Saturday, October 23, 2021

An alarm to the temperature rise – Thasni Salim

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Along with the reports of global warming scientist frequently ask a question to the human kind and to themselves, what happen if all the snow of the globe melt? In an assumption the average sea level will rise by 7metres. Just imagine Kuttanad the rice cultivating location of Kerala is 2. 2m lower than sea level. Kollam is only 3 m above sea level. Cochin the queen of Arabian sea is on the height of sea-level. The beautiful Maldives has a height of 2. 4m above the sea level. What about our beaches.

Situation of the poles are getting worse day after day. Scientists discovered that the ice sheets of Greenland are getting darker by the presence of algae. These dark coloured algae absorb more light and accelerate the melting of ice in Greenland. The reasons for the growth of algae over these sheets are due to the rise in overall atmospheric temperature.

Now, The ice melt in Greenland add a rise of 1mm in the sea level and the algal growth may speed up the process in north pole. The algal growth is discovered in Antarctic region also is an alarming warning to the researchers and the earth inhabitants.

It is in the month of June scientist discovered the ever largest ice shelf start melting and drifting of iceberg from the North Pole. The iceberg has a size of 2500square km. The trillion ton ice burg larger than many of the world’s major metropolitan cities is known by the name A68. This was not a clear single cut but make a lase network of cracks which has a length of more than 200km. The split of such a huge mass will disturb the condition of entire peninsula. And a small change of Antarctic Peninsula can make changes in the global climatic condition. The iceberg was separated from the Larsen C shelf. By this single crack 10% of the Larsen C shelf was removed.

Ice shelves act as a wall that prevents the floating of ice on water. When an ice shelf melt there is no sticking force to hold them and the glaciers speed up. They are necessary for the balance of icebergs. The melting of these ice shelves are called as ice calving.

The attention of scientist shifted to the polar region by the end of 20th century. It was in 1995 on the largest and important ice shelf of Antarctica; Larsen A collapsed marking a rise in global sea-level. Larsen B shelf was removed by 2002. Algae were first observed on the Greenland ice sheet more than a century but no one is bothered about their potential effect. Only in the last few years researchers started to explore how the microscopically small plants could affect future melting. The algae darken the ice sheets, absorbing more solar energy and fasten the melting.
The reason for the melting of iceberg is the rise in global temperature. There are certain melty points in every in every mass of ice. The heat melts these melty points and creates a crack and iceberg separate from this point. The glaciers trap various microbes and gases beneath their surface. The melting leads to the release of huge amount of methane gas which is the most dangerous among the greenhouse gases. Also the melting of ice can mark an increase in temperature can accelerate the rate of ice calving. As per the inferences of experts rising temperatures will allow algae to flourish not only on the slopes of the narrow margins of the ice-sheet but also on the flat areas in the far larger interior where melting could happen on a much bigger scale.

The small amount of ice calving is enough to harm millions of coastal inhabitants of the world and billions of ecosystem can get destroyed forever. The melting of glaciers added 8inch rise to water level. This will become 10-13 inches if the Larsen C shelf is melted down. Larsen C, which is 10 times the size of Larsen B and is the fourth biggest ice shelf of Antarctica peninsula, could eventually follow in its neighbour’s way. Though the surface melt is less it is not possible to predict the pattern of the ice calving in this varying climatic situation.

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