Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The iceman leaveth

Eli and Stoat have been going back and forth, with Stoat bleating (what IS the cry of the Bellette?) on who will emerge triumphant and marginally richer when the fat iceberg sings. Stoat points to the graph of Arctic sea ice anomaly which is lagging behind last years, however it is clear that this year will at a minimum be the second lowest year, if not the lowest. E & S are now haggling about the 2009 bet. Given the strength of the pound vs. the dollar, Eli is holding out for equal amounts of the appropriate national currency. Given Stoats view of Brunn, this may be a twofer for him.

Anyhow, looking todays sea ice maps at the University of Bremen, something evil comes this way.
It is clear, even now that the 2008 minimum will have a different pattern then that in 2007.


William M. Connolley said...

Hmmm. As usual, there is a danger of people taking this stuff too seriously. Whether 2008 beats 2007 is, and was always going to be, a matter of weather not climate. For reasons I've explained before I thought it was unlikely. It currently looks like I was right, but that could easily change.

Hopefully it won't come down to disagreements amongst different datasets. We already have some confusing wurble from NSIDC explaining why monthly june 2008 was lower than june 2007, even though the june 2008 daily graph was always above 07. Perhaps its time to clarify whether "record" meant daily or monthly?

And tricky as it may be to spell Connolley, surely everyone can spell Belette?


llewelly said...

WmConnolley is right to point out that recent trends are not in your favor. However - this is the time of year when the anomaly in arctic sea ice extent is subject to large variations. And as he points out, it is all highly subject to weather - where will the arctic high pressure zones be, how strong will they be, etc. Nonetheless - anomalies in sea ice concentration and extent remain well below every previous year except 2007. As long as that condition persists, I see no reason to view the excitement over all lots of single year ice as 'overdone'.

EliRabett said...

Rabbit, Rabbett, Rabet, Rabett and if you think that is bad you should see what I get in the mail. Anyhow, as I said, the real point is what is obviously going to be a long term decrease in the summer ice coverage.

Anonymous said...

"Rabbit, Rabbett, Rabet, Rabett..."

I thought you were about to break into some Chas n' Dave there Eli.

My work's firewall blocks those images, but I know what you're referring to.

But please, Shhh, don't let on to the denialists. It's such fun watching them dig. With a bit of luck come September, they'll find the holes they've been digging themselves into get used as latrines.

One year is weather, but entertainment is entertainment.


Unknown said...

This does nor require comment surely work it out!
It just ain't happening guys good luck. This 10 July

Nick Barnes said...

I think it'll be a close-run thing. The area north of the Beaufort Sea is clearly going to melt out. Any notion that last year was a freak is obviously mistaken. But I might well lose both my wagers (with Stoat and Joeduck).

Coeruleus said...

Weather?'s volcanoes!

Anonymous said...

Shorter Vincent: i no grammer an i dunno so i no

Anonymous said...

It's "Rabette" from now on as far as I'm concerned. :)

Re the ice behavior, it appears that last year the ice commenced a quite rapid drop around now but then hit something of a wall around August 20th and remained virtually unchanged for about six weeks. Unsurprisingly that behavior hadn't been seen in previous years. My entirely non-expert prognostication, assuming the weather doesn't do anything too strange, is that ice volume is substantially lower now than at the same time last year and that the melt will remain behind last year's through mid-August but won't hit a similar wall. OTOH the fact that much of that reduced volume is in the form of thin ice near the pole (a circumstance not seen prior to this year) could throw this analysis off (that and the fact that I have no idea what I'm talking about). OTOH Mark Serreze guessed 50/50 a few weeks ago in circumstances similar to the present, so I have some reason to hope.

BTW, IIRC the WMC bets are based on the UIUC daily figures, which I think I pointed out at the time could lead to some ambiguity as to whether a new record low has happened. As they use different metrics, UIUC and NSIDC could be inconsistent in terms of whether a new record has been set. That very thing happened in 2005.

EliRabett said...

Steve, Eli thinks you are right and it will be close. The answer will depend on which record you look at. He looks forward eagerly to debating the issue with Stoat until retirement.

Nick Barnes said...

Steve: Yes, Stoat's bets, and my bet with Joeduck, are on (UIUC) Cryosphere Today's area, not NSIDC's extent.

Steve Bloom said...

Nick, I assume you guys know that UIUC has a long history of problems with their daily product. Mark Serreze is of the opinion that some of the problems are inherent in the chosen metric. Much of the rest can probably be chalked up to UIUC being more or less a one horse operation, although Serreze has also commented that any daily product is going to have problems.

Of course NSIDC didn't even have one until recently (although one could get the needed data from them as UIUC does), I assume because the NSF twisted their arms.

It's interesting to watch how these sea ice scientists respond to being unexpectedly thrust into the spotlight.

Anonymous said...

You boys are all struggling. But interesting, hey. Getting your reasons ready for when ice area does not fall below 4M sq km.

CA now highlighting where some Team members are questioning tree ring robustness.
You guys are as funny as cut snakes.


Nick Barnes said...

Steve: sure I know that CT's daily product has had problems - all daily products do, as you say (the NSIDC's extent graph had some remarkable wiggles earlier this year). I've been following CT for a long time now. My bets concern the declared minimum area, not any particular day's number. Last year, and I believe the year before, there was an article at CT in early October giving a particular figure for the minimum. That's what I'm intending to use to resolve my bets.