The above NASA video (good catch by Paul) shows a stunning and massive sea ice break up over the entire Beaufort region. Ice break up began in early February and has continued to cover much of the area between Svalbard and Alaska. As the video shows, what appears to be happening is an unprecedented disintegration of sea ice. (The caption isn’t technically correct, though. Clear skies and brisk winds have dominated this region throughout the cracking period).
Recent sea ice thickness composites from the US Navy take another look at the break-up. Below, we can see areas north of Alaska, Canada and Greenland converting to thin and broken ice.
Melt season has just barely started. For such powerful break-ups to have occurred so early is not a good sign. Not a good sign at all.