Category Archives: Latest Research

2020 is the Hottest Year on Record Says NASA, Despite Cooling Influence of La Niña

Using 1951-1980 as baseline, NASA ranked 2020 as the warmest year on record by a narrow margin, while NOAA and the UK Met Office put 2020 in a close second place, essentially tied with 2016. This record or near-record is even more staggering considering the fact that 2020 saw the beginning of a La Niña, […]

New Understanding of Cloud Formation May Improve Climate Projections over Antarctica

Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, January 19 The ratio of ice to water in clouds strongly influences how much they reflect the sun’s rays, and whether they are primarily warming or cooling.  Scientists have struggled however to explain the large number of ice particles found in clouds above the coasts of Antarctica during the summer.  New […]

Number of Glacier-Related Landslides Doubles in High Mountain Asia During the Past 20 Years

Nature Scientific Reports, January 15 Glacial melting has been identified as one of the main triggers for larger and more frequent landslides in high mountain Asia (the eastern Pamir, western Himalayas, Hindu Kush, Karakoram, and western Kunlun mountains). For the past two decades, glacier extent in this region has decreased overall, while the number of […]

Heightened Risk of Water Stress in the Himalayas Under High Emissions Scenarios

Advancing Earth and Space Science, January 19   The response of Himalayan rivers to climate change is complex due to multiple competing factors: snowfall and snowmelt; rainfall; and glacier melt. This study focused on 5 river basins in the Central Himalayas, and found that snowmelt contributions to river flows will likely decrease by 2100 under both […]

Increase in Arctic Ocean Nutrients from Permafrost Thaw and Coastal Erosion

Nature Communications, January 8 Rapid coastal and riverbank erosion due to thawing permafrost today is one of the main sources of nitrogen nutrients in the Arctic Ocean, contributing around 30-50% of the total input (the rest is transferred from neighboring seas and oceans). This land-derived nitrogen off the Arctic continental shelves boosts the productivity of […]

Movement of Antarctic Icebergs Helped Drive the Onset of Ice Ages

Nature, January 13   Ice ages have long been associated with small periodic changes in the Earth’s orbit around the sun, but how and why such changes could trigger an ice age has remained an enigma.  Now, one possible explanation has arisen: under a specific orbital setting, Antarctic icebergs travel, and melt further and further […]

Long-term Warming Projections Increase When Including Regional Temperature Differences

Nature, January 4 Warming does not occur evenly across the world. Regional differences in temperature can influence the way the Earth sends its heat back into space and temporarily dampens the planet’s response to increasing emissions, therefore masking a warmer future. This feedback, not included in most models, has the potential to increase long-term estimates for […]

Warm Water from the Atlantic Accelerates Greenland Glacier Retreat and Ice Sheet Loss

Science Advances, January 1   Warm Atlantic water flowing into dozens of Greenland’s deepest fjords nearly doubles the amount of ice loss by undercutting their outlet glaciers, accounting for about half of their melting and ice loss during the summer months.  The abrupt ∼1.9°C warming of sub-surface ocean waters around Greenland in 1998–2007 triggered widespread […]

High Emissions Scenarios Could Double Ice-Free Freshwater Lakes by 2100

Geophysical Research Letters, August 14   Since the 1970s, freshwater lakes in the Northern Hemisphere have been three times more likely to experience entirely ice-free winters, never freezing at all. Drawing less attention than Arctic sea ice loss, this shift – driven by warmer winters — carries major ecological, socio-economic, and cultural consequences. Projections show […]