Greenland – The World’s Northernmost Island

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Recently a group of scientists luckily discovered what they believe is the world’s northernmost island off Greenland’s coast.

They flew to place what they thought was Oodaaq Island, in July. It had been known by this name since 1978.

But later when they checked their position with the Danish official in charge of registering Arctic islands, they were 800m (2,625ft) further north.

And according to them, the 60X30m island is the closest point of land to the North Pole.

Greenland is a massive independent Arctic territory that belongs to Denmark.

The scientific leader Morten Rasch of the Arctic Station in Greenland, University of Copenhagen, told –

“The island was discovered during a Danish-Swiss research expedition, which I was co-ordinating,”

“We wanted among many other things to visit Oodaaq Island, which was previously known as the northernmost island.”

Mr Rasch said his team “wanted to sample the island to look for new species being adapted to a life in this very extreme environment”.

“We were six people in a small helicopter, and when we reached the position of Oodaaq Island, we could not find it,” he said, adding that maps were not very accurate in that part of the world.

“So, we just started to search for the island. After a few very exciting minutes, we landed on a strange unvegetated bunch of mud, moraine deposits and gravel surrounded by sea ice on all sides – not a very friendly place.

“After the expedition and many discussions with specialists on the topic, we have now realised that we by accident actually discovered the world’s most northerly island.”

He also said that it was “not a big deal” from a scientific point of view.

Furthermore, he added:

“But, from a personal perspective it is, of course, somehow funny to be among those six people ever on earth who have had muddy boots at the most northerly point in the world.”

Now the scientists want to name the island Qeqertaq Avannarleq, which means “the northernmost island” in Greenlandic.

Greenland has hit the headlines several times in recent years, with then-President Donald Trump suggesting in 2019 that the US could buy the territory.

Denmark quickly dismissed the idea as “absurd”, but international interest in Greenland’s future has continued.

 

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