The ice sheet in the Antarctic sea is all set to hit a record this year despite the rising global temperature as it is rapidly increasing its current 7.6 million square miles of stretch, showed a recent report from the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC).
On the other hand, the Arctic sea continues to lose its ice cover.
The NSIDC report showed that on September 15 the Arctic sea ice extent was 1.96 million square miles, i.e. 11,600 square miles below the same date last year. However, the Arctic sea ice extent remained at lower levels when examined against the long-term 1981 to 2010 average.
“In the short term, it seems like there hasn’t been much ice loss in the past couple of years, but I think it’s still very much within the long-term trend of declining sea ice. One shouldn’t necessarily expect every year to be a record low,” Axel Schweiger, chairman of Polar Science Center at the University of Washington in Seattle, said.
As per the NSIDC report, the Arctic sea ice extent reduced at a rate of 11,100 square miles a day through the first half of the month of September, which is almost two times as high as the average rate of decline for the period between 1981 and 2010.
According to the scientists, the global warming is the major contributor of declining levels of the ice sheets in both the Arctic sea and Antarctica sea.
The increase in the Antarctica’s sea levels may be the impact of more powerful winds, which is the result of the southern polar vortex that is agitating the air closer to the cold Antarctica’s ozone hole and greenhouse gases.
Researcher Jan Lieser, of the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Center, expects that the Antarctic sea ice may decrease eventually by 2100 when it will witness dramatic reductions in the ice sheets.
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