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Scientists: Arctic ice area is shrinking at unprecedented pace

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — The head of the Arctic and Antarctic Institute, Alexander Makarov, said that the Arctic ice area is shrinking at unprecedented rates.

This was stated in a report published by Russian scientists participating in the TransActica – 2019 scientific mission.

Makarov said the minimum amount of Arctic ice was recorded in 2007, 2012 and 2019.

The ice sheet in the northern seas is shrinking only in summer, he said. For the 9-month Arctic winter season, the ice area remains unchanged.

He said the information on the Arctic ice fields was provided by the scientific expedition conducted by scientific ships on the limits of melting ice: Academician Treshnikov, Professor Molchanov, Mikhail Somov and Professor Multanovsky.

The scientific report published by scientists participating in the mission indicates that the shrinking of the ice area is accompanied by a decrease in the thickness of the ice layer and increase the heat brought by water currents from the Atlantic to the Arctic Ocean, which in turn changes the water circulation and the direction of the spread of cold and warm air blocks in the region .

Experts noted that the changes in the Arctic seas will affect the climate of the planet as a whole and change the navigation conditions in the North Seaway. They expected the ice-free season in the region to increase over time. But the same changes could also cause undesirable natural phenomena not seen in the region before, according to scientists.

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