SCAR 2020 Parallel Session 25: Sea ice in the atmosphere-ice-ocean-biosphere system - How, where and why is it changing, and what are the effects?
Monday 27th July 2020: 06:00-08:00 and 11:00-13:00 (UTC)
Convenors: Petra Heil, Klaus Meiners, Rob Massom, and Pat Wongpan
While there is strong focus on rapid change occurring in Arctic sea ice, relatively little is known about the complex sea-ice environment around Antarctica (comprising both pack and fast ice), how and why it is changing and varying, and the wide-ranging physical, biological and chemical effects of such change/variability. Improved understanding of the southern coupled sea ice-ocean-atmosphere-biosphere system is required to truly explain the marked and baffling recent reversal in overall sea-ice extent – from a slight positive trend to successive record maxima peaking in 2014, followed by a rapid decline. While sea-ice extent and concentration are monitored reasonably accurately from space, much remains to be learned about the processes driving annual advance and retreat; the role of snow; sea-ice interaction with the ice sheet; sea ice as a habitat; sea-ice biogeochemical processes; and teleconnections with lower latitudes (including sea-ice relationships with southern hemisphere weather and climate).