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Climate change: Drilling in 'Iceberg Alley'

Researchers are looking into positioning themselves at the centre of "Iceberg Alley"- which is off the top of the Antarctic Peninsula- to drill into the seafloor. They are hoping that the sediments they will recover will reveal how the White Continent has changed in the past. It is hoped to, also, show how the ice sheet will react in the projected warmer weather in the coming years. Expedition 382 left and using a drill ship, the Joides Resolution, the team will core seafloor locations in the middle of the iceberg. Scientists are looking for "rafted debris" dropped by giant bergs, originally scraped off the continent by the ice when it was part of a glacier. It is possible through this research that they can date this material. The alley provides a very broad view of the Antarctic's past behaviour such as: the more ice blocks that passed through the alley at a particular time, the more unstable the Antarctic was. I am very excited about this research! It especially is intriguing that the researchers are going to look into the Late Pliocene Warm Period where carbon dioxide levels were 400 parts per million in the atmosphere. Looking into how the environment reacted during this period of time could help us predict how events will play out in our current time, due to the levels right now being similar.
I also believe research like this is exciting as it makes me happy to see that there are people looking into and being concerned about the changes we are seeing on our planet. Hopefully this research will help us prepare for what these changes have in store for our way of life, and maybe it will even bring more attention to climate change. Although many people look past the intense threat climate change has for the planet, I believe it is an important issue that should be getting more attention from those who would actually be able to stop it.

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