by Alex Fox/Smithsonianmag.com
Health Editor’s Note: To the naysayers of climate change: Explain this….Carol
A new study finds that Earth lost 28 trillion tons of ice between 1994 and 2017, reports Chelsea Harvey for E&E News.
In a clear illustration of climate change’s worrying acceleration, the rate at which our planet is losing its ice skyrocketed from an average annual loss of roughly 760 billion tons of ice in the 1990s to more than 1.2 trillion tons per year in the 2010s, according to the study published this week in the journal Cryosphere.
Human activities, which have warmed our planet’s atmosphere and oceans by 0.47 degrees Fahrenheit and 0.22 degrees Fahrenheit per decade since the 1980, respectively, drove the massive ice loss.
This study’s staggering total of lost ice is the first global assessment that accounts for the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, Arctic and Antarctic sea ice, as well as ice lost from mountain glaciers the world over, according to E&E News. All told, the massive loss of ice has raised global sea levels by 1.3 inches since 1994.
“The ice sheets are now following the worst-case climate warming scenarios set out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC),” says Thomas Slater,