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29 August 2011
Receding Alaskan glaciers could disrupt gulf food chain
When Alaskan glaciers move, they grind away at the underlying rocks. The scouring produces sediments that contain iron – an essential nutrient to the rich coastal ecosystem of the Gulf of Alaska. But if global temperatures continue to warm and the glacial landscape melts into forested land, the type and amount of iron coming from Alaskan rivers could change, with unknown but potentially significant consequences for the downstream ecosystem.