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 user 2005-04-06 at 11:09:00 am Views: 112
  • #29327
    World’s Biggest Iceberg on the Move Again
    B15A, a Remnant of the
    Ross Ice Shelf, Is Moving a Half-Mile Per Day
    WELLINGTON, New Zealand
    (April 05) – The world’s biggest iceberg has begun moving nearly three months
    after it stopped its slow float toward colliding with a huge Antarctic ice
    tongue, New Zealand officials said Monday.


    B15A contains enough water to feed the River Nile for 80

    Known as B15A, the giant iceberg, a remnant of a Ross Ice
    Shelf fracture in 2000, is now moving slowly northward out of McMurdo Sound,
    where it had been blocking sea access, Antarctica New Zealand chief executive
    Lou Sanson said.

    He said the iceberg is moving just over a half-mile a

    Earlier, B15A, which is 1,200 square miles and contains
    enough water to feed the River Nile for 80 years, was expected to smash into the
    ice tongue, possibly cracking it apart.

    “We know very little about what makes this thing tick.
    Every time someone has made a prediction about it, they’ve been proved wrong,”
    Sanson said.

    B15A has blocked wind and water currents that break up ice
    floes in McMurdo Sound during the Antarctic summer, causing a build-up of ice
    behind it. The U.S. McMurdo Station and New Zealand’s Scott Base are located on
    the sound, while Italy’s Terra Nova base is nearby.

    The iceberg and the ice buildup have been in the path of
    ships supplying fuel and food for the three stations.

    The ice blockage has also threatened penguin breeding
    colonies, with tens of thousands of Adele penguin chicks facing starvation as
    parent birds are forced to trudge up to 110 miles to open sea to gather

    Sanson said the “pleasant surprise” had been that the
    movement of the iceberg had cleared a narrow channel through the sea ice for
    about 20 miles toward the pier at McMurdo Station.

    “It still hasn’t cleared (out of the area) but it’s moving
    in the right direction,” he said.