The Journal Gazette
 
 
Monday, August 30, 2021 1:00 am

By mistake, researchers discover new Arctic isle

Associated Press

HELSINKI – A team of Arctic researchers from Denmark say they accidentally discovered what they believe is the world's northernmost island located off Greenland's coast.

The scientists from the University of Copenhagen initially thought they had arrived at Oodaaq, an island discovered by a Danish survey team in 1978, to collect samples during an expedition that was conducted in July.

They instead wound up on an undiscovered island farther north.

“We were convinced that the island we were standing on was Oodaaq, which until then was registered as the world's northernmost island,” said expedition leader Morten Rasch of the university's department of geosciences and natural resource management.

“But when I posted photos of the island and its coordinates on social media, a number of American island hunters went crazy and said that it couldn't be true,” he said in a statement on Friday.

“Island hunters” are known as adventurers whose hobby it is to search for unknown islands.

The yet-to-be-named island is about 850 yards north of Oodaaq, an island off Cape Morris Jesup, the northernmost point of Greenland and one of the most northerly points of land on Earth.

The tiny island, apparently discovered as a result of shifting pack ice, is about 100 by 200 feet in size and rises to about 10 to 13 feet above sea level, the university said.

The research team reportedly doesn't consider the discovery to be a result of climate change and has proposed naming the island Qeqertaq Avannarleq, which means “the northernmost island” in Greenlandic.


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