North Pole ice could melt, in September!
by Alan Harten
July 1, 2008
The North Pole could be completely ice-free in September, due to the effect of faster than expected global warming on the melting of the ice cap that covers the surface of the Arctic Ocean.
This stunning announcement was made by a U.S. scientist Mark Serrez, member of National Data Centre of the Snow and Ice of the United States (NDSIC), located in Boulder, Colorado.
Serrez says that the rapid melting process has to do with a historic climate cycle.
The most pessimistic forecasts so far predicted the total melting of the Arctic Ocean for no earlier than 2012.
The scientist said that there is a probability of 50/50 that the thin layer of ice on the Arctic Ocean, produced from last autumn’s snows, will be completely melted in late summer at the latitude of the North Pole.
The retreat of ice to an unprecedented level, in September last year, made it possible for the Northwest Passage-sea route that connects Greenland to Alaska through the Arctic to remain ice-free through the summer for the first time since records began.
During recent decades the ice sheet has been increasingly thin and frail.
The next few weeks’ weather conditions will determine if the North Pole ice melts completely this summer, said the researcher.
The shortage of seasonal ice in the Arctic will not bring an immediate effect for the entire planet.
According to Serrez, the North Pole is no different to elsewhere in the globe, but has a symbolic meaning.
It is assumed that there must always be ice at the pole.
The possibility that later this summer there will be no ice would have a big impact.
According to the expert, who still maintains that the process of melting in the Arctic is part of a historical cycle is incorrect.
The only positive side to this psychological milestone is the opening up of the Northwest Passage sea lanes.
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