Tags: Climate Change | Global Warming | Antarctica | glacier | ice melt | sea level

Antarctic Ice Shelf Crack Grows 17 Miles in Two Months

Image: Antarctic Ice Shelf Crack Grows 17 Miles in Two Months

This Nov. 10, 2016 aerial photo released by NASA, shows a rift in the Antarctic Peninsula's Larsen C ice shelf. (AP Photo/John Sonntag/NASA)

By    |   Tuesday, 07 Feb 2017 03:11 PM

A crack in an Antarctica ice shelf has grown 17 miles in two months, leading scientists wondering if it will fully break thanks to warming temperatures, according to The New York Times.

The crack is in Antarctica's fourth-largest ice shelf. It has grown about five football fields each day since December, the scientists reported.

Some parts of the crack are as wide as two miles, and the crack runs more than 100 miles length-wise. The crack is one-third of a mile deep, according to the Times report.

When the crack reaches the other end of the shelf, about 20 miles away, it would create one of the biggest icebergs ever, according to Project Midas, a research team that has monitored the crack since 2014, according to the Times.

"The iceberg is likely to break free within the next few months," Project Midas lead researcher Adrian J. Luckman said.

The collapse of the shelf would only add a small amount of water to global sea level, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientist Eric J. Rignot told the Times.

If the glaciers behind the shelves collapse because the shelves no longer hold them back, that would lead to the ocean rising to higher levels, Rignot said.

When the crack happens, the frozen chunk that splits off would be the size of the state of Delaware, according to NPR.

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A crack in an Antarctica ice shelf has grown 17 miles in two months, leading scientists wondering if it will fully break thanks to warming temperatures, according to The New York Times.
Antarctica, glacier, ice melt, sea level
225
2017-11-07
Tuesday, 07 Feb 2017 03:11 PM
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