There has been a bit of a discussion of this in the ASI update 3 thread, but it looks interesting enough for a separate blog post.
In the past three days the fast ice in the region between the New Siberian Islands and the Lena Delta has started to take on a blue colour (see below). I noticed a slight difference between this year's LANCE-MODIS images and last year's, which seem to be brighter, but this definitely looks blue.
What could be causing it? Someone suggested it's melt ponding, or river dicharge from the Lena, which unfroze a while back (video). It could also be caused by the way light is refracted by the surface, absorbing green and red, reflecting blue. Or perhaps something in the atmosphere. As the small image on the top shows it is also picked up on sea ice concentration maps.
It's something in the ice, the atmosphere or the satellite sensor.
Either way, there must be something going on there, as it's very warm in the Siberian coastal settlement of Tiksi (red spot in the image), where the May record of 16.1 °C in 1954 was smashed today by at least 5 °C (edit: make that 3 °C, I didn't know there were two weather stations in Tiksi). And it's been anomalously warm there for over a week now according to the Russian Pogoda i Klimat website.
Last year I made an animation of this region: New Siberian Islands. The fast ice started to break up there towards the end of June. One would expect it to happen sooner this year.