The 2017 Arctic Report Card reflects contributions from 85 scientists representing 12 countries. The pace of Arctic sea ice area (hereafter extent) decrease is unprecedented over the past 1,500 years, according to Emily Osborne’s et al. 2017 contribution to the Arctic Report Card released today.
Osborne and team carefully relied upon 45 different archives with a variety of yearly records (i.e. ice cores, tree rings, and sediment cores) that provide information on air temperature, sea surface temperature, and Arctic sea ice extent. Note that record ends at around 2,000.
To see the latest story with sea ice extent observations, Don Perovich et al. 2017 contribution to the Arctic Report Card demonstrate it is not rebounding or recovering.
It is critical to track such unprecedented pace of change.
Navy Rear Admiral (Ret.) Timothy Gallaudet, Acting NOAA Administrator, highlighted the national security and economic reasons for closely tracking changes in the Arctic.
Gallaudet mentioned that NOAA is already taking action in terms of advancing our Earth system prediction and capability. Various departments depend on this information including Departments of Commerce, Agriculture and Defense.
The longer-term perspective sure gives the impression of precipitous decline in Arctic Sea ice extent. Accordingly, there are many consequences associated with such a rapid pace of change.
Jeremy Mathis, Director of NOAA’s Arctic Research Program noted that ‘the Arctic is among the most under observed places on the planet. The imperative is clear whether we are dealing with open ocean navigation, refugees, or native hunters.’
Spanning a dozen years, NOAA, has consistently delivered a robust assessment of the Arctic. As we know, the world depends on this information because what happens in the Arctic influences coastlines around the world, extreme weather events in the Northern Hemisphere and more.