The Scariest Lake in the World Sits at the North Pole

Global warming-caused Arctic lake becoming deeper each year

The pristine Arctic ice of the North Pole has now melted into a lake.

2013 North Pole now has a LakePlease visit - The North Pole, great bastion of eternal cold and barren ice, is a LAKE. The sea ice ...

A time-lapse video, produced by Jake Bialer with images captured by a webcam erected near the North Pole Environmental Observatory--shows the state of Arctic sea ice since 2000 and documents the dramatically altered landscape as global warming takes its toll.

Though the area of ice cover expands and contracts each year with the change in seasons, the photos show that the pole has been progressively melting since at least 2002.

The meltwater lake, which sits on top of a layer of ice, now forms each year, though the ice is thinning and the newly formed lake is continuing to deepen. According to the National Snow & Ice Data Center, July temperatures were 2 to 5 degrees higher this year than average.

As Live Scienceexplains:

Meltwater ponds sprout more easily on young, thin ice, which now accounts for more than half of the Arctic's sea ice. The ponds link up across the smooth surface of the ice, creating a network that traps heat from the sun.

Fossil fuel industry vultures celebrate such melt as they eye untapped oil and gas drilling sites and potential shipping channels now accessible through the newly formed Arctic waters. However, a recent study reveals that continued Arctic melting may spell both a climate and economic "catastrophe" if the billions of tons of methane trapped beneath Arctic permafrost become released into the environment, triggering "massive feedback loops and dramatically increas[ing] the rate of global warming."

Join Us: News for people demanding a better world

Common Dreams is powered by optimists who believe in the power of informed and engaged citizens to ignite and enact change to make the world a better place.

We're hundreds of thousands strong, but every single supporter makes the difference.

Your contribution supports this bold media model—free, independent, and dedicated to reporting the facts every day. Stand with us in the fight for economic equality, social justice, human rights, and a more sustainable future. As a people-powered nonprofit news outlet, we cover the issues the corporate media never will. Join with us today!

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.