Feedback loop in Greenland amplified ice melt from warm weather

Last August, rain fell for the first time at the peak of Greenland’s ice sheet, but this had little impact on ice melt compared with other effects



Environment



17 June 2022

A weather station on the Greenland ice sheet

GEUS/ESA

When rain fell for the first time at the highest point of Greenland’s ice sheet last August, it marked a significant climate change milestone. But researchers have now revealed in unprecedented detail how an accompanying plume of hot air had a far bigger impact by melting snow, with the rain only playing a minor role.

The snow melt created a feedback loop by exposing darker ice, which absorbs more heat and causes more snow to melt in turn. Events like this will …

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