According to the US government’s National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC) sea ice in the Arctic has melted faster this year than ever recorded before. On June 18, the five-day average sea ice extent was 10.62 million square kilometers. This was 31,000 square kilometers below the same day in 2010, the record low for the day and 824,000 square kilometers below the same day in 2007, the year of record low September extent.
Although it is still early in the “melt season” and changing weather patterns throughout the summer will affect the exact trajectory of the sea ice extent the latest observations suggest that the Arctic sea ice cover is continuing to shrink. . The increased melting is believed to be a result of climate change. Arctic temperatures have risen more than twice as fast as the global average over the past half century.