The rapid decline of Arctic sea ice in the last decade is a dramatic indicator of climate change. The Arctic sea ice cover is now thinner, weaker and drifts faster. The ocean is also changing; the volume of freshwater stored in the Arctic and has increased as have the inputs of coastal runoff from Siberia and Greenland. Concurrently inflows from the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans have warmed. As the global surface temperature rises, the Arctic Ocean is speculated to become seasonally ice-free in the 21st century, which prompts us to revisit our perceptions of the Arctic system as a whole. What could the Arctic look like in the future? How are the present changes in the Arctic going to affect the lower latitudes? What aspects of the changing Arctic should future observations, remote sensing and modelling programmes address? The scientific community is investing considerable effort in making the current knowledge of the physical and biogeochemical properties of the Arctic more systematic, in exploring poorly understood coupled atmosphere-sea-ice-ocean processes to improve prediction of future changes in the Arctic.
In this session, we invite contributions from a variety of studies addressing the recent past, present and future Arctic. We encourage submissions examining interactions between the ocean, atmosphere and sea ice and on studies linking changes in the Arctic to the global ocean. Submissions with a focus on emerging cryospheric, oceanic and biogeochemical processes and their implications are particularly welcome.
The session promotes results from current Arctic programmes and discussions on future plans for Arctic Ocean modelling and measurement strategies, and encourage submissions on the results from the Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC).