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Title: Consistent evidence of increasing Antarctic accumulation with warming

Abstract

Projections of changes in Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) surface mass balance indicate a negative contribution to sea level because of the expected increase in precipitation due to the higher moisture holding capacity of warmer air1. Observations over the past decades, however, are unable to constrain the relation between temperature and accumulation changes because both are dominated by strong natural variability2,3,4,5. Here we derive a consistent continental-scale increase in accumulation of approximately 5 ± 1% K−1, through the assessment of ice-core data (spanning the large temperature change during the last deglaciation, 21,000 to 10,000 years ago), in combination with palaeo-simulations, future projections by 35 general circulation models (GCMs), and one high-resolution future simulation. The ice-core data and modelling results for the last deglaciation agree, showing uniform local sensitivities of ∼6% K−1. The palaeo-simulation allows for a continental-scale aggregation of accumulation changes reaching 4.3% K−1. Despite the different timescales, these sensitivities agree with the multi-model mean of 6.1 ± 2.6% K−1 (GCM projections) and the continental-scale sensitivity of 4.9% K−1 (high-resolution future simulation). Because some of the mass gain of the AIS is offset by dynamical losses induced by accumulation6,7, we provide a response function allowing projections of sea-level fall in termsmore » of continental-scale accumulation changes that compete with surface melting and dynamical losses induced by other mechanisms« less

Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1567548
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Nature Climate Change
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 5; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 1758-678X
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

. Consistent evidence of increasing Antarctic accumulation with warming. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1038/nclimate2574.
. Consistent evidence of increasing Antarctic accumulation with warming. United States. doi:10.1038/nclimate2574.
. Mon . "Consistent evidence of increasing Antarctic accumulation with warming". United States. doi:10.1038/nclimate2574.
@article{osti_1567548,
title = {Consistent evidence of increasing Antarctic accumulation with warming},
author = {},
abstractNote = {Projections of changes in Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) surface mass balance indicate a negative contribution to sea level because of the expected increase in precipitation due to the higher moisture holding capacity of warmer air1. Observations over the past decades, however, are unable to constrain the relation between temperature and accumulation changes because both are dominated by strong natural variability2,3,4,5. Here we derive a consistent continental-scale increase in accumulation of approximately 5 ± 1% K−1, through the assessment of ice-core data (spanning the large temperature change during the last deglaciation, 21,000 to 10,000 years ago), in combination with palaeo-simulations, future projections by 35 general circulation models (GCMs), and one high-resolution future simulation. The ice-core data and modelling results for the last deglaciation agree, showing uniform local sensitivities of ∼6% K−1. The palaeo-simulation allows for a continental-scale aggregation of accumulation changes reaching 4.3% K−1. Despite the different timescales, these sensitivities agree with the multi-model mean of 6.1 ± 2.6% K−1 (GCM projections) and the continental-scale sensitivity of 4.9% K−1 (high-resolution future simulation). Because some of the mass gain of the AIS is offset by dynamical losses induced by accumulation6,7, we provide a response function allowing projections of sea-level fall in terms of continental-scale accumulation changes that compete with surface melting and dynamical losses induced by other mechanisms},
doi = {10.1038/nclimate2574},
journal = {Nature Climate Change},
issn = {1758-678X},
number = 4,
volume = 5,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {3}
}

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