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Melting Ice Caps

By Suri Zheng

Take a look at the ice, do you notice anything different? Besides the family of penguins stuck on a floating iceberg, did you notice the size of the ice sheet? It’s a little small for all of these penguins.

Melting ice caps are very deadly because one, they affect weather patterns, and two, they cause sea levels to rise. 

Weather patterns: 

Each year, sea ice or glaciers are declining by 10% every 10 years, especially in the Arctic! As the ice caps melt, there are going to be fewer surfaces for the sunlight to be reflected off of, which can lead to more heat absorbed in the atmosphere thereby causing intense heat waves. 

Rising sea levels: 

To put it blankly, melting ice caps, especially the sheets on the mountain tops, melt into the oceans adding in more water. Sea level rising can also contribute to coastal erosion which then warms up the oceans and causes more coastal disasters like hurricanes, tsunamis, and typhoons. 

Over the past century, ice caps have melted faster than in any other time period. The main reason? Human activities, particularly during the industrial era, with humans releasing chemicals such as CO2 or other greenhouse gasses. These gasses negatively affect the atmosphere thus warming up our planet, and leading to significant ice caps melting. “Even if we significantly curb emissions in the coming decades, more than a third of the world’s remaining glaciers will melt before 2100. Regarding sea ice, 95% of the oldest and thickest ice in the Arctic is already gone” (WWF).

We can’t stop melting ice glaciers once it for all but we can individually do our part in minimizing these things from happening (Riddle Life). Some things you can do are: cutting down on carbon emissions, for example, riding your bike, carpooling, or using solar panels, etc; using energy-efficient appliances, planting more trees, recycling, and lastly being aware of the situation. 

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