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Arctic sea ice reaches historic summer low

    Arctic sea ice

Scientists have recorded the third-lowest level of summer Arctic sea ice since data collection began more than 30 years ago.

The National Snow and Ice Data Center, which uses satellite imagery to track the so-called summer minimum, said the Arctic ice sheet had reached its minimum on Sept. 10, and that it was headed back into its winter growth cycle.

The minimum this year, however, was 25% below a 31-year average (1979-2010), a deficit of 625,000 square miles. 

NSIDC reported:

This is only the third time in the satellite record that ice extent has fallen below    5 million square kilometers (1.93 million square miles), and all those occurrences have been within the past four years. The minimum for 2009 was 5.10 million square kilometers (1.97 million square miles), fourth lowest in the satellite record.

Despite a late start to the melt season, the ice extent declined rapidly thereafter, with record daily average ice-loss rates for the Arctic as a whole for May and June. Assuming that we have indeed reached the seasonal minimum extent, 2010 would have the shortest melt season in the satellite record, spanning 163 days between the seasonal maximum and minimum ice extents.


Polarbear Declining seasonal sea ice sheets have had a deadly effect on the polar bear, which was given federal endangered species protection in 2008 -- the first species to be listed explicitly as a victim of climate change.

-- Geoff Mohan




Photo: A mother polar bear and cubs on the shore of Hudson Bay, near Churchill, Manitoba, Canada. Credit: Jonathan Hayward/AP

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Hold on, the overall melting wasn't quite over. The ice extent reached another minimum on September 18 -- 8 days after the original minimum that this article reports.

What about ski instructors will we be given compensation for the lak of snow around the world and the rize of temperature

Data Analysis of Recent Warming Pattern in the Arctic

Masahiro Ohashi1) and H. L. Tanaka2)

1) Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Tsukuba
2) Center for Computational Sciences, University of Tsukuba


In this study, we investigate the mechanism of the arctic warming pattern in surface air temperature (SAT) and sea ice concentrations over the last two decades in comparison with global warming since the 1970s.
According to the analysis result, it is found that the patterns of SAT and sea ice before 1989 are mostly determined by the Arctic Oscillation (AO) in winter. In contrast, arctic warming patterns after 1989 are characterized by the intensification of the Beaufort High and the reduced sea-ice concentrations in summer induced by the positive ice-albedo feedback.

It is concluded that the arctic warming before 1989 especially in winter was explained by the positive trend of the AOI. Moreover the intensified Beaufort High and the drastic decrease of the sea ice concentrations in September after 1989 were associated with the recent negative trend of the AOI. Since the decadal variation of the AO is recognized as the natural variability of the global atmosphere, it is shown that both of decadal variabilities before and after 1989 in the Arctic can be mostly explained by the natural variability of the AO not by the external response due to the human activity.

Author’s Commentary

“According to our result, the rapid warming during 1970-1990 contains a large fraction of unpredictable natural variability due to the AO. The subsequent period of 1990-2010 indicates a clear trend of the AO to be negative. The global warming has been stopped by natural variability superimposed on the gentle anthropogenic global warming. The important point is that the IPCC models have been tuned perfectly to fit the rapid warming during 1970-1990 by means of the ice-albedo feedback (anthropogenic forcing) which is not actually observed. IPCC models are justified with this wrong scientific basis and are applied to project the future global warming for 100 years in the future. Hence, we warn that the IPCC models overestimate the warming trend due to the mislead Arctic Oscillation.”

And Walrus too.


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