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Canadian Arctic Ice Shelf Breaks Up (Ellsmere Island)

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 02:27 PM
Original message
Canadian Arctic Ice Shelf Breaks Up (Ellsmere Island)
Associated Press
WASHINGTON - "Warming conditions pushing average temperatures above freezing are being blamed for the breakup of an ice shelf at Ellsmere Island in northern Canada.

The breakup of the Ward Hunt ice shelf between 2000 and 2002 was reported Monday by researchers from Canada and the United States.

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They reported that the ice shelves on northern Ellsmere Island had been stable since 1982, but in April 2000 a satellite revealed the first signs of cracking.

EDIT

In July and August, 2002, the researchers landed to take measurements and found cracks that separated the central part of the shelf into free-floating ice blocks. That August, the northern edge of the ice shelf broke free, they reported. Besides freeing the floating ice blocks, the breakup caused the loss of almost all of the freshwater from a lake which had been dammed behind the ice in a fjord."

EDIT

http://www.kansas.com/mld/kansas/news/world/6834056.htm
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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
1. Additional - Breakup Of Ice Shelf Signals Climate Change, Scientists Say
By Andrew C. Revkin
New York Times, September 22, 2003

"A large ice shelf that has jutted into the Arctic Ocean from the northernmost part of Canada for at least 3,000 years has broken up over the last two years, providing evidence that the region is warming past thresholds that can produce abrupt changes, scientists said today. The scientists, from Laval University in Quebec and the University of Alaska - Fairbanks, described the changes in a paper published in the current issue of Geophysical Review Letters.

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They said it was not yet possible to say if the melting was related to rising atmospheric concentrations of heat-trapping greenhouse gases from human activity. But the authors said the breakup was just one of many signs confirming that the Arctic is seeing enormous climate shifts that merit careful monitoring.

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The 150-square-mile region of floating ice, called the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf, had formed a cap across the mouth of the 20-mile-long Disraeli Fjord on Ellesmere Island, in the Canadian territory of Nunavut.

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The Ward Hunt Ice Shelf is up to 100 feet thick - far more massive than the 10-foot-thick slabs of floating sea ice that form a milling cap on the Arctic Ocean."

EDIT

NYT
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-23-03 08:07 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Scientists See Antarctic Vortex as Drought Maker
Edited on Tue Sep-23-03 08:09 PM by bigtree
Australia may be facing a permanent drought because of an accelerating vortex of winds whipping around the Antarctic that threatens to disrupt rainfall, scientists said on Tuesday.

Spinning faster and tighter, the 100 mile an hour jetstream is pulling climate bands south and dragging rain from Australia into the Southern Ocean, they say.

They attribute the phenomenon to global warming and loss of the ozone layer over Antarctica.

http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml ;jsessionid=LBCFQRJ2G5XPWCRBAELCFEY?type=scienceNews&storyID=3490426 (gotta piece this one in the search box manually)

Way above my head.
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