Total days en route

32


Distance covered:

580 km

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Greenland

project Inland Ice - general

Greenland (Greenlandic: Kalaallit Nunaat, meaning "Land of the Kalaallit” (Greenlanders) is a self-governed Danish territory located between the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans. Greenland's Head of State is the Danish Monarch, who’s government in Denmark appoints a Rigsombudsmand (High commissioner) representing the Danish government and monarchy. Greenland has an elected parliament and the head of government is the Prime Minister. Unlike Denmark, Greenland is not part of the European Union.

About 81% of its surface is covered by ice, known as the Greenland ice sheet, the weight of which has depressed the central land area to form a basin lying more than 300 m below the surrounding ocean. Approximately one-twentieth of the world's ice and one-quarter of the earth's surface ice is found in Greenland. If the Greenland ice sheet were to completely melt away, sea levels would rise more than 7 m (23 ft)[3] and Greenland would most likely become an archipelago. In 2007, the existence of a 'new' island was announced. Named Warming Island (Inuit:Uunartoq Qeqertoq), this island has always been present off the coast of Greenland, but was covered by an ice sheet. This ice sheet by 2007 had completely melted away, leaving the exposed island.

At least four scientific expedition stations and camps have been established in the ice-covered central part of Greenland. Climate researchers drilled into the summit of Greenland's ice sheet, obtaining a pair of two-mile (3.2 km) long ice cores. Analysis of the cores has provided a revolutionary record of climate change in the Northern Hemisphere going back about 100,000 years and illustrated that the world's weather and temperature have often shifted rapidly with worldwide consequences.

project Inland Ice - general

The glaciers of Greenland are also contributing to global sea level rise at a faster rate than was previously believed. In 2006, researchers reported that Greenland's glaciers are melting twice as fast as five years ago, with an estimated annual loss of 216 km³/yr. Between 1991 and 2004, monitoring of the weather at one location found that the average winter temperature had risen almost 6°C. Other research has shown that higher snowfalls caused the ice cap to thicken by 6 cm/yr between 1994 and 2005.

Scientists who probed two kilometers through a Greenland glacier to recover the oldest plant DNA on record said in the july 2007 issue of Science the planet was far warmer 450,000 to 900,000 years ago than is generally believed. Their data suggest the temperature probably reached 10 °C in summer and -17 °C in winter. They also indicated that during the last period between ice ages, 116,000-130,000 years ago, when temperatures were on average 5 °C higher than now, the glaciers on Greenland did not completely melt away.