Washington (AP) The Boulder-based National Snow and Ice Data Center says Arctic sea ice may have started rebuilding after reaching a record low.
The agency says Arctic ice now covers 1.61 million square miles. That's up from an apparent minimum of 1.59 million on September 16th.
The agency cautions that some variability could still occur.
The previous record low for arctic sea ice was 2.05 million square miles set in September 2005. The average low at the end of the summer melt is 2.6 million square miles.
The Northwest Passage between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans along the coasts of Canada and Alaska remains open, but it starting to refreeze.
The Northeast Passage along the coast of Siberia is closed by ice.