Animated history of Arctic sea ice during the satellite era

  • Robert Rohde, who is a Lead Scientist at Berkeley Earth, shared interesting thread on his Twitter account.
    Rapidly rising temperatures in the Arctic are causing declines in sea ice,with larger percentage declines in the annual minima than the maxima.

    Comparison of Arctic sea ice distributions on September 21 in 1979 and 2018, near the time of the annual minimum.

    The minimum sea ice extent was ~1/3 lower in 2018.

    Recently, sea ice reductions have allowed brief periods of navigable open water each year.


    Comparison of Arctic sea ice distributions on March 13 in 1979 and 2019, near the time of the annual maximum. The maximum sea ice extent was 10% lower in 2019.


    The annual average temperature in the Arctic Ocean has risen about 3 C (5.4 F) since the 1970s.

    Arctic warming is driven by the buildup of greenhouse gases, but it has also been amplified by the loss of sea ice, which allows more sunlight to be absorbed in the Arctic Ocean.


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