A basic geographic understanding will help. At the library you can get a GoogleEarth ‘satellite’s eye-view.’ From an overhead vista it is noticeable that the Continent is weird looking. Like a pie that had a bunch of sloppy pieces mauled out of it by some mythic left handed creation god. (The “earthobservatory.nasa.gov” website has better images, but GoogleEarth’s more fun.)
The remnant of the left side of the pie ~ strung out toward the nine and ten o’clock orientation ~ is the western peninsula: sight of dramatic temperature increases, ice shelf loss and increasing glacial flow. The Southern Ocean cuts deep into the continent along this peninsula, and it’s seasonal ice mass resembles the North Pole’s. The peninsula itself has only wisps of land breaking through 2,000 meters, than it rapidly decreases toward the ocean interface. The average temperature is reportedly -5C, with 0C being freezing.
Contrast to that, the unscathed right half of this continental pie. The majority of its mass lies between 2,500 & 4,000 meters elevation ~ with most of that being frozen water. It only dips below 2,000 meters on the oceanic fringe. Due to its elevation and being the world’s biggest ice cube the average temperature is reportedly -37C.
This is vital background information for us lay folks because it helps one judge others prognostications. For instance: dismissing ice shelf loss and other changes on the western peninsula as insignificant, because nothing comparable can be found on the eastern half of the continent is an obvious fraud.
~ you & me ~
~ fight back ~
~ educate yourself ~
For an image of Antarctica click.
For an informative site about Antarctica in general.