CPOM has a significant presence in the media, whether it’s expertise provided by our scientists or news about CPOM itself. You can read a selection of recent media coverage below:
04.06.21: Renewable energy and the impact it has on the climate
CPOM Director Professor Andy Shepherd spoke to BBC Radio Leeds to discuss renewable energy and the impact it has on the climate.
04.06.21: Artic sea ice thinning faster than expected, new study shows
Research led by UCL’s Robbie Mallet (CPOM PhD researcher), Julienne Stroeve and Michel Tsamados (CPOM Associate Investigators), comment on the study finding sea ice in the Arctic’s coastal regions may be thinning up to twice as fast as previously thought, with worrying implications for climate change.
“The thickness of sea ice is a sensitive indicator of the health of the Arctic. It is important as thicker ice acts as an insulating blanket, stopping the ocean from warming up the atmosphere in winter, and protecting the ocean from the sunshine in summer. Thinner ice is also less likely to survive during the Arctic summer melt.”
01.06.21: CryoSat reveals ice loss from glaciers in Alaska and Asia
Noel Gourmelen, CPOM Associate Investigator at University of Edinburgh, is amongst the authors of a recent study, which shows that mountain glaciers in the Gulf Alaska and in High Mountain Asia have lost 5% of their volume of ice over last decade.
“It is astonishing to think that over last decade alone, both regions have lost 5% of their volume of ice. What CryoSat has accomplished also is astonishing.”
25.05.21: World’s largest iceberg breaks off Antarctic shelf
Further coverage of ice loss in Antarctica that includes mention of CPOM research from January led by Dr Tom Slater (University of Leeds) that revealed the rate at which ice is disappearing across the planet is speeding up.
18.05.21: Greenland ice sheet on brink of major tipping point, says study
News that ice in Greenland is at a major tipping point includes comments from Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) about the urgent need for action to save our climate.
07.05.21: Sea level rises from melting ice massively reduced by limiting global warming
Coverage of the new study, from an international research team headed by CPOM Associate Dr Tamsin Edwards (KCL) and including CPOM Director Professor Andy Shepherd, explored the land ice contribution to sea level in the 21st century arising from the world’s glaciers and the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets.
“Ahead of COP26 this November, many nations are updating their pledges to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris Agreement.
Global sea level will continue to rise, even if we halt all emissions now, but our research suggests we could limit the damage.”
29.04.21: Global glaciers losing 267 billion tonnes in mass per year – study
Professor Andrew Shepherd (CPOM Director), who was not involved in the study, comments on the findings that show glaciers are losing ice at an accelerated pace in the 21st century.
“Glacier melting accounts for a quarter of Earth’s ice loss over the satellite era, and the changes taking place are disrupting water supplies for billions of people downstream, especially in years of drought when meltwater becomes a critical source.”
28.04.21: Climate change: World’s glaciers melting at a faster pace
CPOM study led by Dr Thomas Slater (CPOM Staff Researcher) is mentioned in the context of similar research that French scientists recently conducted. Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) is quoted in the article talking about the increasing rate of glacier melting.
21.04.21: Earth Day 2021: Climate change ‘tipping points’ might not be the end of the world after all, report says
Professor Andrew Shepherd (CPOM Director) provides his thoughts on new research by the University of Exeter and the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology which suggests climate change tipping points can still be avoided if governments act fast enough.
15.04.21: Interview with Professor Andrew Shepherd
In the light of David Attenborough’s new documentary about the impact of the pandemic on the climate, Professor Andrew Shepherd (CPOM Director) provides his thoughts to BBC Leeds. Professor Shepherd talks about the overall impact of climate change on our lives.
08.04.21: Climate crisis: Third of Antarctic ice shelf area ‘at risk of collapse’ if emissions aren’t rapidly reduced
Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) comments on a University of Reading study which suggests ice shelves in Antarctica could potentially collapse and release large amounts of water into the ocean if temperatures reach 4C above pre-industrial levels.
23.02.21: CPOM led research shows widespread increase in ice speed across the Getz sector of Antarctica, with some glaciers accelerating by nearly 50%
Widespread coverage of research led by Heather Selley (CPOM PhD Student), which found glaciers in West Antarctica are moving more quickly from land into the ocean, contributing to rising global sea levels. A 25-year record of satellite observations has been used to show widespread increases in ice speed across the Getz sector for the first time, with some ice accelerating into the ocean by nearly 50%.
European Space Agency, British Antarctic Survey, Mirage News, Notimerica,com (in Spanish), The BBC, University News, The Times, Phys.org, Yorkshire Evening Post, ABC Nyheter, Tech2.org, MSN Norway, Science Daily, SciTechDaily
25.01.21: CPOM research that shows the rate of global ice loss is increasing is covered by media outlets worldwide
Widespread coverage of research led by Dr Thomas Slater (CPOM Staff Researcher), which found that the rate of global ice loss is increasing, and that the Earth lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice between 1994 and 2017. Report co-author and PhD researcher Inès Otosaka (CPOM PhD Researcher) also appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme discussing the findings:
Wall Street Journal, BBC Radio 4 (approx. 2 hour 42 mins in), BBC World Service, The Guardian, The Independent,Washington Post, The Times, Nouvelles du Monde (in French), University news, The i, The Telegraph (Print), The Metro (Print), The Sun (Print), Bloomberg, Daily Mail, Gizmodo, La Jornada (Mexico – in Spanish), Science Times, India Today, The Australian (subscription required), De Stentor (in Dutch), University news, Al Jazeera, Japan Times, Cosmos Magazine, MSN, News-24 (In French), Yorkshire Evening Post, La Croix (In French. Print), Mashable, El Confidencial (In Spanish), Financial Express (India), La Liberte (In French),Outlook (India), SpaceRef, News 18|, EcoWatch (referenced in article about 2032 Olympics bid), Yale Environment 360, Radio Habana Cuba, The Independent (1st Feb, 2021), BBC Newsround (15.02.21), Geospatial World, SciTechDaily, Reuters, The National Interest, Mashable UK, World Economic Forum, The Financial
“The melting of ice across the planet is accelerating at a record rate /…/ The rate of loss is now in line with the worst-case scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.” https://t.co/Xn9wpWSgfF
— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) January 25, 2021
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08.01.21: The long, alarming decline in sea ice in the Arctic
Quotes from Professor Julienne Stroeve are included in an article looking at forty years of satellite data showing that 2020 was just the latest in a decades-long decline of Arctic sea ice.
“We’ve been moving around 4 million square kilometers of Arctic sea ice every summer for some time.”
23.12.20: CPOM researchers analyse the changing shape of A68a, a giant iceberg heading towards Georgia, over its three-and-a-half-year history
Using data from four satellites, including CryoSat, scientists from CPOM have produced the first assessment of iceberg A68-a’s changing shape.
CPOM PhD researcher Anne Braakmann-Folgmann and CPOM postgraduate researcher Jamie Izzard provided the analysis for this story, which was picked up by media around the world, including:
15.12.20: CryoSat Reveals Surprising Ebb and Flow of Subglacial Lakes
George Malczyk, lead author, and CPOM Associate Investigator Noel Gourmelen based at the University of Edinburgh co-authored a paper recently published in Geophysical Research Letters which describes how a decade of radar altimetry observation data have been used to reveal a network of four subglacial lakes under the Thwaites glacier.
“What takes place under the ice sheet is critical to how it responds to changes in the atmosphere and ocean around Antarctica, and yet it is hidden from view by kilometres of ice which makes it very difficult to observe.”
20.11.20: EcoLight AZFP Buoy to Monitor Light and Under-Ice Zooplankton
CPOM Associate Investigator Julienne Stroeve (UCL) is a member of a team of scientists that have developed a project called EcoLight which uses an Autonomous Biological Echo Sounding Buoy (ABES) to continuously measure changes in the light field and associated biological responses under sea ice.
16.11.20: Climate crisis: Arctic sea ice freezing at latest date on record
CPOM staff member Dr Isobel Lawrence (University of Leeds) is quoted in a piece on the slow formation of ice in Siberia following a heatwave earlier in the year. Dr Lawrence highlights the potential for impacts from this to be felt globally:
“Sea ice plays a pivotal role in regulating Earth’s climate. There are processes we understand very well, like how the bright surface of sea ice reflects incoming solar radiation back into space. This means that the loss of sea ice drives further warming, a positive climate feedback known as the albedo feedback.”
“There are other processes that we understand less well, like sea ice’s role in global ocean circulation. This means that losing the sea ice will have longer-term consequences for the global climate that we can’t currently predict.”
27.10.20: Warming reaches the coldest region on the planet
Andrew Shepherd (CPOM Director) questions the division of responsibilities in the warming of Antarctica made by the authors of this study.
Although climate models suggest that the South Pole was warmer for long periods in the past, the warming of recent decades exceeds the upper range of his predictions and shows no signs of warming. slow down, so it’s hard to dissociate it from the broader pattern of climate change that is melting the ice along the northernmost areas of Antarctica.
26.10.20: Brave New Arctic: Sea ice has yet to form off of Siberia, worrying scientists
Quotes from Professor Julienne Stroeve are included in an article looking at the worrying impacts over the lack of sea ice yet to form off of Siberia.
Julienne Stroeve, who specializes in sea ice research at NSIDC, adds another potential serious impact to the list: threats to our food supply. “What’s predicted to happen in agricultural sectors is not good news.… We’re going to be living on a very different planet if we keep adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere,” she said. “We’re conducting this blind experiment, and we don’t yet know the real implications.
29.09.20: Antarctica could melt ‘irreversibly’ due to climate change, study warns
Quotes from Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) are included in a piece looking at the impact of global warming on Antarctica.
This cataclysmic melting will not occur in our lifetimes; the full effects would likely not be seen for roughly 150,000 years, Andrew Shepherd, a climatologist from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom, who was not involved in the study, told the Daily Mail.
28.09.20: Interview with Professor Andrew Shepherd
Andrew Shepherd is the professor of Earth Observation at the University of Leeds. He told CGTN’s Xi Jia about how a rise of one centimeter in global sea levels will change lives in the world’s coastal communities.
24.09.20: Sea level rise matches worst-case scenario
Comments from Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) are included in coverage of a new study examining the impact of global warming on Antarctica:
Scientists have released a shocking computer animation showing Antarctica emerging from under its ice sheet due to melting linked to rising temperatures […] Andrew Shepherd, Director of the Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling at the University of Leeds, who was not involved in the study, said this was not a scenario we are likely to see any time soon.
‘These are long-term predictions of how much ice Antarctica will have lost in perhaps 150,000 years’ time,’ he said.
‘Although we won’t be around to see it, it’s a stark warning that the melting can’t be reversed unless we can cool our planet to below pre-industrial temperatures. Now is the time to act.’
21.09.20: Arctic sea-ice shrinks to near record low
Whilst exact levels may vary from year to year, sea ice in the Arctic is shrinking and will continue to do so, warns Professor Julienne Stroeve (CPOM PI and Associate Investigator, UCL):
“The way I look at it now is that we’re always going to have low sea-ice; it’s never going to go back to the way it was in the 1980s or 1990s,” said Prof Julienne Stroeve from the Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling (CPOM) at University College London (UCL), UK.
“But whether or not we get a new record low from one year to the next – that really depends a lot on whatever happens in the summer weather patterns,” she told BBC News.
31.08.20: Sea level rise matches worst-case scenario
An article led by CPOM’s Dr Tom Slater (University of Leeds), alongside Dr Anna Hogg (University of Leeds) and Ruth Mottram (Danish Meteorological Institute), was published this week in Nature Climate Change. They found that ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica whose melting rates are rapidly increasing have raised global sea level by 1.8cm since the 90s and are matching worst-case climate warming scenarios.
“Although we anticipated the ice sheets would lose increasing amounts of ice in response to the warming of the oceans and atmosphere, the rate at which they are melting has accelerated faster than we could have imagined,” said the study’s lead author, Tom Slater, a climate researcher at the Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling at the University of Leeds. “The melting is overtaking the climate models we use to guide us, and we are in danger of being unprepared for the risks posed by sea level rise,” he added.
The article has garnered international coverage: The Independent, Daily Mail, The Sun, Daily Express, Sky News, CBBC Newsround, Daily Mail, Vice, The Brussels Times, EcoWatch, True News Analysis, AccuWeather, Energy Live News, Sustainability Times
An Early Day Motion (02.09.20) was tabled in parliament by MP Caroline Lucas, which quotes this study:
“That this House expresses profound alarm at the climate and ecological emergency, with wildfires raging in California, and ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica melting in line with worst case scenario predictions for sea level rise according to a study by the University of Leeds and the Danish Meteorological Institute; acknowledges that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states “rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society” are needed in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C”.
Continued interest in this article includes (09.09.20): Greta Thunberg quotes lead author, CPOM’s Tom Slater, on Twitter, new articles published in The Express, Gizmodo, CBC News (Canada), Business Standard (India), CNN Indonesia (In Indonesian), University news, Radio Canada International,
“We need to come up with a new worst-case scenario for the ice sheets because they are already melting at a rate in line with our current one” https://t.co/0y23E65N5e
— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) September 9, 2020
24.08.20: CPOM-led study showing that the earth has lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice in less than 30 years receives widespread attention
Widespread coverage of a study carried out by scientists from the University of Leeds, University of Edinburgh and University College London which shows that 28 trillion tonnes of ice have disappeared from the surface of the Earth since 1994 due to greenhouse gas emissions. CPOM researchers Professor Andy Shepherd, Dr Tom Slater (first author on the paper, and Dr Isobel Lawrence are quoted in a number of articles:
“To put the losses we’ve already experienced into context, 28 trillion tonnes of ice would cover the entire surface of the UK with a sheet of frozen water that is 100 metres thick,” added group member Tom Slater from Leeds University. “It’s just mind-blowing.”
Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) discusses the article in depth on ABC Radio National, Australia.
Articles include: The Guardian, The i (Print), The Times (Print), Daily Mail, BBC Radio Leeds, BBC Radio Scotland, Sky News (23 August, at approximately 15:45), Fortune Italia (in Italian), Publico (in Portuguese), Esquire Russia (in Russian), Metro Time (in French), News-24fr (in French), The Irish Times, Nation of Change, The Jakarta Post, the Evening Standard, Fox News, The Independent , World Economic Forum, Daily Express, Yahoo, Al Jazeera Balkans (in Bosnian), El Espectador (in Spanish), Ezone.hk (in Chinese), Kienthuc.net.vn (in Vietnamese), Business Insider (in Japanese), WBUR, English Jagran
20.08.20: CPOM comments on a study that shows Greenland’s Ice Sheet Saw Record Mass Loss in 2019
Reports in New York Times that ice-sheet loss in Greenland hit a record high in 2019 include quotes from Professor Andy Shepherd (CPOM Director) about the implications of this:
If the rate of ice loss experienced in 2019 were to continue, the annual impact on sea levels could cause increasing coastal flooding that affects up to 30 million more people each year by the end of the century, said Andrew Shepherd, a polar scientist at University of Leeds who specializes in ice sheet observation. Shepherd was not involved in the new research.
The new findings underline that “we need to prepare for an extra 10 centimeters (4 inches) of global sea level rise by 2100 from Greenland alone,” Shepherd said. “We have to invent a new worst-case climate warming scenario, because Greenland is already tracking the current one.”
10.08.20 A study, contributed to by CPOM researchers, supports predictions that the Arctic could be free of sea ice by 2035
A new study, published this week in the journal Nature Climate Change, supports predictions that the Arctic could be free of sea ice by 2035. Dr David Schroeder (CPOM staff researcher) and Professor Danny Feltham (CPOM Sea Ice Lead) developed and co-led the implementation of the melt pond scheme in the climate model, and Julienne Stroeve (CPOM Associate Investigator) also contributed to the study. Dr Schroeder is quoted in The Independent and Science Daily:
“This shows just how important sea-ice processes like melt ponds are in the Arctic, and why it is crucial that they are incorporated into climate models.”
30.06.20 CPOM research and comments included in articles on rising temperatures in Antarctica
A study published in Nature Climate Change (led by Dr Kyle Clem, Victoria University of Wellington) showed that Antarctica has warmed at three times the global average over the last three decades up through 2018 and that warming at the South Pole was seven times higher than the overall average for the continent. CPOM research is quoted in a Carbon Brief article discussing the research alongside comments from Andrew Shepherd:
It is important to note that, away from the south pole, human-caused warming is causing significant ice melt, says Prof Andrew Shepherd, director of the NERC Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling and scientist at the University of Leeds. He tells Carbon Brief: “Climate change has caused significant ice loss from Antarctica, even if its fingerprint in the frozen interior of the continent is difficult to detect.”
The new study shows that Antarctica is “waking up” to climate change, Stroeve warned. “That, to me, is alarming.”
23.04.20 European State of the Climate 2019 report released, featuring CPOM research
Media coverage of this report focuses on the fact that 2019 was Europe’s hottest year on record. Comments from Professor Shepherd, a co-author on the report, have been quoted widely:
Andrew Shepherd, director of the University of Leeds’ Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling, said C3S’s data was all the more worrying as it foreshadowed accelerated melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet.
“We can’t avoid the rapid changes in climate that are happening around our planet, even if they occur miles away in the polar regions, because they affect our weather today and will affect our coastlines in the future,” he said.
12.03.20 Six-fold increase in polar ice losses since the 1990s shown from CPOM research
This story has been covered extensively by media outlets and engaged with heavily on Twitter, reaching the top 20 trending topics in the UK at around 10am on 12th March 2020. Sources include: The Guardian, The BBC, The Daily Mail, The Independent, EcoWatch, The Japan Times, The Standard, iNews, Daily Sabah, LaVanguardia (in Spanish), The Australian, The Express, The Evening Standard, Sputnik News (translated from Russian), Bangkok Post, USA Today, IB Times Singapore, Forbes
03.03.20 Professor Andy Shepherd is quoted in a number of articles on the threat of rising sea levels to the world’s beaches
Professor Shepherd’s draws on CPOM research in comments on new research that highlights the risk rising sea levels and storms potentially pose to around half the beaches around the world. These comments were picked up by a number of media sources, such iNews, The Daily Mail, Today Online and SBS News:
The director of the Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling at the University of Leeds, Andrew Shepherd, said the impact of receding coastlines that still maintain a thinning ribbon of sand should also be considered.
“Between a quarter and half of the UK’s sandy beaches will retreat by more than 100m over the next century, depending on how rapidly polar ice sheets melt,” he said.
“Unfortunately, ice losses from Antarctica and Greenland are both tracking the worst-case climate warming scenarios.”
10.12.2019 CPOM’s Nature study shows that Greenland is losing ice ‘faster than expected’
This research has been covered extensively by media sources, such as The Guardian, the BBC, National Geographic, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Telegraph, Sky News, and New Scientist. Inès Otosaka also explored the implications of this ice loss in a The Conversation article.
Professor Shepherd, CPOM Director and first author of the study, said: “As a rule of thumb, for every centimetre rise in global sea level another six million people are exposed to coastal flooding around the planet.
On current trends, Greenland ice melting will cause 100 million people to be flooded each year by the end of the century, so 400 million in total due to all sea level rise.
These are not unlikely events or small impacts; they are happening and will be devastating for coastal communities.”
16.05.2019 The Guardian CPOM’s study shows that ice losses are now affecting a quarter of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet
06.03.2019 BBC Mal McMillan describes how the Sentinel-3 mission can be used to monitor the Antarctic ice sheet
13.06.2018 BBC Andy Shepherd’s work on the Ice Sheet Mass Balance Intercomparison Exercise (IMBIE) shows how Antarctica is losing 159 billion tonnes of ice each year
12.04.2018 Scientific American Hannes Konrad explains how warming ocean water is causing glaciers to melt