It looks to me as if we are past the peak, in terms of sea-ice “extent”. It is the highest it has been in recent years.
I should hasten to add that there are various reasons that this “maximum” can foster an illusion, But I’ll not be hasty. After all, if this extent was the lowest in recent years, Alarmists would be making a big deal and exaggerating the importance. Instead, this year we hear crickets. Let’s listen to them for a bit.
Cheep-cheep, cheep-cheep, cheep-cheep. All right, that’s enough. I’ll now attempt to look like I’m giving the Alarmists some ammunition, by pointing out that “extent” alone does not tell us how solid and thick the ice is. In fact 2007 had a rather high maximum extent, despite the fact there were already indications that the September minimum was going to be low and might set a record (which it did, until 2012 broke it.)
2007 saw a great flushing of sea-ice down through Fram Strait, which temporarily increased the “extent” in the Greenland Sea as it all headed south. “Extent” actually rose though that sea-ice was doomed to head south and melt. There was also initially no sign how much less ice was left behind, in terms of “extent”, because all the wide leads were skimmed with thin baby-ice, which counted as much as thick ice on the “extent” graph. However that baby-ice melted swiftly when the summer sun reached its high-point in the arctic, (when temperatures have always averaged above freezing for roughly sixty days, as far as DMI records go.) (1958) In 2007 the result was the “extent” went from the relatively high 2006 totals to the 2007 record low.
In conclusion, a high extent at the maximum in March doesn’t necessarily mean a high extent at the minimum in September. One needs to look more deeply.
Unfortunately, some Alarmists fail to look all that deeply, and can’t really remember the 2007 event and what changes the Arctic has seen since then. For example, consider this statement from a BBC article posted last fall, when the MOSAiC Expedition was first being set up:
“But what is becoming clear is that the sea ice is getting more dynamic because of climate change. Up until the 1980s and 1990s, the Arctic sea ice was thick and slow-moving. As the ice has thinned, its motion has become faster, more turbulent and more varied. This motion pulls the ice into a vicious cycle of melting.
“The problem is that the ice is moving faster,” says Haapala. “The floes themselves are not staying in the Arctic for such a long time.” As a result, the ice doesn’t have time to grow thick, so it moves even faster, spending even less time at high latitudes – and so it begins the runaway cycle. Add to that the extra cracking of thinner ice, which opens up more stretches of relatively warm water, and the pace of change steps up further.”
Personally I’ve been watching the sea-ice since 2005, and have not seen the sea-ice move like it did in 2007 since 2007. (The low extent of 2012 involved different dynamics brought about by a major summer gale.) To be precise, since 2007 the ice has moved slower. It is disingenuous to state otherwise. Sea-ice may be moving faster than it did in 1979, but 1979 was the end of a “cold” cycle of the AMO, and the sea-ice was especially thick. Now we are at the end of a “warm” cycle of the AMO, and the ice is thinner and to some degree more mobile, but as the cycle moves back to a “cold” cycle the ice will come back just as the tide comes back. To speak of a “runaway cycle” is like saying the tide is going out and will continue to go out forever.
Another version of the “runaway cycle” is the so-called “Death Spiral”, which has failed to manifest. I’ve been pointing out how it has failed to manifest until I’m blue in the face. This has been going on for years. This is from 2008:
And this is from 2009:
And here we are eleven years later and the “Death Spiral” looks like this:
Because the extent was failing to show less sea-ice, in 2017 the idea was floated that the sea-ice was thinner, and the focus became the “volume” maps, (which involve modelling and are problematic,) but now even the PIOMAS “volume” graph is failing to show thinner ice.
It looks to me like after sea-ice amounts sunk due to the “warm” PDO and “warm” AMO, those amounts arrived at a sort of equilibrium. Could it not be like the “pause” we see when the tide has stopped going out, but hasn’t started coming in again?
I like to lurk about Alarmist sites, keeping my big mouth closed by my eyes and ears open wide, so I can comprehend what they are telling themselves to sustain their beliefs despite all evidence to the contrary. Recently I came across a splendid excuse, (which I can greatly appreciate, because fifty years ago a hush would fall upon my Algebra class when it came time for me to explain to the teacher why I had no homework to hand in).
I read that the “volume” graph is rising because Global Warming is causing glaciers to calve more ice into the oceans. No data nor evidence was offered, but it sure sounded good.