Arctic warming seen in perspective

During the first months of 2018 the Arctic temperatures were “unusually” warm, which made most media jump into quasi hysterical writings; an example is The Guardian, never shy of pushing the alarm:

What most media forget to tell, is that after peaking in February, there was a formidable plunge to cooler temperatures in March, as seen on this graph of the Danish Meteorological Service from today:

The blue line corresponds to the freezing point of 0°C; so even at its highest, the average (global) temperatures of the Arctic region above latitude 80° were still “comfortably” in the freezing range; they are now practically “back” to the mean of the 1958 to 2002 period. You will not be surprised that this was ignored by the Guardian!

A look at the revised PAGES2k project will put things into perspective. The PAGES2k consortium was a research project to make a reanalysis of the land temperatures of the NH of the last 2000 years. Heavy mistakes were made in the first publication, which were corrected in a second corrigendum published in 2015 (see a more complete discussion here). The relevant data for the Arctic are available at the NOAA website here; using the published Excel file, I made the following graph were every data point is the mean of 30 years temperature (given as anomaly w.r. to the period 1961-1990):

Clearly the Arctic has warmed during the past 100 years, but it has not exceeded the maximum around year 400 and is actually now below the temperature of the Medieval warming around year 1000, when atmospheric CO2 levels are assumed being approx. 280 ppmV. What this graph shows is the well known approx. 1000 year oscillation of the climate system (see for instance here ):

The Central Arctic Sea Ice area has shrunken during the last year, but using a realistic y-axis scale, this does not seem to spell disaster (link:

Looking at the winter snow cover of the Northern Hemisphere also brings us back to normality:

No visible plunge into “snow-free” winters are observed, contrary to what some “professors” prophesied ten years ago (see here)!


Before shouting ” disaster!”, please look at the past changes!



One Response to “Arctic warming seen in perspective”

  1. 4TimesAYear Says:

    Reblogged this on 4TimesAYear's Blog.

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