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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
Updated: 2 hours 41 min ago

Whitening the Arctic Ocean: May restore sea ice, but not climate

Tue, 04/28/2015 - 16:14
Some scientists have suggested that global warming could melt frozen ground in the Arctic, releasing vast amounts of the potent greenhouse gas methane into the atmosphere, greatly amplifying global warming. It has been proposed that such disastrous climate effects could be offset by technological approaches. One such proposal is to artificially whiten the surface of the Arctic Ocean in order to increase the reflection of the Sun's energy into space and restore sea ice.

Salty aquifer, previously unknown microbial habitat discovered under Antarctica

Tue, 04/28/2015 - 11:52
Many view Antarctica as a frozen wasteland. Turns out there are hidden interconnected lakes underneath its dry valleys that could sustain life and shed light on ancient climate change. Microbiologists detected extensive salty groundwater networks in Antarctica using a novel airborne electromagnetic mapping sensor system. The findings shed new light on ancient climate change on Earth and provide evidence that a similar briny aquifer could support microscopic life on Mars.

Blogging on the ice: Connecting audiences with climate-change sciences

Tue, 04/28/2015 - 07:20
Climate change is a perennially controversial subject frequently splashed across mainstream headlines. However, what we see in the news is not always what the scientists at the front line of climate change experience. Some scientists have been trying to counteract these misconceptions via citizen journalism and directly connecting with the public through blogging rather than official media channels.

Alternate theory of inhabitation of North America disproven

Mon, 04/27/2015 - 13:51
The most widely accepted theory of the inhabitation of North America is that humans migrated from Siberia to Alaska by means of a 'land bridge' that spanned the Bering Strait. However, in the 1990s, a small group of researchers proposed that North America was first settled by people from Europe, who moved from east to west via a glacial 'ice bridge.' Now, researchers have definitively disproven the ice bridge theory.

Thawing permafrost feeds climate change

Thu, 04/23/2015 - 11:56
Single-cell organisms called microbes are rapidly devouring the ancient carbon being released from thawing permafrost soil and ultimately releasing it back into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide, according to new research. Increased carbon dioxide levels, of course, cause the Earth to warm and accelerate thawing.

Entire genomes of woolly mammoths mapped: Clues to extinction, possibility of bringing mammoths back

Thu, 04/23/2015 - 11:48
An international team of researchers has sequenced the nearly complete genome of two Siberian woolly mammoths -- revealing the most complete picture to date -- including new information about the species' evolutionary history and the conditions that led to its mass extinction at the end of the Ice Age.

High mountains warming faster than expected

Thu, 04/23/2015 - 07:54
High elevation environments around the world may be warming much faster than previously thought, according to members of an international research team. They call for more aggressive monitoring of temperature changes in mountain regions and more attention to the potential consequences of warming.

Are gas hydrates a source of environmentally friendly energy?

Wed, 04/22/2015 - 09:41
Gas hydrate is also known as the ice that burns. And all that burns releases energy. And a lot of energy is stored in hydrates and there are gigatons of it stored in the sediments of the oceans. 

Global warming more moderate than worst-case models, empirical data suggest

Tue, 04/21/2015 - 09:56
A study based on 1,000 years of temperature records suggests global warming is not progressing as fast as it would under the most severe emissions scenarios outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Natural decade-to-decade variability in surface temperatures can account for some much-discussed recent changes in the rate of warming. Empirical data, rather than climate models, were used to estimate this variability.

Phytoplankton, reducing greenhouse gases or amplifying Arctic warming?

Tue, 04/21/2015 - 09:53
Scientists have presented the geophysical impact of phytoplankton that triggers positive feedback in the Arctic warming when the warming-induced melting of sea ice stimulates phytoplankton growth.

Greenland continuing to darken

Fri, 04/17/2015 - 09:37
Darkening of the Greenland Ice Sheet is projected to continue as a consequence of continued climate warming, according to experts.

How radiative fluxes are affected by cloud and particle characteristics

Fri, 04/17/2015 - 09:34
Climate models calculate a changing mix of clouds and emissions that interact with solar energy. To narrow the broad range of possible answers from a climate model, researchers analyzed the effect of several proven numerical stand-ins for atmospheric processes on the energy flux at the top of the atmosphere. They found that the flux is the main driver of surface temperature change.

Dating the moon-forming impact event with meteorites

Thu, 04/16/2015 - 13:55
Through a combination of data analysis and numerical modeling work, researchers have found a record of the ancient moon-forming giant impact observable in stony meteorites. The research indicates numerous kilometer-sized fragments from the giant impact struck main belt asteroids at much higher velocities than typical main belt collisions, heating the surface and leaving behind a permanent record of the impact event.

Studying how climate affects biodiversity

Thu, 04/16/2015 - 12:20
A key question in the climate debate is how the occurrence and distribution of species is affected by climate change. But without information about natural variation in species abundance it is hard to answer. In a major study, researchers can now for the first time give us a detailed picture of natural variation.

Iceberg armadas not the cause of North Atlantic cooling

Wed, 04/15/2015 - 12:33
Armadas of icebergs were probably not the cause of abrupt episodes of cooling in the North Atlantic over the past 440,000 years, according to new research.

Climate connections: Examining climate changes of the past

Tue, 04/14/2015 - 20:25
Global climate has undergone periods of stability, but also instability, with abrupt, rapid and substantial climate changes occurring as a consequence of natural processes scientists still don't understand. A paleoceanographer has contributed to the field in a recent paper, which demonstrates the influence of rapid climate change on marine ecosystems near Venezuela tens of thousands of years ago and shows how changes there were accompanied by simultaneous changes globally.

New method relates Greenland ice sheet changes to sea-level rise

Tue, 04/14/2015 - 08:35
Early schemes to model the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets and their impact on sea levels failed to accurately account for changes caused by snowfall and snow melt. These changes depend on ice sheet elevation and region. Researchers developed a new method that includes the effects of elevation and region.

What life was like for newborn giant sea lizards during the age of the dinosaur

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 10:34
Many scientists have studied fossils from gigantic marine lizards called mosasaurs that lived at the time of the dinosaurs and flourished in ancient seas, but little is known about aspects of their breeding and birth. Investigators have gained new insights from young mosasaur specimens collected over 100 years ago that had previously been thought to belong to ancient marine birds. The team noted that the specimens show a variety of features related to the jaws and teeth that are only found in mosasaurs.

Panama debate fueled by zircon dating

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 17:29
New evidence by geologists dates the closure of an ancient seaway at 13 to 15 million years ago and challenges accepted theories about the rise of the Isthmus of Panama and its impact on world climate and animal migrations.

Arctic: Ferromanganese crusts record past climates

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 11:04
The onset of northern hemispheric glaciation cycles three million years ago has dramatically changed Arctic climate. Scientists have now for the first time reconstructed the history of Arctic climate based on records archived in ferromanganese crusts.

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