09 Aug 2010:
Massive Iceberg in Greenland
An ice island four times the size of Manhattan
has broken off from the Petermann Glacier in Greenland,
the largest calving of an iceberg in the Arctic since 1962. The iceberg covers at least 100 square miles and is roughly 700 feet thick — about half the height of the Empire State Building. University of Delaware ocean scientist Andreas Muenchow said that so much freshwater is stored in the massive iceberg that it could keep all U.S. public tap water flowing for four months and could sustain the flow of the Hudson and Delaware rivers for two years. Muenchow said it is unclear whether this massive calving event is related to rising air temperatures in Greenland and the Arctic, but another researcher said that the calving was probably hastened by rising sea and air temperatures
in northern Greenland. The Petermann Glacier is one of the two largest remaining glaciers in Greenland that terminate in floating ice shelves. In 1962, a 230-square-miles iceberg broke off from the nearby Ward Hunt Ice Shelf.
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Photographer Robert Wintner documents the exquisite beauty and biodiversity of Cuba’s coral reefs, which are largely intact thanks to stifled coastal development in the communist nation. View the gallery.
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The Warriors of Qiugang
, a Yale Environment 360
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Top Image: aerial view of Iceland
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A three-part series Tainted Harvest
looks at the soil pollution crisis in China, the threat it poses to the food supply, and the complexity of any cleanup. Read the series.