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Tremors Mean Antarctic Volcanism May Be Heating Up

timothy posted about 10 months ago | from the slip-slidin'-away dept.

Earth 132

The L.A. Times reports on the discovery of seismic events (nearly 1400 tremors were recorded by researchers in 2010-2011) which seem to indicate the presence of volcanic activity 15 to 20 miles beneath the surface of western Antarctica. According to the article, "The area of activity lies close to the youngest in a chain of volcanoes that formed over several million years, and the characteristics and depth of the seismic events are consistent with those found in volcanic areas of Alaska’a Aleutian Islands, the Pacific Northwest, Hawaii and Mt. Pinatubo in the Philippines, the study concludes." Volcanism isn't a new discovery (Mt. Waesche, a volcanic mountain, is the believed origin of some ash mentioned in the article), but the newly detected seismic activity may be a harbinger for local melting from below of the Antarctic ice sheet, and possibly have long-term effects on the flow patterns of the overlying ice.

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It will be ok. (4, Funny)

mevets (322601) | about 10 months ago | (#45450605)

We are getting rid of that ice as fast as we can.

Re:It will be ok. (2)

peragrin (659227) | about 10 months ago | (#45450641)

Damn straight, how else can we clean the streets of New York, London, Paris, Tokyo plus many more all at the same time?

Fat Chicks: A Waste Of A Perfectly Good Vagina (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450645)

You know, I watch Star Trek shows. I see that there's almost NO fat chicks. Can't remember seeing any ever. Truly this is an advanced civilization!

apologies for feeding the troll..... (1)

Shakrai (717556) | about 10 months ago | (#45450687)

Amarie [memory-alpha.org]

(Off the top of my head as a Star Trek geek, I'm sure there are other examples....)

Re:Fat Chicks: A Waste Of A Perfectly Good Vagina (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451075)

There was that he-she from the he-she planet that Riker boinked. [memory-alpha.org] No, wait, Soren was just disgusting, not fat.

Re:It will be ok. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450765)

Something that gets left out when the media reports about the Antarctic caps melting are the fact that Volcano's are contributing to the melting however scientists have yet to determine how much melting is going on. There was a show on the History Channel some years ago (I believe 15-20 years ago) that showed the volcanic activity helping to melt the caps. So before you just jump to conclusions you should try and hold out, or take it into consideration, instead of knee jerk reactions when scientists and the media have yet to fully understand how the planet and how man made carbon have affected the planet.

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451033)

Something that gets left out when the media reports about the Antarctic caps melting are the fact that Volcano's are contributing to the melting however scientists have yet to determine how much melting is going on. There was a show on the History Channel some years ago (I believe 15-20 years ago) that showed the volcanic activity helping to melt the caps. So before you just jump to conclusions you should try and hold out, or take it into consideration, instead of knee jerk reactions when scientists and the media have yet to fully understand how the planet and how man made carbon have affected the planet.

What do you mean they can't tell how much? They are telling me all the time how much I am melting the polar ice just by heating/cooling my home and driving around.

Re:It will be ok. (3, Insightful)

HJED (1304957) | about 10 months ago | (#45451135)

Yes, and if we wait long enough with our heads in the sand it'll be too late to do anything anyway...think of the money we could save!
Seriously, we know CO2 emissions are causing significant climate change, there may be other factors but waiting around until we have perfect knowledge of the entire universe is ignorant at best and criminally negligent at worst.Also I assume that you don't think volcanoes in Antarctica aren't causing melting in the Artic as well, that's a pretty big clue that they're not the main cause.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451333)

When the fixes do not cost more, I will agree we could save money. But until then, that is all happy talk about savings I will never enjoy. Most of us will not be around when the dire catastrophes happen and time will have allowed those who are to make significant changes to mitigate the damages.

To be somewhat blunt, I really don't care if part of NYC is under water as it is all over priced land owned by rich fat cats who can more than afford putting up a retaining wall or losing a piece of property. As for the so called natural disasters being more potent, the only thing I can see that has changed in my lifetime is the amount of people living in areas already destined to be hit and the massive amounts of news coverage trying to sensationalize every person's worst misery when they are. I mean seriously, a news helicopter could fly a reporter to a bridge that people were stuck on during Katrina in order to show how everyone was suffering but could not drop off some bottled water and MREs or even medics to treat the ill?

Re:It will be ok. (4, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | about 10 months ago | (#45451495)

Can we please just discuss volcanoes instead of having a pissing contest over who is the biggest sociopath?

Re:It will be ok. (-1, Troll)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451537)

Listen, as long as the topic of global warming comes up and someone claims how they can save us all if we just raise taxes to force the majority of the population who aren't rich or privileged into the stone age with the hopes that someone will some day come up with a way to bring us back out, you can expect comments about it.

Unless the GP I was responding to is a puppet account of yours, you really do not need to bother yourself with this and can simply move along if you do not care for it. Just don't find a virgin to offer the volcanoes hoping to appease it as that doesn't work and a lot of /.ers might become overly frightened to find you looking for one.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 10 months ago | (#45452401)

Unless the GP I was responding to is a puppet account of yours

Add paranoid and insulting to the list as well. Talk about thin skinned.
My point is why the hell are people denying (or even bringing up) climate science just because a place where a lot of that science is has been done for a century plus is mentioned?

Re:It will be ok. (1)

DiamondGeezer (872237) | about 10 months ago | (#45452625)

They're not denying climate science, they're criticising a recent manifestation of creationism masquerading as climate science.

All of that measured warming in the Antarctic continent occurs where there are volcanoes while the rest hasn't warmed up at all.

So STFU and learn something.

When all you have is a hammer ... (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 10 months ago | (#45452763)

they're criticising a recent manifestation of creationism masquerading as climate science

Another one from the quiver of the science deniers - was that from Ian Plimer's pile of crap from a decade back - pretend an entire field of science is really a religion and then attack religion in general? Another bullshit comparison from the "when all you have is a hammer everything looks like nails" school of blinkered thinking.

while the rest hasn't warmed up at all.

Meanwhile reality as recorded with some incredibly good data since 1957 and bit from before, disagrees with what you shamelessly pulled out your arse to show to us all. I hope you enjoyed doing it because you are not fooling anyone.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

HJED (1304957) | about 10 months ago | (#45451559)

I think you might need to see a psychiatrist... I for one will be alive when the major changes take effect (within the next ten years) and hear it Aus we are already seeing the effect, thousands of homes lost to fires and it isn't even summer yet. I swear the weather has broken a new record every week this year.
So what about the third world countries that will be almost completely under water, the ones were people are too poor to leave. I am sure they're rich fat cats living in an unsuitable area to you, but the rest of the world lives in this thing called reality.

Re:It will be ok. (0, Flamebait)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451685)

Australia never had fires before global warming? I must inform all the uni-professors about this as they seem to think there have been. Or you mean there haven't been as many in your life time and you are just now noticing them?

And those pesky third world countries that could have never survived this long without you caring over them. What will they ever do? I mean it isn't like Venice or Holland has any insight into this situation. It isn't like making buildings and islands is out of the question. Most worst case scenarios place the sea level rises at 2 to 5 feet over the next 90 or so years. It will be unpossible for anyone to do anything about it. Well, you can relax, most of them will be knocked off by typhoons and hurricanes that have never happened before global warming too. Or are you thinking of the Maldives who are not too poor to purchase another set of islands-

As for the Psychiatrist, I think maybe you should be the one seeking it. I see you completely ignored the part about saving money being a fallacy and instead went for the emotional arguments. That is either because you are a con artist who knows nothing purposed to fix climate change actually touches it or that you have been brainwashed into thinking anything in the name of it good. Either way, it not a sign of good mental health.

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451855)

How many witch doctors did it take to stop pinatubo? How many virgin priestesses to stop venusivus? Or how many dikes to hinder the flows in iceland? for a good presentation on volcanos go to jo nova's site, saw a better one today saying there are an estimate, because no one has said, of a million volcanos, and gas release fountains in the world, almost all along the underwater faults, thru the arctic, which was causing the ice melts there, stopped? but not studied because man is easier to blame, we contribute aerosols to the atmosphere, some gets to the upper atmosphere, but a volcano, in a week puts more there then man ever in the past could.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

Dodgy G33za (1669772) | about 10 months ago | (#45451951)

While you might be okay if you live in Australia (unless you live in the entrance or around Newcastle) people in the Netherlands, southern Vietnam or the Shanghai and Macau areas won't be too happy about a 1 - 2m rise (see http://flood.firetree.net/ [firetree.net] )

The problem is that all of our coastal infrastructure is built around existing sea levels. Including many of the worlds major cities. Change that sea level and there are going to be consequences.

And of course if we get into a positive feedback loop and the sea rise is significantly more than anticipated, we are all fucked.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | about 10 months ago | (#45452091)

The problem is that all of our coastal infrastructure is built around existing sea levels.

Not exactly true... a huge chunk of San Francisco was built up *out* of the water via landfill and similar means; same with parts of Manhattan, Hong Kong, Tokyo's waterfront (and a whole airport), and as you partially mention - huge swaths of Holland.

Overall, all this prediction of doom&gloom over a 2m rise in sea levels just means that those low-lying areas will build up by 2m. Well, that is, if things actually get to that point. Extrapolating from previous measurements [wikipedia.org] , I strongly suspect that you'd be hard-pressed to get even 0.3m of sea-rise.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

Dodgy G33za (1669772) | about 10 months ago | (#45452489)

Living in cities under sea level? That went well for New Orleans didn't it?

I hope you are right on the sea level rises. Because us warming the planet up is likely to have other implications that we will have to deal with. Our biggest problem with all of this is that any major change in an ecosystem will create unexpected change that we haven't modeled, which could prove catastrophic.

As it happens I am an optimist about the human race, so I think that we will overcome whatever gets thrown at us, although there may be many casualties along the way. I just don't understand why climate change deniers swallow the corporate propaganda so wholeheartedly. Dammit I want electric cars and quieter, unpolluted cities via clean energy NOW. That they are good for the environment is just a bonus.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | about 10 months ago | (#45452585)

Living in cities under sea level? That went well for New Orleans didn't it?

Actually, it has. New Orleans [wikipedia.org] was founded in 1718, almost three centuries ago, and it's mostly recovered by now from the worst civil engineering disaster in US history.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

HJED (1304957) | about 10 months ago | (#45452621)

I think I heard it best when someone said that "once in a lifetime weather events used to be once in a lifetime."

Australia never had fires before global warming? I must inform all the uni-professors about this as they seem to think there have been. Or you mean there haven't been as many in your life time and you are just now noticing them?

Have a look at this list." I want to point two interesting things out to you, the first is that the recent fires are the only major fires to have occurred October, which is very early in (or before) the bushfire season. Only two occurred in November, the rest occurring in December or latter, to me that would suggest that the climate is changing. The second thing I'd point out is the frequency of major bushfires has increased. I also take it that you are turning a blind eye to the number of weather records broken this year.

And those pesky third world countries that could have never survived this long without you caring over them. What will they ever do? I mean it isn't like Venice or Holland has any insight into this situation. It isn't like making buildings and islands is out of the question. Most worst case scenarios place the sea level rises at 2 to 5 feet over the next 90 or so years. It will be unpossible for anyone to do anything about it. Well, you can relax, most of them will be knocked off by typhoons and hurricanes that have never happened before global warming too. Or are you thinking of the Maldives who are not too poor to purchase another set of islands-

Yes because third world countries can afford to build dikes and islands in place far less suitable to them as Venice or Holland. I don't think anyone's saying there was no typhoons or hurricanes before global warming (unless you are?). No, what people are saying (with data to back it up) is that the frequency of typhoons and hurricanes are increasing. Sea level rises are predicted to increase the flooding of cities, but they will also have a very real impact on the tourism industry doing significant economic damage

As for the Psychiatrist, I think maybe you should be the one seeking it. I see you completely ignored the part about saving money being a fallacy and instead went for the emotional arguments. That is either because you are a con artist who knows nothing purposed to fix climate change actually touches it or that you have been brainwashed into thinking anything in the name of it good. Either way, it not a sign of good mental health.

I'm afraid science disagrees with you there, there is a lot we can do. I went for the more obviously flawed arguments, because I shouldn't need to explain why saving money at the expense of those who will have to live in the world you destroyed is immoral.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about 10 months ago | (#45452021)

I think you might need to see a psychiatrist... I for one will be alive when the major changes take effect (within the next ten years

If you think the worst from climate change is going to be in the next 10 years, I think you are the one who should consider help. Not that I'm saying we should do nothing. But even if we stopped adding CO2 to the atmosphere tomorrow, it would take more than ten years for the full effect of what has been done to be realized.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45452147)

And if we stopped adding CO2 to the atmosphere tomorrow it will be a century before we see the last effect, as it will take that long for Earth to process it.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

HJED (1304957) | about 10 months ago | (#45452573)

I think you might need to see a psychiatrist... I for one will be alive when the major changes take effect (within the next ten years

If you think the worst from climate change is going to be in the next 10 years, I think you are the one who should consider help. Not that I'm saying we should do nothing. But even if we stopped adding CO2 to the atmosphere tomorrow, it would take more than ten years for the full effect of what has been done to be realized.

I said nothing about the full effect, we may not see that for a century or more. I said major changes, as in changes that will realistically effect peoples lives in a major way. Models indicate that these will increasingly occur during the next ten years (and longer).

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451893)

To be somewhat blunt, I really don't care if part of NYC is under water as it is all over priced land owned by rich fat cats who can more than afford putting up a retaining wall or losing a piece of property.

Fun fact: The "fat cats" who share your sociopathic views think the same thing about you and your sub-tropical trailer park.

Re:It will be ok. (5, Insightful)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about 10 months ago | (#45451991)

To be somewhat blunt, I really don't care if part of NYC is under water as it is all over priced land owned by rich fat cats who can more than afford putting up a retaining wall or losing a piece of property.

Have you ever been to NYC? Yes, there are some insanely rich people living there. There are also a hell of a lot more poor. Contrary to what you seem to think, the streets are not paved with gold. In fact, they are closer to the surface of the moon.

Re:It will be ok. (0)

dtjohnson (102237) | about 10 months ago | (#45453269)

"Also I assume that you don't think volcanoes in Antarctica aren't causing melting in the Artic as well, that's a pretty big clue that they're not the main cause.

Typical global warming 'reasoning.'

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451865)

This is an old climate canard that goes back at least a decade, but if you're trying to find if there's a link between volcanos and melting ice caps then you may want to start by considering the relevant sizes of the Antartic continent and the region of volcanic activity. Also warmer ground in Antartica can simply mean it's -30degC rather than -70DegC.

Re:It will be ok. (2)

c0lo (1497653) | about 10 months ago | (#45452151)

This is an old climate canard that goes back at least a decade, but if you're trying to find if there's a link between volcanos and melting ice caps then then you may want to start by considering the relevant sizes of the Antartic continent and the region of volcanic activity.

Oh, is it a canard [wikipedia.org] ?
Regarding the size: why did you choose to ignore the time factor? After all, the post-glacial rebound [wikipedia.org] is still in progress after 12000 years [wikipedia.org] .
If it can have an effect on the Earth shape [wikipedia.org] (making it less oblate), why are you so quick to dismiss the link between volcanoes and ice-caps [wikipedia.org] ?

Except being a canard, you are right: knowledge about the complex relation of Earth's dynamics (volcanism included) and ice-caps thickness goes back longer than the last decade: around 2 centuries [wikipedia.org] to be more precise.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

mevets (322601) | about 10 months ago | (#45452173)

When it is fully understood, it will be on the History channel. That is the nature of difficult problems. As it stands, the IR absorption by CO2 seems pretty well understood. The amount we have released is very well understood. Shy of one of the other variables changing dramatically, the course is pretty well set.
Other variables will change. There may be more volcanoes, throwing more co2 into the atmosphere. But there is nothing we can do to stop that, so all we have done then is to worsen the problem.
The sun might start providing less energy, or the soot from more volcanoes reflect more of that energy away from the earth. In that case, we may have thwarted a disaster with our CO2 pollution.

Standing by until we are 100% positive, ignoring all the best information we can collect, with a backup plan of hoping for an unspecified global event to save us is an intriguing strategy. Are there any situations in which it works?

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45452581)

Standing by until we are 100% positive, ignoring all the best information we can collect, with a backup plan of hoping for an unspecified global event to save us is an intriguing strategy. Are there any situations in which it works?

Yes, one manifestation is the placebo effect. Most things doctors could try can actually harm their patients, making it seem like doing nothing helps. This was true for most treatments up until the last 50 years and is still probably true for many of them. There probably a mental aspect to the placebo effect too, of course.

Re:It will be ok. (1)

DiamondGeezer (872237) | about 10 months ago | (#45452641)

As it stands, the IR absorption by CO2 seems pretty well understood. The amount we have released is very well understood. Shy of one of the other variables changing dramatically, the course is pretty well set.

To Judgment Day, for we're on the Highway to Hell!

The sun might start providing less energy, or the soot from more volcanoes reflect more of that energy away from the earth. In that case, we may have thwarted a disaster with our CO2 pollution.

Aaaannnnndddd you've got yourself an exit strategy in case all of the predictions of thermageddon are proven wrong (like all of the others). The Sun didn't cause the rise but it can cause the fall.

Denial. Slashdot style.

Re:It will be ok. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45452965)

As it stands, the IR absorption by CO2 seems pretty well understood. The amount we have released is very well understood.

Correct. What isn't understood is the feedback loops, and there are a ton of those. Some of them are positive, others are negative. These aren't understood because we haven't been messing with them before.

Some people, the ones who tend to be fans of the IPCC believe that we are talking about a huge positive feedback loop, i.e. adding a small input results in a huge output. These people will often compare the Earth to Mercury, where CO2 is like 90% of the athmosphere, and temperatures are high enough that the probes we have sent there have lasted for a few hours at most (and those were designed for the heat). Somehow, these people tend to forget that Mercury is a lot closer to the sun, CO2 didn't do it alone.

Others believe that the climate of the Earth is mostly self-balancing. Otherwise, we would've had that runaway climate millions of years ago. Yet, somehow after every warm period the Earth cools down, and after every ice age it warms up. That does not point to runaway positive feedback loops.

As for myself? I would like to see falsifiable predictions. The current predictions say 2100, so they won't be falsifiable for the next 87 years. I have, however, previously heard predictions that said 2010 (back then 2010 was 10-15 years in the future), though I don't remember exactly how many feet the water was supposed to rise by 2010. So far, their track record isn't exactly good, and making predictions that can't be tested for another 87 years does not improve the trustworthiness of their predictions.

Re:ain't nothing gonna be ok (1)

TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) | about 10 months ago | (#45453325)

As for myself? I would like to see falsifiable predictions.

How moderate and scientific of you to say, well spoken. But that would completely upset the most popular 'canard' (great word) of devastating sea rise that is being sold and re-told. It's the most effective way to terrify small children [youtube.com] who are instinctively afraid of being drowned.

The data is there but gets lost in the noise. Sea level rise is 4-8 in/century, no evidence of acceleration [blogspot.com] but some land subsidence (land height changes) accounting for regional difference.

Now there is a gentleman in the Philippines who is on hunger strike [nytimes.com] because he is convinced that we -- the carbon emitting 'others' -- have sent them this killer typhoon.

This is our doing. James Hansen (I am so glad he left NASA) was chided by weather forecasting professionals and climate scientists alike for putting out his own view that hurricanes (from Katrina onwards) have this statistically significant blame factor. In our time, right now. This increasingly pissed off NASA because not only was he out on a scientific limb, but his hurricane musings were far out-pacing any news coverage of NASA's other endeavors. Talk about mission creep.

To those seeking carbon taxation and treaties, There is no time even to wait for even short-term falsifiable hypotheses. We must skip directly to the conclusions to achieve maximum panic right now.

Re:It will be ok. (2)

dtjohnson (102237) | about 10 months ago | (#45453335)

"As it stands, the IR absorption by CO2 seems pretty well understood."

If, by this, you are referring to the blocking of IR heat radiation into space by CO2 molecules, then no, it (the atmospheric heat transfer process) is not well understood, or even understood. CO2 absorbs only a very narrow and specific wavelength. THAT is understood. Moreover, a CO2 molecule that has absorbed a photon, immediately either re-radiates the heat or loses it via a collision with one of its neighboring molecules which, in the earth's atmosphere, are going to be O2 or N2 molecules. Those molecules, in turn, re-radiate the heat into space. The heat does not 'stay' in the atmosphere but is constantly re-radiated into space. The atmosphere is not a heat storage reservoir. That is NOT understood.

Re:It will be ok. (0)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 10 months ago | (#45452267)

Man made carbon? I don't think there is much man made carbon. It would be bladdy expensive to make carbon and much easier to just dig up some coal.

So what you're telling me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450611)

Is that even if we could completely reverse the effects of global warming tomorrow, the ice around Antarctica might still melt anyway due to mother nature?

Hmm.

Re:So what you're telling me (5, Insightful)

Alain Williams (2972) | about 10 months ago | (#45450673)

I would not be surprised if the loss of the weight of the ice that has already melted [nasa.gov] is itself contributing to the emergence of the volcanoes. Less weight pressing down might make it easier for them to come to the surface.

Disclaimer: I am not a geologist.

Prepare not to be surprised (5, Informative)

sam_vilain (33533) | about 10 months ago | (#45450827)

There's a great book covering some of the science on this topic; reviewed here on NewScientist [newscientist.com] ; very much worth the read. Actually what happens is that the crust "rebounds" [wikipedia.org] in two phases. You can use the first phase to weigh the ice sheet as they are doing in Greenland [thinkprogress.org] . Then, the athenosphere (the molten layer, 15-150km deep which the crust/lithosphere sits atop) slowly slops in there and supplies extra heat and magma; generally quite a slow process, with some rebound from the last ice age still occurring.

Upshot: it's certainly possible that the events are related.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (-1, Flamebait)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451361)

So a glass of water with ice cubes in it weighs more then a glass of water without ice?

Hmm.. do you know where I could get a scale precise enough to measure this effect on small scale so I can compare it with a larger glass of water called an Ocean?

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451391)

Oh, you know what, I just modded you "overrated" because there's no "witless cretin" option, but I'm going to point out why you're a witless cretin and hope other people follow the lead I tried to set:

* There is ice on top of Antarctica. The argument is that that ice is melting and forming rivers. At this point there is no less pressure on Antarctica, although it is certainly more localised. However, that water runs into the sea. It is then not on top of Antarctica. There is then less weight on top of Antarctica.
* In the desire to look clever, you have taken a situation in which ice would be floating on water. When that ice melts, one ends up with the same amount of water. This is true.

Alas, the two situations don't even begin to match, because one of them involves water on top of water running into water, and the other involves water on top of land and running off the land. If you had used a single second to think about what you were writing you may have realised this and held your mouth. As it is, you didn't, and decided to get in with a knee-jerk response that proves you're a witless moron.

Nothing I have said should be taken to imply that I either agree with, or disagree with, the study under discussion or indeed the entire idea of ice-loss from Antarctica or the possibly-related issue of global warming. I do have opinions on those, but they're irrelevent to my central thesis here, which is that you are a witless moron.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451877)

Not a scientist either, but the ice there is in the kilometer, about two clicks deep at that area, so you are saying they are 1500 meters or better up? from the sea level, never have read anything on the altitude there. They must believe it's not worthwhile , would cloud the issue with steam or whatever. I believe that I have read, that the area is a chain of islands, which implies volcanism over the long run. an anchor point.
If there is a whittless moron, it's generally the denegrading arguements, or requesting information to form a viewpoint that is informed.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (1)

Type44Q (1233630) | about 10 months ago | (#45451397)

You really live up to your username, don't you... :p

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (0)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451521)

You sure are an insightful boy. Do all your comment come with this kind of all knowing comfort?

So I thought they were talking about the volcanic activity around the arctic in the pacific and didn't realize it was on the other side of the world. DO you never make mistakes? Or do you always rush to be as insightful on your own? I mean seriously, you added nothing to the discussion, including pointing out where I was wrong. Even with me being wrong, I think /. is collectively dumber now that you posted with all your whit.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451721)

Wit, not whit.

And someone who chooses sumdumbass as a username should at least pretend to have a sense of humor.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451751)

You didn't find my reply humorous? Maybe you should get a funny bone.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (1)

rioki (1328185) | about 10 months ago | (#45452575)

+1 Insightful (No modpoints today...)

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (1)

Fjandr (66656) | about 10 months ago | (#45451887)

Umm, yes. 100ml of water plus 10ml of water frozen as ice weighs more than 100ml of water without the 10ml of ice.

Re:Prepare not to be surprised (4, Informative)

ultranova (717540) | about 10 months ago | (#45451911)

So a glass of water with ice cubes in it weighs more then a glass of water without ice?

...You do realize that Antarctica is a continent, not an ocean, right?

Hmm.. do you know where I could get a scale precise enough to measure this effect on small scale so I can compare it with a larger glass of water called an Ocean?

Nope, I guess you didn't.

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

anabis (108279) | about 10 months ago | (#45450957)

The Antarctic ice is growing due to increased precipitation from global warming.
So on the balance you could say GW postponed the volcanoes and bought us time.

Re:So what you're telling me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451049)

The Antarctic ice is growing due to increased precipitation from global warming. So on the balance you could say GW postponed the volcanoes and bought us time.

So the seas really are receding, just like Obama promised? Hallelujah!

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 10 months ago | (#45452103)

Just to be clear, the Antarctic sea ice, the ice that forms on the ocean when it gets cold enough has increased some lately. But it melts nearly completely out every Antarctic summer so there is no "memory" of it from one year to the next. The Antarctic ice sheet, the ice that is sitting on land is still shrinking, particularly in West Antarctica. Volcanism can melt some of the ice but the area of volcanism is so small compared to the total area of ice it's really insignificant for ice melt. If you think that's wrong look at Iceland which is one of the most volcanic areas on Earth yet still has major ice caps.

Re:So what you're telling me (4, Informative)

chmod a+x mojo (965286) | about 10 months ago | (#45451445)

In some ways you are correct. Depressurization is one of the 3 big ways to generate a melt (magma). Just in case you wonder, the other two ways are 1:simply add heat, and 2: add volatiles such as H2O or CO2.

But the isostatic rebound being fast enough for us to see it in our lifetime is highly doubtful, same with the resulting melt travel time to possible eruption. What they are seeing now most likely is melt from more than just a few years ago.

Disclaimer: Undergrad Geologist, not PhD yet.

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45451981)

That's fine as far as it goes, but it seems like there has been a lot of volcanic activity over the last couple of years, and little of that can be explained by changes in the thickness of ice. In some cases it involves volcanos that have been quiet for decades or longer. There has been eruptions or activity on Mount Etna in Italy, Mount Sinabung in Sumatra, Sakurajima in Japan, Eyjafjallajökull in Iceland, Popocatepetl in Mexico, Puyehue in Chile, Fuego in Guatemala, Tungurahua in Ecuador, Shiveluch in Russia, Cleveland Volcano in Alaska, Mayon in the Philippines, and plenty more.

Volcanoes that erupted in April 2013 [seattlepi.com]

Didn't I see the first picture here [boston.com] in Lord of the Rings?

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

chmod a+x mojo (965286) | about 10 months ago | (#45452121)

I really don't understand what you are arguing for or against. Volcanic eruptions are not something new, there are hundreds to thousands every year, just as there has been since the Hadean. They range from little burps of gas to the big ones like in your second link.

Most of them that you listed are located on the arcs surrounding subduction zones, with at least one other for sure ( Eyjafjallajokull ) on a rifting zone. Rifting causes decompression, subduction causes volatiles to be added, both producing melts. There is a reason all of those ( I don't recognize any hotspot volcanoes like we have in Hawaii on the list off hand ) are on the ring of fire, it's where most of the volcanism is located for exactly the reasons I just listed.

Re:So what you're telling me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45452967)

In some ways you are correct. Depressurization is one of the 3 big ways to generate a melt (magma). Just in case you wonder, the other two ways are 1:simply add heat, and 2: add volatiles such as H2O or CO2.

Oh ... then in large time frame by displacing dormant deposits of biogenic carbon from shallow positions in Earth's crust and sending them as CO2 to the subduction zones in oceanic trenches as part of the carbon cycle, we are heating up the volcanism on the global scale. And that is an effect that comes after the nature is done with quenching the anthropogenic atmospheric CO2 surge. While the solar heat might look like something we are familiar with and we can endure, elevated volcanic activity might get (occasionally used to be) pretty horrific and bring nasty ways of dying to many people.

Our task on restoring habitability of our world for us then appears much harder: not just to remove CO2, but to turn it into inert solid carbon and to store it safely away from oxygen. All the energy we got and used up burning fossil fuels since the beginning of The Industrial Revolution is a loan-shark deal - we'll have to return all of it back and then hefty more on top of it. Significant part of biosphere will have to be harnessed to work for storage in deep graves.

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 10 months ago | (#45453041)

But the isostatic rebound being fast enough for us to see it in our lifetime is highly doubtful

By replacing our fragile frames with sturdier robotic ones we can both mitigate our concern over climates we can't yet tolerate and witness the isostatic rebound. We could both achieve cyborgodhood and solve the climate issues if only non-Artifical intelligence wasn't illegal on this planet.

If you outlaw the future only outlaws will be future in laws.

Re:So what you're telling me (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45450933)

Is that even if we could completely reverse the effects of global warming tomorrow, the ice around Antarctica might still melt anyway due to mother nature?

Hmm.

Yes. It appears that "climate change" nee "global warming" has mechanisms independent of humanity, of which this is just one. It sort of humbles you, doesn't it?

Saw a movie about this. (3, Funny)

Max Threshold (540114) | about 10 months ago | (#45450621)

Pretty soon, dinosaurs will be pouring out of the hollow earth.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

tttonyyy (726776) | about 10 months ago | (#45450715)

Hand your movie buff card back - Tremors; that can only mean snakeoids about to pour from beneath the very dirt itself!

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 10 months ago | (#45450815)

So very wrong [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Saw a movie about this. (2)

Forty Two Tenfold (1134125) | about 10 months ago | (#45450837)

Hand your movie buff card back - Tremors; that can only mean graboids [wikipedia.org] about to pour from beneath the very dirt itself! Oh the perversity of nitpicking.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45451021)

Pretty soon, dinosaurs will be pouring out of the hollow earth.

Are you kidding? This is the polar regions we're talking about. The real threat there is from the secret Nazi Antarctic Fortress [mentalfloss.com] which the US countered with its secret nuclear powered subterranean Air Force base [defensetech.org] . Hopefully the Nazis can still be thwarted so we can avoid an "Iron Sky" [imdb.com] scenario. If only ....

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 10 months ago | (#45451405)

Have no fear, superman also has a Fortress of Solitude out there. He will whip those Nazi's around like he did in the 1940's.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45451159)

Actually it's another Predator hunting reserve under the ice, they're warming it up for another hunting party.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 10 months ago | (#45452047)

Wait, those things [wikipedia.org] can fly under the ice?

Re:Saw a movie about this. Too. (1)

TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) | about 10 months ago | (#45451339)

Pretty soon, dinosaurs will be pouring out of the hollow earth.

Or cockroaches that start fires [imdb.com] by rubbing their cerci [wikipedia.org] together.

As opposed to garden variety man eating cockroaches [youtube.com] . All cockroaches are man eaters as conditions permit, but these couldn't wait. Living in the tropics I was occasionally awakened by a large cockroach gnawing, or what ever it is they do, on a toenail. Makes you feel glad to be alive.

Re:Saw a movie about this. Too. (1)

volmtech (769154) | about 10 months ago | (#45452221)

I guess Florida counts as the tropics. In the 70s I lived in an old house on a potato farm. No air conditioning so the windows were open all the time. We had five-striped skinks that wandered in and out. The adult males were almost a foot long and loved french fries. My wife made them every day during spring harvest season. If you didn't give them enough fries they would nibble your toes. We had green anoles in the curtains and tree frogs in the shower. Having a pine bark scorpion drop onto your chest while your laying in bed will wake you up real fast.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

gallondr00nk (868673) | about 10 months ago | (#45451525)

Pretty soon, dinosaurs will be pouring out of the hollow earth.

Ridden by the Deros.

Re:Saw a movie about this. (1)

laejoh (648921) | about 10 months ago | (#45453509)

No, but Shoggoths will!

Meh (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450627)

Probably just the StarGate.

Western Antarctica? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450633)

Maybe it's a named feature on maps of Antarctica otherwise which part is more west than any other part?

Re:Western Antarctica? (2)

prefec2 (875483) | about 10 months ago | (#45450731)

Antarctica is not a single point on the south pole. Have a look at a globe and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Antarctica [wikipedia.org]

Re:Western Antarctica? (2)

I'm New Around Here (1154723) | about 10 months ago | (#45452335)

His point is still valid though. Pick a point on the main body of Antarctica, walk west. Eventually you will reach your starting point again. Theoretically, anyway.

It would be like walking across Tamriel, looking for a witch's coven you discovered on a later save. It only works if your angle is perfect.

Re:Western Antarctica? (1)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45450739)

Wiki has the answer.
Its just a general term for that part that falls into what people consider the western hemisphere.

Re:Western Antarctica? (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 10 months ago | (#45450759)

It's the part where your longitude has a W in front of it.

Tremors in the antarctic? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450643)

Better get Kevin Bacon on the job.

Go west from the South Pole??? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450647)

and just how do we get to "western Antactica"???

Re:Go west from the South Pole??? (1)

DexterIsADog (2954149) | about 10 months ago | (#45450791)

I got there on the Clipper Adventurer. Nice little boat. Looked like a toy next to luxury cruise ships when we went back to Ushuaia.

Google map it. That would have taken less time than your post.

Re:Go west from the South Pole??? (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 10 months ago | (#45450813)

You can go west from every point in Antarctica but one.

Re:Go west from the South Pole??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45451067)

Antactica != South pole

Re:Go west from the South Pole??? (1)

isorox (205688) | about 10 months ago | (#45452875)

Antactica != South pole

Well yes, but his point stands.

We call it Western Antarctica as it's longitude is west of an arbitrary point.

Where the west coast of europe, or america, or austrailia, or the atlantic, or the pacific, are easily spotted on a globe if you know "north" is the hemisphere with most land, choosing "West" on a continent that encircles the globe is arbitrary. If the Meridian was where the dateline is, "western" antarctica would be what we call "Eastern Antarctica"

Re:Go west from the South Pole??? (1)

HJED (1304957) | about 10 months ago | (#45451141)

Through the Stargate obviously

Where's the link? (4, Informative)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about 10 months ago | (#45450671)

Summary mentions an article from the LA Times.

Here's the link:

http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-volcano-ice-antarctica-20131115,0,6645564.story [latimes.com]

Re:Where's the link? (1)

sjwt (161428) | about 10 months ago | (#45450973)

About time we all just gave up on posting links, clearly no one reads them, and the Editors don't care.

If Slashdot was to sink any lower, they could help by directly measuring the volcanism 24k down below

28 comments in, and this is the only one that seems to have noticed, you should be awared the lowest abandoned ID number.

Re:Where's the link? (1)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about 10 months ago | (#45452005)

Nooo!

Don't do that. I tell all the hot ladies I meet on Slashdot that my id is my bank account balance.

If you lower my id, I'll get laid n-1 times than I have using that line.

Global warming! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450693)

You heard it here first. If I'm right, I'm a genius. If I'm wrong, no one will remember. Unlike Obamacare.

Re:Global warming! (1, Insightful)

DexterIsADog (2954149) | about 10 months ago | (#45450803)

Congratulations, you win today's prize for gratuitous mention of the ACA.

Really, it's just a random drawing of the 34,547 posts by twits on /. today.

Graboids versus The Thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450817)

There's not enough flamethrowers and dynamite in the world. We're all doomed.

Dipole Antenna arrays (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45450935)

HAARP &
Chinese HAARP HAARP

Really no one here at /. is aware of the shit going on?

Or is /. censoring comments, perhaps some are phishing for comments aware of these 'research' stations and believe me I use that term loosely.
More like cataclysmic weapons systems they blame on mother nature these days.

White Man's Fault (0, Troll)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 10 months ago | (#45450945)

Obviously this volcano activity is caused by global warming and is the fault of old white men in the first world nations. The penguins demand reparations now!

They're lying... (5, Funny)

Type44Q (1233630) | about 10 months ago | (#45451383)

beneath the surface of western Antarctica

They're lying: every part of Antarctica lies to the north.

:p

Re:They're lying... (4, Informative)

necro81 (917438) | about 10 months ago | (#45453541)

Pedantically you may be correct. Cartographically, however, Antarctica is, in fact, divided into East and West. The feature that divides them is the Transantarctic mountains. See this map [wikimedia.org] . West Antarctica [wikipedia.org] contains the Antarctic Peninsula (which stick out towards South America) and most of the floating ice sheets. East Antarctica [wikipedia.org] contains the broad, high plateau containing most of the land ice.

More generally, the dividing line could be said to be the prime meridian. Places whose coordinates are given using west longitude are generally part of West Antarctica. Most maps of Antarctica are oriented with the prime meridian pointing up towards England. Things on the left side of the map are West Antarctica, the right side is East. Again, this is just a general convention - a way to get yourself oriented. (Even though McMurdo Station (77.8 S 166.6 E) would be in East Antarctica by this definition, it is traditionally part of West Antarctica because it lies on that side of the Transantarctic mountains.)

This is a cartographer's convention - giving names to places - and it has a particular European bias. But everyone that works in Antarctica uses the same naming convention, so there you go.

Re:They're lying... (4, Insightful)

Type44Q (1233630) | about 10 months ago | (#45453579)

Pedantically you may be correct.

In my defense, I was trying to be funny (I hardly expected to be modded insightful though I suppose I do have my moments here and there). :)

Famous Last Words (1)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about 10 months ago | (#45451433)

“It’s not something that’s going to cause major issues. You’d have to have a huge, huge eruption.”

Which leads me to say:

There was supposed to be an earth-shattering KABOOM!

Re:Famous Last Words (1)

isorox (205688) | about 10 months ago | (#45452879)

“It’s not something that’s going to cause major issues. You’d have to have a huge, huge eruption.”

Which leads me to say:

There was supposed to be an earth-shattering KABOOM!

It leads me to say

"That's what your mom said"

fracking frackers (1)

AndyKron (937105) | about 10 months ago | (#45452101)

I blame all this on fracking.

Antarctic mountains (3, Interesting)

dargaud (518470) | about 10 months ago | (#45452603)

On normal maps of Antarctica it's hard to see where the (rock) mountains are. I made a script for that 15 years ago [gdargaud.net] , and it's still there.
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