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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 40 min ago

Want to know what ancient koalas ate? Check modern koalas' teeth

Wed, 08/22/2018 - 13:10
New research confirms the shape of tooth wear best indicates the kind of food modern koalas and kangaroos ate, not whether it was covered in dust and dirt.

NASA gets up close with Greenland's melting ice

Tue, 08/21/2018 - 16:52
With a new research plane and a new base to improve its chances of outsmarting Atlantic hurricanes, NASA's Oceans Melting Greenland campaign takes to the sky this week for its third year of gathering data on how the ocean around Greenland is melting its glaciers.

In Eastern US, adult trees adapt and acclimate to local climate

Tue, 08/21/2018 - 13:52
Trees growing in temperate forests in the eastern US show strong adaptation or acclimation to local climate. So reports a new study that analyzed more than 23,000 tree cores to investigate how adult trees respond to changes in climatic conditions.

New Antarctic rift data has implications for volcanic evolution

Tue, 08/21/2018 - 08:41
New marine geophysical data recorded during two excursions on a French icebreaker enabled researchers to date the ocean floor and calculate the relative motion between the Antarctic Plates and the Australian Plate. This new data revealed that Antarctica fused into one plate around 11 million years ago, roughly 15 million years later than previously assumed.

Carbon reserves in Central American soils still affected by ancient Mayan deforestation

Mon, 08/20/2018 - 10:30
Deforestation is suspected to have contributed to the mysterious collapse of Mayan civilization more than 1,000 years ago. A new study shows that the forest-clearing also decimated carbon reservoirs in the tropical soils of the Yucatan peninsula region long after ancient cities were abandoned and the forests grew back.

99-million-year-old beetle trapped in amber served as pollinator to evergreen cycads

Thu, 08/16/2018 - 13:32
Flowering plants are well known for their special relationship to the insects and other animals that serve as their pollinators. But, before the rise of angiosperms, another group of unusual evergreen gymnosperms, known as cycads, may have been the first insect-pollinated plants. Now, researchers have uncovered the earliest definitive fossil evidence of that intimate relationship between cycads and insects.

'Abrupt thaw' of permafrost beneath lakes could significantly affect climate change models

Thu, 08/16/2018 - 13:30
Methane released by thawing permafrost from some Arctic lakes could significantly accelerate climate change, according to a new study. Unlike shallow, gradual thawing of terrestrial permafrost, the abrupt thaw beneath thermokarst lakes is irreversible this century. Even climate models that project only moderate warming this century will have to factor in their emissions, according to the researchers.

Diving robots find Antarctic winter seas exhale surprising amounts of carbon dioxide

Tue, 08/14/2018 - 12:41
A new study uses data gathered by floating drones in the Southern Ocean over past winters to learn how much carbon dioxide is transferred by the surrounding seas. Results show that in winter the open water nearest the sea ice surrounding Antarctica releases significantly more carbon dioxide than previously believed.

Glacier depth affects plankton blooms off Greenland

Tue, 08/14/2018 - 09:14
The unusual timing of highly-productive summer plankton blooms off Greenland indicates a connection between increasing amounts of meltwater and nutrients in these coastal waters. Researchers now show that this connection exists, but is much more complex than widely supposed. Whether increasing meltwater has a positive or negative effect on summertime phytoplankton depends on the depth at which a glacier sits in the ocean.

How Neolithic people adapted to climate change

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 15:05
Research has uncovered evidence that early farmers were adapting to climate change 8,200 years ago.

Europe needs coastal adaptation measures to avoid catastrophic flooding by the end of the century

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 11:52
Coastal floods could impact up to 3.65 million people every year in Europe by 2100, according to a new study.

Melt-rate of West Antarctic Ice Sheet highly sensitive to changes in ocean temperatures

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 10:35
Melting of ice shelves in West Antarctica speeds up and slows down in response to changes in deep ocean temperature, and is far more variable than previously thought, according to new research.

Scientists trace atmospheric rise in CO2 during deglaciation to deep Pacific Ocean

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 10:33
How carbon made it out of the ocean and into the atmosphere has remained one of the most important mysteries of science. A new study, provides some of the most compelling evidence for how it happened -- a 'flushing' of the deep Pacific Ocean caused by the acceleration of water circulation patterns that begin around Antarctica.

Ice sheets of the last ice age seeded the ocean with essential nutrient silica

Fri, 08/10/2018 - 08:10
New research led by glaciologists and isotope geochemists has found that melting ice sheets provide the surrounding oceans with the essential nutrient silica.

The underestimated cooling effect on the planet from historic fires

Thu, 08/09/2018 - 08:34
Historic levels of particles in the atmosphere released from pre-industrial era fires, and their cooling effect on the planet, may have been significantly underestimated according to a new study.

Lost Norse of Greenland fueled the medieval ivory trade, ancient walrus DNA suggests

Tue, 08/07/2018 - 18:28
New DNA analysis reveals that, before their mysterious disappearance, the Norse colonies of Greenland had a 'near monopoly' on Europe's walrus ivory supply. An overreliance on this trade may have contributed to Norse Greenland's collapse when the medieval market declined.

Pacific Ocean's effect on Arctic warming

Tue, 08/07/2018 - 08:51
New research shows that changes in the heat flow of the northern Pacific Ocean may have a larger effect on the Arctic climate than previously thought.

Rediscovering the sources of Egyptian metals

Tue, 08/07/2018 - 08:51
Two new studies offer the first comprehensive analytical datasets of Protodynastic to Old Kingdom Egyptian copper-based artifacts (c. 3rd millennium BC), analyzing the provenance of Egyptian copper. As elaborated in a methodological comment, the studies constitute an important step forward in current knowledge on copper provenance and the subsequent economic, social and cultural insights into ancient Egypt.

Earth at risk of heading towards 'hothouse Earth' state

Mon, 08/06/2018 - 14:20
An international team of scientists is showing that even if the carbon emission reductions called for in the Paris Agreement are met, there is a risk of Earth entering what the scientists call 'hothouse Earth' conditions.

Possible connection between U.S. tornado activity, Arctic sea ice

Mon, 08/06/2018 - 09:42
The effects of global climate change taking place in the Arctic may influence weather much closer to home for millions of Americans, researchers report.