By Rick Pierce
Over 300 billion tons of iceberg had calved off east of Antarctica, the largest to happen after 50 years. But scientists believed that it is not due to climate change.
The massive iceberg, bigger than Greater London or Los Angeles, calved off the shelf on September 26. Measuring around 210 meters thick and 1,636 square kilometers wide, the iceberg is put under watch as it is a potential hazard to ships.
Scientists have closely monitored the ice shelf in the last 20 years after they spotted a rift in the 2000s.
“I am excited to see this calving after all these years,” said Helen Amanda Fricker, an expert on glaciology from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego.
Researchers from Scripps and other institutions had expected the calving event sometime in 2010 to 2015. In 1963, a similar calving event occurred in the Antarctic.
Fricker, however, believed the climate change has nothing to do with the calving event.
Calving such as this happens every 60 to 70 years, she explained.
Researchers said the event will have no major impact on sea levels.
The Scripps tweets: They (ice shelves) do not directly affect sea level because ice shelves are already floating, much like an ice cube in a glass of water. Grounded ice is the concern for sea-level rise.”
Fricker said they closely watching Antarctica.
But there’s nothing to worry in the ice calving last week, she added. (Rick Pierce for Mindanao Sun/ Featured Image: Pixabay)