Time will tell if this is a record summer for Greenland ice melt, but the 20-year pattern is clear

3/07/2019 2:30:00 AM

Temperatures in the planet’s extreme north are rising twice as fast as the global average.

Temperatures in the planet’s extreme north are rising twice as fast as the global average.

Temperatures in the planet’s extreme north are rising twice as fast as the global average.

Amplification of climate change in the Arctic.Larger text size Very large text size Australia's hottest start to any year extended to a sixth month for day-time temperatures even as conditions moderated in June, while rainfall continued to be very much below average for large parts of the country.Larger text size Very large text size Treasurer Josh Frydenberg is giving Chinese conglomerate Shandong Ruyi more time to negotiate the sale of part of Australia's largest cotton farm, four years after the company was first required to reduce its stake in the sprawling Queensland property.Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Aged 39, Venus Williams is considered Wimbledon royalty as she has been part of the All England Club family for over two decades, having won the singles title five times - including two before Cori Gauff was even born.

Read more: Ice melt in Greenland and Antarctica predicted to bring more frequent extreme weather Greenland is warming so rapidly because of what climate scientists refer to as a “positive feedback”.Despite the name, these are not good.78 degrees above the 1961-90 baseline used by the Bureau of Meteorology.A better term might be “climate change amplifier”.Shandong Ruyi, which owns Cubbie Station alongside Dubbo businessman Roger Fletcher, was originally required to reduce its stake by October 2015.The Arctic has many “positive feedbacks” or “amplifiers” that worsen the effects of climate change here.Parched land near Coonamble, in north-western NSW - one of the region's with much-below average rainfall over the past year.For example, as snow and ice begin to melt, the surface darkens, allowing it to absorb more heat and thus melt even more."I never thought this would happen, I am literally living my dream right now, and not many get to say that.

This effect is most dramatic when snow and ice are lost completely, as in the case of the dramatic loss of the sea ice covering the Arctic ocean.In NSW, mean temperatures - which track day- and night-time readings - were 2.It is not clear whether those talks have stalled.Arctic sea ice loss is one of the major factors that explains why the Arctic is warming so much faster than the rest of the planet.Another worrisome characteristic of climate change in the Arctic is the potential for ice melt to accelerate.3 degrees.The temperature threshold at which ice begins to melt means that once the climate has warmed enough to start melting ice, any further warming will rapidly cause an even larger amount of melting to occur.“I am not going to comment further due to commercial confidentiality and privacy law requirements,” he said.That is the reality beginning to play out in Greenland.Advertisement Loading In the capitals, Sydney's start to the year was also the hottest in records dating back to 1858.The nerveless display continued in the second set and she sealed victory on her fourth match point when Williams netted a forehand.

Beginning of the 2019 summer melt season Last month, ice melt across the surface of Greenland made headlines.Surface melting spiked rapidly and was unusually strong for June.0 degrees, eclipsing the 24.Melting was most intense around the edges of the Greenland ice sheet, and about 40% of the entire ice sheet surface was affected to some extent.Greenland ice melt is typically very irregular during each summer, spiking as weather systems bring warm air masses over the ice sheet.Melbourne's readings are a little harder to assess because of site changes.Given this variability, it is not yet clear whether 2019 is going to be an unusually bad year for melting over Greenland – and whether it will rival the worst year on record, 2012, when the entire surface of the ice sheet experienced melting." Source.

But what is very clear from observations since the 1970s (and completely consistent with simple physics) is that as the Arctic climate warms, the Greenland summer melt season is starting earlier, lasting longer, and becoming more intense.The record warm start to 2019 came as temperatures in May and June came in closer to long-run averages.Samples of older ice from inside Greenland’s ice sheet paint an even clearer picture of the changes that climate warming is causing.The amount of summer melting first began to increase in the mid-1800s, not long after human-driven climate warming began.In NSW, falls were about half the norm, making it the driest June since 1986.Summer melt over the past two decades has reached levels roughly 50% higher than before the Industrial Revolution, and the speed of ice loss from the Greenland sheet has increased nearly sixfold since the 1980s.Greenland melt intensity over the past 350 years.The Murray-Darling Basin had another poor month, with rainfall also half the long-run average, making it the 10th driest June.

Choices for the future An ice sheet has existed on Greenland for millions of years.But the geological timescales of ice sheet growth and renewal are vastly outpaced by the human-caused changes we see today.Loading Rainfall has been poor over much of the country too.A study published in June this year, at the same time surface melting of the ice sheet was spiking, predicts that if human greenhouse emissions continue unabated, by the end of this century ice loss from the Greenland ice sheet could see the ocean rise by up to 33cm.If all of the Greenland ice sheet were to melt, global sea level would rise by more than 7m.45 millimetres, one of the four lowest readings in the past 119 years, and the driest such period since 1969-70.According to the same study, that could potentially happen within 1,000 years.

The evidence is abundantly clear: the rising temperature of the planet is causing more Arctic ice to melt during the northern summer."Of course the long-term background warming trend [from climate change] is relevant," he added.We cannot avoid further ice loss in coming decades, and people and ecosystems will have to adapt to this.But there is still a window of opportunity to avoid the worst impacts of future climate change in the longer term.The bureau's outlook predicts more of the same , at least for the July-September period.The evidence tells us that the only way to prevent the destruction of the Greenland ice sheet, and multi-metre rises in global sea level, is to make rapid, deep cuts to greenhouse gas emissions.That is a choice we still have a chance to make..

Nerilie Abram receives funding from the Australian Research Council, through the Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes and a Future Fellowship.Source.

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