Stuffed settled science: Exhibit 3

With the advent of the Stuff “Quick save the planet” campaign wherein they forbid discussion and delete any comments that may question the “overwhelming scientific consensus that climate change is … caused by human activity”, we here at Whaleoil thought it might be instructive to review a few of the new scientific discoveries of 2018 that were clearly not known about five years ago when Al Gore declared, “The science is settled”.

Today our keen-eyed researcher has pointed us to another article about Antarctica, also from June. Quote.

An international team of researchers, with a new study published in Science with DTU Space as lead author, finds that the bedrock below the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is rising much more rapidly than expected, revealing a very different Earth structure than previously believed. It shows that the Earth Mantle is extremely fluid.

This discovery has important implications in understanding the past, present and future climate changes in Antarctica.

The unexpectedly fast rate of the rising earth may increase the stability of the ice sheet against catastrophic collapse due to ice loss. At the same time the rapid rise, known as uplift, also affects gravity measurements. This implies that up to 10 percent more ice has melted off the West Antarctica Ice Sheet (WAIS) than previously assumed.

?The results of our work will provide a very important contribution in the understanding of dynamics of the Earth along with the ice melting processes in Antarctica,? said leading author of this new study, postdoctoral researcher Valentina R. Barletta at DTU Space, the National Space Institute at the Technical University of Denmark.

The Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) in West Antarctica alone contributes to 25 percent of all water estimated from melting ice on our planet. To make numbers easier to understand, in one year ASE loses enough to cover an area the size of Denmark (43.000 square km) with a 2.8 meters high layer of ice. The same area (ASE) holds enough ice to potentially raise the global sea level by 1.2 meters or to cover an area the size of Denmark with 11 km of ice.

?The large amount of water stored in Antarctica has implications for the whole planet, but especially for northern Europe?, said Barletta.

“Because of a combination of gravitational effects, surprisingly, the ice lost in Antarctica mostly raises the sea level here, in northern Europe. In contrast, the ice lost in Greenland has no effect here, but it raises the sea level in the southern hemisphere and further destabilizes the WAIS.”

The uplift velocity in ASE was measured at up to 41 millimeters per year.

?This is one of the fastest rates of uplift ever recorded in glaciated areas. In comparison, the GPS stations installed nearby the Greenland ice streams record up to 30 millimeters per year, but we know that it is caused by an immediate elastic rebound of the earth, acting like a spring” said Abbas Khan, one of the coauthors and associate professor at DTU Space.

Participating researchers led by scientists at the Ohio State University (OSU) installed a series of GPS stations on rock outcrops around the ASE to measure its rise in response to thinning ice.

?The rapid rise of the bedrock in this part of Antarctica suggests that the geology underneath the ice is different from what scientists had previously believed. The rate of uplift we found is unusual and very surprising. It?s a game changer,? said Terry Wilson, one of the leaders of the study and professor emeritus of Earth Sciences at OSU.

Under the massive weight of ice the earth subsides.

?When the ice melts and gets thinner, the earth readjusts, and rises immediately by a few millimeters, which depends on the ice lost,” explains Valentina Barletta.

“But the earth also acts a bit like a very hard memory-foam mattress. And it slowly keeps readjusting for several thousand years after the melting. In Scandinavia the bedrock is still rising about 10 millimeters per year because of the last ice age.”

Scientists call this delayed readjustment Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA), which can also be described as the Earth retaining memory of the ice lost in the past. How fast this readjustment takes place, depends on the properties of the mantle, the portion inside the earth between the crust and the core that is 2900 kilometers thick.

?Thanks to the satellite observations, we were able to estimate the current ice thinning in ASE, and conclude that the measured uplift rate is up to 4 times larger than expected based on the current ice melting rates?, says Barletta. Therefore the new study focused on the delayed readjustment of the Earth. […] End quote.

DTU


Dear old Stuff. Encased in their consensus thinking bubble, unable to venture out into the real world of science and discovery to find all the new and wonderful things science has to offer.

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