Thursday, March 31, 2016

Climate Model Predicts West Antarctic Ice Sheet Could Melt Rapidly

By Justin Gillis  March 30, 2016

A view from a NASA airplane of large icebergs that have broken from the calving side of Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica in November 2014. A disaster scenario of West Antarctic ice sheet disintegration could occur much sooner than previously thought, new research suggests.
Credit  Image: Jim Yungel/NASA

For half a century, climate scientists have seen the West Antarctic ice sheet, a remnant of the last ice age, as a sword of Damocles hanging over human civilization.

The great ice sheet, larger than Mexico, is thought to be potentially vulnerable to disintegration from a relatively small amount of global warming, and capable of raising the sea level by 12 feet or more should it break up. But researchers long assumed the worst effects would take hundreds — if not thousands — of years to occur.

Now, new research suggests the disaster scenario could play out much sooner.

Continued high emissions of heat-trapping gases could launch a disintegration of the ice sheet within decades, according to a study published Wednesday, heaving enough water into the ocean to raise the sea level as much as three feet by the end of this century.

With ice melting in other regions, too, the total rise of the sea could reach five or six feet by 2100, the researchers found. That is roughly twice the increase reported as a plausible worst-case scenario by a United Nations panel just three years ago, and so high it would likely provoke a profound crisis within the lifetimes of children being born today.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Experimental Climate Monitoring and Prediction for Maldives – March 2016


The southern islands were quite wet during February and first 3 weeks of March. Northern islands did not receive any rainfall during this period while central islands received moderate rainfall. The seven-day forecasts suggest that there shall be no rainfall in the next few days in any island. There is an El Nino that is ongoing which may last at least a few more months. The most direct impact is the warmer seasonal temperatures.

Rainfall anomalies in Maldives in Feb 2016. Southern most atolls received above average rainfall while northern most atolls received average rainfall.

 Printable Version of the Full Report (PDF)

---------------------------Inside this Issue------------------------

  1. Monthly Climatology
  2. Rainfall Monitoring
    1. Daily Satellite derived Rainfall Estimates
    2. Monthly Rainfall derived from Satellite Rainfall Estimate
    3. Monthly and Seasonal Monitoring
  3. Ocean Surface Monitoring
  4. Rainfall Predictions
    1. Weekly Predictions from NOAA/NCEP
    2. Seasonal Predictions from IRI