Wednesday, July 6, 2011

PIOMAS plunges to a new record low

The linear decline in Arctic ice volume is looking less and less plausible. It seems likely that what we are facing is an exponential decline in ice volume and, ultimately, in sea ice extent.

Warming in the Arctic will continue to accelerate, as the open water absorbs far more of the incident sunlight than the highly reflective surface of the ice. While this ice is not going to raise the sea level, since it is already floating over the ocean, the loss of this ice and the attendant local warming are accelerating losses from the northern portion of the Greenland ice sheet, which represents 7 meters of sea level rise in total, enough to put the homes of 700 million people under water.

Greenland's melting season last year shattered records. What will 2011 bring?

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