Arctic ice grows again in August after record 2012 melt

The Wall Street Journal reports:

The area of Arctic sea ice was nearly 30% greater in August than a year ago, according to recent satellite data, though projections based on longer-term trends suggest the sea ice will continue its decline over time.

Arctic sea ice covered 2.35 million square miles in August, up from 1.82 million square miles a year earlier, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, or NSIDC, in Boulder, Colo. The level recorded last year was a record low.

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5 thoughts on “Arctic ice grows again in August after record 2012 melt”

  1. By dragging everyone into tedious debates about datasets, trendlines, ocean currents, and natural variability, they’ve effectively sidestepped the ultimate question of “why should we care”. I can’t recall a single news story about a city sliding into the ocean as a result of the previous record breaking minimum.

  2. Data for August ice area and extent are here:
    ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/Aug/N_08_area.txt

    The confusion may come from the difference in terminology between “area” and “extent”. The ice area is up 49.6% from August 2012, while the extent is up 29.6%. There is a footnote at that web site explaining the difference in calculation methodology.

    See this article for an interesting twist on why this all matters:
    http://www.mcoscillator.com/learning_center/weekly_chart/is_shrinking_arctic_ice_a_bad_thing/

  3. What happened to the 60%, now it is 30%? Are there different datasets that show these different variations in ice cover? Shoot if our observers can’t get it right within 30% that is pretty bad.

  4. Last year’s small minimum of ice extent was related more to currents and winds than it was to changes in temperatures. Those conditions changed this year and ice extent is much larger than last year. Temps seem to be trending very slightly down but the changes in wind and current seem more important than a down-slope in temps.

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