What if Hudson Bay remained largely ice-covered for an entire year?

There is significantly more sea ice than average in Canada’s Hudson Bay as of today (July 26th).


What if Hudson Bay remained largely ice-covered for an entire year?

By H.B. Schmidt

There is significantly more sea ice than average in Canada’s Hudson Bay as of today (July 26th).

Canadian sea ice – 26 July 2018 – Note how much ice remains in Hudson Bay as opposed to ‘normal’ years.

As you can see on the map below, the 30-year average for July 23 is a very small amount of loosely-packed sea ice in the southwestern portion of the bay.

Canadian sea ice 30-year median

To me this says that it’s been below normal both in absolute temperatures as well as solar gain (# of sunny days.) The less solar gain to heat the waters of Hudson Bay, the colder it remains. The less heat retention, the faster it refreezes.

In addition to that, you have the albedo effect of the bright white ice reflecting back into space all that incoming solar insolation. This is something that AGW alarmists should celebrate, as is the gain in Greenland ice sheet mass balance. Anything to cool the planet and prevent Armageddon, right?

We are nearly at the beginning of August. The summer melt season is in decline and will reach its minimum within two months. While I do not believe Hudson Bay will retain its sea ice throughout the rest of the summer, the forecasted below-normal temperatures throughout much of middle Canada for Aug 1st mean that time is running short for adding all that thermal gain to its waters.

What would happen if the bay remained largely ice-covered for an entire year? How would that impact surrounding lands downstream of the prevailing westerlies? Would the cold ice depress temperatures and potentially allow for snowfall rather than rain? Possibly.

We already know that the climate of Michigan and lower Quebec is far more moderate—meaning fewer higher highs and lower lows—than surrounding areas, thanks to the Great Lakes’ thermal mass, especially in years following elevated lake ice extent. It is by no means a stretch to postulate that the same effect would occur with a Hudson Bay that remains largely ice-covered year round. But why should this matter?

How and where would a new ice sheet begin?

Consider where North America’s Laurentide ice sheet was located, and which direction it retreated as it melted: north and east of Hudson Bay. Climate scientists need to ask themselves and their fancy computer climate models this important question: How and where would a new ice sheet begin?

Absolute temperature and Milankovitch cycle precession are both important, but the mechanics of what that would look like should be equally important. It would give us an indication of where and how such a global event would affect humanity. And being that albedo at lower latitudes have an outsized contribution (due to angular solar gain) to overall global temperatures compared to albedo at high latitudes, is it crazy to postulate that going forward in time, Hudson Bay and the Canadian archipelago might be key to whether or not the Laurentide ice sheet returns?

Perhaps. I just find it interesting that all the ballyhooing from government officials and AGW alarmists is solely focused on mitigating coastal flooding from sea level rise when there is every reason to believe that large quantities of snow and ice might one day build up on the land for our neighbors to the north.

Source of maps:


The post What if Hudson Bay remained largely ice-covered for an entire year? appeared first on Ice Age Now.

via Ice Age Now


July 26, 2018 at 10:24PM

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