Weather Forecast



The North Pole. Photo by Christopher Michel,

Weather Talk: The North Pole is warming up

The temperature in the region near the North Pole have gone above freezing twice already this winter and are likely to do so again this week.This extreme warmth is quite unusual.

There is no permanent weather station at the North Pole because there is no land there; only ice. However, temperatures in the Arctic Ocean are observed via a network of instruments on buoys and contemporary modelling technology allows us to estimate temperatures in between the actual observations. Satellite measurements indicate a record amount of open water in the Arctic Ocean this winter as well.

The Arctic region has been warming at a faster rate than Earth as a whole, but the temperature pattern over the Arctic Ocean this winter has been remarkable. This incredibly mild Arctic winter is likely a temporary anomaly. But it is also a demonstration of how, in a warming world, a temporary warm spell can become extreme warming because of the warmer base from which the warm spell started.