And yet, Greenland is no Lake Agassiz. “Greenland doesn’t have large land lakes to store the water,” Driscoll said. Rather, it releases steady streams of water in the form of glacial runoff, which often goes straight into the ocean – and it releases huge icebergs that slowly melt.

So nobody is necessarily expecting a sudden outburst flood as Greenland melts. Still, Driscoll and Keigwin both think that Greenland’s steady losses over time, especially if they increase in pace, can build up.

Climate scientists will be quick to point out that even if the Atlantic circulation shows or shuts down, ceasing to transport as much heat and leading to some Northern Hemisphere cooling, the overall global warming trend will still be ongoing and may overpower it. We won’t directly repeat the Younger Dryas, but we can learn from it.

The Washington Post