Not Great: Watch This Video of a Glacier Melting Faster Than It Can Recover

"Footage like this should act as a wake-up call that we cannot ignore the signs any longer", said a researcher behind the project.
Simon Childs
London, GB
Footage shows the rapid melting of​  Breidamerkurjokull, Iceland’s third biggest glacier. Photos: Dr Kieran Baxter/University of Dundee​
Footage shows the rapid melting of 

Breidamerkurjokull, Iceland’s third biggest glacier. Photos: Dr Kieran Baxter/University of Dundee

Startling footage shows how a glacier in Iceland is melting faster than it can recover.

The rapid melting of Breidamerkurjokull, Iceland’s third biggest glacier, in Vatnajökull National Park in southeast Iceland, was captured in the summer by a team of film-makers, glaciologists and scientists.

Experts say that melting in the summer months is now so fast that it is affecting the recovery of the glacier in the winter.

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Dr Kieran Baxter, a lecturer in Communication Design at the University of Dundee who was behind the time-lapse project, said, "Footage like this should act as a wake-up call that we cannot ignore the signs any longer.

"Climate change is already having dire consequences around the world and we have to take responsibility for that.

"The paths we choose now, including the decisions made at COP26, will have a huge influence on the climate impacts that we will have to deal with in the future. The volume of ice melt that we are seeing in Iceland is just one of the indicators that show us the scale of those impacts."

The COP26 climate change summit continues this week. The conference has faced criticism as delegates from fossil fuel companies outnumber those from any single country.

Snævarr Guðmundsson, a glaciologist at the South East Iceland Nature Research Centre, said, "When a glacier is in balance the winter accumulation would equal the summer melt, but we do not see that here. The ablation [reduction in volume] has accelerated beyond recovery and in recent decades a retreat of up to 250 metres per year has been recorded."