A Heatwave in Greenland

Recent unseasonably warm temperatures, brought to Greenland by a heat wave that smashed records across Europe a week before, have accelerated the melting of the ice sheet that covers 82 percent of the country, releasing water at record rates. On Thursday alone, an estimated 12.5 billion tons of meltwater flowed into the ocean, which would be the highest single-day total since 1950, according to Ted Scambos, a senior researcher at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, quoted in The Washington Post. Snow and ice melt every summer in Greenland, and this heat wave was an anomalous event, but climatologists warn that overall warming trends intensify such events, and make them more likely in years to come. The Associated Press cites a June 2019 study that concluded “melting ice in Greenland alone will add between 5 and 33 centimeters (2 to 13 inches) to rising global sea levels by the year 2100.”

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Noah Berger / AP

    Photos of the Week: Taxi Ornament, Russky Bridge, Turning Torso

    Aquarium dining in Singapore, the damaged Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, increasing COVID-19 cases worldwide, a drive-through Santa experience in Los Angeles, and much more.

  • Emilio Morenatti / AP

    Photos: The Reality of the Current Coronavirus Surge

    Images from around the world of the current battle against COVID-19, photographed over the past few weeks

  • NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team

    2020 Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar

    Every day until Friday, December 25, we’ll present one new image of our universe from NASA’s orbiting telescope.

  • Matt Rourke / AP

    Pennsylvania: Images of the Keystone State

    A few glimpses of the landscape of Pennsylvania, and some of the animals and people calling it home