An ice age, or more precisely, a glacial age, is a period of long-term reduction in the temperature of the Earth's surface and atmosphere, resulting in the presence or expansion of continental ice sheets, polar ice sheets and alpine glaciers. Within a long-term ice age, individual pulses of cold climate are termed "glacial periods" (or alternatively "glacials" or "glaciations" or colloquially as "ice age"), and intermittent warm periods are called "interglacials". Glaciologically, ice age implies the presence of extensive ice sheets in the northern and southern hemispheres. By this definition, we are still in the ice age that began 2.6 million years ago at the start of the Pleistocene epoch, because the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets still exist.
Read more about Ice Age: Origin of Ice Age Theory, Evidence For Ice Ages, Major Ice Ages, Glacials and Interglacials, Positive and Negative Feedbacks in Glacial Periods, Causes of Ice Ages, Recent Glacial and Interglacial Phases, Effects of Glaciation
Famous quotes containing the words ice and/or age:
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