More precise measurements show West Antarctica ice melt accelerating

February 26, 2018 by Bob Yirka, Phys.org report
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

A team of researchers from NASA and several other institutions in the U.S. and Europe has found evidence of ice melt accelerating in some western parts of Antarctica. In their paper published in the journal Cryosphere, the group describes the new technology they used to study ice melt in Antarctica and what they found.

As the planet continues to warm, and humans continue to pump into the atmosphere, scientists are finding more climatic, geographic and biologic changes that are taking place. One of those changes is in the colder parts of the planet, including Antarctica, of course. In this new effort, the researchers used what they describe as cutting-edge technology to process multiple thousands of images from satellites and used the data to chart ice-sheet motion with more precision than other technologies. The images produced by the new system show ice-sheet movement using colors—from reds to yellows—the lighter the yellow, the faster the ice was seen to move.

The researchers noted that several parts of western Antarctica are experiencing acceleration of ice loss, rather than the consistent ice loss seen on the eastern parts of Antarctica. In practical terms, this means that each year, less ice that melts in the summer is replaced by winter snows, leaving less ice in total—and the pace of this process is speeding up. They note also that this is particularly alarming because prior research has shown that much of the ice in the western part of Antarctica is unstable, which means that large swaths could slip into the sea, causing a dramatic and relatively speedy rise in worldwide ocean levels. If the whole western ice sheet goes, they further note, the world could see rise as much as three meters.

Some of the areas identified in the new images are the same parts of western Antarctica that have made headlines in recent years as major calving events have occurred, highlighting changes taking place. An increase in calving, the researchers note, can be problematic, placing large regions of ice at increasing risk of melting.

Explore further: Stronger winds heat up West Antarctic ice melt

More information: Alex S. Gardner et al. Increased West Antarctic and unchanged East Antarctic ice discharge over the last 7 years, The Cryosphere (2018). DOI: 10.5194/tc-12-521-2018

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Steve Case
1 / 5 (19) Feb 26, 2018
Antarctica is well below freezing nearly everywhere nearly all of the time. It's not melting.

Steve Case - Milwaukee, WI
mackita
1 / 5 (8) Feb 26, 2018
Deep bore into Antarctica Ross shelf finds freezing ice, not melting as expected The undersides of ice shelves are usually smooth due to gradual melting. But as the camera passed through the bottom of the hole, it showed the underside of the ice adorned with a glittering layer of flat ice crystals—like a jumble of snowflakes—evidence that in this particular place, sea water is actually freezing onto the base of the ice instead of melting it.
Steve Case
1 / 5 (12) Feb 26, 2018
On a Google image search of "temperature map Antarctica" here's the first one up:

http://www.thecol...this.jpg
gkam
4.4 / 5 (19) Feb 26, 2018
I hope I do not hurt any feelings by saying I believe the professional scientists over some anonymous internet poster.

Political prejudice is a terrible basis for making scientific conclusions.
rrwillsj
4.7 / 5 (13) Feb 26, 2018
gkam, the other commentators remind me of the old skits about the boastful little boy. Who was double-dared by his friends to walk through the graveyard at midnight.

Reluctant but determined not to be called yellow by the other boys. He sneaks in.

As he gets further inside, his vivid imagination begins to play tricks on him.

He mutters "I ain't afraid of no spooks!" Then he starts to whistle, cause everyone knows, ghosts can't stand whistling.

Frighten of the imaginary spirits hounding him. He rushes forward for the exit. When he suddenly trips over a sunken tombstone and breaks his fool neck!

He was afraid of fantasies. And failed to be afraid of reality!
Zzzzzzzz
5 / 5 (8) Feb 26, 2018
Antarctica is well below freezing nearly everywhere nearly all of the time. It's not melting.

Steve Case - Milwaukee, WI


This unfortunate idiot is completely lost in delusion. He has taken to fecal regurgitation......
antigoracle
1.3 / 5 (12) Feb 26, 2018
LMAO....The only place where the AGW Cult can find GloBULL warming is exactly where there is intense geothermal activity.
Caliban
5 / 5 (14) Feb 26, 2018
LMAO....The only place where the AGW Cult can find GloBULL warming is exactly where there is intense geothermal activity.


goaticle,

I challenge you --for the dozenth time, at least-- to provide a citation or link to ANY peer-reviewed study that supports your implied claim that geothermal activity is anything more than a tiny contributing factor to the accelerating melting of the WAIS --much less a MAJOR driver of the melting.

Now --piss off.
Turgent
1 / 5 (10) Feb 26, 2018
Antarctica is well below freezing nearly everywhere nearly all of the time. It's not melting.

The physical attributes of water, ice, and snow supports the argument that Antarctic ice is not melting.

1. The temperatures of Antarctica have been well below freezing for millions of years.

2. The temperature of the ice can assumed to be well below freezing.

3. Snow is a very good insulator.

4. Snow reflects at least all visible light, not absorbing the heat.

5. Ice is a good insulator.

6. Substantial energy is required to heat ice.

7. In order to go through the phase transition of ice to water -0 to +0 a very substantial amount of energy is required.

8. Assume the all Antarctic ice and snow has warmed by 2 C due to GW.

Cont
Turgent
1 / 5 (10) Feb 26, 2018
That isn't enough to get anywhere near melting. Ice has a very small coefficient of thermal expansion. The best we could expect is a small increase is the growth of the ice shelves.

Is there a flaw in this argument?

This sounds AGW Porn.
mackita
1 / 5 (6) Feb 26, 2018
I hope I do not hurt any feelings by saying I believe the professional scientists over some anonymous internet poster
But what if this anonymous internet poster just cites the work of professional scientists?
Da Schneib
4.6 / 5 (9) Feb 26, 2018
This article cites professional scientists, @macurinetherapy.

Maybe you forgot.
Da Schneib
4.6 / 5 (11) Feb 26, 2018
Deniers aside, this is not good news. If the WAIS goes, sea level rise will affect the global economy along the coasts, areas where a majority of the economic activity in the world occurs.
Nik_2213
5 / 5 (12) Feb 26, 2018
#T, you forgot to mention that the surrounding ocean, which is NOT frozen below the seasonal ice, is undercutting the ice shelves...
tblakely1357
1 / 5 (11) Feb 26, 2018
Strange, I coulda swore that there were numerous predictions that our coastlines would be many feet underwater by now. Oh well, past predictions are memory holed for new ones.

GW is a non-falsifiable theory that showers money upon 'right' thinking scientists by governments who love the idea of a 'scientific' reason to expand their power over the prols.
Turgent
1 / 5 (9) Feb 26, 2018
Da Sch

Deniers aside, this is not good news. If the WAIS goes, sea level rise will affect the global economy along the coasts, areas where a majority of the economic activity in the world occurs.


Being that the preponderance of the WAIS is below sea level and ice shrinks as it melts, how much new beach front property will be available?
greenonions1
5 / 5 (11) Feb 26, 2018
Steve
It's not melting


Well - glad you and the other gem stones in the comment section can clear that up. The scientists who are studying it thought that it was. Maybe you can write them a letter - or give them a call...

https://www.natur...week.com
FieryFly
5 / 5 (9) Feb 26, 2018
Both Poles work in tandem of each other.. as does the weather patterns.. With the rise of temperatures across the Arctic this winter, we may very well see a up-tic of melting on the southern pole as well. More relevant research & real time monitoring of the southern pole needs to be done. We need satellites monitoring both poles. It will get worse before it gets better.
Caliban
5 / 5 (13) Feb 26, 2018
Strange, I coulda swore that there were numerous predictions that our coastlines would be many feet underwater by now. Oh well, past predictions are memory holed for new ones.

GW is a non-falsifiable theory that showers money upon 'right' thinking scientists by governments who love the idea of a 'scientific' reason to expand their power over the prols.


Save your swears, blackety.

Since it appears that you suffer from a severely compromised memory, why don't you see if you can locate any first-person quote from any climate scientist making such a claim?

Can't or won't do it?

Then piss off.
guptm
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2018
But the original paper title is: "Increased West Antarctic and unchanged East Antarctic ice discharge". Stop fooling people!!
mackita
1 / 5 (8) Feb 27, 2018
This is well known story: Gravity data show that Antarctic ice sheet is melting increasingly faster – but never mind the active volcanic region under the ice. Numerous volcanoes exist in Marie Byrd Land, a highland region of West Antarctica. High heat flow through the crust in this region may influence the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.
There is another support for these observations, for example: New paper finds West Antarctic glacier likely melting from geothermal heat below
mackita
1 / 5 (8) Feb 27, 2018
Note that if we subtract the ice melting at the west Antarctic, then the whole Antarctica gains the ice instead of losing - being the continent insulated from geothermal heat. This explains, why global warming applies to north half of globe only - it comes from bottom, not from air.
gkam
3 / 5 (6) Feb 27, 2018
Has anybody noticed how Deniers are the same folk as Birthers and those who fell for "WMD!"?
rrwillsj
3.4 / 5 (5) Feb 27, 2018
Well gkam the cranks are busy cranking up their deceptive agitprop campaign denying reality. They lack the competency to upgrade their ignorant ravings when faced with empirical evidence.

."... he's also a very self-assured man. Arrogant even. I'd wager he imagined that his planning was quite thorough. Even if he did consider the possibility of error he would have dismissed it as impossible. A man like him doesn't make mistakes. ..."

An accurate description of the condone-mongers infesting these comments.
gkam
3 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2018
Political prejudice is a terrible criterion for evaluating science, . . or any part of reality.

"WMD!", anyone?
Turgent
2.3 / 5 (6) Feb 27, 2018
Have any of the mathematically impaired critics even looked at the paper or read this paper at https://www.the-c...018.pdf? Don't bother it contains statistics, calculus, and vector algebra. It does not address the physical attributes of ice. Being ice flow rate is a key component of the paper; it seems that at least the plasticity or flow rate relative to overhead weight would have been figured in. Rather complex paper, which I did not try to understand in detail.
Windchaser
5 / 5 (7) Feb 27, 2018
"1. The temperatures of Antarctica have been well below freezing for millions of years."

If you read the article, you'll see they're talking about West Antarctica, where it definitely has not been well below freezing for millions of years.

It should be pretty obvious that the ocean on these coasts is not below freezing in the summer time. I mean, you can look at the pictures -- see that open water? Not freezing.

The ice flows downhill, into the sea. There, it melts, or it breaks off, is carried away, and melts.
Windchaser
5 / 5 (7) Feb 27, 2018
See this article from Reuters:

"Antarctica hits record high temperature at balmy 63.5°F"

Hmm. Kinda seems like some parts of Antarctica have *not* been below freezing for all of the last few million years. Either that, or our thermometers are *really* off.

https://www.reute...BN1684I7
Turgent
1.7 / 5 (6) Feb 27, 2018
OK, however context is needed. "The heat record for the broader Antarctic region, defined as anywhere south of 60 degrees latitude, was 19.8°C (67.6°F) on Jan. 30, 1982 on Signy Island in the South Atlantic". Note it is 60 degrees S latitude (far N) and is an island. It really shouldn't count as representative of the Antarctic land mass. In all likelihood the Antarctic Circumpolar Current went below 60 degrees and allowed more temperate waters and air in.

"And the warmest temperature recorded on the Antarctic plateau, above 2,500 meters (8,202 feet), was -7.0°C (19.4°F) on Dec. 28, 1980, it said." This is an extreme, not the average, and it is still below freezing. Such a temporary extreme is not going to effect that ice.

Please see my first comment. Part of the point I tried to make first comment was that the ice is not really affected by surface temps. In all likelihood it is the same temp at the far point of the ice shelf as it was when it left the land.
mackita
4 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2018
Arctic warming: scientists alarmed by 'crazy' temperature rises An alarming heatwave in the sunless winter Arctic is causing blizzards in Europe and forcing scientists to reconsider even their most pessimistic forecasts of climate change. Although it could yet prove to be a freak event, the primary concern is that global warming is eroding the polar vortex, the powerful winds that once insulated the frozen north. The north pole gets no sunlight until March, but an influx of warm air has pushed temperatures in Siberia up by as much as 35C above historical averages this month. Greenland has already experienced 61 hours above freezing in 2018 - more than three times as many hours as in any previous year.
antigoracle
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2018
LMAO....The only place where the AGW Cult can find GloBULL warming is exactly where there is intense geothermal activity.


goaticle,

I challenge you --for the dozenth time, at least-- to provide a citation or link to ANY peer-reviewed study that supports your implied claim that geothermal activity is anything more than a tiny contributing factor to the accelerating melting of the WAIS --much less a MAJOR driver of the melting.

Now --piss off.


A Chicken Little Jackass brays above.
https://phys.org/...ice.html
Caliban
5 / 5 (6) Feb 28, 2018
LMAO....The only place where the AGW Cult can find GloBULL warming is exactly where there is intense geothermal activity.


goaticle,

I challenge you --for the dozenth time, at least-- to provide a citation or link to ANY peer-reviewed study that supports your implied claim that geothermal activity is anything more than a tiny contributing factor to the accelerating melting of the WAIS --much less a MAJOR driver of the melting.

Now --piss off.


A Chicken Little Jackass brays above.
https://phys.org/...ice.html


goaticle,

I've already read this article.

If you had, you would know that nowhere does it attribute geothermal heat as the primary --or even a significant-- driver of accelerating melt for the WAIS.

The fact is, your stupidiosity is unabashed. IOW, you are too stupid to even understand that you are stupid.

Try breathing through you nose for a change.

Now, piss off.
gkam
5 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2018
"A Chicken Little Jackass brays above."

Goaticle, please go back to Stormfront.

Or RT.
Porgie
1 / 5 (6) Mar 01, 2018
This is a crock. It does not. It shows spring is coming that's all. How can they sleep at night lying like this?
TechnoCreed
5 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2018
This article is based on a study that compiled ice flow data from 2013 to 2015 in comparison to a similar study of ice flow using data from 2008.

So.
This is a crock. It does not. It shows spring is coming that's all. How can they sleep at night lying like this?
Who would make such a simplistic comment other than a simple.
Turgent
1 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2018
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/27/arctic-warming-scientists-alarmed-by-crazy-temperature-rises?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other An alarming heatwave .


My only concern with this article is it cites M. Mann, a rather biased vested interest in promoting AGW and CC.
mackita
1 / 5 (2) Mar 01, 2018
The inequality and dynamic of global warming in certain areas could soon present problem even for alarmists convinced of anthropogenic origin of climate change.
mackita
1 / 5 (3) Mar 03, 2018
Are penguins really dying because of global warming? Previously unknown supercolony of penguins discovered in Danger Islands. Readers may remember this story from last year, where Chris Turney, leader of the ill fated "ship of fools" Spirit of Mawson expedition blamed the dreaded "climate change" as the reason. Later Discover Magazine ran an article that suggested Turney was full of Penguin Poop.
gkam
not rated yet Mar 03, 2018
It is warming.

Be prepared.
Turgent
1 / 5 (2) Mar 03, 2018
Its Gaia balancing.
Turgent
1 / 5 (3) Mar 03, 2018
88% of floating ice is below waterline. Ice shrinks 8% when it melts. That yields a net volume increase of 4%. Hard to get to scared of the WAIS melting.
barakn
5 / 5 (4) Mar 03, 2018
88% of floating ice is below waterline. Ice shrinks 8% when it melts. That yields a net volume increase of 4%. -Turgent

Somebody doesn't understand Archimedes' principle. Please check up on it and then come back and apologize for presenting completely made-up numbers.
Turgent
1 / 5 (1) Mar 04, 2018
I don't see this even in light of considering displacement. Simplified. consider the entire mass of ice under water. It would still lose 8% of its volume.

Where is the error? Thanks?
mackita
1 / 5 (3) Mar 04, 2018
The rising of water surface levels due to melting of ice is quite minute. In addition, most of glaciers are sinking continental plates: if their ice will melt then the continents will be lifted due to buoyancy of litospheric plates.
Turgent
1 / 5 (3) Mar 04, 2018
This is well illustrated by the Labrador and Scandinavian peninsulas. I would expect this might have as significant an effect on sea lever rise as ice melts. However, this could be a net zero impact as other areas sink back to post glaciation levels. Gaia is always hiding in the weeds. That is many complex systems have an equilibrium, like a strange attractor.

While I don't know if this is significant, water reaches is highest density and lowest volume as it goes to 4 C. The change between 0 C and 4 C is .015%, however that is relative to the volume of the oceans.
barakn
not rated yet Mar 15, 2018
I don't see this even in light of considering displacement. Simplified. consider the entire mass of ice under water. It would still lose 8% of its volume.

Where is the error? Thanks?

So you have floating ice, but somehow only the part that is underwater melts, the above water part remains as ice and remains above the water's surface?
Turgent
1 / 5 (1) Mar 15, 2018
Piss off

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