There is now less sea-ice surrounding the Antarctic continent than at any time since we began using satellites to measure it in the late 1970s, the BBC reports.
It is the southern hemisphere summer, when you’d expect less sea-ice, but this year is exceptional, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
Winds and warmer air and water reduced coverage to just 1.91 million square km on 13 February.
What is more, the melt still has some way to go this summer.
Last year, the previous record-breaking minimum of 1.92 million sq km wasn’t reached until 25 February.
Three of the last record-breaking years for low sea-ice have happened in the past seven years: 2017, 2022 and now 2023.