Print 85 comment(s) - last by amosbatto.. on Aug 26 at 2:26 PM

Sea ice extent in the Arctic fell to 483,000 square km (186,000 square miles) on August 13, a new record

The Arctic Ocean is feeling hot, hot, hot, says new report released by the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center. 
According to the report, sea ice extent in the Arctic dropped to a record low on August 13, and will continue dropping to new record lows by the end of the month. 
Sea ice extent, which measures the amount of sea ice remaining in the ocean, fell to 483,000 square km (186,000 square miles) on August 13. This was a dip from the previous record low on the same date back in 2007. 
But that's not the end of it. The Arctic sea ice is expected to continue melting through mid to late September, but more record lows have been predicted for the end of this month.
"A new daily record would be likely by the end of August," said Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center. "Chances are it will cross the previous record while we are still in ice retreat."
The news of a new record hasn't surprised many among the environmental community. This may be because the Arctic neared record lows last year, according to climate physics Professor Seymour Laxon from University College London. It almost seemed inevitable that this would happen at some point. "Rapid" melting occurred in June of this year as well with 100,000 square km melting daily.
However, Laxon worries that this rate of melting will adjust the prediction for an ice-free Arctic in summer. Previous reports estimated that the Arctic will have an ice-free summer in 2100 based on melting at that time, but when the 2007 low hit, this estimate was brought to the 2030-2040 range. Scientists are now concerned that this year's lows will bring that date even closer, which is problematic because the melting of sea ice means warming of the oceans. Sea ice keeps the Earth's temperature controlled.  
Global warming always seems to be a hot topic (pun intended). A recent controversial report released by James Hansen at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies claimed that global warming has caused hotter summers since 1980, but many question the merit of his opinions based on his position on climate change. 

Source: BBC News

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Crickets
By Ringold on 8/21/2012 11:22:20 PM , Rating: 2
Wait.. what? Did you just admit that the cost-benefit analysis of CO2 reduction is abysmal, that we'd be making ourselves poorer and essentially killing fellow humans, forcing untold millions to spend more of their lives in abject poverty, in a sacrifice upon the alter of environmentalism? To minimally offset something that climate scientists say is pretty much a done deal at this point anyway?

Maybe there is hope for this country, this world, after all!

Now, just join your conservative brothers in deciding to toss the UN in to the Atlantic ocean, and we'll have a real common cause.

RE: Crickets
By bupkus on 8/22/2012 12:40:00 AM , Rating: 2
in a sacrifice upon the alter of environmentalism
Praise Jesus! :P

RE: Crickets
By Azethoth on 8/22/2012 12:57:51 AM , Rating: 2
Wait what? Why can we not save the environment AND screw the poor people in the poor countries at the same time? It seems reasonable to me because I do not know any of them.

RE: Crickets
By Mint on 8/22/2012 6:40:54 PM , Rating: 2
LOL, conservative brothers? I'm not a conservative in any sense of the word. I'm a scientist (well, an engineer to be specific), so I came to these conclusions by looking at data.

I don't look at it in some ignorant conservative fingers-in-my-ears-AGW-doesn't-exist way, nor in some hippie AGW-must-be-stopped-now-or-the-planet-will-die kind of way. I prefer the neutral, honest way.

This is how I see it: AGW is real and the science is fairly solid, but that's not enough. No country will individually get any tangible benefits from addressing it in a non-nuclear way, so any investment is goodwill towards the betterment of humanity. That's the same class of world issues as ending world poverty, disease, illiteracy, etc. It's bad enough that the west is too selfish to spare 1% of its resources towards the latter, but even worse if we somehow come up with trillions and then spite them by using it for another cause.

It's consistent with my objection to invading Iraq to "free the Iraqi people". It may or may not wind up a net positive (we'll never know without a parallel universe), but regardless of that, it unequivocally had extremely poor cost-benefit compared to solving any number of other world conflicts. Just an awful waste of our rightly limited appetite for military action, like non-nuclear CO2 reduction is a waste of limited global goodwill.

Anyway, there isn't much for you conservatives to worry about. Despite conspiracy theories about Chu getting his way, Obama barely even tried pushing for a carbon tax or emission caps. Wind is getting a much bigger lobbying effort from natural gas tycoons like Pickens (nuclear and coal can't ramp fast enough to take care of intermittency) than environmentalists.

RE: Crickets
By KoS on 8/23/2012 8:43:20 AM , Rating: 2
What about the cost benefit analyst of having to continue the no-fly zones if we hadn't toppled the Iraqi govt? Let alone the potential continued attackes on other govt assests around the world due to the no-fly zones; ie, embassies bombings in Africa as a example.

We seem to forget about that part of the Iraqi equation.

But anyway. Please the science that man is causing the current warming trend isn't solid. It's currently, we see it's warmer and CO2 has increased. Beyond a doubt is true. But is the increase of CO2 the cause? That is still a matter of debate. But lets cut off our nose to spite our face. It's evil mans fault.

RE: Crickets
By Mint on 8/23/2012 1:12:47 PM , Rating: 2
WTF do embassy bombings in Africa have to do with invading Iraq? You can't seriously believe that the cost of no-fly zones for decades comes anywhere near the cost of the invasion, especially when the human toll is taken into account.

No, that's not how the AGW conclusion is made. We've studied how CO2 causes a radiative forcing through spectrometer analysis (rock solid), and we've looked at climate sensitivity in a many ways with outcomes in the same ballpark. There are attributes to GHG warming which don't apply to other modes of warming. We've eliminated a ton of other possible natural variables and there's really no alternative hypotheses that have remained valid.

AGW theory is not the weakest link in calling for emissions reduction. The determination of societal costs, however, is. There's way too much conjecture here as opposed to science. If the anti-AGW movements weren't so idiotic and continually making easily disprovable claims (e.g. AGW violating thermodynamics, human CO2 production being small vs. natures and therefore "obviously" irrelevant, pointing out a few cold spells in winter, claiming cooling for a decade in 2008, and a bunch of other BS) they would focus on this and make the same simple calculations that I did using the IPCC's own numbers.

RE: Crickets
By KoS on 8/23/2012 1:58:18 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe you should read the rationals Osama gave in attacking US itself and it's assests abroad.

The embassies bombings, in part, was because of the no-fly zones over Iraq. Along with the Kolbart Towers bombing. We were enforcing the no-fly zone, at least from one of the places, in Saudia Arabia. Osama didn't like we had troops in the "holy land".

In the end it all ties together.

The biggest problem with you analyst of AGW and the like is.....
using the IPCC's own numbers.
You are a tad guliable.

We have eliminated all other possible natural variables??? What?? I'm told by people they can't account for all the variables as is, so how can we say we have elimiated all possiblities? Let alone, some of the earlier models didn't take into consideration the Sun or even cloud cover.

In end no one can say with 100% what is going on! Like I have said before, let it warm or cool, I really don't care and will do the best to adapt to any changes. I hope it warms, would hate the cooling effect in our area.

Emissions and pollution that is another topic.

RE: Crickets
By JediJeb on 8/23/2012 11:43:38 AM , Rating: 2
LOL, conservative brothers? I'm not a conservative in any sense of the word. I'm a scientist (well, an engineer to be specific), so I came to these conclusions by looking at data.

Quite interesting how data can be interpreted differently. I am a scientist, chemist by training, and I have also looked at the data and I do agree that the climate is changing in a warmer direction, but do not believe that human activity has more than a tiny influence if any at all on that trend.

One trend that I have seen in several data sets is that temperature rise actually precedes CO2 level rise. This is exactly what you would expect to see as the Earth naturally warms because CO2 is less soluble in water as the temperature increases, therefore it will leave the oceans and move into the atmosphere naturally as the temperatures rise. Also even though the radical side of the AGW crowd like to say that the CO2 rise is almost 100% due to human activity, that does not pan out because if that is what is causing rising temperatures then it should precede temperature rise.

There are still too many variables to consider to make any 100% assumptions about what is causing it and where it may end up. Reducing pollution is always a good thing, but defining CO2 as a pollutant I can't get behind yet. If we find that water is the worse problem causing warming do we then somehow try to regulate how water evaporates? I bought in to AGW in the beginning, but the proponents just kept getting more and more radical with their predictions and "fixes" to the point I began to look into the data, and then I began to not believe as much of what I was hearing. As with many things, the truth often lies in the boring middle ground than on the wild fringes, but that boring middle ground just doesn't sell so people tend to over hype both ends of the argument to try to get attention.

RE: Crickets
By Mint on 8/23/2012 2:08:22 PM , Rating: 2
The data sets you're talking about have no real bearing determining causal relationships in the last century. To make an analogy, if I had a NO2/N2O4 system in a balloon, and put that balloon in chamber that lets me change it's pressure, the fraction that is N2O4 changes goes up with higher pressure (and indeed it will lag the pressure change). Now, if I had a tube going into the balloon and injected N2O4 in it, would you deny that the balloon's pressure increase was due to the N2O4 addition (since causality was the other way in the chamber experiment)? Of course not!

In fact, that data supports the notion of a positive feedback factor: as the CO2 injection heats up the earth, you an additional amount of CO2 from the oceans. It's not enough to cause instability/runaway, but it's enough to create a gain. Same with water vapor, as you likely know from Clausius-Clapeyron. The fallacy among AGW-skeptics that more evaporation leads to more clouds also flies in the face of this law: the higher evaporation occurs precisely because the warmer air will hold more water, and needs more before precipitating.

Indisputable evidence for AGW is an impossible standard, because we don't have another earth that we can play with, and the time scales are too long. Using that as a basis to deny AGW is the same M.O. as evolution denialists. We'll never, ever see first hand evidence that a species can, through variation, randomly develop the genetic code from scratch to produce an eyeball. Is that a good basis to deny that it happened?

Take a look at the Foster-Rahmstoff study:
Can you think of any other earth based phenomena in modern history where mankind has been so clueless that decades of study didn't even put the correct hypothesis on the radar?

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad

Latest Headlines

Most Popular ArticlesAre you ready for this ? HyperDrive Aircraft
September 24, 2016, 9:29 AM
Leaked – Samsung S8 is a Dream and a Dream 2
September 25, 2016, 8:00 AM
Inspiron Laptops & 2-in-1 PCs
September 25, 2016, 9:00 AM
Snapchat’s New Sunglasses are a Spectacle – No Pun Intended
September 24, 2016, 9:02 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki