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Potential regime shift in decreased sea ice production after the Mertz Glacier calving

Citation

Tamura, T and Williams, GD and Fraser, AD and Ohshima, KI, Potential regime shift in decreased sea ice production after the Mertz Glacier calving, Nature Communications, 3, (826) pp. 1-6. ISSN 2041-1723 (2012) [Refereed Article]


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Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0) http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/

DOI: doi:10.1038/ncomms1820

Abstract

Variability in dense shelf water formation can potentially impact Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) production, a vital component of the global climate system. In East Antarctica, the George V Land polynya system (142–150°E) is structured by the local ‘icescape’, promoting sea ice formation that is driven by the offshore wind regime. Here we present the first observations of this region after the repositioning of a large iceberg (B9B) precipitated the calving of the Mertz Glacier Tongue in 2010. Using satellite data, we find that the total sea ice production for the region in 2010 and 2011 was 144 and 134 km3, respectively, representing a 14–20% decrease from a value of 168 km3 averaged from 2000–2009. This abrupt change to the regional icescape could result in decreased polynya activity, sea ice production, and ultimately the dense shelf water export and AABW production from this region for the coming decades.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:sea ice production, Mertz Glacier, calving
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical Oceanography
Objective Division:Environment
Objective Group:Other Environment
Objective Field:Antarctic and Sub-Antarctic Oceanography
Author:Tamura, T (Dr Takeshi Tamura)
Author:Williams, GD (Dr Guy Williams)
Author:Fraser, AD (Dr Alex Fraser)
ID Code:78227
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:27
Deposited By:CRC-Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems
Deposited On:2012-06-18
Last Modified:2013-04-26
Downloads:309 View Download Statistics

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