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

All About the Cryosphere
Find out what the cryosphere is and why it matters.

Cryosphere Tour
Take a guided tour of the cryosphere, courtesy of NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio.

NSIDC Educational 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.

Glacier Photography
Features before and after photos of the planet's shrinking glaciers.

NSIDC Data on Google Earth
Interactive visual data of the ever-changing cryosphere.

Cryosphere Glossary
A handy reference of cryosphere-related words.

When the Weather is Uggianaqtuq
Inuit observations on global climate change.