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SC25

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September 20, 2006 10:12PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20060920/sc_afp/climatewarmingarctic_060920111816

Scientists shocked as Arctic polar route emerges

European scientists voiced shock as they showed pictures which showed Arctic ice cover had disappeared so much last month that a ship could sail unhindered from Europe's most northerly outpost to the North Pole itself.

The satellite images were acquired from August 23 to 25 by instruments aboard Envisat and EOS Aqua, two satellites operated by the European Space Agency (ESA).

Perennial sea ice -- thick ice that is normally present year-round and is not affected by the Arctic summer -- had disappeared over an area bigger than the British Isles, ESA said.

Vast patches of ice-free sea stretched north of Svalbard, an archipelago lying midway between Norway and the North Ple, and extended deep into the Russian Arctic, all the way to the North Pole, the agency said in a press release.

"This situation is unlike anything observed in previous record low-ice seasons," said Mark Drinkwater of ESA's Oceans/Ice Unit..........

........Regular satellite monitoring over the last 25 years shows that the northern polar ice cover has shrunk and thinned as global temperatures have risen.

But this year's images are unprecedented, and fierce storms that fragmented and scattered already thin pack ice may be to blame, the scientists believe.

The images were released less than a week after a paper, published in the US journal Science, found that year-round sea ice in the Arctic shrank by one seventh between 2004 and 2005..........

And this shrinkage of artic ice, set against the fact that thus far, globaly, 2006 is on pace to be the all time record hottest year, after the last record was set, in 2005. This year has recently crossed into all time record territory for acres burned by fire in the US, with the intense heat and dryness creating a tinder box in our wildlands. Mindboggling amounts of CO2 are being pumped into the atmosphere, by the dramatic increase in wildland fire activity, worldwide. We may have already, or be very close to, reaching various " tipping " points for what the Biosphere can tolerate, with cataclysmic consequences if this occurs.
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SC25

Wizard 1015September 20, 2006 10:12PM

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Wizard 589September 23, 2006 12:10AM

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Wizard 549September 23, 2006 01:01AM

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jobe 580September 23, 2006 06:57AM

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Rick 621September 23, 2006 10:43AM

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jobe 531September 23, 2006 10:28PM

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Wizard 564September 23, 2006 01:50PM

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Wizard 517September 23, 2006 03:56PM

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Wizard 649September 23, 2006 05:21PM

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Paul P. 588September 24, 2006 01:58PM

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jobe 675September 24, 2006 07:00PM

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jobe 578September 24, 2006 07:56PM

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Wizard 540September 24, 2006 10:00PM

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jobe 566September 25, 2006 09:45PM

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Paul P. 581September 25, 2006 01:52PM

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Rick 563September 25, 2006 01:57PM

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jobe 626September 25, 2006 10:03PM

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Paul P. 1038September 26, 2006 10:52AM



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