Viking bones and DNA will decay quickly as Greenland thaws


Viking settlers abandoned Greenland some 600 years ago. But the frozen ground has preserved centuries of the seafarers’ hardy existence on the western shores of the remote landmass, including bones and DNA. 

The Vikings, though, didn’t first step foot on Greenland. The Saqqaq people arrived there first, around 3,800 years before the Vikings, as did other nomadic peoples. Yet now, all of their culturally invaluable organic remains are under threat from amplified Arctic warming — the fastest changing region on Earth

Archaeologists, geochemists, and climate scientists traveled to Greenland and collected soil samples from seven archaeological areas to determine how vulnerable the sites are to warming. Their research, published Thursday in the journal Scientific Reports, found these organic archaeological remains (also known as organic carbon) will accelerate their decay as they become exposed to increasingly warmer climes and hungry microorganisms. Read more…

More about Global Warming, Climate Change, Archaeology, Vikings, and Greenland
Source: mashable
Viking bones and DNA will decay quickly as Greenland thaws