Abstract

The gravitational attraction of the massive Quaternary ice sheets caused the oceans to rise locally relative to the land. As the ice sheets melted and lost mass, the sea level fell in response to the reduced gravitational attraction. This gravitational effect alone could cause raised beaches to occur 85 m above present sea level in Hudson Bay, and it may be the cause of the apparently rapid rate of initial emergence reported in Greenland. If the immediate elastic uplift of the ground is considered, as well as direct gravitational attraction of ice on water, then, of the 135 m of uplift in West Greenland, 54 m may be due to these instantaneous effects. Therefore, the rigidity of the crust and viscosity of the upper mantle beneath Greenland may not be as different from the Earth structure beneath arctic Canada as was previously thought.

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