Did a January Hurricane Just Set off a Massive Greenland Melt Event in Winter?

This freakish Winter there’s something odd and ominous afoot.

We’ve seen unprecedented above-freezing temperatures at the North Pole coincident with record low daily sea ice extents. We’ve seen global temperatures hitting new, very extreme record highs. We’ve seen climate change related storms raging across the globe — flooding both the UK and the Central US, firing off record hurricanes during January in both the Pacific and the Atlantic — even as other regions swelter under record heat and drought.

Now, it appears that Greenland is also experiencing an unprecedented melt during wintertime.

image

(The remnants of hurricane Alex being pulled into a storm system just south of Greenland on Friday January 15, 2016. An event that then flooded both Baffin Bay and Western Greenland with warm, tropical air. At the same time, Greenland observers both noted what appears to be ice mass losses over Western Greenland as well as a possible large melt water outflow issuing from the Disko Bay area. Image source: Earth Nullschool.)

Greenland Melt During Winter

Greenland — the last bastion of major continental glacial ice in the Northern Hemisphere. An island archipelago dwarfed by great mountains of frozen water towering as high as two miles. Though the Arctic sea ice provides quite extensive coverage — in the range of millions of square miles — the great Greenland Ice Sheet contains the majority of the remaining frozen fresh water in the Northern Hemisphere. And though the extreme ongoing sea ice melt does not contribute to sea level rise, Greenland melt is another matter entirely. In total, if all of the Greenland Ice Sheet flooded into the world ocean, it would raise global sea levels by an average of 23 feet. Enough to inundate pretty much every coastal city in the world.

And Greenland is melting, pushing those sea levels higher. Contributing hundreds of cubic kilometers of melt water into the world ocean system every year since at least the middle of the first decade of the 21st Century. Creating an ominous ocean heat-conveyer that spreads fresh, cool water out at the surface even as it pulls deep, warmer water directly in toward the many glaciers whose towering faces plunge into the ocean itself.

During recent years, most of Greenland’s melt has occurred during the hot season of summer even as the ice sheet underwent re-freeze and a pseudo-recovery during Winter. Sure, net mass loss was in the range of hundreds of billions of tons each year. But we still had consistent and uninterrupted mass gain during Winter.

Unfortunately, with human-forced warming there was always a danger that, during Wintertime, we’d see an increase in melt pressure as well. At issue is the way in which greenhouse gasses fundamentally warm the atmosphere and oceans. Possessing the ability to re-radiate solar energy, greenhouse gasses have a greater impact on temperatures during times of darkness and during Winter. In other words, we’d expect nighttime temperatures to warm faster than daytime temperatures and we’d expect wintertime temperatures to warm faster than summertime temperatures. Perhaps more ominously, the oceans are very efficient holders of heat and are less impacted by seasonal variance than the lands. In other words, if the world’s oceans warm, they re-radiate much more heat back to the atmosphere and ice sheet during Winter than they do during Summer.

This kind of greenhouse gas warming is an assault on the winter season itself. It’s something we’ve seen in the frequent extreme polar warming episodes during recent years. One that this year generated a very odd and ominous period of above-freezing temperatures at the North Pole. But if there’s something even more odd than temperatures at the North Pole hitting above freezing during Winter, it’s an incident of substantial melt occurring over the Greenland ice sheets during what should be the coldest, darkest season.

January Hurricane Blows a Tropical Wind into the Arctic

Over the past few days, just such a major heat-up has been underway across a large section of Western Greenland. Warm winds flowing off the North Atlantic — driven by hurricane Alex’s merging with powerful lows south of Greenland — have roared up over the southern coastal ranges. Meanwhile, warm, tropical air has infiltrated northward over Baffin Bay. The net result is temperatures approaching 20-40 degrees Fahrenheit above average (16 to 22 C above average) over a broad region of Western Greenland.

Greenland Warm UpGreenland warm up temperature

(By Sunday, 15-36 F above average temperatures had come to dominate much of southern and western Greenland. This translated to near or above freezing temperatures over sections of the Jacobshavn Glacier. Image source: Climate Reanalyzer.)

Over the past few days, as indicated in this recent post by Jason Box, the region near Disko and Uummannaq Bays — both in Baffin Bay and along the coastal ranges — has felt the full force of this substantial warm-up. By today, a large section of the coastal offshore waters and a wedge of glacier-covered Western Greenland all experienced near or above-freezing temperatures. A very rare event for Greenland and Baffin Bay during wintertime and one that appears to have coincided with a possible large glacial melt water outflow from the Jackobshavn Glacier.

Spot temperature readings along the southern reaches of the Jacobshavn Glacier hit 1 C or 34 F today according to GFS measures. Meanwhile near freezing temperatures have dominated Niaqornat on Uummannaq Bay (forecast to hit 32 F on Tuesday). Ilulissat on Disko Bay is showing 36 F temperatures at 12:00 AM Monday and is forecast to hit 41 F on Tuesday, even as Nuuk (about 200 miles south of Ilulissat) is showing 40 F temperatures at 12:00 AM Monday. These are all extremely warm readings for Greenland during Winter.

Greenland Glacial Melt During Winter

Disko and Uummannaq Bays are notable in that they are the outflow zone of the Jackobshavn Glacier — one of the swiftest-melting glaciers on Greenland. Over recent years, it has been one of the primary hot-spots for summer Greenland ice mass loss. But during recent days, mass loss also appears to have occurred in this area.

Western Greenland Melting in January

(Western Greenland has shown surface mass losses during recent days as in this January 17 mass balance data provided by DMI.)

Dr Jason Box notes that surface mass balance totals have consistently shown up as negative over the past week in the DMI measure. A record that continued today. Though Dr. Box states that such a negative mass balance could simply be chalked up to wintertime sublimation, the consistent losses showing up in the monitor over the past seven days have coincided temperatures in a melt-inducing range.

In addition, Dr Box also indicates a disturbing flushing of ice away from both Disko and Uummannaq Bays occurring on January 16th. In the satellite shot, both sea ice and ice burgs are moved en-mass from the bays and on out into the waters of Baffin.

Large Melt Water Pulse From Jacobshavn?

Offshore winds could be the cause. But, again, the ice movement coincides with indications of mass loss over Greenland’s Western glaciers as well as a period of much warmer than normal, above-freezing temperatures.

Large meltwater pulse from Jacobshavn

(Did a huge melt water pulse issue from the Jacobshavn Glacier on January 16, 2016? Dr Jason Box appears to be concerned that it has. Image source: Dr. Jason Box.)

Perhaps more ominously, this widespread clearing of ice from these Arctic bays occurs in concert with what appears to be a large ice-calving event along the ocean-facing front of the Jacobshavn Glacier. In the above graphic by Dr. Jason Box (see more here), we see a large retreat of the glacier together with what looks like a major sediment outflow. Sediment hitting water in this way would be a sign that a very large volume of water had been expelled along the basal zones of the Jacobshavn. In addition, the ice itself appears to have been forcibly ejected. This apparent sediment flush, the concave bowing of sea ice away from Disko and Uummannaq and the inland recession of the calving face are all indicators that something terrible is afoot in Western Greenland.

A large flush of melt water coming from Greenland during Winter would, indeed, be that terrible thing. Something that now may become a more and more common feature of our age as Winter continues its ongoing retreat against a relentless assault by human greenhouse gas emissions.

 

Links:

What is Up in Disko-Uummannaq Bay, Greenland January 9-16

Mauri Pelto @ Realglacier

Earth Nullschool

Climate Reanalyzer

DMI

Hat Tip to Colorado Bob

Leave a comment

194 Comments

  1. Hi Robert,

    you seem to refer to Mauri Pelto, not Jason Box?

    Best,

    Alex

    Reply
    • I link to Mauri at top due to ongoing updates from his Twitter feed. Box is referenced throughout. Both are clearly involved in the discussion. Please also follow related ASIB links in the comments.

      Reply
  2. wili

     /  January 18, 2016

    The katabatic wind-gust explanation would not very well explain the sediment, would it?

    Reply
    • Griffin

       /  January 18, 2016

      You are correct wili. It would be very helpful to have some sort of verification of sediment and salinity levels on-site. Saying this makes me “Captain Obvious” I know, but if we are talking about something this significant…

      Reply
    • I agree with Griff here. We need not only surface monitoring, but ocean monitoring and underwater monitoring for these big, ocean fronting glaciers. They’re clearly in retreat — some in very rapid retreat. And the science on how these giants could go down is still evolving. Not really captain obvious. I’d call it captain precaution😉 .

      Reply
  3. redskylite

     /  January 18, 2016

    ‘Things are looking very, very grim’: Cyclone Victor lashes Cook Islands

    “If we get the worst case scenario, she intensifies to category four and we get the 20 to 40 waves and 120 knot northerlies then there’s very little we can do.

    ‘We’re going to be devastated.”

    Fiji Meteorological Service predicted Cyclone Victor will intensify to a category four storm later this afternoon.

    https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/world/things-are-looking-very-grim-cyclone-victor-lashes-cook-islands

    Reply
  4. johnm33

     /  January 18, 2016

    There was a massive outflow of less saline water from Uummannaq in december too, started about the 5th, I couldn’t find signs of it except in SSS from Hycom

    Reply
    • redskylite

       /  January 18, 2016

      Very timely launch of U.S/European Jason-3 today to accurately measure effects of the sea level. The high winter Greenland temperatures are worrisome.

      Reply
  5. Ryan in New England

     /  January 18, 2016

    We have front row seats for what are remarkable, rapid and devastating changes. Just think back to a few decades ago. It would’ve been unthinkable to imagine the North Pole above freezing and Greenland melting in the cold, dark depths of Winter. Not only that,but we have record flooding on the Mississippi and hurricanes in the Atlantic and the Pacific, and we’re about as far from hurricane season as you can get.

    The season of Winter has shifted to something else. Sure, we still see cold. But now we also have the very real potential to experience any type of weather event during the Winter months, even storms and temperatures that are usually reserved for Spring, Fall and even Summer. A profound change in a geological blink of an eye.

    Reply
  6. wili

     /  January 18, 2016

    More discussion of this, with links and images, at neven’s site: http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,154.msg68528.html#msg68528

    Reply
    • wili

       /  January 18, 2016

      Here’s incessant-poster ASLR’s take on what happened, based on what he read here:

      “An expulsion of basal melt-water from the bottom of Jakobshavn could have been facilitated by the relatively high-tides helping to partially lift the glacier near the grounding line, thus reducing the contact pressure sufficiently to allow the basal melt-water pressure to break the seal at the grounding line.”

      Another veteran poster at ASI forum, johnm33, concurs.

      Reply
      • You’ve got all these storms at the mouth of Baffin Bay driving water that way. I’d expect the storm enhanced total variability to be rather high this year. But it does appear we’ve had melt and physical pressure on these sea facing glaciers during winter this year from both the air, the up glacier potential melt, the internal melt holding heat content through winter, and directly applied to the glacial base through ocean warming, sea level rise, and storm intensification.

        Reply
    • Thanks for the links, will. It’s good to see the lively discussion surrounding this event.

      Reply
  7. Kevin Jones

     /  January 18, 2016

    NASA and NOAA will hold a teleconference 11 a.m. Wed Jan. 20 to announce 2015 global temperatures.

    Reply
  8. Syd Bridges

     /  January 18, 2016

    As there is no insolation (or very little just south of the Arctic Circle) over the GIS in winter, the other sources of heat dominate. The ones I can think of are downwelling longwave radiation and heat brought in by the ocean or the atmosphere. With the DLR, ocean currents, and weather systems all adding excess winter heat, it is now having an extra effect which adds to the increasing summer melt. With the increasing moisture this air carries a lot of latent heat. With the specific heat of ice being about half that of liquid water, then 1 gram of water vapor can melt about 6.5 grams of ice at -5 C. So moist air over the GIS is a major threat. But in January, I agree, it is extremely ominous.

    It seems very unlikely that this mass loss could be due to sublimation as the warm air is going to be saturated by moisture as it comes off the ocean. I have seen sublimation in Michigan and Colorado, but that was air from much further north which was warming from Alberta temperatures and so had moisture carrying capacity to spare.

    With the recent SLR spike shown by AVISO, I wonder whether I cm rises are now the new normal, before they get topped in a few years. More creativity may be required from the legislators in the Carolinas.

    Reply
    • wili

       /  January 18, 2016

      Would katabatic winds coming off of the GIS warm appreciably enough to melt sea ice?

      Reply
      • It’s more if the winds exposed ocean surface warm enough to melt the ice and then if related wave action increased melt pressure on the floating ice. But a warm wet wind of this kind could also somewhat enhance surface melt. I’d think that this is more of an Ekman/ ocean churning situation if this is the case.

        Reply
    • My bet is on the warm winds scenario as well. And it does appear that we’ve hit another upslope in the rate of sea level rise. All coastal cities are under the gun now whether they acknowledge it or not.

      Reply
  9. Andy in SD

     /  January 18, 2016

    If we watch the SSTA off of the coast of Labrador into the Atlantic over the next few days to a week, it may provide a proxy validation. If there is a pulse of negative SSTA (or significantly reduced) punching down into the Atlantic without any other explanation, it may provide an anecdotal verification.

    Reply
    • You tend to get these plumes that show up in the waters near Greenland at first. Then some delay in the overall effect on the North Atlantic.

      Reply
  10. Andy in SD

     /  January 18, 2016

    2015 a ‘tipping point’ for climate change: experts
    ===================================

    Much of that seriousness was driven by a crescendo of deadly extreme weather and the growing confidence of science in connecting the dots with long-term shifts in climate.

    …..

    They could point to the most powerful hurricane ever registered; freakish, above-freezing temperatures—if only for a day—at the North Pole in December; or life-threatening droughts in eastern and southern Africa.

    ….

    In third and fourth position are “water crises” and “large-scale involuntary migration”.
    …..

    In the business arena, the balance of investment is shifting away from fossil fuels and towards renewables, Bloomberg New Energy Finance reported recently.

    http://phys.org/news/2016-01-climate-experts.html

    Reply
    • All good news. But we have one heck of a fight ahead of us. 2016 is when denial turns to anger, I think. And that could have some pretty ugly manifestations in the public debate.

      Reply
      • I agree, but the typical scenario is also a reason for extreme caution: First denial, then anger, then panic. The “panic” part can easily lead to geo-engineering attempts. it is astounding to contemplate, given man’s track record with unintended consequences, but some will champion such course just the same.

        Reply
      • Abel Adamski

         /  January 18, 2016

        Breitbart blocked me from commenting years ago. Now they have even blocked me from their site, their take on the Nasa Scientist with cancer. Possibly to prevent their article from being quoted and ridiculed
        Desperation

        Reply
        • I don’t really know what to say about this other than that anyone getting news from Brietbart on climate is bound to be vastly misinformed. I’ve generally gotten pretty disgusted with the way so many sources these days just blithely spout bad information and actively shut down informed commenters. But blocking people from viewing the site is a new low. I honestly don’t know what to say about that. Maybe they want to hide their complicity in the fossil fuel industry’s active campaign to survive by wrecking the Earth’s climate? Or the widespread effort by these sources to block real solutions — renewables, increased efficiency, wholesale shifts away from fossil fuel burning, and various forms of atmospheric carbon draw-down.

          In any case, it will probably be better for your piece of mind. Of course, you could always just change your URL. That would give me a bit of a laugh.

      • Ryan in New England

         /  January 18, 2016

        I’m with Robert, change your URL and post level headed, reality based comments. It’ll drive them nuts. It’s the same thing professional deniers do. They create multiple personalities and inundate comments sections with typical denier misinformation.

        Reply
      • Leland Palmer

         /  January 21, 2016

        Hi Robert-

        I hope 2016 is the year when denial turns to anger. But I think it may also be the year when a demagogue – Donald Trump – harnesses hysterical denial to his ignorant bigoted political ambitions and adds to an already tragic situation.

        The whole authoritarian follower phenomenon where authoritarian followers encourage an authoritarian leader to create an alternate reality for them is truly scary.

        Reply
        • Which is why we have to make certain that Trump gets the election coverage he truly deserves. It’s as if senator snowball ran for president. Climate change denial is writ large all over Trump and with 70 percent of the American people now starting to wake up, I think we need to show the American people the ugliness of the ignorance represented by that vocal and well funded minority.

  11. Andy in SD

     /  January 18, 2016

    Ice sheets may be hiding vast reservoirs of powerful greenhouse gas
    =================================================

    Essentially, ice caps and large glacial features apply pressure & provide thermal buffering in order to maintain large hydrates under them. Concern is these methane stores being given an opportunity to release.

    http://phys.org/news/2016-01-ice-sheets-vast-reservoirs-powerful.html

    Reply
    • Nicholas Swenson

       /  January 19, 2016

      Yeah this pretty damn scary. God forbid we don’t start seriously melting antarctic, which has basically had 35 million years to form clathrates …

      Reply
    • Leland Palmer

       /  January 21, 2016

      Hi Andy –

      Yes, I’ve speculated in the past after corresponding with Gerald Dickens that ice sheet pressure allowed the apparent layer of relict methane hydrate that created the Yamal blowout craters in Siberia to form.

      There is apparently a shallow layer of methane hydrates and free methane in permafrost under wide areas of Siberia, encountered when drilling for gas there, at depths of only 80- 150 meters. Dickens pointed out that this is too shallow to be in the methane hydrate stability zone, but could possibly be relict hydrate left over from when the area was under ice sheets.

      The topography of Yamal and surrounding areas, covered with thousands of circular lakes may be the visible result when such a layer is activated by global warming. The pressure builds up, gas pressure caused pingos form, these pingos burst and create craters. The craters evolve by subsidence and progressive enlargement to form circular lakes, by this model.

      Sources of natural gas within permafrost, north-west Siberia:

      http://research.iarc.uaf.edu/NICOP/DVD/ICOP%201998%20Permafrost%207th%20conf/CD-ROM/Proceedings/PDF001189/151104.pdf

      Reply
      • So there’s this issue of old pockets being liberated by thaw. But you also have this issue of new pockets of organic material being liberated by that and then exposed to microbial action. So what we have is a combination of the old gas pockets subject to the geophysical force of thawing as well as new methane sources being developed through the thaw process itself.

        Reply
      • Leland Palmer

         /  January 21, 2016

        Hi Robert-

        Yes, maybe. The existence of the shallow layer of hydrate under Yamal is somewhat speculative, although based on widespread experience when drilling for natural gas at numerous gas fields in Siberia. I don’t think this has been systematically studied by anyone other than the authors of the paper quoted above. The authors of the paper above though talk about cores from these levels that evolve more gas than they should when placed in water – an indication that hydrate is present.. And drill rigs have had numerous blowouts when punching through this layer.

        It’s not good news, if it’s true, because these Yamal crater blowouts might become much more common. If it is true, the Russians might not want to admit it, since it might interfere with their natural gas exploitation efforts.

        So, yes, I think you are right. New gas and old relict gas, with the newly generated methane gas from rotting permafrost likely being the biggest producing source,in the near future. But the pockets of old relict hydrate might be more like a layer covering huge areas of Siiberia. Look on Google Earth for topography with large numbers of circular lakes – it’s downright scary. There is confusion right now about whether the Yamal blowout process produced some of these lakes, or most of them. But Occams Razor says that one circular lake generating process operating in Siberia is probably simpler than two.

        There is some question about whether ice sheets during the last major glaciation did cover Yamal, although I was able to find one map that showed Yamal glaciated.

        Reply
      • Leland Palmer

         /  January 21, 2016

        Suggestion – email Gerald Dickens about it. He won’t talk to me anymore, he apparently thinks I’m some sort of scientific crank. Compared to him, that’s actually true.

        Reply
      • Leland Palmer

         /  January 22, 2016

        This 1995 paper has Yamal glaciated both during the latest glacial maximum tens of thousands of years ago and during the middle Pleistocene several hundred thousand years ago.

        https://notendur.hi.is//~oi/AG-326%202006%20readings/Russian%20Arctic/Astakhov%20et%20al%2096%20Permafrost%20as%20deformable%20glacier%20bed.pdf

        Several later papers present evidence that Yamal was not glaciated during the most recent glacial maximum.

        So, if there is a shallow 80-150 meter relict hydrate layer under Yamal, could it be left over from the middle Pleistocene hundreds of thousands of years ago?

        I have no idea, myself. But it might be a really good idea for humanity to urgently investigate the extent of this supposed shallow gas and possibly gas hydrate layer under Yamal and adjacent areas..

        Reply
  12. Reblogged this on GarryRogers Nature Conservation and commented:
    In coming days, this event might reach into the popular media. As wispy clouds precede a storm, melting ice and storms at sea precede climate change. Investors may pay heed yet consumers merely plan longer driving vacations.

    Reply
  13. Caroline

     /  January 18, 2016

    When and how will it be determined what exactly (major calving event??) is going on in Greenland now?

    First thoughts/questions that came to mind after reading this: AMOC and SLR; i.e. further weakening of Gulf Stream and sea level rise for East Coast??

    (http://mashable.com/2015/03/24/gulf-stream-slowdown-study-tipping-point/#rz4HylDopqqgand)

    Reply
  14. Oldhippieu

     /  January 18, 2016

    Credit where credit is due. This discovery belongs to Tenney Naumer. Who is, strictly speaking, an amateur observer. Details of the exact sequence of events at Neven’s ASI blog. The modest johnm33, posting above here, also had a role. The most prolific Greenland and glaciology poster at the ASI is A-Team, who notes that you can tell the good researchers can be identified by their habit of sharing immediately when they find something important. Exactly as it has happened here

    Reply
    • Thanks. I’ll be updating to add ASI references when I get back to my desk. For my part, the Jason Box blog was the first I saw of it.

      Reply
  15. Jay M

     /  January 18, 2016

    Entering an age of Heinrich events?

    Reply
  16. Caroline

     /  January 18, 2016
    Reply
  17. utoutback

     /  January 18, 2016

    Having lived in an area where “out of sight – out of mind” prevails, I can understand how uninformed people would think nothing of just using the ocean for waste disposal. But, eventually, even the largest dumpster overflows.

    Reply
    • utoutback

       /  January 18, 2016

      This was a reply to the comment on ocean plastic which seems to have disappeared?

      Reply
      • I’ve been moderating Jeremy’s comments out of the forum due to past instances of apparent trolling, spreading misinformation and making offensive and outrageous statements. He keeps changing his url to get through the filter. So we do get the occasional, after the fact, innocuous comment coming through. I apologize for any sense of disorientation. Please feel free to continue any discussion on ocean plastics.

        Reply
  18. The increase in massiveness, frequency and number of events would now seem disproportionate to the ongoing increase in greenhouse gases, suggesting a nonlinear or abruph transition in climate change.

    Reply
    • James Burton

       /  January 18, 2016

      I am of the same frame of mind. I can’t prove it either, but my feeling tells me we have made a nonlinear jump in climate change. The Cold Fresh Water Pool that Robert has written about south of Greenland, the slowing of the current due to less sinking of salty warmer waters into the depths. This backs up warm waters off of the US East Coast.
      I think we know the role the Ocean Conveyor plays in climate. Since the 1980’s people have feared that the situation we see today would develop, cold fresh water slowing down the current. Indeed that is happening, so yes, I think that qualifies as a nonlinear transition. Not to mention the Jet Streams sudden new behaviors. Taken together, and over just a few years time, I think this is just what we didn’t want to see. Abrupt transition. The Arctic climate systems are not what they were a few years ago.

      Reply
  19. Eric Thurston

     /  January 18, 2016

    If the pumping of warm air into the Greenland/Iceland area becomes a pattern, it is hard to see how the chilling effect of the Greenland ice melt will cause the cooling of Europe’s climate. I guess we can at least expect more chaotic and violent storms with the dipoles developing in that area and the warm and cold competing to dominate the local climate.

    It seems that what we will get is a situation with colder water and warmer air, rather than what we have had with the ‘normal’ gulf stream pattern which is just the opposite with its warmer water and cooler air.

    Reply
    • In nature, you end up with a kind of shoving match between forcing mechanisms that tilt the scales back and forth. So the harder you push Greenland, the harder it pushes back. That’s the era we’re heading into — very unstable weather and likely quite rapid sea level rise.

      Reply
    • To be very clear, we are not heading toward a new ice age. But what we may get is enough melt related negative feedback to plateau atmospheric warming for a possible period of decades at around 2 C as the geophysical changes and energy imbalance really start ramping up.

      During this time, much of the heat will be pulled in by the oceans and the land glaciers. So it’s not a halt to overall warming, just a realigning of where the heat goes. We’re not there yet. But we are in the ramp up. 2030s to 2040s under BAU. 2040s to 2070s if all of COP21 sticks.

      Reply
  20. – All is heat — human generated heat via combustion.
    We generate it then turn our backs but it is still their somewhere whether in the air, the water, or the land — an immense amount of energy that is still manifesting itself in one way or another.

    -” … since 1997, Earth’s oceans have absorbed man-made heat energy equivalent to a Hiroshima-style bomb being exploded every second for 75 straight years.’

    ‘Study: Man-made heat put in oceans has doubled since 1997’
    AP SETH BORENSTEIN January 18, 2016

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The amount of man-made heat energy absorbed by the seas has doubled since 1997, a study released Monday showed.

    Scientists have long known that more than 90 percent of the heat energy from man-made global warming goes into the world’s oceans instead of the ground. And they’ve seen ocean heat content rise in recent years. But the new study, using ocean-observing data that goes back to the British research ship Challenger in the 1870s and including high-tech modern underwater monitors and computer models, tracked how much man-made heat has been buried in the oceans in the past 150 years.

    The world’s oceans absorbed approximately 150 zettajoules of energy from 1865 to 1997, and then absorbed about another 150 in the next 18 years, according to a study published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.

    To put that in perspective, if you exploded one atomic bomb the size of the one that dropped on Hiroshima every second for a year, the total energy released would be 2 zettajoules. So since 1997, Earth’s oceans have absorbed man-made heat energy equivalent to a Hiroshima-style bomb being exploded every second for 75 straight years.

    “The changes we’re talking about, they are really, really big numbers,” said study co-author Paul Durack, an oceanographer at the Lawrence Livermore National Lab in California. “They are nonhuman numbers.”

    – This image provided by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory shows Pacific and Atlantic meridional sections showing upper-ocean warming for the past six decades (1955-2011). Red colors indicate a

    Reply
    • FILE UNDER: So since 1997, Earth’s oceans have absorbed man-made heat energy equivalent to a Hiroshima-style bomb being exploded every second for 75 straight years.

      Rare Stock Footage | Atomic Bomb Test (Royalty Free)

      Reply
      • – After detonation the blast shock wave hits laterally followed by the reverse as the massive fireball and its energy rises and sucks everything back and up into the air. The heat, where there was none is still there… here.

        Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  January 19, 2016

        If our continued use of fossil fuels seems crazy, just think of all the time, energy, resources and effort thousands and thousands and thousands of people all to create a device designed to inflict maximum harm and destruction upon our fellow human beings. Some of our brightest minds have wasted parts of their lives designing bigger and stronger weapons, instead of solving countless problems that continually plague humanity.

        Reply
  21. NASA ‏@NASA 22h22 hours ago

    In-depth analysis of the out-of-season tropical cyclone Alex.

    Reply
  22. From London to Delhi, air pollution kills. Why do we do nothing?

    Clean air should be a global priority, and it is puzzling that it is not. Unlike, say, climate change, toxic air is identifiable by the layperson, indisputably of the here-and-now, and kills rich as well as poor, which should make it a seductive subject for problem-solving by politicians.

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jan/18/kolkata-london-air-pollution-kills-indian-cities

    Reply
  23. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    150 zettajoules of energy ……………………….. “They are nonhuman numbers.”

    Reply
  24. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    OT –
    Eagles guitarist Glenn Frey has died, the band has announced.

    He died in New York City on Monday from complications arising from rheumatoid arthritis, colitis and pneumonia.

    Reply
  25. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    This smacks of a very big deal , I can’t recall NASA and NOAA doing this before :

    WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Climate experts from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will discuss the release of new data on 2015 global temperatures, and the most important weather and climate events of the year, during a media teleconference at 11 a.m. EST Wednesday, Jan. 20.

    The teleconference panelists are:

    Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York
    Thomas R. Karl, director of NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information in Asheville, North Carolina, and chair of the Subcommittee on Global Change Research for the U.S. Global Change Research Program in Washington

    Media can participate in the teleconference by calling 888-790-1804 (toll-free in the United States and Canada) or 415-228-4885 (international) and use the passcode “climate.”

    Audio of the briefing, as well as supporting graphics, will stream live at:

    Link

    Reply
    • redskylite

       /  January 19, 2016

      CB – I agree, the normal GISS release of data seems to be delayed, maybe to coincide with the teleconference. Though the JMA data was released on time, don’t see how Curry and Watts can carry on their negative denial track anymore. Just imagine the next major El Niño and the one after that, the reality of it all is getting mind boggling close. After so many years of scientific reports and warnings, that so many chose not to see.

      Reply
  26. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    “150 zettajoules of energy” Equals the energy of 935.21 cubic miles of oil.

    Reply
    • Pretzel Logic

       /  January 18, 2016

      So 300 zettajoules is roughly 1870.42 cubic miles of oil? “The world’s oceans absorbed approximately 150 zettajoules of energy from 1865 to 1997, and then absorbed about another 150 in the next 18 years”

      Reply
    • Or something in the range of 1 trillion tons. In other words, 1 million megatons.

      Reply
  27. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    In Greenland, a climate change mystery with clues written in water and stone

    “You’d pay a million bucks for a view like this,” says Gordon Hamilton, from the University of Maine by way of Scotland. “Pretty nice breakfast buffet, I guess, for sitting out here next to the ice sheet.”

    Hamilton, Detective No. 1 in our Greenland mystery, is sitting on the rocky rim of a glacier. Kind of figures. After all, the man is a glaciologist. But this isn’t just any glacier. It’s the Helheim glacier, one of Greenland’s biggest, a three-mile-wide river of mottled gray, whites and stunning blue ice that flows into Sermilik fjord on the island’s southeast coast.

    We’re on one side of that fjord. Across, on the other side, is what drew us here — a horizontal stripe running the length of the fjord, about 600 feet above the ice.

    “Everybody who’s come here with me has said, ‘What’s that line over there?’” Hamilton says. “And I say, ‘Well, that’s where the glacier was in 2003.’ It’s kind of like the signal clue that something really big had happened.”

    Link

    Reply
  28. ““150 zettajoules of energy” Equals the energy of 935.21 cubic miles of oil.””
    Plus a very substantial cubic mileage of oxygen, sans which there ain’t all that energy.

    Reply
  29. Ryan in New England

     /  January 18, 2016

    A good article about the true cost of fossil fuels, and how the externalities that the fossil fuels industry produces never disappear, and are going to reveal the real price of our use of this dirty energy.

    http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/34409-mother-nature-s-invisible-hand-strikes-back-against-the-carbon-economy

    Reply
  30. Tom Bond

     /  January 18, 2016

    Some good news for the climate, French electricity CO2 emissions remain at very low levels for 2015 (42g/kWh) which are more than 10 times less than Germany (569g/kWh).

    http://www.rte-france.com/en/eco2mix/chiffres-cles-en
    http://decrypterlenergie.org/en/la-sortie-du-nucleaire-en-allemagne-entraine-t-elle-une-hausse-des-emissions-de-co2

    Unfortunately while Germany achieved record renewable electricity outputs for 2015, decarbonisation of the energy system is stagnating and unchanged since 2011 (see page 41 in the following report).

    http://www.agora-energiewende.de/fileadmin/Projekte/2016/Jahresauswertung_2016/Agora_Jahresauswertung_2015_Slides_web_EN.pdf

    Reply
    • Hey Tom. What I see in these reports is that rapid renewables growth has both allowed historic cuts in carbon emissions for both Germany and France. But with France hanging on to nuclear and cutting coal while rapidly building nuclear, it’s jumped ahead in the race toward net negative emissions. Germany’s hanging on to coal plants for energy export and other reasons, as many noted earlier, appears to have been a rather bad idea. If their energy transition is going to continue to advance, they need to cut out coal. In any case, I’m heartened by some of the public opinion numbers in the final report where coal is only showing 5 percent of the public in support!!

      France really show what’s achievable now and with cost of renewables in free fall and viable storage in the wings, there’s no excuse not to phase that coal out quickly.

      Reply
  31. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    From barbamz @ Dr, Masters site :

    This animation of the SEVIRI RGB air mass product shows Hurricane Alex moving through the Azores and turning NW. It then transitions to a post-tropical low before merging with another system near Greenland.
    This video contains no speech or other audio information necessary for the comprehension of the content. It is best viewed in HD. The resolution can be changed by clicking on the gear wheel in the bottom of the video screen.
    The imagery in this video is courtesy of the GOES-R Proving Ground.

    Reply
    • All that tropical moisture hurled directly into Greenland. Pretty amazing really. We have to keep reminding ourselves that this is supposed to be Winter.

      Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  January 19, 2016

        And that crazy retrograde Sandy type left turn.

        Reply
        • The whole path of this storm — from its origins off the east coast of the U.S., to its eastward trans Atlantic progress, to its turning into a hurricane off the Azores, to its terminal bee-line into Greenland could well be considered retrograde. This storm did everything backwards.

  32. Colorado Bob

     /  January 18, 2016

    I have long thought it’s the small things that will hit us hardest , because of climate change :

    Could Spread of Zika Virus Be Linked to Climate Change?

    The proliferation of the Zika virus could be linked to climate change, a top researcher told NBC News on Monday.

    Zika, which is suspected of causing severe birth defects in Brazil and has now been found in Hawaii, is a tropical virus spread by mosquitoes whose numbers are exploding as the earth gets warmer.

    “Their lifestyles, their behaviors, the speed with which they grow up is tightly related to climate,” Heidi Brown at the University of Arizona said.

    Link

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  January 18, 2016

      New mosquito-borne virus Zika spreading in Caribbean

      “We’ve always said that once we are certain of something, we will say it,” Minister Florence Guillaume said at a press conference Friday. “We have scientifically confirmed that the illness… everyone calls Zika is in Haiti.”

      Hours later, the CDC in Atlanta, which was considering whether to warn pregnant women against travel to countries in the region where Zika is present, issued its travel alert. The countries it warned about are: Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Suriname and Venezuela, as well as the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Caribbean health officials say the virus is also present in Guyana.

      Link

      Reply
    • Vic

       /  January 19, 2016

      Carnival celebrations which begin in the first week of February are expected to draw 1.5 million foreign tourists to Brazil. The Olympic games later this year are expected to attract another half a million.

      “Even in the state of Pernambuco, the epicenter of the zika outbreak and a historic hub of Carnival revelry, officials said tourism has not been hit. There are at least as many reservations as last year and in the case of some hotels even more,”

      http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/19/brazil-downplays-threat-from-zika-virus-in-run-up-to-carnival-and-rio-olympics

      Reply
  33. climatehawk1

     /  January 18, 2016

    Tweeting.

    Reply
  34. Ryan in New England

     /  January 18, 2016

    The CBS Evening news had a story about Zika virus tonight, and mentioned the recommended travel ban for pregnant women to areas in the Caribbean and Central/South America. It seems this story is starting to spread.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/pregnant-women-warned-about-zika-virus/

    Reply
    • I think they should have given a hat tip to Umbrios😉

      Reply
    • Jeannie

       /  January 19, 2016

      Jump ahead to the Summer Olympics–in Brazil. Underfunded health care system (lines outside hospital emergency services), sewage in the open waters where the sports are to perform, now no one pregnant should attend! Oh—and don’t forget the drought. What a nightmare.

      Reply
  35. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” wrote Martin Luther King Jr. from a Birmingham jail on April 16, 1963. “We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.”

    The Atlanta-based King was explaining why he was in prison for nonviolent demonstrations so far from home, responding to a critical public statement by eight Southern white religious leaders. His words are timeless and universal in part because King was a master of language but primarily because he viewed civil rights through a moral lens.

    The greater the moral crisis, the more his words apply. The greatest moral crisis of our time is the threat posed to billions — and generations yet unborn — from unrestricted carbon pollution. The Pope made that clear last spring in his 195-page climate encyclical. Now more than ever, we are “tied in a single garment of destiny,” cloaked as a species in a protective climate that we are in the process of unraveling.

    Joe Romm

    Reply
  36. Andy Heninger

     /  January 19, 2016

    dtlange linked a good article on the amount of heat being absorbed by the oceans, and commented

    – All is heat — human generated heat via combustion.
    We generate it then turn our backs but it is still their somewhere whether in the air, the water, or the land — an immense amount of energy that is still manifesting itself in one way or another.

    I think there is a misunderstanding here. The heat directly produced by the combustion of fossil fuels is tiny compared with the additional solar heat captured on earth thanks to the extra CO2 that the initial combustion dumps into the atmosphere. And the damage doesn’t stop, additional heat keeps on accumulating for centuries.

    Lawrence Livermore Labs has a nice article on this,
    http://carboncycle2.lbl.gov/resources/experts-corner/fossil-fuel-combusion-heat-vs-greenhouse-gas-heat.html

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  January 19, 2016

      Andy –
      And that direct combustion is releasing more fossil water vapor, sulfur, and nitrogen as well. While small, it’s still adding to the system after it all has been locked up for 100’s of millions of years.

      Reply
      • To be very clear, the vast majority of the heat energy comes from the ability of the greenhouse gas — CO2 — to re-radiate solar energy. The Livermore paper provides a pretty telling study here. The combustion engines and boilers powered by fossil fuels on this planet have produced far more latent heat in the atmosphere and oceans than they have ever produced for the useful work provided by machines.

        An outside alien observer might well conclude that humans, for some strange reason, had intentionally built all these fossil fuel powered machines for the singular purpose of pushing their world toward a hothouse state. Because that’s what these fossil fuel driven machines do best.

        Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  January 19, 2016

        “Future generations will curse us, because we took the most useful molecule in nature, and burnt it in low grade heat engines.”

        Steve Baer in the “Mother News”

        Reply
      • “An outside alien observer might well conclude that humans, for some strange reason, had intentionally built all these fossil fuel powered machines for the singular purpose of pushing their world toward a hothouse state. Because that’s what these fossil fuel driven machines do best.”

        Or, perhaps it’s the other way around!?! Bwahahaha…

        Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  January 20, 2016

        Davidlwindt, that’s so funny (in a tragic way) I’ve thought about that movie recently. I saw The Arrival years ago when global warming was still something that was considered to be a threat to future generations. It’s now been two decades since that movie was released, and our emissions have only grown. We are starting to see some really devastating and profound effects from climate change, and still our emissions soar. That movie starts with a scene in Greenland where flowers are blooming in the middle of the ice sheet (obviously an unrealistic scenario), and now we are seeing rain at the Noth Pole and melting in Greenland in the dead of Winter, while hurricanes in both the Atlantic and Pacific churn. The movie has a scene with a TV forecast with 90s and 100s across the the U.S. and the meteorologist commenting on record breaking temperatures…it looks exactly like a modern day forecast that we routinely see in our summers now. It’s sad to think that that scene was supposed to be shocking at the time. Our current climate is worse than the writers of that story could even imagine.

        I never thought we would be stupid enough to continue on our suicidal course, and with such enthusiasm. I swear, the idea that powerful people are really aliens who are increasing CO2 intentionally to alter the climate to be more suitable to their species seems more plausible than the idea that humanity is so profoundly stupid as to collectively commit suicide and destroy the biosphere just so that a handful of individuals can amass obscene amounts of wealth. Or maybe I just don’t want to believe that we’re that stupid.

        Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  January 19, 2016

      Andy –
      And we took hell of a lot of that carbon mixed it with crushed rock, and spread all over the Earth as black pavement .
      Your comment opens a can of worms I’ve long wondered about . Just how big are these “small” sideshows ?

      Reply
  37. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    As climate change threatens CentAm coffee, a cocoa boom is born

    Brimming with shade trees and bounded by the Tuma river, the lower climes of Roger Castellon’s farm in Nicaragua’s mountainous Jinotega department were long ideal for growing coffee.

    But with temperatures on the rise, the veteran coffee farmer is shifting his lower-lying land to a crop that, although new for him, enjoys a rich legacy in the region: Cocoa.

    “Coffee is no longer viable due to climate change,” said Castellon, who calls his 420-hectare (1,038-acre)farm Los Nogales. Soaring temperatures in Central America, linked to climate change, are forcing many farmers like Castellon to replace coffee trees with cocoa – a crop once so essential to the region’s economy it was used as currency.

    Farmers across the region, known for high-quality arabica beans, are still recovering from a coffee leaf rust disease known as roya, which devastated crops over the past four years.

    Now, lower-altitude areas are becoming unsuitable for growing coffee as temperatures heat up. Cocoa thrives in the warmer weather.

    Link

    Reply
  38. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    But, Glenn was the one who started it all. He was the spark plug, the man with the plan.”

    Henley continued, “He had an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn’t quit. He was funny, bullheaded, mercurial, generous, deeply talented and driven.

    Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/glenn-frey-eagles-guitarist-dead-at-67-20160118#ixzz3xeXmV16S

    Reply
  39. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    RE : The new ocean heat paper –

    One outside scientist, Kevin Trenberth, climate analysis chief at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, also has been looking at ocean heat content and he said his ongoing work shows the Gleckler team “significantly underestimates” how much heat the ocean has absorbed.

    Link

    Reply
  40. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    One more reminder, Dr. Ricky Rood’s Climate Change Blog at WU is well worth reading everyday. While his posts come slowly, his readers are some of the best around, and like here, there are not a lot of monkeys hurling feces at each other.

    The Difference between What You Say and What You Do

    Link

    Reply
  41. redskylite

     /  January 19, 2016

    Should we be surprised at large Greenland events ?, a reminder of what turning up the CO2 knob to over 400ppm has done in the past . .

    Do we really want to go there ???????

    Exploring Antarctica: the search for ancient water

    Called the Pliocene, it was the most recent time in the Earth’s history that there was 400 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

    That same level has been reached today through the human carbon emissions projected to heat the planet’s climate by several degrees by the end of the century.

    In the so-called Pliocene “hot house”, the sprawling West Antarctic Ice Sheet – which stores the equivalent of four metres of global sea level rise – had disappeared.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11576138

    Reply
  42. NWS OPC ‏@NWSOPC 3h3 hours ago

    00Z #Pacific sea-state analysis. Note the very high #seas created by two #hurricane force lows in the Pacific.

    Reply
  43. – High water

    Mississippi River more than 30 feet higher than past Januaries

    The Mississippi River started cresting Monday at 43.5 feet. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) keeps track of how high the Mississippi River gets.

    “This morning, the gauge was reading 43.5 feet and we’re right at crest,” said USGS Field Operations Chief Garron Ross.

    Along the levee on the Baton Rouge side, the words “Baton Rouge” can barely be seen with only the tops showing. At the “paperclip pier” as it’s called, the ramp that people are usually able to go down is now halfway submerged. Going across the river to the Port Allen side, there is a lot of debris floating in the river and a sign submerged.

    Ross said usually around this time of the year, the river is between 10 to 15 feet.

    “The first week of October I think, we were at 10 feet water level. Now we’re at 43 feet so that’s 33 feet higher than the first week of October,” said Ross.

    Reply
  44. Abel Adamski

     /  January 19, 2016

    And another concerning item
    http://www.skymetweather.com/content/climate-change/global-warming-turning-indian-ocean-into-ecological-desert/

    Indian Ocean may be turning into an ecological desert, all thanks to global warming. From local fishermen to subject experts, all opine that sea life in the Indian Ocean is being affected due to rising temperatures.

    As per Roxy Mathew Koll, a scientist at the Centre for Climate Change Research at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology in Pune, rapid warming in the Indian Ocean has led to a reduction in phytoplankton (microscopic organisms which are a key factor for oceans, seas, and freshwater bodies). Warming Indian Ocean has reduced phytoplankton count by up to 20%.
    You may also like:

    Phytoplankton are actually fish fodder that exist in the upper layer of nearly all the oceans and fresh water bodies. Any change in the number of phytoplankton disturbs the food chain. As a result, an extremely productive region (in terms of biology) is gradually turning into an ecological desert.

    A substantial food source, 20% of the tuna catch is from that ocean

    Reply
    • Yes Abel, I’ve been worried about that too. Especially that ocean fisheries will collapse simultaneously, just at the same time that droughts and floods make terrestrial agriculture a lot more difficult.

      Considering one of Jarred Diamond’s main theses in Guns Germs and Steel is that the size and strength of civilizations is directly related to how efficiently they can grow or obtain protein, the climate + phytoplankton effect might have really serious and costly consequences long before sea level rise starts to wipe out coastal communities.

      Reply
      • entropicman

         /  January 19, 2016

        This is my worry. Climate change is the third punch in a ropadope. The climate change consequences will become severe just as our population peaks at 12 billion and the mineral resources run out.

        Reply
    • Scheduling a tweet on this, thanks.

      Reply
  45. Abel Adamski

     /  January 19, 2016

    Choices are made
    http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/killer-robots-invisible-drones-not-science-fiction-any-more-welcome-to-war-20160118-gm8rwi.html

    Autonomous killer robots that can hunt down humans and make their own decisions about who to exterminate are not science fiction or a problem for the future. They are a threat now.

    Any doubt about that can be removed by reading US Department of Defence budgets covering the past 12 years and by talking to scientists at the forefront of military-funded research. Having done so, the following scenario becomes frighteningly real.

    I can assure you a lot more innocent civilians will be killed by drones if we take humans out of the loop.
    Professor Toby Walsh, UNSW

    Skynet is coming, no wonder humans are being considered disposable except for the select few who fund the deniers

    Reply
  46. Abel Adamski

     /  January 19, 2016

    Just for interest, ramifications for future eastern Antarctica basal ocean melt. ?
    http://www.9news.com.au/technology/2016/01/14/15/27/140116-worlds-largest-canyon-discovered-in-antarctica

    Reply
  47. Abel Adamski

     /  January 19, 2016

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11576138

    Call it extreme geology: a team of Kiwi scientists are venturing to a remote part of Antarctica to dig up ancient evidence of a warmer world.

    The treasure trove of fossilised marine life buried in the rock near Mt Discovery – about 50km from Scott Base – could help us better understand what might happen to our planet under future climate change.

    It’s a place exposed to some of the unforgiving weather on the continent – including 150km/h wind storms that recently shredded the tents of a US camp.

    The expedition, being led by Dr Richard Levy of GNS Science and Professor Tim Naish of Victoria University’s Antarctic Research Centre, aims to follow up descriptions of a similar site found nearby by a science party around 50 years ago.

    Importantly, Professor Naish said, the party found shells that represented organisms which couldn’t live in the sea ice that covers the environment today.

    “The samples are telling us it was a warmer world, but we want to know when that was and how old the deposit is; we think it’s probably from about three million years ago.

    “This period is becoming a pretty important window for understanding what might happen in the coming centuries with global warming.”

    Called the Pliocene, it was the most recent time in the Earth’s history that there was 400 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

    That same level has been reached today through the human carbon emissions projected to heat the planet’s climate by several degrees by the end of the century.

    In the so-called Pliocene “hot house”, the sprawling West Antarctic Ice Sheet – which stores the equivalent of four metres of global sea level rise – had disappeared.

    Reply
    • So it’s good to be looking at this. However, it’s worth noting that CO2 levels during the Pliocene were in the range of 390 to 405 ppm CO2. This year we’ll see peak monthly CO2 above that range and yearly averages around 403 ppm. Total forcing, even including the negative forcing from aerosols, is quite a bit higher — in the range of 425 to 430 ppm CO2e (around 485 CO2e without the negative aerosol forcing).

      With fossil fuel burning so ridiculously rampant, we will hit the Pliocene boundary for CO2 in the yearly average during 2017-2018. And we are well above that already once other CO2e forcings are already added in. So they should be looking at least at the Middle Miocene as well, because we’re rapidly moving out of the Pliocene context for GHG forcing.

      Reply
      • Hi Robert as Agriculture got going during the Holocene with all crops developed at circa 275-300ppm CO2 it would appear that plant nutrition are optimal (for human consumption) at that level (Look up Irakli Loladze for this). I have searched extensively for the ideal CO2 level for human nutrition from plant foods, no luck so far. It’s a bit late as a self-limiting system though.

        Reply
        • Heat is the primary impact. At 4 C warming, you’ve basically taken down 50 percent of the world’s cereal crops. Add in a greatly reduced ocean productivity and you have a severe challenge feeding the global population. To be very clear, warming, is the greatest impact due to CO2 increase. So let’s not confuse this issue.

  48. Kevin Jones

     /  January 19, 2016

    Kangerlussauq (Sondre Stromfjord) Greenland recorded 46F today. Av. high on date, 5F Record, 33F 2003 from WU. Ummmm… that would be about 72F for south west New Hampshire having a similar anomaly.

    Reply
    • Kevin Jones

       /  January 19, 2016

      Climate Reanalyzer confirms this. I was beginning to think I ‘d mistook Jack for milk when I wetted my Wheaties….

      Reply
      • islandraider

         /  January 19, 2016

        48F in Narsarsuaq, Greenland on 19 January 2016
        At more than 61 degrees north. Way up there.
        Faster & faster.

        Reply
  49. wili

     /  January 19, 2016

    Any estimates or WAGs on how much water would have had to have been ejected to wash away that much sea ice? Any way to quantify this event?

    Reply
  50. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    Earth’s 29 Billion-Dollar Weather Disasters of 2015: 4th Most on Record
    By: Dr. Jeff Masters

    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=3226#commenttop

    Reply
    • São Paulo and Carribean drought not included. I wonder if these events are only those that have been officially reported.

      In any case, it may be worth doing a separate tally altogether for climate change. This year we could include the sargassum seaweed bloom, impacts to fisheries, impacts due to rising sea levels, impacts due to persistent water shortage, impacts to crops, and new disease outbreaks related to climate change.

      Reply
  51. Speculation here and elsewhere that this is a pulse of sediment-laden meltwater seems to be based on a misunderstanding. The greyscale image shown is a synthetic aperture radar image (frequency 5.405 Ghz) and will not detect sediment. Here the brightness of the SAR returns corresponds to surface roughness (e.g., water with choppy waves and/or unresolved m- to dm-size floating ice chunks) and possibly to changes in dielectric properties (i.e., fresh water on top of more saline seawater).

    Reply
  52. Colorado Bob

     /  January 19, 2016

    Flash flooding follows fires as south-west WA experiences heaviest rainfall in decades

    Many residents in the South West and Great Southern regions recorded rainfall of more than 170mm in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning. ………………. Talkback caller Estelle told ABC Great Southern she had received 213mm of rain, which she said had created “a very big mess”.

    Link

    Reply
  53. JPL

     /  January 19, 2016

    Drought Dries South African Maize Silos

    Temps and wildfires are up, precip and crop yields down from adverse effects of El Nino.

    John

    Reply
  54. islandraider

     /  January 19, 2016

    Gleckler, et al. “Industrial-era global ocean heat uptake doubles in recent decades”

    Trenberth (NCAR) said his work shows the Gleckler team (link below) “significantly underestimates” how much heat the ocean has absorbed. Soooo, Gleckler’s group says heat absorbed by oceans has doubled since 1997, only 18 years. Trenberth says this is a “significant underestimation”.

    Al Bartlett: “The greatest shortcoming of the human race is its inability to understand the exponential function”

    Link below is a link to the abstract. Full article is behind a paywall. Desdemona has an article about this study near the top today. I also found an article about the study on the cbs news website.

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2915.html

    Flipping the hope/fear coin!

    Reply
  55. islandraider

     /  January 19, 2016

    Related to the ocean heat content study above, comes the following from Roxy Mathew Koll (Centre for Climate Change Research at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology):

    “Over six decades, rising water temperatures appear to have been reducing the amount of phytoplankton – microscopic plants at the base of the ocean food chain – available as food for fish, according to research released in December by Koll and other scientists from the United States, South Africa and France.

    That “may cascade through the food chain, potentially turning this biologically productive region into an ecological desert,” Koll said. Such a change would curb food security not only in Indian Ocean rim countries but also global fish markets that buy from the region, he said.”

    Oddly, the Reuters article is missing the hopium finish…

    http://www.reuters.com/article/sri-lanka-fishing-climatechange-idUSKCN0UX0IQ

    Cause & effect.

    Reply
  56. Jeremy in Wales

     /  January 19, 2016

    “China’s coal use has fallen in 2015 across a wide range of measures and its national carbon emissions are likely to have fallen by about 3% as a result. There was a 3.5% drop in coal production, coal-fired electricity generation fell 2.8% and overall power generation dropped 0.2%, the first fall in 50 years. There were similar decreases in coal-intensive heavy industry such as iron, steel and cement. ”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/19/chinas-coal-burning-in-significant-decline-figures-show

    A good start for the enviroment and atmosphere especially as the fall in electricity generation of 2.8% and the overall fall in electricity generation of 0.2% seems to suggest the balance was generated by renewables.

    The downside in future would seem to be a reduction in global dimming as the far easts air gets cleaner but I am sure the average chinese person would actually like to see the sun (or clouds) rather than live in a semi-permanent smog.

    Reply
    • Aldous

       /  January 19, 2016

      http://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-power-emissions-idUSKCN0UV0XS

      “No official data on the extent of the problem has been released since a government audit in 2013 found hundreds of power firms had falsified emissions data, although authorities have continued to name and shame individual operators.”

      Also,

      “Widespread misreporting of harmful gas emissions by Chinese electricity firms is threatening the country’s attempts to rein in pollution, with government policies aimed at generating cleaner power struggling to halt the practice.”

      This is not the first time China’s official data has turned out to be false either. A pound of salt would be appropriate when digesting “official” data.

      Reply
      • Jeremy in Wales

         /  January 19, 2016

        That statistics are suspect is certainly true in China but the slow down of their economy is supported by other statistics worldwide, whether the price of steel or thermal coal, or shipping rates (Dry Baltic) http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/BDIY:IND
        This website certainly suggests a reduction in coal consumption in China and this is particularly important as China produces 44% of worldwide coal
        https://yearbook.enerdata.net/coal-and-lignite-production.html#coal-and-lignite-world-consumption.html
        Again the trends will be important and at some point should be reflected in pollution levels over China.

        Reply
      • Mblanc

         /  January 19, 2016

        Whilst your point is basically good, Aldous, I think it is interesting that other non-official commenters in the Guardian piece do basically subscribe to the idea that the Chinese are making some progress.

        Of course, some of that is the economic slowdown, but I think it is widely accepted that Chinese emissions are going to peak well before their stated aim of 2030.

        So maybe we should be skeptical about the official figures, but also recognise the Chinese response to AGW is significant and substantial, and no excuse for not doing our bit.

        Reply
  57. – Watching storm as possible added moisture to river levels still running on the high side.

    seth borenstein ‏@borenbears 52m52 minutes ago

    Millions brace for East Coast end of week nor’easter; “going to be a doozy”

    Reply
    • – Ditto

      NWS WPC ‏@NWSWPC 54m54 minutes ago

      #ice and #snow expected for Mid Mississippi Valley to lower Ohio Valley by Thursday.

      Reply
    • Dan Leonard ‏@DanLeonard_wx 3h3 hours ago

      #ECMWF Would be Richmond’s biggest snowstorm of all time, by a mile.

      Reply
  58. – Rail safety documents heavily redacted or kept secret by Transport Canada

    Company financial, commercial interests cited as reasons public can’t see findings of Canada’s rail regulator

    Transport Canada is refusing to publicly release details about a range of safety issues detected on Canada’s railways.

    A CBC investigation has found the federal regulator has withheld — or blacked out key findings in — a number of documents related to railway safety that were requested by community groups and the media under Canada’s access to information law.

    The requested documents included an audit, risk assessments for CP, CN and other rail companies, orders, notices and letters of concern. Of the 21 document requests made by CBC in 2015, most came back with redactions, and in the case of several key safety reports, specific details were completely blacked out.

    “I think it’s ridiculous. We should be told. We should know,” said Patricia Lai of the group Safe Rail Communities…
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/rail-safety-transport-canada-records-1.3409352

    Reply
  59. Greg

     /  January 19, 2016

    King Tides (sun moon earth lined up )coming in two days are a good view into near future of coastal flooding.
    http://www.wired.com/2016/01/king-tides-give-a-glimpse-of-sea-level-rise/

    Reply
  60. – Old News?

    IMF Says Saudi Arabia Could Be Bankrupt By 2020


    “[T]he IMF said that the kingdom will suffer a negative 21.6 per cent ‘General Government Overall Fiscal Balance’ in 2015 and a 19.4 per cent negative balance in 2016, a massive increase from only -3.4 per cent in 2014.

    Saudi Arabia currently has $654.5 billion in foreign reserves, but the cash is disappearing quickly.

    The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency has withdrawn $70 billion in funds managed by overseas financial institutions, and has lost almost $73 billion since oil prices slumped, according to Al-Jazeera. Saudi Arabia generates 90 per cent of its income from oil.”

    If the trend continues unchecked, the IMF believes Saudi Arabia, once one of the most powerful economies in the world, will be bankrupt by 2020.

    Reply
  61. – USA Flood plains High water Hydrology in the Time of SLR and Atmospheric
    Rivers — and the Timing of.

    ‘Mississippi River crests in Baton Rouge, will inch lower as water leaves the floodplain for the Gulf of Mexico’

    The rising Mississippi River crested Monday in Baton Rouge at a slightly lower than expected level of 43.3 feet, but the high water is expected to stick around for a while.

    Forecasting how long the river will remain above flood stage is difficult because there are several factors that come into play, from the opening of floodgates at the Bonnet Carre spillway near New Orleans to the amount of water that has been stored in parts of the flood plain.

    “All that water that went into storage needs to come out,” said W. Scott Lincoln, senior hydrologist with the National Weather Service Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center.

    According to long-range forecasts, water levels at Baton Rouge aren’t expected to get below 43 feet until Saturday. The river will continue to slowly drop over the coming weeks until it’s below flood stage of 35 feet in Baton Rouge sometime during the second week of February.
    http://theadvocate.com/news/14611944-123/mississippi-river-crests-in-baton-rouge-will-inch-lower-as-water-leaves-the-floodplain-for-the-gulf-

    Reply
  62. Tim Ream ‏@ourcarbon 6h6 hours ago San Francisco, CA

    Great animation showing how #fracking waste injection turned #Oklahoma into the #earthquake capital of the US

    Reply
    • – Robert, I hope this doesn’t buy up the screen too much — the gif has no controls. Usually ‘G’ will stop a gif.

      Reply
  63. Ryan in New England

     /  January 19, 2016

    Twp pregnant women in Illinois have tested positive for Zika virus. Both women had traveled to areas where Zika infected mosquitoes are known to currently be. This seems to really be spreading both in awareness and infections.

    http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/health/Two-Pregnant-Women-in-Illinois-Test-Positive-for-Zika-Virus-365826141.html

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  January 20, 2016

      Guess the right to lifers will happily take over caring for the poor kids

      Reply
  64. Abel Adamski

     /  January 20, 2016

    Like a lethal virus being spread.
    We must first change our ways and rise above our primitive Apex Predator patterns
    http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/humans-will-cause-disaster-on-earth-must-escape-to-stars-stephen-hawking-warns-20160119-gm9lna.html

    Reply
  65. Abel Adamski

     /  January 20, 2016

    And once again the taxpayer foots the major element of the bill for the Corporate sectors greed

    http://www.skynews.com.au/news/world/sthamerica/2016/01/20/brazil-may-settle-with-mining-company.html

    Brazil’s solicitor-general says authorities may negotiate a settlement with the company involved in two dam collapses at an iron ore mine that unleashed a wave of mud that killed 17 people.

    Solicitor-General Luis Inacio Adams told reporters the government would seek 20 billion reals ($A4.92b) in damages from mining company Samarco, which is co-owned by Brazil’s Vale and BHP Billiton of Australia.

    He made his remarks on Monday night. The negotiations will address social, environmental and economic problems caused by the bursts, he said.

    The November 5 environmental disaster polluted hundreds of kilometres of waterways in two states in southeastern Brazil.

    When the dams burst, leftovers from the mining process formed a massive wave of viscous red mud that all but erased a nearby hamlet.
    – See more at: http://www.skynews.com.au/news/world/sthamerica/2016/01/20/brazil-may-settle-with-mining-company.html#sthash.Fym0fXB9.dpuf

    Reply
  66. Abel Adamski

     /  January 20, 2016

    Sorry previous must have included their link at the bottom . Sorry RS

    Once again the poor taxpayer foots the major part of the bill for corporate greed

    Brazil’s solicitor-general says authorities may negotiate a settlement with the company involved in two dam collapses at an iron ore mine that unleashed a wave of mud that killed 17 people.

    Solicitor-General Luis Inacio Adams told reporters the government would seek 20 billion reals ($A4.92b) in damages from mining company Samarco, which is co-owned by Brazil’s Vale and BHP Billiton of Australia.

    He made his remarks on Monday night. The negotiations will address social, environmental and economic problems caused by the bursts, he said.

    The November 5 environmental disaster polluted hundreds of kilometres of waterways in two states in southeastern Brazil.

    When the dams burst, leftovers from the mining process formed a massive wave of viscous red mud that all but erased a nearby hamlet.

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  January 20, 2016

      And of course a News Ltd site is all OK with this taxpayer funded charity to major corporations, especially when they were extremely culpable

      http://www.skynews.com.au/news/world/sthamerica/2016/01/19/brazil-mining-firm–knew-of-dam-risk-.html

      As Umbrio told us, but then of course the whitewash

      The mining company responsible for Latin America’s biggest environmental tragedy knew since 2013 its dam in southeast Brazil was at risk of bursting, according to a media report.

      Brazil’s TV Globo reported on Sunday night it had obtained documents showing consultants hired by mining firm Samarco, which is a joint venture of Vale and Anglo-Australian mining giant BHP Billiton, reported more than two years ago that safety was compromised at the Mariana dam in Minas Gerais state.

      Samarco’s attorney said the firm took precautions after the warning.

      The dam burst on November 5, killing 17 people and polluting 850km of waterways in two states of southeast Brazil.

      TV Globo also said Minas Gerais investigators believed Samarco neglected key documents to obtain the dam’s licence. The company denies that.

      The TV-led media conglomerate also said that the investigation by the Minas Gerais attorney general’s office showed the first concerns about the mine’s safety appeared in 2007.

      Samarco managed to get the environmental licence from the state government even though it failed to provide all necessary documents to operate the mine.

      The Minas Gerais state attorney general’s office and the state government did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

      Last week, Brazil’s federal police indicted Samarco, Vale and seven of their executives for the dam burst. Among those indicted were Samarco’s CEO, geology experts and an engineer who issued a document in July of 2015 saying that the dam was stable.

      Brazilian police have not filed charges against BHP Billiton.

      Samarco said it disagreed with the federal police decision because no conclusion has been made about what exactly caused the burst.

      Brazil’s federal government and Minas Gerais and Espirito Santo states filed a lawsuit in December asking Samarco, Vale and BHP to pay about $US5 billion ($A7.29 billion) in damages.

      Reply
  67. Vic

     /  January 20, 2016

    Long-term exposure to a toxin produced by blue-green algal blooms can trigger tangles in the brains of animals similar to those seen in the brains of humans with Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological conditions, a study has found.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-20/blue-green-algae-toxin-may-increase-risk-of-alzheimers/7098646

    Reply
  68. Ryan in New England

     /  January 20, 2016

    Denmark produced nearly half of its power from wind in 2015…

    The record 42 percent electricity generated from wind represents a three percent increase from the 39 percent it generated in 2014, which at the time broke the world record for the most electricity from wind production by a single country. According to the Danish national grid operator Energinet, this year’s number represents both the highest figure ever and the highest proportion of electricity from wind for any country.

    Moreover, for 16 percent of the year, two Western regions in Denmark produced more electricity than the region’s residents consumed, leading to an electricity surplus. While it’s not unusual for wind power production to exceed consumption some of the time, the fact that it happened for such a significant period of time means that Denmark can sell surplus energy to consumers in Norway, Sweden, and Germany. Denmark also imports some hydroelectric power from Norway and solar energy from Germany.

    Thanks to a particularly windy year, Denmark was able to set the record even without help from two large onshore wind farms. Had those wind farms been operational, Energinet estimates that wind production would have made up 43.5 percent of the country’s total power. On July 10, 2015 — an unusually windy day — Denmark produced 140 percent of its national electricity demand from wind power.

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/01/19/3740547/denmark-wind-power-2015-record/

    Reply
  69. Ryan in New England

     /  January 20, 2016

    CBS morning show did a report about Zika and the explosion of cases of microcephaly in Brazil, over 3000 last year.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/growing-fears-as-zika-virus-linked-to-birth-defects/

    The show this morning (couldn’t find a clip yet) reported confirmed cases in Florida and Texas as well.

    Reply
  70. Ryan in New England

     /  January 20, 2016

    Zika cases reported in Florida…

    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/health-care/article55538970.html

    There is also a case reported from Texas. While Zika infected mosquitoes have not been found in the U.S. yet, I thinks it’s just a matter of time before it happens. They’re being found in Puerto Rico and Mexico, so they’re right on our doorstep. I see this becoming a big issue in the not too distant future. We’re only making the world more hospitable to mosquitoes.

    Isn’t that right, Griffin?😉 Mosquitoes in Massachusetts, in December.

    Reply
    • wili

       /  January 20, 2016

      I’m waiting to see whether the Republican response will be to deny the existence of mosquitoes, or to propose building an even taller and wider wall to try to keep out Latin American mosquitoes!

      Reply
      • He, Aedes aegypti can fly over three meter tall walls, and is quite adept at borrowing human transports like cars and elevators. That would need to be quite a wall.

        Reply
    • Griffin

       /  January 20, 2016

      You got that right Ryan! That species is incredible. The way that they just appear as soon as there is an opportunity in the weather, it is uncanny. Some folks worry about killer robots, I worry more about the little bastards that are already here!

      Reply
  71. Abel Adamski

     /  January 20, 2016

    Meanwhile the EXXON Saga continues
    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-exxon-global-warming-20160120-story.html

    California to investigate whether Exxon Mobil lied about climate-change risks

    California Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris is investigating whether Exxon Mobil Corp. repeatedly lied to the public and its shareholders about the risk to its business from climate change — and whether such actions could amount to securities fraud and violations of environmental laws.

    Harris’ office is reviewing what Exxon Mobil knew about global warming and what the company told investors, a person close to the investigation said.

    The move follows published reports, based on internal company documents, suggesting that during the 1980s and 1990s the company, then known as Exxon, used climate research as part of its planning and other business practices but simultaneously argued publicly that climate-change science was not clear cut.

    Reply
  72. Abel Adamski

     /  January 20, 2016

    An excellent Article from Le Monde

    Night of the living dead, climate change-style

    The lesson seemed to be that it was hard to kill something off — if it wanted to keep going.

    Something similar is happening right now with the fossil fuel industry. Even as the global warming crisis makes it clear that coal, natural gas, and oil are yesterday’s energy, the momentum of two centuries of fossil fuel development means new projects keep emerging in a zombie-like fashion.

    https://mondediplo.com/openpage/night-of-the-living-dead-climate-change-style

    Reply
  73. Colorado Bob

     /  January 20, 2016

    Early agriculture staved off global cooling, mounting evidence suggests

    Early human agriculture cancelled natural cooling of Earth’s climate, new ice core data and other evidence confirm. Earth naturally cycles between cool glacial periods and warmer interglacial periods because of variations in its orbit around the sun. We currently are in an interglacial period, called the Holocene epoch, which began nearly 12,000 years ago.

    Link

    Reply
    • wili

       /  January 20, 2016

      But, iirc, the globe had, in fact, been cooling very gradually since the Holocene optimum about 8000 ybp–at a rate of about .1 C per millennium. So would we have cooled even faster without ag? How do they balance human ag effects against the gw effects of vast herds of bison grazing on the vast grasslands opened up by the retreat of the ice sheets?

      Reply
      • Kevin Jones

         /  January 20, 2016

        Yeah, wili. Ruddiman does believe we would have cooled faster without agriculture: massive forest clearing, rice paddy construction & cultivation. The bison did a lot of fertilizing as they roamed and belched. And anyway, they were not a new force…unless they lost predators in the megafauna wipeout which appears to be of our ancestors doing as well.

        Reply
    • Kevin Jones

       /  January 20, 2016

      William Ruddimans’ Plows Plagues & Petroleum (2005?) is a deep thought provoking book. I thought then that he was on to something profound regarding Anthropocene timelines….

      Reply
  74. Kevin Jones

     /  January 20, 2016

    Nuuk, Greenland 9 min. ago: (10:00 am EST) 52F

    Reply
  75. Colorado Bob

     /  January 20, 2016

    Mid-Atlantic Braces for Potentially Epic Blizzard

    A serious flood threat for the mid-Atlantic coast
    There is more than snow in the works with this storm. The ferocious dynamics at play during the storm’s height could produce winds of 40-50 mph or more, which would lead to blizzard conditions and huge drifts. On top of that, strong onshore winds may produce waves up to 20 feet and major coastal flooding, especially from New Jersey to the Delmarva Peninsula. The full moon on Saturday will only add to the risk of significant flood impacts. In addition, sea-surface temperatures running 5 – 7°F above average should keep the offshore surface air relatively warm, allowing strong winds aloft to mix to the surface more readily than usual for a midwinter nor’easter, as noted by the NWS/Philadelphia office in a weather discussion on Tuesday night. The risk of damaging coastal flooding will need to be watched with the same vigilance as the potential for crippling snowfall just inland.

    Link

    Reply
  76. Kevin Jones

     /  January 20, 2016

    NASA & NOAA to discuss 2015 temperatures and climatic events at 11am EST
    http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio

    Audio of the briefing as well as supporting graphics will stream live”

    Reply
  77. wili

     /  January 20, 2016

    Latest conclusion about this at neven’s site from A-Team: “there is no observational evidence at this time in support of a noteworthy discharge of fresh water or sediment from under the Jakobshavn ice stream. Instead the hurricane remnants merely blew the melange out of the fjords, overturning a lot of water in the process”

    Reply
    • Griffin

       /  January 20, 2016

      Thanks for this wili. It is something of continued interest to me regardless. I am going to be looking for more info on the subject of meltwater release. Just because it is so darn interesting.

      Reply
  78. Greg

     /  January 20, 2016

    Due to pipeline issues and quality of crude but this North Dakota source has reached nearly $0 as an offer price:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-01-18/the-north-dakota-crude-oil-that-s-worth-less-than-nothing

    Reply
  79. Kevin Jones

     /  January 20, 2016

    NASA GISS L-OTI 2015 Jan-Dec 0.87 C above 1951-1980 Base Period
    Dec. 2015 1.11 C above 1951-1980 Base Period. Hottest year and month ever for NASA measurements.

    Reply
    • Kevin Jones

       /  January 20, 2016

      First year above 1 C ( since records began in late nineteenth century) says Gavin Schmidt of NASA

      Reply
      • Kevin Jones

         /  January 20, 2016

        That would place December 2015 in the neighborhood of 1.35 C above late 1800’s.

        Reply
      • Kevin Jones

         /  January 20, 2016

        “[2015] Global temperature was +1.13 C relative to the 1880-1920 mean.” Dr. James Hansen

        Reply
      • Kevin Jones

         /  January 20, 2016

        New Scientist reports UK Met again predicting 2016 warmer than 2015. Sorry I can’t get this machine to copy & paste.

        Reply
  80. Caroline

     /  January 20, 2016

    What would it take to cancel the Olympics? Rio was never a good place to host this “event” (I’ve never been a big fan of the Olympics for a variety of reasons): drought/water energy problems, social tension, economic burden, pollution (see reference to Guanabara Bay below**).
    Now we have the Zika virus epidemic. If the world moves forward on this it will be yet another example of utter insanity—–collective insanity.
    Onpoint with Tom Ashbrook (WBUR) had a program on the Zika virus this morning. One of the guests indicated that Zika could be spread by saliva and semen. They also suggested that the World Cup may have set this outbreak in motion.
    So now we’re going to bring millions of people from all over the world to a Zika hotspot for a sports event to then return to their homes and spread the virus. This is insane. It is also very clear that AGW is the cause of an increase in vector borne diseases.

    The focus of the world right now should not be on gold medals for athletes but STOPPING THE USE OF FOSSIL FUELS, pollution, habitat destruction.

    **From MercoPress : Dead fish and garbage in Rio’s Guanabara Bay question Brazil’s Olympic celebrations
    Thousands of dead fish washed up on the shores of Rio’s Guanabara Bay during the week, not far from where events are being held at this year’s Olympic Games, environmental officials said. The incident was the latest involving water quality in the bay, where sailing, open water swimming, and triathlon races are due to take place during the Games in August.(http://en.mercopress.com/2016/01/16/dead-fish-and-garbage-in-rio-s-guanabara-bay-question-brazil-s-olympic-celebrations)

    Reply
  81. Michael E. Mann ‏@MichaelEMann 34m34 minutes ago State College, PA

    Via @pdouglasweather, ocean surf temps of 24.5C (76F!) 150 miles east of Norfolk VA.

    Reply
  82. Earth’s Long-Term Warming Trend, 1880-2015
    NASA.gov Video

    Published on Jan 20, 2016

    This visualization illustrates Earth’s long-term warming trend, showing temperature changes from 1880 to 2015 as a rolling five-year average. Orange colors represent temperatures that are warmer than the 1951-80 baseline average, and blues represent temperatures cooler than the baseline.

    Reply
  83. NASA GISS ‏@NASAGISS 1h1 hour ago

    “Climate change is the challenge of our generation,” NASA Administrator Charles Bolden

    Reply
  84. Colorado Bob

     /  January 20, 2016

    NOVA
    Mystery Beneath the Ice Preview

    What’s behind the death of a tiny creature with an outsized role in the Antarctic? Airing January 20, 2016 at 9 pm on PBS

    Link

    Reply
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