Science, Antarctica can take stress and damage

Science, Antarctica can take stress and damage

Some researchers at the University of Exeter have published a study showing that in a few decades extreme events in Antarctica will be more common and more dangerous.

Reduce the temperature

Extreme events in Antarctica, eg Ocean heat waves and ice lossIt will almost certainly become more common and more severe. This is evidenced by a studyUniversity of ExeterPublished in the journal Frontiers in Environmental Sciences.

In view of the clear need for drastic measures to reduce Global Warmingwhich aim asParis agreementlowering the temperature to 1.5 °C, recent extreme events in Antarctica The researchers warned.

stress and damage

The research looked at evidence of extreme events in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, incl abnormal weather conditionssea ​​ice, ocean temperatures, glaciers and ice shelf systems, and terrestrial and marine biodiversity. Scientists have noted that fragile environments in Antarctica can be vulnerable to attack great stress and damage in the coming years and decades.

“Therefore, urgent political action is needed to protect them,” the authors stress. “The change in Antarctica has global implications,” he said. Martin Siegert, from the University of Exeter and lead author. “Reducing greenhouse gas emissions Zero is our best hope for preserving Antarctica, and that should affect every country and every individual on the planet.

Antarctic Treaty

“The rapid changes taking place in Antarctica could lead many countries to violate an international treaty,” Siegert said. The signatories Antarctic Treatyincluding the United Kingdom, the United States, India and China have pledged to preserve the environment in this remote and fragile place.”

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“Countries need to understand that as they continue to explore, extract and burn fossil fuels anywhere in the world, Antarctica’s environment will be increasingly endangered in ways inconsistent with their efforts,” Siegert said. The researchers looked at Weakness of Antarctica To a series of extreme events, to understand their causes and possible future changes, after a series of recent extreme events.

Impacts on biodiversity

For example, the world’s largest recorded heatwave, 38.5°C above average, occurred in East Antarctica in 2022, and currently, winter sea ice formation is the lowest on record. Extreme events can also affect Biodiversity. For example, higher temperatures have been linked to years with fewer krill, resulting in reproductive failure for krill-dependent predators, and many species of marine invertebrate, as evidenced by the many dead fur seal pups on beaches.

Hogg: “Protect these areas”

“Our results show that, in addition to affecting the entire globe through torrential rains, floods, heatwaves and wildfires, extreme events, such as those that occurred in Europe this summer, also affect remote polar regions,” he said. Anna Hogg, from the University of Leeds and co-author of the study. All glaciers, sea ice, and natural ecosystems in Antarctica are affected by extreme events; It is therefore necessary that treaties and laws be implemented international politics To protect these beautiful but sensitive areas,” Hough continued.

minimum sea ice

“the Antarctic sea ice It has been making headlines in recent weeks and this paper shows how sea ice records, previously at all-time highs but since 2017, at an all-time low, have been collapsing in Antarctica for several years,” he explained. Caroline HolmesSea ice expert British Antarctic Survey.

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“Moreover, there are deep connections between extreme events in different aspects of the Antarctic physical and biological system, almost all of which are susceptible to human influence in some way,” Holmes said. the Antarctic sea ice retreat It will make the new areas more accessible to ships and, according to the researchers, will need careful management to Protect vulnerable websites.


the Copernicus Sentinel satellites The European Space Agency and the European Commission is an essential tool for Regular monitoring of the entire area Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. This data can be used to measure the rate of ice melt, sea ice thickness, and ice loss with very high accuracy.

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