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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 49 min ago

Warmer winters are keeping some lakes from freezing

Tue, 10/06/2020 - 10:43
Warmer winters due to climate change are causing lakes in the Northern Hemisphere to experience more ice-free years, according to a new study. Researchers recently analyzed nearly 80 years of lake ice data, stretching from 1939 to 2016, for 122 lakes that typically freeze every winter. They found ice-free years have become more than three times more frequent since 1978 and 11% of lakes studied experienced at least one completely ice-free year since 1939.

Who is driving whom? Climate and carbon cycle in perpetual interaction

Tue, 10/06/2020 - 10:42
The current climate crisis underlines that carbon cycle perturbations can cause significant climate change. New research reveals how carbon cycle and global climate have been interacting throughout the last 35 million years of geologic history, under natural circumstances.

Dust dampens albedo effect, spurs snowmelt in the heights of the Himalayas

Mon, 10/05/2020 - 10:21
Dust blowing onto high mountains in the western Himalayas is a bigger factor than previously thought in hastening the melting of snow there, researchers show. That's because dust - lots of it in the Himalayas - absorbs sunlight, heating the snow that surrounds it.

Climate change responsible for record sea temperature levels

Fri, 10/02/2020 - 09:57
Global warming is driving an unprecedented rise in sea temperatures including in the Mediterranean, according to a major new report.

Ice discharge in the North Pacific set off series of climate events during last ice age

Thu, 10/01/2020 - 14:59
Repeated catastrophic ice discharges from western North America into the North Pacific contributed to, and perhaps triggered, hemispheric-scale changes in the Earth's climate during the last ice age.

Stellar explosion in Earth's proximity, eons ago

Wed, 09/30/2020 - 13:44
When the brightness of the star Betelgeuse dropped dramatically a few months ago, some observers suspected an impending supernova - a stellar explosion that could also cause damage on Earth. While Betelgeuse has returned to normal, physicists have found evidence of a supernova that exploded near the Earth around 2.5 million years ago.

Greenland is on track to lose ice faster than in any century over 12,000 years

Wed, 09/30/2020 - 10:42
If human societies don't sharply curb emissions of greenhouse gases, Greenland's rate of ice loss this century is likely to greatly outpace that of any century over the past 12,000 years, a new study concludes. Scientists say the results reiterate the need for countries around the world to take action now to reduce emissions, slow the decline of ice sheets, and mitigate sea level rise.

Marine biodiversity reshuffles under warmer and sea ice-free Pacific Arctic

Tue, 09/29/2020 - 11:35
Climate warming will alter marine community compositions as species are expected to shift poleward, significantly impacting the Arctic marine ecosystem.

Lessons from a cooling climate

Tue, 09/29/2020 - 11:33
Usually, talk of carbon sequestration focuses on plants: forests storing carbon in the trunks of massive trees, algae blooming and sinking to the seabed, or perhaps peatlands locking carbon away for tens of thousands of years. While it's true that plants take up large amounts of carbon from the atmosphere, the rocks themselves mediate a great deal of the carbon cycle over geological timescales. Processes like volcano eruptions, mountain building and erosion are responsible for moving carbon through Earth's atmosphere, surface and mantle.

Ancient Adélie penguin colony revealed by snowmelt at Cape Irizar, Ross Sea, Antarctica

Mon, 09/28/2020 - 14:57
Researchers encountered a puzzle at Cape Irizar, a rocky cape located just south of the Drygalski Ice Tongue on the Scott Coast, Ross Sea. He found both ancient and what appeared to be fresh remains of Adelie penguins, mostly of chicks, which frequently die and accumulate at these colonies. However, the 'fresh' remains were puzzling, he says, because there are no records of an active penguin colony at this site.

The Arctic is burning in a whole new way

Mon, 09/28/2020 - 14:57
'Zombie fires' and burning of fire-resistant vegetation are new features driving Arctic fires -- with strong consequences for the global climate -- warn international fire scientists.

Increasing stability decreases ocean productivity, reduces carbon burial

Mon, 09/28/2020 - 11:51
As the globe warms, the atmosphere is becoming more unstable, but the oceans are becoming more stable, according to an international team of climate scientists, who say that the increase in stability is greater than predicted, and a stable ocean will absorb less carbon and be less productive.

The testimony of trees: How volcanic eruptions shaped 2000 years of world history

Mon, 09/28/2020 - 08:05
Researchers have shown that over the past two thousand years, volcanoes have played a larger role in natural temperature variability than previously thought, and their climatic effects may have contributed to past societal and economic change.

Coldest Northern Hemisphere temps of minus 69.6 degress Celsius: Greenland, 1991

Sat, 09/26/2020 - 13:51
Nearly 30 years after recording a temperature of minus 93.2 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 69.6 Celsius) in Greenland, the measurement has been verified by the World Meteorological Organization as the coldest recorded temperature in the Northern Hemisphere.

Island-building in Southeast Asia created Earth's northern ice sheets

Thu, 09/24/2020 - 13:16
Tectonic processes are thought to have triggered past ice ages, but how? A new analysis of mountain building in the maritime tropics of Southeast Asia attributes the last ice age, which reached a maximum 15,000 years ago, to increasing rock weathering in the rising island arc from Sumatra to New Guinea over the past 15 million years, with the first ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere appearing about 3 million years ago.

Unusual climate conditions influenced WWI mortality and subsequent influenza pandemic

Thu, 09/24/2020 - 12:53
Scientists have spotted a once-in-a-century climate anomaly during World War I that likely increased mortality during the war and the influenza pandemic in the years that followed.

New model -- Antarctic ice loss expected to affect future climate change

Wed, 09/23/2020 - 15:46
In a new climate modeling study that looked at the impacts of accelerated ice melt from the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) on future climate, a team of climate scientists reports that future ice-sheet melt is expected to have significant effects on global climate.

Stability check on Antarctica reveals high risk for long-term sea-level rise

Wed, 09/23/2020 - 11:47
The warmer it gets, the faster Antarctica loses ice - and much of it will then be gone forever. That's what a team of researchers has found out in their new study on how much warming the Antarctic Ice Sheet can survive.

Some polar bears in far north are getting short-term benefit from thinning ice

Wed, 09/23/2020 - 11:46
The small subpopulation of polar bears in Kane Basin were doing better, on average, in recent years than in the 1990s. The bears are experiencing short-term benefits from thinning and shrinking multiyear sea ice that allows more sunlight to reach the ocean surface, which makes the system more ecologically productive.

2020 Arctic sea ice minimum at second lowest on record

Mon, 09/21/2020 - 16:04
The 2020 minimum extent, which was likely reached on Sept. 15, 2020 measured 1.44 million square miles (3.74 million square kilometers).