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Satellite data show the rate of Antarctic ice loss is accelerating

A major study using satellite information reveals that ice melting in Antarctica has raised sea levels by 7.6 cm since 1992. Critically, almost half of this rise has occurred in the last five years.

The findings come from IMBIE or Ice sheet Mass Balance Inter-comparison Exercise which provides the most complete picture to date of how Antarctica’s ice sheet is changing and was supported by ESA's Climate Change Initiative.

Scientists, including Prof. Andy Shepard of Leeds University who leds the IMBIE team, report the findings in the journal Nature.

The Antarctic ice_sheets_cci project has enabled scientists to set up a long-term and reliable production of a set of key parameters from ice sheets derived from available and future satellite observations. The selected key parameters are:

  • Surface Elevation Change (SEC);
  • Ice Velocity (IV);
  • Grounding Line Location (GLL);
  • Calving Front Location (CFL); not for currnet Antarctic
  • Gravimetric Mass Balance (GMB)