reference : Collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet after local destabilization of the Amundsen Basin

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Bibliographic fields
reftype Journal Article
Abstract The future evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet represents the largest uncertainty in sea-level projections of this and upcoming centuries. Recently, satellite observations and high-resolution simulations have suggested the initiation of an ice-sheet instability in the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica, caused by the last decades’ enhanced basal ice-shelf melting. Whether this localized destabilization will yield a full discharge of marine ice from West Antarctica, associated with a global sea-level rise of more than 3 m, or whether the ice loss is limited by ice dynamics and topographic features, is unclear. Here we show that in the Parallel Ice Sheet Model, a local destabilization causes a complete disintegration of the marine ice in West Antarctica. In our simulations, at 5-km horizontal resolution, the region disequilibrates after 60 y of currently observed melt rates. Thereafter, the marine ice-sheet instability fully unfolds and is not halted by topographic features. In fact, the ice loss in Amundsen Sea sector shifts the catchment's ice divide toward the Filchner–Ronne and Ross ice shelves, which initiates grounding-line retreat there. Our simulations suggest that if a destabilization of Amundsen Sea sector has indeed been initiated, Antarctica will irrevocably contribute at least 3 m to global sea-level rise during the coming centuries to millennia.
Author Feldmann, Johannes; Levermann, Anders
DOI 10.1073/pnas.1512482112
Date November 17, 2015
Issue 46
Journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Pages 14191-14196
Title Collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet after local destabilization of the Amundsen Basin
Volume 112
Year 2015
Bibliographic identifiers
.reference_type 0
_record_number 19412
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