Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Greenland melting faster than thought?

And faster ice melt in Greenland means faster sea level rise, perhaps a catastrophic sea level rise, all at once.

From the Daily Kos:

Another headline to get used to reading: Greenland ice may be melting faster than previously thought
By Meteor Blades
6 January 2016

Meltwater pours into un moulin bleu in Greenland.
Source: DailyKos
A new scientific study published Monday at Nature Climate Change concludes that more melt water from Greenland may be running off into the ocean than previously calculated. That, of course, means the eventual impact the melting ice sheet of the world’s largest island has on rising sea levels could happen sooner than expected.

For several years, the international team of scientists led by Horst Machguth of the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland have been studying “firn.” This is porous snow resting just under the surface atop dense glacier ice. Because of its porosity, firn contains spaces that hold meltwater. Over time, this firn-held meltwater descends into the glacer where it freezes hard, which keeps it from running off. The study evaluated whether climate change has affected firn’s capacity for holding meltwater. According to the scientists, it has:
Our observations frame the recent exceptional melt summers in 2010 and 2012 (refs 5,6), revealing significant changes in firn structure at different elevations caused by successive intensive melt events. In the upper regions (more than ∼1,900 m[eters] above sea level), firn has undergone substantial densification, while at lower elevations, where melt is most abundant, porous firn has lost most of its capability to retain meltwater. Here, the formation of near-surface ice layers renders deep pore space difficult to access, forcing meltwater to enter an efficient surface discharge system and intensifying ice sheet mass loss earlier than previously suggested.

Bad year for Arctic sea ice, coming up!

After a huge, intense, hurricane force storm brought above-freezing temps to the North Pole (it's supposed to be 40 below), Arctic Sea ice is exhibiting record daily lows, below the 2 standard deviations from 1981-2010 average line.

Source: NSIDC

Find your weird weather here.

Excellent photos and graphics of strong storms and weird and other noteworthy weather events on twitter by the National Weather Service.

Latest from NWS OPC - Hurricane Force Low at Aleutian Islands.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Will 2016 Be a Banner Year for Hurricanes?

Hat tip to Andy in SD.

 "Current Hurricane estimate for 2016. Still very early and speculative."


Looks to me the folks at WeatherTrends360 are predicting that the hurricane goddesses are going to do a reprise of the 2012, 2011 or even the 2004 hurricane season -- which was a doozy!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Weird Clouds in Norway

Very strange clouds appeared in Norway on December 16th:

dtlange at Robertscribbler noted:

Nacreous clouds appear around the Arctic Circle

Polar stratospheric clouds, also known as nacreous clouds (from nacre, or mother of pearl), are icy structures that form in the lower stratosphere (15 – 25 km) when temperatures drop to around -85 ºC (-121 ºF). They are best observed when the Sun is between 1 and 6 degrees below the horizon.
“High-altitude sunlight shining through tiny ice particles ~10µm across produce the characteristic bright iridescent colors by diffraction and interference. Once thought to be mere curiosities, some PSCs are now known to be associated with the destruction of ozone,” Dr. Tony Phillips of the explains.

Truls Tiller photographed these over Tromsø city, Norway, on December 16, 2015: