Arctic sea ice levels to reach record low within days


By , from The Guardian

North Pole webcam picture taken on 22 August 2012 showing ice cap melting. Climate scientists expect the Arctic sea ice is on course to plummet to its lowest levels ever this weekend. Photograph: University of Washington/ North Pole Environmental Observatory/NOAA

Arctic sea ice is set to reach its lowest ever recorded extent as early as this weekend, in “dramatic changes” signalling that man-made global warming is having a major impact on the polar region.

With the melt happening at an unprecedented rate of more than 100,000 sq km a day, and at least a week of further melt expected before ice begins to reform ahead of the northern winter, satellites are expected to confirm the record – currently set in 2007 – within days.

“Unless something really unusual happens we will see the record broken in the next few days. It might happen this weekend, almost certainly next week,” Julienne Stroeve, a scientist at the US National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC) in Boulder, Colorado, told the Guardian.

Read the rest of this article at The Guardian.