For more than half a century, scientists at a remote outpost in western Antarctica have been tracking the region’s weather, and a new analysis published in Nature Geoscience comes to alarming conclusions: Temperatures have lept up by 4.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1958 — twice as much as previously thought, making the area one of the fastest-warming in the world.
Should temperatures continue on this path, scientists fear warmer and longer periods of melting for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, which could result in a rapid partial collapse, as happened at the Larsen B ice shelf in just one month’s time in 2002. Over the course of hundreds of years, prolonged melting in the region could contribute 10 feet of global sea-level rise.according to The New York Times. For now, though, the mean temperatures during the summer are still below freezing, but, the authors warn that the…
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