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Changes in Barents Sea ice Edge Positions in the Last 440 years: A Review of Possible Driving Forces

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Document pages: 68 pages

Abstract: This is the first report of the Barents Sea Ice Edge (BIE) project. The BIE position has varied between latitude 76°N and above 82°N during the last 440 years. During the period 10,000 to 6000 years ago, Arctic climate was significantly warmer than today. We review various oceanic and atmospheric factors that may have an effect on the BIE position. The Gulf Stream beat with respect to alternations in flow intensity and N-S distribution plays a central role for the changes in climate and BIE position during the last millennium. This occurred in combination with external forcing from total solar irradiation, Earth’s shielding strength, Earth’s geomagnetic field intensity, Earth’s rotation, jet stream changes; all factors of which are ultimately driven by the planetary beat on the Sun, the Earth and the Earth-Moon system. During the last 20 years, we see signs of changes and shifts that may signal the end of the late 20th century warm period. The BIE position is likely to start advancing southward in next decade.

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