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Drift Ice

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Drift Ice Svalbard  Svalbard and Jan Mayen
Drift Ice

Floating ice, or drift ice, is a common occurrence in the waters surrounding Svalbard. The West Spitsbergen Current keeps the west coast ice-free for much of the year, while the colder East Spitsbergen Current brings a lot of drift ice from the Arctic Ocean to eastern Svalbard. Floating ice can also occur when glaciers calve into the fjords and oceans. Despite annual temperature fluctuations, the planet's warming trend seems undeniable. It is now much easier to reach the fjords and islands of northern Svalbard than it was even as recently as 20 years ago, while the remaining drift ice is around 33 percent thinner.