The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be

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The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be Empty The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be

Post by Ben Reilly on Sat Nov 01, 2014 9:10 am

Think of Antarctica -- the world's coldest continent, with ice, penguins and very little else. It's hard to imagine the lush continent that was Antarctica millions of years ago.

From around 144 million to 65 million years ago, Antarctica was, of course, much closer to the Equator (at one point about as far from it as Australia is today), and thus much more temperate. It was covered in forests of conifers and deciduous trees, along with ferns, with flowing freshwater rivers (the continent still has 75 percent of Earth's fresh water) that were home to many fish species. On land, reptiles and dinosaurs ruled -- along with synapsids, the ancestors of all modern mammals. The ancestors of the penguins emerged later, but they were a bit different from modern penguins, in that they grew to nearly six feet tall and probably weighed up to 300 pounds ...

Of course, as Antarctica drifted to the South Pole, it become colder, only the hardiest species survived, and it became inundated with ice -- so much so that the ice makes the continent much heavier, pressing it in toward the Earth's core and into the Southern Ocean. But Antarctica is thawing ...

Experiencing twice the rate of climate change as the rest of the planet, Antarctica may soon share its water with the rest of the world, flooding coastlines of the other continents as much as 50 miles inland of where they are today. And the true shape of Antarctica would be shown as it not only emerged from its ice but rose in the Southern Ocean:

The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be Antarctica_without_ice_sheet

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The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be Empty Re: The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be

Post by Irn Bru on Sun Nov 02, 2014 9:47 pm

There is estimated to be around 200 million barrels of oil lying under the surface of Antarctica along with many other natural resources that we use. No one country has any Jurisdiction over Antarctica but that doesn't stop countries lodging claims to part of it - just in case. Also no military activities are permitted and any visits by military people have to be authorised in advance.

It's a big place

The Antarctica that was, the Antarctica that may be _75735138_antarcticmapcorrect

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