A new study reveals that the current trend in rising temperatures could lead to an alarming increase of the sea level.
According to the authors of the research, whose findings were published in this month’s issue of the journal Science, the sea level could rise as much as 20 feet unless we do something about it.
The researchers analyzed a comprehensive data collection of three very warm periods recorded in the past that are similar to the one we are now experiencing. After careful scrutiny of the data, they soon reached the conclusion that sea levels rose above 20 feet in each instance.
These findings are extremely important because they suggest that the same thing might be occurring now, even if none of the three warm periods taken into account were identical to the present one.
What is more worrying is the fact that the melting was the result of a mere increase of one or two degrees Celsius in temperatures recorded globally.
“As the planet warms, the poles warm even faster, raising important questions about how ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica will respond. While this amount of sea-level rise will not happen overnight, it is sobering,” said geochemist Andrea Dutton, who is the lead study author.
She explained that her team looked at many interglacial periods and each time they found an increase in sea level of at least 6 feet.
They also stated that there is no uniformity regarding global warming. Thus, it is more likely that the poles will warm at a faster rate than the rest of the planet. It remains uncertain how the polar ice sheets from Greenland and Antarctica will respond. What we should take into account is the fac that ice sheets are incredibly vulnerable to any temperature shifts.
The results could not be more alarming, even if the 20-feet rise is not expected within the next weeks. However, the researchers also warned us that the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is much higher that it has ever been and it should not be neglected when measurements are made.
More research still needs to be carried out further, but it should also be noted that more preventive measures need to be taken to protect our planet from the devastating effects of climate change.
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