Coupling of CO2 and Ice Sheet Stability Over Major Climate Transitions of the Last 20 Million Years

Tripati, A. K. and Roberts, C. D. and Eagle, R. A. (2009) Coupling of CO2 and Ice Sheet Stability Over Major Climate Transitions of the Last 20 Million Years. Science. DOI doi:0.1126/science.1178296

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Abstract

The CO2 content of the atmosphere has varied cyclically between ~180 and ~280 ppmv over the last 800,000 years, closely coupled with temperature and sea level. For earlier periods in Earth’s history, pCO2 is much less certain and the relationship between pCO2 and climate remains poorly constrained. We use boron/calcium ratios in foraminifera to estimate pCO2 during major climate transitions of the last 20 million years (myr). During the Middle Miocene, when temperatures were ~3 to 6°C warmer and sea level 25 to 40 meters higher than present, pCO2 was similar to modern levels. Decreases in pCO2 were synchronous with major episodes of glacial expansion during the Middle Miocene (~14 to 10 million years ago; Ma) and Late Pliocene (~3.3 to -2.4 Ma).

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 09AREP; IA58;
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Divisions: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Journal or Publication Title: Science
Identification Number: doi:0.1126/science.1178296
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2009 15:59
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 09:55
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/1185

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