The story of the decade is the collapse of Arctic sea ice and its impact on our extreme weather (see “CryoSat-2 Confirms Sea Ice Volume Has Collapsed”).
Many experts now say that if recent volume trends continue we will see a “near ice-free Arctic in summer” within a decade. And that may well usher in a permanent change toward extreme, prolonged weather events “such as drought, flooding, cold spells and heat waves.”
It will also accelerate global warming in the region, which in turn will likely accelerate both the disintegration of the Greenland ice sheet as well as the release of the vast amounts of carbon currently locked in the permafrost, which in turn will likely add 0.4°F — 1.5°F to total global warming by 2100.
For more on the death spiral, here’s Peter Sinclair’s latest video, featuring an interview with Walt Meier of the National Snow and Ice Data Center: