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Fri May 1, 2020, 12:57 AM

NASA says Antarctica and Greenland lost enough ice to fill Lake Michigan over last 16 years

BY J. EDWARD MORENO - 04/30/20 11:23 PM EDT

Antarctica and Greenland lost thousands of gigatons of ice in the last 16 years, according to results from a new NASA mission published Thursday.

Scientists reported that the two land masses have lost 5,000 gigatons of ice in that time period, which is enough to fill Lake Michigan. A gigaton is equal to a billion metric tons.

The data was measured by ICESat-2, a NASA satellite launched in 2018, following a mission from ICESat, that gathered data from 2003 to 2009. Using information from both missions, researchers calculated the scale of melting.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said last week that Arctic ice reached its second-lowest extent on record in 2019. NOAA also said earlier this month that they are projecting 2020 will be the hottest year on record, surpassing a record set in 2016.


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