NASA’s claim that Greenland is experiencing “unprecedented” melting is nothing but a bunch of hot air, according to scientists who say the country’s ice sheets melt with some regularity.
A heat dome over the icy country melted a whopping 97 percent of Greenland’s ice sheet in mid-July, NASA said, calling it yet more evidence of the effect man is having on the planet.
But the unusual-seeming event had nothing to do with hot air, according to glaciologists. It was actually to be expected.
“Ice cores from Summit station [Greenland’s coldest and highest] show that melting events of this type occur about once every 150 years on average. With the last one happening in 1889, this event is right on time,” said Lora Koenig, a Goddard glaciologist and a member of the research team analyzing the satellite data.
But rather than a regular 150-year planetary cycle, the new NASA report calls the melt “unprecedented,” the result of a recent strong ridge of warm air, or a heat dome, over Greenland — one of a series that has dominated Greenland’s weather since the end of May.