Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica

S. Passchier, S. M. Bohaty, F. Jiménez-Espejo, J. Pross, U. Röhl, T. Van De Flierdt, C. Escutia, H. Brinkhuis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Few high-latitude terrestrial records document the timing and nature of the Cenozoic "Greenhouse" to "Icehouse" transition. Here we exploit the bulk geochemistry of marine siliciclastic sediments from drill cores on Antarctica's continental margin to extract a unique semiquantitative temperature and precipitation record for Eocene to mid-Miocene (∼54-13 Ma). Alkaline elements are strongly enriched in the detrital mineral fraction in fine-grained siliciclastic marine sediments and only occur as trace metals in the biogenic fraction. Hence, terrestrial climofunctions similar to the chemical index of alteration (CIA) can be applied to the alkaline major element geochemistry of marine sediments on continental margins in order to reconstruct changes in precipitation and temperature. We validate this approach by comparison with published paleotemperature and precipitation records derived from fossil wood, leaves, and pollen and find remarkable agreement, despite uncertainties in the calibrations of the different proxies. A long-term cooling on the order of ≥8°C is observed between the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (∼54-52 Ma) and the middle Miocene (∼15-13 Ma) with the onset of transient cooling episodes in the middle Eocene at ∼46-45 Ma. High-latitude stratigraphic records currently exhibit insufficient temporal resolution to reconstruct continental aridity and inferred ice-sheet development during the middle to late Eocene (∼45-37 Ma). However, we find an abrupt aridification of East Antarctica near the Eocene-Oligocene transition (∼34 Ma), which suggests that ice coverage influenced high-latitude atmospheric circulation patterns through albedo effects from the earliest Oligocene onward.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1399-1410
Number of pages12
JournalGeochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems
Volume14
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2013

Fingerprint

aridification
Antarctic regions
Sediments
Eocene
Geochemistry
Miocene
Ice
polar regions
Cooling
cooling
sediments
continental shelves
geochemistry
ice
Greenhouses
marine sediment
Oligocene
continental margin
pollen
atmospheric circulation

Keywords

  • Antarctica
  • Cenozoic
  • Integrated Ocean Drilling Program
  • chemical index of alteration
  • greenhouse
  • icehouse

Cite this

Passchier, S., Bohaty, S. M., Jiménez-Espejo, F., Pross, J., Röhl, U., Van De Flierdt, T., ... Brinkhuis, H. (2013). Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 14(5), 1399-1410. https://doi.org/10.1002/ggge.20106
Passchier, S. ; Bohaty, S. M. ; Jiménez-Espejo, F. ; Pross, J. ; Röhl, U. ; Van De Flierdt, T. ; Escutia, C. ; Brinkhuis, H. / Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica. In: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. 2013 ; Vol. 14, No. 5. pp. 1399-1410.
@article{b48088f6ef214bd89cb6d1d4d4205027,
title = "Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica",
abstract = "Few high-latitude terrestrial records document the timing and nature of the Cenozoic {"}Greenhouse{"} to {"}Icehouse{"} transition. Here we exploit the bulk geochemistry of marine siliciclastic sediments from drill cores on Antarctica's continental margin to extract a unique semiquantitative temperature and precipitation record for Eocene to mid-Miocene (∼54-13 Ma). Alkaline elements are strongly enriched in the detrital mineral fraction in fine-grained siliciclastic marine sediments and only occur as trace metals in the biogenic fraction. Hence, terrestrial climofunctions similar to the chemical index of alteration (CIA) can be applied to the alkaline major element geochemistry of marine sediments on continental margins in order to reconstruct changes in precipitation and temperature. We validate this approach by comparison with published paleotemperature and precipitation records derived from fossil wood, leaves, and pollen and find remarkable agreement, despite uncertainties in the calibrations of the different proxies. A long-term cooling on the order of ≥8°C is observed between the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (∼54-52 Ma) and the middle Miocene (∼15-13 Ma) with the onset of transient cooling episodes in the middle Eocene at ∼46-45 Ma. High-latitude stratigraphic records currently exhibit insufficient temporal resolution to reconstruct continental aridity and inferred ice-sheet development during the middle to late Eocene (∼45-37 Ma). However, we find an abrupt aridification of East Antarctica near the Eocene-Oligocene transition (∼34 Ma), which suggests that ice coverage influenced high-latitude atmospheric circulation patterns through albedo effects from the earliest Oligocene onward.",
keywords = "Antarctica, Cenozoic, Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, chemical index of alteration, greenhouse, icehouse",
author = "S. Passchier and Bohaty, {S. M.} and F. Jim{\'e}nez-Espejo and J. Pross and U. R{\"o}hl and {Van De Flierdt}, T. and C. Escutia and H. Brinkhuis",
year = "2013",
month = "5",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1002/ggge.20106",
language = "English",
volume = "14",
pages = "1399--1410",
journal = "Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems",
issn = "1525-2027",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "5",

}

Passchier, S, Bohaty, SM, Jiménez-Espejo, F, Pross, J, Röhl, U, Van De Flierdt, T, Escutia, C & Brinkhuis, H 2013, 'Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica', Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, vol. 14, no. 5, pp. 1399-1410. https://doi.org/10.1002/ggge.20106

Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica. / Passchier, S.; Bohaty, S. M.; Jiménez-Espejo, F.; Pross, J.; Röhl, U.; Van De Flierdt, T.; Escutia, C.; Brinkhuis, H.

In: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, Vol. 14, No. 5, 01.05.2013, p. 1399-1410.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica

AU - Passchier, S.

AU - Bohaty, S. M.

AU - Jiménez-Espejo, F.

AU - Pross, J.

AU - Röhl, U.

AU - Van De Flierdt, T.

AU - Escutia, C.

AU - Brinkhuis, H.

PY - 2013/5/1

Y1 - 2013/5/1

N2 - Few high-latitude terrestrial records document the timing and nature of the Cenozoic "Greenhouse" to "Icehouse" transition. Here we exploit the bulk geochemistry of marine siliciclastic sediments from drill cores on Antarctica's continental margin to extract a unique semiquantitative temperature and precipitation record for Eocene to mid-Miocene (∼54-13 Ma). Alkaline elements are strongly enriched in the detrital mineral fraction in fine-grained siliciclastic marine sediments and only occur as trace metals in the biogenic fraction. Hence, terrestrial climofunctions similar to the chemical index of alteration (CIA) can be applied to the alkaline major element geochemistry of marine sediments on continental margins in order to reconstruct changes in precipitation and temperature. We validate this approach by comparison with published paleotemperature and precipitation records derived from fossil wood, leaves, and pollen and find remarkable agreement, despite uncertainties in the calibrations of the different proxies. A long-term cooling on the order of ≥8°C is observed between the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (∼54-52 Ma) and the middle Miocene (∼15-13 Ma) with the onset of transient cooling episodes in the middle Eocene at ∼46-45 Ma. High-latitude stratigraphic records currently exhibit insufficient temporal resolution to reconstruct continental aridity and inferred ice-sheet development during the middle to late Eocene (∼45-37 Ma). However, we find an abrupt aridification of East Antarctica near the Eocene-Oligocene transition (∼34 Ma), which suggests that ice coverage influenced high-latitude atmospheric circulation patterns through albedo effects from the earliest Oligocene onward.

AB - Few high-latitude terrestrial records document the timing and nature of the Cenozoic "Greenhouse" to "Icehouse" transition. Here we exploit the bulk geochemistry of marine siliciclastic sediments from drill cores on Antarctica's continental margin to extract a unique semiquantitative temperature and precipitation record for Eocene to mid-Miocene (∼54-13 Ma). Alkaline elements are strongly enriched in the detrital mineral fraction in fine-grained siliciclastic marine sediments and only occur as trace metals in the biogenic fraction. Hence, terrestrial climofunctions similar to the chemical index of alteration (CIA) can be applied to the alkaline major element geochemistry of marine sediments on continental margins in order to reconstruct changes in precipitation and temperature. We validate this approach by comparison with published paleotemperature and precipitation records derived from fossil wood, leaves, and pollen and find remarkable agreement, despite uncertainties in the calibrations of the different proxies. A long-term cooling on the order of ≥8°C is observed between the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (∼54-52 Ma) and the middle Miocene (∼15-13 Ma) with the onset of transient cooling episodes in the middle Eocene at ∼46-45 Ma. High-latitude stratigraphic records currently exhibit insufficient temporal resolution to reconstruct continental aridity and inferred ice-sheet development during the middle to late Eocene (∼45-37 Ma). However, we find an abrupt aridification of East Antarctica near the Eocene-Oligocene transition (∼34 Ma), which suggests that ice coverage influenced high-latitude atmospheric circulation patterns through albedo effects from the earliest Oligocene onward.

KW - Antarctica

KW - Cenozoic

KW - Integrated Ocean Drilling Program

KW - chemical index of alteration

KW - greenhouse

KW - icehouse

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84878644973&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/ggge.20106

DO - 10.1002/ggge.20106

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84878644973

VL - 14

SP - 1399

EP - 1410

JO - Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems

JF - Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems

SN - 1525-2027

IS - 5

ER -

Passchier S, Bohaty SM, Jiménez-Espejo F, Pross J, Röhl U, Van De Flierdt T et al. Early eocene to middle miocene cooling and aridification of east antarctica. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. 2013 May 1;14(5):1399-1410. https://doi.org/10.1002/ggge.20106