Skip to content

Iceland Glaciers In LIA Biggest For 8000 Years

February 23, 2014
tags: ,

By Paul Homewood


More evidence that the Little Ice Age marked the coldest point in the Arctic, since the Ice Age ended.

Researchers in 2010 found that glaciers in Iceland reached their Holocene maxima between 1300 and 1900AD. During the mid Holocene, about 6000 years ago, some of the present day ice caps were probably absent completely, before a gradual neoglaciation began.





Deglaciation and Holocene Glacial History of Iceland

By Ingolfsson et al.

Iceland was heavily glaciated at the Last Glacial Maximum – glaciers extended towards the shelf break. Ice thickness reached 1,500±500 m. The rapid deglaciation, starting 17.5–15.4 cal. kyr BP, was controlled by rising global sea level. The marine part of the ice sheet collapsed 15.4–14.6 cal. kyr BP and glaciers retreated inside the present coastline. In Younger Dryas, 12.6–12.0 cal. kyr BP, the ice sheet readvanced and terminated near the present coastline. After 11.2 cal. kyr BP the ice sheet retreated rapidly and relative sea level fell towards and eventually below present sea level at 10.7 cal. kyr BP. At 8.7 cal. kyr BP glaciers terminated proximal to their present margins. During the mid-Holocene climate optimum some of the present-day ice caps were probably absent. Ice caps expanded after 6.0–5.0 cal. kyr BP, and most glaciers reached their Holocene maxima during the Little Ice Age (AD 1300–1900).



This study backs up many other different studies, all coming to similar conclusions. See here.

It is evident that current Arctic conditions are not anomalous.

  1. David Eyles permalink
    February 23, 2014 5:50 pm

    Seems about right to me. Archeological evidence shows that Greenland Vikings started to decline markedly from about 1300. By 1500 they were extinct on Greenland.

  2. John F. Hultquist permalink
    February 23, 2014 11:53 pm

    ~~~ Don’t miss the USA is about to go cold again this week.

    I started this at your last post “ Whenever we hear about “Arctic ice melting”, it is always from a start point of 1979. Why should this be so, when we know …” – but my answer ballooned. Briefly, my answer is they did these things because they could. Now they get called out for such things.

    Let’s say a person familiar with past weather and related phenomena (ice, snow, storms, …) wanted to push the cAGW agenda in the late 1980s. Say, for example at the Senate hearing held by Timothy Wirth on 23 June 1988 (without air conditioners on). That would be high summer in humid Washington, D. C.

    This would be about the time that Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau were hatching what would become the World Wide Web.
    Presentations by senior researchers, major NGOs, and influential politicians would be covered by media organizations. However, there could not be informed or timely counter presentations made. For many people this was a time of nightly news on the TV and print media. Even now, the report you link to is available for a price of US$ 31.50 or by paying dues for the subscription. Such things back in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s would be almost unknown.

    Stephen McIntyre’s Ohio State paper was presented on May 16, 2008 and posted on-line a few days later. This is 20 years after the James Hansen presentation at the Wirth hearing. I was still using a dial-up POTS modem for reading news and doing simple e-mail. I got DSL in September of 2008. I was somewhat late – along with many others – learning of what the “climate scientists” had been up to. Can you imagine the WUWT Surface Station Project being done without the Web?

    The timing was amazingly good for cAGW activists. There appears to have been some warming from the late 1970s to about 1998-2000 (?) [hard to really know, isn’t it?]. By the time this “warming” stopped (paused) a gazillion dollar effort had made it a so called settled science. For people such as the Ehrlichs, Maurice Strong, John Kerry, James Hansen, John Holdren, Al Gore, and fellow travelers, there elitism easily fueled their religious attachment to the green-guilt global warming theme.

    Mother Nature has a sense of timing and humor. The WWW has allowed many (you included, Paul) to confront cAGW just as the temperature hiatus took hold. We don’t actually know if the future will bring cold and trouble or continued warmth. Regardless, cAGW and the green-guilt complex no longer has an open field.

  3. Andy DC permalink
    February 24, 2014 3:36 pm

    “Climate change” is obviously nothing new. Considering how much it has changed in the past, a case could be made that the last 100 years have been a time of unusual climate stability, that man has given earth a wonderful, protective blanket of CO2.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: