This article discusses a study that analyzes the impact that Antarctic ice melt will have on the planet.
The collective work, published in this week’s special edition of the journal Nature, assembles a half-dozen papers written by the world’s top experts on Antarctica. It serves as a major update to our understanding of how human activity affects the Earth’s largest store of ice — and what it would take to prevent a worst-case scenario.
Antarctica’s glaciers are massive enough to flood every coastal city on Earth. So it’s no exaggeration to say that what happens in Antarctica over the next few decades will determine the fate of not just Miami and Mumbai, but also the course of human history. If we’re lucky and quickly start cutting emissions, Antarctica’s glaciers might mostly remain in place. The alternative is unthinkable.
This second article also discusses the same study – Antarctica is melting faster than anyone thought, and we’re not ready for the sea level rise that’s coming.
- Ice melting rates in Antarctica tripled between 2012 and 2017, according to a study published in the journal Nature.
- The biggest increase has been ice melt in West Antarctica, where glaciers and ice sheets are vulnerable to warmer ocean temperatures.
- Experts think that if we don’t get climate change under control quickly, ice sheets in West Antarctica could collapse, leading to rapid sea level rise around the globe.
Last, Carbon Brief has a more detailed report.