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Abrupt climate warming in East Antarctica during the early Holocene

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Author: Cremer, H. · Heiri, O. · Wagner, B. · Wagner-Cremer, F.
Institution: TNO Bouw en Ondergrond
Source:Quaternary Science Reviews, 15-16, 26, 2012-2018
Identifier: 240125
Keywords: Geosciences · Biological materials · Glaciers · Lakes · Organic carbon · Sedimentation · Sediments · Glacial archives · Holocene · Sedimentation rate · Global warming · allochthon · climate change · climate conditions · dissolved organic carbon · Holocene · lacustrine deposit · organic carbon · sedimentation rate · spatiotemporal analysis · Amery Oasis · Antarctica · East Antarctica · Southern Ocean


We report a centennial-scale warming event between 8600 and 8400 cal BP from Amery Oasis, East Antarctica, that is documented by the geochemical record in a lacustrine sediment sequence. The organic carbon content, the C/S ratio, and the sedimentation rate in this core have distinctly elevated values around 8500 y ago reflecting relatively warm and ice-free conditions that led to well-ventilated conditions in the lake and considerable sedimentation of both autochthonous and allochthonous organic matter on the lake bottom. This abrupt warming event occurred concurrently with reported warm climatic conditions in the Southern Ocean while the climate in central East Antarctic remained cold. The comparison of the spatial and temporal variability of warm climatic periods documented in various terrestrial, marine, and glacial archives from East Antarctica elucidates the uniqueness of the centennial-scale warming event in the Amery Oasis. We also discuss a possible correlation of the Amery warming event with the abrupt climatic deterioration around 8200 cal BP on the Northern Hemisphere. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.