Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Greenland ICE becoming DARKER ....?

The bright surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet reflected well over half of the sunlight that fell on it. This reflectiveness helped keep the ice sheet stable.
In the past decade, however, satellites have observed a decrease in Greenland’s reflectiveness.

This darker surface now absorbs more sunlight, which accelerates melting.
Greenland’s Ice Is Growing Darker
Color bar for Greenland’s Ice Is Growing Darker difference between the amount of sunlight Greenland reflected in the summer of 2011 versus the average percent it reflected between 2000 to 2006.

Warmer, lower-elevation areas of the ice sheet have darkened more than the colder, higher-altitude interior. Each summer, winter snow retreats from the edge of the ice sheet. Dark pools of melt water form on the surface of the ice, and windblown dust and other particles also collect near the surface, making it even less reflective.

Jason Box of Ohio State University, who analyzed the reflectiveness data propose that ice itself undergone change in shape and structure...

Courtesy:Nasa Earth Observatory

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