Climate Decade in Review Post 3: Ward Hunt Ice Shelf Disintegrating

2002 - Ward Hunt Ice Shelf breaks in two.

The Ward Hunt Ice Shelf is the largest ice shelf in the Arctic, attached to Ellesmere Island in Canada In 2003, satellite imagery showed that a crack that had been observed in 2000 had broken the ice shelf in two, draining the largest epishelf lake in the northern hemisphere. In April 2008, it was discovered that the shelf was fractured into dozens of deep, multi-faceted cracks.[4] It seems likely the shelf is disintegrating. The most likely cause is warmer air and sea temperatures, likely a result of global warming.

One of the most significant effects of global warming is melting ice. Scientists have been studying glaciers, polar ice fields, continental ice sheets, snow pack and other ice worldwide and continue to find growing evidence of the severity of climate change on our planet as evidenced by changes in ice such as the Ward Hunt ice shelf.

This is one in the series of "Climate Decade in Review" posts on this blog that began in January 2010. These posts present climate-change-related events that occurred during the 00's, the warmest decade in recorded history.

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