Ilulissat Icefjord - A world heritage site

Edited by Ole Bennike, Naja Mikkelsen, Henrik Klinge Pedersen and Anker Weidick

The Inland Ice and the ice stream Sermeq Kujalleq that terminates in the interior of Kangia are celebrated natural phenomena that have attracted world-wide scientific interest since the first descriptions in the 18th century. The calving front of Sermeq Kujalleq is 5 km long. The extremely high velocity of 19 metres a day, makes it one of the world's fastest glaciers. It produces 35 cubic kilometres of ice a year and is responsible for one-tenth of the total production of icebergs from the Inland Ice. The icebergs fill the fjord Kangia, and vary in size from small blocks to giants of 1.5 cubic kilometres of ice or more. Really large icebergs are rare, but they can always be seen at the mouth of the icefjord, where they run aground on the threshold of Isfjeldsbanken.

The book on the Ilulissat Icefjord site was prepared by the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), and includes many contributions from relevant specialists. The book is a popular version of the nomination volume. The parties involved in the preparation of the original nomination report agreed to publication in book-form, in Greenlandic, Danish and English versions, of a volume that a wider range of readers can enjoy.

We hope that those who enjoy reading this book, and admire the varied and fascinating illustrations, will feel tempted to spend a few summer days at Sermermiut, from where the beauty of the icefjord can be properly appreciated.