The circum-Antarctic ice-shelves respond to a more positive Southern Annular Mode with regionally varied melting

Deborah Verfaillie*, Charles Pelletier, Hugues Goosse, Nicolas C. Jourdain, Christopher Y. S. Bull, Quentin Dalaiden, Vincent Favier, Thierry Fichefet, Jonathan D. Wille

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The Southern Hemisphere cryosphere has recently shown regionally-contrasted responses to climate change, in particular to the positive phases of the Southern Annular Mode. However, the understanding of the impacts of this mode on ice-shelf basal melt at a circum-Antarctic scale is still limited. Here, we performed idealized experiments with a pan-Antarctic regional ice-shelf cavity-resolving ocean—sea-ice model for different phases of the Southern Annular Mode. We show that positive phases lead to increased upwelling and subsurface ocean temperature and salinity close to ice shelves, while the opposite occurs for negative phases. A one-standard-deviation increase of the Southern Annular Mode leads to a net basal mass loss of 40 Gt yr−1, with strong regional contrasts: increased ice-shelf basal melt in the Bellingshausen and Western Pacific sectors and the opposite response in the Amundsen sector. Estimates of 1000–1200 and 2090–2100 ice-shelf basal melt changes due to the Southern Annular Mode are −86.6 Gt yr−1 and 55.0 to 164.9 Gt yr−1, respectively, compared to the present.
Original languageEnglish
Article number139
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalCommunications Earth and Environment
Volume3
Issue number1
Early online date22 Jun 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Jun 2022

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