13:22 17 July 2013
A study headed by Doctor Bert Wouters, at the University of Bristol, found that over the course of nine years roughly 300billion tonnes of ice melted each year. This relates to the glaciers of Greenland and Antarctica.
The findings of Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment are to be published in the Nature Geoscience journal.
Researchers gathered the results from 2002 onwards using satellites, being interested in sea levels. They took readings every month.
“In the course of the mission,’ Dr. Wouters said, “it has become apparent that ice sheets are losing substantial amounts of ice about 300 billion tonnes each year and that the rate at which these losses occurs is increasing.”
Dr. Wouters is at present a visiting researcher at the University of Colorado.
Although the team found out about the 300billion tonnes of ice being lost annually, information gathered was not enough to tell if this had a connection with an increasing pattern, for example humans, or if it was to do with natural occurrences.
In the end the study said natural processes should not be taken out of the equation when it comes to the ice sheets melting. And so sea-level rises going forwards are unable to be predicted accurately at the moment.
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