“The 2020 heat wave in the Russian Arctic shows how—even at high latitudes—really warm weather conditions can develop that can lead to fires that burn intensely and can grow to be very large,” says Isla Myers-Smith, an ecologist at the University of Edinburgh who studies the region but wasn’t involved in this new work.
Whatever the purpose, scientists know this for certain: The Arctic region, which the narwhals call home, is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet, and by analyzing these tusks, researchers can glean surprisingly detailed insights into how the animals are dealing with catastrophic change.
“We don’t know anything about king penguins at Martillo Island,” says Sami Dodino, a penguinologist at Argentinian scientific institute CADIC.Ushuaia, right at the southern tip of Argentina, is known fondly as “The End of the World.” Travel around 1,000 km south and the next place you reach is Antarctica (although not before passing through another settlement on the Chilean side of the Beagle Channel, Puerto Williams—“Beyond the End of the World”).
The ship leaves Wellington and heads south with 20 science staff and 19 crew on board to learn more about key environmental and biological processes in the Ross Sea. Voyage leader and fisheries scientist Dr Richard O’Driscoll says this is the third in a series of voyages focused on providing baseline information about the Ross Sea Marine Protected Area (MPA) established in 2017.
Photograph: Jakob AssmannThat’s because perhaps a third of the carbon stored in the soils of the world is in the Arctic permafrost—essentially frozen dirt.
A massive Antarctic iceberg is headed straight for South Georgia Island, a remote outpost in the southern Atlantic Ocean that is home to millions of seabirds, penguins, and seals that may find their route to the sea blocked if the Delaware-sized chunk of ice gets stranded near their breeding grounds.
Ocean temperatures in the area recently climbed to more than 5 C above average, following a record breaking heat wave and the unusually early decline of last winter’s sea ice.The downward trend is likely to continue until the Arctic has its first ice-free summer, said Meier.
So what would happen if the global temperature increased enough to melt the ice cap in Antarctica?However, in this case, I really don't have a feeling for the size of the Antarctic ice cap.
Researchers operating special ship-mounted sonar gear found a series of 25-mile-wide channels in the seafloor that bring warm water to the base of the Thwaites and Pine Island Glaciers.Together, they revealed massive seafloor channels moving warm water to the base of the glacier.
Satellite images have revealed 11 previously unknown emperor penguin colonies in Antarctica, boosting the number of known colonies of the imperilled birds by 20 percent.Philip Trathan, also at BAS, said: “The new breeding sites are all in locations where recent model projections suggest emperor penguins will decline.
Now that scientists know the Arctic is laced with microplastics blown in from Europe, and now that this new work has modeled that route of transport in fine detail, they are concerned that synthetic particles might be darkening snow and ice, accelerating melting.
But those currents may be changing because more melting ice is injecting the Arctic Ocean with freshwater, which is less dense than saltwater, and therefore floats above it.
These neutrinos that Anita was searching for would be classified among the most energetic particles in the universe, which physicists believe are produced by the same processes that generate jets of charged particles called ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays.
NIWA researchers have helped unlock information trapped in ancient air samples from Greenland and Antarctica that shows the amount of methane humans are emitting into the atmosphere from fossil fuels has been vastly underestimated.
Lightning—a phenomenon more suited to places like Florida—is now striking within 100 miles of the North Pole .All the while, researchers are racing to quantify how the plant species of the Arctic are coping with a much, much warmer world.
But step into the Martian-like dry valleys and you’ll be treading on a bustling community of tiny organisms, like nematode worms and ultra-hardy water bears and mites.“Really, that's the charismatic megafauna of continental Antarctica,” says evolutionary ecologist Byron Adams of Brigham Young University, who is currently surveying life on the continent.
Samsung is unveiling and Antarctica is ailing, but first: a cartoon about marriage in the age of social media .Here's the news you need to know, in two minutes or less.
“Where permafrost tends to be lake sediment or organic soils, the type of Earth material that can hold a lot of water, these are like sponges on the landscape,” says Turetsky.
Kristin Laidre, an animal ecologist at the University of Washington and a coauthor, says the melting summer sea ice is causing trouble for big mammals: polar bears, walruses, and seals.
So as ice shelves retreat, so does the natural reserve status, precisely at the time blue-carbon zones need strong legal protections.But many have already opposed agreements on Marine Protected Areas in the Southern Oceans, areas much smaller than predicted blue-carbon sites.
NIWA principal fisheries scientist Dr Steve Parker and colleagues were on board the Janas , a deepwater longline vessel owned by Talley’s Group Ltd, for the second voyage ever during the winter to study the ecology of toothfish in the northern Ross Sea, especially to investigate spawning patterns of the Antarctic toothfish.
It’s certainly possible for ordinary folk to help with collecting microplastic samples, as Airbnb intends participants to: Bergmann and her team had regular people living on a Norwegian archipelago pack up snow samples for a study themselves.
Called a Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW), it occurs when the temperature of the stratosphere (30-50km above ground) over the South Pole rises by more than 25ᵒC.The Southern Hemisphere is characterised by a cold Antarctic continent surrounded by relatively warm seas.
“Snow ‘scavenges’ the particles in the air and brings them down,” says marine ecologist Melanie Bergmann of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, lead author of a new paper in Science Advances .
Matt Simon covers cannabis, robots, and climate science for WIRED.Weirder still, on top of there typically being not enough heat to form deep convective clouds in the Arctic, there’s also a limit to how high these things can build up into the atmosphere.
The fiery orange submarine, which she named Ran after the Norse goddess of the sea, hadn’t yet resurfaced from its first mission in the watery depths around the face of West Antarctica’s Thwaites Glacier.“She’s a very temperamental lady,” Wåhlin said of the $3.6 million, unmanned submarine, while peering through her binoculars on an overcast March day.