JHC Navigating Limits Sub-Committee
The INC 1/11/03 wording is designed for modern trading realities: The associated climate information is kept under review by the standing sub-committee.
February 2020 Update
For early February, members noted that its East Asia area is suffering its worst ice conditions for years although the Russian port of Vanino is kept open by ice breakers.
The Baltic has minimal ice coverage and the Gulf of St Lawrence has 95% ice coverage, mostly around 1 foot thick. The Arctic has experience higher sea temperatures and colder air temperatures, meaning ice has formed later but quicker than usual.
The ice around the Antarctic is worse than last year but below the average for the last 10 years. There is also considerable scientific concern around the Thwaites Glacier being undermined by warm sub-sea currents.
The Arctic Council
The Arctic Council has set up a Best Practice Forum and a very useful information portal http://www.arcticshippingforum.is/
APPG Polar regions
The All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Polar Regions continue to provide useful presentations, often focused on climate change which is varied and complex but the effects are certainly observable. Sea ice is decreasing in the Arctic but increasing in the Antarctic. It is believed the Arctic is warming at twice the global rate with a measurable loss of sea ice but the effect of retreating permafrost has not been factored into any climate models. The main threat to coastal areas lies in the rise of sea-level, (currently rising at 3.5mm a year). Research suggests that a 1 metre rise would displace 140 million people.