Zombie ice

  • IASbaba
  • August 31, 2022
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  • The recent study has showed that melting of the Greenland ice sheet will unavoidably raise the global sea levels by at least 10.6 inches or 27 centimetres, no matter what climate action the world decides to take right now.
  • This is because of ‘zombie ice’, which is certain to melt away from the ice cap and blend into the ocean.

What is ‘zombie ice’?

  • Also referred to as dead or doomed ice, zombie ice is one that is not accumulating fresh snow even while continuing to be part of the parent ice sheet.
  • Such ice is “committed” to melting away and increasing sea levels.

What has led to this?

  • This is on account of warming that has already happened.
  • The research points to an equilibrium state where snowfall from the higher reaches of the Greenland ice cap flows down to recharge edges of the glaciers, and thicken them.
  • It says that over the last several decades there has been more melting and less replenishment.

What does a 10-inch rise in sea-level mean?

  • According to the UN Atlas of the Oceans, 8 of the world’s 10 largest cities are near a coast. Rising sea levels will make flooding, high tides and storms more frequent and worse as their impact will reach more inland.
  • This, in turn, means a threat to local economies and infrastructure. Also, low lying coastal areas will take a harder hit.

Source: Indian Express


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