Antarctic Ice Chunk Collapses

Sudden break fuels climate change concerns
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 25, 2008 5:40 PM CDT
This satellite photo released by the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder shows the Wilkins Ice Shelf on March 6, 2008, as it began to break apart.   (AP Photo/ National Snow and Ice Data Center, NASA)
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(Newser) – A mammoth chunk of ice has collapsed in Antarctica, leaving an ice shelf the size of Connecticut "hanging by a thread" and providing more evidence of global warming, scientists say. The sudden collapse of the 160-square-mile piece of ice threatens the Wilkins ice shelf, which has been in place for up to 1,500 years, the AP reports.

A scientist who flew over the shelf to photograph it reported that “chunks of ice the size of small houses look as though they’ve been thrown around like rubble,” the BBC notes. Scientists say the collapse won't affect sea levels, but one called such events "indicative of a tipping point or trigger in the climate system."