Current melting of Greenland's ice mimicks 1920s-1940s event
Date: Monday, December 10, 2007 @ 23:24:00 MST
Topic: Science


Two researchers spent months scouring through old expedition logs and reports, and reviewing 70-year-old maps and photos before making a surprising discovery.

They found that the effects of the current warming and melting of Greenland 's glaciers that has alarmed the world's climate scientists occurred in the decades following an abrupt warming in the 1920s.


Their evidence reinforces the belief that glaciers and other bodies of ice are exquisitely hyper-sensitive to climate change and bolsters the concern that rising temperatures will speed the demise of that island's ice fields, hastening sea level rise.

The work, reported at this week's annual meeting of the American Geophysical Uni0n in San Francisco , may help to discount critics' notion that the melting of Greenland 's glaciers is merely an isolated, regional event.

They recently recognized from using weather station records from the past century that temperatures in Greenland had warmed in the 1920s at rates equivalent to the recent past. But they hadn't confirmed that the island's glaciers responded to that earlier warming, until now.

“What's novel about this is that we found a wealth of information from low-tech sources that has been overlooked by most researchers,” explained Jason Box, an associate professor of geography at Ohio State University and a researcher with the Byrd Polar Research Center. Many researchers, he says, rely heavily on information from satellites and other modern sources...

Full story: http://www.physorg.com/news116505069.html
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