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Antarctic ice melts into hidden ‘Grand Canyon’

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posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 06:43 AM

A mile-deep rift valley that could rival the dramatic chasms of America’s Grand Canyon has been found hiding beneath the ice in West Antarctica. UK scientists behind the discovery believe it is contributing to ice loss.
­The steep walls of the Ferrigno Rift plunge nearly 1.5 kilometers down at its deepest point. Being about 10 kilometers across and at least 100 kilometers long, it probably goes all the way to the sea.
A joint team from the University of Aberdeen and the British Antarctic Survey in Cambridge discovered the canyon in the course of an exhausting 2,400-kilometer trek through the region that had only been visited once previously, in 1961. The discovery came as a total surprise when Robert Bingham, a glaciologist at the University of Aberdeen, detected the rift with an ice-penetrating radar system.
But what is the connection between the discovery of this ancient, ice-filled rift valley and the loss of ice mass?
The canyon is believed to be connected to the warming ocean, which itself impacts upon contemporary ice flow and its eventual collapse into the sea.
“We conclude that rift basins that cut across the WAIS [West Antarctic Ice Sheet] margin can rapidly transmit coastally-perturbed change inland, thereby promoting ice-sheet instability,” Robert Bingham and his co-authors from the British Antarctic Survey wrote on July 25 in their Nature article.
The ice sheet of West Antarctica is diminishing faster than in any other part of the continent. Some glaciers are shrinking by more than one meter per year. At the same time, it accounts for some 10 per cent of the global rise in the sea level. Understanding these processes is crucial for our ability to predict future behavior of the ice flow, as well as the global rise in sea levels as the climate continues to warm.
Over the past two decades, satellite observations revealed consistent and substantial ice losses from around much of Antarctica’s coastline.
“What’s particularly important is that this spectacular valley aligns perfectly with the recordings of ice-surface lowering and ice loss that we have witnessed with satellite observations over this area for the last 20 years,” Bingham explained.
Diminishing glaciers in various parts of the world are becoming a major concern for scientists. In July, observations from three NASA satellites showed an unusual melting that occurred in a flash over a widespread area in Greenland. Even the island’s coldest and highest point showed signs of melting – on a scale unseen since the beginning of satellite observations some 30 years ago.

It's pretty crazy how our ice sheets are dramaticly melting, And a vast amount of flooding happening around the world. I'm pretty intrigued and skeptical on what would happen if all the ice sheets melted, and also if Greenland melted..How would that effect the world. Why isn't anyone helping out and seeing how serious than can be to the planet, The ice caps shouldn't be melting so vastly. Why are we wasting so money on stupid wars, We should be spending more money on research, so we can help prevent this kind of stuff from occuring and recurring and help preventing such tradegy's as this. It's a shame what man has done to do this to our precious earth, I'll admit I'm not perfect and do sometimes litter because I'm to lazy to throw something out, Or drinking a beer in public and need to ditch the 'Evidence"
it's little things like this, that millions of people do that effect the earth, It doesn't feel like much when it's one person though, but it all adds up.

So ATS what is your opinion on this matter, what do you think would happen if all our Ice sheets melt?
edit on 26-7-2012 by live2beknown because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 06:52 AM
Possible Ice Age.......?????

“The expected decrease in temperature may … become the fifth over the past nine centuries, reports Hydrometeorological Center of Russia. Experts call this phenomenon the “little ice age”, it was observed in the XII, XV, XVII, XIX centuries. This cyclicity makes the theory of upcoming cold weather in XXI century look like truth.”

New Ice Age to Begin in 2014

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 06:55 AM
reply to post by sonnny1

That's just the thing we need out here, Maybe that's why all these countries are building bunkers
When was the last ice age again? I wonder how humans survived that. I wonder if we would survive this Ice age and how it will effect us and Nature..

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 07:21 AM
Great post pal, wonder what they may find as more ice melts. I hoping for the elusive Hall of Records and some more crystal skulls. LoL

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 07:31 AM
reply to post by andy06shake

Thanks man, It's my first post. But people need to be aware of this, As this is going to and will cause more floods around the world. And I hope this wont extinct the poor polar bears, they depend on Ice to live. I've watched many documentaries from BBC and National Geographic on this subject and how this effects nature out there. And frankly, It's very sad..

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 08:48 AM
Vary interesting stuff. I've always been fascinated with the complex and ever changing dynamics of our home we call earth.

As for the next polar melting cycle, it will surely be the first one where the flooding is secondary to the nuclea disasters the world will face. We think Fukushima was and is bad, this wold have much farther reaching implications.

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 09:03 AM

Originally posted by live2beknown

So ATS what is your opinion on this matter, what do you think would happen if all our Ice sheets melt?

Interesting find
snf. To answer your question. I think if the all the icesheets melt they will COOL the OCEANS FAST, this will destroy current flows of ocean currents already disrupted by the destruction of the GULF LOOP from the massive oil leak. The same leak that may have forced a certain wind belt that carries moister thru the corn belt OF THE AMERICANAZ
FURTHER NORTH SMH... Once these currents of warm water which manage weather global weather are modified / destroyed then you end up with a VERY VERY COLD OCEAN (EXPECT OCEAN LIFE TO SUFFER MORE SMH) WHICH INTURN WIL LBRING IN AN ICE AGE. Amazing how heat can cause an iceage yet AL Gore was so wrong smh...

posted on Jul, 26 2012 @ 09:59 AM
reply to post by Ophiuchus 13

It is indeed an interesting find, but one that I wouldn't want to find as it's not the best news. If it does indeed drop a few degrees in the ocean, it can cause alot of deaths..It could shock the fish or anything their. Yes, it is crazy how a few degrees can do so much damage, we think oh just +2 wont do much, but after years..And also the next year, you add another degree to that well you have this!!

edit on 26-7-2012 by live2beknown because: (no reason given)

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