Bering Ice March Madness

Science Matters

In February the media breathlessly told us that Bering Sea ice has melted away, and thus Arctic ice is doomed.  Now we see that reports of the demise were premature.  More surprising than the early retreat, Bering ice roared back in the last two weeks, and continues to grow even after the overall NH ice extent peaked

Two Weeks of Growing Bering Ice: The above image shows the last two weeks of dramatic ice growth in Bering with only minor melting in Okhotsk. Bering Sea on the right more than doubled, adding 250k km2 and effectively sealing off Chukchi inside the Arctic.  Meanwhile on the left Okhotsk ice seesawed, ending up 150k km2 lower, but still at 88% of 2019 maximum.
The graph below shows March progress in ice extent peaking and beginning the melt season. As noted before, the month started with a sharp increase nearly reaching average and…

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