Global Warming Increasing Ice Shrinkage at Beaufort Sea: Study
The Beaufort Sea, which is part of Arctic Ocean, is no longer covered with everlasting layers of ice, says a study. Waves of 16-ft high have been measured at the sea in previous readings. Researchers say continuous melting of the ice is due to global warming.
The giant waves earlier occurred during a storm in 2012. According to the study, conducted by National Geographic, these giant waves are self-sufficient to lower down the ice. They say these massive waves break the ice and sunrays make the ocean's water even warmer. Scientists also reveal that bigger waves can wear-away the nearby shores, which give ignition to release of greenhouse gases in the ocean. This cycle repeats and causes more warming, which leads to meltdown of the ice and formation of bigger waves.
The researchers said increase in the occurrence of these massive waves is slowly pushing the ocean's system which will eventually lead to an ice-free summer. Melting of ice is a bad news not only for local animals but it may also hinder the extraction of oil and shipping business.
Scientists say waves were never measured in The Beaufort Sea as it used to be covered with ice throughout the year. But due to global warming, the ice is slowly melting. Monitoring of the sea began in 2012. According to the measurements taken in 2012, there was 620 miles of open water on the day the reading was taken, which was enough to give rise to such giant waves. According to National Snow and Ice Data Center, 1.32 million square miles of ice melted in 2012.