The word cryosphere comes from the Greek word cryos meaning "cold" or "ice." It includes the part of the planet's surface covered in snow or ice, including glaciers, ice caps, ice sheets, and sea ice. These days, much of the planet's cryosphere has come under threat from rising temperatures. Planet Diary tracks this global meltdown and reports on efforts to slow it down.
Planet Diary Activities
- Global Meltdown
Investigates the effects of rising temperatures on the cryosphere and global sea level.
Examines how glaciers form and looks at the different kinds. Students control temperature and precipitation of a virtual glacier.
All About the Cryosphere
Find out what the cryosphere is and why it matters.
Take a guided tour of the cryosphere, courtesy of NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio.
NSIDC Education Resources
Find a treasure chest of resources on the cryosphere from the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
Arctic Sea Ice News
Get the latest news and images of the Arctic.
Atlas of the Cryosphere
View dynamic maps of snow, sea ice, glaciers, ice sheets, and permafrost.
Features before and after photos of the planet's shrinking glaciers.
NSIDC Data on Google Earth
Interactive visual data of the ever-changing cryosphere.
A handy reference of cryosphere-related words.
When the Weather is Uggianaqtuq
Inuit observations on global climate change.