Science Past for February 14, 1959

  Bubbles of “ancient air” trapped in polar ice may reveal whether the modern industrial world is polluting the atmosphere with carbon dioxide. The air bubbles were found in cores drilled at depths down to 1,345 feet in the Greenland and Antarctic ice caps. The ice originated as snows that fell as long ago as ten centuries. James Bender of the U.S. Army Snow, Ice and Permafrost Research Establishment, Wilmette, Ill., said the bubbles are now being analyzed for their carbon dioxide content. If the analysis shows a lower percentage of the gas in the ancient atmosphere and an increase in later years, this will indicate more carbon dioxide enveloping the earth due to industrialization.

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