40 tons, 1 ton of cooling consumes 5 kW hours...that's 5 kilowatts per hour. 40 tons consumes 200 kW per hour. In a single day, running 24 hours a day, that's 4,800 Kw per day. Assuming a 90 day cooling season, which is also a low estimate for D.C., that's 432,000 kW. Makes less than 20,000 Kw produced seem pretty dinky.

There's also no mention of battery banks and solar controllers, both of which are needed to store electricity. Guess where the vast majority of large, flooded lead-acid deep cycle batteries are made? Either in China or South Korea. The process is so polluting that almost no plants in the US produce them, only AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) batterries, which are far less polluting to make, but also much more exspensive and generally less capable. We simply transfer the source of pollution from batteries once made in the USA to overseas, but the polluton still exists.

Solar panels are excellent for heating water, since hot water can be stored in standard household or larger industrial hot water tank systems. To produce electric power, the process is much more costly, and the need for large battery banks more than offsets any emissions savings from using solar panels, which are presently only economically capable of recharging batteries, not producing any significant amount of electric power directly.

Since I live in my 26' foot motorhome, I've put a lot of time, study, and money into batteries and solar panels. Between my battery bank, solar panels, and my propane powered generator, I can and have lived off the grid for several weeks at a time. My only limiting factors are the availability of fresh water and the need to eventually refill my 60 gallon propane tank. The real answer to reducing our carbon footprint is to reduce the sizes of our homes and make them more independent of the electrical grid. I realize not everyone can do this but, with more and more people retiring, living in a smaller space is quite possible. You'd be amazed at how well you can do with just 210 square feet.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Dakster:
The trillion dollar question is, have we reached the tipping point in climate change? (whether man made or not)


Yes. With 50% ice loss, you can take it to the bank that we're not going back to a climate modern humans are familiar with.

For those wrapping politics into the discussion of global warming, you've got serious issues. IT'S A SCIENCE DISCUSSION. If you can't separate the discussion, don't bother talking about it.

How would you feel if you were having brain surgery and someone walked into the ER and tried to bring politics into the doctors' discussion about the procedure?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


Yep, it is.

Is is expanding but there has been more and more ice islands breaking off in summer. Some have been the size of NYC.




Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


Sea ice fluctuations do not change sea level. Just like melting ice in your water glass doesn't make the glass overflow.

Got it Ty.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Great... my typical luck, spending 40 minutes on a post to a message board, then finding out the person I wrote it to/for, has signed off three minutes earlier. Oh well...

Jo
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


These are two different studies. The item in the first paragraph is about a study that was done to try and reconstruct observations. The last paragraph is a note about an entirely different study which studied attribution.

I thought I was clear in the last paragraph when I said that "the majority of sea ice decline we've seen during the 1953 - 2010 period was due to human causes." It's possible this wasn't clear, though. For sure, the Day et al. study is only looking at the recent past through 1953. Of course, we all know that fossil fuel-induced warming didn't start until the industrial revolution, so before this, it would be silly to suggest otherwise.


Thanks for the reply, Angela, but I'm sorry, as I haven't a clue what you're trying to clarify here, as it had nothing to do with what I was attempting to say. My point was basically this...

You're absolutely certain that "the majority of sea ice decline we've seen during the 1953 - 2010 period was due to human causes? (emphasis mine)

As I said, I still think the jury is out about why the global climate appears to be getting warmer, and though you'd know better than I, I don't like absolutist statements indicating we know exactly why things are getting warmer, and thus what is truly driving the last couple of decades of Arctic ice melting.

Again, "human causes" may turn out to be definitively correct (and that we'll thank god for them as the Earth tries to sink into a cyclical "Little Ice Age"). But still, there are a huge number of instances where Occam's Razor has proven wrong, and that we'll find that a majority of the current climate change is being caused by changes in the electrical makeup of the Sun or the internal processes affecting the structure and flow inside the Earth, itself... or both.

For example, though everyone will scream it's impossible, a gradual increase in the axial inclination of the earth... even a degree or two (many Inuits are claiming the Sun is setting in different areas than it should)... exposing the N. Hemisphere to more solar radiation for longer (with its long wave radiation effects on its greater landmasses), would probably also cause exactly the changes, and speed of changes, that we're seeing (especially given the continent of Antarctica is not seeing any global warming... its increased icemelt is caused by increased ocean temperatures at its edges).

Such a possibility is easily debunked, but still...?

Finally, and again, you and Dr. Masters and the learned powers who be are most probably right, as all the evidence we know about is probably correct, and correctly interpreted. My post was simply a cautionary tale about the hubris, and the potential pitfalls, involved with making such absolutist comments about processes we're still struggling to truly, and completely, understand.

I'm silly that way... what can I say? :-)

Great good luck to you both with your studies and your chosen professions.

Jo
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
470. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting TampaFLUSA:

So even though Antarctic land ice is DEcreasing and Antarctica sea ice is INcreasing its not enough to counteract any increase in sea level? I mean if one increases and another decreases wouldn't that equal out or slow rising seas.


Sea ice fluctuations do not change sea level. Just like melting ice in your water glass doesn't make the glass overflow.
469. angelafritz (Admin)
I'm going to sign off for the evening but it's been nice chatting with everyone!
Quoting angelafritz:


Yep, it is.

So even though Antarctic land ice is DEcreasing and Antarctica sea ice is INcreasing its not enough to counteract any increase in sea level? I mean if one increases and another decreases wouldn't that equal out or slow rising seas.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
467. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting AussieStorm:
Here is a few good articles about nuclear power.

For Australia, nuclear is the power of last resort


Nuclear power the way forward: climate scientist


Unfortunately I need an account to read the second one, but I'm always interested in reading the Australian perspective on climate change. They seem to have just as much pushback in the denial community as anywhere else, but the impact of global warming on Australia has been incredible.
If the weather changes affect the normal strength and fequency of the troughs in September and October, that could be a problem tropical wise.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


Michael
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Here is a few good articles about nuclear power.

For Australia, nuclear is the power of last resort


Nuclear power the way forward: climate scientist
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comm ent.html?entrynum=1178


Averaging together antarctic and arctic sea ice hides an important truth

Posted by: Dr. Jeff Masters, 9:37 AM EST on January 15, 2009
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
462. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting TampaFLUSA:
Isn't the Antarctic sea ice expanding at a higher rate than normal?


Yep, it is.
Isn't the Antarctic sea ice expanding at a higher rate than normal?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I would like to hear from the group what you think about the chances of 90L turning into something. We got a brief but very intense blast of wind and rain two days ago as the low passed through our area (Destin, FL) on its way from Alabama into the Gulf.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
US National Weather Service Alaska
Wednesday
One of the strongest reports of wind the National Weather Service received last night was 131 mph from Glen Alps. This is not an official observation, but it is an observation that fills the gap where we do not have data. This type of data provides valuable insight into the complex weather that Alaska produces. We greatly appreciate all of the reports and pictures that you have been shared with us. Keep them coming!


http://www.facebook.com/US.NationalWeatherService .Alaska.gov
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
From local Met: "We may see a rare weather event early next week. Hurricanes Michael and Leslie will be very close to each other off the coast of New England. Close enough to possibly see the Fujiwhara Effect, an interaction where two storms orbit around each other. The photo above is this effect with Severe Tropical Storm Parma and Typhoon Melor in October 2009. Usually storms must be within 1000 miles of each other for this to happen"
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting GTcooliebai:
Hydro Power Niagara Falls

The Niagara River is one of the world's greatest sources of hydroelectric power. The beauty of its wild descent from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario attracts millions of visitors each year. During its short course (56 km), the river drops 99 metres, with much of the spectacular plunge concentrated in a 13 km stretch of waterfalls and rapids.

The History of Power Plants

Water was first diverted from the Canadian side of the Niagara River for generating electricity in 1893. A small 2,200 kilowatt plant was built just above the Horseshoe Falls to power an electric railway between the communities of Queenston and Chippawa.

Today the churning river provides the driving force for almost 2 million kilowatts of electricity from a number of power plants on the Canadian side. The three largest are Sir Adam Beck Niagara Generating Station Nos. 1 and 2 and the nearby pumping-generating station.

On the American side of the border, down river from the Falls, the Robert Moses Niagara Power Plant and the Lewiston Pump Generating Plant, together generate more than 2.4 million kilowatts of electricity, enough to power 24 million 100-watt light bulbs. Since 1958, Sir Adam Beck Generating Station No.2 has been Ontario Power Generation's largest and one of its most reliable hydroelectric facilities.

Link


Hydro is great if you have a river and the right terrain nearby. History shows a lot of opposition from environmental groups when trying to build a dam however. You need to flood a huge area of habitat. Similar concerns with wind turbines killing fowl.

Regarding wind and hydro. One thing most people don't realize is that electricity is a regional product. You have to consume it relatively close to where it's generated due to transmission losses. If you put millions of wind turbines in the desolate plains of Nebraska, you're not going to sell it to metro Chicago. The proximity of supply to demand caused Denmark to issue a moratorium halting the building of more wind farms. People kept putting them where they were too far from centers of demand.

I'm outta here. Maybe 90L will gasp for life and we can talk about that tomorrow. If not, we'll talk about how 'AutoTune' won tonight's MTV VMAs.
Member Since: May 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1200
Quoting RTSplayer:
In about another 7 to 10 years, the winter maximum will be less than the 1980 summer minimum. August, September, and October will be ice free.



One could speculate that with all that fall-season previously frozen but now open water in the Arctic, adjacent landmasses will get significantly more snow than in the past due to massive "lake effect". What climate feedback that might produce (glacier formation?) would be interesting.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
455. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting Abacosurf:
And you are 100 percent sure of that in 4 billion years???


No, but then again, all the other potential climate change eras led to massive extinctions. Does that make it okay? I think we can continue to debate semantics in public discourse but at the end of the day, we're still in a situation where changes need to be made.
454. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting Doppler22:
Im warning u guys...... Admin will ban all the people talking about the government/politics... Weather blog and weather only is what admin accepts (Plus climate change due to the topic of Jeffs post).... Just warning u


I haven't seen anything wrong with the comments thus far. I think it's perfectly acceptable to talk about politics when it involves weather, climate, science, etc.
Hydro Power Niagara Falls

The Niagara River is one of the world's greatest sources of hydroelectric power. The beauty of its wild descent from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario attracts millions of visitors each year. During its short course (56 km), the river drops 99 metres, with much of the spectacular plunge concentrated in a 13 km stretch of waterfalls and rapids.

The History of Power Plants

Water was first diverted from the Canadian side of the Niagara River for generating electricity in 1893. A small 2,200 kilowatt plant was built just above the Horseshoe Falls to power an electric railway between the communities of Queenston and Chippawa.

Today the churning river provides the driving force for almost 2 million kilowatts of electricity from a number of power plants on the Canadian side. The three largest are Sir Adam Beck Niagara Generating Station Nos. 1 and 2 and the nearby pumping-generating station.

On the American side of the border, down river from the Falls, the Robert Moses Niagara Power Plant and the Lewiston Pump Generating Plant, together generate more than 2.4 million kilowatts of electricity, enough to power 24 million 100-watt light bulbs. Since 1958, Sir Adam Beck Generating Station No.2 has been Ontario Power Generation's largest and one of its most reliable hydroelectric facilities.

Link
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
ALGORE the earth is a million degree's hot!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
THURSDAY, AUGUST 16, 2012

Tropical Rainfall Rate in Arctic Alaska

From the National Weather Service in Alaska:

Roughly one third of the annual precipitation has fallen in Northwest Alaska over the past 4 days! 3.5 inches of rain at Kivalina, 2.5 inches at Kotzebue and 5 inches at Red Dog Mine, a region where rainfall in excess of 3 inches over 3 days is a once-in-a-hundred-year event.

The Wulik River below Tutak Creek crested at 6 A.M. this morning with a river level of 15.31 feet. This was the highest stage ever observed since the gauge was installed in 1985, and far exceeds the previous record of 12.21 feet set in August of 1994. Water levels in the area will remain high as additional rainfall of 1 to 3 inches is expected in the next 48 hours. Water levels are also high in the village of Noatak.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Abacosurf:
No way....The earth has hiccuped more issues off it's surface than we can even dream of.


All it takes is one of the earth orbit-crossing asteroids to crash to earth and that will take a notch out of GW and it's related concerns. (We only know the tracks of 10% of them.) Don't say it won't happen. The earth would look as 'crater pocked' as the moon if it wasn't for its atmosphere, water, and vegetation.

Not saying a comet or asteroid is a desired solution to GW. Just pointing out that other things can destroy the status quo of life on the surface of the earth much quicker.... and have.
Member Since: May 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1200
449. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting StormHype:
I'm curious to see how many climate change activist support the use of nuclear energy. It is the only current practical large scale form of energy that is free of CO2 emissions.


I support nuclear energy as a solution to the problem. It's not a solution for every region, but there's plenty of land in the U.S. that isn't susceptible to geo-hazards. Each region of the globe (and the U.S.) needs to determine what non-fossil fuel energy resource is the best for them. It's not going to be the same in every place, nor should it be. I think the federal government should facilitate the transition to renewable energy, but allow states (and potential new regional alliances) to make those decisions for themselves.
GFS 30 hrs.

Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


The rate of current warming is unprecedented -- check out our resource on the PETM.


Even compared to the melting of Methane Clathrates at the end of the Permian?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting angelafritz:


The rate of current warming is unprecedented -- check out our resource on the PETM.
And you are 100 percent sure of that in 4 billion years???
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AussieStorm:

back in the early 00's. The Australian Federal Govt proposed a plan to build 23 nuclear reactors around Australia. There was a massive outcry from people saying, oh not in my back yard or I'm worried about an accident.

Nuclear reactors nowadays are very safe. So I would have no problem with getting rid of the coal and gas fired power stations we have here and replace them with nuclear power plants.
Not until we upgrade our existing plants with enough backup coolant and generator capability to be able to cool their cores for one year....should the Country's power grid go down. Right now, dozens of them will meltdown 3 weeks after a grid collapse.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting captainktainer:


The President himself has been a strong proponent of nuclear energy, and both supported and secured loan guarantees for the first nuclear power plant to be licensed in thirty years, so I'm not sure where you get that "liberals" aren't in favor of the topic. Given the rather extraordinary level of support for nuclear power amongst the mainstream political left in this country (with the notable and disgusting example of Andrew Cuomo in New York, may his entrails be devoured by a thousand scarabs), you'd have to be arguing with an empty chair version of liberals to suggest otherwise.

For that matter, the market forces at work are far less simple than you seem to be suggesting. Europe is buying so much coal both because of the move away from nuclear in Germany (a very, very stupid move on the part of Andrea Merkel) as well as a massive oversupply of carbon credits in the cap-and-trade system. Their overall reliance on coal is still far less than the United States', and should begin to massively reduce once the "free" credits for developing European nations like Poland run out. In China, Beijing is moving away from coal *precisely* for environmental reasons. Their "Emission Standard of Air Pollutants for Thermal Power Plants" enacted last September 21st was intended to increase coal power costs, and they're specifically trying to shut down the last four coal power plants in Beijing and replace them with natural gas - despite the higher prices for the latter in that country - because of environmental concerns. Wen Jiabao of China specifically reoriented China's future energy policy toward renewables and nuclear in 2010 for environmental reasons; you can view his May 2010 "Iron Hand" speech (translated) online for more evidence that it's due to environmental concerns.


Ok. Where did you see that I claimed 'liberals' were not in favor of nukes? I never once said anything of the sort. It's the ignorant not in favor of nukes (regardless of silly party affiliation) and if they are the majority, and/or buy the best influence/lawyers, they get their way.

FWIW, India is nearly all coal and is going b*lls to the wall to fast track building more coal plants after their latest 2-day blackout affected 650M people last month.

China's propaganda on environmental concerns driving decisions have to be taken with a grain of salt. They are masters of 'polite deceitfulness'. We all know that. Their economy is the #1 agenda for the time being, as it's the present lynch pin for domestic social unrest.
Member Since: May 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1200
442. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting Abacosurf:
No way....The earth has hiccuped more issues off it's surface than we can even dream of.


The rate of current warming is unprecedented -- check out our resource on the PETM.


six or so hours old (21 GMT)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Dakster:
The trillion dollar question is, have we reached the tipping point in climate change? (whether man made or not)
No way....The earth has hiccuped more issues off it's surface than we can even dream of.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Starting to wonder if 90L will even feel the front. The only swirl detectable by satellite imagery is completely void of convection, and I don't see that changing. Additionally, it is wedged between two anticyclones, which will allow for very little movement. It is also possible a new center will reform under the pulsating convection to the south. Surface observations also suggest that the low has moved farther south since yesterday.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Good night everyone, I wonder if Leslie will still be the same and how much Michael has weakened in the morning.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
In about another 7 to 10 years, the winter maximum will be less than the 1980 summer minimum. August, September, and October will be ice free.

Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:

Still wants to be a strong hurricane, but the cooler waters and environment have other plans.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting yoboi:



do they have solar panels at the white house??


A history of solar panels at the White House
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 484 - 434

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.