METSAT-derived lake ice breakup dates on the Laurentian Shield as a robust climate proxy
Our overall research objective is continued exploration of the use of lake ice breakup patterns in late winter/early spring as spatially explicit climate indicator in the mid- to high latitudes. This combination of time and space corresponds with the spatiotemporal domain in which the magnitude of temperature increases due to enhanced greenhouse warming is generally predicted to be greatest. Realization of this objective is being accomplished via satellite image analysis of more than 2,000 GOES and A VHRR scenes acquired from 1979-1994 to determine ice breakup patterns for a subset of the large(\textgreater 1000 hectares) inland lakes and reservoirs Wisconsin, Northern Michigan, North and South Dakota, as well as the portions of Manitoba and Ontario, Canada south of Hudson Bay. To date, we have completed the analysis of 621akes over the period 1987-1993. Our preliminary results indicate that 1) lake morphometry has a generally insignificant effect on the date of ice breakup; 2) lakes in close juxtaposition have temporally coherent ice breakup dates; and 3) the date of lake ice breakup as determined frommetsat data is a robust climate change indicator inherently amenable to operational monitoring.
Technical Papers Vol. 3