Greenland: the surface of the ice sheet is melting faster than predicted
It is becoming difficult to deny global warming. The increase in the surface melting of Greenland's ice sheet over the past 28 years certainly confirms it. Xavier Fettweis, from ULg’s Climatology and Topoclimatology Laboratory, has been studying Greenland for the past six years. He has shown that the ice there is melting much faster than previously estimated: the surface melting of the ice sheet has increased by 45 % since 1979. What’s more, the average summer temperature in Greenland increased 2.4°C between 1979 and 2006, and 2007 already promises to be a record year.
There are also spatial discontinuities. I showed that these discontinuities appeared there where my digital simulations predicted rain on the ice sheet, in other words, the satellite assimilates a day of rain with a day of no melting (because the rain clouds change the direction of the melting signal emitted by the surface)...whereas the rain actually accelerates melting. To correct this change of direction, I therefore imposed continuity in time and space to the satellite data, which allowed me to reveal this trend of an increase in melting." Just recently, observations at a frequency not biased by the presence of rain clouds confirmed Xavier Fettweis’ intuition and, in particular, the accuracy of his corrections.