June 18, 2024

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The study found that the Petermann Glacier in Greenland is melting with the tide, which could indicate a faster rise in sea level

The study found that the Petermann Glacier in Greenland is melting with the tide, which could indicate a faster rise in sea level

(CNN) Major glacier in the northwest green land It interacts with ocean tides, scientists reported Monday, triggering previously unknown melting and Sea level rise is likely to be faster.

The group of glaciologists from the University of California, Irvine and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory published the study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Monday.

Observations from the Petermann Glacier revealed that the glacier’s landline—the area where the ice sheet begins to extend over the crest of the ocean—can change dramatically with the entry of tides each day.

According to Enrico Ciracì, lead author of the study and a scientist at UCI, the Petermann landline “migrates between 2 and 6 kilometers (1.2 to 3.7 miles) with the entry and exit of tides”.

This is an important finding: the traditional view among scientists was that the ground line did not move with the tides—this presents another major source of melt that could accelerate sea level rise.

Between 2016 and 2022, warmer tidal cycles melted a 670-foot-high hole in the glacier’s underside along the ground line—large enough that two Statues of Liberty could be stacked on top of each other inside it.

This phenomenon could worsen in the coming years and decades as ocean temperatures rise. CNN reported recently That sea surface temperatures were at their highest on record this spring — a rise that has scientists worried may be part of a worrying new trend.

The study raises further concerns about the already troubling prospect of sea level rise, which threatens coastlines around the world. Melting ice in Greenland Do single largest shareholder to sea level rise, according to NASA, which has accelerated in recent years. But current projections do not account for this newly discovered contribution from subglacial interactions with tides.

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“These ocean-ice interactions make glaciers more sensitive to ocean warming,” co-author Eric Rignot, a professor at UCI and a NASA JPL research scientist, said in a statement. “These dynamics were not built into the models, and if we did include them, it would increase projections of sea level rise by as much as 200 percent — not just for Petermann but for all ocean-terminating glaciers, which is much of northern Greenland and all of Antarctica.”