October 26, 2021

Arctic Ice Report for Summer 2010

Arctic Ice

Rapid Arctic Ice Melt in 2010

Ice coverage in the Arctic Ocean melted quite rapidly this year, according to U.S. scientists. However, the melt-off was not as extreme as it was when the minimum area of ice coverage was measured in 2007.

Experts at the National Snow and Ice Data Center located in Boulder, Colorado, say the seasonal summer minimum for ice coverage has now passed and the Arctic ice has moved into its seasonal winter growth phase.

When measured at its smallest level on September 10th,¬† ice covered 1.84 million square miles of the Arctic Ocean. Researchers say that was a larger area than in 2007 and 2008 but smaller than in any annual observation since 1979. This year’s melt occurred unusually quickly, they added.

NSIDC scientist Walt Meier said that this was a short-lived melt season. The time from the maximum ice coverage to the minimum was shorter than before. However, the ice from the previous winter build-up was especially thin, resulting in the rapid melting.

Independent  climate data indicate that the last twelve months have been abnormally warm worldwide, the warmest measured in the 130 years that records have been maintained.

Meier stated that, in spite of this, predictions of the total disappearance of ice in the arctic region in the immediate future appear to have been overly extreme. He added, however, that the 2040 -2050 timeframe for the loss of all arctic ice remains a valid projection. So far, the data they have collected does not disprove it.

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