1. This winter the area represents nearly a 10% loss since 1979 when satellite measurements began. That's a loss that is more than twice the area of Texas.
2. Record warm temperatures during the Arctic winter probably contributed to the low ice amount. During January 2016 Alaska was 15 degrees Farenheight above average.*
TAG: The trend of decreasing ice amount is related to the long-term pattern of the warming atmosphere and oceans.
* NOAA's NCDC Climate Review for January 2016