Thoughts on the ocean, the environment, the universe and everything from nearly a mile high.

Panorama of The Grand Tetons From the top of Table Mountain, Wyoming © Alan Holyoak, 2011

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Holy Cow! Look at that decline in Arctic sea ice!

I haven't posted anything about much here lately, though there has been a lot going on.  For example the launch of the Carbon Observatory Satellite (, but I just had to place a short post when I checked the Arctic sea ice extent today at the site.

The graph below shows the relationship between the current sea ice extent (blue line) and the extent in 2012 (green dashed line), the year that generated the smallest sea ice extent so far, and the long-term average sea ice extent (dark gray line).  The rate of sea ice melt through mid-June 2014 wasn't really much out of the ordinary, just 500,000 km2 below the long term average (just!?), but over the past couple of weeks the sea ice extent has plummeted!  It's now about 1.2 million km2 below the average extent for this time of year.  


If this sea ice melt rate keeps up we could see another record low extent or close to it.  And yet another indicator from the high Arctic that the effects of climate change are not going to be going away anytime soon.

This is also the second month running where the atmospheric carbon dioxide level did not dip below 400 ppm, the second month it's ever been this high in human least for the last several hundred thousand years.

Hang on, it could get interesting and exciting to see just how far things will go before there is general acceptance and outcry that something be done, at least in the USA.

Think green!

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