Climate Change, Warm Water and “Doomsday Glacier”

Is climate change to blame for warm water temperatures beneath one of the fastest melting glaciers in Antarctica? And how will this impact the world?


It’s a recipe for disaster. A significantly large glacier. . Warm water temperatures. But the effects of climate change in one place, as remote as it might seem, could hurt the rest of the world.

A Dangerous Trio: Climate Change, Warm Water and

Under one of the fastest melting glaciers in , “Doomsday Glacier”, scientists have learned of the presence of warm water. The decline of this moving mass of ice, also known as , has been observed by researchers for at least 10 years; however, this stands out because it is the first time scientists have found that warm water is at a critical point under the glacier. This shocking finding can be linked to climate change.

Climate Change Implications

The warm water under this glacier could signal an unrelenting retreat taking place as a result of climate change, and there are major implications when it comes to global sea rise.

New York University Abu Dhabi’s Center for Global Sea Level Change director, David Holland, conducted the research demonstrating this possibly unstoppable process.

A Warning About Climate Change

Holland discussed how warm waters in that part of the world, although seemingly remote, should be a warning about the damage climate change could bring to our planet.

“Doomsday Glacier” spans 74,000-square-miles, so in terms of sea level rise, it is considered to be a significant and vulnerable glacier. Why? Because with climate change and rising sea levels, a mass of water could be released the size of the state of Florida. And melting as a result of climate change wouldn’t just impact Antarctica – it would disturb the entire world. How? It would raise global sea levels enough to devastate defenseless populations – or to be specific, the sea levels could rise by more than three feet.

In order to conduct research on the potential impact of climate change, warm water and this glacier, a team developed a 2,000 foot deep access hold. This was a part of an initiative costing millions between the United Kingdom and the United States. An ocean-sensing device was used by scientists to record waters (in January) beneath the glacier that were more than two degrees above freezing. What does this mean regarding climate change and glaciers? Keep reading…

Climate Change and Melting Glaciers

NYU graduate student, Aurora Basinski, made a turbulence measurement. Basinski discussed how their observations into the ocean cavity enabled them to detect more than just warm water – they were also able to observe its level of “turbulence” and ability to melt the base of the ice shelf.

The amount of ice flowing from the Doomsday Glacier, as per the International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration, has practically doubled over the course of the last three decades. This same notion holds true for nearby glaciers. Some still discount the potential risks associated with climate change, but they might be alarmed to know that ice melting from the Thwaites into the Amundsen Sea (at present) is responsible for just about 4 percent of existing worldwide sea-level rise. And when the glacier essentially disintegrates, this number would ominously increase. Climate change effects are real, and they are very worrying.

An indication of quick decay was found last January when a huge cavity comparable to two-thirds of Manhattan in size was discovered under the glacier. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet, according to warnings from scientists, could collapse over the course of the next hundred years. This could be the cause of a sea level rise of up to 10 feet. Coastlines across the planet could see flooding. Clearly, climate change is dangerous.

Climate Change and Sea Level Rise

Sea levels are rising as a result of climate change. And by the year 2050, it is anticipated that three times the number of people could be impacted than previously believed by climate change caused rising seas. According to researchers, millions of homes – close to 300 million, could be impacted over the next three decades by climate change and flooding. By the year 2100, this number could double.

The threats of climate change are real and there is rock hard – or ice cold – evidence of this. Keep following climate change news to stay in the know. Consider your own voice and how you could help in the fight on climate change.




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