Will the Arctic Be Ice-Free Within the Next Two Decades?

David Appell, Yale Climate Connections, is asking the question - Will the Arctic Be Ice-Free Within the Next Two Decades?

When white sea ice melts, the ocean loses its reflective surface and the darker water absorbs more heat from the sun.

Kristina Pistone of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Ames Research Center says, "melting Arctic sea ice is not only a symptom of global warming, it’s also an important contributor because of the albedo effect.”

So - when Arctic sea ice melts, the underlying ocean water absorbs more of the sun’s heat and warms up.

Than, that, melts more sea ice, producing the dreaded “positive feedback” effect that’s only “positive” in that it generates more heat.

Since 1979, over 600,000 square miles of winter sea ice have disappeared—an area larger than twice the size of Texas.

Pistone said that rate of loss could lead to ice-free summers in the Arctic within the next two decades.

This will be disastrous for local ecosystems, accelerate global warming and affect weather patterns worldwide.

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