The 2020 July Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) Report is now available online. The SIO, a product of the Sea Ice Prediction Network–Phase 2 (SIPN2), provides an open process for those interested in Arctic sea ice to share predictions and ideas. The monthly reports contain a variety of perspectives—from advanced numerical models to qualitative perspectives from citizen scientists. The Outlook is not an operational forecast.
For the 2020 July report, 38 contributions were received that included pan-Arctic predictions. Of those contributions, 10 included predictions for the Alaska Region and 7 included pan-Antarctic predictions. Additionally, we received 13 submissions of sea-ice probability and 10 submissions of first ice-free date. New this year, the report includes ice-free conditions for the Hudson Bay region; the September sea-ice concentration contour in the Fram Strait region, motivated by the MOSAiC expedition; and we invited contributors to submit initial conditions (sea-ice concentration and sea-ice thickness) of their forecasts to better understand how observations are being used in forecasts.
For the pan-Arctic, the median July Outlook value for September 2020 sea-ice extent is 4.36 million square kilometers, with quartiles of 4.1 and 4.6 million square kilometers. The median is close to the observed 2019 September sea-ice extent of 4.32 million square kilometers.