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London-sized iceberg breaks off Antarctica ice shelf

STORY: Satellite imagery shows that an iceberg almost the size of Greater London has broken off the 150m thick Brunt Ice Shelf in Antarctica.

The occurrence happened between 1900-2000GMT on Sunday (January 22) during a spring tide, the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) said.

The iceberg calved following years of naturally occurring cracks that finally extended across the shelf and caused the new iceberg to break free, the research institute said.

The iceberg break-off is the second major calving from the ice shelf within the last two years.

In February 2021, a slightly smaller iceberg calved from the Brunt ice Shelf and drifted into the Weddell Sea.

BAS first detected vast cracks developing in the area a decade ago, and since 2017 staff have been stationed on the ice shelf during Antarctic summer (November to March) to monitor the behaviour of the ice shelf.