De-classified photos reveal Arctic Ice retreat


from US spy satellites declassified by the Obama White House provide
the first graphic images of how the polar ice sheets are retreating in
the summer. The effects on the world’s weather, environments and
wildlife could be devastating

Satellite images of polar ice sheetsView larger picture

images of polar ice sheets taken in July 2006 and July 2007 showing the
retreating ice during the summer. Photograph: Public Domain

images that reveal the devastating impact of global warming in the
Arctic have been released by the US military. The photographs, taken by
spy satellites over the past decade, confirm that in recent years vast
areas in high latitudes have lost their ice cover in summer months.

pictures, kept secret by Washington during the presidency of George W
Bush, were declassified by the White House last week. President Barack
Obama is currently trying to galvanise Congress and the American public
to take action to halt catastrophic climate change caused by rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

particularly striking set of images – selected from the 1,000
photographs released – includes views of the Alaskan port of Barrow.
One, taken in July 2006, shows sea ice still nestling close to the
shore. A second image shows that by the following July the coastal
waters were entirely ice-free.

Read the rest of this article in the Guardian

(by Suzanne Goldenberg and Damian Carrington)