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Temperate rainforests near the South Pole during peak Cretaceous warmth

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Title: Temperate rainforests near the South Pole during peak Cretaceous warmth
Authors: Klages, JP
Salzmann, U
Bickert, T
Hillenbrand, C-D
Gohl, K
Kuhn, G
Bohaty, S
Tischak, J
Mueller, J
Frederichs, T
Bauersachs, T
Ehrmann, W
Van de Flierdt, T
Simoes Pereira, P
Larter, RD
Lohmann, G
Niezgodzki, I
Uenzelmann-Neben, G
Zundel, M
Spiegel, C
Mark, C
Chew, D
Francis, JE
Nehrke, G
Schwarz, F
Smith, JA
Freudenthal, T
Esper, O
Paelike, H
Ronge, T
Dziadek, R
And the Science Team of Expedition PS104
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: The mid -Cretaceous was one of the warmest intervals of the past 140 million years31(Myr)1–5 driven by atmospheric CO2 levels around 1000 ppmv6. In the near absence of proximal geological records from south of the Antarctic Circle, it remains disputed whether polar ice could exist under such environmental conditions. Here we present results from a unique sedimentary sequence recovered from the West Antarctic shelf. This by far southernmost Cretaceous record contains an intact ~3 m-long network of in-situ fossil roots. The roots are embedded in a mudstone matrix bearing diverse pollen and spores, indicative of a temperate lowland rainforest environment at a palaeolatitude of ~82°S during the Turonian–Santonian (92–83 M yr). A climate model simulation shows that the reconstructed temperate climate at this high latitude requires a combination of both atmospheric CO2 contents of 1120–1680 ppmv and a vegetated land surface without major Antarctic glaciation, highlighting the important cooling effect exerted by ice albedo in high-CO2 climate world
Issue Date: 2-Apr-2020
Date of Acceptance: 23-Jan-2020
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/76835
DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2148-5
ISSN: 0028-0836
Publisher: Nature Research
Start Page: 81
End Page: 86
Journal / Book Title: Nature
Volume: 580
Issue: 7801
Copyright Statement: © 2020 Springer-Verlag. The final publication is available at Springer via https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-020-2148-5
Sponsor/Funder: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
Funder's Grant Number: NE/P019080/1
Keywords: Science & Technology
Multidisciplinary Sciences
Science & Technology - Other Topics
AMUNDSEN SEA EMBAYMENT
ANTARCTIC ICE-SHEET
JAMES-ROSS-ISLAND
MARIE BYRD LAND
HETEROCYST GLYCOLIPIDS
WEST ANTARCTICA
COEXISTENCE APPROACH
BOUNDARY-CONDITIONS
PROXY DATA
CLIMATE
Antarctic Regions
Atmosphere
Carbon Dioxide
Climate
Fossils
Geologic Sediments
History, Ancient
Models, Theoretical
New Zealand
Pollen
Rainforest
Spores
Temperature
Science Team of Expedition PS104
Spores
Pollen
Carbon Dioxide
Temperature
Atmosphere
Climate
Geologic Sediments
Models, Theoretical
Fossils
History, Ancient
Antarctic Regions
New Zealand
Rainforest
General Science & Technology
Publication Status: Published
Online Publication Date: 2020-04-01
Appears in Collections:Earth Science and Engineering
Faculty of Engineering