Polar Ice Sheets Losing Mass, Several Methods Show
All the major regions of the polar ice sheets except one have been losing mass since 1992, suggests a state-of-the art study in Science that pulls together several independent measurement methods.
This slideshow from the AAAS Office of Public Programs highlights new findings from the 30 November 2012 research article by Andrew Shepherd and an international team of scientists titled, "A reconciled estimate of ice sheet mass balance."
Researchers calculated the rates of ice loss from the ice sheets of Greenland, East Antarctica, West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula during the period between 1992 and 2011. East Antarctica is the only region where the mass balance is increasing, although this increase isn't enough to compensate for the larger losses in the rest of Antarctica. All told, the authors report that mass loss from the polar ice sheets has contributed roughly 20 percent of the total global sea level rise during that period.