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Out of the Ice

During the last glacial period vast areas of northern Europe and North America were covered in ice.  Over Scotland the peak of this occurred approximately 27 thousand years ago.  As global climate changed the ice melted back and Fife became ice free by around 17 thousand years ago.  Because of the weight of ice over Scotland during the glaciation the land under the ice was weighted down and so relative sea level was higher than today.  Gradually over time the land bounced back but at the same time sea levels also rose to form a complex geologic record of preserved shorelines and sediment sequences.

Researchers in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences are working to record the geologic patterns using an interdisciplinary approach of geophysical, geochemical, geologic and dating techniques.  The outcome will be a better understanding of the interplay between land and sea that will not only enable us to reconstruct the past but model the future coastal changes.