The Northern Artic


(Made for National Geographic Magazien, Geographica May 2005 issue,

article about the resluts of the Arctic Coring Expedition, ACEX)

The Earth at present

With the global warming one might think: how will Earth look in about 10,000 years. Look at the other images on this page: Earth was colder and much warmer through the past 50 million years.

Earth 10.000 years ago

During hte last ice age most of the northern regions were frozen and covered with glaciers and snow.

Earth Miocene period
(14 milion years ago)

After the Eoceen the ice was taking over in the northern regions.

Earth Eocene

The northern ocean may have looked like a giant fresh water pound, choked with waterweed. Microscopic fossils in sediments tell us that today.

DARWIN Azolla Project 

During the Arctic Coring Expedition (ACEX) 302 of the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) unique central Arctic drill cores have been recovered from the Lomonosov Ridge  (Backman et al., 2006; Brinkhuis et al., 2006). Preliminary analyses of the laminated sediments has shown that enormous quantities of the free floating, freshwater fern Azolla grew and reproduced in situ in the mid Eocene (~48,5 Ma) Arctic Ocean for a period of at least 800 kyrs. Additional cores taken during commercial coring in the Arctic Basin and in the adjacent Nordic Seas have also been reported to contain huge amounts of Azolla remains (Brinkhuis et al., 2006).

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