"Europe's Envisat Shows Rapid Antarctic Ice Shelf Loss"

"PARIS -- As the Envisat satellite marks 10 years in orbit, the European Space Agency says the instruments onboard continue to observe the rapid retreat of one of Antarctica's ice shelves due to climate change."

"One of the satellite's first observations after its launch on March 1, 2002 was the break-up of a main section of the Larsen B ice shelf in Antarctica.

During that break-up, 3,200 square kilometers (1,235 square miles) of ice disintegrated within a few days "due to mechanical instabilities of the ice masses triggered by climate warming," according to the European Space Agency.

Now, with 10 years of observations using its Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar, ASAR, Envisat has mapped an additional loss in Larsen B's area of 1,790 sq km (690 square miles) over the past decade."

Environment News Service had the story April 6, 2012.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012