A simple, physically motivated model of sea-level contributions from the Greenland Ice Sheet in response to temperature changes

A. M. Bakker, P. J. Applegate, and K. Keller

Environmental Modelling & Software (September 2016)

DOI: 10.1016/j.envsoft.2016.05.003

Abstract Sea level could rise by several meters over the next centuries. The Greenland ice sheet could be an important contributor to future sea-level rise, because of its large volume and its high sensitivity to surface air temperature increases. Frameworks for the integrated climate risk management often require fast, simplified treatments of sea-level rise, in particular for estimating the risks associated with low probabilities but potentially high impacts. State-of-the-art ice sheet models provide important insights, but are often computationally too demanding to evaluate tail-area risks. Here we present SIMPLE, a physically motivated model of the Greenland ice sheet in response to temperature changes. SIMPLE can skillfully reproduce the results from a three-dimensional ice sheet model and outperforms existing simple models, after similar calibration. We anticipate that SIMPLE will be calibrated to other ice sheet models and can provide a fast approximation (emulator) for such models in studies that require many model evaluations.

keywords: Greenland ice sheet; Semi-empirical model; Sea level change; Emulator; Scenario; Geo-engineering

github: https://github.com/scrim-network/SIMPLE

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