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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 35 min ago

Cooling in high and mid-latitudes led to aridification in Northern Africa

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 08:24
Analyses of ancient plant leaf wax found in the sediments of the Gulf of Guinea told the researchers about rainfall in Cameroon and the central Sahel-Sahara over the past several millennia and showed a rapid aridification around 5500 years before now.

Hot news from the Antarctic underground

Tue, 11/07/2017 - 12:17
A new NASA study adds evidence that a geothermal heat source called a mantle plume lies deep below Antarctica's Marie Byrd Land, explaining some of the melting that creates lakes and rivers under the ice sheet. Although the heat source isn't a new or increasing threat to the West Antarctic ice sheet, it may help explain why the ice sheet collapsed rapidly in an earlier era of rapid climate change, and why it is so unstable today.

Federal climate science report for U.S. released

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 13:37
The newly released Climate Science Special Report describes current trends in the climate globally and for the U.S., and projects trends in temperature, precipitation, sea-level rise and Arctic sea ice for the remainder of this century.

Foraminifer shells much more susceptible to ocean acidification than previously thought

Thu, 11/02/2017 - 10:00
The carbonate shells of tiny marine plankton, foraminifers, are important archives of geochemical records of past climates. Now researchers have discovered that, contrary to long-standing textbook knowledge, these shells do not form as calcite, but instead, are originally formed as the metastable carbonate vaterite and only later transform into calcite. The presence of vaterite instead of calcite in these abundant organisms also means that foraminifer shells are much more susceptible to ocean acidification than has been previously thought.

New Greenland maps show more glaciers at risk

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 14:12
New maps of Greenland's coastal seafloor and bedrock beneath its massive ice sheet show that two to four times as many coastal glaciers are at risk of accelerated melting as had previously been thought.

Intensifying winds could increase east Antarctica's contribution to sea level rise

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 13:16
Totten Glacier, the largest glacier in East Antarctica, is being melted from below by warm water that reaches the ice when winds over the ocean are strong, according to research. The new findings are a cause for concern because the glacier holds more than 11 feet of sea level rise and acts as a plug that helps lock in the ice of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.

Future volcanic eruptions could cause more climate disruption

Tue, 10/31/2017 - 07:48
Major volcanic eruptions in the future have the potential to affect global temperatures and precipitation more dramatically than in the past because of climate change, according to a new study.

Greenhouse gas concentrations surge to new record

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 13:19
Concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere surged at a record-breaking speed in 2016 to the highest level in 800,000 years, according to a new report. The abrupt changes in the atmosphere witnessed in the past 70 years are without precedent.

Bat feces: A reliable source of climate change

Thu, 10/26/2017 - 12:53
Isotopes found in bat guano over the last 1,200 years provide scientists with information on how the climate was and is changing.

Yellowstone spawned twin super-eruptions that altered global climate

Thu, 10/26/2017 - 07:58
A new geological record of the Yellowstone supervolcano's last catastrophic eruption is rewriting the story of what happened 630,000 years ago and how it affected Earth's climate. This eruption formed the vast Yellowstone caldera observed today, the second largest on Earth.

'Scars' left by icebergs record West Antarctic ice retreat

Wed, 10/25/2017 - 13:04
Thousands of marks on the Antarctic seafloor, caused by icebergs which broke free from glaciers more than ten thousand years ago, show how part of the Antarctic Ice Sheet retreated rapidly at the end of the last ice age as it balanced precariously on sloping ground and became unstable.

Ice sheets may melt rapidly in response to distant volcanoes

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 10:06
Volcanic eruptions have been known to cool the global climate, but they can also exacerbate the melting of ice sheets, according to a new paper.

Sea-level rise, not stronger storm surge, will cause future NYC flooding

Mon, 10/23/2017 - 17:25
Rising sea levels caused by a warming climate threaten greater future storm damage to New York City, but the paths of stronger future storms may shift offshore, changing the coastal risk for the city, according to a team of climate scientists.

Mountain glaciers shrinking across Western U.S.

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 17:25
A technique using satellites to create twice-yearly elevation maps of US mountain glaciers provides new insight into thinning of glaciers in the lower 48 states.

Fossil coral reefs show sea level rose in bursts during last warming

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 09:09
Scientists have discovered that Earth's sea level did not rise steadily when the planet's glaciers last melted during a period of global warming; rather, sea level rose sharply in punctuated bursts.

Ice stream retreats under a cold climate

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 09:08
Warmer ocean surface triggered the ice retreat during The Younger Dryas.

Hardy corals make their moves to build new reefs from scratch

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 10:35
Resilient species of coral can move to inhospitable areas and lay the foundations for new reefs, a study shows.

Nice ice, maybe: Study finds water-repelling surfaces ease ice removal

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 07:56
A new study has discovered that ice grows differently on water-absorbent vs. water-repellent surfaces. The research suggests that applying water-repellent coatings to windshields before winter storms -- or engineering surfaces that inherently repel water -- could enable a strong breeze to handle the burden of ice removal.

Study reshapes understanding of climate change's impact on early societies

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:43
A new study linking paleoclimatology -- the reconstruction of past global climates -- with historical analysis shows a link between environmental stress and its impact on the economy, political stability, and war-fighting capacity of ancient Egypt.

Study shows how water could have flowed on 'cold and icy' ancient Mars

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:43
Research by planetary scientists finds that periodic melting of ice sheets on a cold early Mars would have created enough water to carve the ancient valleys and lakebeds seen on the planet today.