The recent nine-day heatwave between February 4 and February 13 scorched the northern tip of Antarctica. It is due to climate change and it melted nearly a quarter of the snow cover in Eagle Island leaving the environment devastated. NASA has captured images of the developments during the nine days. A comparison of the first and last image says it all.

Large portions of the land under the icecap are normally hidden from view. These stood exposed and there were pools of meltwater on its surface. Scenes of this nature are uncommon and people should treat them as pointers to the health of the planet.

Such mass scale melting of ice from the polar region could convert into a sea-level rise.

CNN says Antarctica experienced a high of 64.9 degrees Fahrenheit (18°C) during this nine-day period. The temperature was the same as in Los Angeles on the same day as confirmed by NASA. In just over a week, the world witnessed a melting of 4 inches of icepack of Eagle Island. That works out to approximately 20 percent of the island's total seasonal snow accumulation. A geologist told NASA's Earth Observatory - "I haven't seen melt ponds develop this quickly in Antarctica.

You see these kinds of melt events in Alaska and Greenland, but not usually in Antarctica."

The heatwave was due to climate change

A climate scientist Xavier Fettweis has done some study on the quantity of meltwater from the Antarctic Peninsula that finally reached the ocean. The study reveals that the heatwave contributed the most this year. Antarctica seldom sees melt events of this magnitude even during summer because it is one of the coldest places on Earth.

The origin of the melt could be traced to the sustained high temperatures that is something new for this century. It is becoming common as global temperatures continue to rise. The world is losing glaciers due to climate change.

CNN explains the situation.

The main reason for the rapid melting of ice caps in Antarctica is the heat trapped in the environment. This is from gas pollution for which humans are responsible. When the melting ice raises sea levels, it could be catastrophic for those who live in coastal regions. Incidentally, if the ice sheets of Antarctica melts, it could raise global sea levels by nearly 200 feet. This is according to the World Meteorological Organization.

Climate change threatens Antarctica

According to CBS News, Antarctica has been experiencing high temperature that is increasing the melting rate of icecaps. The region suffered a heatwave for nine days and ice caps from Eagle Island lost huge mass of ice.

The heatwave was between February 4 and February 13 and images were taken before and after the event revealed the truth. Surface normally under the ice was visible due to excessive melt. Eagle Island is near a research base of Argentina.

Mauri Pelto, a glaciologist, commented that the rapid melting of this nature is because of sustained temperatures significantly above freezing point. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is trying to verify the facts. It has admitted that the Antarctic Peninsula is one of the faster warming regions on Earth. One effect of this is the decline in numbers of chinstrap penguins.

It is of the order of 60 percent and is attributed to the increasing temperatures. In the Arctic, there are instances of polar bears starving because of climate change.

The world cannot ignore climate change

An increase in the frequency of climatic disorders is an indication that something is not correct. The climate dictates our lives and it is our duty to maintain the balance of nature. Rainfall is important for survival but in measured quantities. The deficit would mean drought and excessive would mean floods. It is necessary for the world to check global warming because it is the main factor responsible for melting ice from the polar regions.

That means sea level rise and fight for the survival of those who live in coastal areas.

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