Thinning ice may signal changes
Article first published online: 3 JUN 2011
©1987. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union
Volume 68, Issue 42, page 1129, 20 October 1987
How to Cite
1987), Thinning ice may signal changes, Eos Trans. AGU, 68(42), 1129–1129, doi:10.1029/EO068i042p01129-02.(
- Issue published online: 3 JUN 2011
- Article first published online: 3 JUN 2011
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The thinning of ice on Antarctica's Lake Hoare over the past decade may be a signal of profound climatic change, at least on the local level. Scientists have measured a 2-meter decrease in the thickness of surface ice on the lake, as well as rising water levels, during the 10-year study. The same trend has been observed at other lakes in the Taylor Valley, where the study is taking place.
According to George M. Simmons of Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Blacksburg, Va.), a member of the study group, the 20-cm/yr thinning rate and higher water levels suggest increased input from glacial meltwaters into Lake Hoare. The lake is in the dry valley region of Antarctica, where the ground is icefree and surface temperatures sometimes climb above freezing in the austral summer. The ice-covered lake is essentially closed to losses of water or other material and is “a terrific climatological library,” says Simmons. “Almost everything that goes into it stays in.”