You Won’t Hear The Truth From Mark Serreze
By Paul Homewood
According to Climate Home:
Arctic sea ice fell to its lowest winter extent in recorded history for a second straight year, according to scientists at the National Snow and Ice Data Center and NASA.
Ice cover in the polar region averaged 14.52 million square kilometres (5.607 m sq miles) on March 24, the US science agencies said in a statement on Monday.
That’s a 0.2% decline on the previous lowest maximum in 2015, and a 7% fall on the 1981-2010 average of 15.64m sqkm.
Scientists cited abnormally warm temperatures from December to February which spurred melting. Temperatures rose between 2-6C across all regions.
“I’ve never seen such a warm, crazy winter in the Arctic,” said NSIDC director Mark Serreze. “The heat was relentless.”Ice extent grows through autumn to winter, and the maximum usually occurs in mid-March. Sea ice then retreats through spring and summer, declining to its smallest or minimum extent by mid-September.
The September Arctic minimum has typically drawn more attention than the March maximum, after it first shrank to record lows in 2005, then 2007 and 2012, scientists said.
That changed last year when the maximum extent was the lowest.
“The Arctic is in crisis. Year by year, it’s slipping into a new state, and it’s hard to see how that won’t have an effect on weather throughout the Northern Hemisphere,” said Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the Colorado-based NSIDC.
It’s hard to know where to start!
They can’t even get their numbers right – according to NSIDC, sea ice extent fell from 5.612 to 5.607 million sq miles, which is a drop of less than 0.1%, and not 0.2%.
But the real nonsense comes from Mark Serreze and his sidekick, Ted Scambos.
Abnormally high temperatures? Well, certainly that is what DMI report:
But unprecedented? The truth is that these sort of temperatures are not unusual in Arctic winter. Intrusions of mild air from lower latitudes can have an amplified effect in the Arctic because the air is so dry. In terms of heat content, the change means diddly squat.
One of the problems is that the green line, which is the mean for 1958-2002, is presented as “normal”, when in fact it hides large year to year variations.
There are many examples of warm temperatures such as these during the DMI record, which of course does not even extend back to the much warmer 1930s and 40s.
For instance, 1972:
These high temperatures were not sustained throughout winter, but the winter that really stands out for warmth was 1976:
Serreze may have not been around in 1976 to see it, but it is highly dishonest to simply ignore years such as that and pretend that there is anything abnormal about this year.
In any event, we know that most of the “missing” ice is in the Barents Sea, which even NSIDC admit is largely due natural factors:
Another contributing factor has been a predominance of southerly winds in the Kara and Barents seas that have helped to keep the ice edge northward of its typical position. This area has also seen an influx of warm Atlantic waters from the Norwegian Sea.
[What they don’t say is that it is these very same factors which have led to a warmer atmosphere in those parts]
What we have been seeing in the Barents Sea in recent years is no more than a rerun of what is called the Warming of the North, between 1920 and 1960. Dickson and Osterhus, in their 2007 paper One hundred years in the Norwegian Sea, describe it:
As our hydrographic time series is lengthened into the middle decades of the 20th century, it begins to capture evidence of one of the largest and most widespread regime shifts to affect our waters within the modern instrumental record. These were the decades of ‘the Warming in the North’, when the salinity of North Atlantic water passing through the Faroe-Shetland Channel into the Norwegian Sea reached a century-long high (Dooley et al. 1984), when salinities were so high off Cape Farewell that they were rejected as erroneous (Harvey 1962) and when a precipitous warming by more than 2C in the 5-year mean pervaded the West Greenland banks (Fig. 6), and also when the northward dislocations of biogeographical boundaries for a wide range of species, from plankton to commercially important fish, terrestrial mammals, and birds, were at their most extreme in the 20th century. The astonishing nature of these radical events is vivid in the contemporary scientific literature.
They include the following graph of air temperatures for the Barents Sea. Note that the biggest variability is in winter:
But you won’t hear any of this from Serreze or Scambos, who have their own agenda.