Sea Ice in Arctic at Record Low

John McConnico / AP Photo

An iceberg is seen in Disko Bay, Greenland above the arctic circle Friday Aug 19, 2005. Scientists meeting in the area say that global warming has an increasing effect on the Arctic region with glaciers shrinking, temperatures of the arctic waters warming, and permafrost softening and that nations must take action against global warming. (AP Photo/John McConnico)

The amount of sea ice in the Arctic has fallen so low that parts of the region have "become like a giant Slushee this time of year,” says Walt Meier, a scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The agency is reporting that sea ice is covering less than 30 percent of the Arctic Ocean’s surface this summer, less than the previous record low set in 2007. Since satellites began monitoring it in the late 1970s, the amount of sea ice during the summer has declined more than 40 percent. Scientists believe the trend is directly correlated to the human release of greenhouse gases.