Larsen C Ice Shelf
The Larsen C Ice Shelf of the Weddell Sea is presently the fourth largest ice shelf in Antarctica, with an area of about 44,000 km². Concerns about the stability of this ice shelf have been fuelled by the calving of a large iceberg, A68, in 2017 and by the recent retreat and collapse of the neighbouring Larsen A and Larsen B ice shelves.
Although the breakup of an ice shelf does not have an immediate impact on global sea levels, the removal of the buttressing effect of ice shelves can cause acceleration of the glaciers that feed into the ice shelf. The glaciers that drain into the Larsen C Ice Shelf hold enough ice to raise global sea levels by around 10cm.
The Weddell Sea has been put forward for consideration for special protection as a Marine Protected Area (MPA), as a result of its unique and rare ecosystems.
The Larsen C Ice Shelf of the Weddell Sea is presently the fourth largest ice shelf in Antarctica, with an area of about 44,000 km².
Iceberg A68, which has an area of around 6,000 km² and is more than 200 metres thick, calved from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in July 2017.