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Striking study finds Arctic Circle warming at 4 times the global rate


Scientists understand the area in and around the North Pole to be warming disproportionately to the rest of the planet, a phenomenon known as "Arctic amplification." A new study, however, argues that this effect has been vastly underestimated, concluding that the rate of warming occurring in the Arctic Circle is happening around four times faster than the global average.
 

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Antarctica's Doomsday Glacier "hanging on by its fingernails"


Scientists have deployed an advanced robotic submarine to gain a new perspective on the Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica, with the groundbreaking seafloor imagery highlighting its precarious state in concerning new detail. The research reveals the glacier has undergone spurts of rapid retreat in the past that scientists now expect to see again in the future, which could have important ramifications for global sea levels.

Around the size of Florida, the Thwaites Glacier is known as the "Doomsday Glacier" owing to its status as one of the most unstable glaciers in Antarctica. Its melt rate is accelerating, with its outflow speed doubling in the last 30 years, and some studies suggesting it could be just years away from a complete collapse. Were that to happen, the amount of water released from the giant ice stream would be enough to drive up global sea levels by several meters.
 

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"Relatively low cost" plan would cool the Earth's poles by 2 °C


New research suggests that cooling the poles by 2 °C (3.6 °F), and re-freezing the Arctic and Antarctic, is "feasible at relatively low cost with conventional technologies," using Stratospheric Aerosol Injection (SAI) of heat-reflective particles focused on the poles. The side effects could be nasty, and the politics near-impossible, but the plan offers a way to slow, or reverse the catastrophic sea level rise projected as polar ice collapses.
 

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Hunga Tonga eruption put over 50B kilograms of water into the stratosphere


In January this year, an undersea volcano in Tonga produced a massive eruption, the largest so far this century. The mixing of hot volcanic material and cool ocean water created an explosion that sent an atmospheric shockwave across the planet and triggered a tsunami that devastated local communities and reached as far as Japan. The only part of the crater's rim that extended above water was reduced in size and separated into two islands. A plume of material was blasted straight through the stratosphere and into the mesosphere, over 50 km above the Earth's surface.
 
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