New Scientist: Antarctic glaciers calving faster into the ocean:
The edges of the Antarctic ice sheets are slipping into the ocean at an unprecedented rate, raising fears of a global surge in sea levels, glaciologists warned on Monday.
The findings confound predictions made just four years ago, by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that Antarctica would not contribute significantly to sea level rise in the 21st century.
In one area, around the Amundsen Sea in West Antarctica, glaciers are dumping more than 110 cubic kilometres of ice into the ocean each year, Eric Rignot of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, US, told a meeting at the Royal Society in London, UK. This loss, which is increasing each year, is many times faster than the ice can be replaced by snowfall inland, he says.
Also, it's worth noting that the folks at New Scientist have a nice section of their site devoted to climate change.
Arctic Ocean could be ice-free in summer within 100 years
Originally published in the Aug. 23 Eos, the weekly newspaper of the American Geophysical Union... The report is the result of weeklong meeting of a team of interdisciplinary scientists who examined how the Arctic environment and climate interact and how that system would respond as global temperatures rise. The workshop was organized by the NSF Arctic System Science Committee...
The current warming trends in the Arctic may shove the Arctic system into a seasonally ice-free state not seen for more than one million years, according to a new report. The melting is accelerating, and a team of researchers were unable to identify any natural processes that might slow the de-icing of the Arctic.
Such substantial additional melting of Arctic glaciers and ice sheets will raise sea level worldwide, flooding the coastal areas where many of the world's people live.
Melting sea ice has already resulted in dramatic impacts for the indigenous people and animals in the Arctic, which includes parts of Alaska, Canada, Russia, Siberia, Scandinavia and Greenland.
"What really makes the Arctic different from the rest of the non-polar world is the permanent ice in the ground, in the ocean and on land," said lead author University of Arizona geoscientist Jonathan T. Overpeck. "We see all of that ice melting already, and we envision that it will melt back much more dramatically in the future as we move towards this more permanent ice-free state."