New satellite data, spanning about 5 decades, has been used as a base for a new scientific study, which shows clearly that temperatures in the Antarctic have risen by 0.5 Celsius (0.8 Fahrenheit) since the 1950s. This puts an end to global warming cynics, who say that the trend is just local, and that the polar regions are getting cooler. No, in fact they are not, instead they are melting down as well, as proven by the latest
case. The South Pole holds 90 percent of the world's ice, and, if it were to melt, it would raise sea levels worldwide by a few feet, basically spelling destruction to millions living in coastal areas.
“The thing you hear all the time is that Antarctica is cooling and that's not the case,” Eric Steig, a researcher at the University of Washington in Seattle, and also the lead author of the new study, published in the January 22 edition of the journal Nature, explains. In light of the new finds, critics to global warming have lost their greatest argument, as previous studies have shown that the South Pole is not a part of the larger global warming trend.
However, the newest discovery proves to those who are endowed with reason that the situation is indeed grave, and that action must be taken immediately to prevent a catastrophe in the region. Because they are now deprived of the Antarctica cooling argument, no doubt those who dispute global warming as a myth will turn to the periodic heating and cooling of the Earth. Steig says they should save their breath. The cycle truly exists, but the period in which we are has been drastically altered as opposed to others.
The analyzed area has covered many parts of West and South Antarctica. “The area of warming is much larger than the region of the Antarctic Peninsula,” Steig says. “The continent-wide near surface average is positive,” his paper adds, saying that a cooling in the East has only partially compensated for the meltdown in the West. NASA's Drew Shindell, a member of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, states that West Antarctica “will eventually melt, if warming like this continues.”
The region holds enough water to lift sea levels by 57 meters (187 ft), which would basically mean the end of all major cities near the sea, from Boston to New York, Washington, Tokyo, London, and other such metropolises. Not to mention millions of acres of land flooded, and the reshaping of the entire world map.