Enhanced melting of Northern Greenland in a warm climate

Nov 12, 2012
Enhanced melting of Northern Greenland in a warm climate
Simulated ice thickness for the Greenland ice sheet for the last interglacial period (~126 thousand years before present). This was the most recent period with relatively warm temperatures at high northern latitudes, not unlike what is expected for the 21st century from projections of global warming. Circles show locations with ice core data.

In a new study from the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, scientists show how the northern part of the Greenland ice sheet might be very vulnerable to a warming climate.

The study is based on simulations with a state of the art and a dynamic ice sheet model of the last interglacial warm period. This period (~126 thousand years before present) is the most recent in Earth's history with temperatures warmer than present in the Arctic region, and has frequently been used as an analogue for a future greenhouse climate. During this period we know that the Greenland ice sheet was significantly reduced in size compared to today.

The show an extreme retreat of the northern part of the in response to the warm interglacial climate, a climate not unlike what we expect on Greenland in the very near future. This result is surprising, as temperatures on the north part of Greenland are colder than in the south. However, increased precipitation compensates for much of the increased melting of the southern part of the ice sheet in a warmer climate.

Today, most scientists expect that the southern part of the Greenland ice sheet is most vulnerable to a . In particular, there are several studies monitoring ice streams and fjord temperatures along the coast of southern Greenland. However, the new results indicate that the northern part of Greenland, at the fringe of the Arctic Ocean, should be particularly closely. In this area part of the ice sheet is grounded below sea level, and can respond rapidly once it starts receding.

If the were to melt completely, it would result in an increase in mean by about 7 meters. However, the sea level impact of the observed recent accelerated melt of the ice sheet, as well as future projections of melt from the ice sheet, are not implemented by the current generation of included in the IPCC effort.

The study by Andreas Born at the University of Bern and Kerim Nisancioglu at the Bjerknes Centre and University of Bergen was published this Monday in the EGU journal The Cryosphere.

Explore further: Not all phytoplankton in the ocean need to take their vitamins

More information: Born, A. and Nisancioglu, K. H.: Melting of Northern Greenland during the last interglaciation, The Cryosphere, 6, 1239-1250, doi:10.5194/tc-6-1239-2012, 2012. http://www.the-cryosphere.net/6/1239/2012/

Provided by Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research

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The Lords Little Helper
1 / 5 (1) Nov 29, 2012
Less Forest less Oxygen this is why the moon. That has no Oxygen is very cold on the side with out Sun Light, And hot as ever on the side with Sun Light. Way too cold and too hot to live there. You would need at least 10 times the Energy we use on Earth to even live there and life on the Moon would be very short.

With no blank of Oxygen to lessen or reduce the Sun's UV Rays and Solar Wind they are deadly there on our Moon. Every Mt. Climber and Aircraft Pilot knows the higher you go the thinner the Oxygen and colder it gets.

The Bad Weather Storms now are Babies compared to what is to come.
They will get even bigger and worse less Oxygen the more UV Rays to the Earth and more Water molecules will evaporate and go up into the Earth's Atmosphere. Less Oxygen the colder without sun light and hotter with it.

If every living person on Earth were to Plant A Tree Today we might have a chance.
The Earth's Atmosphere Blanket surrounding it protects life on Earth as Our Lord and GOD will a