When it comes to our warming climate, the most obvious concern is the expected rise of the level of the sea due to melting ice. Although the melting of sea ice, such as that in the Arctic Ocean, is important for a number of reasons, it is the melting of ice presently on land that will cause the sea to rise.

The Greenland subcontinent contains enough ice to raise sea levels by more than 20 feet if it all were to melt. Such a thing is not likely this century. However, Greenland ice is melting, and its rate of melt is increasing.

The summer of 2019 was particularly warm over Greenland due to a weather pattern that brought air from North Africa to Greenland, causing an unusual amount of melting. NASA estimates 532 billion tons of Greenland ice melted in 2019, resulting in an average sea level rise around the world of 1.5 millimeters.

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