Abrupt Climate Change and Extinction Events in Earth History

  title={Abrupt Climate Change and Extinction Events in Earth History},
  author={Thomas J. Crowley and Gerald R. North},
  pages={1002 - 996}
Slowly changing boundary conditions can sometimes cause discontinuous responses in climate models and result in relatively rapid transitions between different climate states. Such terrestrially induced abrupt climate transitions could have contributed to biotic crises in earth history. Ancillary events associated with transitions could disperse unstable climate behavior over a longer but still geologically brief interval and account for the stepwise nature of some extinction events. There is a… Expand
Abrupt Climate Change and Transient Climates during the Paleogene: A Marine Perspective
It is investigated the possibility that sudden reorganizations in ocean and/or atmosphere circulation during these abrupt transitions generated short-term positive feedbacks that briefly sustained these transient climatic states. Expand
Transient nature of late Pleistocene climate variability
It is proposed that increasing variablility within the past million years may indicate that the climate system was approaching a second climate bifurcation point, after which it would transition again to a new stable state characterized by permanent mid-latitude Northern Hemisphere glaciation. Expand
Estimating the potential for twenty-first century sudden climate change
  • D. Shindell
  • Environmental Science, Medicine
  • Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
  • 2007
Reductions in subtropical precipitation are likely to be the most severe hydrologic effects this century, with rapid changes due to the feedbacks of relatively well-understood large-scale circulation patterns. Expand
Abrupt Climate Change
Changes in Holocene climate have generally been gradual and the environmental security effects have been manageable. However, the long–term Holocene climate record also indicates that significantExpand
Climate change on tectonic time scales
Abstract Observational and modeling studies relevant to climate change on tectonic time scales are reviewed. Probably the most significant climate result from this time scale involves inferencesExpand
Paleoclimate Perspectives on a Greenhouse Warming
Results from paleoclimatology are used as a frame-of-reference for interpreting possible consequences of a future greenhouse wanning. The warming will probably represent a first-order change in theExpand
Climate modelling of mass-extinction events: a review
  • G. Feulner
  • Physics, Geography
  • International Journal of Astrobiology
  • 2009
Abstract Despite tremendous interest in the topic and decades of research, the origins of the major losses of biodiversity in the history of life on Earth remain elusive. A variety of possible causesExpand
Carbon cycle feedbacks and the initiation of Antarctic glaciation in the earliest Oligocene
The initiation of Antarctic glaciation in the early Oligocene (∼34 Ma) is represented by a distinct positive anomaly in the marine δ18O record designated Oi-1 and accompanied by positive excursionsExpand
Orbital variations, climate and paleoecology.
The interplay of solar radiation, seasonality and ice-sheet changes is responsible for the complex ecological history documented in the fossil record of the past 20 000 years. Expand
The projected timing of climate departure from recent variability
A new index of the year when the projected mean climate of a given location moves to a state continuously outside the bounds of historical variability under alternative greenhouse gas emissions scenarios is presented. Expand


The geologic record of climatic change
This paper reviews the principal results from paleoclimate studies and includes background material slanted toward climate modelers. The inferred temperature history of the last 4.6 billion yearsExpand
Application of a seasonal climate model to Cenozoic glaciation
Mathematical modelling of climate has matured as a discipline to the point that it can be useful in palaeoclimatology. As an example a new two-dimensional energy balance model is described andExpand
Temperature and biotic crises in the marine realm
Climatic change has been a prominent cause of marine mass extinction, but areal restriction of seafloor during global regression has not. Late Eocene and Pliocene-Pleistocene cooling, for example,Expand
Nondeterministic theories of climatic change
Abstract A basic assumption in some climatic theories is that, given the physical properties of the atmosphere and the underlying ocean and land, specified environmental parameters (amount of solarExpand
Destabilization of the oceanic density structure and its significance to marine “extinction” events
Abstract Areally extensive overturn of deep toxic or biologically unconditioned water, at the beginning of climatic change, is suggested as a possible contributing factor to mass extinction events inExpand
The Mid-Quaternary Climatic Transition as the Free Response of a Three-Variable Dynamical Model
Abstract A simplified version of a previously described dynamical model governing global ice mass, atmospheric carbon dioxide, and mean ocean temperature (that may also be a proxy for some otherExpand
Insolation changes, ice volumes, and the O18 record in deep‐sea cores
A detailed curve of ice volume versus time is needed in order to test the validity of the hypothesis that changes in the earth's orbital parameters are the cause of oscillations in PleistoceneExpand
Tertiary oxygen isotope synthesis, sea level history, and continental margin erosion
Tertiary benthic and planktonic foraminiferal oxygen isotope records are correlated to a standard geomagnetic polarity time scale, making use of improved chronostratigraphic control and additionalExpand
Paleogene stable isotope events
The oxygen isotope record in Paleogene benthic Foraminifera shows that at the base of the Paleogene the ocean deep waters had a temperature of about 10°C, rising to about 12°C at the base of theExpand
Mid-Oligocene Extinction Event in North American Land Mammals
An abrupt mid-Oligocene extinction event appears in the record of North American land mammals, which results in the selective disappearance of archaic members of the fauna and later diversification of other taxa, suggesting climatic and ecological causes rather than an extraterrestrial catastrophe. Expand