Kiran Chug of The Dominion Post reports on new research by New Zealand scientists which shows that massive ice shelves are the reason why Antarctica is not losing as much ice as the Arctic.
Climate change skeptics have previously claimed that the lack of ice loss in Antarctica is evidence against global warming, but the new findings put these claims to rest, say scientists. Cold water melting off the ice shelves acts as an insulator against the effects of climate change, allowing them to remain relatively stable in summer, and grow in winter.
An excerpt: (read in full here)
“The team was led by Otago University physics researcher Andrew Mahoney, who said the eight-month study focused on a topic scientists understood little about.
“Dr Mahoney said findings would help climate scientists make predictions about the future.
“National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research oceanographer Mike Williams said the research explained why Antarctic sea ice was not decreasing at a similar rate to that of the Arctic.
“Figures from America’s National Snow and Ice Data Center show that Arctic sea ice shrank by about 4 per cent of 500,000 square kilometres each decade during the past 30 years. By contrast, Antarctic sea ice was not believed to have changed much in size and may have increased slightly.”