Research Paper: Cryosphere and Economy

Pages: 4 (1412 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 4  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Weather  ·  Buy This Paper

Cryosphere and Economy

The Cyroshpere describes collectively all forms of water that is frozen at the surface of the earth such as sea ice, glaciers, ice caps, ice sheets, rivers, snow cover permafrost, seasonal frozen ground and solid precipitation. Snow is precipitation that is made up of ice crystals. The snow crystals form when cold temperatures and humidity come together in the atmosphere. Snow continues to fall on the ground as long as air temperatures are below freezing point.

When temperatures go way below freezing point liquid water turns solid and this is what is known as ice.ice exists in glaciers, frozen ground, icebergs, sea ice, and ice shelves.sea ice is formed when the water found in oceans cools below freezing point. Glaciers are thick ice masses that are found on land.ice shelves are ice platforms that are formed in areas where ice sheets and glaciers move into oceans. Icebergs are ice chunks that break away from glaciers or ice shelves and move into the ocean. Frozen ground is part of the ground that contains frozen soil or rock. Permafrost is a situation where the ground remains frozen in a whole year.

The Cryosphere is a very important component in the climate change context since it is affected and also affects by temperature changes. These cold regions of the earth have an influence on the entire climate of the world. The Cycrosphere forms the centre of daily lives of people, animals and plants that live in these areas. When talking of the Cryosphere scientists imply that these are areas that water exists in solid forms where water freezes due to low temperatures and sub-sequentially water turns to ice.

Importance of the cryosphere

A significant proportion of the earth's land and ocean surface is covered by the cryosphere. The cryosphere holds a substantial amount of the total fresh water supply of the earth. About 77% of fresh water on earth is frozen. The cryosphere also impacts climate on a global perspective. Snow and ice have high albedo, meaning they reflect solar radiation back into the earth's space. 80-90% of the incident solar energy is reflected by ice and snow. The sunlight that is reflected back into the earth is not reabsorbed back into the earth as heat is therefore a requirement that there exists a high albedo since it acts as a cooling factor to the global climate system. There is as significant spatial extent of ice and snow therefore a considerable amount of solar energy is deflected and therefore the earth is protected from the extreme effects of global warming (Maurer, 2004).

Cold water has the capacity of holding more salt as compared to warm water, and then the polar sea water is often dense and therefore is seen to sink at the ocean's bottom. This then spreads across the globe and acts as a pump that is used to drive the circulation in oceans therefore enabling the transfer of energy across the equator and poles. The primary transfer of heat that gets to the poles originates from oceans there could be a decrease in polar temperatures at the poles if there was no influence for these actions of the oceans thereby stimulating increased glaciations and ice age periods increase. The Cyrosphere therefore cools down the planet, regulates the sea level globally, and stores stocks of carbon, acts as sole insulator from the temperatures that are subfreezing and the most important function being a seasonal -- rectified supply of water to humans for their consumption, nutrient transport, irrigation and waste disposal.

Relation between Cryosphere and economy

There exists a relationship between the cryosphere and the economy. The existence of the cryosphere is important to various sectors of the economy. Some aspects of the cryosphere affect the economy either directly or indirectly. Therefore the state and existence of this cryosphere has an impact on the economy. If the cryoshpere is in existence and stays in good condition then the sectors of the economy that depend on the cryosphere will remain intact and not be affected in any way. On the other hand, if the cryosphere changes in some way due to factors such as climatic change then the sectors of the economy that depend on the cryosphere/weather… [END OF PREVIEW]

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