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Double Dip: Arctic Ice Resumes Late Season Melt

Last week, the National Snow and Ice Data Center reported:

Arctic sea ice appears to have reached its annual minimum extent on 10 September. The minimum ice extent was the third-lowest in the satellite record, after 2007 and 2008, and continues the trend of decreasing summer sea ice.

But appearances can occasionally be deceiving. After a brief bump upward for a few days following September 10, the extent of Arctic Ocean sea ice resumed its fall, and is now approaching the 2008 minimum sea ice level:

Estimated extent of sea ice in the Arctic, National Snow and Ice Data Center, as of September 18 2010 with previous years' record for comparison

No matter whether the 2010 Arctic sea ice level falls below that of 2008, this year’s sea ice weather is part of a clear climate trend. The four years with the smallest extent of ice in the Arctic are the last four years, and right now the extent of ice in the Arctic has shrunk a significant 29% down from the 1979-2000 average.

Something’s going on in the Arctic; we’d do well to pay attention.

5 comments to Double Dip: Arctic Ice Resumes Late Season Melt

  • Tom

    We can’t even hope that anything will change to make this trend reverse back to the “norm” of hundreds of years previous. Since the human population is too ignorant to heed clear warnings, this will only get worse until there is no summer ice there. At that time (if it hasn’t already started), the idiots will probably start drilling for oil there, with the usual mishaps and problems to follow soon thereafter. Even if everything went swimmingly, the mere use of this fossil fuel, which got us into this climate mess in the first place, would continue to wreak havoc with weather patterns causing sea level rise, habitat destruction for many species (including that of humans), food production problems, pollution, extended flood and drought problems, and more.

  • deep thinker

    Thanks Tom. It’s probably just weather, but Phoenix this weekend hit an all-time high temperature for this late date. The thermometer on our porch was 109F.

  • J Ecob

    Melting of Arctic Ice is caused by sea currents. Ice melts from below. Currents change just as the Gulf stream has now changed and UK and EU are freezing. They are shut down because there is no warn ocean current to create a temperate climate. Climatologists expect a mini ice age now so just wait a little longer and you will see the arctic freeze as it did before 2000. Temperatures in the main body of Antarctica are falling. I flew past it in October 2010 and photographed the vast areas of floating ice at the end of spring.
    If I believe that man can change the climate why doesn’t someone do something about warming up the northern hemisphere right now?
    The period from 1979 to 2010 is only 30 years and that is too short a sample to draw conclusions that man has changed the climate. Especially since the big Arctic melt didn’t start till 2000 and lasted only 7 years before reversing. It would be absurd to conclude from such scant information that man has changed the climate.

    • Melting of Arctic Ice is also affected by air temperature, which is warmer than average, and arctic ice melt has not reversed either in extent or in volume since 2007. Since you don’t have any citations for your other claims, why should I believe what you say when these two claims of yours are clearly not true?

    • Mark

      J Ecob said: “I flew past it in October 2010 and photographed the vast areas of floating ice at the end of spring.”

      Having been to Antarctica myself I can attest that floating sea ice is prevalent until summer. October is hardly the end of Spring, in fact, it’s only the beginning. Spring in the Southern Hemisphere doesn’t end until December 21.

      Also, I’m curious to know which Climatologists are predicting a mini ice age to come soon. I’ve not seen any forecasts from them.

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