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A substance called mélange — made up of windblown snow, iceberg bits, and sea ice — is lodged in and around arctic ice shelves and critical to holding them together, which may make the glaciers melt even faster than previously expected amid rising temperatures, according to a study at UC Irvine and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.

The same process may have caused an iceberg the size of Delaware to break off Antarctica in 2017, the researchers say.

Kimberly Cheng reports for the KTLA 5 News at 5 on Oct. 14, 2021.