Glacier Dynamics May Not be Fully Understood

21 October 2015, by

Jakobshavn Isbræ, an outlet glacier off the west coast of Greenland, is losing mass faster than previously thought, due to increased melt water passing through it, as reported in a new paper. The glacier’s rapid trajectory of thinning may well represent the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) ice loss rate in the near future, which could mean faster sea […]

Mountain Spirits and the Shaking Earth

20 October 2015, by

After the devastating earthquakes in Nepal earlier this year, Sienna Craig began to conduct field research in Mustang to understand how communities in the area perceived and dealt with the earthquake. Craig is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Dartmouth College. She is the co-editor of HIMALAYA, the flagship journal of […]

Roundup: French Presidential Visit, Trek Itinerary, and Dangerous Glacial Lakes

19 October 2015, by

French president visits glacier to witness climate change “PARIS — The French president took a few steps on an Icelandic glacier Friday to experience firsthand the damage caused by global warming, ahead of major U.N. talks on climate change in Paris this year. Francois Hollande went to the shrinking Solheimajokull glacier, where the ice has […]

Photo Friday: Exploring Imja Tsho in Nepal

16 October 2015, by

Check out photos of Imja Tsho (or Imja Lake), a glacial lake created by the accumulation of meltwater at the foot of the Imja Glacier in the Himalayas in Nepal. The meltwater, located at the toe of both the Imja and Lhotse Shar glaciers, is held in place by a terminal moraine. Enjoy the landscape […]


The Question of Black Carbon

15 October 2015, by

Black carbon has only recently emerged as a known major contributor to climate change, especially for the Arctic. Formed by the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, biofuels, and biomass, black carbon absorbs light more strongly than any other particulate matter, especially when deposited onto glaciers and snow cover. Here, it lowers their reflectivity, thereby absorbing […]

Glacier Past Unveiled Through Sediments

14 October 2015, by

Researchers have long used preserved sediment layers in glaciers as time records to understand the climate of the past. But now, researchers, publishing in Quaternary Science Reviews, have used lake sediments in glacier-fed Lake Hajeren in Svalbard to recreate glacier variability during the Holocene period. The sediments, which were deposited over millennia, have been undisturbed, allowing researchers to […]

Doctor Accused of Taking Artifacts from Glacier

13 October 2015, by

A doctor from Mono County, California has been accused of looting Native American artifacts from a melting glacier on public and tribal lands in Death Valley National Park. Jonathan Bourne, an anesthesiologist, was indicted on 21 counts of looting following a yearlong investigation that began after he posted photos of himself finding a wooden bow out of […]

Roundup: Climate Park, Microbes and Variability

12 October 2015, by

Park in Norway Aims  to Raise Climate Awareness “Increased ice melting revealed in 2006–2007 many reminiscences of ancient human activity around ice patches near Mt Galdhøpiggen, Norway’s highest mountain peak. The public limited company ‘Klimapark 2469 AS’ was established to develop a heritage interpretation product and to study climate change. A 60-metre long ice tunnel […]

Photo Friday: A Snapshot of Svalbard

9 October 2015, by

Svalbard is a Norwegian archipelago tucked in between Norway and the North Pole. Especially known for its views of the Northern Lights and its summer “midnight sun,” in which sunlight graces the archipelago 24 hours a day, Svalbard is also known for its glaciers, which cover around 60 percent of Svalbard’s land area. Project Pressure, […]

Courtesy of BBC

Political Tug of War Over Greenland’s Mining Industry

8 October 2015, by

Greenlanders are engaging in a fierce ongoing debate about whether to develop the country’s onshore mineral resources into a robust mining industry. Since gaining political autonomy from Kingdom of Denmark in 2009, the government of the world’s largest non-continental island has long been brainstorming how to solve its increasing financial woes. When a 2008 US Geological […]

The Microscopic Life of Glaciers

7 October 2015, by

Though it can be hard to imagine that cold, barren-looking glaciers are conducive to life, glaciers are actually teeming with organisms. Glacier surfaces are filled with cylindrical holes called cyroconite holes, in which melt water accumulates and micro-algae and cyanobacteria  thrive. Now, a new study published in Biogeosciences has taken a closer look at these complex ecosystems […]

Glacier Lake Bursts in Alaska

6 October 2015, by

When Paul Gowen, 83, saw turquoise-green water spilling into the Frederick Sound and Wrangell Narrows in Alaska at the end of last month, he knew a glacier lake on the Baird Glacier had burst. Further up the Frederick Sound, residents noticed a larger quantity of icebergs and stronger currents. “This is amazing, this turquoise color as […]