CR1 – The State of the Cryosphere: Past, Present, Future
Glaciers and Ice Caps under Climate Change
Glaciers and ice caps are major contributors to sea-level rise and have large impacts on runoff from glacierized basins. Major mass losses of glaciers and ice caps have been reported around the globe for the recent decades. This is a general session on glaciers outside the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, emphasizing their past, present and future responses to climate change. Although much progress in understanding the link between glaciers and climate and the impacts of their wastage on various systems has recently been achieved, many substantial unknowns remain. It is necessary to acquire more direct observations, both applying novel measurement technologies and releasing unpublished data from previous years, as well as combining in situ observations with new remote sensing products and modelling. In order to improve our understanding of the processes behind the observed glacier changes, the application of models of different complexity in combination with new data sets is crucial. We welcome contributions on all aspects of glacier changes – current, past and future – based on field observations, remote sensing and modelling. Studies on the physical processes controlling all components of glacier mass balance are especially encouraged, as well as assessments of the impact of retreating glaciers and ice caps on sea-level rise, runoff and other downstream systems.
Ice sheet mass balance and sea level: ISMASS/ISMIP6 and beyond
This session explores improvements in our understanding and quantification of past, present and future ice sheet and sea-level changes. We invite contributions around the following topics: How to improve the reliability of the projections using observations (paleo and present), models and model intercomparison exercises (ISMIP6 results, MISOMIP, …); assessment of uncertainties and probability distributions of the ice sheets' contribution to sea level change; emerging processes; feedbacks coming from interactions between components (ice sheets, ocean, atmosphere, solid earth). We focus on the present and future (multi-centennial) Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, but paleo-studies are encouraged if they shed a light on the mentioned topics. This session is related to both ISMASS (http://www.climate-cryosphere.org/activities/groups/ismass) and ISMIP6 (http://www.climate-cryosphere.org/activities/targeted/ismip6).
Observing and modelling glaciers at regional to global scales
The increasing availability of remotely sensed observations and computational capacity, drive modelling and observational glacier studies towards increasingly large spatial scales. These large scales are of particular relevance, as they impact policy decisions and public discourse. In the European Alps, for instance, glacier changes are important from a touristic perspective, while in High Mountain Asia, glaciers are a key in the region’s hydrological cycle. At a global scale, glaciers are among the most important contributors to present-day sea level change.
This session focuses on advances in observing and modelling mountain glaciers and ice caps at the regional to global scale. We invite both observation- and modelling-based contributions that lead to a more complete understanding of glacier changes and dynamics at such scales.
Contributions may include, but are not limited to, the following topics:
• Observation and modelling results revealing previously unappreciated regional differences in glacier changes or in their dynamics;
• Large-scale impact studies, including glaciers' contribution to sea level change, or changes in water availability from glacierized regions;
• Advances in regional- to global-scale glacier models, e.g. inclusion of physical processes such as ice dynamics, debris-cover effects, glacier calving, or glacier surging;
• Regional to global scale process-studies, based on remote sensing observations or meta-analyses of ground-based data;
• Strategies to facilitate or systematise the information flow of observations into models (e.g. blending/homogenisation of different remote sensing products, machine learning algorithms, inverse techniques, data assimilation);
• Inverse modelling of subglacial characteristics or glacier ice thickness at regional scales.
Fri, 27 May, 10:20–11:48 (CEST), 13:20–14:02 (CEST)
The Antarctic Ice Sheet: past, present and future contributions towards global sea level
The largest single source of uncertainty in projections of future global sea level is associated with the mass balance of the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS). In the short-term, it cannot be stated with certainty whether the mass balance of the AIS is positive or negative; in the long-term, the possibility exists that melting of the coastal shelves around Antarctica will lead to an irreversible commitment to ongoing sea level rise. Observational and paleoclimate studies can help to reduce this uncertainty, constraining the parameterizations of physical processes within ice sheet models and allowing for improved projections of future global sea level rise. This session welcomes presentations covering all aspects of observation, paleoclimate reconstruction and modeling of the AIS. Presentations that focus on the mass balance of the AIS and its contribution towards changes in global sea level are particularly encouraged.
CR2 – Instrumental and paleo-archive observations, analyses and data methodologies in the cryospheric sciences
Geophysical and in situ methods for snow and ice studies
Geophysical and in-situ measurements offer important baseline datasets, as well as validation for modelling and remote sensing products. They are used to advance our understanding of firn, ice-sheet and glacier dynamics, sea ice processes, changes in snow cover and snow properties, snow/ice-atmosphere-ocean interactions, permafrost degradation, geomorphic mechanisms and changes in englacial and subglacial condition.
In this session we welcome contributions related to a wide spectrum of methods, including, but not limited to, advances in radioglaciology, active and passive seismology, geoelectrics, acoustic sounding, fiber-optic sensing, GNSS reflectometry, signal attenuation and time delay techniques, cosmic ray neutron sensing, ROV and drone applications, and electromagnetic methods. Contributions could be related to field applications, new approaches in geophysical or in-situ survey techniques, or theoretical advances in data analysis processing or inversion. Case studies from all parts of the cryosphere such as snow and firn, alpine glaciers, ice sheets, glacial and periglacial environments, permafrost, or sea ice, are highly welcome.
The focus of the session is to compare experiences in the application, processing, analysis and interpretation of different geophysical and in-situ techniques in these highly complex environments. We have been running this session for nearly a decade and it always produces lively and informative discussion. This session is offered as a fully hybrid vPICO: an engaging presentation format in which all authors will present their research orally as a quick-fire 2-minute overview, and then further present and discuss their research.
Wed, 25 May, 08:30–11:50 (CEST), 13:20–14:50 (CEST)
Glacier monitoring from in-situ and remotely sensed observations
Process understanding is key to assessing the sensitivity of glacier systems to changing climate. Comprehensive glacier monitoring provides the base for large-scale assessment of glacier distribution and changes. Glaciers are observed on different spatio-temporal scales, from extensive seasonal mass-balance studies at individual glaciers to decadal assessments of glacier mass changes and repeat inventories at the scale of entire mountain ranges. Internationally coordinated glacier monitoring aims at combining in-situ measurement with remotely sensed data, and local process understanding with global coverage. We invite contributions from a variety of disciplines, from tropical to polar glaciers, addressing both in-situ and remotely sensed monitoring of past and current glacier distribution and changes, as well as related uncertainty assessments. A special focus of this year’s session shall be on (i) strengths and limitations of different types of satellite data for global and regional glacier surveys, (ii) achieving a better temporal resolution of global and regional surveys (iii) how to develop in-situ networks for real-time monitoring of glacier changes and (iv) advances in studies on local process understanding and how best to combine them with regional to global change assessments?. An additional focus this year relates to improving understanding of debris-covered glaciers from in-situ and remote sensing methods, as well as understanding their long-term dynamics with numerical models.
This session will focus on recent and upcoming advances in satellite remote sensing of the global cryosphere. We welcome presentations providing new insights into cryospheric processes in the broadest sense, ranging from ice sheets, glaciers, snow cover and its properties, frozen soil, sea ice and extraterrestrial glaciology. While the advent of remote sensing has revolutionized the field of glaciology, a vast reservoir of potential remains to be unlocked by using these observations in concert with other data sets. We particularly encourage presentations discussing multi-platform data merging, integration of GIS and ground validation data, integration of remote sensing data into earth system models, as well as cloud computing and processing of super large data sets. We also encourage contributions focusing on historic satellite data re-analysis, novel processing approaches for upcoming satellite missions, and presentations outlining pathways to next-generation satellite missions for the coming decades.
Snow constitutes a freshwater resource for over a billion of people world-wide. High percentage of this water resource mainly come from seasonal snow located in mid-latitude regions. The current warming situation alerts that these snow water storages are in high risk to be dramatically reduced, affecting not only to water supply but also ecosystem over these areas. Therefore, understanding seasonal snow dynamics, possible changes and implication have become crucial for water resources management. Remote sensing has proven to be the main technique used to monitor the snow properties across mid-large extensions and their hydrological implications, for decades now. Moreover, the recent advances, which are focused on the study of snow properties at higher spatio-temporal scales (e.g., small-scale snow-topography interactions, snow-vegetation interaction, diurnal variation of snow, rain over snow events), are helping to understand better snow acumulation, distribution and ablation dynamics.
This session is focused on studies linking the use of remote sensing of seasonal snow in hydrological applications: techniques and data from different technologies, such as time-lapse imagery, laser scanners, radar, optical photography, thermal and hyperspectral technologies, or other new applications, with the aim of quantifying and better understanding snow characteristics (i.e. snow grain size, snow depth, albedo, pollution load, snow specific area and snow density), snow related processes (snowfall, melting, evaporation and sublimation), snow dynamics, snow hydrological impacts and snow environmental effects.
Advances in methods and applications for satellite altimetry
Satellite altimetry provides the possibility to observe key parts of the hydrosphere, namely the ocean, ice, and continental surface water from space. Since the launch of Topex/Poseidon in 1992, the applications of altimetry have expanded from the open oceans to coastal zones, inland water, land, and sea ice. Today, seven missions are in orbit, providing dense and near-global observations of surface elevation and several other parameters. Satellite altimetry has become an integral part of the global observation of the Earth‘s system and changes therein.
In recent years, new satellite altimetry missions have been launched carrying new instruments; the CryoSat-2/Sentinel-3 missions equipped with a Delay/Doppler altimeter, the Saral AltiKa mission carrying the first Ka-band altimeter, and 2018 launched six beam photon-counting laser altimeter onboard NASAs ICESat-2. Further, new orbits with high inclination and long-repeat time are used for CryoSat-2 and ICESat-2.
Fully exploiting this unprecedented availability of observables will enable new applications and results but also require novel and adapted methods of data analysis.
Across the different applications for satellite altimetry, the data analysis and underlying methods are similar and a knowledge exchange between the disciplines has been proofed to be fruitful.
In this multidisciplinary altimetry session, we therefore invite contributions which discuss new methodology and applications for satellite altimetry in the fields of geodesy, hydrology, cryosphere, oceanography, and climatology.
Topics of such studies could for example be (but not limited to); creation of robust and consistent time series across sensors, validation experiments, combination of radar and laser altimetry for e.g. remote sensing of snow, classification of waveforms, application of data in a geodetic orbit, retracking, or combination with other remote sensing data sets.
From climate to ice core proxy signal and reverse – primary and secondary signal formation processes
Ice cores are a crucial archive to study past climates, containing various proxies which provide insights into the variability of atmospheric circulation and composition, past temperatures, volcanic activity, biological production and sea ice extent on different timescales. The accuracy and reliability of reconstructed climate parameters, however, depends on a detailed understanding of the processes forming the proxy signal. Relevant processes might not be the same throughout time, and could be variable on a spatial scale, i.e. different for ice core sites in Antarctica, Greenland, Svalbard or high alpine areas. In light of new projects that will analyse very old ice (e.g. Beyond EPICA Oldest Ice), it is even more important to understand the archival of climatic signals in proxies, such as stable water isotopes, impurities, dust, tephra, gases and trace elements in order to develop suitable methods for the recovery of the original climate signal.
This session intends to foster cross-disciplinary exchanges of paleoclimatologists working on established and novel climate proxies in ice cores and their interpretation. We welcome contributions that investigate the transfer function between climate and ice core proxies describing both the primary climatic imprint at the surface and potential secondary, post-depositional modifications of proxy records. We invite submissions from, but not limited to, field studies and lab experiments on the primary signal formation, theoretical simulations and proxy system modeling, as well as studies investigating the role of secondary processes modifying the original climate signal, and methodologies to optimally retrieve information from disrupted or altered proxy records (e.g. through melt events, transport and diffusion). We further encourage submissions presenting novel statistical methods, model-based studies and potential geochemical proxies.
Tue, 24 May, 11:05–11:40 (CEST), 13:20–14:42 (CEST)
Cryospheric Data Science and Artificial Intelligence: Opportunities and Challenges
Machine learning, artificial intelligence and big data approaches have recently emerged as key tools in understanding the cryosphere. These approaches are being increasingly applied to answer long standing questions in cryospheric science, including those relating to remote sensing, forecasting, and improving process understanding across Antarctic, Arctic and Alpine regions. In doing so, data science and AI techniques are being used to gain insight into system complexity, analyse data on unprecedented temporal and spatial scales, and explore much wider parameter spaces than were previously possible.
In this session we invite submissions that utilise data science and/or AI techniques that address research questions relating to glaciology, sea ice, permafrost and/or polar climate science. Approaches used may include (but are not limited to) machine learning, artificial intelligence, big data processing/automation techniques, advanced statistics, and innovative software/computing solutions. These could be applied to any (or combinations) of data sources including remote sensing, numerical model output and field/lab observations. We particularly invite contributions that apply techniques and approaches that reveal new insights into cryospheric research problems that would not otherwise be achievable using traditional methods, and those that discuss how or if approaches can be applied or adapted to other areas of cryospheric science. Given the rapid development of this field by a diverse group of international researchers, we convene this session to help foster future collaboration amongst session contributors, attendees, and international stakeholders and help address the most challenging questions in cryospheric science.
Beyond the unconstrained: Driving and assisting cryospheric models with observations
This interdisciplinary session brings together modellers and observationalists to present results and exchange knowledge and experience in the use of inverse methods, geostatistics and data assimilation - including machine learning - in cryospheric science.
In numerous research fields it is now possible not only to deduce static features of a physical system but also to retrieve information on transient processes between different states or even regime shifts. In the cryospheric sciences a large potential for future developments lies at the intersection of observations and models with the aim to yield prognostic capabilities in space and time. Compared to other geoscientific disciplines like meteorology or oceanography, where techniques such as data assimilation have been well established for decades, in cryospheric sciences only the foundation has been laid for the use of these techniques, one reason often being the sparsity of observations.
We invite contributions from a wide range of methodologies - from satellite observations to deep-looking geophysical methods and advancements in numerical techniques, and from topics including permafrost, sea ice and snow to glaciers and ice sheets, covering static system characterisations as well as transient processes.
This session invites innovative Earth system and climate studies based on geodetic measuring techniques. Modern geodetic observing systems document a wide range of changes in the Earth’s solid and fluid layers at very diverging spatial and temporal scales related to processes as, e.g., glacial isostatic adjustment, the terrestrial water cycle, ocean dynamics and ice-mass balance. Different time spans of observations need to be cross-compared and combined to resolve a wide spectrum of climate-related signals. Geodetic observables are also often compared with geophysical models, which helps to explain observations, evaluate simulations, and finally merge measurements and numerical models via data assimilation.
We appreciate contributions utilizing geodetic data from diverse geodetic satellites including altimetry, gravimetry (CHAMP, GRACE, GOCE and GRACE-FO), navigation satellite systems (GNSS and DORIS) or remote sensing techniques that are based on both passive (i.e., optical and hyperspectral) and active (i.e., SAR) instruments. We welcome studies that cover a wide variety of applications of geodetic measurements and their combination to observe and model Earth system signals in hydrological, ocean, atmospheric, climate and cryospheric sciences. Any new approaches helping to separate and interpret the variety of geophysical signals are equally appreciated. Contributions working towards any of the goals of the Inter-Commission Committee on "Geodesy for Climate Research" (ICCC) of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) are also welcomed in this session.
With author consent, highlights from this session will be tweeted with a dedicated hashtag during the conference in order to increase the impact of the session.
Fri, 27 May, 10:20–11:47 (CEST), 13:20–14:37 (CEST)
From historical images to modern high resolution topography: methods and applications in geosciences
Recent advances in image collection, e.g. using unoccupied aerial vehicles (UAVs), and topographic measurements, e.g. using terrestrial or airborne LiDAR, are providing an unprecedented insight into landscape and process characterization in geosciences. In parallel, historical data including terrestrial, aerial, and satellite photos as well as historical digital elevation models (DEMs), can extend high-resolution time series and offer exciting potential to distinguish anthropogenic from natural causes of environmental change and to reconstruct the long-term evolution of the surface from local to regional scale.
For both historic and contemporary scenarios, the rise of techniques with ‘structure from motion’ (SfM) processing has democratized data processing and offers a new measurement paradigm to geoscientists. Photogrammetric and remote sensing data are now available on spatial scales from millimetres to kilometres and over durations of single events to lasting time series (e.g. from sub-second to decadal-duration time-lapse), allowing the evaluation of event magnitude and frequency interrelationships.
The session welcomes contributions from a broad range of geoscience disciplines such as geomorphology, cryosphere, volcanology, hydrology, bio-geosciences, and geology, addressing methodological and applied studies. Our goal is to create a diversified and interdisciplinary session to explore the potential, limitations, and challenges of topographic and orthoimage datasets for the reconstruction and interpretation of past and present 2D and 3D changes in different environments and processes. We further encourage contributions describing workflows that optimize data acquisition and processing to guarantee acceptable accuracies and to automate data application (e.g. geomorphic feature detection and tracking), and field-based experimental studies using novel multi-instrument and multi-scale methodologies. This session invites contributions on the state of the art and the latest developments in i) modern photogrammetric and topographic measurements, ii) remote sensing techniques as well as applications, iii) time-series processing and analysis, and iv) modelling and data processing tools, for instance, using machine learning approaches.
CR3 – Snow and ice: properties, processes, hazards
Modelling and measuring snow processes across scales
Snow cover characteristics (e.g. spatial distribution, surface and internal physical properties) are continuously evolving over a wide range of scales due to meteorological conditions, such as precipitation, wind and radiation.
Most processes occurring in the snow cover depend on the vertical and horizontal distribution of its physical properties, which are primarily controlled by the microstructure of snow (e.g. density, specific surface area). In turn, snow metamorphism changes the microstructure, leading to feedback loops that affect the snow cover on coarser scales. This can have far-reaching implications for a wide range of applications, including snow hydrology, weather forecasting, climate modelling, and avalanche hazard forecasting or remote sensing of snow. The characterization of snow thus demands synergetic investigations of the hierarchy of processes across the scales ranging from explicit microstructure-based studies to sub-grid parameterizations for unresolved processes in large-scale phenomena (e.g. albedo, drifting snow).
This session is therefore devoted to modelling and measuring snow processes across scales. The aim is to gather researchers from various disciplines to share their expertise on snow processes in seasonal and perennial snowpacks. We invite contributions ranging from “small” scales, as encountered in microstructure studies, over “intermediate” scales typically relevant for 1D snowpack models, up to “coarse” scales, that typically emerge for spatially distributed modelling over mountainous or polar snow- and ice-covered terrain. Specifically, we welcome contributions reporting results from field, laboratory and numerical studies of the physical and chemical evolution of snowpacks, statistical or dynamic downscaling methods of atmospheric driving data, assimilation of in-situ and remotely sensed observations, representation of sub-grid processes in coarse-scale models, and evaluation of model performance and associated uncertainties.
Snow avalanche formation and dynamics: from snow mechanics to mitigation strategies
Snow avalanches range among the most prominent natural hazards which threaten mountain communities worldwide. Snow avalanche formation is a complex critical phenomenon which starts with failure processes at the scale of snow crystals and ends with the release of a large volume of snow at a scale of up to several hundred meters. The practical application of avalanche formation is avalanche forecasting, requiring a thorough understanding of the physical and mechanical properties of snow as well as the influence of meteorological boundary conditions (e.g. precipitation, wind and radiation). This session aims to improve our understanding of avalanche formation processes and to foster the application to avalanche forecasting. This session is also devoted to the dynamics of dense and powder snow avalanches and their accompanying transitional regimes. One focus is their interaction with, and impact on, vulnerable elements, such as buildings, protection dams, forests, and roads.
We welcome novel experimental and computational contributions including, but not limited to the topics of spatial variability, avalanche release mechanics, remote avalanche detection, avalanche forecasting, physical vulnerability of structures impacted by snow avalanches, avalanche hazard zoning and avalanche mitigation strategies.
The global cryosphere with all its components is strongly impacted by climate change and has been undergoing significant changes over the past decades. Glaciers are shrinking and thinning. Snow cover and duration is reduced, and permafrost, in both Arctic and mountain environments, is thawing. Changes in sea ice cover and characteristics have attracted widespread attention, and changes in ice sheets are monitored with care and concern. Risks associated with one or several of these cryosphere components have been present throughout history. However, with ongoing climate change, we expect changes in the magnitude and frequency of hazards with profound implications for risks, especially when these interact with other aspects relating to context vulnerability, exposure, and other processes of biophysical and/or socioeconomic drivers of change. New or growing glacier lakes pose a threat to downstream communities through the potential for sudden drainage. Thawing permafrost can destabilize mountain slopes, and eventually result in large landslide or destructive rock and ice avalanches. An accelerated rate of permafrost degradation in low-land areas poses risk to existing and planned infrastructure and raises concerns about large-scale emission of greenhouse gases currently trapped in Arctic permafrost. Decreased summertime sea ice extent may produce both risks and opportunities in terms of large-scale climate feedbacks and alterations, coastal vulnerability, and new access to transport routes and natural resources. Furthermore, rapid acceleration of outlet glacier ice discharge and collapse of ice sheets is of major concern for sea level change. This session invites contributions across all cryosphere components that address risks associated with observed or projected physical processes. Contributions considering more than one cryosphere component (e.g. glaciers and permafrost) are particularly encouraged, as well as contributions on cascading processes and interconnected risks. Contributions can consider hazards and risks related to changes in the past, present or future. Furthermore, Contributions may consider one or several components of risks (i.e. natural hazards, exposure, vulnerability) as long as conceptual clarity is ensured. Furthermore, cases that explore diverse experiences with inter- and transdisciplinary research, that sought to address these risks with communities through adaptation and resilience building, are also be considered.
From snow and glacier hydrology to catchment runoff
Water stored in the snow pack and in glaciers represents an important component of the hydrological budget in many regions of the world, as well as a sustainment to life during dry seasons. Predicted impacts of climate change in catchments covered by snow or glaciers (including a shift from snow to rain, earlier snowmelt, and a decrease in peak snow accumulation) will reflect both on water resources availability and water uses at multiple scales, with potential implications for energy and food production.
The generation of runoff in catchments that are impacted by snow or ice, profoundly differs from rainfed catchments. And yet, our knowledge of snow/ice accumulation and melt patterns and their impact on runoff is highly uncertain, because of both limited availability and inherently large spatial variability of hydrological and weather data in such areas. This translates into limited process understanding, especially in a warming climate.
This session aims at bringing together those scientists that define themselves to some extent as cold region hydrologists, as large as this field can be. Contributions addressing the following topics are welcome:
- Experimental research on snow-melt & ice-melt runoff processes and potential implementation in hydrological models;
- Development of novel strategies for snowmelt runoff modelling in various (or changing) climatic and land-cover conditions;
- Evaluation of remote-sensing or in-situ snow products and application for snowmelt runoff calibration, data assimilation, streamflow forecasting or snow and ice physical properties quantification;
- Observational and modelling studies that shed new light on hydrological processes in glacier-covered catchments, e.g. impacts of glacier retreat on water resources and water storage dynamics or the application of techniques for tracing water flow paths;
- Studies on cryosphere-influenced mountain hydrology, such as landforms at high elevations and their relationship with streamflow, water balance of snow/ice-dominated mountain regions;
- Studies addressing the impact of climate change on the water cycle of snow and ice affected catchments.
Tue, 24 May, 08:30–11:50 (CEST), 13:20–14:50 (CEST)
Volcano-glacier interactions: Arctic, Antarctic, and globally
Glaciers and volcanoes interact in a number of ways, including instances where volcanic/geothermal activity alters glacier dynamics or mass balance, via subglacial eruptions or the deposition of supraglacial tephra. Glaciers can also impact volcanism, for example by directly influencing mechanisms of individual eruptions resulting in the construction of distinct edifices. Glaciers may also influence patterns of eruptive activity when mass balance changes adjust the load on volcanic systems, the water resources and hydrothermal systems. However, because of the remoteness of many glacio-volcanic environments, these interactions remain poorly understood.
In these complex settings, hazards associated with glacier-volcano interaction can vary from lava flows to volcanic ash, lahars, landslides, pyroclastic flows or glacial outburst floods. These can happen consecutively or simultaneously and affect not only the earth, but also glaciers, rivers and the atmosphere. As accumulating, melting, ripping or drifting glaciers generate signals as well as degassing, inflating/ deflating or erupting volcanoes, the challenge is to study, understand and ultimately discriminate these potentially coexisting signals. We wish to fully include geophysical observations of current and recent events with geological observations and interpretations of deposits of past events. Glaciovolcanoes also often preserve a unique record of the glacial or non-glacial eruptive environment that is capable of significantly advancing our knowledge of how Earth's climate system evolves.
We invite contributions that deal with the mitigation of the hazards associated with ice-covered volcanoes in the Arctic, Antarctic or globally, that improve the understanding of signals generated by ice-covered volcanoes, or studies focused on volcanic impacts on glaciers and vice versa. Research on recent activity is especially welcomed. This includes geological observations e.g. of deposits in the field or remote-sensing data, together with experimental and modelling approaches. We also invite contributions from any part of the world on past activity, glaciovolcanic deposits and studies that address climate and environmental change through glaciovolcanic studies. We aim to bring together scientists from volcanology, glaciology, seismology, geodesy, hydrology, geomorphology and atmospheric science in order to enable a broad discussion and interaction.
Ice sheets play an active role in the climate system by amplifying, pacing, and potentially driving global climate change over a wide range of time scales. The impact of interactions between ice sheets and climate include changes in atmospheric and ocean temperatures and circulation, global biogeochemical cycles, the global hydrological cycle, vegetation, sea level, and land-surface albedo, which in turn cause additional feedbacks in the climate system. This session will present data and modelling results that examine ice sheet interactions with other components of the climate system over several time scales. Among other topics, issues to be addressed in this session include ice sheet-climate interactions from glacial-interglacial to millennial and centennial time scales, the role of ice sheets in Cenozoic global cooling and the mid-Pleistocene transition, reconstructions of past ice sheets and sea level, the current and future evolution of the ice sheets, and the role of ice sheets in abrupt climate change.
Mon, 23 May, 08:30–11:50 (CEST), 13:20–14:46 (CEST)
Linking ice sheets, solid Earth and sea levels – observations, analysis and modelling of glacial isostatic adjustment
Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA) describes the dynamic response of the solid Earth to ice sheet glaciation/deglaciation, which affects the spatial and temporal sea level changes, and induces surface deformation, gravitational field variation and stress changes in the subsurface. The process is influenced by the ice sheet characteristics (e.g., extent, volume, grounding line) and solid Earth structure. With more observational data (e.g., relative sea-level data, GPS data, tide gauges, terrestrial and satellite gravimetry, glacially induced faults) are available/standardized, we can better investigate the interactions between the ice sheets, solid Earth and sea levels, and reveal the ice sheet and sea-level evolution histories and rheological properties of the Earth.
This session invites contributions discussing observations, analysis, and modelling of ice sheet dynamics, solid Earth response, and the resulting global, regional and local sea-level changes and land deformation, including paleo ice sheet and paleo sea-level investigations, geodetic measurements of crustal motion and gravitational change, GIA modelling with complex Earth models (e.g., 3D viscosity, non-linear rheologies) and coupled ice-sheet/Earth modelling, investigations on glacially triggered faulting as well as the Earth’s elastic response to present-day ice mass changes. We also welcome abstracts that address the future ice sheets/shelves evolution and sea-level projection as well as GIA effects on oil migration and nuclear waste repositories. Contributions related to both polar regions and previously glaciated regions are welcomed. This session is co-sponsored by the SCAR sub-committee INSTANT-EIS, Earth - Ice - Sea level, in view of instabilities and thresholds in Antarctica https://www.scar.org/science/instant/home/.
Ice shelves and tidewater glaciers - dynamics, interactions, observations, modelling
Ice shelves and tidewater glaciers are sensitive elements of the climate system. Sandwiched between atmosphere and ocean, they are vulnerable to changes in either. The recent disintegration of ice shelves such as Larsen B and Wilkins on the Antarctic Peninsula, current thinning of the ice shelves in the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica, and the recent accelerations of many of Greenland's tidewater glaciers provide evidence of the rapidity with which those systems can respond. Changes in marine-terminating outlets appear to be intimately linked with acceleration and thinning of the ice sheets inland of the grounding line, with immediate consequences for global sea level. Studies of the dynamics and structure of the ice sheets' marine termini and their interactions with atmosphere and ocean are the key to improving our understanding of their response to climate forcing and of their buttressing role for ice streams. The main themes of this session are the dynamics of ice shelves and tidewater glaciers and their interaction with the ocean, atmosphere and the inland ice, including grounding line dynamics. The session includes studies on related processes such as calving, ice fracture, rifting and mass balance, as well as theoretical descriptions of mechanical and thermodynamic processes. We seek contributions both from numerical modelling of ice shelves and tidewater glaciers, including their oceanic and atmospheric environments, and from observational studies of those systems, including glaciological and oceanographic field measurements, as well as remote sensing and laboratory studies.
Subglacial and supraglacial processes of ice sheets, ice shelves and glaciers
Supraglacial and subglacial processes play a key role in the structure, motion and stability of Earth’s ice masses. Such processes broadly relate to supraglacial hydrology (concerning the generation and movement of meltwater at the ice surface), subglacial hydrology (including the formation and operation of flow pathways beneath the ice), and subglacial processes (including deformation and erosion and its consequences for ice mass motion and the glacial-geomorphological record). This session brings together observational and modelling contributions that concern any such processes and/or interactions between them.
This session is a merger of initial sessions CR4.4 ‘Subglacial environment of ice sheets and glaciers’ and CR4.5 ‘Hydrology of ice shelves, ice sheets and glaciers - from the surface to the base’. The session is divided into three time blocks: (1) supraglacial hydrology, (2) subglacial hydrology, and (3) subglacial sedimentary processes.
Solicited authors: Jennifer Arthur, Kasia Warburton, Mohammed Reza Ershadi
Fri, 27 May, 08:30–11:50 (CEST), 13:20–16:39 (CEST)
CR5 – Frozen ground, debris-covered glaciers and geomorphology
Thawing permafrost - stabilization versus decomposition of organic matter?
About 800 Pg soil carbon has been frozen for centuries to millennia. A large fraction of it is assumed to be thawed due to climate change in the near future. A rapid mineralization of this carbon to carbon dioxide or methane will directly alter the global carbon cycle resulting in positive feedback mechanisms that even accelerate climate change. However, permafrost-affected soils and the organic matter stored within are distributed heterogeneously with depth and across ecosystems. Is such thawing organic matter accessible to microorganisms and vulnerable to microbial decay, and hence will it be decomposed fast? Will a large part of it be stabilized at mineral surfaces or in soil aggregates, or will stabilization processes known from temperate soils be rather ineffective? Furthermore, what is the effect of hydrological changes to carbon mineralization or stabilization, particularly with respect to energy constraints of microorganisms? What will be effects of changing vegetation functions to soil organic matter dynamics? This session invites papers that investigate decomposition versus stabilization of thawing permafrost or active layer-organic matter. Contributions may be based on laboratory experiments, field observations, or modelling from the process level to the global scale.
Mobilization of permafrost material to aquatic systems and its biogeochemical fate
Wide-spread permafrost thaw is expected to amplify the release of previously frozen material from terrestrial into aquatic systems: rivers, lakes, groundwater and oceans. Current projections include changes in precipitation patterns, active layer drainage and leaching, increased thermokarst lake formation, as well as increased coastal and river bank erosion that are further enhanced by rising water temperatures, river discharge and wave action. In addition, subsea permafrost that formed under terrestrial conditions but was later inundated might be rapidly thawing on Arctic Ocean shelves. These processes are expected to substantially alter the biogeochemical cycling of carbon but also of other elements in the permafrost area.
This session invites contributions on the mobilization of terrestrial matter to aquatic systems in the permafrost domain, as well as its transport, degradation and potential interaction with autochthonous, aquatic matter. We encourage submissions focusing on organic and inorganic carbon as well as on other elements such as nitrogen, phosphorus, silica, iron, mercury and others, from all parts of the global permafrost area including mountain, inland, coastal and subsea permafrost, on all spatial scales, in the contemporary system but also in the past and future, based on field, laboratory and modelling work.
The geological records of glaciations provide information on the Earth’s past climate and on the efficiency of glaciers in modifying landscapes. Traces of glacial activity are manifested in characteristic depositional and erosional landforms. The focus of this session is to stimulate discussions about the challenges and advances in understanding glaciations and glacial records with a special emphasis on the Quaternary period: How do landscapes and erosion rates evolve under the repeated impact of glaciations? What is the impact of early vs. late glaciations during an ice age? What are the (chrono-)stratigraphic challenges for better constraining glacial periods, especially during earlier periods of the Quaternary? How do climatic conditions affect glaciations and vice versa? How do Quaternary sediments compare to deposits of ice ages earlier in Earth’s history?
Repeated glaciation of an area tends to overprint older landforms and creates fragmented sedimentary successions. For the last glacial cycle, for instance, timing, extent, and driving mechanisms are increasingly well understood, whereas landscape evolution and trends in topographic preconditioning remain poorly constrained for previous glacial cycles. This complexity tends to accentuate when pre-Quaternary glaciations are considered.
We are therefore particularly interested in contributions that demonstrate how some of the limitations imposed by the geological records’ fragmentation can be overcome. For instance, by the following approaches:
1. Uncovering and characterizing glacial deposits, for example preserved in subglacially formed basins (overdeepened basins, tunnel valleys, and fjords), extend the accessible sedimentary record.
2. Modern and ancient analogues help to understand erosion and deposition mechanisms in glacial environments.
3. Relative and absolute chronostratigraphy allows the development of a temporal framework of landscape evolution and environmental conditions.
Contributions may include investigations based on field observations, scientific drilling, geophysical measurements, and/or modelling of present-day, Quaternary, and pre-Quaternary glacial settings. Possible topics cover: (a) glacial and interglacial stratigraphic successions, (b) subglacial erosion and deposition, (c) glaciation chronology, and (d) landscape evolution.
Present-day glacial and periglacial processes in cold regions, i.e. arctic and alpine environments, provide modern analogues to processes and climatic changes that took place during the Pleistocene, including gradual retreat or collapse of ice sheets and mountain glaciers, and thawing and shrinking of low-land permafrost. Current geomorphological and glaciological changes in mid-latitude mountain ranges could also serve as a proxy for future changes in high-latitude regions within a context of climate change. Examples are speed-up or disintegration of creeping permafrost features or the relictification of rock glaciers.
For our session we invite contributions that either:
1. investigate present-day glacial and/or periglacial landforms, sediments and processes to describe the current state, to reconstruct past environmental conditions and to predict future scenarios in cold regions; or
2. have a Quaternary focus and aim at enhancing our understanding of past glacial, periglacial and paraglacial processes, also through the application of dating techniques.
Case studies that use a multi-disciplinary approach (e.g. field, laboratory and modelling techniques) and/or that highlight the interaction between the glacial, periglacial and paraglacial cryospheric components in cold regions are particularly welcome.
Mountain glaciations: Developments in geomorphology, geochronology, glaciology and climate change
Mountain glaciations have a long research heritage since they provide an invaluable record for past and present climate change. However, complex glaciological conditions, geomorphological processes and topography can make regional and intra-hemispheric correlations challenging. This problem is further enhanced by ongoing specialisation within the scientific community, whereby working groups often focus on individual aspects or selected mountain regions, thus frequently remain disconnected.
The main incentive for this session is to evaluate the potential of mountain glaciation records and stimulate further discussion to work towards bridging between specialised research communities. Contributions on all relevant aspects are welcomed, including (but not limited to): (a) glacial landforms and glacier reconstructions, (b) dating techniques and glacier chronologies, (c) glaciology and palaeoclimatic interpretations, (d) impacts on ecosystems and human society.
A special regional focus within the session will be dedicated to the Andean Cordillera and topics such as glaciers and palaeoclimatic records from the Andean Cordillera or model-data comparisons that aim to improve projections of future climate and ice-mass behaviour in the Andes and beyond.
Submissions involving interdisciplinary studies, complex interactions or highlighting the specific conditions of mountain glaciations, from continental to maritime regions at any latitude, are encouraged. The potential of related studies should be highlighted alongside strategies to tackle existing challenges as this will enable the session to fully address the diversity of the topic.
In past years, precursors of this session have steadily become a popular platform for everyone interested in the emerging collaborative research network, “The Legacy of Mountain Glaciations”. This network continues to grow, and we hope the 2022 session will provide an opportunity to meet and exchange new ideas and expertise.
Rapid changes in sea ice: processes and implications
Recent years have seen significant reductions in Arctic sea ice extent, and a redistribution of sea ice in the Antarctic. Climate projections suggest a reduction of the sea ice cover in both poles, with the Arctic becoming seasonally ice free in the latter half of this century.
The scientific community is investing considerable effort in organising our current knowledge of the physical and biogeochemical properties of sea ice, exploring poorly understood sea ice processes (e.g. MOSAiC), and forecasting future changes of the sea ice cover, such as in CMIP6.
In this session, we invite contributions regarding all aspects of sea ice science and sea ice-climate interactions, including snow and sea ice thermodynamics and dynamics, sea ice-atmosphere and sea ice-ocean interactions, sea ice biological and chemical processes, and sea ice models. A focus on emerging processes and implications is particularly welcome.
Under cover: The Southern Ocean’s connection to sea ice and ice shelves
The interaction between the ocean and the cryosphere in the Southern Ocean has become a major focus in climate research. Antarctic climate change has captured public attention, which has spawned a number of research questions, such as: Is Antarctic sea ice becoming more vulnerable in a changing climate? Where and when will melting of ice shelves by warm ocean waters yield a tipping point in Antarctic climate? What role do ice-related processes play in nutrient upwelling on the continental shelf and in triggering carbon export to deep waters? Recent advances in observational technology, data coverage, and modeling provide scientists with a better understanding of the mechanisms involving ice-ocean interactions in the far South. Processes on the Antarctic continental shelf have been identified as missing links between the cryosphere, the global atmosphere and the deep open ocean that need to be captured in large-scale and global model simulations.
This session calls for studies on physical and biogeochemical interactions between ice shelves, sea ice and the ocean. The ice-covered Southern Ocean and its role in the greater Antarctic climate system are of major interest. This includes work on all scales, from local to basin-scale to circumpolar. Studies based on in-situ observations and remote sensing as well as regional to global models are welcome. We particularly invite cross-disciplinary topics involving physical and biological oceanography, glaciology or biogeochemistry.
Mon, 23 May, 13:20–14:50 (CEST), 15:10–18:30 (CEST)
Changes in the Arctic Ocean, sea ice and subarctic seas systems: Observations, Models and Perspectives
The rapid decline of the Arctic sea ice in the last decade is a dramatic indicator of climate change. The Arctic sea ice cover is now thinner, weaker and drifts faster. Freak heatwaves are common. On land, the permafrost is dramatically thawing, glaciers are disappearing, and forest fires are raging. The ocean is also changing: the volume of freshwater stored in the Arctic has increased as have the inputs of coastal runoff from Siberia and Greenland and the exchanges with the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. As the global surface temperature rises, the Arctic Ocean is speculated to become seasonally ice-free by the mid 21st century, which prompts us to revisit our perceptions of the Arctic system as a whole. What could the Arctic Ocean look like in the future? How are the present changes in the Arctic going to affect and be affected by the lower latitudes? What aspects of the changing Arctic should observational, remote sensing and modelling programmes address in priority?
In this session, we invite contributions from a variety of studies on the recent past, present and future Arctic. We encourage submissions examining interactions between the ocean, atmosphere and sea ice, on emerging mechanisms and feedbacks in the Arctic and on how the Arctic influences the global ocean. Submissions taking a cross-disciplinary, system approach and focussing on emerging cryospheric, oceanic and biogeochemical processes and their links with land are particularly welcome.
The session supports the actions of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) towards addressing challenges for sustainable development in the Arctic and its diverse regions. We aim to promote discussions on the future plans for Arctic Ocean modelling and measurement strategies, and encourages submissions on the results from IPCC CMIP and the recent observational programs, such as the Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC). This session is cosponsored by the CLIVAR /CliC Northern Ocean Regional Panel (NORP) that aims to facilitate progress and identify scientific opportunities in (sub)Arctic ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere research.
Drs Karen Assmann and Wilken-Jon von Appen are the solicited speakers for the session. Karen Assmann will be presenting on physical and ecological implications of Arctic Atlantification. Wilken-Jon von Appen will be talking about eddies in the Arctic Ocean.
CR7 – The Cryosphere in the Earth system: interdisciplinary topics
Coupled modelling in the polar regions
In recent decades, the climate in the polar regions has undergone dramatic changes. Quantifying the individual contributions of Earth system components (cryosphere, ocean, atmosphere, and land) to the observed changes is challenging due to feedback between the components. Examples include (but are not limited to) ice shelf-ocean interactions (through basal melting and cavity geometry evolution) and elevation feedbacks (through surface mass balance). Hence, studies based on individual components of the Earth System have limited capacity to represent all relevant processes. This session aims to provide a platform for sharing coupled modelling experiences incorporating the cryosphere in the polar regions.
Before obtaining scientific outcomes, design decisions must be made in the development of coupled models. Adopting existing coupling technologies or implementing new, concurrent or sequential parallelism, bringing component source codes together or maintaining independence, choosing the level of temporal synchronicity between components operating on different timescales, are all examples of choices to be made.
We solicit both technical and scientific contributions from modelling studies in which feedback and emergent properties between the cryosphere and other Earth System components in polar regions are investigated, better understood, and possibly even quantified. In addition to application of coupled modelling to real world domains, contributions are also invited from idealised studies and intercomparisons, such as the Marine Ice Sheet-Ocean Intercomparison Project (MISOMIP).
Polar Meteorology and Climate and their Links to the Rapidly Changing Cryosphere
The polar climate system is strongly affected by interactions between the atmosphere and the cryosphere. Processes that exchange heat, moisture and momentum between land ice, sea ice and the atmosphere play an important role in local-to-global processes. Atmosphere-ice interactions are also triggered by synoptic weather phenomena such as cold air outbreaks, polar lows, atmospheric rivers and Foehn winds. However, our understanding of these processes is still incomplete. Despite being a crucial milestone for reaching accurate projections of future climate change in Polar Regions, deciphering the interplay between the atmosphere, land ice and sea ice on different spatial and temporal scales, remains a major challenge.
This session aims at showcasing recent research progress and augmenting existing knowledge in polar meteorology and climate and the atmosphere-land ice-sea ice coupling in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. It will provide a setting to foster discussion and help identify gaps, tools, and studies that can be designed to address these open questions. It is also the opportunity to convey newly acquired knowledge to the community.
We invite contributions on all observational and numerical modelling aspects of Arctic and Antarctic meteorology and climatology, that address atmospheric interactions with the cryosphere. This may include but is not limited to studies on past, present and future of:
- Atmospheric processes that influence sea-ice (snow on sea ice, sea ice melt, polynya formation and sea ice production) and associated feedbacks,
- The variability of the polar large-scale atmospheric circulation (such as polar jets, the circumpolar trough and storm tracks) and impact on the cryosphere (sea ice and land ice),
- Atmosphere-ice interactions triggered by synoptic and meso-scale weather phenomena such as cold air outbreaks, katabatic winds, extratropical cyclones, polar cyclones, atmospheric rivers, Foehn winds,
- Role of clouds in polar climate and impact on the land ice and sea ice through interactions with radiation,
- Teleconnections and climate indices and their role in land ice/sea ice variability.
Presentations including new observational (ground and satellite-based) and modelling methodologies specific to polar regions are encouraged. Contributions related to results from recent field campaigns in the Arctic and in the Southern Ocean/Antarctica are also welcomed.
Thu, 26 May, 11:05–11:50 (CEST), 13:20–14:50 (CEST)
Arctic changes – processes and feedbacks in climate, ocean and cryosphere
The Arctic Realm is changing rapidly and the fate of the cryosphere, including Arctic sea ice, glaciers and ice caps, is a source of concern. Whereas sea ice variations impact the radiative energy budget, thus playing a role in Arctic amplification, the Greenland Ice Sheet retreat contributes to global sea level rise. Moreover, through various processes linking the atmosphere, ice and ocean, the change in the Arctic realm may modify the atmospheric and ocean circulation at regional to global scales, the freshwater budget of the ocean and deep-water formation as well as the marine and terrestrial ecosystems, including productivity. The processes and feedbacks involved operate on all time scales and it require a range of types of information to understand the processes, drivers and feedbacks involved in Arctic changes, as well as the land-ocean-cryosphere interaction. In this session, we invite contributions from a range of disciplines and across time scales, including observational (satellite and instrumental) data, historical data, geological archives and proxy data, model simulations and forecasts, for the past, present and future climate. The common denominator of these studies will be their focus on a better understanding of mechanisms and feedbacks on short to long time scales that drive Arctic and subarctic changes and their impact on climate, ocean and environmental conditions, at regional to global scales, including possible links to weather and climate outside the Arctic.
Climate Variability and Prediction in High Latitudes
Arctic sea ice and high latitude atmosphere and oceans have experienced significant changes over the modern observational era. The polar climate is crucial for the Earth’s energy and water budget, and its variability and change have direct socio-economic and ecological impacts. Thus, understanding high-latitude variability and improving predictions of high latitude climate is highly important for society. Long-term variability in ocean and sea ice are the largest sources for predictability in high latitudes. Dynamical model predictions are not yet in the position to provide us with highly accurate predictions of the polar climate. Main reasons for this are the lack of observations in high latitudes, insufficient initialization methods and shortcomings of climate models in representing some of the important climate processes in high latitudes.
This session aims for a better understanding and better representation of the mechanisms that control high latitude variability and predictability of climate in both hemispheres from sub-seasonal to multi-decadal time-scales in past, recent and future climates. Further, the session aims to discuss ongoing efforts to improve climate predictions at high latitudes at various time scales (e.g., usage of additional observations for initialization, improved initialization methods, impact of higher resolution, improved parameterizations, novel verification approaches) and potential teleconnections of high latitude climate with lower latitude climate. We also aim to link polar climate variability and predictions to potential ecological and socio-economic impacts and encourage submissions on this topic.
The session offers the possibility to present results from ongoing projects and research efforts on the topic of high-latitude climate variability and prediction, including, but not limited to, the WMO Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP), NordForsk-project ARCPATH, MOSAiC, and the H2020-projects APPLICATE, INTAROS, BlueAction, and KEPLER.
This session has greatly benefited by the expansion via added contributions from the CL4.11 session on "Arctic climate change: governing mechanisms and global implications" that specifically aims to identify, characterize and quantify the processes and feedbacks that govern amplified Arctic warming and sea ice retreat, and it also addresses the climate impacts on the lower latitudes associated with Arctic changes.
Wed, 25 May, 11:00–11:49 (CEST), 13:20–14:51 (CEST)
Challenges in climate prediction: multiple time-scales and the Earth system dimensions
One of the big challenges in Earth system science consists in providing reliable climate predictions on sub-seasonal, seasonal, decadal and longer timescales. The resulting data have the potential to be translated into climate information leading to a better assessment of global and regional climate-related risks.
The latest developments and progress in climate forecasting on subseasonal-to-decadal and longer timescales will be discussed and evaluated. This will include presentations and discussions of predictions for the different time horizons from dynamical ensemble and statistical/empirical forecast systems, as well as the aspects required for their application: forecast quality assessment, multi-model combination, bias adjustment, downscaling, exploration of artificial-intelligence methods, etc.
Following the new WCRP strategic plan for 2019-2029, prediction enhancements are solicited from contributions embracing climate forecasting from an Earth system science perspective. This includes the study of coupled processes between atmosphere, land, ocean, and sea-ice components, as well as the impacts of coupling and feedbacks in physical, chemical, biological, and human dimensions. Contributions are also sought on initialization methods that optimally use observations from different Earth system components, on assessing and mitigating the impacts of model errors on skill, and on ensemble methods.
We also encourage contributions on the use of climate predictions for climate impact assessment, demonstrations of end-user value for climate risk applications and climate-change adaptation and the development of early warning systems.
A special focus will be put on the use of operational climate predictions (C3S, NMME, S2S), results from the CMIP5-CMIP6 decadal prediction experiments, and climate-prediction research and application projects.
An increasingly important aspect for climate forecast's applications is the use of most appropriate downscaling methods, based on dynamical or statistical approaches or their combination, that are needed to generate time series and fields with an appropriate spatial or temporal resolution. This is extensively considered in the session, which therefore brings together scientists from all geoscientific disciplines working on the prediction and application problems.
Tipping points, domino effects and resilience in the Earth system
In 2015, the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on climate recognized the deteriorating resilience of the Earth system, with planetary-scale human impacts constituting a new geological epoch: the Anthropocene. Earth system resilience critically depends on the nonlinear interplay of positive and negative feedbacks of biophysical and increasingly also socio-economic processes. These include dynamics and interactions between the carbon cycle, the atmosphere, oceans, large-scale ecosystems, and the cryosphere, as well as the dynamics and perturbations associated with human activities.
With rising anthropogenic pressures, there is an increasing risk we might be hitting the ceiling of some of the self-regulating feedbacks of the Earth System, and cross tipping points which could trigger large-scale and partly irreversible impacts on the environment, and impact the livelihood of millions of people. Potential domino effects or tipping cascades could arise due to the interactions between these tipping elements and lead to a further decline of Earth resilience. At the same time, there is growing evidence supporting the potential of positive (social) tipping points that could propel rapid decarbonization and transformative change towards global sustainability.
In this session we invite contributions on all topics relating to tipping points in the Earth system, positive (social) tipping, as well as their interaction and domino effects. We are particularly interested in various methodological approaches, from Earth system modelling to conceptual modelling and data analysis of nonlinearities, tipping points and abrupt shifts in the Earth system.
Nonlinear Dynamics and Tipping Points in the Earth System
The dynamics of the Earth system and its components is highly nonlinear. In particular, several subsystems have been suggested to react abruptly at critical levels of anthropogenic forcing. Well-known examples of such Tipping Elements include the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, the polar ice sheets and sea ice, tropical and boreal forests, as well as the Asian monsoon systems. Interactions between the different Tipping Elements may either have stabilizing or destabilizing effects on the other subsystems, potentially leading to cascades of abrupt transitions. The critical forcing levels at which abrupt transitions occur have recently been associated with Tipping Points.
It is paramount to determine the critical forcing levels (and the associated uncertainties) beyond which the systems in question will abruptly change their state, with potentially devastating climatic, ecological, and societal impacts. For this purpose, we need to substantially enhance our understanding of the dynamics of the Tipping Elements and their interactions, on the basis of paleoclimatic evidence, present-day observations, and models spanning the entire hierarchy of complexity. Moreover, to be able to mitigate - or prepare for - potential future transitions, early warning signals have to be identified and monitored in both observations and models.
This multidisciplinary session invites contributions that address Tipping Points in the Earth system from the different perspectives of all relevant disciplines, including
- the mathematical theory of abrupt transitions in (random) dynamical systems,
- paleoclimatic studies of past abrupt transitions,
- data-driven and process-based modelling of past and future transitions,
- early-warning signals
- the implications of abrupt transitions for Climate sensitivity and response,
- ecological and societal impacts, as well as
- decision theory in the presence of uncertain Tipping Point estimates
Understanding sea level changes: global to local, from past to future
To address societal concerns over rising sea level and extreme events, understanding the contributions behind these changes is key to predict potential impacts of sea level change on coastal communities and global economy, and is recognized as one of the Grand Challenges of our time by the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP). To continue this discussion, we welcome contributions from the international sea level community that improve our knowledge of the past and present changes in global and regional sea level, extreme events, and flooding, and produce improved predictions of their future changes.
We welcome studies on various drivers of sea level change and linkages between variability in sea level, heat and freshwater content, ocean dynamics, land subsidence from natural versus anthropogenic influences, and mass exchange between the land and the ocean associated with ice sheet and glacier mass loss and changes in the terrestrial water storage. Studies focusing on future sea level changes are also encouraged, as well as those discussing potential short-, medium-, and long-term impacts on coastal and deltaic environments, as well as the global oceans.
Thu, 26 May, 08:30–11:44 (CEST), 13:20–14:44 (CEST)
CR8 – Short courses, Outreach, Communication
Meet the EGU Journal Editors
Publishing your research in a peer reviewed journal is essential for a career in research. All EGU-affiliated journals are fully open access which is great, but the unique open discussion and transparent peer review process can be daunting for first time submitters and early career scientists. This short course will cover all you need to know about the publication process from start to end for EGU journals, and give you a chance to ask the editors some questions. This includes: what the editor looks for in your submitted paper, how to deal with corrections or rejections, and how best to communicate with your reviewers and editors for a smooth transition from submission to publication. Ample time will be reserved for open discussion for the audience to ask questions to the editors, and for the editors to suggest ‘top tips’ for successful publication. This course is aimed at early-career researchers who are about to step into the publication process, and those who are yet to publish in EGU journals. Similarly, this course will be of interest to those looking to get involved in the peer-review process through reviewing and editing. This short course is part of the “Meet the EGU Journal Editors” webinar series that was held prior to the EGU General Assembly 2022.
We are excited to welcome our panelists for this session, who will be representing their respective journals:
On 9 August 2021, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the first volume of its 6th Assessment Report (AR6). The Working Group I contribution to the Report (Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis) synthesises over 14,000 publications and represents the most comprehensive and up-to-date assessment of the climate system and climate change. Crucially, the Report highlights the unprecedented and potentially irreversible influence of anthropogenic climate forcing, and for the first time, explicitly states that human influence on the climate system is unequivocal.
This short course will be a panel discussion where authors and contributors of Working Group I unpack how the IPCC 6th Assessment Report (AR6) is produced, provide personal behind-the-scenes insight on its development, and discuss its global impact, including how it is used to inform policy. Authors of the report will share their experiences of working on the report before and through the COVID pandemic. Panelists will also emphasise various ways in which scientists of all career stages can contribute to the IPCC process. Ample time will be allocated for open discussion for the audience to ask related questions to the panelists.
For more information about the AR6 please visit the IPCC website: https://www.ipcc.ch/.
gnssrefl: an open source GNSS reflections software package for measuring snow accumulation and water levels
We have developed an open source software package in python for ground-based GNSS reflections – gnssrefl (https://github.com/kristinemlarson/gnssrefl). This new software supports geoscientists wishing to measure in situ snow accumulation, permafrost melt, firn density, tides, and lake/river levels. We have developed videos (hosted on youtube) to help new users understand both the basic concepts of GNSS reflections and how to install and run the gnssrefl code. More than a dozen use cases are available online; Jupyter Notebooks have been developed as well. We envision the EGU tutorial session to be hands-on and interactive, with a focus on demonstrating the gnssrefl software and online tools (https://gnss-reflections.org), examining and discussing environmental results derived from GNSS data taken from public archives, and analyzing new datasets suggested by the students.
We have developed an open source code in python (gnssrefl) that allows users to measure either water levels or snow accumulation using GNSS data. This session will be devoted to helping users understand how to run and install the code. Please see the github (https://github.com/kristinemlarson/gnssrefl) repository for some tips on how to install the gnssrefl package on your local machine. We currently support the python code on linux and macs, with docker images for these and PCs. We also have links to jupyter notebooks. There is a complementary web app at https://gnss-reflections.org.
QuakeMigrate: an open-source software package for automatic earthquake detection and location
QuakeMigrate is a new, open-source software package for automatic earthquake detection and location (https://github.com/QuakeMigrate/QuakeMigrate). Our software provides a means for seismologists to extract highly complete catalogues of microseismicity from continuous seismic data, whether their network is installed at a volcano, plate-boundary fault zone, on an ice shelf, or even on another planet. Rather than traditional pick-based techniques, it uses a migration-based approach to combine the recordings from stations across a seismic network, promising increased robustness to noise, more accurate hypocentre locations, and improved detection capability. Cloud-hosted Jupyter Notebooks and tutorials (https://mybinder.org/v2/gh/QuakeMigrate/QuakeMigrate/master) provide an overview of the philosophy and capabilities of our algorithm, and in this session we intend to provide a more hands-on introduction, with a focus on providing a general understanding of the considerations when applying a waveform-based algorithm to detect and locate seismicity.
QuakeMigrate has been constructed with a modular architecture, to make it flexible to use in different settings. We will demonstrate its use in detecting and locating basal icequakes at the Rutford Ice Stream, Antarctica, volcano-tectonic seismicity during the 2014 Bárðarbunga-Holuhraun and 2021 Reykjanes/Fagradalsfjall dike intrusions, and aftershocks from a M5 tectonic earthquake in northern Borneo, which was recorded on a sparse regional seismic network. In each case we will discuss the reasoning behind parameter selections, and the key factors in maximising detection sensitivity while minimising computational cost. We will end the session by exploring sample datasets provided by attendees, with interactive involvement as we tune parameters and use the comprehensive array of automatically generated plots to take a preliminary look at unseen data.
What is the “Potsdam Gravity Potato”? What is a reference frame and why is it necessary to know in which reference frame GNSS velocities are provided? Geodetic data, like GNSS data or gravity data, are used in many geoscientific disciplines, such as hydrology, glaciology, geodynamics, oceanography and seismology. This course aims to give an introduction into geodetic datasets and presents what is necessary to consider when using such data. This 105-minute short course is part of the quartet of introductory 101 courses on Geodynamics 101, Geology 101 and Seismology 101.
The short course Geodesy 101 will introduce basic geodetic concepts within the areas of GNSS and gravity data analysis. In particular, we will talk about:
- GNSS data analysis
- Reference frames
- Gravity data analysis
We will also show short examples of data handling and processing using open-source software tools. Participants are not required to bring a laptop or have any previous knowledge of geodetic data analysis.
Our aim is to give you more background information on what geodetic data can tell us and what not. You won’t be a Geodesist by the end of the short course, but we hope that you are able to have gained more knowledge about the limitations as well as advantages of geodetic data. The course is run by early career scientists from the Geodesy division, and is aimed for all attendees (ECS and non-ECS) from all divisions who are using geodetic data frequently or are just interested to know what geodesists work on on a daily basis. We hope to have a lively discussion during the short course and we are also looking forward to feedback by non-geodesists on what they need to know when they use geodetic data.
Please give us feedback on the short course: https://forms.gle/EMp3U79UsT1jdQYu6
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