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Arctic Ice Melts Faster As It Gets Warmer

New satellite observations show that sea ice in the Arctic is melting faster while air temperatures in the region are rising sharply, scientists say.
Since 2002, satellite data have revealed unusually early springtime melting in areas north of Siberia and Alaska. Now the melting trend has spread throughout the Arctic, according to a national collaboration of scientists.

The latest observations through September show that melting in 2005 began a record 17 days earlier than usual.

The observations showed 2.06 million square miles of sea ice as late as Sept. 19. That's the lowest measurement of Arctic sea ice cover ever recorded, the researchers said. It's also 20 percent less than the average of end-of-summer ice pack cover measurements recorded since 1978.

At the same time, average air temperatures across most of the Arctic region from January to August 2005 were as much as 5.4 degrees warmer than average temperature over the last 50 years, said the team of researchers from two universities and NASA" name="c1" /> News | News Photos | Images | Web

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NASA.

"The melting and retreat trends are accelerating," Ted Scambos, of the University of Colorado at Boulder's National Snow and Ice Data Center, said in a statement released by the university. The results have not yet been published in a scientific journal.

"The one common thread," Scambos said, "is that Arctic temperatures over the ice, ocean and surrounding land have increased in recent decades."

The scientists stopped short of directly blaming the melting trend on global warming but said they have few other explanations at this point.

During the 1990s, a cyclical atmospheric circulation pattern called the Arctic Oscillation was believed to have been pushing sea ice out of the region and into adjacent waters. But the oscillation has weakened in recent years, and yet the melting continued and even accelerated.

"Something has fundamentally changed here, and the best answer is warming," said Mark Serreze, another researcher at the snow and ice data center.

Sea ice records in the Arctic are sketchy before 1978. Since satellite observations began in earnest, researchers said Arctic ice has been retreating at a rate of more than 8 percent per decade.

And, they suspect, the melting may only contribute to even higher arctic temperatures in the future. That's because the bright white ice tends to reflect more of the sun's radiation. With more of the dark ocean exposed, the seawater tends to absorb more heat and reduce the amount of solar energy reflected back into space.

The researchers used satellite data from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Defense Department, as well as data from Canadian satellites and weather observatories.

The Colorado institute led the study that also involved two NASA laboratories, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the University of Washington.
Anyone else think that alternative energy sources is a good idea?
 

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Well, we'll be out of gasoline in about 20 years at the current rate of consumption anyway. If we don't find an alternative fuel source we're looking at a complete crash of the world economy, let alone global warming. Too bad people are too complacent to start doing anything about it...
 

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No ice = more water, so does this mean that the sea level is gonna rise further in other parts too (parts further from arctic?)

Is it that the coastal areas are in danger?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Global warming dont exist.
I hope you are sarcastic

No ice = more water, so does this mean that the sea level is gonna rise further in other parts too (parts further from arctic?)

Is it that the coastal areas are in danger?
Yes the sea levels are going to rise and the instances of flooding will also increase due to the increased percipitation caused by the raised temprature, costal areas will have an increased risk of flooding, the aditional energy in the ocean due to the aditional heat causing more hurricanes like katrina and rita to ouccur
 

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iirc, the global water level would rise by 60 metres if all of Antarctica was to melt. I think people should start working on safer ways to exploit nuclear energy. Did you know there is enough resources to power the whole world on nuclear energy for several hundred years?
 

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Don't you think several hundred years is just too less considering the age of a planet?

Well, what alternate sources of fuel do we have?
 

· Heretic
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Well, thats just using the uranium without restoring it. If we were to use the specially designed Breeder Reactors it should last a few billion years.
 

· War Games coder
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I doubt that an alternate energy source will prevent this.

Recent evidence has suggested that Earth is not the only planet in the solar system undergoing global warming - comparisons between photos of the polar ice caps on mars shows that they have been steadily melting for the last few years (as far back as our high-resolution photos go - we have no earlier records). I doubt the two mars rovers are responsible. The common factor? The sun, best I can tell.

Then again, alternate energy sources are always a welcome idea :)

EDIT: Decided to grab a reputable source reference: clicky
 

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No, by alternate energy source I was trying to express the concern over this: WHat if we ran out of oil and natural gas? Then what???

We're moving towards a doomsday for sure, right?
 

· The Hunter
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Syed Fawad said:
No ice = more water, so does this mean that the sea level is gonna rise further in other parts too (parts further from arctic?)

Is it that the coastal areas are in danger?
Yeah, curse you all if I'm ever going to drown because of global warming :p
I live in the part of Holland that's below sea level. Luckily the protection seems to be very good here in Holland, way much better than it was in New Orleans. At least that's what I've read about it :)
 

· Emulation to the max!
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wow who would have guessed that warmer temperatures would make ice melt faster. as for alternate energy sources, there are already many. solar, wind, water. the only problem is that they are expensive and result in a small fraction of the power of the higher polluting devices. not to mention some argue that it creates more pollution to make solar cells. then again you could argue that in the long run it is benefficial. i think we just need to sort out our priorities. spend less money on war and weapons and all the other things that we use to kill eachother and the planet and divert them into more economic productive advancements.
 

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Here's an interesting fact that I remember from a project I did a while ago; a single nuclear pellet (the size of your finger nail) can produce the same amount of energy as 12000 tonnes of coal (I'm not sure on the coal, but it was something like that; maybe 1200). Now THAT's effeciency.
 

· The ChinaDude!!!
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Nuke the planet to dust :evil:

seriously, no way you can whine about a power shortage then... yes it's uncontrolled power, but you didn't ask for that :evil:
 

· No People, No Problems
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Well, we'll be out of gasoline in about 20 years at the current rate of consumption anyway. If we don't find an alternative fuel source we're looking at a complete crash of the world economy, let alone global warming. Too bad people are too complacent to start doing anything about it...
That´s completely false, in my country alone there are oil fields discoveries almost weekly.

I have a friend whose father works for Exel and i know people that have worked and work for Chevron,Texaco,Total, Fina, Elf etc. plus several logistics companies, and they say that efficient Hydrogen fuel is just a step away but the oil companies are doing everything in their power to postpone that.
So i think that Hydrogen fuel is the way for a clean, abundant and effcient fuel.
 

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