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Denman Canyon

Mains-GS1- Geography of the world, Prelims- Geography

NASA scientists have stated that the Earth's deepest ice canyon ‘Denman Canyon’ is vulnerable to melting.

About Denman Canyon

1. A canyon or gorge is a deep cleft between escarpments or cliffs resulting from weathering and the erosive activity over geologic timescales.

2. Denman Canyon is located in the East Antarctica region and is the deepest land gorge on Earth, reaching 3,500m below sea-level.

    Denman Canyon (vertical exaggeration x 5)

3. The deepest point on continental Earth has been identified in East Antarctica under Denman Glacier.

4. The shores around the Dead Sea in the Middle East was regarded to have the lowest visible land surface elevation on Earth.

5. Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean is the deepest ocean point. It is around 11km below the sea surface.


1. The canyon is vulnerable to the ice melting caused by climate changes happening around the world.

2. The complete melting of this canyon can raise the global sea surface by 1.5m.

3. Retreating and thinning sections of the glacier suggest it is being eroded by encroaching warm ocean water.

4. There is a marked retreat in the glacier's grounding line. This is the point where the ice stream lifts and floats as it flows off the land and enters the ocean.

5. Most of the ice loss in Antarctica is occurring in the west of the continent.