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Thin Ice: Melting Greenland Might Be Set for a Mining Boom

The vast island is nearly pristine, but not for long.


These NASA maps show how, within the space of four days earlier this month, Greenland's vast ice sheet faced degree of melting not seen in three decades of satellite observations as temperatures there rose. The image at left shows the ice sheet on July 8, with a large part of it experiencing no melting in summer, as is typical. By July 12, the surface of virtually the entire ice sheet was melting, a phenomenon not seen in three decades of satellite imaging. (NASA)

Last week we had big climate change news out of Greenland (well, sort of) with a NASA report that shows that the entire ice sheet that covers the vast majority of the country dramatically melted in mid July. On the heels of the news that an iceberg twice the size of the island of Manhattan had calved from Greenland as well, the doomsday talk was reaching fever pitch.

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