Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Soaring Ocean Temperatures melting Arctic Ice

Temperatures in January 2016 over the Arctic Ocean were 7.3°C (13.1°F) higher than in 1951-1980, according to NASA. These high temperatures go hand in hand with sea ice extent. Arctic sea ice extent this year is the lowest in the satellite record.

Extremely low sea ice extent is fueling fears this year's Arctic ice maximum extent was already been reached. A much higher ocean temperature is behind both the low sea ice extent and the high temperature anomalies.
Arctic sea ice extent in January was 402,000 square miles below average — an area equivalent to about 60 percent of Alaska.

January 2016 is now the hottest month of January in the 137-year record, following 2015 as the hottest year. The January 2016 globally-averaged temperature across land and ocean surfaces was 1.04oC (1.87oF) above the 20th century average.
Earth’s 2015 surface temperatures were the warmest since modern record keeping began in 1880, according to independent analyses by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

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