September 5 Sea Ice News

The Arctic is getting rather chilly, with temperatures over the entire ice pack ranging from 0 to minus 15ºC.

Over the last few days, a lot of the remaining low concentration ice in the East Siberian Sea has melted out. You can see that represented in the downwards blip below.

The modified NSIDC image below shows changes in the ice over the last week. Losses are shown in red, and gains in green.

The modified NSIDC image below shows changes since 2007.

NSIDC typically bottoms out during the first week in September. This makes sense given the widespread cold, and new ice should start forming any day now. We will see that represented in the area graphs a little before it shows up in the extent graphs. First places to freeze should be areas of lower concentration ice near the pole.

The modified NSIDC image below shows changes in the ice relative to September, 2009

2009 had thinner ice in the East Siberian and Beaufort Seas, but experienced much less wind during the summer. Note that 2009 had a lot more ice in the Northwest Passage.

DMI and Norsex show 2010 and 2009 even, while NSIDC and JAXA show 2010 below 2009.

The target below shows current forecast rankings. The bullseye represents current JAXA extent (5,190,313 km²) and each ring represents 100,000 km² error. Looks like it is going to be very close between my August SEARCH forecast (5.1) and NSIDC’s (5.0.)

http://www.arcus.org/files/search/sea-ice-outlook/2010/09/images/summary/siofig1.jpg

About stevengoddard

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30 Responses to September 5 Sea Ice News

  1. Alexej Buergin says:

    Who is interested in forecasts from August (of the same year)? Anybody can get near this bullseye in August. Let us not forget that Goddard as well as Stroeve prognosticated 5.5 in June, which turns out to be a bit on the high side. Was it not Bastardi who made a forecast already last year? How close did he get one year before the event?

  2. Leon Brozyna says:

    Always appreciate all the work you do on these frequent updates on the condition of the ice. Of course, the bottom line will be that this year’s melt is greater than last year, so the soothsayers of gloom and doom will be pressing that message for all it’s worth until September 2011 (compensating for the discomfort they felt at the late date of max extent, perhaps). Looking forward to a state of the multi-year ice report.

  3. HR says:

    Sorry OT but I thought you might be interested the deniers Ice Island has slipped out into the Nares Strait.

  4. Phil. says:

    The SEARCH project is based on the NSIDC data which is currently 4.97 so it appears you’re out of the reckoning.

    • Where do you get the NSIDC numbers from?

      I explicitly specified in my SEARCH submission that my forecast was based on JAXA. If what you are saying is correct, they should have notified me so I could adjust the numbers.

    • Here is the complete text of my SEARCH submission

      1. Extent Projection
      5.1 million km^2 based on JAXA. Reduced from initial June projection of 5.5 million

      2. Methods / Techniques 3. Rationale
      Statistical. In late May, I performed a numerical and visual comparison of the PIPS2 thickness distributions in the Arctic Basin for the last ten years vs. the current year – and found a closest match with 2006. I also calculated the ice volume by integrating the thickness across all pixels. It showed that 2010 should come in below 2006 and above 2009. Verification of previous years showed that this is a highly accurate forecasting technique, with the exception of 2007 – which was dominated by unusual winds which compacted and melted vulnerable areas of ice. Until mid-August this approach appeared to be working very accurately. Since then, strong southerly winds have developed and extent has dropped below predicted values. Thus the 8% reduction from the initial forecast.

      4. Executive Summary
      Our projection is based on comparing short term PIPS2 thickness forecasts with those of previous years. It was found that May 2006/ May 2010 made a close match of ice thickness distribution inside the Arctic Basin, though absolute 2010 extent/volume was lower. We now expect 2010 to finish the summer slightly below 2009.

    • Amino says:

      Thanks Phil for filling us in on NSIDC. But has already been examined in the past, NSIDC has data that is different than other agencies. JAXA does not show what NSIDC shows. It stands to reason that you would chose the NSIDC to highlight and not any other. This shows your bias. We all know that Mark Surreze is the head of NSIDC. Since an alarmist of the first order was assigned to the helm there it shows everyone the NSIDC is a government agency and not an unbiased science agency. ‘Global warming’ is coloring everything that happens there.

      If, in fact, the NSIDC is only presenting the data as it really is then the government did itself a huge disfavor by promoting Mark Surreze, an open alarmist, a man only known because of alarmism, to run it. But, since it was he that was promoted one can see the bias.

      • Julienne says:

        Amino, it might do you some good to read papers published by Mark Serreze as it seems you do not know anything about his work except for some media reports. You also don’t seem to understand how sea ice concentration and extent are derived from passive microwave observations, the different algorithms used and their sensitivities, methods for filtering out weather and land contamination, etc. Finally you don’t seem to understand what NSIDC is, which is one of the NASA DAACs. BTW…our data is available for anyone to do their own analysis (including the raw data), the algorithms are also available, so there is 100% transparency in the sea ice fields. Feel free to do your own analysis to test how “biased” you think our data are.

  5. Joe Bastardi European Blog
    Joe Bastardi’s Europe Column
    POSTED: 7:42 p.m. September 2, 2010

    (…)
    In the spirit of transparency, I was wrong about global temp dropping in August

    The global temp DID NOT FALL in August as I had predicted it too. Whether this a delay of my idea, or denial will be settled in the spring. In the meantime the .51 was slightly cooler than the .52 in August of 1998 and means this year still trails the warmest satellite year on record, 1998

    Duly noted and logged, I was wrong on that.

    Full post: http://www.accuweather.com/ukie/bastardi-europe-blog.asp

    Regards

  6. Neven says:

    Steven, I hope it’s okay for me to post this off-topic question. I have noticed that sea ice concentration under what NISDC calls the ‘pole hole’ has recently fallen below 100%. This poses an interesting dilemma. IJIS for instance assumes there to be 100% ice, so their total extent number might be overestimated. I’ve written a blog post on it and I think I have managed to get a clear and recent satellite image composition that shows the area in question.

    Now I know that you use pixel counting for various research purposes. Could you give me a tip on which software to use etc., so I might try to assess what the area number is (and perhaps after that extent) for the North Hole?

  7. Neven says:

    Steven, in retrospect (now that I know more about the North Hole myself) I dare say that was one of the best pieces I’ve seen you write for WUWT.

    ps I think the image is too vague to really pinpoint the number with which IJIS extent is overestimated, but it’s probably not more than 50K. Area is another matter, could be 100K max.

  8. Phil. says:

    stevengoddard says:
    September 5, 2010 at 7:14 pm
    Where do you get the NSIDC numbers from?

    Julienne Stroeve

    I explicitly specified in my SEARCH submission that my forecast was based on JAXA. If what you are saying is correct, they should have notified me so I could adjust the numbers.

    It’s been the case in previous years (for example the 2009 value shown on the graph is 5.36, the NSIDC value), they should have told you.

  9. Phil. says:

    Amino says:
    September 5, 2010 at 8:02 pm
    Thanks Phil for filling us in on NSIDC. But has already been examined in the past, NSIDC has data that is different than other agencies. JAXA does not show what NSIDC shows. It stands to reason that you would chose the NSIDC to highlight and not any other. This shows your bias.

    You appear to have missed the point, SEARCH chose NSIDC not me.

  10. Westerner says:

    I find these arctic ice graphs fascinating, as we all do, I believe. However, I never seem to see similar graphical representation of antarctic ice, although there are often articles about it. If such graphs are available, I am sure everyone would be intrigued. Have I just missed them?

  11. Amino says:

    It is interesting that no one talking about global warming wants to point out how Antarctic ice is in step with Arctic ice. They could easily make a case for a relation between North Pole and South Pole ice. It is a fascinating relation. While the Arctic had gone down in mass until 2007 Antarctic ice had gone up. A perfect balance in nature that is normal.

    But I know there will be rationale why that is from ‘global warming’ and co2 and not from natural variations in the earth. After all, if you wanted to, you could say everything is global warming and make it sound reasonable to some people.

    Others though sit back and wonder when is this side show going to end. I suppose as long as billions are pumped into it it’s going to go on.

    • Julienne says:

      Amino, there are several papers that discuss the factors contributing to increased Antarctic ice extent. If you are interested in reading them, I can give you the references.

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