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Portent of doom ... Greenland ice sheet reached tipping point 20 years ago, new study finds ...


Active member
The tipping point was 20 years ago which was when the last equilibrium occurred between ice melt and new ice formation.

Greenland holds enough ice for 7+ metres of sea-level rise.

Nothing we can do in our lifetimes will change the imbalance between ice loss and ice formation.

It is too late and international society is doing too little to turn global warming around.


Greenland ice sheet reached tipping point 20 years ago, new study finds
by Grace Palmer, Earth Institute at Columbia University

The Greenland ice sheet likely lies above an ancient tundra landscape with its own complex topography. Credit: Michalea King
At the turn of the 21st century, unbeknownst to the world, the Greenland ice sheet likely entered a state of sustained mass loss that will persist for the foreseeable future, according to a new study. Though the finding has raised concern over the future of the ice sheet, scientists emphasize that reducing emissions remains critical.

The study, which looked at 40 years of satellite data, was released on August 13 in Communications Earth & Environment. Second in size only to the Antarctic ice sheets, the Greenland ice sheet covers nearly 80 percent of the vast island. It contains the equivalent of about 24 feet of global mean sea level rise and, due to its accelerated retreat, is considered the largest single contributor to rising sea levels worldwide.

While the ice sheet's decline has been well-documented over the past two decades, this latest study, led by Michalea King of the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center, found that widespread glacier retreat helped push the ice sheet from a balanced to an imbalanced state. This work suggests that even if the oceans and atmosphere were to stop warming today, the ice sheet will continue to lose more ice than it will gain.

In the decades leading up to the turn of the century, the ice sheet was in a state of relative equilibrium. The ice lost in a given year would be replenished by wintertime snowfall, and the sheet maintained a near-constant mass. But beginning around the year 2000, ice discharged through outlet glaciers—channels that flow outward to the sea—started to outpace annual snowfall that, in a balanced year, would replenish lost ice. The authors sifted through 40 years of satellite data, tracking outlet glacier velocity, thickness, and calving front position over time to determine the rate of ice loss. The shift they found represents a tipping point that is unlikely to be reversible in the near future. King told GlacierHub, "It's like a gear change… we've accelerated the drainage at the edge of the ice sheet, and now… we expect mass loss to be the new norm for the ice sheet in the near future." ...


Wonder woman
Are you surprised.?
I don't know how old you are, but informed folk have been expecting this sort of thing happening for decades.
I woke up in the 80's

but not actually having much personal power.. ie money.. I worked hard for years to buy and protect some precious ecosystem.. BUT it won't stand up against what we are facing , here and around the world.

Governments didn't listen... back then.. and they aren't really listening NOW.

The Arctic Circle ice is likely to consist mainly of open water soon, and Antarctica..?


Head Honcho
Staff member
It will take centuries. If you wanted to do something you would call for nuclear and renewable energy.