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Rapid Degradation of West Antarctic Ice Underway

 

END of COLD: ANTARCTIC ICE

Antarctic from Space
From Big Ice Hole research, beautiful image from NASA Scientific Visulation Studio
From Big Ice Hole research, beautiful image from NASA Scientific Visulation Studio

 

Rapid Degradation of West Antarctic Ice Underway

Study finds 24% of West Antarctic Ice is now Unstable,
American Geophysical Union, May 16, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

"In only 25 years, ocean melting has caused ice thinning to spread across West Antarctica so rapidly that a quarter of its glacier ice is now affected, according to a new study."

"Antarctica's ice sheet has thinned by up to 122 meters in places, with the most rapid changes occurring in West Antarctica where ocean melting has triggered glacier imbalance. "

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Brunt Ice Shelf about to Calve

 

BRUNT ICE SHELF

The Edge of Cold
This is the the edge of the Brunt Ice Shelf, Jan de Rydt, Northumbria University.
This is the the edge of the Brunt Ice Shelf, Jan de Rydt, Northumbria University.

 

Natural Cycles of Antarctic Ice

Large Antarctic Ice Shelf, home to a UK research station, is about to break apart,
Northumbria University, April 5, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Brunt Ice Shelf

“...150m to 250m thick…twice the size of New York City - is expected to break away from the Brunt Ice Shelf in as little as a few months, when two large cracks which have been growing over the past seven years meet.”

“...there is no indication from our research that this particular event is related to climate change.”

“...this type of event is historically consistent and part of the natural cycle and movement of the ice shelf.”

 

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Extreme Antarctic Events Common Source of Annual Averages

 

SNOW, ICE, EXTREME WEATHER & CHANGE

Percent of Annual Precip Deposited by Extreme Events
circular map, showing percentage of annual precip brought by EPEs, by British Antarctic Survey.
The contours and colours show the percentage of the annual snowfall that comes from the extremes, here taken as the top 10% of daily snowfall amounts, credit to BAS.

 

Extreme Events Common Source of Annual Averages

Antarctic snowfall dominated by a few extreme snowstorms,
British Antarctic Survey, March 25, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Extreme Precipitation Events (EPEs)

This “...study reveals the importance of a small number of intense storms around Antarctica in controlling the amount of snow falling across the continent.”

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New Mechanisms and Processes of Antarctic Glacial Melting Found in Big Ice Hole

OCEANS, WATER, & ICE on the Bottom of the Planet

 Antarctica from Space, September 21, 2005
Antarctica from Space, September 21, 2005, NASA Scientific Visulation Studio.
Credit to NASA Scientific Visulation Studio

 

New Mechanisms and Processes of Antarctic Glacial Melting Found

Huge Cavity in Antarctic Glacier Signals Rapid Decay,
NASA, January 30, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Ice Hole
“A gigantic cavity — two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall — growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is one of several disturbing discoveries reported in a new NASA-led study...”

In a Big Ice Hole in the Thwaites Glacier
 NASA/OIB/Jeremy Harbeck

Credits: NASA/OIB/Jeremy Harbeck

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2018 ADVENTURE: Two Explorers Set Out to Cross Antarctica

Keep Updated

TRACKING RUDD

Pre-Start Article, below

Started November 3rd

12 miles to South Pole on Dec 12

Completed on 12-28-18, 56 Days across Antarctica via South Pole

Tracking Captain Lou Rudd, from Shackleton Clothing, London.

 

National Geo End of Trip Article, 12-28-18

 

 

TRACKING O'BRADY

Pre-Start Article, BI, November 4, below

Started November 3rd

3 miles to South Pole on Dec 11

Completed on 12-26-18, 53 Days across Antarctica via South Pole

“...follow his GPS tracker in real time or check his posts on Instagram.”

 

WaPo End of Trip Article, 12-27-18

 

 

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Moderate warming could melt East Antarctic Ice Sheet

OCEANS, ICE, & WATER

The Old, Cold One is Going Away. Eventually...

Moderate warming could melt East Antarctic Ice Sheet,
University of Queensland, September 19, 2018.

MAIN POINTS

"Antarctica is around twice the size of Australia, with ice sheets several kilometres thick and containing around half of the world's fresh water."

"The East Antarctic Ice Sheet covers about two thirds of the area, and because its base is largely above sea level it was generally thought to be less sensitive to warming climates than the adjacent West Antarctic Ice Sheet.”

"However, some areas - like the Wilkes Land Subglacial Basin, directly south of Australia - are below sea level and contain enough ice to raise global sea levels by several metres.”

"We found that the most extreme changes in the ice sheet occurred during two interglacial periods 125,000 and 400,000 years ago, when global sea levels were several metres higher than they are today"

“...the findings were extremely concerning for humanity.”

"The evidence we have suggests that with the predicted 2°C warming in Antarctica - if sustained over a couple of millennia - the sheet would start melting in these locations."

 

more, associated research report

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East Antarctic Breakdown: The Totten Glacier is Melting

OCEANS, ICE, and WATER

East Antarctic Breakdown

The Totten

Glaciers in East Antarctica also 'imperiled' by climate change,
University of California - Irvine, July 26, 2018.

E Antarctica Losing It

"...found evidence of significant mass loss in East Antarctica's Totten and Moscow University glaciers, which, if they fully collapsed, could add 5 meters (16.4 feet) to the global sea level."

"...estimate that between April 2002 and September 2016, the two glaciers lost about 18.5 billion tons of ice per year - equivalent to 0.7 millimeters (0.03 inches) of global sea level rise over the analyzed time period."

Not Stable Anymore...

"Making up roughly two-thirds of the Antarctic continent, East Antarctica has been viewed by polar researchers as less threatened by climate change than the volatile ice sheets in West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula."

"This work highlights that East Antarctic glaciers are as important to our future as those in the continent's western regions."

 

Canada's BAS PDF Antarctic Map

 

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Coldest Temps on Earth: Tiny Valleys near top of Antarctica's Ice Sheet

 

EXTREME NATURE

Coldest Temperatures on Earth

Tiny Valleys near the top of Antarctica's Ice Sheet

New study explains Antarctica's coldest temperatures,
University of Colorado at Boulder, July 25, 2018.


Coldest Temps

"Tiny valleys near the top of Antarctica's ice sheet reach temperatures of nearly -100 degrees Celsius..."

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Freak Warm Winds Melting Snow & Forming Lakes During Antarctic Winter

 

THE SOUTH POLE-ANTARCTIC

Midwinter Antarctic Lakes Surprise Everyone

Freak Warm Winds Melt Snow During Antarctic Winter

Why Antarctic snow melts even in winter,
Swansea University, May 2, 2018.

The Human Affect is Everywhere!

Melting the Antarctic in the Middle of Winter!

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