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This Month in Climate Science: Faster Antarctic Melt, Slower-Moving Storms and Disappearing Artifacts

本月《气候科学》杂志:南极融化速度加快,风暴移动速度减慢,史前古器物正在消失

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【来源】: 世界资源研究所
【时间】: 2018-07-19
【阅读】: {{d.SYS_FLD_BROWSERATE}}次

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Antarctic melt speeding up: Reporting in Nature, 80 scientists found that the melting of Antarctica is speeding up. They compared 24 independently derived estimates of the Antarctic Ice Sheet’s mass and found that it has lost about 2,720 billion tonnes between 1992 and 2017. The picture in West Antarctica is the clearest. Ice loss there has roughly tripled, from 53 billion tonnes per year to 159 billion tonnes per year over the same time period.

But in East Antarctica, the picture is more ambiguous. While most scientists believe East Antarctica is on average gaining mass in the form of ice and snowfall, or both, they also believe that increases in the East are not enough to offset losses in the West. The continent is losing ice mass overall.

To further complicate the picture, scientists reported in Science new information on the upward movement of Antarctica’s underlying bedrock, which could suggest the Ice Sheet is more stable than previously thought. The Earth's crust deforms when it is under the weight of glaciers and ice sheets. With the removal of these masses, the crust will rebound, which may help prevent the complete collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, even with significant warming. New GPS measurements signal that as ice is lost, the Earth’s crust under the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is rebounding much faster than previously expected. This surprising finding, though, may cause estimates of total ice mass loss to be revised upward by as much as 10 percent.