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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
Updated: 54 min 34 sec ago

Antarctica: The ocean cools at the surface but warms up at depth

Thu, 01/21/2021 - 12:18
Scientists have concluded that the slight cooling observed at the surface of the Southern Ocean hides a rapid and marked warming of the waters, to a depth of up to 800 meters. These results were obtained thanks to unique data acquired over the past 25 years.

Scientists discover how the potentially oldest coral reefs in the Mediterranean developed

Thu, 01/21/2021 - 12:17
A new study brings unprecedented insights into the environmental constraints and climatic events that controlled the formation of the potentially oldest coral reefs in the Mediterranean.

2020 tied for warmest year on record, NASA analysis shows

Fri, 01/15/2021 - 09:30
Earth's global average surface temperature in 2020 tied with 2016 as the warmest year on record, according to an analysis by NASA.

Greenland melting likely increased by bacteria in sediment

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 15:38
Bacteria are likely triggering greater melting on the Greenland ice sheet, possibly increasing the island's contribution to sea-level rise, according to scientists. That's because the microbes cause sunlight-absorbing sediment to clump together and accumulate in the meltwater streams, according to new study. The findings can be incorporated in climate models, leading to more accurate predictions of melting, scientists say.

Accounting for the gaps in ancient food webs

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:01
Studying ancient food webs can help scientists reconstruct communities of species, many long extinct, and even use those insights to figure out how modern-day communities might change in the future. There's just one problem: only some species left enough of a trace for scientists to find eons later, leaving large gaps in the fossil record -- and researchers' ability to piece together the food webs from the past.

Wetland methane cycling increased during ancient global warming event

Wed, 01/13/2021 - 11:07
Wetland methane cycling increased during a rapid global warming event 56 million years ago and could foreshadow changes the methane cycle will experience in the future, according to new research.

Northern lakes at risk of losing ice cover permanently, impacting drinking water

Wed, 01/13/2021 - 11:07
Close to 5,700 lakes in the Northern Hemisphere may permanently lose ice cover this century, 179 of them in the next decade, at current greenhouse gas emissions, despite a possible polar vortex this year, researchers have found. Those lakes include large bays in some of the deepest of the Great Lakes, such as Lake Superior and Lake Michigan, which could permanently become ice free by 2055.

Red and green snow algae increase snowmelt in the Antarctic Peninsula

Wed, 01/13/2021 - 11:06
Red and green algae that grow on snow in the Antarctic Peninsula cause significant extra snowmelt on par with melt from dust on snow in the Rocky Mountains, according to a first-of-its-kind scientific research study. This could have serious impacts on regional climate, snow and ice melt, freshwater availability and ecosystems, yet is not accounted for in current global climate models.

Melting icebergs key to sequence of an ice age

Wed, 01/13/2021 - 11:06
Scientists claim to have found the 'missing link' in the process that leads to an ice age on Earth.

A bucket of water can reveal climate change impacts on marine life in the Arctic

Tue, 01/12/2021 - 10:01
We know very little about marine life in the Arctic. Now researchers are trying to change that. They have shown that a simple water sample makes it possible to monitor the presence, migration patterns and genetic diversity of bowhead whales in an otherwise hard-to-reach area. The method can be used to understand how climate changes and human activities impact life in the oceans.

New study of Earth's crust shows global growth spurt three billion years ago

Tue, 01/12/2021 - 07:54
Researchers have used ancient crystals from eroded rocks found in stream sediments in Greenland to successfully test the theory that portions of Earth's ancient crust acted as 'seeds' from which later generations of crust grew.

Number of people suffering extreme droughts will double

Mon, 01/11/2021 - 11:56
A global research effort offers the first worldwide view of how climate change could affect water availability and drought severity in the decades to come. By the late 21st century, global land area and population facing extreme droughts could more than double -- increasing from 3% during 1976-2005 to 7%-8%, according to a professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Will global warming bring a change in the winds? Dust from the deep sea provides a clue

Wed, 01/06/2021 - 10:20
Climate researchers describe a new method of tracking the ancient history of the westerly winds--a proxy for what we may experience in a future warming world.

The new face of the Antarctic

Wed, 01/06/2021 - 08:53
In the future, the Antarctic could become a greener place and be colonized by new species. At the same time, some species will likely disappear.

Drought of the century in the Middle Ages -- with parallels to climate change today?

Tue, 01/05/2021 - 12:01
The transition from the Medieval Warm Period to the Little Ice Age was apparently accompanied by severe droughts between 1302 and 1307 in Europe. Researchers write that the 1302-07 weather patterns display similarities to the 2018 weather anomaly, in which continental Europe experienced exceptional heat and drought.

New tool for reconstructing ancient sea ice to study climate change

Mon, 01/04/2021 - 12:19
A previously problematic molecule turns out to be a reliable proxy for reconstructing sea ice, a new study by Brown University researchers shows.

Alert system shows potential for reducing deforestation, mitigating climate change

Mon, 01/04/2021 - 10:40
Forest loss declined 18% in African nations where a new satellite-based program provides free alerts when it detects deforestation activities.

Evidence for a massive paleo-tsunami at ancient Tel Dor

Wed, 12/23/2020 - 13:24
Underwater excavation, borehole drilling, and modelling suggests a massive paleo-tsunami struck near the ancient settlement of Tel Dor between 9,910 to 9,290 years ago, according to a new study.

Ancient DNA sheds light on the peopling of the Mariana Islands

Tue, 12/22/2020 - 12:20
Compared to the first peopling of Polynesia, the settlement of the Mariana Islands in the Western Pacific, which happened around 3,500 years ago, has received little attention. Researchers have now obtained answers to long debated questions regarding the origin of the first colonizers of the Marianas and their relationship to the people who initially settled in Polynesia.

Climate change: Threshold for dangerous warming will likely be crossed between 2027-2042

Mon, 12/21/2020 - 15:04
The threshold for dangerous global warming will likely be crossed between 2027 and 2042 - a much narrower window than the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's estimate of between now and 2052. Researchers introduce a new and more precise way to project the Earth's temperature. Based on historical data, it considerably reduces uncertainties compared to previous approaches.

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