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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
Updated: 1 hour 42 min ago

Landslide along Alaskan fjord could trigger tsunami

Thu, 11/12/2020 - 11:38
Scientists noted that the slope on Barry Arm fjord on Prince William Sound in southeastern Alaska slid some 120 meters from 2010 to 2017, a slow-moving landslide caused by glacial melt that could trigger a devastating tsunami. These are some of the first measurements to quantify how the slope is falling there; the study also models a potential tsunami.

Possible 1,000-kilometer-long river running deep below Greenland's ice sheet

Thu, 11/12/2020 - 07:09
Computational models suggest that melting water originating in the deep interior of Greenland could flow the entire length of a subglacial valley and exit at Petermann Fjord, along the northern coast of the island. Updating ice sheet models with this open valley could provide additional insight for future climate change predictions.

COVID-delayed Arctic research cruise yields late-season data

Wed, 11/11/2020 - 17:06
Researchers studying the Bering and Chukchi seas for three weeks in October found no ice and a surprisingly active ecosystem as they added another year's data to a key climate change record.

Atmospheric rivers help create massive holes in Antarctic sea ice

Wed, 11/11/2020 - 13:44
Warm, moist rivers of air in Antarctica play a key role in creating massive holes in sea ice in the Weddell Sea and may influence ocean conditions around the vast continent as well as climate change, according to new research.

Late-season Arctic research cruise reveals warm ocean temperatures, active ecosystem

Wed, 11/11/2020 - 13:43
Arctic researchers have been visiting the Bering and Chukchi seas off Alaska for nearly 30 years, collecting information about the biological diversity of the watery world under the sea ice. This year, a late-season research cruise revealed a surprise. At a time of year when an ice-breaking ship is usually required to get to some of the data-gathering outposts, scientists found nothing but open water and an unusually active ecosystem.

Mental health strained by disaster

Wed, 11/11/2020 - 13:43
A new study found that suicide rates increase during all types of disasters -- including severe storms, floods, hurricanes and ice storms -- with the largest overall increase occurring two years after a disaster. A team of researchers examined the impact of 281 natural disasters on suicide rates during a 12-year span and found overall suicide rates increased by 23% when compared to rates before and after the disaster.

Scientists have discovered an ancient lake bed deep beneath the Greenland ice

Tue, 11/10/2020 - 12:31
Scientists have detected what they say are the sediments of a huge ancient lake bed sealed more than a mile under the ice of northwest Greenland.

A jigsaw puzzle made of ancient dust

Mon, 11/09/2020 - 10:02
During the last Ice Age about 20,000 years ago, iron-containing dust acted as a fertilizer for marine phytoplankton in the South Pacific, promoting carbon dioxide sequestration and thus the glacial cooling of the Earth. But where did the dust come from?

Rivers melt Arctic ice, warming air and ocean

Sat, 11/07/2020 - 12:39
A new study shows that increased heat from Arctic rivers is melting sea ice in the Arctic Ocean and warming the atmosphere.

Mystery of glacial lake floods solved

Sat, 11/07/2020 - 12:39
A long-standing mystery in the study of glaciers was recently and serendipitously solved. A trigger was identified for some of the largest floods on Earth -- those emerging suddenly and unpredictably from beneath glaciers or ice caps.

After election: Making the endangered species act more effective

Thu, 11/05/2020 - 17:38
Following the presidential election, a leading group of scientists are making the case that a 'rule reversal' will not be sufficient to allow the Endangered Species Act to do its job. Instead, they're calling for deeper improvements to the rules federal wildlife agencies use to apply the law -- aiming to make the Act more effective and to gain bipartisan and industry support in an era of accelerating climate change.

Past is key to predicting future climate, scientists say

Thu, 11/05/2020 - 17:38
A group of climate experts make the case for including paleoclimate data in the development of climate models. Such models are used globally to assess the impacts of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions, predict scenarios for future climate and propose strategies for mitigation.

The burning question of Bonfire Night pollution

Thu, 11/05/2020 - 07:37
Bonfire Night celebrations contaminate our air with 100 times more soot than usual. The particles, also known as black carbon are so small, they can penetrate deep into the lungs and cause irritation. Long term exposure can cause harmful effects on the heart and lungs and contributes to millions of deaths worldwide each year.

Brown carbon 'tarballs' detected in Himalayan atmosphere

Wed, 11/04/2020 - 07:30
Some people refer to the Himalaya-Tibetan Plateau as the 'third pole' because the region has the largest reserve of glacial snow and ice outside of the north and south poles. The glaciers, which are extremely sensitive to climate change and human influence, have been retreating over the past decade. Now, researchers have detected light-absorbing 'tarballs' in the Himalayan atmosphere, which could contribute to glacial melt.

Consequences of glacier shrinkage

Mon, 11/02/2020 - 11:49
Scientists have investigated the causes of a glacial lake outburst flood in the Ladakh region of India. They drew on field surveys and satellite images to create an inventory of glacial lakes for the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh, identifying changes in the size and number of glacial lakes, including undocumented outburst floods. The inventory aims to improve risk assessment for future events.

Expect more mega-droughts

Fri, 10/30/2020 - 10:18
Mega-droughts - droughts that last two decades or longer - are tipped to increase thanks to climate change, according to new research.

Resilience in the face of climate change: Archaeological investigations reveal human adaptability in ancient Turkey

Thu, 10/29/2020 - 16:16
An examination of two documented periods of climate change in the greater Middle East, between approximately 4,500 and 3,000 years ago, reveals local evidence of resilience and even of a flourishing ancient society despite the changes in climate seen in the larger region. The study demonstrates that human responses to climate change vary at the local level, and highlights how challenge and collapse in some areas were matched by resilience and opportunities elsewhere.

Coastal Greenland reshaped as Greenland ice sheet mass loss accelerates

Tue, 10/27/2020 - 18:24
Ice loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet has accelerated significantly over the past two decades, transforming the shape of the ice sheet edge and therefore coastal Greenland.

Hurricanes pack a bigger punch for Florida's west coast

Tue, 10/27/2020 - 18:24
Hurricanes, the United States' deadliest and most destructive weather disasters, are notoriously difficult to predict. With the average storm intensity as well as the proportion of storms that reach category 4 or 5 likely to increase, more accurate predictions of future hurricane impacts could help emergency officials and coastal populations better prepare for such storms -- and ultimately, save lives.

Ice loss due to warming leads to warming due to ice loss: a vicious circle

Tue, 10/27/2020 - 12:37
The loss of huge ice masses can contribute to the warming that is causing this loss and further risks. A new study now quantifies this feedback by exploring long-term if-then-scenarios.