The last time the Canadian Arctic was as warm as it is today, our ancestors were only just beginning to migrate out of Africa.
A study published in Geophysical Research Papers suggests that recent temperatures in the region were unmatched during the last 120,000 years.
"Our results indicate that anthropogenic increases in greenhouse gases have led to unprecedented regional warmth," said University of Colorado at Boulder professor Gifford Miller, the lead author of the new paper.
Over three years, Miller and his colleagues collected dead clumps of moss that were left exposed by receding ice caps on Baffin Island, the largest island in Canada's Arctic Archipelago. They concluded that the oldest were last exposed to the elements at least 44,000 years ago -- but that they were probably far older than that. From the paper: