The loss of ice from the Arctic glaciers of Canada has turned them into a major contributor for large scale changes in sea level. The fact was recently revealed by a team of researchers that was working for the University of California. They made the study for the changes that took place from 2005-15 and found that the melting of surface ice caps for the Queen Elizabeth Islands grew exponentially by 900 percent taking the per year melt of 3 gigatons to 30 gigatons. The lead author of the paper published on this topic, Romain Millan, says, “In the past decade, as air temperatures have warmed, surface melt has increased dramatically.” He is an Earth system science doctoral student at the University.
The team also discovered that in last one decade the overall decline in the ice mass was more than they expected, this contributed to large changes in sea level in this area. Canada is the bearer of one fourth ice of the Arctic sea ranking right next to Greenland. The study offers one of the first long-duration analysis that has been made with respect to ice flow in the ocean after 2015. The Canadian ice cap also has glaciers moving in the Arctic Ocean. The researchers made use of regular satellite data along with a regional climate model to calculate the balance between total loss and gain on an annual basis. They expected that the high number of glaciers ending into marine basins will be one of the major causes of enhancement in the sea level.
They also found that till year 2005, the ice loss was due to two major factors, one was the calving icebergs from these huge glaciers fronts in the were responsible for 52 percent rest 48 percent was caused by the surfaces of the glaciers that were exposed to the air. MIllan further adds that, we identified meltwater runoff as the major contributor to these ice fields’ mass loss in recent years. With the ongoing, sustained and rapid warming of the high Arctic, the mass loss of the Queen Elizabeth Islands area is likely to continue to increase significantly in coming decades.”
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