Today's Eye Candy comes from The Fate of Greenland: Lessons from Abrupt Climate Change, by Philip Conkling, Richard Alley, Wallace Broecker, and George Denton; photographs by Gary Comer. The Fate of Greenland features 77 color photos and is the first climate science trade book to focus on Greenland, the world’s largest island. Because of global warming, Greenland’s ice sheets, glaciers, and sea ice are melting, as evidenced by dramatic photographs made available a couple of years ago that have been the focus of news stories. This dramatically illustrated book describes how Greenland’s changing ice will affect the rest of the world.
Here are a few photographs from the book (click on each image to enlarge):
A meltwater lake on the surface of the Greenland ice sheet. Ice flow over bedrock bumps creates local low spots on the surface where water pools. These lakes sometimes wedge open crevasses, draining suddenly and spectacularly through the ice to the bottom and then out to the edge of the ice. (Photo by Gary Comer)
A debris-laden iceberg in Scoresby Sound. Glaciers carry material that falls on them, or that they pick up from beneath them or bulldoze in front. This material is eventually left in ridges called moraines, or spread across the landscape or dropped from icebergs to the sea floor. (Photo by Gary Comer)
Large iceberg calved from Daugaard-Jensen Glacier, Northwest Fjord in Scoresby Sound. (Photo by Philip Conkling)
Statue of Leif overlooking his father's, Erik the Red's, farm Brattahlid. (Photo by Philip Conkling)
Except in especially cold places where ice is frozen to the rocks beneath, glaciers usually erode the landscape more rapidly than rivers or wind. Valleys that are "U-shaped" in cross-section are characteristic of erosion by glaciers, such as the classic Qinguadalen valley that drains into the head of Taserssuaq Lake and was full of ice during the ice age. Note the delta and melt water plume built by sediment carried in the stream fed by numerous alpine cirque glaciers. (Photo by Gary Comer)
George Denton (right) and Bjorn Andersen study the geomorphology of a raised delta colonized by tundra plants, including bearberry leaves that show this striking red color in autumn, in Milne Land along the northern flank of Scoresby Sound. (Photo by Richard Alley)