The Arctic ice cap has just started to re-freeze after reaching a historic minimum last week on 19th Sepetmber. An ice-free Arctic during summer-time is now a few years away at most, with untold consequences for our weather systems and the follow-on impact on our ability to live on the planet.
As well as the effect of cold melted ice on the milder sea water systems of the mid-Atlantic, bringing more extreme weather - hot and cold, wet and dry - to many parts of Europe and Britain, the decline in white ice will reduce the planet's albedo effect, which reflects much of the heat of the sun away from Earth. This will increase the rate of global warming even faster than now.
It also augurs extremely badly for many Arctic species' survival.