Thanks to Dre for this info:
To give a sense of how dramatic the (climatic) changes have been over the last 28 years, the figures below show the minimum ice extent in September 1979, and the situation today (Aug 9, 2007)
The reduction is around 1.2 million square km of ice, a little bit larger than the size of California and Texas combined.
Pasted from <http://www.realclimate.org/
The dramatic loss of sea ice over the past few years has prompted competition among countries bordering the Arctic Ocean over navigation routes and the rights to its mineral-rich seabed. And you expect any serious attempt at a reverse?
Then again, during the interglacials of 125,000 and 8,000 years ago only a tiny pocket in Africa from just above Cape Town to Angola was actually desert, with the Sahara and Saudi Arabia being grassland, savannah or scrub. At that point there must have been a lot less ice than today - the world was much warmer and wetter. (The tricky thing about the current state-of-affairs is that its human-induced.)
Glacial maximums happened 18,000 and 80,000 years ago (and a tiny one 700 years ago, which helped kill off the Vikings in Greenland).
During these cool periods most of Africa was desert, tropical forest cover was miniscule, and the Red Sea dried-up sufficiently to allow an opening to Asia at the Gate of Grief (southern point). That allowed Africans to enter Asia and then - along currently submerged (by sea) routes, and a short Island hop - Australia; and much later - to everybody's despair - Europe. [The likely first of many victims of anatomically modern European-based humans would have been Neanderthals, although Human Erectus was probably also in the Genocide (victim) mix.]