Arctic’s oldest, thickest sea-ice breaks for the first time on record



A four-mile iceberg breaks a glacier in Greenland

Raw Video: NYU scientists capture video of a four-mile iceberg breaking away from a glacier in Greenland.

The oldest and thickest sea ice in the Arctic has begun to break down, opening waters that are normally frozen, researchers say.

This type of incident, that is not included, happened twice this year as a result of the warmer wind, and what scientists call a climate-change-driven heat wave in the Earth’s northern hemisphere, according to the Guardian.

The sea ice on the north coast of Greenland was affected by an abnormal temperature spikes in February and earlier this month, reports the british publication, who have pushed the ice further from the coast than at any other time since satellite records began in the 1970s.


For the first time the strongest polar ice has begun to break down, scientists say.


Walt Meier, a senior research scientist at the US National Snow and Ice Data Center, told the British publication: “The ice there is nowhere else to go, so it stacks. On average it is more than four meters thick and can be piled up in ridges 20 feet thick or more. This thick, compressed ice is generally not easily to be moved.”

“However, that was not the case last winter (February and March) and now. The ice is pushed away from the coast by the wind,” he added.

Thomas Levergne, a scientist at the Norwegian Meteorological Institute, called the phenomenon “scary” in a retweet of a satellite-POISON of blue water to penetrate the white ice and expose miles of the coast of Greenland.

The Norwegian Ice Service said that the Svalbard sea-ice area for Tuesday is on 43,231 square miles, which is 44,775 square miles below the average from 1981 to 2010 and it is the lowest area for this time of the year dating back to 1967.

The remarkably low #Arctic sea ice conditions around Spitsbergen…

— Zack Labe (@ZLabe) 19 August 2018

The Kap Morris Jesup weather in the region, where the moderate usually -4 degrees Fahrenheit, this year proved to be 10 days above freezing and warmer wind, reports the Guardian. Last week temperatures briefly hit an altitude of 62 degrees Fahrenheit and stronger southerly wind picked up.


“This event is a pretty big one going all the way to the west of Kap Morris Jesup. This is unusual,” Keld Qvistgaard, the ice service coordinator in Denmark, said.

Outside the reduction of ice, water, scientists fear the water of the ocean break-in could push the Earth in a feedback loop that precipitates what they called a “conservatory” of freakishly warm weather.

Christopher Carbone is a reporter and news editor covering science and technology for He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @christocarbone.

Follow us

Don't be shy, get in touch. We love meeting interesting people and making new friends.

Most popular