Clim. Past Discuss., 6, 2593-2623, 2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in CP.
Deciphering the spatio-temporal complexity of climate change of the last deglaciation: a model analysis
D. M. Roche1,2, H. Renssen1, and D. Paillard2
1Section Climate Change and Landscape Dynamics, Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement (LSCE), UMR 8212 CEA/INSU-CNRS/UVSQ, Centre d'Etudes de Saclay, CEA-Orme des Merisiers, bat. 701, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France

Abstract. Understanding the sequence of events occuring during the last major glacial to interglacial transition (21 ka BP to 9 ka BP) is a challenging task that has the potential to unveil the mechanisms behind large scale climate changes. Though many studies have focused at a complex understanding of the sequence of rapid climatic change that accompanied or interrupted the deglaciation, few have analysed it in a more theoretical framework with simple forcings. In the following, we address when and where the first significant temperature anomalies appear when using slow varying forcing of the last deglaciation. We use here coupled transient simulations of the last deglaciation, including ocean, atmosphere and vegetation components to analyse the spatial timing of the deglaciation. To keep the analysis in a simple framework, we do not include rapid freshwater forcings that have led to rapid climate shifts during that time period. We aim to disentangle the direct and subsequent response of the climate system to slow forcing and moreover the location where those changes are more clearly expressed. In a data-modelling comparison perspective this could help understanding the physically plausible phasing between known forcings and recorded climatic changes. Our analysis of climate variability could also help to distinguish deglacial warming signals from internal climate variability. We thus are able to better pinpoint the onset of local deglaciation, as defined by the first significant local warming, and further show that there is a large regional variability associated with it, even with the set of slow forcings used here.

Citation: Roche, D. M., Renssen, H., and Paillard, D.: Deciphering the spatio-temporal complexity of climate change of the last deglaciation: a model analysis, Clim. Past Discuss., 6, 2593-2623, doi:10.5194/cpd-6-2593-2010, 2010.
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