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Lecture: The Greenland Ice Sheet: Is it melting? What are the consequences?

January 29, 2015 — 

A free public lecture by one of the world’s leading climate change researchers is being held on the Fort Garry campus on Jan. 29 as part of the Riddell Faculty Seminar Series.

What: The Greenland Ice Sheet: Is it melting? What are the consequences?
Lecturer: Søren Rysgaard, Canada Excellence Research Chair in Arctic Geomicrobiology and Climate Change, University of Manitoba
When: Thursday, January 29th,  1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Where: Klaus Hochheim Theatre (5th floor, Wallace Building)

The talk will provide an introduction to the Greenland Ice Sheet and summarize current knowledge of processes related to melting. The Ice Sheet accumulates snow in its center and melts around its margin. Increasing air temperatures have increased meltwater pond formation on the Ice Sheet. Glacier velocity speeds up, and professor Rysgaard will provide some of the explanations why glaciers do not behave the same. The influence on warm ocean water on the melt will also be discussed. Depending on how the Ice Sheet melts it will either stimulate or reduce phytoplankton production and hence influence biology. In addition, meltwater from the Ice Sheet affects ocean current and the exchange of CO2 between the atmosphere and ocean. The increased warming will most likely release more icebergs and intensify ice hazards. Finally, current estimates of the net balance of the ice sheet will be provided as well as a guess of what the future will bring.

 

About Søren Rysgaard

Professor Rysgaard obtained his PhD in biology from Aarhus University in Denmark, and holds a Canada Excellence Research Chair in Arctic Geomicrobiology and Climate Change at the University of Manitoba. He has made major discoveries about microbial activity and chemical transformation within sea ice and marine sediments, offering new insights into current and future Arctic marine ecosystems and their changing sea ice habitats. Rysgaard has led many large-scale international expeditions to the Arctic. He has been instrumental in the establishment of the “Arctic Science Partnership” which includes the University of Manitoba, Aarhus University and the Greenland Climate Research Centre.

 

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