Iceland Glacier-Free After 100 Years?

Iceland Glacier-Free After 100 Years?

Published June 30, 2014

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
José Hernández

A professor of environmental sciences believes that if glacial-shrinking trends continue, Iceland could be completely ice-free after as soon as 100 years.

The sixth episode of The Weather Channel’s “Destination Unchartered” series focuses specifically on Iceland. The episode goes into detail about Iceland’s geothermal activity and its effect on the climate, both locally and internationally. However, the show also talks about how the climate affects Iceland.

“You have to come visit Iceland soon because in a hundred years, it will certainly be a different landscape,” says Dr. W. Roger Buck, professor and research scientist at the Earth Institute at Columbia University.

With glaciers and ice caps covering over 11 percent of its land area, future climate change is likely to have pronounced effects on Iceland. Increased temperatures related to climate change have been recorded in the last decade and in addition to decreasing glaciers, other consequences include biological impact on biodiversity, economy, transport, health and in creased frequency of extreme weather, according to the European Environment agency.

“Glaciers of Iceland reached its maximum extent about 100 years ago, and are retreating visibly year to year,” says Buck. “It’s quite likely that in the next 100-200 years, there will be no glaciers left on Iceland.”

You can watch the full episode here.

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