Melting glaciers and global warming has been blamed by scientists for slowing down earth’s rotation on its axis.
Earth’s axis is also wobbling in a motion called a ‘polar wonder’ due to melting ice and rising oceans. Days are getting longer, weather is getting warmer, the seas are rising to meet the beaches and the earth is doing a wobble on its axis; all due to global warming.
The Mirror reports:
The driving force behind the modest but discernible changes in the Earth’s rotation measured by satellites and astronomical methods is a global sea level rise fueled by an influx of meltwater into the oceans from glaciers , the researchers said.
“Because glaciers are at high latitudes, when they melt they’re distribute water from these high latitudes towards lower latitudes, and like a figure skater who moves his or her arms away from their body, this acts to slow the rotation rate of the Earth,” Harvard University geophysicist Jerry Mitrovica said.
The movement of ice and meltwater is also causing a slight migration of the Earth’s axis, or north pole, in a phenomenon known as “polar wander,” the researchers said.
“Imagine that figure skater who doesn’t stick their arms straight out but rather sticks one at one angle and the other out at another angle. The figure skater will begin to wobble back and forth. This is the same thing as polar motion,” Mitrovica said.
The research looked at the changes in the planet’s rotation and axis in light of the world’s sea level rise in the 20th century as a result of increasing global temperatures.
The melting of the ice sheets and the rise in sea levels moved the planet’s rotation axis, or north pole, at rates of less than a centimeter per year, Mitrovica said.
This melting slowed the Earth’s rotation and increased the duration of a day by about a thousandth of a second over the 20th century, Mitrovica said.
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