#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. It seems that the North and South Poles are very similar to each other: the sun is always low above the horizon, it does not rise for months during winter, and the ice reflects most of its light. However, there are significant differences in seemingly identical conditions.
The South Pole is much colder than the North Pole. The average annual temperature at the ‘top’ of the planet is about minus 40 degrees Celsius in winter and about zero degrees in summer. It is 20 degrees colder in winter, and in summer the thermometer rarely rises above minus 30 degrees Celsius in the South Pole. The air temperature reaches minus ten degrees in summer and it is +1+2 degrees in the warmest month (January) on the Antarctica coast.
According to the science and technology portal allscitech.ru, this is because the North Pole is an ocean, and the South Pole is a continent. Water heats up and cools down much more slowly than land. Even when the Arctic Ocean is covered in ice, its waters remain relatively warm.
Scientists have recently recorded simultaneous warming at the South and North Poles. Preliminarily, this is explained by a simple coincidence.
Another difference is the ice thickness. In winter, at both poles, it increases, and in summer the ice melts. The Arctic is almost completely surrounded by land, the sea ice is not very mobile there and the ice is more likely to converge, this makes the sea ice thicker. It can reach two or three meters thick in winter. In Antarctica, it is the opposite: the ice thickness is only one or two meters there.
Antarctica contains about 90 percent of the world’s ice, and it melts unevenly, while in the Arctic the situation is reversed: the Arctic and Greenland ice volume is decreasing rapidly due to warming. And climate change intensifies with the reduction of its area.
Text: Angelica Stepanova, Photo: istockphoto.com, Olga Alexandrova