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Big ice island breaks off Arctic shelf

Posted on Saturday, December 30 2006 @ 06:10:33 CET by


Scientists reported this week that an ice island the size of a small city broke off from one of the Arctic shelves in Canada.
The ice island is 37 metres (120ft) thick and measures 9 miles by 3 miles, according to the CanWest News Service. It broke clear from Ellesmere island, about 500 miles south of the North Pole, 16 months ago, triggering tremors so powerful they were picked up by earthquake monitors 155 miles away.

Scientists have only just released details about the island after piecing together the break-up from seismic monitors and satellite images. Within days of breaking free from its fjord on Ellesmere, the floating ice island had drifted a few miles offshore. It travelled west for 31 miles until it froze into the sea ice in early winter.

The island was part of the Ayles ice shelf, one of six major ice shelves in Canada's Arctic. Scientists believe the shelf's break-up - the largest of its kind in the Canadian Artic in 30 years - is the result of global warming.



 



 

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