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The Big Melt-Down January 21, 2008

Posted by Andreas in Climate change, Environment, Global warming.

It’s not a good time to be a polar bear and if you live anywhere near the coast you should also start to be concerned, because the Earth’s polar ice caps are melting!

Research by an international team of scientists has shown that warm summers in recent years have caused the most extensive amount of Greenland ice melting in 50 years.

On the other side of the globe, the Antarctic ice sheet, which has ten times more ice than Greenland, is shrinking at an increasing rate – in 2007 it lost 75% more ice than in 1996!

Exactly what it all means, particularly how much sea level is going to rise due to this and how fast, is not clear as yet, but the prognosis is not good: Joseph Romm quotes research that shows that “during the last warm or interglacial period (the Eemian, about 120,000 years ago [when temperatures where 2 °C higher than today, which is where we’re headed by the year 2100]), … seas rose 1.6 meters per century”. That amount of sea level rise would displace an estimated 100 million people!



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