"A Look at How Much Less Antarctic Sea Ice There Is This Year"

"It’s winter in Antarctica, when sea ice cover typically grows. But this year’s sea ice is way behind, reaching record lows with implications for the planet."

"It’s winter in the Southern Hemisphere, when ice typically forms around Antarctica. But this year, that growth has been stunted, hitting a record low by a wide margin.

The sharp drop in sea ice is alarming scientists and raising concerns about its vital role in regulating ocean and air temperatures, circulating ocean water and maintaining an ecosystem crucial for everything from microscopic plankton to the continent’s iconic penguins.

“This year is really different,” said Ted Scambos, a senior research scientist at the University of Colorado Boulder and an Antarctica expert at the National Snow and Ice Data Center. “It’s a very sudden change.”"

Delger Erdenesanaa and Leanne Abraham report for the New York Times August 2, 2023.

Source: NYTimes, 08/03/2023