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Timing of Millennial-Scale Climate Change in Antarctica and Greenland During the Last Glacial Period

Science  05 Jan 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5501, pp. 109-112
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5501.109

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Abstract

A precise relative chronology for Greenland and West Antarctic paleotemperature is extended to 90,000 years ago, based on correlation of atmospheric methane records from the Greenland Ice Sheet Project 2 and Byrd ice cores. Over this period, the onset of seven major millennial-scale warmings in Antarctica preceded the onset of Greenland warmings by 1500 to 3000 years. In general, Antarctic temperatures increased gradually while Greenland temperatures were decreasing or constant, and the termination of Antarctic warming was apparently coincident with the onset of rapid warming in Greenland. This pattern provides further evidence for the operation of a “bipolar see-saw” in air temperatures and an oceanic teleconnection between the hemispheres on millennial time scales.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: blunier{at}princeton.edu

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