Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


More snow but less ice for Antarctic glaciers

MEDIA RELEASE

15 September 2014

___________________________________________________________

More snow but less ice for Antarctic glaciers

Future increases in snowfall will not prevent the retreat of glaciers on the northern Antarctic Peninsula, according to a new study involving a Victoria University of Wellington researcher.

Dr Nicholas Golledge, a senior research fellow at Victoria’s Antarctic Research Centre, is part of an international team of researchers studying a small glacier on James Ross Island, near the northern Antarctic Peninsula.

The team, led by Dr Bethan Davies, from Royal Holloway, University of London, found that surface melt in this region will increase greatly under even a slight warming, offsetting any gains from increased snowfall.

The currently observed glacier recession in this region is therefore likely to continue, and even accelerate, under the presently warming climate.

Published online in the scientific journal Nature Climate Change (http://bit.ly/1BE3DNS), the study used a combination of glacial geology, ice-core data and numerical glacier and climate modelling. Dr Golledge developed the glacier model used in the study.

The model uses a series of equations to simulate ice flow, and allows changes in climate to be translated into advance or retreat of the glacier depending on the balance between the accumulation of snow in higher areas, and the melting of ice at the glacier front.

Using this model, Dr Davies simulated the present-day extent and flow speed of the glacier, based on climatic conditions interpreted from the nearby Mt. Haddington ice-core record. The model was then applied to the last ten thousand years, guided by geological data, and then into the future using outputs from a regional climate model.

Dr Golledge says this is important research because it helps reduce some of the uncertainties about how these small glaciers will react to changing temperature and precipitation over the next two centuries.

“This glacier, though small, is typical of many of the smaller land-terminating glaciers around the Antarctic Peninsula. It is these small, peripheral glaciers that are likely to contribute most to sea-level rise over coming decades,” he says.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Trade Plans: Prime Minister's Speech To International Business Forum

"The work to improve public services, build infrastructure, and solve social problems is possible only because we have enjoyed sustained, solid economic growth. A big reason for that is the Government’s consistent agenda of economic reform, and our determination to open up more opportunities for trade with the world." More>>

ALSO:

Media: TVNZ Flags Job Cuts To Arrest Profit Decline

Chief executive Kevin Kenrick said the changes were aimed at creating "a sustainable future video content business for TVNZ in an ever-changing media market." More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: Wheeler Keeps OCR At 1.75%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate unchanged at 1.75 percent, as expected, and reiterated his view that the benchmark rate doesn't need shifting for the foreseeable future. More>>

ALSO:

f work for Pumpkin Patch staff

Retail: Pumpkin Patch Brand, IP Sold To Catch Group

The receivers of failed children's clothing retailer Pumpkin Patch have confirmed that the company's brand and intellectual property have been sold to Australian online retailer Catch Group. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news