Climate Change making the Arctic abnormally warm – Again

The above map is showing abnormally warm temperatures reaching into the middle of the Arctic.  The map was captured at 6 PM PST on December 17, 2016, equating to about 2 AM UTC, meaning the area shown was in the middle of the night and experiencing the coldest temperatures for the day.  Yet, it shows Iceland, Northern Scotland, even the coast of Norway, with temperatures in the 40’s.  Since those are middle-of-the-night temperatures can we expect daytime highs in the 50’s?  I believe those temperatures are completely abnormally warm for this time of year in those place.

For example, I’ve been to Findhorn Scotland about 10 years ago in the summer of 2006.  It’s a lovely place, an ancient fishing village on the coast of the North Sea, with a new age commune full of blissed out spiritual seekers.  In the old fishing village the houses were all built to have as narrow a face to the ocean as possible so that during the bitter cold winters the winds coming off the ocean would have as little affect as possible on the houses and their occupants.  That fact is testament to the bitter cold they face about this time of year.  The weather map shows their temperature is 40+ degrees F.

BTW – the source for the map above?  DarkSky.net is an absolutely excellent source of weather information.  They publish extremely excellent weather maps, and the forecasts they give are uncannily accurate.  The specific map is here:  https://maps.darksky.net/@temperature,67.909,1.230,4

I’m no client scientist, and I don’t even play one on the net, so can you trust me?  I’m offering this map as a kind of demonstration of Climate Change.

It’s showing abnormally warm weather, going into the heart of the Arctic.  Normally this time of year the Arctic is frozen solid, and the whole climate system we grew up with is predicated on that idea.

The problem this presents is – if the Arctic doesn’t stay frozen, then melting of the Arctic will speed up.

The melting of the Arctic won’t cause sea level change — the ice that’s melting is floating on water, and therefore doesn’t raise the height of the water as it melts.  However, the ice insulated the water underneath it keeping that water cool.  But with the ice gone, the water heats up faster and therefore causes more ocean heating.

Here’s a few articles to back up the seriousness of this issue:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/12/13/hottest-arctic-record-triggers-massive-ice-melt/ — “Hotest Arctic on record triggers massive ice melt”  It’s not just right now that the Arctic is hotter than normal.  It was hotter than normal the whole year, and the year before, and the year before that, and so on.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/12/13/the-arctic-where-tillerson-and-exxon-want-to-drill-shattered-temperature-records-in-2016/?utm_term=.0557f13a9851 — “The Arctic just had its hottest year on record ‘by far,’ scientists say”  Ditto.  This article includes a map of the temperature abnormalities, showing an area just north of Russia as being exceedingly hot.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/12/13/rex-tillersons-view-of-climate-change-its-just-an-engineering-problem/?tid=a_inl&utm_term=.7c3fad357e0f — “Rex Tillerson’s view of climate change: It’s just an ‘engineering problem’”  The current CEO of ExxonMobil, and due to be the Secretary of State, is dismissive of Climate Change.

http://e360.yale.edu/feature/unusually_warm_arctic_climate_turmoil_jennifer_francis/3060/ — “An Unusually Warm Arctic Year: Sign of Future Climate Turmoil?” An interview with a Climate Scientist who’s been raising the alarm about this particular warming pattern.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2016/12/15/abnormally-warm-arctic-spurs-planet-to-second-warmest-november-on-record/?utm_term=.a2f3a09c01ad — “Abnormally warm Arctic spurs planet to second-warmest November on record” It seems that every month now is the warmest month on record.

About David Herron

David Herron is a writer and software engineer living in Silicon Valley. He primarily writes about electric vehicles, clean energy systems, climate change, peak oil and related issues. When not writing he indulges in software projects and is sometimes employed as a software engineer. David has written for sites like PlugInCars and TorqueNews, and worked for companies like Sun Microsystems and Yahoo.
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About David Herron

David Herron is a writer and software engineer living in Silicon Valley. He primarily writes about electric vehicles, clean energy systems, climate change, peak oil and related issues. When not writing he indulges in software projects and is sometimes employed as a software engineer. David has written for sites like PlugInCars and TorqueNews, and worked for companies like Sun Microsystems and Yahoo.

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