Study suggests Arctic to see more rain than snow earlier than expected

Arctic rain instead of snow?

New research suggests rainfall will soon be more common in the Arctic than snowfall.

A study led by researchers from the University of Manitoba, published today in the journal Nature Communications, says the region will see a steep increase in rain 20 years earlier than predicted.

It says modelling suggests the change to more rain than snow will happen between 2050 and 2080.

The study also says the change could happen even faster because of rapid warming and sea ice loss.

Lead researcher Michelle McCrystall says there are huge consequences for increased rain in the Arctic, including permafrost melt and flooding.

In August, rain fell for the first time in recorded history on the highest point of the Greenland ice sheet.

“The fact that we're getting rainfall on the summit of Greenland right now, and that we're maybe going to get more rainfall into the future — it kind of staggers me,” McCrystall said.

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