Project Summary

The last two decades have seen various unusual changes in the ice sheets, with the breakup of massive ice shelves from the Antarctic Peninsula and several major surface melt events in Greenland perhaps being most iconic. But how reflective are short-term extreme events of longer-term change and what is role of sustained external forcing such as climate change versus short-term variability? This workshop will explore the degree to which recent short-term fluctuations and extreme events in the ice sheets reflect their longer-term evolution and response to ongoing climate change. Significant uncertainties remain concerning mass changes of the ice sheets during the rest of this century. Two major open questions relate to dynamic mass losses and possible non-linear feedbacks from Antarctica and also melt- and dynamic- related feedbacks from Greenland. We will consider the relative influences of the ocean and atmosphere and their interactions with ice-sheet changes on timescales of days to centuries. We will discuss recent innovations and recommendations for the next 5-10 years that are needed in observations, process studies and modelling to make further major breakthroughs in understanding how ice sheets change and the resulting local to global impacts: for example in global sea-level rise and extreme weather.


Date and Location: 

23 – 24 August 2022 in Reykjavik, Iceland


IASC Working Groups / Committees funding the Project:


Project Lead

Edward Hanna (University of Lincoln, United Kingdom)


Year funded by IASC




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