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Feb032016

What the Petermann Glacier in Greenland Tells Us About Climate Change

Published by Rease at 4:00 AM under Blog

In a recent 60 Minutes piece, the news team travels to a remote area of Greenland to the Petermann Glacier.

The glacier is 700 miles above the Arctic Circle and only a few hundred miles south of the North Pole. The glacier itself can only be visited during a few weeks of summer each year because it is the only time of the year that there is enough ice melt for the area to be passable. Unfortunately, the amount of melted ice is increasing rapidly each year, which is a big focus of this video.

 

The video is around 13 minutes long, which we realize is much longer than the average internet user’s attention span, so we’ve put together some key takeaways from the news report. However, if you get a chance, you should really take a look at the video, as it offers some pretty incredible visuals that a written description simply could not do justice.

  •          The Petermann Glacier is three times the size of Texas and 80% of it is covered in ice, but it now loses more ice than it gains in snowfall each year.
  •          In the past 5 years alone, the glacier has receded by 20 miles.

 

Perhaps the coolest part of this video (outside of the sweeping views of endless ice) is the clear-cut evidence that Climate Change is real.

Two striking visuals really hit home for us.

First, the rivers of ice melt. As the helicopter flies over the ice, the 60 Minutes Team points out huge blue gaps in the ice, and zooms in to show you that these cracks are actually flowing rivers of melted ice. The rivers tear through the iceberg and cause thunderous cracks as huge chunks of ice finally meet their breaking point and fall into the ocean. This raises the sea level and decreases the landmass of the iceberg.

The second was what the reporter admitted looked like basic mud, but a scientist explained was actually a sediment sample from far below the iceberg that allowed the scientists to see changes in temperature over time. The color of the sediment shows a pattern of warmer and colder periods of time over thousands of years, and the scientist was even able to pinpoint when Ice Ages occurred. However, the most recent sediment sample showed a rapid shift towards much warmer temperatures. Instead of changing color gradually, as the sediment had in the past 10,000, years this shift was sudden – proving that this period of warming is not natural.

It’s time for people to stop denying the existence of Climate Change and start taking it seriously. We at Affordable Comfort strive to provide energy efficient solutions that reduce the carbon footprints of households, while still keeping homes as comfortable, and in fact often more comfortable than homes with less efficient setups.

 

If you have any questions about how you can make your home more energy efficient, please give us a call!

(314) 884-0092

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