Glaciers - 10 of 29

Glaciers FAQs - 29 Found

How does present glacier extent and sea level compare to the extent of glaciers and global sea level during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM)?

The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) occurred about 20,000 years ago, during the last phase of the Pleistocene. At that time, glaciers covered:


            ~ 8 % of Earth’s surface

            ~ 25 % of Earth’s land area, and

            ~ 33% of Alaska

During the LGM, global sea level was more than 400 feet lower than it is today.


Following the LGM (beginning ~ 15,000 years ago), continental glaciers retreated and sea level began to rise. By ~ 8,000 years ago sea level reached its current height. It has fluctuated ever since.


Today, glaciers cover:


            ~ 3.1 % of Earth’s surface,

            ~ 10.7 % of Earth’s land area, and

            ~ 5 % of Alaska.

Tags: Global Change, Glaciers, Climate, Snow, Ice, Polar