27 Apr '12, 1pm

Ice shelf in Antarctica has shrunk by 85% | MNN - Mother Nature Network

Ice shelf in Antarctica has shrunk by 85% | MNN - Mother Nature Network

A vast ice shelf in the Antarctic peninsula, a hotspot for global warming , has shrunk by 85 percent in 17 years, the European Space Agency said on Thursday. Images taken by its Envisat satellite show that the so-called Larsen B ice shelf decreased from 4,373 square miles in 1995, an area about the size of the Gulf state of Qatar , to only 634 miles today. Larsen B is one of three ice shelves that run from north to south along the eastern side of the peninsula, the tongue of land that projects towards South America . From 1995 to 2002, Larsen B experienced several calving events in which parts of the shelf broke away. It had a major breakup in 2002 when half of the remainder disintegrated. Larsen A broke up in January 1995. "Larsen C so far has been stable in area, but satellite observations have shown thinning and an increasing duration of melt events in summer," the agen...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/climate-weather/stories/...

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