The most recent satellite data indicate that there is a strong possibility that the extent of ice in the Arctic could be at a new low before melting stops later this month.
According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, this year's ice pack is already quite a bit below the minimum levels reached in all other years except for the record low 2007. So, even if the ice-covered area began growing again as of today, 2011 would already have the second-lowest ice coverage in the Arctic ever measured. In addition to 2007, 2008 and 2010 are currently the 2nd and third lowest ice years.
The minimum ice mark will only be confirmed after a clear pattern of ice expansion returns, however the minimum could be reached any time between today and the next 1-3 weeks.