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Major sea level rise likely as Antarctic ice melts

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Author Topic: Major sea level rise likely as Antarctic ice melts  (Read 547 times)
Ice Age Wanderer
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« on: December 01, 2009, 01:29:28 am »

Cold store

The Antarctic Peninsula - the strip of land that points towards the southern tip of South America - has warmed by about 3C over the last 50 years, the fastest rise seen anywhere in the southern hemisphere, according to the report.

But the rest of the continent has remained largely immune from the global trend of rising temperatures.

Indeed, the continent's largest portion, East Antarctica, appears to have cooled, bringing a 10% increase in the sea ice extent since 1980.

This report backs the theory that it has bucked the global trend largely because of ozone depletion - the chemical havoc wrought over 30 years by chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and other agents in the stratosphere above the polar region.

"We used to have a big blanket of ozone, and when we took it away we saw a cooling," said Professor Turner.

"The Antarctic has been shielded from the impacts of global warming."

But, the report concludes, that will not last forever.
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