Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Arctic shows that the climate change is real

Arctic is intensely feeling the heat of climate change. In fact, Arctic is warming faster than any other place on our planet. The latest data suggests that the 2011 was the warmest year on record with average Arctic temperatures 2.28 degrees Celsius (4.1 degrees Fahrenheit) higher compared to those measured in period from 1951-1980.

The highest recorded temperatures have also lead to an all time low Arctic ice cover. The rapid loss of Arctic ice has been measured by researchers and they say that the ice cover on Arctic has declined by staggering 76 percent from 1979 (16,855 cubic kilometers) to 2011 (4,017 cubic kilometers).

The ever-warming Arctic spells the danger for entire planet because researchers believe that the region could soon hit climatic tipping points that could severely affect the rest of the world.

The loss of sea ice is already having devastating effect on Arctic's ecosystems resulting in decline of many animal species such as polar bears and walruses.

One of the recent studies has even connected this year's cold winter in Europe with the loss of Arctic's ice cover and many researchers also believe that massive blizzards that stroke the U.S. in 2009 and 2010 were also connected with increased melting of Arctic.

The thawing of Arctic's permafrost is also raising serious concerns because of the huge amounts of greenhouse gases trapped in the permafrost. If these gases get released they have potential to equal the amount of greenhouse gases currently emitted by deforestation worldwide.

The melting of Arctic's ice should be of real concern to world leaders but instead of worrying about the global environmental impact of Arctic' ice melting they seem to be more occupied with plans to expand oil and gas exploitation, create new shipping routes, and increase mining and other industry in this ecologically sensitive area.

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