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Bedrock erosion surfaces record former East Antarctic Ice Sheet extent.

Paxman, G. J. G. and Jamieson, S. S. R. and Ferraccioli, F. and Bentley, M. J. and Ross, N. and Armadillo, E. and Gasson, E. G. W. and Leitchenkov, G. and DeConto, R. M. (2018) 'Bedrock erosion surfaces record former East Antarctic Ice Sheet extent.', Geophysical research letters., 45 (9). pp. 4114-4123.

Abstract

East Antarctica hosts large subglacial basins into which the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) likely retreated during past warmer climates. However, the extent of retreat remains poorly constrained, making quantifying past and predicted future contributions to global sea level rise from these marine basins challenging. Geomorphological analysis and flexural modeling within the Wilkes Subglacial Basin is used to reconstruct the ice margin during warm intervals of the Oligocene–Miocene. Flat‐lying bedrock plateaus are indicative of an ice sheet margin positioned >400–500 km inland of the modern grounding zone for extended periods of the Oligocene–Miocene, equivalent to a 2 meter rise in global sea level. Our findings imply that if major EAIS retreat occurs in the future, isostatic rebound will enable the plateau surfaces to act as seeding points for extensive ice rises, thus limiting extensive ice margin retreat of the scale seen during the early EAIS.

Item Type:Article
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Status:Peer-reviewed
Publisher Web site:https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL077268
Publisher statement:© 2018. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Date accepted:14 April 2018
Date deposited:30 April 2018
Date of first online publication:27 April 2018
Date first made open access:10 May 2018

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