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Really weird' But he said he was taken aback by the difference between 2009 and 2011 when he visited the glacier in late July. Advertise | AdChoices "Although I knew what to expect in terms of ice loss from satellite imagery, I was still completely unprepared for the gob-smacking scale of the break-up, which rendered me speechless," he said in the statement. "I'm very familiar with the glacier. It's very hard to sort of envisage something so big not being there ... to come back and basically see an ice shelf has disappeared, which is 20 kilometers across (about 12 miles) ... I was speechless and started laughing because I couldn't sort of believe it," Hubbard added, speaking to msnbc.com. "It was really weird when the helicopter first came over," he added.
'Abnormally warm' He said while sea glacier's "calving" of ice bergs was a natural process, they were witnessing something out of the ordinary. "The break-off last year is bigger than anything seen for at least 150 years," Hubbard said. "This region (northern Greenland) is experiencing temperatures which are abnormally warm ... I think the far northwest of Greenland is seeing a kind of new regime of climate," he added. The Humbolt Glacier, the widest in the northern hemisphere, is also retreating, Hubbard said. He said he was not a climate scientist, but said the pattern of ice melting in the area was "a definite consequence of climate change and global warming."