Due to global warming, glaciers on Greenland are slipping into the ocean twice as fast as they were just five years ago, scientists announced today.
Current estimates already suggest that Greenland is contributing to rising seas. Now it seems that those estimates may have underestimated the melting island’s effect, says Eric Rignot, a glaciologist with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
Warming surface temperatures in Greenland are allowing more meltwater to trickle down to the glacier bed. There, where glacier meets earth, the water acts as a lubricant, allowing the ice to flow more quickly to the ocean.