Four of the past 5 months are “all-time” records for Southern Hemisphere sea ice anomalies, “unprecedented” since the data set began in 1979 as shown below:
On a global basis, world sea ice in April 2008 reached levels that were “unprecedented” for the month of April in over 25 years. Levels are the third highest (for April) since the commencement of records in 1979, exceeded only by levels in 1979 and 1982. This continues a pattern established earlier in 2008, as global sea ice in March 2008 was also the third highest March on record, while January 2008 sea ice was the second highest January on record. It was also the second highest single month in the past 20 years (second only to Sept 1996).
As suggested by a reader, here’s the same information with each monthly series plotted as a separate line (April-solid; January – dotted.) The surge in anomaly area in 2008 is not limited to a single month, but is consistent for all 4 months to date (and for the YTD average).
At Cryosphere Today, they provide the following scientific description of recent sea ice changes:
You’ve heard Al Gore comment that the “Earth has a fever”? It may also have major tooth decay.
They provide an animation showing declining sea ice to 2007 lows, but not the subsequent recovery in 2008:
Peruse an archive of map displays of the atmospheric and radiative climatic conditions leading up to the record setting Northern Hemisphere sea ice minimum of 2007: sea ice autopsy
Instead of perhaps celebrating the dramatic recent increase in sea ice, they complain that there has been a loss of “multiyear sea ice”.
I’ve uploaded my collation of the NOAA data to http://www.climateaudit.org/data/ice/seaice.dat .
UODATE: NOAA reported high March 2008 SH sea ice here.