Sunday, November 2, 2008

Antarctica - Human activity caused warming

There are some people that still dispute the role of mankind in global warming claiming that man made activity isn't responsible for climate change and global warming phenomenon. This opinion had only one strong point, namely Antarctica where evidence for man made climate change was so far inconclusive. But the latest report published in Nature Geoscience showed that there is a strong link between warming of both poles and human activity.

It is because greenhouse gases, most notably CO2, are being transported globally and once they reach atmosphere they cause warming effect even in far, inhabited polar regions. A joint team of scientists used climate data collected from the Arctic and the Antarctic over 100 years and 50 years, and afterwards compared the measurements with predictions from four different climate models.

Scientists did variety of different tests. For instance in one test, they used only natural influences on climate, like variations in the sun's intensity and volcanic eruptions, in the simulations. In another test, they added human influences, such as greenhouse gas emissions and the ozone hole, which tends to have a cooling effect. And as the author Peter Stott said : "What came out of that is that there was a clear detection in both the Arctic and Antarctic of a human influence on climate. We've shown that we detect the human fingerprint in both these regions."

Increased temperatures are more expressed in Arctic where temperatures increased by over 3.5 degrees Fahrenheit in the last 40 years, but Antarctic area also shows signs of significant overall warming trend. Though there are some parts of the continent that appear to be cooling, such as over the South Pole, warming has severely increased its impact over West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula.

Antarctica's warming is man made

And as the warming continues on both poles so does the danger of significant sea level rise. Current predictions of one meter sea level rise by the end of the century will spell trouble for many countries worldwide. And ice sheets on both of our poles are getting smaller and smaller.

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