More than half of the ice sheet surface began melting for the first time since 2012 When the remnants of Europe’s second summertime heatwave migrated over Greenland in late July. Research published Wednesday in Nature shows that mega-melts like that one, that is being amplified by climate change, aren’t merely causing Greenland to scatter billions of tons of ice. They’re creating the remaining ice to turn into denser.
“Ice slabs” solid planks of ice that may span hundreds of square miles and grow to be 50 ft thick are spreading throughout the porous, air pocket-filled surface of the Greenland ice sheet because it melts and refreezes again. From the year 2001 to 2014, the slabs expanded in the area by around 25,000 square miles, making an impermeable barrier the size of West Virginia that restricts meltwater from trickling down via the ice. As a substitute, the melted water turns into runoff that flows overland, ultimately making its way out to sea.
Because the ice slabs continue to spread, the study’s authors predict more and more of Greenland’s surface will turn into a “runoff zone,” boosting the ice sheet’s contribution to global sea-level rise and, maybe, causing unexpected changes.
Lead research author and A glaciologist at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Mike MacFerrin stated that They are watching an ice sheet transform its state in front of our eyes, which is terrifying.