Melting of the Ice Glaciers

by caily on November 19, 2017 - 11:11am

CBC News discusses the concern of climate change in its column Technology and Science through an article written on February 20, 2017 regarding the concern of the rapidly melting ice glaciers. It is believed that the melting of these glaciers in the North will have many environmental effects on habitats in and around that region. The articles discusses the topics of the many environmental concerns that are associated with the melting of the glaciers such as climate change, water quality and habitat loss and destruction.The main cause of the increase in the melting of the polar ice caps is believed to be caused by climate change.

Glaciers are made up of fresh water and are found in Greenland, Antarctica and Canada. Canada holds about 20% of the worlds fresh water glaciers. Continuous emissions of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere is what will allow for continuous melting of the glaciers in Canada and around the world. Due to the fact that these glaciers hold mass amounts of water, their melting will cause a significant increase in sea level rise around the world. Canada currently remains the third - largest contributor to the rise in sea level around the world as stated within the CBC news article. The articles continues to express the other effects the discharge from glaciers may have on surrounding environments. It discusses the habitat loss that will be faced by seals and birds in the region, as well as the pollutants the glaciers may expose as they melt. Volatile containments such as PCB’s and DDT’s are often released into the atmosphere but rain back down and subside in glaciers. This leads to accumulation of contaminants in glaciers which is released into habitats as the glaciers melt.

There are many altercations and difficulties when attributing to managing this fresh water resource because there is no previous experience of humans coping with the effects of climate change. Although researchers have invested time and money in attempting to understand the behavior of the northern ice sheets little has been done. This is shown in the article when it claims, “The extent of the effects this melting has on the ecosystem isn't entirely clear, through Sharp said scientists are looking at what the effects are on the seals and birds who feed off the tips of the glaciers.” This claim is evidence that managing this natural resource is difficult and that little information is known.
This case of the northern melting ice sheets can be viewed through the concept of adaptive management. Adaptive management occurs in situations in the attempt to manage a resource that contains many uncertainties and allows for the ability to accept these uncertainties and implement policies despite the uncertainties of the situation. Adaptive management procedures and policies contain many questions and act as an experiment to produce either positive or ineffective outcomes. It obtains a goal to seek resiliency in the complex environment although is not guaranteed to be the correct response. Adaptive management techniques are used because answers to a specific problem remain unknown.

Adaptive management is a form of management that applies to the melting northern glaciers because there is an inability to understand how to manage the habitats and environments in and surrounding arctic that will be effected by the excessive melting of the ice sheets. Although continuous efforts and research is being allocated to its attention, little is known for sure.

Martillaro. N., (2005) As Arctic Warms, Canada’s Glaciers Playing Major Role in Sea Level Rise. CBC News. Retrieved From:


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