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Ice and Sand Essay

Ice and sand is an eye opening video about just what the title states: ice and sand. It talks about the polar ice caps and the affects of green house gasses to the environment. This movie talks about what would happen if the ice sheets in the north and South Pole melt, and how weather systems are changeable. It talks about the sands in the Sahara and how they blow all the way to Paris, it also states that it is largest dessert in the world. This movie is very informative about “Ice and Sand”.

In the movie “Ice and sand” it talks about the polar ice caps. These ice caps are located at the north and south poles of the Earth, and take up a large portion of the earth’s water. Ice caps fluctuate from year to year, growing and shrinking with weather changes. Greenhouse gasses are causing these ice caps to melt more and more every year though.

If the ice caps were to melt completely, it would raise our ocean level ten to twenty stories about what it is now. This would send places like Nova Scotia, Vancouver, and New York completely under water. Scientists are not really quite sure what will happen with green house gases, whether they will cause a flood from melting the ice caps, or whether it will send us into another ice age. If it were to send us into another ice age, only people in very southern countries would be likely to survive due to the extremely cold weather.

Scientists have determined that weather systems are changeable. Over a large amount of time, the earth’s tilt changes, causing the axis’s to tilt more one way then it used to, and thus changing the weather. Greenhouse gasses may also change the weather, making our climate either much hotter or much cooler. Ice caps and deserts have one thing in common, one small change in the weather can change them- and they will change the world.

The Sahara desert is known as the largest dessert in the world, it covers a third of the continent of Africa. The thing about the desert is that it is always changing, new vegetation is sprouting and animals are dying and being born. During the day the desert is very hot, about 50 degrees Celsius, but at night time temperatures can drop very low. In the night is when the desert rains, for temperatures are too hot during the day for clouds to accumulate above them, and water is limited so there isn’t much precipitation. Since it only rains 12 cm a year, all the plants and animals there have to be very good at conserving water.

Winds are picked up from the Sahara and blown all over the world. The warm winds pick up the sand and carry it across the Mediterranean picking up cool moisture. The wind blows an estimate 250 tons of sand off the Sahara. A lot of this wind is blown over Europe and Paris. When the sand mixes with the clouds in the winter, Paris ends up with its “pink” snow, which is beautiful. Winds determine all weather in the world. Convection currents are the currents that blow wind all around the word. Although they aren’t the only influence on the world’s weather, they are the main ones. The wind shapes the desert, grinds the rock, and forms sand.

The Sahara used to be at the bottom of a sea six million years ago. Then the Trade winds shifted and it all dried up. Rivers have gone underground, which makes the soil in the Sahara very good for growing; it is just hard to keep agriculture there because the heat is so high and you have to continuously water crops so they will not dry out. The winds are so hot and dry that they absorb up all the moisture from everything, the earth, the air, and the plants. It is very east to get dehydrated in the dessert. The wind is like a vacuum sucking up all the moisture.

Chad has one of the major fishing industries in Africa; the Chad Lake is shrinking however. Lake Chad, over many years, has shrunk to less than one tenth of its original size, which is astounding. There were huge lakes in the Sahara thousands of years ago because thousands of years ago, the Sahara was in the southern hemisphere.

All continents have shifted thousands kilometers over millions of years. Scientists say that at one point, there was just one big continent, and someday, that will happen again. Hieroglyphics show that at one point the Sahara was a very green and lush place, covered in plants and trees. There were many animals and humans to hint them. Over time it tuned into the now dry place it is. The Cyprus tree in the Sahara is said to be over 4000 billion years old! Now that’s a really old tree!

In the movie “Ice and sand” scientists talked about what might happen if the ice caps in the north and south poles melted. They talked about these concerns of greenhouse gasses causing either an ice age or major flooding, putting buildings in places such as New York and Nova Scotia way under sea level. It also talks about how weather systems are changeable, and the sands of the Sahara. It talks about the lakes in Chad, and their fishing industry. It talks about how much rainfall the Sahara gets each year, and what the typical temperature is. The movie “Ice and sand” is extremely informative. It tells you all about wind currents, ice, sand, and lakes. It tells you a lot of interesting things which will help me to better understand the world in which I live in.


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