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Climate changed abruptly as the Nordic Seas turned rapidly from a white to a blue ocean

Widespread sea ice decline happened within 250 years or less and unleashed abrupt climate change during the last glacial period, a new study shows. This documents that the cause for the rapidity and severity of abrupt changes during the last glacial resides in the ocean. Henrik Sadatzki writes about the work he has been leading.

Klimakart
Sea ice east of Greenland on July 16, 2015.
Photo:
NASA/Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC

Written by Henrik Sadatzki, former PhD student at the Department of Earth Sciences and Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research at the University of Bergen, and now Postdoc researcher at the Alfred Wegener Institute.

Our new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) shows that widespread sea ice decline happened within 250 years or less and unleashed abrupt climate change during the last glacial period. This scientific breakthrough settles a long debate on the mechanisms for abrupt climate changes and documents that the cause for the rapidity and severity of abrupt changes during the last glacial resides in the ocean.

Read more from Bjerknessenteret here.