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Arctic Sea Ice 2019 Wintertime Extent Is Seventh Lowest

20 March 2019

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Sea ice in the Arctic appears to have hit its annual maximum extent after growing through the fall and winter. The 2019 wintertime extent reached on 13 March ties with 2007's as the 7th smallest extent of winter sea ice in the satellite record, according to scientists at the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice Data Center and NASA.

This year's maximum extent peaked at 5.71 million square miles (14.78 million square kilometers) and is 332,000 square miles (860,000 square kilometers) below the 1981 to 2010 average maximum – equivalent to missing an area of ice larger than the state of Texas.

Source: NASA

Image credit: NASA/Joe MacGregor - A big lead, or opening in the sea ice pack, in the eastern Beaufort Sea