Antarctica’s Fastest Melting Glacier Began Retreating in the 1940s

In the late 1940s, with World War II finally over, the USS Pine Island was redeployed from the fight in the Pacific on yet another perilous mission: Operation Highjump.

Pilots would launch from the ship, surveying Antarctica from seaplanes and helicopters, and performing some of the earliest photo mapping of the continent. Three airmen died during the mission. And a Texas-sized chunk of ice was named in honor of their ship: The Pine Island Glacier.

Today that glacier — and its neighbor

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