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Greenland arctic shelf ice and climate experiment

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Impact of historic climate variation on Arctic sea ice

Establishing a better understanding of the long-term effect of global warming on the Arctic Ocean is of central importance to researchers and governments all over the world. The GREENICE project, which examined sediment cores from the Arctic seabed, revealed new data on the conditions which were present over the last two glacial - and interglacial cycles.


From an ice camp located near to Arctic Canada, scientists investigated the properties of sediment cores and the long-term climate variability. The Lomonosov Ridge, which faces the Lincoln sea, had not previously been explored. In this uncharted territory, the scientists studied the structure and dynamics of the sea ice cover. The sediment cores under examination were found to contain calcareous microfossils. The samples were examined and they were able to establish a reliable age of the area. The analysis brought to light new data on variable palaeo-oceanographic conditions of the Arctic over the last two million years BP (Before Present). The main finding was that the heavily ice covered area under study, actually underwent long periods of reduced ice in previous warm periods. This result is particularly significant for testing climate models of Arctic Ocean conditions in respect to global warming. These results have been published in peer-review scientific journals.

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