Apr 13, 2016

Scientists are stunned by what just happened in Greenland

Greenland
by
Chris Mooney
,
Washington Post
This NASA handout photo obtained March 29, 2016 shows a stunning perspective of the northeast coastline of Greenland, one of the worlds two great ice sheets (the other is Antarctica), captured by the Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) field campaign team. Photo: AFP / NASA
This NASA handout photo obtained March 29, 2016 shows a stunning perspective of the northeast coastline of Greenland, one of the worlds two great ice sheets (the other is Antarctica), captured by the Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) field campaign team. Photo: AFP / NASA

The Danish Meteorological Institute reported that although it’s only April, nearly 12 percent of the ice sheet’s surface is covered with a layer of meltwater of a depth of at least a millimeter. “The former top 3 earliest dates for a melt area larger than 10% were previously all in May (5th May 2010, 8th May 1990, 8th May 2006),” the institute noted on the website Polar Portal...

The news raised memories of the record melt season in 2012, when the ice sheet as a whole lost 562 gigatons, or billion tons, of freshwater mass to the ocean, enough to raise sea levels the world over by more than a millimeter in that year alone