100 Mile-Long Crack in Antarctic Ice Shelf Keeps Growing By Kacey Deamer

Summary of the Article: In recent decades, a major environmental issue has been the melting of ice in places where it plays such a large role due to increase in annual average temperature. In this article, however, the author tells us that in Antarctica, due to a growing rift, the Larsen C Ice Shelf is beginning to split in half, which will cause a large iceberg to be created. This will decrease the size of the ice shelf by more than 5,000 square miles, an event that will alter the landscape of the Antarctic Peninsula drastically. The glaciers created from the breaking of the ice will move towards the ocean, and the impact that this ice will have on the ocean ecosystems is definitely a story to watch. The studies show that it is only a matter of time before yet another Larsen Ice Sheet will split, as Larsen B disintegrated in 2002.

Analysis: Although many that look at this quickly attribute this to human activity, it may actually just be a natural process. That being said, the effects of the ice splitting may be profound, not only to the continent of Antarctica, but also nearby bodies of water that will be considerably colder once the ice disintegrates into the water. Once this occurs, the currents of the oceans can be altered, and this will hurt the organisms that are unable to adapt as quickly. Also, sea level may continue to rise and the Arctic that is covered by permafrost contains a lot of carbon. Once this is melted or displaced, tons of carbon will be released, damaging the environment further. Regardless of the cause, the ice shelf splitting will have a negative impact on multiple ecosystems.

Takeaways: I chose to read this article because I have very little knowledge on this area and was interested to learn about how the rift formed and has continued to grow. Initially, I assumed that this would talk about how the rising global temperature caused yet another issue, but I now see that this is most likely not the cause. I am going to keep following this story and am curious to see if the experts predictions about when the full split will take place is accurate. In the mean time, I think all people around the world need to figure out how to help the ecosystems that will be affected by this to try and limit the damage that will occur.

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.