It has been discovered that the melting of the ice sheets may contribute to changes in the earth’s rotational axis.
The latest research points towards climate change affecting the geophysical setup of the earth. Its axis of rotation may undergo a shift thanks to the melting of the ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica.
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While the earth moves from east to west in a total time span of 24 hours, the axis around which it revolves may be undergoing a radical transformation. The North and South poles are thus creeping slowly out of alignment. Soon the North pole will be in the same place where the UK is today.
The melting of polar ice is the main contributing factor to this SNAFU. At least, it is partially responsible for the issue at hand. The loss of ice from one area automatically shifts it elsewhere.
As this mass is shifted, the axis also gets changed as a result. This leads to motion at the level of the poles. The research was published in a journal.
The paper does not mention man-made changes as the sole causal agent in this equation. Rather, the shifting of the poles was noted down and this was reported along with the concomitant hypothesis.
NASA’s twin GRACE satellites gathered this important data from their vantage point in space. However, there is evidence of climate change caused by global warming as being responsible for the polar motion.
Both Greenland and Antarctica as well as other glaciers around the world are undergoing a conversion into meltwater which has led to chaotic conditions. Greenland alone is losing 287 billion tons of ice on an annual basis. As for Antarctica, it is losing 134 billion tons per year.
While the axis of rotation is an imaginary line that goes through the poles, it is a necessary adjunct in understanding various phenomena of the earth. It has always been shifting slightly since times immemorial.
Even rumblings within the bowels of the earth cause it to change position. Also mass changes on the surface cause its displacement. It’s been more than a century since these movements have been recorded by scientists.
Previously, the North pole was shifting towards Canada. Now it is shifting towards the UK and Europe. The motion is also speeding up which is cause for further alarm. The poles move for obvious reasons among which one is that we humans have become a geophysical force for better or for worse.
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This new research published on April 8 in the journal Science Advances.