Arctic sea ice hits its yearly extent - Tucson News Now

Arctic sea ice hits its yearly extent

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The Arctic ocean has reached its highest ice extend this year, March 21st to be exact. The amount of ice up on the arctic was sitting at 14.80 million square kilometers, the fifth lowest ever. This is 730,000 square kilometers below the 30 year average, and 330,000 square kilometers above the record low, which happened in 2006.

The average extent usually falls around March 5th, this year the late-season surge came as the arctic oscillation (atmospheric circulation) turned strongly positive the second week of March. This was associated with unusually low sea level pressure in the eastern Arctic and the northern North Atlantic. This is also the reason for the extreme cold felt along the eastern seaboard and midwest this past winter.

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