Arctic sea ice volume now one-fifth its 1979 level

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:52 AM GMT on February 19, 2013

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The stunning loss of Arctic sea ice extent in recent years is undeniable--satellite measurements have conclusively shown that half of the Arctic sea ice went missing in September 2012, compared to the average September during 1979 - 2000. But the extent of ice cover is not the best measure of how the fire raging in Earth's attic is affecting sea ice--the total volume of the ice is more important. But up until 2010, we didn't have the measurements needed to say how the total volume of ice in the Arctic might be changing. Scientists relied on the University of Washington PIOMAS model, which suggested that the loss of Arctic sea ice volume during September might be approaching 75% - 80%. The model results were widely criticized by climate change skeptics as being unrealistic. However, in April 2010, a new satellite called Cryostat-2 was launched, which can measure ice volume by beaming pulses of microwave energy off of the ice. With two years of data to Cryosat-2 data to analyze, the results of the PIOMAS model have now been confirmed by a study published on-line in February 2013 in Geophysical Research Letters. In a University of Washington news release, co-author Axel Schweiger said, "people had argued that 75 to 80 percent ice volume loss was too aggressive. What this new paper shows is that our ice loss estimates may have been too conservative, and that the recent decline is possibly more rapid." The U.K.'s Natural Environmental Research Council reported that the team of scientists found that from 2003 to 2012, the volume of Arctic sea ice declined 36% in the autumn and 9% in the winter. The measure of sea ice volume is a good indicator of how the Arctic's most stable, "multi-year" ice is fairing. As the multi-year ice declines, sea ice extent, the total area covered by sea ice, in an "Arctic death spiral". The new study shows that thick, multi-year ice has disappeared in areas north of Greenland, around the Canadian Archipelago, and to the northeast of Svalbard, Norway.


Figure 1. Arctic sea ice volume in thousands of cubic kilometers during the September minimum in 1979 compared to 2012, as estimated by the University of Washington PIOMAS model. Arctic seas ice volume has declined by more than a factor of five. Image credit; Andy Lee Robinson.


Figure 2. The Polar-5 aircraft, carrying the EM instrument that was used to validate Cryosat-2 sea ice thickness measurements, flying over the validation site. Image credit: R. Willatt.

Why care about Arctic sea ice loss?
If you remove an area of sea ice 43% the size of the contiguous U.S. from the ocean, like occurred in September 2012, it is guaranteed to have a significant impact on weather and climate. The extra heat and moisture added to the atmosphere as a result of all that open water over the pole may already be altering jet stream patterns in fall and winter, bringing an increase in extreme weather events. The record sea ice loss in 2012 also contributed to an unprecedented melting event in Greenland. Continued sea ice loss will further increase melting from Greenland, contributing to sea level rise and storm surge damages. Sea ice loss will also continue to crank up the thermostat over Arctic permafrost regions. This will potentially release a significant fraction of the vast amounts of carbon currently locked in the permafrost, further accelerating global warming.

Related Posts
Earth's attic is on fire: Arctic sea ice bottoms out at a new record low (September 2012)
Half of the polar ice cap is missing: Arctic sea ice hits a new record low. September 6, 2012 blog post
Wunderground's Sea Ice page
Arctic Death Spiral Bombshell: CryoSat-2 Confirms Sea Ice Volume Has Collapsed by Joe Romm at climateprogress.org.

Jeff Masters and Angela Fritz

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Quoting Neapolitan:
No one has said that it's "proof" of anything; that's the word you're using. But you should know that proofs are for mathematics. OTOH, the rapid disappearance of the longstanding North Polar ice cap is evidence that the planet is rapidly warming, with the poles leading the way. There is lots of other evidence that--chemical, physical, logical--that points a humans as the cause.So you do admit that rapid climate change is possible. I'm glad to see it; some denialists claim that the earth is steady and stable, and not capable of such cataclysmic events, but you obviously know better. Good.

Now, what do you think would have happened if civilization had spring up during the YD, then had to face the rapid end of it? Here's a hint: entire ecosystems would have been thrown out of whack. Coastal cities would have been submerged in a matter of years. Agricultural institutions would have taken an immense beating. There'd have been massive forced migrations, food shortages, armed conflicts, crippling disease breakouts, and basically worldwide turmoil.

Luckily, though, the few tens of thousands of humans scattered around the planet at the time were nomadic cave and tent dwellers, so packing up and moving to less hostile climes wouldn't have been much a problem at all.

When it happens this time--as it most assuredly will--we won't be so lucky...
Nea...Great post, but I get so tired after I read it just knowing how much time and energy you spend just to make one post, BUT, It is eloquently done...
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I swear if this season is another 19 named storm deal, I won't know what to say.
maybe it will be 21 this season
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Quoting ARiot:


Simple really. Ask that you'd like to read the papers that formed her opinion.

We live in a time of highly irresponsible mass media and "single study fixation." It's particularly bad in medicine. Perhaps your professor based her entire opinion on those minority view papers, or more likely was influenced by popular misunderstanding of Milankovitch Cycles. The later is when people equate previous changes in geological time with human time. It's a common mistake to say "The climate has changed before" to dismiss AGW. The current anthropogenic forces on climate are neck-breaking in geological time.

+ some suitably large number that conveys admiration and agreement.
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Quoting AGWcreationists:
And so tell me why the Arctic being free of ice 125,000 years ago is obviously not due to human influences but it becoming such now is proof of human influences on climate?.
No one has said that it's "proof" of anything; that's the word you're using. But you should know that proofs are for mathematics. OTOH, the rapid disappearance of the longstanding North Polar ice cap is evidence that the planet is rapidly warming, with the poles leading the way. There is lots of other evidence that--chemical, physical, logical--that points a humans as the cause.
Quoting AGWcreationists:
The Younger Dryas cooling event ended in 40-50 years, so rapid warming has happened in the recent past.
So you do admit that rapid climate change is possible. I'm glad to see it; some denialists claim that the earth is steady and stable, and not capable of such cataclysmic events, but you obviously know better. Good.

Now, what do you think would have happened if civilization had spring up during the YD, then had to face the rapid end of it? Here's a hint: entire ecosystems would have been thrown out of whack. Coastal cities would have been submerged in a matter of years. Agricultural institutions would have taken an immense beating. There'd have been massive forced migrations, food shortages, armed conflicts, crippling disease breakouts, and basically worldwide turmoil.

Luckily, though, the few tens of thousands of humans scattered around the planet at the time were nomadic cave and tent dwellers, so packing up and moving to less hostile climes wouldn't have been much a problem at all.

When it happens this time--as it most assuredly will--we won't be so lucky...
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Quoting AGWcreationists:
Pretty silly argument, given that the standard of evidence for a criminal conviction in the U.S. is beyond a reasonable doubt, a standard that IMO AGW proponents have come nowhere close to reaching. Your mileage may and obviously does vary.

Do you know what the standard of evidence is in science?!

And who the jurors are?

LOL! The standard of evidence in a trial is outrageously below that of science. IOW, I'd rather try to fool a jury a thousand times before trying to fool science once.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I swear if this season is another 19 named storm deal, I won't know what to say.


Better not say it might have something to do with global warming. You'll get slapped down with 'hurricanes have only been recorded since (whenever)'. How do you know that 19 storms a season wasn't the norm in the 15th century?'
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I swear if this season is another 19 named storm deal, I won't know what to say.


With so many subtropical systems being named recently, it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest. ACE is more important to me now than actual numbers.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I swear if this season is another 19 named storm deal, I won't know what to say.
So you might say "Sucks living in south Florida?"
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I swear if this season is another 19 named storm deal, I won't know what to say.
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Quoting ARiot:


Simple really. Ask that you'd like to read the papers that formed her opinion.

We live in a time of highly irresponsible mass media and "single study fixation." It's particularly bad in medicine. Perhaps your professor based her entire opinion on those minority view papers, or more likely was influenced by popular misunderstanding of Milankovitch Cycles. The later is when people equate previous changes in geological time with human time. It's a common mistake to say "The climate has changed before" to dismiss AGW. The current anthropogenic forces on climate are neck-breaking in geological time.
Wow...I'll get back to you in 38 days regarding that post
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287. ARiot
Quoting WDEmobmet:


Thats funny you say that... My college advisor about 3 years ago who is a climatologists swore that we are fixing to enter into a "Little Ice Age". She was defensive in her reasoning which to me didnt make much sense, but regardless of what our class presented she was always quick with responses to why we were wronge.

Wish I would have had this information back then


Simple really. Ask that you'd like to read the papers that formed her opinion.

We live in a time of highly irresponsible mass media and "single study fixation." It's particularly bad in medicine. Perhaps your professor based her entire opinion on those minority view papers, or more likely was influenced by popular misunderstanding of Milankovitch Cycles. The later is when people equate previous changes in geological time with human time. It's a common mistake to say "The climate has changed before" to dismiss AGW. The current anthropogenic forces on climate are neck-breaking in geological time.
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Quoting hydrus:
Probably. The more active the season, the higher chance of the U.S. receiving a strike..I think....:)
Yes
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Quoting Birthmark:

That's a good idea. I think a defense attorneys should use it to defend accused murderers. "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, people have always died of natural causes. Millions died before my client was even born! Therefore, it is clear that my client, the accused, can not possibly be responsible in this case."

In fact, I hope all defense attorneys use this defense if their client is actually guilty. It'd save a lot jury deliberation and provide endless laughs.
Pretty silly argument, given that the standard of evidence for a criminal conviction in the U.S. is beyond a reasonable doubt, a standard that IMO AGW proponents have come nowhere close to reaching. Your mileage may and obviously does vary.
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Quoting Globe199:


I don't know that I'd call it a sleight-of-hand, but I also wondered about that. How do we know the volume of ice in 2003 let alone 1979?

Just a suggestion, but have you considered looking for the answer to your question among the scientific journals?
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Quoting AGWcreationists:

So we have past incidents where the Arctic was either ice free or nearly ice free. Both events are a blink of an eye in the past geologically.

Yet somehow a reduction in Arctic Ocean ice coverage now is proof of AGW, even though past events have happened without human influences.

That's a good idea. I think a defense attorneys should use it to defend accused murderers. "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, people have always died of natural causes. Millions died before my client was even born! Therefore, it is clear that my client, the accused, can not possibly be responsible in this case."

In fact, I hope all defense attorneys use this defense if their client is actually guilty. It'd save a lot jury deliberation and provide endless laughs.
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Quoting JohnLonergan:
In a speech delivered to The Royal Society, Edward Davey, UK Secetery of State for Energy and Climate Change characterizes deniers as "dogmatic and blinkered".

"You know, when I am confronted by some of the most dogmatic and blinkered people who deny that climate change is happening, I am reminded of the sentiment of the famous USA Today cartoon.

“If we really are wrong about climate change, we will have created a better world for nothing”.

In reality, those who deny climate change and demand a halt to emissions reduction and mitigation work, want us to take a huge gamble with the future of every human being on the planet, every future human being, our children and grand children, and every other living species."


You mean this Edward Davey:

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/cop18-stat ement-from-uk-energy-and-climate-change-secretary


Speaking on his return from the Doha talks, UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey said: "This round of international climate change talks was a modest step forward. We always knew they ...

-------------

How much carbon did Davey generate by flying to Doha?

Have all these climate change proponents ever thought of using teleconferencing to reduce the carbon emissions from thousands of people travelling thousands of miles to attend these conferences?

If Obama is so concerned about climate change, why does he fly out to Vegas and back on a 747 to deliver a single fundraising speech?

I guess cutting back on carbon generation is for the little people.
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Quoting hydrus:
Probably. The more active the season, the higher chance of the U.S. receiving a strike..I think....:)


I think that during a negative NAO, the Azores/Bermuda high weakens. This would mean lots of recurving storms, so possibly fewer landfalls despite an increased number of tropical storms.
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A little worried about the severe weather outbreak for LA/MS on Thursday. The thermodynamics for this system are impressive to say the least, with instability being the biggest question. I've been saying for the past week that the models were underestimating the instability with this system, as always. Let's hope it doesn't reach its full potential, but I know I don't like seeing 30% over us here in Hattiesburg already...still 2 days out.
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Quoting yonzabam:



Interesting, but is there any correlation with US landfall?


This is an interesting point to discuss. While U.S. landfall count is generally correlated with the overall level of Atlantic tropical activity, notice what happens when we look at the Feb-May MSLP anomaly for all years with 3 or more U.S. hurricane landfalls:



Notice that there is no longer a solid, clear-cut pattern evident over the Atlantic. It is rather neutral overall. What this tells us is that U.S. landfalls depend much more on the pattern during the season than before the season, which makes good sense. The season activity overall, however, can be greatly affected by the late winter and spring patterns, hence the nice correlation with a negative NAO I presented earlier.

Notice though in the image above, what does stand out is a big ridge of high pressure in the northeast Pacific. This indicates the predominance of a negative PDO pattern in the Pacific during years with high U.S. landfalls. This makes sense because such a pattern tends to promote ridging over SE Canada and the northeastern U.S., which can direct storms into the coast instead of out to sea.

Indeed, for the same set of years as the previous image, here's the 500mb height anomaly pattern during August-October, illustrating the setup that leads to U.S. landfalls.



Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
NAM give GA instability:


Not as much helicities:


Doesnt correlate well with precip however

And the NAM keeps cool surface temps firmly entrenched over GA...I think it's smoking something:
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this 10 dollar figure is likely pulled out of the same ether most RW chain emails get their 'facts' from.

Quoting StormHype:
Obama's cap-and-trade plans can't do anything significant to affect it in proportion to how much misery it will bring to the people of the US. $10 gas and $2K annual increase in family electricity costs are his own accepted numbers for the impacts of it.
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Tropical cyclone Haruna


(Link from Blogger FunnelVortex earlier)

Edit: Predicted track is now to the southeast, so it wouldn't hit and flood the continental coast of Southern Africa but the southern tip of Madagascar.


Source and more
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 55 Comments: 6013
In a speech delivered to The Royal Society, Edward Davey, UK Secetery of State for Energy and Climate Change characterizes deniers as "dogmatic and blinkered".

"You know, when I am confronted by some of the most dogmatic and blinkered people who deny that climate change is happening, I am reminded of the sentiment of the famous USA Today cartoon.

“If we really are wrong about climate change, we will have created a better world for nothing”.

In reality, those who deny climate change and demand a halt to emissions reduction and mitigation work, want us to take a huge gamble with the future of every human being on the planet, every future human being, our children and grand children, and every other living species."


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Quoting yonzabam:



Interesting, but is there any correlation with US landfall?
Probably. The more active the season, the higher chance of the U.S. receiving a strike..I think....:)
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Quoting ARiot:


If you were scared in the 1970s, it's because the media was irresponsible then, like they are now.

Climate predictions for cooling were in the minority then. Significant minority.

Or perhaps you base your fear on two issues of two news magazines.

http://ams.confex.com/ams/pdfpapers/131047.pdf

"A survey of peer reviewed scientific papers from 1965 to 1979 show that few papers predicted global cooling (7 in total). Significantly more papers (42 in total) predicted global warming (Peterson 2008, link above). The large majority of climate research in the 1970s predicted the Earth would warm as a consequence of CO2."


Thats funny you say that... My college advisor about 3 years ago who is a climatologists swore that we are fixing to enter into a "Little Ice Age". She was defensive in her reasoning which to me didnt make much sense, but regardless of what our class presented she was always quick with responses to why we were wronge.

Wish I would have had this information back then
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Quoting Levi32:


It turns out, not surprisingly at all, that a negative NAO pattern in late winter and spring is usually what precedes big Atlantic hurricane seasons.

Here's the average MSLP anomaly pattern for February-March for the top 10 Atlantic hurricane seasons (ranked by ACE).



The similarities to the GFS forecast for the next 2 weeks are obvious. That's why we start watching right about now for that type of pattern to persist.

The last time this pattern persisted from February through May was in 2010 (left image). And you're right, 2005 had a similar pre-season setup (right image). This isn't surprising at all, and it doesn't necessarily mean this year will be super active, but it could be made more active if a pattern like this persists most of the time through the spring.




Interesting, but is there any correlation with US landfall?
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Quoting StormHype:
Everytime I look up at the moon and see how it's pocked with 1000s of meteor craters, I'm reminded that man's emissions of CO2 should not be the #1 concern regarding a potential source of serious climate change.


CO2 may not be the worst thing that could alter our climate but it is certainly the most pressing thing that is altering our climate now.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 4745
Quoting StormHype:
I don't deny global warming. I also haven't seen enough politically unbiased evidence that it's *primarily* caused by man, and not some natural long-term cycle.

Then you've never looked at the science. Op-eds or even newspaper and magazine articles are a pretty poor source of scientific information.
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Quoting OrchidGrower:
Re: #254, thanks for that graphic and discussion, Levi. When was the last winter/spring transition where we saw such a strongly negative NAO? And I can't help but wonder if we had a similar springtime setup in advance of the crazy 2004 and/or 2005 hurricane seasons.

For us in South Florida, I guess this means a few more cold days like last weekend are a distinct possibility :-(


It turns out, not surprisingly at all, that a negative NAO pattern in late winter and spring is usually what precedes big Atlantic hurricane seasons.

Here's the average MSLP anomaly pattern for February-March for the top 10 Atlantic hurricane seasons (ranked by ACE).



The similarities to the GFS forecast for the next 2 weeks are obvious. That's why we start watching right about now for that type of pattern to persist.

The last time this pattern persisted from February through May was in 2010 (left image). And you're right, 2005 had a similar pre-season setup (right image). This isn't surprising at all, and it doesn't necessarily mean this year will be super active, but it could be made more active if a pattern like this persists through most of the spring.

Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
Quoting Levi32:
The GFS ensembles mean MSLP anomaly for Week 2 shows a starkly negative NAO pattern over the Atlantic. The Azores high is all but gone, and this would greatly reduce the trade winds over the tropical and subtropical Atlantic. SSTs in the tropics are likely to rise substantially for at least a week or two under this pattern.

Starting about now through early May, we have to watch for a pattern like this trying to persist for multiple weeks, as it can change the SST distribution of the Atlantic before the hurricane season starts.



Hi Levi. Also something to watch will be the wind shear values. It looks like below average shear is forecast until the 17th of March but of course is very early. Let's see how things progress in this factor.

Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14314
I always like this link to demonstrate how fast and abruptly the climate can change due to many things. This Wiki Link talks about the different Dryas Periods..Link
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Quoting PalmBeachWeather:
Or the Buckinghams....Mercy, Mercy, Mercy


Written for this Quintet according to Wiki.

Cannonball Adderley Quintet

And a former Floridian....
Member Since: February 29, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 5908
Re: #254, thanks for that graphic and discussion, Levi. When was the last winter/spring transition where we saw such a strongly negative NAO? And I can't help but wonder if we had a similar springtime setup in advance of the crazy 2004 and/or 2005 hurricane seasons.

For us in South Florida, I guess this means a few more cold days like last weekend are a distinct possibility :-(
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Quoting Levi32:
The GFS ensembles mean MSLP anomaly for Week 2 shows a starkly negative NAO pattern over the Atlantic. The Azores high is all but gone, and this would greatly reduce the trade winds over the tropical and subtropical Atlantic. SSTs in the tropics are likely to rise substantially for at least a week or two under this pattern.

Starting about now through early May, we have to watch for a pattern like this trying to persist for multiple weeks, as it can change the SST distribution of the Atlantic before the hurricane season starts.



very interesting time as the hurricane season nears by then... thanks for the info.
Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14873
Quoting PedleyCA:
Mercy, Mercy Me
Or the Buckinghams....Mercy, Mercy, Mercy
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Raining somewhat heavy in my area...good to wash clean the dirty roads and sidewalks from the snow and salt from Nemo

Meanwhile, am major storm in the making for the central/Midwest states.

Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14873
12z Euro precip map-looks to be a good consensus of a LOT of rain heading for the eastern half of the country..



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Mercy, Mercy Me
Member Since: February 29, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 5908
AGWcreationists

Please provide a natural cause/explanation for the climate change now happening.
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Quoting 1911maker:


Please do not forget or leave out the mercury coming out of the coal fired plants also.

I think a lot of progress has been made in the last 10? years to reduce the mercury, but I am not sure how much. A significant amount of the mercury in Devils Lake is attributed to the coal fired power plants up wind from the lake.

The following EPA study states that man versus natural occurring mercury is about 2:1 from a airborne pollution point of view.

http://water.epa.gov/lawsregs/lawsguidance/cwa/tm dl/mercury/upload/2009_01_08_tmdl_mercury_pdf_devi lslakefinalreport.pdf
Link

http://nd.water.usgs.gov/pubs/wri/wri034078/pdf/w ri034078.pdf
Link
Methylmercury, which is produced by methylation of inorganic mercury, is a potent form of organic mercury and is
among the most toxic and widespread contaminants affecting the Nation’s aquatic ecosystems (Brumbaugh and others,
2001). Methylation and bioaccumulation of mercury pose toxicological risks to both fish (Wiener and Spry, 1996) and
humans (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1997). Because of serious concerns about methylmercury toxicity, the
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently reduced the recommended standard for methylmercury in fish tissue from
0.5 milligram per kilogram to 0.3 milligram per kilogram (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, accessed February 8,
2001). Methylmercury contamination also has caused many states, including North Dakota, to issue fish-consumption advisories.


Yep and the worst part is that mercury tends to accumulate in bodies of water far from development so estuaries are more impacted by mercury pollution. Not to mention that Marvin Gaye mentioned this in 1971 in his song 'Mercy, Mercy Me' about fish being full of mercury.
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Quoting AGWcreationists:


If Cryostat-2 was launched in 2010, how do you know that the estimates from 2003 are any good compared to the new technology?

A bit of a slight of hand there.


I don't know that I'd call it a sleight-of-hand, but I also wondered about that. How do we know the volume of ice in 2003 let alone 1979?
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Quoting ncstorm:


THANK YOU for providing that..I will surely pass this along for discussion..

I also wonder though why the state chapters dont carry this initiative on their websites...couldnt list them all but since Texas is one of those drought stricken states and NY recently hit by Sandy, I would assume they would be leading the charge but nothing?

Texas

NC

Florida

New Jersey


NY

California





You're welcome that's a good question too. Hopefully they get on it as the problems are only going to get worse going forward.
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If you have a lot of time watch or listen to the Open Yale Courses on many, many subjects, f.e.

Lecture 24 - Ice in the Climate System

Just one part of the course GG 140: The Atmosphere, the Ocean, and Environmental Change

A friend by chance just sent me the link to those courses. Amazing.
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 55 Comments: 6013
The GFS ensembles mean MSLP anomaly for Week 2 shows a starkly negative NAO pattern over the Atlantic. The Azores high is all but gone, and this would greatly reduce the trade winds over the tropical and subtropical Atlantic. SSTs in the tropics are likely to rise substantially for at least a week or two under this pattern.

Starting about now through early May, we have to watch for a pattern like this trying to persist for multiple weeks, as it can change the SST distribution of the Atlantic before the hurricane season starts.

Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
Please provide a natural cause/explanation for the climate change now happening.

Quoting StormHype:
I don't deny global warming. I also haven't seen enough politically unbiased evidence that it's *primarily* caused by man, and not some natural long-term cycle.

Even so, Obama's cap-and-trade plans can't do anything significant to affect it in proportion to how much misery it will bring to the people of the US. $10 gas and $2K annual increase in family electricity costs are his own accepted numbers for the impacts of it. You won't be able to blame a Bush for this one either.
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Quoting Neapolitan:
The Arctic has not been free of summertime ice in at least 125,000 years. So the fact that the Arctic has lost more than 75% of its summertime ice in just the past 30-plus years should be quite alarming to anyone--as it is to climate scientists.

Remember, it's not necessarily the changes themselves that are so hard for humanity to deal with; it's the speed of those changes. And, brother, those changes are coming on swiftly and furiously...
And so tell me why the Arctic being free of ice 125,000 years ago is obviously not due to human influences but it becoming such now is proof of human influences on climate? The Younger Dryas cooling event ended in 40-50 years, so rapid warming has happened in the recent past.
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However, in April 2010, a new satellite called Cryostat-2 was launched, which can measure ice volume by beaming pulses of microwave energy off of the ice. With two years of data to Cryosat-2 data to analyze, the results of the PIOMAS model have now been confirmed by a study published on-line in February 2013 in Geophysical Research Letters. In a University of Washington news release, co-author Axel Schweiger said, "people had argued that 75 to 80 percent ice volume loss was too aggressive. What this new paper shows is that our ice loss estimates may have been too conservative, and that the recent decline is possibly more rapid." The U.K.'s Natural Environmental Research Council reported that the team of scientists found that from 2003 to 2012, the volume of Arctic sea ice declined 36% in the autumn and 9% in the winter.


If Cryostat-2 was launched in 2010, how do you know that the estimates from 2003 are any good compared to the new technology?

A bit of a slight of hand there.
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Quoting AGWcreationists:
National Snow and Ice Data Center - Frequently Asked Questions on Arctic sea ice

Has the Arctic Ocean always had ice in summer?

We know for sure that at least in the distant past, the Arctic was ice-free. Fossils from the age of the dinosaurs, 65 million years ago, indicate a temperate climate with ferns and other lush vegetation.

Based on the paleoclimate record from ice and ocean cores, the last warm period in the Arctic peaked about 8,000 years ago, during the so-called
Holocene Thermal Maximum. Some studies suggest that as recent as 5,500 years ago, the Arctic had less summertime sea ice than today. However, it is not clear that the Arctic was completely free of summertime sea ice during this time.

The next earliest era when the Arctic was quite possibly free of summertime ice was 125,000 years ago, during the height of the last major interglacial period, known as the Eemian. Temperatures in the Arctic were higher than now and sea level was also 4 to 6 meters (13 to 20 feet) higher than it is today because the Greenland and Antarctic ice
sheets had partly melted. Because of the burning of fossil fuels, global averaged temperatures today are getting close to the maximum warmth seen during the Eemian. Carbon dioxide levels now are far above the highest levels during the Eemian, indicating there is still warming to come.

--------------------------------

So we have past incidents where the Arctic was either ice free or nearly ice free. Both events are a blink of an eye in the past geologically.

Yet somehow a reduction in Arctic Ocean ice coverage now is proof of AGW, even though past events have happened without human influences.
The Arctic has not been free of summertime ice in at least 125,000 years. So the fact that the Arctic has lost more than 75% of its summertime ice in just the past 30-plus years should be quite alarming to anyone--as it is to climate scientists.

Remember, it's not necessarily the changes themselves that are so hard for humanity to deal with; it's the speed of those changes. And, brother, those changes are coming on swiftly and furiously...
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Little sideview (I'm following this for a while now): Feb, 19th: Are these novel coronavirus cases the tip of the iceberg?
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 55 Comments: 6013
Quoting StormHype:
I also haven't seen enough politically unbiased evidence that it's *primarily* caused by man, and not some natural long-term cycle.
If that's the case, you're simply not looking at the right sources. I can provide dozens--heck, hundreds--of politically unbiased links that clearly indicate from a purely scientific perspective that anthropogenic CO2 is the only possible explanation for the warmth the planet is experiencing.

(That is, unless you're the type who already has his mind made up and believes against all logic that tens of thousands of scientists are involved in a massive scam spanning every continent and country, dozens of disciplines, and many decades. If that's the case, I'm afraid I won't be of much use to you.)
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247. ARiot
Quoting bullitt68:
Wait, you mean the climate is changing. We've never had climate change in the past. Yes, that's sarcasm! I remember being scared when I was a kid in the mid 1970's by all the scientists saying we were heading into another ice-age.

Man is a funny species. We give way too much weight to both our intelligence and our stupidity.


If you were scared in the 1970s, it's because the media was irresponsible then, like they are now.

Climate predictions for cooling were in the minority then. Significant minority.

Or perhaps you base your fear on two issues of two news magazines.

http://ams.confex.com/ams/pdfpapers/131047.pdf

"A survey of peer reviewed scientific papers from 1965 to 1979 show that few papers predicted global cooling (7 in total). Significantly more papers (42 in total) predicted global warming (Peterson 2008, link above). The large majority of climate research in the 1970s predicted the Earth would warm as a consequence of CO2."
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.