More on East Antarctic Lakes
September 28, 2016
Impossible to write climate stories these days with out using the words “surprising” and “not expecting”.
One of the key differences between Greenland in the north, and Antarctica in the south, has been that Greenland, because of its geography and smaller size, has been more subject to warming enough on the surface to create significant meltwater, that collects in lakes, visible in broad areas during the summer. This surface melt has a number of significant effects on ice dynamics, as Jason Box spells out in this 2014 video.
Up until now, this kind of surface dynamic has not been documented on the gigantic, and not-so-long-ago-thought-invulnerable East Antarctic ice sheet. Projections of Antarctic melt focused mainly on the dynamic of ocean waters eating away and undermining the ice edges.
The fact that we are seeing these is an unscheduled wake up call.