Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Changing Arctic Affecting Air, Ocean, And Everything In Between

Date:
November 9, 2009
Source:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Summary:
Despite the fact that summer 2009 had more sea ice than in 2007 or 2008, scientists are seeing drastic changes in the region from just five years ago and at rates faster than anticipated.

Wide-spread melt ponds observed by NOAA's North Pole Web cam.
Credit: NOAA

Despite the fact that summer 2009 had more sea ice than in 2007 or 2008, scientists are seeing drastic changes in the region from just five years ago and at rates faster than anticipated. The findings were presented October 22 in the annual update of the Arctic Report Card, a collaborative effort of 71 national and international scientists.

"The Arctic is a special and fragile place on this planet," said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. "Climate change is happening faster in the Arctic than any other place on Earth -- and with wide-ranging consequences. When I visited the northern corners of Alaska's Arctic region earlier this year, I saw an area abundant with natural resources, diverse wildlife, proud local and native peoples -- and a most uncertain future. This year's Arctic Report Card underscores the urgency of reducing greenhouse gas pollution and adapting to climate changes already under way."

Among the changes highlighted in the 2009 update to the report card were:

  • A change in large scale wind patterns affected by the loss of summer sea ice,
  • The replacement of multi-year sea ice by first-year sea ice,
  • Warmer and fresher water in the upper ocean linked to new ice-free areas,
  • A continued loss of the Greenland ice sheet,
  • Less snow in North America and increased runoff in Siberia, and
  • The effect of the loss of sea ice on Arctic plant, animal, and fish species.

Scientific assessments are key to informing our understanding of climate -- how and why it is changing and what the changing conditions mean to lives and livelihoods. The Arctic Report Card established a baseline of conditions in the region at the beginning of the 21st century and the annual updates track and monitor the often quickly-changing conditions in the Arctic. Using a color-coding system of red to indicate consistent evidence of warming and yellow to indicate there are mixed signals about warming from climate indicators and species, the report card is updated annually in October and tracks Arctic data in six categories: atmosphere, sea ice, biology, ocean, land, and conditions in Greenland.

"The Arctic we see today is very different from the Arctic we saw even five years ago," said Jackie Richter-Menge of the USACE Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory in Hanover, N.H. and the report's chief technical editor and contributing author. "It's a warmer place with less thick and more mobile sea ice, warmer and fresher ocean water, and increased stress on caribou, reindeer, polar bears and walrus in some regions."

The 2009 update to the report card reflects the contributions of an international team of 71 researchers from countries that include the United States of America, Canada, Belgium, China, Denmark, Japan, The Netherlands, Russia, and the United Kingdom.

The Report Card can be found at http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. "Changing Arctic Affecting Air, Ocean, And Everything In Between." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091106140757.htm>.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (2009, November 9). Changing Arctic Affecting Air, Ocean, And Everything In Between. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091106140757.htm
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. "Changing Arctic Affecting Air, Ocean, And Everything In Between." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091106140757.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Big Waves In Arctic Ocean Threaten Polar Ice

Big Waves In Arctic Ocean Threaten Polar Ice

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Big waves in parts of the Arctic Ocean are unprecedented, mainly because they used to be covered in ice. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

AP (July 30, 2014) Every summer, tourists make the pilgrimage to Chincoteague Island, Va. to see wild ponies cross the Assateague Channel. But, it's the rockets sending to supplies to the International Space Station that are making this a year-round destination. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins