NASA / GODDARD SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / GODDARD SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Arctic ice minimum extent. Satellite image showing the Arctic polar ice cap at its annual minimum extent on 17th September 2014. The Arctic sea ice (white with blue tint) reaches a minimum in September, at the end of the Arctic summer. This minimal ice area is called the perennial ice cover. The perennial ice has been steadily decreasing since satellites began observing it in 1979, at a rate of about 10 percent per decade. The sea ice here covers just over 5 million square kilometres. This decrease is attributed to global warming. Data from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Global Change Observation Mission 1st-Water (GCOM-W1).
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