Record warmth at the top of the Greenland Ice Sheet

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:25 PM GMT on July 18, 2012

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The coldest place in Greenland, and often the entire Northern Hemisphere, is commonly the Summit Station. Located at the top of the Greenland Ice Sheet, 10,551 feet (3216 meters) above sea level, and 415 miles (670 km) north of the Arctic Circle, Summit rarely sees temperatures that rise above the freezing mark. In the 12-year span 2000 - 2011, Summit temperatures rose above freezing only four times, according to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera. But remarkably, over the past week, temperatures at Summit have eclipsed the freezing mark on five days, including four days in a row from July 11 - 14. There are actually three weather stations located at the location--Summit, Summit-US, and Summit AWS. The highest reliable temperature measured at any of the three stations is now the 3.6°C (38.5°F) measured on Monday, July 16, 2012 at Summit-US. A 4.4°C reading at Summit in May, 2010 is bogus, as can be seen by looking at the adjacent station. Similarly, a 3.3°C reading from June 2004 is also bad. Records at Summit began in 1987.


Video 1. A 20-ton tractor attempting to repair a bridge washed out by the raging Watson River on July 11, 2012 in Kangerlussauaq, Greenland gets washed downstream. The driver escaped unharmed. Image taken from an article, Warm air over the ice sheet provides great drama in Greenland, at the Danish Meteorological Institute's web site.

Record heat leads to major flooding in Greenland
The record heat has triggered significant melting of Greenland's Ice Sheet. According to the Arctic Sea Ice Blog, on July 11, glacier melt water from the Russell Glacier flooded the Watson River, smashing two bridges connecting the north and south of Kangerlussuaq (Sønder Strømfjord), a small settlement in southwestern Greenland. The flow rate of 3.5 million liters/sec was almost double the previous record flow rate. The latest forecast for Summit calls for cooler conditions over the coming week, with no more above-freezing temperatures at Summit.

Another huge iceberg calves off of Greenland's Petermann Glacier
A massive ice island two times the size of Manhattan and half as thick as the Empire State Building calved off of Greenland's Petermann Glacier on Monday, July 16, 2012. According to Andreas Muenchow, associate professor of physical ocean science and engineering at the University of Delaware's College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment in his Icy Seas blog, the break-off point has been visible for at least 8 years in satellite imagery, and has been propagating at 1 km/year towards Nares Strait. The same glacier calved an iceberg twice as big back on August 4, 2010--the largest iceberg observed in the Arctic since 1962. The freshwater stored in that ice island could have kept the Delaware or Hudson rivers flowing for more than two years, or kept all U.S. public tap water flowing for 120 days. “While the size is not as spectacular as it was in 2010, the fact that it follows so closely to the 2010 event brings the glacier’s terminus to a location where it has not been for at least 150 years,” Muenchow said in a university press release. “Northwest Greenland and northeast Canada are warming more than five times faster than the rest of the world, but the observed warming is not proof that the diminishing ice shelf is caused by this, because air temperatures have little effect on this glacier; ocean temperatures do, and our ocean temperature time series are only five to eight years long — too short to establish a robust warming signal.”


Figure 1. The calving of a massive 46 square-mile iceberg two times the size of Manhattan from Greenland's Petermann Glacier on July 14 - 18, 2012, as seen using MODIS satellite imagery. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 2. Look familiar? Two years ago, a 100 square-mile ice island broke off the Petermann Glacier. It was the largest iceberg in the Arctic since 1962. Image taken by NASA's Aqua satellite on August 21, 2010. Image credit: NASA. I've constructed a 7-frame satellite animation available here that shows the calving and break-up of the Petermann Glacier ice island. The animation begins on August 5, 2010, and ends on September 21, with images spaced about 8 days apart. The images were taken by NASA's Aqua and Terra satellites.

Related posts

Unprecedented May heat in Greenland; update on 2011 Greenland ice melt

Greenland update for 2010: record melting and a massive calving event

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
The 30 day SOI continues with the uptick. El Nino is not in a hurry to appear.



based on the GFS my prediction was it will rise some more and may drop in the extended as high pressure overtakes tahiti.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9737
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


staying out of the C US..
A dust bowl(which i think is very unlikely), could create a PAL (Plains Air Layer) if that dust gets blown east, effectively cutting down rain chances.

Chance of another dust bowl = 1% just because farming practices are different nowadays.
A few dust storm could eventually be possible but nothiing like the 30s
Also remember that they had used up most of the good soil the previous two decades to grow crops for for WW1.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17483
Just keeping a mental note, so to speak but:-
It seems we have now got almost no anti Global warning/ Climatic change towards the heating up factor, fans or advocates.
Does This mean we can return to pure weather which of course will contain lots of news of climate change and global warming. Catch 22?
I can't remember when somebody posted an accomplished attempt at planetary warming denial?
Then again I might have blinked!
The general background opinion seems to be that the projected temp increases will be progressive and sort of linear. How horribly wrong this assumption is going to be. The ice stuff will melt most when rainwater falls on it and if you have a temp above 0/C then you get rain. Simple.
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Quoting PlazaRed:
Reading through the blog post again, it interesting to note that water in one river is putting 3,500 cubic meters of water a second into the oceans.
Must be other rivers?
I'm sure somebody with a better slide rule than me will come up with how many units of time/ hour days it will take to put a cubic kilometer or cubic mile of water into the seas.
The ice replacement rate on the Greenland ice cap must now be much less than the melt rate!


meanwhile...how much snow and ice is forming in the Southern Hemisphere?

It is all cyclical.
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Quoting JNCali:
This should help with some of the drought...


staying out of the C US..
A dust bowl(which i think is very unlikely), could create a PAL (Plains Air Layer) if that dust gets blown east, effectively cutting down rain chances.

Chance of another dust bowl = 1% just because farming practices are different nowadays.
A few dust storm could eventually be possible but nothiing like the 30s
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9737
Quoting Grothar:


If I take one from column A and one from column B,can I get a free egg roll?


LOL. You are marked down as 1/2 a vote for each. But out of curiosity do you prefer soy, duck sauce or mustard with your egg rolls? BTW what is your favorite chinese food here in the Fort Lauderdale area. Ever since channel 10 busted my local chinese restaurant during their "dirty dining" segment for, yes literally, keeping their pet dog in their kitchen I haven't been able to find a new one.

BTW, looks like a few dry days moving into south florida due to my uncle SAL arriving tomorrow and staying into the weekend.
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It might be worth keeping an eye on that ULL spinning around the GA-Carolina border if it holds together and makes it off the coast intact over the next 24 hours. I think Dr. M mentioned that area several days ago because of the "split" in the jet stream and very low sheer just off the coast. Very good upper level vorticity and decent mid-level vort. If it splashes down, there is lots of moisture and convection (over land)in the vicinity.

200mb
Link

500mb
Link

water vapor loop

Link
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The 30 day SOI continues with the uptick. El Nino is not in a hurry to appear.

Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14565
Quoting Grothar:


If I take one from column A and one from column B,can I get a free egg roll?



The deal is cookies Gro! Nobody said anything about Egg Rolls, rather demanding aren't you?
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SOI Values of the day 3.02
90 day avg SOI -3.39
30 day avg SOI -5.38

Member Since: June 20, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2169
Quoting JNCali:
This should help with some of the drought...
Yes!.But this is kinda getting out of hand.Every time the local news mets beg for rain we end up getting to much of it.We do need it for the drought though.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17483
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I say we would get 2 name storms before the month is over.I say it before we start the month and I am holding my prediction. maybe we will get Ernesto and Florence form a trough split.
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Im surrounded, and a inbound gust fronts now arriving from the East.

Cool.

er, "Kewl" too.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129093
This should help with some of the drought...
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


8 10 12 14 is much cooler

or maybe we could do 8/12/12 8edt

anyway, ive got a monster lightning show going on here, so hopefully i keep power
Stay safe from the lightning, it would be cool for me on either one of those days.
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Quoting 954FtLCane:
Maybe we need a good poll to liven things up a little. So by popular demand here we go.

How long do you think it'll be before we have our next named storm.
A) 1-10 days (on or before July 28th)
B) 11-20 days (between July 29th & August 7th)
C) 21-30 days (between August 8th & 17th)
D) 31+ days (on or after August 18th)
E) *Who cares the world is coming to an end and most hurricane prone areas will be flooded due to global warming before the next one hits so everyone abandon the blog and run for your lives.......
F) I'm not partaking in this poll and I'm voting "F" so you will never post one again.

*disclaimer, I do believe in global warming just having a little fun.


If I take one from column A and one from column B,can I get a free egg roll?
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26867
How many hours until this is impoacting the Detroit Metro area and will it be severe?
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Here's a neat monthly time-lapse from NOAA's Environmental Visualization Laboratory of the ongoing shifting drought in the United States since January 2012.

By early July 2012, more than 60% of the contiguous United States was experiencing drought conditions, nearly double the area from early January. This animation shows monthly composites of D1 to D4 categories of drought in the contiguous U.S. over the time frame January 2012 to July 2012 using data from the U.S. Drought Monitor. The Drought Monitor summary map identifies general drought areas, labeling droughts by intensity, with D1 (lightest color) being the least intense and D4 (darkest color) being the most intense.

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Nada.

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Quoting 954FtLCane:
Maybe we need a good poll to liven things up a little. So by popular demand here we go.

How long do you think it'll be before we have our next named storm.
A) 1-10 days (on or before July 28th)
B) 11-20 days (between July 29th & August 7th)
C) 21-30 days (between August 8th & 17th)
D) 31+ days (on or after August 18th)
E) *Who cares the world is coming to an end and most hurricane prone areas will be flooded due to global warming before the next one hits so everyone abandon the blog and run for your lives.......
F) I'm not partaking in this poll and I'm voting "F" so you will never post one again.

*disclaimer, I do believe in global warming just having a little fun.


A, but the most probably is B
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Quoting wxchaser97:
I say B-C but I'll get a birthday present on August 12th with a formation of a storm no matter what.


8 10 12 14 is much cooler

or maybe we could do 8/12/12 8edt

anyway, ive got a monster lightning show going on here, so hopefully i keep power
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9737
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Watching Hurricane Hunters on TWC... They just got into the eye of Irene.
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Quoting Tribucanes:
Very strong line of bowing storms coming through my neck of the woods here just north of Madison, Wisconsin. Strongest part of this line looks to have 80-90mph potential. Already may be producing 80mph winds and increasing quickly still. Finally some rain. Going to get close to two two and a half inches of rain in a thirty minute to hour span. Lot of runoff but it will help. Ugly line though, La Cross radar in NW Wisconsin shows a great radar shot of this line.


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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


you know you had it coming when you put it in there.... F

jk, i say C 8/10/12 1400 edt


i want A, but the most probably is B
Member Since: June 20, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2169
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

That's cheating!



Ya got me, I am a cheater, send me to the "Stony Lonesome".
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Quoting 954FtLCane:
Maybe we need a good poll to liven things up a little. So by popular demand here we go.

How long do you think it'll be before we have our next named storm.
A) 1-10 days (on or before July 28th)
B) 11-20 days (between July 29th & August 7th)
C) 21-30 days (between August 8th & 17th)
D) 31 days (on or after August 18th)
E) *Who cares the world is coming to an end and most hurricane prone areas will be flooded due to global warming before the next one hits so everyone abandon the blog and run for your lives.......
F) I'm not partaking in this poll and I'm voting "F" so you will never post one again.

*disclaimer, I do believe in global warming just having a little fun.
I say B-C but I'll get a birthday present on August 12th with a formation of a storm no matter what.
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Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


you know you had it coming when you put it in there.... F

jk, i say C Aug 9th


LOL, it's all good. Heck I never voted my own poll. I'm going to say B, in about 2 weeks or so.
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Good Evening. What is more impressive to me at the moment, than the structure of the wave, is the huge plume of moisture that it is imbedded in along the ITCZ. It is moving in tandem with the SAL towards the West but is missing two key ingredients in addition to some of the others mentioned on here already; sustained convection and no consensus model support for development at the moment. But it is a great start for the ITCZ moisture trail for ones that might follow in the short-term.
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Quoting ncstorm:
Updated QPF map



ohhhh yeahhhh
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:
B

That's cheating!
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
The return of the blob.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26867
Quoting TWCBOT49:


Notice how that moisture is circling.
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NHC Director, Dr. Rick Knabb is very unfriendly with bloggers but , i don't know until when this could continues, August is across the corner
Member Since: June 20, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2169
Quoting 954FtLCane:
Maybe we need a good poll to liven things up a little. So by popular demand here we go.

How long do you think it'll be before we have our next named storm.
A) 1-10 days (on or before July 28th)
B) 11-20 days (between July 29th & August 7th)
C) 21-30 days (between August 8th & 17th)
D) 31 days (on or after August 18th)
E) *Who cares the world is coming to an end and most hurricane prone areas will be flooded due to global warming before the next one hits so everyone abandon the blog and run for your lives.......
F) I'm not partaking in this poll and I'm voting "F" so you will never post one again.

*disclaimer, I do believe in global warming just having a little fun.


you know you had it coming when you put it in there.... F

jk, i say C 8/10/12 1400 edt
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9737
Quoting spathy:
And wouldnt the lake quickly draining away be a good thing over the long run?
The darker water would tend to gain heat faster(hold it longer) than the ice left after draining, wouldnt it?


The water usually drains down within the ice sheet, which enhances glacial lubrication and speeds up the glaciers, thus increasing the ice loss.
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the JMA..a lot of moisture heading into florida from the east..




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Quoting skook:
Is there such a thing as reliable temperature data? So much data seems to be "bogus"?


[citation needed]
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B
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Quoting Bluestorm5:
Was just watching the "Hurricane Hunters" show on Weather Channel that I recorded... I remember tracking the missions into Irene, Katia, Maria, and Nate on the computer and I thought the show was pretty cool.




am watching that now on my new LCD 39" 1080p TV
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Quoting wxchaser97:
More insult to injury...

Here we go again..
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17483
Quoting MAweatherboy1:

It doesn't matter anyways though right? Don't the black ones just indicate speed contamination? If so then it would still indicate a circulation.

Yeah, that was my point.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
Maybe we need a good poll to liven things up a little. So by popular demand here we go.

How long do you think it'll be before we have our next named storm.
A) 1-10 days (on or before July 28th)
B) 11-20 days (between July 29th & August 7th)
C) 21-30 days (between August 8th & 17th)
D) 31+ days (on or after August 18th)
E) *Who cares the world is coming to an end and most hurricane prone areas will be flooded due to global warming before the next one hits so everyone abandon the blog and run for your lives.......
F) I'm not partaking in this poll and I'm voting "F" so you will never post one again.

*disclaimer, I do believe in global warming just having a little fun.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Severe Thunderstorm Warning
SEVERE WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MILWAUKEE/SULLIVAN WI
656 PM CDT WED JUL 18 2012

WIC021-025-027-045-055-065-105-190030-
/O.CON.KMKX.SV.W.0051.000000T0000Z-120719T0030Z/
COLUMBIA WI-DANE WI-DODGE WI-GREEN WI-JEFFERSON WI-LAFAYETTE WI-
ROCK WI-
656 PM CDT WED JUL 18 2012

...A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR NORTHWESTERN
ROCK...SOUTHEASTERN LAFAYETTE...WESTERN JEFFERSON...GREEN...
SOUTHWESTERN DODGE...DANE AND EXTREME SOUTHEASTERN COLUMBIA COUNTIES
UNTIL 730 PM CDT...

AT 652 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
LINE OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING QUARTER SIZE
HAIL...AND DESTRUCTIVE WINDS IN EXCESS OF 70 MPH. THESE STORMS WERE
LOCATED ALONG A LINE EXTENDING FROM 7 MILES SOUTHWEST OF COLUMBUS TO
BROOKLYN TO WINSLOW...MOVING EAST AT 40 MPH.

SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE NEAR...
MONROE AIRPORT...MARSHALL...EVANSVILLE AND ALBANY AROUND 700 PM
CDT.
WATERLOO AND DEERFIELD AROUND 705 PM CDT.
LAKE RIPLEY...EDGERTON...CAMBRIDGE AND BRODHEAD AROUND 710 PM CDT.
LAKE MILLS AND FOOTVILLE AROUND 715 PM CDT.
ORFORDVILLE AROUND 720 PM CDT.
MILTON AND JOHNSON CREEK AROUND 725 PM CDT.

OTHER LOCATIONS IMPACTED BY SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS INCLUDE
COOKSVILLE...UTICA...MAGNOLIA...JUDA...INDIANFORD ...FULTON...
ALBION...ROCKDALE...HUBBLETON AND BUSSEYVILLE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

THIS STORM HAS A HISTORY OF PRODUCING WIND DAMAGE ACROSS SAUK AND
DANE COUNTIES. THIS IS A DANGEROUS SITUATION. SEEK SHELTER
NOW INSIDE A STURDY STRUCTURE AND STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS!

TORRENTIAL RAINFALL IS ALSO OCCURRING WITH THESE STORMS...AND MAY
LEAD TO FLASH FLOODING. DO NOT DRIVE YOUR VEHICLE THROUGH FLOODED
ROADWAYS.

&&

LAT...LON 4251 9008 4291 8962 4329 8948 4330 8869
4283 8884 4250 8918
TIME...MOT...LOC 2355Z 277DEG 36KT 4327 8910 4284 8928
4249 8983
WIND...HAIL 70MPH 1.00IN
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Reading through the blog post again, it interesting to note that water in one river is putting 3,500 cubic meters of water a second into the oceans.
Must be other rivers?
I'm sure somebody with a better slide rule than me will come up with how many units of time/ hour days it will take to put a cubic kilometer or cubic mile of water into the seas.
The ice replacement rate on the Greenland ice cap must now be much less than the melt rate!
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I am aware.

It doesn't matter anyways though right? Don't the black ones just indicate speed contamination? If so then it would still indicate a circulation.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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