Climate: unprecedented rain near the top of the ice cap in Greenland

the essential The Danish meteorological institute DMI announced on Monday 20 an exceptional climatic phenomenon: a unprecedented rain on the Greenlandic ice cap, at more than 3 meters above sea level.

It rained in mid-August at more than 3 000 altitude on the Greenlandic ice cap, an exceptional climatic phenomenon , announced on Monday 20 August, the Danish meteorological institute DMI (Danmarks Meteorologiske Institut).

Rain was observed for several hours on 14 August, at the US Summit station located at the top of the ice cap, a reported the US Snow and Ice Data Center. “Rain can only fall if the temperature is above or slightly below 0 ° C . So this is an extreme situation, because it may never have happened before , explained DMI researcher Martin Stendel. This is likely a sign of global warming. »

Unusual temperatures recorded during the summer

Temperatures were just above 0 ° C, meaning the snow melts and refreezes to turn to ice, which has only happened three times in the past ten years (2012, 2019 and but it didn’t rain in 1990 and 2012.

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This rainy episode comes at a time when unusual temperatures of over 18 ° C, with local records, have been recorded in the north of Greenland during the summer. This heat wave resulted in an accelerated rate of melting of the ice sheet. Its decline, which began several decades ago, has been accelerating since 1990 and continues to get carried away.

The second largest ice cap behind Antarctica, with an area of ​​nearly 1.8 million square kilometers, the Greenlandic cap is causing concern among scientists, with warming in the Arctic being three times faster than elsewhere in the world.

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According to a European study published in January, the melting of the Greenland icecap should contribute to the general rise in ocean level by at 14 centimeters from here to 2100, or 60% faster than the previous estimate. The Greenlandic cap contains in total enough to raise the level of the oceans by six to seven meters.

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