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Locked in ice for millions of years, Antarctic bacteria are thawing – and they're alive. So will a prehistoric plague be swimming in a sea near you?
The sea ice of the Arctic shrank to its lowest-ever level this week, shattering the previous record, set two years ago, by an enormous amount, American scientists have confirmed.
In what will be widely seen as one of the most alarming signs yet of accelerating global warming, the summer melt-back exceeded the September 2005 low point by 22 per cent – an area of 1.2 million square kilometres – more than 385,000 square miles. This represents an area five times the size of the UK.