ONE of the world’s largest ice sheets is becoming unstable due to fractures from underwater

“melt lakes”, drone footage

has revealed.

Researchers from the University of Cambridge have made the first drone-based observations of how fractures form under meltwater lakes on the Greenland Ice Sheet.

They show the fractures cause catastrophic drainages in which huge quantities of surface water are transferred to the sensitive environment beneath the ice.

Lead researcher Dr Poul Christoffersen said: “To date, most observations are provided by satellites. Drone-based observations give a lot more nuance to our understanding of these lake drainages.”

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal.