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New evidence reveals Arctic summers, now hotter for 115,000 years – Xinhua

NEW YORK, Jan 27 (Xinhua) – Researchers have discovered in detail that the Arctic is experiencing the hottest temperatures in 115,000 years, according to new findings published in a recent scientific report.

Published in the scientific journal Nature Communications, the report, entitled "Canada's Fast Arctic Glaciers Reveals Continually Ice-Covered Landscapes for Over 40,000 Years," has shown that summers in the Canadian Arctic desert have not had mild temperatures for at least 115,000 years.

To reach this conclusion, researchers have studied geographic anomalies and ancient ice on Baffin Island, Canada, especially in ice chapels and deep fjords, according to the news site.

The glacial caps, unlike the glaciers, do not move and the material lying on the ground is preserved while the cap remains in place.

For centuries, ice had occupied the plateaus and walls of Baffin Island. In some summers, there would be a thaw, but in general the low temperatures and the snow kept things in balance.

Now, climate change has disrupted that balance, causing the Arctic to warm up at twice the rate of the rest of the world. This led to more summer melting, which exposed moss and lichen on the banks of the polar caps.

Simon Pendleton is the lead author of the report and researcher at the Arctic and Alpine Research Institute at the University of Colorado. He and his team crossed their findings with various sources, including measurements of nearby Greenland ice, and found that today's Arctic summer is now warmer than anytime in 115,000-120,000 years, according to .

"Our last century of heat will probably be greater than a few centuries in the last 120,000 years," Pendleton said.

As ice caps thinner, scientists can expose even older landscapes. By refining their measurements, they can predict how the Arctic will look, as climate change continues to reshape it.

Pendleton said that even without radiocarbon dating, a technique used to date materials such as carbon, it is clear how quickly Baffin Island is shifting to a new state. Each year, the changes become more visible to the naked eye.

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