December 3, 2010

Glacier Retreat creates Amsler Island Palmer Station Antactica

Posted by Mauri Pelto

In mountain ranges around the world glacier retreat is leading to the formation of new lakes. In the Antarctic and Greenland retreat is leading to the formation of some new islands. Palmer Station on Anvers Island just off the Antarctic Peninsula is largely surrounded by glaciers. It has been called ground zero for climate change. Hard to argue, except I have seen that term applied to many other locations, that are also hard to argue with. To the north of the base a new island formed in 2004. Amsler Island was named in 2007, it used to be just part of Norsel Point. Below is a 1999 image and a 2004 image from Google Earth. The channel now connects Arthur Harbor to Loudwater. The channel is now over 200 meters wide. The ice front is quite heavily crevassed. The crevasses indicate a terminus ice cliff that is not currently in a stable position and additional calving should lead to continued channel expansion. There are still a couple of small ice patches on Amsler. This change lacks the magnitude of those seen on Fleming Glacier.