Antarctic Ice Sheet Shrinking

The Radar Science and Engineering Section at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California released a study on Sunday indicating the Antarctic ice sheet is melting at a faster rate than expected. Dr. Eric Rignot, the principal scientist for the study, attributed the shrinkage in the ice sheet to an upwelling of warm waters along the Antarctic coast, which is causing some glaciers to flow more rapidly into the ocean. According to Rignot, "we are not in a natural cycle, but in something that is related to global warming or global climate change, whichever you want to call it." Dr. Rignot said the Antarctic ice loss in 2006 raised sea levels about half a millimeter (a small fraction of an inch), putting it on par with the contribution to sea level rise from the recently observed melting of the Greenland ice sheet.

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