ECONOMYNEXT – A-76, the largest know iceberg slightly bigger than the Spanish island of Majorca, has broken off from its ice shelf in Antarctica, the European Space Agency said.
The iceberg has calved off from the Western side of the Ronne Ice Shelf, lying in the Weddell Sea Antartica.
It is around 170km in length and 25km wide and measures around 4,320 sq km in area.
“The enormity of the berg makes it the largest in the world, snatching first place from the A-23A iceberg (approximately 3880 sq km in size) which is also located in the Weddell Sea,” the European Space Agency report said.
“In comparison, the A-74 iceberg that broke off the Brunt Ice Shelf in February earlier this year, was only 1270 sq km.”
Various international news reports have determined the iceberg’s size in comparison to different cities. One said it is 80 times the size of Manhattan USA.
CNN reports that the break-off is part of the natural cycle and since it’s a floating ice shelf it will not cause sea levels to rise.
“Iceberg calving is part of the natural cycle, with huge chunks of ice breaking off the ice shelf at regular intervals,” the CNN report said.
“Scientists aren’t attributing this particular break-off to climate change, and instead believe it’s part of the natural cycle of iceberg calving in the region.
“Once it melts, the new iceberg will not lead to a sea level rise, because it was part of a floating ice shelf — just like a melting ice cube doesn’t increase the level of the drink in your glass.
“That makes icebergs like this different from glaciers or ice sheets, which are found on land, and which do raise global sea levels when they break off into the ocean and melt.”