Credit: NOAA Visualizations
August global temperatures are the 4th highest on record, and Arctic sea ice extent shrinks to all-time lowest extent on record in August, according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.
The sea ice in the Arctic Ocean dropped below the previous all-time record set in 2007. This year also marks the first time that there has been less than 4 million square kilometers (1.54 square miles) of sea ice since satellite observations began in 1979.
This animation shows the 2012 time-series of ice extent using sea ice concentration data from the DMSP SSMI/S satellite sensor. The black area represents the daily average (median) sea ice extent over the 1979-2000 time period. Layered over top of that are the daily satellite measurements from January 1 - September 14, 2012. A rapid melt begins in July, whereby the 2012 ice extents fall far below the historical average.
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