Time-lapse video Reveals the ice shelf of one of Antarctica's largest glaciers breaking into large chunks

The ice shelf holding together among Antarctica's largest glaciers is breaking apart quickly as scientists fear that it could shorten the timeline for its eventual collapse into the sea.

Time-lapse video Reveals the ice shelf of one of Antarctica's largest glaciers breaking into large chunks

Satellite images of Pine Island Glacier taken between 2015 and 2020 reveal the rapid break from the ice shelf's edge. A study from Washington University shows the ice shelf lost about one-fifth of its area from 2017 to 2020, mostly in three dramatic breaks.

You can watch the full time-lapse here.

The Pine Island Glacier covers 68,000 square miles in the West Antarctic and comprises 180 trillion tons of icehockey, based on LiveScience.

If the glacier drops into the ocean, the average global sea level could rise with a total of 50 cm (around 20 inches).

"We may not have the luxury of waiting for gradual changes in Pine Island; things could actually go much faster than expected," explained Ian Joughin, a glaciologist at the UW Applied Physics Laboratory, in accordance with the BBC.

"The procedures we had been studying in this region were contributing into an irreversible collapse, but at a rather measured pace. Things could be much more surprising if we lose the remainder of that ice shelf," Joughin added.

Joughin forecasts the whole shelf could give way"within the upcoming few years."

The Pine Island Glacier, which is roughly five times the size of Wales, is just one of two glaciers in western Antarctica that scientists are concerned about.

The other is the Thwaites Glacier, sometimes known as"Doomsday Glacier", which can be melting faster than previously thought, based on an April report cited from Scientific American.

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