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Date:11/14/2012

ial for predicting future ice loss and resulting sea-level rise. In this new study, scientists from the United Kingdom, Germany, and Norway have reconstructed the timing of grounding-line retreat since the end of the last ice age about 12,000 years ago. The research team analyzed marine sediment cores recovered from the seabed offshore from the two glaciers. Their results demonstrate that the grounding line has been located within 110 km of its modern position for the last 10,000 years. Currently, there is no evidence that the glaciers ever re-advanced. Thus, the data imply that the fast retreat observed today is exceptional, if not unprecedented, over the last ten millennia.


Coral record of reduced El Nio activity in the early 15th to middle 17th centuries

Kelly A. Hereid et al., Dept. of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas, Austin, Texas 78705, USA. Posted online 19 October 2012; doi: 10.1130/G33510.1.

The El Nio-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) drives many of the catastrophic climate events that occur from one year to the next: floods, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes. However, climate scientists do not yet know how ENSO will respond to climate change. A new multi-century reconstruction of ENSO variability, based on fossil corals from Papua New Guinea, reveals a century-long decline in the number of El Nio events starting in the mid-1500s. It is the first time such a shift in activity has been documented in either modern observations or past reconstructions. This reduced activity coincided with the initiation of an unusually cool period in the Northern Hemisphere called the Little Ice Age (LIA), which continued on into the mid-1800s. The reconstruction gives scientists a better picture of how ENSO behaved during the coolest period in the last 1,000 years and provides a new baseline for natural ENSO variability to improve future climate change projections.


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Contact: Kea Giles
kgiles@geosociety.org
Geological Society of America
Source:Eurekalert  

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