Journal cover Journal topic
Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
doi:10.5194/cp-2017-7
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
02 Feb 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP).
A dual-biomarker approach for quantification of changes in relative humidity from sedimentary lipid D / H ratios
Oliver Rach1,2, Ansgar Kahmen3, Achim Brauer4, and Dirk Sachse1 1GFZ – German Research Centre for Geosciences, Section 5.1 Geomorphology, Organic Surface Geochemistry Lab, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam, Germany,
2Institute for Earth- and Environmental Science, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Strasse 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
3Department of Environmental Sciences-Botany, University of Basel, Schönbeinstrasse 6, CH-4056 Basel, Switzerland
4GFZ – German Research Centre for Geosciences, Section 5.2 Climate Dynamics and Landscape Evolution, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
Abstract. Past climatic change can be reconstructed from sedimentary archives by a number of proxies. However, few methods exist to directly estimate hydrological changes and even fewer result in quantitative data, impeding our understanding of the timing, magnitude and mechanisms of hydrological changes.

Here we present a novel approach based on δ2H values of sedimentary lipid biomarkers in combination with plant physiological modeling, to extract quantitative information on past changes in relative humidity. Our initial application to an annually laminated lacustrine sediment sequence from western Europe deposited during the Younger Dryas cold period revealed relative humidity changes of up to 15 % over sub-centennial timescales, leading to major ecosystem changes, in agreement with palynological data from the region. We show that by combining organic geochemical methods and mechanistic plant physiological models it is possible to extract quantitative ecohydrological parameters from sedimentary lipid biomarker δ2H data.


Citation: Rach, O., Kahmen, A., Brauer, A., and Sachse, D.: A dual-biomarker approach for quantification of changes in relative humidity from sedimentary lipid D / H ratios, Clim. Past Discuss., doi:10.5194/cp-2017-7, in review, 2017.
Oliver Rach et al.
Oliver Rach et al.
Oliver Rach et al.

Viewed

Total article views: 457 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)

HTML PDF XML Total BibTeX EndNote
348 72 37 457 2 37

Views and downloads (calculated since 02 Feb 2017)

Cumulative views and downloads (calculated since 02 Feb 2017)

Viewed (geographical distribution)

Total article views: 457 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)

Thereof 454 with geography defined and 3 with unknown origin.

Country # Views %
  • 1

Saved

Discussed

Latest update: 26 Apr 2017
Publications Copernicus
Download
Short summary
Currently, reconstructions of past changes in the hydrological cycle are usually qualitative, which is a major drawback for testing the accuracy of models predicting future responses. Here we present a proof-of-concept of a novel approach to derive quantitative paleohydrological data, i.e. changes in relative humidity, from lacustrine sediment archives, employing a combination of organic geochemical methods and plant physiological modelling.
Currently, reconstructions of past changes in the hydrological cycle are usually qualitative,...
Share