New Land 2013 Expedition Environmental Messsage
Since Otto Sverdrup’s discovery of western Ellesmere Island and the Sverdrup Islands some 110 years ago this region has by in large remained the great wilderness that the original explorers experienced.
Changes in the Arctic:
- The past six years (2005-2010) have been the warmest period ever recorded in the Arctic.
- The Arctic Ocean is projected to become nearly ice-free in summer within this century, likely within the next thirty years.
- The area of Arctic Ocean sea ice remaining in summer has been at or near record low levels every year since 2001. It is now about one third smaller than the average sea-ice cover from 1979 to 2000.
- New observations reveal that average sea-ice thickness is decreasing and the sea-ice cover is now dominated by younger, thinner ice.