Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

A Reconciled Estimate of Ice-Sheet Mass Balance

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Matt King


Full text for this publication is not currently held within this repository. Alternative links are provided below where available.


We combined an ensemble of satellite altimetry, interferometry, and gravimetry data sets using common geographical regions, time intervals, and models of surface mass balance and glacial isostatic adjustment to estimate the mass balance of Earth's polar ice sheets. We find that there is good agreement between different satellite methods-especially in Greenland and West Antarctica-and that combining satellite data sets leads to greater certainty. Between 1992 and 2011, the ice sheets of Greenland, East Antarctica, West Antarctica, and the Antarctic Peninsula changed in mass by -142 +/- 49, +14 +/- 43, -65 +/- 26, and -20 +/- 14 gigatonnes year(-1), respectively. Since 1992, the polar ice sheets have contributed, on average, 0.59 +/- 0.20 millimeter year(-1) to the rate of global sea-level rise.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Shepherd A, Ivins ER, Geruo A, Barletta VR, Bentley MJ, Bettadpur S, Briggs KH, Bromwich DH, Forsberg R, Galin N, Horwath M, Jacobs S, Joughin I, King MA, Lenaerts JTM, Li JL, Ligtenberg SRM, Luckman A, Luthcke SB, McMillan M, Meister R, Milne G, Mouginot J, Muir A, Nicolas JP, Paden J, Payne AJ, Pritchard H, Rignot E, Rott H, Sorensen LS, Scambos TA, Scheuchl B, Schrama EJO, Smith B, Sundal AV, van Angelen JH, van de Berg WJ, van den Broeke MR, Vaughan DG, Velicogna I, Wahr J, Whitehouse PL, Wingham DJ, Yi DH, Young D, Zwally HJ

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Science

Year: 2012

Volume: 338

Issue: 6111

Pages: 1183-1189

Print publication date: 30/11/2012

ISSN (print): 0036-8075

ISSN (electronic): 1095-9203

Publisher: American Association for the Advancement of Science


DOI: 10.1126/science.1228102


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric


Funder referenceFunder name
Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory
Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research
Phillip Leverhulme Prize award
UK Natural Environment Research Council
Netherlands Polar Program
125European Union