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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Scientists Land on Ice Island

Scientists, along with a BBC team, have landed on the Ayles Ice Island, a chunk of the Ayles Ice Shelf which broke away in 2005, and was only recently identified.  They went there to "tag" it with a monitor -- not unlike the way many wild animals are tagged -- so scientists can follow the Ice Island's movements as the Arctic pushes it around.

It now floats about 400 miles from the North Pole in one of the fastest-warming regions of the Earth.  It broke from the Ayles Ice Shelf in less than an hour back in August 2005, registering with the force of a small earthquake.

Records show this region of the Arctic has lost as much as 90% of its ice in the last century.  The map of the Arctic will have to be redrawn.

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