Sea Ice Area or Extent?

In my last post I made a mistake in processing the data files through excel. I mixed the area and anomaly data around and accidentally posted an Ice Area anomaly. Something I have never seen before but is likely around.

While I am entirely at fault, my previous post isn’t entirely wrong because I was using the Cryosphere page from University of Illinois which shows Area anomaly below but shows the extent curves. Click on the picture to go to the cryosphere page.


This is the hemispheric ice area plot from UIUC.


Here is my bootstrap National Snow Ice Data Center plot of ice AREA.


There is a small difference between these graphs. If you look at the first year on record, the peak maximum in the NSIDC data (graph above) is lower than subsequent peaks. This is differennt from the peaks in the IUIC graph which have been adjusted to have a stronger downslope. I will request the data for this plot from the IUIC guys again but it clearly is another adjustment in favor of AGW,

Well what’s the difference between extent and area. From the NDSIC web page.

total ice extent is computed by summing the number of pixels with at least 15 percent ice concentration multiplied by the area per pixel.

Total ice-covered area is defined as the area of each pixel with at least 15 percent ice concentration multiplied by the ice fraction in the pixel (0.15-1.00).

So Area includes the amount of ice in each pixel, extent just includes the area of pixels with Ice. It seems to me that Area would be a better measure of the amount of ice in the hemisphere but the extent anomaly (which has a much stronger downslope) is often used.

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Problems in the NH Sea Ice Anomaly

This post contains data which was mislabeled as Sea ice exent. When all data used was accidentally sea ice area. The post is otherwise valid. For an updated version of it

Sea Ice Area or Extent?

I have been working on sea ice data for the last week. Learning the collection methods and the differences between the data. I have found several interesting things, some of which will be discussed in future posts. There are two main methods being used for calculating sea ice extent at NSIDC. Data page is HERE.

Nasateam is the original method which was discovered to have a few problems in accuracy, however the overall trend is quite similar to the newer bootstrap method. Both have some problems but the trend is quite accurate. We only hear about the northern hemisphere, although the data for the southern hemisphere has equal quality.

Let’s look at the northern hemisphere nasateam algorithm data first.


The red line is the overall trend for up to 2006 which is the length of the data on the site. The slope is -0.02618 million km/year or 2.6 million Km^2/century. I didn’t want to use the ice anomaly data as presented by our govt scientists so I used my own method. To keep it simple, I separated the data into years and averaged all the same dates together. All the Jan 1’s 2’s 3’s …… I got the following curve.

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Tamino’s Imagination

I was working on a post on the polar caps tonight and for the past week because I am sick of beating up on the idiotic policies of our collective governments. I went to Tamino who put a placeholder in his blog on ice extent and noticed a new post — YES WE CAN. His new post exposed every one of his extreme left tendencies and well frankly… he pissed me off.

Let’s look at some quotes but first a song.


For sure one of my favorite songs but the message is one of idealistic communism, a beautiful message — that doesn’t work. This is where Tamino lives, in imaginary land.

Damn good song though.

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Ex IPCC and World Scientists Push Back on Global Warming

An interesting article, I hope it turns into a big deal. Link below.

UN Blowback: More Than 650 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims

POZNAN, Poland – The UN global warming conference currently underway in Poland is about to face a serious challenge from over 650 dissenting scientists from around the globe who are criticizing the climate claims made by the UN IPCC and former Vice President Al Gore. Set for release this week, a newly updated U.S. Senate Minority Report features the dissenting voices of over 650 international scientists, many current and former UN IPCC scientists, who have now turned against the UN. The report has added about 250 scientists (and growing) in 2008 to the over 400 scientists who spoke out in 2007. The over 650 dissenting scientists are more than 12 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers.

Here is a list of some of the comments by the scientists.

“I am a skeptic…Global warming has become a new religion.” – Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever.

“Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly….As a scientist I remain skeptical.” – Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology and formerly of NASA who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called “among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years.”

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Class Action Suits to Stop Global Warming

I am tired of posts on the news but recently there is so much rubbish going on in the climate change world that it is hard to ignore.    The global warming crowd is winning, not because of improved information or better science but because of the greed of politicians.

This is  an article from the Guardian in the UK.

Science paves way for climate lawsuits

The article describes some phd who claims that now after our years of top notch science (sarcasm) we can calculate the damage caused by a storm and how much less the damage would have been without global warming. –No really he said it, I’m not kidding.

He said: “We are starting to get to the point that when an adverse weather event occurs we can quantify how much more likely it was made by human activity. And people adversely affected by climate change today are in a position to document and quantify their losses. This is going to be hugely important.”

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Global Sea Ice Extent Experienced Minimal Change!!!?

I have been working on a post on sea ice. As many of you know I am fairly new to climatology and am learning as I go. This means every post requires more work and study than it appears. Well tonight in my hours of study I ran across something interesting. Well rather surprising. Many of us have seen the northern hemisphere sea ice but how many of us have seen the global ice extent charts.

Anecdotally I have heard that antarctica, long ignored as the butt of the world has been growing ice. I also have read and seen graphs indicating that it isn’t enough to compensate for the arctic loss. I never have added the totals together from north and south so I beleived what I heard. Of course, the reports consistently sound like bad news for the earth overall. Well I found a graph today, and not a small one physically or meaningfully.

Sorry about the size, I can’t make thumbnailing work but look at this beast. The link to the full size image is below.


This is the global sea ice measured by satellite. Where’s the warming is what I want to know? All we hear about is the northern hemisphere but the global numbers haven’t changed much at all.

WOW, what is going on here? Wasn’t 1998 the warmest year on record?

Here’s the link check it out yourself.

This is really stunning to me, not what I expected at all. The data above is collected by satellite reflection of ocean surfaces, it is harder to mess with. I would tell anyone to read the info yourselves and don’t trust the news but it is good to remember that even I am not immune.

There isn’t any real ice melting going on in the 90’s whatsoever and after 2000 it is incredibly minimal.

I had been working on what I used to consider more interesting stuff but now my head is spinning on this one.

Can anyone help me verify this by a different organization? Not that the University of Illinois is a bad reference. Wow!!

I have to be missing something.

Do you think they’re serious yet?

Obama has scheduled a meeting with Dr. Al Gore. The powerful Nobel Prize winning mind behind the enlightened movie Inconvenient Truth. Presumably they will discuss issues related to mankind’s coming demise. Since Dr. Gore is leading the charge in cap and trade (an Obama promise) for a nominal fee, he clearly should be the visionary behind our future national policy.

It is hard to describe the warmth and comfort that comes over one when thinking of these brilliant men working together to finally address this most important issue with the intensity and clarity required. It is high time the ignorant conservatives got out of the way and let the business at hand be done.

“I will make a commitment that Al Gore will be at the table and play a central part in us figuring out how we solve this [climate change] problem,” Obama said in April.

From CNN

It is unfortunate that the conservative obstructionists prevented the inevitable truth from coming out, now the costs are likely to be even higher.

Perhaps it’s not too little too late. Oh to be a fly on that wall.

Ten Global Warming Myths

Myth #1 – Temperatures are warmer today than ever in history.

The truth is we’re certain that temperatures were hotter than today in the past but how long ago we really don’t really know. The most popular temperature reconstructions are full of flawed math and data. Others don’t have enough verification to rely on them. Several show global temperatures 1000 years ago which are much higher than today and 3000 year old plants and trees have been found under retreating glaciers.

Myth #2 – There is a consensus among climatologists about global warming.

Most climatologists probably agree, but climatology is a small field funded by government organizations. Those who disagree openly, receive little funding but they do still exist. Weathermen, chemists, physicysts, foresters, solar experts, engineers and thousands of informed people recognize the issue isn’t settled.

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Clear Cut Forests

Ok, another grumpy little post. I think I’ve found my niche, I hope not. Every time I read around the internet I get myself all pissed off. Less internet might be the answer but today, the pressure built again so here I am.


Clearcut forests, well nearly clearcut forests are the issue with I love the title, there friendly and their green, they have both. Since we now live in opposite world where taxes=stimulus and socialism (change) is a new idea everything fit’s perfectly. Well our good friends at friendlygreen have made an issue of the boreal forest and Kleenex which uses fiber from the forest.

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Global Warming Theft

Warning, if you want a quiet read about math read a different Air Vent post, this one is about the worlds rapidly changing political situation.

Link to stupid article here

Our new world government is lining up all the pieces now that the main holdout country has elected Obama.

UNITED NATIONS — Countries around the world are looking to Barack Obama for leadership in reaching a global climate treaty next year, but no nation will be able to singlehandedly deliver a final agreement, a senior U.N. official said Thursday.

Robert Orr, assistant secretary-general for policy coordination and strategic planning, said the president-elect’s comments on the need to address climate change have raised “a lot of hope” _ particularly at a time when some governments are talking about delaying their efforts to curb emissions, partly because of the economic crisis.

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Straightening the Hockey Stick Blade

This is a follow up to my post on Dr. Craig Loehles paper on divergence, The 800lb Gorrilla in the Hockey Stick’s Locker Room. Dr. Loehle demonstrated what will happen to historic temperature trends in tree ring data if we have a non-linear system, citing several papers which refer to an inverse quadratic relationship of tree growth to temperature. Inverse quadratic means that as temp warms, trees first grow more to some limit where additional temperature has the reverse effect, slowing growth. This would explain why tree ring data has so little up or down movement in history and also why extreme tree ring widths are not found in nature (the hockey stick handle).

What we need to understand first is that any noisy signal sorted by correlation is distorted into what you wish to find. In this post I use R to generate ARMA matched tree ring proxies, I inserted an inverse quadratic signal in the proxies and then went looking for it.


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The 800lb Gorrilla in the Hockey Stick’s Locker Room

Divergence is a serious problem in tree ring climatology reconstructions. Basically divergence means data which years ago vaguely correlated to temperature, diverged from temperature in recent years. So trees which used to be thought of as good thermometers — aren’t. This doesn’t stop scientists from using them however but some creativity in handling this inconvenient data is required. For instance, Mann 08 chopped off the divergent parts and pasted on his own non-divergent data.

In September 2007 Dr. Craig Loehle published a paper on the non-linear nature of tree growth. He holds a PhD in Mathematical Ecology and has published more than 100 papers in applied mathematics and ecology. In short he is the closest thing to an expert we could hope for on tree growth response to temperature. This paper is available on line at the link below.

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