The article, featuring recent findings from the geophysicist Robin Bell, discusses ice refreezing. Bell discovered that in Greenland and Antarctica lower layers of ice melted and refroze, generating heat that caused the upper layers of ice to move. Thus, the article features warming as an issue, but not as a central concern, and certainly not global warming as popularly understood. Yet the article does contribute to our understanding of the earth’s warming, providing information that we must account for when discussing the issue.

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Bell found that ice or water from the upper levels of the environment ran through cracks in the surface and then refroze at lower levels. Two points deserve attention and shape our understanding of global warming. First, the process is slow. The ice accumulates and refreezes over the course of thousands of years, the article claims. It does not melt, descend, and freeze within the course of hours or days or even years it seems. At least, the measurable changes do not occur at such a pace.

Second, the reason for the generation of heat is difficult to discern. Bell claims that the refreezing process creates heat and causes the upper layers of ice to shift. However, beyond that, she does not exactly know how or why this heat occurs. This demonstrates one difficult in ecological study: issues are not always conclusive and almost never final. Scientists discover phenomena and begin to explain them, yet they must remain open to new findings and admit current limitations. Bell does a responsible job at both of these tasks in her research.

What is the significance of this study for global warming at the popular level? For those who do not research or fully understand the earth’s geophysical properties, the latest news report or climate trend can hold full authority. However, Bell’s study shows that warming and ice movements deserve careful study and not arbitrary or hasty generalizations. We should not see a large ice sheet fall in Antarctica and immediately conclude that the earth is warming because of increased automobile emissions. This article shows that much occurs below the earth’s surface that may or may not relate to our activities upon the surface. We should proceed with caution and care when discussing climate change.

Further questions for this study would include the following: since Bell’s research covers a tenth of the relevant portions of Greenland, what might the remainder of the country reveal upon study? For someone who is an expert in global warming, what proper conclusions should we, as the non-expert public, draw from studies like Bell’s? And finally, what other areas of ecology have produced recent findings that may overturn common assumptions about environmental problems and solutions?

Summary of Article
Robin Bell, a geophysicist, has recently researched ice formations in Antarctica and Greenland. Her discoveries in Antarctica during 2008 and 2009 are supported and supplemented in her study of ice sheets in Greenland during 2011. She, along with other researchers, found that the topmost layers of ice were moving more rapidly and even rising in elevation. However, the reason was not surface heat or external disturbance. Rather, the ice underneath the topmost layers were melting and refreezing over the course of thousands of years, a process that it appears generated heat and reshaping of the upper ice layers. The study accounts for about a tenth of Greenland’s ice terrain but contributes to our understanding of ice formations and global warming.