By studying Greenland’s prehistoric environment, the researchers hope to learn more about how the island responds to climate change.
In particular, scientists want to know how much of the ice could melt in the future and how quickly.
Dr Christ said: “Our study shows that Greenland is much more sensitive to natural climate warming than we used to think – and we already know that humanity’s out-of-control warming of the planet hugely exceeds the natural rate.”
The researchers believe their findings provide some of the best evidence to date that Greenland is much more susceptible to climate change than previously thought.
Paul Bierman, a geoscientist at UVM, said: “This is not a 20 generation problem. This is an urgent problem for the next 50 years.”