Published October 31, 2008 10:49 AM

Antarctica hit by climate change

In its landmark Fourth Assessment Report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) declared in 2007 that human influence on climate "has been detected in every continent except Antarctica". Now a paper inNature Geoscience says that our impact can be found even in the last wilderness1.

Didn't we already know that human activity was warming the Earth?

While some specific climate changes have been linked to human activity, especially in the Arctic, it has not yet been possible to conclusively demonstrate a link to actual surface temperature changes at both poles. When they made their statement on Antarctica, the IPCC cited "insufficient observational coverage to make an assessment".


"The scarcity of observations in the Antarctic makes it harder to identify and attribute temperature trends, but it does not make it impossible," says climatologist Nathan Gillett of Environment Canada, lead author of the new study.

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