Articles | Volume 14, issue 8
The Cryosphere, 14, 2673–2686, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-2673-2020
The Cryosphere, 14, 2673–2686, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-2673-2020

Research article 21 Aug 2020

Research article | 21 Aug 2020

Clouds damp the radiative impacts of polar sea ice loss

Ramdane Alkama et al.

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Latest update: 20 Sep 2021
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Short summary
The amount of solar energy absorbed by Earth is believed to strongly depend on clouds. Here, we investigate this relationship using satellite data and 32 climate models, showing that this relationship holds everywhere except over polar seas, where an increased reflection by clouds corresponds to an increase in absorbed solar radiation at the surface. This interplay between clouds and sea ice reduces by half the increase of net radiation at the surface that follows the sea ice retreat.