New studies have shown that the ice in Antarctica is melting at an ever increasing rate. According to CNN, almost 25 percent of the West Antarctic ice shelf becoming thinner and the Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers are losing ice at five times the rate they were in the early 1990s.
A study that was published in the Geo-physical Research Letters has discovered that Antarctica is losing ice six times faster than it did 40 years ago. The most recent study has discovered that the loss of ice in Eastern and Western Antarctica has increased the global sea level by 4.6 millimetres since 1992.
The study was based on 25 years of satellite data from 1992 to 2017. The satellites were equipped with height measurement instruments in order to measure the changes in the height of the glaciers. In order to make the study as accurate as possible, the researchers used different weather models in order to separate the seasonal deviation.
25yrs of European satellite data: "Using this unique dataset, we've been able to identify the parts of Antarctica that are undergoing rapid, sustained thinning – regions that are changing faster than we would expect due to normal weather patterns" https://t.co/tHHAuGeZR3 #LPS19 pic.twitter.com/WcmUpnfAXf
— Jonathan Amos (@BBCAmos) May 16, 2019
How the melting occurs
The warm water that gets under the glaciers when they hit the seabed is what is causing the melting in particular. Then, it is easier for the glaciers to slide into the ocean and become thinner. In some areas, glaciers have lost more than 100 meters in thickness. More than 50% of the Pine Island and Thwaites glacier basins have been affected by thinning in the past 25 years.
Permanent monitoring of the melting of glaciers is necessary. It is necessary to realize what mass of water is located here. If all glaciers in Antarctica melt, the sea level would increase by about 60 meters.
Photo: flickr.com/photos/cmichel67/8370647648, 24313509773