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Early Oligocene glaciation and productivity in the eastern equatorial Pacific: Insights into global carbon cycling

Early Oligocene glaciation and productivity in the eastern equatorial Pacific: Insights into global carbon cycling
Early Oligocene glaciation and productivity in the eastern equatorial Pacific: Insights into global carbon cycling
The onset of sustained Antarctic glaciation across the Eocene-Oligocene transition (EOT) marks a pivotal change in Earth's climate, but our understanding of this event, particularly the role of the carbon cycle, is limited. To help address this gap we present the following paleoceanographic proxy records from Ocean Drilling Program Site 1218 in the eastern equatorial Pacific (EEP): (1) stable isotope (?18O and ?13C) records generated in epifaunal benthic foraminifera (Cibicidoides spp.) to improve (double the resolution) the previously published records; (2) ?18O and ?13C records measured on Oridorsalis umbonatus, a shallow infaunal species; and (3) a record of benthic foraminifera accumulation rate (BFAR). Our new isotope data sets confirm the existence at Site 1218 of a two-step ?18O increase. They also lend support to the hypothesized existence of a late Eocene transient ?18O increase and early Oligocene Oi-1a and Oi-1b glacial maxima. Our record of BFAR indicates a transient (?500 kyr) twofold to threefold peak relative to baseline Oligocene values associated with the onset of Antarctic glaciation that we attribute to enhanced biological export production in the EEP. This takes the same general form as the history of opal accumulation in the Southern Ocean, suggesting strong high-to-low-latitude oceanic coupling. These findings appear to lend support to the idea that the EOT ?13C excursion is traceable to increased organic carbon (Corg) burial. Paradoxically, early Oligocene sediments in the EEP are extremely Corg-poor, and proxy records of atmospheric pCO2 indicate a transient increase associated with the EOT.
0883-8305
PA2221
Coxall, Helen K.
aeeac8f5-cc62-4861-8805-4a2027b33b6c
Wilson, Paul A.
f940a9f0-fa5a-4a64-9061-f0794bfbf7c6
Coxall, Helen K.
aeeac8f5-cc62-4861-8805-4a2027b33b6c
Wilson, Paul A.
f940a9f0-fa5a-4a64-9061-f0794bfbf7c6

Coxall, Helen K. and Wilson, Paul A. (2011) Early Oligocene glaciation and productivity in the eastern equatorial Pacific: Insights into global carbon cycling. Paleoceanography, 26 (2), PA2221. (doi:10.1029/2010PA002021).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The onset of sustained Antarctic glaciation across the Eocene-Oligocene transition (EOT) marks a pivotal change in Earth's climate, but our understanding of this event, particularly the role of the carbon cycle, is limited. To help address this gap we present the following paleoceanographic proxy records from Ocean Drilling Program Site 1218 in the eastern equatorial Pacific (EEP): (1) stable isotope (?18O and ?13C) records generated in epifaunal benthic foraminifera (Cibicidoides spp.) to improve (double the resolution) the previously published records; (2) ?18O and ?13C records measured on Oridorsalis umbonatus, a shallow infaunal species; and (3) a record of benthic foraminifera accumulation rate (BFAR). Our new isotope data sets confirm the existence at Site 1218 of a two-step ?18O increase. They also lend support to the hypothesized existence of a late Eocene transient ?18O increase and early Oligocene Oi-1a and Oi-1b glacial maxima. Our record of BFAR indicates a transient (?500 kyr) twofold to threefold peak relative to baseline Oligocene values associated with the onset of Antarctic glaciation that we attribute to enhanced biological export production in the EEP. This takes the same general form as the history of opal accumulation in the Southern Ocean, suggesting strong high-to-low-latitude oceanic coupling. These findings appear to lend support to the idea that the EOT ?13C excursion is traceable to increased organic carbon (Corg) burial. Paradoxically, early Oligocene sediments in the EEP are extremely Corg-poor, and proxy records of atmospheric pCO2 indicate a transient increase associated with the EOT.

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Published date: 2011

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 191775
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/191775
ISSN: 0883-8305
PURE UUID: 844d0a5c-fffc-47cc-8a2f-214a2a61e404

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Date deposited: 24 Jun 2011 12:20
Last modified: 25 Nov 2021 21:54

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Contributors

Author: Helen K. Coxall
Author: Paul A. Wilson

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