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Latest Ice sheet Stories

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2008-11-06 09:30:00

A NASA-led research team has used satellite data to make the most precise measurements to date of changes in the mass of mountain glaciers in the Gulf of Alaska, a region expected to be a significant contributor to global sea level rise over the next 50-100 years.Geophysicist Scott Luthcke of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., and colleagues knew from well-documented research that changes in the cryosphere "“ glaciers, ice caps, and other parts of the globe covered...

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2008-10-31 08:40:00

Human activities are making both Antarctica and the Arctic less icy because of global warming, scientists said on Thursday. An international team published their findings in the recent Nature Geoscience journal. "We're able for the first time to directly attribute warming in both the Arctic and the Antarctic to human influences," said Nathan Gillett of England's University of East Anglia of a study he led with colleagues in the United States, Britain and Japan. The research team measured...

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2008-10-29 10:29:36

Scientists from the U.S., U.K. and Australia have teamed up to explore two of the last uncharted regions of Earth, the Aurora and Wilkes Subglacial Basins, immense ice-buried lowlands in Antarctica with a combined area the size of Mexico. The research could show how Earth's climate changed in the past and how future climate change will affect global sea level. Scientists believe the barely observed Aurora Subglacial Basin, which lies in East Antarctica, could represent the weak underbelly of...

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2008-09-05 12:55:00

A US team of researchers concluded that global sea levels are very unlikely to reach above 2m during this century. In fact, the speed of glaciers resulting in a rise over 2m is "physically untenable", researchers note in Friday's edition of the journal Science. Scientists say that news is still nothing to applaud. "Even a sea level rise of 20cm (8in) in a century will have quite dramatic implications," said Shad O'Neel from the US Geological Survey (USGS). "This work is in no way meant to...

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2008-08-29 08:55:00

Only changes in carbon dioxide levels are able to explain the transition from the mostly ice-free Greenland of three million years ago, to the ice-covered Greenland of today There have been many reports in the media about the effects of global warming on the Greenland ice-sheet, but there is still great uncertainty as to why there is an ice-sheet there at all. Reporting yesterday (28 August) in the journal Nature, scientists at the University of Bristol and the University of Leeds show that...

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2008-08-13 00:15:00

Four years of scientific research on ice core data has brought to light the warming trend in West Antarctica, the world's coldest climate.  According to the study, the West Antarctic warmed in response to higher temperatures in the tropical Pacific, which itself has been warming due to weather patterns including an El Nino event from 1939 to 1942 and greenhouse emissions from cars and factories. "An increasingly large part of the signal is becoming due to human activity," said the...

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2008-07-30 09:15:00

Eight square miles worth of giant ice sheets broke off an ice shelf in the Canadian Arctic last week, and scientists said on Tuesday that global warming could be to blame. Experts say temperatures in large parts of the Arctic have increased far faster than the global average in recent decades. In one of the northernmost parts of Canada, the ice broke away from the shelf on Ward Hunt Island, which is a small island just off giant Ellesmere Island. It was the largest fracture of its kind...

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2008-06-27 06:38:39

Predicting climate change depends on many factors not properly included in current forecasting models, such as how the major polar ice caps will move in the event of melting around their edges. This in turn requires greater understanding of the processes at work when ice is under stress, influencing how it flows and moves. The immediate objective is to model the flow of ice sheets and glaciers more accurately, leading in turn to better future predictions of global ice cover for use in climate...

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2008-05-09 08:55:00

An international group of scientists has swapped their comfortable offices for one of the most inhospitable environments on the planet to carry out a challenging field campaign that is seen as the key to ensuring the data delivered by ESA's ice mission CryoSat will be as accurate as possible.The scientists, mainly from Denmark, UK, Germany and Canada, are currently in the middle of CryoSat Validation Experiment (CryoVEx) 2008, an extensive three-week experiment program in the far north of...

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2008-05-08 09:30:00

Computer analyses of global climate have consistently overstated warming in Antarctica, concludes new research by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and Ohio State University. The study can help scientists improve computer models and determine if Earth's southernmost continent will warm significantly this century, a major research question because of Antarctica's potential impact on global sea-level rise."We can now compare computer simulations with observations...