Antarctica Is Getting Taller, and Here’s Why

Jun 22, 2018

By Mindy Weisberger

Bedrock under Antarctica is rising more swiftly than ever recorded — about 1.6 inches (41 millimeters) upward per year. And thinning ice in Antarctica may be responsible.

That’s because as ice melts, its weight on the rock below lightens. And over time, when enormous quantities of ice have disappeared, the bedrock rises in response, pushed up by the flow of the viscous mantle below Earth’s surface, scientists reported in a new study.

These uplifting findings are both bad news and good news for the frozen continent.

The good news is that the uplift of supporting bedrock could make the remaining ice sheets more stable. The bad news is that in recent years, the rising earth has probably skewed satellite measurements of ice loss, leading researchers to underestimate the rate of vanishing ice by as much as 10 percent, the scientists reported.

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2 comments on “Antarctica Is Getting Taller, and Here’s Why

  • @OP – Bedrock under Antarctica is rising more swiftly than ever recorded —
    about 1.6 inches (41 millimeters) upward per year.
    And thinning ice in Antarctica may be responsible.

    In terms of geological time, this is very rapid.
    Some raised beaches in Scotland are still rising today, from the melting of their ice load, at the end of the last ice-age.

    https://www.geolsoc.org.uk/GeositesTarbert

    Because the crust was pushed down further where the ice was thicker, areas near the centre of the ice sheet (roughly centred on Rannoch Moor) have had further to rebound and are still continuing to rise today.

    Along with northern Islay, the West Coast of Jura contains some of the finest examples of raised shore platforms and unvegetated raised shingle ridges in western Europe. Three shore platforms have been identified: the High, Main and Low Rock Platforms.

    The High Rock Platform is well developed north of Loch Tarbert where its inner edge lies between 32-34m OD. It probably formed by a combination of marine and cold-climate shore processes during successive glacial periods at times when the margin of the Scottish ice sheet lay to the east of Jura.

    The seaward edge of the High Rock Platform is cut by the backing cliff (10-15m high) of the Main Rock Platform, which forms a prominent feature along much of the coast. This platform, between 3-5m OD, is considered to have been cut (or retrimmed) also by a combination of marine and cold-climate shore processes (intense frost weathering and removal of debris by sea-ice) during the Loch Lomond Stadial 12,900 to 11,500 years ago.



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  • In fact, the bedrock’s uplift could stabilise the WAIS [West Antarctic Ice Sheet] enough to prevent a complete collapse, even under strong pressures from a warming world.

    Surely this is an example of God’s goodness in protecting His people from the ravages of global warming, which of course He, not the hydrocarbon industries, instigated, in order to show us how merciful He is. Altogether a perverse, warped, insecure individual, who can only generate popularity and love by issuing threats and generating disasters.



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