Climate Change

Warming in Greenland's past

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Science  22 Jun 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6395, pp. 1311-1312
DOI: 10.1126/science.360.6395.1311-f

To project how much sea level will rise in response to ongoing climate warming, one of the things we need to know is how sensitive the rate of Greenland Ice Sheet melting is to rising temperatures. McFarlin et al. present results from a set of sediment cores from a small nonglacial lake in the highlands of northwest Greenland, which contain deposits from the Holocene and the Last Interglacial (LIG). They found midge assemblages indicating peak July temperatures that were 4.0° to 7.0°C warmer than modern temperatures during the early Holocene and at least 5.5° to 8.5°C warmer during the LIG. This perspective of extreme warming suggests that even larger changes than predicted for this region over the coming century may be in store.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 10.1073/pnas.1720420115 (2018).

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