With an average elevation of about 2,500 meters, Antarctica is the highest continent on Earth.
With an average elevation of about 2,500 meters, Antarctica is the highest continent on Earth.

Antarctic Warming Slower Than Arctic's

Antarctic Warming Slower Than Arctic's

Temperatures in the Arctic Ocean are increasing twice as fast as in the rest of the world, while the Antarctic Sea is warming at a much slower rate.
A new study published in Earth System Dynamics, a journal of the European Geosciences Union, shows that land height could be a "game changer" when it comes to explaining why temperatures are rising at such different rates in the two regions, Science Daily reported.
"On average, warming for the entire Antarctic continent has been much slower than Arctic warming so far. Moreover, climate models suggest that, by the end of this century, Antarctica will have warmed less compared to the Arctic," says Marc Salzmann, a researcher at the Institute for Meteorology, University of Leipzig in Germany.
A possible cause for the accelerated Arctic warming is the melting of the region's sea ice, which reduces the icy, bright area that can reflect sunlight back out into space, resulting in more solar radiation being absorbed by the dark Arctic waters.
Scientists believe this is an important contribution to warming in the region, but it's not the only one.
Changes to the transport of heat by the Earth's atmosphere and oceans to the poles have also been suggested as a possible contributor to the steep rise in Arctic temperatures.
In addition, the cold temperatures and the way air is mixed close to the surface at the poles mean that the surface has to warm more to radiate additional heat back to space. These effects may not only lead to stronger warming at the north of our planet, but also at the South Pole region.
With an average elevation of about 2,500 meters, Antarctica is the highest continent on Earth, much due to a thick layer of ice covering the bedrock. The continent also has high mountains, such as Mount Vinson, which rises almost 4,900 meters above sea level.


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