see http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7261171.stm" [Broken]
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The reason does not seem to be warming in the surrounding air.
One possible culprit could be a deep ocean current that is channelled onto the continental shelf close to the mouth of the glacier. There is not much sea ice to protect it from the warm water, which seems to be undercutting the ice and lubricating its flow.
The WAIS (West Antarctica Ice Sheet) instability refers to the potential for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to collapse and contribute significantly to global sea level rise. This instability is due to the unique geography and dynamics of the ice sheet, making it vulnerable to melting and retreat.
Several factors contribute to WAIS instability, including ocean temperatures, ice shelf thinning, and the underlying bedrock topography. Warmer ocean temperatures can melt the ice from below, while thinning of ice shelves can destabilize the ice sheet. The bedrock topography also plays a role, as some areas of the ice sheet rest on bedrock below sea level, making them more susceptible to melting.
If the entire WAIS were to collapse, it could contribute up to 3.3 meters (11 feet) of sea level rise globally. However, it is more likely that the collapse would occur gradually over time, resulting in an increase in sea levels by 0.3 to 1.2 meters (1 to 4 feet) by the end of this century.
There is evidence that the WAIS instability is already happening, with accelerated melting and retreat of ice in certain regions. However, the extent and timeline of this instability is still uncertain and requires further research.
The most effective way to prevent WAIS instability is to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and slow down the warming of the planet. This would help to slow down the melting of the ice sheet and give it more time to adapt. Additionally, continued monitoring and research on the ice sheet is crucial in understanding and potentially mitigating the instability.