So we knew things were changing. It only shows us how important it is to continue monitoring this coastline and acquiring imagery in this specific area at even higher resolution. “It is lucky that we were not on the ice shelf when this happened,” one colleague, Derek Mueller, wrote in a blogpost following the discovery. And as it collapsed into the ocean, it took with it much of the equipment her former colleagues had left there. And it seems that that crevasse is filled with water, which is ultimately the result of climate change. Did you ever think you’d lose your equipment to an event like this? A colleague of mine actually died [in the field]; he was one of the world leaders studying glaciers in the Arctic, and he fell through a crevasse on the Greenland ice sheet. Together and separately, the three have been studying the Arctic for years. An uninhabited research camp was lost when the shelf collapsed. The Milne Ice Shelf was considered one of the least vulnerable to breaking because of the protection offered it by Milne Fjord. Eighty sq km broke free from Milne, leaving a still secure segment just 106 sq km in size. A FULLY intact ice shelf in Canada has collapsed as the block of ice bigger than Manhattan snapped off. In 2017, a team of researchers discovered scallops, sponges, worms and other organisms living some 20 meters deep, inside the ice shelf. For Mueller, the breakup of the ice shelf is also potentially a lost opportunity. Warwick Vincent, a biology professor at Laval University who has worked in the Arctic for more than two decades, say such dramatic changes point to the need for greater protection for parts of the Arctic that will be the last to hold on to sea ice as the world warms. Two researchers walking along the Milne Ice Shelf. You need a cold climate for centuries to form an ice shelf, but to lose one, you lose them immediately. The enormous Milne ice shelf, which was the last intact ice shelf in Canada and which White had studied closely before as a PhD student, was dissolving. All rights reserved. This recent ice exhibits an undulating topog- raphy where the ridges separate troughs filled with meltwater. So, these are ecosystems that are lost basically for good now," Hamilton said. It’s like hearing bad news. On the other side of the island, the most northerly in Canada, the St Patrick’s Bay ice … It’s critically important that we heed these warnings. We spoke to them about what that day was like, and where they go from here. Mueller: The ice shelf is still half there. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The Milne Ice Shelf, a fragment of the former Ellesmere Ice Shelf, is located in the Qikiqtaaluk Region, Nunavut, Canada. (Luke Copland/Courtesy Carleton University) White: I always thought that the Milne was one of the more stable of the ice shelves; we had seen major breakups from the neighboring Serson and Peterson ice shelves, but the Milne seemed less susceptible to breakup. There’s lots of instruments floating around the Arctic that people [had] put out. It’s not an easy thing to get used to. It was Canada's last intact Arctic ice shelf. White: Absolutely not. Our key study site on the ice shelf was lost, but we can find another study area potentially. The Planet Earth-observation company has just released new imagery of the broken Milne Ice Shelf in the Arctic. The enormous Milne ice shelf, which was the last intact ice shelf in Canada and which White had studied closely before as a PhD student, was dissolving. Between July 30 and August 4, the Milne Ice Shelf collapsed into the Arctic Ocean. 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