The Corner

Arctic Warming

Putting aside the obvious volcano-lancing issues this raises, am I crazy for wondering why this story doesn’t even address — if only to shoot down — the idea that maybe it’s volcanoes, and not global warming, that are causing the melting ice caps? I can’t tell from this article, but as a layman it would seem plausible that increased volcanic activity under the ice sheet might have melty results on, you know, ice.

Volcanic eruptions reshape Arctic ocean floor: study

Recent massive volcanoes have risen from the ocean floor deep under the Arctic ice cap, spewing plumes of fragmented magma into the sea, scientists who filmed the aftermath reported Wednesday.

The eruptions — as big as the one that buried Pompei — took place in 1999 along the Gakkel Ridge, an underwater mountain chain snaking 1,800 kilometres (1,100 miles) from the northern tip of Greenland to Siberia.

Scientists suspected even at the time that a simultaneous series of earthquakes were linked to these volcanic spasms.

But when a team led of scientists led by Robert Sohn of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts finally got a first-ever glimpse of the ocean floor 4,000 meters (13,000 feet) beneath the Arctic pack ice, they were astonished.

What they saw was unmistakable evidence of explosive eruptions rather than the gradual secretion of lava bubbling up from Earth’s mantle onto the ocean floor.


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