This rapid melting is reshaping the Greenland coastal region, potentially altering the ecosystems of people and animals along the country’s coast.
New research published above Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth’s Surface on October 27 it was discovered that the Greenland glaciers changed the way glaciers flow and where they flow into the sea. These changes may affect the loss of ice from Greenland in the future, the researchers wrote.
Recent studies have shown that Greenland is losing 500 gigatons of ice a year, more than new snow blows can be added. The amount of ice lost annually today is 14% more than it was between 1985 and 1999. And the melted water from this loss is lubricating the ice so that it slides more easily on the platform below, accelerate the melting process to continue.
The new study, led by research scientist Twila Moon of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, analyzed the changes in more detail.
Moon and her colleagues combined two types of data from satellite imagery: the speed at which the ice floes travel and where glaciers end on their descent. When a glacier receded, its terminal did not reach the valley as far as it once was.
First, they found that glacial retreat is now the norm in Greenland. The researchers wrote in their paper that eight-nine percent of the glaciers have retreated significantly over the past decade. There has been little progress.
However, these reshaping of glaciers leads to many changes in the glacial movement. Some glaciers are accelerating, and are flowing faster toward the sea, the researchers found; others flow more slowly. And in a few years to a decade, a single glacier can do both, depending on the surrounding terrain.
Glaciers are glaciers, so their flow is determined in part not only by their rate at which they melt, but also by what’s below them.
For example, the Kjer and Hayes glaciers in northwest Greenland accelerated at their main stores into the sea from the 1990s to 2010, but other ice shops pouring into the ocean nearby slowed down. In one case, the southern part of one of those stores accelerated, then slowed down again.
Researchers have seen evidence of narrowing ice channels, rerouting the pathways of melting water and even the slowdown of new ice that causes glaciers to become stuck in place, more like lakes than they are. river.
All these local variations could be crucial to how quickly the Greenland ice will disappear in the future. The changes will also likely affect how and where nutrients enter the water, where fjords and ice are present, and where fresh water is.
Study co-author Alex Gardner, a research scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, said: “As the ocean and atmosphere in the Arctic warm, we can It is evident that the flow of ice into the ocean accelerates and the edge of the ice receding. statement.
“However, when we take a closer look, we can see the complexity of how individual glaciers react, due to the differences in the ocean water properties in front of the glacier, the foundation and the until it is underneath, and how the flow of water is routed below Understanding the complexity of the individual glacial reaction is critical to improving the prediction of ice change. and the associated sea level rise will come to our shores. “
This article was originally published by Live Science. Read the GOC text here.