Abrupt climate changes during the last deglaciation and Holocene: pollen & biomarker analyses from the Portuguese Margin

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Anna Cutmore

E-mail Address:

anna.cutmore.15@ucl.ac.uk

Start Year

2016 (Cohort 3)

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PhD Project
PhD Title

Abrupt climate changes during the last deglaciation and Holocene: pollen & biomarker analyses from the Portuguese Margin

Research Theme

Past Life and Environments

Primary Supervisor
Primary Institution

UCL

Secondary Supervisor
Secondary Institution

UCL

Abstract

In light of the current rate of anthropogenic climate change, it is becoming increasingly critical to enhance knowledge of past abrupt climate events and the subsequent responses of Earth’s system. Vegetation is one such component that responds rapidly to abrupt events (Allen et al., 1999), however understanding is currently spatially and temporally limited. As this component plays such a critical role in carbon sequestration, nutrient cycling and food and economic security (Costanza et al., 1997), improving this knowledge is vital. One period that can provide such insight is the Last deglaciation and the Holocene, circa 21kya to present, as a number of abrupt stadial and interstadial events occurred during this time (Dansgaard et al., 1982). The Iberian Margin an ideal location to study the global impacts of these events, as it links both Greenland and Antarctic climate data (Shackleton et al., 2000), and provides access to both high-latitude and sub-tropical climate trends (Tzedakis et al., 2009). Therefore, this research will explore the response of vegetation in western Iberia to millennial and centennial-scale changes, particularly changes in moisture availability, over the deglaciation and Holocene, using pollen and leaf-wax isotopic biomarker records (δD and δ13C) from Iberian Margin core JC089-06-5K.

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