Editorial: Hot news from the North Pole

Published March 2, 2018

Here's disturbing news that deserves more attention: North Pole temperatures have soared 50 degrees above normal in the dead of winter. And it wasn't just a one-time spike. Scientists said the average temperature in February for the entire region was more than 36 degrees above normal, the highest level ever recorded.

That wasn't even the most astonishing finding to scientists who study the Arctic. In the expanse north of Greenland, which is normally covered by thick ancient ice sheets, are areas of open water. Melting sea ice is related to the warmer temperatures, because open water releases heat into the atmosphere.

Meanwhile, the United States sits on the sidelines of efforts to prepare for and combat climate change. Since President Donald Trump announced his intention to pull out of the Paris climate accord, it's not clear whether the United States will even participate in drafting standards to fight global warming. And visitors to the Environmental Protection Agency website searching for official federal government information on climate change find this: "This page is being updated."

None of this should come as a surprise since Trump is a climate change skeptic at best. But even the biggest skeptics should recognize that the North Pole is supposed be frozen in winter.