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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-93
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 26 Jul 2018

Research article | 26 Jul 2018

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

Planktic foraminifera and structure of surface water masses at the SW Svalbard margin in relation to climate changes during the last 2000 years

Katarzyna Zamelczyk1, Tine Lander Rasmussen1, Markus Raitzsch2, and Melissa Chierici3 Katarzyna Zamelczyk et al.
  • 1Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate, Department of Geoscience, UiT – The Arctic University of Norway, 9037 Tromsø, Norway
  • 2MARUM – Zentrum für Marine Umweltwissenschaften, Universität Bremen, Leobener Str., 28359 Bremen, Germany
  • 3Institute of Marine Research, Box 6404, 9294 Tromsø, Norway

Abstract. We present a high-resolution record of properties in the subsurface (250–100m), near surface (100–30m) and surface (30–0m) water masses at the SW Svalbard margin in relation to climate changes during the last 2000 years. The study is based on planktic foraminiferal proxies including the distribution patterns of planktic foraminiferal faunas, δ18O and δ13C values measured on Neogloboquadrina pachyderma, Turborotalita quinqueloba, and Globigerinita uvula, Mg/Ca-, δ18O- and transfer function-based sea surface temperatures, mean shell weights and other geochemical and sedimentological data. We compared paleo-data with modern planktic foraminiferal fauna distributions and the carbonate chemistry of the surface ocean. The results showed that cold sea surface conditions prevailed at ~400–800AD and ~1400–1950AD are associated with the local expression of the Dark Ages Cold Period and Little Ice Age, respectively. Warm sea surface conditions occurred at ~21–400AD, ~800–1400AD and from ~1950AD until present and are linked to the second half of the Roman Warm Period, Medieval Warm Period and recent warming, respectively. On the centennial to multi-centennial time scale, sea surface conditions seem to be governed by the inflow of Atlantic water masses (subsurface and surface) and the presence of sea-ice and the variability of sea-ice margin (near surface water masses). However, the close correlation of sea surface temperature recorded by planktic foraminifera with total solar irradiance implies that solar activity could have exerted a dominant influence on the sea surface conditions on the decadal to multidecadal time scale.

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Short summary
We present 2000 years record of properties in the subsurface, near surface and surface water masses SW off Svalbard in relation to climate changes. Planktic foraminifera and their related proxies show warm Roman and Medieval periods and cold Dark and Little Ice Ages. Close correlation of sea surface temperatures recorded by planktic foraminifera with total solar irradiance implies solar activity as a dominant factor influencing sea surface conditions on the decadal-multidecadal time scale.
We present 2000 years record of properties in the subsurface, near surface and surface water...
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