It was anticipated for months and finally the largest ice berg ever created has calved off Antarctica creating a massive floating island of ice containing twice the volume of Lake Erie. Although calving of ice bergs is a common process when land glaciers meet the sea, it is hard not to correlate this event with climate change. Certainly an ice berg of this magnitude has never been created in human history so it is likely indirectly related to climate change. The figure below shows the position of the ice crack on May 31, 2017 only 13 km from the open sea. The bottom figure now shows how the ice berg finally calved off the main glacier on July 12, 2017 even though it is winter in Antarctica.
Scientists speculate that the ice may refreeze but it is most likely that the Larcen C ice shelf has now become unstable with the removal of 12% of its ice area in one day. Removal of this large ice fragment can cause the main land glacier to accelerate towards the open sea, causing future ice calving to accelerate in kind.
Maddalena Environmental Inc.