Climatic Implications of an 8000-Year Hydrogen Isotope Time Series from Bristlecone Pine Trees

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Science  19 Aug 1994:
Vol. 265, Issue 5175, pp. 1079-1081
DOI: 10.1126/science.265.5175.1079


Tree rings from three dendrochronologically dated bristlecone pines were analyzed for stable hydrogen isotopic composition. These trees give a continuous time series from 8000 years ago to the present that indicates the presence of a postglacial climate optimum 6800 years ago and a continuous cooling since then. The qualitative agreement between this record and records from other sources, such as ice cores, pollen, and treeline fluctuations, indicates that these climate changes were global. This record can serve as a reference for other climate indicators throughout the past 8000 years.