27 Sep '12, 7pm
The vanishing ice cap, in two images
NASA’s Earth Observatory released some images earlier today that make a dramatic point. Here was the ice cap on Sept. 14, 1984. Here it was two weeks ago — near (but not at) the all-time low. If you’re more of a tactile type, the Earth Observatory website has a cool tool that lets you slide between the two images. Easy come, easy go. On a related note, the first Chinese icebreaker to traverse the Northwest Passage made it back home on the same route . China is ready to compete for those newly, increasingly accessible Arctic resources . We look at the melting ice cap and see the harsh impacts of global warming. Others — more powerful, wealthier others — see opportunity.