Greenland Ice Cap dynamics

Don Aitkin posted a comment on the melting of the Greenland ice cap here and mentioned the case of some WWII fighter planes having to make an emergency landing after running out of fuel etc due to severe weather. The planes were 3 miles from where they landed, and buried under 82 metres of ice over a period of 48 years.

Let’s make it 50 years to round things off and 3 miles becomes 5 km (also rounded off). Ice accumulation is 1.7 metres per year.

Empirically this suggests the Greenland ice cap, with a maximum thickness of some 3 km, only took 1,765 years to form, everything else being equal. The current estimate of the is 110,000 years from isotope data. And if we use the generally accepted thickness of more than 2km, then it’s about 1,176 years old.

Which age does one accept?

Why is Greenland called Greenland when it is obviously a whiteland.

About Louis Hissink

Retired diamond exploration geologist. I spent my professional life looking for mineral deposits, found some, and also located a number of kimberlites in NSW and Western Australia. Exploration geology is the closest one can get to practicing the scientific method, mineral exploration always being concerned with finding anomalous geophysical or geochemical data, framing a model and explanation for the anomaly and then testing it with drilling or excavation. All scientific theories are ultimately false since they invariably involved explaining something with incomplete extant knowledge. Since no one is omniscient or knows everything, so too scientific theories which are solely limited to existing knowledge. Because the future always yields new data, scientific theories must change to be compatible with the new data. Thus a true scientist is never in love with any particular theory, always knowing that when the facts change, so too must he/she change their minds.
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11 Responses to Greenland Ice Cap dynamics

  1. Pingback: Climate Schizophrenia | Louis Hissink's Crazy World

  2. fabio says:

    BTW, there is a Brazilian astrologist who said that Brazil, the 3 Guyanas and Greenland are placed in the Aquarium meridianum area, so “cosmic forces” will inexorably turn climate better in these regions. Well, this is clearly not a scientific assumption, but indeed it is curious. And, what about Iceland? Icelanders claims that the island was covered by forests when vikings arrived.

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    • Fabio, Iceland – have you any references detailing the Iceland forest story? I wonder what Greenland was at the time – maybe also forest covered. More googling !

      The Brazilian reference is of course interesting and as you say curious.

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      • fabio says:

        I listen about Iceland early times forests from a tourist guider when I was there in 2008. At that moment I doubted and asked more about but she hadn’t more information. Well, Iceland is a very developed country but they still believe in dwarfs.
        More “astrologistic curiosities” (I don’t believe, but it is curious): Aquarium rules the space conquest (like the precedent Era, Pisces, rules the sea conquest, made by the Atlantic European nations), then it would be the reason why Brazilian aerospace industry goes well and French Guyana has the Kourou basis (it could be placed in another Equatorial region, like Africa or Pacific). And Florida is the American space state (where would be located the Youth Well – an Aquarian symbolism -, searched by Ponce de Leon – and Leo is in complementary to Aquarium)…

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  3. I found some references using Google about Iceland and adds new information concerning the effect of sheep introduced to land they were not previously on. Same happened in Australia, though not the destruction of the forests and which I will detail on a new post. Astrologistic curiosities – I see now what you mean – thank you 🙂

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  4. fabio says:

    The Brazilian astrologist is Antonio Facciollo Neto and he claims Theodor Landscheidt’s theory where solar activity is related to the motions of the Sun around the barycenter of the solar system.

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    • This is the problem – trying to explain everything in terms of gravity and hence solar activity as the consequence of moving and rearranging billiard-balls in a vacuum, and then adding electro-magnetic effects as minor corrections to the barycentric model. It’s the barycentric model that is the problem.

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  5. William McQuiddy says:

    Was your date about the time the Vikings occupied it, and named it Greenland?

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    • The origin of the term ‘Greenland’ needs to be pinned down – did the Vikings name it as such, or was it already known to them as Greenland? Tim Cullen at Malaga Bay has inferred the Greenland ice mass to ~ 950 AD/CE. If so then the catastrophe that was caused by the Comet of Justinian and which terminated the Roman Empire, and probably also the catastrophe described by Bailley in his 6th century comet catastrophe from tree-ring data, would have resulted in many peoples finding themselves in new climates from a careening of the earth around its axis, so that Greenland, being forested, might have been in temperate latitudes and the mediterranean towards more equatorial latitudes (hence the Roman Warm period). I always wondered why Romans and Etruscans are almost always depicted wearing loose fitting, scanty clothing – and same for the egyptians who are depicted wearing loin cloths etc.

      And if Greenland was named Greenland because it was green and luxuriant, then why was the Mediterranean called mediterranean? Middle of the earth? An allusion to its equatorial location?

      And all these musings depend on whether the translators of those early records got it right as well, and then one must instead look at the physical stratigraphy and ignore the literature for most part as accurate.

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  6. fabio says:

    The famous Greenlander anthropologist Rasmussen found in the 30′ archaeological evidences of a culture more old then the inuit and the norse (BTW, it is not politically correct to say, but at least in the southern part of the island, the norses arrived first than inuits). And Hermann Wirth in “Der Aufgang der Menscheit” (he was defeated from Ahnenerbe because he was honest) claims about an ancient Nordic culture in the island.
    What you said about clothing it is valid also for the Chibcha from Colombia: San Augustin now is several meters above the sea level and cold, but its statues figurate people with few clothes. I red this in the books of Aurelio Medeiros Guimarães de Abreu, a deceased Brazilian archaeologist who was an enthusiast of Velikowsky (and wrote about him).

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  7. Ian MacCulloch says:

    There is a key paper on microbiology from Dye 3, Greenland Ice Core, that backs up the fact that there were conifer based forests about 130,000 years BP with extensions back some 800,000 years though this extended period is queried by the authors in their paper – and the reference is Ancient Biomolecules from Deep Ice Cores Reveal a Forested Southern Greenland., Eske Willerslev et al, Science. 2007 July 6; 317(5834): 111–114. doi:10.1126/science.1141758

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