Don’t Let Glacial Melting Become Self-Fulfilling Doomsday Prophecy

Target: Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director of International Monetary Fund

Goal: Explore investment in plan to prevent economically debilitating natural disaster.

The world’s widest glacier has earned a notorious nickname in the past few years due to its potential for catastrophic sea level rise. The Thwaites Glacier—dubbed the Doomsday Glacier—already releases ice into the ocean by billions of tons. It alone pushes sea levels up by four percent every year. If it ever collapsed, which scientists warn is an ever-increasing possibility, sea levels would soar by two feet. And this glacier’s collapse would very likely destabilize the entire West Antarctic Ice Sheet. The ice sheet’s disintegration would have an even more devastating impact, propelling global sea rises ten feet past their current level. Massive planetary flooding that could displace close to 100 million people would be the tip of the iceberg, so to speak.

Thwaites and glaciers like it are melting at such a rapid pace because of relentlessly overheated sea waters. The world’s oceans are like sponges that absorb up to 90 percent of global warming impacts. Many researchers are coming to the conclusion that human inaction and sluggish efforts to curtail climate change contributors will lead to this glacier’s collapse sooner rather than later.

Geoengineers have begun proposing radical but, they say, needed measures to prevent this collapse. One recently unveiled proposal from Finland would see the development and deployment of a massive 60-plus-mile-wide seabed-anchored curtain to be built around the glacier. The structure would protect the glacier from simmering waters and enable its ice to grow thicker and more stable. Researchers are currently testing the curtain and its impacts on a smaller scale, but they will need a massive investment if their effort is to ever move forward.

Sign the petition below to call for a commitment that could literally help save the world.


Dear Managing Director Georgieva,

The continued decline of the Thwaites Glacier presents an imminent global disaster that cannot be ignored. This structure’s collapse could raise sea levels by ten feet worldwide, and you must realize the enormous consequences of such an event. Estimates say that the economic impacts alone will cost the planet 50 billion dollars per year per meter of sea level rise.

With a one-time investment of roughly the same amount of money, the world could help avert this crisis. A research team at Finland’s University of Lapland has proposed building a 60-mile-wide curtain structure around the glacier to stem off the damaging tide of heated waters. This structure would be anchored on the seabed and be removable if unintended effects resulted. And scientists are diligently testing how the structure might operate and how it might affect the glacier’s decline.

The world cannot afford to wait during a time when climate change effects are far outpacing efforts to stop them. Please explore this proposal and make an investment in the planet’s future.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: NASA

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