Transient response of the MOC and climate to potential melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet in the 21st century
Article first published online: 29 MAY 2009
Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 36, Issue 10, May 2009
How to Cite
2009), Transient response of the MOC and climate to potential melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet in the 21st century, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L10707, doi:10.1029/2009GL037998., , , and (
- Issue published online: 29 MAY 2009
- Article first published online: 29 MAY 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 MAY 2009
- Manuscript Revised: 22 APR 2009
- Manuscript Received: 3 MAR 2009
- Greenland Ice Sheet;
- meridional overturning circulation;
- global climate
 The potential effects of Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) melting on the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (MOC) and global climate in the 21st century are assessed using the Community Climate System Model version 3 with prescribed rates of GrIS melting. Only when GrIS melting flux is strong enough to be able to produce net freshwater gain in upper subpolar North Atlantic does the MOC weaken further in the 21st century. Otherwise this additional melting flux does not alter the MOC much relative to the simulation without this added flux. The weakened MOC doesn't make the late 21st century global climate cooler than the late 20th century, but does reduce the magnitude of the warming in the northern high latitudes by a few degrees. Moreover, the additional dynamic sea level rise due to this weakened MOC could potentially aggravate the sea level problem near the northeast North America coast.