Evidence of recent climatic warming on the eastern Antarctic Peninsula

wrack [ at ] awi-bremerhaven.de


Air temperatures at the stations Marambio, Esperanza and Matienzo have been analysed to investigate recent climate change on the eastern part of the Antarctic Peninsula. The data are compared with the station Orcadas on the South Orkney Islands, the longest record available in Antarctica, and with Faraday on the western coast of the Peninsula. Though the interannual variability is comparatively high and the stations are located in different climatic regimes, a pronounced warming trend shows-up in all records. At Marambio a temperature increase of 1.5°C has been observed since the beginning of the record in 1971. This is of similar magnitude as the increase at the station Faraday on the west coast with 2.5°C for the longer period since 1945. The steady retreat and collapse of the northern Larsen Ice Shelf coincided with this warming trend. Of particular importance for the ice shelf mass balance in this region are the summer temperatures which show a statistically significant warming trend at the stations Marambio and Esperanza. The representativity of the summer temperatures of Marambio for northern Larsen Ice Shelf is confirmed by intercomparison with the parallel measurements at Matienzo which is located on the ice shelf.

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Skvarca, P. , Rack, W. , Rott, H. and Ibarzábal y Donángelo, T. (1998): Evidence of recent climatic warming on the eastern Antarctic Peninsula , Annals of Glaciology, 27 , pp. 628-632 .

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