North Polar Sea Ice Minimum, 2014

  • Released Monday, September 22nd, 2014
  • Updated Wednesday, May 3rd, 2023 at 1:50PM

Sea ice acts as an air conditioner for the planet, reflecting energy from the Sun. On September 17, the Arctic Sea ice reached its minimum extent for 2014 — at 1.94 million square miles (5.02 million square kilometers), it’s the sixth lowest extent of the satellite record. With warmer temperatures and thinner, less resilient ice, the Arctic sea ice is on a downward trend. The red line in the still image indicates the average ice extent over the 30 year period between 1981 and 2011.



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