A major source of the water for the sea level rise already affecting Savannah and Jacksonville is melting Arctic Ocean sea ice. WMO Press Release No. 966: 2012: Record Arctic Sea Ice Melt, Multiple Extremes and High Temperatures,
“Naturally occurring climate variability due to phenomena such as El Niño and La Niña impact on temperatures and precipitation on a seasonal to annual scale. But they do not alter the underlying long-term trend of rising temperatures due to climate change as a result of human activities,” said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.
“The extent of Arctic sea ice reached a new record low. The alarming rate of its melt this year highlighted the far-reaching changes taking place on Earth’s oceans and biosphere. Climate change is taking place before our eyes and will continue to do so as a result of the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which have risen constantly and again reached new records,” added Mr Jarraud.
15 September 1982 vs 16 September 2012
The Arctic reached its lowest annual sea ice extent since the start of satellite records on 16 September at 3.41 million square kilometers. This was 18% less than the previous record low of 18 September, 2007. The 2012 minimum extent was 49 percent or nearly 3.3 million square kilometers (nearly the size of India) below the 1979—2000 average minimum. Some 11.83 million square kilometers of Arctic ice melted between March and September 2012.
WMO noted other effects of climate change outside the arctic, including:Continue reading