Temperatures soar at Earth’s poles
Temperatures recorded at the Earth’s poles show alarming heat waves and rising temperatures in the coldest places on the planet.
Antarctica hit historic records last week when monitoring stations in the region logged extremely high temperatures. The Concordia station recorded its highest temperature yet, at 10.04 degrees Fahrenheit, according to a tweet from extreme weather tracker Maximiliano Herrera.
A station in Vostok recorded just over zero degrees, which Herrera said beat a monthly record by nearly 60 degrees.
The Washington Post reported the eastern Antarctica ice sheet was wavering between 50 degrees and 90 degrees warmer than usual.
On the opposite pole, the Arctic is 50 degrees warmer than average temperatures and some areas are nearing or at the melting point. The Arctic as a whole was 6 degrees warmer than the 1979 to 2000 average, according to The Associated Press.
The Arctic has already been warming two times faster than the rest of the globe, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported at the end of last year.
Walt Meier, a senior researcher at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo., said the fact both poles were recording high temperatures at the same time was strange, because they were in opposite seasons.
“You don’t see the north and the south [poles] both melting at the same time,” Meier told the AP, calling the news “stunning.”
Last year was the Earth’s sixth-warmest on record, and every year from 2013 to 2021 has been among the 10 warmest recorded years in a stark reminder that climate change is rapidly warming up the globe.
Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Centre at Pennsylvania State University, told The Guardian that the unusual weather events “drive home the urgency of action.”