Collapse - Chapter 8: Norse Greenland’s End Summary & Analysis

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Summary

When Norse settlers first arrived in Greenland things were favorable. The land was pristine having never been touched and the weather was mild. No Native Americans were there to challenge them. Sea lanes were open and without icebergs allowing trade to flow freely between Greenland and Europe. Those early advantages turned against the Norse. Climate change, European’s changing trade demands and the appearance of the Inuit and the Norse settlers’ reaction to them would all prove to bring them down.

The Norse damaged their environment by destroying natural vegetation, causing erosion and cutting turf. Trees were cut down to create pasture land. Livestock grazing on the decimated woodland prevented it from recovering. They exhausted the timber supply that was needed for buildings, boats and implements. Wood was also needed to heat homes, cook food and pasteurize containers used for...

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This section contains 1,012 words
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Buy the Collapse Study Guide
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