Dynamic behaviour of the East Antarctic ice sheet during Pliocene warmth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Authors

  • Carys P. Cook
  • Tina Van De Flierdt
  • Trevor Williams
  • Sidney R. Hemming
  • Masao Iwai
  • Munemasa Kobayashi
  • Francisco J. Jimenez-Espejo
  • Carlota Escutia
  • Jhon Jairo González
  • Boo Keun Khim
  • Robert M. McKay
  • Sandra Passchier
  • Steven M. Bohaty
  • Christina R. Riesselman
  • Lisa Tauxe
  • Saiko Sugisaki
  • Alberto Lopez Galindo
  • Molly O. Patterson
  • Francesca Sangiorgi
  • Elizabeth L. Pierce
  • Henk Brinkhuis
  • Adam Klaus
  • Annick Fehr
  • Peter K. Bijl
  • Stephanie A. Carr
  • Robert B. Dunbar
  • José Abel Flores
  • Travis G. Hayden
  • Kota Katsuki
  • Gee Soo Kong
  • Mutsumi Nakai
  • Matthew P. Olney
  • Stephen F. Pekar
  • Jörg Pross
  • Ursula Röhl
  • Toyosaburo Sakai
  • Prakash K. Shrivastava
  • Catherine E. Stickley
  • Shouting Tuo
  • Kevin Welsh
  • Masako Yamane

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Imperial College London
  • Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
  • Columbia University in the City of New York
  • Kochi University
  • CSIC-UGR - Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (IACT)
  • Pusan National University
  • University of Wellington
  • Montclair State University
  • University of Southampton
  • University of Otago
  • Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Tokyo Metropolitan University
  • Wellesley College
  • The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College, Brownsville, Texas 78520, USA
  • RWTH Aachen University
  • Colorado School of Mines
  • Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA
  • Universidad de Salamanca
  • Western Michigan University
  • Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources
  • Daito Bunka University
  • University of South Florida Tampa
  • Queens College, City University of New York
  • Goethe-Universität Frankfurt Am Main
  • University of Bremen
  • Utsunomiya University
  • Geological Survey of
  • Universitet i Tromsø
  • Tongji University
  • University of Queensland

Abstract

Warm intervals within the Pliocene epoch (5.33-2.58 million years ago) were characterized by global temperatures comparable to those predicted for the end of this century and atmospheric CO 2 concentrations similar to today. Estimates for global sea level highstands during these times imply possible retreat of the East Antarctic ice sheet, but ice-proximal evidence from the Antarctic margin is scarce. Here we present new data from Pliocene marine sediments recovered offshore of Adélie Land, East Antarctica, that reveal dynamic behaviour of the East Antarctic ice sheet in the vicinity of the low-lying Wilkes Subglacial Basin during times of past climatic warmth. Sedimentary sequences deposited between 5.3 and 3.3 million years ago indicate increases in Southern Ocean surface water productivity, associated with elevated circum-Antarctic temperatures. The geochemical provenance of detrital material deposited during these warm intervals suggests active erosion of continental bedrock from within the Wilkes Subglacial Basin, an area today buried beneath the East Antarctic ice sheet. We interpret this erosion to be associated with retreat of the ice sheet margin several hundreds of kilometres inland and conclude that the East Antarctic ice sheet was sensitive to climatic warmth during the Pliocene.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)765-769
Number of pages5
JournalNature Geoscience
Volume6
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas