Photographs reveal Iceland’s glacier soften – BBC Information

Picture copyright
Nationwide Land Survey of Iceland/Kieran Baxter

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These pictures Breiðamerkurjökull glacier taken in 1989 (prime) and one taken this 12 months (backside) present how a lot ice has been misplaced over this era

A images challenge has highlighted the extent of ice loss from Iceland’s glaciers.

A staff from Scotland and Iceland in contrast pictures taken within the 1980s with present-day drone pictures.

They targeted on the south facet of the Vatnajökull ice cap, which covers about 7,700sq km of land.

Dr Kieran Baxter, from the College of Dundee, stated: “We noticed a staggering distinction in a really brief period of time.”


See how the Skálafellsjökull glacier has modified since 1989


Iceland's Skálafellsjökull glacier in 2019


Iceland's Skálafellsjökull glacier in 1989

The challenge – which additionally concerned the College of Iceland and the Icelandic Meteorological Workplace – used aerial images taken by a survey aircraft within the 1980s.

1000’s of pictures have been taken, usually of overlapping areas, and the staff then used software program to rework these right into a hi-res 3D mannequin of the terrain.

Dr Baxter stated this meant that pictures wanting straight down on to the panorama may then be re-framed to point out the terrain from completely different angles.

He added: “We are able to then align them with drone pictures that we will take right now.”


See how Iceland’s Hoffellsjökull glacier has modified since 1982


Hoffellsjökull glacier in 2017


Hoffellsjökull glacier in 1982

The staff hopes the comparability images will likely be used for public outreach, to point out how quickly Iceland’s glaciers are retreating.

Iceland’s Met Workplace says the nation’s glaciers have retreated by a complete space of about 750sq km since 2000 – and are shedding a median space of 40 sq km every year.

This summer season, Icelanders gathered to commemorate the lack of Okjökull glacier. It misplaced its glacier standing in 2014, when the ice grew to become too skinny to maneuver.

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Media captionWATCH: A memorial to Iceland’s disappearing glaciers

However the issue of glacier loss attributable to local weather change is a worldwide concern. The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Local weather Change (IPCC) report warned that smaller glaciers in Europe, Africa, the Andes and Indonesia have been projected to lose greater than 80% of their present ice mass by 2100 if carbon emissions remained excessive.

The ensuing rise in sea stage may have enormous penalties for hundreds of thousands of individuals, the UN panel warned.

Heinabergsjökull glacier 1989Picture copyright
Nationwide Land Survey of Iceland

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This picture of the Heinabergsjökull glacier was taken in 1989

Heinabergsjökull glacier 2019Picture copyright
Kieran Baxter/College of Dundee

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The 2019 drone picture exhibits the extent that the glacier has lowered over 30 years

Comply with Rebecca on Twitter.

Photographs courtesy of Nationwide Land Survey of Iceland and Dr Kieran Baxter, College of Dundee

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