Ice extent in Antarctica reaches record low in January

Experts of the European program for remote sensing of the Earth "Copernicus" summed up the results of observations of

weather and climate change in January2023. The results showed unusually warm weather in Europe and a record 31% reduction in sea ice extent in Antarctica compared to this month's average.

Ice area change in Antarctica in January 2023 from 1991–2020 averages. Image: Copernicus Climate Change Service/ECMWF

The melting of sea ice does not have a noticeableimpact on sea levels, because the ice is already in the ocean water, experts say. Nevertheless, the reduction in the area of ​​ice cover stimulates further warming. White sea ice reflects up to 90% of solar energy back into space, while the open dark sea, on the contrary, absorbs most of the radiation.

The researchers also noted that in the Arcticin the region where it is now winter, sea ice extent in January was less than the long-term average. But the difference here is not so significant - 4% less than the average, but even this is the third minimum result during the observation period.

Temperature deviation in January 2023 from the 1991–2020 averages. Image: Copernicus Climate Change Service/ECMWF

In addition, climatologists note hightemperatures in January, which were recorded almost throughout Europe, including a number of temperature highs on New Year's Eve. Temperatures were generally above average in much of Europe, the US, Canada and Mexico, with below-normal temperatures recorded in Siberia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Australia.

These temperature extremes remain a tangible sign of the impacts of climate change on many regions and can be seen as an additional warning of future extreme events.

Samantha Burgess, Associate Director of the Copernicus Program

Read more:

Scientists transplanted human “brain” into rats and told what happened in the end

Two photos of the Earth with a difference of 50 years were compared at NASA: what scientists found

Found a rare planet, very similar to the Earth. She is close to us