Climate Change May Cause Massive Tsunamis From Antarctica

Jun 14, 2023 - Views: 466
Rating:4.6 - 50Votes

A study that was just published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Communications suggests that climate change may cause large-scale tsunamis to originate from Antarctica.

The study revealed that submarine landslides, a phenomenon in which marine landslides force accumulations of weak sediment into the open ocean, could be the underlying cause of tsunamis.

The discovery was made after researchers conducted undersea ocean drilling and discovered evidence that, three million and fifteen million years ago, the same event caused enormous tsunamis to strike New Zealand, South America, and Southeast Asia. 

However, the study warns that these tsunamis might not occur right away. 

Tsunamis can be caused by climate change

Tsunamis can be caused by climate change

In prior eras of global warming, Antarctica's average temperature was 3°C higher when the tsunamis struck. Additionally, the ice sheets were smaller and sea levels were greater. 

This could imply that if climate change can be stopped, the predicted tsunamis might be avoided.

According to Dr. Jenny Gales from the University of Plymouth, "Submarine landslides are a key geohazard with the potential to cause tsunamis that can result in significant loss of life." 

Future similar incidents "would create a wide range of economic and social impacts," due to the fact that landslides "can also destroy infrastructure, like subsea cables."

"This study shows the importance of marine geology and scientific ocean drilling in clarifying both past climate change and discovering regions susceptible to natural hazards to inform infrastructure decisions," said Dr. Amelia Shevenell from the University of Florida College of Marine Science's Department of Geological Oceanography. 

Also read: Can We Imprison Carbon Dioxide?

Rating:4.6 - 50Votes

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