Climate change causes record decline in Antarctic sea ice, according to a study.


Climate change causes record decline in Antarctic sea ice, according  to study. According to research released on Monday, last year’s record-low levels of Antarctic sea ice were mostly caused by climate change, signifying significant break from past decades of growth. The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) determined that the ocean surface that surrounds the ice-covered continent reached once-in-2,000-year low as result of human-caused global warming.

Climate Change According to the BAS, the largest region of the Antarctic sea covered  in ice decreased by two million square kilometers, or four times the  size of France, compared to an average winter in past decades.

“This is why we were so interested in studying what climate models can tell us about how often large, rapid losses like this are likely to happen,” the study’s chief author, Rachel Diamond, told AFP.

Following an analysis of 18 different climate models, scientists discovered that climate change increased the likelihood of such big and rapid melting events.

Scientists argue that a variety of elements, including winds, air temperature, and ocean water, might influence sea ice melt, making it impossible to determine the actual cause of the event.

However, because ice production affects everything from ocean currents to global sea level rise, understanding how climate change influences it is critical.

However, the same amount of solar radiation reflected back into space is absorbed by water as highly reflective snow and ice give way to dark blue ocean, hastening global warming.

The Antarctic melt trend is a relatively new phenomenon in comparison to the Arctic, where sea ice has been declining since satellite records were first collected in the 1970s.

According to the BAS, Antarctic sea ice increased “slightly and steadily” between 1978 and 2015.

However, in 2017, there was a major dip, followed by several years of low ice levels.

In the study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, the BAS researchers also made estimates about whether the ice would reemerge.

“It doesn’t completely recover to original levels even after 20 years,” Diamond stated to AFP. That means “the average Antarctic sea ice may still remain relatively low for decades to come,” he said.

“The impacts… would be profound, including on local and global weather and on unique Southern Ocean ecosystems – including whales and penguins,” Louise Sime, a co-author, stated.

Previous BAS investigations have showed that the anomalous melt has resulted in the deaths of thousands of emperor penguin chicks.

They were raised on ice sheets and died when they were thrown into the ocean before their waterproof feathers grew.


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