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Ice Along Eastern Shore of Hudson Bay, Canada

59.8N 78.4W

March 24th, 2013 Category: Climate Change

Canada – March 23rd, 2013

Hudson Bay is a large body of saltwater in northeastern Canada. It drains a very large area, about 3,861,400 square kilometres (1,490,900 sq mi), that includes parts of Ontario, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Alberta, most of Manitoba, southeastern Nunavut, as well as parts of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Montana. The southern arm of Hudson Bay is called James Bay (visible in the full image).

Here, ice can be seen breaking near the eastern shoreline of Hudson Bay. Sea ice studies consider Hudson Bay part of Arctic Sea. In March, Arctic sea ice is nearing its winter maximum and will soon begin its seasonal decline. This year, ice extent remains below average, in part a result of the persistence of the negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation that has kept winter temperatures warmer than average.

Average sea ice extent for February 2013 was 14.66 million square kilometers (5.66 million square miles). This is 980,000 square kilometers (378,000 square miles) below the 1979 to 2000 average for the month, and is the seventh-lowest February extent in the satellite record. Since 2004, the February average extent has remained below 15 million square kilometers (5.79 million square miles) every year except 2008. Prior to 2004, February average extent had never been less than 15 million square kilometers. Ice extent remains slightly below average everywhere except the Bering Sea.

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