LONDON, Thursday (AAP-Reuter). — A new ice age could grip the world within the lifetime of present generations, Britons were warned yesterday.

The warning came in a major television documentary showing that international scientists have changed their minds about the speed with which the world’s “weather machine” can change gear. “The threat of a new ice age must now stand along side nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and mistery for mankind,” said science writer Nigel Cal der, who compiled the program for the British Broadcasting Corporation.

Latest studies show that ice ages are much more frequent than scientists once thought — and the next one seems to be overdue. According to one theory, “Toronto, Leningrad, and Glasgow ought by now to have disappeared under thick ice sheets.”

There is also evidence that its onset could be dramatically sudden, a “snow blitz” rather than the gradual spreading of glaciers, Mr Calder said.

The picture was complicated by a cycle of miniature ice ages.

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Source: AAP-Reuter (The Canberra Times)

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