Monday, April 19th 2010, 6:01 AM EDT
Climate change could spark more ''hazardous'' geological events such as volcanoes, earthquakes and landslides, scientists have warned.
In papers published by the Royal Society, researchers warned that melting ice, sea level rises and even increasingly heavy storms and rainfall - predicted consequences of rising temperatures - could affect the Earth's crust.
Even small changes in the environment could trigger activity such as earthquakes and tsunamis.
And some evidence suggests the consequences of climate change were already having an impact on geological activity in places such as Alaska, researchers writing in the journal the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A said.
Updated below in the comments section by Piers Corbyn
Bill McGuire, of the Aon Benfield UCL Hazard Research Centre at University College London, and the author of a review in the journal of research in the area, said warming temperatures melted ice from ice sheets and glaciers and increased the amount of water in the oceans.
As the land ''rebounds'' back up once the weight of the ice has been removed - which could be by as much as a kilometre in places such as Greenland and Antarctica - then if, in the worst case scenario, all the ice were to melt - it could trigger earthquakes
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