|Melting ice caps a huge concern, expert says||| Print ||
|Written by Royel Edwards|
|Tuesday, 14 February 2012 12:41|
Melting ice caps and climate change will have a dramatic effect on our planet, a climate change expert said Tuesday.
Jing Cheng, who teaches at the University of Toronto, was reponding to a new report showing the Earth's ice caps and glaciers are melting at an alarming rate.
According to the University of Colorado study, our planet has lost approximately 150 billion tons of ice every year between years 2003-2010.
The ice doesn’t disappear, but goes straight out into the oceans raising the levels by 0.4 millimeters per year, the study found.
In order to gather the necessary information for the study, the research team used the twin Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment satellites that detect the changes in the earth’s mass and shift in gravity.
“This is the first time anyone has looked at all of the mass loss from all Earth’s glaciers and ice caps with GRACE. The Earth is losing an incredible amount of ice to the oceans annually, and these new results will help us answer important questions in terms of both sea rise and how the planet’s cold regions are responding to global change,”one of the coauthors of the report John Whar, told the New Jersey-based Environment News Network.
The study reports that in addition to the melting of icecaps, the sea level near Greenland, Antarctica, and Alaska saw the fastest rate of thaw.
Jing Cheng, climate change expert at the University of Toronto Department of Geography said, “ It’ll have a dramatic effect because when the ice changes to water, it will increase the temperature of the surface which will melt more ice.”
“We need to be concerned about the sea level. It can have an affect on the coastal cities that are below sea level.”
Whar told The Huffington Post about some of of the more difficult ways of aquiring data from the high mountains of Asia.
"There are tens of thousands of glaciers in that region, spread over a wide range og elevations and subject to many different kinds of weather patterns. Those things are two of the primary factors in determining the rate of glacial mass loss."
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