Report

Reconstruction of the Amazon Basin Effective Moisture Availability over the Past 14,000 Years

Science  22 Dec 2000:
Vol. 290, Issue 5500, pp. 2285-2287
DOI: 10.1126/science.290.5500.2285

You are currently viewing the abstract.

View Full Text

Via your Institution

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution


Abstract

Quantifying the moisture history of the Amazon Basin is essential for understanding the cause of rain forest diversity and its potential as a methane source. We reconstructed the Amazon River outflow history for the past 14,000 years to provide a moisture budget for the river drainage basin. The oxygen isotopic composition of planktonic foraminifera recovered from a marine sediment core in a region of Amazon River discharge shows that the Amazon Basin was extremely dry during the Younger Dryas, with the discharge reduced by at least 40% as compared with that of today. After the Younger Dryas, a meltwater-driven discharge event was followed by a steady increase in the Amazon Basin effective moisture throughout the Holocene.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: mmaslin{at}geog.ucl.ac.uk

  • Present address: Department of Geosciences, Morrill Science Center, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003, USA.

View Full Text

Related Content