When did the Anthropocene begin? A mid-twentieth century boundary level is stratigraphically optimal

  title={When did the Anthropocene begin? A mid-twentieth century boundary level is stratigraphically optimal},
  author={Jan A. Zalasiewicz and Colin N. Waters and Mark Williams and Anthony D Barnosky and Alejandro Cearreta and Paul J. Crutzen and Erle C. Ellis and Michael A. Ellis and Ian J. Fairchild and Jacques Grinevald and Peter Haff and I. Hajdas and Reinhold Leinfelder and John R. McNeill and Eric Odada and Cl{\'e}ment Poirier and Daniel D. Richter and Will Steffen and Colin Summerhayes and James P. M. Syvitski and Davor Vidas and Michael Wagreich and Scott L. Wing and Alexander P. Wolfe and Zhisheng An and Naomi Oreskes},
  journal={Quaternary International},

Figures from this paper

A transparent framework for defining the Anthropocene Epoch

Lewis and Maslin (2015) applied modern geological requirements to a systematic search for evidence of markers that could be used to define a new geological time unit, the Anthropocene Epoch. These

The Anthropocene as Process: Why We Should View the State of the World through a Deep Historical Lens

  • T. Braje
  • Geology
    Revista de Estudos e Pesquisas Avançadas do Terceiro Setor
  • 2018
The geological community and the Anthropocene Working Group (AWG) are moving ever closer to formalizing a new geologic epoch, the Anthropocene. First proposed to raise awareness for planetary

The Anthropocene as an Event, not an Epoch

Over the course of the last decade the concept of the Anthropocene has become widely established within and beyond the geoscientific literature but its boundaries remain undefined. Formal definition

Making the case for a formal Anthropocene Epoch: an analysis of ongoing critiques

A range of published arguments against formalizing the Anthropocene as a geological time unit have variously suggested that it is a misleading term of non-stratigraphic origin and usage, is based on

Identifying a Pre-Columbian Anthropocene in California

The beginning of the Anthropocene, a proposed geological epoch denoting human-caused changes to Earth’s systems, and what metrics signify its onset is currently under debate. Proposed initiation

The ‘Little Ice Age’: the first virtual issue of The Holocene

The so-called ‘Little Ice Age’ (LIA) of the 15th–19th centuries is a fascinating period of time, for many reasons. Extensive reading of the literature on the topic can reveal the following: (1) in

The Anthropocene is functionally and stratigraphically distinct from the Holocene

C climatic, biological, and geochemical signatures of human activity in sediments and ice cores, Combined with deposits of new materials and radionuclides, as well as human-caused modification of sedimentary processes, the Anthropocene stands alone stratigraphically as a new epoch beginning sometime in the mid–20th century.

The Anthropocene: Exploring its origins, biology, and future

  • M. Lucock
  • Art
    American journal of human biology : the official journal of the Human Biology Council
  • 2020
It is argued that in attempting to define the Anthropocene Epoch/Age and its future effects, long-term human biology and its environmental sequelae should inform on this existential question, not semantics, divisive political conjecture and populist selfinterest, or a snap-shot of historically recent geology.



Are we now living in the Anthropocene

The term Anthropocene, proposed and increasingly employed to denote the current interval of anthropogenic global environmental change, may be discussed on stratigraphic grounds. A case can be made

The term ‘Anthropocene’ in the context of formal geological classification

Abstract In recent years, ‘Anthropocene’ has been proposed as an informal stratigraphic term to denote the current interval of anthropogenic global environmental change. A case has also been made to

Inventing the Present: Historical Roots of the Anthropocene

In 1833, Charles Lyell proposed that the current post-glacial geological epoch be termed Recent. In the late 1860s, Paul Gervais suggested Holocene as a more appropriate name for the same epoch. In

A stratigraphical basis for the Anthropocene?

Abstract Recognition of intimate feedback mechanisms linking changes across the atmosphere, biosphere, geosphere and hydrosphere demonstrates the pervasive nature of humankind's influence, perhaps to

The Anthropocene: a comparison with the Ordovician–Silurian boundary

Analysis and definition of the Anthropocene as a potential formal unit within the Geological Time Scale necessitates overt comparison of present day, geologically significant environmental changes

Can an Anthropocene Series be defined and recognized?

Abstract We consider the Anthropocene as a physical, chronostratigraphic unit across terrestrial and marine sedimentary facies, from both a present and a far future perspective, provisionally using

Ice Sheets and the Anthropocene

Abstract Ice could play a role in identifying and defining the Anthropocene. The recurrence of northern hemisphere glaciation and the stability of the Greenland Ice Sheet are both potentially

The stratigraphic status of the Anthropocene

The term Anthropocene was coined to describe the present geological epoch, in which human activity dominates many of the processes acting on the surface of the Earth. The expression has been widely

The Anthropocene

It is argued that the debate about the “Age of Humans” is a timely opportunity both to rethink the nature-culture relation and to re-assess the narratives that historians of science, technology, and the environment have written until now.

Geomorphology of the Anthropocene: time-transgressive discontinuities of human-induced alluviation