View Full Version : Oldest DNA ever recovered shows warmer planet: report

07-06-2007, 09:52 AM
Scientists who probed two kilometers (1.2 miles) through a Greenland glacier to recover the oldest plant DNA on record said Thursday the planet was far warmer hundreds of thousands of years ago than is generally believed.

DNA of trees, plants and insects including butterflies and spiders from beneath the southern Greenland glacier was estimated to date to 450,000 to 900,000 years ago, according to the remnants retrieved from this long-vanished boreal forest.

The samples suggest the temperature probably reached 10 degrees C (50 degrees Fahrenheit) in the summer and -17 C (1 F) in the 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 (9 F) higher than now, the glaciers on Greenland did not completely melt away.


07-06-2007, 10:58 AM
cool. but for any of those who decide to run with this in a global warming discussion, I would think the important than is the pace of temperature change, not if it was warmer or cooler way back when.