And with no ice in the way, strong northerly winds push these newly-warmed surface waters at the Arctic fringes down to the depths where they’re now accumulating under the Arctic. This is where ice floes come to die, and the cemetery is filling faster each year, according to the leader of this scientific expedition, Till Wagner, of the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW). Currently, it’s being held at that depth by a less dense layer of freshwater overhead, but if the two layers start to mix it could melt all seasonal sea ice, accelerating the already-rapid loss of polar ice cover. This means that the first 2,5 metres of water in the world’s oceans contain as much heat as the 40 kilometres of atmosphere that surround them.
What happens if North Pole melts?
The rise in temperature empowers the greenhouse effect and the thawing of the ice mass, especially at the North Pole, causing a rise in sea level, which has already been noticed in many coastal areas of the planet and is threatening to completely swallow entire countries in the not-so-distant future if solutions are not found now. One of the reasons for this was the isolation of Antarctica becoming positioned over the South Pole and the development of the Circumpolar Current due to South America drifting away and leaving a gap for the current to flow through. Rising seas endanger coastal cities and small island nations by exacerbating coastal flooding and storm surge, making dangerous weather events even more so.