From: Michael Reilly, Discovery News
Published August 24, 2009 09:56 AM

Warming Oceans May Shift Earth's Pole

Human-induced warming of the oceans could shift Earth's axis up to 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) by the end of the century, according to a new study.

Earth wobbles almost constantly. Changes in air and ocean circulation push our planet's poles off kilter temporarily with the passing of the seasons. Only the disappearance of glaciers since the last ice age had any lasting effect, tugging the north pole towards Canada -- or so scientists thought.


In a new study due to be published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, a team of researchers has found that sea level rise caused by warming oceans also plays a significant role in pushing the poles around.

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