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The changing Arctic

Publication date: Mar 10, 2014 1:27:01 PM

Arctic ice trends

Earth's climate is gradually changing. One of the most noticeable ways it changes is in the behaviour of ice, whether that is snow and glaciers on mountains, or sea ice in polar regions. 

A new study from Prof Julienne Stroeve (UCL Earth Sciences and National Snow & Ice Data Center) tracks the melt season in the Arctic over the past quarter century. She finds that in almost all of the Arctic region, the melt season is getting longer, primarily due to changes in the albedo (reflectivity) of the surface, letting the region absorb more solar energy.

In the map above, red and orange regions are experiencing longer melt seasons and blue regions are experiencing shorter ones.

Photo credit: Julienne Stroeve (UCL Earth Sciences)

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