Doomed Ice of Greenland Will Raise Sea Levels by 10 Inches

Climate change-triggered glacier melting has escalated throughout the globe, threatening life in the coastal regions. Greenland has been the cause of the most worry as various studies made ice melting projections that are adding dangerous levels of water into the seas. A new study has found that the current melting of the Greenland ice sheet could raise sea levels by 10 inches.

What’s more disturbing is that even if humans immediately stopped burning fossil fuels, Greenland’s melting ice sheets will still contribute about a foot of sea level rise. Doomed ice – also known as zombie ice, is ice that is not receiving fresh snow even while continuing to be part of the parent ice sheet – is committed to melting away and escalating sea levels. Published in Nature Climate Change, the study states that Greenland has a lot of doomed ice, which is rapidly melting.

This new study has come as a surprise as the data differs a great deal from earlier research, which predicted much lower ice losses somewhere between two and five inches of sea-level rise by 2100.

Doomed Ice of Greenland Will Raise Sea Levels by 10 Inches

Image: Kerem Yucel/Agence France-Presse

Jason Box, a glaciologist at the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland who was the paper’s lead author, said that although there is no predicted timeline, the 10-inch increase could be higher if temperatures persevere to rise. The researchers studied the climactic snow line, or the border between a snow-covered and snow-free surface, on the ice sheet to determine the magnitude of the ice loss.

The line shifts every year in response to the temperatures. In a high-melt year, the snow line is pushed farther up the ice sheet, meaning the area that collects snow gets smaller over time. This change creates an irrevocable disequilibrium.

The relationship between Greenland ice and rising sea levels has piqued the interest of glaciologists and climate change experts alike. If humankind fails to halt the rising temperatures, the world will soon be swallowed by oceans.

Via: The New York Times

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