Science

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

In December 2020, according to information published by the United Nations World Meteorological Organization, it was confirmed that the temperature of the Arctic reached about 38 degrees Celsius that year, which is the "highest temperature" ever recorded in the Arctic since human monitoring.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

Can you imagine? If the temperature continues to rise, what will become of the Arctic? What will happen to the creatures there? Perhaps everyone will give a different answer, but do not think that everything exists only in the imagination, because the "nightmare" has long been staged in the Arctic.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

In this article, we will look at the findings of the icebreaker Polaris and the data scientists have monitored on the unusual changes in Arctic sea ice, and talk about what is going on in the Arctic and why scientists say the Arctic is dying.

The drifting Arctic icebreaker

The polar regions of the Earth have always seemed very "mysterious", attracting scientists from all over the world to explore. The Antarctic has a huge land mass, so countries have built their own research stations on it, and flags of various colors appear on this silent land. The North Pole, more thick ice, humans want to cross this "sea", we have to drive the icebreaker slowly forward, in the process of the ship's scientists will be launched on the Arctic observation and research.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

The icebreaker that led us into the Arctic today was the Polarstern, a German-built icebreaker that, after 389 days of drifting in the Arctic with scientists on board, announced the sad news that the Arctic is dying.

It turns out that the Polar Star icebreaker has a heavy responsibility, carrying scientists from all over the world to study the ocean, atmosphere and sea ice within 50 km of the icebreaker, and to deduce from their changes the situation in the Arctic and possible future changes. In this way, on September 20, 2019, the Polar Star set off from Norway and officially began its drifting journey.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

By October 2019, the Polaris icebreaker was trapped in the sea ice in the middle of the Arctic Ocean, and from the pictures of the scene, it was in total darkness, with only the flashing lights on the icebreaker reminding us of the human presence here. People may wonder, said the good drifting it? How long has it been going, it has been frozen, how can we drift next?

In fact, this is the intention of scientists, drifting in the Arctic and our impression of the ordinary "drift" is different, it is completely dependent on the ice drift. Simply put, the icebreaker is frozen in the ice, you can drift with the foot of the "ice floe".

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

Scientists are actually drifting on the icebreaker in order to actually observe the effects of global warming on the Arctic. At the time, people still had rosy illusions about the situation, and as the icebreaker continued to travel, after drifting for 389 days, the scientists discovered the sad news that the Arctic was dying and told people about it.

In the process of drifting, scientists have found that the appearance of the Arctic has changed dramatically, which previously may have been perceptible only from satellite observations or paper reports. But when the Arctic sea ice was drastically reduced by fieldwork, people realized that the Arctic was really slowly "melting" or "dying".

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

In addition, it was initially expected that the voyage would take at least two years, but in just 389 days, the Polaris icebreaker had already reached its predetermined end point. In particular, as we said in the previous article, the ship "drifted" with the solid ice by means of being frozen in the ice. In the past, when the Arctic ice was dense and hard, it was impossible to drift so fast, but nowadays, with the reduction of sea ice, the ice can no longer be as continuous as before, there is no barrier, the drifting speed naturally becomes faster.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

The "Dead Sea Route", which was previously marked on maps as being permanently frozen, was also "automatically" opened in 2007. All these phenomena show that the Arctic is gradually dying under the global warming trend, and the temperature is like a "chronic poison", which is constantly eroding this formerly frozen place. Perhaps in the near future, the Arctic sea ice will disappear completely, and then human ships will travel unimpeded in the Arctic Ocean, but how many animals will be displaced from their homes in the dead Arctic?

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

If it is not enough to say that the icebreaker's journey was greatly shortened, then the data monitoring of Arctic sea ice by scientists over the years may be able to visually show us the "death process" of the Arctic, as well as its "speed of death".

Anomalous changes in Arctic sea ice

As mentioned above, the Arctic differs from the Antarctic in that the main part of it is the Arctic Ocean, and the "continents" we used to see are actually huge ice sheets formed by the frozen sea ice on the surface of the Arctic Ocean.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

Scientists aboard the Polaris icebreaker has drifted along these sea ice, and according to human data on continuous monitoring of sea ice, the Arctic sea ice coverage shows a trend of "oscillation down", more horrible is that this trend is difficult to reverse.

From a comprehensive view of all data, i.e., from the early 1970s to the mid-1980s, the annual average Arctic sea ice area varied above and below 12.5 million km2; since the late 1980s, the Northern Hemisphere sea ice area decreased rapidly, and by the mid-1990s, the sea ice area was only about 11.6 million km2.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

It is clear that the Arctic sea ice area is indeed in a state of "plummeting", and the situation is only getting worse, the culprit is "global warming". Especially in the summer, the temperature of the Arctic will once again soar red, the beginning of the article is the best evidence of 38 degrees Celsius, in such temperatures, even if the Arctic sea ice has 3 meters thick, but also can not resist the baking.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

Scientists have carefully studied and modeled past trends in Arctic sea ice decline in an attempt to predict the "future" of the Arctic. At the time, there was hope that even if the ice floes were small, the Arctic Ocean was too large to let the sea ice disappear completely in such a short time. However, the model predictions show that the Arctic's death process will only accelerate, and eventually the Arctic ice cap may disappear completely.

Ola Johannessen, a Norwegian scientist involved in the study, believes that increased carbon emissions will accelerate the rate of Arctic ice melt and says that by the end of the century, the Arctic Circle will no longer have snow and ice in the summer months.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

So the rate at which Arctic sea ice is disappearing is a good indication of how serious the situation is in the Arctic right now. In the past, people may have thought that the complete melting of Arctic sea ice was a pipe dream or a scientist's unfounded worry. When the bloody facts and irrefutable data in front of our eyes, human beings should realize that the world is changing, and this change is very "small" at first, but will continue one day to have the opposite effect on human beings.

Indeed, we as ordinary people, firstly, can't get on an icebreaker like scientists to see the Arctic scenery, and secondly, the distance between the Arctic and us is really "a hundred thousand miles", and even if changes occur, it is difficult to visually affect our lives.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

But this is not the reason why we choose to "do not care, hang high", you know that humans are the most intelligent creatures on earth, in the sense that the "Arctic disaster" is being staged, we should be proactive, think about how to save those living on the sea ice The creatures living on the sea ice. After all, when they lose their place to land, then the end is waiting for them is death.

Homeless "Arctic residents"

Everyone should be impressed by a picture of a snow-white polar bear standing on a piece of sea ice, surrounded by broken "sea ice", which is not connected to the sea water stranded between the sea ice. The formerly intact ice layer no longer exists, and the polar bear standing on top of the sea ice seems to know that it is about to lose its home, but it can't do anything about it, it just quietly looks "far away", perhaps it is recalling the past appearance of the Arctic.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

These images seem to remind us of the devastation of the Arctic native homelands under the influence of humans. If the loss of ice leaves the polar bear homeless, then it will have to face the threat of "starvation" before the ice disappears completely.

The polar bear is a powerful fighter and is sometimes referred to as the "most capable creature on land". In the past, its toughness helped it become the dominant force in the Arctic, but as the environment changed, even if the bear's force was high, it could not escape the situation of "no food to eat".

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

In June 2019, Russian media revealed that there were polar bears present in Russia's northern industrial city of Norilsk - hundreds of kilometers away from their natural habitat. The phenomenon is the first seen in the region in more than 40 years not to mention that the polar bears that came to the town, went to the garbage dump to feed ......

It turns out that under the changing environment, polar bears need to consume large amounts of fat in advance in order to survive the ice-free period. But now the ice-free period is getting longer and longer, making polar bears most of the time in a state of hunger, before the round they are now surprisingly thin skin and bones.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

As you know, the food chain is interlocked, and polar bears will even climb up the cliffs to eat the eggs of seabirds in order to survive. It goes without saying that when the eggs of seabirds are eaten, their populations will change. More seriously, global warming has affected the biological clock of the "seabirds", they can no longer predict the migration time as accurately as before, which is undoubtedly fatal.

If the above tragic cases of animals do not wake us up, the changes in human life may make us more alert. The Arctic Circle is inhabited by human beings, and the Inuit living there are typical. Their food is polar animals, and the destruction of the biological chain of polar animals means that the Inuit also have no food source. It can be seen that everything in this world is always interlocked, and humans will eventually eat their own consequences.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

In addition, in addition to the dying Arctic, the remaining "poles" of the planet are also in bad shape. These two poles are the South Pole, as well as the world's highest plateau, the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, which, like the North Pole, is also affected by global warming and is in "chronic death".

Changes in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the Antarctic

The earth's ecology is holistic, so the "one thing leads to the other" makes all regions "react" once the temperature changes. Since scientists have given a death notice to the Arctic, it can be imagined that the situation in the Antarctic and the Tibetan Plateau will not be optimistic.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

First of all, from the Tibetan Plateau, this "snowy plateau" on the snow is rapidly melting with the rise in temperature, the past people see the silver-clad snow-covered mountains, has revealed its "true color". These bare spots of black, visually tell mankind, the highest plateau on earth snow is in the rapid melting, perhaps in the future, they will no longer be "snow mountains". Not to mention the situation of inland glaciers, receding faster than human imagination, and the more desperate is that we can not do anything about it.

Scientists announce bad news after 389 days of icebreaker drift: the Arctic is dying, what's going on?

The second is Antarctica, which used to be frozen, like the Arctic, and is in the process of "melting". The once tall glaciers collapsed under the increasing erosion of warm water. The permafrost began to melt, releasing certain ancient viruses, "Pandora's Box" has been opened, human civilization will be under the influence of this direction, no one knows.