Now that Arctic ice peak has passed, the Pacific basins of Bering and Okhotsk take center stage, providing most of the open water reducing ice extents. The animation above shows in the last 3 weeks Bering on the right lost half of its ice, down from 820k km2 to 450k km2 yesterday. Meanwhile Okhotsk on the left declined from 1080k km2 to 650k km2. Those losses make up entirely the 530k km2 Arctic deficit to average at this time.
Background on Okhotsk Sea
NASA describes Okhotsk as a Sea and Ice Factory. Excerpts in italics with my bolds.
The Sea of Okhotsk is what oceanographers call a marginal sea: a region of a larger ocean basin that is partly enclosed by islands and peninsulas hugging a continental coast. With the Kamchatka Peninsula, the Kuril Islands, and Sakhalin Island partly sheltering the sea from the Pacific Ocean, and with prevailing…
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