Scientists predict 16 FEET of SEA LEVEL RISE as a literal Mt. Everest melts into Antarctic seas every two years
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Another study has been published, concluding that warmer ocean waters are melting Antarctic glaciers and contributing to sea level rise. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet has enough land ice to raise sea level by 16 feet alone. Meanwhile, 2014 is making the record books as the hottest year in recorded meteorological history.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - One year does not make for a global warming trend, but with global records being broken year after year, talk of a global warming "hiatus" is fading. Scientists have found that the deep oceans appear to be warming and that warm water is upwelling around Antarctica where it is transferring heat and melting glacial ice sheets.
Research published in the journal "Science" report that warm water is melting the sea ice that is holding the glacial sheets back on land, allowing the more massive ice sheets to slide slowly into the water. When the land ice melts, it adds to the sea level.
Estimates are that an amount of ice equal to half the mass of Mt. Everest is melting into the sea each year from affected areas. The total is about 161 billion metric tons per year. There is no indication this ice is being replaced by new snowfall. Notably, Antarctica is a remarkably dry continent and ice accumulates very slowly.
Scientists have previously reported expansion of Antarctic sea ice, at least in overall area. However this ice growth is being fueled by thinning ice on the continent. The sea ice is also thicker than expected in at least one part of Antarctica, possibly because it is being thickened by ice displaced from the continent. The ice eventually melts in the warmer water.
Glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea are also expected to melt entirely within the next 200 years. The Antarctic glaciers are moving at a third of a mile per year or faster. These speeds may seem slow and the timeframes long, but even small differences can have global effects.
And as ice declines in one portion of Antarctica, melted by warming waters, ice is also melting in other places and water is warming in other oceans.
Cold winds and currents which protect the cold in Antarctica have also weakened considerably over the past decade, leading to more temperature anomalies on and around the continent.
As the oceans warm, experts say we can expect an increase in violent storms, droughts, cold snaps and other weather anomalies.
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