Feb 23, 2019 | Updated: 10:49 AM EST

Antarctica’s Larsen C Shelf Will Shed A Giant 5,000 Square Kilometer Iceberg In A Matter Of Months

Jun 02, 2017 04:00 PM EDT


The Larsen C ice shelf floating in the West Antarctica is said to break away a massive iceberg from its body in a matter of days or weeks. The possible rift expected to happen is identified to be one of the largest icebergs ever recorded.

According to The Sun, the Project MIDAS which assesses the Larsen C ice shelf since 2014 identified that the ice shelf crack grew 11 miles already in just one week between May 25 and May 31, 2017. The Larsen C that floats in the West Antarctica is then said to only have 13 kilometers (8 miles) left away from the edge of the ice.

"We have previously shown that the new configuration will be less stable than it was prior to the rift, and that Larsen C may eventually follow the example of its neighbor Larsen B, which disintegrated in 2002 following a similar rift-induced calving event," Professor Adrian Luckman, of Swansea University College of Science and head of Project MIDAS, explained. Luckmann also stated that the breakaway of the ice shelf could change the landscape of the Antarctic Peninsula fundamentally.

The iceberg which is said to break away from the Larsen C ice shelf is described to be as large as the city of Delaware, which is 5,000 square kilometer. Project MIDAS scientists then stated that the rift of the iceberg is imminent to break over the next few months as they observe the events in the ice shelf using radar data from satellites per CNN. 

The collapse of the entire West Antarctic ice shelf aside from the Larsen C was mentioned to result in a massive rise in sea levels and cities engulfed in water. Ohio researchers expect that the possible event could lead to “a sea-level rise of nearly 10 feet, which would engulf major US cities such as New York and Miami and displace 150 million people living on coasts worldwide."

Nonetheless, the report from the Project MIDAS regarding the Larsen C rift was identified to be revealed on par when U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from the Paris Agreement to limit climate change. British scientists were said to be dispatched to observe the changes in the Antarctic ice shelves this summer.

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