An alarming new finding by scientists in the Antarctic could totally change how we see the immediate future of climate change.
It appears that scientists have made a very alarming discovery in the Arctic and Antarctic: for the first time, sea ice at both poles will be at record lows this time of year. It’s not surprising for their to be record low sea ice in the Artic, but this particular discovery is surprising because the Antarctic had seen its sea ice rising.
Every year from 2012 through 2014 resulted in a record high for Antarctic sea ice extent, which was used by climate change skeptics as proof that global warming wasn’t really happening. Scientists warned that these were mere natural variations in the atmosphere and would soon succumb to the forces of climate change.
“It looks like, since the beginning of October, that for the first time we are seeing both the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice running at record low levels,” Walt Meier, a research scientist with the Cryospheric Sciences Laboratory at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, said according to a CNN report.
“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 in a statement earlier this year. “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. So our predictive ability in May of the September minimum is limited, because the sea ice cover is so sensitive to the early-to-mid-summer atmospheric conditions, and you can’t foresee summer weather.”