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The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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The catastrophic thermokarst lake drainage events of 2018 in northwestern Alaska: fast-forward into the future

1 December 2020

In summer 2018, northwestern Alaska was affected by widespread lake drainage which strongly exceeded previous observations. The authors of this paper analyzed the spatial and temporal patterns with remote sensing observations, weather data and lake-ice simulations. The preceding fall and winter season was the second warmest and wettest on record, causing the destabilization of permafrost and elevated water levels which likely led to widespread and rapid lake drainage during or right after ice breakup.


The press release from the Alfred Wegener Institute – Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research can be found at: https://www.awi.de/en/about-us/service/press/single-view/schmelzende-arktis-im-schnellvorlauf.html

The catastrophic thermokarst lake drainage events of 2018 in northwestern Alaska: fast-forward into the future
Nitze, I., Cooley, S. W., Duguay, C. R., Jones, B. M., and Grosse, G.
The Cryosphere, 14, 4279–4297, https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-4279-2020, 2020

Contact: Ingmar Nitze (ingmar.nitze@awi.de)

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