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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
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Old ice and snow yields tracer of preindustrial ozone

Wed, 06/12/2019 - 13:13
Using rare oxygen molecules trapped in old ice and snow, US and French scientists have answered a long-standing question: How much have 'bad' ozone levels increased since the start of the Industrial Revolution?

Mysterious holes in Antarctic sea ice explained by years of robotic data

Mon, 06/10/2019 - 10:15
Why did a giant hole appear in the sea ice off Antarctica in 2016 and 2017, after decades of more typical sea ice cover? Years of Southern Ocean data have explained the phenomenon, helping oceanographers to better predict these features and study their role in global ocean cycles.

Rapid retreat of Arctic coastline revealed in images from the air

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 10:04
Drone surveys have revealed extreme erosion on the Arctic coastline, highlight the ongoing change in the region in a warming climate.

Glacial sediments greased the gears of plate tectonics

Wed, 06/05/2019 - 12:35
The transition to plate tectonics started with the help of lubricating sediments, scraped by glaciers from the slopes of Earth's first continents, according to new research.

Patagonia ice sheets thicker than previously thought

Tue, 06/04/2019 - 09:16
A new study of Patagonia's ice fields finds that many glaciers in the region are much thicker than previously thought.

Plant lineage points to different evolutionary playbook for temperate species

Mon, 06/03/2019 - 15:38
An ancient, cosmopolitan lineage of plants is shaking up scientists' understanding of how quickly species evolve in temperate ecosystems and why.

In hot pursuit of dinosaurs: Tracking extinct species on ancient Earth via biogeography

Fri, 05/31/2019 - 09:05
Identifying the movements of extinct species from millions of years ago can provide insights into ancient migration routes, interaction between species, and the movement of continents.

Mass die-off of puffins recorded in the Bering Sea

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 17:02
A mass die-off of seabirds in the Bering Sea may be partially attributable to climate change, according to a new study.

Early humans used northern migration routes to reach eastern Asia

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 13:50
Northern and Central Asia have been neglected in studies of early human migration, with deserts and mountains being considered uncompromising barriers. However, a new study argues that humans may have moved through these extreme settings in the past under wetter conditions. By analyzing past climate, northern Asia emerges as a potential route of human dispersal, as well as a zone of potential interaction with other hominins such as Neanderthals and Denisovans.

Asia's glaciers provide buffer against drought

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 12:12
A new study assesses the contribution that Asia's high mountain glaciers make to relieving water stress in the region. The study has important economic and social implications for a region that is vulnerable to drought. Climate change is causing most of the region's glaciers to shrink.

A warming Arctic produces weather extremes in our latitudes

Tue, 05/28/2019 - 13:01
Atmospheric researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) have now developed a climate model that can accurately depict the frequently observed winding course of the jet stream, a major air current over the Northern Hemisphere.

Did ancient supernovae prompt human ancestors to walk upright?

Tue, 05/28/2019 - 08:53
Supernovae bombarded Earth with cosmic energy starting as many as 8 million years ago, with a peak some 2.6 million years ago, initiating an avalanche of electrons in the lower atmosphere and setting off a chain of events that feasibly ended with bipedal hominins.

Study uncovers surprising melting patterns beneath Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf

Mon, 05/27/2019 - 10:17
Scientists have discovered an ancient geologic structure that restricts where ocean water flows, and reveals that local ocean currents may play a critical role in the ice shelf's future retreat.

Climate change affects the genetic diversity of a species

Fri, 05/24/2019 - 09:27
What effects does climate change have on the genetic diversity of living organisms? In a new study, researchers studied the genome of the alpine marmot. Results were unexpected: the species was found to be the least genetically diverse of any wild mammal studied to date. The alpine marmot has lost its genetic diversity during ice-age related climate events and been unable to recover its diversity since.

GRACE data contributes to understanding of climate change

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 12:02
The team that led a twin satellite system launched in 2002 to take detailed measurements of the Earth, called the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), reports on the contributions that their nearly two decades of data have made to our understanding of global climate patterns.

A family of comets reopens the debate about the origin of Earth's water

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 10:14
Researchers have found that one family of comets, the hyperactive comets, contains water similar to terrestrial water.

Melting small glaciers could add 10 inches to sea levels

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 09:49
A new review of glacier research data paints a picture of a future planet with a lot less ice and a lot more water.

Widespread permafrost degradation seen in high Arctic terrain

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 08:13
Rapid changes in terrain are taking place in Canada's high Arctic polar deserts due to increases in summer air temperatures.

Massive Martian ice discovery opens a window into Red Planet's history

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 13:17
Newly discovered layers of ice buried a mile beneath Mars' north pole are the remnants of ancient polar ice sheets and could be one of the largest water reservoirs on the planet, according to scientists. The layers of ice are a record of past climate on Mars in much the same way tree rings are a record of climate on Earth.

River valleys helped shape current genetic landscape of Han Chinese

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 18:37
New research shows the importance of how the three main river valleys in China contributed to Han genetic diversity.