The largest iceberg on Earth is moving for the 1st time in more than 30 years, scientists said on Friday.
The Antarctic glacier A23a, spanning an area of nearly 4,000 square kilometers (1,500 square miles), is approximately three times the size of New York City. Arctic icebergs of this magnitude are uncommon in motion, according to glaciologist Oliver Marsh of the British Antarctic Survey; therefore, its trajectory will be closely monitored by scientists. The colossal berg will likely be propelled into the Antarctic Circumpolar Current as it gathers steam. As a result, it will be directed along “iceberg alley” toward the Southern Ocean, where similar objects are observed floating in murky waters. The motive behind the berg’s current flight is yet to be determined.
“An iceberg this large has the potential to survive for quite a long time in the Southern Ocean, even though it’s much warmer, and it could make its way further north up toward South Africa where it can disrupt shipping,” said Marsh.