Scientists on Climate Change
 
A Closer Look at the Melting of the Antarctic with Dr. Ted Scambos    Part 2
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Hallo, eco-conscious viewers, and welcome to another edition of Planet Earth: Our Loving Home. Antarctica’s land mass extends for more than 14-million square kilometers, ninety-eight percent of which is covered by the Antarctic ice sheet.

The continent accounts for 90 percent of the world’s ice and 72 percent of its freshwater reserves.
However, climate change is rapidly thawing this ice, and if the entire sheet were to melt, Earth’s sea level would rise 60 to 70 meters, an unimaginable outcome for all beings on the planet.

Recently the world’s attention has been drawn to the rapidly collapsing Wilkins Ice Shelf, a 4,000-square-kilometer mass of floating ice in the western part of the Antarctic Peninsula.

A thin, 40-kilometer ice bridge, the last piece keeping the Shelf in place, shattered in April 2009, an event that is expected to cause the Shelf to disintegrate at an even faster rate.

To learn more about the effects of global warming on Antarctica, we spoke with Dr. Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the University of Colorado’s National Snow and Ice Data Center in the US.

Dr. Scambos’s research covers glaciology, remote sensing, geochemistry and planetary science. His current studies involve Antarctica’s ice sheet, ice shelves and sea ice.

He has briefed former US Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Al Gore on ice sheets and contributed to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report 『Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis.』 Dr. Scambos first discusses the collapse of the Wilkins Ice Shelf.

nsidc.org/research/bios/scambos.html

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