The grounding lines of Antarctica are on the retreat on the ocean floor. According to a new study by scientists at the University of Leeds, warm ocean water is shrinking Antarctica’s underwater footprint.
According to the new data, published this week in the journal Nature Geoscience, the Southern Ocean melted 565 square miles of underwater ice between 2010 and 2016.
“Our study provides clear evidence that retreat is happening across the ice sheet due to ocean melting at its base, and not just at the few spots that have been mapped before now,” lead researcher Hannes Konrad said. “This retreat has had a huge impact on inland glaciers, because releasing them from the sea bed removes friction, causing them to speed up and contribute to global sea level rise.”