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Decadally Resolved Lateglacial Radiocarbon Evidence from New Zealand Kauri

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 October 2016

Alan Hogg*
Waikato Radiocarbon Laboratory, University of Waikato, Private Bag 3105, Hamilton, New Zealand
John Southon*
Department of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697-3100, USA
Chris Turney
Climate Change Research Centre, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Australia
Jonathan Palmer
Climate Change Research Centre, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Australia
Christopher Bronk Ramsey
Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art, University of Oxford, Dyson Perrins Building, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3QY, UK
Pavla Fenwick
Gondwana Tree-Ring Laboratory, P.O. Box 14, Little River, Canterbury 7546, New Zealand
Gretel Boswijk
School of Environment, University of Auckland, New Zealand
Ulf Büntgen
Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, Zürcherstrasse 111, 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland
Michael Friedrich
Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Heidelberg, INF 229, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany Institute of Botany, Hohenheim University, D-70593 Stuttgart, Germany
Gerhard Helle
GFZ German Research Centre for GeoSciences, Dendrochronology Laboratory, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
Konrad Hughen
Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, MA 02543, USA
Richard Jones
Department of Geography, Exeter University, Devon, EX4 4RJ, UK
Bernd Kromer
Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Heidelberg, INF 229, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany
Alexandra Noronha
Department of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697-3100, USA
Frederick Reinig
Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, Zürcherstrasse 111, 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland
Linda Reynard
Department of Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, Divinity Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138USA
Richard Staff
Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art, University of Oxford, Dyson Perrins Building, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3QY, UK
Lukas Wacker
Laboratory of Ion Beam Physics, HPK, H29, Otto-Stern-Weg 5, CH-8093 Zürich, Switzerland
*Corresponding authors. Email:;
*Corresponding authors. Email:;


The Last Glacial–Interglacial Transition (LGIT; 15,000–11,000 cal BP) was characterized by complex spatiotemporal patterns of climate change, with numerous studies requiring accurate chronological control to decipher leads from lags in global paleoclimatic, paleoenvironmental, and archaeological records. However, close scrutiny of the few available tree-ring chronologies and radiocarbon-dated sequences composing the IntCal13 14C calibration curve indicates significant weakness in 14C calibration across key periods of the LGIT. Here, we present a decadally resolved atmospheric 14C record derived from New Zealand kauri spanning the Lateglacial from ~13,100–11,365 cal BP. Two floating kauri 14C time series, curve-matched to IntCal13, serve as a 14C backbone through the Younger Dryas. The floating Northern Hemisphere (NH) 14C data sets derived from the YD-B and Central European Lateglacial Master tree-ring series are matched against the new kauri data, forming a robust NH 14C time series to ~14,200 cal BP. Our results show that IntCal13 is questionable from ~12,200–11,900 cal BP and the ~10,400 BP 14C plateau is approximately 5 decades too short. The new kauri record and repositioned NH pine 14C series offer a refinement of the international 14C calibration curves IntCal13 and SHCal13, providing increased confidence in the correlation of global paleorecords.

Research Article
© 2016 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona 

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