Oceanic, atmospheric and ice-sheet forcing of South East Atlantic Ocean productivity and South African monsoon intensity during MIS-12 to 10

Dickson, Alexander J.; Leng, Melanie J.; Maslin, Mark A. and Röhl, Ursula (2010). Oceanic, atmospheric and ice-sheet forcing of South East Atlantic Ocean productivity and South African monsoon intensity during MIS-12 to 10. Quaternary Science Reviews, 29(27-28) pp. 3936–3947.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2010.09.014

Abstract

Variations in the strength of coastal upwelling in the South East Atlantic Ocean and summer monsoonal rains over South Africa are controlled by the regional atmospheric circulation regime. Although information about these parameters exists for the last glacial period, little detailed information exists for older time periods. New information from ODP Site 1085 for Marine Isotope Stages (MIS) 12–10 shows that glacial–interglacial productivity trends linked to upwelling variability followed a pattern similar to the last glacial cycle, with maximums shortly before glacial maxima, and minimums shortly before glacial terminations. During the MIS-11/10 transition, several periodic oscillations in productivity and monsoonal proxies are best explained by southwards shifts in the southern sub-tropical high-pressure cells followed by abrupt northwards shifts. Comparison to coeval sea-surface temperature measurements suggests that these monsoonal cycles were tightly coupled to anti-phased hemispheric climate change, with an intensified summer monsoon during periods of Northern (Southern) Hemisphere cooling (warming). The timing of these events suggests a pacing by insolation over precession periods. A lack of similar regional circulation shifts during the MIS-13/12 transition is likely due to the large equatorwards shift in the tropical convection zone that occurred during this extreme glaciation.

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