• Member Statistics

    15,569
    Total Members
    7,904
    Most Online
    havaninotlari
    Newest Member
    havaninotlari
    Joined
Sign in to follow this  
Hambone

What's happening in Greenland this winter?

Recommended Posts

2 hours ago, Hambone said:

But a rather important part. 

I agree. It seems to me that in the media Warm Weather can = Climate Change but Cold Weather can only = Normal Weather and no one dares talk about anything other than Warm Extremes. Anyway, the Acc. SMB has been well above normal for months now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Newman said:

I agree. It seems to me that in the media Warm Weather can = Climate Change but Cold Weather can only = Normal Weather and no one dares talk about anything other than Warm Extremes. Anyway, the Acc. SMB has been well above normal for months now.

 

43 minutes ago, Hambone said:

Crickets....

 

http://polarportal.dk/nyheder/nbsp/nyheder/heavy-snowfall-in-greenland/

 

This winter has seen a series of unusual weather hit the Arctic in general, it has been much warmer than average in the high Arctic since October though there have also been some periods of extreme cold, especially in western Greenland but also new high temperature records have been set in the east and north.

There has also been a succession of heavy storms hitting Greenland. Starting in October these storms have dropped a lot more snow than average over Greenland, particularly on the eastern side and in the south. This increasing mass has not gone unnoticed and we have received a number of questions about it, so here we attempt to summarise what we know and can infer about the winter 2016-2017 and what it might mean to the overall surface mass balance year 2016-2017.

The surface mass balance year goes from September to August, with most of the snow falling between September and May (known as the accumulation season) and melt generally dominating June-August (known as the ablation season).  The accumulation season got off to a flying start in October, when a series of large storms hit the east coast of Greenland dropping 264mm of rain in the main town of Tasiilaq in 25 days, compared to the average for October of 83mm for the whole of October. Most of the precipitation from these storms fell as rain at lower levels but as this freezes in the surface snow over the ice sheet it still adds ice to the ice sheet. However, these storms also meant that Autumn was record warm in east Greenland with all DMI weather stations on the east coast recording the warmest or second warmest October on record. These records stretch back to 1873 in some places on the east coast.

The October storms boosted the accumulation of snow over the ice sheet far above what is normal for the time of year as we see in the curve below, though since December, the amount of snow falling over the ice sheet has followed a more normal pattern.

If we look at the picture over the whole of Greenland we can see that in fact northwest Greenland has actually had less snowfall than usual at this time of year. This is because north Atlantic storms have been driving up the east coast but north western Greenland has been relatively dry compared to the average.

The warm Arctic this winter and the amount of snow falling over Greenland are linked. Warm air can hold more water vapour than cold air. Projections from climate models suggest that as the atmosphere warms, there will also be increased snowfall over Greenland (particularly in the Southeast), however there will also be more melting and the question is really how far do these two processes balance each other. To date all model projections for the future suggest that melt and runoff will dominate over the increased accumulation of snow in a warmer world leading to retreat of the ice sheet and sea level rise. However, it’s important to remember that unusual winters like this one reflect regional weather patterns and on a climate timescale there is still significant variability from one year to another.

As we have stated before, the surface mass budget of the ice sheet is best viewed over a year or longer to get a sense of what is happening to the ice sheet – it is the difference between looking at weather and climate. When viewed over the year the three most important months for the annual surface mass balance budget are the summer ones of June, July and August. The amount of melting in the summer is much more important in determining the mass budget over the ice sheet than the winter months.  It is therefore still far too early to suggest that the Greenland ice sheet will not lose more mass than it gains this year.

Finally, we should be clear that the period over which the observations or model simulations are made is important. On the polar portal we currently use a model reference period of 1990-2013 (the grey band in the top figure) that is relatively short and covers a period with relatively low precipitation when compared with the few longer records available from DMI weather stations. In the next few weeks we expect to update the surface mass balance product to reflect a newer improved version of the underlying model and this will also be referenced to a more standard 30 year period of 1981-2010. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SMB gain at higher elevations and in the depth of winter was expected. In fact, gains can be expected in those areas right up until the temp trips over the 0C line in summer. The key for the sheet's stability and survival is the height of the summer ablation/wet zone. That has been steadily rising over the longer term.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/11/2017 at 7:03 PM, Jack Frost said:

 

We are doomed...

Not doomed, but no denying increased glacier melt from Greenland can cause quite a rise in sea level. Sea level rise of just a few feet will cause large areas of migration along highly populated coast lines around the world. I'm not a believer in doomsday AGW, but human induced warming will cause quite a bit of inconveniences. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sure haven't heard much about catastrophic melting in Greenland this summer. Maybe that's because ice and snow there are at near record highs for the summer melt season. In fact Summit, Greenland just set the coldest temperature ever -33C in the northern hemisphere for the month of July.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, iluvsnow said:

Sure haven't heard much about catastrophic melting in Greenland this summer. Maybe that's because ice and snow there are at near record highs for the summer melt season. In fact Summit, Greenland just set the coldest temperature ever -33C in the northern hemisphere for the month of July.

It is a very impressive feat, but still doesn't mean anything in the overall sea of warming. Climate change is the large scale view, small term cold weather outbreaks will still happen in a warming world, I don't understand why anyone would think long term melting is going away just because of record cold a few years out of a bunch. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its the disingenuous media that raises the shackles of we pragmatists in the AGW debate. The record ice and snow levels in Greenland this summer are ignored. Yet anything close to a record heat event is blazed across the headlines. If Greenland were to be experiencing record heat and melt...it would be the coming of Armageddon,per the media. Thus...the skepticism for those that do their own research.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, iluvsnow said:

Its the disingenuous media that raises the shackles of we pragmatists in the AGW debate. The record ice and snow levels in Greenland this summer are ignored. Yet anything close to a record heat event is blazed across the headlines. If Greenland were to be experiencing record heat and melt...it would be the coming of Armageddon,per the media. Thus...the skepticism for those that do their own research.

The weather conditions over Greenland aren't being ignored - where do you think the information is coming from?  But the Surface Mass Balance (SMB) is only part of the overall situation in Greenland - so focusing on it tot he exclusion of total mass change is simply grasping at straws.  The long-term GIS mass loss of around 300,000,000,000 tons of ice each year continues unabated and according to some studies is accelerating.

Grace_curve_La_DK_20160300.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, PhillipS said:

The weather conditions over Greenland aren't being ignored - where do you think the information is coming from?  But the Surface Mass Balance (SMB) is only part of the overall situation in Greenland - so focusing on it tot he exclusion of total mass change is simply grasping at straws.  The long-term GIS mass loss of around 300,000,000,000 tons of ice each year continues unabated and according to some studies is accelerating.

Grace_curve_La_DK_20160300.png

The media reports climate change in small scale events.  The narrative is more dramatic that way.  If Greenland total ice is at some kind of all time record for summer ice, to me, that is more important than say, a peice of sea ice breaking away from Antarctica, usually stated to be the size of Delaware or Rhode Island as though that's relevant.  This greenland ice story coverage is minimal.  My own view is because ice build up doesn't sound as apocalyptic as giant islands of rogue ice floating out of control, therefore no one will be frightened enough to read it, therefore the story isn't economical to report. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, cleetussnow said:

The media reports climate change in small scale events.  The narrative is more dramatic that way.  If Greenland total ice is at some kind of all time record for summer ice, to me, that is more important than say, a peice of sea ice breaking away from Antarctica, usually stated to be the size of Delaware or Rhode Island as though that's relevant.  This greenland ice story coverage is minimal.  My own view is because ice build up doesn't sound as apocalyptic as giant islands of rogue ice floating out of control, therefore no one will be frightened enough to read it, therefore the story isn't economical to report. 

I've never been much to gather opinions from media sources regardless of where they come from. I follow science, mathematics, and real life observations. The media is in the business to sell its story, politicans are in it to stay in politics and will or won't do certain things based on their constituents or lobyist. I do understand why there are those who put more extremist view points in AGW, but it does do it some diservice. Humanity needs to figure out how it can use carbon free, or near carbon free energy on a very large scale, and those extremist are trying to get governments to enact large scale change, and not slow to no change that would probably happen if the threat wasn't taken seriously. Even if AGW wasn't a threat or even gasp a hoax, it is still in humanities best interest to get on carbon free or near carbon free energy asap. Renewables are the closest thing to energy independence that exist. Not to mention if we as a species want to travel to other planets, we are going to have to learn to do without hyrdocarbons, and low pollution solutions. 

 

 

Side note, I'm all for individuals doing their part in fighting AGW, whether it be putting solar panels on their homes, buying an electric vehicle, etc. but honestly governments of the world HAVE the power to enact large scale change. The people in charge have to take greater measures, if that means outlawing coal powerplants, ICE vehicles, giving greater subsidies to electric vehicles, then so be it. I think its more damaging to the AGW movement if these things aren't done. I often wonder, electric grid caretakers often complain that renewables are terrible to manage and inefficient (this maybe true), but why aren't we investing billions to modernize our electricity grid to handle the variations of intermittent renewable power? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.