Arctic Heat Tops 1,800 Year High

Summers on Norwegian Archipelago of Svalbard are warmer than any other time in the past 1,800 years, according to a new study in the journal Geology.

Since 1987, summers on Svalbard have been 3.6 to 4.5 degrees F warmer than the hottest era in the region in the past 1,800 years known as the Medieval Warm Period.

“Our record indicates that recent summer temperatures on Svalbard are greater than even the warmest periods at that time,” said study’s lead author William d’Andrea, a climate scientist at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Recent temperature data also shows that the arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet, with sea ice shrinking to its lowest extent on record.