Katelyn Weisbrod | June 15, 2018
A new report found Antarctic ice is melting at an astoundingly higher rate than scientist thought.
The study published in Nature found that from 1992 to 2017, about 3 trillion tons of ice melted from Antarctica, increasing sea levels by about 7.6 millimeters around the world. Although it does not sound like much, a disproportionate amount of that rise was in the last five years. If sea level rise continues to accelerate, levels could be over three feet higher by 2100.
The Antarctic ice sheet, the study said, is an important indicator of global climate change. Rising sea levels is one of the main consequences of climate change, as it will increase flooding in coastal cities, especially during storms like hurricanes.
“This is the most authoritative and comprehensive treatment to date and should further reassure the public and policymakers that the science is solid, while perhaps making people more broadly less assured because the small warming and other climate changes to date have already triggered mass loss,” climate scientist Richard Alley of Penn State University told Axios in an email.