More alarmism from James Hansen
A half-dozen climate experts told AFP, ahead of international climate talks starting on Monday, that current rates of greenhouse gas emissions, if unchecked, would unleash devastating droughts, floods and huge increases in human misery by century's end.
But the new studies, they say, indicate that human activity may be triggering powerful natural forces that would be nearly impossible to reverse and that could push temperatures up even further.
"The most recent IPCC report was prior to ... the measurements of increasing mass loss from Greenland and Antarctica, which are disintegrating much faster than IPCC estimates," said climatologist James Hansen, head of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York.
Unlike the Arctic ice cap, which floats on water, the world's two major ice sheets - up to 3km thick - sit on land.
Runaway sea level rises, Hansen said, would put huge coastal cities and agricultural deltas in Bangladesh, Egypt and southern China under water, and create hundreds of millions of refugees.
Were Greenland's entire ice block to melt, it would lift the world's sea levels by almost seven metres, while western Antarctica's ice sheet holds enough water to add six metres.
Read it here.