The Fifth-Lowest Maximum Extent of Arctic Sea Ice Ever Recorded.

The Fifth-Lowest Maximum Extent of Arctic Sea Ice Ever Recorded.

The Arctic sea ice extent for the winter of 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere will be the fifth-lowest on record.

The Arctic sea ice likely achieved its maximum extent on March 6 at 5.64 million square miles, according to a report released on Wednesday by the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The average maximum between 1981 and 2010 was 6.04 million square miles, which is a difference of 398,000 square miles.

According to Dr. Zack Labe, a postdoctoral researcher at the Princeton University Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences Program and the NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, these effects are unmistakably related to human-caused climate change and have significant regional implications throughout the Arctic.

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the climate crisis increases ocean and air temperatures, which contribute to the melting of Arctic sea ice. The Arctic Ocean’s sea ice normally covers the majority of the ocean by March after melting in the summer and reaching its minimum extent in September.

The Fifth-Lowest Maximum Extent of Arctic Sea Ice Ever Recorded.

The minimum extent of sea ice in September and the maximum extent in March have both decreased over the past 40 years, but the Arctic is also warming at a rate that is roughly four times faster than the global average.

The lowest minimum extent occurred in September 2012, 44 percent below the average for the years 1981 to 2010, and the lowest maximum extent occurred in 2017, 7.4 percent below the average. According to the NSIDC, the last eight years saw measurements of all five of the lowest maximums on record and the last 17 years saw measurements of all ten of the lowest maximums.

The highest extent for this year occurred on March 6, which was six days early than the March 12 average between 1981 and 2010. A 45-year satellite record serves as the foundation for all of NSIDC’s comparisons.

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The data was made public on the same day as a new study that appeared in Nature and indicated that after 2007, the Arctic sea ice substantially changed, becoming younger and thinner, ushering in a new age for the region.

Our data suggests an irreversible reaction of Arctic sea ice thickness coupled to an increase in ocean heat content in areas of ice formation, suggesting a long-term influence of climate change on Arctic sea ice through reduced residency time, according to the study’s authors.

The Fifth-Lowest Maximum Extent of Arctic Sea Ice Ever Recorded.

This regime change resulted in part from the fact that greater warming resulted from the albedo effect—the ocean’s capacity to reflect sunlight—decreasing following the enormous summer ice losses of 2005 and 2007.

Arctic ice loss is also crucial because it starts a feedback cycle, leading to increased warming in the region, the EPA noted. In addition, a loss of ice damages Arctic ecosystems and Indigenous communities because big creatures like polar bears and walruses that formerly relied on the ice for breeding and hunting can no longer easily access it. This in turn threatens the lifestyles of subsistence hunters like the Yup ik, I update, and Inuit Indigenous groups, who also depend on the ice and the wildlife support.

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This year, there were alarming signals not only from the Arctic but from the Antarctic as well, which saw its record lowest minimum sea ice extent on Feb. 21 at 1.79 million square kilometers (approximately 700,000 square miles) as Carbon Brief reported. The previous year’s record had been broken by this.

The Fifth-Lowest Maximum Extent of Arctic Sea Ice Ever Recorded.

According to Dr. Mark Serreze, director of NSIDC, the global sea ice extent for the Arctic and Antarctic has been at a record low for a number of months this year.

Vishal Rana

Vishal is working as a Content Editor at Enviro360. He covers a wide range of topics, including media, energy, weather, industry news, daily news, climate, etc. Apart from this, Vishal is a sports enthusiast and loves to play cricket. Also, he is an avid moviegoer and spends his free time watching Web series and Hollywood Movies.

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