Sharyn Alfonsi reports from the top of the world on one of the most significant efforts to study climate change happening today

The following is a script from “Greenland” which aired on Jan. 31, 2016. Sharyn Alfonsi is the correspondent. Daniel Ruetenik, producer.

One of the most significant efforts to study changes in the climate has been taking place near the top of the world. It’s a place called Petermann Glacier in Greenland, one of the largest glaciers in the Arctic Circle and a glacier that has experienced dramatic melting. It is a harsh and dangerous environment, and it has drawn some of the world’s leading climate scientists who are only able to work there a little over a month a year. We wanted to see how that work is proceeding, how they are able to move equipment and people in such a hostile place and what they’ve discovered so far — so we went to the top of the world to find out.


[Columbia University paleoclimatologist Peter] Demenocal says the cores pulled from Petermann Glacier will fill in a crucial piece of the climate change puzzle.


Sharyn Alfonsi: How quickly have we seen the changes in Greenland?

Peter Demenocal: The changes that are happening right now as a result of human activities are remarkable. And they’re happening incredibly fast and they’re — it’s not only happening fast but it’s accelerating. And it’s important to really get our mind around what we’re saying there.

Peter Demenocal: We’re not just saying that climate in the Arctic is changing. It’s changing at an accelerating rate. So basically it means it’s starting to melt but it’s melting at a faster and faster clip. So anyone who knows what it’s like to fall off a cliff, that’s what it’s doing.

Source: CBS News