Extreme Warming at the Poles this Week — Arctic and Antarctic Temperatures to Rise to 20-30 C Above Average in Some Locations

Human-caused climate change via fossil fuel burning produces a number of stranger things. And some of the weirdest happen to occur in the polar regions of our world.

One of the foremost of these odd impacts is called polar amplification. Under polar amplification, the warming effects of elevated greenhouse gasses are concentrated at the poles. This is due to reduced reflectivity (albedo) from smaller snow and sea ice concentrations, due to the increased intensity of the greenhouse effect in colder and darker regions, and due to increased energy transfer from lower latitudes into upper latitudes due to weakening of the polar Jet Stream.

Over the next week, this kind of polar amplification is predicted to generate very extreme warm temperatures for both poles of our world.

(Warm winds blowing into the Arctic will produce far above average temperatures this week. Image source: Global and Regional Climate Anomalies.)

In the Arctic, temperatures in both Northern Greenland and on the Siberian side of the Arctic Ocean are predicted to hit ranges higher than 20 degrees Celsius above average (36 degrees Fahrenheit) with some readings over Northeastern Siberia striking near the 30 C above average mark by early next week (54 degrees F). This will produce near or above freezing temperatures over both Siberia and sections of the Arctic Ocean near or north of the 80 degree North Latitude line. Overall, temperatures are predicted to average as high as 4.4 C above average for the entire Arctic. A very considerable warm temperature departure consistent with the heightened levels of global warming the world has been experiencing during recent years.

In the Antarctic, where temperature variance should be moderating as austral spring shifts toward summer, the exact opposite is occurring. Very warm temperatures hitting more than 20 C above average are expected to sweep across East Antarctica this week and ultimately cross over to West Antarctica. Above freezing or near freezing temperatures in some coastal regions including coastal West Antarctica and over the Amery Ice Shelf in East Antarctica will accompany far warmer than normal, but still below freezing, temperatures inland.

(Even as the Arctic is predicted to heat up, the Antarctic is also expected to experience much warmer than normal conditions. Image source: Global and Regional Climate Anomalies.)

Overall temperatures for East Antarctic land masses will hit an amazing 7 C above average even as temperatures for West Antarctic land masses rise to 5.1 C above average for later this week.

Primary atmospheric drivers for these warming events are large synoptic warm wind patterns drawing above average temperatures into both the Arctic and Antarctic. In the Arctic, winds crossing hundreds of miles of warm Pacific Ocean in association with the back side of a high pressure system moving over the Bering Sea will draw these very warm temperatures northward. In the Antarctic, warm winds funneling southward from Australia will reinforce the influence of a strong high pressure dome over East Antarctica even as another strong synoptic warm wind pattern feeds into West Antarctica off the Pacific and Southern Oceans later in the week.

It’s very early for temperatures over parts of Antarctica to be pushing above freezing. And it’s rather late for such similar temperatures to be continuing to invade so far north into the Arctic. So much warmth will have an ongoing deleterious impact to both sea and land ice as well as snow cover. Contributing to the overall pattern of warming and melt we’ve seen for both Antarctica and the Arctic during recent years as global temperatures have risen into a range from 1 C to 1.2 C above 1880s averages.



Global and Regional Climate Anomalies

Polar Amplification

Climate Reanalyzer

Earth Nullschool

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  1. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    Scientists Just Found Another Vulnerability in Antarctica’s Icy Armor

    It’s becoming increasingly clear that no place on Earth is safe from the influence of carbon pollution, and East Antarctica is no exception. Research published on Wednesday in Science Advances is the latest troubling sign to emerge for the region, showing that natural processes that cause melt could accelerate due to climate change. It’s just going to happen in a way you might not expect.

    The findings focus on Totten Glacier, which links to a basin roughly the size of Spain covered in 2.5 miles of ice. If all that ice melted, it would be enough to raise sea levels up to 11.5 feet.

    • Thanks for this, Bob. Trying to get some present context for this research.

      • coloradobob

         /  November 1, 2017

        I know , this one is really a good article. I think with the AGU meeting coming we’ll see more on the “Murder of Ice” this year. I’ve read several articles on volcanoes, and their impact on albedo. Guess what , as ice melts volcanoes wake up.

        • Abel Adamski

           /  November 2, 2017

          Relative to Volcanism and Geological impacts – I keep an eye on them

          The amplifying influence of increased ocean stratification on a future year without a summer

          Basically using as a reference the 1815 year without a Summer and it’s consequences and comparing that with our current state.
          Global Warming has led to increased stratification of the oceans, which reduces the oceans moderating effect, as such the impact of a super volcano and they happen will be amplified and greatly extended, so effectively several freezing years world wide with all the impacts that will bring, however the High CO2 and stratified oceans will bring the warmth back more raoidly as its effect bites

  2. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    The rubber is really meeting the road now –

    West Quebec mayors grapple with ‘new normal’ after latest floods
    Weekend deluge overloaded culverts, washed away roads across region

    State of emergency

    That’s how many municipalities across west Quebec are feeling this week in the aftermath of the record-breaking storm.

    ‘We have to be ready to deal with situations like that because they’re going to happen more and more.’
    – Gatineau Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin
    As they assess the latest damage, which comes toward the tail end of a year of destructive flooding across the region, they’re also wondering how their communities can mitigate the costly impact of these weather events that seem to have become the new normal.

    “It makes me wonder if that’s the new tendency of the weather,” said La Pêche Mayor Robert Bussière. “It seems to be amplifying all the time, so we really don’t know what to expect now.”

    The municipality declared a state of emergency after communities such as Wakefield suffered flooding and mudslides that cut whole neighbourhoods off from main roads.

    “We’ve been hit twice in three weeks,” said Bussière.

    • It seems that on any given day, somewhere on the globe, there’s an extreme weather event related to climate change. And many of these are emergency weather type events.

      • coloradobob

         /  November 1, 2017

        In places with no tax base to adapt. And they get punched in the face more than once.
        Unlike a heavy fight , they cannot get up off the mat. There is no referee. anymore. If one reads that entire article from Quebec, one place just put in new larger culverts from this last storm , and they were over run.

        This whole “adaption hypothesis” is wishful thinking.

        • You’re running to stand still and ultimately fall behind if you’re just focused on adaptation. You’ve got to mitigate like holy hell to survive this. NE grid was hardened post Sandy. The recent heavy Nor’Easter put power out for more than half a million at one point. That storm was pretty tough. Not in Sandy’s range or in the range of events that the Atlantic is now capable of hurling at us.

    • On Meech Lake, Hamilton said she’s thought about whether it makes sense to stay in that location, but decided their “dream home” is worth saving.

      “We’ll fix this. We’ll get over it.”

      It’s this kind of attitude that will make things worse. “Normal” is gone. If it returns, it will not be on a timescale meaningful to our species. Unfortunately it’s getting pretty late to just be getting to denial….

  3. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    Chris Rea – The road to hell (long version CD) HD

  4. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    RS –
    I’m burdened with all the aftermath. I was part of the problem.

    • You did all you could. Changed when it was obvious there was a problem. More than can be said for a lot of folks who presently work in the fossil fuel industry.

  5. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    Manor floods again

    Wed, 11/01/2017 – 1:02pm
    LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — Water pushed through the streets of Livingston Manor once again in the wee hours of October 30 as torrents of rain swelled the rivers and creeks in the area, and flood waters quickly rose to about 30 inches on Main Street.
    In the morning, people in buildings and on the streets were cleaning up. Sally Wright, the executive director of the Catskill Art Society, was pushing a mop in the exhibition space, as the flood waters deposited a layer of mud on the floors of the building.

  6. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    My point is that climate change is beating people who have little to fall back on , over and over. And it came far sooner than we thought.

  7. coloradobob

     /  November 1, 2017

    The one thing about the “Wine Fires” ,
    Climate Change is going eat everyone’s ass.

  8. Jeremy in Wales

     /  November 1, 2017

    Re-posted as more appropriate here:
    The British Antartic Survey base at Halley on the Brunt Ice Shelf will not be manned over winter in 2018 as the chasm and Halloween crack are still extending. Looks like at some point there will be one or more huge calving events from the Brunt Ice Shelf.
    also paper discussing formation of rift

  9. Loni

     /  November 2, 2017

    CB, to your comment, “I was part of the problem”, weren’t we all. I was a commercial fisherman, a logger, and pile-butt, (heavy construction), to name a few, every one of them hard on the environment.

    Who knew that the worlds wonderful climate was so precariously balanced?

    We make amends by screaming now, I suppose.

    • Similar line of research ongoing for some time. But it’s getting clearer and clearer now that heightened CO2 has an impact on clarity of thought.

  10. Erik Frederiksen

     /  November 2, 2017

    From a slide in a presentation this year by the NASA glaciologist Eric Rignot

    “Future sea level rise from warming of the polar ice sheets

    Sea level rise by 2100 >1m very likely
    SLR commitment with 1.5-2 °C warming: 6-9m
    Time scale of major shift: ~100-200 years, not 1,000 years
    ASE 1m SLR (leading to West Antarctic Ice Sheet irreversible retreat (3.3m SLR)
    2 out of 3 marine-based sectors retreating in Greenland (3m SLR)
    East Antarctica losing mass at increasing rates (Totten 4m SLR)
    These changes are worrisome
    The pace of change is fast, i.e. decades”

  11. Robert in New Orleans

     /  November 2, 2017

    I consider myself to be very intelligent individual with a very high level of imagination, but trust me not even in ANY of my wildest dreams could I conjure up the following.

    Rick Perry says fossil fuels can help prevent sexual assault


  1. Next week/this week – climate and nuclear news | Nuclear Australia
  2. Dahr Jamail | “Apocalyptic” Melting Transpires in Antarctica as Earth Wraps Up a Scorching Year | The Extinction Chronicles

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