Where were you when the last of the Arctic ice melted?
Just a few years ago — eight, actually — the odds of you being alive to answer the question weren’t very good. Now, it appears the odds of you not being alive to answer the question are pretty bad.
The National Snow and Ice Data Center has released this daily snapshot of the state of the Arctic sea ice, showing a massive melting in just the last few years.
Over three days this month, sea ice “extent” dropped by nearly 77,220 square miles.
It’ll come back slightly over the coming winter, but scientists say that’s not unexpected and there’s only one possible reason for the rapid melt.
In 2000, a United Nations report on climate change predicted the Arctic would be ice-free by 2100. In 2007, the prediction was changed to between 2030 and 2040. The World’s environmental editor, Peter Thomson, says it may now be the end of this decade.