Greenland situated near the north pole received precipitation at the summit not in the form of snow but as rain — for the first time in recorded history.
This shows that rising temperatures have drastically changed the weather patterns in the otherwise cold region.
According to a press release by the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), this was the third time in less than a decade, and the latest date in the year on record, that the National Science Foundation’s Summit Station had observed above-freezing temperatures and wet snow.
The statement also mentioned that there is no previous report of rainfall at the location which reaches 3,216 meters or 10,551 feet in elevation above sea level.
Following the rainfall, the island also lost ice mass that is believed to be seven times higher than the daily average for this time of year.
NSIDC reported that earlier significant melt events in the instrumental record occurred in 1995, 2012, and 2019.
Before these events, melting inferred from ice cores had been absent since an event in the late nineteenth century.
The centre mentioned that the cause of the melting event that took place from August 14 to 16, 2021, was similar to the events that occurred last month.
Earlier this month, data released by the Polar Portal warned that Greenland is on track to lose its vast ice sheets.
The region lost 8.5 billion tons of surface mass on August 3 and another 8.4 billion tons on August 5.
The events of massive ice mass loss occurred in the region after a strong low-pressure centre over Baffin Island and high air pressure southeast of Greenland worked together to push warm air and moisture rapidly from the south, reported the National Snow and Ice Data Center.