Environmental impact of Norse occupation in Greenland
Project DescriptionChanging economies and patterns of trade, rather than climatic deterioration, could
have critically marginalized the Norse Greenland settlements and effectively sealed their fate.
Counter-intuitively, the end of Norse Greenland might not be symptomatic of a failure to adapt
to environmental change, but a consequence of successful wider economic developments of
Norse communities across North Atlantic. Data from Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and medieval
Iceland is used to explore the interplay of Norse society with climate, environment, settlement,
and other circumstances. Long term increases in vulnerability caused by economic change and
cumulative climate changes sparked a cascading collapse of integrated interdependent settlement systems, bringing the end of Norse Greenland.