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Warming Arctic tolls alarming bell
www.chinaview.cn 2004-11-09 16:43:11

Global warming is happening twice as fast in the Arctic as anywhere else and could cause everything from the extinction of polar bears to the flooding of large parts of Florida, says a study released yesterday.
Global warming is happening twice as fast in the Arctic as anywhere else and could cause everything from the extinction of polar bears to the flooding of large parts of Florida, says a study released yesterday.
    BEIJING, Nov. 9 (Xinhuanet) -- Global warming is happening twice as fast in the Arctic as anywhere else and could cause everything from the extinction of polar bears to the flooding of large parts of Florida, says a study released yesterday.

    The study said the annual average amount of sea ice in the Arctic has decreased by about 8 percent in the past 30 years, resulting in the loss of 386,100 square miles of sea ice, an area bigger than Texas and Arizona combined.

    With "some of the most rapid and severe climate change on earth," the Arctic regions' melting contributed to sea levels rising globally by an average of about 3 inches in the past 20 years, the report said.

    This most comprehensive study of Arctic warming to date adds yet more weight to the projections by many of the world's climate scientists that there will be a steady rise in global temperature, the result of greenhouse gases released by the burning of fossil fuels and other sources.

    The Arctic is warming now and the process is only likely to accelerate. That would threaten the lives of polar bears, ice-dependent seals, caribou, and reindeer herds, as well as the local people whose main food source comes from hunting those animals.

    According to the study, in the next 100 years, the yearly average temperatures will increase by 7 to 13 degrees Fahrenheit over land and 13 to 18 degrees over the ocean. Enditem

(Agencies)

 

 

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