Yu, Pai-Sen; Chen, Min-Te (2011): A prolonged warm and humid interval during Marine Isotope Stage 13-15 as revealed by hydrographic reconstructions from the South China Sea (IMAGES MD972142). Elsevier, Oxford, United Kingdom, In: Chen, Min-Te (editor), Sun Youbin (editor), An Zhisheng (editor), Quaternary paleoclimate of the western Pacific and east Asia; state of the art and new discovery, 40 (6), 1230-1237, georefid:2011-078986

Variations of orbital-driven insolation, ice volume, and greenhouse gas effects have been proposed as major controlling factors in determining the timing and amplitude of Quaternary cyclic climate changes. However, it remains to be determined how the internal feedback in the tropical atmosphere and ocean and the coupling between the low- and high-latitude systems may have produced instability or non-cyclic changes in the long-term climate evolution. Such "abnormalities" have been reported increasingly from paleoclimatic reconstructions in East Asia and the western Pacific for a prolonged warm and humid climate interval during marine isotope stage (MIS) 13-15, approximately 475-610 kya. To better address the climate abnormality in MIS 13-15 that has been observed in the western Pacific, here we report high-resolution late Quaternary planktic foraminifer faunal abundance and faunal sea surface temperature (SST) records from the International Marine Past Global Change (IMAGES) program core MD972142, which was retrieved from the southeastern South China Sea (SCS). Our results indicate that the faunal assemblages and SSTs in the southeastern SCS express a substantially prolonged, unusual warm interglacial-type climate condition in MIS 13-15. The climate was abnormally warm during the cold MIS 14. Our study also suggests a lowering of sea surface salinity (SSS) during MIS 13-15. While the western Pacific climate experienced a persistently warm and humid period at MIS 14, a "normal" cooling ( approximately 2 degrees C) condition on the surface of the eastern equatorial Pacific existed concomitantly. While assessing possible interpretations of this "abnormal" climate interval in MIS 13-15, our study indicates that an enhanced interhemispheric and/or longitudinal temperature gradient across the basin-wide Pacific cannot be ruled out. A change in the sensitivity of the East Asian Monsoon (EAM) that controlled temperature and precipitation patterns in East Asia and the western Pacific is probably also important or responsible for this climate abnormality. Based on our evidence, we suggest that the tropical dynamics would have played a role in the climate abnormality in MIS 13-15, through maintaining or even increasing the longitudinal SST gradient in the equatorial Pacific, which may have intensified the low-latitude trade winds in the eastern component of the Walker Circulation that drove a longer duration and/or stronger intensity of the summer vs. winter EAM. Abstract Copyright (2011) Elsevier, B.V.
West: -82.2800 East: 119.2900 North: 12.4200 South: .0100
Expedition: 202
Site: 202-1240
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Data set link: http://sedis.iodp.org/pub-catalogue/index.php?id=10.1016/j.jseaes.2010.08.002 (c.f. for more detailed metadata)
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