The crack in this Antarctic ice shelf just grew by 11 miles. A dramatic break could be imminent.

Well, exciting times for all!

An enormous rift in one of Antarctica’s largest ice shelves grew dramatically over the past month, and a chunk nearly the size of Delaware could break away as soon as later this winter, British scientists¬†reported this week.

The crack in the ice shelf, known as Larsen C, has been growing at an accelerating rate. Since the beginning of December, it has grown about 11 miles in length, after extending 13 miles earlier in the year. In total, the rift has grown about 50 miles since 2011 (it’s almost 100 miles long in total), and has widened to well over 1,000 feet. Now, only 12 miles of ice continue to connect the chunk with the rest of the ice shelf.

When it breaks away, the loss would be of nearly 2,000 square miles of ice, say the researchers with Project MIDAS, a British government-funded collaboration based at Swansea and Aberystwyth universities in Wales. That’s larger than Rhode Island and almost as big as Delaware.

The consequences of the break could be dramatic.

The crack in this Antarctic ice shelf just grew by 11 miles. A dramatic break could be imminent.

Here’s what I want to know. Since that is a TRULY MASSIVE block of ice breaking away, how long will it take for the deniers to explain this one? A day? A week? They’re still claiming the ice is growing in the Antarctic. It would take CENTURIES for this amount of ice to re-accumulate in Antarctica. But how much does anyone want to bet that their false narrative isn’t going to change one iota? Any takers?

Meanwhile, we’ve got some serious sea level rise headed our way. That’s BIG iceberg, large enough to start your own small country. Maybe we could deport the idiotic deniers onto its surface, I’m sure they’d all fit. They could even jump up and down and if we’re lucky, they’d flip the thing over!

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7 thoughts on “The crack in this Antarctic ice shelf just grew by 11 miles. A dramatic break could be imminent.

  • January 7, 2017 at 10:32 pm
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    According to the Japanese satellite data the Antarctic ice cover is the lowest on record, though the margin between this year’s values and the 2000s average is declining.

    https://ads.nipr.ac.jp/vishop/#/extent

    Equally interesting is the fact that the Arctic ice cover is the lowest on record, and has recently been declining when it would normally be increasing.

    https://ads.nipr.ac.jp/vishop/#/extent

    Since there is a humungous quantity of ice (both in the water and on land) in both polar regions I do not see the latest observations as a reason to panic. I suspect panicking will occur around a decade from now, when sea levels will have rise a few more centimetres and the stability of climate systems will have been even more displaced from normal than they are now.

    A Jennifer Francis presentation, which is well worth watching if you have not seen it already:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wE53Or56eNM

    • January 7, 2017 at 10:58 pm
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      I expect it will all happen sooner then that. Larsen C could accelerate the collapse of more ice. In any case, it will get a lot of attention.

      If there is one thing I’ve learned, and it may not be much, but so far, it is consistent, all the estimates continue to be proven wrong, time and time again. Always worse is a clear pattern. Probably because of all the dynamics and variables not being fully understood.

      Anything older then just one or two years is often being revised with a clear trend of having been underestimated. The changes are happening so rapidly now that it’s very hard to even get any published papers that can be considered current.

      Somewhere, I read a study on just this topic and the conclusion was as I stated – what we’re working with is pretty dated considering the speed of the events taking place. Even Jennifer’s video is pretty dated, they’re almost all like this. Exceptions are Beckwith, Wadhams, Anderson and a few others (who are producing current material) – they’ve come out and stated there is a problem with the speed of the reporting and the developments in the climate.

      Evacuation of Miami’s low-lying regions should begin now. But of course, it won’t. They’re still planning on pumping the water out in a never-ending and losing battle. Wonder if anybody has done a carbon analysis of this doomed effort?

  • January 8, 2017 at 1:16 am
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    Perhaps I should explain.

    In English culture the phrase ‘Don’t panic!’ has special meaning which Americans are probably unfamiliar with. In the television comedy series ‘Dad’s Army’, Lance Corporal Jones normal response to hearing about a threatening situation was to run around in a state of panic shouting “Don’t panic!”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lance_Corporal_Jones

    On a more serious note, there is an up-to-date animation which shows the dramatic drop in global sea ice cover here:

    https://thinkprogress.org/this-could-be-what-a-global-warming-tipping-point-looks-like-c9287e836403#.xd4yfji8r

    Not quite “Game over man, game over!” but apparently headed that way.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsx2vdn7gpY

    • January 8, 2017 at 9:09 am
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      By the way, I gave up on Joe Romm several years back. Climate Progress was constantly issuing the “pablum alerts” with heavy doses of hopium. I couldn’t swallow that anymore and haven’t been back since. It looks like Romm still foolishly believes that fixing this is going to happen. I think it is bloody obvious that the “tipping point” has been breached.

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