Ten Second Update…
Posted by The Diatribe Guy on January 5, 2009
Well, after traveling on vacation and getting back to work, I am in the midst of getting caught up with a number of things here.
I did, however, want to quickly point out that the latest ENSO data came out (link to the right) and it has a value of -0.633. That is the fourth consecutive month under the -0.5 threshold considered to be La Nina. It is a two-month average reading, so it is now persistent enough to note as a probably La Nina. Officially, we need one more reading in that range, if I understand correctly.
Also, another link I have to the right shows the December Sunspot count at 0.8. This is another very low reading after a couple months of a small increase. Many thought the last two months, while low readings, indicated a stirring of Cycle 24 into some activity. It appears that this is not the case yet. The December number compares to last year’s count of over 10, so the 12-month average will dive to its lowest average yet. I will hopefully take a little closer look at that.
The Northern Hemisphere Sea Ice rebounded quickly this fall, and then it reached a point where it did not advance for a number of days. This hiatus in the extent increase put the 2008 total on the same course as 2007. It has since tracked closely along that line. While it does not appear that a dramatic increase in total extent is going to occur, it does appear that the 2007 maximum levels are at least matched. There is really somewhat of a maximum upside that can be expected anyway, though historically there have been higher levels reached than current trends would indicate. However, it woould stand to reason that since the freeze started with a higher base than 2008 and occurred earlier, there will be more thick ice heading into the 2009 melt. There will also be more second-year ice. People are really enamored with the difference between first and second year ice. That seems silly to me, but I guess it might be important as it relates to overall thickness.
The Southern Hemisphere tracking shows that current ice levels continue to have a positive anomaly, meaning ice levels are above average.
No nifty charts or anything at the moment. Just wanted to pass on my quick observations.
I hope you all had a Happy New Year.