Greenland losing 200 million tons ice every year due to melting

New Delhi, Tue, 20 Nov 2012 NI Wire

Greenland that is covered with Glaciers is in danger as it is facing a huge loss of an average of 200 million tons of ice every year due to melting since 2003. The data has been confirmed by the scientists, studying the changing mass of the island using satellite data.

The latest data favours the previously reported trend without even including the last two summers of record-breaking ice melts.

"Greenland is really the place where everyone agrees that (the ice melt) is definitely accelerating with time and there is a big contribution to sea level rise," Discovery News quoted researcher Isabella Velicogna from the University of California at Irvine (UCI) as saying.

Velicogna is engaged in analyzing the similar kind of data used in this most recent study: from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) which can detect mass changes on the surface of the Earth over time.

GRACE performs this by detecting any increases and decreases in the gravity that is directly related to the mass below the two orbiting GRACE satellites.

In its latest work, Chris Harig and Frederik Simons, Princeton University researcher applied a new method for analyzing the GRACE data.

During the study, they found that during 2003 and 2004, mass loss was sited along the eastern coast of Greenland while from 2005 to 2006 maximum loss dropped in the northeast but increased in the southeast. Meanwhile, more mass was lost along the northwest coast, especially from 2007-2010.

"The study confirms what we already knew," Eric Rignot, an Earth Systems Science Professor at UCI and scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab, said.

"The authors use a new decomposition, but the sources of error and corrections are essentially the same as for other studies," Rignot added.

The details of the study have been published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

-With inputs from ANI

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