A 2700-year record of ENSO and PDO variability from the Californian margin based on coccolithophore assemblages and calcification

Type Article
Date 2017-03
Language English
Author(s) Beaufort Luc1, Grelaud Michael2
Affiliation(s) 1 : Aix Marseille Univ, CNRS, Coll France, IRD,CEREGE, Ave Louis Philibert,BP80, F-13545 Aix En Provence 04, France.
2 : Autonomous Univ Barcelona UAB, Inst Environm Sci & Technol, Bellaterra 08193, Spain.
Source Progress In Earth And Planetary Science (2197-4284) (Springer), 2017-03 , Vol. 4 , N. 5 , P. 1-13
DOI 10.1186/s40645-017-0123-z
WOS© Times Cited 10
Keyword(s) El Nino Southern Oscillation, Pacific Decadal Oscillation, Past climate variability, Santa Barbara Basin, Solar cycles, Centennial climatic variability

The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) account for a large part of modern climate variability. Over the last decades, understanding of these modes of climate variability has increased but prediction in the context of global warming has proven difficult because of the lack of pertinent and reproducible paleodata. Here, we infer the dynamics of these oscillations from fossil assemblage and calcification state of coccolithophore in the Californian margin because El Niño has a strong impact on phytoplankton ecology and PDO on the upwelling intensity and hence on the ocean chemistry. Intense Californian upwelling brings water rich in CO2 and poor in carbonate ions and coccolithophores secrete lower calcified coccoliths. Seasonally laminated sediments of the Santa Barbara Basin are used to document ENSO variability and PDO index for the last 2700 years at a temporal resolution of 3 years. The records present the same characteristics as other PDO or ENSO records from the same area spanning the last centuries. We are therefore confident on the value produced here for the last 2.7 millennia. The records show important centennial variability that is equivalent to solar cycles.

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