The drastic effects of climate change are finally inflicting themselves on the world. In some shocking news, Antarctica has exceeded 20 degree Celsius for the first time. Researchers logged a temperature of 20.75 degree Celsius on an island off the coast of the peninsula.
Brazilian Scientist Carlos Schaefer told AFP they had “never seen a temperature this high in Antarctica”.
HOW BAD OF A NEWS IS THIS?
The news might not be as bad as it sounds. The same scientist notes that the temperature was one specific reading of February 9 and not part of a larger data set. However, the continent also hit a record last week. A temperature reading of 18.3 degree Celsius was recorded on the Antarctic Peninsula.
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This latest reading was taken at a monitoring station on Seymour Island, part of a chain of islands off the same peninsula, at the northernmost point of the continent.
Although the temperature is a record high, Mr Schaefer emphasized that the reading was not part of a wider study and so, in itself, could not be used to predict a trend.
“We can’t use this to anticipate climatic changes in the future. It’s a data point,” he said. “It’s simply a signal that something different is happening in that area.”
However, this is not a short term problem. The UN’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) reveals that temperatures on the Antarctic Peninsula have risen by almost 3 degree Celsius over the past 50 years. In fact, about 87% of the glaciers along its west coast have retreated in that time.
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The situation in Antarctica is very dire. Quick steps need to be taken in order to stop this deceleration.
It is yet to be revealed if the world can fight this menace.