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Greenhouse Gases Slowing Down Earth

Thanks to pollution, our days will be getting longer in the future. We could be slowing down the rotation of the Earth by steadily releasing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, according to a team of Belgian researchers. They used climate models to simulate a 1 percent increase in the primary greenhouse gas each year, a rise they said goes along with current trends, and found that there will be a shift in the Earth?s spin over the course of the next few decades.

?The Earth?s rotation is an interesting quantity as it is global. Meteorological data are mainly local,? says Michel Crucifix. ?Consequently, the Earth rotation is a useful tool for looking?at the effects of global climate change.?

They figured out how the extra gas will affect ocean currents, atmospheric winds and other meteorological patterns that influence the momentum of the Earth and found that the increase in carbon gas emissions could add 11 extra microseconds every ten years (a microsecond is 1 millionth of a second), unless changes in wind speed and atmospheric pressure somehow cancel each other out.

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