Global ocean heat content in the Last Interglacial

Shackleton, S.; Baggenstos, Daniel; Menking, J. A.; Dyonisius, M. N.; Bereiter, Bernhard; Bauska, T. K.; Rhodes, R. H.; Brook, E. J.; Petrenko, V. V.; McConnell, J. R.; Kellerhals, T.; Häberli, M.; Schmitt, J.; Fischer, Hubertus; Severinghaus, J. P. (2020). Global ocean heat content in the Last Interglacial. Nature geoscience, 13(1), pp. 77-81. Springer Nature 10.1038/s41561-019-0498-0

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The Last Interglacial (129–116 thousand years ago (ka)) represents one of the warmest climate intervals of the past 800,000 years and the most recent time when sea level was metres higher than today. However, the timing and magnitude of the peak warmth varies between reconstructions, and the relative importance of individual sources that contribute to the elevated sea level (mass gain versus seawater expansion) during the Last Interglacial remains uncertain. Here we present the first mean ocean temperature record for this interval from noble gas measurements in ice cores and constrain the thermal expansion con-tribution to sea level. Mean ocean temperature reached its maximum value of 1.1 ± 0.3 °C warmer-than-modern values at the end of the penultimate deglaciation at 129 ka, which resulted in 0.7 ± 0.3 m of thermosteric sea-level rise relative to present level. However, this maximum in ocean heat content was a transient feature; mean ocean temperature decreased in the first several thousand years of the interglacial and achieved a stable, comparable-to-modern value by ~127 ka. The synchroneity of the peak in mean ocean temperature with proxy records of abrupt transitions in the oceanic and atmospheric circulation suggests that the mean ocean temperature maximum is related to the accumulation of heat in the ocean interior during the preceding period of reduced overturning circulation.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Climate and Environmental Physics
08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute
10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)

UniBE Contributor:

Baggenstos, Daniel; Bereiter, Bernhard and Fischer, Hubertus

Subjects:

500 Science > 530 Physics
500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology

ISSN:

1752-0894

Publisher:

Springer Nature

Funders:

[UNSPECIFIED] ERC Advanced Grant MATRICs (no. 226172)
[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Projects:

[UNSPECIFIED] 200020_172506 (iCEP),
[UNSPECIFIED] 200021_155906 (NOTICE)

Language:

English

Submitter:

Hubertus Fischer

Date Deposited:

20 Jan 2020 08:50

Last Modified:

07 Jul 2020 02:30

Publisher DOI:

10.1038/s41561-019-0498-0

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.138071

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/138071

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