by Ariel Schwartz  譯: Patrick.H

Lots of things cause Earth's spinning top-like axis to shift — earthquakes, El Nino, and even volcano eruptions. Now scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory say that global warming could actually alter the tilt of our planet's axis due to instability from melting ice sheets! Scientists have long theorized that climate change could cause a negligible amount of movement in the axis, but NASA's research shows that the problem could be much more severe than was initially thought. In fact, it could be as drastic as the northern pole shifting by 1.5 centimeters every year towards Hawaii and Alaska.

造成地球頂旋轉軸產生位移的原因有很多--地震、聖嬰現象,甚至火山爆發。NASA的噴射推進實驗室(JPA)的科學家指出全球暖化可能確實造成星球軸的傾斜的改變,原因是因為冰冠融化產生的不穩定。過去科學家長期相信氣候改變可能造成軸運行的微小變化,但NASA的研究指出這問題可能比過去想的更嚴重。事實上,這可能嚴重到北磁極每年以1.5公分往夏威夷和阿拉斯加產生位移。

The shifting pole won't speed up climate change itself, but it could potentially act as a measure of sea level rise. In other words, the more the pole shifts each year, the faster ice sheets are melting. It's not a foolproof plan–scientists have no way of telling if a shift in the axis is because of a massive earthquake in Japan or a giant ice sheet turning into fresh water–but it is one more way to calculate the effects of global warming on the planet.

位移的磁極並不會加速氣候變化本身,但可能是海平面上升的潛在因素。換句話說,每年磁極位移越多,冰冠融化的速度會快!這不是一個簡單的計畫,科學家無法證實軸的位移是日本大量地震或巨大冰冠融化成水的原因,但是是另一個研究全球暖化的可行性。

 

 

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