Scientists warn 'catastrophic iceberg collapse' could cause a rise in sea levels

One of the largest icebergs ever recorded broke free in Antarctica. It is called the Larsen C.

Scientists are saying another collapse might have catastrophic consequences, according to the Independent.

Lucky for us, the iceberg is still floating in the ocean so it won't directly add to sea levels. It's about the size of Delaware.

But we're not necessarily totally in the clear.

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Images of the Larsen C Ice Shelf and other large icebergs
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Images of the Larsen C Ice Shelf and other large icebergs
An aerial view of the rift in the Larsen C seen in an image from the Digital Mapping System over the Antarctica Peninsula, Antarctica, on November 10, 2016. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY
FILE PHOTO: A rift across the Larsen C Ice Shelf that had grown longer and deeper is seen during an airborne surveys of changes in polar ice over the Antarctic Peninsula from NASA?s DC-8 research aircraft on November 10, 2016. Coutesy NASA/Handout via REUTERS/File Photo ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
A section of an iceberg ? about 6,000 sq km ? broke away as part of the natural cycle of iceberg calving off the Larsen-C ice shelf in Antarctica in this satellite image released by the European Space Agency on July 12, 2017. Courtesy ESA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.
An oblique view of a massive rift in the Antarctic Peninsula's Larsen C ice shelf is shown in this November 10, 2016 photo taken by scientists on NASA's IceBridge mission in Antarctica. Courtesy John Sonntag/NASA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
A resident views the first iceberg of the season as it passes the South Shore, also known as "Iceberg Alley", near Ferryland Newfoundland, Canada April 16, 2017. Picture taken April 16, 2017. REUTERS/Greg Locke
A view of icebergs remaining after a break-up of Wilkins ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula, January 19, 2009. Picture taken January 19, 2009. REUTERS/Alister Doyle
A view of icebergs remaining after a break-up of Wilkins ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula, January 19, 2009. Picture taken January 19, 2009. REUTERS/Alister Doyle
Residents view the first iceberg of the season as it passes the South Shore, also known as "Iceberg Alley", near Ferryland Newfoundland, Canada April 16, 2017. Picture taken April 16, 2017. REUTERS/Greg Locke TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A 20 metre-high ice cliff forming the edge of the Wilkins Ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula is seen from a plane January 18, 2009. REUTERS/Alister Doyle/File Photo
Icebergs stranded by the tide lie on the beach in Nuuk, Greenland, June 5, 2016. REUTERS/Alister Doyle
The Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica is seen in this undated NASA image. Vast glaciers in West Antarctica seem to be locked in an irreversible thaw linked to global warming that may push up sea levels for centuries, scientists said on May 12, 2014. Six glaciers including the Thwaites Glacier, eaten away from below by a warming of sea waters around the frozen continent, were flowing fast into the Amundsen Sea, according to the report based partly on satellite radar measurements from 1992 to 2011. REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reuters (ANTARCTICA - Tags: ENVIRONMENT SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY) ATTENTION EDITORS - FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
The B-31 Iceberg is seen before separating from a rift in Antarctica's Pine Island Glacier in this NASA Earth Observatory handout image acquired on October 28, 2013. Scientists are monitoring an unusually large iceberg - roughly six times the size of Manhattan - that broke off from an Antarctic glacier and is heading into the open ocean, although not in an area heavily navigated by ships. REUTERS/NASA Earth Observatory/Holli Riebeek/Handout via Reuters. (ANTARCTICA - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY ENVIRONMENT) FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
JOKULSARLON, ICELAND - JUNE 13: Icebergs float at the Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon in Jokulsarlon, Iceland on June 13, 2017. (Photo by Hasan Esen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
ANTARCTICA - OCTOBER 27: An iceberg floats near the coast of West Antarctica as seen from a window of a NASA Operation IceBridge airplane on October 27, 2016 in-flight over Antarctica. NASA's Operation IceBridge has been studying how polar ice has evolved over the past eight years and is currently flying a set of 12-hour research flights over West Antarctica at the start of the melt season. Researchers have used the IceBridge data to observe that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet may be in a state of irreversible decline directly contributing to rising sea levels. NASA and University of California, Irvine (UCI) researchers have recently detected the speediest ongoing Western Antarctica glacial retreat rates ever observed. The United Nations climate change talks begin November 7 in the Moroccan city of Marrakech. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
An iceberg lies in the Ross Sea with Mount Erebus in the background near McMurdo Station, Antarctica on November 11, 2016. US Secretary of State John Kerry is visiting the station as he travels to Antarctica, New Zealand, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and will attend the APEC summit in Peru later in the month. Kerry is travelling to Antarctica, New Zealand, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and will attend the APEC summit in Peru later in the month. / AFP / AFP POOL / MARK RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)
ANTARCTICA - OCTOBER 27: A tabular iceberg floats near the coast of West Antarctica as seen from a window of a NASA Operation IceBridge airplane on October 27, 2016 in-flight over Antarctica. NASA's Operation IceBridge has been studying how polar ice has evolved over the past eight years and is currently flying a set of 12-hour research flights over West Antarctica at the start of the melt season. Researchers have used the IceBridge data to observe that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet may be in a state of irreversible decline directly contributing to rising sea levels. NASA and University of California, Irvine (UCI) researchers have recently detected the speediest ongoing Western Antarctica glacial retreat rates ever observed. The United Nations climate change talks begin November 7 in the Moroccan city of Marrakech. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
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Antarctica Research Professor Nancy Bertler warns the collapse of another iceberg, the Ross Ice shelf, could increase the speed of land ice flowing into the sea.

That could consequently raise sea levels by 3.3 meters...That's almost 11 feet.

A sea level rise of that capacity would dramatically alter coastlines all over the world. That could cause large pieces of land that are now inhabited, to disappear.

Looking back at similar situations, like the Larsen B Ice Shelf which collapsed in 2002: that didn't affect sea levels, however, he melting of the ice behind the shelf has sped up.

There is no telling whether the Ross Ice shelf is prone to a break-off but Bertler says it has been found to be "very sensitive in the past and capable of rapid change."

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