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Greenland's Ice Yields New Information About Climate Shifts

When a group of scientists led by UVM’s Paul Bierman started studying a sample of ice taken from the very bottom of Greenland’s ice sheet, they expected to find a mix of ice and dirt or rock. But what they discovered surprised them. It revealed a landscape very unlike what everyone had envisioned, and changes our understanding of what’s been happening to Greenland’s ice over the last several million years.

Paul Bierman is a professor of geology at the University of Vermont. What his team discovered about the landscape of Greenland suggests that the ice sheet that covers that country has not melted and reformed and melted and reformed over millennia, but has most likely stayed frozen through multiple climate shifts.

The publication of his team’s findings in the journal Science has created quite a stir. Bierman spoke with Vermont Edition about the research.