Giant Iceberg Breaks Off of West Antarctic Ice Shelf

Jul 13, 2017

In breaking news—ice breaking, that is—one of the biggest icebergs ever recorded broke away from the Larsen C ice shelf in Antarctica Wednesday, in the latest sign that climate change will drive sea levels to rise dramatically over the coming decades. The iceberg weighs an estimated 1 trillion tons and is roughly the size of Delaware. Geophysicist Edward King of the British Antarctic Survey said the iceberg itself won’t contribute to sea level rise, but that if the entire ice shelf breaks apart, Antarctica’s glaciers could soon begin spilling into the ocean.

Edward King: “If you look at all the ice in Antarctica, you’re talking about many meters of sea level rise potential. But we’re not talking tomorrow, we’re not talking next year. It will be a process that will take time. But we think that, in places, that process has started.”

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