Environmental Scientists are very concerned about the immense amount of ice contained on the very large Antarctica continent. Picture a block of ice two miles thick and one and 1/2 times as large as the United States.
Should all the ice melt and flow into the oceans, scientists calculate sea levels would rise 216 feet. Since most of humanity lives near ocean shores, mass migration to higher land would be required and it would be catastrophic.
Major action is already being taken in the United States to prepare for rising sea levels.
- Ocean front cities are preparing for higher shore erosion. Ocean front planning commissions are requiring new projects to raise the site by adding fill dirt, as much as six feet, before building new construction.
- The US Navy is planning for new harbors as existing Navy yards become flooded.
- States bordering the ocean are projecting sea rises and spending money planning for major projects and major expenses.
- States, California included, are mandating sustainable cities and ‘green’ energy to halt global warming.
These are all life changing mandates and very disruptive and expensive.
- What if ice is actually returning to the Arctic?
- There is daily data at: “charctic interactive Sea Ice Graph”.
- Take time to select the recent years 2012, 2015, 2016 and 2017;
- note each year has more summer ice than 2012. How can that be if CO2 which is increasing causes ice to melt??
- What if ice is actually increasing on the large East Antarctica to offset any loss in the West?
- What if we have actually already entered the next ice age?
- What would weather be like during a descent into an ice age?
- Would we not see more winter snow, and heavy summer rain?
- Would we stop calling it “severe weather caused by climate warming”?
- What if all this effort and expense is unnecessary, wasteful and actually harmful?
- What if all the effort to reduce atmospheric CO2 is pure waste of time and money?
Our search for answers is not about whether temperatures have increased since 1980. Temperature has probably increased.
Nor is our search for reasons about the melting of Arctic Ice between the years of 2000 and 2012. The measurements of temperature and ice area may be assumed to be correct for that short period of melting ice.
Nor is there doubt about the very rapid increases in CO2 concentration since 1990.
What is this chapter about? Actually?
- Why has the temperature, as reported by NOAA, increased by 10 to 15 deg. F along the Antarctic Peninsula but other areas rose only about 1.5 degrees.
- Why has the ice melted on only two mountain glaciers on West Antarctic?
- Why are there about 127 known volcanoes along West Antarcticas’ coast but only one in all of vast East Antarctica?
- Why are there visible cracks in the West Antarctica ice shelves that are melting?
- If it is melting from warmer air, engineering calculations predict cracks on the bottom of the ice which would not be visible from above, but if from warm water beneath the ice, the cracks would occur and be visible from above; as they are.
Lets begin with a map of Antarctica. Then check out a list of volcanoes.
Notes for the Map of Antarctica:
- The black wavy line follows a mountain range that divides East and West Antarctica.
- East Antarctica (the larger area) is to the right, West Antarctica is to your left.
- Antarctica’s Peninsula extends up from West Antarctica toward Chile.
- Two bays contain major ice shelfs; the Ross Ice Shelf and the Ronne Ice Shelf.
- The red dots locate 36 volcanoes which are listed on graph at the end of the Chapter 6.
- Mount Erebus on West Antarctica is actively emitting gas and steam; others are not erupting.
- Four other volcanoes on West Antarctica, erupted in 1876, 1892, 1905 and 1970.
- East Antarctica, in contrast, has a single dormant volcano located 300 miles offshore.
MAP OF ANTARCTICA VOLCANOES ARE LOCATED WITH RED DOTS
EAST ANTARCTICA vs WEST ANTARCTICA vs ANTARCTIC PENINSULA
Penguins, over 10 million of them, choose Antarctica as their home.
Researchers are concerned about the future of these excellent swimmers.
There are 70 research stations studying and reporting on penguins, climate and ice.
The concern originated with rising CO2 levels and rising temperatures.
Antarctica has totally baffling questions if CO2 is assumed to cause both rising temperature and melting ice.
But first, some facts about Antarctica, the “Down Under Continent”.
- While North Pole regions have thousands of polar bears none exist on Antarctica.
- Mammals, in fact, do not live on the continent.
- At 5.4 million sq. miles it is almost twice as large as the United States’ 3 million sq. miles.
- East Antarctica is much larger (72% of Antarctica’s’ area) and reported to be gaining ice.
- West Antarctica, 18% of the area, has numerous volcanoes and is the only area of alarm.
- Antarctica is a continent resting on rock, while most of Arctic Ice floats on sea water.
- Under the snow lies rocky mountains and a mountain range dividing the continent.
- Snow and ice depth over the continent ranges up to 2 miles thick.
- Calculations have been made to indicate seas would rise 216 feet if all the ice melted.
- Shelfs of West Antarcticas’ sea ice are reported to be melting.
- Ice cores reveal over 1.5 million years of history ( CO2, sea level and air temperature).
- National Geographic’s Dec, 2015 map of air temperature changes, show air temperature DECREASES of up to 5 degrees over some sea areas surrounding Antarctica.
This map also shows a 3 degree F increase offshore of West Antarctica, while the air temperature rise over snow covered eastern area is about 1.5 degrees F, similar to the entire planet.
THE RING OF FIRE.
1 The Pacific Ocean is surrounded by a “Ring Of Fire”.
2 Location of the Ring is well established:
– 90% of the worlds earthquakes occur on the Ring.
– 75 % of the worlds active volcanoes are located on the Ring of Fire.
– Three of the world’s largest recent eruptions occurred on the Ring of Fire.
3 The Ring extends south along Chiles’ west coast to West Antarctica’s Peninsula and then farther southward offshore of West Antarctica before turning northward toward New Zealand.
This chain of volcanoes and magma along West Antarctica’s shore is 3600 miles long but width is not known; a width of 100 miles would provide 360,000 square miles of hot seabed.
For comparison, Los Angeles to New York is only 2500 miles;
4 There is one active and 35 inactive volcanoes on the peninsula and shore of West Antarctica.
One inactive volcano is located 400 miles off the coast of East Antarctica. (66°48’S,89°11’E)
5 The volcanoes were created by hot magma which still exists beneath them.
1 West Antarctica is shown by the National Geographic map to now have 3 degrees higher air temperature than 54 years ago; the rest of Antarctica has risen 1 degree or less. Ocean areas around Antarctica are shown to have cooled as much as 5° degrees Fahrenheit.
2 Ice shelfs and glacier are melting in the Western Antarctica region.
3 Volcanoes are shown on a map of Antarctica by dark dots. See page 11.
Note that most lie off the west shore of West Antarctica under sea ice.
A table is attached listing all the volcanoes located in Antarctica. See Page 12.
4 Sea rise would be minimal from melting ice; ice shelfs are floating, Coastal ice is minimal.
5 While there is not sufficient data to calculate the amount of ice the magma might melt, science cannot be “settled” until data is available and able to predict melting ice shelfs.
6 Melting of land-supported ice would cause sea levels to rise but cannot happen without volcanoes.
7 East Antarctica has been gaining ice in spite of 400 ppm CO2 concentrations.
East Antarctica does not have a source of heat below the ice to cause melting.
This vast area is very unlikely to begin melting any time soon.
8 West Antarctica’s chain of magma and volcanoes along the shore causes floating ice to melt, but will not cause sea levels to rise.
The amount that melts will be determined by magma and volcanic activity, not CO2 concentration.
9 Since only offshore ice is affected by the magma and volcanoes, there will not be enough melted ice to raise sea levels significantly.
10 Further, the net change appears to be an increase in ice.
Ice increases in East Antarctica has been offsetting any loss in West Antarctica.
The topic for this chapter is still being researched.
It was sparked by a discussion with Robert J Tuttle about his book;
The Fourth Source; Effects of Natural Nuclear Reactors.