Remember our last article on Little Ice Age? That happened back in 17th century and it is going to happen again somewhere in 2030’s, scientists say so. According to experts, the next Mini Ice Age is already heading our way and will hit Earth may be 15 years from now! It is quite natural for us to think that this next bout of cooling that may happen will be a result of relentless human exploits of the nature but scientists have made it clear that this time, humans are innocent and the main culprit will be our very own Sun.
A little terrifying right? The very thought of earth becoming cold actually manages to strike fear into our hearts. But, did you know that we are actually in middle of an Ice Age? You may choose not to believe this with all the rants about global warming but it is true. We are in the middle of an Ice Age and we are living in a phase that we called Intergalcial – a period in which Earth remains relatively warm. Go through our article on 40 interesting Ice Age Facts for details.
Anyway, getting back to our Mini Ice Age problem, scientists have deduced this from a mathematical model which reveals that 15 years from now, our Sun will suddenly go silent. Well, it will not die out but solar activities will drop significantly. We are very much aware today that solar cycles impact climates on this planet and when Sun goes silent, Earth will become much colder.
Only a few months ago in last year, NASA came up with a shocking revelation about Antarctica’s ice. NASA said that Antarctica is actually gaining more ice rather than losing it. The organization published a paper titled “Mass gains of Antarctic ice sheet grater than losses”. This paper was published in Journal of Glaciology and can be accessed through NASA’s website here.
So, why did NASA say so and how? We have been told for years that Antarctica is losing its ice. Well it was true! Ice was indeed retreating but recently things have changed. Satellite imagery helped NASA to calculate the heights of ice sheets in the region and found that there was a net gain in height. The paper was produced by the members of Goddard Space Flight Center of NASA.
The authors did make it clear that the exact reason for such a gain in height by the ice sheets is not fully known but they came up with a number of theories. We humans are often plagued with our myopic view of events occurring on this planet and very often we end up blaming ourselves for the nasty faces of nature we see from time to time. Of course we are culprits to a great extent but we also need to widen our gaze and look beyond because Earth’s climate is certainly not solely dependent on just human activities.
It is a well-established fact the extent of Antarctic ice reached its all-time high a few years back (sources 1, 2) and many of us already jumped to the conclusion that global warming was the major culprit. Well, not everyone agreed to this and several other theories were also put forward.
But is this really connected to the approaching Mini Ice Age? Not really! The only reason for bringing this point up is to assert that there are forces far beyond human exploits that can play dirty as well. This however doesn’t make us – the humans, any less criminals. The truth however is that Earth, since its birth has went through climate changes and humans weren’t even present back then! So, what caused such changes. Of course the ancient animals weren’t that advanced to wreak havoc on this planet. This is where the scientist explored the possibility that may be our Sun has some major role to play.