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The ABCs of Antarctic Ice Shelf Melting

The ABCs of Antarctic Ice Shelf Melting

January 1995 marked a seminal moment in modern Antarctic history, with the crumbling of the Larsen A ice shelf, a floating plain of ice fed by glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula. Less than a decade later, its southern neighbor, the Larsen B ice shelf, disintegrated, stunning polar scientists. After the spectacular collapses of Larsen A and B… Read More

The Surprising Link Between Fjords and Carbon

The Surprising Link Between Fjords and Carbon

The magnificent, steep-sided fjords that slice deeply into the coastlines of New Zealand, Norway and Alaska are hugely popular attractions for tourists. But they may be surprisingly important to the Earth’s climate system as well. While fjords make up just one tenth of one percent of the oceans’ surface area they account for about 11 percent … Read More

New NASA Satellite Gets the Dirt on Soil Moisture

New NASA Satellite Gets the Dirt on Soil Moisture

Tracking soil moisture is a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it. Soil moisture is a critical indicator of drought. For decades, ground observations have done the heavy lifting but they’re few and far between. That’s why NASA spent $1 billion to launch a soil moisture monitoring satellite earlier this year. After months of calibration, the… Read More

Scientists Turn to Drones For Closer Look at Sea Ice

Scientists Turn to Drones For Closer Look at Sea Ice

An oceanographer at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory is calling on a 21st century technology to understand exactly how the floating ice that clogs the world’s northernmost seas every winter breaks up and melts.… Read More

Major Changes Loom in Arctic as U.S. Leads Council

Major Changes Loom in Arctic as U.S. Leads Council

Just 30 years ago, the Arctic was viewed as a frozen expanse of limited opportunity. But climate change is rapidly reshaping the region — it’s warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet — creating new opportunities and risks that are coming into global focus. “Without climate change, we wouldn’t really be talking about the Arctic in the first… Read More

Arctic Research Vessel Set Adrift to Study Sea Ice Decline

Arctic Research Vessel Set Adrift to Study Sea Ice Decline

A research vessel is adrift in the Arctic to study why sea ice is retreating faster than expected. Ice cover across the northern ocean fell to a new low last month, reaching just over 14.5 million sq kilometers (5.61 million square miles) at its winter peak, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, in Colorado. That was 130,000 sq… Read More

New Studies Reveal Climate Extremes From Fire to Ice

New Studies Reveal Climate Extremes From Fire to Ice

Climate scientists don't just rely on computer models and contemporary observations to understand the intimate relationship between CO2 in the atmosphere and environmental conditions on Earth. They also look to the ancient past — and two reports in recent days have made it clear how intimate that relationship is. One chronicles an episode 2.4 … Read More

Three Ways The West Can Adapt To Drought

Three Ways The West Can Adapt To Drought

The current Washington drought could help the West learn to adapt to one of the most profound effects that climate change is projected to bring to the region. Scientists warn that climate change could deliver “megadroughts” to the West, the likes of which haven’t been experienced in more than a millenium. “I’m seeing this year as a dress rehearsal … Read More

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Dire, Record Low Snowpack in California This year's sad California snowpack "obliterates" the previous record low.

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