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Extensive retreat of Greenland tidewater glaciers, 2000-2010


Murray, T and Scharrer, K and Selmes, N and Booth, AD and James, TD and Bevan, SL and Bradley, J and Cook, S and Cordero Llana, L and Drocourt, Y and Dyke, L and Goldsack, A and Hughes, AL and Luckman, AJ and McGovern, J, Extensive retreat of Greenland tidewater glaciers, 2000-2010, Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research, 47, (3) pp. 427-447. ISSN 1523-0430 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 Regents of the University of Colorado

DOI: doi:10.1657/AAAR0014-049


Overall mass loss from the Greenland ice sheet nearly doubled during the early 2000s resulting in an increased contribution to sea-level rise, with this step-change being mainly attributed to the widespread frontal retreat and accompanying dynamic thinning of tidewater glaciers. Changes in glacier calving-front positions are easily derived from remotely sensed imagery and provide a record of dynamic change. However, ice-sheet-wide studies of calving fronts have been either spatially or temporally limited. In this study multiple calving-front positions were derived for 199 Greenland marine-terminating outlet glaciers with width greater than 1 km using Landsat imagery for the 11-year period 20002010 in order to identify regional seasonal and inter-annual variations. During this period, outlet glaciers were characterized by sustained and substantial retreat summing to more than 267 km, with only 11 glaciers showing overall advance. In general, the pattern of mass loss detected by GRACE (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment) and other measurements is reflected in the calving record of Greenland glaciers. Our results suggest several regions in the south and east of the ice sheet likely share controls on their dynamic changes, but no simple single control is apparent.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:glaciology, ice-ocean interaction, Greenland
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Physical geography and environmental geoscience
Research Field:Glaciology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the earth sciences
UTAS Author:Cook, S (Dr Sue Cook)
ID Code:102760
Year Published:2015
Web of Science® Times Cited:54
Deposited By:CRC-Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems
Deposited On:2015-09-04
Last Modified:2017-10-30

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