Climate Change – Our Worst Fear May Become Reality

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A couple of years ago, a climate scientist that worked with NASA, James Hansen, warned people that with glaciers starting to melt at an increasingly fast rate we could expect to see higher sea levels in the future and, even more worryingly, we could expect to go through dangerous superstorms as well. This almost apocalyptic prediction did not have any hard data behind and it was obviously dismissed at the time but new data shows that Hansen’s prediction may be the truth.

Latest oceanographic study

This study was based on data comprised of ocean measurements that were taken on the coast of East Antarctica. Researchers say that the melted ice was making the sea water fresher, meaning that the densest water on Earth, salty sea water, would not drop below the sea surface. Two regions in Antarctica are already experiencing this, namely the West Antarctic coast and East Antarctica, regions where glaciers have already started to melt.

In other words, the melted glacier ice traps warm waters beneath glaciers which then triggers even more glaciers to melt due to high temperatures. The upper layer of water is made up of the freshly melted frozen water and the bottom layer is made up of warm water that is trapped, causing ice to melt in a continuous loop.

Now, this is still going on at a relatively small scale but if scientists take into account the effects of climate change and gas emissions to go on at the constantly increasing rate that they have shown in the past up to the present, we could expect to see higher sea levels in the future, along with more CO2 emissions. It is too soon to pinpoint this melted ice as the reason for our doom but we should be aware of this process and try to slow it down or stop it altogether. However, in order to do that we will first need to work harder on addressing climate change.

Patrick Supernaw

Patrick Supernaw is the lead editor for Great Lakes Ledger. Patrick has written for many publications including The Huffington Post and Vanity Fair. Patrick is based in Ottawa and covers issues affecting his city. In addition to his severe hockey addiction, Pat also enjoys kayaking and can often be found paddling the Rideau Canal. Contact Pat here