Watching the southern edge of the glaciers of the Andes Mountains in South America, the scientists found that global warming losses in Southern Patagonia ice cover over the last 10 years has increased by more than half compared with the previous 30-year period. It is the largest glacier in the southern hemisphere with his neighbor to the north (North Patagonian glacier) significantly increase global sea levels, thawing every year faster. Scientists compare the current ice loss with height Empire State Building in the United States.
The western part of the glacier in the Southern Patagonia in 2001. Melting seen bottom right.
Picture of the glacier in 2010. Bottom left visible glacier area, bordered by the approaching water.
In the period from 1970 to 2000 years, the rate of melting in Patagonia was 0.042 mm per year. In the following decade, it increased to 0.067 mm. This is equivalent to a loss of 20 billion tons of ice each year. The same amount of water, only magnified 9000 times, pumped the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River for a year. This amount of water would be enough to cover the 2.7-cm layer of water all the United States. And if we take into account the Northern Patagonian glacier, the figure can be safely increased to 3.3 cm
Together with the general warming of deglaciation affect rainfall, which often formed in the warm air masses and blur the ice above. This in turn causes an increase in the volume of water under the ice. Lowland water allows faster glaciers move down from the surface, and hence, faster melt is exposed to sea water. Yet the mechanisms of interaction between ice and climate change have not been studied thoroughly, and the researchers plan to continue and deepen their research.