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Interdecadal climate variability in the Coral Sea since 1708 A.D.

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Low resolution (5-year) Sr/Ca and δ18O samples, extending back to 1708 A.D., were analysed from a Porites coral core collected from Flinders Reef, an offshore reef on the Queensland Plateau in the western Coral Sea (17.5° S, 148.3° E). Using the Sr/Ca ratio as a proxy for sea surface temperature (SST), we deconvolved a salinity record by subtracting the SST signal from the δ18O record. Decadal variability in the reconstructed salinity record is closely paralleled by changes in SST, with cooler (warmer) temperatures recorded during wetter (drier) periods. This relationship differs from the conventional view often described for tropical areas, where warm temperatures are associated with wet periods and cool temperatures with dry periods. The anti-correlation between reconstructed SST and salinity observed at Flinders Reef, however, matches the climatic effects expected from variations in the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO), a recurrent pattern of SST variability over the Pacific Ocean which is known to modulate Australia's climate, in particular the impact of ENSO events on decadal time scales. On longer timescales, salinity seems to have remained almost constant for the last two centuries after a progressive freshening of surface waters that culminated around 1800 A.D. Conversely, SSTs show a warming trend towards the late 20th century. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication Date


  • 2007

Citation


  • Calvo, E., Marshall, J. F., Pelejero, C., McCulloch, M. T., Gagan, M. K., & Lough, J. M. (2007). Interdecadal climate variability in the Coral Sea since 1708 A.D.. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 248(1-2), 190-201. doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2006.12.003

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-34247101689

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 190

End Page


  • 201

Volume


  • 248

Issue


  • 1-2

Abstract


  • Low resolution (5-year) Sr/Ca and δ18O samples, extending back to 1708 A.D., were analysed from a Porites coral core collected from Flinders Reef, an offshore reef on the Queensland Plateau in the western Coral Sea (17.5° S, 148.3° E). Using the Sr/Ca ratio as a proxy for sea surface temperature (SST), we deconvolved a salinity record by subtracting the SST signal from the δ18O record. Decadal variability in the reconstructed salinity record is closely paralleled by changes in SST, with cooler (warmer) temperatures recorded during wetter (drier) periods. This relationship differs from the conventional view often described for tropical areas, where warm temperatures are associated with wet periods and cool temperatures with dry periods. The anti-correlation between reconstructed SST and salinity observed at Flinders Reef, however, matches the climatic effects expected from variations in the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO), a recurrent pattern of SST variability over the Pacific Ocean which is known to modulate Australia's climate, in particular the impact of ENSO events on decadal time scales. On longer timescales, salinity seems to have remained almost constant for the last two centuries after a progressive freshening of surface waters that culminated around 1800 A.D. Conversely, SSTs show a warming trend towards the late 20th century. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication Date


  • 2007

Citation


  • Calvo, E., Marshall, J. F., Pelejero, C., McCulloch, M. T., Gagan, M. K., & Lough, J. M. (2007). Interdecadal climate variability in the Coral Sea since 1708 A.D.. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 248(1-2), 190-201. doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2006.12.003

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-34247101689

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 190

End Page


  • 201

Volume


  • 248

Issue


  • 1-2