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‘Virtually certain’ extreme Antarctic events will get worse without drastic action, scientists warn

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: A recent scientific study warns of increasingly severe extreme events in Antarctica, necessitating urgent action to curb global heating
The report underscores alarming trends such as the 2022 record heatwave over East Antarctica, collapsed ice shelves, and unprecedented low sea ice levels

🔭 The context: Antarctica has been experiencing unprecedented changes, with records for sea ice breaking multiple times in recent years
Between 1992 and 2020, the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets contributed to a 2.1cm rise in global mean sea level

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: The changes happening in Antarctica are indicative of the climate crisis and have the potential to lead to irreversible consequences
• The observations show the worst-case predictions coming true threatening ecosystems and human livelihoods worldwide

⏭️ What's next: With additional global heating of at least 0.4°C now unavoidable, it is “virtually certain” that future Antarctic extreme events will be even more pronounced
• Researchers stress the need to understand these processes better and act immediately to curb fossil fuel emissions and limit heating in accordance with the Paris Agreement

💬 One quote: “We should be deeply concerned about the environment of Antarctica in the years that are coming under continued fossil fuel burning. This is the most extreme natural laboratory on the planet... we really must try harder to understand the processes that are causing these extreme events and their interconnectivity” (Prof Martin Siegert, British glaciologist and professor at Imperial College London) 

📈 One stat: This July, sea ice extent set a record low, surpassing the previous July 2022 record by three times the average deviation

Click for more news covering the latest on climate change

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