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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-20
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 27 Mar 2018

Research article | 27 Mar 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP).

Climate evolution across the Mid-Brunhes Transition

Aaron M. Barth1,2, Peter U. Clark1, Nicholas S. Bill1, Feng He1,3, and Nicklas G. Pisias1 Aaron M. Barth et al.
  • 1College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
  • 2Department of Geoscience, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA
  • 3Center for Climatic Research, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA

Abstract. The Mid-Brunhes Transition (MBT) began ∼430ka with an increase in the amplitude of the 100-kyr climate cycles of the past 800,000 years. The MBT has been identified in ice-core records, which indicate interglaciations became warmer with higher atmospheric CO2 levels after the MBT, and benthic oxygen isotope (δ18O) records, which suggest that post-MBT interglaciations had higher sea levels than pre-MBT interglaciations. It remains unclear, however, whether the MBT was a globally synchronous phenomenon that included other components of the climate system. Here we further characterize changes in the climate system across the MBT through statistical analyses of ice-core and δ18O records as well as sea-surface temperature, benthic carbon isotope, and dust accumulation records. Our results demonstrate that the MBT was a global event with a significant increase in climate variance in most components of the climate system assessed here. However, our results indicate that the onset of high-amplitude variability in temperature, atmospheric CO2, and sea level at ∼430ka was preceded by changes in the carbon cycle, ice sheets, and monsoon strength during MIS 14 and 13.

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Multiple components of the global climate system record a transition ∼ 430 ka from lower to higher amplitude glacial cycles. Statistical analyses of globally distributed climate proxies show that a sequence of events including persistent Asian summer monsoons, weak glaciation, and reorganization of water masses preceded the transition to higher interglacial values for temperature, atmospheric greenhouse gases, and sea level.
Multiple components of the global climate system record a transition ∼ 430 ka from lower to...
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