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sarah das in greenland

Greenland's disappearing lakes

Associate Scientist Sarah Das studies the relationship between ice sheets and global climate, and that often means long walks on frozen expanses. When lakes on the surface of the Greenland ice sheet disappear each summer, she guessed that the water drained through cracks in the ice, eventually making its way out to sea. But how? Das and her team learned that water filling large glacial lakes can build up enough pressure to crack the ice below and send torrents of water straight down to the bottom of the ice sheet. The water then flows over the bedrock, acting as lubrication between ice and ground, speeding up the glacier’s flow toward the ocean. (Photo by Chris Linder, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)


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