Understanding Why Sea Ice Is Disappearing at an Alarming Rate
It is a fact that sea ice around the globe is melting at an alarming rate. Images of the North Pole – once a frozen block of ice year-round – now show open seas. Instead of fuelling an argument or adding more polarizing opinions to the problem, I want to explain why the ice is really disappearing. Understanding why this is happening can help you prepare for what’s in store as our planet continues to warm up.
Table of Content
1. What makes sea ice so important
2. Why sea ice is disappearing so fast
3. How it is linked to climate change
4. What does this mean for the planet?
5. The impact of rising sea levels
6. The harmful effects on marine life
What Makes Sea Ice So Important
You’ve probably heard the news by now. You might have even seen the video of a polar bear forced ashore.
After hearing about the dangers of global warming, you’re probably wondering why sea ice is so important.
Sea ice is defined as the floating cap of frozen seawater that covers most of the surface of the oceans in polar regions. It doesn’t always completely melt during summer, thus partially offsetting the heat absorbed from sunlight in winter.
Life on Earth cannot exist without ice. From polar bears to penguins and even humans, ice is crucial to our survival.
But now it seems there is less and less of it. Rising temperatures are causing more sea ice, which melts in the summer months, to disappear every year.
Understanding why sea ice is disappearing at an alarming rate isn’t just important for the survival of many animals on Earth: what if we could learn from the changing behaviour of sea ice?
What if we could use this knowledge to help save our planet from further global warming?
Sea ice doesn’t have much surface area compared to the land or the oceans. But in terms of the earth’s systems and the impact on them, it’s very important. It helps moderate our climate.
So, as it melts, it effects other parts of the world like weather patterns and even average temperatures.
Overall, the data is overwhelming, and suggests that sea ice levels are on a downward slope.
The decrease in size and thickness of the sea ice has resulted in an almost equal increase in global sea levels. This leads to more land being covered by water.
That is not good news for humanity and the environment. While there are many initiative-taking ways we can adapt to prevent further damage to our ecosystems, ultimately humans need to work together to find answers.
This will require greater cooperation than ever across borders and between countries, even if it means solving problems that aren’t directly impacting your own country or region.
Regardless of where you live or what your politics are, there’s no escaping the fact that climate change (that includes all of us) is the biggest threat humanity faces this century.
Why Sea Ice Is Disappearing So Fast
Every year, Arctic Sea ice recedes during the summer months due to rising temperatures.
The amount of sea ice then builds again during the winter months as temperatures drop. This so-called “cycle of freezing and thawing” is what Earth’s climate has been experiencing for thousands of years.
However, recent trends in this cycle suggest that we may be headed towards something more serious.
Sea ice levels in the Arctic are at a record low. This is due to several reasons including climate change, but scientists are still debating that angle.
Regardless of how far we need to go back in time to explain the speed at which sea ice is disappearing, it seems that global climate change has played some role in this.
When a study was conducted on rising levels of ocean acidity, it found that current levels are the highest they’ve been in 300 million years – shocking by itself.
The reason for this increase? The so called ‘greenhouse effect’. It’s for this reason that alarm bells should be ringing.
What Are Your Thoughts on the Future of the Planet?
The quickest warming place on Earth is the Arctic. Sea ice area in the Arctic has fallen precipitously. Despite a growing awareness of this phenomenon, there is still widespread confusion and disagreement about what’s happening.
In a matter of a few decades, there will be no more sea ice at the North Pole during summer months.
Western Arctic caribou herd is one of the rare herds in which males and females migrate separately.
Males move between their wintering grounds in Alaska and their calving grounds in Canada, while females go north to the calving grounds only to give birth.
Since females can spend up to two months on the frozen tundra without eating or drinking, they face added risk of death if they begin to calve at sea ice free areas.
We may be on the verge of some major changes on our planet. This isn’t the first time that ocean temperatures have increased worldwide.
However, it could be the first time that these changes take place at such a fast rate. As always, there are many factors that come into play when it comes to global warming and climate change.
But one thing is clear: if our temperatures continue to rise, the smallest creatures in our oceans—like ice algae—will bear the brunt of their disappearance.
And since we rely on these tiny organisms for so many things, like food security and certain products, their decline is cause for concern.
- We will all be affected by climate change
- It’s dangerous for polar bears and sea life
- Ice is a very important part of our climate system
- The populations living in the area are the hardest hit
- Temperatures are rising in both poles at the same time
When climate change first came to public attention, some people doubted if it was as big a problem as scientists were making it out to be.
However, over time the science proved beyond all reasonable doubt that the Earth’s climate is changing. And this could have devastating consequences for all living creatures on Earth.
A great example of how the planet is already being affected can be found in what has been happening to sea ice in the Arctic Circle.
As the earth’s temperature rises, so does the water temperature in our oceans.
This causes the great polar ice caps to thaw, contributing to rising sea levels worldwide and later flooding.
Also, as our planet warms, cascades of meltwater pour into rivers, lakes, and the sea. The runoff pollutes drinking water for millions of people and disrupts ecosystems from the poles to the tropics.
The thing I’d like to point out about this is, it’s not just climate scientists that are able to make this connection.
You can be a scientist of oceanography, or marine biology, or meteorology and still be able to appreciate the relative effect that the phenomenon of melting sea ice has on changing global climate.
It’s a good example of how worrying about climate change is not limited to one narrow science. It’s more than a subject for climatologists it’s something that affects all of us.
And it’s worth taking the time to learn about how your actions change the planet, not just on an individual level but on a scale level too.
From thinking about ourselves to considering the bigger picture, there are several reasons why the melting of glaciers is a problem.
What Does This Mean for the Planet?
It’s said that knowledge is power. When it comes to climate change, we all have a duty to understand as much as possible to act.
The Arctic, which is a very large region of the world, is rapidly disappearing. This has serious consequences for us all, including the future of the planet.
It’s important that we understand what we are up against, and why what we are doing matters.
Climate change is real, it’s happening, and it could affect things such as plant and animal species, glaciers, and sea level.
Antarctica has experienced rapid melting in one area that has doubled in size over the past decade. There’s a lot of confusion around why the Arctic is disappearing.
And that’s because until recently, researching the Arctic required specialised technology and scientific-grade equipment. As a result, most of the information we have available to us about this vital part of our planet is actually quite limited.
However, now you can get a better understanding of this major issue without getting lost in all the science or technical data.
Whether you care about the environment or not, the Arctic is a pivotal region of the Earth. It has an indisputable effect on our planet’s climate.
If current trends continue, we can expect to experience many more instances that have never occurred before in recorded history.
We may experience Arctic weather in places where it did not typically occur before, and colder events may happen in other places for the same reason.
- Decrease your carbon footprint and help the environment
- The Arctic is a region of the world rapidly disappearing
- We all need to be more environmentally conscious and aware
- We need to act, or we will not be able to reverse the damages
The Impact of Rising Sea Levels
If we go back to the late seventies, there was a hypothesis that if we don’t put an end to the greenhouse effect, we’re going to turn our planet into an ice age.
Everybody thought that it was a joke. Yet today we’re being forced to accept the fact that global warming is real.
The greenhouse effect is becoming a gigantic problem and in the next decades, sea levels will rise which will furthermore make us aware of this debate.
Global warming is a highly controversial topic with many opinions on causation and many different factors affecting the planet.
However, there is no debate over what rising sea levels will mean for humans and animals if the trend continues. Rising sea levels have dramatic consequences on the habitats of humans, animals, and plants.
The most obvious consequence is as the sea level rises, an increasing part of the earth becomes covered in water. This takes away land that humans and animals may be using to live on.
What Do You Think About the Rising Sea Levels?
Overall, I believe the issue of rising sea levels is only going to become more critical in the coming years. The planet is a much different place than it was even fifty years ago, and our effect on it will only increase with time. It’s kind of frightening if you really think about how this process might play out over the next hundred years or so.
Despite the best efforts of scientists and politicians, rising sea levels continue to be an issue.
And even if global warming is not as severe as predicted, the effects of climate change are very real in some parts of the world.
In fact, even a slight increase in sea levels can cause significant problems for coastal communities.
As with any issue, it may be helpful to remember that while there is no question that if current projections of climate change continue the sea level will rise significantly.
Although by how much and by when exactly there will be significant rises in sea levels as well as the other impacts of climate change still is unknown (and uncertain).
While the best thing we can do for the planet at this point is to curb our carbon footprints and work towards slowing down global warming, it’s also important to make contingency plans just in case.
The Harmful Effects on Marine Life
Ever heard of sea ice? It’s the floating ice found in large bodies of water, such as the Arctic, the Antarctic, and other oceans all around the world.
Sea ice is crucial to marine mammals and birds, however, what was once considered a great place to observe many species has started being dramatically reduced in size.
In fact, it’s shrinking at an alarming rate. We’re all aware of the physical effects climate change has on our natural environment.
When the polar ice caps melt it can have harmful effects on marine life in the surrounding areas.
This is caused by human activity. The predictions are that within a short period there will be some places where no ice will remain at all.
Humans keep on polluting the environment and warming it up. The melting sea ice is the most visible sign of this trend.
If we do not do anything about this, our coastal cities will be flooded by the sea, ruining both humans and marine life. Therefore, we should try to reduce the temperature and stop polluting the environment before it is too late.
Marine life is disappearing as the melting Arctic Sea ice has harmful effects on marine life. In fact, according to scientist’s climate change and global warming have been linked to the phenomena.
The polar bears of Alaska are threatened by the melting sea ice. Other animals living off the coast of Alaska and Canada that rely on the sea ice for habitat migration are being threatened by climate change.
All in all, we can see that the melting sea ice has many harmful effects on marine life.
These harmful effects will only increase as the ice continues to melt, and we need to find a solution that will protect marine life before it’s too late.
Because of warming temperatures, sea ice melts during the summer months. In comparison to land or oceans, sea ice has a small surface area. However, it is critical in terms of the Earth’s systems and its impact on them. It contributes to the stabilisation of our climate. Arctic sea ice has reached an all-time low.
This is attributable to a variety of factors, including climate change. If global temperatures continue to rise, the smallest organisms in our waters will suffer the most. And this could have catastrophic ramifications for all living things on Earth.
Climate change is real, it is occurring, and it has the potential to influence plant and animal species, glaciers, sea level, and even the planet’s future. It’s critical that we understand what we’re up against and why what we’re doing is vital. If current climate change estimates hold true, the sea level will rise.
As climate change causes temperature changes and impacts weather patterns, the sea ice surrounding Antarctica is starting to disappear.