Norway's Arctic archipelago Svalbard five degrees Celsius warmer: report

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-06 05:53:50|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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OSLO, Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- A recent research report showed that Norway's Arctic archipelago of Svalbard warmed up five degrees Celsius since 1980, much faster than researchers expected, newspaper Klassekampen reported Tuesday.

"We must return at least 12,000 years in time to find as high average temperatures as Svalbard is experiencing now," said Inger Hanssen-Bauer, climate researcher at the Norwegian Meteorological Institute.

According to the report conducted by the Norwegian Climate Service Center, annual temperature will increase by about ten degrees Celsius before the year 2100.

It is expected to experience precipitation increase by almost 65 percent, higher water flow in the rivers, as well as more erosion and greater danger of landslides both in the summer and winter.

The most disturbing fact is that the changes happen so rapidly, Hanssen-Bauer said, calling for action to reduce emissions of harmful greenhouse gases.

Svalbard has already seen big climate changes: abnormally increased temperature in the city of Longyearbyen for almost 100 months in a row, the retreat of glaciers and increased sea temperature, as well as migration of fish.

The winters became milder with more rain, leading to difficult conditions for, among other things, reindeer and polar bears.

Also, Longyearbyen's citizens have been evacuated several times due to dangerous landslides.

Without ice in the Arctic Ocean, the sea temperature will increase further, the researcher said.

"Svalbard has already had some very special climate phenomenon. Few other places have received up to 25 percent of the annual rainfall in the form of rain during one day of winter. Such torrential rain has occurred several times and brought with it great challenges," Hanssen-Bauer said.

"We have to manage to stabilize climate change. The warming cannot continue," she added, reminding that climate change is first noticed in the Arctic.

"No one can sit still. It is an international goal to stop heating for 1.5 degrees," Norwegian Minister of Climate and Environment Ola Elvestuen was quoted as saying.