Greenland ice loss continues to increase

by Richard on August 20, 2014

From the BBC

A new assessment from Europe’s CryoSat spacecraft shows Greenland to be losing about 375 cu km of ice each year.

Added to the discharges coming from Antarctica, it means Earth’s two big ice sheets are now dumping roughly 500 cu km of ice in the oceans annually.

“The contribution of both ice sheets together to sea level rise has doubled since 2009,” said Angelika Humbert from Germany’s Alfred Wegener Institute.

“To us, that’s an incredible number,” she told BBC News.

In its report to The Cryosphere journal, the AWI team does not actually calculate a sea-level rise equivalent number, but if this volume is considered to be all ice (a small part will be snow) then the contribution is likely to be on the order of just over a millimetre per year.

This is the latest study to use the precision altimetry data being gathered by the European Space Agency’s CryoSat platform.

Cryosat uses a radar instrument to measure the shape of polar ice surfaces
The satellite was launched in 2010 with a sophisticated radar instrument specifically designed to measure the shape of the polar ice sheets.

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Mark Byron 10.09.14 at 5:42 pm

… if this volume is considered to be all ice (a small part will be snow) then the contribution is likely to be on the order of just over a millimetre per year.

At that pace, the seas will rise an inch by 2040 or so.

Accepting the science here at face value points to a rather small problem, but that will make me sound like a “science denier.”

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