Canadian Arctic Last 3 Weeks

The image shows that most of the Arctic ice lost in the last 3 weeks disappeared from the two Canadian Bays: Hudson and Baffin.  Hudson lost 400k km2 from 535k km2 down to 123k km2.  Baffin lost 300k km2 from 375k km2 down to 67k km2.

The melting season in July up to yesterday shows 2019 moving toward the 12 year average.

Presently 2019 ice extent according to MASIE is about 500k km2 below the 12 year average, having been 800k km2 in deficit just 5 days ago. The pace in recent days has flattened in comparison to the average, and is now matching 2007.  SII started to diverge about the same time and is now 400k km2 lower than MASIE.

The Bigger Picture (from Previous Post)

We are about 46 days away from the annual Arctic ice extent minimum, which typically occurs on or about day 260 (mid September). Some take any year’s slightly lower minimum as proof that Arctic ice is dying, but the image below shows the third week in July  over the last 11 years. The Arctic heart is beating clear and strong.

Open image in new tab to enlarge.

These are weekly ice charts from AARI in St. Petersburg.  The legend says the brown area is 7/10 to 10/10 ice concentration, while green areas are 1/10 to 6/10 ice covered. North American arctic areas are not analyzed in these images.

Over this decade, the Arctic ice minimum has not declined, but since 2007 looks like fluctuations around a plateau. By mid-September, all the peripheral seas have turned to water, and the residual ice shows up in a few places. The table below indicates where we can expect to find ice this next September. Numbers are area units of Mkm2 (millions of square kilometers).

Day 260 12 yr
Arctic Regions 2007 2010 2012 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Average
Central Arctic Sea 2.67 3.16 2.64 2.98 2.93 2.92 3.07 2.91 2.93
BCE 0.5 1.08 0.31 1.38 0.89 0.52 0.84 1.16 0.89
LKB 0.29 0.24 0.02 0.19 0.05 0.28 0.26 0.02 0.16
Greenland & CAA 0.56 0.41 0.41 0.55 0.46 0.45 0.52 0.41 0.46
B&H Bays 0.03 0.03 0.02 0.02 0.1 0.03 0.07 0.05 0.03
NH Total 4.05 4.91 3.4 5.13 4.44 4.2 4.76 4.56 4.48

The table includes three early years of note along with the last 5 years compared to the 12 year average for five contiguous arctic regions. BCE (Beaufort, Chukchi and East Siberian) on the Asian side are quite variable as the largest source of ice other than the Central Arctic itself.   Greenland Sea and CAA (Canadian Arctic Archipelago) together hold almost 0.5M km2 of ice at annual minimum, fairly consistently.   LKB are the European seas of Laptev, Kara and Barents, a smaller source of ice, but a difference maker some years, as Laptev was in 2016.  Baffin and Hudson Bays are almost inconsequential as of day 260.

For context, note that the average maximum has been 15M, so on average the extent shrinks to 30% of the March high before growing back the following winter.


  1. uwe.roland.gross · August 4, 2019

    Reblogged this on Climate- Science.


  2. Hifast · August 9, 2019

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s