Antarctica has just experienced a freak heatwave. Well, that is if you can call -10 degrees Celcius a heatwave!
But we have to remember that Antarctica is the world’s coldest continent. In mid-March average temperatures at the Concordia research station, 3234 metres above sea level, surged to -12.2°C. An average high in mid-March is more like -50°C. Consequently, this station saw a temperature average of 36-degrees above normal levels.
This heatwave could mean temperatures may rise above freezing over vast parts of ice shelves along the coast.
Dr. Kyle Clem, who is an expert on Antarctica’s climate and a research fellow at the Victoria University of Wellington, said, “That can cause these ice shelves to break up and collapse, and that leaves the interior ice sheet vulnerable to just blow into the ocean.”