Greenland was once … well .. Green!!

Last updated on Jul 7, 2007

Posted on Jul 7, 2007

So, there was some Truth (albeit Pre-Historic) to Greenland’s name after all!  It was not always this cold.  Earth has gone from hot to cold and back again.. and it will keep going back and forth all the while.

An international team of researchers recovered ancient DNA from the bottom of an ice core that indicates the presence of pine, yew and alder trees as well as insects.The researchers, led by Eske Willerslev of the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, say the findings are the first direct proof that there was forest in southern Greenland. Included were genetic traces of butterflies, moths, flies and beetles, they said. The material was recovered from cores drilled through ice 2 kilometres thick at a site called Dye 3 in south central Greenland. Ice cores from another site farther north, 3 kilometres deep, did not yield any DNA.Experts who recovered the oldest plant DNA on record said the planet was far warmer hundreds of thousands of years ago than is believed. The samples suggest the temperature probably reached 10 degrees Celcius in the summer and -17 C in the winter.
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