Greenland’s ice sheet has started melting so early that scientists initially thought their models had broken when they saw the record-breaking measurements.

Melt in Greenland, over this wide an area, this early in the season, is not supposed to happen.
—Climate scientist Mike MacFarrin

“To say the 2016 Greenland melt season is off to the races is an understatement,” reported Climate Central‘s Brian Kahn on Tuesday. “Warm, wet conditions rapidly kicked off the melt season this weekend, more than a month-and-a-half ahead of schedule.”

The annual melting of Greenland’s ice sheet officially starts when at least 10 percent of the ice sheet has melted. “The former top 3 earliest dates for a melt area larger than 10 percent were previously all in May,” wrote Danish ice monitoring research outlet Polar Portal.

In average years, the melt season in Greenland begins in late May or early June. On Tuesday, however, the temperature in a small village in southwest Greenland hit a record-setting high of 64.4°F, and “heavy rain also inundated local communities,” Kahn reported. The high temperatures and rainy conditions are contributing to the ice sheet’s melt.

“Melt in Greenland, over this wide an area, this early in the season, is not supposed to happen,” wrote climate scientist Mike MacFarrin in a response posted on the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) website, detailing how the early melt may derail critical ice monitoring plans.

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