Unveiling Earth’s Icy Mysteries: The Future That Lies Ahead
The most recent ice age ended a few thousand years ago, and today the world is, according to geological definitions, in a “warm phase of an interglacial period.” Some experts even suggest that we might be heading towards another ice age. The relative positions of the Earth and the Sun are similar to those of 116,000 years ago, when the interglacial period that preceded the last ice advance was ending. It’s not out of the question that history could repeat itself, and within 5,000 years, glaciers might once again cover vast continental areas.
Other scientists are even more pessimistic, hypothesizing that an ice age could start within the next 2-3 centuries as a consequence of global warming and climate change. The rise in atmospheric temperatures could lead to such massive precipitation at mid-to-high latitudes that it could “dilute” the Gulf Stream (which originates in the tropics, travels towards the Pole, sinks in the North Atlantic, and returns to the tropics by flowing along the ocean floor in a 2,500-year cycle), reducing its salinity.
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