Polar ice formation patterns
Richard Holle says:
I think the difference is in the shift in position of the ice formation so far for the season.
In 2007 the lunar declination was starting to drop from a maximum extent, (in 2005) creating a lot of the wind patterns that pushed out a lot of the ice, now in 2010 the declinational extent is down to the average ~23 degrees and we are having a lot of the loopy turbulence patterns in global circulation.
The pattern of the ice formation is more centered in the arctic ocean, from the global wind patterns of this last summer/fall pushing up from the South the remnants of the tropical storms, both warmth and moisture in across the N Atlantic into the Beaufort Sea, Canadian Archipelago, and Baffin Bay. With the flow out through Siberia extending the ice extent in that direction, with the advent of NH winter coming on the flows of warm moisture will slow to a crawl, and the ice will continue to grow in this more centered position through spring 2011.
The main difference between the 2007 and 2010 ice formation pattern is the result of where we are in the 18.6 Mn period of lunar declination, and as the declinational angle at culmination drops further to ward the minimum of ~18.5 degrees over the next several years, the patterns of blocking highs will drop off in about two years yielding more robust zonal flow patterns, isolating the polar cold from the tropics more, that will engender more years of increases in total ice cover.