Wednesday, July 4, 2007

The Meltdown

You might have heard about the lake in the Chilean Patagonia that suddenly disappeared last month. The initial hypothesis was that an earthquake that recently hit the region might have opened up a fissure on the lake's floor, thereby draining the water. But a recent flyover by Chilean experts revealed a breach in the glacial barrier that served to dam the lake. The likely cause of the breach was a rise in the lake's water level, which in turn was due to increased glacial runoff as a result of higher regional temperatures. So while the phenomenon is a common occurence in the Patagonia's lake systems, in this case it was exacerbated by global warming.

Those of you with small children will already be familiar with the science behind the story, since it's basically the premise behind Ice Age 2.

Posted by Judah in:  The Natural World   

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