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Satellite images aid study of Greenland

Greenland’s glaciers are dumping ice into the ocean twice as fast as they did 10 years ago, most likely because of global warming, researchers said recently. The researchers cataloged changes in 28 major glaciers, based on satellite images and radar data. The slow-moving glaciers are the main route for ice to move from the region’s frozen interior to the sea. The researchers found that in 2005, the glaciers discharged more than twice as much ice as they did in 1996 — enough fresh water to supply Los Angeles for 220 years.
The sea level along U.S. coasts is expected to rise at least 2 feet by 2100, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Greenland’s glacial contributions are now slight, adding only about 1 inch of depth to seas every 45 years at the present rate. However, increasing runoff raises fears of a steeper rise in coming decades, says geoscientist Richard Alley of Pennsylvania State University.