Evolution of Ocean Temperature and Ice Volume Through the Mid-Pleistocene Climate Transition

  title={Evolution of Ocean Temperature and Ice Volume Through the Mid-Pleistocene Climate Transition},
  author={Henry Elderfield and Paolo Ferretti and Mervyn Greaves and S. Crowhurst and I. Nick McCave and David A. Hodell and Alexander M. Piotrowski},
  pages={704 - 709}
Cycling Down The Mid-Pleistocene Transition, which lasted from approximately 1.25 million to 700 thousand years ago, was a period during which the dominant periodicity of Earth's climate cycles inexplicably changed from 41 thousand to 100 thousand years. This change is clearly apparent in the oxygen isotopic composition of many calcifying marine organisms, but changes in both ice volume and temperature affect the signal, and so exactly what the signal means has remained unclear. Elderfield et… 

Thermohaline circulation crisis and impacts during the mid-Pleistocene transition

A major disruption of the ocean thermohaline circulation (THC) system during the mid-Pleistocene transition effectively marks the first 100-thousand-year cycle, including an exceptional weakening through a critical interglacial (MIS 23) at ~900 thousand years ago.

The residence time of Southern Ocean surface waters and the 100,000-year ice age cycle

Using surface- and bottom-dwelling foraminifera from the Antarctic Zone of the Southern Ocean to reconstruct the deep-to-surface supply of water during the ice ages of the past 1.5 million years, it is found that a reduction in deep water supply and a concomitant freshening of the surface ocean coincided with the emergence of the high-amplitude 100,000-year glacial cycle.

Deep Atlantic Ocean carbon storage and the rise of 100,000-year glacial cycles

Over the past three million years, Earth’s climate oscillated between warmer interglacials with reduced terrestrial ice volume and cooler glacials with expanded polar ice sheets. These climate

Breathing more deeply: Deep ocean carbon storage during the mid-Pleistocene climate transition

The ∼100 k.y. cyclicity of the late Pleistocene ice ages started during the mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT), as ice sheets became larger and persisted for longer. The climate system feedbacks

Mid-Pleistocene transition in glacial cycles explained by declining CO2 and regolith removal

Model simulations reveal the importance of atmospheric CO2 and glacial erosion of regolith for Quaternary climate dynamics. Variations in Earth’s orbit pace the glacial-interglacial cycles of the

The influence of ice sheets on the climate during the past 38 millionyears

Since the inception of the Antarctic ice sheet at the Eocene-Oligocene Transition (~ 34 Myr ago), land ice has played a crucial role in Earth's climate. Through the ice-albedo and

Ice Sheets in Transition

  • P. Clark
  • Environmental Science
  • 2012
Elderfield et al. (4) provide important new insights into ice-age variability and the origin and timing of the middle Pleistocene transition, which began at some time after 1.25 million years ago.



Deep-Sea Temperature and Ice Volume Changes Across the Pliocene-Pleistocene Climate Transitions

An orbitally resolved record of deep ocean temperature derived from benthic foraminiferal magnesium/calcium ratios from the North Atlantic shows that temperature variations are a substantial portion of the global δ18Ob signal.

The Mid‐Pleistocene climate transition: A deep sea carbon isotopic perspective

Five δ13C records from the deep ocean, extending back to 1.3 Ma, were examined in order to constrain changes in mean ocean carbon isotope composition and thermohaline circulation over the 41- to

Modelled atmospheric temperatures and global sea levels over the past million years

A coupled model of the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets and ocean temperatures, forced to match an oxygen isotope record for the past million years compiled from 57 globally distributed sediment cores, finds that during extreme glacial stages, air temperatures were 17.8 °C lower than present, with a 120 ± 10 m sea level equivalent of continental ice present.

The timing of Pleistocene glaciations from a simple multiple-state climate model

The Earth's climate over the past million years has been characterized by a succession of cold and warm periods, known as glacial–interglacial cycles, with periodicities corresponding to those of the

Plio-Pleistocene Ice Volume, Antarctic Climate, and the Global δ18O Record

We propose that from ∼3 to 1 million years ago, ice volume changes occurred in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, each controlled by local summer insolation. Because Earth's orbital

Simulating low frequency changes in atmospheric CO 2 during the last 740 000 years

Abstract. Atmospheric CO2 measured in Antarctic ice cores shows a natural variability of 80 to 100 ppmv during the last four glacial cycles and variations of approximately 60 ppmv in the two cycles

Sea-level fluctuations during the last glacial cycle

A hydraulic model of the water exchange between the Red Sea and the world ocean is used to derive the sill depth—and hence global sea level—over the past 470,000 years, finding that sea-level changes of up to 35 m occurred, coincident with abrupt changes in climate.

Intensified deep Pacific inflow and ventilation in Pleistocene glacial times

Sediment records are used to reconstruct deep-water properties and speed changes during the Pleistocene epoch to infer that the global thermohaline circulation was perturbed significantly during the mid-Pleistocene climate transition between 0.86 and 0.45 million years ago.