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Antarctica: Not Entirely Warmed Up And Floating Away …

  • April 23rd, 2009
  • Posted by EUEditor

antarctica-sat-2009.jpgAverage temperatures have been staying the same in the Antarctica continent – despite global climate change melting large chunks of the ice shelf.

Satellite imagery published this month by the European Space Agency  (see EUAustralia, “New Risk …”, 6.4.09) showed that a large section of the Western ice shelf had cracked away from the Antarctic continent.

It’s not been disputed that the event was a sign of global warming, and yet Antarctica is not facing up to a melt-down of ice on the scale of the Northern Arctic.

The two regions have different topography, Antarctica a land mass surrounded by Ocean, which can absorb heat; the Arctic a landlocked zone.

Australian experiments and monitoring, including drilling into the ice, have shown that the larger part of Antarctica, the East, is in a phase of continuing cold.

Scientists at Australia’s national Climate and Ecosystems research centre say there has been a slight increase in sea ice over the last thirty years.

Climate modelling at Adelaide University supports the notion of build-up of snow, and thickening of ice particularly on the Eastern side.

Nevertheless temperature monitoring in the Australian Antarctic Territory has suggested some rises in temperature are going on, not necessarily affecting the sea ice.

Reference:

Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre (ACE CRC), Hobart, (Home). www.acerc.org.au/, (23.4.09).

Greg Roberts, “Change is a Cold Certainty”, The Australian – Online, Sydney, 18.4.09. www.theaustralian.news.com.au, (23.4.09).

Picture:

Antarctic ice shelf, ESA

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