Ice plug prevents irreversible discharge from East Antarctica

Published: Sep 1, 2014 by The PISM Authors

   
Title Ice plug prevents irreversible discharge from East Antarctica
Authors M. Mengel and A. Levermann
Venue Nature Climate Change

This paper uses PISM to define an “ice-plug” which, if removed from the coastal ice in the Wilkes Basin of East Antarctica, would initiate irreversible retreat of the grounded ice in that basin. The modeled retreats, which occur on a time scale of a few thousand years, generate 3–4 m of sea level rise from the region surrounding the basin. Thus this basin is a potential “tipping-point” ice sheet configuration, in additional to the better-known West Antarctica configurations. For the PISM user this paper shows its ability to model an ice sheet region (hashed in figure) at high resolution across a range of ice dynamics parameters and climate forcing choices.

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