DWQA QuestionsCategory: Physical UniverseIs it true that ice ages are more the norm for Earth than the current temperate age?
Nicola Staff asked 4 months ago

In a sense, this is true if your basis of comparison and vantage point is during the current period of peak temperature being in an interglacial period. Once the turning point is reached, the temperature will be descending and it will take a while to surpass a kind of middle-range so as to become clearly on its way to another ice age and that will require a great length of time to reach a bottom and be on a kind of long plateau that slowly begins to change and rise once again, and the rise eventually will accelerate, leading to a kind of peak period of time when the temperatures are in this temperate range you speak of. So if you count the time where temperature is declining up to the time when it passes an arbitrary level beyond which significant warming is happening, there will be much more time forming and resolving a glacial period than the intervals of the peak temperature themselves.

So this is, to some degree, arbitrary distinctions so one can choose their own cutoff point for what is normal, what is high, and what is low by comparison. But, in general, this is a series of arcs that ascend to a peak then descend to a trough of a broad curving gentle nature and then once again moving up to a peak that will happen over a relatively short span of time, perhaps on the order 25,000 to 50,000 years, and then the interval in between will be more on the order of 100,000 when there is clearly a drop underway or a failure to regain prior moderate to high temperature zones.