A new study published in Nature climate change shows how human-caused climate change and global warming led to the inevitable melting of the polar ice cap in Greenland. According to the study, the irreversible melting of the ice would have increased the level of the oceans by 27 cm.
27 cm that derive only from emissions already into the atmosphere: in the coming decades it is estimated at least 110 thousand billion tons of melted ice in the oceans. The researchers of the study explained: "This is the result of the increase in mass turnover due to precipitation, the discharge of ice flows and the runoff of melt water." The volume loss of the shell will be equal to 3.3% of the total.
The ice imbalance already triggered by the climate of the 2000-2019 period, with snowfall no longer able to replace the ice lost annually, will cause a retreat of the Greenland ice sheet equal to an area of 6077-7622 km2.
The biggest concern is with the result of the research, which scientists say is conservative. In fact, according to the study, this would happen with a total and immediate stop of CO2 emissions. So the actual result could be much more dramatic.
In this case, the rise in sea level caused by the melting of the Greenland ice will be as much as 78 cm.
Greenland: melting of ice is inevitable, oceans higher than 27 cm
This is because of something that could be called zombie ice, ice that, while still attached to thicker ice areas, is no longer being replenished by major glaciers which now receive less snow.
Without refueling, the ice is doomed to melt due to climate change and will inevitably raise sea levels. If the researchers' calculations are correct, they can accurately estimate the amount of water that will be discharged into the sea in the coming years before the Greenland glacial system adjusts to the planet's current average temperatures.
Because not only is the Arctic ice sheet melting, but with it also the Antarctic one and all the alpine glaciers in the world, from those of the Alps to the Himalayas. The 2019 report on the state and change of the cryosphere in the Hindu Kush Himalaya region predicts that the volumes of some glaciers could decrease by up to 90% over the 21st century in response to reduced snowfall, increased height of the snow limit and longer melting seasons.