Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) Margin Retreat Driven By Marine Outlet Glacier Activity


by : 
Arunim A.


The Greenland Ice Sheet retreat is a very clear and quantifiable metric by which climate change can be evaluated. Recent studies have suggested that the ice sheet melt will continue to contribute to sea level rise, meaning that mapping the future expectations for changes in the ice sheet is vital. In this study, satellite and aerial imagery of the region around the Jakobshavn Glacier spanning from 1985 to 2020 was loaded into and analyzed in QGIS, with the areas of ice retreat to both the north and the south being mapped out manually. The data analysis indicated that the areas of fastest retreat are closest to the fast-moving marine outlet glacier. A significant acceleration in the retreat of the ice sheet between the two periods was also noted. The study shows that the vicinity to a glacier likely impacts the retreat rate of the ice sheet around it, specifically muting ice-climate feedback further away, a factor which ought to be investigated further in the future to better model such regions.