The Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets Under 1.5 °C Global Warming

TitleThe Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets Under 1.5 °C Global Warming
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsPattyn, Frank, Ritz Catherine, Hanna Edward, Asay-Davis Xylar, DeConto Rob, Durand Gael, Favier Lionel, Fettweis Xavier, Goelzer Heiko, Golledge Nicholas R., Munneke Peter Kuipers, Lenaerts Jan T. M., Nowicki Sophie, Payne Antony J., Robinson Alexander, Seroussi Helene, Trusel Luke D., and van den Broeke Michiel
JournalNature Climate Change
Pages1053 - 1061
Date PublishedJan-12-2018
Abstract / Summary

Even if anthropogenic warming were constrained to less than 2 °C above pre-industrial, the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets will continue to lose mass this century, with rates similar to those observed over the past decade. However, nonlinear responses cannot be excluded, which may lead to larger rates of mass loss. Furthermore, large uncertainties in future projections still remain, pertaining to knowledge gaps in atmospheric (Greenland) and oceanic (Antarctica) forcing. On millennial timescales, both ice sheets have tipping points at or slightly above the 1.5–2.0 °C threshold; for Greenland, this may lead to irreversible mass loss due to the surface mass balance–elevation feedback, whereas for Antarctica, this could result in a collapse of major drainage basins due to ice-shelf weakening. 

URLhttps://www.nature.com/articles/s41558-018-0305-8
DOI10.1038/s41558-018-0305-8
Journal: Nature Climate Change
Year of Publication: 2018
Pages: 1053 - 1061
Date Published: Jan-12-2018

Even if anthropogenic warming were constrained to less than 2 °C above pre-industrial, the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets will continue to lose mass this century, with rates similar to those observed over the past decade. However, nonlinear responses cannot be excluded, which may lead to larger rates of mass loss. Furthermore, large uncertainties in future projections still remain, pertaining to knowledge gaps in atmospheric (Greenland) and oceanic (Antarctica) forcing. On millennial timescales, both ice sheets have tipping points at or slightly above the 1.5–2.0 °C threshold; for Greenland, this may lead to irreversible mass loss due to the surface mass balance–elevation feedback, whereas for Antarctica, this could result in a collapse of major drainage basins due to ice-shelf weakening. 

DOI: 10.1038/s41558-018-0305-8
Citation:
Pattyn, F, C Ritz, E Hanna, X Asay-Davis, R DeConto, G Durand, L Favier, X Fettweis, H Goelzer, NR Golledge, P Kuipers Munneke, JT Lenaerts, S Nowicki, AJ Payne, A Robinson, H Seroussi, LD Trusel, and M van den Broeke.  2018.  "The Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets Under 1.5 °C Global Warming."  Nature Climate Change 1053 - 1061, pp. 1053 - 1061.  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-018-0305-8.