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Arctic sea ice variability and trends, 1979–2010

By C. L. Parkinson and D. J. Cavalieri

Abstract

Analyses of 32 yr (1979–2010) of Arctic sea ice extents and areas derived from satellite passive microwave radiometers are presented for the Northern Hemisphere as a whole and for nine Arctic regions. There is an overall negative yearly trend of −51.5 ± 4.1 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−4.1 ± 0.3% decade<sup>−1</sup>) in sea ice extent for the hemisphere. The sea ice extent trends for the individual Arctic regions are all negative except for the Bering Sea: −3.9 ± 1.1 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−8.7 ± 2.5% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan, +0.3 ± 0.8 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (+1.2 ± 2.7% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Bering Sea, −4.4 ± 0.7 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−5.1 ± 0.9% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for Hudson Bay, −7.6 ± 1.6 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−8.5 ± 1.8% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for Baffin Bay/Labrador Sea, −0.5 ± 0.3 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−5.9 ± 3.5% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Gulf of St. Lawrence, −6.5 ± 1.1 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−8.6 ± 1.5% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Greenland Sea, −13.5 ± 2.3 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−9.2 ± 1.6% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Kara and Barents Seas, −14.6 ± 2.3 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−2.1 ± 0.3% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Arctic Ocean, and −0.9 ± 0.4 × 10<sup>3</sup> km<sup>2</sup> yr<sup>−1</sup> (−1.3 ± 0.5% decade<sup>−1</sup>) for the Canadian Archipelago. Similarly, the yearly trends for sea ice areas are all negative except for the Bering Sea. On a seasonal basis for both sea ice extents and areas, the largest negative trend is observed for summer with the next largest negative trend being for autumn

Topics: LCC:Environmental sciences, LCC:GE1-350, LCC:Geography. Anthropology. Recreation, LCC:G, DOAJ:Environmental Sciences, DOAJ:Earth and Environmental Sciences, LCC:Meteorology. Climatology, LCC:QC851-999, LCC:Physics, LCC:QC1-999, LCC:Science, LCC:Q, DOAJ:Meteorology and Climatology, DOAJ:Earth and Environmental Sciences
Publisher: Copernicus Publications
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.5194/tcd-6-957-2012
OAI identifier: oai:doaj.org/article:f216dbb81bce49ffb347ea70c54d1369
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