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The Earth is Rotating Slower and Climate Change May be to Blame

2 months ago
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The Earth is rotating slightly slower than ever before. Climate change is the reason behind this increased speed.

The Earth's speed means that official timekeepers may have to add a second to the length of one day before the end of this decade.

Climate Change Factors Affecting the Earth's Rotation

Many aspects of climate change are affecting the Earth's rotation speed. First, scientists point to the melting polar ice. As the ice turns into water, it naturally moves closer to the Earth's equator.

Duncan Agnew, a geophysicist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California, says you can picture it like a figure skater.

When the skater's arms are above her head and standing upright, the skater moves quickly. Alternatively, if the skater sticks out an arm or leg, the rate of spinning slows down.

He says the melting ice is like a skater sticking out an arm or leg, slowing the Earth's rotation.



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