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The Entire Continent of Antarctica May Be Doomed by 2100, Thanks to Climate Change

It's easy to forget that Antarctica is actually a large continent and not just a warped white blob at the bottom of world maps, but scientists say climate change is melting the Antarctic so fast there may not even be a continent to forget about come...
Photo via Flickr user Andreas Kambanis

Photo via Flickr user Andreas Kambanis

Read: Writers, Scientists, and Climate Experts Discuss How to Save the World from Climate Change

It's easy to forget that Antarctica is actually a large continent and not just a warped white blob at the bottom of world maps, but scientists say climate change is melting the Antarctic so fast there may not even be a continent to forget about come next century.

New research published in Nature Geoscience suggests that the floating chunks of ice that extend off land into the ocean in Antarctica, known as ice shelfs, could double their rate of melt by 2050 if the world sticks with its current levels of greenhouse gas emissions. That's bad.

"This [type of scenario] has already occurred in places like the Antarctic Peninsula where we've observed warming and abrupt ice shelf collapses in the last few decades," said Dr. Luke Trusel, lead scientist on the study, according to the Guardian. "Our model projections show that similar levels of melt may occur across coastal Antarctica near the end of this century, raising concerns about future ice shelf stability."

What this basically means is that by 2100, the ice melt could lead to widespread ice shelf collapse, causing a massive rise to global sea levels. Say goodbye to South Florida and a lot of your favorite foods.

The study points out that reducing emissions now could get the situation under control by 2050, but that seems tough to pull off since no one actually cares about climate change.