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Has the Antarctic really shrunk in size or is it a myth?

Last year, American space agency NASA had released a shocking statement saying that ice in the Antarctic was actually increasing, as compared to the decreasing levels in the Arctic.


Has the Antarctic really shrunk in size or is it a myth?

New Delhi: The world is witnessing the haunting effects of climate change. Scientists are monitoring the phenomenon by keeping an eye on the Arctic ice, which is melting at an alarming pace.

However, the one aspect about climate change that has been keeping scientists on their feet is that it doesn’t seem to have any effect on the Antarctic.

Last year, American space agency NASA had released a shocking statement saying that ice in the Antarctic was actually increasing, as compared to the decreasing levels in the Arctic.

The revelation led to many people wondering about the reason for the phenomenon and also sent scientists and researchers into a tizzy to find its cause.

But, in May this year, NASA scientists said that the reason behind this is the geology of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

The study found that two persistent geological factors -- the topography of Antarctica and the depth of the ocean surrounding it -- are influencing winds and ocean currents, respectively, to drive the formation and evolution of Antarctica's sea ice cover and help sustain it.

Their analyses revealed that as sea ice forms and builds up early in the sea ice growth season, it gets pushed offshore and northward by winds, forming a protective shield of older, thicker ice that circulates around the continent.

This week, researchers revealed that the past 100 years seem to have caused no change in the ice at the Antarctic.

Since satellite observations began, Antarctic sea ice has increased slightly over the past 30 years, said lead author Jonathan Day from the University of Reading.

Logbooks of Captain Robert Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton - key figures in the 'Heroic Age' of Antarctic exploration - have revealed that sea ice levels in Antarctica have barely changed over the past century, despite global temperatures hitting record highs year after year.

Logbooks from the likes of Captain Robert Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton - key figures in the 'Heroic Age' of Antarctic exploration - have revealed that sea ice levels in Antarctica have barely changed over the past century, despite global temperatures hitting record highs year after year.

There had been on-going reports and controversies that sea ice has been shrinking rapidly every year. Statistically, the size of the Antarctic sea ice has been reduced by around 14 percent in the past 100 years. However, satellite images have shown the present-day size and shape of the Antarctic sea ice is consistent with a majority of the recordings from Scott and Shackleton.

Furthermore, there are also data that have been showing that even if the size reduced by a tenth it is again slightly increasing over the past three decades. It is becoming more difficult for scientists to detect the trend in the behavior of the Antarctic, Nature World News reported.

From Zee News

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