Arctic ice melts

Nothing like interpretation of remote sensed imagery to ruin your day: Scientists sound alarm on Arctic ice cap:

Satellite data for the month of June show Arctic sea ice has shrunk to a record low, raising concerns about climate change, coastal erosion, and changes to wildlife patterns. Meier says circulation patterns are bringing more storms and warmer air from the South into the region, and that’s helping to break up the ice.

“June is really the first big month of melt in the central Arctic Ocean and so it’s an indication that the melt is progressing faster than normal,” [according to Walt Meier of the U.S. based National Snow and Ice Data Centre.] . “And when you start melting the ice you’re leaving the open ocean there which absorbs much more solar energy and so it tends to heat up even more.”

Less sea ice means more moisture in the air and more rain.

It also leads to an increase in coastal erosion since the ice isn’t there to buffer the shoreline from waves.

Meier says the ice has retreated almost everywhere in the Arctic except for a small area in the East Greenland Sea.

I guess it’s time again for Canada to worry about its sovereignty over the Northwest Passage.

BTW, the Centre’s site contains an enormous amount of free snow and ice data on the atmosphere, biosphere, ground level, glaciers, hydrosphere, land surfaces, oceans, even paleoclimate. If only Canada could be similarly generous in its offerings. Indeed, why is this analysis coming from the U.S.?

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