Is Antarctica Ice Melting or Growing? Watch This NASA Video and See for Yourself
You might have seen the news from NASA last week: Antarctica’s Larsen B Ice Shelf could disappear before the end of the decade.
But even while the Antarctic land ice disintegrates down south, and Arctic ice contracts further up North, climate change deniers are touting the record extent of Antarctic ice and using that to claim that climate change isn’t even happening.
What's really going on with the polar ice caps?
In short, there's a difference between sea ice and land ice. Antarctica's land ice has indeed been melting at an alarming rate.
Land ice—also called “glaciers” or “ice sheets”—is ice that has accumulated over time on land. Sea ice is frozen, floating seawater.
Overall, the Antarctic sea ice has been stable—but that fact doesn’t contradict the evidence that our climate is warming.
The ice sheet—land ice—that covers most of Antarctica is melting at the rate of about 159 billion tons every year in recent years. When land ice melts, it flows as water into the ocean, contributing to sea-level rise. Antarctica's melting land ice poses a direct threat to the hundreds of millions of people living on islands and near coasts.
Here’s more about why this is the case—and how glaciologists know this isn’t normal—from our friends at Yale Climate Connections:
What can you do?
First, get informed so that you can respond when you hear misinformation about the ice caps. Visit Skeptical Science for a complete debunking right now, and don’t forget to speak out when you see climate myths perpetuated.
Then, attend a Climate Reality Leadership Corps training to learn more about what’s really happening with our planet—and what you can do to build powerful momentum for solutions. Our next training is July 9-10 in Toronto, Canada.
The Climate Reality Leadership Corps is a global network of more than 7,600 activists working to educate and empower communities in more than 125 countries to take action on climate change. Climate Reality Leaders come from all walks of life but all come with the same deep desire to make a difference and help solve the climate crisis.
By attending a focused multi-day training in Toronto with former US Vice President Al Gore and other experts and influencers, you’ll learn about:
- The science of climate change
- The direct cost of climate impacts on communities across continents
- The practical solutions available and working today
- Effective grassroots organizing for solutions
- How activists like you are working together to drive change around the world
Click here to apply to The Climate Reality Leadership Corps today.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Britain's Prince William interviewed famed broadcaster David Attenborough on Tuesday at the World Economic Forum's annual meeting in Switzerland.
During the sit-down, the 92-year-old naturalist advised the world leaders and business elite gathered in Davos this week that we must respect and protect the natural world, adding that the future of its survival—as well as humanity's survival—is in our hands.
What's more, the accounting firm predicts that another 21 million electric cars will be on the road globally over the next decade due to growing market demand for clean transportation, government subsidies, as well as bans on fossil fuel cars.
By Matthew Savoca
Plastic pollution in the world's oceans has become a global environmental crisis. Many people have seen images that seem to capture it, such as beaches carpeted with plastic trash or a seahorse gripping a cotton swab with its tail.
Greenland is melting about four times faster than it was in 2003, a new study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found, a discovery with frightening implications for the pace and extent of future sea level rise.
"We're going to see faster and faster sea level rise for the foreseeable future," study lead author and Ohio State University geodynamics professor Dr. Michael Bevis said in a press release. "Once you hit that tipping point, the only question is: How severe does it get?"
Finally, some good news about the otherwise terrible partial government shutdown. A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration cannot issue permits to conduct seismic testing during the government impasse.
The Justice Department sought to delay—or stay—a motion filed by a range of coastal cities, businesses and conservation organizations that are suing the Trump administration over offshore oil drilling, Reuters reported. The department argued that it did not have the resources it needed to work on the case due to the shutdown.
Most people have heard of the Amazon, South America's famed rainforest and hub of biological diversity. Less well known, though no less critical, is the Pantanal, the world's largest tropical wetland.
Like the Amazon, the Pantanal is ecologically important and imperiled. Located primarily in Brazil, it also stretches into neighboring Bolivia and Paraguay. Covering an area larger than England at more than 70,000 square miles, the massive wetland provides irreplaceable ecosystem services that include the regulation of floodwaters, nutrient renewal, river flow for navigability, groundwater recharge and carbon sequestration. The wetland also supports the economies of the four South American states it covers.
By Andrea Germanos
Organizers said 35,000 people marched through the streets of the German capital on Saturday to say they're "fed up" with industrial agriculture and call for a transformation to a system that instead supports the welfare of the environment, animals and rural farmers.
By Patrick Rogers
If you have ever considered making the switch to an environmentally friendly electric vehicle, don't drag your feet. Though EV prices are falling, and states are unveiling more and more public charging stations and plug-in-ready parking spots, the federal government is doing everything it can to slam the brakes on our progress away from gas-burning internal combustion engines. President Trump, likely pressured by his allies in the fossil fuel industry, has threatened to end the federal tax credits that have already helped put hundreds of thousands of EVs on the road—a move bound to harm not only our environment but our economy, too. After all, the manufacturing and sale of EVs, hybrids, and plug-in hybrids supported 197,000 jobs in 2017, according to the most recent U.S. Energy and Employment Report.