December 15, 2015


Earth and Environmental Sciences

Temperatures have been warming on the West Antarctic Peninsula at about 0.5 degrees Celsius per decade since the early 1950s, a rate about four times faster than the global average. The sea ice here begins to advance about 2 months later than it did in the 1980s and retreat about a month earlier. The changes and their cascading effects are showing in the numbers and species of marine wildlife, particularly the native Adélie penguin. Hugh Ducklow, a biogeochemist at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and lead principal investigator at Palmer Station, describes the changing conditions.