Skip to comments.Slab of Antarctic ice shelf collapses amid warming
Posted on 03/27/2008 1:34:39 AM PDT by Einigkeit_Recht_Freiheit
"Block after block of ice is just tumbling and crumbling into the ocean," Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, said in a telephone interview.
"The shelf is not just cracking off and a piece goes drifting away, but totally shattering. These kinds of events, we don't see them very often. But we want to understand them better because these are the things that lead to a complete loss of the ice shelf," Scambos added.
Scambos said a large part of the ice shelf is now supported by only a thin strip of ice. This last "ice buttress" could collapse and about half the total ice shelf area could be lost in the next few years, Scambos added.
British Antarctic Survey scientist David Vaughan said in a statement: "This shelf is hanging by a thread."
"One corner of it that's exposed to the ocean is shattering in a pattern that we've seen in a few places over the past 10 or 15 years. In every case, we've eventually concluded that it's a result of climate warming," Scambos added.
Satellite images showing the collapse began on February 28, as a large iceberg measuring 25.5 by 1.5 miles fell away from the ice shelf's southwestern front leading to a runaway disintegration of the shelf interior, Scambos said.
A plane also was sent over the area to get photographs of the shelf as it was disintegrating, he added.
Scambos said this ice shelf has been in place for at least a few hundred years, but warm air and exposure to ocean waves are causing a breakup. In the past half century, the Antarctic Peninsula has witnessed a warming as fast as anywhere on the planet, according to scientists.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Satellite images show that a large hunk of Antarctica's Wilkins Ice Shelf has started to collapse in a fast-warming region of the continent, scientists said on Tuesday.
The area of collapse measured about 160 square miles of the Wilkins Ice Shelf, according to satellite imagery from the University of Colorado's National Snow and Ice Data Center.
The Wilkins Ice Shelf is a broad sheet of permanent floating ice that spans about 5,000 square miles (13,000 square km) and is located on the southwest Antarctic Peninsula about 1,000 miles south of South America.
"The warming that's going on in the peninsula is pretty clearly tied to greenhouse gas increases and the change that they have in the atmospheric circulation around the Antarctic," Scambos said.
With Antarctica's summer melt season coming to an end, the he said he does not expect the ice shelf to disintegrate further immediately, but come January scientists will be watching to see if it continues to fall apart.
No doubt something is happening here. What it is, isn't exactly clear.
All three POTUS candidates have said they will do something about CO2 emissions.
Freepers think anthropengenic climate change is a cult. But sometimes cults win. The smart move is to promote market-based solutions and not wealth-redistribution schemes. Of course, I have been writing this for years.
Can't wait to hear about the weather now (for those of you who don't understand that comment, there is nothing I can do for you).
I lived in Chile and you used to pay Big Bucks to watch the Ice Mountains Collapse and that was 20 years ago...
If an ice shelf grows too heavy it will break off at it’s weakest point.
These LIARS ought to be sued for LYING to the public and CNN ought to be thrown in with them for their lack of research prior to sensationalizing the issue and carrying water for people who simply make claims with very little evidence to support their GLOBAL claim.
I resent the living hell out of these people.
The smart move is to destroy the cult. Failing that, focus on limiting the damage they do, as you suggest.
But the notion that we should all pretend there is valid science behind AGW (using grossly overparameterized, feedback models fit to limited data in the linear portion of their predictive range, then projecting into the future using the non-linear portion of their range is NOT valid science) and urge market solutions to the problem is both unprincipled and gives up our best argument.
I do modeling for a living. I would go out of business if I tried to market models that are validated as poorly as AGW is validated. They are crap and do not even approach decent-quality commercial models. I'm not buying the give up and be assimiliated argument, which you come close to making.
Kinda like when the ice falls from the skyscrapers in Chicago.
Was there ever a time when this kind of thing wasn’t happening? They talk like ice never broke off the ice shelf before the last couple of years.
But I am not convinced GW is for real or, if real, man-made...look at this statement alone, from the article:
...Scambos said this ice shelf has been in place for at least a few hundred years...
In the expanse of history, a few hundred years is a friggin' blip. So a few hundred years ago, it DIDN'T exist, eh? Ice breaking off of Antarctica is nothing new, I'll wager. Except this piece is bigger than one we've seen recently, so it is automatically due to GW?
Nice weed they've got. How much does it go for on the street.
Don’t the global warming folks have to introduce a lot of fudge factors into their computer models to get their results?
Well with the center of Antarctica getting thicker what did they think the edges would do form a city in the sky ?
“”The warming that’s going on in the peninsula is pretty clearly tied to greenhouse gas increases and the change that they have in the atmospheric circulation around the Antarctic,” Scambos said.”
Changes in Water Vapor, the major component of ‘greenhouse’ gases, is almost 100% of the cause of warming and cooling, in the Antarctic, and everywhere else.
C02 is a minute component of greenhouse gases and has abolutely no effect on the weather. Although it would make the plants grow, if they could grow on an iceberg.
Thanks for the thoughtful answer. As I think I implied in what I wrote, I am not a card-carrying member of the cult. For me it is more like Constantine. Maybe the same for many politicians. You see a sign. There is a battle to be fought. You claim that if you win, you will convert knowing that if you lose it is irrelevant . You win the battle. You join the cult, but adapt it to your own ideology. Center of the cult moves to Rome and it helps perpetuate power. Maybe even becomes a good thing.
Sorry for mixing these things up, but for me the analogy works.
If the cult helps the US to achieve energy independence and maintain a technology lead while concurrently restraining Chinese growth maybe it isn't so bad even if it is wrong.
If it leads to a massive, socialist wealth-redistribution weakening the West and Western values that is bad.
So I say if the cult is going to win, at least make sure it's future doctrine is shaped from the right('s) perspective.
The US won by the current rules of the game. All it needs to do is make up new rules that favor its strengths which are innovation and creativity - not wasteful use of energy. To me, at this point, it is a no brainer.
When Freepers claim the US can't do it, they are being unpatriotic. When they worry about not helping all those poor Asians and Africans by constraining the carbon usage they are either being bleeding hearts or disingenuous.
“The article is fairly neutral (accept for some alarmist adjectives)”
except for a whole lot of alarmist adjectives, and outright lies.
“I resent the living hell out of these people.”
Thanks for the info. I’ll help you resent them.
May I help resent them also?
Meanwhile it sounds like a bad year to make one of those boat cruises up there, falling ice shelves and all.
“If the cult helps the US to achieve energy independence and maintain a technology lead while concurrently restraining Chinese growth maybe it isn’t so bad even if it is wrong.”
I can’t recall a time in history when that policy has worked out well.
And yet you don't even give examples. Debunk away my FRiend, Debunk.
Just type, don't copy and paste from outside the article, it is annoying.
“May I help resent them also?”
It’s ICE-FLYER’S party, but as far as I’m concerned, the more the scornier.
“With Antarctica’s summer melt season coming to an end, the he said he does not expect the ice shelf to disintegrate further immediately, but...
next ‘summer melt season’ we expect to see some more melting.
“Block after block of ice is just tumbling and crumbling into the ocean,” Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, said in a telephone interview.
“The shelf is not just cracking off and a piece goes drifting away, but totally shattering. These kinds of events, we don’t see them very often. But we want to understand them better because these are the things that lead to a complete loss of the ice shelf,” Scambos added.
YET. The article states this is about ONE BLOCK 125 miles long and 1.5 miles wide.
NOW, which is it?
There was a larger block that broke off the ice shelf, this past year. Much larger.
The articles written about that one stated that it was a normal event, even though rare.
The article you posted is implying that the ice caps will ‘shatter’ and ‘disintegrate’,’totally’.
I call those outright lies.
When, for instance, has this ever, ever occurred?
“Hello. Mr. Sun? Would you please cool it already?
Oh! You already are?
The article is garbage and more hysteria, pumped out by the media and global warming nuts as a desperation move while their agenda goes down the toilet. Ice shelves in and of their nature collapse into the water as they have been doing for eons. It’s what causes icebergs. To say global warming caused this is akin to saying global warming sank the Titanic. We have heard this hysteria many times over. In 2001 when part of the Larsen ice shelf broke off, which was a much larger piece than this recent break off, the hand wringing and wailing was just as intense. However, a close scrutiny of the 2001 Larsen shelf reveals that scientists said that after the ice calved off, the Larsen shelf had been RETURNED TO THE SIZE IT WAS IN 1911 when first mapped by Amundsen and Scott. So there you have it, this recent episode if you read the articles closely says somewhat the same thing.....this ice shelf may have been there for 400 years!!!! Wow, and what was it like 420 years ago?
The fact that it’s summer in the Antarctic seems to be lost on some, the fact that in the height of summer in Antarctica ant that there is 2 MILLION SQUARE MILES more sea ice than the historical norm currently is also lost to those that deny reality.
There.........I’m done ranting...........
The article is simply more GW bunk and lies. What they don’t mention is that Antartica has been cooling which has been a major thorn in the GW Socialists side.
I was hoping McCain would drop this idiotic GW crap. As a result he may lose my support because to belive in GW proves one to be an absolute moron and a Socialist lemming. Maybe he’s only mouthing that crap to get elected, who knows.
Even if that’s the case nothing pisses me off more than this Commuinst driven wealth transfer scheme that is mainly targeted at weakening America as much as possible.
I’m all for sensible environmentalism here, but I think that should this GW crap be ultimately proven to be the largest hoax in history then public figures, “scientists”, educators and government officials responsible for spreading this crap should be executed and all others flogged within an inch of their lives with some salt rubbed in to boot. After all, isn’t that what the other side advocates against “Deniers”? Are they not deliberately lying and then saying “if you don’t buy into our lie and give us all your money then you shouldn’t be allowed to live on this planet? The Global Warming scheme is HIDEOUS.
Oh and heres a picture of my "Office" I have been a pilot flying this beauty for over 12 years. Nothing like a rocket assisted take off from the top of Greenland. Oh...and the ice is 3 MILES thick. Its not going ANYWAHERE Same of rAntarctica only there is more of it.
Could someone please post stick figures running back and forth.
It’s summer in antarctica - the end of a warming period that happens every year. Also, the ice shelf broke off since new ice is being formed at higher rates in the winter thus creating more ice than ever. Temps last winter were lower than average in antarctica. The facts reported by science reporters are lacking validation.
My alter career path was always to be a research climatologist. When I was in college in the '70's (in this somewhat related field), our professors used the warn us of short term macro trends that bascially incorporated a 10-20 year phases. In fact they used the "coming ice age" mantra that the media was scaring folks with in the 1970's.
Honest answer is, that there many other factors that influence the weather that have much much more impact than human activity (i.e solar activity, Sea Temperatures)
Probably the best question to ask one of these whackos has always been how could have the Viking colonized Greenland 1000 years ago. They sure didn't drive SUV's back then. 9 out of 10 whackos will respond that it was a short term anamolous trend, and then realize they debunked their own argument of the results of the past 20 years here. Bottom line.... Has there been global warming say 1995-2005...answer is yes. Has man had any single hand in it.... my response is a resounding NO!
Ice is constantly melting and then refreezing. It’s called summer, fall, winter and spring.
Winter hasn’t fully arrived there, and it hasn’t fully left here yet. The amazing thing is how ‘amazed’ these fools are every time they see it happen. It’s called the weather and I can tell you this... When you die, when your children die, when their children die, and so on and so forth... the Arctic ice and the Antarctic ice will still be there.
Sometimes there’ll be more, some times there will be less... But it will be there. And Al Gore and all of his favorite global warming scientist will be long gone, fully discredited and dead.
You know... This Global Warming thing could have some positive effect.
1. Third world countries would have higher rates of disease and bug infestation. Plus large parts of their populations die off.
2. Deserts expanding would cause greater starvation in the middle east and Sahara Africa. Plus large parts of their population die off.
3. Rising Ocean levels. More flooding in island and coastal regions. Plus large parts of population move inland creating overpopulation, spread of disease and greater deaths in their population.
4. More markets for our grain and technology.
Everything has a silver lining.
Sarc Alert Off!
Good post, great discussion. BTTT
Ok, the giant ice shelfs have collapsed. The cities aren’t flooded, the crops haven’t failed, sea level is stable, the penguins are fine and life goes on normally. What’s the big deal?
OMG! What happened to the pilot? Ane they're worried about the ice cubes?
< /sarc >
That would make one big ICEE. Take mine in grape flavor please.
There's a man (gore) without a clue over there - telling me I've got to be 'ware.
So, a thawing out Antarctica is supposed to be a BAD thing? Heck, there’ll be a LOT more beach front property and land galore if the ice sheets melt!
DING, DING, DING, DING
We have a winner!
The problem with compromising your principles with the opposition in the hope you can shape the results in your favor is that it didn’t work in 1938. Ask Neville Chamberlain about that.
If you ever are in need of a right seater, I'm game......
I guess not.
I like the little pop up but what does ONOZ mean?
Oh no plural?
Oh, I think McCain truly believes this crap.
Listen to McCain talk. He’s on the edge of insanity.
If he wins, he may well be the first president impeached and removed because of diminished mental capacity.