Detailed information on greenhouse gasses and a subtropical heat wave at the North Pole 55 million years ago is providing information about the Earths past as well as a portent for its future, according to reports in the June 1 issue of Nature.
An expedition to the Artic Ocean in 2004 by a team of scientists aboard a fleet of icebreakers collected samples by drilling into the floor of the ocean. The project was part of an international research effort, the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, which explores the Earths history and structure as recorded in seafloor sediments and rocks.
"Remains of ancient plant and animal life found in cylindrical core samples from the ocean floor have given us critical new information about the history of the Arctic Ocean and surrounding region," said Mark Pagani, assistant professor of geology and geophysics at Yale and a co-author on the study.
Janet Rettig Emanuel | EurekAlert!
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