To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
The oxygen-isotope record from fossil foraminifera in deep-sea sediments is commonly used as a proxy for global ice volume. The linkage between δ18O and ice volume, however, is probably nonlinear. We have developed a simple numerical model of the isotopic response of the oceans to ice-volume change. The major features it simulates are (1) the changing mean isotopic composition of snow as a function of ice volume (colder snow temperatures forced by climate change and higher-elevation accumulation areas imply more negative mean δ18O); (2) the nonequilibrium isotopic composition of ice sheets (the past history of an ice sheet is integrated into its mean isotopic composition, which introduces a lag of isotopic “ice volume,” i.e., the measured δ18O record, scaled to ice-volume units, behind true ice volume); (3) selective preservation of isotopically more negative (colder, higher-latitude) ice (this geographic effect can selectively amplify or dampen the isotopic response to the ice-volume signal). We illustrate the response of our model to simple hypothetical ice-volume transitions of ice growth and ice decay. Sensitivity tests are illustrated for all model parameters. The results suggest that oxygen-isotope records reproduce the general patterns of ice-volume change fairly accurately. The foraminiferal isotope record, however, may misrepresent the true amplitude of the ice-volume signal and lag true ice volume by 1000 to 3000 yr.
A well-dated δ18O record in a stalagmite from a cave in the Klamath Mountains, Oregon, with a sampling interval of 50 yr, indicates that the climate of this region cooled essentially synchronously with Younger Dryas climate change elsewhere in the Northern Hemisphere. The δ18O record also indicates significant century-scale temperature variability during the early Holocene. The δ13C record suggests increasing biomass over the cave through the last deglaciation, with century-scale variability but with little detectable response of vegetation to Younger Dryas cooling.
The final effort of the CLIMAP project was a study of the last interglaciation, a time of minimum ice volume some 122,000 yr ago coincident with the Substage 5e oxygen isotopic minimum. Based on detailed oxygen isotope analyses and biotic census counts in 52 cores across the world ocean, last interglacial sea-surface temperatures (SST) were compared with those today. There are small SST departures in the mid-latitude North Atlantic (warmer) and the Gulf of Mexico (cooler). The eastern boundary currents of the South Atlantic and Pacific oceans are marked by large SST anomalies in individual cores, but their interpretations are precluded by no-analog problems and by discordancies among estimates from different biotic groups. In general, the last interglacial ocean was not significantly different from the modern ocean. The relative sequencing of ice decay versus oceanic warming on the Stage 6/5 oxygen isotopic transition and of ice growth versus oceanic cooling on the Stage 5e/5d transition was also studied. In most of the Southern Hemisphere, the oceanic response marked by the biotic census counts preceded (led) the global ice-volume response marked by the oxygen-isotope signal by several thousand years. The reverse pattern is evident in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, where the oceanic response lagged that of global ice volume by several thousand years. As a result, the very warm temperatures associated with the last interglaciation were regionally diachronous by several thousand years. These regional lead-lag relationships agree with those observed on other transitions and in long-term phase relationships; they cannot be explained simply as artifacts of bioturbational translations of the original signals.
Study of the eolian fraction of late Quaternary sediments from the tropical Atlantic reveals that two modes of long-term climate variability have existed in tropical Africa during the last 150,000 yr. Tropical northwest Africa (i.e., the southwestern Sahara and Sahel) was driest during glaciations and stades, but wetter than at present during interglaciations and interstades. This may be a response to ice sheets at higher latitudes, via equatorward displacement of the westerlies and the subtropical high. In contrast, central equatorial Africa (southeast of the Sahara) was most arid during interstades and times of ice growth, and most humid during deglaciation. Wet periods in this area correspond to insolation maxima in northern hemisphere summer. A 23,000-yr precessional rhythm is suggested, supporting a direct link between African Monsoon intensity and orbitally modulated insolation. The late Holocene is the only time observed when both areas are arid during an interglacial episode. This may reflect, in part, anthropogenic disturbance of late Holocene climates.
Terrigenous sediments from Ceara Rise in the western tropical Atlantic Ocean record Pleistocene Amazon Basin climate variability. Iron oxides and oxyhydroxides in this region originate mainly from chemically leached Amazon lowland soils. Concentrations of goethite and hematite in the terrigenous fraction consistently peak during transitions from glacial to interglacial periods, suggesting an increased proportion of erosive products derived from the Amazon lowlands compared to the physically weathered highlands. Lowland Amazon Basin precipitation changes, monitored by the percentage of goethite relative to total iron oxides, lead ice age extremes with maximum aridity during ice growth and maximum precipitation during ice melt. Rapid climate changes over the Amazon Basin may reflect shifts in the position of the Intertropical Convergence Zone forced by northern hemisphere insolation at precessional (1/23,000 yr−1) and obliquity (1/41,000 yr−1) frequencies. Variance in the orbital eccentricity bands (1/100,000 and 1/413,000 yr−1) may be explained by nonlinear amplification of insolation forcing at precessional frequencies. The early response of Amazon precipitation to insolation, ahead of high-latitude ice volume (δ18O) at all orbital frequencies, suggests that tropical aridity is part of the chain of events leading to ice ages, rather than a response to glacier oscillations.
Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this to your organisation's collection.