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Posted Sun Apr 3 2011: from The Independent:
Glaciers melting at fastest rate in 350 years, study finds
Some mountain glaciers are melting up to 100 times faster than at any time in the past 350 years. The findings, based on a new ice loss calculation technique developed by studying the glaciers of Patagonia in South America, have worrying implications for crop irrigation and water supplies around the world. The quantity of ice lost from Patagonia is equivalent to a fifth more than the contents of Lake Erie, one of the Great Lakes of North America. Scientists behind the discovery claim their findings show that the rate of melting at the start of the 20th century was much slower than previously calculated, but that over the past 30 years it has been significantly faster than suspected.... The figures show the contribution to sea level rise is increasing, though still at a low level, but what alarmed the team most was that the rate of loss has sped up rapidly since 1980. "The glaciers have lost a lot less ice up until 30 years ago than had been thought. The real killer is that the rate of loss has gone up 100 times above the long-term average. It's scary," said Professor Glasser, who carried out the study with the University of Exeter and Stockholm University.
[Read more stories about: faster than expected, melting glaciers, arctic meltdown, climate impacts]

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'Doc Michael says:
I thought Patagonia was just an outdoor clothing line.

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