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During late February, Antarctic sea ice breached the previous all-time record low for extent coverage since measurements began in 1978. And in the following days, sea ice extent measures near the South Pole have continued to creep lower, gradually extending into unprecedented ranges.

Record Melt During a Period of Considerable Global Heat

antarctic-sea-ice-new-all-time-record-low

(This February, according to JAXA, the Antarctic sea ice extent measure hit a new all time record low. Image source: JAXA.)

Hitherto unseen global heat — driven primarily by human fossil fuel emissions — appears to be the chief contributor to this melting. During 2016, global average surface temperatures rose to 1.2 degrees Celsius above 1880s ranges. This global reading likely represents the warmest surface temperatures the world has experienced in the last 115,000 years. At the same time, the global ocean system has been rapidly accumulating warmth and transferring it through the surface and deep…

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10 thoughts on “Antarctic Sea Ice Hits New All-Time Record Low

      • I’m not sure what will hit us first in the U.S. pacific northwest, rising sea levels from climate change or a huge tsunami from an overdue catastrophic earthquake on our nearby subduction zone faults. In any event, we’re gonna get wet! Got an extra room in Johannesburg?.. lol!

      • That “overdue catastrophic earthquake” is gonna’ be a dandy when it finally hits. At least I live inland (on the other side of a mountain range) so the tsunami won’t reach us, but I have no doubts the shaking will! Hoping I won’t be around (no spring chicken am I), but unfortunately, no guarantees. *sigh*

      • On a personal note — we travel up that direction quite often during the summer months (my other half’s daughter lives in Milwaukie, OR). You’re on the WA side of the Columbia, right? Maybe (if we’re both still around and haven’t been wiped out by the quake), we could get together for a quick visit on one of our trips that direction. Perhaps a glass or wine or some other tasty beverage at a local establishment.

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