Environment Counts | Dramatic retreat in northern Greenland Petermann Glacier reported
Author: Geoff Zeiss – Published At: 2011-09-20 12:26 – (803 Reads)
A dramatic change in the Petermann Glacier in northern Greenland has been reported by Alun Hubbard of Aberystwyth University who in July 2011 reported that he was completely unprepared for the scale of the break-up since 2009 that he observed.
Supported by the US National Science Foundation and the Natural Environment Research Council in the UK, Dr Hubbard gathered data using time lapse cameras and GPS sensors set up in July and August 2009. The GPS sensors were set in anticipation of a large break-up of ice that eventually occurred on August 3, 2010 leading to the formation of an ice island measuring more than 200 sq km. In July 2011 Dr Hubbard returned and reported that he was completely unprepared for the scale of the break-up since 2009 that he observed.
New Minimum for Arctic Sea Ice Extent Reported
According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) the last record low for Arctic sea ice extent was recorded in September 2007. That year was also the first time the Northwest Passage through the Canadian Arctic was ice free since satellite records began in 1978.
Researchers at the University of Bremen have reported that according to their calculations September 8, 2011 represents a new record minimum for the extent of Arctic sea ice extent. They used high-resolution microwave data from a sensor on NASA’s Aqua satellite. They estimated that the observed sea ice extent was 4.24 million km2, 27,000 km2 less than the previous record in 2007. However, other researchers report this year’s minimum extent was a close second to 2007.