The Beacon

Hot Topics: Yes, It's a Record

The volume of Arctic sea ice may be at its thinnest and most critical point in human history.

Despite recent headlines touting no new records for this year (it's looking like there will be slightly more sea ice this year than the 2007 record low) sea ice conditions overall are worse than ever before.

The Arctic sea ice is thinner and newer than it has been since scientists first set out to monitor sea ice extent in the 1970s. Since 1985, the Arctic has experienced a 56 percent decline in sea ice older than five years and the oldest ice has already vanished.

Not breaking records in this case is a good thing; however, with such a persistent yearly loss of older, thicker sea ice, don't be fooled, trends in the Arctic are dire.

For more on climate change, see http://oceana.org/climate.

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