Graphic shows global ice mass change between 1994 and 2017.
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ENVIRONMENT

Earth has lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice since 1994

August 26, 2020 - The Earth lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice between 1994 and 2017 with 60 percent of melting occurring in the northern hemisphere, according to data published in the online journal Cryosphere Discussions.

Scientists from Leeds and Edinburgh universities and University College London combined satellite observations and numerical models to identify the impact of global warming.

The group of researchers describe the ice loss as “staggering” and warn that melting glaciers and ice sheets could cause sea levels to reach a meter (3 feet) by the end of the century.

The analysis showed that the rate of ice loss has risen by 57 percent since the 1990s – from 0.8 to 1.2 trillion tonnes per year – owing to increased losses from mountain glaciers, Antarctica, Greenland, and from Antarctic ice shelves.

The majority of all ice losses were driven by atmospheric melting, with 68 percent from Arctic sea ice, mountain glaciers, ice shelf calving and ice sheet surface mass balance. The remaining 32 percent of the losses were from ice sheet discharge and ice shelf thinning, driven by oceanic melting.

PUBLISHED: 26/08/2020; STORY: Graphic News
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