Arctic melt 'like doubling CO2'
6 September 2012 Last updated at 04:15 BST
An expert has told BBC Newsnight that the loss of Arctic ice is having an impact equivalent to 20 additional years of greenhouse gases, as yet more of the sun's rays are absorbed.
Ice scientist Prof Peter Wadhams has calculated that the increased absorption of the sun's rays is "the equivalent of about 20 years of additional CO2 being added by man".
The Cambridge University expert says that the Arctic ice cap is "heading for oblivion".
Newsnight's Susan Watts has been finding out what impact this could have on the UK.