More evidence regarding global warming
Humanity’s impact on climate has been detected on every continent except Antarctica, or so said the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in February 2007. No longer: scientists, comparing decades of records from 17 Antarctic weather stations with computer simulations of Earth’s climate, found that human-induced global warming has been heating up the continent that is home to the South Pole, as well.
“We have detected the human fingerprint in both the Arctic and Antarctic region[s],” says Peter Stott, a climate modeler at the U.K. Met (meteorological) Office’s Hadley Center, and co-author of the study published in the journal Nature Geoscience.
The researchers compared 100 years of weather records from the Arctic and 50-plus years of those kept on Antarctica with the results of four computer models. Their findings: natural influences such as changes in the amount of sunlight or volcanic eruptions did not explain the warming trends, but the results matched when increasing levels of greenhouse gas emissions were added to the mix.
In the past few decades, average Arctic temperatures have warmed roughly 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius); average temperatures in Antarctica have warmed slightly less than 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit (1 degree Celsius).
Lead study author Nathan Gillett, a climatologist at Environment Canada, the government ministry charged with Canadian environmental protection and issues, notes that the collapse of the Larsen B and Wilkins ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula, which has warmed more than any other part of the entire world, has already been linked to global warming.
As if the new finding is not disturbing enough, researchers may have underestimated …