Tags: nasa | new normal | ice melt | arctic

NASA: 'New Normal' for Arctic Ice Melt Means Decline in Long Run

NASA: 'New Normal' for Arctic Ice Melt Means Decline in Long Run

(Screengrab of NASA video)

By    |   Tuesday, 23 August 2016 04:03 PM

NASA suspects a "new normal" of continued Arctic ice melt over the long term, even though this year's melt will not likely set a new melting record.

The space agency stated that Arctic Ocean ice experienced rapid loss in May, but also explained in a statement Friday that the decrease in melt speed in June makes it unlikely that a new record will be achieved.

"Even when it's likely that we won't have a record low, the sea ice is not showing any kind of recovery," said Walt Meier, a sea ice scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

"It's still in a continued decline over the long term. It's just not going to be as extreme as other years because the weather conditions in the Arctic were not as extreme as in other years. A decade ago, this year's sea ice extent would have set a new record low and by a fair amount. Now, we're kind of used to these low levels of sea ice – it's the new normal."

The opposite, though, has happened at the bottom of the world in Antarctica, where a study by the National Center for Atmospheric Research reported in July that the extent of sea ice on that continent has expanded, noted ScienceDaily.com.

The Antarctica study displayed evidence that the negative phase of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation, characterized by cooler-than-average sea surface temperatures in the tropical eastern Pacific, had created favorable conditions for additional Antarctic sea ice growth since 2000.

In the Arctic, NASA stated that sea ice that covered the Barents and Kara seas north of Russia "opened up early, in April, exposing the surface ocean waters to the energy from the sun weeks ahead of schedule. By May 31, the extent of the Arctic sea ice cover was comparable to end-of-June average levels."

NASA said, though, that an area of low atmospheric pressure along with cloudiness, winds that dispersed ice, and lower-than-average temperatures, was slowing the rate of melt.

"This year is a great case study in showing how important the weather conditions are during the summer, especially in June and July, when you have 24 hours of sunlight and the sun is high in the sky in the Arctic," Meier said. "If you get the right atmospheric conditions during those two months, they can really accelerate the ice loss. If you don't, they can slow down any melting momentum you had."

© 2019 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
NASA suspects a "new normal" of continued Arctic ice melt over the long term, even though this year's melt will not likely set a new melting record.
nasa, new normal, ice melt, arctic
406
2016-03-23
Tuesday, 23 August 2016 04:03 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved