For decades Greenland has been losing ice, but not anymore. It’s building again — due to our naturally cooling planet.
It’s the middle of July and the Greenland Ice Sheet is gaining so much ice that the blue line, indicating the accumulated surface mass balance, has pushed above the 1981-2010 mean.
As seen on the below chart, courtesy of the Danish Meteorological Institute.
As ice sheets grow a process called ‘calving’ occurs.
Calving, also known as glacier calving or iceberg calving, is the breaking of ice chunks from the edge of a glacier. It is a form of ice ablation or ice disruption and is normally caused by the glacier expanding — not melting.
When calving occurs freshwater gets injected into the ocean.
A Strong Correlation
When it comes to regulating global climate, the circulation of the Atlantic Ocean (AMOC) plays a key role.
Influxes of fresh water can disrupt the deep-water system resulting in impacts on climate.
A research team led by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) recently found the fingerprint of a massive flood of fresh water in the western Arctic, likely to be the cause of an ancient cold snap that began around 13,000 years ago.
“This abrupt climate change — known as the Younger Dryas — ended more than 1,000 years of warming,” explains Lloyd Keigwin, an oceanographer at WHOI and lead author of the paper published July 9, 2018 — for the full article click here.
It’s clear to the researchers that this huge influx of fresh water from caving ice sheets disrupted the AMOC, resulting in rapid global cooling.
The AMOC hasn’t been running at peak strength since the mid-1800s and is currently at its weakest point in the past 1,600 years.
As we descend further into the Grand Solar Minimum, expanding ice sheets and the resulting calving will further weaken the AMOC, disrupting weather patterns across the globe.