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30 years of sea ice data. The red line indicates deviation from the seasonally-adjusted mean.  (Source: Arctic Research Center, University of Illinois)
Rapid Rebound Brings Ice Back to Levels from the 1980s.

An abnormally cool Arctic is seeing dramatic changes to ice levels.  In sharp contrast to the rapid melting seen last year, the amount of global sea ice has rebounded sharply and is now growing rapidly. The total amount of ice, which set a record low value last year, grew in October at the fastest pace since record-keeping began in 1979.

The actual amount of ice area varies seasonally from about 16 to 23 million square kilometers. However, the mean anomaly-- defined as the difference between the current area and the seasonally-adjusted average-- changes much slower, and generally varies by only 2-3 million square kilometers.

That anomaly had been negative, indicating ice loss, for most of the current decade and reached a historic low in 2007. The current value is again zero, indicating an amount of ice exactly equal to the global average from 1979-2000.

Bill Chapman, a researcher with the Arctic Climate Center at the University of Illinois, says the rapid increase is "no big deal". He says that, while the Arctic has certainly been colder in recent months, the long-term decrease is still ongoing. Chapman, who predicts that sea ice will soon stop growing, sees nothing in the recent data to contradict predictions of global warming.

Others aren't quite so sure. Dr. Patrick Michaels, Professor of Environmental Science at the University of Virginia, says he sees some "very odd" things occurring in recent years. Michaels, who is also a Senior Fellow with the Cato Institute, tells DailyTech that, while the behavior of the Arctic seems to agree with climate models predictions, the Southern Hemisphere can't be explained by current theory. "The models predict a warming ocean around Antarctica, so why would we see more sea ice?" Michaels adds that large areas of the Southern Pacific are showing cooling trends, an occurrence not anticipated by any current climate model.

On average, ice covers roughly 7% of the ocean surface of the planet. Sea ice is floating and therefore doesn't affect sea level like the ice anchored on bedrock in Antarctica or Greenland. However, research has indicated that the Antarctic continent -- which is on a long-term cooling trend -- has also been gaining ice in recent years.

The primary instrument for measuring sea ice today is the AMSR-E microwave radiometer, an instrument package aboard NASA's AQUA satellite. AQUA was launched in 2002, as part of NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS).



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RE: No. Way.
By masher2 (blog) on 11/8/2008 12:04:00 AM , Rating: 3
> "If you had read the literature, you would have noticed that sea ice coverage is at a record low for this time of year"

Nothing could be further from the truth. Antarctic sea ice is well above the 30-year mean, and even in the Arctic, sea ice is substantially above what it was in 2007 or 2006:

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/cur...
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/seaice/extent/AMSRE_S...

> "...and an Exxon-financed whackjob at Cato."

Your claim is without merit. Michaels is, in addition to being a highly published and cited climatologist, also an expert reviewer for the IPCC. He's been interviewed many times by the NYT, NPR, PBS, the BBC, and every major US broadcast news network. He's also been a past president of the American Association of Climatologists, and a department chair of the American Meteorological Society.


RE: No. Way.
By ipay on 11/8/08, Rating: -1
RE: No. Way.
By ipay on 11/8/08, Rating: 0
RE: No. Way.
By masher2 (blog) on 11/8/2008 11:36:31 AM , Rating: 2
> "Highly published - where? "

By Nature, Science, Geophysical Research Letters, Climate Research, and every other major research journal in the field.

> "Cited by who? "

Hundreds of researchers around the world. See Google Scholar:

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=patrick+michae...

> "Harvard’s John Holdren...told the Senate Republican Policy Committee"

Holdren is also president of the Woods Hole Center, an advocacy group focused on "building a climate regime", and one which receives the entirety of its funding from alarmist claims over global warming. Do you honestly expect him to say anything nice about a critic?

Holdren has also worked closely (and authored papers) with the kooky Paul Ehrlich, of "population bomb" fame...a man who, in the 1960s, told us we'd all be starving to death long before now.


RE: No. Way.
By ipay on 11/8/08, Rating: -1
RE: No. Way.
By greenchasch on 11/8/2008 5:32:58 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
John P. Holdren is the Professor of Environmental Policy at Harvard University.
And Patrick Michaels is the Professor of Environmental Science at the University of Virginia. Tie game.

quote:
I'll pay attention to what he says
I'll pay attention to the person who makes sense. From what I see here, Michaels is stating facts and Holdren is just making personal attacks.

quote:
Asher, you're a weasel of a human who lies and distorts Whatever. You're scum.
Just like Holdren. People make personal attacks when they don't have anything intelligent to say.


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/8/08, Rating: 0
RE: No. Way.
By JediJeb on 11/9/2008 1:46:10 PM , Rating: 3
You're a know nothing on the internet - you're not qualified to assess any complex scientific discipline. All you need to know is that every national science academy of every major industrialised country on the planet all confirm recent climate change is due to human activity. If you can't produce evidence that they're all lying or all wrong, then you're a delusional denier

So I guess Galileo and Copernicus were wrong about the Earth not being the center of the Solar System because every other scientist of the time disagreed with them.

And no it wasn't just the Church that disagreed with them, it was all their fellow scientist because they knew it was just how it had to be and would not even look at the data presented by Copernicus because it contradicted what they believed to be true.


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/9/2008 2:56:09 PM , Rating: 1
> "...every other scientist of the time disagreed with them."

You have evidence for that? No, you don't. Suggest you spend a little time educating yourself - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heliocentric

Galileo and Copernicus used science to demonstrate heliocentrism - just as climate scientists today have demonstrated anthropogenic climate change.


RE: No. Way.
By foolsgambit11 on 11/10/2008 5:54:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
So I guess Galileo and Copernicus were wrong about the Earth not being the center of the Solar System because every other scientist of the time disagreed with them.

They wouldn't look at the data because it contradicted the Bible and was banned by the Church. But it was generally accepted by scientists outside of the Holy Roman Empire, where it could be circulated. There were also many scientists within the Empire that tacitly agreed with Copernicus and Galileo, although they couldn't publicly agree.

I understand you're arguing that AGW is like a new religion, and you must conform to it as a scientist. But how about this - stop complaining about the theory. It's there. It does more good than harm - like religion. Polluting less is good. If, in 10, 20, or 100 years, it turns out we were wrong, it'll be okay. If there's an inquisition, then you can take up arms.


RE: No. Way.
By ipay on 11/8/2008 11:34:00 AM , Rating: 1
More on Michael's credibility, or lack of: http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Pat_Mic...

And yet Asher will continue to cite him along with any of the other denial propaganda zombies.


RE: No. Way.
By ChronoReverse on 11/8/2008 12:04:16 PM , Rating: 2
Wow your sources are so credible. A wordpress article. A wiki style "watch site". An article written in 2006 by "An environmental journalist" which basically goes "A politician doesn't agree so he doesn't want to him to speak for him anymore".


RE: No. Way.
By ipay on 11/8/08, Rating: 0
RE: No. Way.
By ChronoReverse on 11/8/2008 6:16:43 PM , Rating: 2
ExxonSecrets, accessed January 2005.
Harpers Magazine, December 1995.
Social Epistemology, 2000, Vol. 14. Nos. 2/3, 181-186.
"Capital Gang", CNN , August 19, 2002.
The Star Press, November 18, 2003.
Washington Post contributor, Media Matters for America, May 20, 2004.
Singer and Michaels, Deltoid ( weblog ), August 17, 2004.
Business Week , August 16, 2004.
The Washington Post Magazine , May 28, 2006.

That's just the first few from your own link. Try a little harder.


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/8/2008 8:14:52 PM , Rating: 2
And your point is?

When you've found factual errors in the material referenced, come back and tell us.


RE: No. Way.
By ChronoReverse on 11/8/2008 8:41:21 PM , Rating: 2
So let me get this straight.

You're telling me to bring up factual error instead of questioning the sources at the same time attacking masher's sources instead of bringing up factual error? Does one graph against masher's graph constitute as full refutation?

Assuming masher's information was wrong, does that warrant calling him a baldface liar?


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/8/08, Rating: -1
RE: No. Way.
By theendofallsongs on 11/8/2008 10:15:29 PM , Rating: 2
Masher's information seems to come directly from the Arctic Research Center at UIUC. At least, I found the identical graph at their site:

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/glo...

So it seems to be factually correct. Why not argue facts, instead of just calling people names?


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/9/08, Rating: 0
RE: No. Way.
By tookablighty on 11/9/2008 10:53:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Asher provides a quote in the story that undermines his own agenda
It's called good journalism, mate. Reporters are supposed to report both sides of the story, and go out of their way to find alternative views. Thats why this article quotes a believer and a skeptic. It's a shame some other reporters have forgotten their journalistic ethics.

quote:
why does Asher only interpret and report data points that suggest the opposite?
Since he's posted the entire 30-year record for the Arctic, it looks like he's reported every data point that exists. He even goes out of his way to point out that 2007 was a historic low. So what do you believe he's hiding?

I don't know why you have such a rod up your bum, but you're shooting blanks here.


RE: No. Way.
By monoape on 11/10/2008 4:16:07 PM , Rating: 2
Really subtle cherry pick, there - missing out "unusually" in reference to Asher providing a quote that undermines his own agenda.

Quoting both sides of a 'story' is not necessarily good journalism, because often both sides are not of equal merit. Evolution and creationism do not deserve equal time. Flat earth theory does not deserve equal time. And the denial of anthropogenic climate change and the blatantly dishonest agenda that Asher has do not deserve equal time.

> ...it looks like he's reported every data point that exists.

I'm going to take a wild guess here: you're not a scientist.

Here, I'll help.

Asher's title and sub-title: "Sea Ice Growing at Fastest Pace on Record - Rapid Rebound Brings Ice Back to Levels from the 1980s."

Here's what the real scientists have to say about their own data: "Consistent with the diminishing trends in the extent and thickness of the cover is a significant loss of the older, thicker perennial ice in the Arctic." - http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard/seaice.html

Spot the difference?


RE: No. Way.
By foolsgambit11 on 11/10/2008 6:27:55 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, he went out of his way to point out 2007 was a historic low. And he also posted an article about 2008 that predicted the melt was over (when it wasn't) and that the total extent of Arctic sea ice was significantly more than the final numbers, which hadn't been released yet. However, when the final numbers were released, and indicated that 2008 was the second worst year on record, he didn't bother posting that news. Then, when sea ice levels rise - which could be promising, though it's only a single data point - he jumps back into reporting sea ice levels. That's not unbiased journalism.

Also, note that the scientist who urges us not to make too much of this data is from the University which released this report, but that's not made explicit. That would add weight to his statement, as the primary source for the data. Can't have that.

Additionally, Mr. Michaels, who he quotes as seeing some strange things in the recent data, isn't made a global warming skeptic by recent data (as I would have thought just reading the article). He's been a skeptic for 15 years. He was also a skeptic on the effects of CFCs on the ozone layer, arguing against their ban through 2001. He has belonged to several industry-financed research groups - for big oil and big tobacco, for instance. And yet he either personally contacted DT or was contacted by DT for comment.

I would be curious how this article came into being. Was masher tipped off on this data by Dr. Patrick Michaels, or did masher decide to contact him after discovering this report?

However it breaks out, I don't mind. I have no illusions that journalism can ever be totally unbiased. The comments generally debate both sides of an issue so the interested reader can get other sides of the argument. And everybody is entitled to their opinion based on weighing the information and the credibility of the sources of that information, based on their own criteria. Which isn't to say I won't try to give people my own opinion, and contribute any information I've found to be helpful in making a decision.


RE: No. Way.
By wookie1 on 11/10/2008 2:54:03 PM , Rating: 3
This is the first stage of grieving: anger. The real earth doesn't seem to be behaving the same as model earth. Perhaps humans can't control the climate. That's probably a good thing, because how would we know how to set the controls?


RE: No. Way.
By wookie1 on 11/10/2008 2:55:59 PM , Rating: 3
Oh geez, look I messed up. The first stage is denial, the second stage is anger. Anyway, I hope we can fast-forward to acceptance (that the universe will carry on despite humans).


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