The extent of glaciers currently on Earth’s surface can be readily measured by remote sensing. This means observing and mapping them through satellite imagery. Inventories can be applied, giving scientists quantitative values for the glacial quantities around the world.
A great deal of glacial cover is located in Greenland. With the increasing threat of climate change and warming atmospheric temperatures, the surface area of these glaciers is declining. There is no constant state of decline at this point, but the risk of a future with rapidly decreasing glaciers is amongst us.
Published through NASA, this article titled New maps chart Greenland glaciers’ melting risk highlights the risks associated with increasing global temperatures and glacier retreat. There is also risk of sea level rise with the continental glaciers due to the fact that they are not already displaced in the ocean.
Within the article, there is talk of why this is important. It highlights how glaciers are not only warmed by global temperature rise, but by insolation and warming water.