Up north in Greenland, a 42-square-mile glacier broke off the Arctic's largest remaining ice shelf as ocean temperatures continue to warm. The Spalte Glacier has been disintegrating for several years, and after another year of record highs, finished its break this summer, BBC reports.
The Spalte Glacier was a piece of Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden, a massive ice shelf at the end of Northeast Greenland Ice Stream. It only recently became the largest remaining ice shelf as others also began to melt in warming waters. But it's starting to lose its area as well, as the part Greenland surrounding the ice stream has warmed by about 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1980. Satellite imagery had shown the Spalte Glacier offshoot cracking since 2013, Business Insider notes. The broken Spalte Glacier and remaining ice shelf will only continue to melt as runoff water from melting pools on top of the ice.
Temperatures are spiking all over the world, leading glaciers to melt and contribute to sea level rise; to hotter and drier summers that exacerbate wildfires; and to warming oceans that worsen tropical storms.