How much will polar ice sheets add to sea level rise? — ScienceDaily


Over 99% of terrestrial ice is sure up within the ice sheets masking Antarctic and Greenland. Even partial melting of this ice because of local weather change will considerably contribute to sea degree rise. However how a lot precisely?

For the primary time ever, glaciologists, oceanographers, and climatologists from 13 nations have teamed as much as make new projections. Their modelling efforts, involving CNRS and CEA researchers (1), present that the Antarctic Ice Sheet might account for as much as 30 cm of sea degree rise between 2015 and 2100. Nonetheless, some eventualities alternatively recommend that the quantity added to the ice sheet by snowfall will surpass what’s misplaced by means of melting, partially offsetting the rise — by 7.8 cm at finest.

This big selection in estimates (2) primarily displays incomplete data of melting that happens on the underside of ice cabinets. However these floating glacial fringes, which might cowl an space half the scale of France, pen in the remainder of the ice sheet. Have been they to be misplaced, the brand new projections point out that the ocean would rise a number of metres over 500 years. Over the identical 2015-2100 interval, the Greenland Ice Sheet would contribute a further 1.5 to 14 cm, relying on the extent of our greenhouse gasoline emissions.

These findings have been mentioned in a spate of scientific articles, together with 5 printed in The Cryosphere on 17 September 2020.

To refine their predictions, scientists are turning to a brand new technology of local weather fashions that instantly combine information on the cryosphere, along with atmospheric, oceanic, and biogeochemical inputs.


(1) Working on the Institute of Environmental Geosciences (CNRS/Université Grenoble Alpes/IRD/Grenoble INP) and Laboratory for Sciences of Local weather and Atmosphere (CNRS/CEA/UVSQ). These labs are members of the Observatoire des sciences de l’Univers de Grenoble and Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, respectively.

(2) These estimates are increased than earlier ones: the 2019 IPCC Particular Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Altering Local weather posited that melting of the Antarctic Ice Sheet would account for 3 to twenty-eight cm of sea degree rise between 2000 and 2100. Nonetheless, not solely have an inadequate variety of research been performed, however these out there primarily based their findings on easier fashions of the interactions between ice, the ocean, and the environment.

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Materials supplied by CNRS. Notice: Content material could also be edited for fashion and size.

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