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View Full Version : Greenland Ice Loss Doubled in the Past Decade



Fraser
2006-Feb-18, 04:52 AM
SUMMARY: According to new research published by NASA scientists, Greenland's glaciers are losing ice at an accelerating rate. In the period from 1996 to 2005, the island's glaciers doubled the amount of ice they're shedding annually into the world's oceans. This acceleration is due to a global rise in temperature. Once Greenland's glaciers are all gone, scientists estimate world sea levels will have risen approximately 7 metres (23 feet).

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/ice_loss_greenland.html)
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JESMKS
2006-Feb-22, 09:22 PM
Wouldn't an ice block's rate of melting increase as the block got smaller in size because it would have a less cooling effect on the surrounding air mass? If so, wouldn't the rate of glacier melting on Greenland increase or accellerate as the glaciers shrunk in size? I think the Earth is still in the recovery phase of the Ice Age. If you lived in central Greenland, you would still be in the Ice Age.
Jack

aurora
2006-Feb-22, 09:35 PM
I think the Earth is still in the recovery phase of the Ice Age.

If so, then it has been fairly flat during the interglacial, with the exception of the last couple of hundred years.

Of course, you could think of it that way regardless of what the climate is doing, since we are not currently in an ice age.

JESMKS
2006-Feb-24, 05:40 PM
Like the glaciers in Glacier National Park, the Greenland Ice Cap is a melting remnant of the once gigantic ice cap that covered large parts of North America and Europe. A glacier grows in size when snow accumulation exceeds melting, and shrinks in size when melting exceeds accumulation. There is often a lag between the time of accumulation and it's effect at the terminous of the glacier. Prior to the Ice Age a large part of Greenland was free of ice. I don't beleive that man, no matter what he tries, will be able to halt the Earth's continuing recovery from the Ice Age.

aurora
2006-Feb-24, 08:43 PM
I don't beleive that man, no matter what he tries, will be able to halt the Earth's continuing recovery from the Ice Age.

That's an odd statement, considering that the evidence is pointing toward accelerated warming in part due to human activity.

Certainly, humans are currently capable of affecting climate. There's debate about how great the current affect is.

Fram
2006-Feb-24, 09:29 PM
It's rather easy to look at the growth and shrink rate of glaciers since the last Ice Age, and most of them (there are, as always, exceptions) are shrinking now faster than anytime during the last thousand years, and the current (i.e. last decade) shrinking is clearly greater than before. To blame this one on "coming out of the ice age" is a bit too easy, and does not explain the acceleration at all.
Info on the retreat of glaciers (specific cases) can e.g. be found here (http://faculty.washington.edu/scporter/Rainierglaciers.html), here (http://www.xs4all.nl/~jzeebe1//Zeeberg_Holocene.pdf) (15 page pdf), here (http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/full/97/4/1406) (an article from the PNAS from 2000), and here (http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov/topstory/20020530glaciers.html) (a NASA article from 2002).