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The succession of Landsat satellites means that we can do repeated inventories, measuring glacier change at decadal scale resolution or better.
Radiocarbon dating sediments
It is the first global catalogue of glaciers, and it was developed to help IPCC scientists improve estimates of sea level rise. From the RGI, we can learn that there are 198,000 glaciers in the World.
However, this is a slightly arbitrary quantity, as it depends on the quality of the digital elevation model used, mapping resolution, and the minimum-area threshold used.
What makes the Labrador rocks particularly special is that they are the oldest known metasedimentary rocks in the world.
That is, they were originally formed from sediments deposited by water — the type of environment that decaying organic remains often end up in, said Bell.
Editor's note: The publish date on this story was originally incorrectly stated as Jan.