NMTV Green : West Antarctic Ice sheet could drown World's capital cities

For half a century, climate scientists have seen the West Antarctic ice sheet, a remnant of the last ice age, as a sword of Damocles hanging over human civilization. Larger than Mexico, it is thought to be potentially vulnerable to disintegration from a relatively small amount of global warming, and capable of raising the sea level by over 12 feet should it break up. But researchers assumed the worst effects would take hundreds of years to occur. Now, new research suggests the disaster scenario could play out much sooner. Continued high emissions of heat-trapping gases could launch a disintegration of the ice sheet within decades, says a study, heaving enough water into the ocean to raise the sea level as much as three feet by the end of this century. With ice melting in other regions, too, the total rise of the sea could reach five or six feet by 2100. That is roughly twice the increase reported as a plausible worst-case scenario by a UN panel three years ago, and so high it would likely provoke a profound crisis within the lifetimes of kids being born today. Mumbai, New York City, London, Venice, Hong Kong and Sydney are all vulnerable to this crisis and the effect would likely drown these great cities from world's coastlines. Bureau report
Be the first to comment