By Anupum Pant

There’s green house gases and then there’s this nasty substance called cryoconite which not many of us have heard about. I certainly heard about it for the first time in a documentary I was watching the other day called chasing ice.

The texture and colour of this substance intrigued me and I wanted to find out more about it.

Cryconite is a dark sooty substance formed due to many man-made and natural pollutants coming together. Dust from as far as Asia, various rock particles, soot and microbes contribute to the formation of this substance. It comes and sits on the ice at and around the poles. A dark patch on the pristine white ice.

As it is dark, it absorbs the heat of the sun much better than the white ice. As a result, it melts ice much faster. So, wherever you have these black marks in the ice, they melt and go down to form certain patterns in the ice which look like the following.

Besides the green house gases we are making, this evil sooty substance is another one of those things that is making the ice at the poles and around it melt much faster.

Global warming is real. Take my word for it, or the statements of thousands of acclaimed scientists around the world. Don’t let anyone else convince you otherwise.

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