Holocene climatic instability: A prominent, widespread event 8200 yr ago

R. B. Alley, P. A. Mayewski, T. Sowers, M. Stuiver, K. C. Taylor, P. U. Clark

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Abstract

The most prominent Holocene climatic event in Greenland ice-core proxies, with approximately half the amplitude of the Younger Dryas, occurred ∼8000 to 8400 yr ago. This Holocene event affected regions well beyond the North Atlantic basin, as shown by synchronous increases in windblown chemical indicators together with a significant decrease in methane. Widespread proxy records from the tropics to the north polar regions show a short-lived cool, dry, or windy event of similar age. The spatial pattern of terrestrial and marine changes is similar to that of the Younger Dryas event, suggesting a role for North Atlantic thermohaline circulation. Possible forcings identified thus far for this Holocene event are small, consistent with recent model results indicating high sensitivity and strong linkages in the climatic system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)483-486
Number of pages4
JournalGeology
Volume25
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1997

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geology

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