Multi-proxy speleothem record of climate instability during the early last interglacial in southern Turkey

Peter Rowe, Leretta Wickens, Diana Sahy, Alina Marca, Emily Peckover, Steve Noble, Mehemet Ozkul, M. O. Baykara, I. L. Millar, Julian Andrews

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Abstract

A stalagmite from Dim Cave in southern Turkey contains a climate record documenting rapid and significant changes in amounts of precipitation between similar to 132 ka and similar to 128 ka, during the penultimate glacial - interglacial transition. Some U-Th dates have been compromised by carbonate dissolution but rigorous selection and tuning to delta O-18 records from other speleothems has generated a robust age model. Growth rate was initially very slow but a rapid increase at similar to 129 ka was accompanied by strong negative trends in delta O-18 and delta C-13, a combination implying the onset of much wetter conditions. Isotopic values at similar to 129 ka suggest that groundwater recharge rates and biogenic activity in the soil zone exceeded those of the early Holocene. A significant isotopic enrichment event at similar to 128 ka, during which there was alternating aragonite and calcite deposition, documents a strong drying event with a duration of similar to 200 years. A concurrent decrease in Sr-87/Sr-86 ratios indicates increased groundwater residence times and the cumulative evidence suggests amounts of rainfall fell from well above to slightly below present-day levels. Similar delta O-18 enrichment events are present in coeval speleothem records from southwest France and the Northern Alps, and these, together with pollen evidence from Italy, Greece and the Iberian margin of drier conditions at this time, imply that a climate anomaly extended across the northern Mediterranean borderlands. The timing, duration and structure of this episode are consistent with marine evidence of strong North Atlantic cooling early in the last interglacial and there is a resemblance to the Holocene 8.2 ka event recorded globally in many proxy-climate archives.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109422
Number of pages19
JournalPalaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology
Volume538
Early online date29 Nov 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2020

Keywords

  • ATMOSPHERIC CIRCULATION
  • Aragonite
  • CASPIAN PATTERN NCP
  • Climate anomaly
  • EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN REGION
  • ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROLS
  • HIGH-RESOLUTION RECORD
  • LATE PLEISTOCENE
  • Mediterranean
  • OXYGEN-ISOTOPE FRACTIONATION
  • SYNTHETIC ARAGONITE
  • Stable isotopes
  • Stalagmite Termination II
  • TRACE-ELEMENT
  • YOUNGER DRYAS
  • Termination II
  • Stalagmite

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