Nothing dramatizes the urgency of global warming quite like a fracture of this scale. There is nothing to be done about a collapsing polar ice sheet except to witness it. It may be too late to stop the warming decay at the boundaries of Antarctic ice, yet there is everything to be done. Humans can radically change the way they live and do business, knowing that it is the one chance to find a possible limit to radical change in the natural world around us.

The Times in London had this:

The disintegration of a large section of the Wilkins ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula does not in itself presage major global sea level rises, still less the end of life as we know it. But there is no longer any reasonable doubt that climate change is the cause; that it would take centuries of lower temperatures for these ice shelves to re-form; and that if they do not, the great ice sheets of the Antarctic interior will be the next to melt.

Hype? I think not. But thanks anyways to Morano for provoking the mental gymnastics.

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Curtis Brainard is the editor of The Observatory, CJR's online critique of science and environment reporting. Follow him on Twitter @cbrainard.