Greenland glaciers melting at an alarming rate
Depressing climate news, version 17,354: Greenland’s two-mile-thick ice sheet is melting at a rate unforeseen to scientists and climate models. Chunks of ice breaking off are so huge that they’re triggering earthquakes; the glaciers are adding some 58 trillion gallons of water annually to the oceans, more than twice as much as they were 10 years ago. In total, Greenland’s ice holds enough water to raise global sea levels by a terrifying 23 feet. The melting may also disrupt weather patterns on the west coast of the U.S., making much of California drier and bringing more precipitation to the Northwest (which really, thank goodness, because Seattle does not get enough rain). “You don’t need to melt much of Greenland to have a pretty big effect,” says glacier specialist Christina Hulbe. “The fact that it’s already happening faster than people thought possible — that’s reason to be concerned.” We’ll add it to our ever-growing list.