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Control of Seasonality and Interannual
to Centennial Climate Variability
in the Caribbean During
the Holocene Combining Coral Records,
Stalagmite Records and Climate Models
Thomas Felis, Denis Scholz, Gerrit Lohmann, Cyril Giry,
Claudia Fensterer, Wei Wei and Augusto Mangini
Abstract This study aimed at quantifying the amplitudes of seasonality and
interannual to centennial climate variability in the Caribbean region throughout the
Holocene, by using marine (shallow-water corals) and terrestrial (speleothems)
climate archives, and climate model simulations (COSMOS). Sea-surface temper-
ature (SST) variability on interdecadal to multidecadal timescales was more pro-
nounced during the mid-Holocene compared to the late Holocene. The amplitude of
the SST annual cycle was within the present-day range throughout most of the last
6,000 years. Exceptions include slightly increased SST seasonality at 6,200 years
ago, which can be attributed mainly to insolation forcing on orbital timescales, and
an increased SST seasonality at 2,350 years ago that can be attributed to internal
dynamics of the climate system (El Ni
o-Southern Oscillation). On multidecadal
and millennial timescales, precipitation variability during the Holocene was
strongly linked to SST in the North Atlantic Ocean, namely the Atlantic Multi-
decadal Oscillation and variations in the strength of the Atlantic Meridional
Overturning Circulation.
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