Start Inundating

Inundating

(A Rolling Stone feature earlier this year dubbed Thwaites “The Doomsday Glacier.”) Together, they act as a plug holding back enough ice to pour 11 feet of sea-level rise into the world’s oceans — an amount that would submerge every coastal city on the planet.

In a remote region of Antarctica known as Pine Island Bay, 2,500 miles from the tip of South America, two glaciers hold human civilization hostage.

Stretching across a frozen plain more than 150 miles long, these glaciers, named Pine Island and Thwaites, have marched steadily for millennia toward the Amundsen Sea, part of the vast Southern Ocean.

To figure that out, scientists have been looking back to the end of the last ice age, about 11,000 years ago, when global temperatures stood at roughly their current levels. There’s growing evidence that the Pine Island Bay glaciers collapsed rapidly back then, flooding the world’s coastlines — partially the result of something called “marine ice-cliff instability.” The ocean floor gets deeper toward the center of this part of Antarctica, so each new iceberg that breaks away exposes taller and taller cliffs.

Ice gets so heavy that these taller cliffs can’t support their own weight.

Further inland, the glaciers widen into a two-mile-thick reserve of ice covering an area the size of Texas.

There’s no doubt this ice will melt as the world warms. The glaciers of Pine Island Bay are two of the largest and fastest-melting in Antarctica.

“We need to know how fast it’s going to happen.” In the past few years, scientists have identified marine ice-cliff instability as a feedback loop that could kickstart the disintegration of the entire West Antarctic ice sheet this century — much more quickly than previously thought.

Minute-by-minute, huge skyscraper-sized shards of ice cliffs would crumble into the sea, as tall as the Statue of Liberty and as deep underwater as the height of the Empire State Building.

A collapse could cause a tsunami that could destroy downtown Geiranger.

The first element could be the plural genitive of the Norse word geiri ('piece of land; field in a mountain side') - which is related to English gore ('spearshaped piece of land').

Constructed in 2013, the Seawalk is a three-segment articulated floating pier, 236 m long and 4.5 m wide on 10 pontoons, which moves (like a floatable jetwalk) to accommodate up to 4,000 passengers per hour disembarking from a single ship.