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Hottest Arctic Hype

December 16, 2016

By Paul Homewood 




There has been a concerted effort in the last few days to run the latest Arctic scare story, such as this one in the Telegraph:


The Arctic shattered heat records in the past year as unusually warm air triggered massive melting of ice and snow and a late fall freeze, US government scientists said on Tuesday.

The grim assessment came in the Arctic Report Card 2016, a peer-reviewed document by 61 scientists around the globe issued by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The NOAA report covers from October 2015 to September 2016, a period it said the Arctic’s average annual air temperature over land was the highest on record.


The use of the word “heat”, has become prevalent lately, all designed to put slightly warmer weather into a bad light. All I can say to the writer of this article is that, if they really think it is hot in the Arctic, let them go for a swim there.

But how warm has it been up there this year?



Atmospheric temperatures, according to UAH,are the highest since 1979, running at 1.16C above the 1981-2010 mean.




HADCRUT surface data, however, does not suggest any unusual warmth this year. (Figures are up to October 2016).


70-90N MonthlyAnomaly Since2000



And looking back through the 20thC, spikes in temperature of this magnitude are not all unusual around the Arctic, as we saw during the 1920s and 30s.









Actual temperatures per GHCN V2 as at 2011.



Meanwhile sea ice extent, despite growing more slowly than usual during the autumn, is now back to the level of recent years.




The Greenland ice sheet has been accumulating at way above normal rates since the summer:




And snow extent in the Northern Hemisphere has also been well above average this autumn, as it has been for most recent years.




Nothing is actually happening that justifies the apocalyptic headlines  published by much of the media around the world, instigated in turn by NOAA.

  1. December 16, 2016 3:47 pm

    Like NASA GISS, UEA, UK Met Office, WMO, BBC and the rest, anything from NOAA should be, by default, discounted.

  2. Broadlands permalink
    December 16, 2016 3:49 pm

    And… the obligatory photo of the iconic Polar Bear adds to the drama. Turning up the “heat” with massive scare tactics. What do they expect us to do?

    • December 19, 2016 10:18 pm

      Remember those UK students who went camping in polar bear territory only to have one become breakfast.

      Cuddly things polar bears – they just eat their prey alive !

  3. martinbrumby permalink
    December 16, 2016 3:51 pm

    “The grim assessment came in the Arctic Report Card 2016, a peer-reviewed document by 61 scientists around the globe issued by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.”

    Since when is “grim” a scientific term? And what evidence is there that the dis-benefits of a warmer Arctic outweigh the (fairly obvious) benefits?

    And why do they need 61 scientists around the globe to pen this? Wouldn’t a couple of honest scientists, expert in the behaviour of Arctic Ice be ample?

    I really hope the DOTUS can clean out this Augean Stable.

  4. December 16, 2016 4:03 pm


    Thanks for your tireless efforts showing these claims are nothing but click-bait fake news. There is absolutely nothing out of the ordinary going on in the Arctic. Just weather. It’s happened before, and will happen again and not much, if anything at all, will be changed as a result. The ice will be just fine. The animals and people up there will cope. The only real news is that groups of people are trying to make this news.

  5. December 16, 2016 4:33 pm

    In support of Paul’s points about the Arctic temps, we now have dramatic increases in ice extent, such as happened yesterday in Hudson Bay.

  6. NeilC permalink
    December 16, 2016 4:55 pm

    The Telegraph is getting as bad as the Grauniad. What a sad state of affairs.

  7. December 16, 2016 5:02 pm

    Reblogged this on Jaffer's blog.

  8. December 16, 2016 5:10 pm

    “In later days, on reading of the growing scarcity of Polar bears…” wrote Kenneth Grahame in Dream Days, published in 1893. Attrition of the species has certainly been caused by man, certainly not by global warming.

  9. Svend Ferdinandsen permalink
    December 16, 2016 6:34 pm

    It is strange when looking at ice extend that the extend ends at 13 mio km2 here late december many years back with very little variation.
    Anyway the average for 1981 to 2000 is 14.5 mio km2. I wonder if methods and better pictures could have an influence on the extend this time of year.

  10. December 16, 2016 10:17 pm

    The supposed ‘record-shattering’ heat from the Arctic didn’t reach the USA.

    ‘Bone-chilling winds will persist Friday across the United States as temperatures continue to plunge into a sub-freezing stretch, bringing some of the coldest air this season.’

    ‘Here’s what you can expect:
    • Nearly 80% of the country will see below-freezing temperatures in the next week
    • With the wind chill, temperatures could reach 35 below zero in some northeastern states Friday
    • Close to 99 million are under a Winter Weather Advisory’

    Where did that come from? Not the ‘melting’ Arctic surely 😉

    • John F. Hultquist permalink
      December 16, 2016 11:31 pm

      With the wind chill, temperatures could reach 35 below zero in some northeastern states Friday

      I do not find such a cold spell next weekend. It is cold for the next few days. Then warmer.
      Bradford, PA is often a good indicator of such things. CNN seems to hype things a bit.

      Wind chill temps are not helpful because it relates to the perceived decrease in air temperature felt by the body on exposed skin. It does sound scary, though.

      • Gamecock permalink
        December 16, 2016 11:37 pm

        Didn’t get above freezing all day here in SC. Very cold for December. Polar vortex, we are told. All that ‘unusually warm air’ gets cold when it gets down here.

      • Natalie Green permalink
        December 17, 2016 4:24 am

        In Alberta, we’ve had that “bone-chilling” cold for the last 2 weeks! Ambient temperature ranging from -25° to -35° Celsius (so close to -40 farenheit) with windchills to -48°Celsius, and finally warming up by Christmas.

  11. Lance permalink
    December 16, 2016 10:36 pm

    I used to work in the High Arctic for Environment Canada(before they drank the cool-aid), in lates 70s, but my old stomping grounds are at a incredibly hot -37C right now…

  12. John F. Hultquist permalink
    December 16, 2016 11:06 pm

    A polar bear hunts for food on melting ice

    Nice looking bear. Looks like he’s playing whack an iceberg, or some such.

    No indication he is hunting.
    No indication the ice is melting.

    Bright sunlight on his right side, shadow on the left.
    Certainly not taken during the last few weeks during the scary stories.

    These folks just make stuff up.

  13. December 17, 2016 12:54 am

    Changes in sea ice extent year to year cannot be related to global warming

  14. December 17, 2016 3:20 pm

    Reblogged this on WeatherAction News.

  15. December 17, 2016 3:57 pm

    FirstNews : Newspaper aimed at kids front page :
    ON THIN ICE : Polar Bears In Peril
    “Scientists think numbers could fall by a third in next 35 years”
    photo I took in Tescos
    Looks ..Fake news ? And Fake Photo ?

    • December 17, 2016 4:00 pm

    • Broadlands permalink
      December 17, 2016 7:43 pm

      The news says: “Writing in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters, the team, led by Dr Eric Regehr from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, concluded: “Our findings support the potential for large declines in polar bear numbers owing to sea ice loss.”

      Supports the POTENTIAL?

      In 2012… “The current scientific consensus places the worldwide polar bear population between 20,000 and 25,000 animals. Prior to the 1973 worldwide restriction on commercial polar bear hunting, that number was dramatically lower, so low that a meeting of polar bear specialists in 1965 concluded that extinction was a real possibility. Some reports even estimated the number of bears as low as 5,000 worldwide. Yet by 1990, Ian Stirling — at the time, the senior research scientist for the Canadian Wildlife Service and a professor of zoology at the University of Alberta; basically, one of the most respected polar bear scientists on the planet — felt comfortable answering the question as to whether polar bears are an endangered species by stating flatly: “They are not.” He went on to say that “the world population of polar bears is certainly greater than 20,000 and could be as high as 40,000 … I am inclined toward the upper end of that range.” Although old studies are sketchy, clearly more polar bears are alive today than there were 50 years ago, an essentially heartening fact that has not managed to pierce the public consciousness.”

      Does not seem to support the potential for large declines.

  16. 4TimesAYear permalink
    December 17, 2016 10:08 pm

    Reblogged this on 4timesayear's Blog.

  17. clipe permalink
    December 17, 2016 10:20 pm

    Dawson City, Yukon

    History&current week – select “all”.

    • Broadlands permalink
      December 18, 2016 5:03 pm

      For a detailed study of the Yukon…in 1906 read this: “The Climate of Yukon Territory”

      Click to access mwr-035-01-0016.pdf

      Compare the monthly temperatures at Dawson with the “normals” today. Warmer then?

  18. December 17, 2016 11:16 pm

    Reblogged this on Climatism.

  19. clipe permalink
    December 18, 2016 12:12 am

    This short documentary studies the geological evolution that has gone on for millions of years in the High Arctic. Following the evidence of glaciers that have advanced and receded, the film also traces life forms that have changed with the climate.

  20. mwhite permalink
    December 18, 2016 9:50 am

    Warmer than average may be, but I don’t see the tourists flocking to the beaches just yet.

  21. December 18, 2016 5:33 pm

    For the record…

    Arctic blast slams northeastern United States
    PUBLISHED : Saturday, 17 December, 2016

    ‘Boston’s morning low of 4 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 16 Celsius) was the coldest for this date since 1883, when the mercury dipped to 1 Fahrenheit (minus 17 Celsius), according to the National Weather Service.

    “We definitely have a blast of Arctic air,” said Lenore Correia, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Taunton, Massachusetts, just outside Boston.’

    Yes they did say ‘Arctic’ 😉

  22. December 19, 2016 11:11 pm

    I c an’t sand it any longer! If I will ever see any polar bear mentioned together with arctic melting I will get some heat and shot them…

  23. December 19, 2016 11:23 pm

    Had anyone mentioned this? The pause is back! At least in the Arctic and Antarctic Sea ice extend.

    13 years neutral trend in the all-years Arctic sea ice.
    15 years neutral trend in the all-years Antarctic sea ice.

  24. Steven Mosher permalink
    December 20, 2016 7:56 pm

    Still using deprecated data.

    • AndyG55 permalink
      December 20, 2016 9:20 pm

      Sorry that they aren’t using pure fabricated BS like your lot produce.

      You hate REAL data, don’t you Mosh.

    • December 20, 2016 10:22 pm

      We’re not as clever as you!

      But as you’re so clever, perhaps you could tell us what was wrong with the original data?

  25. AndyG55 permalink
    December 20, 2016 9:24 pm

    And here is an approximate graph of the total Greenland ice mass since 1979.

    I’m still waiting for someone to draw a better one, using a zeroed vertical axis.

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