Review article: Earth's ice imbalance

  title={Review article: Earth's ice imbalance},
  author={Thomas Slater and Isobel R. Lawrence and In{\`e}s Otosaka and Andrew Shepherd and Noel Gourmelen and Livia Jakob and Paul Tepes and Lin Gilbert and Peter Nienow},
  journal={The Cryosphere},
Abstract. We combine satellite observations and numerical models to show that Earth lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice between 1994 and 2017. Arctic sea ice (7.6 trillion tonnes), Antarctic ice shelves (6.5 trillion tonnes), mountain glaciers (6.1 trillion tonnes), the Greenland ice sheet (3.8 trillion tonnes), the Antarctic ice sheet (2.5 trillion tonnes), and Southern Ocean sea ice (0.9 trillion tonnes) have all decreased in mass. Just over half (58 %) of the ice loss was from the Northern… Expand
11 Citations
Review article : Earth ’ s ice imbalance
We combine satellite observations and numerical models to show that Earth lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice between 1994 and 2017. Arctic sea ice (7.6 trillion tonnes), Antarctic ice shelves (6.5Expand
Modelled response of debris-covered and lake-calving glaciers to climate change, Kā Tiritiri o te Moana/Southern Alps, New Zealand
Abstract Glaciers will lose mass during the next decades as the climate warms. While the largest uncertainty in this mass loss is the global greenhouse gas emissions pathway, on a local or regionalExpand
Spatially and temporally resolved ice loss in High Mountain Asia and the Gulf of Alaska observed by CryoSat-2 swath altimetry between 2010 and 2019
Abstract. Glaciers are currently the largest contributor to sea level rise after ocean thermal expansion, contributing ∼  30 % to the sea level budget. Global monitoring of these regions remains aExpand
A Bayesian approach towards daily pan-Arctic sea ice freeboard estimates from combined CryoSat-2 and Sentinel-3 satellite observations
Abstract. Observations of sea ice freeboard from satellite radar altimeters are crucial in the derivation of sea ice thickness estimates, which in turn provide information on sea ice forecasts,Expand
Societal implications of a changing Arctic Ocean
This paper explores the many ways that a changing Arctic Ocean affects societies in the Arctic and around the world and what choices made within and beyond the Arctic concerning global climate change and industrial policies and Arctic ecosystems and cultures depends on. Expand
Thickness and geodetic mass balance changes for the Triglav Glacier (southeastern Alps) from 1952 to 2016
Various geodetic and lidar measurements performed on the Triglav Glacier (Julian Alps, Slovenia) make it possible to study not only the extent of the glacier but also changes in its thickness andExpand
The disappearing cryosphere in the southeastern Alps: Introduction to special issue
Various ice bodies are an important source of paleoenvironmental data, and their study improves the understanding of present and future environmental conditions. Their changes are an importantExpand
Climate change, melting cryosphere and frozen pathogens: Should we worry…?
Permanently frozen environments (glaciers, permafrost) are considered as natural reservoirs of huge amounts of microorganisms, mostly dormant, including human pathogens. Due to global warming, whichExpand
A Roadmap for Policy-Relevant Sea-Level Rise Research in the United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has a long-term policy horizon, the financial capital, and a vision for a sustainable knowledge-based economy. These characteristics uniquely situate it as a potentialExpand
Climate Sensitivity and Cryospheric Systems
  • Jasper Knight, Stephan Harrison
  • Environmental Science
  • Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences
  • 2021


Mass balance of the Antarctic Ice Sheet from 1992 to 2017
This work combines satellite observations of its changing volume, flow and gravitational attraction with modelling of its surface mass balance to show that the Antarctic Ice Sheet lost 2,720 ± 1,390 billion tonnes of ice between 1992 and 2017, which corresponds to an increase in mean sea level of 7.6‚¬3.9 millimetres. Expand
Recent loss of floating ice and the consequent sea level contribution
We combine new and published satellite observations and the results of a coupled ice-ocean model to provide the first estimate of changes in the quantity of ice floating in the global oceans and theExpand
Changing state of Arctic sea ice across all seasons
Thedecline in thefloating sea ice cover in theArctic is one of themost strikingmanifestations of climate change. In this review,we examine this ongoing loss ofArctic sea ice across all seasons.OurExpand
Four decades of Antarctic Ice Sheet mass balance from 1979–2017
During the entire period, the mass loss concentrated in areas closest to warm, salty, subsurface, circumpolar deep water (CDW), consistent with enhanced polar westerlies pushing CDW toward Antarctica to melt its floating ice shelves, destabilize the glaciers, and raise sea level. Expand
A Reconciled Estimate of Glacier Contributions to Sea Level Rise: 2003 to 2009
It is found that glaciers in the Arctic, Canada, Alaska, coastal Greenland, the southern Andes, and high-mountain Asia contribute approximately as much melt water as the ice sheets themselves: 260 billion tons per year between 2003 and 2009, accounting for about 30% of the observed sea-level rise during that period. Expand
Mass balance of the Greenland Ice Sheet from 1992 to 2018
  • Andrew Erik Eric Ben Michiel Isabella Pippa Kate Ian Gerh Shepherd Ivins Rignot Smith van den Broeke Velicog, A. Shepherd, +87 authors J. Wuite
  • Environmental Science, Medicine
  • Nature
  • 2019
Comparing and combining 26 individual satellite measurements of changes in the Greenland Ice Sheet’s volume, flow and gravitational potential to produce a reconciled estimate of its mass balance produces comparable results that approach the trajectory of the highest rates of sea-level rise projected by the IPCC. Expand
Volume loss from Antarctic ice shelves is accelerating
Satellite data is presented showing that ice shelves in many regions around the edge of Antarctica are losing mass, which increases concern about how fast sea level might rise as climate continues to warm. Expand
Thickness distribution of Antarctic sea ice
[1] Ship-based observations are used to describe regional and seasonal changes in the thickness distribution and characteristics of sea ice and snow cover thickness around Antarctica. The data setExpand
An improved mass budget for the Greenland ice sheet
Extensive ice thickness surveys by NASA’s Operation IceBridge enable over a decade of ice discharge measurements at high precision for the majority of Greenland’s marine-terminating outlet glaciers,Expand
Ice-Sheet Response to Oceanic Forcing
Current observations establish a clear correspondence between the increased delivery of oceanic heat to the ice-sheet margin and increased ice loss, much of which is a response to oceanic forcing, especially of the floating ice shelves. Expand