Photo: UCLA

A new UCLA study reveals that arctic sea ice may become ice free for part of every year between the years 2044 and 2067. Human caused climate change has been steadily warming the arctic for decades. The study was conducted by UCLA Climate Scientists.

Throughout the history of humans on earth, arctic sea ice expands through the winter months and contracts in the summer. Each September, sea ice is historically at its lowest level, after summer months when ice melts and before temperatures drop low enough for water begins to freeze again. Since 1979, September sea ice has dropped 13% each decade.

Various models exist in attempt to track sea ice loss, some showing loss as soon as 2026 while others show much more gradual loss by 2132. The UCLA model takes into account the albedo effect and focuses on a 25-year period as opposed to 10. The albedo effect is a cycle that makes warming occur more rapidly in places where ice has melted due to less light reflection and higher absorption of heat.

Written by Justin Stanphill