With two weeks or so still to go before the annual minimum is reached, the record for lowest extent of Arctic sea ice has already been obliterated by a huge margin. The only question at this point is how much the ice cover will shrink. Frantic denial of reality by Anthony Watts, Marc Morano, and others has only made it obvious how ridiculous they are — they refuse to face the truth of this astounding consequence of global warming. You can smell their desperation.
Here’s the latest data from the NSIDC:
We can also plot the annual minimum extent, bearing in mind that the 2012 value will get even lower as we get closer to this season’s peak melt:
We’ve already dipped below 4 million square kilometers. The ice is disappearing so fast that it won’t be long until the Arctic ocean is essentially ice-free during summer, for the first time in history (and yes, I do mean “in history”).
But wait … how can that be? I can hear Watts and Morano wringing hands and gnashing teeth, whining “We only have 30 years of data!” They’re wrong. The available data (there’s quite a lot, actually) stretch back to the 19th century. The collation by Kinnard et al. (2008) shows this:
Then there’s the Walsh & Chapman data set:
For a longer view, a reconstruction of Arctic sea ice extent based on proxy data by Kinnard et al. (2011) shows just how unique this event is:
The shockingly fast disappearance of Arctic sea ice isn’t like anything we’ve witnessed before. Ever. It isn’t some “natural cycle.” it isn’t a natural anything. It should really be called a “death spiral.”
This is global warming. It’s real. It’s so real it walked right up to us and slapped us in the face.
If you believe we can do this to the planet without consequences, you’re a fool.