Antarctica’s Threat to billions of lives ‘Thwaites Glacier’ is Melting Down sea levels would rise about 25 inches

Thwaites Glacier is now boiling and everyone knows that it is a threat to their lives. According to some reputed Scientists or Experts if this Glacier meltdowns or breaks into parts and floats out to the water then it would highly impact sea levels. As if water levels going to rise then it would be an emergency situation because every nearby area maybe got waterlogged. Although all the cities around the sea area would be highly impacted which creates a situation for every Person, Family, or traveler to relocate as soon as possible. In this read maybe this situation is not look alike heavy but believe it or not, it actually maybe affect more than a billion people.

The whole situation will lead to creating some critical issues like the government having to take immediate actions based on relocation, transport, safety measures, etc.

What is The Thwaites Glacier?

Antarctica’s Thwaites Glacier credit: Flickr

Having about 80 miles of width, possibly the widest Glacier on the earth right now situated on the Walgreen Coast of Marie Byrd Land. This Glacier is popularly known by the name Doomsday Glacier, Now that points to another question why is it called Doomsday Glacier? well, we’ll cover it later. The speed of its surface near the grounding line is more than 1.2 miles per year ( 2 kilometers ). On the east of Mount Murphy, there is the fastest melting part of this Glacier which is situated between the center of 50 and 100 kilometers of it.

As well defined by many Experts or Scientists that the chances of rising sea levels because of Thwaites are more as compared to other glaciers and that is one of the reasons why this Glacier is monitored closely. In the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, there are two glaciers (Thwaites & Pine Island Glacier) that are actually described as the “Weak Underbelly” part due to their apparent vulnerability to substantial withdrawal. After some theoretical studies and observations of the marine ice sheet and changes that happened from time to time on these two Glaciers, a hypothesis is determined. #thwaites glacier doomsday

If you want to know more about Thwaites facts in detail then you can visit Thwaitesglacier.org, this website is supported by National Science Foundation.

What is The Doomsday Glacier?

Well, spoiler alert! The Doomsday Glacier is the nickname of Thwaites Glacier given by some article author, now the question is, is it really appropriate, or is it just for an article title?

As our green planet continues to warm more and more, this is a fundamental reason for the melting of ice around the ocean in general. As we mentioned, such large glaciers are monitored repeatedly by some experts or scientists over the years to get every possible report or data on the changing conditions there. According to experts, if such large glaciers melt, then the extra water in the sea will make it a doomsday.

An American monthly magazine that is popular among many readers around the globe published a great page about Thwaites which is written by a climate writer who is mostly known for a focus on energy and environmental issues. In the publication, there is a simple yet powerful and catchy Title “The Doomsday Glacier”. After reading the publication the title sounds better but giving it a nickname is not a good idea.

Thwaites_Glacier_Tongue
Showing Thwaites Glacier Tongue credit: Wikimedia Commons

Nowadays many publications use to repeat the lines when they have some study or information about Thwaites even some of the publications would like to add that the doomsday glacier name is a regular name in the scientific world because there is a chance that this glacier may rise the sea levels more than the 10 feet and there is not any single theoretical proof of it right now. In short, we actually don’t know or we don’t have a particular number to describe the rising level of the sea because of Thwaites.

It has been noticed that Glacier itself sets off a nearly a 25-inch rise in sea level but if we check out some of the latest stories of Thwaites then we can see that they have some parameters to define the rising level of the sea which is between three to Ten feet. University of Colorado’s glaciologist said no to the term “Doomsday Glacier” for Thwaites Glacier.

Latest About International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration

A Geological oceanography associate professor from the University of South Florida mention that some researchers are trying to research underwater at Thwaites Glacier with the help of some Robots. From the sources and some researchers said that they figure out that Thwaites Glacier’s surface speed is actually far more than that what they expected. It has been found that the daily tides on Glacier’s leading edge are moving up and down which results in more than 160 parallel ridges – documented by some researchers.

Scientists also analyzed that under the deep ocean there is a rib-like formation that typically formed over a single day. In 2018 and 2020 a large piece of the glacier was break off when a never done or known before the retreat of the ice shelf occurred. The feedback process, probably started by new damage to the ice shelf, resulted in ice shelves being preconditioned for further breakdown and large calving possibilities.

Some Scientists said that what happened in 2018 and 2020 actually makes the Thwaites and Pine Island’s ice shelves more sensitive which leads to drastic climate change in the atmosphere, sea ice, and in the ocean. There is a chance if both the Glaciers (Thwaites and Pine Island Glacier) were not stabilized then widespread destruction can take place which makes some of the neighboring areas fall apart. University of Colorado’s researchers said that there were only a few years left in the Thwaites collapse situation.

A British Antarctic geophysicist and co-author of the study said that right now Thwaites is like holding by its fingernails and maybe there’s a chance of seeing big changes over in a small period of time – even from this year to the next one.

What if the Thwaites Glacier collapses?

Research Team at Thwaites Glacier
Research Team at Thwaites Glacier credit: Flickr

According to some experts if the big Thwaites melted down then the impact would be felt globally. If this Glacier loses all of its big ice pieces in the ocean then every nation and every coast would be affected but here is the twist, all coastlines will not be equally affected by the rising of the sea levels. Where Thwaites losses its ice pieces there is a chance of seeing normal sea rise levels as compared to the locations which are far away.

Because of the huge loss of mass of the ice from the Thwaites glacier, there is a drop seen in the sea rise level where the glacier melts down. This leads to a shrink in the ice sheet due to which the ocean can not hold it any longer.

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