Recent satellite images from NASA show that an iceberg, twice the size of Manhattan, has broken away from the edge of the Petermann Glacier off the northern coast of Greenland.
Although this process, known as calving, is fairly common for glaciers that end at the ocean, what concerns some officials is that this is the second large break off in two years. In 2010 an ice island measuring twice the size of this one calved the same glacier.
The Greenland ice shelf has been a point of concern for scientists in recent years, with the thickness thinning extensively due to warmer temperatures.
“It’s dramatic. It’s disturbing…We have data for 150 years and we see changes that we have not seen before,” stated Andreas Muenchow, an associate professor of physical ocean science and engineering at the University of Delaware’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment.
That all being said, Muenchow went on to add that while the ice islands make for grasping imagery, the vast majority of ice loss from the Petermann Glacier actually occurs from melting, deep under the water.
The bigger question for many observing this glacier, among others, is just what kind of impact will the rising temperature of the Atlantic have around this region.