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Journal Articles Quaternary Science Reviews Year : 2009

Evidence from wavelet analysis for a mid-Holocene transition in global climate forcing


A strong mid-Holocene transition has been identified by wavelet analyses in several sea ice cover records from the circum-Antarctic area, ice core records (Taylor dome, Byrd) and tropical marine records. The results are compared with those previously published in a synthesis of North Atlantic records and with 4 new records from the Norwegian and Icelandic seas and from a coastal site in Ireland. These new records confirm the previous pattern for the North Atlantic area, extend this pattern nearly to the Arctic Circle, and include a continental record. We further tested the possibility of extending this scheme using continental records from South America. The Holocene pattern proposed here confirms the importance of external forcing during the Early Holocene (solar activity: 1000 years cyclicity and 2500 years during the entire Holocene), even if the signal is disturbed by meltwater fluxes. The second part of the Holocene is then marked by the gradual appearance of internal forcing (thermohaline circulation around 1500 years), associated with a stabilisation of the signal. Coupling between ocean and atmosphere seems to play a fundamental role in the observed frequencies which vary accordingly in the Atlantic, circum-Antarctic and Pacific areas. The North Atlantic area seems to be the instigator of thermohaline circulation as shown by its sensitivity to meltwater discharges during the Early Holocene, even though each sector is independent with regards to its frequency content (around 1600 years for Atlantic Area; around 1250 years for Antarctica). The Holocene methane pattern, still under debate [Ruddiman, W.F., 2003a. Orbital insolation, ice volume and greenhouse gases. Quaternary Science Review 22, 1597-1629; Ruddiman, W.F., 2003b. The anthropogenic greenhouse era began thousands of years ago. Climatic Change 61, 261-293], could be explained by a more efficient thermohaline circulation around the mid-Holocene with an anthropogenic effect initiated at not, vert, similar2500 BP as shown by the inter-hemispheric gradient.
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insu-00442817 , version 1 (24-12-2009)



Maxime Debret, David Sebag, Xavier Costra, Nicolas Massei, Jean-Robert Petit, et al.. Evidence from wavelet analysis for a mid-Holocene transition in global climate forcing. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2009, 28 (25-26), pp.2675-2688. ⟨10.1016/j.quascirev.2009.06.005⟩. ⟨insu-00442817⟩
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